Jon Niese $4.
Long-term, Niese might be a very good play. He's a groundball pitcher, his K/IP for such a young guy (21 years old) is pretty impressive for Double-A, and the scouting reports praise his work ethic and maturity. Right now though, Niese faces a possible test with the Brewers and Phillies on tap this week (assuming he makes both starts). I agree with this play by the Mets; they have nothing to lose by putting Niese out there and seeing if he can contribute. However, for Roto purposes, Niese is very risky if you're going for it right now.
Anderson Hernandez $2
Hernandez is an unreal 12-for-26 since being acquired from the Mets, but doesn't do much in the HR/SB categories and is more of a light hitting utility type than anything else. He's worth a gamble if you're desperate at MI, but could disappear just as quickly as he appeared.
Cha Seung Baek $2. Other bid $1.
Baek has had an up-and-down year for the Padres. He's a borderline play even in N.L.-only leagues; his K/IP and some of his other rate stats make you think he should be more impressive than he is, but when you watch him pitch you can see that his stuff isn't much more than back-of-the-rotation filler material. Petco makes him worth the risk, but only a light one like the bids here indicate.
Ryan Hanigan $2.
Hanigan has a couple of homers for the Reds, but didn't show power in the minors and is a 28-year-old career minor leaguer. He's getting a little playing time for the Reds, but is only worth it in very deep N.L.-only leagues. If you get him, don't expect much, despite the early power results.
Martin Prado $1. Other bids $1, $1.
Prado's doing very well for the Braves, playing mostly 1B while Greg Norton's out with an injury. He's MI eligible in most leagues, so he's worth owning there while he plays, but most of his value comes because he moves the chains in RBI, not due to any extreme power or speed potential. I'd grab him if you need the player, because I think he'll keep playing as the Braves decide whether or not he's worth playing on their 2009 team.
Brian Stokes $1.
Having seen this guy a few times so far this week, I have no idea how he hasn't made it to this point. He was hitting 97 MPH on the fast gun, and was probably actually hitting 93-95 MPH with regularity. He's a good option for the Mets, and even though they're using him mostly in a middle relief role right now, could actually get some vulture win opportunities if he continues to pitch like this. Don't expect him to close, but Stokes looks like a pitcher, despite his advanced age and poor results for the Rays in his earlier MLB incarnations.
Will Venable $1.
A lousy 2007 at AA knocked Venable off of most prospect lists, but he bounced back this year at AAA to put up solid if not great numbers. He's not young at 25, and probably projects more as a 4th OF long term than as a starter, but he's started for the Padres three games in a row and could see significant playing time down the stretch while the Pads decide where he fits in going forward.
Rich Aurilia $1. Other bid $1.
Aurilia's a weak MLB option at 1B, but he's got a little pop and is playing much more than he probably should be given the Giants purported youth movement. I don't know how much he'll actually play the rest of the way, so he's only worth a gamble if you're desperate for HR at corner infield.
Randy Wolf $1.
Wolf's been an up-and-down pitcher all season long, with subpar rate stats despite 14 quality starts in 28 tries. He gets the Cubs this week at Wrigley, so is probably a poor play if you're playing match-ups. As far as free agent starters go in deep leagues though, he's probably as good as you're going to get. In 5x5, he most likely isn't available.
David Newhan $1.
Newhan's been playing quite a bit at 2B for the Astros, and as long as he keeps swinging a hot bat, he should keep seeing some playing time down the stretch. He's taxed as a starter, but could provide slight N.L.-only Roto value as your 23rd man. Hopefully, you're not stuck in the position where you have to gamble on Newhan.