In our daily fantasy baseball news and notes column, we'll be discussing hot topics in the fantasy baseball world, as well as offering up tidbits of information to help you set your lineup. Comments are welcome below.
Folks, we have some awful news.
Jose Fernandez has been placed on the disabled list with a strain in his throwing elbow, and Tommy John surgery is not out of the question at this point. This is a staggering blow for both Marlins fans (what little of them still exist) and fantasy owners, and on the latter subject, this is a development that will undoubtedly cost thousands of owners from being able to win their fantasy league this season.
How good has Fernandez been? Good enough that you could easily label him the best pitcher in all of baseball -- ahead of even Clayton Kershaw and Yu Darvish, if you were so inclined. That's not a pronouncement many analysts are making; often, players aren't universally ascribed to be the best in the business until it's become indisputable, and Kershaw is still widely considered the top starting pitcher in the game. However, last season (and I realized this only when someone else pointed it out), Fernandez had incredibly similar numbers to Kershaw, with an ERA only 0.36 points higher, a WHIP only 0.06 points higher, and 45 fewer strikeouts in 63 fewer innings.
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Fernandez was having a Cy Young caliber season this year: 70 strikeouts in 51.2 innings, a 2.44 ERA and a 0.95 WHIP. At his strikeout rate, it's hard to think that anyone in the National League would've beaten him out for the award this year, especially with Kershaw missing time due to injury. Fernandez was one of the lone bright spots in the bleak franchise that is the Miami Marlins, and there's a high chance that this genuinely awesome player to watch is done for the year. And if he goes under the knife for Tommy John surgery, we won't get to see him again until next summer.
No matter how you slice it, this is horrible news for everyone.
For your consideration
• The San Diego Padres are poised to activate Carlos Quentin from the disabled list, which is news at which many seasoned fantasy owners will yawn. The former Diamondbacks prospect is an extremely-talented hitter who can smash a torrent of home runs in a short of time, while hitting for a decent average and rarely striking out. If not for bad luck, Quentin could very easily be a must-own fantasy beast, but unfortunately, injuries have more or less destroyed his career. He's never played in more than 131 games in a year, he played in just 86 and 82 of them over the last two years, and to make matters worse, he's hitting in Petco Park, which isn't exactly an amenable ballpark for home run hitters. All that makes Quentin an incredible difficult player to rely on, but for however long he's healthy, which seriously might only be a couple weeks, he's worth a flier if you're in a deep league.
• Addison Reed allowed two runs and three hits to blow his second save of the season yesterday. Reed is 11-2 in saves this year, which is surprising given that his 5.03 ERA is kind of hideous. Chalk it up to Reed allowing extra runs during the course of saves where the team can afford it. Reed may not be imminently close to losing his job, but if he continues to struggle and if that ERA keeps rising, Brad Ziegler, who was rock solid as the D'backs closer a year ago, could see some save opportunities. Ziegler is worth grabbing if Reed struggles one more time.
• Kyle Farnsworth allowed a pair of base runners but still managed to record a save versus the Yankees. If you added Jeurys Familia after Terry Collins stated that he was close becoming the team's closer, don't fret: Familia had been used in the Mets' previous four games and was resting. Of course, Farnsworth may still get some saves in the short term, but Familia just has to make sure that he doesn't implode, and the job will almost assuredly be his soon.
• C.J. Cron homered for his second-straight game and is hitting .393 with two homers and six RBI since being called up. For all the clout that Trout, Pujols and (when healthy) Josh Hamilton have, the Angels honestly have a pretty weak lineup that desperately needs to be filled out with quality hitters like Cron. The new Angels first baseman is not a bad pick-up right now in deeper leagues.
• Out of nowhere, A.J. Pollock has managed to salvage what was a pretty lousy season through the first few weeks. Pollock went 2-for-4 with a home run yesterday and is 9-for-18 from the plate in his last six games with five steals, four runs and four RBI. Nearly half of his counting stats have been registered in the last week, so this hasn't exactly been a complete breakout. Still, he's some major potential and is worth keeping an eye on, or owning in the short-term if you're looking for a hot hand to ride.