by Will Overton
According to Ken Rosenthal reporting on FOX’s game of the week:
The Baltimore Orioles have sent Koji Uehara to the Texas Rangers in exchange for Chris Davis and Tommy Hunter.
The Rangers have been looking for bullpen help in just about every direction they possibly could, and they have finally found it. The Rangers get a reliever with a 1.72 ERA and 62 K’s in 47 IP. Uehara will step in as the team’s primary setup man though, so for fantasy baseball there isn’t a ton of relevance unless your league counts holds. It does mean that Netfali Feliz owners can breathe easier knowing Heath Bell isn’t coming to town to potentially poach saves from him.
The Orioles may have gotten the more interesting side of things for fantasy owners as they land corner infielder Chris Davis and starting pitcher Tommy Hunter. Much has been made of Davis’ potential the last couple years and he has completely dominated Triple-A pitchers. However, that potential has yet to be seen in the majors. And with Texas’ stacked lineup he wasn’t getting many chances. In Baltimore Davis should see semi-regular playing time between first base, third base and DH, especially if Derek Lee does get dealt which is more likely now. Davis has been a whole lot of unfulfilled potential to fantasy owners so far, but he is still worth taking a flier on if he is playing steadily.
Tommy Hunter will also benefit from leaving Texas where there was no room for him in the rotation and he’d been pitching out of the pen. In Baltimore Hunter should step right into the rotation. He isn’t a big time strikeout pitcher with a career 5.1 K/9 rate. But he did have a 3.73 ERA last season in a hitter friendly park. In AL-Only leagues it is worth taking a shot on Hunter and he could be a spot starter for you in deep leagues as well.
The long term impact might be greater than the short term for Davis and Hunter, but both guys value is higher today than it was yesterday and both guys should be monitored.
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