Phil Hughes went 5 innings to get the victory over the Athletics, but it definitely doesn't look like it was a great start other than that. He gave up just 2 earned runs, but only struck out 1 and walked 5. I'm not sold on Hughes, and I think that the Yankees still shut him down in some form before the end of the season, and don't bring him back until the playoffs.
Andrew McCutchen stole his 28th base of the season while going 3 for 5 yesterday with 2 runs and 2 RBI. The guys over at ESPN were debating a couple of days ago about whether he was a top 10 outfielder for next season, and I think he's right on that cusp. His season numbers: .277, 12 HR, 40 RBI, 28 SB, 72 R. These would likely result in a 15 HR/50 RBI/35 SB, 85 R season, and there's upside from there I think. I'm not sold he's top 10 though.
Dan Haren had a nice start against the Mariners, striking out 8 over 7 shutout innings. I want to see more of this, as it was against the Mariners. But it definitely is a good sign that he pitched better.
Koji Uehara recorded his 5th save of the season, throwing 1 2/3 innings to finish the game. I think we can safely say at this point that he has a lock on the closer job, and if he's still available somehow he should be picked up immediately.
Justin Masterson had a nice start against the White Sox yesterday, going 7 2/3 innings and striking out 7 while allowing just 1 earned run. Unfortunately the bullpen couldn't keep the win for him, but only 2 walks is another good sign. He's clearly not as bad as his ERA (5.04), and should be looked at if you need strikeouts.
Aroldis Chapman made his debut last night, throwing 1 inning of relief and striking out 1. Clocked at 103+, I think he's a good play in non-keeper leagues if you need someone to fill a RP spot and should have a fair amount of strikeouts. Watch for walks though to go with it.
Jordan Zimmermann made his second start since returning from Tommy John surgery, and this one went a lot better. 1 hit, 9 strikeouts, and 6 shutout innings. Another spot starter who could help you in the playoff push.
Jose Bautista hit his 43rd homerun of the season last night, and now has 103 runs batted in. Pretty nice from a guy you didn't have to draft at all, eh? I'm still not sure where I'll rank him for next season, but the potential to be a top-10 3B or OF is definitely there.
Cliff Lee lasted only 4 2/3 innings yesterday against the Royals, striking out 5 but allowing 4 earned runs. I really don't know what to make of Lee's last few starts, but I know this much: I wouldn't bench him even still. The last thing you want at the end of the season is to miss winning your league because you didn't get a great start made by Lee. Better to go with his history and get burned than to leave him on your bench and get burned that way.
Ryan Howard hit his 24th homerun of the season last night, and now has 85 runs batted in. It's kind of hard to remember that Howard missed some time to the disabled list this year, but clearly hasn't had the season his owners were hoping for. But he's still having a very good season, especially when you remember that he's hitting .277 as well.