Roto Riteup: July 12, 2013

Today’s Roto Riteup was written while enjoying the latest episode of Uhh Yeah Dude. UYD is an excellent comedy podcast, though the explicit tag should be taken seriously, as there is some swearing. Special thanks to Craig Glaser for recommending UYD.

On today’s agenda:
1. Thoughts on Ryan Dempster
2. Evan Gattis begins his rehab assignment
3. A setback for Trevor Cahill

Thoughts on Ryan Dempster
Yesterday Ryan Dempster was lit up for seven runs (four earned) in 3.1 innings against the Seattle Mariners. He struck out four and walked one while allowing nine hits — including a solo home run. Dempster has seen a rise in his walk and home run rates this year to the point where his 4.24 ERA matches his xFIP. While his 60.2% first strike rate is in line with his career norm, his overall 39% Zone% is well below his 46.9% career rate. His strikeouts haven’t dissapeared nor has his 10%+ swinging strikeout rate, so Dempster isn’t finished just yet.

Dempster’s PITCHf/x shows a change in his pitch repertoire. This year he is going to his sinker less while depending on his four-seamer and splitter more. Be it his new pitching style or just small sample size noise, Dempster has served up a few more home runs than one would expect and his 1.63 HR/9 rate is well above his 1.01 career rate. By allowing more walks and serving up more home runs Dempster has lost a lot of his credibility in standard 12-team mixed leagues. He is owned in less than 60% of both ESPN and Yahoo! leagues, though his 78% CBS ownership rate is still healthy.

Both ZiPS and Steamer project Dempster to get the walks and home runs back under control, however neither are too optimistic for his ERA. For now, 36-year-old Dempster can be considered a spot starter. Be careful with his matchups/ballparks and Dempster can deliver some wins as well as some strikeouts.

Evan Gattis begins his rehab assignment
Today Evan Gattis is scheduled to DH for Triple-A Gwinnett. The Atlanta Braves are hopeful that Gattis will be able to join the club for the first series after the All-Star break. Gattis has been a huge surprise with his 14 home runs in 183 plate appearances and he’ll look to grab playing time wherever he can. His less than ideal batting average and on-base percentage is somewhat mitigated by his utility. Gattis has already made enough starts to gain eligibility at catcher as well as left field and he should gain first base eligibility soon. He is still owned in 76% of CBS leagues, however just  43% of Yahoo! formats and 26% of ESPN leagues.

A setback for Trevor Cahill
After being placed on the disabled list for a hip contusion, Trevor Cahill found tightness in his throwing shoulder in recent days. Cahill’s shoulder felt better as recently as Tuesday, however there seems to have been another flare up. The Arizona Diamondbacks have expressed concerns that Cahill could be out until August.

With Tyler Skaggs being optioned down to High-A to stay on track with his normal throwing schedule, he makes for the likely replacement for Cahill. Skaggs should be able to be grabbed in most leagues as he is currently available in over 60% of CBS leagues and over 90% of ESPN and Yahoo! formats.

We hoped you liked reading Roto Riteup: July 12, 2013 by David Wiers!

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What do you make of Erasmo Ramirez’s debut yesterday? Obviously he got pounded while walking more batters than I would’ve expected, and he was pitching against a potent Boston lineup, but trying to figure out if he’s a hold in a 12 team roto mixer. Not a lot of solid replacements on the wire, so thinking about holding but wanted to get your thoughts.