Roto Riteup: March 30

We’re really almost there. Opening Day is Sunday. There are a few days left to draft, and then we’ve made it.

On the agenda:
1. Matt Harvey is OK, kind of
2. Can C.C. Sabathia claim a rotation spot?
3. Hyun-Soo Kim headed to the minors
4. Will Smith opts against surgery
5. Last call on Trevor Bauer

Matt Harvey is OK, kind of
Yesterday we covered off that Matt Harvey was questionable for Opening Day due to a non-baseball symptom that may have required further examination. It wasn’t too fantasy relevant, as it didn’t sound like something that would threaten him a long time, but the No. 6 pitcher off the board facing any sort of malady was worth watching. He’s, uhh, fine, mostly. Kind of. Adam Rubin has way too much detail here, but rest assured, your (likely) ace will be performing in ace-like fashion, so long as he uses the bathroom regularly.

Can C.C. Sabathia claim a rotation spot?
C.C. Sabathia fired off a pretty solid final salvo against Ivan Nova in the competition for the Yankees’ final rotation spot on Tuesday, allowing just two runs over five innings. His spring numbers still aren’t good, but neither are Nova’s, and the Yankees already have three lefties penciled into their bullpen (and are paying Sabathia obscene amounts of money). It seems likely at this point that the 35-year-old Sabathia gets the chance to improve on his 4.73 ERA from 2015 in a starting role, but it’s really difficult to recommend a buy, even at his current discounted price (outside the top 125 starters).

Hyun-Soo Kim headed to the minors
The most disappointing spring in all of baseball may belong to Hyun-Soo Kim, who was expected to be so major league ready when coming over from Korea that he has to give express consent to be sent to Triple-A. The Baltimore Orioles revealed Tuesday that the 28-year-old is unlikely to make their Opening Day roster. This would be a huge disappointment after the Orioles gave the lefty first-baseman/outfielder a two-year, $7-million contract this offseason, but it’s tough to look past a .182/.229/.182 triple-slash line, however small the sample. Keep an eye on his Triple-A progress if he accepts the assignment, but he can pretty safely be ignored at fantasy baseball’s deepest position for the time being. This is solid news for the fringier Orioles bats like Nolan Reimold and Joey Rickard, who should now see a few more plate appearances than expected.

Will Smith opts against surgery
The closing situation in Milwaukee remains a bit murky after Will Smith suffered a torn LCL last week. Jeremy Jeffress is the presumed heir to the throne and was already one of the more intriguing closer-in-waiting candidates around the league, but the news that Smith will opt to try to rehab the injury instead of immediately undergoing surgery confuses Jeffress’ value some – it makes all the sense in the world in real baseball terms, given that Smith would miss the whole season whether he underwent surgery now or in six weeks, but if he returns, who knows how the Brewers’ bullpen may shake out? Jeffress has been great in limited spring action, and Michael Blazek and Corey Knebel loom if he can’t run with the gig. Knebel may have the best closer profile, but there’s little to suggest Jeffress won’t be able to handle his limited save opportunities.

Last call on Trevor Bauer
Trevor Bauer threw six shutout innings on Tuesday. The market hasn’t responded at all to his solid spring – 2.25 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 19:4 K:BB in 20 innings – which is entirely fair given his track record, but I remain a steadfast believer this is the year he figures things out. He’s the 75th starter off boards. Make the buy. The upside is well worth the cost of just dropping him if he walks five in an early-April start.





Blake Murphy is a freelance sportswriter based out of Toronto. Formerly of the Score, he's the managing editor at Raptors Republic and frequently pops up at Sportsnet, Vice, and around here. Follow him on Twitter @BlakeMurphyODC.

newest oldest most voted
James
Member
James

Hey, Blake … so I traded Bauer in the AL-only keeper you did for me last year, and his new owner dropped him. Inflation aside, what would you be comfortable spending for him in a $260-cap AL-only 5×5?