Burnett Back on DL; Fantasy Fill-in Needed

by Michael Egnak on July 1, 2007 @ 16:00:00 PDT


The Associated Press reports Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher A.J. Burnett (undisclosed) has been placed on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 29.

Burnett was off to a decent start, but a few bad outings in June have inflated his ERA a bit. Burnett had a 4.06 ERA in April and May, but his 4.31 ERA on the season is the result of giving up 13 earned runs in 23 innings during June. On the year, Burnett had a 1.37 WHIP with 106 strikeouts in 94 innings with a 5-6 record.

There's no word yet on how long Burnett will be out, but the team has called up starting pitcher Jesse Litsch. Litsch got knocked around in his first stint with the team in 2007. In four games started, he lasted just 17 2/3 innings and posted a 6.62 ERA with a 1.70 WHIP. He struck out just three and walked seven while allowing four home runs.

Litsch should be left alone in all fantasy leagues, and owners will want to hang on to Burnett in case he just misses 15 days.

For owners in need of a replacement, Cleveland Indians starter Jake Westbrook has been solid since coming off the disabled list. In his past two starts, he has recorded a 2.57 ERA, a 1.00 WHIP and nine strikeouts in 14 innings. Westbrook is available in approximately 99 percent of fantasy leagues polled.

Baltimore Orioles starter Jeremy Guthrie continues to pitch well. He has a 2.63 ERA and a 0.89 WHIP on the year while pitching 10 quality starts in 12 games started. He has also struck out 62 batters in 88 innings. Many fantasy owners haven't yet picked up on it, though, because Guthrie is available in roughly 69 percent of leagues polled.

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About Michael Egnak

Michael Egnak is a Hot Off The Wire Analyst at KFFL and has been with the company since 2005. Covering both NFL and MLB, Egnak is also a key contributor to KFFL's fantasy services.

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