SS Troy Tulowitzki, Colorado Rockies: Three days after his AVG bottmoed at .198, he goes 6-11 with a couple of HRs and 4 RBIs to raise his AVG to .237 and quell any anti-Tulo/pro-Romero talk. In mixed leagues, he appears to have momentum and can be started over the likes of Christian Guzman and Marco Scutaro.
C Ivan Rodriguez, Houston Astros: A 4-4 day with his 4th HR has brought Pudge's AVG to .273. He was considered washed-up when he signed with Houston at least from a fantasy perspective, but the man who as recently as 2007 walked a total of 9 times has six walks already. He may also break a four season streak of declining HRs.
OF Michael Cuddyer, Minneosta Twins: Anyone else notice that Cuddyer has started all eleven games this month going 14-39 with 2 HRs and 12 RBIs? At this point, Carlos Gomez is clearly the 4th OF.
OF Jay Bruce, Cincinnati Reds: With his 10th HR of the season, the likelihood of Jay Bruce being available in shallow mixed leagues just approached zero. A .262 is all that prevents me from stating he is starting in all mixed formats.
3B Hank Blalock, Texas Rangers: With a two-homer game, Blalock has nine taters on the season. Inuries the past two seasons and Chris Davis have dimmed Blalock to the point he was an after-thought in most drafts. A free agent next Winter, Blalock may end-up being a much pursued bat as the July 31st non-waiver deadline nears.
1B Aubrey Huff, Baltimore Orioles: In the first inning, Huff hit his 6th HR of the season. With it, he brought his RBI total to 31. Here was a cornerman whose 2008 season was obscured by a the two before it. Now with a .290, .352 and .358 hitter in front of him, Huff looks likely to repeat his 2008 RBI total of 108.
OF Ben Francisco, Cleveland Indians: Francisco stole his 6th base of the season. For years the only Indian given the green light on the base paths was Grady Sizemore. Maybe it was the success of the Red Sox on the bases that forced the Indians' management to run more than the sabre-dogma allowed. Shin-Soo Choo and Asdrubel Cabrera have five a piece. Last year, just three Indians stole more than four bases.
OF Bobby Abreu, Los Angeles Angels: I was committed to ignoring anything Abreu did until he began to hit with some authority, but he went 0-0 today with four walks. I wonder how long it willt ake before pitchers begin challenging him. A .355 SLG says he has to be treated as if he can't drive the ball anymore.
SP Brett Cecil, Toronto Blue Jays: Eight shutout innings in his second start shows Cecil's Spring numbers should have been heeded by fantasy leaguers rather than his AAA ones.
2B Manny Burriss, San Francisco Giants: A week or so ago I mentioned Burriss may not be long for the starting role as his .228/.315/.253 slash stats wouldn't be overcome by his eight steals. In just five games, he went 13-25 to raise his AVG to an impervious .287. Those nine steals make him bullet-proof.
8th Inning Set-Up (Holds): Alan Embree COL (4), Carlos Marmol CHC (9), David Aardsma SEA (5), Jason Motte (7), Blaine Boyer (2) and Trever Miller STL (2), Phil Coke NYY (1), Mike Gonzalez ATL (1), Tony Pena AZ (4)
Saves: Rafael Soriano ATL (3), Mariano Rivera NYY (6), Chris Perez STL (1), Brandon Morrow SEA (6), Kevin Gregg CHC (6), Huston Street COL (4), Brien Fuentes LAA (9), Chad Qualls AZ (8), Jonathan Papelbon BOS (8)
Blown Saves: Ryan Franklin STL (1)