Elvis Andrus- TEX- Hot- Andrus went 4-for-6 with a steal and 3 RBI last night. He was expected to have a career path similar to Omar Vizquel, starting slow offensively and waiting for his hitting to catch up to his defense. Andrus has exceeded those expectations, posting a .265 or better average in each of his 4 major league seasons. This year he is at .292 and contributing in the steal column with 18. That isn't at the pace for a 30+ season as he has had every year before, but it is still an asset. Andrus has established himself as a valuable fantasy SS faster than expected.
Jake Peavy- CHA- FYI- Peavy has continued to throw a lot of pitches but it doesn't seem to have had any negative effect in the short term. After throwing 2 straight games of 120 or more pitches he allowed 2 runs (1 earned) on 5 hits and 2 walks while striking out 8 in 8 IP yesterday. Peavy was more efficient, needing 112 pitches to get through that effort. Both his ERA and FIP have gone down in this stretch, so whatever regression to the mean might come up looks like it will have minimal effect on his fantasy value. I'm still wary about a pitcher with injury history having that kind of workload, but Peavy is handling it so far.
Ryan Lavarnway- BOS- Rookie- Lavarnway's defense has improved sufficiently that he is being referred to as the Red Sox "catcher of the future." He was called up to provide some bench depth and might not get any playing time as "catcher of the present" before going back down. Lavarnway has improved his Batting EYE at AAA to .65. However, his powere has gone south. After slugging a total of 32 homers in the minors last year and 78 from 2009-2011, he has only hit 8 homers in 367 PAs at Pawtucket this year. Lavarnway has a .295 average at AAA, but also a .340 BABIP. Boston is still very high on him, but his recent production doesn't put him in the must own category of prospects.
Omar Quintanilla- BAL- Cold- Quintanilla went 0-for-3 yesterday and maybe it is the start of some regression to the mean. In 12 games with the Orioles he has a .371 average but that is driven by a .444 BABIP. Robert Andino has been kept out of the starting lineup because of Quintanilla's hot streak, but his track record doesn't indicate it's more than a statistical outlier and Andino will probably regain his starting role before too long.
Jeremy Jeffress- KC- Rise Value- Jeffress may have finally harnessed control of his exceptional stuff. His BB/9 of 3.88 this season at AAA is a dramatic drop from past seasons. It has been accompanied by an impressive K/9 of 9.47. The Royals are going to use Jeffress extensively as the season winds down to see exactly how much progress he has made. He is made of potential closer material and if he carries his minor league progress into the majors he will have fantasy value in the short and long term.
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