D.J. Short

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Dandy Andy

Thursday, May 24, 2012


Josh Bell 3B, Diamondbacks (Yahoo: 1 percent owned, ESPN: 0.5 percent)

The Diamondbacks surprised many earlier this week by designating Cody Ransom for assignment and installing Bell as the regular third baseman while pushing Ryan Roberts into a utility infield role. Bell, now 25, tore up the Pacific Coast League after coming over from the Orioles last month, but he owns a measly .203 batting average and an 81/6 K/BB ratio over 233 plate appearances in the majors. I'm very skeptical about how long this arrangement will last, but Bell should be owned as long as he's getting regular playing time.

Travis Wood SP, Cubs (Yahoo: 1 percent owned, ESPN: 0.2 percent)

Wood replaced the struggling Chris Volstad in the Cubs' starting rotation on Tuesday night and allowed two runs over 5 2/3 innings in a loss to the Astros. The 25-year-old southpaw had a 4.57 ERA across seven starts with Triple-A Iowa, which doesn't inspire much enthusiasm, but he had a solid 39/11 K/BB ratio in 41 1/3 innings. His fly ball tendencies worry me in Chicago and he's unlikely to win many games with a team which is likely headed toward 100 losses, but I'm willing to take a chance on a guy who posted a 3.51 ERA in 17 starts with the Reds back in 2010.

Alexi Amarista 2B, Padres (Yahoo: 0 percent owned, ESPN: 0.2 percent)

The other part of the Padres' youth infusion, Amarista took over the starting second base job following Orlando Hudson's release. The 23-year-old was acquired from the Angels three weeks ago as part of the Ernesto Frieri deal. Checking in at just 5-foot-7 and 150 pounds, many think Amarista will end up as a utility man in the long run, but he posted a .312/.368/.439 batting line in the minor leagues and has the potential for double-digit stolen bases. That's good enough to give him some low-end value in NL-only leagues.

Steve Clevenger C, Cubs (Yahoo: 0 percent owned, ESPN: 0 percent)

I first recommended Clevenger about a month ago, just days before he landed on the disabled list with an oblique strain. Sorry about that. The good news is that he's nearing the end of his rehab assignment and shouldn't have much of a problem getting the lion's share of at-bats at catcher with Geovany Soto and Welington Castillo both on the disabled list.  Clevenger was 11-for-22 (.500) before the injury and owns a solid .308/.369/.421 batting line over parts of seven seasons in the minors. About time he gets a look.


Orlando Hudson 2B, White Sox (Yahoo: 1 percent owned, ESPN: 0.5 percent)

Hudson got the boot from the Padres last week after hitting just .211/.260/.317 over his first 131 plate appearances this season, but it didn't take him long to find a new opportunity. The 34-year-old signed a one-year deal with the White Sox this week and should get most of the playing time at third base while Brent Morel is on the disabled list with a back injury. Yes, third base. Morel has been absolutely dreadful this season, so there's a chance Hudson could take the job if he gets off to a hot start. His modest speed and pending multi-position eligibility makes him worth a look.

Nick Johnson 1B, Orioles (Yahoo: 0 percent owned, ESPN: 0 percent)

Look who has finally shaken the rust. Since starting the season with an 0-for-28 hitless streak, Johnson is batting .371 (13-for-35) with four homers, four doubles seven walks and 11 RBI. This includes his two-homer game against the Red Sox on Wednesday. Sure it's a very small sample and the 33-year-old can't be relied on for sustained success given his lengthy injury history, but he deserves a longer look out of the DH spot right now.

Yan Gomes 3B/C, Blue Jays (Yahoo: 2 percent owned, ESPN: 0.5 percent)

Called up when Adam Lind was demoted to the minors last week, Gomes has embraced his first taste of the majors by hitting .294 (5-for-17) with two homers and five RBI in six games. The 24-year-old Brazilian native was hitting .359/.391/.565 with five homers and a .956 OPS over his first 33 games with Triple-A Las Vegas this year, well above the production he has shown in the past. Of course, that's not unusual for someone hitting in the Pacific Coast League. The Jays think they'll have enough at-bats available between third base, first base, DH and catcher to keep him on the roster, so he's worth watching as a utility type. I like him best in leagues where he qualifies at catcher.

Hector Noesi SP/RP, Mariners (Yahoo: 1 percent owned, ESPN: 0 percent)

I gambled and lost by recommending Noesi as a "Suitable Streamer" against the White Sox back on April 20, but I still like him an awful lot. While the 24-year-old right-hander owns an ugly 5.26 ERA through nine starts this year, he has a solid 1.19 WHIP and has allowed three runs over less in four out of his last five starts. Noesi has enjoyed most of his success at home this year (3.70 ERA in four starts at Safeco Field, 6.67 ERA in five starts away), which doesn't come as a big surprise given his fly ball tendencies. Give him a shot at home this weekend against the Angels.

D.J. Short is a Rotoworld baseball editor and contributes to NBCSports.com's Hardball Talk blog. You can also find him on Twitter.
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