AL FAAB Factor: Spend the Big Bux

AL FAAB Factor: Spend the Big Bux

This article is part of our AL FAAB Factor series.

This is our weekly look at American League free agents. We have two goals for this article:

1. Identify likely free agents and discuss their strengths and weaknesses.
2. Estimate how much of your free-agent budget you should bid on them.

One size does not fit all, and we could never hope to encompass all league structures, so bids are based on:

• 12-team league (either AL or Mixed, we'll specify)
• 5x5 categories
• $100 FAAB budget

Starting Pitcher

Jose Berrios, Twins – Friday Berrios had 10 strikeouts with no walks, as he pitched seven innings and allowed one earned run on five hits for Triple-A Rochester. He's been a dominant force since the start of July with a 61:12 K:BB and 3.12 ERA over that span, yet the Twins don't seem to be in any hurry to promote him despite the fact they're in a race for a postseason berth. He's not on the 40-man roster, so there's no sense in waiting until September, as either way someone will need to leave to make room. In keeper leagues, you want him on your squad. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Buck Farmer, Tigers – Farmer is currently pitching out of the bullpen, but the Tigers will convert him back into a starter to help fill the void in their rotation. In his three starts this season, he gave up 15 earned runs over 14.2 innings for a 9.20 ERA (6.46 FIP) with nine strikeouts and four walks. He

This is our weekly look at American League free agents. We have two goals for this article:

1. Identify likely free agents and discuss their strengths and weaknesses.
2. Estimate how much of your free-agent budget you should bid on them.

One size does not fit all, and we could never hope to encompass all league structures, so bids are based on:

• 12-team league (either AL or Mixed, we'll specify)
• 5x5 categories
• $100 FAAB budget

Starting Pitcher

Jose Berrios, Twins – Friday Berrios had 10 strikeouts with no walks, as he pitched seven innings and allowed one earned run on five hits for Triple-A Rochester. He's been a dominant force since the start of July with a 61:12 K:BB and 3.12 ERA over that span, yet the Twins don't seem to be in any hurry to promote him despite the fact they're in a race for a postseason berth. He's not on the 40-man roster, so there's no sense in waiting until September, as either way someone will need to leave to make room. In keeper leagues, you want him on your squad. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Buck Farmer, Tigers – Farmer is currently pitching out of the bullpen, but the Tigers will convert him back into a starter to help fill the void in their rotation. In his three starts this season, he gave up 15 earned runs over 14.2 innings for a 9.20 ERA (6.46 FIP) with nine strikeouts and four walks. He was much better with Triple-A Toledo, where he had a 4.15 ERA (3.32 FIP) with 76 strikeouts and 25 walks over 86.2 innings, but that was there and this is now. Scheduled for two starts this week against the Reds and Blue Jays on the road, he should be avoided. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Derek Holland, Rangers – Holland made his season debut last week against the Mariners and pitched 6.1 innings with two earned runs, six strikeouts and no walks. It's impressive stuff for such a long layoff, as he missed basically the entire season with a shoulder strain. He's been infected with a malady of injuries the last two seasons and only made seven starts over that time as a result. In 2013 he had a 3.42 ERA (3.59 FIP) with 189 strikeouts and 64 walks over 213 innings and looked well on his way to becoming a productive member of the Rangers rotation. Finishing this season out strong would go a long way towards helping to rebuild that momentum going into next season. This week he gets the Blue Jays and Orioles at home, two tough challenges, but ones that - should he succeed - point to solid mixed-league value the rest of the way. Mixed: $6; AL: $18.

Lance McCullers, Astros – McCullers was recalled this weekend to start Sunday against the Dodgers, though it's unclear if he'll be making a spot start or rejoining the rotation. He had been at Double-A Corpus Christi, as the team wanted him to preserve his arm bit to keep him fresh as the chase for the playoffs ramps up. In the majors he has been impressive with a 3.17 ERA (3.07 FIP), 79 strikeouts, and 28 walks over 76.2 innings. This week he could get the Twins on the road. Mixed: $3; AL: $10.

