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Fake Teams Hits the Fantasy Baseball Links

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Here are your fantasy baseball links for today, August 16:

Powerful Upton in MVP Discussion | Baseball Analytics

Now that he's handling outside pitches, Upton ranks among the game's offensive elite. His 155 OPS+ at age 23 places him between Hall of Famers Orlando Cepeda and Hank Greenberg and is the best age-23 season by OPS+ since Prince Fielder in 2007 (157), according to Baseball-Reference.

The SABR Spotlight: Curtis Granderson | COSFBA

If I were you, I would sell like I've never sold before. I would be willing to bet that by seasons end, Granderson will post his best career numbers. Not to date, rather the best he will post in his entire career. I don't see Granderson ever hitting 40 HR after this season. His counting stats are through the roof, and I've heard of people offering trades including everything but the kitchen sink to get Granderson. If you can get 1st round value for him, now is the time to make that deal. If your in a single season, non-keeper leauge, you might want to ride him out, as I said, he's having the best year of his career.

Grounding Youkilis | Baseball Analytics

Pitchers work Kevin lower in 2011. He appears to be looking lower, swinging lower, and hitting more ground balls. That's hurting his batting average overall.

Slump or Dump: Anibal Sanchez | Roto Hardball

Someone has to be the unluckiest pitcher in baseball over every period of time, and from July 1st forward, it seems as if Anibal Sanchez has taken his turn. If he's been dropped in your league, pick him up. If you own him, hang on. The storm clouds will soon part, clearing the way for sunny, strikeout filled starts.

Follow the jump for more of the latest fantasy baseball news and analysis from around the web.

Patience by the Bay | FanGraphs Fantasy Baseball

Bay’s line drive rate is up this month; suggesting that maybe he’s squaring up the ball and making better contact. Bay also appears to be getting more loft on his swing; leading to a season-high fly ball rate this month. Those extra fly balls seem to be traveling farther as well; as Bay has managed a 20% HR/FB rate this month. While he won’t be able to sustain that rate, it’s a sign that his power — which has gone missing for a year and a half — may finally be returning. That alone warrants a pickup in most leagues.

Is J.J. Hardy Back? |

Hardy is a player to ride while he’s hot. If his production starts to wane then you might go in another direction, but with the exception of Troy Tulowitzki and Asdrubal Cabrera, you’re not getting better power numbers out of the shortstop position.

Yuniesky Betancourt, Fantasy, Shortstop, Brewers | FanGraphs Fantasy Baseball

[Betancourt’s] not likely to keep this up until the rest of the season, but if you have a void at shortstop, or own a slumping player like Elvis Andrus or Alexei Ramirez, it’s worth overlooking the name and trying to cash in on the hot streak while you can.

Edwin Encarnacion Is Still Alive! | Roto Hardball
The best part is that [Encarnacion's] kind of a stealthy pick, too; no one's going to expect top-10 production from him, and that should make him cheaply available. And if we extrapolate from his 21 HR in limited duty last season and encouraging peripherals this year, we could be looking forward to another 30-HR masher joining the third base ranks.

Fantasy Baseball Two Start Starters, Week 20 | Razzball

Catchers on Fire | FanGraphs Fantasy Baseball

Sure, the .455 BABIP is probably unsustainable, but it doesn’t look like the drop-off is coming too soon; not with the Rockies about start a nine game homestand. Iannetta’s home/road splits tell it all: .326-9-33 at home/.150-3-8 on the road. He’s owned in just 13.1% of leagues on ESPN and in 23% in Yahoo, so if you’re not getting anything special from your current backstop, now is the perfect time to make the change.

Fantasy Baseball Free Agent Pool – 2011 Speed Demons Vol. 9 |

Giavotella is batting .333 since debuting on August 5th. He has scored five runs, hit one home run, had four RBI, and four stolen bases in his 11 games. Giavotella plays second base and is owned in less than five percent of fantasy leagues.

Strasburg Back At Lastburg | Razzball

[Altuve] has hit in ten of his last twelve games while batting .330 since his call up and is owned in 1.5% of ESPN leagues. Jed Lowrie, who has one good week every year or so, is owned in 13.4% of ESPN leagues. Then again ESPN dedicates five hour programming blocks to the Sawx so I guess it makes sense.

When ERA Becomes the Best Predictor and Jair Jurrjens | Roto Hardball

If a pitcher has proved himself an outlier -- if he has put up more than 400 innings of steady work that has out-done his peripheral statistics -- we have to consider his career ERA more strongly when trying to evaluate his true talent. You can only complain about Jair Jurrjens' strikeout rate for so long before you have to admit he's figured something out.

Fantasy Fallout: Delmon Young Traded to the Tigers | Rotoprofessor

For the Twins the big winner, and possibly the biggest winner in the whole deal, is Ben Revere who started to see playing time slip when Denard Span got healthy. Now Revere could start seeing regular at-bats again and if you need speed he has it. Revere still has holes in his game so he is probably best left to the deep leagues, but he does have more value now than he did before the trade.

The Week That Was: On Hitting Streaks | Roto Hardball

Just because his season has been rebuilt on the heels of a hitting streak doesn't mean that a) it's likely to continue, or b) Dan Uggla isn't the same exact player he's always been.

Injury Report: August 16: Brian Wilson, Nelson Cruz, Denard Span & More | Rotoprofessor

MLB Injury Updates | Roto Hardball

Prospect of the Day: Tim Wheeler, OF, Colorado Rockies | Minor League Ball

My take is that Wheeler's power outburst this year is mostly for real, but there are some flaws he still needs to address. He still has a sharp platoon split (.318/.396/.616 against right-handers but just .244/.330/.429 against lefties), and I'm not sold on the idea that his batting average is going to hold up at higher levels without some adjustments in his approach. Nevertheless, Wheeler has done enough this year to push himself back up towards the top of Colorado's prospect list.

Fantasy Baseball Player Prospecting: Dellin Betances, Trevor Bauer, Justin Sellers |
Dellin Betances, Trevor Bauer move closer to bigs, where Justin Sellers debuted this weekend

Minor Accomplishments, Week 20 | Razzball

At this point, [Strasburg’s] not going to save your team. He might add a few solid starts to solidify your standing. Seems to me he’s rushing. Most TJ pitchers returning in their first year struggle with command. This would be his first year.

Rare Affliction Cuts Short Drew Cumberland’s Career | Baseball America

The BP Broadside: "Compiler" Jim Thome for the Hall of Fame | Baseball Prospectus
Very well argued. Of course, I say that as a Thome supporter.

Stephen Drew Tells Gruesome Tale Of Resetting His Ankle On The Field | SB Nation Arizona
Don't watch the video.

Wezen-Ball: Scorpions & Fielders, Canseco & Costner | Baseball Prospectus
This sort of drama is better than any minor league promotion.