Leo Nunez $17. Other bids: $11, $8, $2.
Nunez lost the closer job to Clay Hensley, and Hensley has done nothing to warrant giving it back. Nonetheless, manager Henry Rodriguez has said he would like to give Nunez a couple of save chances before the end of the season for his confidence (read: “trade value”). Without getting too deep into Nunez’ numbers, if you are desperate for saves, you could take a flier here; while Nunez lost the job with 8 blown saves, he did not pitch so poorly that he will kill you in ERA/WHIP this week.
John Lannan $15. Other bids: $14, $2.
This conversation starts with "John Lannan has a K/BB of .85." The response: "That rate is 4.40 for August and 2.75 for September, and greater success has come as a result." Lannan gets the Phillies tonight at home and the Mets this weekend at home…as a two start pitcher, those of you who need wins are likely going to have to grab Lannan and hope for the best.
Rodrigo Lopez $15.
Lopez is another two start pitcher: San Francisco on Tuesday against Jonathan Sanchez and very likely Sunday against Billingsley and the Dodgers. While conventional wisdom and metrics tell me that Lopez is unlikely to help you in the rate stats this week, he is in two favorable ballparks against two teams who can struggle offensively. Of course, the 7.88 ERA against the Giants and the 4.56 ERA against the Dodgers do not bode well, but wins are wins if you are safe in ERA and WHIP.
Author's Note: The first three FAAB pick-ups above were by the first place team. That team has led just about wire to wire, but has seen a 15-20 point lead dissipate to five coming in to the last week. Whether these moves are right or wrong, this team should get some recognition for trying to address its vulnerabilities and playing keep-away from other teams, even in the face of a salary cap and with a lead that should be safe. It generally pays to continue to be aggressive through the last week of the season.
Jonny Venters $9. Other bids: $0.
Venters has been tremendous out of the bullpen. This is a nice preservation of ERA/WHIP play, along with a minor strikeout play, depending on how much Venters pitches this week. Keep in mind that the Braves could potentially be involved in a 163rd game, so Venters could pick up an extra inning this week.
Chris Heisey $12. Other bids: $8
Heisey should pick up some playing time this week as
rests its starters. He brings some pop (13.8% of flyballs are home runs) to the lineup, though the home run he hit yesterday was his first since the beginning of August. All in all, he is a relatively safe play with the chance for some counting stats. Cincinnati
Mat Gamel $10. Other bids: $8, $1, $0.
Gamel has essentially been shut out of the Brewers lineup this year; I am not sure where he fits in the long term plan. If you are a non-contender, however, this is the type of move you should be making at this point in the year…you never know what could happen in the off-season. A lot of the luster has dropped off of Gamel going into his age 26 year, and I would have thought his AAA stats would be better, but I do not think we can close the door on Gamel yet.
Troy Glaus $10. Other bids: $8, $0.
Glaus is also a next year play at this point. He has splinters in his baseball pants from the amount of time he has spent on the bench over the past month, and it is unlikely he will be back in
next year (about as likely as him getting 10 at-bats this week). Glaus can still hit home runs, but his lack of strike zone judgment and a slowing bat will continue his decline, and that decline could be a rapid one. Atlanta
Daniel Descalso $4. Other bids: $2.
Descalso looks, fields and hits like a utility player. His minor league career is one of inconsistency, and while he will only turn 24 at the end of the year, nothing in his minor league career suggests long-term professional impact.
Wade LeBlanc $2.
LeBlanc went a stretch where he did not pitch for 16 games after being yanked from the rotation. He has not pitched since September 17. It is unlikely you will see him except in a blow out. As a potential future play, however, LeBlanc holds some intrigue (he will be at $10 in our league), if not for this team, perhaps for another.
Chris Capuano $2.
on Saturday. Not a good play for anyone, regardless of his success against the Marlins yesterday. Depending on your free agent rules, I cannot even recommend him as a next year play at this point, particularly if his salary is anything over $1. Cincinnati
Jay Payton $1.
Bench fodder. Payton should not have been playing this past week (
benched two starting outfielders in a game that meant quite a lot), though he will likely see some at-bats this week. Frankly, there are likely better guys available, even in deep NL-only leagues. Colorado
Micah Hoffpauir $0.
A next year flier by a bottom-dweller, Hoffpauir may get a chance for a starting job next year. Even so, he is likely someone you would want to throw back in the auction and hope someone overpays for him.