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August 21, 2013

Sporer Report

Looking Ahead to September Promotions

by Paul Sporer


For the second straight week, the Sporer Report has an eye on September. On the one hand, I’m sad because we’re winding down the regular season. On the other hand, it’s been a tremendous season and the races to the finish in both MLB and my fantasy leagues should offer plenty of thrills, too. Speaking of those fantasy races, some of them will turn on guys who did little or nothing in the first five months of the season. I’ve got seven potential American League September call-ups—all pitchers—who could bring some solid value down the stretch.

This is some deep speculation, so keep that in mind when deciding whether or not to take the plunge. Those of your in 10- and 12-team mixers likely don’t need to pounce just yet and in fact shouldn’t pounce yet unless you’ve got remarkably deep rosters. Instead, use this as a cheatsheet of who to keep tabs on as we get closer to September 1. Those of you in deeper leagues might find a few of these guys already rostered, but otherwise should be available and if you have the roster space then you should consider getting the jump on your league mates. These are ranked in order of potential impact which accounts for the likelihood that they even get the call.

Kevin Gausman, Baltimore Orioles
Gausman’s gotten some major -eague action this year, showing brief glimpses of his potential, but ultimately failing in his first go at the highest level with a 6.21 ERA in 33 1/3 innings of work. One of those glimpses was his best start out of the five, which actually came against his toughest opponent, the Detroit Tigers. He outpitched Rick Porcello, going six strong, allowing just one run on five hits with four strikeouts and zero walks. That brought his ERA down to 7.20 at the time, and he promptly pushed it back up to 8.84 his next time out in St. Petersburg against the Rays.

His latest stint in Triple-A saw him post a 3.63 ERA in five starts spanning 22 1/3 innings with 18 strikeouts before missing some time with forearm soreness. The Orioles have every reason to be cautious with him, but he returned to the rotation this past Monday and tossed five scoreless allowing just three hits and fanning seven batters. He should get a couple more starts before rosters expand and he should at least log regular innings in the bullpen if not garner a rotation spot at some point in September as Scott Feldman has an unspectacular 4.84 ERA in eight starts with the team.

Yordano Ventura, Kansas City Royals
Ventura has wowed on a national-ish stage, pelting triple-digit bb’s at the opposition in the Futures Game the last two years, but it is his minor-league work this year that has garnered the real attention, as he’s been masterful in a split season between Double- and Triple-A. The 22-year old flamethrower posted a 2.34 ERA in 57 2/3 innings at Double-A with a filthy 32 percent strikeout rate and 3.7 K:BB ratio before earning a promotion to Omaha in early June. There, he has remained quite successful with a 3.43 ERA in 65 2/3 innings while still maintaining an incredible strikeout rate at 25 percent.

He’s 14 innings over his 2012 total, which isn’t egregious, so a couple more Triple-A starts plus a handful of MLB outings in place of Wade Davis or the currently glass slippered-Bruce Chen should still keep him on the right side of 50 innings over his 2012 mark. He should at least offer strikeouts upon arrival even if the results are a little bumpy at the beginning.

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<< Previous Article
Fantasy Article Five to Watch: Good Pr... (08/21)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Sporer Report: Septemb... (08/14)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Sporer Report: Six Sep... (08/28)
Next Article >>
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit Lis... (08/21)

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