The Dodgers had injury problems; big ones. Kemp was on the DL with a never ending saga of shoulder and hamstring issues, Carl Crawford was dealing with similar nagging injuries and Andre Ethier was in the doghouse. Then...a ray of hope rookie sensation came out of the gates like a Kentucky Derby prize horse. Yasiel Puig was smashing homers, making amazing throws and seemingly ending up 3-for-5 every night. He and Hanley Ramirez injected life into the Dodgers and they’ve been one of the hottest teams in the major leagues since. Recently, however, the Dodgers have gotten healthier and Andre Ethier seems to be back on Don Mattingly’s good side. Carl Crawford is back, Matt Kemp came back on Sunday (and may be injured again? Yes-- already) which leaves the outfield a bit overcrowded. Puig has not been helping his own cause either. Dating back to July 10th, the rookie outfielder has gone 4-for-25 with 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0 SB and only 2 runs scored. His luster may be wearing thin as the 22-year-old has failed to make the adjustments necessary to stay consistent. Unless you are in a keeper league you may want to start searching for a replacement if you’ve been relying on Puig, as his at-bats with the Dodgers could become scarce in the not-so-distant future. He’s been fun to watch, but don’t say I didn’t warn ya.
YO KNOWS...the trainer's table
Yoenis Cespedes surely put on a display in the home run derby, but at what cost? In 2012 Cespedes had a breakout rookie season in which he placed second in ROTY voting only to Mike Trout. So, as many experts predicted, he was due for an even bigger splash in 2013 right? So-far: not-so-good. Cespedes’ injury woes continue to be a bugaboo for the A’s and fantasy owners. His flashes of power and run production have become few and far between as he can’t seem to stay healthy long enough to get comfortable at the plate. I hate to hate to sell low on such a glaring talent, but it seems that Cespedes is becoming more and more fragile and DL stints don’t get you fantasy points.
AL Hot Shots
Bartolo Colon improved to an almost unbelievable 13-3 with a win over the Angles. His record is just as unbelievable as his performance in which he tossed a complete game shutout with only four hits and a walk allowed. Baseball is weird.
Mike Napoli homered in the fifth inning and hit a second bomb in the bottom of the eleventh to propel the Red Sox to a walk-off win over the Yankees. Jonny Gomes also homered for the Sox.
Jason Kipnis hit his 15th homer of the season as the Indians trounced the Twins 9-2. Kipnis is going to be a second half stud.
Justin Masterson was hitting the upper 90s with his fastball and earned his 11th win.
Luke Scott continued his bonkers July production with his 9th homer on the year. He’s batting .375/.474/.750 in July with 4 HR and 10 RBI. He even stole a base.
Evan Longoria (20) and Kelly Johnson (15) also homered in the Rays win. Chris Archer improved t0 5-3 and should be owned in all formats.
Chris Tillman led the Orioles past the Rangers with eight strong innings allowing two earned runs on six hits, three walks with seven strikeouts. The victory was Tillman’s team leading 12th. Darren O’Day was called on for a two out save.
Alex Rodriguez. There, I mentioned his name. He’s hurt more. Thank goodness. Does anyone REALLY want to see him anymore?
Miguel Cabrera was 1-for-4 with his 31st homer. Chris Davis did not homer on this day (or this weekend) …watch your back Chris, 1 – 2 Miggy’s coming for you, 3 – 4 you strike out way more….to be continued.
***Jarred Cosart is slated to come back into the Astros rotation on Tuesday to face Oakland. Many "experts" keep calling his first start a fluke and that you should be weary of his credentials and subpar walk rate in the minors. Do the same "experts" know anything about how a pitcher is molded in the minor leagues? Do they for one second stop and realize that maybe the organization was having Cosart refine his offspeed offerings resulting in less than stellar walk rates? His K/9 is fabulous at 9.0 in AAA so whats all the fuss? How did that thought not come to fruition in anyone's mind but my own? Cosart is a great prospect and he had fairy excellent command in start number one did he not? Don't be scared away by "experts" who never stood on a mound or swung a bat people. Cosart is legit. ADD HEEEEEEEM!! He could gain a second start on Sunday as well.
NL Hot Shots
Matt Harvey is ridiculously talented. In case you didn’t know. Harvey made the already foolish-looking Phillies look like rookie-ballers on Sunday striking out ten batters, allowing only three hits and walking none. Some Phillies players had post game quotes to the effect of: “He’s the best we’ve seen this year.”
David Wright (15), Marlon Byrd (17) and Juan Legares (2) all homered for the Metropolitans.
Cliff Lee served up 3 homers for the second consecutive start. The Phillies stubbornly refuse to become sellers and Lee’s value could begin to suffer if he stays in town.
Jeff Locke once again posted a quality start with 3 or less earned runs as he held the Reds to one run over six innings with six strikeouts and one hit. Garrett Jones popped his 10th homer and Jason Grilli saved number 30.
Matt Kemp returned from the DL with a bang (and a gasp) as he homered off Jordan Zimmermann in his first at bat. Kemp would end up 3-for-4 with 3 RBI after doubling and singling. Kemp also injured his ankle trying to score. The Dodgers don’t believe its serious but who knows with Matt Glass….I mean Kemp.
The Marlins have not scored a run in 37 innings. I don’t even know what to say about that except, where is Christian Yelich? Caleb Gindl wound up hitting the game winning walk off homer in a then scoreless game. It wasn’t even really a pitcher’s duel as much as it terrible offenses clashing.
Clayton Kershaw pitched a doozy against the Nats on Sunday. Kershaw struck out nine and his only damage came in the form of two solo homers off the bat of Jayson Werth.
Adam Wainwright improved to 13-5 with eight solid innings against the Padres. Waino K’d seven Friars while allowing 8 hits, 2 walks with two earned. He’s got to be in the Cy Young discussion.
Brad Zeigler looks like the closer to own in Arizona. The lanky ginger earned his fourth save since the Heath Bell experiment went terribly wrong, again. But then again, can you trust a ginger?
Final thoughts: FREE GEORGE SPRINGER!!!!
If you want this article and other high-end fantasy baseball analysis delivered to you on a daily basis, sign up for our daily newsletter. And be sure to check out our 2013 Waiver Wire Watch List (updated daily) for in-depth analysis on gems that you may be able to find sitting on your waiver wire. It’s one of the best fantasy baseball features currently on web!
Follow Shawn Caswell on Twitter, or don’t: @CasKnowsRoto