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Friday, April 22, 2016

FANTASY BASEBALL WRAPUP: THURSDAY

Brian Dozier:  1/4 with his second HR while hitting .203.  The Twins are striking out at a record-setting pace as a team and Dozier has been one of their worst offenders.  It is not much of a surprise as Dozier has struggled horribly with his average throughout his career but he always offset that with power and speed.  Well Dozier is not really hitting for much power or running on the bases which means he has been almost useless.  He is not my cup of tea as I hate owning average liability hitters so I am the wrong person to ask about a buy low.

Miguel Sano:  2/2 with his second HR while hitting .245.  Sano is starting to come out of his titanic early season slump and he will fall into 20 home runs with no effort.  As I have said countless times, you need at least .240 for everyday usage. 

Taylor Jungmann:  4 IP 4 H 3 ER 6 BB 2 K with an ERa of 8.47.  I remember saying all last season when Jungmann was pitching way over his head to wait for the correction which would be swift and ugly for his numbers.  Well it took until 2016 but those swift and ugly numbers are here and Jungmann could be back in the minors before long.  Remember this is a guy who had ugly ERA's in the minors so he couldn't possibly all of a sudden learn how to pitch at the major league level.  Sorry not happening. 

Ricky Nolasco:  6.1 IP 5 H 1 ER 1 BB 7 K with an ERA of 2.66.  I never thought I would ever talk about Nolasco again in this space but he is pitching great right now which is being helped by an uptick in velocity.  Alas Nolasco's .256 BABIP is in the very lucky range so a correction is coming.  Get off the ride now. 

Clayton Kershaw:  8 IP 10 H 1 ER 1 BB 10 K with an ERA of 1.50.  Kershaw giving up ten hits and one run is him getting shelled. 

Robinson Cano:  3/5 with his sixth HR while hitting .246.  Cano has been hitting for power from the jump this season and now the average is coming long after a slump in that department.  Having Nelson Cruz behind Cano has opened up the most hittable pitches since he first signed in Seattle so a big Yankees-like season without the 100-RBI could be in the offing. 

Rajai Davis:  2/5 with his second HR while hitting .250.  Davis will be 50 and we will still be trying to write him off at this rate.

Nathan Karns:  5.1 IP 5 H 4 ER 4 BB 5 K with an ERA of 5.28.  Looks like the Rays knew what they were doing when the shipped out Karns early in the winter in what initially looked like a strange deal.  Anything the Rays do when it comes to pitching we are on board. 

Steve Cishek:  scoreless ninth for his third save with an ERA of 1.13.  Cishek has found some of his lost velocity and just like that he is potent again in the ninth inning.  Sometimes it is that simple.  Those holding Joaquin Benoit can let him go onto the wire. 

Cody Allen:  3 ER in 1.2 IP with an ERA of 8.53.  With Sean Doolittle and J.H. Hoover already out of closer roles from the beginning of the season, it looks as though Cody Allen will jump to the front of the line in terms of the hot seat.  Allen was horrific last April as well but he fought through it and posted a solid season with a huge K rate.  Could be he is just a slow starter and Terry Francona has been very patient in the past.  Still it wouldn't be the worst idea to back him up with dare we say it Joba Chamberlain or Trevor Bauer.  In fact Bauer could be a beast in the ninth inning if he ever got the chance. 

Bryce Harper:  1/4 with his 8th HR while hitting .321.  I think if you threw a fastball to Harper into the dirt, he would dig down with the bat and swat it 450 feet.

Marcell Ozuna:  1/4 with his second HR while hitting .200.  Ozuna has gone nowhere but backwards since a very nice 2014 debut.  Immaturity both with his hitting and personality have conspired to put him in Yasiel Puig territory. 

Max Scherzer:  5 ER in 5 IP with an ERA of 4.32.  This is as hittable as I have seen Scherzer in awhile and you have to wonder if all those innings and two no-hitters are sapping some juice out of his arm.  A no-hitter can be death to an arm as Johan Santana can attest to and 9 out of 10 times a pitcher gets shelled the next time out after tossing one.  Not saying this is what is going on with Scherzer but it bears a bit of watching. 

Mike Trout:  2/2 with his second HR while hitting .286.  This is Mike Trout shouting out to Bryce Harper, "Wait for me!" 

Todd Frazier:  2/4 with his 4th HR while hitting .206.  Here he comes! 

