Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market: Orlando Cabrera, Charlie Furbush, Mark Ellis

by Nicholas Minnix on June 30, 2011 @ 13:13:27 PDT


Your fantasy baseball cheat sheets are no longer of use.'s Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market series gives you tips on fantasy baseball players available as free agents, on waivers or for your FAAB dollars in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball league. It's time to replace your fantasy baseball busts.


Acquire Add player (in most circumstances)
Consider Add for speculation or because of need
Watch Track player, consider if trend continues
Pass Do not add player (in most circumstances)


Middle infielders

Orlando Cabrera, Cleveland Indians

Detroit Tigers RP Phil Coke
Coke went flat

The Tribe was supposed to have called up left-handed-hitting Cord Phelps, 24, to split time with the right-handed-hitting Cabrera, 36. The PT of the former has been inconsistent, particularly while the club plays at NL parks, suggesting that the latter may still be out in front.

Phelps has hit .220 in 41 at-bats. O-Cab has started 11 of the club's last 15 contests, and three of them fell on doubleheader days (which granted the vet a day of rest in one of two games). In that time, he's 14-for-41 (.341) with two homers and a stolen base. It appears that Manny Acta is willing to ride the vet's hot hand, be it while it's playing at the keystone or the hot corner, and regardless of Phelps' feelings. Cabrera isn't exciting, but deep leaguers may bust out the Wite-Out for the writing on the wall - at least until the tables turn or Jason Kipnis makes his way to Cleveland.

Shallow mixed: Pass

Deep mixed: Watch

AL-only: Acquire

Mark Ellis, Colorado Rockies

The Oakland Athletics traded their opening day second baseman because they didn't have much room for him when he returned from the DL and Jemile Weeks had performed so well in Ellis' absence. The A's are looking toward the future. Colorado is looking at the present, and they haven't been able to solve the keystone puzzle.

There's little to suggest that Ellis, who's great with the glove, will change that, offensively. He hit an out-of-character .291 in 436 at-bats in 2010, but he homered just five times and stole a mere seven bases.

Ellis' .217 BA in 217 at-bats with Oakland this season is due to rise (he's a career .265 hitter). That's especially true since he gets away from The Coliseum and into Coors Field. He could post his 2010 numbers in half a season with his new club. The 34-year-old's PT isn't guaranteed, however, and he's a career .265 hitter (about what you should expect). Something to explore but not invest in greatly.

Shallow mixed: Pass

Deep mixed: Watch

NL-only: Acquire


Charlie Furbush, Detroit Tigers

The Tigers have done away with Phil Coke, starting pitcher. He and Furbush, who has been serving as the club's long reliever since his promotion on May 21, have swapped jobs. It might seem to be a Motown mud-toss at the wall because Furbush is a less heralded member of the Tigers' farm system, but there's a little more than meets the eye.

Furbush, 25, has been effective out of the bullpen in 21 2/3 innings, posting a 2.49 ERA, a 1.29 WHIP, a 7.06 K/9 and a 3.74 BB/9. His ERA is due for some correction, particularly because he has issued home runs fairly often (1.25 HR/9 in the majors, 0.98 HR/9 in four minor league seasons). He's also been more efficient (2.38 BB/9 on the farm) that his limited MLB exposure suggests, though.

Furbush has been successful, particularly in the K department, because of his craftiness and deception. He also gained a couple of ticks on his fastball this past spring, according to Baseball America. The southpaw won't turn tides, but he could be a pretty interesting find.

Shallow mixed: Pass

Deep mixed: Consider

AL-only: Acquire

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About Nicholas Minnix

Minnix is baseball editor and a fantasy football analyst at KFFL. He plays in LABR and Tout Wars and won the FSWA Baseball Industry Insiders League in 2010.

The University of Delaware alum is a regular guest on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio and Baltimore's WNST AM 1570.

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