Carlos Gonzalez recently withdrew from the 2013 Home Run Derby due to lingering soreness in his finger. That finger looked to be fine on Thursday, as the Rockies' stud went 3-for-4 with a solo homer which gave him the NL lead with 25 HR on the year. CarGo is currently one of the few elite five-category fantasy assets with a .307 BA, 67 R, 25 HR, 64 RBI and 15 SB. Talk about across-the-board production! Owners should be relieved that he has bowed out of the Derby to give himself time to heal completely and come into the second half healthy and ready for 25 more homers. He’s currently on pace for his first 40-homer season, and he looks like a lock to break the 100-RBI barrier which has eluded him since his breakout campaign in 2010 when he hit 34 home runs and drove in 117.
Chris Davis homered for the 34th time of the season, snapping his recent 0-for-17 slide. Davis now has career-high numbers, and we’re still a few days from the Midsummer Classic. Thursday, Davis matched Boog Powell at 86 for the franchise-record most RBI before the break, a mark Powell set in 1969. For a guy who has more strikeouts than hits to be hitting .310 with this much production is simply amazing. For the sake of comparison, witness Miguel Cabrera, who as of Friday has hit 30 HR, knocked in his 94 RBI while maintaining an other-worldly .366 average. Cabrera has stuck out only 62 times against his 130 hits. Both Cabrera and Davis are having career years and this surely will be fun to watch in the second half.
AL Hot Shots
- Brett Lawrie could be activated by the Blue Jays on Friday. They wanted to monitor his play on Thursday in Triple-A Buffalo, where he went 0-for-4 while playing second base. Lawrie could be a nice second half boost, especially if he gains 2B eligibility, oh…that is, if he can stay healthy.
- Jarred Cosart will indeed make his major league debut on Friday as he has been officially recalled from Triple-A OKC to start against the Rays. The Astros have also talked about giving SS Jonathan Villar a shot soon. Villar holds a .280 BA with 8 HR, 41 RBI and 30 SB in the PCL this year. If you’re in a 16-team FAAB league, now is the time to stash Villar without using any FAAB $.
- Salvador Perez knocked in two RBI in his return from a sore calf on Thursday. Perez has largely underwhelmed after being tabbed as a breakout candidate, with just 4 HR after last year’s 11 in 289 AB.
- Miguel Gonzalez now has thrown down seven straight quality starts. He defeated the Rangers with 6.2 IP and allowing only an earned run while striking out four.
- Carlos Santana missed an early chance to be the hero on Thursday, striking out with the bases loaded in his third at-bat. Santana would redeem himself with an RBI triple which was misplayed by Jose Bautista in right field, once again leaving me to wonder what an error in the outfield actually is.
- Koji Uehara stamped save number seven on the season with a perfect 10th inning as the Red Sox topped the Mariners.
- Kyle Seager hit homer number fourteen on the season; it was a solo job. He added an RBI single, going 2-for-5 on the day.
- Jake McGee, filling in for an overtaxed Fernando Rodney, pitching a perfect ninth for his first career save. He struck out two and induced a week grounder to first to seal the deal.
NL Hot Shots
- Chris Capuano twirled 6.1 scoreless innings to defeat the Rockies. He struck out a season high eight after allowing 10 ER over his last two starts.
- Anthony Rizzo had three RBI with a single and a double against the Cardinals Thursday. He seems to be coming out of his early-month slump.
- Kyle Kendrick spun seven innings of one-run ball to defeat the Nationals after back-to-back losses.
- Pablo Sandoval showed signs of life with a solo homer and two runs scored Thursday. Kung-Fu Panda has been in a 6-for-53 slump over the last two weeks.
- Brad Ziegler posted his second save on the season a night after Heath Bell imploded once again. Ziegler saved 18 games for the A’s a few years ago, and the DBacks will be willing to take anything they can get at this point. He’s worth a speculative add in NL-only and deep mixed leagues.
- Freddie Freeman showed up big after being named to the All-Star team, going 3-for-4 with four RBI on Thursday. He now has 60 RBI on the year.
- Justin Upton is now batting .318 in July after a 3-for-4 performance on Thursday during which he scored twice and hit an RBI double.
- Matt Holliday pulled up lame trying to beat out a grounder on Thursday. He claims its nothing major and is listed as day-to-day. To maximize the impact of the time off during the break, he could sit out the next few.
- Jason Heyward exited the game Thursday with a hamstring injury. He is day-to-day.
- Yasiel Puig was removed from Thursday’s game due to aggravating his recent hip injury. Probably a precautionary move by the Dodgers, Puig is day-to-day.
- Jordan Zimmermann may skip the All-Star game festivities due to a sore neck. He allowed two earned over 6.1 innings on Thursday, but was out-dueled by Kyle Kendrick.
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