Kris Medlen, Royals – Medlen is set to make his first start in the majors since 2013 this week, when he faces the O's at home. He's been pitching out of the bullpen since his return from his second Tommy John surgery and the results have been encouraging with a 2.51 ERA (3.20 FIP), 14 strikeouts and five walks over 14.1 innings. He'll be on a short leash because he's yet to build up his pitch count, but he has a second start this week against the Rays on the road, so there's value here for weekly lineups. In 2013 he had a 3.11 ERA (3.63 FIP) and in 2012 he had a 1.57 ERA (2.53 FIP), but that was in the NL and before he tore his UCL for a second time, so bid with caution. Mixed: $3; AL: $10.

Vidal Nuno, Mariners – Nuno had his first quality start Saturday in four attempts since joining the M's rotation earlier this month. He allowed just one earned run over 6.2 innings with four strikeouts and one walk and was in line for the win before the bullpen blew it. As a starter he has a 4.58 ERA (6.43 FIP) with 14 strikeouts and four walks over 19.2 innings and as uneven as that is, he's been helpful as the team wobbles to the finish line. Last season as a starter he had a 4.29 ERA (4.39 FIP) with 124 strikeouts and 43 walks with the Yankees and Diamondbacks. This week he gets the White Sox on the road. Mixed: No; AL: $2.

James Paxton, Mariners – Currently on the DL with a finger injury, Paxton is on a rehab assignment at Triple-A Tacoma with hopes of rejoining the team's rotation soon after being out since late May. Given that Mike Montgomery produced a 7.22 ERA (5.79 FIP) in this second half, Paxton can't return soon enough, though he'll need at least a few starts to build his stamina back up. He had a 3.70 ERA (4.25 FIP) with 45 strikeouts and 22 walks over 58.1 innings before the injury. Keep tabs on him, though he might only make a handful of starts the rest of the way. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Michael Pineda, Yankees – Pineda is expected to rejoin the Yankees rotation this week after missing a month with a forearm injury. The team sounds like it will be going to a modified six-man rotation, which would limit his value, but at least he's back, as initially his injury sounded potentially much worse. For that reason, perhaps an owner in your AL format dropped him, so it's time to pounce and get him on your squad. On the season he has a 3.97 ERA (3.08 FIP) with 117 strikeouts and just 15 walks over 118 innings. This week he gets the Astros at home. Mixed: $5; AL: $15.

Drew Smyly, Rays – Smyly came off the 60-day DL and made two starts this past week as he opted for rest and rehab over surgery to repair a torn labrum. His first start lasted only four innings and he gave up five earned runs, but he was much better in his second start (no earned runs in 5.2 innings), which is promising. Considering he has a 3.53 ERA (3.91 FIP) over 48 career starts, he needs to be owned in all formats as he continues to work his way back into a rhythm on the mound. This week he gets the Twins at home. Mixed: $6; AL: $18.

Josh Tomlin, Indians – Through two turns in the Indians rotation, Tomlin has a 2.03 ERA (4.93 FIP) with 11 strikeouts and two walks over 13.1 innings. It was welcomed, as Tomlin had not pitched in the majors this year. Last season as a starter, he had a 4.53 ERA (4.00 FIP) with 80 strikeouts and 10 walks over 93.1 innings, but was far too homer prone. These last two starts are likely just a tease, but until he cools, he's worth trotting out there in AL formats. This week he gets the Brewers at home. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Randy Wolf, Tigers – Wolf was traded from the Blue Jays last week to join a Tigers rotation that has become woefully thin due to injuries. He made his team debut Saturday and pitched seven innings with three earned runs, five strikeouts and no walks against the Rangers. He had Tommy John surgery and missed the 2013 season before latching on with the Mariners and from there ping-ponging through several organizations before finally landing with the Blue Jays, where he spent the majority of this season at Triple-A Buffalo racking up a 2.58 ERA (3.00 FIP) with 106 strikeouts and 40 walks over 139.2 innings. Based on those numbers, he could have mixed-league value, but Saturday's start was just his fifth in the majors over the last two years. He should be relevant in AL formats the rest of the way, so long as he keeps the ball in the yard. This week he gets the Angels at home. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Relief Pitcher

Sean Doolittle, A's – Doolittle was activated from the 60-day DL on Saturday after missing nearly the entire season due to shoulder woes. He blazed through Triple-A in his rehab assignment and looks ready to return to high-leverage situations, as reports have his velocity ticking back up. It's likely a matter of time before he makes the closer role his again, but how many games he'll actually get to close out looks bleak as the A's are in last place and have two saves as a team since July 11. Bid on him depending upon your need for saves and hope the team starts winning more games down the stretch. Mixed: $3; AL: $10.

