It is another weekend in fantasy baseball and again we have a bunch of injury news. We have a highly touted pitcher who struggled out of the gate is getting closer to returning, while two high round picks are both out of their team's lineup. And of course we have plenty of news and notes from today's games including two high strikeout/high ERA pitchers squaring off, a struggling second baseman trying to break out, a couple of pitchers trying to turn their season around and a couple of guys under the radar who are getting the job done.
Phil Hughes will start his minor league rehab assignment on Sunday as he attempts to rejoin the Yankee rotation in order to strengthen their pitching staff. Hughes has been on the Disabled List since April 15th with sucking, or as the Yankees call it, a dead arm. If Hughes was dropped in your league I would absolutely pick him up as if he is healthy he could be a huge shot in the arm for your fantasy team. Expect Hughes to make four or five minor league starts before returning to the Bronx.
The hamstring injury suffered by Boston's Carl Crawford yesterday has landed him on the 15 day Disabled List. I am hoping that this is as much a mental health break for Crawford as it is a chance for him to heal rom this hammy injury as year one in Boston hasn't gone to plan for either side. It seemed that he was starting to get back on track before this setback, and now Crawford owners' are now hitting the Sam Adams to forget about how disappointing their first round pick is.
Mike Stanton was scratched from the lineup with an eye infection that apparently has been bothering him for a while and causing him some blurry vision. I guess it has worsened a little and they decided to send Stanton to an eye doctor to look at his problem. Hopefully this is nothing big, and this is nothing like the issues that Brian McCann had in the past. Get him out of your lineup until further notice.
Hunter Pence was scratched from Saturday's lineup after feeling soreness in his elbow after taking practice swings before the game and he has been diagnosed with a hyperextended elbow. Pence will undergo an MRI on Sunday to find the extent of the damage. You have to figure that he will be out again on Sunday, and possibly longer. Keep your eye on Fantasy Alarm for the news on his injury and when he will be back for his team.
After really struggling his last time out, Brian Matusz was only a little bit better on Saturday as he gave up four runs over 5.1 innings, walking three and striking out five. His ERA is now at 5.60 for the season, and although it is early I am a little worried about Matusz. I would like to see him get more strikeouts and he is giving up far too many hits. I wouldn't drop Matusz if he was on my team yet, but his leash is getting fairly short.
Dan Uggla doubled twice and drove in two runs for the Braves as he is trying to turn his disappointing season around. Uggla is still hitting just .177 but at least there are signs of life from the embattled second baseman. I hope that you have been patient with him this long because I am very confident that you will be rewarded. There is still time to try to buy low on this guy, and I still think this is a good idea.
After getting off to a really slow start when the team was doing well, Carlos Carrasco has now turned it around when the team has started to struggle. Carrasco allowed just one run over 6.1 innings and struck out four. Carrasco was a fairly highly touted pitching prospect for the Phillies a while back and finally looks like he is going to start to live up to his potential. The run he allowed tonight was the first one he allowed in his last three outings. At worst Carrasco is worth using as a streamer, but right now I think he is actually worth a roster spot on your team if you need pitching help.
Corey Hart missed almost the entire month of April, but the guy keeps hitting since coming back to the lineup. Hart hit his seventh homer of the year on Saturday, and drove in his 20th run of the year. He is never going to win a batting title, but Hart always hits for a respectable average, and this year is no different with his .277 mark. He is a perfect third outfielder and when he goes into a little slump would be a guy that I would try to acquire in a trade if the price was right.
Edinson Volquez and Brandon Morrow are similar type pitchers in that they both rack up a decent number of strikeouts, but give up far too many runs and walk too many hitters. Not to mention they both are never going to lead the league in wins. They faced off on Saturday and one certainly got the better part of the other. Volquez allowed four runs over his five innings and struck out eight on the way to his third loss of the year, but it was Morrow who shined with 6.2 shutout innings and struck out six. Morrow collected his third win of the season and only walked one. I have to say that I have more faith in Morrow than I do in Volquez, but I don't feel nearly as confident in Morrow as I did before the season started.
Mike Pelfrey has been dealing lately, and tonight was one of the best starts of his career. Pelfrey went the distance against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and allowed just one run, walking one, and striking out five. Only a pinch hit home run by Mark Trumbo ruined his shutout bid, but this is the second consecutive really strong start by Pelfrey. Big Pelf was always supposed to be one of the Mets' top pitchers, so is this realizing his potential? Or is this just a hot streak? Right now I still think it is more of the latter and wouldn't add Pelfrey, but if his next matchup is against a weak offensive team I would use him as a streamer.
John Danks was great again as he continues to reward those of you who sat through his 0-8 start. He allowed just one earned run over seven innings, didn't walk a batter and struck out seven. Hell, even a line drive to the head from Stephen Drew couldn't stop him. His hideous ERA is now down to 4.29 and he won his third game of the season. Danks was way too talented to be as bad as he was early in the season, and he was a hard luck loser on more than one occasion. He isn't going to win every start for the rest of the year, but he should be very strong down the stretch and is absolutely worth a roster spot or even worth trading for if the price is right.
Ubaldo Jimenez was one of the biggest disappointments in fantasy baseball this season, but all of a sudden he is starting to show signs of life. He wasn't flawless on Saturday, but Baldy allowed just three runs over five innings, walked two and struck out five. He did leave this start with a cramp in his calf, but it appears to be minor. He has now given up seven runs in his last four starts and won his second game of the season. Unlike last year when he was incredible in the first half and sucked in the second, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised to see him pull the opposite in 2011 if he sucked in the first half and was awesome down the stretch. Jimenez seems to be the perfect buy low option after the All-Star Break.
Andrew Miller vs. Mat Latos (SD). This is probably my most out there pick so far. Miller was a former first round pick of the Florida Marlins but never quite put it together for the Fish. He has now landed in Boston, which is a great situation for the young man without a lot of pressure on him. Plus he will get a ton of run support. This will be his first start for the Sox, and while I love Latos, you can't argue with the fact that he doesn't get a lot of help from his offense. It is out on a limb, but I like Miller.
Saturday's Result: Rubby De La Rosa (LAD) -- 4.2 IP, 6H, 5 ER, 3 BB, 6 Ks (L). All was going well for De La Rosa until a walk, an infield single, and another single made this all look bad. Not a great choice, but he was a few pitches away from a great outing.
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