The Tommy La Stella story was fun while it lasted. We knew he had elite bat control. This year, he tweaked his launch angle and started socking home runs. It wasn’t a hard line to take in April, if you were willing to be proactive and not afraid to be wrong. For a couple of months, we made a tidy profit.
And now La Stella is basically gone, a broken leg knocking him from action (and from the American League’s All-Star roster). They’re saying 8-10 weeks, and that’s an eternity in our game, especially in July. You don’t hold out hope except if the stashing is free; you move onto the next episode.
So you probably need an infielder. Let’s try to find you someone.
One of the Fraziers, perhaps?
I’d like to see more category juice from Adam Frazier, but at least he has his swing back in order. He’s at .321 over the last month, with 15 runs scored, and is battling Kevin Newman for the team’s leadoff spot. For his career, this is a .279/.342/.418 man, a useful piece. (Newman is still worth consideration, too, but less available.)
I’ll admit I thought Todd Frazier was just about cooked, but he’s refound his power stroke — seven homers over the last month, with a BB/K ratio close to one. He’s controlling his at-bats, the occasional wayward swing to the side. Don’t let the Mets mess distract you from a productive hitter.
Both of these Fraziers are owned in fewer than 10 percent of Yahoo leagues.
Freddy Galvis doing work
Given the ordinary career Galvis has given us, “career season” doesn’t have the same buzz it normally would. But that .768 OPS is a new personal best, and he’s doing it with a plus average and a .459 slugging percentage. No, he’s not running much any more, but he does have 14 home runs in half a season. He also qualifies at both middle infield spots. You can grab him in about three-quarters of the Y.
Yuli Gurriel made the most of his Colorado stop, clubbing three homers in the two-game set. He’s a lot like Galvis, a reasonable average (.275) and occasional pop, not much else. You do get versatility standard with any Gurriel — Yuli qualifies at first, second, and third. If the Astros think he’s good enough for the middle of the lineup, that’s good enough for deep-league ownership. He’s over 50 percent now, but the shallow-leaguers might want to add to that number.
Others receiving votes
If you can pick up any bat for your La Stella fit, not just an infielder, Kevin Pillar is quietly doing work in San Francisco (Top 25 hitter the last month; .299-21-6-21-2). I’ve been fooled by Jackie Bradley Jr. binges in the past, but he’s .313-5-16 over the last month, with three bags. Never a bad idea to invest in the Boston offense.