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Sunday 25th Feb 2018

It was another one of those odd weeks on the transaction wire where the eye-grabbing transactions involved either veterans relegated to teamlessness or veterans clinging to another shot at redemption.

For over the week, Jose Reyes, Carl Crawford and Jimmy Rollins were all rather unceremoniously released into the ether of the waiver wire. I have to think some desperate team might grant Reyes a chance, but I suspect Carl and Jimmy will hang em' up. All three were fine players at their peak.

But, this was also the week that Tim Lincecum made his first start for the Halos, and Timmy comported himself rather well. 

Lincecum has to lead the marquee names of the week, having made it into the Angels rotation, and then tossing six strong innings, allowing four hits, and a pair of walks to go with a pair of whiffs. It should be noted that Lincecum won facing the Athletics, who have been among the weaker hitting teams over the past weeks. In short, I saw Lincecum at his peak and he was indeed wonderful. I would love it if Tim could have a big comeback here, but I am not holding my breath at this point. Still, it is a start.

Speaking of ex-Giants, the Tigers brought Casey McGehee up to fill gaps and though the third sacker was hitting well at Toledo (.323-4-27 over 66 games), his big league numbers have been pretty much nonexistent save 2014 (.287-4-76) going back to 2010. Add in there is a question of playing time, and McGehee makes a poor risk.

Oakland hasn't just had issues hitting, but their pitching has been pretty much a disaster between injuries and ineffectiveness. One guy the Athletics were thinking would be an innings eater when the season began was Liam Hendriks, who went out with a biceps injury in May. Hendriks had some pretty awful numbers over 16.3 frames (0-0, 8.27) but he was very good in a relief role with Toronto last year, going 5-0, 2.92 with 71 strikeouts over 64.6 innings with a 1.082 WHIP. Oakland might be struggling, but Hendriks is the kind of filler guy who can gain command and give some under-the-radar strong innings.

Keeping the "X degrees of player separation" going, former Oakland starter Tommy Milone was recalled by the Twins. A starter, Milone has reasonably good control (463 whiffs to 159 walks) with a 1.302 WHIP over 642.3 innings but has allowed 677 hits, 87 of which have been homers. If you are innings desperate in an AL format, maybe take a chance, but I like the Lincecum gamble better.

OK, let's look at a troika of prospects to close the week out, starting with Blake Snell, who is in the Rays starting rotation. Snell had a solid start against the Yankees in a spot start, allowing just a run and a couple of hits over five innings. Not so much in his second start, as the Mariners pounded him for eight hits over 3.3 innings, including five runs, though just one was earned. If Snell is not on a reserve list in your league, he makes a fun pick-up. If you can grab him and freeze him in another format, do so.

Similarly, the Reds brought second sacker Jose Peraza back to fill the Billy Hamilton (concussion) gap, and Peraza was hitting well (.274 with nine swipes) and is bench strength for now. But Peraza is a serious prospect, and again one to at least grab and stash. The 22-year-old Peraza, whom I mentioned when he debuted for the Reds awhile back, is a former Braves prospect who spent time with the Dodgers before becoming part of the three-team Todd Frazier swap. The consensus top-100 prospect has a .299-10-195 line with 312 runs and 219 swipes in the Minors, and he has a solid future. 

Finally, 24-year-old Michael Ynoa was recalled by the White Sox. With 11 saves and 232 strikeouts over 226.6 innings, Ynoa has had a decent minor league line, and he could find some good work with the Pale Hose as the team struggles to re-invent itself.


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