It’s a holiday weekend, and in the honor of National Lampoon and holiday/family misadventures everywhere, let’s lead this off with a song and a couple of players that might help fantasy owners on the run:
I found out long ago
It’s a long way down the holiday road
Jack be nimble, Jack be quick
Take a ride on the West Coast kick
Trevor Hoffman, Milwaukee Brewers (37% owned)
Trolling for saves is no exact science. We’ve tried using strikeout rates, walk rates, leverage index, ‘thinking stupid,’ and even fingers in the wind to predict closers in the past. Put this post in the latter category. John Axford has done nothing wrong – well, not quite nothing, he does own a 4.50 walk rate that might make sustaining his current performance level difficult, especially if it starts to approach his higher walk rates of the past – but sometimes doing nothing wrong is not good enough. Even though he hasn’t blown a save yet, and is probably the future at the position for Milwaukee, there’s the little matter of the former closer behind him. Not only has Hoffman turned in eight straight innings with only one run surrendered, but he’s also only four saves short of 600. Milwaukee might turn to the Hoff to boost late-season attendance in his run at glory. Stranger things have happened, and Axford owners at the very least should pick up the legendary change-piecer.
Dexter Fowler, Colorado Rockies (5% owned)
Sometimes you just have to keep plucking that chicken. About a month ago, we recommended Fowler in this space, and he promptly sucked for a while and was sent down. Well, at least he raked… in AAA. In 124 plate appearances, he put up a .340/.435/.566 that showed his team that he had little to figure out in the minor leagues. He’s still a member of one of the more crowded houses in the league, as Seth Smith, Ryan Spilborghs, Carlos Gonzalez and Brad Hawpe are all are above-average hitters. Fowler is strong against lefties, though, and in a worst-case scenario, he’ll be a caddy for Smith against lefties. However, Todd Helton has lost all his power (.066 ISO) and is a terrible offensive first baseman right now. The team might best be served (even defensively) by putting Hawpe at first many days, which would open up more at-bats for Fowler. In any case, Fowler has been up and has been playing. He’s played in every game since he’s come back up, and was six for his last eight. Guess finally trying out AAA for the first time did him some good. With his five-tool upside, he’s worth a flier in deeper leagues for sure.