MLB Player Notes
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Marcus Semien, 2B, OAK3/3/2015 8:15:00 PM
Description: Athletics second baseman Marcus Semien hit a pair of home runs with four RBI in Tuesday's victory over the Giants in Spring Training.
Insight: Semien was 3-for-3 in the game, hitting the first home run off World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner. His only blemish on the day was a caught stealing. All fantasy owners should keep an eye on Semien, who has an unique blend of speed and power.?
Madison Bumgarner, SP, SFG3/3/2015 7:38:00 PM
Description: Giants ace Madison Bumgarner hardly looked like himself on Tuesday versus the Athletics.
Insight: Who can blame him? It's not October. Bumgarner allowed four runs in 1 2/3 innings Tuesday. Bumgarner yielded five hits, three of which went for extra bases. Bumgarner is a top 10 option this fantasy season, but those owners reaching for him in the top five are counting on having the postseason version of Bumgarner. He is a good regular season starter but not fantastic until the postseason
Pedro Alvarez, 1B, PIT3/3/2015 7:35:00 PM
Description: Pirates corner infielder Pedro Alvarez hit a three-run home run and an RBI double versus the Blue Jays in Tuesday's Spring Training game.
Insight: Both of the hits were to opposite field off Blue Jays starting pitcher Aaron Sanchez. Alvarez's fantasy value is somewhat limited since he is projected to be platooned at first base, but he can certainly still hit 30 home runs if he gets enough at-bats. He should also hit for a higher average if he doesn't face lefties this season. Alvarez hit just .175 versus south paws in 2014.
Carlos Santana, 1B, CLE3/3/2015 7:35:00 PM
Description: Indians' Carlos Santana went 0-for-3 with a strikeout in the team's loss to the Reds on Tuesday.
Insight: Santana did drive one pitch in the first inning, but Reds center fielder Billy Hamilton made a nice catch in the gap. It would be great to see Santana hit well this spring because he started last season so slowly. He hit .159/.327/.301 in the first 50 games in 2014, but did record an .872 OPS from June until the end of the season.
Jung-Ho Kang, IF, PIT3/3/2015 7:34:00 PM
Description: Pirates prized free-agent signee Jung-ho Kang belted a homer in his second at-bat on Tuesday against the Blue Jays.
Insight: Kang hit 40 home runs in Korea last season, so he certainly has some pop. It will be interesting to see if the right-hander's power translates to the bigger parks in the United States. So far, so good. He also grounded out and walked on Tuesday. Kang is projected to be an utilityman, playing mostly third base and shortstop, but if he continues to display this kind of power, Pittsburgh will have to find an everyday spot for him. Fantasy owners should keep an eye on him.
Rusney Castillo, CF, BOS3/3/2015 7:33:00 PM
Description: 27-year-old rookie Rusney Castillo had pain in the left side of his body during Tuesday's spring training game according to the Boston Globe.
Insight: Team doctors will evaluate Castillo Wednesday morning. Castillo is battling Mookie Betts for the starting center field job, but if the Red Sox are able to deal Shane Victorino, both Castillo and Betts could have starting roles.
Ryan Howard, 1B, PHI3/3/2015 4:34:00 PM
Description: Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard said that he lost 15-to-20 pounds, and it showed during the Grapefruit League Opener.
Insight: Howard looked noticeably slimmer, and utilized a completely new batting stance. He went 2-for-2 with one RBI. It is way too soon to get excited, but Howard has come into camp looking to prove he still has it.
Johan Santana, SP, TOR3/3/2015 10:06:00 AM
Description: Blue Jays left-hander Johan Santana will begin throwing Tuesday.
Insight: Santana is trying to recover from shoulder surgery and an Achilles injury. He hasn't pitched since 2012 and has managed just 21 starts since 2010 which makes him a long shot at best. You probably should wait and see how his rehab goes before selecting him or picking him up in April.
Alex Rodriguez, 3B, NYY3/2/2015 5:50:00 PM
Description: Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez will play Wednesday versus Philadelphia.
Insight: This will be his Grapefruit League debut. Look for Rodriguez to start at DH and see two-to-three at-bats.
Jon Lester, SP, CHC3/2/2015 4:32:00 PM
Description: Cubs starter Jon Lester will start on Opening Day.
Insight: Technically it is Opening Night, as Chicago and St. Louis will kick off the season on Sunday, April 5. Lester was brought in to be the Cubs' ace, and will have a steep opening test against a tough offense, along with likely being opposed by Adam Wainwright.
Victor Martinez, DH, DET3/2/2015 4:29:00 PM
Description: Tigers DH Victor Martinez (surgery on torn left meniscus) took 60 swings off the tee and ran on the anti-gravity machine on Monday afternoon.
Insight: We reported earlier today that Martinez was in camp for his first workout, and the good news continues, as he will push to be ready by Opening Day. Owners should not shy away from drafting him high.
Miguel Cabrera, 1B, DET3/2/2015 4:04:00 PM
Description: Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera (foot) took live batting practice for the first time this spring according to beat writer Anthony Fenech.
Insight: He isn't running yet, but owners should be cautiously optimistic about Cabrera being ready for Opening Day. He batted .313 with 25 HR, 109 RBI and an .895 OPS in what fantasy owners would call a "down" year after two MVP seasons in 2012-13.
