As we move head long into the second half, we hope you are still alive in your pennant race. This week's edition of Waiver Flavor features two veterans who could go a long way helping you climb in the standings. After two years away, Ben Sheets has returned home to the South and may be the shot in the arm that Atlanta needs. In St. Louis, the Cardinals get Lance Berkman back, which should help Carlos Beltran and give Matt Holiday a little help in carrying the club.
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Delmon Young Detroit- Home runs in four straight games heading into the All-Star break should have caught your attention. Young is healthy, should have left field locked down all to himself and projects for a nice second half. The only problem is will there be any runners left on base after Prince Fielder and Miguel Cabrera do their thing?
Lance Berkman St. Louis- Eager to get back in the pennant race, Berkman skipped a brief minor league rehab stint and is back in the Cardinals lineup. Berkman was seen running out an infield single against Cincinnati on Sunday night baseball and his return should boost the slumping Carlos Beltran. If you were waiting to see him return, the wait is over.
Justin Ruggiano Miami- Someone has to step in for the injured Giancarlo Stanton and so far, its Ruggiano. Emilio Bonifacio has just returned after a long absence and although they could both end up earning a spot, the situation bears watching. Four home runs, double digit RBI and a BA north of .400 over past two weeks is worthy of a long look.
Chris Carter Oakland- Has the big first baseman finally arrived? Or is he just the next Brandon Moss? Carter has five home runs in only 26 at bats and drew three walks yesterday. Carter is hitting .346 with a .435 OBP and is worthy of a pickup if he can get full time play., As it stands, he is still working mostly against left handed pitching.
Ben Sheets Atlanta- In those leagues that allow minor league or rehab pickups, Sheets is probably already gone. If you were waiting to see a start before making your move, Sunday's performance should be more than enough. Always possessing a hammer curve ball, Sheets was hitting low 90's on the radar gun which spells trouble for National League hitters.
Homer Bailey Cincinnati- Another solid performance for Bailey, allowing only one earned run over eight innings of work on Sunday night baseball against the Cardinals. Homer is 3-0 in his last three starts with a 17/3 strikeout to walk ratio while allowing only five runs. Bailey has only given up more than four runs, twice all season and may have turned the corner.
Steve Cishek Miami- We cannot let a week go by without giving you a potential source for saves. The love/hate relationship between Ozzie Guillen and Heath Bell was exposed on Showtime about the same time Bell was yanked from the closer role.... again. Cishek is a 6'6" right hander with absolutely nasty sidearm/submarine stuff. Take a chance, I did!
Clayton Richard San Diego- Another sparking performance by Richard on Saturday night, with his only mistake a two run homer by Mark Ellis. Even without run support, Richard is 3-3 over the past month with a sub 3.00 ERA, a 24/6 strikeout to walk ratio and only 34 hits allowed in 44 innings. Other than a six runs aberration against the Reds on July 7, Richard has allowed only 14 earned runs in eight starts dating back to May.
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Tomorrow we take a look at this weeks Farm Report.
Tom Blaz is a writer for Fantasy Alarm and co-owner of The Recruiting Eagle a website focusing on Auburn University Athletics.
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