July Observations

Special thanks to contributing writer James Boyce.

Waiver Wire

C – Yasmani Grandal, SD and Renee Rivera, SD – A bit thin at C on the waiver wire, but we’ll make it our 3rd time recommending a shared C duo, this time for the Padres. Both have clubbed 3 HRs for the month, Rivera with the higher average, Grandal with a lot more walks. Grandal also gives you some flex at 1B.

1B – Chris Johnson, ATL and Connor Gillaspie, CWS – Johnson has had as many RBIs this month (22) as he had the first three months of the season. Gillaspie has also been quietly solid. Both also give you flex at 3B.

laaaaaaaa stellaaaaaaa2B – Arismendy Alcantara, CHI and Tommy La Stella, ATL – Alcantara, another top prospect in the Cubs system, has come up and gotten off to a solid start across the board. He also offers flex in the OF (CF). La Stella comes from the Braves system, and with Uggla shipped off, thankfully for the Braves, 2B is his for the rest of the year. He has no power & speed, but decent #s elsewhere and displays a good batting eye w 22 walks to go against 23 Ks.

SS – Andrelton Simmons, ATL and Josh Rutledge, COL – I guess Atlanta must be scoring runs lately! July has been the best month for Simmons in terms of Ave, Runs, and RBIs. Not much else though. Too bad glove work doesn’t count towards fantasy. Those hit by the Tulo DL can give Rutledge (2B, SS, 3B) a try for at least 2 weeks or perhaps longer if Tulo takes longer to recover, which wouldn’t be new for him.

3B – Chris Coghlan, CHI – Coghlan has been raking in July in all categories and gives you some flex in the OF (LF, CF). Enjoy it while it lasts, as soon as I added him he stopped playing apparently though. Also keep in mind Johnson and Gillaspie from above for their dual 3B eligibility.

OF – Kevin Kiermaier, MIA – Part of the Tampa Bay resurgence, Kiermaier (CF, RF) has put up solid #s in all cats. If the Rays want to make a late season run then Kevin will have to continue what he’s been doing and then some.

OF – Sam Fuld, MIN OAK –  Scrappy, thy name is Fuld (LF, CF, RF). A little bit of this and that across the board and all 3 OF flex. He got traded to the A’s, this should only bring his value up.

OF – Drew Stubbs, COL – Stubbs (CF, RF) is quietly enjoying a nice (rebound) season in Colorado. The only concern would be if he gets traded and the #s all nose dive away from the Coors effect (.358 at Home, .229 Away). I don’t think he’ll get traded though.

SP – Jorge De La Rosa, COL – DLR has enjoyed a nice month of July has better Home than Road splits.

Brandon+McCarthy+Seattle+Mariners+v+Oakland+wJgzjqtcnVblSP – Brandon McCarthy, NYY – McCarthy has enjoyed a nice rebound in New York since the trade, sort of like a reverse Ian Kennedy. He had an ERA above 5.00 in Arizona, perhaps he’s one of the few pitchers that prefers the AL. If you look at the picture, it looks like that guy loves Brandon more than his hot wife does.

SP/RP – Matt Shoemaker, LAA; David Phelps, NYY; and Hector Santiago, LAA – Its nice to have some pitching flex when you need to put a Starter in a Reliever slot. These 3 have been on a role of late but their current spots in the rotation may change after the non-waiver trade deadline. For now, they should be alright.

RP – Brad Boxberger, TB – More wins for Tampa Bay means more Hold opportunities for double B who also has K’d 63 over 42 innings. He’s like a Dellin Betances type pitcher who pitches in a better ballpark.

RP – Darren O’Day, BAL and Kevin Jespen, LAA – A couple of other solid relievers on good teams, raking up Ks to go along with some holds.

On the Farm

Thanks for the name tag Joc, would have had no idea otherwise who you were.

Thanks for the name tag Joc, would have had no idea otherwise who you were.

Hitters – Holdovers from last month Joc Pederson, LAD (OF) could get the call if the Dodgers are active at trading and clearing out some OF glut; Cubs prospects Kris Bryant (3B), Javier Baez (SS), and Jorge Soler (OF/RF); and the Rangers Joey Gallo (3B).

Pitchers – Jimmy Nelson, MIL got the call and is holding his own so far. Andrew Heaney, MIA got sent down but he could be back up. Others on the list from last month – its looking doubtful that either Dylan Bundy, BAL or Alex Meyer, MIN will be called up now that both are on a pitch limit.

Obviously any upcoming trades could change the landscape and create or quash prospect opportunities. Francisco Lindor, CLE (SS) could be called up any day now with Asdrubal gone.


Teams Rankings (previous month)

1. Athletics (1) – playing over .600 for the month but losing ground to the …
2. Angels (4) – … who are playing over .700 for the month.
3. Tigers (3) – added some bullpen depth with Soria. And huge depth with Price.
4. Orioles (13) – the Birds are taking flight this month to the top of the AL East.
5. Dodgers (6) – recent sweep of the Giants vaults them in 1st in the NL West.
6. Brewers (2) – NL Central leaders holding off the Cards and Pirates.
7. Nationals (10) – neck and neck with the next team …
8. Braves (9) – … for the top of the NL East.
9. Giants (5) – adding Peavy didn’t stop recent slide.
10. Cardinals (12) – losing Molina hurts.
11. Pirates (16) – go Pirates go!
12. Blue Jays (7) – lost previous perch on top of AL East to Orioles.
13. Mariners (8) – only hope is 2nd Wild Card spot with all the rest.
14. Yankees (15) – still above .500 w a moderately negative run differential.
15. Kansas City (14) – Big Game James struggling. Who knew Wade Davis would be so good in the 8th.
16. Rays (29) – I guess Joe did have some more magic up his sleeve – the hottest team in the month (16-5).
17. Marlins (18) – on a good run of late.
18. Indians (17) – hanging around .500.
19. Reds (11) – flat lining of late.
20. White Sox (19) – the better Sox team this year.
21. Mets (23) – along with the 2 teams in Ohio, a negative record with a plus run differential.
22. Red Sox (20) – Everyone traded.
23. Twins (22) – haven’t been good – and yet, those below have been worse.
24. Phillies (24) – starts the run of teams out of the playoff picture (double digits behind division & WC). Somehow not involved in any trades.
25. Diamondbacks (28) – waiting for AJ Pollock to return from the DL.
26. Padres (30) – pitching has been solid.
27. Cubs (27) – added another top prospect in Russell. Scary in the future.
28. Rockies (25) – last days of Tulo in Colorado ?
29. Astros (26) – magic run of June has become struggles in July.
30. Rangers (21) – have just been dreadful. Worst record this month (5-19).

