Archive for September 30, 2012

Pitch & Ditch for September 30: Three Starters To Stream Today

by Will Overton

Four more days left and the season is over. I’ve already said it more than once, but it’s time to pull out all the stops and go for broke to win your league or in some cases just get into the money positions. One of the ways to go about this is using a pitching stream for these last few days

So I am here to give you some names of pitchers I would personally advise using if you are going to go this route:

Tommy Milone – Oakland A’s vs. Seattle Mariners: In six of Milone’s last seven starts he has allowed three runs or less. The last time Milone took on the Mariners he went 6 IP and allowed two runs while striking out a season high 10 batters. And that was in Seattle. Tomorrow is at home and Milone has a 2.68 ERA in Oakland. In four games total against Seattle this season Milone has only allowed four runs. The combination of pitching at home and pitching against Seattle is too hard to pass up with Milone. I’d use him without much of a second thought. Read more

Around the Majors: September 29: Roy Halladay Limps To Finish, Chris Davis Reaches 30 HR & More

Who would’ve thought that we would be ending 2012 with questions about Roy Halladay’s status among the elite pitchers in the game?  For that matter, would would’ve thought that Chris Davis would finally live up to the lofty power expectations we all had for him.  Let’s look at their performances yesterday plus all the rest:

  • Rajai Davis went 3-4 with 1 HR, 2 RBI and 1 R last night, improving his season line to .256 with 8 HR, 41 RBI, 61 R and 45 SB.  Those aren’t bad numbers for someone who didn’t have a regular job early in the year and spent a lot of time hitting seventh, eighth or ninth.  However, before we get too excited, he needs to improve his plate discipline (21.1% strikeout rate, 6.2% walk rate entering the day) if he wants to be a leadoff hitter.  Keep that in mind before valuing him for 2013.  He definitely has speed, but we need to make sure he’s going to have the opportunity to steal.  Plus, hitting at the bottom of the order, he truly is a one-trick pony.
  •  It was a nice day for Andy Dirks, going 2-4 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 2 R.  He is playing every day, and has been playing well.  In his past 10 games he has gone 15-37 with 2 HR, 5 RBI and 7 R.  He has the potential to catch fire for a few days and is well worth using for the conclusion of the season.
  • The Mariners-A’s game featured three players posting big days.  The biggest was Brandon Moss, who went 3-5 with 1 HR, 5 RBI and 1 R.  With 21 HR and 47 RBI in just 254 AB it is hard to argue with the results.  Teammate Josh Donaldson went 1-4 with 1 HR, 2 RBI and 1 R.  He has been solid of late, with 2 HR, 9 RBI and 10 R over his past 10 games.  With eligibility at catcher, yet playing regularly at 3B, he’s worth using for the final few days.  For the Mariners, Michael Saunders went 1-3 with 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 R and 1 SB.  With 19 HR and 21 SB, he is an under-the-radar threat though his value is capped by his inability to hit for a high average. Read more

Searching for Saves: Options For The Final Few Days

Obviously most fantasy baseball owners have closed up shop for the year (as you cases, even we hear at Rotoprofessor have started looking ahead to 2013). However, that doesn’t mean that every league is over or that everyone is out of contention.

If you are a owner desperate for a few saves down the stretch, here are a few names that should be closing over the final five days and could be available on your waiver wire:

Bobby Parnell – New York Mets
CBS – 10.6%, ESPN – 7.5%
With Frank Francisco still sidelined (at this point it is pretty safe to say that his season is over) and Jon Rauch stumbling, it appears Parnell is going to once again get an opportunity to close games. Once considered the potential closer of the future, Parnell has been pitching lights out of late. He currently as a 2.43 ERA in the second half and always brings the potential to accumulate strikeouts.

Of course, you always have to wonder how many games the Mets will actually win, but at this point that question hangs over just about everyone.