Kevin Jepsen, Twins – Jepsen recorded saves on back-to-back nights Friday and Saturday filling in for Glen Perkins, who is dealing with a neck issue. Perkins received an injection Wednesday and should be back on the mound by Tuesday, so Jepsen has only fleeting value in terms of saves. On the season, he has been solid with a 2.68 ERA (4.00 FIP), 43 strikeouts, and 24 walks over 50.1 innings between the Rays and Twins. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Tom Wilhelmsen, Mariners – M's closer Carson Smith blew his fourth save of the season Saturday night, giving up two earned runs on two hits and a walk to the White Sox in the ninth inning. Not to be outdone, Danny Farquhar came on in the tenth in a tied game and put three men on to load the bases and then walked in a run before being pulled without having gotten an out. Back to Smith, he had a 1.73 ERA (1.99 FIP) in the first half of the season but hasn't been the same since, with a 5.79 ERA (3.04 FIP) in the second half, and those numbers are before Saturday night. The team would likely trot someone else out there in save situations, but they don't really have anyone else, as they wisely sent Fernando Rodney packing Saturday and traded Mark Lowe to the Blue Jays before the deadline last month. The only other option right now is Wilhelmsen, as he has closer experience from 2013 with the club and has a 3.44 ERA (4.70 FIP) in the second half, though his K:BB of 15:11 screams of instability. If you're speculating for saves, he's worth adding, but this bullpen as a whole is one to be avoided right now. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Catcher

Steve Clevenger, Orioles – Clevenger has been the O's starting DH for five of the last six games heading into Saturday as the team transitions away from an icy Jimmy Paredes, who is 4-for-34 this month. Clevenger hasn't disappointed, with nine hits in those five games, including a double and home run. Almost a week ago, he was at Triple-A Norfolk, where he hit .305/.375/.393 with four home runs over 301 plate appearances. While he's the hot hand now and had two more hits Saturday, he's a shaky bet to keep this up, but he's a catcher getting everyday at-bats, so he's worth a bid in deeper formats. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Josmil Pinto, Twins – Pinto is a candidate to be called up next month, assuming he can show he's healthy as he continues to work his way back from a concussion that cost him two months. He's currently at Triple-A Rochester, where he's hitting .232/.310/.379 with six home runs over 197 plate appearances. He's got decent pop and has shown a good eye at the plate in the upper minors and in the majors the last two seasons. Considering the Twins have gotten a total of six home runs and a .224 batting average from their catchers this season, it wouldn't be a shock to see Pinto get semi-regular at-bats the last month of the season. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

First Base

Greg Bird, Yankees – Bird continues to fill in at first base, as Mark Teixeira remains day-to-day with a leg injury. He's gone 7-for-25, including a two-homer game last week against the Twins, since coming up from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, where he hit .301/.353/.500 with six home runs over 150 plate appearances. Teixeira isn't expected to need a trip to the DL, so expect Bird to see fewer at-bats soon, but September is right around the corner, so he should remain with the team the rest of the way. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Mark Canha, A's – With the news that Ike Davis (hip) is done for the season, Canha has value once again, as he takes on the role of everyday first baseman for the A's. On the season he's hitting .253 with nine home runs and five stolen bases over 312 plate appearances. Last week he had two doubles and a home run before adding another double and home run Saturday hitting cleanup, so he's taking advantage of this opportunity. Mixed: $2; AL: $6.

Matt Hague, Blue Jays – Hague was brought up from Triple-A Buffalo last week after hitting .348/.427/.482 with 10 home runs and five stolen bases over 531 plate appearances. Though he can play first and third base, he was sent back down before he got a chance to hit. Though he could return in September, he's unlikely to have much fantasy value. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Travis Shaw, Red Sox – Shaw had three doubles and two home runs last week as he continues to have a loud August. Since he came back up from the minors on August 1, he's hitting .421 with four doubles and six home runs over 63 plate appearances as the everyday first baseman in Boston. He hit 22 home runs last season between Double-A Portland and Triple-A Pawtucket, but the power he's showing right now is impressive for the 25-year-old. He'll cool eventually, but for now he needs to be owned in more leagues. Mixed: $3; AL: $9.

