Knowing is half the battle. That’s what G.I Joe always said.
Being the Real American Heroes that the Chinstrap Ninjas are, we try to get some big, helpful fantasy baseball news to you as much as possible.
This may or may not be one of those times depending on your current lineup/roster needs, but, hey, it’s something.
We’ll start with the juicy rookie recalls:
Madison Bumgarner — OK, he’s not getting called up yet, but Giants manager Bruce Bochy calls Bumgarner “close” to the majors. The pitcher is 6-1 with a 3.13 ERA in AAA. If he lives up to the hype, he’ll be a fantasy starter and give the Giants a killer top four for years to come.
Pedro Alvarez — Talked about him in the recent rookies/prospects update. Alvarez could be recalled no sooner than June 17 (Thursday). I saw another report saying he could be recalled as early as Wednesday. Saw multiple reports that had him debuting on Friday. He should already be owned in dynasty/keepers — check your wire anyway — and is a nice speculative add in redrafts.
Daniel Nava — All you hardcore baseball fans probably have heard about Nava already, you just haven’t done anything about it in fantasy yet. Nava belted a grand slam on his first major league pitch. He had back-to-back 2-for-4 games to start his major league career and doubled in each game. The 27-year-old played independent baseball at age 24 and joined the Red Sox at age 25. He’s never had enough at-bats to really get anyone excited about his fantasy stats, but with two teams in 2009 he had 22 doubles, five homers and 36 RBI while hitting .352 in 226 ABs. Before his call this season, he had eight homers, 38 RBI and a .294 average in 197 International League ABs. The Red Sox like him so much he’s batting leadoff today. He’s available in all Yahoo leagues. Speculative add? Absolutely. Want more? Read this article from FanGraphs.
Chris Tillman — We go from riding a three player high to this prospect’s disaster of a showing. Tillman is 0-3 with an 8.40 ERA and could be dropped from the rotation. Depending on how many keepers you get, he should be dropped from your team too.
Conor Jackson — Jackson’s trade affects multiple marginal players, but for those of you in NL-only and AL-only leagues or really deep leagues it’s worth noting. Jackson was traded to the Athletics for minor league reliever Sam Demel and cash — to cover some of Parra’s bloated $3.1 million salary. Here are some other notable parts of this trade:
- Sam Demel is 9-8 with a 2.79 ERA and 42 saves in 151 minor league relief appearances.
- The trade makes Gerardo Parra the starting LF in Arizona. More ABs means more opportunities for fantasy relevance.
- There will be serious upheaval in the Oakland outfield. Eric Patterson and Matt Carson are likely to be demoted and, when Coco Crisp returns from the DL, Rajai Davis could lose playing time as well. Go back and read what was said about Parra, except replace more with less.
Alfredo Simon — Taken off the DL on Monday, Simon isn’t getting rushed back into the closer’s role but he was highly effective when he got hurt. David Hernandez has been a better reliever than he was a starter but is still scary. I’d take Simon for now, but to quote a famous little, bald, green man-lizard thing, “there is another” …
Mike Gonzalez — Could be a new wrench in the ointment — as they say back home — in the Orioles bullpen. He’s hitting 88 on his fastball. The FB used to be happy when it was in the low/mid-80s, now it’s super-excited. He’s working on some mechanical stuff during his rehab, too. It sounds like Simon/Hernandez won’t be the closer for long.
Chipper Jones — He’s retiring. He’s not talking about retiring. He was supposed to announce today that he was going to retire from baseball at the end of the season but he canceled the press conference. Just an FYI for Life After Chipper, there are no super prospects waiting in the wings to take his place. Baseball America lists Mycal Jones as the Braves 3B in a projected 2013 lineup. They listed Brandon Hicks — who was called up Monday as a shortstop — as the 2012 starter in 2009. Confused? Good, then I’ve done my job. Let’s move on.
Brett Gardner — Will wear a protective thumb ring that he has called “uncomfortable” for the rest of the season. It hasn’t hindered his production, and his BABIP is still a lucky .361. Are you shopping him? Looking to buy? For what? Let us know in the comments.
John Buck — Homered twice on Monday. We’ve seen this before, Bucko. He hit three homers in two days back on May 7-8 then had one homer in his next 24 games. Congrats if you started him Monday when there were only four games on the schedule.
Pat Burrell — Went 2-for-3 with a solo homer on Monday. Since signing with San Francisco, Burrell has hit .407 (11-27) with two homers and four RBI. The Rays — he hit .202 with two homers in 84 at-bats for Tampa Bay before joining the Giants — are not amused.
Ryan Ludwick — Drove in four runs with a homer and a double while hitting cleanup for the Cardinals. Matt Holliday hit second in the Cardinals win over the Mariners. Ludwick’s on pace for more than 25 homers and 90 RBI while hitting .289. He’s available in a surprising 20% of Yahoo leagues.