Edwin Jackson, SP, CHC3/2/2015 4:02:00 PM
Description: Cubs right-hander Edwin Jackson will have a chance to earn a spot in the starting rotation this spring, according to manager Joe Maddon.
Insight: Jackson was demoted to the bullpen last season after going 6-15 with a 6.33 ERA and 1.64 WHIP, so he'll really have to impress to beat out Travis Wood or Tsuyoshi Wada for the final spot in the starting rotation.
Kyle Hendricks, SP, CHC3/2/2015 3:58:00 PM
Description: Cubs manager Joe Maddon named starter Kyle Hendricks as one of four starters, according to beat writer Patrick Mooney.
Insight: Hendricks earned his spot with a very good season in 2014 going 7-2 in 13 starts with a 2.46 ERA and 1.083 WHIP. He's not a strikeout pitcher (5.3 per nine innings), but he was solid everywhere else.
Travis Wood, SP, CHC3/2/2015 3:38:00 PM
Description: Cubs left-hander Travis Wood will have to beat out both Tsuyoshi Wada, and Edwin Jackson for the final spot in the Chicago starting rotation.
Insight: Wood was 8-13 last season with a high 5.03 ERA and 1.53 WHIP. Those numbers shouldn't get you a spot, so it's understandable that he'll have to earn it this spring.
Joey Votto, 1B, CIN3/2/2015 2:55:00 PM
Description: Reds first baseman Joey Votto is not up to "game speed," according to manager Bryan Price.
Insight: Votto (knee) should be healthy at the start of the season and has a .310/.417/.533 career slash line. Of course, he was nowhere close to that in 2014 when he hit .255 with six homers and 23 RBI in 62 games. Hopefully the batting stroke will return.
Andrelton Simmons, SS, ATL3/2/2015 2:49:00 PM
Description: Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons is dealing with an oblique strain that will keep him out of the lineup for about a week.
Insight: He's a great glove man, but his fantasy value is limited by a mediocre bat. He hit .244 last season with seven homers, 46 RBI, 44 runs and four steals. He did hit 17 HR in 2013, so there may still be hope as he's only 25-years-old.
Hyun-Jin Ryu, SP, LOS3/2/2015 2:47:00 PM
Description: Dodgers left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu is about a week behind after tweaking a muscle in his back.
Insight: He threw a bullpen session on Monday, so he's headed in the right direction. Ryu was 14-7 with a 3.38 ERA and 1.191 WHIP last season. He's in a nice spot as the Dodgers No. 3 starter and should be able to repeat last year's totals.
Victor Martinez, DH, DET3/2/2015 1:04:00 PM
Description: Tigers DH Victor Martinez (surgery on torn left meniscus) is in camp and will go through his first team workout on Monday, according to beat writer Anthony Fenech.
Insight: He could still see enough at-bats to be ready for Opening Day. Martinez had a great season in 2014 (.335, 32 HR, 103 RBI, 87 runs, .974 OPS) and much is expected of him this season.
Carlos Gonzalez, LF, COL3/2/2015 12:58:00 PM
Description: Like his Colorado teammate Troy Tulowitzki, left fielder Carlos Gonzalez (patella tendon surgery) did some base-running work on Monday, according to Nick Groke of The Denver Post.
Insight: Cargo should be ready for Opening Day. He has never played more than 145 games in a season, so fantasy owners must take that into account when selecting him.
Troy Tulowitzki, SS, COL3/2/2015 12:54:00 PM
Description: Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki (hip) did some base-running work on Monday, according to Nick Groke of The Denver Post.
Insight: It's another step in his progress toward Opening Day. Tulowitzki played just 91 games last year. The fantasy stud batted .340 with 21 homers, 52 RBI, 71 runs and a 1.035 OPS. He just has to get and stay healthy to be the anchor of your fantasy lineup.
James Paxton, SP, SEA3/2/2015 12:49:00 PM
Description: Mariners left-hander James Paxton is scheduled to throw in the bullpen Tuesday, according to beat writer Bob Dutton.
Insight: Paxton had fallen and injured his forearm and has been taking his time returning. He should be ready for the season and could be a viable fantasy starter. He went 6-4 last season with a 3.04 ERA and 1.20 WHIP in 13 starts, but has huge upside with his 94 mph fastball.
Chase Utley, 2B, PHI3/2/2015 12:46:00 PM
Description: Phillies second baseman Chase Utley will not play in any spring training games this week due to his ankle issue, according to Ryan Lawrence of the Philadelphia Daily News.
Insight: Utley sprained his ankle in January and will take his time recovering. It shouldn't prevent him from being ready for Opening Day.
Rickie Weeks, 2B, SEA3/2/2015 12:16:00 PM
Description: Former Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks will platoon in left field with Dustin Ackley, according to his manager.
Insight: Weeks didn't hit for a high average against left-handers last season (.256), but did pound out seven homers and a solid .865 OPS in just 133 at-bats.
Elvis Andrus, SS, TEX3/2/2015 12:16:00 PM
Description: Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus could get a few days of rest as he is dealing with minor soreness in his left knee.
Insight: It doesn't appear to be serious, but Andrus' speed and ability to score is his best fantasy asset, so its certainly worth following through spring training.
