Roto Riteup — Presented by DraftKings: August 18, 2014

I have an announcement, but first, I want to thank everyone for reading the Roto Riteup over these past couple years. My announcement is simple: this is not my last Roto Riteup. You’re stuck with me for a while more.

On today’s agenda:
1. Gerrit Cole returns this week
2. Yonder Alonso done for year
3. Carlos Martinez recalled
4. David Buchanan solid again
5. The Fortunate Five

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Gerrit Cole returns this week
The Pirates’ young ace will be returning to the big league club this week, starting the Buccos’ series finale against the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday. Cole hasn’t pitched in a big league game since America’s Birthday, but he has thrown four rehab outings in Triple-A, looking good in three of them. Cole had an ERA of 3.78 before heading to the DL, and that could improve if reduces free passes to last year’s rate. Cole’s injury means there’s no reason to shut him down towards the end of the year, so he’s a big boost for both the Pirates and patient fantasy owners.

Yonder Alonso done for year
After being placed on the Disabled List on Thursday, Alonso is done for the year thanks to a strain in his throwing forearm. For the first time as a member of the Padres, the first baseman ends his season with a wRC+ below 100, making him a below-average big league hitter. It’s become quite clear that Alonso is never going to be the slugger some predicted, but next year he’ll be 28 years old, and he should still put up average or better park-adjusted numbers. That’s not worth anything as a fantasy first baseman, but it’s worth something to the Padres.

Carlos Martinez recalled
The Cardinals have brought Martinez back from the depths of Triple-A, and he’ll be re-joining the big league roster after a little more than two weeks below. Martinez is being recalled to serve in the bullpen, but if the likes of Shelby Miller and Justin Masterson continue to struggle, Martinez will be back in the rotation before long.

David Buchanan solid again
You may not know much about Buchanan, but he delivered his fifth straight quality start yesterday, giving up two earned over six innings against the Giants. Buchanan isn’t much of a strikeout pitcher, but he’s been able to post a solid K% during his nice little streak, and he’s done a great job keeping runners from earning free pases. Buchanan won’t be a standard leaguer next year, but he’ll be intriguing in NL-only formats.

The Fortunate Five

SP: Jason Vargas | $7,400 | @MIN
SP: Jordan Zimmermann | $9,600 | vARZ
1B: Billy Butler | $3,600 | @MIN (Trevor May)
OF: Jayson Werth | $3,800 | vARZ (Vidal Nuno)
OF: Josh Hamilton | $4,200 | @BOS (Brandon Workman)

Werth has missed almost a week, but if he makes it back to the lineup today, he could be huge.

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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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thoughts on shin-soo choo’s ROS outlook? Would i be better off with someone like seth smith or kennys vargas in a redraft league?

Mike Wimmer
Mike Wimmer

I think Choo’s ankle is in pretty bad shape and he could still be shut down for the year if he aggravates it. Smith would be my choice between him and Vargas and I might take Smith over Choo as well as long as you can platoon him.