Jermaine Dye: With 5 home runs in his last 33 AB, Dye is showing signs of breaking out his season-long slumber. He battled a quad strain in the first-half and could finally be healthy. The lingering quad problem could have been affecting his ability to hit for power as his home runs have been down, despite his FB% rising to 47% from 40% last year when he hit 44 home runs. If his power in the second-half resembles anything like last year and with major batting average upside, .178 BHIP%, Dye could be primed for a huge second-half.
Orlando Cabrera: July has not been kind to Cabrera, as he is mired in a 6 for 48 slump. For the year, his numbers still look good, 5/53/.314 with 10 steals in 12 attempts. Coming into this month, he was enjoying a .292 BHIP%, so a correction was coming. He still makes excellent contact, 91% Ct%, but his power is down and he is not running as much. He turns 33 year-old in November, so this could be a new level for Cabrera.
Michael Cuddyer: An MRI showed no break or fracture in Cuddyer's injured right thumb. He missed last night's game and probably won't play until at least Sunday. Cuddyer has not built on the big power growth that he displayed last year, 24 home runs and 41 doubles in 2006 vs. 10 home runs and 17 doubles in 342 AB this year. On the positive side, he has shown growth in his contact rate, .81% vs. .77% last year, and plate patience, .68 .vs .48 last year. His high GB%, 46% this year, makes it more likely that last year was a career year and this year's power output is the level of production we should expect going forward.
Akinori Otsuka: The Rangers placed Otsuka on the 15-Day DL, retroactive to July 9th, with inflammation in his right forearm. The injury almost assures that if the Rangers trade a reliever before the August 1st trade deadline, it will be Eric Gagne, which would leave Otsuka the closer, if he is healthy. This makes for the odd situation where an injury actually raises Otsuka's value.
Darin Erstad: Erstad, who has been out since May with an ankle injury, is rehabbing at Triple-A and hopes to be back by the end of the month. While Erstad was making good contact, 87%, he was not drawing walks, 5.9 BB% or hitting for any power, 2 home runs and 8 doubles in 202 AB. Before the injury to his ankle there was some speed left in his legs, 7 of 9 in steals, but it remains to be seen how active he will be on the basepaths when he returns. Besides the potential for a few stolen bases, there is not much upside with Erstad.
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