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MLB Today: Did Cruz Get Torpedoed?

June 19, 2010 | By RotoRob | comment on this post
Juan Cruz got the heave-ho by the Kansas City Royals.
Why was Juan Cruz released just a few weeks before undergoing surgery?

Anyone else wonder why there wasn’t more scuttlebutt when it was announced last month that Juan Cruz needed season-ending shoulder surgery, just a few weeks after the Royals had released him despite his solid start? If it wasn’t common knowledge he was hurt, wouldn’t someone have picked him up? I smell something stinky here. Anyone know more about this situation?

Kansas City Royals Gear

Despite all their injuries, the Rockies are hanging around in a tight NL West, sitting just four games off the pace. Obviously, starting pitching has been a key for Colorado, but how about a shout out for the NL’s third best bullpen (3.21 ERA)? Believe it or not, Rafael Betancourt deserves some consideration for your NL-only team given his recent work. He’s tossed shutout ball in eight of his past nine appearances to shave over a run and a half off what had been a very ugly early-season ERA.

Sure, the 29 hits allowed in 23 IP doesn’t exactly scream “add me!,” but take a look at Betancourt’s ratios. He’s fanned 29 batters against just three walks, which is even better command than he showed when he was among the most dominant set-up men in the game during his days with the Indians. We ranked Betancourt as a top 60 reliever in April, but based on his overall body of work, he’s probably 100 or more places behind that. However, look closer and you see a reliever who is racking up the Ks and holds while putting up lots of zeroes lately. That’s a valuable commodity in many formats, and you have to know he’s available in just about every league out there.

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