Taking a look around the league, here’s a recap of last night’s action and suggestions for your fantasy baseball team.
Mr. Clutch (pitcher) – Adam Wainwright continued his quest of worldwide domination with a complete game shutout allowing two hits, a walk while striking out seven. Watching the rookie Shelby Miller kill it the previous night must have stirred something up in the old gunslinger. Wainwright had a no-hitter going until Nolan Arenado broke it up in the eighth inning. Looking at Adam Wainwright’s numbers this season, the 0.99 WHIP and the 2.30 ERA are career bests and a 1.88 FIP and 2.36 xFIP point to these numbers continuing. For me, Adam Wainwright is a top-three pitcher for this season. Enjoy the ride.
Mr. Clutch (hitter) – Jean Segura continued his breakout 2013 campaign season going 4-for-5 with a home run, two runs, one RBI and a stolen base. This guy must just make Angels fans sick. Segura was traded for a Zack Greinke rental that did not end the way the Angels had hoped it would. According to ESPN’s player rater, Segura is the number-one fantasy shortstop for the season. I think going forward, he is a top-five option at shortstop, and I am completely buying him.
Surprise, surprise! – Jose Tabata had a huge game last night going 4-for-5 with one home run, three runs and three RBIs against the Mets. Tabata has been fairly solid this season, but does not provide enough steals or home runs to be picked up in 10- and 12-team mixed leagues. He is more of an NL-only option at this point.
Here comes the heat – Justin Morneau extended his hitting streak last night to seven games going 3-for-4 with three RBIs. Though the power has not been there all season (two HRs in 141 plate appearances), Morneau could easily provide 100 RBIs and 85 runs this season with a .280 batting average. The question with Morneau as always will be health.
Left out in the breeze – Kevin Slowey got the kiss of death last night when I made him “The Streamer.” Slowey went 4.2 innings allowing 11 hits, five runs and three walks. He’s still a streamer option for me in 12-team mixed leagues. Last night was not Slowey’s night.
Who’s trending? – Heath Bell is back in the NL West and has been good as advertised so far. If you are in need of saves, he is your man. Bell should have a long leash and should be good for 20+ saves going forward, which at this point in the season probably makes him a top-10 closer. I like when I hear “cleaned up mechanics,” and that is exactly what we are hearing out of Arizona. He is still available in 40 percent of leagues. Go and get him
Bench me, please? – John Buck went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts last night against the Pirates. The 10 home runs has you wanting to buy Buck in the worst way, but that hot start is all but over. The truth is he is going to provide pop, but is a low-average strikeout machine. I’m buying the .228 batting average, and if I can get anything for Buck via trade, I would take it now.
The Streamer – I am going to dig deep here and take Eric Stults. He already has three quality starts in seven outings and is taking on Tampa Bay, who, by all accounts, has just been middle-of-the-road on offense. Stults is not a big strikeout guy but could be efficient enough in Tampa to do you some good. Deploy with confidence!