Yesterday's daily wrap: -Mark Trumbo hit a walkoff HR in the bottom of the 9th for the Angels 7th straight win. Trumbo is have a sneakily good season to the tune of .333/.388/.592 with 8HRs and 22 RBIs. Angels will be scary when Pujols returns to form.
-Speaking of the Angels, Jered Weaver was forced to leave the game in the first inning after just 12 pitches with what is currently spoken of as "a lower back injury". Not good news for fantasy owners.
-Chris Sale fanned 15 in 7.1 leading his squad to a 2-1 victory. Rumors are he had a greatly expanded strikezone, since he and Rays starter Matt Moore combined for 25Ks over 14.1 combined innings. Speaking of Moore, is the hype train back and ready to keep rolling?
-Pitching theme continued: Cole Hamels pitches 8 innings, wins league leading 8th game. On a rotation including Doc Halladay and Cliff Lee, Hamels has been masterful. He's certainly making a case for that big payday he'll be receiving from some team come 2013.
- Lance Lynn continues to reward shareholders with another win and another excellent outing. Exactly who you'd expect to be near the top of the league wins wise at the beginning of the season amirite?
-Starlin Castro hit a homer, allowing the cubs to snap a 12 game losing streak. Lets face it, it's false hope though. The Cubbies have looked pretty rough this season. Castro is at least having a decent season at a thin SS position. (he currently holds a .315/.324/.447 slash with 4 HRs, 31 RBIs and 14 SB)
-James McDonald continues to impress, showing his stuff with 8 shutout innings enroute to a 4-1 win.
Rumor has it that Kemp is due off the DL today or tomorrow? He crushed his rehab stint in the minors and is supposedly due off the DL on Tuesday. At the worst, he'll be back sometime this week. Fantasy owners everywhere who own Kemp rejoice.
Fairly full slate today, here's the docket (time in ET):
Rumors of a greatly expanded strike zone for Sale and Moore are actually unfounded and I'm guessing just speculation from someone who didn't watch the game and only saw the gaudy box score stats. Neither guy was really nibbling the corners, anyway -- lots of swinging and missing in that game.
MLB.com has a video of Sale's 15 ks and you can see that TB had no chance against him; most of his strikeouts were of the swing-and-miss variety (he actually had a total of 26[!} swinging strikes over 7.1 IP) and the ones that were looking all had the plate. His back foot slider to righties was Big Unit-esque and utterly unhittable, easily the best it's looked this year, while he changed speeds well with his heater (about 90-97) and located it well all game. He threw a good amount of changeups that, again, had a big range of speed (78-85). That's a pitch he's really starting to gain confidence in. He used to leave it up consistently, which is why he hasn't used it as much as maybe he should, but if he can command it it's almost as big a wipeout pitch as his slider and will put considerably less strain on his arm, so good news all around there. He hung two pitches, both which were hit hard, the only mistakes he made all game.
Moore was a little less impressive, if only because he gave the White Sox a number of good pitches to hit and, other than Dunn, they couldn't square them up. Konerko, especially, looked like he had a tough time picking up the movement of the ball. Still great to see his control come back and I'd definitely snatch him up if he's on the wire in your league, as long as you can take a little hit to your WHIP.
Sale's a guy I targeted in all my leagues before this season started, so I've been watching him very closely. At this point the only thing you should be concerned about as a Sale owner is his durability. All the stats point to him being a real deal stud (xFIP below 3, 9.52 K/9, 3.81 K/BB) -- he isn't accidentally dominating like Joe Saunders was -- and only his low HR/FB% should give you a little pause. But that just means when it evens out he'll merely be a top-20 stud and not a CY Young award winner.
Nice write up on Sale sebby. I watched most of that game as well and I agree that the strike zone didnt look like anything out the normal range to me either.
My current 1B are Encarnacion and Freeman. Morales was dropped over the weekend by an owner with huge DL problems and Matt Adams is on the wire. With Freemans rather scary vision problems, crap OBP, and complete lack of production for the past month... drop him for either of the above guys? Im really leaning towards swoopin in on Adams. Morales would require burning a high waiver
Yesterday was perhaps my best overall fantasy day, ever. Recovered nicely from Fister's 2 ER, er, I mean 5 ER/5 IP effort for two wins, two saves, and 28 Ks Also batted .417 with two home runs, nine runs and eight ribbies and an SB thrown in there for good measure. Not a bad start for a week against one of three serious competitors