Jonathan Singleton, Astros – He'll come back up when rosters expand next month, but how much playing time and if he'll even hit is still yet to be determined. The 23-year-old has had a decent season at Triple-A Fresno with a .267/.374/.518 batting line and 19 home runs over 390 plate appearances, but he struggled when called up earlier this season, hitting just .205 with one home run over a sporadic 53 PA. The opportunity for playing time is there, as the Astros are mixing and matching Luis Valbuena, Marwin Gonzalez, and Chris Carter at the position. Skills wise, the power will translate, he just needs to refine his approach. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Kennys Vargas, Twins – Optioned to Double-A Chattanooga in early July, Vargas hit .287 with seven home runs over 151 plate appearances before he was promoted to Triple-A Rochester, where he's hitting .281 with no home runs over 44 PA. A first baseman and DH earlier this season, there's no immediate spot for him in the lineup, but he's still likely to be promoted when rosters expand next month. He can hit for power and has shown a better walk rate this time around in the minors, which should serve him well with the Twins. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Second Base

Grant Green, Angels – Recalled from Triple-A Salt Lake on Saturday, Green is filling in for an ill Johnny Giavotella for the time being, but should hang around through the end of the season. Jack-of-all-gloves, master-of-none, Green hit .306 with five home runs and two stolen bases over 414 plate appearances this season at Salt Lake. He's a poor-man's Brock Holt, which is to say no matter what condiment you add, he's bland offensively. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Brock Holt, Red Sox – Before missing the last couple of games with left oblique tightness, Holt had been on a mini hot streak, batting .346 with four doubles and three triples over the last two weeks. He can play almost anywhere defensively, but had been the regular second baseman for the Red Sox when Dustin Pedroia (hamstring) got injured. If the oblique injury proves to be minor, he'll go back to having value in deeper formats as a fill-in-the-gaps, roster-glue guy. On the season, he's hitting .287/.359/.398 with two home runs and six stolen bases over 396 plate appearances. Mixed: $3; AL: Owned.

Micah Johnson, White Sox – Currently dealing with a hamstring injury, Johnson should be ready to come up next month when rosters expand. He's hitting .328 with seven home runs and 26 stolen bases over 299 plate appearances at Triple-A Charlotte, showing he's ready for a new challenge. Carlos Sanchez is the current starter, and while known almost exclusively for his glove, he has started to really turn things around offensively since the break, hitting .319 with three home runs. Still, Johnson should have some value in AL formats, as he has speed that few others on the active roster have. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Rob Refsnyder, Yankees – Since being sent back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre a little over a month ago, Refsnyder is hitting .231 with two home runs over 125 plate appearances, dry numbers considering the wet first half he had that got him promoted in the first place. Still, he figures to be a September call-up, as the corpse of Stephen Drew continues to hit below .200 and start everyday for the first-place Yankees. On the season, Refsnyder is hitting .275/.369/.408 with nine home runs and 10 stolen bases over 486 PA at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Shortstop

Eduardo Escobar, Twins – Escobar had a pair of three-hit games this week, one of which included a home run, as he looks to reclaim the starting shortstop gig. Eduardo Nunez has cut into his playing time, but it's been Escobar who has started four of the last five games and he'll likely continue to see the lion's share of at-bats between the two. We should see Danny Santana back next month, but he's been terrible at the plate this season and has done nothing to earn playing time, so I wouldn't worry much about him. A defense-first shortstop, Escobar is doing enough offensively right now to warrant a roster spot in most AL formats. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Ketel Marte, Mariners – Checking back in on someone we discussed when called up at the end of July, Marte is hitting .297/.384/.375 since his promotion and hit five doubles last week. More speed than power, he showed a disciplined approach in the minors and it's translating in the majors. The doubles hint at a possibility of more power down the line for the 21-year-old. For now, he should be owned in more mixed leagues. After Marte stole 20 bases at Triple-A Tacoma earlier this season, I expect he'll start to run more down the stretch. Mixed: $3; AL: Owned.

Josh Rutledge, Red Sox – Rutledge has started the last couple of games for the Red Sox with Brock Holt (above) dealing with an oblique injury. Part of the Shane Victorino trade with the Angels, Rutledge hit .274 with five home runs and two stolen bases over 337 plate appearances at Triple-A Salt Lake earlier this season. Holt is day-to-day right now, but if he were to miss real time, Rutledge would likely be the everyday starter until Holt or Dustin Pedroia are back sometime next month. As is, Rutledge is a utility infielder without much upside. Mixed: $1; AL: $4.

