Roto Riteup: July 30, 2013

Tomorrow, July 31, will mark the 24th anniversary of Nintendo’s original Game Boy being available in-stores in North America. The present author was not old enough to have one at the time of release, however he does have fond memories of playing on his Game Boy Color.

On today’s agenda:
1. B.J. Upton‘s looming return
2. The return of Michael Morse
3. A rough start for Brandon Beachy
4. Potential position change for Xander Bogaerts

B.J. Upton‘s looming return
There may not be a strict timetable for Upton’s return, but Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez believes that Upton will begin a rehab assignment this week. This season has been a disappointing one for Upton owners, and his injury seems to have driven many owners away. Currently available in over 55% of ESPN leagues, 40% of CBS leagues, and 35% of Yahoo! formats, Upton is a prime buy low candidate.

You’ll have to excuse his poor batting average, however Upton is more than capable of making up his shortcomings there with his counting stats. He has the potential to grab both double digit home runs and steals upon his return. A 10-10 rest-of-season performance isn’t outside the realm of possibility for him. Of players widely available, there aren’t many, perhaps none, that can realistically make that claim. If Upton happens to be available to pick up in your league, grab him.

The return of Michael Morse
Yesterday the Seattle Mariners activated Michael Morse from the 15-day disabled list and designated Jason Bay for assignment to free up a roster spot. Morse figures to be the starting right fielder and with secure playing time could be a solid power play down the stretch. Since arriving in Seattle, Morse has been limited to just 56 games and 226 PA’s, though he has hit well in stretches. His home run per fly ball rate has seen a slight drop from his career average, but his 19.6% HR/FB% rates in the top 25 in baseball with a minimum of 220 PA’s.

Morse’s power is still playable in Safeco and he is eligible in the outfield as well as first base. In addition to his playing time and position flexibility, Morse is available in plenty of leagues. One can grab Morse in 35% of CBS leagues, 55% of Yahoo! formats, and 65% of CBS leagues. If anyone is looking for a potential late season power surge, Morse has more pros than cons.

A rough start for Brandon Beachy
In his first major league start since June of last year, Brandon Beachy failed to reach the fifth inning while throwing 84 pitches. He did generate 12 swinging strikes and claimed five strikeouts against just one walk. The trouble was that five of his eight hits allowed were for extra bases, including two solo home runs.

There was good news, as Beachy’s fastballs — both two and four-seam — averaged about 92 mph, basically right in line with his career average of 91.6 mph. It certainly wasn’t an awe-inspiring season debut for Beachy, but there is reason to hope for better results later. Beachy is still a good buy and is available in 50% of both Yahoo! and CBS leagues though just 20% of CBS leagues.

Potential position change for Xander Bogaerts
There have been countless words and pages discussing and debating a potentially needed position change for Xander Bogaerts, however yesterday the Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell may have shed some new light on the subject. Farrell mentioned that Bogaerts feels more comfortable at shortstop, as one would expect, but the possibility of moving him to third at the big league level remains in play. Yesterday marked the fifth time that Bogaerts started at third base in Triple-A. He is currently hitting for a strong .273/.377/.476 line as a 20-year-old. Now that Jose Iglesias has cooled off and with Will Middlebrooks still in Triple-A, Bogaerts may be the third baseman in Boston sooner rather than later. At this point a call up before rosters expand seems likely.

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15 Responses to “Roto Riteup: July 30, 2013”

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  1. dirck says:

    Sounds like Middlebrooks has been forgotten. That sure didn’t take long .Isn’t it funny how some guys seem to get chance after chance even after producing nothing ,while other guys can look great for a while ,but as soon as they cool down they become Claude Rains . I was never a big Middlebrooks fan ,but the Sawks sure did dump him quickly .

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    • SKob says:

      I’m not sure how allowing him to suck on an MLB team for 3 months is dumping him? How many options were there? He hasn’t done anything in the minors to deserve a recall, so again, what are the options?

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    • David Wiers says:

      I was skeptical of Middlebrooks’ strikeout and contact rates, but I didn’t expect him to fall this far. A .221 BABIP isn’t helping, nor is sustainable, so there is plenty of hope for him to turn things around.

      He might just be a .270, 20 home run, .320 OBP guy. If Middlebrooks settles in as the third base version of a poor man’s Nelson Cruz, that still isn’t too bad and is certainly useful in fantasy leagues.

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  2. jon says:

    You rather Morse or the should-be 2nd half surger Adam LaRoche for the rest of the season? OPS is my 6th cat. 10-team Roto. I’ve been waiting on LaRoche but he’s been turrible and shown almost no power of late.

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  3. shibboleth says:

    The problem with Upton is by the time we recognize he has “figured it out” he’ll be halfway through that good production. Worst 4th round pick ever. Of all time.

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  4. Eric says:

    Debating grabbing Lake and dropping Yelich? Thoughts? Everyone is loving Yelich, though.

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  5. Ruki Motomiya says:

    B.J. seemed to be getting better before he got injured…but that injury might have brought that all crashing down. High risk, high reward there.

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  6. Daniel W says:

    Oh my God, Wiers. Gameboy Color??? How old are you? Just kidding, I had one too.

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    • David Wiers says:

      I turn 26 in 8 days. Don’t rub it in. I think I’m having a quarter-life crisis.

      But really, Mario Golf was awesome on the GB Color.

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      • Daniel W says:

        I turn 25 in December. We baseball nerds get younger every year! And I’ve still got my Gameboy Pocket and Gameboy Color, both in working condition. Never graduated beyond the Color though.

        And I’m definitely having a quarter life crisis. Do I go to grad school? All my friends are married with kids?!? And I’ll have to find a copy of Mario Golf somewhere. Am I missing out?

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