Cubs' Seiya Suzuki has league-winning upside

Drew Silva explains why fantasy managers should buy into Seiya Suzuki for the second half and why he offers championship-winning upside.

Video Transcript

- Cubs outfielder Seiya Suzuki was the heavy betting favorite for National League Rookie of the Year when he sprained his left ring finger while sliding into second base in late May. That injury cost him all of June. And when he did ultimately return from the IL on the 4th of July, he was down to sixth on most betting sites to claim NL Rookie of the Year at plus-1400 behind Spencer Strider, Michael Harris II, Oneil Cruz, Mackenzie Gore, and Nolan Gorman.

Because of the lost time, Suzuki faces a very uphill battle to win the award, but he certainly appears to be the type of player that can help win fantasy championships down the stretch. Suzuki hit two home runs within his first two games back, one being of the inside-the-park variety at Milwaukee's American Family Field.

Overall, the 27-year-old native of Japan has delivered an .812 OPS through his first 186 Major League plate appearances. And his exit velocity and sprint speed readings suggest that he will come through with more fantasy-relevant counting stats, namely homers and steals, over the course of the second half. There should be no hint of buyer's remorse from the Cubs, who signed Suzuki to a five-year, $85 million contract in March.