It was another great day around the league, so let’s take a look at all the stories from yesterday’s games.


Gio the Great…

Gio Gonzalez tossed 6.0 shutout innings, allowing just two hits with six K, so it had to be a good start, right? Well, that’s not really accurate, as he walked six batters. Yes, the results have been there with a 0.47 ERA (one ER over 19.0 IP), but he’s already walked 12 batters on the year. Consider these numbers:

  • He had a career minor league BB/9 of 4.01.
  • He entered 2011 with a BB/9 of 4.67 in over 333 innings of work in the majors.

Can he continue to work into and out of trouble? Right now he is sporting a strand rate of 100 percent, so clearly we know something is going to give, sooner or later. He also has a BABIP of .212, another number that is going to regress significantly.

Gonzalez entered the year with a lot of hype, and thus far his numbers look like he is backing it up. Considering the underlying metrics, things are going to catch up to him sooner or later. Now is probably the perfect time to cut bait and get a huge payoff for your draft-day gamble, don’t you think?


Other Notes

  • It was an amazing four-game series for Troy Tulowitzki in Citi Field, wouldn’t you say? In yesterday’s doubleheader he went 5-for-8 with two HR, two RBI and two R. Over the course of the four days he went 10-for-16 with four HR, eight RBI and five R. Is anyone doubting him as one of the elite now? He already has seven HR on the year and looks to be picking up right where he left off in September of 2010.
  • Jose Reyes went 3-for-9 with one HR, one RBI, one R and one SB in yesterday’s doubleheader. He is now on a 12-game hitting streak, going 20-for-57 with one HR, five RBI, nine R and four SB. He certainly appears primed to cash in on his contract year, wouldn’t you say?
  • The Twins entered the ninth inning with a 2-0 lead, only to see Joe Nathan implode and allow two ER on two H and one BB, striking out none. Lucky for them the game was only tied, and they still had a secondary closer just in case they took the lead. That’s what happened in the top of 10th, as the Twins went up 3-2. Of course, Matt Capps just couldn’t hold it, allowing a two-run home run to Johnny Damon (1-for-5, one HR, two RBI, one R). It’s almost unbelievable, isn’t it?
  • The retirement of Manny Ramirez has brought Sam Fuld into fantasy relevance. He went 2-for-5 with one R and one SB yesterday, putting him at .324 with one HR, four RBI, six R and seven SB. In 696 AB at Triple-A between ’09 and ’10 he had 44 SB. Over his minor-league career (2,281 AB) he hit .285. It certainly appears that he’s playing a bit over his head, so you certainly should enjoy his success while you can.
  • Randy Wolf had a tremendous start, tossing 6.2 shutout innings, allowing just three H and two BB and striking out 10. After a terrible first start (six ER, 10 H, two BB over 4.0 IP), he certainly has turned things around. Then again, his next start comes against Cliff Lee in Philadelphia. Still, he should be a solid option in all formats.
  • The poor start his last time out should be a distant memory, as Cliff Lee returned to dominance. He went the distance, allowing three H and one BB, striking out 12, in a complete-game shutout. That’s already two double-digit strikeout performances on the season. Is anyone complaining?
  • Jordan Zimmermann pitched well, allowing four R (one earned) on five H and no BB, striking out four, over 7.0 IP. He hasn’t offered much in strikeouts (10 K in 18.1 IP), but he is sporting a 2.45 ERA and 0.98 WHIP. In deeper formats, he’s a good play.
  • Phil Hughes was better this time out, but that doesn’t mean he was good. He allowed five ER on seven H and no BB, striking out two, over 4.1 innings. The sad thing is that this was arguably his best start of the year. For someone who we were leaning on for Ks, Hughes has three K in 10.1 innings to open the year. I was wary after the first two starts, but at this point he should be nowhere near starting lineups. His velocity remains down, and it clearly is affecting the results. Keep him on your bench until he proves worthy of being in your starting lineup.
  • With just two hits in his previous six games, Nick Markakis was certainly struggling. He woke up in a big way against Hughes and the Yankees yesterday, going 3-for-5 with one HR, three RBI and two R. He is looking a lot more like the player he was from 2007-2009 than the down 2010.
  • Can Wilson Betemit keep Mike Moustakas down in the minors? Moustakas’ slow start certainly will play a role, but Betemit is currently playing his part as well. After going 1-for-2 with one HR, two RBI and one R yesterday, he has an eight-game hitting streak (12-for-29 with one HR, seven RBI, seven R and two SB). It’s not going to last, but at a shallow position he is a good play while he’s hot (either as an injury replacement or a corner infielder). Be ready to move on, though, as you know the Royals are.
  • Ricky Nolasco got off to about as bad of a start as anyone possibly can, wouldn’t you say? The first four batters all got hits, and all scored. That’s right: Capped off by a Brian McCann three-run home run (2-for-4, one HR, three RBI, one R), Nolasco had allowed four ER without getting an out. Clearly, anyone watching live stats was not too pleased. He settled down, finishing the day with a line of 5.0 IP, five ER, six H, one BB and four K, but the damage was done. He’s always been a frustratingly up-and-down pitcher, so we have to take the good with the bad. His next start comes against the Pirates, and you would expect a bounce-back from him.
  • Dan Uggla went 1-for-4 with one HR, one RBI and one R. Well, at least he hit a long ball, right? On the young season he’s hitting .160 with three HR, three RBI and three R. That’s right—the only way he’s either scored or driven in a run is on solo home runs. Sooner or later he’s bound to get going, so don’t hit the panic button quite yet.
  • Was it a pitching duel between Dustin Moseley (6.2 IP, 1 ER, 7 H, 2 BB, 1 K) and Bud Norris (6.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 H, 3 BB, 7 K, W), or was it two anemic offenses looking awful? Either way, both pitchers looked good. Norris does have potential as a low-end option of strikeouts, and so far he’s matching that billing with 20 K over 16.0 IP. While he does have a 5.06 ERA, his WHIP is just 1.19. His next start comes against the Mets in Citi Field, and those in deeper formats can consider taking a flier on him.
  • It was a non-save situation for Ryan Franklin, but you still can’t like seeing him give up a home run in his only inning of work. Of course, it did lower his ERA to 9.64, but what does that say? It remains to be seen who the Cardinals go to with the game on the line at this point.
  • Albert Pujols went 1-for-5 with one HR, one RBI and two R, just his second home run of the year. He’s now on a modest four-game hitting streak with one HR, three RBI and six R over that stretch. You knew it was just a matter of time.
  • Matt Kemp went 3-for-5 with one HR, two RBI, two R and one SB. On the year he’s hitting .444 with two HR, eight RBI, 11 R and eight SB. Is there anything to saw but “WOW!” Clearly, he is over his ’10 struggles, though sooner or later he has to hit a slow period…doesn’t he?

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