Roto Riteup — Presented By DraftKings: August 30, 2014

Today’s Roto Riteup was written while listening — and watching — the 100th episode of the podcast The Partially Examined Life. I am by no means a philosopher and even calling me a dilettante in the field would be generous, but I do find the realm fascinating.

On today’s agenda:
1. Welcome back, Yadier Molina
2. Hyun-Jin Ryu to start tomorrow
3. Justin Turner has been on fire
4. The daily five

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Welcome back, Yadier Molina
Yesterday the St. Louis Cardinals activated Molina from the 15-day disabled list. It was his first major league action in over seven weeks after tearing a ligament in his thumb. Although he was held hitless yesterday (0-for-4) it is still great to see him back. Feel comfortable plugging him into weekly leagues for the remainder of the season but fellow daily leaguers should take note to see if the Cards give Molina the day off. I’d expect the club to ease him back a bit in the first week then go back to him being the primary catcher over A.J. Pierzynski.

Hyun-Jin Ryu to start tomorrow
As a follow up to Zach Sanders’ previous Roto Riteup, Ryu is expected to be activated tomorrow in order to start against the San Diego Padres. Ryu will have missed the minimum 15 days after straining his right glute muscle and should be started against a very weak Padres lineup.  In his debut season last year Ryu impressed with a 7.22 K/9 and 2.30 BB/9 to go alongside his 3.00 ERA/3.24 FIP/3.46 xFIP and he has improved nearly all across the board this year. Currently sporting a 8.00 K/9 and 1.77 BB/9, Ryu has increased his swinging strike and first strike rates while dropped his both his FIP and xFIP. The 27-year-old Korean has proven himself to be a valuable fantasy asset and I expect him to continue to produce strong numbers in the final month of the season.

Justin Turner has been on fire
Sticking with the Dodgers, utility man Turner has been mashing all season, however his month of August has been particularly hot. In six of his last eight games he’s come away with at least two hits and owns an absurd .394/.481/.515 line this month. I’m well aware of his .400 BABIP right now and while that won’t continue, Turner hit a useful .280 last season in 214 plate appearances and a not awful .269 in 185 PAs in 2012. Turner has made appearances all over the infield and in my custom Yahoo! league he can be played at first, second, third and shortstop. His versatility and lineup flexibility will serve him well when Alex Guerrero gets called up when rosters expand. If you’re in need of help in the infield, grab Turner and hope he makes enough starts to be valuable. He is available in over 75% of CBS leagues and 80% of ESPN and Yahoo! formats.

The daily five
Starting pitcher: Stephen Strasburg — $10,800
Strasburg will be pitching in Seattle, thus getting the double benefit of facing the Mariners 15th ranked offense by wRC+ and pitching in SafeCo.

Starting pitcher: Jake Odorizzi — $8,200
The Tampa Bay Rays and Odorizzi host the Boston Red Sox today. The Sox own the 23rd ranked offense at 88 wRC+ against right-handed pitching.

Infielder: Jose Abreu — $5,600
The lefty masher, and really he is a righty masher as well, Abreu will dig in against Kyle Ryan, making his first major league start. Ryan owns an uninspiring minor league track record and Abreu may go yahtzee more than once today.

Outfielder: Nelson Cruz — $4,900
Cruz — the league leader in home runs — is up against Kyle Gibson who hasn’t made it past the sixth inning in four out his last five starts.

Other hitter: Leonys Martin — $3,500
Martin holds the platoon advantage over Scott Feldman.

Remaining budget: $17,000

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

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