Ok, ok, so he finally hit it. Alex Rodriguez finally connected on home run number 600 after what the New York media turned into a marathon since #599. It is hard to believe that it is the beginning of August and he has just 16 home runs, two steals, and is hitting .264. This is definitely a down year for Alex, but he could turn it on at any time and have a month where he hits 12 to 14 homers so you have to keep throwing him out there every day and not try to sell low on the guy. Hopefully for his owners now that he has this behind him he can focus on being relaxed again.
Are you a Johnny Cueto believer yet? If not, what's it going to take? After flashing some huge skills last season, Cueto ran his record to 11-2 with another impressive outing. Cueto allowed just one run over six innings with six whiffs. He has now given up one run or less in seven of his last nine starts and although his strikeouts would be great if they were a little higher, he is still one of the better surprises in the National League this year. I thought he would be good, but his record is impeccable and his ERA is over a run lower than it was in 2009. Cueto is definitely pitching his way into keeper consideration all over fantasy baseball.
Rookie Pedro Alvarez has really been struggling badly over the last ten games as he has just four hits and one RBI. But he hopefully got himself kick started on Wednesday as he had two hits and connected on his ninth homer of the season. He is striking out too much as well with 55 fans in 41 games, and I expect him to continue to have a rough go for the rest of the year. Alvarez is one of the exciting young hitters in all of baseball, and while you can feel comfortable benching him, I will still hold on to him in all keeper formats.
Tyler Colvin continues to hit very well, and even though he didn't start the season in the Cubs plan he is finishing it that way. He hit his 17th jack of the year, and although his average is just at .268 Colvin is certainly a guy that I think you can trust to have in your lineups for the rest of the year as a low end third outfielder or perhaps a utility guy if you need power. There is a good chance that he could still be available to you as he is owned in just 14% of Yahoo leagues.
I am here to tell you right now that Carlos Gonzalez is going to end up being a second or third round pick in 2011 when fantasy baseball drafts come along. The young kid is still raking as he hit his 23rd and 24th homers of the year and he is still hitting .319. This is not out of the realm of his talent so I don't want you to think that this is going to be a one year wonder. Gonzalez is going to be a great upper tier second outfielder and should be kept in nearly every format.
Brett Anderson had a much better second start since coming off the Disabled List, and even though it was against the Royals I have great faith in him for the rest of the year. As long as he can stay healthy, I think that Anderson won't be elite, but he should be good much more than he is bad. He allowed just two runs over seven innings and struck out four on Wednesday and his record is now 3-2. Look for Anderson to finish the season with at least eight wins and at least four to five strikeouts per starts.
It wasn't a no hitter, but Edwin Jackson was very good in his outing for the White Sox. He gave up one run over seven innings and struck out six. He pitched well in the American League before, so I'm not really worried about him switching leagues after the trade. Jackson could be a nice fourth pitcher on your staff and should win another four or five games before the year is out.
Rookie Brian Matusz had one of his better starts in quite a while as he struggles through his first season. Although the bullpen completely gave up the booty, Matusz still did well as he gave up just one run over six innings and struck out three. There is very little cause for hope for him in 2010, but he is someone that I would like you all to keep your eye on next season.
Scott Baker hasn't been very good this year, but he could be a nice guy to watch down the stretch. His great outing was blown by the bullpen, but Baker still threw eight shutout innings and struck out seven. He has been good before and is a quality pitcher so there is no reason he can't go on a nice run. The Twins also tend to finish the season strong, so if anyone was stupid enough to let go of Baker, I would certainly pick him up.
Marlins' rookie Mike Stanton connected on his tenth home run of the season on Wednesday, and it was his fourth in the last ten days. He is still hitting for a poor average and striking out too much, but if you need a power boost at the end of the season, Stanton could be your guy. He is still only owned in 24% of Yahoo leagues and has a very bright future in front of him.
All of a sudden Houston's Chris Johnson has caught fire. He hit his second homer in the past five days, and he also has driven in 11 runs over that span. Third base isn't exactly a deep position, so you could possibly need help at that position. Johnson was a fine minor league hitter and is definitely the hot corner guy in Houston for the future, and now that they have completely thrown in the towel you can guarantee that he will play everyday. Johnson could keep you a float for the last seven weeks.
You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any question, and I guarantee a response within 18 hours. Please listen to The Fantasy Alarm Show on Blog Talk Radio. Listen to Jeff Mans and Ryan Hallam give you all the latest news and analysis on the topics you are thinking about in fantasy sports, plus plenty of extra laughs as well. You can hear the show Sunday nights at 11:00pm EST and Tuesday night at 9:30pm EST at blogtalkradio.com/fantasyalarm. Don't miss it, it is appointment radio!
Rounding The Bases - Todd Zola Looks At The First 10 Rounds of a Likely 2014 Fantasy Baseball Draft
Master Fantasy Baseball Notes From Todd Zola - Looking Ahead To The 2014 Fantasy Baseball Season
Rounding The Bases - Master Fantasy Baseball Notes From Todd Zola
The Farm Report: Minor League Baseball Coverage From A Fantasy Perspective (20 Prospects for '14)
2013 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Pickups: Week 24
The Farm Report: Minor League Baseball Coverage From A Fantasy Perspective (September Call-Ups)
2013 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Pickups: Week 23
Rounding the Bases: A Day For the Little Man
Rounding The Bases: Morse, Willingham On the Move?
The Farm Report: Minor League Baseball Coverage From A Fantasy Perspective (Roster Expansion)
2013 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Pickups: Week 22
Rounding the Bases: Five Surging Pitchers & Hitters
Rounding the Bases: Rookies, Veterans & Roster Movement
The Farm Report: Minor League Baseball Coverage From A Fantasy Perspective (Pitching Help On The Way!)
2013 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Pickups: Week 21
Master Notes From Todd Zola - Taking A Look at Starting Pitching In Keeper Leagues
Rounding the Bases: Small Names, Big Production?
Rounding the Bases: A First for Stephen Strasburg and the (Near) Final Round-Up
The Farm Report: Minor League Baseball Coverage From A Fantasy Perspective (Hitting Help On The Way!)
2013 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Pickups: Week Twenty