Last night, one of the most talented young arms in baseball followed up a career high in strikeouts with yet another career high in strikeouts. Jose Fernandez cooled off the Cleveland Indians with 8 shutout innings and 14 Ks. The Tribe entered Crayola Canyon on an 8-game winning streak, but left the game wondering if they should have even bothered to pack their bats for the trip. J-Fer, as the kids call him, has most likely been one of your league’s best waiver pickups since his surprise call-up and is currently sporting a two-fitty ERA and a WHIP around 1.00. Oh, and then there are the strikeouts. 27 Ks over his last 16 innings and now 138 on the year is pretty impressive considering the kid couldn’t even have a drink in the Clevelander until this past Wednesday. Like most rookie pitchers, the dreaded innings cap is looming (word on the street is 170), but for now let’s enjoy the ride and appreciate nights like these when we get to see a future ace show his best stuff. Here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
Jake Marisnick – 3-for-5, double, run, RBI, and his first steal. Lost in some of the Yelich call-up hype was the fact that Marisnick is a nice toolsy young outfielder. I’d keep an eye on him as he had a really rough start but is heating up over the last week and could be a nice source of power and speed down the stretch.
Ubaldo Jimenez – 4 IP, 5 R (2 ER), 11 baserunners, 2 Ks vs. the Marlins. In Ohio, we know there are actually two Ubaldos. The one that has decent control, pitches well, and helps those in need. Then there’s the one that screws with your team’s ERA and WHIP and nudges the elderly into traffic. Guess which one this was.
Matt Carpenter – 0-for-6 with 3 Ks in a 13-3 win for the Cards. If you are visiting this site for the first time, two things. One, I apologize that you get me for your first post. Two, this is what is known around here as a Ticker Tease.
Allen Craig – 3-for-3, 3 runs, 3 RBIs, and his 11th homer. Craig is an RBI machine and now has 84 on the year. Not to be confused with a WTF machine, which is what the opposing pitcher Bronson Arroyo was last night.
Chris Davis – 1-for-4 with his (80th?) homer and third in his last four games. Davis seems to hit his homers in bunches. This would be one of those bunches. Where you at, post-Derby naysayers?!
Nate McLouth – 2-for-5, 2 runs and a grand slam. Yeah that’s great and all, but where’s the steal yo?!
Brian Roberts – Placed on paternity leave. One of my favorite Bob Uecker lines is about the MLB paternity leave: “Player X was placed on paternity leave…and he wasn’t even showing!”
Michael Morse – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs, and his 12th homer. Morse came back from the DL with a bang, and despite the missed time could still eclipse 20 homers by the end of the year. That’s Morse code for “this guy has legit power.”
Cody Ross – 4-for-5 with a slam & legs, 2 doubles, and 3 RBIs. Prior to the game, Ross told Boston media that he felt “lied to” by the organization regarding not wanting to sign him. Suggestion: DBacks should hire somebody to lie to Ross before every game.
Paul Goldschmidt – 2-for-5 with his 25th homer. Au Shizz!
Stephen Drew – 2-for-2, 3 RBIs, and his 8th homer. Drew went toe to toe with Ross on “who can show up your old team” night at Fenway.
Jason Heyward – 2-for-4, double, run, RBI. He hit leadoff again and now has 3 homers and 8 RBIs while hitting .321 over the past week. Like Cher, I wish I could turn back time to BUY Heyward when Grey first mentioned him.
B.J. Upton – 1-for-5 with 3 Ks in what looked to be his final rehab game before being activated today. It looks like we’ll have two more months of getting in trouble at work for our “why BJ sucks” Google results. He could pull it together and help your team with some power and speed over the last two months, or he could continue to tank. I would expect the latter and I’ll be pleasantly surprised if I’m wrong, given that I traded for him back in April.
Delmon Young – 3-for-4 with a double and his 8th homer. Nothing to see here folks.
David Wright – 2-for-5 with his 16th homer. Wright left this game with a hamstring injury that looked more than minor. This is terrible timing considering a lot of fantasy trade deadlines are occurring and big pieces like Wright get moved all the time. Honestly, between Stanton, Hanley, and now Wright, I’m over hamstrings.
Troy Tulowitzki – 2-for-3, 2 runs, 2 RBIs, and his 20th homer. Owning an oft-injured guy like Tulowitzki is similar to being the parent of a teenager that comes home way after curfew. Whether he goes 5-for-5 or 0-for-5, you just end up saying “Thank God you’re okay. We were so worried about you.”
Hyun-Jin Ryu – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 11 baserunners, 6 Ks, and the win. Is it just me, or would it be nice if this guy could get a little deeper into games? I feel like every time I watch him pitch he’s at 60 pitches by the end of the third inning. Still, the strikeouts are there and he walked zero in this last start, which is a good sign.
Hector Santiago – 7 IP, 2 ER, 7 baserunners, 7 Ks. Come for the stream, stay for the strikeouts.
Alex Rios – 2-for-3, RBI, and his 23rd steal. He now has as many steals as he did all of last season. The home run total might have come down, but with speed at a premium it’s hard to complain about his production.
Jurickson Profar – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs, and his 4th homer. Ron Washington stated that he plans to keep Profar as an infielder even if Cruz is suspended. I have stopped trying to figure out this Profar situation with the Rangers, but it will be interesting to see what happens come Monday when the suspensions are handed out. If Profar somehow ends up with an everyday job, no matter what position, I feel like he can make an impact for fantasy teams down the stretch. On the flip side, if he continues to play all over the place and not on an everyday basis, he’s no different than the normal waiver fodder to me in mixed leagues.
Brandon Belt – 3-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs, a triple, and his 11th homer. Brandon’s belts were nice, but they probably weren’t enough to get him out of a platoon with Brett Pill, which is tough to swallow. (See what I did there?)
Madison Bumgarner – 7 IP, ER, 10 baserunners, 11 Ks, and the win vs. the Rays on the road. He’s been consistently great all year and now has nearly as many strikeouts as innings pitched to go along with his tidy WHIP.
Jarred Cosart – 7 IP, ER, 6 baserunners, 4 Ks. Cosart has now allowed 1 ER or less in each of his starts. The biggest dis on him I could find was his control, and he only walked one in this appearance. He’s already on my radar (and on some of my teams) and he’s got the stuff to be a serviceable starter the rest of the way.
Melky Cabrera – To the DL with a bad meniscus and he could be out for more than the minimum. Fun fact: I threw the meniscus for my high school track and field team. I was a stud. Since the Melkman can’t deliver, it’ll be Rajai Davis time in left field. If you follow my steals column you know I love to start guys against the Angels, who are terrible at controlling the running game. Grey also told you to BUY Rajai, and the Halos allowed another three steals last night. SAGNOF!
Chris Nelson – 3-for-4, double, 2 runs, and 2 RBIs. Nelson will get the playing time at third base now that Callaspo is gone. In 111 games with Colorado last year, Nelson hit .301 with 9 homers. He’s worth a look if you need to replace your hot corner. I’m looking at you, David Wright.
Ernesto Frieri – IP, 0 ER, 1 baserunner, 3 Ks, and his 26th save. After what can only be described as a terrible week, Frieri got back on the horse in a big way. This is exactly the kind of outing the Angels and his owners needed to step back from that ledge, my friends.
Alex Rodriguez– 1-for-2 with a homer in his rehab start for Double-A Trenton. This whole thing would be more interesting if A-Rod did his press conferences in that centaur getup, and then one of his lawyers argued that he couldn’t be banned for life because he is actually an immortal mythical creature.
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