We are just two days away from the first regular season baseball game of the 2013 season on Sunday night, a game that will pit the Texas Rangers vs the Houston Astros. Monday brings a full slate of games, and with the start of the regular season, I will be publishing the Fake Teams weekly schedule of articles you can expect to see going forward. We have added several new fantasy writers here over the offseason, and some have left us as well, but we are here to offer you, the Fake Teams readers, the best fantasy advice on the internet. Look for the weekly schedule later today.
Hyun-Jin Ryu: Should you target him in 2013?
This offseason, the Dodgers spent loads of cash on two pitchers, Zack Greinke and Hyun-Jin Ryu. All of you have heard of Greinke, and some of you may have heard of Ryu. I had not heard of Ryu before the Dodgers signed him other than seeing him on some offseason free agent rankings. I did not know what to expect from the new Dodgers starter, as some felt he would be nothing more than a back end of the rotation starter or even a bullpen pitcher. His first spring training with the Dodgers started off slowly, as the first reports I remember reading about him was that he came to camp overweight and does not like to run. But as spring training started, we got to know more about Ryu,
Ryu struggled in his first few spring training starts, but has looked great over his last 3-4 spring training appearances. Here is a summary of his spring training starts:
March 1: 2 IP, 4 hits, 2 runs, BB, 3 K
March 6: 3 IP, 3 hits, 2 runs, BB, 5 K
March 11: 4.2 IP, 5 hits, 3 runs, 2 BB, 3 K
March 17: 5.2 IP, 3 hits, 1 run, 2 BB, 6 K
March 23: 7 IP, 1 hit, 2 runs, 2 BB, 5 K
March 28: 4 IP, 0 hits, 0 runs, 0 BB, 4 K
Over his last 16.2 innings pitched, he has struck out 15, walked 4, given up just 4 hits, and 3 earned runs. Not bad for a back end of the rotation starter, eh? He is slated to start the second game of the season vs the World Champion San Francisco Giants. I have to admit, I felt that he could be better than what some were projecting for him, and maybe that will pan out. I will be targeting him in some of my four drafts next week, and will let you know how I fare.
Rockies third base prospect Nolan Arenado will start the season in AAA, but could get an early call up should Chris Nelson struggle at the plate this season. Nelson was out of options, and has hit well of late (he has homered in 2 of his last 3 games), so he beat out Arenado for the starting third base job in Colorado.
The Rangers sent top prospect Jurickson Profar to AAA yesterday, and I am beginning to wonder exactly when he will get a call up to the big league club. Obviously, he would get a call up should one of Elvis Andrus or Ian Kinsler suffer an injury, but will there come a time where Kinsler moves to either first base or the outfield? Will Profar hit so well in AAA to force the team to give him a spot in the starting lineup?
With Chase Headley on the DL till mid-May, the Padres were counting on Logan Forsythe to man the hot corner till he returned. But, Forsythe had been dealing with plantar fascitis this spring and per MLB.com's Tyler Emerick he will miss the next six weeks:
Looking at the Padres 40 man roster tells me that Jedd Gyorko could end up back at third base to start the season, with Alexi Amarista playing second base while Headley and Forsythe are out.
Kevin Nielsen touched on the news about Mets starter Johan Santana last night in his Around the League piece, but here are my thoughts on Santana. Prior to this news, I didn't think he was anything more than a late round flyer in both NL-only and deeper mixed leagues, but was a guy I would not draft. Now, he is out for the season and will likely need a second surgery according to reports. At this point, his career is probably over. He was dominant in his prime, but shoulder injuries are worse than elbow injuries, so that is why I stay away from pitchers who suffer shoulder injuries in drafts. Josh Johnson is one starter who has had shoulder issues in the past, having been shut down two seasons in a row, but he has looked good this spring, and I wonder if his shoulder injury is a thing of the past, or will if become an issue again this season?