Johnny Cueto got rocked, and even that is an understatement. Jason Marquis dazzled en route to his 11th win of the season. Josh Hamilton & Aramis Ramirez made their returns. Let’s look at these stories and all the rest from yesterday’s games:
Toronto 7, New York (AL) 6
- Ricky Romero pitched fairly well, giving up 3 runs on 7 hits and 3 walks, striking out 5, over 6.1 innings. It wasn’t the greatest outing, but it was enough to get a victory for the fourth straight start. This was a start that really concerned me for him, but he proved that he could go into a pitcher’s park and get the job done. At this point he deserves the time to go into significant detail, which I will do in the next few days.
- Scott Rolen’s hitting streak has reached 23 games thanks to a 1-4, 2 RBI day.
- Alex Rios went 1-5 with 1 HR, 3 RBI and 1 R, breaking a 17-game home run drought. He has been far from the player anyone had hoped for this season, hitting .264 with 10 HR, 44 RBI and 13 SB, but do not give up hope just yet and sell low. Remember, last season he struggled in the first half as well, before hitting .300 with 11 HR and 9 SB after the All-Star Break. Hold onto him and hope for a repeat performance.
- Robinson Cano went 2-5 with 2 R. His value as a 2B right now stems from his .303 average, as he has just 1 RBI over his last 16 games. Playing for the Yankees, that seems almost impossible, doesn’t it? He should turn things around soon enough, so hang tight.
Kansas City 4, Detroit 3
- Willie Bloomquist had the big day for the Royals, going 3-4 with 1 HR, 3 RBI and 1 R. The real question is, does anyone care?
- Gil Meche took a no decision, allowing way too many baserunners. He allowed 2 runs on 5 hits and 5 walks, striking out 5, over 5.2 innings. It’s the second straight start walking 5 batters and he has gone winless in his last four outings (0-3). The WHIP has been a problem all year long, entering with a 1.45, so you may want to have him on your bench depending on your other options.
- Armando Galarraga continued to turn things around, allowing 1 run on 5 hits and 1 walk, striking out 7, over 7 innings. He has allowed 2 earned runs over his last 13.1 innings, so maybe, just maybe, he’s getting things back together? He certainly can’t do any worse then he was, so if someone in your league gave up hope, I wouldn’t hesitate to stash him away.
Oakland 6, Boston 0
- Scott Hairston made his debut for the A’s, but it was as a pinch runner before staying in the game in CF. He went 0-1 with 1 R, but should see significant playing time moving forward.
- Brett Anderson went the distance, tossing 9 shutout innings giving up 2 hits and 2 walks, striking out 9. Did anyone see this one coming, having entered the game with a 5.45 ERA and 1.51 WHIP? He’s won back-to-back starts, allowing just 1 earned run over 14.1 innings, so maybe he’s finally turning the corner. I wouldn’t make a move quite yet, but if he pitches well against the Rays in his next start, then maybe in deeper formats. Let’s see what happens.
- John Smoltz’ third start was not very pretty, allowing 5 runs on 10 hits and 1 walk, striking out 3, over 6 innings. You have to give him time, so I wouldn’t panic.
Los Angeles (AL) 9, Texas 4
- Josh Hamilton returned to the Rangers, going 2-4 with 1 R. I wouldn’t hesitate to get him back in your line-up.
- After going 0-17 over the past four games, Ian Kinsler finally got a hit. He went 1-4 with 1 HR, 2 RBI and 1 R, putting his average at .253 on the season. That is far from what fantasy owners had expected, especially after hitting .319 last season. He obviously isn’t getting back to that level at this point, but look for a rebound in the second half.
- Kevin Millwood got bombed for 9 runs on 9 hits and 3 walks, striking out 0, over 5 innings. It almost felt like he was due for a start like this, didn’t it?
- It was a nice bounceback for Jered Weaver, giving up 4 runs (3 earned) on 7 hits and 1 walk, striking out 9, over 7 innings. His next start comes against the Yankees.
Seattle 5, Baltimore 0
- Russell Branyan went 1-2 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 1 R. He has hits in 15 of his last 16 games, but only one has been a multi-hit game, so his average has fallen from .308 to .294. Not the biggest of deals. He has 6 HR over that stretch as he just continues to show what he can do with regular AB.
- Jarrod Washburn tossed a complete game, 1-hit shutout, walking 0 and striking out 3. He is now sporting a 3.08 ERA and 1.10 WHIP on the season. Did anyone see that coming? At the same time, do we really trust him yet? His next start comes against the Rangers, who he allowed 4 runs in 6 innings against earlier in the season. If you have other options in daily leagues, even with his success, I’d be hesitant.
Chicago (NL) 4, Atlanta 2
- Nate McLouth went 3-5 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 1 R. He’s homered in back-to-back games and has a 7-game hitting streak, going 11-31 with 2 HR, 5 RBI and 4 R. Now, if he only picked up the SB, as he hasn’t had one in eight games. I guess we shouldn’t be too picky, huh?
- Jair Jurrjens fell to 6-7 after giving up 4 runs on 7 hits and 3 walks, striking out 1, over 6 innings of work. It’s the first time he allowed more than three earned runs in a start since 6/5, so I wouldn’t worry too much about it.