Dustin Ackley, LF, SEA3/2/2015 12:10:00 PM
Description: Mariners outfielder Dustin Ackley will be in a platoon situation with Rickie Weeks, according to Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon.
Insight: Ackley's splits against left-handers warranted the move. He batted just .212 with a .553 OPS in 151 at-bats last season versus southpaws. This will kill any long-term fantasy value.
Adam Wainwright, SP, STL3/2/2015 12:00:00 PM
Description: Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright threw a bullpen session for the first time since being diagnosed with an abdominal strain.
Insight: Barring any more bad news Wainwright is expected to be ready for Opening Day. He went 20-9 last season with a career-best 2.38 ERA and 1.03 WHIP. He has averaged 226 1/3 IP and 18.4 wins over the past five seasons so he's been an innings-eater as well as an elite starter.
Derek Holland, SP, TEX3/2/2015 11:56:00 AM
Description: Rangers left-hander Derek Hollandhas pushed back his throwing schedule due to shoulder soreness.
Insight: It's probably just typical early spring pains, but from a pitcher returning from microfracture knee surgery you always worry. Holland made five starts last seasson going 2-0 with a 1.46 ERA and 1.054 WHIP.
Jose Fernandez, SP, MIA3/1/2015 3:51:00 PM
Description: Marlins starter Jose Fernandez will throw off a mound on Sunday for the first time since undergoing Tommy John surgery last year according to the Sun Sentinel.
Insight: Fernandez is expected to throw 15 fastballs and work his way up in future bullpen sessions. Fantasy owners, however, can still not expect Fernandez to return to game action until June.
Garrett Richards, RP, ANA3/1/2015 3:06:00 PM
Description: Angels manager Mike Scioscia said Sunday that he is expecting Garrett Richards to rejoin the rotation in the middle of April according to the Orange County Register.
Insight: It sounds like the Angels have given up on Richards being available for Opening Day. Richards had surgery on his patella tendon after he suffered a knee injury in August. His recovery has gone well, which is great news for the young arm. He posted a 2.61 ERA with a 1.04 WHIP in 168 2/3 innnings last season.
Chris Sale, SP, CWS2/28/2015 1:47:00 PM
Description: White Sox left-hander Chris Sale has an avulsion fracture of his right foot, according to the team's site.
Insight: He is expected to miss three weeks and the injury leaves him in doubt for Opening Day. Sale is Chicago's ace, who went 12-4 with a 2.17 ERA and 0.966 WHIP, and a fantasy stud.
Chris Taylor, SS, SEA2/28/2015 12:52:00 PM
Description: Seattle shortstop Chris Taylor will have to beat out Brad Miller in spring training if he wants to be the starter.
Insight: Neither figures to be anywhere near the top of the order. Miller batted .221 with 10 HR, 36 RBI and a .653 OPS in 367 at-bats last season, Taylor hit .287 with no homers, nine RBI and a .692 OPS in 136 at-bats. Taylor is thought to be the better fielder.
Brad Miller, SS, SEA2/28/2015 12:50:00 PM
Description: Mariners shortstops Brad Miller and Chris Taylor will compete for the starting job, according to manager Lloyd McClendon.
Insight: Neither figures to be anywhere near the top of the order. Miller batted .221 with 10 HR, 36 RBI and a .653 OPS in 367 at-bats, Taylor hit .287 with no homers, nine RBI and a .692 OPS in 136 at-bats. Taylor is thought to be the better fielder.
Ronald Belisario, RP, CWS2/28/2015 12:44:00 PM
Description: Right-handed reliever Ronald Belisario has a fractured left shoulder, according to Marc Topkins of the Tampa Bay Times.
Insight: The former White Sox reliever doesn't have much fantasy value even when healthy, though he did save eight games last season in Chicago. His 5.56 ERA and 1.45 WHIP in 2014 should gaurantee he isn't on any fantasy rosters in 2015.
Juan Lagares, CF, NYM2/28/2015 12:39:00 PM
Description: Mets center fielder Juan Lagares is the player Mets manager Terry Collins would like to see in the leadoff role, according to Mets reporter Adam Rubin.
Insight: That would be good news for his fantasy owners. Lagares hit a respectable .281 with four homers and 47 RBI in 416 at-bats in 2014.
Alex Rodriguez, 3B, NYY2/28/2015 12:35:00 PM
Description: Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez took some reps at first base.
Insight: A-Rod is expected to work mostly as a DH, but the ability to play both first and third could add playing time. Whether he can still be a valuable fantasy option is up in the air as he hasn't played since September 2013.
Melvin Upton Jr, CF, ATL2/27/2015 4:28:00 PM
Description: Braves center fielder Melvin Upton will likely begin the season on the disabled list after being diagnosed with sesamoiditis.
Insight: Sesamoiditis is a condition when the bone behind the foot becomes inflamed. Upton will not resume baseball activities until the beginning of April at the earliest, which is unforunate because he is need of a bounce-back year. Eric Young Jr., Eury Perez, and Zoilo Almonte are the candidates to fill in for Upton.
Giancarlo Stanton, RF, MIA2/26/2015 2:46:00 PM
Description: Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton stood in the batters box with live pitching for the first time since he was struck in the face last September.
