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) – Anibal Sanchez threw a one-hitter last night against the Twins, allowing three walks and striking out 12. This was a very nice bounce-back performance from his last outing against the Rangers. The big difference for Anibal Sanchez has been strikeouts (11.19 K/9), which has increased as well as Sanchez’s fastball velocity. He is a sneaky guy to target in trades because most people are not buying what they are seeing. Well I am. Go get Anibal Sanchez.
Mr. Clutch (hitter) – Another big game for Chris Davis, going 3-for-4 with one home run, one run scored, an RBI and a walk. We are roughly one-third of the way through the season, and Davis has gotten invited to the MVP table to have a cup of tea. Whether or not he stays for supper depends on if he keeps up this level of performance. The big reason so far has been his plate discipline. Strikeouts are way down, and walks are way up from his career numbers. He is swinging less and making more contact. I like him to continue what he is doing going forward.
Surprise, surprise! – Another Chris, Chris Young, had a big game last night against the Astros, going 3-for-5 with a home run, two runs scored and three RBIs. Young is giving the Athletics what he gave the Diamondbacks last year, which is not enough to matter in fantasy except for deep, AL-only leagues.
Here comes the heat – John Lackey had a big game last night going 7.0 innings allowing two hits, an earned run and three walks while striking out eight. It’s a small sample size, but Lackey is delivering what you would want from a guy coming off of Tommy John. The command is there, only 2.50 BB/9 and the K/9 is way up, 9.08. I like Lackey a bit this season, but I am not buying this version of Lackey. His GB% seems unsustainable, and I don’t think he can keep up the K/9 either. Enjoy the streak and sell high if you can.
Left out in the breeze –Ryan Braun was not very Ryan Braun last night, going 0-for-4 with two strikeouts. Being the number one overall pick has a lot of expectations to live up to, and so far, Braun is falling short of those expectations. Power is down a bit, so instead of 40 home runs, expect 30. He also isn’t going to get you 30 stolen bases either. While his OBP is at a career high, he only has two stolen bases on the year. Expect 10-15 stolen bases. With that being said, he is still a stud. But I believe Mike Trout and Miguel Cabrera supplanted Braun as the top pick.
Who’s trending? – The upstart, David Phelps, no relation to Michael, looked pretty decent last night going 7.2 innings allowing six hits, four earned runs while striking out three. Needless to say, I am drinking the Kool-Aid — 8.83 K/9, 3.24 BB/9, 3.01 BABIP, and a 71.2 LOB%. That, to go along with a 1.24 WHIP and a 3.96 ERA, has me believing in Phelps. He is only owned in 15 percent of leagues, which is insane when you have Tim Lincecum (96 percent), Yovani Gallardo (93 percent), Tim Hudson (84 percent), Ryan Dempster (69 percent), Jeremy Guthrie (57 percent) and Kyle Lohse (45 percent), just to name a few, that I would drop in order to get Phelps.
Bench me, please? – Curtis Granderson cannot catch a break. He’s out at least four weeks with a broken knuckle in his pinkie. Tough, injury-plagued season for Granderson. What more can you say? Domonic Brown would be a good pickup to replace Granderson.
The Streamer – A.J. Griffin against the Astros is as about as good as it gets. Deploy with confidence!