After a lot of traveling the past day and a half, I have finally been able to sit down and write about the past couple of days. I gave my Alex Rodriguez suspension thoughts the last time I wrote. He’s done. I think he gets some of his money from his contract, but he won’t get to play again.
Now, there are some GREAT things going on in baseball right now. It is great to be able to watch a good game every night, and so many teams are playing well and pushing for a playoff spot. The Orioles are not playing good, but there are some teams playing amazing.
The Pirates are now 1.5 games ahead of St. Louis, a team widely considered the best team in baseball, for the NL Central division lead after winning 3 of 4 this week. They are playing great, and I am sure that they will make the playoffs after TWENTY losing seasons. I do not think they will win the division, but again, they’ll make the playoffs. They rank low in every offensive category as a team, but they are getting the job done. In terms of fantasy, Andrew McCutchen and Starling Marte have been studs and will continue to do well. I would take a look at Neil Walker if you are weak at second base and he was dropped in your league. He is going to be batting second almost every game for the rest of the year, between McCutchen and Marte. His batting average is about 30 points less than his career average, so once he starts to hit more, people will be on base to be knocked in so you can get counting stats. I like Walker the rest of the way if he is available or try to get him cheap in a trade to help you down the stretch.
The Cleveland Indians are probably the biggest surprise to me. Terry Francona has been exactly what that team needed. When they signed Michael Bourn, it didn’t make sense to me because I assumed they wouldn’t be contender. But now, they now hold a half game lead for the second wild card spot over the Orioles and Rangers after this 8 game winning streak. Averaging over 6 runs a game in that span, it probably helped your fantasy team out a lot if you have Indians. I just have a question in terms of fantasy, is Jason Kipnis a better second base option than Robinson Cano? Actually, I think it may not be a question at all. The answer is yes. Kipnis has 15 home runs, 65 RBI’s, and 57 runs with a .297 batting average. That is elite for a second baseman. While Cano has 21 home runs, 70 RBI’s, and 56 runs with a .293 batting average. I would say that Cano is better with those stats. What makes Kipnis the better option is steals. Kipnis has 21 to Cano’s 6. That difference is what I believe makes Jason Kipnis the best second baseman in fantasy baseball. However, I bet Cano gets drafted higher next year because of his consistency and Kipnis will have only had 2 full seasons in the majors. But, we’ll see.
The other AL Central team on a roll is the Kansa City Royals. They are on a serious run with a 9 game winning streak, but they can’t make up ground in the division because the Indians are on a roll too. Not to mention, the Tigers are on a five game winning streak. A big reason of this turn around… Eric Hosmer. After his disastrous season last year, in terms of fantasy because he was drafted so high, he has finally turned it around since the beginning of June.
Eric Hosmer, 23, is hitting .313/.349/.519 with 10 home runs and 30 RBI in 52 games since June 1. That’s a 32 HR, 94 RBI pace.
— Drew Silva (@drewsilv) August 1, 2013
This is a ridiculous stat line. If you did not give up on him, you are reaping the benefits. Of course, you did have to deal with him for the beginning of the season. I am excited to see if he puts together for a whole season next year and becomes a dominant fantasy force.