It’s the weekend! Huzzah! Grab yourself some breakfast and relax. On the subject of breakfast, I can’t be the only one who’s breakfast habits are vastly different on the weekend than during the work week. For example, I usually eat a hot breakfast on days that I work, but my off days consist of sleeping in too late and not wearing pants all day.
• Prior to yesterday’s 2-5 performance, Alexi Amarista had a .286 average with a steal over the past seven days. He hit a bit of a road bump with a 1-20 slump last week, but he seems to have even things out. Amarista sports a seasonal .270 average and with his above average contact rate and solid minor league track record of speed, his .293 BABIP is something that I think will be on the rise. With a GB% of 50%, that just gives me even more reason to be optimistic on him. His ZiPS rest-of-season is pretty gruesome, but I’ll still take the over on that projection. He should be freely available in about 90% of both ESPN and Yahoo! leagues.
• Over the past 14 days Alex Avila has been knocking the cover off of the ball. Even before last night’s 2-4 game he has been hitting .359 with a home run and eight RBI’s. For a catcher, his .267/.367/.417 line and .337 wOBA ranks 10th for catchers (minimum 300 plate appearances). His counting stats aren’t that impressive (he did have a single DL stint this season), but for only two months, his rate stats—really just his OBP, for those of you in such leagues—can help out even in small sample sizes. He’s still hitting low in the lineup so his RBI chances will continue to be scarce, but given the way that he’s hit over the past two weeks, I hope Leyland notices and moves him up. Avila can be found available in 60% of ESPN% and Yahoo! leagues.
• I know this is his fifth mention in just over a month here at RotoGraphs, but Justin Ruggiano just keeps hitting and people just keep ignoring him. Over the past 30 days he has a 146 wRC+, a trio of homers and seven steals. He fills up the stat line on almost a nightly basis. For him to still be available in over 55% of ESPN formats and over 75% of Yahoo! leagues is baffling.
For those of you who play daily fantasy games like FanGraphs: The Game, or just like to stream players, here are a couple matchups you may be able to exploit.
A Pitcher for Today: Edwin Jackson at ARI
Sure, the ballpark is working against him but I’ve been on the record about being an E-Jax fan for a long time.
A Pitcher for Tomorrow: Ben Sheets at NYM
Sheets is pitching like an ace, at least for now. His SwStr% and F-Strike% doesn’t quite match up with his K%, but he is still keeping his FIP low, but his xFIP is over two runs higher than his current ERA. I’d play him at Citi Field, but I’d be careful on his future match ups.
A Hitter for Today: Chris Carter at CHW (Francisco Liriano)
Carter has hit fly balls at the 12th highest frequency over the past 30 days. He also has the 14th highest HR/FB%. Liriano has bottom 30 HR/FB for starters over the same 30 day span.