ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 05: Left fielder Travis Snider #45 of the Toronto Blue Jays take a cut at a pitch against the Texas Rangers in the top of the 5th inning on Opening Day at Rangers Ballpark on April 5, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. The Rangers beat the Blue Jays 5-4. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
I apologize in advance if I missed anyone, as I am still on vacation. If I did, please post in the comments so everyone knows what's what. Thanks for bearing with me this week and I'll be back to normal starting Tuesday. Let's get to the players, because there are a lot:
Lance Berkman - When he hit the disabled list we thought Big Puma's career was over. He's back to steal a little playing time from Allen Craig, whose bat is too good to sit. That will potentially affect Matt Holliday, Jon Jay and Carlos Beltran's playing time as well as potentially David Freese. It will be interesting to see how rookie Manager Mike Matheny finds playing time for all of these players. We could eventually see Craig at the keystone, though it would be a risk for the oft injured player.
Travis Snider - I'm not going to be breaking down the insane 10-player trade between the Astros and the Blue Jays, but the upshot of it all is that Travis Snider has a roster spot in Toronto and appears to be a regular corner outfielder. It looks like the Jays will roll with an outfield of Snider/Rasmus/Gose with Rajai Davis in a 4th outfielder role until Bautista returns. I'm hopeful (as I have been) about Snider, but there is plenty of risk here too as he's flopped numerous times. I'm still buying though.
Matt Joyce - Joyce was crushing on the season before hitting the DL and suffering a small setback. He's back in action but doesn't quite seem 100% as he's received a few days off and had some awkward swings. I would continue to start him against RHPs but he's always struggled vs LHPs so feel free to bench him then, as the Rays might too.
More after the jump...
Carl Crawford - The long awaited 2012 debut for Crawford has finally occurred. If you've held on to him this long it's likely that you're not moving him and you just want a little value out of that pick/roster spot. Crawford has been great in extremely limited action as long as you don't mind a singles hitter. Plug him in (finally) if you have him because who knows when his elbow will pop.
Anthony Gose - Gose was a big minor league name called up this week. He had a .292/.375/.432 slash line in Triple-A Las Vegas before his call up. He has shown legit power in his career but not much this year. What he can do is garner playing time due to defense, and stolen bases due to his easy plus-plus speed. Worth a look for his upside in deeper leagues.
Alex Presley - Presley was activated from the 7-day concussion DL and further clouds the outfield playing time in Pittsburgh. Use at your leisure, but I wouldn't count on much.
Joey Votto - And this is the downside of being the smallest market in MLB guaranteeing someone $250+ dollars in an extension to years before they hit the DL. Yes it's likely just a minor injury and we will see him in 4-6 weeks due to a torn meniscus, but it could have been worse and could be the first of many. The Reds don't have a viable fantasy replacement on their roster or even in their minor leagues so this is just a vaccuum that will be left unfilled until Votto's return.
Jed Lowrie - For those waiting for the shoe to drop on Jed Lowrie's season (and trade value), here it is. The oft-injured shortstop hits the DL with an ankle sprain, and while he potentially could have brought back big value to the Astros, it's likely that they hold on to him through the July 31 trading deadline with this injury. If he can heal quickly (unlikely) he could come back and re-establish some value. Marwin Gonzalez will replace him in the lineup.
Jason Castro - Castro was sent to the DL and my guess is nobody noticed.
Roy Halladay - No one really seems to know what was wrong with Roy, but if he says he's healthy, I'm inclined to believe him. Plug him in as soon as possible.
CC Sabathia - Start the big man.
Ben Sheets - Sheets is a hell of a story and you have to admire his #want. He came up and produced in his first start and I like his chances of being a solid addition as long as he's healthy. That of course is the big question with Sheets and I'd be surprised (pleasantly though) if he makes it the rest of the season and avoids injury.
Zach Britton - Britton was a revelation early last year and since lost some of his luster and then pitched hurt to start 2012. If he's truly right, he's well worth grabbing, but giving him a couple starts to see how he performs might be your best course of action.
Jerome Williams - What were the odds on Jerome Williams retaining a spot in the starting rotation this far into the season? He was activated early this week and if he was helpful to you before, he'll be helpful now. He is what he is, and that is a non-strikeout, not exciting option that could steal you a win in the right matchup.
Joe Saunders - I figured Saunders for a quick bust this season, and while he hasn't exactly been good, he's been good enough, as the D'Backs opted to send Trevor Bauer and his ardent supporters (of which I am one) back to the minors (this also moved Collmenter into the rotation). I would continue to advise against using him as I think he's a ticking time bomb, but if you own him, you're happy to see him back.
Trevor Rosenthal - Rosenthal has been on a rocket through the St. Louis system and it culminated in his call up this week. It's my understanding that he will be used in the bullpen for now, though he was a starter in his time in the minors. I'm a big fan of Rosenthal and can see him being a mid-rotation starter down the line. If you're in a deep dynasty, he's worth a look.
Chad Billingsley - A continual disappointment in the eyes of many, Billingsley came down with some elbow inflammation. This is likely a cause for celebration by fantasy owners who never know whether to start or sit Billingsley. I would bet he'll be ready by the time he is eligible.
Trevor Bauer - My preseason pick for NL ROY has had one truly good start and it was against a Kemp and Ethier-less Dodgers. He clearly needs more seasoning despite some dominating Triple-A starts, though I wouldn't be shocked to see him back in the majors sometime in August.
Jason Hammel - One of the surprises of the year to me, I was disappointed to see Hammel hit the DL. He's been great thus far, and you're unlikely to find a replacement pitcher of his caliber on the wire, but if Ben Sheets is available in your league, he could approximate Hammel's value pitching in a weaker league.
Randall Delgado - Delgado's vacated rotation spot was claimed by Ben Sheets. I'd be surprised if this is the last we hear from Delgado between the Braves rotation issues and Sheets injury history. Feel free to cut him if you haven't already (you should have).