Players of the Month

Notable Hitters

brett the jet

C – Yan Gomes – Indians have been hitting the ball, just need someone besides Kluber who can pitch
1B – Lucas Duda – the Mets made the right call for a change
2B – Ben Zobrist – Mr. Versatile contributing to the Tamba Bay rebirth
3B – Carlos Santana – finally thawing out after a really slow cold start to the year.
SS – Jimmy Rollins – Mr. Phillie closing in on 2300 hits for his career.
OF – Jayson Werth – the #1 rated player for the month on Yahoo. Had a big 2nd half last year.
OF – Torii Hunter – at 39, still producing – also closing in on 2300 hits.
OF – Brett Gardner – 6 HRs this month ! where has the power come from ?
UT – Chris Coghlan – hitting about .365 for the month, about the same as his total average for the previous two months
DH – Chris Carter – on a HR binge

Notable Pitchers

MLB: New York Mets at New York Yankees

Jacob deGrom – 4 Wins, in the rookie of the year mix
Sonny Gray – 5 Wins, the RH tandem to go along w lefty Kazmir
Clayton Kershaw – under 1.00 ERA & WHIP for the month
Corey Kluber – has been stellar after a bad April
David Price – 5 Wins, making it hard to trade him, or if they do, making the haul that much better
Tyson Ross – 4 Wins and top rated pitcher in Yahoo for the month
Chris Sale – the other SP under 1.00 ERA & WHIP – and he had to be a last man vote in all star game candidate ?
Brad Boxberger – solidified the 8th inning for resurgent Rays

Trade Reactions

David Price trade – I can’t believe the Rays only got Drew Smyly, Nick Franklin, and some other guy. Okay Willy Adames, a SS prospect on the Tigers who was too young to get called up when the Tigers were desperately looking for a SS this year, how good could he be? I mean I like Drew Smyly, but he’s not enough for David Price. When I first heard the news I thought it was Austin Jackson and Smyly for Price, which I still thought was unfair, but this is just…can someone please explain this to me? The Rays were still in the playoff race and I thought it would take a king’s fortune to get their All Star pitcher away from them, looks like it only took Dave Dombrowski. Please Doug Fister continue to do well, just so he could lose for once. The Mariners were somehow gifted Austin Jackson and only had to give up Franklin, I feel like the Tigers didn’t really care at that point after they somehow convinced the Rays to give them Price.
Dave Dombrowski – “Wait that’s all they want for Price? Who cares what the Mariners get, heck through in Verlander while you’re at it.”
Maybe teams should wise up and stop trading with this guy. *sigh…why am I so angry right now? I’m not even a Rays fan…they should have gotten so much more, heck they got more from their James Shields trade. There was no rush to trade David Price!
I feel like everyone’s price, heh, should remain the same after this trade, maybe I’m a little higher on Drew Smyly and a tad lower on Austin Jackson now. JD Martinez and Rajaj Davis should get more playing time now.

Jon Lester got traded, along with every other Red Sox pitcher, for Yoenis Cespedes. I feel like this is a great trade for Boston as Lester wants to resign with the Red Sox at the end of the season. Lester is going to a better ballpark for him, and Yoenis is going to a better ballpark for him. So win-win on the fantasy side. Otherwise it looks like Billy Beane is going all in this year, although I’m not sure why they’d give up an elite bat for an elite arm when arguably they have a deeper pitching staff.

The Twins got Tommy Milone for Sam Fuld, who they claimed off waivers from the A’s at the beginning of the season. This looks like a win to the Twinkies to me, something they’ve been unfamiliar with for years, and honestly if Tommy Milone joined the rotation now he could be their best starter.

The Cardinals acquired John Lackey and gave up Allen Craig and Joe Kelly. I feel like the Cardinals won this trade, they usually win, because they’ll control Lackey’s cheap contract through next year. I feel like shows how confident they are in Wacha’s return this year, hint they aren’t, and they must not have a ton of faith in Carlos Martinez and Shelby Miller either if they did this. I’m actually pretty impressed the Cardinals were able to improve their rotation without losing any of their big prospects…seriously how can you not hate this team?! Lackey’s value obviously goes up, Allen Craig could use the change in scenery, but I feel like it’s just a lost season for him. I don’t think this trade will revive him from this nose dive of a season. Kelly went from spot starter to  much riskier spot starter. I’m not interested there. Super rookie Oscar Taveras gets the full time job now, I haven’t been impressed so far but the talent is there.

The Marlins acquired Jared Cosart because…well they think they have a shot. And the do…but they don’t. They gave up some prospects to get him, his value should only increase in the NL East, but the Ks just aren’t really there.

The Red Sox trade more of their arms and Stephen Drew, to the Yankees for some reason, and every other team in the AL now fears the Tiger and Athletic stranglehold.


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