Holy waiver wire! In a season full of devastating losses for the Boston Red Sox, Thursday’s 14-13 extra inning defeat ranks up there as 2012′s most devastatingest. After Alfredo Aceves blew the lead, giving up 5 ER on 6 hits including 2 home runs, the Sox star “slugger” Adrian Gonzalez struck out with a man on base to end the game. Little did we know at the time that would be A-Gone’s last at bat in a Red Sox uniform. Boston placed Gonzalez and Josh Beckett on waivers and the Los Angeles Dodgers pounced (yoink!). Don’t mind if we do… Just a few hours later, Gonzalez, Beckett, Carl Crawford, Nick Punto, and the roughly $270 million of the Red Sox payroll are “unofficially” being shipped to SoCal in exchange for James Loney, Rubby De La Rosa, Jerry Sands, Ivan De Jesus and Allen Webster. The deal is not yet complete but the teams have allegedly agreed on players. We expected payroll dumps from teams like the AAAstros, but the Boston Red Sox? Actually, it was obvious, the Dodgers seem to love Boston players who’ve outstayed their welcome: Nomar Garciaparra, Manny Ramirez and Derek Lowe all enjoyed “successful” runs with LA. Those of you in NL only leagues, hope you didn’t blow all your cash on Travis Snider, get ready to bid the farm on AGone. He’ll bring his .300/.243/.469 line with 15 HRs and 86 RBIs to Dodgers lineup and instantly makes the Dodgers one of the most feared in the league. Although his power numbers are down, Adrian is one of the league’s best hitters and his average with runners on (.338) and average with runners in scoring position (.398) are quite impressive. Teamed with Matt Kemp and Hanley Ramirez, he could even see a boost in production with the move to the NL. Likewise, Josh Beckett goes from barely ownable in 10 and 12 team leagues to, “OK, maaaybe I could pick him back up and see what happens?” As poor as Beck’s pitched lately, the NL West is certainly more forgiving than the AL East and Beckett has a chance to gain some confidence back. The Red Sox lose their three highest paid players and probably most of their fan base for James Loney and some prospects. Loney is a white flag first baseman. In real life and fantasy, if James Loney is your first baseman you’ve given up. He’s batting .245 with 4 HRs and 33 RBIs. Woof. Only deep leagues should consider for now, but Loney could see a boost in production if he is the Red Sox everyday first baseman. Jerry Sands is a young outfielder with a ton of power, and Rubby De La Rosa and Allen Webster are very highly touted starting pitching prospects. I don’t really see them contributing immediately, but the hard throwing De La Rosa could certainly see some time in the Sox rotation by the end of the year. I guess Boston is now determined to win even less games than they did last September!
Here’s what else happened Friday night in fantasy baseball:
Jon Lester — 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Ks. Limped off the field in the 7th inning. It turns out it was a mild hamstring cramp. Tough night to be a Red Sawx fan, but I know those guys can handle it — they’re wicked resilient.
David Ortiz — 2-for-4 with 2 RBIs. Who needs AGone when you have Big Papi! Me amo el salsa de mango!
Pedro Ciriaco — 2-for-4 with 2 RBIs and a SB. If you need help at MI, Pedro is batting .480 over the past 7 day and could be a great SAGNOF if he continues to lead off for Boston.
Andrew Bailey — Pitched a scoreless inning to get his first save of the season. It could be because current closer, Alfredo Aceves, threw 37 pitches Thursday night, or it could be because he was so epicly disastrous, giving up 5 ER in 1.0 IP. Either way, I am blaming this entire Adrian Gonzalez trade on Alfredo “I Can’t Even Get” A-ceves. Bailey could be the Sox new closer by the end of the week, and if he is he’s worth adding in all leagues.
Wilton Lopez — 1.1 IP, 1 K and his second save of the year. They say that first career save doesn’t really count, and if you ask Wilton, he’d tell you about last night’s save, “This time, it was for reals.”
Garrett Richards — 0.2, 2 Ks and his first save of the season. Unlike Alfredo Aceves, I’m sure Angels closer Ernesto Frieri just got the night off after pitching 2.0 innings on Thursday.
Howie Kendrick — 2-for-4 with 2 RBIs. Now has an 11-game hitting streak. Continues to produce ever since you dropped him. No, don’t pick him back up! That’s just what he wants you to do.
Miguel Cabrera — 2-for-4 with his 32nd HR in his return to the line up. When I saw the 2-1 score, I thought, “Oh, Miggy hit a home run.” And I was right. #smallvictories
Ben Zobrist — 2-for-3 with his 15th HR. BenZo’s added SS eligibility makes him extra tasty. He should gain that eligibility for next year, too, and will definitely be a SS I’m targeting on draft day.
Matt Moore — 6.1 IP, 3 ER, 7 Ks. Ma-Moo wasn’t as sharp as he’s been lately but still turned in a quality start despite the no decision. Look for another strong performance from him next week in Toronto.