Jered Weaver:  7 IP 3 H 1 ER 2 BB 2 K with an ERA of 3.12.  I swear I don't know how he does it. 

Evan Longoria:  2/6 with his third HR while hitting .258.  Longoria still has his power but not much else as this stripped down version of the former first round pick is actually quite boring. 

Mookie Betts:  2/6 with his fourth HR while hitting .239.  Betts will be hitting .300 before you know it which go great with the increased HR rate and 25 steals. 

Dustin Pedroia:  3/6 with his first HR while hitting .290.  Pedroia still has a very good contact rate and can hit for average but the steals are gone for good and the next injury is about two weeks away or so. 

David Price:  8 ER in 3.2 IP with an ERA of 7.06.  True story.  I own Price in the Experts League but even I forget to set my lineup sometimes.  Today was that day as Price and his hideous outing sat on my bench.  Whew!  Anyways I don't want to hear anything about the AL East as Price developed into an ace in the division and still is every bit of one despite this rough start. 

Yasmani Tomas:  1/4 with his third HR while hitting .288.  Tomas is showing a spark with the power and for the second season in a row the average has been better then expected considering the thought was a high K Rate would do him in there. 

Gerrit Cole:  6 IP 4 H 0 ER 0 BB 7 K with an ERA of 2.70.  It seems to me that Cole often gets forgotten when talk begins regarding the best pitchers in fantasy baseball.  The fact of the matter is that Cole is as good as any other starter in the game and just recently became the latest success story in terms of fighting through some early control issues and then allowing his power stuff to take over.

Colby Rasmus:  2/3 with 2 home runs (5 for season) while hitting .311.  This is a guy the fantasy baseball community is well aware of in terms of this:  try offering up Ramus and his 5 homers and currently impressive average around the league.  Guaranteed you find zero takers unless you give him away.

Adrian Beltre:  3/4 with his third HR while hitting .333.  Yeah I guess Beltre deserves a new deal despite his advanced age.  I remember when he was awful with the Seattle Mariners but has been a .300-plus guy since with big power.  Now the home run rate has fallen off which is the only obvious sign of age but the discount he supplied at the draft table this past spring has already turned Beltre into a huge value in 2016.

Ian Desmond:  2/4 with his first HR while hitting .158.  Took away too long for Desmond to finally post his first home run in Texas of all place and honestly he is pretty much looking like waiver trash now.  If Texas can't boost your bat then there is little hope.

A.J. Griffin:  6 IP 4 H 2 ER 2 BB 6 K with an ERA of 3.18.  One thing about A.J. Griffin no matter the location, the guy pitches great at home.

Dallas Keuchel:  6 IP 13 H 6 ER 0 BB 6 K with an ERA of 3.71.  The WHIP is now up to 1.43 as we sit here nodding our heads in an unsurprising manner.  I will reiterate what I said over the winter which is that Keuchel's 2015 was squarely in the OUTLIER region and 2016 could be quite difficult. 

Rich Hill:  6 IP 3 H 1 ER 4 BB 10 K with an ERA of 3.32.  The 1.53 WHIP shows you disaster is coming despite all the missed bats and fatigue will be an early factor as well given the limited amount of innings Hill has thrown recently.  However when you face the New York Yankees, good things happen.  Still can't believe I typed that.

Coco Crisp:  2/3 with his second HR and 4th SB while hitting .195.  Vintage power/speed outing for Crisp who is now batting toward the bottom of the A's lineup as he should since Billy Burns is now a more capable leadoff guy.

Jake Arrieta:  9 IP 0 H 0 ER 4 BB 6 K with an ERA of 0.87.  Second no-hitter in two seasons for Arrieta who is absolutely dominating like he did the second half of 2015.  Right now one could make the argument that since last July, no one including Clayton Kershaw has been better.

Kris Bryant:  4/6 with 2 home runs (4 for season) while hitting .273.  Bryant exploded here which his impatient fantasy baseball owners had been waiting for.  The Cubs slugger is one of those players where his owners expect a home run in every game which is silly but truth be told he had been a bit quiet early on. 

Anthony Rizzo:  1/6 with his fifth HR while hitting .186.  I really wish Rizzo would stop doing his bets Chris Carter impersonation. 

Ben Zobrist:  3/5 with his first HR while hitting .246.  Honestly he got a lot of money on the open market but Zobrist is barely worth a roster spot in fantasy baseball these days as the weak numbers beat out. 

 

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