Lance Cormier (
) SP, ATL
Yep, that's right, I'm predicting big (well, at least "bigger") things for Lance Cormier this year.
"But GF," you say in disbelief, "this guy is about as mediocre as they come! Why would you have any faith in a guy with a career ERA+ of 77, and that coming out of the bullpen!"
Well, the simple answer is this: he's young (still just 26 despite three years of ML service), he's been lights-out this spring and, more impressively, had a strong September as a full-time starter, and finally because there is an actual reason for the success as a starter: Cormier spent time in the minors last year and developed a cut fastball. His spring numbers were ridiculous: a 1.something ERA and a K/BB of like 19/2.
Now let's be reasonable. I'm not expecting him to turn in to a starting version of Mariano Rivera overnight or anything like that. But he's a virtual lock to be on your waiver wire, and I think he'll be able to give you 6 solid innings in front of a strong lineup and one of the best bullpens in the league with probably league-average Ks. And the upside is there for him to have an ERA around 4.
I'm not saying go drop Carpenter (seriously, how long until we get a "what's wrong with Carp?" thread?) for him. Just put him on your watch lists. Give him a start or two, and if he's looking decent (good control, getting Ks, not getting hit too hard), take a flier. He's better than your #7 guy in that ultra-deep 16-teamer you've got, and even in your standard-sized Yahoo! leagues he might be effective.