Fantasy Baseball Grab Bag

by Joe Bond
Carlos Gonzalez

Photo: Mark Runyon | BaseballSchedule.org

Injuries to some big names have seemed to rule the major league baseball headlines this year, along with cause some major headaches for fantasy owners. It is why we make sure you understand the risk of drafting a player like Carlos  Gonzalez, who just went on the DL this week finally giving his balky finger a rest, and also urge that you cover yourself by having depth at that position. Some more guys who fall into that category, and have already gotten bit by the injury bug, are Bryce Harper, Ryan Braun, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jose Reyes and Josh Hamilton. I think the one guy we are waiting for at this point to land on that list, is Troy Tulowitzki. I'm not rooting for it to happen, but lets be real here, it is very likely.

We did get quite a bit of good news with injuries lately though. Josh Hamilton, Jay Bruce, Aramis Ramirez, and Carlos Beltran all returned from injuries. It also appears that Joey Votto is close to returning, although manager John Fey said that he may be at less than 100%  the rest of the season. Regardless he'll be a nice asset to have back for fantasy owners.

The other big news is the call ups of Oscar Tavares and Jon Singleton. Both impressed in their first games, by hitting a home run. I expect them to be worth owning in all leagues going forward, but also expect some rookie struggles. I know everybody wants to have these guys be the next Mike Trout or even Yasiel Puig, but that just doesn't happen often folks. That is why we talk about Trout and Puig all the time. It appears the next to be called up is Gregory Polanco for the Pirates. If he isn't already taken in your league and have the room to stash him, I would.

In The Batter's Box
Oswaldo Arcia (OF - MIN) Owned in 13% ESPN, 11% Yahoo - I'll start by saying Arcia sprained his ankle Thursday night and is probably going to be out at least Friday if not a couple games after that. Even knowing that, this is a guy you want to get on your team. He was dealing with a wrist injury to start the season and when he returned was optioned to the minors. At that point most people wrote him off, and for good reason. However, on May 27th he was called up and since has mashed the ball, hitting for .356 with 4 home runs and 12 RBI. Grab him if you need some help in the outfield. 

Stephen DrewStephen Drew (SS - BOS) 3% ESPN, 9% Yahoo - Stephen Drew is an immediate add in most leagues, especially if you have a 2B/SS spot to fill. In just 127 games last season he hit 13 home runs, 67 RBI and scored 57 times. He will be taking over the starting shortstop spot for Boston while Xander Bogaerts will shift to third. The only negative for him is he might sit against lefties, hitting a careeer. 235 against them, but its still worth the pick up.

Corey Dickerson (OF - COL) 17% ESPN, 22% Yahoo - For those that lost Carlos Gonzalez and can't get Arcia, Dickerson is the next logical move to make. He will get the majority of the starts in CarGo's spot. In the few chances he has gotten this year, he has not disappointed. With the 108 at-bats he is hitting .340 with 7 home runs, 17 RBI and 18 runs. He is an attractive option playing for Colorado and that lineup, especially when they are at home.

From The Mound
Henderson Alvarez (SP - MIA) 11% ESPN, 21% Yahoo - He did it again. Another complete game shutout. That gives him three on the season, leading the majors in that category. He is carrying a 2.62 ERA and a respectable 1.28 WHIP into a great match up against the Cubs on Sunday. If you don't think he is worth grabbing long term, and honestly I'm not even sure yet, getting him for Sunday is a good idea.

John Danks (SP - CWS) 1% ESPN, 3% Yahoo - I can't believe I'm actually recommending John Denks, but you can't argue with what he has done lately. In this last three starts he has given up a total of three earned runs, and four walks, going 7+ innings in each one. His ERA still sits at an ugly 4.34, but that is much improved from the 5.64 it was back on May 18th after he gave up seven to the Astros.

Joba Chamberlain (RP - DET) 3% ESPN, 15% Yahoo - This is a stash pick up, for those of you in deeper leagues that need saves. It's no secret that Joe Nathan is struggling in Detroit, having lost the game or blown the save in two of his last three outings. They haven't been even close to pretty either, giving up eight earned runs total, including two in the game he did get the save in. Chamberlain on the other hand hasn't given up a run in 10 straight appearances, going back to May 14th. If there is going to be a change, and I think there should be, at least temporarily, Joba will get the call.

You can follow me on Twitter @FantasySixPack for more fantasy news and advice. Also be sure to like us on Facebook, and Google+ for all updates from Fantasy Six Pack.

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