What does Juan Lagares have to do with this title? Not very much, but this day only comes around once a year, and I’m going to honor it by using it as the title of my post. I’m such a nerd that I still have my Star Wars lunch box from when I was a kid, and I ain’t selling it. My inner-Jedi has been searching around to try and find a stop-gap who has the force flowing through them for the next week. Many of us need help in our lineups while we deal with injuries and non-performers. I own Adam Eaton, Billy Hamilton, and Kole Calhoun in one league, and I’m in serious need of a bat right now that won’t kill my team. If you were a diligent reader of the pre-season awesomeness here at Razzball, then you may own some of these players too. It’s a predicament of Sarlaccian proportions and as we dodge asteroids in our Millennium Falcons, we need to find that bat to help us through this mess.
Before I move forward, I want to talk about the newest Star Wars movie due to be released on December 18th, 2015. The cast has been set and many of the original Star Wars players will be involved, including Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, and Carrie Fisher. You can read about the new cast here. The marketing is going to go bananas for this one and we will be flooded with merchandise of epic proportions. Vans has even announced a line of Star Wars shoes for the uber geeks. Hey Jay(Wrong), can you get Star Trek slip-ons?……I think not. [Ed. Note-- Uhh. Yes I can?]
Juan Lagares just came off the DL, he’s only 1% owned in ESPN leagues, and as I write this, he has picked up right where he left off going 4-for-9 with a run and a RBI in his first two games. Before he went down, he was sporting a very nice .298 batting average with 5 runs, 6 RBI’s, 4 extra base hits in only 47 AB’s. To put him in perspective, he had only one game so far this year where he didn’t get a hit, and including what he’s done since coming off the DL, he has 7 multi-hit games on the young season. I understand the counting stats are not jumping off the page, but when you hit like that, they will come. I prefer to have a player that isn’t going to hurt you than a player who might give me a home run one game then go 0-13 over their next three contests.
Lagares opens the week with three games against the Marlins where he has gone 6-for-14 with 2 triples against the scheduled starters for those games. The sample size is small (hehe), but I have a feeling he’s going to use that huge park and his speed to put himself in position to score. After an off day on Thursday he opens a home weekend series against the Phillies where he faces Cole Hamels (5-for-13, 3 doubles, 2 walks) and Kyle Kendrick (3 for 4, 1 double, 1 walk). He also gets to face Roberto Hernandez and his bloated 5.74 ERA and 1.56 WHIP. Again we have a small sample size, but when you have a player that is an extra base hits machine, you have higher opportunities to score runs and maybe some of those XBH’s will start turning into home runs. He might come off as a little boring but he is steady and won’t hurt you. If you really want to get into the underlying numbers with him, then look at his GB/FB of 0.76. It screams power should be there, and I think it’s only a matter of time before he pops a few more over the fence. His BABIP is high at .422, but if you look at his minor league track record, it’s not uncommon for him to be on the high side. Because of his defense, he should continue to get AB’s and his speed will keep him interesting.
I’m starting him in a few leagues and I suggest if you need a fill in you should too.