The second half of the season is in full swing and fantasy owners are analyzing whether to go for the flag or restock for next year. This week’s FAAB fantasy baseball targets will satisfy both groups as we feature two top prospects, two veterans who could provide end of roster impact down the stretch, and a starter who should be high on every owner’s list regardless of current standing. Bid recommendations are based on a $100 FAAB budget.
Welcome back to FAAB Fantasy Baseball Targets. In the last episode Travis d’Arnaud was recommended as a pick up. Since he returned from the minors the backstop has mashed an .872 OPS. Today we take another dive into the player pool, looking for players expected to receive increased playing time. As always, bid recommendations are based on a $100 FAAB budget. Players listed are available in the majority of leagues across all major fantasy platforms.
The Boston Red Sox are on the periphery of a David Price trade, but have the good to enter the running. Marred in last place six games below .500, the Red Sox do not appear to be a logical destination for the Tampa Bay Rays’ ace hurler. Throw in the ongoing feud between the left hander and David Ortiz and a match seems ridiculous. However, the 2013 World Champions are in retool mode. Feuds diminish when championships are at stake. It’s exciting to envision a Jon Lester-Price one-two punch in the Sox’ rotation if able to retain Lester’s services. If not, the Red Sox system is a strong example of what the Rays need to acquire.
Heaping expectations on an 18-year old infielder at a short season affiliate is a fool’s errand. After seeing the Blue Jays’ Franklin Barreto though, it’s easy to be carried away. With an impressive array of tools and plenty of athleticism, Barreto was a gem of the 2012 international class. Signed for $1.45 million, Toronto can afford to let the Venezuelan determine his own pace. For now, he’ll play shortstop, but what do the Blue Jays have in Franklin Barreto?
When catching unfamiliar arms, a signal caller generally works “book” and falls back on a pitcher’s best pitch in strikeout situations. It’s a common practice as battery mates learn the tendencies and preferences of their respective partners. Whether high school, college, or professional baseball, it’s a common occurrence played out on diamonds around the world. Was the Masahiro Tanaka injury a bi product of Brian McCann having to learn a new pitching staff?
Top Blue Jays prospect Aaron Sanchez has been called up after making eight appearances with the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons. While in upstate New York on a family trip, he was a must see prospect and well worth the trip to visit the Syracuse Skychiefs. Blessed with an ideal pitcher’s frame and power fastball/curveball combination, the right-handed pitcher has been ranked highly on top-100 prospect lists. About to debut, is Sanchez Toronto’s closer of the future? Or is he the frontline starter multiple scouting contacts have loosely compared to Justin Verlander?
Few players possess the raw power potential of Texas Rangers prospect Nomar Mazara. The Rangers inked the Dominican outfielder to a record breaking $4.95-Million signing bonus as a July international bonus baby in 2011. The signing of Mazara and Hickory teammate Ronald Guzman (Scouting Report) started the influx of explosive power prospects into Texas’ farm system that now includes Joey Gallo (Scouting Report) and Jairo Beras. While Gallo power potential translated in game action immediately upon his professional debut, Mazara has taken longer to develop. Since June 1st, he has hit ten home runs, slugged .546 and hit 20 extra base hits. Has Nomar Mazara finally emerged after more than a season of struggles in the South Atlantic League?
Ian Clarkin’s delivery is reminiscent of Dodgers superstar Clayton Kershaw. And while imitation is the highest form of flattery, does the Yankees first round pick have the stuff to match? Earlier in the 2014 season, the now promoted Luis Severino and left-handed Clarkin formed a formidable 1-2 punch. With a 64/19 strikeout-to-walk ratio and less hits than innings pitched, will Clarkin force his way to Tampa by seasons end?
Will a David Price trade happen? It’s the million dollar question right now in MLB with no rumor greater than a deal to the Mariners for a package including Taijuan Walker and D.J. Peterson. On the surface, Seattle has the pieces to empty the cupboard and make a deal happen. However, does it make sense for the Rays to pursue a David Price trade with a team whose best trade chip is a pitcher considering their ability to develop and acquire young pitching?
The Solo Home Run situations study has featured pitchers who have undergone Tommy John surgery or have missed time due to injury. This week, the focus is a pitcher who’s avoided the knife and thrown more Major League innings than all of the previous subjects combined: Mariners ace Felix Hernandez. Hernandez is having his best statistical campaign, already accumulating 5.4 WAR in his age-28 season. Still, Hernandez has been a reliable workhorse since entering the league in 2005. How do King Felix’s Solo Home Run ratios stack up against the young guns felled by elbow issues?
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