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Mike Alonso Left a Major League Legacy at Upland

The Wire Troll: Junior Guerra Almost Ready to Return

May 21, 2017 | by RotoRob | Comments Comments Off
Junior Guerra will be rejoining the Milwaukee Brewers soon.
A healthy Junior Guerra could help your rotation. (ESPN.com)

Welcome back to another week of Fantasy baseball. Now that we’re into late-May, you’ve got a fairly good idea of whether you’re in it this season. So milk that waiver wire for all it is worth!

This week, beloved Dodger great Tommy Lasorda has been hospitalized, and it’s unclear how the 89-year-old is doing; Mets manager Terry Collins admitted that he considered intentionally walking Mike Trout with the bases loaded on Saturday; and Atlanta has made a deal to bring in Matt Adams to fill in for Freddie Freeman (wrist).

And now let’s get to this week’s Fantasy baseball waiver wire recommendations…

Junior Guerra, SP, Milwaukee Brewers (ESPN: 6.4 per cent; CBS: 42 per cent): After hurting his calf on Opening Day, Guerra is almost done his rehab, with his next start moving to Triple-A. He was expected to miss six weeks, so the injury is dragging a tad, but we started hearing about his progress two weeks ago (see video below) and you’ve still got an opportunity to add him before the hype machine has him flying off the wire. Don’t forget that as a rookie last year, Guerra spent two-thirds of the season in the Brewer rotation and enjoyed a surprisingly good ERA while only experiencing a slight boost in his homer rate over Triple-A.

Freddy Galvis, SS, Philadelphia Phillies (ESPN: 23.1 per cent; CBS: 42 per cent): Galvis has again improved his offensive game this season and top prospect J.P. Crawford isn’t exactly pushing him out of the job with his lacklustre performance at Triple-A. So Galvis continues to gobble up the majority of action at shortstop in Philly, proving very durable for a middle infielder. His BABIP is a tad on the low side, so there’s a slight possibility of growth in his BA by season’s end.

James Farris, RP, Colorado Rockies (ESPN: unowned; CBS: unowned): Acquired from the Cubs in the Eddie Butler trade, Farris is putting up some very impressive numbers as a closer in Double-A. Farris has clearly mastered this level now (judging by that sweet ERA), and it’s time for a promotion to either Triple-A or even the bigs. As always, the usual caveat about Colorado pitchers applies here, but Farris has put himself on the map as someone to watch in keeper leagues.

Trevor Plouffe, 3B, Oakland Athletics (ESPN: 2.8 per cent; CBS: 15 per cent): Plouffe’s walk rate dipped in an injury plagued 2016, but the move to Oakland has inspired some Moneyball like effects from him as his walk rate has soared to a career best after drawing a pair of free passes Saturday. Unfortunately, his strikeout rate has also spiked, but even so, he’s seen a slight increase in his batting eye. And given his recent hot play (.350 over the last week), we think Plouffe makes for a decent pickup in an AL-only league or a deeper mixed format.

Erasmo Ramirez, RP, Tampa Bay Rays (ESPN: 2.6 per cent; CBS: 8 per cent): Ramirez may not be inducing infield flies at his normal rate, but his K/BB rate is superb and — given a chance to start on Friday, he once again teased us with his talent, which he is wont to do from time to time. Ramirez’s HR/FB ratio is better than usual this season, and that’s likely to correct itself, but if you need a starter, you may want to give him a long look.

Mike Clevinger, SP, Cleveland Indians (ESPN: 5.4 per cent; CBS: 16 per cent): Clevinger is getting more ground balls than fly balls so far this season and it’s working for him. Saturday, he took a no-hitter into the seventh inning against Houston and he’s now been scored on just once in his four appearances. It’s worth picking up Clevinger to see if this is for real.

Matt Adams, 1B, Atlanta Braves (ESPN: 2.3 per cent; CBS: 9 per cent): As mentioned above, Adams has been traded to Atlanta, where he’ll fill in for the injured Freeman for the next couple of months. Yes, Adams in the outfield is a serious adventure, so finding consistent at-bats for him has been challenging for the Cards. Now he’ll get a chance to play pretty much every day, providing a nice boost for a guy that is actually getting on base more often than ever so far this season.

Others to Consider

Jake Junis, SP, Kansas City Royals (ESPN: unowned; CBS: unowned): Junis has been recalled to make his first MLB start on Sunday. Depending on how he does, this may not just be a temporary stay, especially with Nate Karns possibly DL bound.

Connor Joe, OF, Pittsburgh Pirates (ESPN: NA; CBS: unowned): A first round compensation pick in 2014, Joe is a solid contact hitter, but with very little speed. He’s enjoying a breakout season at Double-A, so could force his way into the picture in Pittsburgh soon.

Adrian Sanchez, 3B, Washington Nationals (ESPN: unowned; CBS: unowned): This Venezuelan switch-hitter fell off the Nats’ prospects list a few years back, but seems to be having a career renaissance this season, putting himself in position for his first ever promotion to the majors. Sanchez is getting long in the tooth for a prospect, but it wouldn’t be the first time a late bloomer burst onto the scene to provide value, so keep an eye on him.

Justin Smoak, 1B, Toronto Blue Jays (ESPN: 42 per cent; CBS: 47 per cent): Texas’ 2008 first round pick hasn’t exactly had the career most of us expected, but he’s enjoying his finest season at the age of 30 now that he’s back to playing full-time.

Yan Gomes, C, Cleveland Indians (ESPN: 3.8 per cent; CBS: 17 per cent): Gomes has really picked up his game recently. He’s clearly entrenched as the Indian starter and is nearly back to where he was in 2014.

Now it’s your turn. Let us know in the comments below who your favourite Fantasy baseball waiver wire pick of the week is.

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Will the Heat Break Up the Brothers Johnson?

May 17, 2017 | by RotoRob | Comments Comments Off
He missed a bit of time with a shoulder injury, and while you’d like to see more in the way of assists from him, Johnson proved a fine Fantasy asset capable of contributing in virtually every other category (although after averaging nearly a block in January, he normalized after the All-Star break, going down to 0.4 per game).
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The Wire Troll: Cards Have Star on the Way in Oscar Mercado

May 14, 2017 | by RotoRob | Comments Comments Off
Miami’s first round pick from last year finally made his pro debut last week, tossing 4 2/3 shutout frames at Low A. Garrett definitely got a bit lucky with the goose egg given the control issues, but overall, it was worth the wait. Keeper league owners need to have this dude on their radar.
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The Wire Troll: Time to Suck up J.J. Hoover?

May 7, 2017 | by RotoRob | Comments Comments Off
Griffin held the Astros to a solo homer on Thursday, fanning seven in five innings to earn the win. He looked like a very promising starter for the A’s a few years ago, going 7-1 with a 3.06 in a half season as a rookie in 2012 and following that up with a 14-win effort in 2013 before missing two seasons with injuries. Griffin looks like he’s finally back to that level now, so scoop him up while you can as he’s sure to get a long look in the Texas rotation.
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The Wire Troll: Ryan Rua Running With Shot For Rangers

April 30, 2017 | by RotoRob | Comments Comments Off
So, Boston’s rotation will be so much better this year, right? Um, ya… about that. BoSox starters continue to mostly scuffle, ranking 20th in ERA, so perhaps it’s time for some replacement options? Owens didn’t get much of a shot in the bigs last year, mostly because he was rocked in his few starts. But he’s racking up some dominant strikeout rates at Triple-A right now, suggesting that Boston’s compensation pick from 2011 is ready for another look in the Show. We’re predicting Owens could stick if he gets the chance.
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