Evan Gattis quickly became a fan favorite when he broke onto the scene with the Braves in 2013. Affectionately dubbed El Oso Blanco, or The White Bear, Gattis hit six home runs that April and finished with 21 in his rookie season. He clubbed 22 home runs in 2014 and 27 last year, his first season with the Astros.
Despite the power production, Gattis slipped through the cracks a bit early in 2016. Due to offseason surgery to repair a hernia, Gattis didn’t make his debut until April 12, and he scuffled a bit out of the gate, not hitting his first home run until April 29. And with the switch to the AL, Gattis had essentially stopped catching and switched to DH full time, which limited his value.
But now Gattis is hitting—and catching—again. He’s homered in three straight games and has eight since May 17, when he returned from a brief stint in the minors. That trip to the minors was for Gattis to shake the rust off behind the plate. Since his return from the minors, Gattis has caught eight times, and he figures to continue to see regular playing time there going forward. For those in shallower season-long leagues, Gattis is worth grabbing if he’s available, especially if he becomes eligible at catcher, given the thin nature of the position. And Gattis also makes for a strong DFS tournament play at the moment due to his power surge. El Oso Blanco is back.
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