Roto Riteup: Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

– Brandon Morrow is a cruel temptress, am I right? He’s like a siren, drawing you closer and closer with his gorgeous numbers only to let you crash into the rocks below. His strikeout rate is pristine, his walk rate is under control, and his HR/9 is manageable. Even his WHIP is better than average. But the ERA. Oh, the ERA. Morrow may be the pitching equivalent of someone like Jay Bruce; someone who gets taken too early every year because of his potential only to disappoint. But like Bruce, eventually he’ll probably put together a stellar season of production and make someone very happy.

– Eric Hosmer is who we thought he was. His walk rate is a tad low at the moment, but other than that, he’s performed almost exactly as I expected. He’s striking out less than 14% of the time, hitting for some power and maintaining a high batting average. Oh, and he’ll only be 22-years old when next season starts. Assuming he doesn’t undergo a sophomore slump, a .290-25 season looks to be right around the corner.

– Believe it or not, the tight races for the AL and NL Wild Card are good things for fantasy owners. If a team has locked up a postseason birth, they are more likely to have their starters and relievers take it easy over the last week or two of the season in an effort to save their arms for the playoffs. With five or six teams fighting it out for two playoffs spots, we should see pitchers be pushed a bit more and be allowed to throw deep into games that are close.

– Bragging time, America. When discussing the second game of the Red Sox-Orioles doubleheader on Monday, I said this: “If you’re a betting man, I’d suggest putting all your monopoly money on the over. It doesn’t matter what the line is, because no line could be high enough for this game.” The teams combined to score 27 runs.

A Pitcher for Today: Randy Wolf at CHC
Wolf isn’t going to be available in deep leagues, but he’s a great play in standard leagues. If you’re looking for a deep league option, go with Chris Schwinden on the road against the St. Louis Cardinals.

A Pitcher for Tomorrow: Phillip Humber at CLE
Humber effectively shut down the Indians last time out, striking out seven batters in six innings while allowing two runs. And, if you need him to, Humber can slot in at RP for you.

PickSix Lock of the Day: Jacoby Ellsbury vs BAL (Tommy Hunter)
I’m not afraid of Tommy Hunter, and you shouldn’t be either.
Prediction: 3-4, 2B, SB; 17.6 points
Last Week’s Results: 4 players (2 SP), $34.50, 52.50 points

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Zach is the creator and co-author of RotoGraphs' Roto Riteup series, and RotoGraphs' second-longest tenured writer. You can follow him on twitter.

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