Third Base

Kaleb Cowart, Angels – Cowart was called up from Triple-A Salt Lake last week when the team designated Conor Gillaspie for assignment. Cowart hit .323/.395/.491 with six home runs and two stolen bases over 253 Triple-A plate appearances. So far though, he looks overmatched, as he went hitless over his first 14 at-bats with six strikeouts before homering Saturday. It's clear that when David Freese returns, he'll be the everyday starter once again. Mixed: No; AL: $2.

David Freese, Angels – Freese started a rehab assignment at Triple-A Salt Lake this weekend as he recovers from a fractured right index finger that has kept him out a month. He'll likely only need a few games to show he's ready to return, though the team could hold him out until rosters expand. He hit .240/.309/.397 with 11 home runs over 353 plate appearances before the injury. He'll go back to his role of everyday starter when he returns. Mixed: $2; AL: $6.

Joey Gallo, Rangers – Gallo will likely be up with the team when rosters expand, but the only question is if he learned something in the minors, and right now the answer to that looks like no, as he continues to struggle with his approach. This month he's hitting just .211 at Triple-A Round Rock, which is a marginal improvement from the .194 he hit in July. The power will play at any level, but until he learns to hit for more contact, he'll be a three-true-outcomes player in the majors. At Round Rock he has a .201/.297/.479 batting line with 13 home runs over 192 plate appearances. Mixed: $4; AL: Owned.

Richie Shaffer, Rays – After he was sent to Triple-A Durham on Monday, Shaffer hit three home runs, showing he's ready to rejoin the team next month or maybe sooner. He hit .263 with two home runs over 23 plate appearances in his brief time up, but the team curiously sent him back down. The Rays would be wise to let him start at first base every day, when he returns, as James Loney has hit one home run each month this season with a stale .262 batting average. Between Durham and Double-A Montgomery this season, Shaffer is hitting .274/.366/.564 with 26 home runs over 419 PA. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Outfield

Jackie Bradley, Red Sox – With four doubles, a triple, and three home runs this past week, Bradley is making a case for more at-bats and a potential everyday role next season. As is, he's in a platoon role with Rusney Castillo, which limits his value to mostly AL and deep mixed formats. It's welcomed production, as he had never really shown signs of life as a hitter in the majors, as evidenced by his .198 batting average over 423 plate appearances last season. Mixed: $5; AL: $15.

Joey Butler, Rays – Optioned to Triple-A Durham two weeks ago, Butler hit two home runs last week, showing that he's ready for a call-up when rosters expand. He got off to a solid start in May and June, hitting .315 with six home runs and five stolen bases, but faded badly in July, hitting just .170 with no home runs or stolen bases, earning a demotion. He'll be a decent bench bat for the team down the stretch. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Byron Buxton, Twins – Activated from the DL and optioned to Triple-A Rochester earlier this month, Buxton was recalled last week when Aaron Hicks (hamstring) hit the DL. An elite prospect, Buxton is immediately worth owning in all formats, as he can hit for average and has nice speed at just 21. This season between Double-A Chattanooga and Triple-A Rochester, he hit .305/.367/.500 with seven home runs and 22 stolen bases over 327 plate appearances. With Buxton hitting leadoff and starting in center most days, try to find room for the precocious talent on your roster. Mixed: $10; AL: $30.

Terrance Gore, Royals – Previously dealing with an ankle injury, Gore has been activated from the DL and is back at Double-A Northwest Arkansas, as he readies himself for a September call-up. Last season he made a name for himself as a basestealer, which eventually led to a spot on the team's playoff rosters and run to the World Series. This season he's hitting .280/.368/.300 at Northwest Arkansas with 36 stolen bases over 236 plate appearances. Likely to be used as a pinch runner, he could be a cheap source of steals in September. Mixed: No; AL: $2.

Franklin Gutierrez, Mariners – Gutierrez hit two home runs in a game last week, highlighting a strong month in which he's hitting .306 with four home runs, and he added another three hits Saturday. A defensive maestro, he's playing almost everyday now and deserves another look in mixed leagues. Injuries have been an issue for him for the last handful of seasons, but for now he looks healthy. Mixed: $3; AL: Owned.

