Friday, September 02, 2011

Gearing Up: A.L. Week 23: September 5-12

Rising Up
Leonys Martin (7% owned last week; 12% this week)
I profiled Martin in early July. He was promoted to Triple-A that month and really struggled upon his promotion. This makes me think that Martin is a candidate to go back to AAA to start 2012 and that he won't be up until mid-year. For now, Martin looks like bench depth for the Rangers. If you're desperate for steals you can try Martin and hope for the best.

David Huff (7/10) @CHW
Huff is a two-start pitcher this week, so the time to spot start him was in Week 22, not Week 23. He gets the White Sox on the road; this is a bad match-up for a flyball pitcher in a hitters' park whose HR/FB% this year has been really, really low. Huff had a nice start against the A's his last time out but I'd stay away this week.

Andrew Miller (9% owned last week; 12% this week) @TOR
A few weeks ago, Miller looked like someone who you wouldn't consider for your roster in a million years. His last two starts have been strong, though, including an extremely impressive start in Arlington his last time out. Some think that Miller has made some tangible improvements due to shortening his stride, resulting in a more repeatable delivery. This doesn't mean that Miller's suddenly an All-Star, but he is worth playing now for a match-up and/or if you're mostly playing for wins/strikeouts.

Scott Feldman (1% owned last week; 3% this week)
Feldman had a stellar spot start against the Rays last Tuesday. It seemed that Alexi Ogando might get bumped/rested but the Rangers have said that Ogando will make his next start. Feldman's not worth owning if he's not getting regular turns. If you can stash him, fine, but don't waste an active roster spot right now.

Possible Waiver Claims
Donald is playing and swinging a hot bat, but Jason Kipnis should be back soon. What little Roto value Donald has will soon evaporate.

Izturis is day-to-day with a right thigh contusion. If he's healthy, Izturis is playing his role of super sub well; he has almost 400 AB to date and is providing sneaky value in deep leagues. If you're running a reserve out there at this point, Izturis is a no-brainer.

Jackson's Roto value took a hit when the A's swapped him to the Red Sox right before the trade deadline. Jackson will probably give Josh Reddick a bit of a breather and maybe play a little third base until Kevin Youkilis comes back, but as a reserve Jackson's value is marginal.

In what is always labeled as one of those "bad for fantasy owners" situations, McCoy and Dewayne Wise are splitting time in center field while Colby Rasmus is out. Neither player steals enough to make him a good option as a 5th Roto outfielder. If you're looking for cheap speed, Martin or someone like Joey Gathright might be a better gamble.

Sogard started yesterday for only the second time in 10 days. He's a poor use of a roster spot.

Anthony Swarzak vs CHI, @DET
Swarzak is automatically worth looking at because he's a probable two-start pitcher, but that's the most positive thing there is to be said. He's a low strikeout, high flyball pitcher with two tough match-ups on tap. This is nothing more than a huge wins gamble, and one I wouldn't take.

On the Farm/Recently Promoted
Montero made his Major League debut last night against the Red Sox. He didn't fare well, but it looks like he should get a fair amount of time down the stretch at DH for the Yankees. If he's a free agent in your league and he's catcher eligible, grab him. He's probably more of a long-term play (the MLE of his AAA power is more like 15 HR than 30 right now) but all it takes is one hot streak to get big dividends.

Moore has been absolutely electric throughout his time in the minors, and this year was no exception. Moore dominated Double-A and then was even better at Triple-A after a mid-season promotion. The rub for fantasy owners is that it sure doesn't sound like Moore is going to get any starts in September. A best-case scenario for Moore in 2010 would seem to be a smattering of relief appearances down the stretch. He's an obvious keeper pick-up for 2012 in leagues that don't have farm systems. If Moore wasn't the top pitching prospect in baseball entering 2011, he sure as hell is now.

Turner had a rough spot start against the Royals yesterday, and I get the impression that he made his final start in 2011. The Tigers might use him now and again out of the bullpen but this isn't a good place to look for fantasy value. Turner is only 20 years old and unlike Moore I think Turner needs at least half a season in Triple-A before he's ready. If you can stash Turner as a farm player that's great, but otherwise you might want to save a roster spot.

1 comment:

Brett said...

Hey Mike, hope all is well. Haven't commented in awhile but I still have been reading often.

Quick question about who you'd prefer for the stretch run. Let's assume I need all offensive categories equally (5x5 AL-only league). We can keep players who move to the NL (they continue to accumulate stats).

I have to drop one of the following hitters tonight:

Michael Cuddyer
Derrek Lee
Vernon Wells
Vladimir Guerrero
Howie Kendrick

Kendrick is the only no-brainer to keep, I think, but which of the other 4 would you drop? None of them are at keeper prices.