Friday Fantasy Pickup: Dee Gordon, 2B, Marlins

Gordon was suspended 80 games in late April after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs. He is still four weeks away from returning, but his ownership levels will rapidly increase as we close in on his return date of July 28. The rare opportunity to pick up a player of his caliber is one that, regardless of your roster situation, is too good to pass up.

There’s little doubt that, upon his activation, he will immediately jump back into the top tier of second baseman. The 28-year-old speedster will return with 61 games remaining on the Marlins’ schedule. Throughout his five-year career, Gordon has averaged one stolen base every 2.5 games — which puts him among the all-time best baserunners in that regard. Using these numbers, last season’s stolen-base champion is good for nearly 25 swipes between his return date and the end of the regular season. He’s got the green light practically every time he’s on base, and Gordon will be plenty motivated to try and surpass even this high projection.

Gordon is expected to instantaneously return to the top of a Marlins lineup that, surprisingly, is tied with Detroit for MLB’s sixth-best team batting average at .271. If the guys behind him in the order can continue finding the holes in the defense, Gordon should see plenty of chances to cross the plate and rack up the runs. There has been a fairly strong showing from second baseman this fantasy season, but Gordon will be working with fresh legs down the stretch, and an unimaginable determination to finish the season strong and restore his image.

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