A small sampling of today's notes...
Chad Gaudin (SP-SF) - Gaudin was next up Sunday in the Giants' search for a Ryan Vogelsong replacement. Mike Kickham allowed four runs in 2.1 innings in his shot, and Gaudin surrendered just two runs on four hits with a 5:0 K:BB in six impressive innings against the Cardinals. Gaudin appeared to hit has high as 95 mph on the stadium gun after entering Sunday's game with a 91.9 mph average fastball, so skepticism is warranted there. Nonetheless, Gaudin has a 2.21 ERA and given he entered Sunday with a 4.1 BB/9, the zero walks Sunday were encouraging. He should remain in the rotation for the foreseeable future.
Ed Lucas (3B-MIA) - Who? That's what I was saying to myself when I saw his name in the box score against the Mets on Sunday, but after I saw that he went 4-for-4 with a walk, double, and two RBI, I figured I'd better dig deeper. First thing I noted was his age - 31. That was just about enough for me to write him off completely as a sleeper option, but let's look at the numbers. The year for Triple-A Newark, Lucas was batting .300/.351/.450 with five homers in 195 PA's, with shortstop his primary position. This is his first taste of the big leagues, so that's a great story and sure, there could be some short-term value here, but the best-case scenario long-term is that he's a utility man.
Lucas Duda (OF/1B - NYM) - Duda was just 1-for-4 Sunday against the Marlins, but that one hit was his 10th home run, giving him a .239/.348/.466 batting line. He was also hitting cleanup, so his relatively low 20 RBI total should start to increase at a faster pace if he can maintain that slot in the order. Duda is striking out in just over 25% of his PA's, but he's also walking in close to 14% of them to give him a respectable .55 EYE. Still, the lack of contact he's shown the past couple years serves to limit his BA upside to perhaps the .250-.260 range. Still, he's showing 30-homer power, so we'll take that.
B.J. Upton (OF-ATL) - There was a B.J. Upton sighting on Sunday, as the maligned big-ticket free agent has been struggling mightily. Sunday he was 1-for-4, with that one hit being his fifth homer to give him a .156/.237/.269 batting line. He's now 3-for-8 in his last two games, so perhaps this is a start. Upton has fanned in a whopping 35.6% of his PA's, and even his power hasn't been there, Sunday aside. In each of the past three years, Upton posted at least a .186 ISO, but even after the HR Sunday, it still sits at just .103 in 2013. He is walking in close to 9% of his PA's, and at age 28, Upton should be right in his prime. He has the reputation of being very talented, but lazy, but if you're looking for a guy who you can possibly get at a steep discount, he may be your man.
Yasiel Puig (OF-LAD) - With Matt Kemp sidelined with a hamstring injury, Carl Crawford nursing a minor injury, and Andre Ethier doing very little at the plate, the Dodgers appear poised to recall Puig this week. He has reportedly played a little CF in recent days, and Puig is not listed in the lineup for Double-A Chattanooga's game on Sunday. In addition, Dodger beat writer Bill Shaikin tweed Sunday that it would be an "upset" if Puig were not in the Dodgers' lineup Monday. Puig was easily the most impressive player on the team this spring that I saw in my triple to Arizona, and that's continued for Chattanooga to the tune of a .313/.383/.599 line with eight homers, a 50% XBH rate, and 13 steals. Needless to say, the fantasy upside is immense. Edit: Puig is getting the call.