Roto Riteup: May 14, 2015

Congratulations to Juventus! After dispatching Real Madrid they now get the honor of most likely getting crushed by Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League final. They could certainly upset Barca, however it’d take a herculean effort from the Italian club.

On today’s agenda:
1. Justin Turner, starting third baseman?
2. Marlon Byrd heats up
3. Bad news for Drew Smyly
4. Streaming Pitching Options

Justin Turner, starting third baseman?
While I’d personally prefer to see Alex Guerrero get the job, Turner has received the bulk of the starts at the hot corner lately. His manager Don Mattingly had some interesting comments to the Orange County Register regarding the third base situation. The Los Angeles Dodgers skipper told the OCR he has no set plan at thirdĀ as Guerrero and Turner have pushed Juan Uribe from the starting role. Turner has appeared in 14 games at the hot corner against Guerrero’s seven, though both have appeared at other defensive positions as well. Turner profiles as posting the higher batting average going forward, but Guerrero holds a significant power advantage. As both are riding hot streaks it’s hard to say which is the favorite, Turner appears to have the inside track at third. He is available in more than 80 percent of Yahoo! or CBS leagues and over 95 percent of ESPN formats.

Marlon Byrd heats up
After an opening month where Byrd posted a .169/.188/.273 line, he has crushed the ball in May. Prior to yesterday’s 1-for-3 performance with a home run and a walk, he owned a .303/.455/.758 line this month. Small sample size issues aside, Byrd has managed to rediscover his power stroke as he has five home runs this month and seven on the season. His 12:36 walk to strikeout rate isn’t ideal, but for a cheap power hitting outfielder, Byrd shouldn’t be overlooked. Factor in his friendly home park plus being moved to the No. 2 spot in the lineup in recent games and Byrd should be picked up in most leagues and is a solid budget pick in DFS. He’s owned in less than 50 percent of the three major fantasy sites despite the hot hitting. As a side note, I can’t hear Byrd’s name without thinking of Bird from The Wire, particularly theĀ scene with Omar in court (warning: language).

Bad news for Drew Smyly
The Tampa Bay Rays may lose Smyly for the season in the wake of a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder. He is yet to make a decision on whether or not he’ll undergo surgery or attempt rehabbing it, but he’s probably done for 2015 either way. Here’s to hoping he has a speedy and full recovery, regardless of which option Smyly decides to go for.

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

A pitcher for today: Travis Wood vs NYM (Jon Niese)
The New York Mets have hit a touch below league average against southpaws thus far. Combine that with Wood showing an uptick in his swinging strike rate and K%, this makes for a favorable at home match-up for him. One can stream Wood in more than 50 percent of CBS formats and more than 80 percent of ESPN and Yahoo! leagues.

A pitcher for tomorrow: Chase Anderson at PHI (Chad Billingsley)
As per wRC+, Philadelphia is the worst offense in baseball when facing a right-hander. Anderson is available in 68 percent of CBS leagues and over 85 percent of Yahoo! or ESPN formats.

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

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7 years ago

hey David, how do you feel about Delino DeShields Jr?

Mike W.
7 years ago
Reply to  FeslenR

Not David, but my 2 cents on DeShields is he is much like Billy Burns where if he can continue to be somewhat competent against MLB pitching and find a way on base he will rack of the steals since he can fly on the bases. Martin’s wrist injury has given him a clear path at playing time over the last week or so and it sounds like Martin will sit out the rest of this week before (hopefully) coming back next week.

I know some Rangers media have speculated that DeShields and Martin could end up as a mini-platoon in CF, with Martin starting against RH’s and DeShields starting against Lefties. Not sure that will happen, but he is a nice steal “streamer” for the next 5 days or so since he will be starting in CF and could easily steal a week’s worth of bases for owners in a matter of days.

What scares me about DeShields long terms both this season and going forward is that his .407 BABIP is due to regress and can be avoid completely cratering at the plate where a lot of questions still surround him.

7 years ago
Reply to  Mike W.

Agreed, Mike W. I kinda feel also DeShields Jr is similar to Turner-they will get their ABs but won’t really be full-time guys.

I just picked him up in one of my fantasy leagues while he’s hot, I mean, why not, right? He and J Turner will regress, they aren’t this good.

Mike W.
7 years ago
Reply to  Mike W.

DeShields is definitely worth a shot if you need steals in the short term. I probably like Burns a bit more than him, just because I could see Burns beating out Sam Fuld for a starting job before DeShields can beat out Martin (provided Martin is healthy), but like you said it makes sense to run with him until he cools off.

7 years ago
Reply to  Mike W.

Also something to keep an eye on – with the presumed addition of Hamilton into the Rangers outfield soon, there has been some talk of keeping DDJ in the lineup at 2B with the demotion of Odor. Not the worst idea, either.