Well, I’d like to start off this post by saying I’m sorry to the folks in Razzball nation who picked up Cameron Maybin last week in their weekly leagues. He’ll be out for quite a while with a PCL tear to his knee. In the words of the Guru on Twitter, “This time wasn’t different, Mike…oops”. Maybin promised me the 8 o’clock rez at Dorsia, but then he slipped me an extra lithium and I ended up at Barcadia. Worst of all, in my weekly league, it was too late to swap him when the injury news came out. Next thing I knew it was lunch at Texarkana. Sheesh. Onward and upward, they say, and this week we have some new faces in the mix, including Gregor Blanco, who seems to have found a hot bat since stepping in for the injured Angel Pagan. Check him out and some of the other base stealing threats this week, but you’ll have to excuse me, I have a lunch meeting in 20 minutes with Cliff Huxtable at the Four Seasons.
Gregor Blanco - (2013: 7 SB, Last 7: 1 SB, This Week: Padres, Marlins)
While Pagan nurses a bad hammy on the disabled list, Blanco is a safe bet to patrol the outfield most nights as well as lead off for the Giants. He’s got a decent average (.280) and a solid OBP (.341), which will give him some opportunities for both steals and runs scored. In 2012, Blanco stole 26 bases in 141 games.
Juan Pierre - (2013: 18 SB, Last 7: 2 SB, This Week: @D’Backs, @Giants)
Pierre’s hitting .353 in his last 15 games and it is showing in his stolen base numbers, with 5 swipes in that span. I mention him every week, I know, but he’s only owned in 25% of ESPN leagues. Here’s a legitimate concern, however: if the Marlins’ young and talented outfield suddenly gets crowded, Pierre could be shipped off to a team that only uses him as a fourth outfielder/pinch runner. Basically, don’t hitch your star to his wagon permanently, but certainly pick him up now while he’s hitting everything.
Ben Revere - (2013: 16 SB, Last 7: 2 SB, This Week: Nationals, Mets)
Not to be outdone by his NL East mate Pierre, Revere has 6 SB in his last 15 games, hitting .340. He’s had 3 multi-hit games in his last five, and he’s got more youth and upside than Pierre and is in a better lineup. He’s also owned in twice as many leagues as Pierre, however, and in RCL leagues he’s almost unavailable now with 91% ownership.
DJ LeMahieu - (2013: 8 SB, Last 7: 3 SB, This Week: @Blue Jays, @Nationals)
Well, for as bad as the Maybin recommendation turned out, my post two weeks ago on LeMahieu seems to be panning out. Despite being kind of a light-hitting middle infielder, he’s steadily racking up steals. His playing time isn’t in jeopardy even if he yields a start or two to Jonathan Herrera, and he should continue to provide some steals. I really like the goose egg in the CS column. He’s 8-0 in SB attempts in just 28 games.
Jarrod Dyson - DL (2013: 6 SB, Last 7: 0 SB, This Week: @Indians, White Sox)
Dyson is looking like he’s close to returning to action after an injury to his ankle landed him on the disabled list. While David Lough has filled in nicely, it shouldn’t take long to see Dyson back in the outfield most nights and batting leadoff for the Royals. Dyson was successfully stealing bags in the little bit of playing time he had before his injury, and the Royals seem to be clicking offensively at the moment. I’m not going gaga, but he’s on the radar for sure.
Peter Bourjos - (2013: 2 SB, Last 7: 1 SB, This Week: Mariners, Pirates)
I’m a little concerned that Bourjos was only able to steal 3 bags last year in 100 games, and that’s what I’ll tell folks who ask me if he’s a good option to pick up for steals. I’m also not a big fan of him hitting at the bottom of the lineup. All that being said, he does have good speed and should play everyday given his above average defensive abilities in centerfield. I just don’t trust him as a great option when there are other guys available who are hitting leadoff for their respective teams.
Notes: Speaking of the Angels, they are still allowing the most steals in all of baseball with 58 through Sunday. An example of this problem was Saturday night, when Ichiro Suzuki stole a pair and should actually have had 3 SBs for the evening had it not been for a bad call. Expect good SB numbers from your Mariners and Pirates players.
Teams highlighted in red are in the top ten in least stolen bases allowed.
Teams highlighted in green are in the top ten in most stolen bases allowed.
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