Your fantasy baseball cheat sheets are no longer of use. KFFL.com's Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market series gives you candid ratings of fantasy baseball players making MLB news in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball league. If they're available in any of your fantasy baseball games as free agents, on waivers or for your FAAB dollars, you'll know whether they make the cut.
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Devin Mesoraco, Cincinnati Reds
The Reds have recalled Mesoraco, 23, considered perhaps the top catching prospect in the minor leagues. The Cincinnati Enquirer's John Fay noted that, in a Baseball America poll of International League skippers, Mesoraco was voted the best defensive catcher in the league. The 6-foot-1, 220-pound specimen's bat hasn't quite caught up to his glove, but he's projected to be pretty good with a stick in his hands, too.
Volquez ready to contribute?
That's not to say that he's a poor hitter now. At Triple-A Louisville this season, he posted a .289/.371/.484 slash line, belted 15 ding dongs and drove in 71. His frame and swing mechanics suggest continued power growth. Although he's not exactly a future batting title winner, he's made solid adjustments to learn to control the strike zone at each new level and possesses good overall plate discipline. His career minor league average is .269, and he could easily reproduce that in the bigs.
Naturally, with Ramon Hernandez and Ryan Hanigan around, Mesoraco won't play a ton. But each of the vets is banged up, and GM Walt Jocketty acknowledged that the youngster will get some PT. If fantasy owners can get seven to 10 starts from this kid, in the right format, it could be worthwhile. Keeper leaguers, of course, are already on this fellow.
Shallow mixed: Pass
Deep mixed: Pass
Edinson Volquez, Cincinnati Reds
The Reds will recall Volquez after his final start at Triple-A Louisville, and he'll initially join the bullpen. But not long afterward - like, probably when Mike Leake reaches his cap for the year, in a couple of starts at most - Volquez will step into the rotation. The Reds have likely done the smart thing by not rushing him back to the bigs, like they did after his first demotion.
Volquez, 28, clearly need to work on his control. He'll return to The Show with a line that includes a 5.93 ERA, a 9.00 K/9 and a 5.82 BB/9 in 85 innings. For the Bats, however, he's posted a 2.46 ERA, a 7.95 K/9 and a 3.02 BB/9 in 80 1/3 frames. Since the break, he's induced 2.57 ground-outs for every air-out and posted a 2.70 ERA, a 9.15 K/9 and a 2.55 BB/9. The right-hander seems to have regained his focus and an appreciation for throwing strikes.
Although his big-league track record suggests that he'll be back to his wild ways at the MLB level, the hope is that his BB/9 more along the lines of something that the fireballer can manage - in the 3.50 to 4.00 range. He can make up the difference with strikeouts; velocity and movement haven't been an issue. He could still be a roto asset down the stretch, in three or four starts.
Shallow mixed: Watch
Deep mixed: Consider
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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