Fantasy Baseball Rankings, Week 17: Model that beat experts says start Cavan Biggio, sit Anthony Rizzo

The MLB All-Star Game is over and the first full week of Fantasy baseball will begin on Monday. It’s already Week 17 of the season and owners everywhere are starting to position themselves for the stretch run and the postseason. Marlins starting pitcher Jordan Yamamoto has been one of the most added players in recent weeks with a 3-0 record and a 1.24 ERA. He’s now owned in 82 percent of CBS Sports leagues and is becoming a fixture atop the 2019 Fantasy baseball rankings. However, if you missed the boat on Yamamoto, there is still time to add talent from the waiver wire and via trade. That’s why you’ll want to see the 2019 Fantasy baseball rankings from the proven computer model at SportsLine. They’ll guide you to the next big breakout star in Fantasy baseball and assist with difficult start or sit decisions.

When it comes to ranking players, the model beat human experts in Fantasy football last season when there were big differences in ranking. And the model was closest-to-the-hole overall, meaning it best pinpointed where every player would finish each week.

Two weeks ago, the model was extremely high on Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor, saying he’d finish in the top five at his position despite being owned in just 51 percent of leagues. The result: Odor recorded two home runs, two runs scored and six RBIs in Texas’ three-game series against the Angels. Anybody who had him in their lineup was well on their way to a huge week.

Now the model, which simulates every pitch and every at-bat 10,000 times, has revealed its 2019 Fantasy baseball rankings for Week 17 (July 15-21). 

One player the model is high on this week: Blue Jays second baseman Cavan Biggio. The son of former Astros star and MLB Hall of Famer Craig Biggio was called up at the end of May and has shown an advanced plate approach through his first six weeks. Biggio is hitting his .232 overall, but he has a .362 OBP, six home runs and six doubles so far in 153 plate appearances. He has also stolen five bases, providing plenty of versatility.

With a hard-hit contact rate of 50 percent and a lift-generating swing (47.6 percent flyball rate), Biggio will reach base, hit for power to provide plenty of Fantasy value. That’s why SportsLine’s 2019 Fantasy baseball rankings for Week 17 list him as the No. 5 Fantasy second baseman despite being No. 13 at his position this season.

And a massive shocker: Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo, the sixth-best player at his position according to market value, stumbles big-time and barely cracks the top 20. He’s a player to consider putting on the bench.

RIzzo is having a typical season for the Cubs, with 19 home runs and 58 RBIs while slashing .272/.384/.519. However, Rizzo hasn’t hit a home run since June 15 and plays all six games next week in Wrigley Field, where he’s not driving the ball as effectively.

To make matters worse, Rizzo and the Cubs play the Reds next week and are scheduled to run into their ace, Luis Castillo, early in the series. Then, they take on a lefty-laden Padres staff; Rizzo is hitting just .188 against left-handers this season.

The model is also calling for a surprising outfielder you aren’t even thinking about to finish in the top 10 of its Week 17 Fantasy baseball rankings. This pick could be the difference between winning big and going home with nothing.

So who should you sit and start this week? Visit SportsLine now to get Week 17 Fantasy baseball rankings for every position, plus see which outfielder is going to come out of nowhere to crack the top 10, all from the model that out-performed experts in football big time last season, and find out.

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