A new week and eight new players for your review. We have four pitchers, including former All-Star Tim Lincecum who inexplicably lost his way in the season's first half. Our featured reliever seemed to be banished to setup for life, but K'Rod is again the man! Our four hitters include a white hot veteran and our sleeper pick of the week.
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Tim Lincecum/San Francisco- Is Lincecum turning the corner? For the first time since April, he made excellent starts in back to back appearances. Eleven strikeouts in eight shutout innings against the Houston Astros, followed up by seven solid innings and another win, this time at Philadelphia. If you are in a league that gave up on him, he is certainly worthy of a look. If someone already has him in your league, you may want to make a low ball offer.
Francisco Rodriguez/Milwaukee- The Brewers weren't kidding when the announced the move of K-Rod into the closer's role. Rodriguez worked four straight days last week, unusual for a short reliever, or any pitcher. Rodriguez picked up saves in the last two appearances, but was very shaky in the last,issuing three walks.The club insists that John Axford will eventually be tried in the role again at some point, and Francisco's name is often mentioned in trade rumors.
Cody Ross/Boston- Wow, talk about the player of the week! Ross with a pair of three run homers on Wednesday, adding another on Thursday, of the walk off variety to beat the White Sox. Although Carl Crawford, Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedroia are all back in the lineup, Ross will maintain a spot as long as he stays hot. In only 234 at bats, Ross has 16 home runs, 50 RBI and a .269 average. Things may tighten up when David Ortiz returns, but for now Ross can carry a team.
Travis Snider/Toronto-With Jose Bautista landing on the DL, the Jays are taking a look at rookie Anthony Gose as well as Travis Snider. Is Snider a AAAA player? Too good for Triple-A, but unable to make it at the major league level? Snider raked in 56 games at Las Vegas, 13 home runs, 56 RBI with a .335 average in 209 at bats. Snider has hit in all three games since getting called up, including a three run home run on Sunday.
Josh Collmenter/Arizona- Prized rookie Trevor Bauer was sent back down, creating an opportunity for Collmenter. In nine appearances since Memorial Day weekend, Collmenter posting an ERA off 0.89, a 1,12 WHIP and 32 strikeouts over 30 innings of work. Collmenter returned to the rotation on Sunday, picking up the win while allowing only two runs and issuing only one walk. In three July starts, Collmenter has allowed only only five runs and issued only three walks.
Roger Bernadina/Washington- The Ian Desmond injury may create more playing time for Bernadina. How you might ask? Well, Steve Lombardozzi who has been playing alot of outfield will now play second base full time with Danny Espinosa sliding over to shortstop. Rick Ankiel has also been cut loose, spelling playing time for Roger, certainly against right handed pitching. In three starts last week, Bernadina was a blistering 10-for-16 with four RBI and two steals.
Fernando Salas/St.Louis- The Cardinals bullpen is struggling in a big way. St.Louis has blown 14 saves, an ERA of 4.37 and only nine wins in 24 decisions. I have been keeping my eye on Fernando Salas this month, nine strikeouts in nine and a third winnings of work, he hasn't allowed a run and has issued only three walks. The Cards aren't using him in crunch time, evidenced by him not posting a decision in those eight appearances. Just a reminder, last season Salas had 24 saves, with an ERA of 2.28 and 0.95 WHIP.
Ryan Flaherty/Baltimore- Brian Roberts and Robert Andino are both on the DL, creating an every day role for Ryan Flaherty. Flaherty has good pop for a middle infielder and showed it with home runs on Friday and Saturday. A one time first round draft pick, the left hander is 6-3, 220 and could be a source of unexpected power. Flaherty hasn't contributed much this season, this is a "sleeper" pick based on potential playing time due to injury and going deep in back to back games.
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We continue tomorrow with "The Farm Report", a look at young talent on the verge of arriving at the Show.
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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