Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market: Starling Marte, Nathan Eovaldi, 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 Bucs are trying something new in left field after Jose Tabata and a platoon of Alex Presley and Drew Sutton proved ineffective. Marte was recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis Wednesday, and he'll make his major league debut against the Houston Astros today.
John Perrotto reminds us, though, that Pittsburgh might not settle for a young Marte as the solution in left for the remainder of the schedule as they push for the playoffs. Marte could be traded, too, but that won't necessarily hurt his value - it could enhance it, actually. It's worth keeping in mind.
A triple slash line of .286/.347/.500 with 12 home runs and 62 RBIs in 388 at-bats for Indy convinced the Pirates that he was ready for a shot at everyday outfield action in The Show. Manager Clint Hurdle previously said the club didn't want to rush Marte for a call-up because he had some things they wanted him to work on, notably his plate discipline. Well, it appears he's shown improvements, enough to make him deserving of his first major league look.
It's not often a rook rakes out of the gate while seeing major league pitchers for the first time, so temper your expectations. It'll be hard for him to avoid whiffing often initially (21.1 K percent with Indy), but his raw speed and burgeoning power profile give him enough allure as outfield depth in deep enough leagues.
10-tm mixed: Pass
Wade LeBlanc was slated to move to the starting rotation to take the spot of Anibal Sanchez, who was dealt to the Detroit Tigers earlier this week. That won't be the case now, as Eovaldi will make his team debut versus the San Diego Padres Saturday, a tasty matchup. Eovaldi was involved in the swap that sent Hanley Ramirez to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
This works out better for Miami; LeBlanc is better suited for the bullpen anyway, and Eovaldi is more intriguing as a starting arm. Eovaldi went 1-6 with a 4.15 ERA and 34 K's in 56 1/3 innings (10 starts) for the Blue.
Control has been his undoing, especially last year in his six starts with L.A., but he's made some minor adjustments (3.20 BB/9 with L.A., 3.34 BB/9 with Double-A Chattanooga). The 22-year-old righty has considerable upside, and his rotation leash is longer in Miami than it was in his old uni.
Recently acquired Jacob Turner waits in the wings at Triple-A New Orleans, but Eovaldi could hold him off until at least September if he pitches well enough. He's moving from a great pitcher's park (Chavez Ravine) to another that suppresses offense.
10-tm mixed: Pass
The aging (36 years old) and increasingly brittle Placido Polanco (lower back inflammation) hit the disabled list today. Polanco has hit .255 with two homers and only 19 RBIs this year while battling to stay healthy. The subject of recent trade rumors, Polanco is virtually all but certain to remain in Philly now, with the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline quickly approaching.
Wigginton, no spring chicken himself at age 34, will step in at the hot corner. He started all three games at third base with Polanco sitting out this week. Wigginton is hitting only .234 with nine home runs and 36 RBIs in 252 at-bats, but eligibility at third, first and the outfield make him a tad bit more valuable.
Increased PT is really the only thing making him worthy in the deepest of mixed leagues. That and the fact that he can still clear the fences on occasion. After struggling against righties last year (.235), he's reversed that tune and is searching for answers against southpaws (.208). Regardless, he won't help you in average, but he could find some hot spells eventually.
10-tm mixed: Pass
Starting backstop J.P. Arencibia (broken right hand) will miss at least six weeks after being hit with a foul tip Wednesday. In his absence, skipper John Farrell said Mathis will receive the bulk of the catching duties, with Gomes as the backup.
We know you must be DYING to run out and claim either of these reserves… NOT! Although Mathis will be the first man up, Farrell will be hesitant not to overwork the rarely used catcher, leaving Gomes' workload to be determined. It wouldn't be a stretch to fathom Gomes at least splitting the load evenly, depending on production.
Mathis' stick is nonexistent; he's striking out over 30 percent of the time. He's hitting only .253, and he's sporting a career high BABIP of .327 - that says it all. That's good news for Gomes, who should also have first base eligibility in most leagues.
Pick your poison, but the 25-year-old Gomes can probably help your squad more than Mathis can in limited duty. It's probably best to avoid this situation wherever possible.
10-tm mixed: Pass
About Keith Hernandez
Keith, an editor with KFFL, joined the team as a Hot off the Wire analyst in 2008 and has been playing fantasy sports since 2005. He is involved in MLB, NFL and NASCAR content. He graduated from the University of California-San Diego in 2005 with a B.A. in Communications and was a four-year starter as a member of the baseball program. Follow @keithdez27
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