Desperate for an option over the final few days of the season? It’s certainly worth looking under the radar, especially for those in deeper formats. I don’t think you can get much further under the radar then the Mets’ outfielder Lucas Duda, who has silently emerged as a viable option.
After starting off his Major League career at 1-33, Duda has actually been pretty good since. Starting on September 16, he has gone 10-24 with 2 HR, 9 RBI and 5 R (excluding his numbers in yesterday’s double header, where he homered again).
With the Mets out of contention and suffering from injuries (Jason Bay and Carlos Beltran are out), the team has no reason not to see exactly what they may have. There’s certainly reason to believe that they may have a player, not just based on his recent success, but from his minor league numbers this season (splitting time between Double & Triple-A):
425 At Bats
.304 Batting Average (129 Hits)
23 Home Runs
1 Stolen Bases
.398 On Base Percentage
.569 Slugging Percentage
.333 Batting Average on Balls in Play Read more
by Will Overton
I speak from experience when I say that there is nothing more frustrating than being in the middle of a chase for first place, or being locked into a tight playoff battle and having your best players go down with injury. I lost Hanley Ramirez and Mark Teixeira for the whole weekend in my semi-final matchup and thus ended my season. If you are stuck in a similar situation don’t give up hope. Here is a look at some of the notable injuries right now in baseball and what the latest news on the injury is. This is also coupled with a discussion on who might be available to take these guys place down the stretch run and try and salvage your late season run.
Ryan Zimmerman: According to Jim Riggleman he doesn’t expect Zimmerman to play again this season. If the manager doesn’t expect him to play, you shouldn’t either. So with Zimmerman done for the year it’s time to look for possible replacements. The first place to look is at the guy replacing the injured player. In this case it’s likely to be a comination of three guys; Alberto Gonzalez, Adam Kennedy and Willie Harris. None of these three have any fantasy value, even if one takes the rest of the playing time. So we move on to the waiver wire. The rotoprofessor discussed Melvin Mora yesterday and he is one of the three guys I would be looking at to fill this spot. Another guy is Jose Lopez, he’s been a huge fantasy bust this year and so you’re probably a bit skittish to entertain this one, and rightfully so. However he has at least two hits in four of his last seven games and he showed a bit of power the other night finally, hitting three home runs. Probably the best option in my opinion to fill a third base opening though, would be Pedro Alvarez. The kid is raking right with 13 hits in his last 27 at bats, and three homeruns mixed in there. He has legitimate power and his upside is through the roof in terms of power making him the biggest potential reward play out of this bunch. Read more
It’s funny. Two years ago I found myself in desperate need of saves in August, and my league rules limited my options for trades (in August you can only trade with a team two spots from you in the standings). With excess power, I was able to coerce the team behind me to trade me Jonathan Papelbon & Melvin Mora in exchange for Ryan Braun & Jonathan Sanchez.
I knew the owner, and I knew his love for home runs and strikeout potential. Plus, let’s be honest, on paper the deal looks lopsided in the wrong direction from my perspective. However, there was a huge need I needed to fill.
The deal panned out, as I went on to take home the title. Surprisingly, that had as much to do with the performance of Mora (despite missing time in September), who hit .418 with 8 HR and 32 RBI in August that year (in August & September, Braun hit a total of 8 HR and 25 RBI) as Papelbon locking down saves (he was one of the best closers in the league that season).
I never would’ve predicted that, and I wouldn’t have predicted actually picking up the now 38-year old Mora for the final week of the 2010 season. In baseball, however, strange things happen. Read more
by Will Overton
We’re heading towards the final week of regular season baseball action and there are a lot of championships on the line. With it in mind here is a look at a few guys who could have big final weeks based on the matchups they have coming their way.
Casper Wells: When it comes down to this time of the year there are a couple key things you want to look for. You want to look for players in the middle of a playoff chase, and you want to look for young guys who are looking to make a big impression. Casper Wells falls in that second group and he has a shot to really end the year with a bang. He has a very favorable schedule and it’s a full schedule with seven games. All seven games will be on the road where Wells is hitting .408 and six of the seven are against righties which Wells hits .424 against. And to add to it the teams Wells is facing are the Cleveland Indians and Baltimore Orioles, so the best pitcher he’ll face is probably Jeremy Guthrie. The Tigers want to know what they have in Wells for next year and he’ll be looking to make the most of that and show them exactly what he can do. He’s a great play in deep leagues and a possible sneaky one in standard leagues.
Melvin Mora: Another key factor in choosing your lineups for the final week is playing the hot hand. Right now Melvin Mora fits the bill. He may be 38, but it hasn’t been slowing him down this month as he’s hitting .325 and has 17 RBI. The Rockies are fading, but if we’ve learned anything from Colorado the last couple years it’s that they are never really out of the race and I expect one more push to come this week. Mora’s hot and the guys around him are hot , if you need a little power boost at third base you might be able to squeeze a very solid week out of this aging veteran. Read more
The Diamondbacks lineup, when healthy, is fairly potent. They are right in the middle of the pack in runs scored (16th with 694 through Saturday) and are fifth in home runs (175).
Their home ballpark helps to inflate power, so using a spot start pitcher against them never seemed like a very good idea. Over the final week of the season, things may be different.
Mark Reynolds has been hampered by a hand injury for some time and could be shutdown at any moment. Justin Upton, who has been sidelined for the better part of the last three weeks also may not return, leaving some gaps in the Diamondbacks lineup.
The Diamondbacks are actually on the road for their final six games of the season, where they have gone 24-51. On their last road trip (10 games), the scored more then three runs in a game just three times. They never scored more then six runs. Read more