by Will Overton
It looked at first like it was going to be a pitching dominant night, but as the night went on the bats started going. There did end up being some really good pitching efforts during the course of the night, but we also saw four different guys leave the yard with HR’s more than once.
If you couldn’t keep track of all the action happening last night you’re in luck, cause we have it all broken down for you right here:
- Recently James Shields hasn’t quite been himself, allowing 12 runs in his last 16.2 innings pitched. Shields righted things last night when he allowed just one run in seven innings against the Yankees. This was also Shields second win in three starts after going two whole months without one. Hopefully we see more of this from Shields in the second half with more wins.
- It has been a really rough season for Cole Hamels so far, but he’s working hard to put it behind him and pick things up. Hamels worked 8 IP last night and allowed 4 H, 3 R, 1 BB and 4 K with a W, his second win in a row. Hamels ERA is slowly trending downwards towards the 4.00 mark and I think it continues to drop as the seasons goes. I would give some thought to trying to buy low on Hamels before it’s too late.
- After a rough start upon being called up Chris Archer has gotten things together here lately, throwing his third quality start in his last four times out last night. Archer only surrendered one unearned run last night in six innings, not walking any for his third win of the season. He did only get 2 K’s and we are still waiting for those dominant strikeout performances that we saw in the minor leagues, but that’s the final piece to come together right now.
- The hitting streak of Adrian Beltre is up to 11 now and he extended it in style last night. Beltre had four hits total on the night and went deep twice, driving in five runs. Beltre now has 6 HR and 10 RBI in his last six games and is 24 – 51 in his last 13 games. Beltre has been one of the game’s best hitters and he still is even though he often flies under the radar.
- After last night Martin Perez has now allowed three runs or less in all five of his starts in the big leagues this season. Perez allowed a total of four runs last night, but only two were earned. Perez has been a pretty popular add in leagues and he is a solid pitcher, but he doesn’t have a ton of strikeout upside which limits his overall value. He’s not a bad addition, but not a must add.
- For the first time in his seven starts Ubaldo Jimenez made it a full six innings. Jimenez threw six scoreless last night allowing five hits and two walks with four strikeouts. Jimenez has had his moments this season, it’s really just the control holding him back and keeping him from being a must own. He’s certainly got to be a viable streaming candidate in all leagues though.
- I think we can all agree that last night was an, “it’s about time” moment for Dayan Viciedo. The White Sox slugger finally did some slugging with a pair of homeruns off the Tigers pitching, one of them off Justin Verlander. This was just the 6th and 7th HR’s of the season. On the top of the lack of power Viciedo has also been in a slump, so this was a big game for him all around. Last season he hit a HR every 20 AB’s, last night he was hitting one every 48 AB’s. He’s got the power so his numbers should start to show it soon enough.
- Following up another great performance his last time out, Jose Quintana allowed just three runs in eight innings last night while striking out seven. Even more impressive is that his last two starts have been against Baltimore and Detroit who both have potent offenses and he’s shut both down. In leagues of 12 teams or more he’s a very solid add.
- For the first time since June 12th Justin Upton went deep last night. This was also just the fourth homer he has hit since the beginning of May after hitting 12 of them in April. Upton has started to show some more life again in July going 11 – 37 so far this month. Upton has talent, top ten hitter kind of stuff, he’s so just unbelievably streaky it can drive a fantasy owner mad.
- The recent hot streak of Alfonso Soriano sure is helping the Cubs chances of trading him and it’s doing wonders for fantasy teams who endured a mediocre first couple of months. Soriano went deep twice last night and he now has 7 HR’s in his last 10 games and he also has 16 RBI. Before this run Soriano could be had in some standard leagues, not so much anymore.
- It was a tough way to take his first career loss, but Tony Cingrani was outdone by Wily Peralta despite striking out 10 in 7 IP and allowing just 2 R. Peralta meanwhile threw a complete game shutout and struck out six. This is Peralta’s third time in four starts not allowing a run. The young pitcher has a ton of upside and is unowned in almost all leagues, might be time to change that.
- A couple starts ago Dan Straily was being talked about as a potential demotion. Since than Straily has thrown a one-hitter over seven innings and then last night allowed just one run on two hits in 6.1 IP. Straily also has 13 K’s in his last two starts. Straily should be sticking around for more starts in the second half and his upside makes him a nice grab if you need pitching.
- What a surprisingly amazing first half of baseball for Matt Carpenter who just keeps on hitting at the top of the Cardinals lineup. Carpenter went 3 – 4 last night with 3 R and 3 RBI. This is the third time in eight games Carpenter has gotten three hits. Carpenter now has 69 R for the season and is on pace to top 130 R.
- Last night was Dodger debut for Ricky Nolasco and he looked impressive for his new team. Nolasco put up a line of 7 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 5 K and a W. This is now three straight games without a walk given up for Nolasco. He has been somewhat inconsistent throughout his career and that probably won’t change in LA, but he should be in a better spot to get some wins and even with the inconsistencies he’s still a decent pitcher.
- Making his season debut against Nolasco and the Dodgers was the Diamondbacks young outfielder, Adam Eaton who has been hurt all year. Eaton’s debut was less impressive going 0 – 4 with a K. It’s going to take a little time for him to get his swing back, but when he does he should win a starting job and should put up decent numbers with elite level steals.
- For the second time in seven games Kendrys Morales hit multiple HR’s, hitting two out against the Red Sox last night. Morales has quietly been putting together a solid season with 13 HR’s and 51 RBI now to go with a .280 average. It’s rather surprising to see that he isn’t owned in all 10 team standard league formats.
- Much like the rest of the Padres pitching staff Eric Stults is dominant at Petco Park and it showed again last night. Stults threw his complete game of the season, allowing just a single run on four hits and striking out five on the night. His 2.56 ERA at home make him a nice play there even with a low strikeout rate, but you shouldn’t touch him on the road where he has a 4.31 ERA which just doesn’t cut it considering the K rate.