Roto Riteup: April 13th, 2012

It’s the mildly vaunted Friday the 13th today! Instead of bad luck and misfortune, I bring you a wide array of fantasy baseball relevant news from the world. Well, at least the world of baseball.

• The Cleveland Indians have apparently talked to and potentially signed Johnny Damon. Although it is not yet official (note the time stamps on the Heyman tweet and the Bastian article). Assuming Damon and Shelley Duncan for a platoon in left field, that figures to give the lefty batting Damon the majority of playing time. In more or less 650 PA (647 actually) in last year, Damon managed a 108 wRC+ for the season. His ZiPS line of .256/.328/.406 seems about in line with what we could reasonably expect the now 39 year old to be able to do. If you need a bench bat, Damon wouldn’t be a terrible pick. He won’t dazzle you with power or steals, but he’ll be playing against right-handed starters and figures to score some runs. He’s worth a flier if you need an OF.

Stephen Drew is progressing nicely in extended spring training. Yesterday marked only his second look at a game atmosphere since breaking his ankle over nine months ago. He only played one inning in the field, but tallied four at bats in the game. Though there is no timetable for his return, Drew is certainly someone to keep an eye on. Drew had himself a 5 WAR season in 2010 before the injury cut his season short last year. Assuming he comes back healthy, he is certain to be a mid-to-late season boost to any fantasy team.

Lorenzo Cain hit the DL yesterday after first hitting the outfield wall. If you decided to gamble and ride his hot spring training into the season, you’ll be needing a replacement outfielder. I would suggest taking a flier on Rajai Davis. Though he won’t get many starts, he will rack up the steals for you, 34 last year despite only 338 PA, and he will come around and score a few runs for you as well. If nothing else, Davis is a worthwhile replacement for the two week spell that Cain is expected to miss.

FanGraphs: The Game is a free and daily fantasy baseball system. If you haven’t yet created a player, I urge you to do so. It’s absurdly fun and highly competitive.

A Pitcher for Today: Jeremy Guthrie (COL) at SD
Normally I wouldn’t recommend Guthrie to anyone, but pitching in Petco is simply different than anywhere else.

A Pitcher for Tomorrow: Tom Milone (OAK) at SEA
I wouldn’t expect Milone to keep dancing between the raindrops and having a WHIP of just 0.75, but his strikeouts should get a nice bump against the inept Mariners offense.

A Hitter for Today: Melky Cabrera (SF) vs PIT
Melky has started this year on a tear, and is facing likely starer James McDonald. Melky tends to hit righties slightly better; by a difference of .15 wOBA. He should come cheaply so if you need to save your budget in the outfield, Melky is a potentially great value.



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Drew’s 5 WAR season was in 2010. Also, Guthrie got shelled 2 nights ago by SF and Col isn’t even playing SD today. Hochevar was the recommended start for today in yesterday’s riteup.

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