Lucas Duda went 4-for-4 with a double in Monday's 2-1 loss to the Braves.
Making his first start at first base this season, Duda raised his average 15 points (from .226 to .241). Mets manager Terry Collins has resisted trying Duda at first base in anticipation of an eventual Ike Davis return, but there's no doubt that New York is a better team with Duda at first and Daniel Murphy at second. Duda's a terrible defender, but he's posted a nice .241/.348/.454 slash line through 216 at-bats.
Dillon Gee was slapped with a loss despite pitching a gem Monday, allowing two runs over 8 1/3 innings to the Braves.
He struck out six and walked one. Gee was absolutely cruising through eight innings and entered the ninth in Atlanta with a 1-0 lead. He surrendered a leadoff single to Justin Upton and Jason Heyward ended the game with a 365-foot blast to right field. Gee revealed after his last start that he's dealt with flexor tendonitis all season, but he appeared just fine on Monday. He's 5-7 with a 4.56 ERA.
Rich Hill allowed a bunt single to David Lough on Monday.
Hill relieved Brian Shaw in a 1-1 game in the ninth inning with runners on first and second. After Lough reached, Matt Albers replaced Hill and threw a wild to gift Kansas City with a 2-1 lead. Hill, a non-roster invitee who made the club out of spring training, may be reaching the end of his rope as Cleveland's left-handed specialist. He has a 7.79 ERA and 1.96 WHIP in 17 1/3 innings over 26 appearances.
Jason Vargas whiffed a season-best nine batters and surrendered a mere two runs over seven innings in Monday's 11-3 win against the Mariners.
Vargas allowed four hits and a walk to his former club. Monday's strikeouts are clearly a bonus for owners -- Vargas has struck out about six batters per nine innings this year -- but Vargas has established himself as a rotation stalwart in his first season in LA. He's now 6-4 with a 3.65 ERA.
Josh Hamilton went 2-for-5 with a homer, two runs scored and two RBI against the Mariners on Monday.
Coming off a Sunday off-day against Yankees left-hander CC Sabathia, Hamilton teed off in an easier matchup, taking Aaron Harang deep for a two-run shot in the second. Hamilton owners, much like the Angels, are stuck in a holding pattern with the former top slugger. Nobody is going to take his .217/.273/.395 slash line off your hands and offer you value back, but it's unlikely that you have a more talented backup to insert into the lineup until Hamilton regains his stroke.
Albert Pujols went 4-for-5 with a double, an RBI and a run scored in Monday's 11-3 victory against the Mariners.
While his big night must be qualified -- Aaron Harang was on the mound, after all -- Pujols' heat check must be recognized. El Hombre is 12-for-23 (.522) over his last five games. He's batting .333 with an OPS over .900 in June after struggling mightily over the first two months of the season. If you can buy low, now's the time to do it.
Aaron Harang was tagged for four runs on 12 hits in five innings by the Angels in a loss Monday.
He struck out four and didn't walk a batter. Harang actually has an outstanding 56/9 K/BB rate and a solid 1.31 WHIP. That's the good news for Seattle management and AL-only owners still holding out hope he'll turn it around. To the naked eye, however, Harang just doesn't have the stuff to get out major league hitters anymore. It's great to eliminate free passes, but it doesn't do much good if the slop you loft over the plate is obliterated all over the park. Harang (3-7) and his 5.73 ERA aren't to be trusted in any format.
Jacob Turner allowed two runs on six hits over five innings Monday against the Diamondbacks.
He struck out five and walked three. The former first-round pick has only allowed six earned runs in four starts, posting a 2.16 ERA and 1.20 WHIP over 25 innings. Turner has only one win to show for his efforts, however, an unfortunate occupational hazard of pitching in South Florida.