Melky Cabrera - Cabrera is putting up ridiculous numbers this year for the Giants, including a 426/452/667 line for the month of May after another five hits in the last two games. He has improved his contact rate to over 90%, his base stealing has improved tremendously, and the improved power that he exhibited last year is still there. All of this improvement has come despite a stunning GB rate of almost 55%, a figure that is generally reserved for slap-and-dash leadoff men. I doubt that Cabrera will ever be a 20-HR threat (last year's 18 may very well end up as a career-best), if he's hitting over .300 with 12-15 HR and 20-25 SB that is a pretty valuable bat. I expect significant AVG regression here, but the likelihood of a .300-100-12-70-20 season is looking pretty lofty right now, and at age 27 it might mean a career year, but it also means there's likely going to be value here for the better part of this decade.
JD Martinez - Martinez is once again mired in a slump (0-11 this time) and sat out the nightcap yesterday against the Rockies. Martinez has a fantastic minor league track record as a high AVG hitter with solid power, and at age 24 we would expect to see the power develop even a bit further, but this year Martinez has turned into an extremely passive groundball hitter....basically the opposite of what he normally is. Martinez's biggest weakness is likely his speed, something that accentuates the effect that the excess groundballs are having on his performance thus far this year. I still have high hopes for Martinez, but his supporting cast is weak enough that my treatment of him would depend on what style of league I'm in. In standard size roto-style leagues he's probably safe to cut. In deeper leagues or NL-only leagues of that same style I'd probably reserve him until he comes out of this slump. In points-based leagues of moderate or greater depth I would target him as a buy-low candidate, as I do expect him to both bounce back and develop more power over the next few seasons.
Dexter Fowler - After not playing for most of the last week with a right ankle injury, Fowler was suddenly batting leadoff in both ends of the doubleheader yesterday. He responded with a flourish, going 7-9 with 5 R, a 3B, a HR, and a SB in the sweep, and he improved his ISO to .276 with the huge day. The fact that he hit leadoff in both games meant a lot to me in trying to consider his value going forward, as a 26 year old OF playing in Colorado with decent contact skills, double-digit SB speed, and developing power is certainly a guy worth having. I'm optimistic that his value will continue to increase over the coming weeks, and Fowler is clearly worth a pickup in just about all formats (and is currently owned in less than 14% of ESPN leagues).
Barry Zito - Pay less attention to the 4-2 record and the 3.41 ERA, both improved upon last night by a 7 IP, 2 ER performance against Arizona, than you do to the peripherals. Zito is doing the exact same thing that he did last season except his HR rate has normalized, which basically means that you should expect him to offer a high-4.00's ERA and a 1.50 or so WHIP going forward. Be very careful here.
James McDonald - McDonald was unstoppable again yesterday, shutting out the Reds over eight innings while allowing just five hits and a walk. McDonald only fanned five, but he did manage 14 swinging strikes over 103 pitches so that figure remains impressive during this fantastic stretch. He's one out three starts ago from having 7 quality starts in a row, and honestly I attribute the lion's share of it to his control improvement. He has always had the potential for this level of performance, and I'm beginning to be a bit less skeptical that he's going to fall apart in the near future. Obviously some regression is to be expected soon, but I would hold rather than sell unless someone offers #2-type value for him.