Chase Utley is finally showing signs of turning things around.  Justin Smoak is hitting up. and Jered Weaver has suddenly become a strikeout machine.  Let’s look at these stories and all the rest from yesterday’s games:


  • Jose Reyes (2-4, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R) – He was the Mets entire offense as he continues his blazing hot stretch. He’s now on an 11-game hitting streak going 21-48 with 4 HR, 7 RBI, 12 R and 3 SB.
  • Justin Smoak (3-4, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 R) –   He’s gotten red hot almost out of nowhere.  Over his last two games he’s gone 5-9 with 2 HR, 7 RBI and 3 R.  We all heard about the potential, so it’s nice to finally be seeing it.  Is he a must use in shallower formats?  No, just due to the depth at the position, but in deeper formats you certainly want to get him in there while he’s hot.
  • Chase Utley (3-5, 3 RBI, 1 R) –  Who’s worried now? He’s 5-10 with 1 HR, 7 RBI and 3 R over his last two games.  Obviously, considering how long he had been slumping, it’s going to take a little bit more, but a lot of nerves have to have been eased.
  • Howie Kendrick (3-6, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 R) –   It’s the second consecutive game with a home run.  He has hits in seven of his last eight games, going 14-35 with 3 HR, 9 RBI, 5 R and 0 SB.  We all know about the potential we’ve heard so much about, so it’s nice to see him actually flashing it.
  • Delmon Young (3-6, 2 RBI, 2 R) – He simply continues to hit. Yes, his hitting streak was broken up recently, but he’s gone 24-62 (.387) with 3 HR, 17 RBI and 13 R in June.
  • Matt Kemp (0-4, 1 RBI) –  Seriously, why can’t Joe Torre just settle into a lineup spot for him and let him get comfortable?  He was hitting leadoff in this one, which has a major impact on his fantasy value. Obviously, the absence of Rafael Furcal had an influence, but fantasy owners drafted Kemp expecting a big-time run producer.
  • Pedro Alvarez (1-3, 1 RBI) –   Finally, a hit! Still, he struck out once, bringing his total to 6 in his 13 major league AB.  In fact, he’s struck out at least once in each game he’s played.  That was the concern before he was recalled and clearly is a reality. It makes him a tough play in all formats at this point.
  • Hanley Ramirez (2-4, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R) –   In what turned out to be a crazy game, Ramirez was lifted after the eighth inning due to tightness in his hamstring.  At this point that talk is that the injury is minor, but we’ve been down that path already this week (Troy Tulowitzki).  Chances are he won’t play no Sunday and after that, we’ll just have to wait and see.  Owners are going to want to keep a close eye on this one.
  • Adam Jones (2-4, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 R) – It hasn’t been a meteoric rise, but he’s certainly showing signs that his early season struggles are fading away.  Since June 5 he’s gone 15-50 (.300) with 3 HR, 10 RBI, 6 R and 2 SB.  After all the bad you’ve endured, hopefully you haven’t given up on him.  No, he hasn’t developed as many hoped, but he’s still extremely usable in all five-outfielder formats.


  • Jered Weaver (7.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 H, 0 BB, 11 K, W) –   He has been tremendous for the majority of the season, with a few blips along the way.  You can live with that, however, when your pitcher is striking out over a batter per innings (107 K over 94.2 IP), has an ERA of 3.04 and a WHIP of 1.11.  Before you say that he has to be doing it with luck, he entered the day with a .316 BABIP and 74.2% strand rate. So, what’s changed? It’s the Ks, considering he is up over two strikeouts per nine innings over his career mark. If he can maintain that, he really is this good.
  • Jesse Litsch (7.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 H, 0 BB, 3 K) –   His second start back was certainly significantly better then his first (7 ER over 2.1 innings). Then again, this one did come against the Giants.  I wouldn’t trust Litsch at all quite yet, especially with the Phillies next on the schedule.
  • Jake Peavy (9.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 H, 2 BB, 7 K, W) –   I spoke about Peavy about a week ago (click  here to view) and he continues to excel of late. Over his last three starts he’s allowed 4 ER over 23 innings.  He’s been showing signs of turning things around and it already may be too late to buy low on him. If you can, however, I wouldn’t hesitate.
  • Aaron Heilman (1.1 IP, 1 ER, 2 H, 0 BB, 2 K, SV) –   Yeah, he got the save, but he’s now given up runs in back-to-back outings and three of his last five.  Just how long do you think he’s going to stick in the closers role?
  • Rick Porcello (5.1 IP, 4 ER, 8 H, 1 BB, 4 K) –   It’s only the second time all year that he’s struck out four batters or more. How sad is that? He’s simply been terrible, allowing 7 hits or more in ten of his thirteen starts. Upside or not, he’s completely unusable.
  • Zack Greinke (7.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 H, 0 BB, 5 K) –   He certainly wasn’t bad, but this year if he’s not unbelievable (as he was in his last start), he’s just not likely to win.  It’s a shame, but it’s a fact of life.  He’s still a top pitcher, but just try and find wins elsewhere.
  • Jason Motte (1.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 H, 0 BB, 2 K, SV) –   Ryan Franklin got the save chance, as normal, but he allowed 2 hits and a walk without recording an out. At that point, the Cardinals turned to Motte, who shut the door.  Yes, Franklin has allowed runs in two of his last three runs.  Yes, Motte has proven that if the Cardinals decide to make a change, he will get the first opportunity.  They just aren’t likely there yet. If you are desperate for saves, then sure, but otherwise Motte is just a middle reliever at this point.
  • Felix Hernandez (9.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 H, 1 BB, 9 K, W) – It’s become obvious that the pounding in Texas on June 8 (7 ER over 6 IP) was an aberration. He’s now allowed 3 ER or less in seven of his last eight starts, winning his last two.  He’s now 5-5 with a 3.39 ERA and is proving to be one of the top pitchers in the game.
  • Yovani Gallardo (6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 H, 1 BB, 9 K) – The first two relievers in allowed 6 ER over 1 inning, costing him an opportunity to win.  He’s now 6-3 with a 2.59 ERA and 1.28 WHIP.  He is pitching like a true ace, though he needs to work deeper into games.  In his 15 starts, he’s worked sic innings or less in ten of them. He’d likely have a lot more then 6 W if he could work deeper into games, becoming less reliant on the bullpen.

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


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