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Transaction Analysis: Uggla Hopes for New Vision

Ryan Arbour

Ryan Arbour

Arbour writes the weekly Transactions article for RotoWire. He also enjoys creating his own projections and statistical analysis each winter for the upcoming season. In his spare time, Arbour roots for the Blue Jays from north of the border.

Here's a look at some of the top transactions in baseball over the past week, along with their fantasy implications:

MONDAY

Diamondbacks

Cody Ross, OF -
placed on the 15-day DL (right hip)
Tyler Skaggs, LHP - recalled from, and then optioned to Triple-A Reno

Impact: Ross is expected to undergo season-ending surgery after he dislocated his right hip Sunday. His numbers this year have been rather pedestrian (.278 AVG, 33 R, 8 HR, 38 RBI in 94 games), but he had been starting to show some improvement at the time of the injury. The D-Backs have no shortage of outfielders on their roster to pick up the slack, with Adam Eaton, Gerardo Parra, A.J. Pollock, Jason Kubel and Martin Prado vying for playing time. Skaggs did not make an appearance during his brief stint with the team.

Reds

Ryan Ludwick -
activated from the 60-day DL
Derrick Robinson, OF - optioned to Triple-A Louisville

Impact: Ludwick had been out since Opening Day, when he tore the cartilage in his right shoulder during a slide. He had a good year at the plate last season, hitting .275 with 26 home runs and 80 RBI in 125 games. The team likely will give him the occasional day off, but he should still be worth a look in most leagues. Robinson hit .254 (44-for-173) with no home runs and seven RBI in 84 games with St. Louis.

Tigers

Omar Infante, 2B -
activated from the 15-day DL
Hernan Perez, IF - optioned to Triple-A Toledo

Impact: Detroit's second baseman returned to action Monday after missing more than a month with a sprained left ankle. Infante had been swinging a hot bat before the injury, as he returns to a .309 average over 76 games. He can be an asset to fantasy teams in need of help in batting average, though he's not likely to be of much use in any of the other standard categories. Perez had been sharing the second-base duties with Ramon Santiago, and hit .214 (12-for-56) in 21 games with the Tigers. Santiago returns to a backup role.

TUESDAY

Angels

Jason Vargas, LHP -
activated from the 15-day DL
Tommy Hanson, RHP - optioned to Triple-A Salt Lake

Impact: Vargas has finally returned after missing nearly two months due to a blood clot in his left armpit that required surgery to remove. He has been a consistent performer his last few seasons and was 6-4 with a 3.65 ERA in 14 starts before he landed on the shelf in mid-June. His strikeout rates have never been overly impressive (thus limiting his fantasy value), but he can still be of some use in most leagues. Hanson has been a disappointment in his first season with the Angels, going 4-3 with a 5.59 ERA over 13 starts.

Braves

Dan Uggla, 2B -
placed on the 15-day DL (eyes)
Tyler Pastornicky, IF - recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett

Impact: Uggla has dealt with vision problems throughout the season, and it has shown in his numbers so far. The veteran second sacker is hitting just .186, which is the lowest mark among all qualified hitters in the major leagues. He has also struck out a whopping 146 times, prompting him to finally decide to undergo corrective eye surgery. While Uggla hopes to be ready in just a couple weeks, the team has a comfortable enough lead in the NL East that it may take a cautious approach with him and not rush him back. Pastornicky likely will receive most of the playing time at second base while Uggla is out, though his career .618 OPS makes him a very risky fantasy pick. Paul Janish could also figure into the mix at second base.

Brewers

Aramis Ramirez, 3B -
activated from the 15-day DL
Caleb Gindl, OF - optioned to Triple-A Nashville

Impact: The Brewers third baseman had been limited to just 55 games this season due to a left knee injury that forced him to the DL twice. Ramirez's offensive numbers have been down this year, as he was hitting .271 with only five home runs and 26 RBI before his latest stint on the DL. Jeff Bianchi and Yuniesky Betancourt had been sharing the duties at the hot corner while Ramirez was on the shelf, and both should now see a reduction in playing time. Gindl hit .282 with a home run and six RBI in 32 games with the Brew Crew.

WEDNESDAY

Blue Jays

Colby Rasmus, OF -
placed on the 15-day DL (left oblique)
Kevin Pillar, OF - contract purchased from Triple-A Buffalo

Impact: The Blue Jays center fielder will miss at least a couple weeks due to a strained left oblique muscle. After a couple disappointing seasons in 2011 and 2012, Rasmus was having a nice bounce-back campaign this year before the injury. His .273 average is just shy of his career-high .276 set in 2010 with St. Louis, and he was on pace to top his career highs in homers and RBI. Pillar could see a fair amount of playing time in the outfield while Rasmus works his way back, and he has shown an ability to hit for average and steal bases in the minors. He could be worth a look in AL-only leagues.

THURSDAY

Cardinals

Yadier Molina, C -
activated from the 15-day DL
Tony Cruz, C - placed on the 15-day DL (left forearm)

Impact: Molina missed the minimum 15 days with a sprained right knee. The All-Star catcher returns to a .330 average (second in the National League), eight home runs and 54 RBI in 99 games and can safely be activated in all league formats. Cruz had been serving as the Cards' primary backstop in Molina's absence, and is now suffering from a stress fracture in his left forearm. Rob Johnson will serve as the No. 2 catcher in St. Louis while Cruz is out of commission.

Rays

Alex Cobb, RHP -
activated from the 60-day DL
Ryan Roberts, IF - designated for assignment

Impact: Cobb was hit in the head by a line drive June 15 and ended up missing two months as a result. He pitched well before the injury, as he returns to a 6-2 record, 3.01 ERA and 8.18 K/9 over 13 starts. He should be safe to activate in most league formats, though it may take him a few starts to get back into the groove. Roberts hit .247 with five home runs and 17 RBI over several stints with the big league club.