August 31, 2012
Outfielders for 8/31/12
With the flurry of trades and injuries in the Phillies outfield, John Mayberry (Yahoo! 6%, ESPN 7%, CBS 19%) has stepped up and become an everyday player. The Phillies are playing him every day mostly out of need; one could argue that Mayberry would fit best in a platoon due to his noticeable handedness split favoring lefties. Luckily, the Phillies face two lefties in their next three games, so he’s a clear go for the weekend. Mayberry is best suited for daily leagues where you can sit him against tougher righties and only reap the rewards when a lefty opposes him. Considering his ample at-bats and middle-of-the-order lineup spot though, he could be worth the add in deeper leagues even if you can’t rotate him in and out of your lineup.
While we’re on the subject of the Phillies outfield, it’s as good a time as any to mention Darin Ruf (Yahoo! 0%, ESPN 0%, CBS 0%), the player in Double-A Reading with 14 homers in his last 20 games. At 26 years old he may be more Brad Eldred than anything else, and Kevin Goldstein appropriately gave some starry-eyed gazers of his stats a needed reality check in his latest Monday Morning Ten Pack. Still, those in NL-only leagues would be wise to keep an eye on Ruf, though a promotion may be unlikely considering he’s somewhat of a defensive project in the outfield. It’s true that a hot hitter is not guaranteed to stay hot, but a player this hot could be a different story. If the Phillies give him a chance, I don’t have a problem with you doing so either.
I’m admittedly late to the Nate McLouth (Yahoo! 2%, ESPN 3%, CBS 4%) party after I made him a late scratch from the VP ranks two weeks ago. He was brought up in the comments though, so the moral is always read the comments section. Despite another productive week with a homer and two steals, McLouth remains (surprisingly) widely available. If you and your leaguemates have collectively avoided this comeback story so far, now is the time to believe with an upcoming series at Yankee Stadium (think lefty batter and short right field fence) and only one lefty on the schedule in the next seven games.
Normally when a struggling player gets send down to Triple-A, you like to see him tear it up for a few weeks, regain some confidence, and carry it back up to the bigs when recalled. Well, Lucas Duda (Yahoo! 23%, ESPN 27%, CBS 28%) actually hit slightly worse during his 25-game demotion to Triple-A, so I’m not sure exactly what feelings he’s bringing back up with him. Nevertheless, he’s back and playing nearly every day in the Mets outfield. If he was dropped in your league, consider adding Duda for his power and RBI potential batting fifth in the Mets lineup.