Well, who else wants to give up on avoiding TJS on their pitching staff this year? I’m not going to include Jose Fernandez in the decline column — it’s obvious he’s done for the year, and it’s also obvious how much that hurts. It’s also tempting to include Rangers SP Harrison and Perez, but for once I want to avoid players who are going to be out for the rest of the year. With that said, let’s groan at the downers and pray for the risers.
Stocks on the Rise
Kolten Wong – He’s back in the majors after a strong showing in Triple A. He lacks power, but his BA and speed should play right away. For deep leagues and NL-only leagues, he’s a great pickup right now. I believe he can hold the starting gig the rest of the year.
Carlos Quentin – He’s too risky in weekly lineup leagues, but for daily leagues, his power still plays well. Monitor his health and keep him in your lineup whenever he’s actually in San Diego’s. For leagues that play 4+ OF or 2+ DH, I’ve cobbled together some good points in the past by using Quentin for 200-300 AB and another player as a fill-in.
David DeJesus – He’s not going to blow you away with his season stats, but he could actually be available in your FA pool, and he’s getting full-time AB, so he’s worth picking up for the hot streak. He’s always been a player who can hit for decent average and power, and maybe throw in a few SB.
Robbie Erlin – He’s less well-known than many other sleeper SP, and he had a stinker of a start a while ago. However, since then he’s posted one average and two good starts. Pitching in the NL West can always help out a starter, and he may be ready for a solid season.
Mike Zunino – Catchers aren’t that exciting unless you have to start two of them, but there’s till good value to be had by playing the hot catcher on the waiver wire. Zunino has had a good week, and maybe we can hope that he’s finally found his game. Six homers this early from a catcher (tied for third among C) is a nice show of power.
Stocks on the Decline
Ben Zobrist – He was having a strong season — better than what I predicted for him. Now a thumb injury may put him on the shelf, and I worry how that will affect his swing for a while even if he avoids the DL.
CC Sabathia – He hasn’t been pitching like an ace this year, and he’s obviously not been a top-10 SP for a few years. However, the fact that he’s going to be dealing with “degenerative change” in his knee, whatever that means, indicates that his value is going to be terrible, whether you’re in redraft or keeper leagues.
Alex Wood – He pitches well and still gets bumped to the bullpen. I don’t expect it to be a permanent thing — look at all the injuries going on, and then tell me the Braves rotation will stay as it is all year — but for leagues who drafted him higher than a late-game sleeper for 2014, the missed starts hurt his value. That being said, he’ still a good long-term investment.
Aramis Ramirez – If you were surprised by the fact that A-Ram ended up on the DL, then I’ve got some oceanfront property in Arizona to sell you. A hamstring issue may be a lingering hindrance for him even though he’s not known for his running.
Trevor Plouffe – I had hoped that Plouffe’s power potential would allow him to find enough AB to be useful in 2014. As it turns out, now I’m shocked to see that he’s received even 20 AB in the last seven days. Finally he put together two hits in a game, but without the home runs, he doesn’t give your team anything of value. If he doesn’t produce a string of HR soon, I could see him being demoted or benched more often.