If your fantasy baseball team has made it this far without being affected by the injury bug, you have my permission to stop reading. Please go buy me a lottery ticket instead. For those of you that have a roster full of “DL” marks, stopgaps are the name of the game right now. Find out what statistics you need to replace, and kick sexy name appeal to the side.
Let’s hope that some of the fantasy baseball thoughts from Week 12 can help you sort through things.
- Brett Lawrie and Jose Bautista both left their game yesterday due to injuries. Bautista left with just some leg stiffness but with his injury history I think his owners would be wise to sell high at this point. Lawrie actually broke a finger after getting hit with a pitch. Lawrie, like Bautista, has had his difficulties staying healthy as well and it would be safe to assume that he will be out until after the break.
- J.D. Martinez was a trendy at this week after he hit four home runs this week. Maritnez has had hot streaks in the past and considering he is only batting .094 against lefties, it is easy to overlook this week unless you are in an AL only league.
- Jarrod Dyson received consistent at-bats this week as Norichika Aoki hit the DL with a groin injury. Dyson did not doing anything to excite fantasy owners, but his ability to steal bases in bunches makes him a sneaky add in any format.
- Corey Dickerson has been doing a fine job replacing Carlos Gonzalez or Michael Cuddyer, or whoever, and he plays half his games at Coors so, yeah he has some value until CarGo returns…as long as you view him as a stopgap option, add away.
- Carlos Santana was shelved for seven days with a concussion in late May into June. Whatever he did to his head might have knocked something back into place as his slash line this month coming into Sunday’s game was 8/5/12/.340. He is a good buy low candidate with nice position flexibility.
- Aramis Ramirez can flat out rake when healthy. He is another buy low candidate, but do not put all your eggs into one basket as another trip to the DL this season could happen at any moment.
- Billy Hamilton stole six bases this week, came around to score five times and knocked five into boot.
- James Jones, is a poor man’s Billy Hamilton. He stole five bags this week and also came around to score five times as well. He is like Dyson, a nice add in any format if you feel the need, the need for speed.
- If you are looking for less speed and more pop, Ryan Howard is still hitting HRs at a clip where he will exceed 30 on the year, he could be right for your team if he can stay healthy.
- Tip of the cap to Clayton Kershaw, not only for throwing his first no-hitter, but for proving he can still ball after you get paid.
- Michael Wacha and Jamie Garcia hit the DL for the Cards. Garcia is not a surprise nor a big hit in fantasy. Wacha on the other hand has been a steady arm in any format and his absence could bring tears to his owners. I’m not one to say I told you so, but….
- Carlos Martinez was bumped up to the starting rotation for the Cardinals in the wake of all their rotation being depleted by injuries. Martinez has some nasty stuff, but lacks consistent control to make him a must add.
- Justin Verlander made some changes to his mechanics and it paid dividends giving Verlander owners some hope for a strong second half.
- Andrew Heaney made his pro debut and came out with a quality start. It was against the Mets who make a habit out of missing pitches, but Heaney’s potential and track record in the minors makes him worth a flier in most formats, just expect some bumps in the road along the way.
- Speaking of pitching well against the Mets, Jesse Hahn did just that last week. This week he repeated a scoreless outing against the Mariners. Hahn developed in the Rays organization and he has pitched like it in his last two outings. Small sample size beware, but he could be a nice stream option depending on his matchup or as an addition to your rotation in NL formats.
- Jake Odorizzi appears to be benefiting from his recent time with the Rays as well. His K/9 on the season is now sitting at 10.55. Yeah, that’s him right between Yu Darvish and Masahrio Tanaka in that category. I do think he will tire as the season goes on as he faces the grind of his first full major leagues season, but a10.55 K/9 is surely playable in most formats while it lasts.
- Speaking of Jakes with an attractive K/9, Jake Arrieta sits at 9.90 in that category. Arrieta flaunts a 1.98 ERA and xFIP of 2.66 as well. Arrietra has struggle with his command through his major league career, but so far with the Cubs he has been hitting his spots. I wouldn’t drop an established arm for him, but if you have someone like Tony Cingrani on your roster, then I make that switch.
- By the way, Cingrani’s Sophomore Slump is over…for now…because he was optioned to AAA.
- Many thought Mark Melancon replacing Jason Grilli as the Pirates closer was inevitable, and they were right.
- Mike Leake was having a rough June but turned things around against the explosive Blue Jays lineup. Leake’s lack of K potential dampens his fantasy appeal, but he does not walk many people wither. A strong xFIP of 3.45 suggests he could provide your team with some value depending on your format; give him a look.