Find a Replacement for the NL ROY Frontrunner

by Tim Piotrowski on July 24, 2007 @ 16:00:00 PDT


Houston Astros outfielder Hunter Pence (wrist) went on the 15-day disabled list Monday, July 23, with a small chip fracture in his right wrist. He will miss four to six weeks. "How they explained it to me was the ligament was being pulled and basically instead of it tearing, it pulled off like the part of the bone with it. Or something," Pence said.

Pence injured his wrist while batting in the fourth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates Sunday, July 22. He is having a great 2007 rookie campaign at the plate. He has a .330 batting average, 12 home runs and 45 runs batted in. He has been regularly hitting in the second spot in the lineup ever since he was called up April 28.

From a fantasy perspective, Pence was likely a No. 3 outfielder on many fantasy teams, but he was performing as a No. 2 outfielder or better because he was likely a waiver wire addition. There is a chance he will not come back until September, so owners will have to find a consistent replacement for a month or more. In the meantime, as valuable as Pence has been, owners should find room for him on their DLs, and if space isn't available, then stash him on the bench.

One player who could be an option is Baltimore Orioles outfielder Corey Patterson. Over the past week, he has upped his average 12 points to .260. Patterson also has four homers, 26 RBI and 23 stolen bases. He has hit three if his home runs this month while batting .357. Patterson has been hitting in the No. 2 hole during his streak. He is available in approximately 66 percent of leagues polled.

Another option would be Seattle Mariners outfielder Jose Guillen. He has put up a nice season in 2007. Guillen is currently hitting .284 with 12 home runs and 58 RBI; he has been hitting in either the third spot or cleanup, so he should get opportunities to drive in runs. He is available in roughly 91 percent of leagues polled.

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About Tim Piotrowski

Piotrowski has been a Hot Off the Wire analyst since 2007.

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