This article is part of our MLB Barometer series.
Roster fluidity and paying close attention to every roster spot is imperative at this point in the season. With five weeks left, there's no time to wait on dead roster spots or underperforming players we drafted who have yet to pay off. Dead weight has no place on a roster surging toward a league championship.
If you're holding on to injured arms like Noah Syndergaard and James Paxton in your 12-team leagues to give you that boost in the final two weeks, I urge you to reconsider. That's not to say that you should outright drop them, but a comprehensive run-through of your roster and the available free agents is vital. With the Mets being long out of contention, there is no reason for them to push Syndergaard back too quickly, and when he does return, they will likely be conservative with his pitch count. Paxton is not throwing off a mound yet and you'll be holding your team back from a pitcher scratched for a Monday start, an important offensive injury fill-in or weekend platoon-split hitter if you continue to hold that dead spot on your roster (unless you've got a 10-man bench). Every potential run, stolen base, strikeout and even hit may be just as important as ever, but the effect is even more magnified with our eyes on the prize.
Most of you already know to do this, but if you're in need of wins and strikeouts, project the following week's pitchers (not this upcoming week, but