Summer is upon us, and bats--well some--are indeed heating up, while arms are here to replace. So, let's see just who needs attention in your league this coming week, as we try to navigate through the first third of the season.
The Tigers have been plagued with injuries (haven't we all) and Jim Adduci, seemingly a name from the past, has stepped in to fill part of the void. At age 31, Adduci last played in the Majors in 2014, having played in the Latin leagues in the interim. Maybe we will think of him as Eric Thames light, but for the price, he might be better, having dropped a .381-0-7 line with a .919 OPS, seven runs scored, and a swipe over 11 games. He keeps that up and he will get to play.
I have always had a soft spot in my heart for Yonder Alonso for some reason, and this year is no different save he is sticking. It is weird, though for over his career of 692 games, Alonso has 47 homers, with nine of them this year. Four, or nearly 10%, have come in the last week, over which the first sacker has hit .421 with eight RBI and a solid hold on first base at Rickey Henderson Field.
There is speculation around who gets to join the lean Twins rotation, and of course there is speculation surrounding Jose Berrios, but keep an eye on Tyler Duffey. Yeah, Duffey struggled last year, going 9-12, 6.43, but thus far his 13 whiffs over 14.3 innings, 1.88 ERA and 1.18 WHIP suggest some lessons learned for the 26-year-old.
Similarly, the Mets are struggling now with both Matt Harvey suspended and Noah Syndergaard ailing, and they promoted Tommy Milone to fill one spot. A journeyman of the highest order, Milone is a nibbler who has to keep the ball down, and can indeed have some success when he keeps hitters guessing. And, that usually lasts for one or two starts, and then Milone becomes canon fodder. Tread carefully: be prepared to dump aggressively.
Sandy Leon, who banged a couple of homers Sunday, has been the main backstop in Beantown this year, but Christian Vazquez has been a pretty good back-up. If you are in a deeper league, and say need to replace Josh Phegley, Vazquez, hitting .333-0-4 over 47 plate appearances, is a great path to try.
Devon Travis has hit a relatively solid .220-1-2 over the past ten days, raising his totals to .156-1-4. That tells you both how poorly Travis was hitting, and that maybe he is shaking off the shackles of the slump that has plagued him thus far. I like Travis and think he will indeed bust out, so watch and try to take advantage.
Similarly, Kole Calhoun has a season mark of .248-4-11, but over the past week he has hit .250-3-5, meaning the bulk of production this year was over the past seven days, and that too suggests a potential breakout. If Calhoun is languishing (he shouldn't be) jump on him, and with their struggles, both Calhoun and Travis are worth exploring as DFS plays whose value has dropped.
Finally, if you are an Eric Thames devotee, think about selling high. Following his self-imposed exile to the Far East, Thames came out of the blocks red-hot, hitting .345 with 11 homers and 19 RBI. But over the past two weeks, those totals have dropped thanks to a .222 average with three of those homers and six of the RBI. Before he left, Thames was no Cecil Fielder, so no reason to think he will be upon coming back.
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