We've got a trio of teams with very fantasy-friendly schedules in the coming week that also have multiple players who are widely available in ESPN leagues. This presents us with quite the opportunity on the fantasy baseball waiver wire as Week 8 dawns. Make sure you're all-in on these three teams, at least for the short term, when considering your free agent pickups and lineup decisions.
Miami Marlins: The Marlins begin their week with a four-game series at Colorado's Coors Field -- a dream arrangement for any offense, but especially good for a team that has notoriously struggled to score runs in recent seasons yet has (in encouraging fashion) scored five-plus runs in seven of its last 13 games. The Marlins hitter to grab is Jorge Soler, whose 12 home runs are tied for ninth-most in baseball, yet make him the only player with at least that many to be available in more than two-thirds of ESPN leagues. Soler is somehow out there in 83.6% of leagues!
Over his last 16 games, Soler has been a .323/.391/.677 hitter with seven of those 12 homers and 17 RBI, resulting in 60 fantasy points (tied for ninth among hitters). What's more, since the beginning of 2021, he's a .244/.350/.598 hitter against lefties, his .397 wOBA against that side 14th-best among players with at least 250 plate appearances facing that split. This is significant considering his Marlins are set to face four left-handed starters in their seven Week 8 games. In fact, to extend the schedule further, if the Marlins' future opponents keep their rotations on turn, Soler and the Marlins are likely to face nine lefty starters in their next 14 games through Monday, June 5.
Beyond Soler, the Marlins have additional hitters worth adding for at least the Coors series, even if those Coors games make Monday-Tuesday-Wednesday starters Edward Cabrera, Eury Perez and Sandy Alcantara "must sits" in ESPN's standard leagues. If you play in a rotisserie league, Jon Berti, who typically leads off against left-handers, is a worthwhile add-and-start for this upcoming stretch. Bryan De La Cruz, who has (with the exception of 2022 in the majors) routinely hit lefties well throughout his professional career, is also a recommended short-term fantasy play.
Chicago White Sox: This slow-starting team has begun to heat up, having swept the Kansas City Royals over the weekend. They've now won six of their last eight games, during which time the team's ERA was an MLB-leading 1.75. The team does have a rotation opening that arrives on Monday after Mike Clevinger (wrist) was placed on the IL. Jesse Scholtens seems a likely option after manager Pedro Grifol recently declared the rookie to be the "next man up."
Every other White Sox starter has re-established himself a strong fantasy starter for the foreseeable future. Dylan Cease aligns for a two-start Week 8, but the widely available starter to get is Michael Kopech, who is fresh off eight shutout innings -- a 10-strikeout masterpiece against the Royals -- and faces the Cleveland Guardians (Wednesday), Los Angeles Angels (May 29), Detroit Tigers (June 3) and Marlins (June 9) over the next three fantasy weeks.
It's a White Sox hitter who stands out as the team's top current pickup, however, as Jake Burger homered in three consecutive games following his return from an oblique injury, plus delivered four multi-hit performances in his seven games since activation. Burger has delivered better-than-90th-percentile Statcast rates in terms of average exit velocity, Barrel rate, hard-hit rate and expected wOBA (99th percentile!) this season and he's somehow still out there in 88.0% of ESPN leagues. Andrew Benintendi, the team's No. 2 hitter against right-handers, is also a strong pickup who remains free in 83.4% of ESPN leagues.
Colorado Rockies: The Rockies are having nothing but trouble filling out their rotation as injuries have depleted the staff to the point that, from their season-opening rotation, only Kyle Freeland and Austin Gomber remain -- and Chase Anderson needed to be scooped off waivers recently just to fill it out. It's plainly obvious for fantasy purposes that you want only this team's hitters, and generally only in their home games.
Here's the good news: The Rockies play all seven of their Week 8 games at Coors. Even extending beyond that, the team plays a full seven games (despite them all coming on the road) in Week 9, with three of them against an awful Royals pitching staff, then the team plays all of Week 10 at home. In short, it's a good 21-day stretch to lean on Rockies hitters, every one of which is out there in more than 20% of ESPN leagues.
Two particularly hot Rockies hitters, Brenton Doyle and Jurickson Profar, who have batted .292/.306/.625 (16 games) and .295/.377/.492 (15) in the month of May, are available in 98.0% and 89.6% of leagues, respectively. Profar typically leads off against lefties and bats second against righties, with generally better results against the latter. This is a good thing when his Rockies are aligned to face six right-handed starters in seven games. Doyle, meanwhile, has hit .302/.333/.698, with all four of his home runs in the majors thus far against same-handed pitchers.