RotoWire Partners

Transaction Analysis: Nunez Flees to the D.R.

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.


Blue Jays

Yunel Escobar, SS -
placed on the 15-day DL (elbow)

Impact: Escobar hasn't played since Sept. 10 when he was hit by a pitch in his left elbow, so the team has opted to place him on the DL retroactive to Sept. 11 in what has been deemed a "procedural move." He's eligible to return Monday, but the team will likely take a cautious approach rather than rushing him back. He has had a nice bounceback season for the Jays, hitting .290 with 11 home runs, while mostly batting leadoff. Escobar's injury has given Mike McCoy a chance to get into the lineup on a regular basis, though he hasn't done much with the bat.

Brett Lawrie, 3B -
placed on the 15-day DL (finger)

Impact: The Jays' rookie third baseman is done for the season after breaking his right middle finger while fielding ground balls during batting practice Wednesday. He has been an offensive force since making his major league debut on Aug. 5, hitting .293 with nine home runs, 25 RBI and seven stolen bases in just 43 games. Edwin Encarnacion, Chris Woodward and Mark Teahen could all see action at the hot corner over what's left of the season. Jose Bautista is another option, though the Jays prefer to use him as an outfielder.


Zach McAllister, RHP -
recalled from Triple-A Columbus

Impact: McAllister has pitched well for Columbus this year, going 12-3 with a 3.32 ERA in 25 starts. That success has earned him a late-season audition for Cleveland's 2012 rotation after he pitched poorly in two starts for the Tribe earlier this year. He fared much better against the White Sox in the second game of a doubleheader on Tuesday, giving up just two earned runs in 5.1 innings, but still picked up a loss. It's possible that he could make another start before the end of the season, though Cleveland has a lot of other pitchers in line for starts the final week.


Vin Mazzaro, RHP -
recalled from Triple-A Omaha

Impact: Mazzaro was downright awful in his earlier chances with the Royals this season, but he'll try to finish the season on a high note. The 24-year-old righty is 1-1 with a disastrous ERA of 9.25 and a ridiculous WHIP of 2.14 in five appearances (four starts). The worst of those appearances was a record-setting (and not in a good way) relief appearance where he gave up 14 earned runs in 2.1 innings on May 16 against Cleveland. He should get one start before the season draws to a close and has more potential than he's shown so far in the major leagues.


Scott Baker, RHP -
activated from the 15-day DL

Impact: Baker has easily been Minnesota's best starter this year when he hasn't been sidelined due to injuries. The righty is 8-6 with an impressive 3.21 ERA and a strong 8.20 K/9 strikeout rate over 21 starts. Elbow injuries have landed him on the DL twice this year, and he's expected to pitch out of the bullpen the remainder of the 2011 season. The six pitchers the Twins are expected to use in their rotation over the final stretch are a combined 21-42 as of Wednesday. Ouch!

Denard Span, CF -
activated from the 15-day DL

Impact: The Twins center fielder sustained a concussion during a collision at home plate on June 3 and has missed most of the three-and-a-half months since. He attempted to return at the beginning of August but continued to feel the effects of the injury and was shut down after appearing in just nine games. After being symptom-free for several days, he finally returned to game action Wednesday, going 0-for-3. He was having an off-year by his standards even before the injury, so don't expect too much from him the final week of the season.



Brian Wilson, RHP -
activated from the 15-day DL

Impact: The Giants' closer missed about a month with a strained elbow, but looked sharp in his return Sunday against the Rockies in a non-save situation. He is expected to regain his closing duties, which means that he should be activated in all fantasy formats. He has appeared in 55 games this season, picking up 35 saves, with an ERA of 3.19 and a strikeout rate of about one per inning. Santiago Casilla filled in nicely while Wilson was out, but will return to a setup role.


Leo Nunez, RHP -
placed on the restricted list

Impact: The Marlins have placed their erratic closer on the restricted list, thus ending his season about a week early. No reason has yet been disclosed as to the reasons for this move, but he is reportedly already on his way home to the Dominican Republic. He did pick up 36 saves this year, but with a less-than-ideal ERA of 4.06 and six blown saves. Steve Cishek and Edward Mujica are Florida's most likely candidates for saves this week. Both pitchers have performed well in setup roles.


Chase Headley, 3B -
activated from the 15-day DL

Impact: Headley's power has all but disappeared this season, as he's hit just four home runs in 107 games. However, he has rewarded his fantasy owners with a nice batting average of .292 and 13 stolen bases. He's been out since early August with a broken pinkie finger, and he'll be eased back into the starting lineup, pushing Andy Parrino and Alberto Gonzalez to the bench. Both Parrino and Gonzalez have had little success at the plate this season.