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RotoBaller Farm Report for 4/24/2013

  • Dave Sizer from Flickr: The #future of the #mariners Mike ZuninoMike Zunino (C, SEA) has adjusted to AAA pitching and has raised his average to .259 with 10 extra-base hits in his last 14 games.  He also has 5 HR and 25 RBI in 54 AB.  With Jesus Montero struggling and Kelly Shoppach uninspiring, expect to see the quick-rising Zunino join the Mariners' big-league club sooner than later.  He could be up as early as June, at which point he should become an impact fantasy player.  If you're in a deep league and you can afford carrying a dead roster spot for a few weeks, Zunino might well be worth the investment now.
  • Jesse Biddle (SP, PHI) struck out a career-high 16 for AA Reading on 4/22. The 21-year-old has now improved his record to 2-1 with a 2.16 ERA after 4 starts.  He has struck out 30 batters against just 9 BB, and he's allowed a miniscule .126 opponents' batting average over that span. The 6’4” 225-pound left-handed pitcher projects as a possible #2 starter down the road, but likely not until middle of 2014 at the earliest.
  • Top prospect Erik Johnson (SP, CHI-AL) struck out 10 over 7 innings in a 3-1 win for AA Birmingham over Huntsville.  The second-round pick in 2011 now stands at 2-0 on the young 2013 season. He's 23 years old and has the polish and intelligence of a U.C.-Berkeley graduate, along with a nasty slider, so he could be in line for a call-up at some point later on this season. It's not worth making a roster move just yet, but monitor his progress closely as he could have some impact during this fantasy season.
  • #2-ranked overall prospect Dylan Bundy (SP, BAL) will see orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion after trying to throw off flat ground on Monday and still not feeling quite right. A previous MRI showed no damage to the elbow, but visits to the guru of Tommy John rarely portend well for young pitchers. If healthy, you can expect Bundy to make it back to the big-league club before the end of this season, as ha made his major-league debut at the close of the 2012 season. He has three really good pitches, and he projects as a front-of-the-rotation guy somewhere down the road, so if he's somehow available in you keeper league, you should pick him up. In redraft formats, it makes sense to wait to hear Dr. Andrews's opinion before making any substantial investment.

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