Chris Davis became only the second player in Orioles' history to hit 20 homers in the team’s first 57 games. Davis hit number 20 off of Detroit’s Rick Porcello on Sunday, part of a 2-for-4 day during which he scored twice. As the calendar turned to June this weekend, Davis seemed determined to carry over his fabulous start and silence even more naysayers. Davis’s season numbers so far are rivaling those of 2012 Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera, as his .357 BA is second only to Cabrera’s .367, his 20 homers are ahead of Cabrera by three, and his RBI total is 13 off of Cabrera’s record-setting pace of 65 to this point in the season. Those owners who decided Davis was too big a risk on draft day, passing him over for first basemen like Albert Pujols or Allen Craig are kicking themselves now. Davis is easily in for the best season of his career, and he may be becoming one of the game’s most prolific power threats.
Domonic Brown, highlighted in today's Three Up column, has been the hottest hitter in baseball over his last 10 games. Over that span, Brown has hit 8 home runs, raising his batting average from .262 to .282 with season totals of 16 HR and 40 RBI. The Phillies jerked Brown around from the bigs to the minors, back to the majors in a platoon, to now finally they're giving him every day at-bats, and he has found his stroke and is raking. Over the 10-game span he’s had five multi-hit contests and has added two stolen bases. He still strikes out a bunch and hardly ever walks (11 BB in 202 AB), but the kid can definitely hit and is finally realizing his potential in Philly.
The Dodgers summoned Yasiel Puig; he will be manning center field while Matt Kemp recovers from being pathetic and hurt. Puig is an uber-talented 22-year-old Dominican defector in the mold of Yoenis Cespedes with raw power and even better speed. I have heard scouts liken his build and skillset to my all-time favorite Bo Jackson. Puig's line in Double-A Chattanooga was .313/.383/.599 with eight bombs and 13 stolen bases. While Kemp is likely to return when eligible, Puig is absolutely worth a roster spot in fantasy leagues. Matt Magill was optioned to make room for Puig after being pummeled by Colorado.
AL Hot Shots:
- Clay Buccholz earned a rain-shortened complete game victory over the Yankees Sunday as he threw 5 scoreless before the skies opened up. After skipping a start due to AC joint pain from falling asleep with his baby daughter on his shoulder, Buchholz was fantastic again. He will start Saturday against the Angels.
- Jarrod Parker has bounced back with three straight solid performances as he tossed 6.1 innings with 7 K on Sunday in a win over the White Sox.
- Chris Perez will resume throwing Wednesday; Vinnie Pestano is the add in his absence still.
- Shane Victorino will remain on the DL and had his rehab put on hold as he is still not able to run at 100%.
- Chris Sale’s scoreless streak was snapped at 28 innings by the Athletics. He pitched well enough to win but was outdueled by A’s starter Jarrod Parker.
- Hector Ambriz recorded his second save of the week as Jose Veras was unavailable after consecutive days with a save. Veras is still the guy to own and has been solid twice in a row with a 96 mph heater with great movement. However, Ambriz is the obvious choice should Veras falter at any point.
- Brian Dozier has a quiet little seven game hit streak going as he was 3-for-4 Sunday with a homer. He has two homers in the seven game stretch.
- Kevin Gausman pitched very well in a win over the Tigers on Sunday. He twirled six innings of one-run ball walking no one and striking out five. The promising start could buy him some leash.
- Yunel Escobar is heating up for the Rays as he’s posted multi-hit games in four of his last eight games and now has 5 homers after his dinger on Sunday. Evan Longoria also went yard.
- Alexi Ogando will join the Rangers rotation on Wednesday in Boston.
NL Hot Shots:
- Hanley Ramirez will not be activated Monday as the Dodgers chose to give him a rehab start instead; he should, however, be in your lineup for this week, as he should be activated on Tuesday.
- Rex Brothers will handle closing duties in Colorado as Rafael Betancourt was placed on the DL with a groin strain. The move is retroactive to June 1st.
- Chad Gaudin was good in his first start for the Giants and will likely stick around for another start this week.
- Dexter Fowler hit a pair of long balls off Dodgers' starter Matt Magill on Sunday and is 10-for-24 over his last 7 games.
- Brandon Phillips may miss two or three games this week with a forearm injury after being HBP on Saturday.
- Patrick Corbin allowed 4 ER but moved to a perfect 9-0 with a 2.06 ERA and 1.05 WHIP. He has allowed 7 ER over his last two starts.
- Paul Goldschmidt had a monster weekend hitting a grand slam on Saturday and going 2-for-3 with an RBI and 3 runs scored on Sunday while adding two stolen bases. His average is up to .337 and he is currently on pace for 38 homers and 17 stolen bases. That’s fantasy “Gold” at first base.
- Cliff Lee picked the Phillies up Sunday with 7 2/3 strong innings and 11 Ks in a 7-5 win over the Brewers. Cole Hamels coughed up a 3-0 lead on Saturday falling to 1-9 on the year.
- Bryce Harper is aiming to resume baseball activities by the end of the week. He admittedly should have gone on the DL immediately following his “face-meet-wall” incident in LA.
Getting the call:
- The Brewers have called up their 2B prospect Scooter Gennett. Together with the addition of Juan Francisco from waivers, it seems the Brewers are tired of Yuniesky Betancourt's and Rickie Weeks's woes. Aramis Ramirez may be spelled for Francisco a few times a week and Gennett could conceivably do the same for Weeks. Francisco could possibly find time at 1B while Corey Hart continues to rehab his surgically-repaired knee.
- Tyler Skaggs will be recalled from Triple-A Reno to make a start on Tuesday. Skaggs will probably stick this time as Brandon McCarthy could be out awhile with shoulder discomfort. Skaggs was outstanding in his last start; hopefully you stashed him and didn't drop him when he was sent down.
- Clete Thomas was called up from Triple-A Rochester after hitting .296 with 9 HR over 36 games. He could steal time at all three OF positions and can play CF. The Aaron Hicks experiment could be nearing its end in Minnesota.
- Zack Wheeler is expected to make one more start at Triple-A before being promoted in time for the Mets home series against the Cubs. His owns a 3.86 ERA in Triple-A and is worth an add.
Hold the Line: Coming Soon?
- Carlos Zambrano could be in line to become the Phillies fifth starter in the near future. Big Z has excelled with the Phillies farm system and threw six scoreless Sunday with High-A Clearwater. Gatorade coolers league-wide should run and hide. Big Z pitching in Philly sounds like a lot of homers for opposing teams.
- Yordano Ventura has skyrocketed onto the scene after narrowly missing out on a rotation spot for the Royals this spring. Ventura posted a 2.34 ERA and 11.9 K/9 at the Double-A level and was promoted to Triple-A on Sunday. He may not be long for the big league rotation if he keeps this up.
- Rangers slugging prospect Mike Olt has been moved up to the Triple-A level. He had vision issues but after receiving corrective surgery he has been raking. He will be looking to improve on his .139 average to start the year.
- Hiroyuki Nakajima has upped his batting average to .317 at Triple-A Sacramento. There is no reason for them to call him up but Jed Lowrie, after a hot start, has been on an offensive downward-spiral of late. He could be up at some point to get a taste of the show.
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Follow Shawn Caswell on Twitter: @CasKnowsRoto