Desmond Jennings, Rays – Jennings hit his first home run of the season Friday in the second of back-to-back games with two hits. He's hitting .357 in 28 at-bats since coming off the DL and has taken over as the Rays regular left fielder. More speedy than powerful, he was caught stealing Friday as well, a sign that he's at least not shy about taking a base after his knee injury. He should have value in most formats the rest of the way. Mixed: $3; AL: $10.

Max Kepler, Twins – Kepler is hitting .343/.425/.573 with nine home runs and 16 stolen bases at Double-A Chattanooga and is a candidate for a September call-up depending upon what Chattanooga does in the playoffs. The 22-year-old has almost as many walks (51) as strikeouts (56) this season, which is pretty rare no matter the level. He's had a breakout season offensively with a spike in power and stolen bases. If you're in a keeper league, he's worth a bid. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Steven Moya, Tigers – Moya is a possible September call-up for the fading Tigers to evaluate for the 2016 season. The 6'6" tower of a man has hit 17 home runs with four stolen bases and a .243 batting average over 455 plate appearances at Triple-A Toledo this season as he continues to work on his plate discipline, which is sorely lacking. Only 23, Moya could slide into left field next month, though the team might also elect to keep him in the minors, where his swing-and-miss approach isn't so easy to exploit. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Steve Pearce, Orioles – On a rehab assignment with the Gulf Coast League Orioles, Pearce (oblique) could rejoin the team in the coming days after missing a month of action. A 2014 fantasy darling, he'll return to a depressing .227 average and seven home runs over 193 plate appearances. Still, the team has been using Steve Clevenger as the DH lately, so Pearce may find at-bats ready for him if he shows he's healthy. Mixed: No; AL: $2.

Dalton Pompey, Blue Jays – Optioned to the minors after an uneventful April, Pompey is hitting .311/.386/.427 with six home runs and 21 stolen bases over 400 plate appearances between Double-A New Hampshire and Triple-A Buffalo. He's likely to be a September call-up, but the speedy Ben Revere usurped what potential value he had when he was traded from the Phillies. That said, Revere has yet to steal a base with Toronto, so perhaps there's still a place for Pompey down the stretch. If you're in a keeper league playing for 2016, he's worth a bid. Mixed: No; AL: $1.

Preston Tucker, Astros – Optioned to Triple-A Fresno on Saturday, Tucker was squeezed out of a roster spot when the Astros welcomed Lance McCullers back into their rotation. Tucker has no reason to hang his head though, as he hit .250/.302/.448 with 12 home runs over 288 plate appearances in the majors. He'll be back up next month, though by then a crowded outfield will likely have George Springer back, making at-bats that much tougher to come by. Still, he's proven himself enough that he might find time at DH and being a lefty doesn't hurt either, considering Evan Gattis and Christ Carter are both righties. Mixed: $1; AL: Owned.

Henry Urrutia, Orioles – Your new flavor of the week in left field for the Orioles, Urrutia delivered a satisfying walkoff home run – his first homer in the majors – last week to help down the Mets in the bottom of the ninth. He's started six of the last seven games in left and looks like the everyday starter there going forward, though that's what I thought about Travis Snider, David Lough, Alejandro De Aza, and Nolan Reimold, who all got their chance there this season. Previously, Urrutia hit .292/.344/.414 with 10 home runs over 474 plate appearances at Triple-A Norfolk. At 28 he's not a prospect, but at this point the O's will take stabilizing force, if that's what he delivers in left field. Mixed: $1; AL: $3.

Will Venable, Rangers – With Josh Hamilton (knee) ailing and eventually put on the DL, the Rangers acquired Venable from the Padres last week. A 20/20 talent back in 2013, Venable has struggled to remain relevant since then and this season hit .258 with six home runs and 11 stolen bases over 308 plate appearances in San Diego. He's looking at pretty steady at-bats going forward until Hamilton is ready to return, which gives him value in AL formats. He's a lefty and Ryan Strausborger is a righty, so we may see a platoon develop, but even still, Venable should see the lion's share of at-bats in that setup. Mixed: $2; AL: $6.

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

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Andrew Martinez
Andrew Martinez writes about baseball and football. He is a native Texan and roots for the Astros, Rockets, Texans, and Rice Owls.
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