Carlos Torres (SP-NYM): Torres allowed 1 earned run and struck out 6 across 6 and 2/3 innings in picking up the win. With the injuries to Jeremy Hefner and Matt Harvey and the struggles of Daisuke Matsuzaka, Torres is likely to receive an extended look in the rotation for the rest of the season. Across 55 and 1/3 innings (4 starts), the swingman has posted solid 40:7 K:BB ratio and a 2.77 ERA/3.50 xFIP. Over the past two seasons, Torres has transformed himself into a groundball pitcher and has vastly improved his control. While he isn't going to rack up huge K numbers, Torres deserves a look in medium-deep mixed leagues, especially with solid matchups at home.
Ethan Martin (SP-PHI): Martin allowed 3 earned runs on 4 hits and 3 walks in only 4 innings of work, although he did strike out 9. Ryne Sandberg said he "hit a wall" in the 4th and looks to be fatiguing down the stretch. Many see Martin as a solid bullpen arm, while others feel he could have a future as a mid-rotation starter. Control and extreme flyball tendencies continue to limit Martin, as his 13% BB-rate and .50 GB/FB ratio through 6 starts are numbers similar to what he posted in the minors. He can definitely maintain an above average K-rate (currently 23%), so if the matchup is right, the upside is there. However, I see him as more of an impact arm in the bullpen, and the Phillies may move him there at any time.
Gerrit Cole (SP-PIT): Cole battled through 7 and 1/3 innings, striking out 4 and allowing 3 earned runs on 10 hits and 1 walk. Cole now has a 3.80 ERA/3.43 xFIP and a 61:18 K:BB ratio in 85 and 1/3 innings. His spot in the rotation looks secure as the Pirates are poised to make a playoff push. However, he pitched on 7 days rest last night, and the Pirates have indicated that they might give him extra rest on occasion to preserve the arm, so keep an eye on the scheduling in those weekly leagues.
Cody Asche (3B-PHI): Asche (hamstring) sat last night, with Michael Young starting at 3B, and Kevin Frandsen at 1B. Asche has posted a respectable .256/.312/.419 line with 2 homers, 14 RBI, and 11 runs in 26 games. He is listed as day-to-day and should be back in there over the weekend. Maikel Franco, who is playing 1B and 3B in the minors to give him versatility, is knocking on the door, but rumors suggest that the Phillies want to showcase Asche as a potential trade chip. And the Phillies probably don't want to start Franco's clock until next season. I'd stick with Asche in deeper leagues for 2013, as he's likely to get the bulk of the playing time at 3B. For those in keeper leagues with the room, Maikel Franco is a name to watch.
Scooter Gennett (2B-MIL): Gennett stayed hot at the plate, going 3 for 4 with a run scored. The effort moved his line to .336/.371/.534 with 5 homers, 14 RBI, and 16 runs through 40 games. While Gennett has been fantastic so far, I'm skeptical that he can maintain this pace in moving forward. His .198 ISO far exceeds (by 100 points) what he did in the upper minors and his troublesome .30 EYE is consistent with those numbers. I do think he was slightly underrated as a prospect and can see him maintaining a solid .290-.300 AVG. I just wouldn't expect much power or speed to go with it.
Lineup questions for your playoff push? Tweet them to @Walterkuberski.
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