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Roto Roundup: Raisel Iglesias, Blake Swihart, Andrew Heaney and others

Ray highlights some of the top fantasy performers from Wednesday's roto action, including two young starters, Andrew Heaney and Raisel iglesias, who are under-owned at the moment, Red Sox catcher Blake Swihart and others.

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Roto Roundup

The Reds are probably going to be active on the trade market this offseason, with Jay Bruce and Aroldis Chapman possible trade targets, but I don't see GM Walt Jocketty going all fire sale on us. That said, they have a few starting pitcher prospects in Michael Lorenzen, Robert Stephenson and recently dominant Raisel Iglesias. Yesterday, Iglesias dominated the Cubs, limiting them to 2 runs (two solo home runs), 3 walks and 10 strikeouts over 7 innings in the Reds 7-4 win. Iglesias did not get the win, as the Reds bullpen gave up the lead after he was pulled from the game. Iglesias has been pretty dominant over his last four starts, and is now 3-6 with a 3.81 ERA, 1.10 WHIP and a solid 97-26 strikeout to walk rate over 87.1 innings. Over his last four starts, he has given up just 6 runs on 13 hits, 9 walks and 36 strikeouts over 28 innings. After posting an ERA near 6.00 in the first half, he owns a very respectable 2.69 ERA in the second half, with a 70-17 strikeout to walk rate. He is striking out 10 batters per nine, limiting the walks and inducing ground balls at a 45% rate, so he could be a nice sleeper on draft day next season.

Another young starter who could come cheap on draft day next season is Angels starter Andrew Heaney. Yesterday, he limited the Athletics to 3 runs on 7 hits, no walks and 6 strikeouts over 7 innings in the Angels 9-4 win. The win moved his record to 6-2 with a 3.18 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and a 56-14 strikeout to walk rate in 79.1 innings. He isn't the strikeout pitcher that Iglesias is, but he limits the free pass. He struck out near a batter per inning in the upper minors, so the strikeouts could come in 2016. He has given up two runs or less in seven of his last ten starts, with a few disaster starts in there as well.

Red Sox catching prospect Blake Swihart is not your normal catcher. He has a solid hit tool, some power, but some speed as well. You probably saw highlights of his inside the park home run over the weekend. He was flying. And he's a catcher. Not your normal stocky catcher. Yesterday, Swihart had a good day at the plate, going 2-3 with 2 walks, 2 runs scored, an RBI and a stolen base. A STOLEN BASE. He's a catcher. Swihart is now hitting .284-.335-.387 with 2 home runs, 38 runs scored, 24 RBI and 3 stolen bases in just over 240 plate appearances. We haven't had a catcher steal 10 or more bases since Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina stole 12 bases back in 2012. We could see Swihart steal double digit bags as soon as next season, and there is value in that.

One of the late round picks in 2015 mixed leagues drafts was Royals designated hitter Kendrys Morales. Heck, he may not have been drafted in some mixed leagues, especially after his disappointing 2014 season where he hit just .218 with 8 home runs and 42 RBI in just over 400 plate appearances. He has been one of the better DHs this season, and last night he had a big night at the plate in the Royals big win over the Tigers. Morales (at the time I am writing this) went 2-3 with a home run, 2 runs scored and 3 RBI, and is now hitting .289-.355-.473 with 17 home runs, 60 runs scored and 94 RBI in 131 games. He ranks third in the American League, and leads all designated hitters, in RBI, and has been a consistent middle of the order hitter for the Royals this season. His performance at the plate has made Royals fans forget about former DH Billy Butler who is now in Oakland.

I have mentioned to you several times in these pages that if you get the chance to watch Clayton Kershaw pitch, you should take the time and do so, as you can say watched a Hall of Famer pitch. I don't know how much that means to you or not, but it is important for me. I love fantasy baseball, but watching Kershaw pitch every fifth day can be magical at times, and last night was one of them. Or, shall I say, another one. Kershaw was his dominant self once again last night, limiting the Giants to 1 run on 6 hits, a walk and striking out 15 batters. The win moves his record to 12-6 with a 2.18 ERA, 0.90 WHIP and a 251-34 strikeout to walk rate in 194 innings. He is on pace to strike out 300 batters in the season for the first time in his career. Over his last 17 starts dating back to the end of May, Kershaw has given up two runs or less in 14 of his 17 starts, and has given up one run or less in 11 of his last 12 starts. Yeah, that NL Cy Young award race is really going to be something.

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