The return of the "King" and other late August stories are featured in this week's Week That Was.Alex Presley
: Alex Presley
came off the DL this week and promptly produced for the Bucs, doubling and scoring a run last night. Before landing on the DL, the "King" was hitting .320+ with 4 SB in around 80 AB. Look for Presley to play a lot, run a fair bit, and provide good value down the stretch. His track record (.350 in AA and .295 in AAA last year) supports continued success. Matt Kemp
: Matt Kemp
added to his great rebound season, jacking his 30th dinger. That dinger was significant because it catapulted Kemp into the vaunted 30/30 club. What is the roto lesson here? Sometimes the non-statistical news is key to understanding aberrational performances. In 2008-09, Kemp had 44 dingers and 69 SB. So, why did he fail miserably at 25 in 2010? Answer -- he had a bad relationship with ownership and with Joe Torre. He was unfairly criticized for his play, his personal life and more. Players are human and that situation clearly got to him. Those roto-owners that saw a track record of talent and production and who understood the reason for Kemp's 2010 troubles got a bargain in 2011. Lesson -- look beyond the numbers, especially when the numbers do not make any sense.A.J. Burnett
: A.J. Burnett
was atrocious again last night, giving up 9 runs in just five innings. With an ERA well over 5.00 on the year and well over 8.00 since the break, Burnett should be no where near any fantasy lineup. Indeed even those teams that need the wins the Yankees will produce and can afford bad ratios should avoid A.J. At this point, it seems very likely that A.J. will miss some starts and may not get his spot back at all. This situation is just a disaster. Plain and simple.Chris Capuano
: In a rare instance of the Mets outperforming the Yankees, Chris Capuano
was as good as A.J. Burnett
was bad. Capuano tossed a complete game, striking out 13 Braves Friday night. On the year, Capuano has been good but not great. He sports a 4.43 ERA, 1.32 WHIP and 136K in 154 innings. With the Marlins next up, Capuano is a good speculative play. That said, I would not get too excited. Capuano has not thrown this many inning in five years. Thus, there is a real risk that he will fade and/or get shut down in September. In deep NL leagues, you probably got a lot more production than you paid for with Cap. Just make sure you have a plan B for September.Dayan Viciedo
: According to reports, the Chisox will bring up Dayan Viciedo
and place Carlos Quentin
on the DL. Viciedo makes an attractive roto free agent play. The White Sox play in a hitter's haven, Viciedo has been hot in AAA and proved he can hit in the show last year with his .308 average in 106 AB. He cannot field worth a lick, but that doesn't matter in fantasy. Buy. Michael Brantley
: Michael Brantley
landed on the shelf with a right wrist problem. Bad news for Brantley and his owners. Not only will he miss critical time, players are rarely the same hitters upon returning from hand or wrist injuries. If you own Brantley, look elsewhere for pennant race production. In fact, you may be able to look at fellow Indian Ezequial Carrera. "Zeke" as maybe only I call him, has posted a respectable .269 AVG to go with his 7 SB in 100 AB. If you have a need for speed, Zeke may that which you seek.Jordan Schafer
: Jordan Schafer
came off the DL, was inserted directly into his new team's starting lineup and has gone 6-17 with two steals. Houston has every reason to play one of the key pieces acquired in the Michael Bourn
e deal. He has ability as shown by his making the show at 22. He has speed as shown by his 17 SB this year. However, Jordan has yet to prove he can hit for average. Not only is his major league career average just barely over the Mendoza line, he has not hit over .300 at any level since A ball in 2007. Buy, but beware of the average hit you will take.
And last but not least, a super sized Schultz Says: "I'm unsure if this has made the news outside of the local hamlets and summer resorts but it appears that a hurricane is bearing down the east coast and may wreak havoc with the populace's day-to-day activities, including those of Major League Baseball. If this news hasn't reached you, especially if you live on the East Coast, groan now like Hans Moleman learning he's ill from Phish. Pretty much every game on the east coast is in jeopardy of being postponed with a few (Marlins/Phillies, Yankees/Orioles) already being replanned. If you are in a league with daily transactions, you're gonna want to populate your roster with players located on the west coast this weekend.
If Hurricane Irene shuts down the east coast for a couple days, you are going to want to pay close attention to how the games are rescheduled and what each team does with their starting rotations. This looks like it will be an issue for the both New York teams, the Marlins, Orioles, Braves, Phillies and possibly Oakland and the Red Sox. Double-headers are going to result in a rash of 24 hour call-ups from the minor leagues and filling in off-days with games are going to tax the back ends of certain rotations. While this is unlikely to have a great effect on the number 1 and number 2 pitchers (in fact, they might get a couple days extra rest with the washouts), look for the number 5 guy to be called on a little more down the stretch.
If you want a lesson on the importance of keeping your rotation fresh, look no further than the Cleveland Indians. With a healthy rotation that included Carlos Carrasco
, Mitch Talbot
and Josh Tomlin
, the Tribe shot out to the best record in baseball. As the young starters fell to the wayside, leaving only Justin Masterson
and the mercurial Fausto Carmona
as the most reliable options, the losses started to mount. Another lesson could probably be learned from the rash of injuries that have decimated the young Tribe this summer. All of the talent seems to have gone on reserve with the dreaded red cross next to their name. Recent injuries to Michael Brantley
, Travis Hafner
, Tomlin and Jason Kipnis
are just heaped atop of those that have sidelined Grady Sizemore
, Shin Soo-Choo, Carrasco and Talbot. Sometimes teams - fantasy or real life - just get bit by the injury bug. For fantasy purposes, it simply stresses the importance of a good bench and the foresight of being prepared for the unexpected.
One silver lining to the Tribe's injury woes: Welcome THOME! "
Response: Much to my chagrin, it hard to argue with Schultz's cogent analysis.
Final thoughts: Please join me in extending a congratulatory shout-out to Bobby Colton -- rotoworld contributor and son of yours truly - as he embarks on a wonderful four years at Duke. All of Rotoworld and its readers are proud of you, but none more than me!