Rays of Hope
Desmond Jennings has recently taken over as the Rays' leadoff hitter, and he's responded by terrorizing the base-paths. The 26-year-old center fielder hit .413 (12-for-29) with a homer, nine runs scored, six RBI and was 4-for-4 in stolen base attempts over the last week. The hot week pulled his average up to .265 on the season and he is now on pace for an 18-homer, 23-steal campaign. It wouldn't be a stretch to say Jennings is within spitting distance of his first 20/20 season as a major leaguer.
David Price has returned from the disabled list with a bang. After missing all of June, Price has come on strong in the early part of July with two straight victories. He’s posted back-to-back gems, throwing seven shutout innings on July 2 and allowing only one earned run in a complete-game victory on Sunday. The 2012 AL Cy Young Award winner seems to be back on track with a 15/0 K/BB ratio over his last 16.0 innings pitched. Price will face the Astros on Friday so look for yet another strong performance from the Rays ace.
AL Hot Shots:
- Miguel Cabrera is kinda good. He was 5-for-8 over the weekend with two homers, four RBI and a stolen base. The best hitter in the game is the owner of a lofty .367 BA, 28 HR and 90 RBI with a week to go before the All-Star break. Krikey, those are close to full-season totals for some of the game’s best hitters.
- Colby Rasmus smashed home run number 16 on the season and notched three RBI on Sunday, the former St. Louis outfielder now is sitting at .250 with 46 RBI on the year.
- Howie Kendrick had a power surge over the weekend hitting a homer on Friday and Saturday putting the second baseman at 11 bombs with 40 RBI with a .311 average. The 29-year-old should be starting in all leagues.
- Jered Weaver has bounced back with only two ER over his last 20.2 IP. The lanky ace should be this good the rest of the way.
- Michael Brantley slugged two homers, doubled and knocked in 5 RBI and scored thrice on Sunday.
- Lance Berkman was officially placed on the 15-day DL on Sunday. The injury could free up some more playing time for Jurickson Profar who made his first start in the outfield n Saturday. Profar is only 1 for his last 14.
- Mike Trout smacked his fifteenth homer of the season on Sunday over the Right field wall in Anaheim.
- Rajai Davis notched his 22nd steal of the season on Sunday to go along with a homer and a double.
- Nick Franklin had two hits in the series against the Reds, both homers giving the rookie six on the season. He’s currently playing through a bruised knee (fouled a ball off his knee) but should be starting in all formats.
- Justin Smoak is slowly coming alive. Since coming off the disabled list June 18, Smoak is batting .308 (16-for-52) with a .577 slugging percentage, .967 OPS, two doubles, four home runs, seven RBI and seven walks in 15 games (13 starts).
NL Hot Shots:
- Paul Goldschmidt had a big weekend against the Rockies batting .500 (5-for-10) tallying a homer and five RBI over three games.
- Domonic Brown set off his own fireworks in celebration of his first All-Star selection, going 2-for-4 with a homer and a triple on Sunday. The home run, his 23rd on the year, is the most by a Phillie before the break since Mike Schmidt. Brown's batting .323 (21-for-65) with two triples, four home runs, five doubles, 13 RBI and 15 runs in his last 16 games.
- Clayton Kershaw dominated the scuffling Giants on Sunday tossing eight innings of one-run ball with only three hits allowed to earn his eighth win on the season. His ERA is now a league best 1.88 with a 0.90 WHIP and 129 K over 138.3 IP.
- Yasiel Puig was 2-for-4 with a stolen base on Sunday. He was also caught stealing.
- Bobby Parnell converted a four-out save to shut down the Brewers for his 15th save on Sunday.
- Patrick Corbin stepped up with 10 K on Sunday notching win number 10. He had a winless month of June, but some extra rest over the break could help him freshen up.
- Josh Satin is making it tough on Terry Collins. Satin mashed again Sunday, going 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles and a stolen base in the Mets’ win over the Brewers. Ike Davis was just recalled and the plan was to start him, however, Satin is trying to smooth his way into the lineup.
- Grant Green will be recalled by the A’s and should split time at 2B with Eric Sogard. The A’s would probably prefer Green to run away with the job due to Sogard’s lack of offensive pop.
- Oscar Taveras will miss the Futures Game due to an ankle injury. The Cardinals' top prospect will have to get healthy to make his way to St. Louis this summer.
- Avisail Garcia hit for the cycle on Sunday. If an outfield injury were to occur he would be next in line for the Tigers.
- Jarred Cosart may be nearing his Major League debut. The Astros pitching prospect has a 9.0 K/IP rate and Lucas Harrell has been moved to the ‘pen. If you have room to stash him, now may be the time to pounce on the talented Cosart.
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