This is turning out to be a bizarre fantasy week already. After only missing 15 days with a broken wrist it appears that Albert Pujols will return to the Cardinals’ lineup tonight. For those of you who took the risk and activated him for today lets hope he comes back motivated and strong. This year’s best fantasy player Jose Reyes is also battling the injury bug. Reyes is officially day to day and could return as early as tonight as well. Then again he may miss the entire week. His status is up in the air. Ryan Braun has missed the last few games due to injury. He is also day to day and its uncertain when he will return. Ryan Zimmerman missed a game 2 days ago with soreness in his surgically repaired abdomen. He returned yesterday and appears to be fine. Would you believe that I have all 4 of these guys on the same team in one league? That’s a tough week. Now lets take a look at some good pickups.
Freddie Freeman (1B, ATL)- I’ve praised Freddie a lot this year early on and even called him a rookie of the year candidate. Well he still is. There is still a lot of baseball to be played and Freeman could be a nice second half player. He is showing signs of being a much better hitter and is starting to blast more HR too. The time to buy low on him will soon be over.
Adam Dunn (1B, CWS)- I’ve seen Dunn cut a good bit in fantasy leagues. His career is not over yet. Which means he will adjust and start to hit eventually. After moving to a new league, facing all new pitchers, and adjusting to a new role as the DH Dunn rightfully so had a bad first half. The second half is a whole different season and he’s going to be one angry Texan. He just homered Monday. Maybe a sign that this slump is over.
Jemille Weeks (2B, OAK)- Not quite as good as his brother, but still plenty of tools. Weeks can hit for a decent average and has a lot of speed. If your stuck with an unproductive 2B then you can at least pick up a guy who can help you in the steals category each week.
Mark Reynolds (3B, BAL)- He’s found his power stroke and he is absolutely on fire crushing a ton of HR’s over the last week. If he is still available and you have room go ahead and grab him. He will hurt your average, but he has a ton of power. He will consistently hit you HR’s throughout the rest of the season.
Daniel Murphy (1B/2B/3B/OF, NYM)- His position eligibility is great. Aside from that he plays everyday, is hitting over .300, and does a little bit of everything. Good utility guy to plug in each day where he’s needed.
Danny Valencia (3B, MIN)- Now that his lineup is healthy he is starting to produce more. He was a high AVG guy last year who was a rookie of the year candidate and has started off pretty bad this year. He is starting to rack up a good number of hits and could be a good AVG guy for you in the second half. He also has 20-25 HR power.
Rafael Furcal (SS, LAD)- I know he’s injury prone, but he’s always productive when healthy. Furcal is a top of the order guy who steals bases, scores a lot of runs, and has a little power. If your desperate at SS he is always a good option as long as he’s playing.
Logan Morrison (OF, FLA)- LoMo got off to a huge start reaching base in every single game over the first two months or so. Then he hit a pretty bad slump that really dropped his season totals. This may have caused some people to cut him. If they did he’s a good add. LoMo is a high AVG guy and will get his AVG back up at or over .300. He also has 25 HR potential. Plus he’s the king of Twitter.
Angel Pagan (OF, NYM)- I’ve always liked this guy because he does a little bit of everything. He can hit for average, can hit HR’s and can steal bases. He is pretty consistent as well. If your looking for an impact guy to give you a little boost in every category then pick him up.
Eric Thames (OF, TOR)- I’ve been paying attention to this guy and I like him. He will hit for AVG and has a little bit of power. He was a career .308 hitter in the minors and that should transfer over to the majors. For some reason having decent power means major HR production in Toronto. He won’t really steal bases, but he will continue to hit a few HR’s and hit for a nice AVG.
Mike Leake (SP, CIN)- He probably isn’t still there, but if he is he’s a good guy to add and to hold on to for awhile. He has a huge ceiling being a first round talent who skipped the minors, and his last few starts have been very good. He is starting to rack up quality starts.
Doug Fister/Jason Vargas/Erik Bedard (SP, SEA)- If any Seattle pitcher is available get them. They all throw gems every outing. Fister and Vargas have been amazing and are even completing games. If anyone cut Bedard because of his injury pick him up because he won’t be out long.
Barry Zito (SP, SF)- As long as Jonathan Sanchez is on the DL Zito is good to own. He won all of his minor league rehab appearances including a 1 hit shutout in the final one. Then he pitched well in his first outing back, pitched again on 3 days rest, and then came back into that same game after a 3 hour rain delay. Like the Cinderella Story article I wrote said, he is finally earning some money.
Vance Worley (SP, PHI)- I said in my Cinderella Story article that he would save the Phillies pitching without Oswalt. He has continued to have nothing but great outings. He is currently in AAA, but thats only because they want him to keep pitching through the All-Star break. He will be back immediately after the break and will stay in the rotation.
Guillermo Moscoso (SP, OAK)- Great park to pitch in. In his last 3 starts he has a 0.51 ERA and is getting nice K’s. He’s young too.
Juan Nicasio (SP, COL)- I’ve talked about him a couple times now, and he’s had his bumps in the road, but he’s been pretty good for the most part. His performances remind me of Ubaldo’s when he was a rookie. Thats a good sign.
Cory Luebke (SP, SD)- He’s young, he has high upside, and he pitches in the best pitcher’s park in baseball. Both of his outings have been pretty good so far and he’s striking out a lot of batters. I’m sure there will be ups and downs but as long as he’s pitching at Petco there will be more ups.
Tom Gorzelanny (SP, WAS)- He has always been an undervalued pitcher. Gorzelanny has been great at many points this season and has always been a high K guy. Once in awhile he may get hit hard, but most of his starts are quality.
Charlie Furbush (SP, DET)- Let the inappropriate jokes begin. Furbush replaced Coke in the rotation. The rookie has an impressive ERA on the season. In his first start last night he was limited in pitches because he is transitioning from a reliever. Expect him to go longer and longer with each additional outing.