Diamondbacks outfielder Chris Young took some swings in the batting cage and is throwing the ball from 120 feet, and is close to starting a rehab assignment, possibly this weekend. Young's injury derailed a very hot start to the 2012 season, as he was hitting .410-.500-.897 with 5 HRs, 13 RBI, 8 runs and 2 stolen bases before he injured his shoulder running into the outfield wall. Small sample size warning, but he had cut his strikeout rate from 21% to 11% this season. Fantasy owners, as well as the Diamondbacks lineup, can't wait to see how he performs when he returns from the DL.
The news got worse for Jayson Werth and his fantasy owners yesterday. Original reports had him missing 6 weeks with a broken wrist, suffered attempting a sliding catch on Sunday night. Now he will miss 3 months as the wrist injury was worse than expected. So, he will be out till at least early August.
Dodgers manager Don Mattingley didn't waste anytime in announcing a change in the closer role in Los Angeles yesterday. He announced that Kenley Jansen will replace Javy Guerra as the Dodgers closer beginning on Monday night, where the Dodgers start a stretch where they will play 18 of their next 23 games at home. As I mentioned in Monday's Roundup, Guerra has been very unlucky this season, as his BABIP is a crazy high .452, but Mattingley had seen enough, and now Jansen, and his 14.6 K/9 and and 3.9 K/BB, will be closing games going forward. What worries me about Jansen is his 53.1% FB rate and 11.8% HR/FB rate thus far in 2012 vs a 6.5% HR/FB rate in 2011.
More Roto Roundup after the jump:
Coming into the season, some were skeptical of what to expect from Braves outfielder Jason Heyward, especially after his disappointing 2011 season. I ranked him as my 23rd ranked outfielder coming into the season, so I took some risk in the ranking, but so far so good. Thus far in 2012, he has put to rest questions about his swing and shoulder injury as he is hitting .274-.378-.478 with 4 HRs, 13 RBI, 17 runs and 9 stolen bases in 11 attempts. He's on pace for 22 HRs and 49 stolen bases, but I tend to think he won't approach 40 steals, and can see the power increase as the season gets longer.
Back on April 21st, Philip Humber threw a perfect game vs the Mariners. I warned that fantasy owners shouldn't rush to pick him up, and Humber has made that warning look good. Since that start, he has given up 20 earned runs on 21 hits and 5 HRs in 13.1 innings, including Monday's 8 earned runs in 2.1 innings vs the Indians. His ERA is now 6.83 and his WHIP is just under 1.50 for the season.
Cardnals starter Chris Carpenter isn't anywhere close to returning to the mound. GM John Mozeliak announced yesterday that the timeline for his return is "open ended" right now. Here's more from Joe Strauss from the St. Louis Post Dispatch:
The club, which once thought his May return possible, is rapidly approaching a time when Carpenter's availability any time prior to the July 9-12 All-Star break is in question.
Yikes. I drafted Carpenter in two of my leagues thinking he would be back in May, but that was apparently very optimistic.
Cubs starter Carlos Zambrano apparently likes to pitch in Miami and for Ozzie Guillen. He threw a complete game 3 hit shutout vs the Astros in Houston last night. He walked one and struck out a season high 9 batters. He is now 1-2 on the season with a 1.98 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP.
Mets third baseman David Wright was another hitter with mixed reviews coming into the season, but he is quietly off to a great start to the 2012 season. If the Mets plan on trading him this season, they better hope Wright can stay healthy, as he is tearing the cover off the ball. He went 1-3 with 2 RBI in the Mets win over the Phillies last night, and is hitting a healthy .374-.482-.549 with 3 HRs, 16 RBI, 18 runs and 3 stolen bases in 6 attempts. Wright has had trouble with the strikeout the last few seasons, but he has cut his K rate from 22% in 2011 to just under 14% this season, and he is walking more than he is striking out. His .423 BABIP tells you he is due to regress, but he should be good for 25-20 HRs and 90 RBI this season.
Heading into Monday night's game with the Braves, Cubs manager Dale Sveum stated he would rest closer Rafael Dolis after he threw 25 pitches on Sunday, and mentioned that Carlos Marmol could be used should there be a save opportunity. Marmol did pitch the 8th inning with the score 3-1, so that tells me Sveum still has confidence in Marmol and he could return to the closer role in due time. Marmol pitched a scoreless 8th inning, walking 2 and striking out 2.
Orioles pitching prospect Dylan Bundy finally gave up a run last night, but it was unearned. Bundy gave up one hit, a double, no walks and struck out 8 in 3 innings last night. There were Twitter reports of him hitting 95-98 on his fastball in the second inning vs the Yankees Low A farm team.
Red Sox new third baseman Will Middlebrooks is showing that his performance in AAA this season was no fluke. He went 3-5 with 2 HRs and 5 RBI last night in the Red Sox win over the Royals. Our own Marc Normandin wrote about Middlebrooks yesterday, where he advised stashing Middlebrooks on your roster in case the Sox decide to deal Kevin Youkilis or if Youk doesn't perform at the plate when he returns from the DL.