Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market - Rising

by Tim Heaney on September 23, 2009 @ 00:00:00 PDT

 


Also see: Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market - Falling

Fantasy baseball waivers and the acquisition of fantasy baseball free agents can make or break a season. You may have adjusted your fantasy baseball cheat sheets over and over during spring training. If your team remains the same after opening day, though, you will probably have trouble competing in your rotisserie baseball league.

Do you need to add players to replace your fantasy baseball busts? Which players can you ignore? KFFL.com's Diamond Market series gives you the fantasy baseball tips and advice you need to sort through the masses quickly.

Key

Acquire - Add player (in most circumstances)

Watch - Track player; consider adding if trend continues

Pass - Do not add player (in most circumstances)

Second basemen

Ronnie Belliard, Los Angeles Dodgers

The Dodgers wouldn't confirm that Orlando Hudson was their starting second baseman. Belliard has torn it up since being traded from the Washington Nationals, hitting .322 with four dingers and 15 RBIs in 56 at-bats. He holds eligibility at every infield position sans shortstop in most setups, which makes him at least a decent plug-in, and at best a hot bat for the stretch.

Shallow mixed: Watch

Deep mixed: Acquire

NL-only: Acquire

Third basemen

Edwin Encarnacion, Toronto Blue Jays

Toronto Blue Jays 3B Edwin Encarnacion
Edwin: turning over a new maple leaf?

The streaky bat has been on the good side of the coin: In the last nine days, he's hitting .364 with five dingers and 10 RBIs, with two taters coming in last night's game. Be aware that he could fall back to earth, but he's hitting in the middle of the order as they look to groom him for next season.

Shallow mixed: Watch

Deep mixed: Acquire

AL-only: Acquire

Shortstops

John McDonald, Toronto Blue Jays

With Marco Scutaro (heel) likely out for the season, Mac will pick up the shortstop slack. All rhyming aside, he's a glove-first player and is valuable mostly for his playing time.

Shallow mixed: Pass

Deep mixed: Pass

AL-only: Acquire

Relief pitchers

Matt Thornton, Chicago White Sox

Closer Bobby Jenks (calf) is done for the rest of '09, and though a potential committee setup could mar this situation, Thornton is by far the most skilled option. Octavio Dotel, Tony Pena and potentially D.J. Carrasco could factor in, but you should go with Thornton first if you have the choice. If you miss out, follow the order of the other three for your priority.

Shallow mixed: Acquire

Deep mixed: Acquire

AL-only: Acquire

Brad Kilby, Oakland Athletics

At the risk of jinxing another streaking reliever, we have to mention Kilby's run to open his MLB career: 11 innings, 13 K's, three hits, one walk ... and no runs allowed. The 26-year-old southpaw is a bit of a soft-tosser with a fastball in the mid- to low 90s, but he's deceptive. Sound familiar, Brad Ziegler fans?

He has retired 19 of the last 20 hitters he has faced and can eat multiple innings as a bridge reliever, which is vital for helping your ratios this late.

Shallow mixed: Pass

Deep mixed: Watch

AL-only: Acquire

Also see: Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market - Falling

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About Tim Heaney

Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous outlets, and recognized as a finalist in the Fantasy Sports Writers Association awards. The Boston University alum, who competes in LABR and Tout Wars, has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.

During baseball and football season, he appears on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio on Thursdays and Sundays, and every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore.


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