Eno Sarris

Baseball Daily Dose

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We Want Stanton

Thursday, April 07, 2011


It's strange. Sometimes the biggest story of the night is a non-story. The Yankees and Twins did not play a game Wednesday night. And yet there was some intrigue. Derek Jeter, Joe Mauer, Jim Thome, Jorge Posada and Russell Martin were not supposed to be in the lineup.

That meant Eric Chavez was going to start a game. That meant Alex Rodriguez is going to be a very expensive DH that night. That meant Michael Cuddyer was being trusted with an outfield glove. That meant Eduardo Nunez was going to pair up with Chavez and Gustavo Molina at the bottom of a weakened Yankees lineup. And the starting pitcher matchup was Freddy Garcia versus Carl Pavano.

It's the danger when you draft older players on deep contenders. They'll sit your guy, and you'll have to have a bench that can slide in and get you those games back. Mixing from different age groups and teams can really help a (fantasy) team's depth.

* Good health is a fickle beast, a beast who can come calling at any time for any age. Todd Helton hit a three-run shot off of Chad Billingsley, but how spry will he stay all year. On the other end of the age spectrum, Mike Stanton (hamstring) has been fielding grounders and taking batting practice. He might be back (here?) by the weekend. Casey Blake rolled off of the disabled list and went two-for-three. Maybe he can be mediocre forever. Stephen Drew is young, but out still, and from a family with 'old' blood. Grady Sizemore is also younger than it seems, and went hitless in a Triple-A exhibition game Wednesday. Adam Dunn seems like an old man, but he caught the appendix thing (not really scientifically possible) and will be out after surgery. He might only miss five days!

Brian Matusz (intercostal) had a wart lazered off - again - and will be out until the end of the month at least. That's kind of a strange combination of afflictions. Brad Lidge seems like he's never been young - and now he's out until the All-Star break most likely. Ubaldo Jimenez was so healthy last year, and now he's out at least 15 with a cuticle problem.

* Some sneaky good pitching occurred between the Rays and Angels. Dan Haren obviously struck out six, walked none and held the Rays to one run. But Jeremy Hellickson struck out ten batters in five and two-thirds against only two walks. He should be owned everywhere.

National League Quick Hits (Injuries, Rosters): The Cubs just got socked with both Andrew Cashner (mild rotator cuff strain) and Randy Wells (forearm) hitting the DL on the same day … Your stolen base category just took a hit - Michael Bourn left the Astros game last night with a sore groin … Brian Wilson came back from his oblique and gave up three earned quickly, but it probably doesn't mean much … Santiago Casilla (elbow) hit the DL to make room for him … SI.com's Jon Heyman thought that Aaron Rowand might be released when Cody Ross comes back … Jon Lucroy (pinkie) is starting rehab this weekend …. Manny Parra (back) threw some simulated innings and is an SP/RP in most leagues … Carlos Pena (thumb) missed another game but should be back soon.

National League Quick Hits (Game Reports): Prince Fielder went three for four but doesn't have an extra base hit yet; use that to buy him if you like … Ryan Howard is on fire, four-for-four with a home run on Wednesday … Brandon Belt went two for five with two singles and two strikeouts … John Axford earned a save but walked Jason Heyward too … The same Jason Heyward that hit his second home run of the season earlier in the game … Mike Minor still owns much upside, but his first start didn't start out well (three straight walks); He'll return to the minor leagues and is still interesting later in the season … Another terrible first inning from Edinson Volquez, another battle and another mediocre final result … Jose Contreras got a save - he's settling in … Chris Coghlan hit three doubles and a single in five at-bats and could be a batting average boon in most leagues … Mike Pelfrey has an okay sinker, but games like his seven-run, two-inning affair on Wednesday show he doesn't have ace upside … Livan Hernandez gave up four runs in five innings and is mostly a pitcher to avoid … Tim Stauffer gets ground balls but is also hittable - eight hits, nine ground balls, two walks, one strikeout against the Giants.

American League Quick Hits (Injuries, Rosters): He hasn't been great as a reliever so far, but Phil Coke will move to the rotation for good, supposedly … Yunel Escobar (dizziness) slid headfirst and hurt himself and will be re-evaluated Thursday … The Rangers might sign Cuban OF Leonys Martin to a contract … Jon Rauch got his first save but Frank Francisco (pectoral) is starting his rehab assignment this weekend … The Athletics aren't sure if Rich Harden (lat) will come back as starter or reliever … Erick Aybar (oblique) might not hit the DL, but will miss some time … Adam Moore is getting an MRI on his right knee … Peter Bourjos got a routine day off … Scott Downs, scheduled to make a Thursday rehab start, is more of a competitor to new closer Jordan Walden than anyone else in that Angel bullpen.

American League Quick Hits (Game Reports): Hey Adrian Gonzalez hit his first of many Red Sox home runs … Justin Verlander kept the surging Orioles down to three runs and upped his season strikeout total to 17; he's an ace in all formats … Carlos Quentin is murdering the ball and went hit a home run Wednesday … I'm not worried about Matt Thornton yet, despite his blown save … Mitch Talbot labored through 102 pitches and was otherwise unexciting … In a parallel report, Daisuke Matsuzaka threw a ton of pitches and left early … Asdrubal Cabrera hit a home run, but his regular, acceptable play is good enough to play him in deep leagues … I don't want to own Brad Bergesen in any of my leagues, especially after not making through four innings against the Tigers … Derrek Lee hit his first as an Oriole … Dallas Braden doesn't have great peripherals; Wednesday he struck out three, walked one, and gave up ten hits and five earned in seven innings … Travis Snider still has mixed-league upside and hit his first home run of the season … Brandon Wood debuted with an oh-for-four with three (!) strikeouts … Dan Johnson in Tampa Bay is having a hard time getting on base, which was the one thing he could do maybe … Chone Figgins is 3-25 this season.


Eno Sarris is an editor and writer at FanGraphs.com. You can find his work gathered in one place at and enosarris.com. Follow his misadventures in writing on Twitter as well.
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