An arm and a pair of legs for your fantasy squad…
Trevor Cahill | SP | Athletics | 22% owned
The A’s were dealt a big but not totally unsurprising blow when hip trouble ended Justin Duchscherer‘s season, but Cahill has stepped right in and performed admirably. He’s backed off his four-seamer in favor of more two-seamers and curveballs this year, which has helped him generate more ground balls (52.5% in ’10, 47.8% in ’09) and keep lefties in check (4.27 xFIP vs. LHB in ’10, 5.31 in ’09).
The strikeouts aren’t there (5.14 K/9) and xFIP (4.35) and BABIP (.246) suggest Cahill’s 3.23 ERA and 1.17 WHIP are destined for regression, but he should be able to sustain a low-4.00’s ERA over the long haul ((R) ZiPS projects a 4.70 ERA, for what it’s worth). After facing the Cardinals in St. Louis on Sunday, Cahill’s next two outings will come at home against the Pirates and in Cleveland.
Julio Borbon | OF | Rangers | 29%
Borbon’s fantasy value lies in his steals, and after swiping 19 bags in 49 games last year, fantasy owners were drooling at the potential of adding 60+ steals their to ledger. ZiPS and CHONE projected 30 and 34 steals respectively, but if there’s any stat that’s easy to outperform the projections, it’s stolen bases.
Borbon opened the season by hitting just .226/.243/.263 (.229 wOBA by my calculation) with six steals in the team’s first 48 games, but he’s gone off with the bat since late May. In Texas’ last 17 games, Borbon has hit .434/.446/.585 (.452 wOBA), reclaiming an everyday job and serving as the second leadoff man from the nine-spot in the lineup. The steals still aren’t there, just two for six during that span, but those can home at any time and without warning. (R) ZiPS is holding out hope for 22 SB during the rest of the season, on par with guys like Brett Gardner, Rajai Davis, and teammate Elvis Andrus.
Ownership rates based on Yahoo! leagues.