OK, so Milwaukee starter Wily Peralta didn't quite dominate the Cardinals lineup on Wednesday — he went 6.1 innings, allowing six hits and one run, recording three Ks — but he did manage to pick up his second win of the year. We're now three starts into Peralta's season, and his ERA sits at 1.96, his WHIP at 1.09. The kid has faced nothin' but playoff-caliber lineups, too: Boston, Pittsburgh, St. Louis.
The schedule finally takes a friendly turn for Peralta next week, as he'll double-dip at home against the Pads and Cubs. He's unowned in 91 percent of Yahoo leagues at the moment, available to most of you. Without question, Peralta is worth a one-week test drive. He's a hard-throwing sinker/slider/groundball-type (95-96 mph), a 24-year-old righty with top-prospect credentials. This is a talented pitcher with K-potential on a quality team, perhaps making a leap.
Make the move as needed, then hit the bullets...
• George Springer's first major league hit was a tapper that traveled maybe 25 feet, but he still receives full credit in the box score. Springer went 1-for-5 in his debut, with one walk, two Ks and a caught-stealing. He hit second for the Astros, which is nice to see. There's plenty of swing-and-miss in Springer's game, but also loads of power/speed potential. He's an obvious pick-up in leagues of any size and shape.
• Just in case you'd forgotten what a terrifying thrill ride Jose Valverde could be, well ... BWAHAHAHA. Valverde gave up a pair of homers in New York's 5-2 win over Arizona. When he enters a game in a non-save situation, it's basically a fantasy nightmare.
• The news on Aroldis Chapman continues to be not-so-disastrous. Reds manager Bryan Price indicated on Wednesday that Chapman could be throwing live BP fairly soon, by the end of the team's upcoming 10-game road trip. We're still looking at a May return here, which should give Aroldis a chance to justify his draft price.
Meanwhile in New York, the Shawn Kelley save train continued to roll. He closed out a 3-0 win over a mostly atrocious Cubs lineup in the first game of a double-header. Masahiro Tanaka flummoxed Chicago, striking out 10 batters over 8.0 frames and yielding just two hits. Tanaka is at least as good as advertised; the Cubs are possibly worse than anyone feared. In Game 2, Chicago was blanked again, with Michael Pineda looking unreasonably effective and Adam Warren collecting the rogue save.
• One additional closer item here: Craig Kimbrel declared himself fit to return. All good. Threat level reduced.
• Billy Hamilton reached base twice against the Bucs on Wednesday, swiping two bags. I will take him off your hands, Dalton, if you're panicking.
• You can't really do much with this bullet in standard leagues, but nonetheless I'd like to mention the continued fine work by Zach Britton in Baltimore. He went three innings on Wednesday in support of starter Miguel Gonzalez, extending his season-opening scoreless inning streak to 11.1. Britton has totaled seven Ks thus far, posting a 0.71 WHIP. That thing he threw to Wil Myers for an inning-ending strikeout in the seventh on Wednesday was pure evil. In holds leagues, own him. Nice story, good stuff. For additional Britton reading, head over here.
• Cliff Lee and Julio Teheran tossed dueling complete games on Wednesday, which isn't something you see everyday (at least not since, like, 1974). Lee struck out 13 batters, but he had no answers for Evan Gattis (4-for-4, HR). Also, Teheran was shaming people. Of course you can't actually add anyone in the blurb above, so let's move on...
• Nick Franklin was recalled by Seattle on Wednesday afternoon, then he went 1-for-4 against the Rangers on Wednesday evening. He tripled in his first at-bat against Yu Darvish, but later K'd twice. Franklin opened his year on an absolute tear at Tacoma (17-for-43, 4 HR); he's expected to see time at DH and in the outfield for Seattle, plus he carries 2B-eligibility.
• The Red and White Sox played until Chicago ran out of bullpen arms, and infielder Leury Garcia was forced to pitch. Here's how that turned out. No great surprise, honestly. Matt Lindstrom was officially credited with a blown save against Boston, but he'd inherited a mess from Maikel Cleto. As blown saves go, it really wasn't that bad. Lindstrom is capable of worse, as we all know.
• Kole Calhoun is expected to miss 4-6 weeks with an ankle injury, which should eventually force a shuffling of the LAA lineup. J.B. Shuck went 0-for-6 from the top spot on Wednesday against Oakland. In the near-term, Collin Cowgill and/or Brennan Boesch should pick up at-bats while Calhoun rehabs.
• Andrew Cashner had his way with every Colorado hitter who wasn't Justin Morneau on Wednesday. Cashner went 7.1 innings, allowing two runs (one earned) and striking out five. So he was great, per his usual. But Morneau managed to go 3-for-3 with a homer, double and a sac-fly, raising his season slash to .354/.396/.542. Morneau is still out there in 56 percent of Yahoo leagues, if you can use a former MVP who does his home hitting in an appealing park.
- Sports & Recreation
- George Springer