It was an interesting day of baseball yesterday to say the least. Has Adrian Gonzalez finally turned the corner? Has Santiago Casilla been replaced as the Giants closer? How did Ryan Howard perform in his first game off the DL? Let’s try to answer these questions and all the rest from yesterday’s games:
- Drew Smyly – Detroit Tigers – Starting Pitcher – It was an impressive outing, allowing 2 ER on 6 H and 0 BB, striking out 10, over 6.0 innings of work. He had not pitched well in his first two starts off the DL, allowing 9 ER over 9.2 IP and he also had been struggling a bit prior to missing some time (3 ER or more in seven straight starts). We all know there is upside there, but he hasn’t gone more than 6.0 innings in any start this season. That’s a major concern, especially when it comes to getting W. In yearly formats it makes him a low-end option.
- Adrian Gonzalez – Boston Red Sox – First Baseman – There were a lot of good performances in the Red Sox-Yankees game last night (except for from the pitchers), but Gonzalez’ may be most notable. He went 3-5 with 1 RBI and 2 R, extending his hitting streak to 16 games. Over the streak he’s gone 25-68 with 1 HR, 9 RBI and 9 R. Obviously the power still hasn’t been there, especially when you consider he has just 4 extra base hits during the streak. That’s becoming a bigger and bigger concern and, while we’d like to say that he’s going to turn it around is there really a guarantee? He does have a 23.2% line drive rate, so the hope is there. Obviously, you stay the course.
More Quick Thoughts:
- Brian McCann provided the biggest blow for the Braves, going 1-4 with 1 HR, 4 RBI and 1 R. It gives him home runs in back-to-back games to go along with 7 RBI. Hopefully he’s finally starting to turn the corner.
- In his first game off of the DL Ryan Howard was slotted right into the cleanup spot and went 2-4. He’s not the player he once was, but as a source of power he should hold value.
- Drew Pomeranz continued to pitch well since returning from the minor leagues (3 H over 12.1 IP), allowing 1 H and 2 BB, striking out 6, over 6.1 shutout innings to defeat the Nationals. That 75 pitch count is going to continue to cause problems for Rockies’ starters, but you have to wonder exactly how long they’ll keep that in place. He had been pitching well in the minor leagues and if the team lifts the limit he could easily hold value over the rest of the season.
- Interesting to get Sergio Romo pitch a perfect ninth inning to earn his first save of the season for the Giants. Santiago Casilla hadn’t pitched much of late (only appearances in July were 7/1 and 7/6) and he had blown the save the day before. It’s too early to say that a chance has been made, but it certainly could be on the horizon. If Romo is available, don’t hesitate.
- It was a terrible outing for Justin Masterson, allowing 8 ER on 9 H and 4 BB, striking out 7, over 4.1 IP. At least he generated the strikeouts, right? Masterson had been pitching better of late, so I wouldn’t write him off based on this outing. He struggled with his control and wasn’t generating groundballs (only 3 groundball outs and he allowed 2 HR). He’s better than that and should bounce back.
- Carlos Marmol entered in a non-save situation and nearly blew the game. In an inning of work he allowed 3 ER on 2 H and 3 BB, striking out 1. Sure, he had been pitching better recently, but these meltdowns are way too common. If the Cubs had a better option, I could see them making a move. Don’t be surprised if a long-term closer candidate is imported at the deadline.
- Adam Lind went 2-4 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 1 R last night. He’s now hit 4 HR with 8 RBI in his past 8 games. Granted, he’s not generating enough in the average department quite yet (8-27), but it’s obviously not killing you either. With the power he’s showing he could prove to be a viable option for the remainder of the season. If you are searching for some under-the-radar power, he’s worth considering.
- Isn’t Norichika Aoki supposed to be nothing more than a speed option? He went 2-4 with 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 R and 1 SB yesterday. Obviously I wouldn’t start expecting significant power from him, but it’s nice to see a little bit of a contribution. He also hadn’t stolen a base in 8 games (11 on the year), so it’s hard to predict too many of those either. He’s got to be considered a low-end option.
- Martin Perez again gave a good showing for the Rangers, allowing 4 R (2 earned) on 6 H and 3 BB, striking out 3, over 6.0 innings of work. The control was obviously an issue and, after performing poorly at Triple-A (4.59 ERA, 49 K, 38 BB over 84.1 IP) you have to wonder if he can maintain anything. Chances are he’s not long for the rotation and he definitely comes with a lot of risk. Top prospect or not, those in yearly formats can probably find a better option.
- Logan Morrison went 1-2 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 1 R who now has a 9 game hitting streak and home runs in three of his past four games. Over the streak he’s gone 12-27 with 4 HR, 11 RBI and 7 R. Obviously the knee is a concern, but he has the potential to really produce. There’s a bit of risk, but I would obviously stick with him as long as he’s healthy.
- Josh Collmenter has been coming around of late and finally got rewarded with a victory. He allowed 2 R (1 earned) on 6 H and 2 BB, striking out 6, over 6.0 innings yesterday giving him back-to-back 6.0 innings, 1 ER starts. In his two July starts he’s showing strikeout stuff (8.25 K/9) and good control (1.50 BB/9). He also has avoided getting hit hard (12.1% line drive rate), though the latter may not be sustainable. That said, if you are in desperate need of pitching he could be worth streaming if the matchup justifies it.
- It was a gem thrown by Bronson Arroyo, with a complete game shutout of the San Diego Padres. He allowed 3 H and 1 BB, striking out 8, in the process. We all know what Arroyo is at this point, as he is a solid pitcher who is prone the occasional blowup. He’s a low-end option, but if you are going to use him he’s the type of guy you want to slot in and leave him there so you don’t miss the good and get saddled with the bad.
- There’s suddenly a little bit of punch available to the A’s, isn’t there? We’ve long heard about Chris Carter’s power potential, though we have yet to see it until now. He provided a pinch hit three-run home run to send the A’s home a winner last night. He’s now provided 3 HR in just 12 AB, though the problem is that he’s not guaranteed regular playing time with Brandon Moss continuing to produce. In deeper formats he’s worth stashing, but keep that in mind.