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Roy Halladay says he is healthy and ready to put last season behind him. Should you believe that? Will Mike Napoli be able to overcome concerns about his hips, get 500+ at-bats, and be a dominating fantasy catcher in 2013? With Frank Francisco's elbow barking, who are the Mets targeting to work the 9th inning in his place? Finally, what will the Indians do at the end of their rotation, and should you even care?
If Albert Pujols struggled, and he did, the brainiacs among you remained patient knowing things would turn around. His track record of excellence dictated it. If you owned Mark Teixeira you remained patient knowing full well that his production seemingly always improves as the season moves forward. You've been rewarded for your patience. However, what do you do if a player doesn't have a track record like these two? What do you do if a player is coming back off an injury? What do you do if a player is aging or inexplicably unable to perform of late? Should you be panicking or should you hold fast with said players?
On this special day in our nations history – by the way it might be more applicable for us to celebrate on July 2nd and not the 4th (see my report on why) – I'd like to extend my thanks to everyone who has ever fought for our freedoms be it with a sword, a cannon, a gun, a voice or the pen. Thanks you for giving us the freedom to do things like play fantasy baseball. Oh yeah, there's also some baseball stuff in this article too – though there really is no rhythm or reason today. I'm going to mention young hitters – guys like Brandon Belt and Ike Davis – I'll talk young callups on the hill like Chris Tillman and Trevor Bauer, and I'll also mention old guys like R.A. Dickey. Hey, what do you expect from a guy who is already four beers deep at 11 AM?
It never turns out the way you really want it to, does it? You hope, you dream, you pray, but somehow there’s always a curveball thrown in there that you don’t really expect. Once again, that’s the way it went for fantasy owners who were anticipating a dream match-up of young studs – future all-stars – on the mound on Tuesday night when uber-phenom Trevor Bauer took the hill for the Arizona Diamondbacks opposite the young flamethrower, Andrew Cashner, of the San Diego Padres. The unconventional ways of Bauer mixed with the 100-plus mph fastballs of Cashner built expectations of a low scoring, fast moving, strikeout-laden game that was sure to eventually land in the “classic games” archives of the MLB Network, right? Whoops! Not so fast there, Skippy.
So far we’ve seen a nice , steady influx of top rookie talent brought up this season, between Bryce Harper, Mike Trout, Anthony Rizzo and Trevor Bauer, just to name a few. Fantasy owners in keeper leagues are drooling over this youth infusion we’re getting and you can’t really blame them. The talent level is ginormous. So in the spirit of this fabulous youth movement, the Padres have joined in the fun and brought back up one of the top catching prospects in the game and it looks like they’re actually going to play him this time around. That’s right, San Diego finally grew tired of watching Nick Hundley try to pull himself out of a season-long funk and have decided to send him down to the minors to work things out. In exchange for Hundley, they’ve brought up Yasmai Grandal, a future-star behind the plate.
It looks like we’re getting a little minor league influx this week – two big prospects and the return of a banished slugger. After much speculation over the past week or so, we received word over the weekend that Arizona pitching phenom Trevor Bauer would make his mound debut, that the Cubs were finally ready to bring up slugging first baseman Anthony Rizzo and one-time 30-home run hitter from Toronto, Adam Lind, was coming back from his Triple-A exile and returning to the Blue Jays lineup. If, for any reason, any one of those guys sits available in your league, you better snatch them up as quickly as you can. There’s no guarantee, of course, that the production will be there immediately, but any one of the three is certainly worth a look.
It's early in the 2012 fantasy baseball season, and that means you should exercise patience with proven performers and show only guarded optimism with formerly middling options who are off to blazing starts. Today, I'll discuss a handful of the starting pitchers who are in the news and give my thoughts if you should be buying, or selling, base on their starts in 2012.