Roto Riteup: July 17, 2015

Baseball is back in action today! With the second half getting kicked off, Mr. Sanders and I (somehow I haven’t been fired yet) are back to guide you each day with the Roto Riteup.

On today’s agenda:
1. Welcome back, Kyle Schwarber
2. Wily Peralta may return soon
3. Brian Johnson to debut next week
4. Streaming Pitching Options

Welcome back, Kyle Schwarber
Yesterday word broke the Cubs plan on recalling Schwarber, this time for longer than just one week. Given that Miguel Montero could miss as many as six weeks dealing with his thumb injury, Schwarber figures to get the majority of the playing time behind the plate. The 22-year-old has power potential, a solid batting eye and projects to be a league average bat right now, at an age where most prospects are just preparing to face Double-A for the first time. He’s a must-own in two catcher leagues and I’d consider him in single catcher 14-teamers or deeper. Schwarber will need to trim down on the strikeouts — 34.7 percent in Triple-A this year — however his talent, specifically his power, shouldn’t be doubted. One can find Schwarber available in over 40 percent of CBS leagues, 60 percent of Yahoo! settings and 90 percent of ESPN formats.

Wily Peralta may return soon
After his second rehab start in Double-A, Peralta is a candidate to return to the Brewers in the near future. The right-hander tossed 58 pitches in 3 2/3 shut out innings yesterday, striking out three and allowing two hits and a walk. Prior to hitting the shelf due to an oblique strain, Peralta owned a pedestrian 5.83 K/9 despite his 8.5 swinging strike rate being in line with his career numbers. For the season it looks as though he’s lost a tick of speed on his pitches, however going start-by-start it appears as though Peralta’s early season dip is past him. Peralta owns a strong 52.7 percent ground ball rate for his career and he’s been relying on his sinker more and four-seamer less this season. With a low strikeout rate and modest 4.00 ERA inflated from allowing eight home runs in 54 innings along with a .320 BABIP, I’d make an offer on him. You may not even have to make an offer to his current owner given Peralta’s highest ownership rate is around 23 percent in both Yahoo! and CBS leagues. If you’re looking for a (near) free pitcher who should bounce back in the second half, I’d take Peralta.

Brian Johnson to debut next week
The Red Sox have tabbed Johnson to make his first MLB start on either Monday or Tuesday. The 24-year-old southpaw was rated by our own Kiley McDaniel as the No. 104 overall prospect in the game prior to this season, calling him a likely candidate to rate as a back-end starter. Johnson owns a solid 3.12 strikeout to walk ratio in 85 2/3 innings at Triple-A this season and has fanned nearly a batter per inning. Looking at his 42.6 percent ground ball rate throughout his minor league career  (according to Minor League Central), it seems as though Johnson could have trouble as a fly ball pitcher in certain AL East ballparks. Still, as a near top-100 prospect here (and ranked No. 82 by Baseball American entering this season), I’m thinking I’ll stash Johnson in my deeper leagues. He’s free to pick up in more than 80 percent of the three major fantasy sites.

Streaming Pitching Options
If you enjoy streaming pitchers, tune into the Roto Riteup for recommendations each and every day.

A pitcher for today: Kyle Hendricks at ATL (Julio Teheran)
Thus far the Braves have been pretty punchless against right-handers, posting a .379 slugging percentage against them this season. Hendricks should generate grounders and while he may not strike out too many batters, I like him to post a solid outing today. Hendricks is owned in 60 percent of CBS leagues and about 30 percent of ESPN and Yahoo! settings.

A pitcher for tomorrow: Rick Porcello at LAA (Garrett Richards)
I’m still on board the Porcello train (mostly because I’m a fool and I’m holding out hope my bold prediction on him won’t be off by so much)! He’ll be in a pitcher’s park at night against a team that has been pretty average against right-handers. He’s free to stream in over 65 percent of Yahoo!, CBS and ESPN leagues.

You can catch David spouting off about baseball, soccer, esports and other things by following him on twitter, @davidwiers.

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Thosghts on potential effect of Schwarber on the Cubbies SP’s? I don’t know what kind of a framer/pitch receiver he is supposed to be.

Mike W.
Mike W.

Won’t hurt Lester obviously since Ross is his personal catcher. Probably hurts Arrieta, Hendricks and Hammel a bit, but not enough to concern me to the point where I am looking to sell.

My guess is if Schwarber is an absolute disaster defensively behind the plate, the Cubs will take the offensive hit and play Ross or Teagarden more.


True with Lester. I had personal interest in my shares of Arrieta and Hammel. I’ll keep an eye on it, but won’t look to make moves yet.