Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market: Yasmani Grandal, Ben Sheets, Chris Tillman, more
KFFL.com's Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market gives you candid reviews and ratings of fantasy baseball players making MLB news in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball leagues. Are they trade bait or worth your FAAB dollars in your fantasy baseball games?
The Pads made a stronger statement about their backstop spot than the last time they brought up the youngster. Grandal's two-day MLB stint in early June was a tease. This time, San Diego sent down Nick Hundley and brought back the youngster, who promptly became the first player in MLB history to hit a homer from each side of the plate in collecting his first two career hits Saturday.
Recognize the typical Pacific Coast League caveat, but after being sent back down last month, he proved why he belonged with the big club, going .365/.478/.554 in 74 June at-bats. His PETCO Park starts will be more promising if he hits from the right side, but his spray profile plays well for extra-base love in his home digs.
In two-catcher leagues, the 23-year-old's impact will be greater and demand will be higher, considering the erratic heap of No. 2s.
10-tm mixed: Watch
Is it 2008? The Bravos were impressed enough with the long-term DL inhabitant to take a chance. He'll make at least two starts in the minors, for now at Double-A Mississippi. Atlanta hopes he'll be ready soon after the All-Star break if he glides through his tune-ups, presumably to take a rotation spot from Mike Minor or Randall Delgado.
2010 marked the right-hander's last extensive action. His fantasy career has shown elite seasons ... and plenty of injuries. Tommy John surgery and an additional operation on two other elbow tendons put his career in jeopardy two years ago, and his last complete campaign came four years ago. Shoulder woes hindered him, as well, throughout his MLB years.
Turning 34 in a few weeks, the 1999 first-rounder and four-time All-Star was clocked by Atlanta at 91 and 92 mph in workouts. Still a bit to go before revisiting his mid-90s potency from years ago, but solid enough that regaining his feel for pitching could make him fantasy-relevant. He joins a promising situation for pitching success, as well.
Follow the template: As with most TJS patients, Sheets' control will probably take a bit to return, and he may give up more hard-hit offerings as a result. If he can sustain health after he gets things right, expect something close to his 2008 and 2010 numbers, not those from the right-hander's peak years. In many leagues, that'll do, and he has potential to do much more over the final few months. Just keep his fragility in mind during your bidding.
10-tm mixed: Watch
The righty was scratched from his Monday start for Triple-A Norfolk and may be the O's choice to start on Thursday at the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The spot is available because of Brian Matusz's demotion. Tillman has logged a 2.88 ERA over his last 10 outings at the minors' top level, including a six-inning, two-run (one earned) affair Sunday with seven punchouts.
Still just 24, the right-hander has served up batting practice in his big-league time, with a career 5.58 ERA in 36 starts. He's adjusted well after a horrific April for the Tides and has displayed a better fastball plane, strike-zone aggressiveness and command of his four pitches. Tillman has been a smidge better in inducing grounders, and his curveball has "better 12-6 depth to it than I've seen in the past," per Norfolk pitching coach Mike Griffin.
Baltimore may jump into the SP market at the end of the month, but if Tillman starts showing signs of the upside they saw from his prospect days, they'll take notice.
Tillman's endurance remains spotty and will mark the biggest tipping point of his maturity, but he holds plenty of attractive pitching pieces that warrant cavernous-league speculation as a matchup play, at minimum.
10-tm mixed: Watch
With CC Sabathia (groin) and Andy Pettitte (ankle) sidelined, the righty was recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to bolster their depth and will start Wednesday versus the Tampa Bay Rays. His pitch count will probably stay around the 70s while he's stretching back out.
He'll have a shot at keeping a spot over Freddy Garcia whenever Sabathia resurfaces, considering the Bombers will be without Pettitte for about two months. In his short sample size, Phelps displayed nearly equal K/9s for his starting and relief work this year, and his diverse arsenal should keep help him eat IPs.
The right-hander works mainly on deception, but the 25-year-old has enough skills not to rely heavily on run support, as Garcia does. Phelps is, in fact, the better speculation of the two if you can aim high.
10-tm mixed: Pass
Chisey won't be busy for about 10 to 12 weeks after a pitch fractured the right ulna in his forearm. Hannahan (lefty) and Lopez (righty) comprise a likely platoon in the stead of Lonnie Chisenhall (fractured right forearm). Hannahan holds the playing time advantage, but Lopez is the (marginally) better own if you want more power. Yawn.
10-tm mixed: Pass
About Tim Heaney
Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous publications, and recognized as a finalist in FSWA's awards. The Boston University alum competes in Tout Wars and LABR and has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.
During baseball and football season, he's on The Reality Check with Glenn Clark every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore. He hits the airwaves every Thursday at 9:30 a.m. ET on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio, where he often crashes other shows, as well.
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