Happy All-Star break! With the trading deadline now on the horizon, we will begin to at least hear about proposed deals. If you are in a standard roto league, average category numbers like BA, ERA and WHIP are getting harder to move. (Although it certainly seems easy to drop in these categories, right?) You have a better chance to make a move in cumulative categories like HR, RBI, SB, W and S.
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Jim Thome Baltimore- Was there ever a player that was a better fit for a DH? The 41 year old Thome raised many eyebrows recently during inter league play, when the Phillies put him on display for AL clubs hungry for hitting. Thome hit .333 with four home runs and 14 RBI in the DH role for Philadelphia and the audition landed him in Baltimore. The Orioles are in a pennant race and Camden fits Thome well.
Alexi Amarista San Diego- The Ruthian display by Amarista was an aberration, but anytime you can get production like that in the middle infield, you need to at least address it. Amarista was ridiculous heading into the Fourth, going 11-for-21 in a six game stretch with four home runs and eleven RBI. Amarista has cooled off considerably and is historically more a stolen base threat than a power provider.
Pedro Alvarez Pittsburgh- One of the streakiest hitters in the majors this season, I picked him up a tad too late following his first barrage of the season. The young third baseman is hot again ad will need to continue to rake if the PIrates want a rare post season appearance. Over the past week and a half, Alvarez has three homers, 15 RBI while hitting a tad under .300.
Tyler Colvin Colorado- Colvin was on my radar and jumped near the top after taking Stephen Strasburg deep.... twice. The Cubs drew impatient with Colvin, who has found new life at Coors Field. While Colvin is on pace for decent season long numbers, much damage has been done of late. How about five home runs, ten RBI and a .300 average in July alone?
Jose Quinata Chicago White Sox- This rookie southpaw has been a surprise and is certainly sneaking up on almost everyone. Quinata was lit up at Yankee Stadium at the end of June, otherwise he has been as good as anyone over his last five starts. Quinata has only allowed five earned runs in his last five starts, outside the start in New York. Eight K's each of his last two starts certainly caught my eye.
Michael Fiers Milwaukee- Another rookie who has quietly been very effective over the past month. Over this last five starts, Fiers has only given up five earned runs, never more than two in any of the five starts. Fiers has been getting stronger, with ten and nine strikeouts in his last two starts. Fiers is a solid prospect, an organization All-Star last season in Nashville.
Chris Tillman Baltimore- One of many young guns in the Baltimore organization that have yet to arrive. Tillman gave fantasy owners a little taste with a lights out performance against Seattle before getting sent back down. Tillman will return and take a turn in the rotation after the break. Mid-to-upper 90's on the radar gun last week is certainly worth a second look.
Ben Sheets Atlanta- Sheets figures to have two more Double-A starts, then if all goes well, will join the Braves rotation. Sheets has had nothing but injury concerns in his career, but is hitting 91 on the gun. If Sheets can maintain that velocity, to supplement his hammer curve ball, Atlanta could be on to something.
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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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