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MLB News from Yesterday

Giants' rookie reliever Brian Wilson set-up closer Brad Hennessey with a scoreless 8th inning.  This is Wilson's 4th appearance and his 4th without allowing a run.  Expect Wilson to fill this role for a while, and, if successful, get a chance at closing in September.

The Rockies recalled flame-throwing lefty Franklyn Morales, and he did not disappoint. Despite a rocky start, thanks to a solo HR from Matt Kemp in the 1st inning, Morales pitched 5.1 innings and allowed just that run and struck out four without issuing a walk. Given his high minor league walk totals, I wouldn't expect that peripheral mix too frequently. He also picked up his first major hit and RBI.

Indians' middle infielder Asdrubal Cabrera first major league HR.  He seems to offer more of what the Indians' look for in a hitter (walks) than 2nd-year 2B Josh Barfield does (.271 OBP).  Given the Indians dealt a starting major league 3B for Barfield, one wonders two things.  First, did the Padres know something the Indians didn't, and, second, will the Indians hope another team will take Barfield for the near-equivalent of what the did in order to open up the 2008 2B job for Cabrera?

Brendan Ryan hit his 4th HR yesterday while hitting 9th and starting at 2B in place of the injured Adam Kennedy.  On the season, he has been very impressive with a slashtats line of 342/416/519 with 10BB and just 7K.  Those K's translate to a 91% Contact Rate in 77 ABs.  There appears little reason not to project Ryan as at least the utility infielder on the 2008 team.  One caution, though, he has just two doubles amongst his 26 hits, and I can see those 4 HRs turning into 2Bs and sending his fantasy value plummeting.

Jeff Keppinger now has 277 career ABs with a slashstat line of 307/361/433 and a 93.5% contact rate.  This season's 356/430/515 is better than that because he has hit more doubles and drawn more walks.  At just 27, he looks like another hitting Krivsky scrap heap find. (Josh Hamilton and Brandon Phillips are the others.)  If his career slashstats are reliable, then Keppinger is an ideal utility player - good bat with multiple position flexibility.

Twins' rookie 2B Alexi Casilla stole his 8th base.  With 103 ABs, he is shaping up as a hot off-season source of cheap steals.  Of course, a full off-season of that type of talk will take all the "Cheap' of of him, and he will rise to the full value for a 40 SB player.  Note, though, his OPS is under .600 since Castillo was traded, so maybe he runs towards over-valued.