Divisional races are heating up, both in the fantasy world and MLB standings. It’s time to bear down and make that final push toward the playoffs. With that in mind, let’s check out some fantasy links…
Brandon Funston of Yahoo! Sports puts a fantasy spin on John Smoltz’s impressive return to the National League. “St. Louis pitching coach Dave Duncan has been known to work magic with reclamation projects and I think Smoltz still has plenty to offer,” Funston writes. “His upcoming schedule sets up nicely, with Washington and Pittsburgh next on his starting agenda.”
Brian L. Schubert of Fantasy Baseball Cafe joins the ogling of Rangers reliever Neftali Feliz. Setup men don’t often carry much fantasy value, but a 21-year-old who posts a 0.63 ERA, 0.35 WHIP and 19/1 K/BB ratio in his first 14-plus major league innings clearly deserves attention from all realms of the sport.
Rotoworld’s Matthew Pouliot checks out some potential September call-ups both in the American League and Nationals League. Keep an eye out for Milwaukee’s Mat Gamel, Atlanta’s Jason Heyward and San Diego’s Aaron Poreda. It’s sometimes surprising how much of an impact these guys can have.
In desperate need of steals? Aren’t we all? Charlie Saponara of FantasyBaseball365.com runs down some potential September call-ups who boast fantasy-worthy wheels. The Rockies’ Eric Young Jr., Oakland’s Eric Patterson and Cleveland’s Michael Brantley top the list.
Ray Flowers of BaseballGuys.com takes a deeper look at “The Resurgence of Barry Zito.” As Flowers notes, over the last 30 days, Zito “has a 2.51 ERA, the 10th best mark in baseball and better than guys like Jon Lester (2.70), Johan Santana (3.19) and CC Sabathia (3.35).” FanGraphs’ own Erik Manning delivered a post on Zito late last week.
R.J. White of AOL Fanhouse takes note of Ryan Zimmerman’s recent hot streak. The Washington third baseman has posted a .359 average, .512 on-base percentage and .781 slugging percentage in the month August, with seven homers, 15 RBI and 15 runs scored. White suggests Zimmerman could be a top-25 player heading into next season.