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FAAB Factor - AL: Ellsbury's Injury Opens the Door

Andrew Martinez

Andrew Martinez

Andrew Martinez writes about baseball and football, in addition to hosting the award winning RotoWire Fantasy Sports Today on Sirius XM radio. He is a native Texan and roots for the Astros, Texans, Rockets, and Rice Owls.


Starting Pitchers:

David Huff, Yankees - Huff made his first start of the season with the Yankees this week and was crushed by the Red Sox. The Red Sox have been hitting everyone it seems lately, but this was still not a good outing by Huff, as he gave up eight hits over just 3.1 innings with only two strikeouts. On the season he has a 6.45 ERA (4.13 xFIP) with 18 strikeouts and eight walks over 22.1 innings. This season between Triple-A Columbus and Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre he had a 3.90 ERA with 92 strikeouts and 22 walks over 92.1 innings. This week he gets the Orioles on the road. He should not be trusted. Mixed: No; AL: $3.

Erik Johnson, White Sox - Johnson made his MLB debut this week against the Yankees and gave up three runs over six innings. He allowed three walks and seven hits with only one strikeout. He showed much better command at Triple-A Charlotte, where he had a 1.57 ERA, 57 strikeouts and 19 walks over 57.1 innings. The White Sox have a pretty good track history with their starting pitchers and Johnson is considered a prospect, so he's worth bidding on in keeper leagues. This week he faces the Tigers, so owners may want to stay away initially. Mixed: $1; AL: $5.

James Paxton, Mariners - Paxton made his MLB debut this week against the Rays and performed very well with six innings of one-run ball. He allowed only four hits with three strikeouts and one walk. The Rays offense has been stagnant of late, so excitement likely needs to be tempered a bit, but this was still an admirable debut from the prospect. This season at Triple-A Tacoma he had a 4.45 ERA with 131 strikeouts and 58 walks over 145.2 innings. He dealt with a knee injury this season, which limited his innings somewhat. For the remainder of the season he's worth taking a chance on in most leagues. This week he faces the Cardinals, which will be a much tougher test than that of the Rays. Mixed: $4; AL: $20.

Brad Peacock, Astros - Peacock had an eye opening start this week against the A's in which he struck out nine batters with just one walk and five hits allowed over seven innings. The nine strikeouts are what catch most eyes here as he really had his curveball fooling batters. He had a start similar to this earlier this season with 10 strikeouts against the Twins, so this isn't a completely out of nowhere. He showed much better control in the minors this season than in the majors and if he can somehow figure out how to carry that over, he could be a sleeper going into next season. This week he faces the Mariners on the road. Mixed: $2; AL: $9.

Relief Pitchers:

David Robertson, Yankees - Though he's still dealing with an inflamed shoulder, Robertson is someone to consider rostering in keeper leagues as he appears to be the successor to Mo Rivera as the Yankees closer next season. On the season he has a 1.85 ERA (2.62 xFIP) with 70 strikeouts and 17 walks over 58.1 innings. For the remainder of this season, he's a more than capable middle reliever. Mixed: $4; AL: $15.

Josh Fields, Astros - Fields earned another save this week and looks to be in the mix with Chia-Jen Lo to be the Astros closer, which is one of the least productive closer situations in all of organized baseball. On the season Fields has a 5.81 ERA (4.03 xFIP) with 32 strikeouts and 14 walks over 31 innings. If he could limit the walks, he'd be someone worth watching, but as such, it's tough to see him having much value, when he's not getting the occasional save. Mixed: $8; AL: $20.

Catchers:

Bryan Holaday, Tigers - Holladay was brought back this week from Triple-A Toledo. He'll serve as the team's third catcher, behind Alex Avila and Brayan Pena. At Toledo he hit .260/.312/.372 with four homers over 320 PA. Unless an injury occurs, it's doubtful that he'll have value the rest of the way. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Derek Norris, A's - Norris made his way off the DL this week, after dealing with a toe injury. As a RHB, he'll have to battle Kurt Suzuki for playing time, which is not ideal, while Stephen Vogt will play against RHPs. On the season, Norris has hit .230/.335/.387 with eight homers and three steals over 270 PA. It's doubtful he has much value in any leagues. Mixed: $0; AL: $2.

Mike Zunino, Mariners - Zunino was activated off the DL this week, after dealing with a broken hamate bone in his left hand. He'll go back to starting for the M's and should carry decent value in AL only formats. He has hit .229/.303/.314 with two homers over 132 PA in the majors this season. The batting average is likely to be a liability, but he has enough power to make a difference at his position. He's only 22-years old, so there's a learning curve here. If you're in a keeper league, he's definitely someone worth picking up. Mixed: $10; AL: $30.