Insight: He'll wear protective gear this season. The slugger should be ready to go for Opening Day. Stanton batted .288 with 37 HR and 105 RBI in 145 games last season. A repeat seems likely.
Josh Hamilton, LF, ANA2/25/2015 5:40:00 PM
Description: The Angels are bracing for a serious penalty in reagrds to outfielder Josh Hamilton.
Insight: Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports that it is "worse" than the use of performing-enhancing drugs. We do not want to speculate, but Hamilton is seemingly in a ton of trouble. Brace yourselves.
Bryce Harper, LF, WAS2/25/2015 3:30:00 PM
Description: Nationals manager Matt Williams told CSN Washington that Harper will likely hit somewhere in the middle of the lineup.
Insight: Harper mostly hit sixth last season despite his complaints. Harpes is injury prone, having missed 106 games over the last two seasons, but Williams clearly expects Harper to take his game to another level. Fantasy owners would love that.
Homer Bailey, SP, CIN2/25/2015 3:27:00 PM
Description: Reds starter Homer Bailey might miss opening day according to MLB.com.
Insight: Bailey is recovering from flexor tendon surgery and even though he hasn't suffered a setback, he is a little behind the other pitchers in camp. Price is expected to throw a bullpen session in the next few days.
Denard Span, CF, WAS2/25/2015 3:25:00 PM
Description: Nationals center fielder Denard Span is cleared for full workouts according to CSN Washington.
Insight: Span had surgery in December to repair a sports hernia, but he is 100 percent recovered. He was a very good fantasy player last season, hitting .302/.355/.416 with 31 stolen bases and 94 runs. Span was particularly good in the second half, hitting .346/.403/.459 after the All-Star break.
Mike Trout, CF, ANA2/25/2015 3:22:00 PM
Description: Angels center fielder Mike Trout told the Los Angeles Times that he wants to increase his stolen bases and cut down on his strikeouts in 2015.
Insight: This is music to fantasy owners' ears. Trout stole just 16 stolen bases last season after swiping 33 in 2013 and 49 in 2012. He also led the AL with 184 strikeouts last season. Fantasy owners would love to see another 30-steal season, but regardless, it's hard to argue Trout isn't the first overall pick off draft boards this spring.
Adam Wainwright, SP, STL2/24/2015 2:21:00 PM
Description: Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright is flying to St. Louis to have his abdominal pain checked out, according to a St. Louis Post-Dispatch report.
Insight: Barring bad news Wainwright is expected to be ready for Opening Day. He went 20-9 last season with a career-best 2.38 ERA and 1.03 WHIP. He has averaged 226 1/3 IP and 18.4 wins over the past five seasons so he's been an innings-eater as well as an elite starter.
Angel Pagan, CF, SFG2/24/2015 11:50:00 AM
Description: Giants center fielder Angel Pagan (back surgery last September) says he's without restrictions and feels good, according to beat writer Alex Pavlovic.
Insight: OK, everyone feels good the first day of spring training. Pagan hasn't played more than 96 games in each of the last two seasons. He may also lose his spot at the top of the lineup to Norichika Aoki, so drafting Pagan comes with multiple red flags.
Victor Martinez, DH, DET2/24/2015 11:44:00 AM
Description: Tigers DH Victor Martinez (surgery on torn left meniscus) is expected in training camp next week, according to manager Brad Ausmus.
Insight: That's good news for fantasy owners and the Detroit offense. If get gets in camp at the beginning of March he could still see enough at-bats to be ready for Opening Day. Martinez had a great season in 2014 (.335, 32 HR, 103 RBI, 87 runs, .974 OPS) and much is expected of him this season.
Everth Cabrera, SS, SDP2/24/2015 9:43:00 AM
Description: Shortstop Everth Cabrera is expected to sign a one-year deal with Baltimore on Tuesday.
Insight: Cabrera would vie for the second base job with Jonathan Schoop. If Cabrera gets significant time, he could be one of the best base-stealing second basemen for fantasy owners in 2015, but he's too one-dimensional for most fantasy lineups.
Kris Bryant, 3B, CHC2/24/2015 9:40:00 AM
Description: Cubs super prospect Kris Bryant, who was named the 2014 Minor league Player of the Year by Baseball America, will be asked to work in the outfield as well as his natural third base spot this spring, according to Bruce Levine of CBS Chicago.
Insight: The 23-year-old Bryant blasted 43 home runs, 78 extra-base hits, 110 RBI while batting a combined .325 at Double-A Tennessee and Triple-A Iowa. He even stole 15 bases. He won't start the season with the Cubs, but should be up in late April or early May and should be selected in your preseason draft.
Jurickson Profar, 2B, TEX2/23/2015 2:35:00 PM
Description: Rangers second baseman Jurickson Profar (shoulder surgery) will miss a second consecutive season.
Insight: Profar surgery comes with a nine month recovery time. Once a top prospect, Profar's baseball future is in doubt.
Alex Rodriguez, 3B, NYY2/23/2015 1:59:00 PM
Description: Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez reported to training camp Monday.
Insight: The circus is officially in town. It remains to be seen what the slugger still has in the tank. His last official at-bat was Sept 25, 2013. Over his last three seasons, he hit .269 with a total of 41 homers and a .796 OPS. Fantasy owners should watch closely, but do not touch.
