Adam Wainwright is inserting himself into the previously 2 man NL Cy Young race as he had another great start yesterday. He recorded his 14th win after throwing 6 shutout innings with 3 strikeouts against the Dodgers. For the year, he now has a 2.02 ERA and an even 1.00 WHIP. I can't wait to see the end of this race, because it is really looking like all 3 of the main candidates would be deserving in any season.
Josh Johnson threw 6 shutout innings yesterday to get his 10th win of the season. He struck out 7 batters, but it is a bit of a concern to me that he threw 109 pitches despite not walking anyone. He did manage to lower his ERA to 1.62, which remains the league lead. He may very well be the top overall pitcher by the end of the season.
Cliff Lee, it appears, cannot buy a break so far as a member of the Rangers. He went 9 innings, allowed only 2 earned runs, but unfortunately 1 was in the 9th when he had previously had a lead. The Rangers ended up losing in 11 innings unfortunately.
Carl Pavano threw another complete game, allowing 2 earned runs and striking out 6 in the victory. Clearly, Pavano has been everything the Twins could have hoped for and more. He is now sporting a 3.48 ERA.
Carlos Marmol giveth, and Carlos Marmol taketh away. After an excellent save on Friday where he struck out 3 batters, Saturday was a different story. The ending line: 2/3 of an inning, 1 strikeout, 1 hit, 5 walks, 4 earned runs. He's locked into this job, but some days are going to be like this.
Sadly, it wasted an excellent outing by Randy Wells, who continues to rebound from some poor starts earlier in the season. He struck out 5 batters over 7 shutout innings. When I looked at Fangraphs last week, Wells was near the top of the list of pitchers who had the largest difference between their ERA and their FIP. If he is available, he's definitely worth a look.
On the other side of that same leader board was Tim Hudson, who had a substantially lower ERA than his FIP. Looks like the regression may have started after giving up 6 earned runs and struck out 2 over 6 and 2/3 innings pitched. Hudson's value is almost entirely tied to his ability to have a low ERA and low WHIP, so this regression could be pretty costly.
Very quietly, Cliff Pennington has now stolen 14 bases. He's clearly not a great option overall, as he hits for very little power and has a .265 average so far. But if you need a fill in at your MI position, he's probably enough to not hurt you there.
A day after complaining to the media about his playing time, Mike Napoli caught and hit his 15th homerun of the season. The batting average could kill still, but he's on pace to hit around 25 homeruns providing he continues to get the playing time.
Carlos Santana hit his 6th homerun of the season in the second game of the doubleheader yesterday, and I think that at this point, he's rounding into a top 100 player overall and potentially the top catcher for the remainder of the season. I think that with Mauer not hitting homeruns and Martinez still unclear on his return date, Santana could vault past them all.
Buster Posey is going to have something to say about that though, as he hit his 8th homerun yesterday in the Giants' victory. He is now hitting .356/.391/.591 with 27 rbi this year. Could he also finish ahead of Mauer and Martinez?
Reid Brignac hit 2 homeruns and drove in 5 yesterday against the Yankees while playing 2B. Despite being available, Sean Rodriguez did not play, most likely I'm guessing due to a righty starting for the Yankees. I think that at this point, manager Joe Maddon is going to play the hot hitters between 2B, SS and RF, so be wary when starting any of them.
Shawn Camp was called on to record the final out of the Blue Jays victory yesterday after Kevin Gregg walked 3 batters in the 9th inning. I don't think that this necessarily will signal a change, but Gregg is one of those closers who I always seem to think could be out of a job at any given time. Honestly, I'm not even sure who you should grab as the handcuff either.
Edinson Volquez pitched very well in his return from the disabled list, striking out 9 batters and allowing only 1 earned run over 6 innings en route to the victory. He's probably already owned in nearly every league, but he's definitely worth a pick up if he isn't in your league.
Ike Davis hit 2 homeruns in San Francisco yesterday, bringing his total to 13. I acquired Davis along with Adam Jones and Jaime Garcia a while back in my keeper league in exchange for Justin Smoak and the rights to Jordan Lyles and Grant Green. It seems to me now that Davis is not nearly as far behind Smoak now that Smoak is playing in Seattle instead of Texas. (It probably didn't help that I moved Jones for Jason Bay right before Jones got hot.)