Stephen Strasburg was impressive, but not quite as impressive in his second career start.  Prince Fielder continues to hit home runs, but is not driving in runs.  Zack Greinke turned back the clock to 2009.  Let’s look at these stories and all the rest from yesterday’s games:


Billy Butler (4-5, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1 R) –  A much needed breakout.  He had just 3 RBI since May 26 (the last time he hit a HR).  He’s still hitting for average (now up to .335), but if he can finally find a regular power stroke he will emerge into one of the top 1B in the game.  As it is he’s a must-use in all formats.

Mike Stanton (2-2, 2 RBI, 1 R, 1 SB) –  He’s hitting .368 in his five games since being recalled, but has yet to hit a HR.  It’s a good thing we know that’s coming, considering this is the first game where he hasn’t struck out (7 Ks already).  The average will drop, but the power will be there.  Don’t worry about that.

Prince Fielder (2-4, 2 HR, 2 RBI, 2 R) –
 Where are the RBI?  He’s showing the power, now with 12 HR, but he has just 24 RBI.  His last nine home runs have all been solo shots and he just hasn’t been driving in runs besides that.  Since May 6 he has 11 RBI.  He’s one of the premier sluggers in the game, so sooner or later you have to believe he’s going to get extremely hot.  All you can do is stay patient and wait for the breakout.

Jorge Posada (1-3, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 2 R) –
 For the second straight day Posada hit a grand slam (3-6, 2 HR, 8 RBI, 3 R).  Prior to this outburst he had gone 4-30 with 0 HR, 1 RBI, and 2 R.  One of the better offensive catchers in the league and playing for the Yankees, he’s a must-use option in all formats regardless.

Raul Ibanez (1-4, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 R) –
 This puts him at .247 with 4 HR and 27 RBI on the year.  He is starting to finally turn things around, however.  He has hits in five of his last six games going 9-23 with 1 HR, 5 RBI, and 2 R.  Remain patient and it should pay dividends before long.

Troy Glaus (4-5, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 3 R) –
 Anyone now remember that he was hitting .194 with 2 HR and 9 RBI at the end of April?  He’s now on a four-game hitting streak going 8-17 with 1 HR, 4 RBI, and 5 R.

Delmon Young (1-3, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 R) –
 I mentioned him in yesterday’s column, but he just continues to mash.  His hit streak is up to 10 games, going 13-35 with 3 HR, 13 RBI, and 6 R.  We’ve all heard about the potential and though it took a long time for him to get there, this could be every bit for real.  If you are in a five-outfielder format, you want to grab him if he’s still available.

Alex Avila (1-3, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 R) – 
In his last two games he’s now gone 4-6 with 1 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R and 1 SB.  No, it’s not a lot, but it could be enough to gain him more regular playing time.  With Gerald Laird continuing to struggle (.160, 1 HR, 7 RBI, 8 R), any type of hot streak should get Avila in the lineup a little bit more. 

He has some pop, so if you are in need of some help in two-catcher formats, keep a close eye on this.  One or two more good days and Avila good claim the majority of the ABs.

Ryan Spilborghs (3-5, 2 HR, 2 RBI, 2 R) –
 Even without Dexter Fowler, the Rockies outfield is extremely crowded.  Spilborghs is currently on a six-game hitting streak going 12-20 with 3 HR, 3 RBI, and 6 R.  He’s certainly earned an extended look, which may come at the expense of Seth Smith.

Aubrey Huff (2-4, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 2 R) –
 He is on a tear, extending his hitting streak to four games (7-15 with 3 HR, 7 RBI and 4 R).  In June he’s gone 14-40 with 4 HR, 10 RBI, and 8 R.  Do I expect this to continue?  No, but enjoy it while you can.

Chris Young (3-5, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R) –
 He has hits in 10 of his 12 games in June, though this is only his second multi-hit game.  I wouldn’t call him raging hot, but at .277 with 12 HR and 44 RBI, he certainly has exceeded expectations.


Stephen Strasburg (5.1 IP, 1 ER, 2 H, 5 BB, 8 K, W) –  It was less impressive than his first start, but did you possibly expect him to be able to repeat that?  Five walks is not the norm, so look for that to improve moving forward.  Without that, he was nearly as dominant as his major league debut.  He’s already shown just how good he could be.  Is he first round good, however?  That’ll be an interesting debate moving forward.

Zack Greinke (9.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 H, 0 BB, 12 K, W) –  Well this is the type of performance we’ve all been waiting for.  He had given up four or more runs in three of his last four starts, but this one shows that he’s still the same pitcher he was, he just hit a little bit of a rough patch.  His only mistakes came to Joey Votto (2-4, 2 HR, 2 RBI, 2 R).  Continue considering him a No. 1 fantasy starter in all formats.

Colby Lewis (8.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 H, 1 BB, 10 K, W) – 
He’s been great all year long, now sporting a 3.30 ERA to go along with 81 Ks over 84.2 innings.  He entered the game with a .256 BABIP, so a regression is likely coming.  If you want to sell high on him or not depends on your situation, however.  I don’t see him completely falling off a cliff, so he will continue to hold value moving forward.

Jesse Litsch (2.1 IP, 7 ER, 9 H, 1 BB, 2 K) –  It was his first start back since Tommy John surgery and it was an ugly one.  Don’t bother with him.

Felix Hernandez (8.2 IP, 2 ER, 4 H, 1 BB, 9 K, W) –  He almost took this one the distance, pitching like the ace we all know he is.  It was a great rebound from a terrible start his last time out and is more along the lines of what we should be expecting from him.

Chad Qualls (0.1 IP, 2 ER, 3 H, 0 BB, 0 K) –  Seriously, how much longer can they stick with him?  Aaron Heilman tossed 1.1 shutout innings and has his ERA down to 2.83.  They almost have to go with him for the next save opportunity, don’t they?

Ted Lilly (8.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 H, 1 BB, 3 K, W) – He carried a no hitter into the ninth inning before Juan Pierre spoiled it with a pinch hitter single.  Carlos Marmol proceeded to walk a few and make it interesting, but the Cubs ultimately held on for the win.  He defeated Gavin Floyd (8.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 H, 3 BB, 9 K).  Lilly has now allowed 3 ER or less in each of his last seven starts, though this is his first win over that span.

What are your thoughts from yesterday’s games?  Which ones caught your eye? And which ones did I miss?


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