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) – Patrick Corbin continues to be a very pleasant surprise this season. Last night he went 6.1 innings allowing four hits, one run, two walks and striking out four. He is now 5-0 on the season in seven starts with a 1.06 WHIP and a 1.75 ERA. His advanced stats, especially the 87.4 LOB% point to some regression, but I still Corbin is a top-40 pitcher going forward.
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Mr. Clutch (hitter) – Mark Reynolds had a big night against Oakland going 2-for-3 with one home run, two runs, two RBIs and a walk while striking out once. Mark Reynolds is having a monster year. It seems that he has made an adjustment to how pitchers are trying to strike him out because his O-Contact% is at 58.5, which is a spike from last season of 52.1. Every year his O-Contact% goes up, his K% has gone down. Right now, his K% is a 25 (career best) which has resulted in a .391/.367/.645 slash line (also a career best). The question is can he keep this up? There is going to definitely be some regression, especially with the batting average, but I think Mark Reynolds is going to have a career year, and I wouldn’t be selling high.
Surprise, surprise! – Eric Hosmer finally hit his first home run last night, which was his first since September 11, 2012. He finished the game 2-for-4 with one home run, two RBIs and two runs scored. I own him in my longtime keeper league, and my team’s success is dependent on Hosmer’s success (literally no first base options available on the waiver wire for me) so I have been following him closely. The BB% and K% are going the wrong way, there is zero power and I’m not sold that the .277 average is legit because of the .342 BABIP. I really question the Royals ability to develop young hitters because this has become a trend in their organization the last few years now. He has been dropped in nearly 50 percent of leagues and probably should be until he shows us more.
Here comes the heat – Scott Kazmir continues to dazzle, shutting down the Athletics last night. He went 6.0 innings allowing five hits, one run, zero walks while striking out 10. I think as long as the fastball velocity is there and he remains healthy, he is going to be able to give you nights like this. The only knock against him is the five home runs allowed in 20.1 innings pitched. I still think he has a high ceiling this year, and I would pick him up if you are in need of pitching.
Left out in the breeze – Against the Nationals, Doug Fister got hit around and only lasted 3.0 innings. He allowed eights hits, four earned runs, a walk while striking out three. Even with this start, Doug Fister has been very Doug Fister-like and is a solid option going forward. I think he is always undervalued, and a start like this could give his owners hesitation enough to part ways with him for cheap. Might be worth an inquiry.
Who’s trending? – Oscar Taveras has been one of the hottest players in the minors right now, and the fact that they have him playing center field suggests that Jon Jay does not have a long leash. Taveras is batting .301/.342/.456 with three home runs and two stolen bases. If Jay continues to struggle and the Cardinals stay in contention, Taveras could be called up. He has the ability to be an impact player this season.
Bench me, please? – David Freese has been abysmal this season. The .208/.278/.250 slash line is by far the worst of his career, add in the fact his K% has crept up to 22.8 (career high) means that he is just not worth owning. It looks as though he is being pitched a whole lot more inside has and not made the adjustment. Until he does, he needs to be benched or dropped all toether.
The Streamer – The ability to rack up some strikeouts, plus getting to pitch in Seattle, has me streaming Dan Straily. He has struggled in two out of three starts, but I think he gets back on track tonight facing a very weak Mariners team. Deploy with confidence!