It's a long season; let us guide you through all of the potential names on the wire who can help your team.
Roger Bernadina, Washington Nationals -- Bernadina, 25, could be the answer in right field if he hits. He has base-stealing speed and plays good defense, so he's worth monitoring. He has averaged 32 stolen bases a year in his previous six professional seasons but strikes out too much to maybe hit for a high average. He also needs to hit lefties better. He played in only three games last year due to a broken ankle. Grade C+
Jose Contreras, Philadelphia Phillies -- Contreras, 38, throws hard (up a couple of ticks to 94-mph this year) and is the next choice to close with Brad Lidge hurting and Ryan Madson on the DL. Contreas seems to have taken to short relief, compiling an 0.77 ERA and 0.60 WHIP with a 15/1 K/BB in 11 2/3 innings so far. He has been mostly a starts the last six years. He missed parts of the last two years recovering from a torn Achilles' tendon. An MRI on Lidge's elbow revealed no structural damage. Grade B
John Ely, Los Angeles Dodgers -- Ely, 24, has pitched well since his recall last week and could stick for a while. He is a finesse guy who relies on location and a pretty good changeup so he has to be sharp to win. He was 2-1 with a 3.00 ERA for AAA Albuquerque. Grade B-
Jeff Francis, Colorado Rockies -- Francis, 29, will finally be activated to start on Sunday. He last pitched for the Rockies on Sept. 12, 2008 and missed all last season following shoulder surgery. He won 17 games in 2007 and as a finesse pitcher he has a chance to bounce back quicker than a power guy, but should be monitored before fantasy players make a move on him. Grade C
Derek Holland, Texas Rangers -- Holland, 23, was recalled to take injured Matt Harrison's place in the rotation. Holland was 4-1 with a 0.93 ERA in six starts for Oklahoma City. He regained his confidence and command in the minors and was able to stay ahead of the hitters. He has good stuff (mid-90s fastball with a slider and changeup) and can be dominant at times but was 8-13 with a 6.12 ERA in his rookie season last year. If he performs well, he could stay in the rotation by moving Harrison to the bullpen when he returns. Grade B-/C+
Corey Patterson, Baltimore Orioles -- Patterson, 30, could leadoff and play left field for the O's, who are struggling offensively. This could be a stretch, though. He was batting .385 with three steals at AAA Norfolk but has had trouble getting on base the previous couple of years in the majors. He was the third pick overall pick by the Cubs in 1998, but never did pan out. The Orioles first acquired him in 2006 and he had two solid years with them, but then struggled again and was cut. Grade C+
Matt Thornton, Chicago White Sox -- Lefty Thornton, 26, could pick up some saves with Bobby Jenks struggling. He saved four games last year and has the stuff and demeanor to close games. Grade B+
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