Week One has come to an end and we now have some information to base our waiver pickups on. I took some risks on pitchers in Week One and many of them came back to bite me in the butt. The list of poor performers includes Edinson Volquez, Vance Worley, Clayton Richard, and Brandon McCarthy. However, I did stumble upon some bright spots, like Justin Masterson, Bud Norris, Shelby Miller, and Zach McAllister. I also decided to take a flyer on a few hitters. I went with a Cleveland Indians theme and it paid off in the form of Mark Reynolds and Michael Brantley. Let's take at the favorable matchups for Week Two.
Erik Bedard (4/9) at Seattle Mariners
Jeremy Guthrie (4/9) vs. Minnesota Twins
Carlos Villanueva (4/11) vs. San Francisco Giants
Vance Worley (4/12) vs. New York Mets
Erik Bedard will get his first start on Tuesday against his former club, the Seattle Mariners. He has appeared in 3+1/3 innings of relief so far and has only given up one hit. Jeremy Guthrie looked very good in his first start against the White Sox. He struck out 9 and gave up one run in 6 innings. Guthrie is 4-2 with a 3.31 ERA in his career against the Twins. Carlos Villanueva also had an impressive first start. He faced Atlanta and gave up one run in 6+2/3 innings, while striking out 6. In three career starts against the Giants, he is 2-1 with 17 strikeouts in 17+1/3 innings. Vance Worley has already started two games in the young 2013 season. In 11 innings, he has given up 7 runs, 18 hits, and has only K'd 5 batters. However, these starts were against Baltimore and Detroit and I expect him to bounce back at spacious Target Field against the Mets.
New York Yankees 4 games at Cleveland Indians/3 games vs. Baltimore Orioles
The Orioles will play in two hitter-friendly parks this week: Fenway and Yankee Stadium. They will face three lefties, which may hurt guys like Chris Davis. The Yankees will face 6 righties, which benefits the lefties in their lineup like Lyle Overbay, Travis Hafner, Brennan Boesch, and Robinson Cano. The Giants will see some below average pitching this week. Plus, they get to play four games at Wrigley Field. The Mariners will enjoy their first homestand at the new and improved Safeco Field. They face 5 righties, so left-handers such as Dustin Ackley, Raul Ibanez, Justin Smoak, and Michael Saunders should benefit. It will also be interesting to see how their bats handle the moved-in fences. This change should be advantageous for right-handed power hitters like Michael Morse and Jesus Montero.
Week 1 Notes: I have Josh Hamilton and Matt Kemp on two of my fantasy teams. Frustrating to say the least. I am way more concerned about Hamilton, who has basically swung at everything thrown towards the plate. Robinson Cano looks pretty bad early on too. Maybe it's the lack of protection or maybe it's the pressure of his contract situation. Speaking of Yankees, Kevin Youkilis is absolutely scorching the ball and Vernon Wells is looking like he might have a Renaissance year. I do have Chris Davis on one of my teams and this has brought me a great amount of joy. Chase Utley looks healthy, which is a very good sign. Carl Crawford and Troy Tulowitzki look able bodied too. Dexter Fowler looks like he is ready to have a breakout year and Todd Frazier doesn't seem like he is ready to abide by the sophomore slump. Meanwhile, Michael Morse is punishing the baseball like the grown man he is, as is Justin Upton. Bryce Harper's hot spring has carried over to the regular season. Also, Franklin Gutierrez and Gerardo Parra are making their case to be waiver wire pickups. Will Middlebrooks ended the week on a strong note, belting three homers on Sunday. On the pitching side of the ball, Clayton Kershaw is straight up dominating. Zack Greinke came out of the gates strong as well. However, a bunch of aces struggled their second time around. Just to name a few, David Price, Cole Hamels, Stephen Strasburg, James Shields, Jered Weaver, R.A. Dickey, and Matt Cain all got spanked. John Axford and Greg Holland are a couple of relievers who I own. Both of them are making me quite angry early on. My biggest takeaway from Week One is the fact that Mariano Rivera is back out on the mound. He is breaking bats and making the lives of left-handed hitters hell again. What a beautiful sight.