We have another week of Interleague games, giving a few NL teams a full week of DH action. While a lot of this week’s benefits sit with players who will actually get a full week of games (as opposed to finding their way to the bench), there is definitely one potentially under-the-radar sleeper for fantasy owners. Let’s take a look:
Benefactor – Chipper Jones
Is he going to be the everyday DH? Not a chance, as Eric Hinske and Matt Diaz will likely get some of the AB. However, with the DH spot available Jones could very easily find his name in the lineup for all six games against the Yankees and Red Sox.
There are certain facts that we all know when it comes to Jones:
- When he’s in the lineup he is going to hit
- He needs extra rest, especially at his age and given his history
- He is one of the most injury prone players in the game
Right now he’s healthy and, when the Braves want to give him a day off this week, it should be as the DH instead of on the bench. He’s worth using in all formats, hitting .294 with 5 HR and 24 RBI over 119 AB. Even though he hasn’t produced much since coming off the DL (4-18 with 0 HR and 0 RBI), it’s likely just a matter of time.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Benefactor – Not Applicable
I just don’t see the Dodgers handing the DH spot to one player for the coming week, though many players could see some extra time. If I had to pick one “winner” it would probably be Juan Rivera, who should be in the lineup most nights this week either in the OF, at 1B or as the DH.
However, Bobby Abreu, Adam Kennedy and Jerry Hairston could also see extra AB. Also, I would think the Dodgers would use this opportunity to give Andre Ethier a break while keeping his bat (which they absolutely need) in the lineup.
In other words, if you are looking for a sneaky pick thanks to the added DH the Dodgers are not the team to be looking at.
St. Louis Cardinals
Benefactor – Matt Adams
Since Allen Craig came off the DL at bats have been tough to find for Adams. However, with trips to Detroit and Kansas City on the schedule this week the Cardinals will have an opportunity to get all of their big bats into the lineup. This could prove to be the last week of viability for Adams, especially with Lance Berkman (July) and Matt Carpenter (currently rehabbing) coming back at some point. Considering Adams can’t find AB now, when those guys are back he’s going to end up back in the minors.
We’ve seen Adams’ power potential (he hit 32 HR in the minors in 2011 and has 2 HR in 71 AB this season) and he has been hot of late (3-8 with 3 RBI in his past two games). If you have an open spot in your lineup at 1B/CI/U, he has plenty of upside and could prove worth the risk.
San Francisco Giants
Benefactor – Buster Posey
He’s not going to DH every game, obviously, but one of the biggest things with top NL catchers is that they don’t get to play every day. With the DH at their disposal and a desperate need for offense, the Giants should take full advantage of the opportunity awarded them this week.
Posey is already a must use option, do this doesn’t change anything. However, there could be a small trickle down to Brandon Belt. Instead of keeping Posey in the lineup by shifting him to 1B (he’s played 8 games there this season), they can put him in the DH spot. That means Belt can stay in the lineup, instead of losing some of his AB.
The other player who could benefit is Joaquin Arias, who could see time at 3B with Pablo Sandoval DH’ing. Of course, in 406 career AB Arias is hitting .261 with 1 HR. There’s not much fantasy appeal there.
Who do you think is the biggest winner from gaining a DH spot?