Alex Gordon, LF, KAN2/23/2015 1:55:00 PM
Description: Royals outfielder Alex Gordon (right wrist surgery) has been cleared to threw and take 15 swings Tuesday.
Insight: Gordon underwent extensor retinaculum repair in january He's a four-time Gold Glove winner who batted .266 with 19 HR, -74 RBI, 87 runs and stole 12 bases. He's capable of more and this wrist injury, which may have happened back in July, could have been the culprit. He could be ready for Opening Day.
Zack Greinke, SP, LOS2/21/2015 3:02:00 PM
Description: Dodgers starter Zack Greinke had a "precautionry" injection in the elbow on Thursday, according to Dodgers beat reporter Ken Gurnick.
Insight: It's supposed to help prevent "dead arm," but any time a pitcher is getting injections in the elbow or shoulder fantasy owners will have to pay attention. It's not a time to change his draft status, but fantasy owners planning on drafting him should follow this closely.
Brandon Beachy, SP, LOS2/21/2015 2:39:00 PM
Description: Right-hander Brandon Beachy, trying to return from a second Tommy John surgery, has signed a one-year deal with the Dodgers.
Insight: Beachy has appeared in only 18 games since the start of 2012, but offers a huge upside if he can get healthy.
Josh Hamilton, LF, ANA2/20/2015 6:47:00 PM
Description: Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto told the Los Angeles Times on Friday that left fielder Josh Hamilton could miss up to 12 weeks with his shoulder injury.
Insight: Hamilton's original timetable was six-to-eight weeks, so that's quite a difference. The weird thing is Hamilton hasn't suffered a setback; Dipoto has simply just changed the prognosis. This situation just indicates that the Angels really have no idea when Hamilton will be back, and he may not return until May.
Wilin Rosario, C, COL2/19/2015 9:55:00 AM
Description: Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario signed a one-year deal yesterday after losing his arbitration case.
Insight: Rosario picked the wrong time to go before the three-man panel. He had his worst season with the bat and there are also questions about his catching. Rosario could end up playing some first base if he can find the batting stroke that saw him hit 28 HR in 2012 and 21 in 2013. He'll be a high-risk catcher as he could end up losing the full-time gig or even be traded.
Eric Hosmer, 1B, KANHot2/18/2015 7:57:00 PM
Description: First baseman Eric Hosmer and the Royals agreed to a two-year, $13.9 million contract according to MLB.com.
Insight: The two sides avoided arbitration with this deal. Hosmer underachieved in the 2014 regular season, hitting .270 with nine home runs and 58 RBI in 503 at-bats, but he played very well in the playoffs. Hopefully, he can carry that streak into 2015.
Miguel Cabrera, 1B, DET2/18/2015 3:40:00 PM
Description: Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera (foot) has been cleared for limited baseball activity.
Insight: He will be allowed to hit and throw, and continue to increase his workload. Owners should be cautiously optimistic about Cabrera being ready for Opening Day.
Kenley Jansen, RP, LOS2/17/2015 9:33:00 PM
Description: Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen will miss two-to-three months after undergoing surgery Tuesday to remove a growth from a bone in his left foot.
Insight: This news come out of nowhere, and while Jansen will not miss much of the regular season, look for Los Angeles to sign either Francisco Rodriguez or Rafael Soriano to help fill the void.
Bobby Parnell, RP, NYM2/17/2015 3:08:00 PM
Description: New York closer Bobby Parnell, returning from Tommy John surgery last April, likely won't be ready for Opening Day.
Insight: Adam Rubin of ESPN New York was told by a source that he'd likely miss 2-3 weeks of the season. Parnell amassed 22 saves in 2013, but will have to beat out Jenrry Mejia if he wants the closer's role in 2015.
Justin Verlander, SP, DET2/17/2015 3:02:00 PM
Description: Tigers starter Justin Verlander threw 60 pitches in a bullpen session, according to beat writer Anthony Fenech.
Insight: Verlander appears to be ahead of schedule after offseason core muscle repair surgery. it's good news, but we still don't like our chances of seeing the "old" Verlander ever again. Last season he was 15-12 with a 4.54 ERA and 1.398 WHIP.
Joel Hanrahan, RP, DET2/17/2015 8:28:00 AM
Description: Tigers reliever Joel Hanrahan still has soreness in his right arm, reports Tigers beat writer Anthony Fenech.
Insight: Hanrahan, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery, but has yet to prove he can pitch again, much less be the closer he once was. He totaled 76 saves for the Pirates from 2011-12, but has pitched just 7 1/3 innings since the 2012 season.
Rajai Davis, CF, DET2/17/2015 8:23:00 AM
Description: Tigers center fielder Rajai Davis says he's completely recovered from a groin injury suffered late last season that hurt his play in October, says Tigers beat writer Anthony Fenech.
Insight: Davis is primarily a one-trick pony for fantasy owners. He's a base stealer, so if his legs aren't right then he's of little value to fantasy owners. He stole 36 bases in 2014 and 45 in 2013. He can be useful as a fill-in, but a low OPS and no power hurts his value.
Garrett Richards, RP, ANA2/17/2015 8:17:00 AM
Description: Angels starter Garrett Richards (knee) threw a short bullpen session on Monday - about 20 pitches, according to the Orange County Register.
