Fake Teams is looking for fantasy football and baseball writers
In case you missed my post from Tuesday afternoon, I am looking for some fantasy football and baseball writers over the next week or so. The details of the position can be found here. If interested, please register and join Fake Teams, and write a fan post on the topic of your choice. I will be reviewing the fanposts over the next week and get back to you when I have made my decision.
George Springer Called up by Astros
The Astros didn't take long to call up the best fantasy prospect for 2014, George Springer. He will be called up today, replacing Robbie Grossman in the Astros outfield, as Grossman was sent to AAA to make room for Springer. I think Springer will bat third in the Astros lineup from the get go, and should make an impact on fantasy rosters this season.
I offered my thoughts on the Springer call up late last night, and you can find that article here.
For more on the Springer call up, and to get the Astros fan reaction, make sure you check out Crawfish Boxes, SB Nation's Astros fan site.
Stephen Strasburg: Getting hit hard in 2014
Stephen Strasburg was ranked as the fourth starting pitcher off draft boards this season, but he isn't pitching like the ace that he is thus far. Last night, he was knocked around by a Marlins lineup that is hitting better than one would expect this season. They fielded a lineup with seven hitters hitting .280 or higher, and they continued to hit well off of Strasburg.
Strasburg gave up six runs on eight hits, three walks and five strikeouts in four innings of work, needing 81 pitches to get twelve outs. In his four starts, he is 1-1 with a 6.00 ERA and 1.57 WHIP in 21 innings of work. He is striking out more than 14 batters per nine, but walking more three batters per nine as well. According to FanGraphs PitchFx data, he is throwing more change ups, and less fastballs and curve ball, this season.
Josh Johnson could miss the 2014 season
Josh Johnson was once one of the top starting pitchers in the game, but he has dealt with recurring shoulder problems over the last few seasons, and now he is having an issue with his right forearm. Here is more from Jeff Sanders from U-T San Diego, via Twitter:
#Padres RHP Josh Johnson to see Dr. Andrews next week. Will he pitch this year? Byrnes: "Not sure."— Jeff Sanders (@JeffSanders_UT) April 16, 2014
That doesn't sound encouraging, at all. Any time you visit Dr. James Andrews, Tommy John surgery is on the table. Hopefully not too many of you drafted him this season. 2014 has not been kind to the Padres pitching staff.
Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco had been held back by the managerial decisions made by former Reds manager Dusty Baker over the last two seasons, but he is now the Reds starting catcher, and he is making the most of it thus far.
In the suspended game from Monday night, Mesoraco went 1-4 with a home run. In Tuesday night's game, he went 3-4 with two RBI, and is now hitting .480-.500-1.080 with four home runs and ten RBI in 25 at bats. He appears to be in the beginning stage of a break out season. And I traded him in an NL only keeper league this offseason.
In the suspended game finished on Tuesday night, Pirates second baseman Neil Walker went 3-5 with two home runs and two RBI, hitting two of the ten home runs hit in that game. In Tuesday's game, Walker had another good night at the plate, going 2-4 with a home run, two runs scored and two RBI, raising his slash line to .310-.344-.707 with seven home runs,
I have always felt that Giancarlo Stanton was capable of hitting 40+ home runs if he could stay healthy. This year could be that season. Last night, he went 2-4 with a double, home run, three runs scored and five RBI i the Nationals 11-2 win over Stephen Strasburg and the Nationals. He raised his slash line to .317-.368-.635 with five home runs, twelve runs and 21 RBI thus far, and is well on his way to a 40-100 season.
Rangers starter Robbie Ross is owned in less than 3% of leagues right now, but that should change after his outing last night. Ross shut out the Mariners on five hits, no walks and two strikeouts over 7.2 innings in the Rangers 5-0 win. Ross is now 1-0 with a 1.00 ERA and 1.22 WHIP in 18 innings over his three starts this season.
White Sox young starter Erik Johnson went into Tuesday night's game struggling on the mound, and it appeared with the Red Sox coming into town, his struggles might continue. Well, that was not the case as he dominated the Red Sox, giving up just one run on three hits, two walks and nine strikeouts in 6.2 innings. He has struck out 15 and walked six in 15 innings thus far, and keeps the ball on the ground a fair amount, so I see him pitching better going forward. He is barely owned in most mixed leagues, so he is there for the taking, and a decent streamer option.
The Rangers decided to place third baseman Adrian Beltre on the disabled list with a quad injury on Monday, opening up third base for Kevin Kouzmanoff. Kouzmanoff was a former top prospect in the Indians and Padres farm systems, but he was blocked by Chase Headley in San Diego, so he was dealt to Oakland along with Eric Sogard for Scott Hairston and Aaron Cunningham. Now with the Rangers, Kouzmanoff gets a shot with the injury to Beltre. Beltre should be back next week at the earliest, but Kouzmanoff is doing his best to make an impression. Last night, he went 3-4 with two doubles, a home run, two runs and three RBI in the Rangers 5-0 win over the Mariners. He is now hitting .450-.522-.750 with a home run and five RBI in 23 at bats.
Rays starter Matt Moore has elected to have Tommy John surgery and will miss the rest of the season, and the beginning of the 2015 season. The Rays have had the worst luck with pitching injuries this season, ranking up there with the Braves and Padres.
Red Sox first baseman Mike Napoli injured the ring finger on his left hand with a head first slide into second base last night. The pictures I saw showed that he either dislocated or broke the finger, but reports indicate it was a dislocation. He will miss a few games with the injury, as the injury is to his left hand, and that is the main swing hand for a right handed hitter.
Angels outfielder Kole Calhoun injured his ankle running to first base last night and will be placed on the 15 day disabled list. Colin Cowgill should get playing time in his absence.
Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen may be throwing harder than ever before this season, but he is getting hit harder as well. Last night, Jansen blew his second save of the season, giving up a run on two hits, a walk and two strikeouts n the Dodgers 3-2 loss to the Giants. Jansen has four saves, but has a 4.50 ERA, 2.00 WHIP and a 14-3 strikeout to walk rate in eight innings of work. He has given up runs in three of his last five appearances.
Former A's closer is beginning to get back to his old form, as he tossed two shutout innings to earn the win in the A's 10-9 win over the Angels last night. After reliever Sean Doolittle gave up a game tying two run home run to Mike Trout in the ninth inning, Johnson came in to shut out the Angels on a hit and a walk in two innings to earn his second win of the season. He has thrown five scoreless innings in his last three appearances since blowing a save last week.
For all things fantasy baseball (and football), make sure you check out Fantasy Rundown, for links to some of the best fantasy coverage on the interwebs.