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Transaction Analysis: A's Get their Closer Back

Ryan Arbour

Ryan Arbour writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire.

Here's a look at the transactions this week that had the most important fantasy impact.



Andrew Bailey, RHP
activated from the 15-day DL
Bobby Cramer, LHP optioned to Triple-A Sacramento

Impact: The A's closer finally returned from the disabled list after missing the first two months of the season due to a strained right forearm. Bailey has dominated opposing hitters since the start of his Major League career in 2009, posting a career ERA of 1.70 in 115 appearances over the last two seasons. Brian Fuentes has saved 11 games in 13 chances and will return to a setup role once Bailey has been eased back into the closer's role. Cramer appeared in just three games in an earlier stint with the club.


Brad Bergesen, RHP
optioned to Triple-A Norfolk
Pedro Viola, LHP recalled from Double-A Bowie
Chris Tillman, RHP optioned to Triple-A Norfolk
Chris Jakubauskas, RHP recalled from Triple-A Norfolk
Brian Matusz, LHP activated from the 15-day DL
Jake Fox, UT designated for assignment

Impact: The O's did some serious juggling with their starting rotation, sending two-fifths of their starters to Triple-A. Bergesen and Tillman were a combined 3-9 with a 5.03 ERA, and with Baltimore sitting at the bottom of the AL East standings, the Orioles decided to shake things up. Brian Matusz's activation from the DL on Wednesday filled one of the two vacant spots. An off day Thursday allowed Baltimore to go with a four-man rotation this time around, so Jakubauskas will work out of the bullpen until the Orioles require a fifth starter. Viola gives the O's bullpen another left-handed arm, and Fox became expendable when the team called up Craig Tatum on May 26 to serve as their backup catcher.


Francisco Liriano, LHP
placed on the 15-day DL (shoulder)
Anthony Slama, RHP recalled from Triple-A Rochester

Impact: Liriano has been experiencing some inflammation in his shoulder, so the Twins have opted to shut him down for a couple of weeks (retroactive to May 23). The righty, who hurled a no-hitter against the White Sox on May 3, has dealt with severe control issues this year, walking 32 batters in 48.2 innings (including a season-high six walks during his no-hitter). Anthony Swarzak will continue to fill in for the injured Liriano, who is eligible to return as early as June 7. Swarzak pitched a one-hit gem through eight innings while making a start in place of Liriano on May 28. His track record is spotty, so don't expect that level of success every time out.

Jim Thome, DH
placed on the 15-day DL (quad)
Jason Kubel, DH placed on the 15-day DL (foot)
Ben Revere, OF recalled from Triple-A Rochester
Luke Hughes, IF recalled from Triple-A Rochester

Impact: The Twins have lost both of their primary designated hitters to injuries, as both Kubel and Thome landed on the disabled list. Kubel sprained his left foot during Monday night's game and was leading the team in RBI and batting average. Thome strained his left quadriceps during Wednesday's game. The Twins will likely rotate players in and out of the DH spot, resulting in extra playing time for the likes of Jason Repko, Matt Tolbert and Trevor Plouffe (in addition to Revere and Hughes).



Kyle McClellan, RHP
placed on the 15-day DL (hip)
Lance Lynn, RHP called up from Triple-A Memphis

Impact: In his first season as a starter, McClellan has done all that was asked of him and more, going 6-2 with a 3.86 ERA in eleven appearances (10 starts). He strained a hip flexor muscle during the first inning of Monday's game but stayed in long enough to give up seven earned runs in just four innings. As of yet, there is no timetable for his return, and Lynn will fill out the Cards rotation for the time being. Lynn has had some control issues in the minors and has also proven to be quite hittable. He's still young and has plenty of time to develop, but at the moment he's probably not worth taking a chance on in most fantasy leagues.


Geovany Soto, C
activated from the 15-day DL
Welington Castillo, C optioned to Triple-A Iowa

Impact: The Cubs' regular catcher is back in action after missing a few weeks due to a groin injury. Soto usually puts up solid numbers for a catcher, and with the Cubs dealing with several injuries, his return couldn't come at a better time. His replacements Koyie Hill and Welington Castillo did very little offensively while Soto was shelved, hitting a combined .228 with no home runs and six RBI in 17 games.

Alfonso Soriano, LF
placed on the 15-day DL (quad)
Tyler Colvin, OF recalled from Triple-A Iowa

Impact: Soriano left Monday's game due to a strained left quad and will now miss at least a couple of weeks while he recovers. He was leading the Cubs in both home runs and RBI, so they'll have a tough time replacing that offense. With Marlon Byrd and Reed Johnson both already on the DL, the Cubs will be looking at some less than ideal options to fill out their outfield. Tony Campana has been starting regularly in center field, leaving Colvin, Lou Montanez, Brad Snyder and Blake DeWitt battling for playing time in left. With none of those players assured of regular playing time, it's probably a good idea to avoid them in all but the deepest of fantasy leagues.


Cameron Maybin, CF
placed on the 15-day DL (knee)
Aaron Cunningham recalled from Triple-A Tucson

Impact: The Padres center fielder will miss at least a couple of weeks as he recovers from a tendinitis in his right knee. An MRI revealed no structural damage, so he shouldn't be out for too long. Blake Tekotte has been filling in for the injured Maybin, and Cunningham figures to get some time in the outfield as well. In fantasy terms, Tekotte could be good for a few steals, but not much else.