Insight: This is great news as he progresses from a torn patellar tendon in his left knee suffered late August after a breakout season - 13-4, 2.61 ERA, 1.038 WHIP, 164 Ks in 168 2/3 IP. He probably won't be ready for Opening Day, but a late April or early May goal is a reasonable expectation.
Barry Zito, SP, OAK2/17/2015 8:14:00 AM
Description: Veteran lefthander Barry Zito has signed a minor league deal with the Oakland A's, the team he started with back in 2000.
Insight: Zito won 15 games with the Giants as recently as 2012, but hasn't been a fantasy-worthy starter since leaving Oakland in 2006. His best season for fantasy owners was 2002 when he went 23-5 with a 2.75 ERA, 1.134 WHIP, 205 Ks and won the AL Cy Young award. The soon-to-be 37-year-old can be ignored.
Jason Giambi, DH, CLE2/16/2015 2:29:00 PM
Description: DH Jason Giambi has released a statement announcing his retirement.
Insight: Giambi played 20 years, but hadn't been fantasy worthy for the last six years. He was a fantasy stud from 1999 through 2008 for Oakland and the Yankees. He'll finish his career with a .277 batting average, 440 homers, 1,441 RBI and a .916 OPS.
Cole Hamels, SP, PHI2/16/2015 1:38:00 PM
Description: Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels has been on the trading block for a while now, but it appears that four teams have made offers, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.
Insight: None have been accepted at this point, which means the bidding war starts now. Hamels was 9-9 last season, starting 30 games with a 2.46 ERA, 1.148 WHIP and 196 Ks. He's likely to end up on a playoff contender and his fantasy value should skyrocket with a better chance to win games and playing in a more pitcher-friendly ballpark.
Garrett Richards, RP, ANA2/13/2015 10:42:00 AM
Description: It may be Friday the 13th, but there is good news for Angels starter Garrett Richards (knee) as he's been cleared to start bullpen sessions on Monday, according to Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register.
Insight: He tore the patellar tendon in his left knee in late August after a breakout season - 13-4, 2.61 ERA, 1.038 WHIP, 164 Ks in 168 2/3 IP. He probably won't be ready for Opening Day, but a late April or early May goal is a reasonable expectation.
Aroldis Chapman, RP, CIN2/13/2015 10:31:00 AM
Description: The Reds and closer Aroldis Chapman agreed to a one-year deal that will have him throwing his triple-digit fastballs in the ninth inning for them again this season.
Insight: Chapman was once again one of the best closers in baseball and his strikeouts per nine innings was the highest of his career (17.7). Despite missing time early in the season he finished with 36 saves, a 2.00 ERA and 0.833 WHIP.
Rickie Weeks, 2B, SEA2/12/2015 1:58:00 PM
Description: Former Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks has apparently agreed to a deal with Seattle, according to Jim Bowden.
Insight: Weeks is expected to play outfield as well as second base, something he balked at for Milwaukee. he hit .274 with eight homers, 29 RBI and an .809 OPS in 252 at-bats last season. He's hit as many as 29 HR in a season and could be a fill-in fantasy option.
Vance Worley, SP, PIT2/12/2015 10:45:00 AM
Description: Pirates starter Vance Worley won his arbitration case and will make $2.45 million next season.
Insight: Worley was 8-4 with a 2.85 ERA and 1.211 WHIP in 110 2/3 innings last season. Though his won-loss record and ERA were solid, he's never had a great WHIP and is not a strikeout pitcher (342 in 437 career innings) which limits his fantasy value.
James Shields, SP, SDP2/12/2015 10:40:00 AM
Description: James Shields has signed a four-year, $75 million contract with a club option for 2019 with the San Diego Padres.
Insight: If he was looking for the perfect landing spot for his fantasy owners he couldn't have found a better one. His ERA and WHIP should drop in his new home park, pitcher-friendly Petco Park, and facing opposing pitchers should help too.
Tyler Clippard, RP, OAK2/12/2015 10:37:00 AM
Description: Oakland setup man,Tyler Clippard, signed to a one-year contract to avoid arbitration.
Insight: Clippard could rack up a few saves until Doolittle (shoulder) can return, probably in late April or early May. He had 32 saves in a closing role back in 2012 for the Nationals. Even as a setup man he'll have some fantasy value with a great WHIP and a career of more strikeouts than innings pitched (209 vs. 179).
Jonathan Lucroy, C, MIL2/11/2015 10:21:00 AM
Description: Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy will miss four-to-six weeks with a strained right hamstring.
Insight: This is not good news for one of the top options at catcher for fantasy owners, but the good news is even if Lucroy misses six weeks, he should be ready for opening day.
Wilin Rosario, C, COL2/10/2015 10:45:00 AM
Description: Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario has been practicing at first base and this offseason, according to Rockies beat writer Patrick Saunders.
Insight: Rosario could end up being eligible at multiple positions in 2015, so IF he regains his home run stroke could be a valuable fantasy asset. He hit 28 homers in 2012 and 21 in 2013, but slipped to just 13 last season.
