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Fantasy Week in Review - Week 1

Brian Creagh recaps all the happenings in week 1 of the fantasy season

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

In a new series, "Fantasy Week in Review", I'll take a look at all the trades, injuries, promotions, and free agent signings that have occurred with a little blurb about their potential fantasy impact. The goal is to provide a refresher of what just happened, as well as to follow-up on any injury news that drags out for a few days. This is going to be a work in progress, and I appreciate any feedback/suggestions in the comments or via email ( My initial attempt at this will be to organize information by position - this may change in coming weeks as my process evolves. Within each position, I also rank the news/notes by potential fantasy impact. A note higher on the list, means the player(s) involved are more worthy of your attention.


Yan Gomes - Gomes will miss the next 6-8 weeks with an MCL sprain. Roberto Perez is the replacement for Cleveland and is an interesting add if you need a C. He’s hit well in the minors and even saw some major league success last year. He becomes one of the top waiver wire adds in the position.

John Jaso - Jaso is on the 15-day DL after jamming his wrist opening day. It shouldn’t last more than the necessary 15 days and there was some talk that a DL stint wasn’t going to be necessary. Rene Rivera will fill in temporarily and shouldn’t be on many radars except for 2 catcher leagues.


Brandon Belt - Belt returned Sunday afternoon from a groin injury. His injury concerns have been growing and his fringe fantasy value is dropping. It’s only a matter of time before Posey plays 1B full time and he filled in at the position in Belt’s absence.

James Loney - Placed on the 15 day DL with an oblique strain, Loney will miss at least two weeks of action. His replacement is Allan Dykstra, a career minor leaguer with a propensity for the walk. I don’t expect him to make any sort of impact, but he’s an interesting add in super-deep OBP leagues.


Jake Lamb - Jake Lamb has been off to a hot start for Arizona, and we’re getting a closer look as to how he’s going to be used going forward. Lamb is in a strict platoon with Aaron Hill at the hot corner. Lamb gets the AB’s against the right-handed pitchers, but it appears owning him will require a little bit of work to shuffle him in and out of the lineup. I still love Lamb’s long-term potential for the season and is a cheap source of power.


Ryan Braun - Braun was injured early in the week with a rib cage issue. He missed a few games but returned to action on Friday. I don’t expect this to be a lingering problem after such a quick return, but if he gets some days off in the coming weeks, Gerardo Parra figures to be the main beneficiary.

Michael Saunders - Expected to return this week from the DL, Saunders was pulled from his rehab game with a hamstring injury. No updated timetable has been given and the removal may have just been precautionary. Saunders is an attractive target while playing in Toronto so hopefully this setback doesn’t mess with his target return date.

Mikie Mahtook - Recently promoted by Tampa, the former first round pick is going to get some playing time in the OF or DH. He isn’t going directly into a starter’s role, but he’s an interesting bat that can make some noise if given an opportunity. Look to add Mahtook if he finds some consistent AB’s.

Starting Pitcher

Matt Cain/Chris Heston - The Giants placed Matt Cain on the 15-day DL retroactive to 4/3 with a right tendor flexor strain. Following his season ending surgery last year in August, there’s too many flags on Cain for me to wait this out. Chris Heston and Ryan Vogelsong will benefit from his absence. Heston is the more interesting play long-term, and will get a few starts to prove himself. He has a tough next matchup against Colorado.

Ricky Nolasco/Trevor May - Nolasco has been placed on the 15 day DL with elbow inflammation. No timetable for return has been given and Trevor May has been promoted to fill Nolasco’s spot. May is an intriguing play who could provide big strikeout numbers. He had a small taste of big league action last year and will be hoping for better results this time around.

Justin Verlander - Placed on the 15-day DL on Wednesday, Verlander is making positive progress and is poised to return next weekend. Given his recent struggles and the injury, I’m staying away from Verlander for a few starts before I buy in to anything.

Trevor Bauer - Bauer had a monster game worth noting, going six hitless innings with 11 K’s against Houston. He also issued 5 BB’s and that will always be a problem with Bauer, but the upside is huge and he could finally be finding the form many believed he was going to become coming out of college.

Raisel Iglesias - A top prospect for Cincinnati made his debut on Sunday against St. Louis. The results weren’t spectacular, but were certainly encouraging: 5 IP, 3 ER, 4 K, 2 BB. The results are skewed by one bad inning, as Iglesias started off with 4 shutout innings before breaking down in the 5th. I still like Iglesias long-term.

Ian Kennedy - Kennedy was placed on the 15-day DL with a hamstring injury. You’re always happy when it’s not an arm injury that sidelines a pitcher and Kennedy should only be out a few weeks. Odrisamer Despaigne is the fill-in, and he’s a low-strikeout SP who will need to rack up W’s to hold any serious fantasy value.

Wandy Rodriguez - With everyone in Texas going down with arm injuries, my interest was piqued by the Wandy Rodriguez signing. He could quickly find himself in the rotation and providing useful innings. He’s worth a flier now if you have room.

Burch Smith - Smith will undergo Tommy John surgery and is out for the remainder of the year. Smith was a sneaky SP target for me if other injuries occurred in the Tampa Bay rotation.


Joe Nathan/Joakim Soria - Nathan is out indefinitely with a strain in his elbow. It’s not a severe strain, but there’s no timetable for his return. Joakim Soria assumes closer duties in Detroit for the near future.

Miguel Castro/Roberto Osuna - Miguel Castro has taken the closers role from Brett Cecil and has successfully converted his first two opportunities. I believe Roberto Osuna might sneak a few opportunities to close and is a great preemptive addition.

Jenrry Mejia/Jeurys Familia - Suspended for 80 games, Mejia is out as the New York Mets closer. Jeurys Familia is the immediate add and Bobby Parnell is a nice speculative play.

Chris Hatcher/Joel Peralta - Hatcher got the first Dodger save opportunity and converted it. He then blew a save and Peralta was given the opportunity the following day. I believe Peralta holds the upper hand in the race right now, but both will get more opportunities.

Jason Grilli - As a result of the Craig Kimbrel deal, Grilli inherits the closers role in Atlanta. It looks to be all his despite Jim Johnson’s save on Saturday. Grilli had successfully saved the prior 3 opportunities and was merely getting some rest.