Happy Memorial Day to you all! With a full slate of games and an early start here for the holiday, you’ve got to get those lineups in quickly before you disappear to the land of no work and lots of BBQ’s. No reason to delay you with a real wordy intro as I’ve go tto get those steaks marinating as well, so let’s just get to the Sunday wrap…
|Melky Cabrera, OF SF||4-4, 3 R, HR, RBI, 2 SB|
It’s about time that the hottest hitter in baseball right now landed one of the biggest in-season awards as Melky Cabrera celebrates another big night. I’ll admit, I’m very skeptical of handing out too many accolades for him, because I’ve never been a big believer. I watched him breakout last season with Kansas City, but after looking at some of the numbers, was hard-pressed to believe that he could repeat his totals, let alone improve upon them. Well here we are at the tail-end of May and while the power he showed last year seems to have stayed in the past, the guy is absolutely raking in every way he knows how. He’s currently batting .369, leading the majors with 73 hits and has nine stolen bases which puts him on pace to surpass last season’s mark of 20. But I am sticking to my guns here and saying that he is a prime sell-high candidate. I just don’t see him sustaining this .406 BABIP, nor do I see it finishing above last year’s .332 mark. The hot start has been great and for those that drafted him, a worthwhile early-season investment, but we’ll see what happens once we creep into those dog days of summer and where Melky’s average lands then.
|J.P. Arencibia, C TOR||2-4, 2 R, 2 HR, 2 RBI|
|Carlos Gonzalez, OF COL||2-4, 2 R, 2 HR, 2 RBI|
|Quintin Berry, OF DET||3-4, 2 R, BB, 2 SB|
|Paul Konerko, 1B CHW||2-4, 2 R, HR, 4 RBI, BB|
|R.A. Dickey, SP NYM||W, 0.00 ERA, 0.55 WHIP, 10 K|
When J.P. Arencibia busts out of a slump, he knows how to do it in style. After a four-game 1-for-18 slump, JPA had his second multi-homer game in his last nine and now has six home runs over his last 11 games. You’re not getting a decent batting average out of him, but if you’re just looking for some pop behind the plate, then you’ve got your man right here. His home run barrage lately has coincided with heavy Triple-A production from prospect Travis d’Arnaud and the promotion of Yan Gomes, so as long as he’s hitting Arencibia will stave off anyone looking to poach from his playing time.
A day after Carlos Gonzalez goes 0-for-4 to end a little five-game hit streak, he plugs two home runs to start back up on another streak. He’s got some nasty home/road splits still, but so long as he gets his 81 games at Coors Field, he should remain a top fantasy outfielder.
With Austin Jackson hitting the disabled list, Quintin Berry becomes an interesting add, atleast for the next two weeks. If you’re looking for a quick speed fix for your team, Berry can help as he’ll take over center field for the Tigers while Jackson is down and, barring a sudden run of hitless nights, should stay in the leadoff spot as well. Just don’t get too attached as his time here will likely be short.
No folks, Paul Konerko will not hit .400 this season. While this two month tear that he is on is fantastic and a huge boost to fantasy owners, there’s no way it lasts. I mean, come on. A .432 BABIP? That’s more outlandish than Melky’s. I’m not even saying that he’s a big sell-high guy, because the power he provides is, to me, a bigger asset than someone swiping 20 bases, so I like to hang onto players like that, but you have to be realistic and understand that the batting average is going to drop. Now if you do have someone willing to offer you up say Albert Pujols, for example, then yes, I’m trading Konerko, but right now I’m just enjoying what he’s doing and bracing myself for the expected drop.
And finally, come on. R.A. Dickey? Doesn’t anyone know how to hit a knuckleball anymore? One more outing from a Mets pitcher like this and I just might have to start trading for some. Take away that one bad outing in mid-June, and Dickey hasn’t given up more than three runs or pitched fewer than six innings in any start this season. And with 29 strikeouts in his last three outings, he’s either putting some bizarre movement on his knuckler or he’s just learned how to fool hitters better. Either way, he’s been a huge fantasy boost and a great bargain find this season.
|Eric Hinske, OF ATL||0-4, 4 K|
|Eric Hosmer, 1B KC||0-4, 3 K|
|Andre Ethier, OF LAD||0-5, 3 K|
|Kyle Drabek, SP TOR||L, 27.00 ERA, 3.67 WHIP, K|
|Roy Halladay, SP PHI||L, 18.00 ERA, 2.50 WHIP|
Where to begin here? Usually I just chalk it up to a bad day, but today there are a few added thoughts…
Eric Hosmer looked like he was finally breaking out of his slump, but Sunday looked a step backwards which is always a concern for a guy who is trying to dig himself out of a very deep, early-season hole. After being dropped in the order, Hosmer went on a little five-game hit streak in which twice he had three-hit performances. All was looking better and it would seem that he was finally going to pull that batting average above .200 finally. But with three whiffs in four at-bats, it would seem that someone got a little over-anxious at the plate again and was pressing. Looks like they moved him up to the sixth spot in the order a little soon and he fell back into some old habits. He’s got a long way to go before fantasy redemption, but he’s never going to get there unless he learns to relax and be patient on a more consistent basis.
As for Kyle Drabek, well, outings like these are to be expected. He’s still young and will continue to have growing pains all year as he tries to really find his way. He’s definitely worth a look all year, but perhaps streaming him for favorable starts is the right way to go for the moment. He’s got the talent to succeed, but stll needs to mature a little before things click for him on a more regular basis.
And then there’s Roy Halladay. Panic? Not yet. But be very wary here. They say he was removed for precautionary reasons, but the shoulder problems would certainly help explain the negative changes we’ve seen in him this year, particularly the decrease in velocity. Though they said that there was no MRI scheduled, you would have to assume that they would run some sort of a barrage of tests to be sure. Stash him for now and see. They might tell you he’s fine and just needs rest or they might tell you that he needs a stint on the DL to get healthy, but I would play it safe and bench him for this week. If he’s fine, then you’ve lost only one start. If he’s not, then you’ve got someone else in there to cover. Not that just anyone can replace Halladay though.
Miguel Montero, C ARI – groin (questionable)
Freddie Freeman, 1B ATL – eyes (doubtful)
Asdrubal Cabrera, SS CLE – hamstring (doubtful)
Travis Hafner, DH CLE – knee (questionable)
Jarrod Dyson, OF KC – hamstring (questionable)
Jose Tabata, OF PIT – leg (questionable)
Cameron Maybin, OF SD – wrist (questionable)
Yunel Escobar, SS TOR – groin (questionable)
Kelly Johnson, 2B TOR – hamstring (questionable)
Jesus Flores, C WAS – hamstring (questionable)
Howard Bender has been covering fantasy sports for over ten years on a variety of web sites including his own, The Fantasy Baseball Buzz. You can follow him on Twitter at @rotobuzzguy or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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