CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

Premium and Super Premium Subscribers Get a 20% Discount at MLB.tv!

<< Previous Article
Pebble Hunting: Every ... (05/08)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: Nati... (05/07)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: Amer... (05/14)
Next Article >>
Fantasy Article Bullpen Report: Boston... (05/09)

May 9, 2013

Free Agent Watch

American League, Week Six

by Paul Singman

the archives are now free.

All Baseball Prospectus Premium and Fantasy articles more than a year old are now free as a thank you to the entire Internet for making our work possible.

Not a subscriber? Get exclusive content like this delivered hot to your inbox every weekday. Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get instant access to the best baseball content on the web.

Subscribe for $4.95 per month
Recurring subscription - cancel anytime.


a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Purchase a $39.95 gift subscription
a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

Daric Barton, 1B, Oakland A’s
Ownership:  ESPN: 0.0% Yahoo!: 0%  CBS: 0%
2013 Stats: 18 R, 3 HR, 21 RBI, 0 SB, .287 AVG (AAA)

The thickly bearded, rocket-armed Josh Reddick has hit the disabled list with a wrist injury, prompting the veteran Barton to be recalled to Oakland. Barton’s past experiences in the majors aren’t pleasant ones, with replacement-level play forcing his demotion in the first half of both 2011 and 2012. Thus far in 2013, he has been playing well at Triple-A, batting .287 with three homers, 21 RBI, and a typical 19 percent walk rate. Barton figures to see playing time at first base when the A’s are facing a righty, but only for the couple of weeks Coco Crisp and Reddick are out. If you are in an AL-only league that uses OBP, he can be mildly exciting. Otherwise, there’s nothing to see here. 

Junichi Tazawa, RP, Boston Red Sox
Ownership: ESPN: 42.5% Yahoo!: 47%  CBS: 32%
2013 Stats: 14.1 IP, 2 W, 0 SV, 18 K, 2.51 ERA, 0.98 WHIP

Tazawa leapfrogged setup man Koji Uehara to steal the Red Sox’ closing gig after both Andrew Bailey and Joel Hanrahan succumbed to muscle strains in their throwing arms. Based on his performance to date, Tazawa has the chops to close and should thrive in the role. Even though Bailey could return in a week, I can see Tazawa hanging on to the job, considering Bailey was closer for all of five minutes before getting hurt. If you need saves, now is a good week to add a closer with volatility in several bullpens.  

Hector Santiago, SP, Chicago White Sox
Ownership: ESPN: 3.4% Yahoo!: 10%  CBS: 34%
2013 Stats: 26.2 IP, 1 W, 0 SV, 25 K, 1.68 ERA, 0.98 WHIP

Along with Matt Harvey, Santiago was the other tough-luck recipient of a no-decision in Tuesday night’s duel. After holding the Rangers to one run in 5 1/3 innings in his first start, he next blanked the Mets in seven innings, punching out seven batters. Last year, inflated 5.12 BB/9 and 1.28 HR/9 ratios hurt Santiago’s ERA, but so far in 2013, he’s been able to limit both his walks and homers allowed. His high projected strikeout rate, near 8.0 K/9, makes him an appealing option for all league types, and his soft May schedule (@MIN, @LAA, MIA, @CHC) only sweetens the pot.

Jamey Wright, RP, Tampa Bay Rays
Ownership: ESPN: 0.0% Yahoo!: 0%  CBS: 0%
2013 Stats: 14.0 IP, 0 W, 0 SV, 12 K, 1.29 ERA, 0.93 WHIP

As Jason Collete proclaimed in the Towers of Power Fantasy Hour Facebook Group, “Fernando Rodney is once again a pumpkin.” His 5.08 ERA and 1.78 WHIP support this statement, so let’s see who potential replacements are in the Rays bullpen. In the preseason, Jake McGee would be the first answer, but he’s lost faith in his secondary offerings and has an ERA in the 11.00s. After that, there’s Jamey Wright and setup man Joel Peralta, who are performing well in the Rays pen. Admittedly, I would assume Peralta is next in line, but Collette believes Wright would be the Rays’ first choice. It’s all speculation at this point, but if you have an extra roster spot, stashing Wright could be worth a try.

