Thursday, June 9, 2016


Ben Zobrist:  2/4 with his 8th HR while hitting .325.  While Zobrist's BABIP is still well into lucky territory, the power is legit and it makes you wonder what he would have been capable of if he didn't spend his entire previous career in major hitter's parks.

Kris Bryant:  2/5 with his 14th HR while hitting .284.  No reason to discuss the power as we all knew already that Bryant was a 40-home run guy.  The real growth that we can get very excited about though is the 22 percent K rate Bryant is carrying right now which is down from a very high 30 percent in 2015.  Expect more improvement as we go along and that means Bryant will then vault into a .300 hitting/40 HR/15 SB monster.

John Lackey:  7 IP 3 H 0 ER 0 BB 8 K with an ERA of 2.63.  Basically if you are a pitcher for the Cubs, you are automatically awesome.  This has been some late career renaissance for Lackey after it looked like he was toast with the Boston Red Sox.  Goes to show you the stark differences between the two leagues in terms of allowing more years to be tacked onto a career.

Josh Donaldson:  3/4 with his 14th HR while hitting .255.  The average is down some here but honestly that is nitpicking of the highest order considering the power numbers.  One guy you never have to pop a TUMS on.

Nick Castellanos:  2/3 with his 11th HR while hitting .316.  I tell you what this is a clear example of a young prospect who worked at his craft and really developed into some hitter.  It was even last season where Castellanos hardly showed anything in the way of power or even batting average consistency.  Given his youth, we are past the time where this can be considered a fluke and instead we should embrace the development.

Jordan Zimmerman:  7 ER in 4.2 IP with an ERA of 3.30.  Zimmerman has not looked right since coming back from injury and one has to wonder if he is still not 100 percent.  Either that or American League hitters are beginning to adjust to Zimmerman after the lifelong NL resident arrived in the winter.

Wil Myers:  2/4 with 2 home runs (12 for season) while hitting .294.  No one ever questioned the pure power of Wil Myers but don't buy the overall picture here as Myers has a very lucky .331 BABIP and is only walking in a little more than 5 percent of his at-bats.  In other words he is the same player he was in 2014 and 2015 but is just staying healthy. 

Julio Teheran:  8 IP 5 H 2 ER 1 BB 8 K with an ERA of 2.85.  Teheran has done a great job putting his disastrous 2015 season in the rearview mirror.  Remember Teheran was very good in 2014 so 2015 is looking more like an outlier.  The home run rate remains very high at 1.32 but Teheran has upped his K rate by a full strikeout.  A major red flag lies in Teheran's extremely lucky .228 BABIP which means major trouble could be ahead.  An XIP and FIP both over 4.00 tell you to sell high right now. 

Corey Dickerson:  3/4 with 2 home runs (11 for season) while hitting .222.  Amazing the stark drop in numbers with Dickerson moving away from Coors Field.  I mean Dickerson looked like a batting title contender with the Rockies and now is nothing but a horrendous average home run specialist. 

Chris Tillman:  7.1 IP 8 H 0 ER 0 BB 9 K with an ERA of 3.01.  Like with Teheran, Chris Tillman was simply brutal last season but has more than turned it around.  Sometimes we simply have to chalk things up to a bad season and in the cases of Tillman and Teheran, we can do this more liberally and be more inclined to buy back in due to their youth. 

Jacoby Ellsbury:  2/3 with his third HR while hitting. 293.  Ellsbury is in an extended groove now as he is batting over .330 in his last 20 games and running at a decent clip.  The same principle remains here in terms of enjoying the production before the next injury strikes but at least Ellsbury is showing he is still capable of a speed game.  Once that goes, there is nothing left to really work with.

Carlos Beltran:  3/4 with is 15th HR while hitting. 281.  Beltran can't miss right now with his home run swing and he is actually having one of his most productive power seasons ever.  Must be on the David Ortiz workout program.

Chris Parmlee:  3/5 with 2 home runs (2 for season) while hitting .600.  Two homers in his debut with the Yanks is a nice way to reintroduce yourself to the fantasy baseball community.  Currently Parmlee is splitting first base duties with Rob Refsnyder so everyday numbers are not going to flow from here just yet.

Mike Trout:  3/5 with his 13th HR while hitting .309.  It seems like Trout is always hitting .305 with a bunch of power and now no more steals. 

Michael Conforto:  1/3 with his 9th HR while hitting .246.  Given the youth here and lack of minor league time, there is not shock from these parts in terms of Conforto's recent struggles.  Keep the faith though as his power is legit and the swing screams out .300.

Jameson Taillon:  6 IP 6 H 3 ER 2 BB 3 K with an ERA of 4.50.  Taillon was just all right as his strikeout stuff was not there just yet.  We have to watch to see if the past control problems resurface at the major league level but Taillon deserves to be out there in his next fantasy baseball start. 

George Springer:  2/5 with his 14th HR while hitting .281.  Love seeing anything above .275 in terms of Springer's average but more steals would be nice.  Hope he is not losing interest there already. 

Yu Darvish:  5 IP 3 H 1 ER 4 BB 7 K with an ERA of 2.87.  Darvish is slated to make his next start despite having some shoulder soreness.  This has to be watched closely given the Tommy John past and for the fact Darvish has some major inning totals from Japan on his arm. 

Jayson Werth:  3/5 with his 10th HR while hitting .236.  Yeah the average is garbage now which is a result of age and the bat speed slowing and the steals are vanished forever as well.  Pure home run specialists as Werth has become are a dime a dozen.

Ryan Zimmerman:  1/4 with his 9th HR while hitting .250.  Injuries seemed to have robbed Zimmerman of the ability to hit .280 or better so he goes into the same group as Werth. 

Danny Espinosa:  3/5 with his 9th HR while hitting .206.  Commence Trea Turner banging his head against his minor league locker. 

Max Scherzer:  7 IP 5 H 0 ER 1 BB 6 K with an ERA of 3.57.  Yeah if you don't get a home run off Scherzer, you pretty much won't touch him.

James Shields:  7 ER in 2 IP with an ERA of 31.50.  Yeah welcome back to the AL James Shields.  Also welcome to your own horror movie.  Cut him. 

Kenta Maeda:  6.2 IP 5 H 1 ER 1 BB 9 K with an ERA of 2.70.  First pure dominant outing from Maeda since April which is a good sign he is fighting back against the adjustments hitters have made against his arsenal. 


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