StrategyMay 12, 2009

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Future Rookies: Another Braves Pitching Gem

By R.J. White

Well, that was quick. The day after appearing as the Featured Add in Future Rookies, Josh Whitesell was recalled from Triple-A and inserted into Arizona’s everyday lineup, with Chad Tracy heading to the bench. Whitesell is 1-for-14 with five walks thus far, and the impressive plate discipline could very well earn him the chance to stick with the big league club, especially if the offense gets it in gear. I hope you deep leaguers were able to grab Whitesell in time.

Now Available

While I haven’t written about either of these players specifically, two players were just recalled and added to Yahoo in the past week. Chris Coghlan has been discussed thoroughly on several fantasy sites, so he’s likely to be gone by this point in any league that would warrant adding him. If you need some strikeout and ratio help, take a chance on Daniel Bard. He’s got triple-digit heat and should rack up quite a few strikeouts while not using up a lot of innings.

I’ve run out of Yahoo-available players that I want to write about, so I’m going to start digging into the lesser known guys (at least, lesser known by some) that could soon be leading fantasy teams to titles. From here on out, some of these guys won’t be available in your league but still deserve your attention.

Featured Add – Hitter

Mike Carp, 1B, SEA, Age 23, Triple-A

2008 AA47867177217988.299.403.471.874
2009 AAA1112382201826.363.490.5751.065
Last 10356380910.229   

Acquired from the Mets in the same trade that sent J.J. Putz to New York, Carp hasn’t had any problem with Triple-A thus far. In 2008, Carp upped his walk rate and saw a corresponding rise in his average. This year, he’s added power into his game while sustaining the high average and walk rate. He’s got eight home runs already in just over 100 at-bats and is getting on base over 40% of the time. With Russell Branyan playing unbelievably well for Seattle, Carp isn’t a likely candidate to be called up soon. If injuries strike Branyan and/or Ken Griffey Jr. and the Mariners hope to continue to stay in contention, Carp could make his MLB debut a bit earlier than expected.

Hitter Performance Review (as of 5/10/09)


Mat GamelAAA1122383101933.339.426.6701.096
Last 10AAA365150513.250   
Nolan ReimoldAAA1011982551721.386.479.7131.192
Last 10AAA30314187.333   
Kyle BlanksAAA1141882201534.289.391.544.935
Last 10AAA356480214.286   
Gaby SanchezAAA871941611114.345.414.517.931
Last 10DL   
Brett WallaceAA1162051601632.284.407.448.855
Last 10AA413140212.268   
Andrew McCutchenAAA114251951210.254.325.447.773
Last 10AAA33703161.212   
Alcides EscobarAAA127212815922.260.314.346.660
Last 10AAA37701438.243   

Featured Add – Pitcher

Kris Medlen, SP, ATL, Age 23, Triple-A

2008 AA120.13.521.23827120
2009 AAA37.10.960.7801044

Tommy Hanson gets so much attention (and rightly so) that it’s easy to overlook this rising star in the Gwinnett rotation. Medlen had a great year in 2008 in Double-A, as the Braves limited his innings by giving him only 17 starts and 19 relief appearances. Look for that innings pitched number to settle around 150 this year as they develop Medlen’s arm. If his first seven appearances (six starts) are any indication, Medlen has a good shot at throwing hundreds of innings in Atlanta throughout his career, starting as soon as September. He hasn’t allowed an earned run in three games, with his latest gem on May 11 providing 6.2 innings of two-hit ball, three walks, and six strikeouts, and upping his record to 5-0. With Medlen and Hanson soon to join a crowded rotation in Atlanta, the Braves sit on an enviable plethora of quality starting pitchers.

Pitcher Performance Review (as of 5/10/09)


Tommy HansonAAA40.21.990.9841357
May 10AAA8.03.380.88319
Michael BowdenAAA26.21.010.8601119
May 11AAA7.11.060.68012
Jeremy HellicksonAA30.02.100.931836
May 5AA2.04.501.00003
Chris TillmanAAA25.02.521.1601027
May 7AAA6.03.001.33016
Jarrod ParkerAA10.13.481.650111
May 7AA6.03.001.33006
Carlos CarrascoAAA31.15.461.313634
May 7AAA5.110.131.69113
Junichi TazawaAA32.13.341.2131128
May 6AA6.01.501.17013

That’s gonna do it for today. If you’re jonesing to see particular prospects highlighted in the article, or if you have any fantasy questions you’d like the writing staff to tackle, e-mail us at We’ll see you next week!

R.J. White (or daullaz) has been actively involved in fantasy sports for over 14 years, making him an addict at this point. He loves writing, the Atlanta Braves, music, the Buffalo Bills, theatre, the Philadelphia Eagles, his family, and the number 42, though not in that order.
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