In his first major league at-bat, Joey Gallo hit a hard two-hopper right at Adam LaRoche. The White Sox first baseman misplayed the grounder as it rolled passed him and into right field. Maybe there was some home cooking in Arlington Tuesday night, or perhaps I just don’t understand what’s going on in the minds of some official scorers. It was scored a base hit, albeit a questionable one. What isn’t questionable is the fact that Bryce Harper’s Little League teammate will cost a not so small FAAB fortune this weekend if you want to acquire his fantasy services. What if you don’t want to wait until a waiver prospect’s price is through the roof to go after him? Or what if you’ve burned through your budget and need some bargain pickups to plug some holes?
Eddie Rosario was scooped up in numerous leagues the last two weeks, but he remains available in others. I saw him in the Arizona Fall League last year. Love his swing and the way the ball sounds coming off his bat. He has a 15 HR, 15 SB ceiling and comes with some batting average risk.
Hanser Alberto has four career games as a major leaguer. He’s also riding a four-game hitting streak. He’s got no real power to speak of and he won’t steal more than a dozen bases. However, if you’re like me and stuck with scrubs posting 2-for-27 performances every other week, you might find this Ranger middle infielder useful as long as he continues to get at-bats.
Nick Ahmed isn’t exactly a recommendation, but it has to be mentioned that he’s slashing .317/.339/.550 over the last three weeks, stats similar to his Triple-A line last year. He’s capable of swiping 20 bags if he gets on base enough. In a very small sample size, he’s crushed lefties and struggled against right-handed pitching. If he can make some adjustments, he could turn into a serviceable player.
Javier Baez may still be on the wire, and his bat may just be the fastest on the planet. Of course, that does little good if you can’t make contact. Javier has cut down on the strikeouts a little bit, the Cubs have seven games with a DH in June, Baez is scheduled to move to third base this week and Kris Bryant has now made four starts in the outfield. Just connect the dots.
Tyler Cravy is a soft-tosser that uses command along with mixing pitch types and location to get by. His first outing was rather effective, but after watching him pitch he might be more of a Shaun Marcum tease than a fantasy asset. His four-seam fastball sat right at 89-90 mph throughout the night and appeared straight, with almost no movement. He has a looping curve that ranges from 82-85 mph and sits at 84. He also sports an 83 mph pitch with a slight, straight downward sink, which I’m guessing is a two-seamer. He barely used that pitch. A 5-8 mph differential between your fastball and your off-speed stuff doesn’t bode particularly well for long-term success. To his credit, the rookie located his curveball low and away against right-handed hitters and worked his fastball inside. That can compensate for off-speed stuff that’s not much slower than your fastball. He struggled a little with his release point early on, but later settled in, gaining confidence as the evening wore on and even adding a little life on his four-seamer, topping out at 91 mph. For whatever reason, Cardinal hitters weren’t seeing him well. Weak contact and a couple of broken bats were all St. Louis could muster most of the evening. Also working against both offenses was a strike zone the size of an ocean. I don’t know if home plate umpire Joe West had a dinner date or if he just needs to make another visit to his optometrist, but it’s no surprise that those in attendance saw only one run cross home plate. Cravy was optioned back to Colorado Springs after the game. His current Triple-A status and the lack of wins in Milwaukee mean that you might be able to land him for a buck.
Andrew Heaney has struck out 51 and walked 13 in 56 innings for the Salt Lake Bees. If he is available in your league and you don’t like spending the $200-$300+ it takes to land the latest hot pitching target, you might be able to add the former Marlins prospect for a buck.
Daily Notes for Thursday
The home/road splits for Erasmo Ramirez are about as extreme as it gets. That makes Mariner hitters an interesting stack. Lefty Gio Gonzalez, another pitcher that struggles on the road, travels to the Friendly Confines, where he’s unlikely to get a friendly greeting from any of the young Cubs sluggers. The North Side stack is in play.