Phillies ace Cliff Lee dominated the Dodgers for 7+ innings last night, giving up just 2 runs on 6 hits, a walk and 12 strikeouts. Phillies manager allowed him to throw 122 pitches, and left him in to pitch to Elian Herrera with 2 on and 2 out in the 8th. Why wasn't closer Jonathan Papelbon summoned to get 4 outs? He is getting paid enough, he can get 4 outs no?
Lee is now 0-3 on the season, with a 2.92 ERA, 2.89 FIP, 2.52 xFIP, 1.01 WHIP, a 9.19 K/9 and 1.53 BB/9. His stats are the poster child for how bad the Phillies offense has been this season.
Dodgers starter Chad Billingsley had his best start in several weeks last night, limiting the Phillies to just one run on 6 hits, a walk and 3 strikeouts. Billingsley went 7 innings for just the 3rd time this season, and is now 3-4 with a 3.80 ERA, 3.77 FIP, 3.84 xFIP, but the 1.40 WHIP need to improve. A couple positives that fantasy owners can focus on thus far is his 8.26 K/9 and 47% ground ball rate. If he can limit the walks going forward, he can put together a season like 2008.
I was high on Indians catcher Carlos Santana coming into the season, as the 30 HR potential is very valuable for someone who catches for a living. But as the 2012 season progresses, I wonder if he will get to 20 HRs this season. Similar to Orioles catcher Matt Wieters, who I wrote about yesterday, Santana doesn't have any luck with balls he puts in play, as his BABIP for the last 3 seasons are as follows:
The major league average for BABIP is around .300 and he hasn't come very close to being league average. Santana still has a great eye at the plate, as he is striking out around 20% of his at bats, and walking in almost 16% of his at bats, up from 14.7% in 2011, but his power is down big time. His ISO is down to just .142 from .217 in 2011 and .207 in 2010. What is even stranger is that his line drive rate is 20.7%, up from 15.4% in 2011, so it is hard to explain his .239 BA thus far in 2012. The season is still young, and all he needs is a hot few weeks to get the power stroke back.
More Roto Roundup after the jump:
This time last year, Braves second baseman Dan Uggla was hitting around .170, and some fantasy owners stayed away from him on draft day due to the batting average risk. Well, Uggla is proving his critics wrong thus far, as he went 4-5 with 2 HRs and 5 RBI last night, and is now hitting .276-.384-.492 with 10 HRs, 40 runs and 37 RBI this season. His strikeout rate has increased from 23.2% to 25.3%, but his walk rate has skyrocketed from a respectable 9.2% to 14.8%, which would be a career high.
Yankees starter Andy Pettitte turns 40 years old next week, but he is pitching like he is 10 years younger so far in 2012. Pettitte dominated the Rays lineup last night, shutting them out for 7.1 innings, giving up 2 hits, 2 walks and striking out 10. He is now 3-2 with a 2.78 ERA, 4.00 FIP, 2.89 xFIP, a solid 1.01 WHIP, and a 32-7 strikeout to walk rate in 35.2 innings thus far. How long does he keep this up?
Second base is becoming a strong position for fantasy purposes, thanks to guys like Jason Kipnis, Omar Infante and Astros second bagger Jose Altuve. Altuve went 4-5 with 2 doubles and 3 runs scored last night, and is now hitting .327-.369-.475 with 3 HRS, 36 runs 18 RBI and 9 stolen bases. Altuve is a small dude, but 22 of his 71 hits have gone for extra bases, so he packs some power in that small frame. He is on pace to score 100+ runs and steal 27 bases. In his last 10 games, he is 18-47with 5 extra base hits and 11 runs scored.
Blue Jays outfielder Colby Rasmus had the game of his life last night, going 5-5 with a HR, double, 4 runs and 3 RBI. Coming into this season, I thought it would be a make or break season for him, and he is still not out of the woods, as he is hitting .247-.314-.447 with 7 HRs and 24 RBI. He was praised by many to have the potential to be an all star, but he strikes out way too much and doesn't walk enough, so his time as a full time major leaguer could be limited if he doesn't improve his eye at the plate.
This wil be a short one today, as I had to work late last evening. I will be back at it with a longer Roundup on Thursday.