Fantasy Baseball Today: Zack Wheeler back on track, young steals, Week 5 sleepers and more from Thursday

Happy Friday, everyone! Although it was a typical short Thursday slate – most of which we wrapped up prior to the start of the NFL Draft – there was a lot of great baseball action from Thursday. We had starters get back on track and other stud pitchers continue to deliver stud performances. The early-season breakout from Kyle Wright appears to be for real. But we also have some unfortunate news to get to. Royals 3B / SS Adalberto Mondesi was diagnosed with a torn ACL and is now expected to miss the remainder of the 2022 season.

Now let’s get back to some good news for all baseball fans – especially those in Atlanta. Ronald Acuna Jr. made his 2022 debut before the end of April was even over. And guess what? He stole two bases! Acuna finished with two bags and one hit on five at bats, but the steals are an excellent sign of what’s to come. There was some speculation that after returning from injury he would no longer be much of a base stealer, but those concerns were quelled tonight for me.

We also had Phillies SP Zack Wheeler finally get on track after a really rough start to the season. Wheeler threw six shutout innings against the Rockies and allowed just one hit with four walks. He also struck out seven and induced 11 swinging strikes on 90 pitches. The best news of all – he only allowed two hard hit balls the entire outing.

Below, we’ll dive into more of the standout hitters and pitchers from Thursday, Scott White’s Week 5 sleepers and two-start pitchers to play and more. But first, make sure you catch up on all of the great content going down over at CBSSports.com/Fantasy/Baseball. Scott White dove deep into a few more players you should consider scooping off your waiver wire. He also broke down why Orioles C Adley Rutschman needs to move to the top of your priority list in his prospects report. Chris Towers updated his trade values ​​chart for both Roto and H2H scoring leagues.

And of course, as always, you can follow to make sure you get the latest episodes of Fantasy Baseball Today right when they drop on Apple and Spotify.

Bags for all top prospects!

Speaking of stolen bases – Acuna was not the only one who grabbed multiple bags on Thursday. Mariners top prospect OF Julio Rodriguez stole two more bases on Thursday and is now up to a whopping eight on the season! Royals top prospect SS Bobby Witt Jr. also stole another bag and now has four.

Standout pitchers

Justin Verlander, HOU: Verlander delivered his third straight quality start going seven innings of one run ball against the Rangers. He allowed just four hits, one earned run and did not walk a batter while striking out eight. He now has a 1.73 ERA and 0.69 WHIP on the young season with 28 strikeouts over 26 innings pitched.

Alek Manoah, TOR: You can make that four straight quality starts for the Blue Jays’ best young pitcher. He went seven shutout innings against the Red Sox while allowing just three hits and one walk. He also struck out seven.

Kyle Wright, ATL: Wright kept the momentum going in what is looking like a true breakout season. He went seven deep against the Cubs and allowed just three hits, four walks and one earned run. He struck out eight.

Two-start pitchers to stream in Week 5

Sleeper hitters in Week 5

  • 63% rostered: Taylor Ward @ CHW1, @ BOS3, WAS3
  • 77%: Andrew Vaughn LAA1, @ CHC2, @ BOS3
  • 65%: Randal Grichuk WAS3, @ ARI3
  • 56%: Anthony Santander MIN4, KC3
  • 51%: Max Kepler @ BAL4, OAK3
  • 76%: Yuli Gurriel SEA3, DET4
  • 53%: Brandon Marsh @ CHW1, @ BOS3, WAS3
  • 45%: Luis Arraez @ BAL4, OAK3
  • 38%: Austin Hays MIN4, KC3
  • 19%: Daniel Vogelbach @ DET2, @ CIN4

Best hitter matchups

1. Twins @ BAL4, OAK3

2. Astros SEA3, DET4

3. Orioles MIN4, KC3

4. Angels @ CHW1, @ BOS3, WAS3

5. Rockies WAS3, @ ARI3

Worst hitter matchups

1. Cubs CHW2, LAD3

2. Rangers @ PHI2, @ NYY3

3. Guardians SD2, TOR4

4. Dodgers SF2, @ CHC3

5. Padres @ CLE2, MIA4

News and lineup notes

Every night the Fantasy Baseball Today team dives into all of the happenings around the MLB from top performers to injuries, trades and more. The podcast is a must listen for any diehard, if I do say so myself. Tune in to the podcast to hear the FBT crew expand on the news and notes below.

  • We’ve heard this before but Tony La Russa is hopeful that Luis Robert will return to the lineup Friday.
  • Vladimir Guerrero Jr. missed Thursday’s game after fouling a ball off his foot Wednesday night. X-Rays were negative.
  • Jose Altuve will begin a rehab assignment at Triple-A this weekend and is expected to return from the IL Monday.
  • Nolan Arenado has been issued a two-game suspension for his role in that benches-clearing brawl on Wednesday against the Mets.
  • Jack Flaherty advanced to throwing off flat ground from 240 feet Wednesday. He remains without a timetable with a shoulder injury.
  • Chris Sale threw seven pitches during a bullpen session this week. He’s on the IL with a stress fracture in his right rib cage.
  • Lance Lynn is progressing in his throwing program and could return by the end of May.
  • JD Martinez was held out of Thursday’s lineup after he aggravated his adductor injury. That does not sound great.
  • Kris Bryant has missed three straight games due to back stiffness.
  • Bailey Ober was removed from his start Thursday due to right groin tightness.
  • Mitch Haniger took part in a pregame workout Thursday but has yet to be officially activated from the COVID IL because he’s not feeling 100%.
  • Steven Kwan has missed four straight games due to that hamstring injury.
  • Nick Lodolo was placed on the IL with a lower-back strain but is expected to return next weekend against the Pirates.
  • Wil Myers was placed on the IL with a right thumb contusion. Matt Beaty has started two straight games.
  • Miguel Sano tweaked his knee on Tuesday night and has been receiving treatment. He did not play on Wednesday or Thursday.
  • Ken Giles has been cleared to resume throwing. He’s on the IL with a tendon injury in his right middle finger. Worth a stash in deeper category leagues? 14% rostered
  • Jordan Hicks is expected to start Sunday after leaving Tuesday’s start with a wrist contusion.
  • Ryan Mountcastle should return to the lineup Friday against the Red Sox.

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