Jordan Lyles, SP, Houston Astros
Ownership: ESPN: 0.0% Yahoo!: 5%  CBS: 3%
2013 Stats: 10.0 IP, 1 W, 0 SV, 12 K, 4.50 ERA, 1.30 WHIP

A former top prospect, Lyles’ stock has since fallen with two subpar major-league auditions in 2010 and 2011. It’s important to note that he was 20 and 21 years old in those seasons, when most pitchers are still “developing” in the minors. Therefore, it’s reasonable to expect for some growth in Lyles, who has performed decently in two starts against the Tigers and Angels. The strikeout gains he’s displayed thus far will certainly regress, but given his uptick in fastball velocity, perhaps he’ll maintain a solid mid-7.0 K/9. Playing for the Astros limits him to AL-only leagues for now, but deep mixed-leaguers should keep an eye on him if he puts together a few more solid starts. Unfortunately, he draws the Rangers next.

Jason Bay, OF, Seattle Mariners
Ownership:  ESPN: 0.2% Yahoo!: 1%  CBS: 6%
2013 Stats: 10 R, 3 HR, 9 RBI, 0 SB, .254 AVG

For those who have stopped following, Bay is still playing in Seattle and is actually achieving an acceptable level of production. He’s not performing like he did in his peak years, but the 34-year-old outfielder is still displaying good on-base skills with some pop in his new environs. For a player with his history, it’s worth seeing in deep mixed leagues if he can enjoy something of a career rejuvenation.

Jeff Baker, 1B/OF, Texas Rangers
Ownership:  ESPN: 0.0% Yahoo!: 0%  CBS: 1%
2013 Stats: 6 R, 3 HR, 6 RBI, 0 SB, .333 AVG

Baker is currently on the weak side of a platoon in left field with David Murphy, and, so far, he has excelled in that role, batting .333 with three home runs in just 33 at-bats. That’s a lot of threes. It’s also a lot better than his career production, but Baker has always fared well against lefties. He’s likely owned in AL-only leagues—or at least should be—but isn’t getting enough at-bats at the moment for mixed leagues. Still, as the backup for Rangers starters, his at-bats could easily increase in the future, making him a mixed-league-relevant player.

Jarred Cosart, SP, Houston Astros
Ownership: ESPN: 0.0% Yahoo!: 0%  CBS: 5%
2013 Stats: 33.0 IP, 4 W, 0 SV, 39 K, 2.18 ERA, 1.18 WHIP (AAA)

After being touted as a potential high-strikeout starter while in the low minors, Cosart has had curiously low punchout rates in his minor-league career. This year in Triple-A, though, the fireballer whose fastball reportedly touches 98 mph, has been mowing through batters with 39 strikeouts in 33 innings. In the preseason, BP’s prospect team ranked him as the Astros fifth-best prospect, pessimistically predicting a future in the bullpen. I’m guessing his recent performance is changing some of those opinions. While the Astros won’t provide many wins, their rotation is easy to crack, meaning we could see Cosart in the majors in a month or two. AL-only leaguers, take note.

Related Content:  Ownership

4 comments have been left for this article.

<< Previous Article
Pebble Hunting: Every ... (05/08)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: Nati... (05/07)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: Amer... (05/14)
Next Article >>
Fantasy Article Bullpen Report: Boston... (05/09)

RECENTLY AT BASEBALL PROSPECTUS
Premium Article Minor League Update: Games of July 25-27
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Monday, July 28
Fantasy Article The Buyer's Guide: Francisco Liriano
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Bochy and Peavy, Back ...
This is Not Your Father's Baseball Road Trip...
Premium Article The HOF Rule Change
Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: July 28, 2014

MORE FROM MAY 9, 2013
Baseball ProGUESTus: A Beat Writer Goes to t...
Premium Article In A Pickle: The Turn of the Two
Premium Article What You Need to Know: King of the Hill
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Thursday, May 9
Premium Article Skewed Left: Diamond Mining
Fantasy Article Bullpen Report: Boston Blues
Premium Article Daily Roundup: Around the League: May 9th, 2...

MORE BY PAUL SINGMAN
2013-05-23 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: American League, Week Eigh...
2013-05-17 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Loosening the Trade Lines
2013-05-14 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: American League, Week Seve...
2013-05-09 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: American League, Week Six
2013-05-03 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Lineup Movers
2013-04-30 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: American League, Week Five
2013-04-23 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: American League, Week Four
More...

MORE FREE AGENT WATCH
2013-05-22 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: National League, Week Eigh...
2013-05-16 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: National League, Week Seve...
2013-05-14 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: American League, Week Seve...
2013-05-09 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: American League, Week Six
2013-05-07 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: National League, Week Six
2013-05-01 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: National League, Week Five
2013-04-30 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: American League, Week Five
More...

INCOMING ARTICLE LINKS
2013-06-06 - Fantasy Article Free Agent Watch: American League, Week 10