Today is National Comic Book Day! In honor of that, here is a link to the primary comic influence in my life: Calvin and Hobbes. The amount of hours that I spent reading, re-reading and thinking about this comic in my youth can’t be measured. Without being hyperbolic at all, it is safe to say that Bill Watterson was one the primary architects of my imagination and writing.
• Eric Chavez clubbed his 14th home run of the season last night during his 3-for-4 day. All told that brings him up to 14 on the season — his most since his days in an Oakland A’s uniform. He has appeared at both first and third base this year and has proven to be a small asset in very deep mixed leagues or AL-only formats. He only has 300 or so plate appearances, but his overall line is a very respectable .284/.341/.487. Chavez is owned in less than 5% of both ESPN and Yahoo! leagues.
• For the sixth game in a row, Coco Crisp has been out of the A’s lineup. He is still battling an eye infection and despite visits to three separate doctors, no visible progress has been made. Although he isn’t out for the season, I would bench him until further notice. Despite his hot hitting in the second half, he is just taking up a roster spot. Keep close tabs on his updates as he could return by midweek.
• Just in case anyone has forgotten, Adam Dunn is really strong. He hit his 41st home run of the season yesterday and now has 94 RBI’s and 84 runs scored. This is Dunn’s 6th 40-home run campaign and his first since 2008. That is a bit misleading, as he had back to back seasons of 38 homers. His most optimistic projection was the one conducted by the fans polling, and that had him at 33 home runs and 96 RBI’s. Barring a disastrous final nine games, Dunn should be able to surpass the RBI mark. For fellow Dunn believers, this season was everything you could have hoped for and more.
• Ike Davis also hit a pair of home runs yesterday afternoon and now has a 30 home run campaign under his belt. The downside is that his on-base percentage is just .304, so despite his 30 HR and 88 RBI’s, he is not as effective as he could be. His walk percentage, usually a culprit for low OBP players, is a strong 10% but it isn’t hard to find the root of his OBP issues. His BABIP this year is .246 and his IFFB% is 13.3%, good (or bad) for 19th most in MLB. A lot of home runs + lots of in field flies lead to a low BABIP. I’m confident that both rates will normalize come next season.
• Although it probably won’t happen, Matt Carpenter isn’t terrible far from receiving second base eligibility. He has five games played there, including three starts. He is already first, third and outfield eligible in Yahoo! formats so 2B/MI would be an even bigger boost to his value. He is hitting .304/.372/.482 in just over 300 PA’s this season and has 32 extra-base hits. Seeing as how he is owned in a mere 3% of ESPN leagues and 4% of Yahoo! leagues, I would go grab him now in every format.
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: Anibal Sanchez vs KC
The Royals on the road against a quality pitcher? I’ll take Sanchez here.
A Pitcher for Tomorrow: Josh Johnson at ATL
I adore J.J. I’m a sucker for his stuff and I swoon over what he could do in a full, healthy season.
A Hitter for Today: Nick Swisher at MIN (Esmerling Vaquez)
Swish has hit 17 of 22 of his home runs against right-handed pitchers. Even in a spacious ballpark, I like my oddsh ere.