With a 0.82 ERA in September, he is well worth owning if you are in need of 1 or 2 saves. Read more

Around the Majors: September 28: Homer Bailey Tosses No-Hitter, Clayton Kershaw Dominates & More

Homer Bailey’s performance last night was obviously the biggest story, giving fantasy owners everywhere an unexpected boost.  Throw in a dominant performance from Clayton Kershaw, the returns of Giancarlo Stanton & Coco Crisp and much more, and fantasy owners had a lot to talk about.  With five days left in the season time is quickly running out, so let’s take a look at all the stories that matter:

  • Homer Bailey was obviously the biggest story of the day yesterday, tossing a complete game no-hitter against the Pittsburgh Pirates.  He walked 1 while striking out 10 in the process.  It was the cherry on top of what has been a solid campaign for Bailey, who now is 13-10 with a 3.75 ERA.  He has great control and entered with a realistic .297 BABIP (courtesy of a 20.1% line drive rate), so there is nothing not to believe in the numbers.  He’s never going to be a top option, but to fill out your fantasy rotation he has proven to have value.
  • With Matt Wieters out of the lineup due to the birth of his daughter it was Ryan Flaherty who posted the big day to pace the offense, going 2-4 with 1 HR, 5 RBI and 2 R.  He has shown some pop throughout his minor league career, and now has 6 HR in 142 AB for the Orioles.  If he can do a better job of making contact (39 K), he could be a productive option overall.
  • Since returning to the rotation on September 17 (he missed a few games due to injury), Chris Tillman has been light out.  He allowed 1 R (0 earned) on 1 H and 2 BB, striking out 4, over 8.0 innings to defeat the Red Sox last night.  In his past three starts he has allowed 2 ER over 20.0 innings.  If he gets another start this season he clearly is a must use option. Read more

Pitch & Ditch: Streaming Options For September 28

by Will Overton

There should be no quit in a fantasy baseball player. The season is nearing it’s end, but it’s far from over. I know I personally watch my standings change and change rather drastically every day. Pull out all the stops, go for broke and see what kind of damage you can do.

From now until the end of the season I am going to be writing this daily offering you the names of three pitchers who would make quality streaming options that day. I can’t guarantee they’ll all pan out, but I do my best to find the guys with the best chance to succeed.

Here are the three guys I am rolling with in the pitching stream for today:

Chris Tillman – Baltimore Orioles vs. Boston Red Sox: This guy has not gotten nearly enough credit from fantasy owners this season, as he is still owned in less than 20% of leagues. Tillman is 8 – 2 with a 3.08 ERA in 13 starts this season. He was dealing with arm problems early this month, but he has since come back and started two games going 6 IP in each and allowing one run only in each. That includes a start against the Red Sox his last time out. Since the start of September Boston is one of the five worst offenses in baseball and Tillman should be able to shut them down once again as he tries to help pitch the Orioles into the postseason. Read more

Around the Majors: September 27: Mike Trout Continues To Slump, Paul Goldschmidt Shows Full Value & More

There are now just 6 days left to the Major League season.  What under-the-radar options may help you secure a championship?  Who has hit a cold spell at the wrong time?  Let’s try to answer those questions by looking at last night’s games:

  • While Mat Latos took a no decision, he continued to pitch lights out baseball.  Over 7.0 innings against the Brewers he allowed 1 ER on 3 H and 1 BB, striking out 3.  Despite allowing 7 ER in one start (on 8/24 against the Cardinals), he has a 2.71 ERA over his past 10 starts.  All concerns about pitching in Great American Ballpark are out the window, as he has a 3.18 ERA at home this season.  In the second half he has a 2.89 ERA and 1.12 WHIP.  Obviously, he’s a must start option and will continue to be a very good play in 2013.
  • Remember when Todd Frazier was one of the hottest players in the game?  He went 1-4 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 1 R yesterday, his first HR in over a month (August 21).  In 65 September AB he has just 3 RBI.  While he’s better than that, he also isn’t quite as good as he showed during his hot stretch.  That said, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him as the Reds starting 3B in 2013.
  • At one stretch Doug Fister struck out 9 in a row, one shy of the MLB record.  At the end of the day he allowed 3 R (2 earned) on 5 H and 0 BB, striking out 10, over 7.2 innings in a no decision.  Like Latos, despite having a blowup of late he still has a 2.84 ERA over his past 10 starts.  While the strikeout total he posted yesterday, even if he regresses there you would expect an improvement in his 23.3% line drive rate (and thus the .293 BABIP).  With great control, he is going to be a great source of WHIP for the foreseeable future. Read more