Adrian Beltre – 4-for-4 with a HR and 4 RBIs. Yo, Adrian! You did it! You hit for the cycle! This coming after his 3 HR game Thursday night. Wha! Beltre is insanely hot right now with 13 hits in the past five games along with 5 HRs and 9 RBIs. That’ll help your fantasy team!
Chris Davis — 3-for-4 with 3 HRs and 4 RBIs. Speaking of 3-homer games, Davis became the 5th player in Orioles history to have a 3 homer game along with Nick Markakis, Roberto Alomar, Albert Belle, and Cal Ripken Jr. What surprised me the most is that Markakis actually had a 3-HR game. WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU, NICK?! Anyway, I feel like we’ve all owned Davis at some point this season, so pat yourself on the back if you stuck with him this long.
John Axford — 0.2 IP, 2 ER. Came into the ninth to protect a 3-run lead and, yes, of course he struggled giving up 2 ER. Axford was pulled and Kameron Loe had to finish out the game to grab his second save. Could Loe be the new closer??? AHH, I can’t take it anymore! Loe’s your add here if you’re speculating for saves, but at this point I’m staying away from Milwaukee’s bullpen.
Mike Fiers — 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 10 Ks. Oh. Hey there, Ks. Did somebody drop you? I’m sorry, let me pick those up for you. I kind of thought Fiers was getting a bad rep from the fantasy ‘perts. Yeah, I know he had back-to-back rocky outings including a 2.0 IP, 8 ER doozy in Colorado, and I know he’s starting to feel the effects of pitching so many innings. But outside those two starts he’s been downright dominant. Brewers say they’re gonna cap his innings, but he gets the Cubs next week, and if someone dropped him I’d certainly consider picking him up for his start on Wednesday.
Todd Frazier — 3-for-4 with an RBI. ALL HE DOES IS HIT THE BALL. At this point Joey Votto better lay his jersey out on Dusty’s desk, a la Rudy, “If he don’t play, I don’t play, Coach.” Frazier has been unreal, he’s batting .341 in August with 6 HRs and 21 RBIs.
Matt Harrison — 8.0, 2 H, 0 ER, 5 Ks and his 15th win. He took a no-hitter into the 7th inning. Y Yu Mad, Yu? Is it because I’m better than you, Yu?
Allen Craig — 3-for-5 with a 3-run HR, his 19th. Remember when we doubted The Wrench could stay healthy for the rest of the year. Well, look at him now! I’ve got an idea, just stay healthy. Just do it, okay? Don’t argue with me.
Lance Lynn — 2.0, 4 ER. Yes, this is what regression looks like. What’d you expect?
Michael Morse — Hit by a pitch on the hand and left the game but the X-Rays came back negative. Should only miss a few games.
Edwin Jackson — 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Ks. In the city of brotherly love, EJax wasn’t getting any love from his teammates and took the loss despite the quality start. Womp womp.
Corey Kluber — 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Ks against the Yankees. I was sure Kluber would get clobbered but he pitched pretty well. He might be worth a stream next week versus Oakland.
Cargo Gonzalez — 1-for-4 with his 21st HR. I’m sure that home run was dedicated to whoever’s funeral CarGo was attending. That one was for you up there watching me — may you RIP.
Adam Dunn — 2-for-5 with 2 HRs. Donkey’s now batting .207 with 38 home runs! .207. Ha, I could think of jokes all night, but I’m not coming up with anything funnier than that.
Jason Vargas — 4.0 IP, 6 ER. Served up 3 HRs as the quality start streak ends. It was bound to happen sooner or later, and probably sooner, and definitely on the road. I still like Vargas to rebound next week in Minnesota.
Addison Reed — 0.2 IP, 3 R, 2 ER. Blew a three-run lead but got the win, luckily Tom Wilhelmsen (0.1, 3 H, 2 ER) was that much worse. Still they each could have been much much worse. See Alfredo Aceves.
Cameron Maybin — 1-for-4 with his 24th SB. Grey told you to BUY him if you need steals. Do it now while the Padres are actually hitting!
Freddie Freeman — 2-for-3 with 2 HRs. Freddie was a Nightmare at AT&T Park for Ryan Vogelsong (6.1 IP, 3 ER, 5 Ks), but he escaped with his life and his 11th win.
Javier Lopez — 1.1 IP, and his 4th save. I wouldn’t say it too loud, Bruce Bochy might hear you, but I think the San Francisco Giants may have found their closer? But wait–no, he only faced one right-hander. Oh well. Keep speculating!
Andre Ethier — 4-for-4 with a HR and 4 RBI. Hanley Ramirez and Juan Rivera also homered in this one and Matt Kemp added 2 hits and an RBI but the LA offense could only manage a measly 11 runs. But don’t worry Dodgers’ fans, help is on the way!
Join us next Saturday for another Friday recap, as fantasy baseball continues next week, all week long!