Corner Infielders:

Chris Colabello, Twins - Colabello has starter to warm up, now that he's the Twins starting first baseman again. This week he had a stretch where he went 8-for-26 with a double and three homers. Earlier this season, when he got originally called-up, he was cold at the plate, but then warmed up, before being sent back down. Now, just like last time, he has warmed up again, after starting out cold. This season at Triple-A Rochester he .352/.427/.639 with 24 homers and two stolen bases over 391 PA. He's worth a look in the mixed leagues he still available in for his power alone. Mixed: $10; AL: Owned.

Brandon Laird, Astros - Laird was brought back from Triple-A Oklahoma City this week, after the team was eliminated from the minor league playoffs. At OKC this season he hit .277/.324/.449 with 16 homers over 513 PA. It's unlikely he gets much playing time this month, but he could hit a few homers, given his power. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Marcus Semien, White Sox - Semien came up this week from Triple-A Charlotte and should see regular at-bats for the White Sox this month. Between Double-A Birmingham and Triple-A Charlotte he hit .284/.401/.479 with 19 homers and 24 stolen bases over 625 PA. He established himself as something of a prospect this season at 22-years old and is worth a roster spot for those in keeper leagues. In scratch draft leagues, it's tougher to see him making an impact, despite the fact that he's starting most days at third base for the Pale Hose. Mixed: $3; AL: $10.

Middle Infielders:

Thomas Field, Angels - Field was brought back this week from Triple-A Salt Lake to reassume his role as depth in the Halos infield. He hit .303/.391/.484 with 11 homers with six stolen bases over 372 PA. Should he be pressed into duty, he could offer some mild value to owners, but he doesn't have enough power or speed. He's 26-years old, but isn't a keeper league prospect. Mixed: No; AL: $2.

Leury Garcia, White Sox - White Sox manager Robin Ventura has said that Garcia is set to see a "significant amount" of playing time in the remainder of the season. Garcia is a great defensive player, but that's of little consequence to fantasy owners. This season between Triple-A Round Rock with the Rangers and Triple-A Charlotte with the White Sox he hit .265/.314/.395 with four homers with 15 stolen bases over 240 PA. If anything, he'll be of use for his speed in AL only formats. Mixed: $3; AL: $10.

Jonathan Schoop, Orioles - Schoop came up this week from Triple-A Norfolk and will be used as depth in the infield. He's only 21 years old and is considered a prospect, so those in keeper leagues will want to take notice. At Norfolk he hit .256/.301/.396 with nine homers over 289 PA. He's not likely to get much playing time, so those in redraft leagues can ignore him. Mixed: No; AL: $2.

Carlos Triunfel, Mariners - Triunfel was brought back this week from Triple-A Tacoma to serve as infield depth. At Tacoma he hit .282/.328/.394 with five homers and six stolen bases over 413 PA. He's only 23 years old, but is no longer considered a prospect. If he's able to get on the field, he'll offer little value to owners because of his lack of power or speed. Mixed: No; AL: $2.

Outfielders:

Jackie Bradley, Red Sox - Bradley is set to see a significant amount of playing time the remainder of the season with Jacoby Ellsbury nursing a foot injury. This season at Triple-A Pawtucket he hit .275/.374/.469 with 10 homers and seven stolen bases over 374 PA. Earlier this season when he got an extended look he didn't hit at all and the team was forced to send him back down. This time around he should fair better, but there are still issues with his ability to attack high-end velocity. In keeper leagues he's worth considering, as he could be the team's starting center fielder next season, if the team decides to move on from Ellsbury. Mixed: $5; AL: $15.

Lorenzo Cain, Royals - Cain came off the DL this week, after dealing with an oblique injury. It's going to be tough for him to get at-bats between Jarrod Dyson and David Lough. On the season he has hit .259/.322/.360 with four homers and 12 stolen bases over 388 PA. He's of use for his speed, should he find playing time, outside of the occasional day that he plays and late game situations. Considering how much the Royals are running this season, this could be a bigger factor than compared to most teams. Mixed: $2; AL: $8.

Jimmy Paredes, Astros - Paredes was brought back this week from Triple-A Oklahoma, after the team was eliminated from the minor league playoffs. He hit .287/.345/.462 with eight homers and 16 stolen bases over 358 PA. He could see time in right field, considering Trevor Crowe and L.J. Hoes are there and neither inspires much confidence in their ability to produce consistently. Paredes has speed, but it'll likely be tough for him to get on base considering the poor bat to ball skills he has shown thus far. Mixed: $1; AL: $4.

Ryan Raburn, Indians - Though he is still dealing with an Achilles issue, Raburn came off the DL this week. He has played in two games and has two doubles, so it's not affecting his ability to hit the ball. Still, there is some worry that playing him every day might exacerbate the issue. On the season he's hit .275/.370/.580 with 15 homers over 230 PA. If he's still out there in mixed leagues, he should be picked up for his power alone. Mixed: $8; AL: $20.

Note: If you have anyone else you'd like me to discuss, just drop a line in the comments section.

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