CC Sabathia, SP, NYY2/10/2015 10:40:00 AM
Description: CC Sabathia (right knee surgery) says his rehab is going well and hopes to make at least 30 starts this season, according to a Bryan Hoch report for mlb.com
Insight: I'm more concerned with the drop in velocity over the past seasons. The left-hander has recorded just a 17-17 record, a 4.87 ERA and a 1.389 WHIP in the last two seasons and I recommend all fantasy owners take a wait-and-see attitude.
Victor Martinez, DH, DET2/5/2015 9:58:00 PM
Description: Tigers DH Victor Martinez will likely miss 4-8 weeks with his torn meniscus.
Insight: It is not a terrible scenario for Martinez and the Tigers. Look for Detroit to play it safe, putting his status in extreme question for opening day.
Victor Martinez, DH, DET2/5/2015 2:52:00 PM
Description: Tigers DH Victor Martinez tore up his left medial meniscus in a workout last week and will have Dr. James Andrews do the surgery to repair it next week.
Insight: It's horrible timing, but the good news is that the DH position doesn't require too much from the knee. Make him questionable for opening day. Martinez hit .335/.409/.565 with 32 home runs and 103 RBI in 2014.
Logan Watkins, 2B, CHC2/5/2015 11:51:00 AM
Description: Cubs infielder Logan Watkins tore his Achilles working out at the Cubs' Arizona complex on Wednesday and will likely miss the entire 2015 season.
Insight: Watkins spent most of the year at Triple-A Iowa, but did see 65 at-bats in 31 games for the big club. This news won't change any fantasy rosters, but it does show how quickly things can change.
Josh Hamilton, LF, ANA2/3/2015 7:02:00 PM
Description: Angels left fielder Josh Hamilton (shoulder) will be sidelined the next 6-8 weeks.
Insight: He needs surgery to repair the AC joint in his right shoulder. This will likely give Hamilton a late start, and there is now doubt that he will be ready for opening day.
Casey Janssen, SP, WAS2/2/2015 2:06:00 PM
Description: Former Blue Jays closer Casey Janssen has signed a deal to pitch for Washington.
Insight: It won't be as a closer, so his value will certainly be limited, barring injury to Drew Storen. Janssen posted a 3-3 record with 25 saves, a 3.94 ERA and 1.182 WHIP last season in Toronto. Expect him to pitch middle relief.
Lucas Duda, LF, NYM2/2/2015 10:27:00 AM
Description: Mets first baseman Lucas Duda signed a one-year deal to avoid aribtration.
Insight: Duda finished an impressive breakout season with 30 homers, 92 RBI and an .830 OPS . He should have a solid chance at repeating those numbers in 2015.
Brandon Belt, 1B, SFG2/2/2015 10:23:00 AM
Description: Giants first baseman Brandon Belt agreed to a one-year deal to stay in San Francisco.
Insight: Belt only played in 61 games last season, but was on his way to a personal best home run total before a concussion derailed his year. He hit 12 homers in 214 at-bats after hitting a career-high 17 in 509 at-bats in 2013. He could be a nice sleeper in 2015.
Alexi Ogando, SP, BOS1/31/2015 4:45:00 PM
Description: The Red Sox signed right-handed relief pitcher Alexi Ogando to a one-year, $1.5 million contract.
Insight: Ogando had a rough 2014, posting a 6.85 ERA while battling injuries all season, but he is still a quality signing for the Red Sox to bolster the bullpen.
Chad Billingsley, SP, PHI1/30/2015 2:45:00 PM
Description: Right-hander Chad Billingsley has signed a one-year deal with Philadelphia.
Insight: Billingsley (torn flexor tendon) has made just two starts in two years. Given the team he'll be playing with, it's hard to expect him to amass a high win total and his WHIP and ERA don't figure to be elite in the Phillies' hitter-friendly ballpark. It would probably be best to stay away.
Ichiro Suzuki, RF, NYY1/27/2015 10:39:00 PM
Description: The Marlins signed outfielder Ichiro Suzuki to a one-year deal.
Insight: Suzuki hit .284/.324/.340 with a home run and 15 steals last season in the Bronx. He is 156 hits away from 3,000 major league hits although he already has 4,000 counting his numbers from Japan. At 41 years old, Ichiro is really just a flier in standard leagues.
Jimmy Nelson, SP, MIL1/26/2015 11:03:00 AM
Description: Brewers general manager Doug Melvin said the team wasn't looking for another big piece to replace Yovani Gallardo in the rotation, according to beat writer Andrew Grumen.
Insight: That's good news for Brewers 25-year-old right-hander Jimmy Nelson, who figures to be the No. 5 starter. Nelson was just 2-9 with a 4.93 ERA last season with the big club, but posted great minor league numbers and should get another look.
Mike Napoli, 1B, BOS1/26/2015 10:55:00 AM
Description: Red Sox first baseman Mike Napoli had offseason surgery to deal with his sleep apnea and he hopes to be healthy for spring training.
Insight: Napoli had a good first season in Boston but his numbers fell off in 2014 to .248 with 17 HR and 55 RBI. The 33-year-old might not have many more chances, so we hope this works.
Tyler Clippard, RP, OAK1/25/2015 10:45:00 AM
Description: Newly acquired setup man,Tyler Clippard, could be the A's early season closer as Sean Doolittle is dealing with a slight tear in his rotator cuff, as well as inflammation and irritation in his throwing shoulder.
