Add today, win tomorrow: 10 guys to stash

May 20th, 2016

You tinker with your fantasy squad's starting lineup, looking to have the best possible player at every position.

But did you know that your bench could make the difference between ultimate fantasy success or defeat? For those who have the reserve space, stashing premium prospects or injured big leaguers -- guys who can make a difference tomorrow, if not today -- makes a ton of sense. Without further ado, let's review 10 players worth hoarding for the time being.

Devon Travis, second baseman: Travis hit .304 with eight homers across 217 at-bats before his '15 season ended on July 28 due to a shoulder injury that required offseason surgery. Toronto is in need of an offensive spark like Travis, as its powerful lineup has failed to meet expectations; meanwhile, current Jays second baseman Ryan Goins has posted a .155/.205/.245 slash line this year. The 25-year-old Travis is working his way back, having recently started a rehab assignment.

Could help fantasy owners by: Early June

Trea Turner, second baseman: The best position-player prospect in the Nats' organization, Turner is off to a terrific start (.322/.383/.477 slash line, 14 steals) at Triple-A Syracuse this season. Current starting shortstop Danny Espinosa has had some success this month, but his overall slash line in 2016 (.211/.309/.305) makes him vulnerable to being demoted to a reserve role. The Nats could also use a spark atop their lineup, as leadoff hitter Ben Revere is batting .123 and the team has been evaluating options other than Anthony Rendon (.217 average) in the two-hole.

Could help fantasy owners by: Early June

Jhonny Peralta, shortstop: On the comeback trail after undergoing left thumb surgery in March, Peralta could meet the early end of his projected timetable by returning to the roster by the end of this month. Peralta's replacement Aledmys Diaz has fared well at dish (.372 average, six homers across 129 at-bats), but he leads all shortstop with 10 errors. The 33-year-old should immediately regain his regular role, with Diaz possibly trying his hand at second base. Having averaged 19 homers per season from 2014-15, Peralta can help owners in need of a power boost.

Could help fantasy owners by: Late May

Byron Buxton, outfielder: Buxton has twice burned fantasy owners. He batted .209 in his '15 debut season, and then he opened '16 by hitting .156 ... before getting sent back to Triple-A. Still viewed as a premium young player with plus speed, the 22-year-old has hit .301 since returning to the Minors. Owners in deep mixed leagues may wish to stash Buxton now, as he could provide a notable steals total if the last-place Twins give him another extended opportunity this summer.

Could help fantasy owners by: Mid-June

James Paxton, starter: After struggling during Spring Training and in his early-2016 Triple-A action, Paxton has allowed seven earned runs (eight total) across 29 2/3 innings with Tacoma since April 20. Given his lifetime 3.16 ERA across 165 innings in the Majors, the left-hander could be a mixed-league asset as soon as the Mariners have a rotation opening.

Could help fantasy owners by: June

Luis Severino, starter: Severino is a rare case -- a pitcher who warrants attention despite being on the disabled list with poor in-season ratios (7.46 ERA, 1.69 WHIP). After posting a 2.45 ERA in the Minors last year, the right-hander produced a 2.89 mark across 11 second-half starts with the Yankees. Severino has the upside to be an impactful mixed-league starter, which makes him worth a bench or disabled-list spot in many formats.

Could help fantasy owners by: Mid-June

A.J. Griffin, starter: With a 2.94 ERA and a 1.13 WHIP this season, Griffin has reestablished himself as a viable mixed-league option after missing '14 and '15 due to injury. The right-hander is currently on the disabled list with shoulder stiffness, but he is not expected to miss a significant amount of time. Upon his return, the 28-year-old could post a low WHIP -- with help from his fly-ball-heavy approach -- while racking up wins on a talented Texas team.

Could help fantasy owners by: Late May

Zack Wheeler, starter: Wheeler is hoping to return from Tommy John surgery on July 1, and owners who stash him now will head into the All-Star break with a rotation option who owns a 3.50 ERA and an 8.5 K/9 rate in the Majors. The right-hander may have limited shallow-league value given his inconsistent control (career 3.9 BB/9 rate, 1.34 WHIP), but he has notable upside thanks to his swing-and-miss stuff.

Could help fantasy owners by: Early July

Will Harris, reliever: Astros closer Luke Gregerson has blown three of his past five save chances. Most owners will rush out to pick up Ken Giles, but he has also struggled this season (6.61 ERA). Meanwhile, Harris has produced a 0.46 ERA and a 0.66 WHIP in '16 after posting a 1.90 ERA and a 0.90 WHIP last season. Although he lacks the name value of Gregerson and Giles, Harris may be the best closer option if manager A.J. Hinch feels the need to shake up his bullpen.

Could help fantasy owners by: Late May keeps track of all closer situations

Joaquin Benoit, reliever: After converting his first nine save chances of '16, Mariners closer Steve Cishek has allowed six runs across his past 6 1/3 innings. Having lost his ninth-inning role with the Marlins during a '15 season in which he was sent to the Minors, the right-hander could be on the verge of a similar fate in Seattle. So, who would step in? With a 2.02 ERA and a 0.92 WHIP since the outset of '13, Benoit has the skills to lock down the stopper's role if given the chance.

Could help fantasy owners by: Late May