There are a plethora of young star pitchers in the fantasy baseball world right now. Popular prospects like Jose Fernandez, Shelby Miller, Gerrit Cole, and Michael Wacha have all flown up fantasy rankings this off-season.
One name that was purposely omitted from that list was New York Mets SP Matt Harvey. The big righty will miss the entire 2014 fantasy season following Tommy John Surgery and will be greatly missed this fantasy season. In Harvey’s absence, the team will be relying heavily on another young starter, Zack Wheeler.
In 17 appearances last season, Wheeler finished with a 7-5 record. He also posted a 3.42 ERA and struck out a respectable 7.56 batters per nine innings of work. Wheeler was unfortunately shutdown at the end of last season with some shoulder soreness, but it was merely precautionary. The team was obviously out of contention, so it is better to be safe with their future number two hurler.
In his Spring Training debut on Tuesday afternoon, Wheeler pitched three scoreless innings in a 6-2 win over the Houston Astros. He allowed just two hits, one single and one double, while striking out three batters. The right-hander did enough to get the spring win and it was simply a glimpse of the numbers the young fireballer is capable of putting up this season.
There is some debate about which pitcher will be the team’s opening day starter. New York shockingly signed super-veteran Bartolo Colon to a two-year, $20 million contract and Jabba the Hutt has been rumored to be the starter in game one. Jonathan Niese has also been mentioned as an option and recently Wheeler has entered the conversation.
Wheeler can be a decent fourth starter to grab this year in deeper leagues. New York will finally let him take of his training wheels and a breakout season seems almost guaranteed from the youngster.