- Kosuke Fukudome went 2-3 with 1 RBI and 1 R, giving him a modest 3-game hitting streak. He also has runs and RBI in each of his last two games and has three multi-hit games in his last six. It appears that he’s starting to turn the corner, therefore he could be a usable option in five outfielder formats again depending on the size of your league. Outside of the deepest of formats, you may want to sit pat for now.
- Aramis Ramirez made his return, hitting clean-up and going 0-4. Give him time.
- Randy Wells continues to roll, giving up 2 runs on 7 hits and 0 walks, striking out 4, over 6 innings. He’s now won four consecutive starts, giving up 7 earned runs over 26.2 innings (2.40 ERA). We’ll have to see if he can continue this stretch, but for now he’s definitely worth using.
- Johnny Cueto was awful, there’s just no other way to put it. He allowed 9 runs on 5 hits and 3 walks, striking out 1, over 0.2 innings. No, that’s not a typo, he allowed 9 runs without getting out of the first inning. His ERA, which started at 2.69, went up to 3.45. Wow. This is three disasters in his last four, allowing 19 earned runs among the three starts. A start against the New York Mets in his next outing may be the ticket to get him back on track.
- Cole Hamels allowed 1 run on 3 hits and 0 walks, striking out 2, over 7 innings to get the win, his first win since 6/4. Then again, when you are spotted a 10-0 lead after an inning, it’s pretty easy. Let’s see how he does next time out against the Pirates before we declare him fully back.
- I could write an entire column on the Phillies offense after this start, so let’s just pick one. Shane Victorino gets the selection, going 4-5 with 1 HR, 4 RBI and 5 R. Wow, that’s a great week for some people.
- OK, I’ll mention Jayson Werth as well, who went 2-5 with 1 HR, 5 RBI and 2 R. He had gone hitless in his last two games (0-4 with 2 BB), but this is some way to break that, huh?
- Steve Pearce was in at 1B, going 0-3 and is sporting a .091 average on the season. Remember when some people thought he could be a big-time major league hitter?
- Mike Hampton gave up 1 run on 3 hits and 3 walks, striking out 3, over 7 innings to even his record at 5-5 with a 4.16 ERA. He’s been pitching well lately, giving up 7 earned runs over 32 innings in his last 5 starts. We’ve seen him from this before, however, before things slipped and he went through a rough patch. At this point in his career, he’s just not an option that I’d trust.
- Craig Stammen pitched well, giving up 1 run on 5 hits and 1 walk, striking out 3, over 7 innings, but it wasn’t enough as he fell to 1-4 with a 4.88 ERA. Obviously, don’t get caught up because of one good start, he still has no value in all formats.
- Jason Marquis, who 11 games all of last season, improved to 11-5 with a 3.61 ERA after tossing 7 shutout innings, giving up 7 hits and 2 walks, striking out 3. He’s won his last three starts, tossing 24 shutout innings in the process. Needless to say, the guy is on fire right now and is worth using in all formats while he’s pitching like this. Considering he hasn’t posted an ERA under 4.13 since 2004, I’m not convinced that he’ll be able to maintain this all season, so I would be cautious and monitor him closely. Still, for now, he has to be used.
- Tony Gwynn Jr. was in CF and hitting second, going 3-5 with 1 R and 1 SB. Everth Cabrera was the leadoff hitter, going 0-3 with 2 R and 2 SB. If you aren’t going to have power, you need to have plenty of speed, and with these two atop the line-up the Padres have just that. Both are usable in all formats if you are in need of some extra speed in the deepest of formats, but they could develop into so much more.
- Kyle Blanks was not in the outfield, instead it was Will Venable (1-5) taking the AB for the departed Scott Hairston. Blanks did enter as a pinch hitter, going 0-1. If he’s not going to play, he has no value.
- Justin Upton went 1-3 with 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 R and 1 SB. He’s now hitting .300 with 15 HR, 48 RBI and 11 SB on the season. Who remembers that at the end of April he was hitting .250 with 2 HR, 8 RBI and 1 SB? Patience is a virtue, as I know plenty of people panicked after he got off to a terrible start.
San Francisco 5, Florida 4
- Emilio Bonifacio went 3-5 with 1 R giving him 7 hits in his last three games. It’s still a far cry from how he opened the season, but at least he’s showing a little something again, right? While he’s hot he’s a decent source of stolen bases if you are desperate, but be ready to dump him quickly when he slowes down again.
- Pablo Sandoval went 1-4 with 1 HR, 4 RBI and 1 R, putting him at .332 with 13 HR and 48 RBI on the year. He really deserves to be on the All-Star team, doesn’t he?
- Matt Cain gave up 2 runs (1 earned) on 5 hits and 2 walks, striking out 5, over 6.2 innings to improve to 10-2 with a 2.42 ERA. He’s had a few small blips on the radar, but for the most part he simply continues to roll. With a .266 BABIP and a 86.1% strand rate, a regression is still likely in order, so as we’ve discussed in the past, he is a good sell high candidate if you can get a good bounty back.
Anyone have any thoughts? Anything to add?
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