October 03, 2009
It's your last day for adds and drops, so choose wisely. We'll look at the Sunday streamables first, then discuss other points of interest.
• Brian Duensing(notes) looks like the best grabbable arm for the final roto day, drawing Kansas City; while has been knocked around a bit over 6.2 innings against the Royals (11 hits, five runs), we're not going to overreact to a small sample. He's in a good spot matched against untrustable Luke Hochevar(notes) and the game will have meaning for the Twins unless Minnesota loses Saturday while Detroit beats Chicago. Even if Gardenhire's Guys are eliminated before Sunday comes around, I'm still endorsing Duensing for this one.
Important PM Update: The Twins have decided to pitch Carl Pavano Sunday, on short rest at that, in place of Duensing (the decision came down after Saturday's victory). I think it's a curious call but Ron Gardenhire hasn't asked my opinion. The balls roll funny for everybody, kid. Make sure to double-check those Sunday lineups a few times before opening pitch; we might see some strange orders in a few parks.
• Homer Bailey(notes) was outstanding in September (2.41 ERA, 35 strikeouts) and now he gets a finishing start against the Pirates. We'd feel better if it were at PNC Park, but as the guys at WKRP already know, there's a sneaky, underrated quality to Bailey.
• It didn't take long for Wade Davis(notes) to enter the circle of trust, averaging a strikeout per inning and allowing just one homer over 31.1 frames. He's probably in a good spot against the Yankees; the game is in Tampa and New York has no reason to take this one seriously. A.J. Burnett(notes) works on the other side, and he's been a carnival ride for the second half.
• Jason Marquis(notes) hasn't had his sharpest stuff down the stretch and he was lucky to win his last turn, but he's beaten LA convincingly in both meetings and he's pitching for his playoff spot right now so I'm not afraid to consider him at Chavez Ravine. It's one of the four late games (4 pm starts) on the Sunday card, so you can always grab Marquis now then decide later in the day if you actually want to go through with using him.
• The Rockies already have a playoff berth clinched but they're taking the NL West title seriously; Jim Tracy had his regulars on the field against the Dodgers Friday and aggressively used Huston Street(notes) in a four-out save. Pay close attention to the Colorado-Los Angeles result from Saturday night; if the Dodgers win and clinch the title it's likely both teams will go into bunker mode for the meaningless Sunday game. If the Rockies win Saturday the finale then becomes the NL West title game, albeit the managers could always decide to rest anyone dealing with a minor ache or pain. History has told us that wild-card teams aren't really penalized in the current MLB playoff format.
• Finally some optimism for long-suffering Toronto fans: general manager J.P. Ricciardi has been fired after a messy run of nearly eight years (Cito Gaston probably isn't far behind). Feel free to discuss the biggest Ricciardi blunders in the comments; there's plenty to choose from.
• This is our last Closing Time of the year (unless Garrett Jones(notes) hits four homers on the weekend and I'm pressed into a celebration piece) which means it's time to queue the music. Thanks for being a daily part of our community for the last 6-7 months. We'll be talking fantasy baseball again real soon, amigos.