I took a few days off from the Roto Roundup, and almost took another day, but wanted to get back to it today. I have substituted the Roundups for some player profiles and will probably write up Pedro Alvarez for Friday. Let me know if you would like to see a profile on anyone and I will do my best to publish a couple.
Midseason Position Rankings
Just a heads up, some of the writers and I are working on our consensus Midseason Position Rankings for the rest of the season, along with write ups for each position, and will begin posting them next Monday. We will post our rankings according to the following schedule:
Tuesday: First Base
Wednesday: Second Base
Thursday: Third Base
Tuesday: Starting Pitchers
Fake Teams Podcast, Episode 16: The All Star Teams
Andrew and Zack discuss the All Star game rosters including their take on Yasiel Puig's all start merit, what is going on with Justin Verlander, the strength of 2B and 3B in the American League, and more. You can listen to the podcast in the following ways:
Matt Cain: He has to be hurt, right?
I am beginning to think that Giants starter Matt Cain is starting to feel the effects of pitching so many innings over the last few seasons. He has pitched at least 217.2 innings in each of the last five seasons, and that doesn't count the innings he has thrown in the playoffs, which are much more intense innings.
Yesterday, Cain couldn't make it out of the first inning vs the Mets, giving up 3 runs on 2 hits and 3 walks in just 0.2 innings. He was coming off one of his worst, if not the worst, outing of his career vs the Dodgers last week, where he gave up 8 runs on 6 hits and 4 walks in 2.1 innings. So, over his last two starts, Cain has given up 11 runs on 8 hits and 7 walks in just 3 innings. He is now 5-6 with a 5.06 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and a 103-37 strikeout to walk rate in 112 innings
I think Cain is hurt, and even said so on Twitter yesterday afternoon. Last night, the team announced that they are worried that he could be injured. Really?
Josh Hamilton homers twice
It is not secret that Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton has struggled mightily in his first season with the team. Hamilton had a big night at the plate last night, going 2-5 with 2 HRs, 2 runs and 5 RBI in the Angels big 12-1 win over the Cubs. Hamilton is now hitting .229-.289-.422 with 14 HRs, 48 runs and 39 RBI. He has hit four home runs in his last 6 games, and has hits in 10 of his last 11 games. This could be the start of a Hamilton hot streak.
Former Giant pitching prospect Zack Wheeler made his first start against his former team yesterday, and pitched great. Wheeler limited the Giants to one run on 3 hits, 3 walks and 5 strikeouts in the Mets 7-2 win over the struggling Giants. Wheeler is now 3-1 with a 3.54 ERA, a very high 1.43 WHIP and a 21-16 strikeout to walk rate in 28 innings. Wheeler will have to work on his command before he becomes the ace that many expect.
Back in the offseason, many fantasy writers, and some Fake Teams readers, were of the opinion that Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton would have a down year power-wise due to the decimated lineup after all of the trades the team had made since last July, and that he wouldn't see any pitches to hit. Well, they are looking correct right now, as Stanton has just 8 home runs on the season. Yesterday, he walked 3 times and has walked 13 times over his last 10 games. I still see him hitting 20-25 home runs by the end of the season.
Reds starter Mike Leake is having his best season as a big leaguer, and yesterday he pitched into the ninth inning for the first time all season. Leake held the Brewers to 2 runs on 4 hits 4 walks and 2 strikeouts in 8.1 innings, and induced 14 ground ball outs. He is now 8-4 with an excellent 2.69 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and a 71-26 strikeout to walk rate in 117 innings.
Wei-Yin Chen returned from the DL to silence the Rangers on Wednesday night. Chen gave up just one run on 3 hits, 3 walks and 4 strikeouts to win his fourth game in 9 starts. Chen is now 4-3 with a 2.82 ERA, 1.16 WHIP and a 31-15 K-BB rate in 54.1 innings.
Tigers first baseman Prince Fielder is having a solid season, but his batting average is down from the usual .290-.300. range. Yesterday, he had a big day at the plate, going 3-4 with a HR, 2 runs and 3 RBI, raising his triple slash line to .267-365-.465 with 16 HRs, 47 runs and 69 RBI. I think his RBI total is amazing considering Miguel Cabrera hits before him in the Tigers lineup and he has driven in 93 runs thus far. Fielder is on pace to hit 29 HRs and drive in 124 runs.
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