In addition to Monday's eight featured Pickups of the Week, Yahoo! Sports fantasy expert Brandon Funston offered a Friday update on five hitters on the rise that weren't profiled in Monday's POW. And also on Friday, Brad Evans goes through the same drill for pitchers. The same criteria applies - players must be available in more than half of Yahoo! leagues.
Nova's unplugging pushes tweener back into rotation
David Phelps (SP, RP) New York Yankees
Juggling duties between relief and the rotation, Phelps has been a savior for a Yankees rotation battered by injuries. With Ivan Nova now out for at least the next couple weeks, the jack-of-all-trades will again net regular starts. His past two extended looks, against Boston and Texas (11.2 IP, 5 ER, 10 K), were very encouraging. Gopherballs are a problem for Phelps, but his 9-plus K/9, solid walk rate (2.83 BB/9) and plentiful run support are strong indicators he will twirl SP3 numbers in his new role.
- Y! %6%
- L14 rank307
Yet another baby 'Back with a venomous bite
Tyler Skaggs (SP) Arizona Diamondbacks
Outside of Trevor Bauer, no Snakes prospect entered the season with more buzz than Skaggs. Though a bit unwieldy at times in his first start (5 BB), he largely lived up to the hype. Facing Miami, the lefty went 6.2 innings, allowing two earned with four strikeouts. After a spectacular season in the minors, he could be the late-season call-up owners in deeper leagues sorely need.
- Y! %8%
- L14 rank 278
Southpaw quietly sensational over past month
Clayton Richard (SP) San Diego Padres
The Padres' season may have been decided long ago, but Richard is hurling like an ace in the midst of a pennant chase. Over his past 30.1 innings, he's posted a tidy 1.78 ERA and 1.02 WHIP. Because of his pitch-to-contact approach, the punchouts haven't been there, but his friendly home environment and superb ratio contributions make him worth the add, even in shallower formats.
- Y! %22%
- L14 rank325
Cobb packed with buttery flavor, quality starts
Alex Cobb (SP) Tampa Bay Rays
Ignoring his eight-run meltdown against the Angels on August 18, Cobb has performed brilliantly, yielding one run or fewer in four starts. More impressive, he's notched a 5.40 K/BB rate during that stretch. As his 3.44 xFIP suggests, he is in a great position to tally SP3/SP2 level numbers in deeper mixers down the homestretch. Hop aboard.
- Y! %15%
- L14 rank 358
Starter the new pitching king of KC
Jeremy Guthrie (SP) Kansas City Royals
Festering in the trash heap as a member of the Rockies, Guthrie has morphed into Bret Saberhagen circa '85 as a Royal. Since August 1, he's surrendered a measly three runs in 28.2 innings pitched (0.94 ERA). Most importantly, he's added nearly two points to his K/9 during that span (5.16 in July, 7.22 in August). Given his pinpoint command and favorable ground-ball yield, don't expect the good times to stop rolling.
- Y! %13%
- L14 rank32
"L14 rank" denotes the ranking of the player in the Yahoo! fantasy baseball game for the past 14 days.