Insight: Clippard could rack up a few saves until Doolittle can return. He has 32 saves in a clsing role back in 2012 for the Nationals.
Sean Doolittle, RP, OAK1/25/2015 10:42:00 AM
Description: Athletics closer Sean Doolittle has a slight tear in his rotator cuff, as well as inflammation and irritation in his throwing shoulder, according to mlb.com's Jane Lee.
Insight: He is not expected to be ready for Opening Day. Fortunately for the A's they acquired Tyler Clippard who is capable of closing.
Carlos Gonzalez, LF, COL1/23/2015 1:28:00 PM
Description: Colorado left fielder Carlos Gonzalez (patella tendon surgery) has gotten the go-ahead to begin straight-line running, according to the Rockies' site.
Insight: Gonzalez has been taking batting practice for about a month. Cargo doesn't appear to be as far along as teammate Troy Tulowitzki, but should be ready for Opening Day. He has never played more than 145 games in a season, so fantasy owners must take that into account when selecting him.
Troy Tulowitzki, SS, COL1/23/2015 1:22:00 PM
Description: Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki (hip) has started fielding practice this week, according to the team's site.
Insight: Tulowitzki was already taking hitting sessions. He's played 143 games or less in each of the last five seasons. In 91 games last year, the fantasy stud batted .340 with 21 homers, 52 RBI, 71 runs and a 1.035 OPS. He just has to stay healthy.
Jesus Montero, DH, SEA1/22/2015 2:23:00 PM
Description: Mariners trainer Rick Griffin told the Seattle Times that Jesus Montero has his weight down to 235 pounds which is his recommended weight.
Insight: The Tacoma News Tribune reported Montero played at 275 pounds towards the end of last season. Perhaps he was motivated to lose some weight after a scout sent Montero an ice cream cone in the dugout of a Triple-A game last summer. Montero threw the ice cream back at the scout, and the team suspended him for the final weeks of the season. He is talented, but Montero is still not fantasy relevant.
Everth Cabrera, SS, SDP1/22/2015 2:19:00 PM
Description: The Blue Jays are considering signing shortstop Everth Cabrera according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.
Insight: Cabrera's career has suffered from off-the-field issues the last few years. He should come very cheap, and Toronto would presumably play him at second base. If Cabrera gets significant time, he will be one of the best base-stealing second basemen for fantasy owners in 2015.
Jayson Werth, RF, WAS1/22/2015 2:16:00 PM
Description: Nationals right fielder Jayson Werth told the Washington Post that his goal is to be ready for the start of the 2015 season.
Insight: Werth received surgery to repair the AC joint in his right shoulder in January. Rehab for this type of injury typically takes two to three months, so that puts him on par with a possible opening day return. Werth went on to say he will not jeopardize further injury to play on opening day, but that is still his goal.
Javier Baez, 2B, CHC1/22/2015 12:20:00 PM
Description: Cubs second baseman Javier Baez has gone 0-for-9 with six strikeouts to start the Puerto Rican Winter League playoffs according to FOX Sports.
Insight: Baez also struck out 21 times in 43 at-bats during the regular season in winter ball. Baez has great speed but doesn't put the ball in play enough.
Joey Votto, 1B, CIN1/22/2015 10:49:00 AM
Description: Reds manager Bryan Price said first baseman Joey Votto's health is looking "very, very good" according to MLBlogs.
Insight: That's reassuring for a first baseman who missed 100 games last season due to a distal quad strain. Votto should be healthy at the start of the season and has a .310/.417/.533 career slash line.
Adam Wainwright, SP, STL1/18/2015 10:44:00 AM
Description: Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright, who had his ligament "trimmed" in his right elbow last October, was playing catch, according to a St.Louis Dispatch report.
Insight: Wainwright will likely be lightly tested in the preseason, but is expected to be ready for Opening Day. He went 20-9 last season with a career-best 2.38 ERA and 1.03 WHIP. He has averaged 226 1/3 IP and 18.4 wins over the past five seasons so he's been an innings-eater as well as an elite starter.
Jung-Ho Kang, IF, PIT1/16/2015 11:54:00 AM
Description: The Pirates have signed shortstop Jung-ho Kang to a four-year deal.
Insight: Kang should be given a chance to beat out Jordy Mercer, who did little to help fantasy owners (.255, 12 HR, 55 RBI, 56 RBI, 4 SB). Kang batted .356 with 40 home runs and 117 RBI in 117 games last season for the Nexen Heroes of the Korean Baseball Organization.
Lance Lynn, SP, STL1/15/2015 2:24:00 PM
Description: It looks like Cardinals starter Lance Lynn will stay in St. Louis for a while as he signed a three-year deal.
Insight: Lynn had another solid season in the Cardinals rotation, going 15-10 with a career-best 2.74 ERA. He struck out 181 batters in 203 2/3 IP. He's a viable back end of the fantasy rotation guy.
Dustin Pedroia, 2B, BOS1/15/2015 11:52:00 AM
Description: Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia (September season-ending wrist surgery) has been cleared for all baseball activities, according to manager John Farrell.
Insight: Pedroia hit.278 with seven home runs, 72 runs scored and 53 RBI last season. Those numbers were a significant drop from previous years, but if he's healthy he's still a top-10 fantasy second baseman.


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