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Roto Roundup: Devon Travis, Mark Melancon, Matt Carpenter and Others

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Alex offers his thoughts on some of the top fantasy performers and news from Wednesday, including Devon Travis, Mark Melancon and Matt Carpenter.

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Devon Travis: Still hitting

Toronto's Devon Travis avoided serious injury last week after being hit by a pitch in the ribs. He returned to the lineup three days later, and the Blue Jays second baseman continued his hot hitting. Through 14 games, the 24-year-old is hitting .388/.434/.714 with four home runs, 10 runs, 14 RBI and one steal. He added three hits last night in a 4-2 win against Baltimore, homering and stealing batting second after Jose Reyes. Believe it or not, the 5-foot-9, 195-pounder leads Toronto in RBIs.

Travis' previous high in home runs is 16 in 2013, but that came in two combined seasons of low-A ball. He hit 10 home runs in 100 games in Double-A a year ago, adding 16 steals. I'd have a hard time projecting the former 13-round pick of the Detroit Tigers to hit more than 12 home runs the rest of the way, but his great contact skills should make him a regular in Toronto's lineup going forward.

Batting before the likes of Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion and Josh Donaldson, Travis could score upwards of 70 runs. Throw in 15-20 steals, he could continue to produce top-10 numbers at the position. But if you're like me, you'll be looking to cash in the hot start of Travis, a rookie without any major-league experience before this year.

Roto Roundup

Tony Watson picked up a two-inning save against the Cubs Wednesday night, allowing an inherited runner to score in the eighth and giving up an Anthony Rizzo single in the ninth before striking out Kris Bryant to end the game. Before Wednesday night's NL Central contest, manager Clint Hurdle told reporters that Melancon would remain the team's closer. Melancon, 30, was unavailable on this night, but one can easily see Hurdle going to the lefty Watson in a more permanent fixture if the former continues to struggle. Melancon has already blown one save, and the right-hander's velocity is down significantly to start the season (92.8 mph in 2014; 88 in 2015). Those looking for potential saves need to stash Watson now.

In the same game, Pirates outfielder Starling Marte left after being plunked in the right hand, but X-rays came back negative. Cubs outfielder Dexter Fowler also left the game with a right groin strain, but was feeling better after the game, according to ESPN Chicago's Jesse Rogers. Both outfielders could miss a game or two, but, for now, it appears both avoided serious injury. Marte has turned it around recently and has five home runs and 12 RBIs through 14 games.

Many, including myself, thought Matt Carpenter's fantasy value would nosedive after losing second-base eligibility. On Wednesday, the 29-year-old third baseman continued his hot start to the season, launching his third home run to lead the Cardinals to a 7-5 win over the Nationals. Through 13 games, Carpenter is hitting .377/.441/.679 batting out of the leadoff spot with 11 runs and 10 RBIs. He's hitting fewer flies, but enjoying a 14.3 percent home run-to-fly ball rate while striking out in 11.1 percent of plate appearances. Both numbers would be career bests, but should we expect the power show to continue? Carpenter's career high is 11 home runs, when he scored 126 runs and drove in 78 in 2013. His hot start makes another 10-home run campaign more likely, but nothing in the early numbers shows me anything is different here. Carpenter will need his batting average to carry him to put up top-five numbers at third.

The National League's highest-scoring offense, the San Diego Padres, will be going with a platoon at second base, according to manager Bud Black. Both Jedd Gyorko and Yangervis Solarte. Black like's Solarte's versatility in the infield, so he could start to really cut into Gyorko's time if the latter doesn't start hitting. Gyorko is hitting just .163/.250/.209 without a home run, so it makes sense. Those who were expecting a bounce back from Gyorko should start looking elsewhere. Solarte is hitting .343 with two home runs, but he also started last year hot before cooling off.

Drew Smyly (shoulder) will make his first start of the year Friday against Toronto after three rehab games. Smyly, who owns a career 3.26 ERA and 1.17 WHIP 328 1/3 innings, will likely be on a pitch count after throwing just 3 2/3 in his third and final rehab start. While you might want to hold back on using Smyly in his first start back, there are probably fewer talented starting pitchers left on the waiver wire. He's available in nearly 50 percent of ESPN leagues, and the 25-year-old lefty is worth stashing in nearly every format.

David Price wants a mulligan.

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