Fantasy Baseball Risers and Fallers (May. 24th)

Davd Ortiz

Ortiz is turning things around in Boston.

Risers:

David Ortiz, BOS, DH

The season started and David Ortiz started out exactly as he did in 2009. Last year he hit .185 with 1 HR in April and May combined. In the four months after that Ortiz hit .264 with 26 HR’s. This year he hit .143 with 1 HR in April. In 53 at bats in May, Ortiz is hitting .358 with 7 HR’s. Ortiz looks to be going at a similar pace this year, except one thing, he is starting earlier.

Ricky Romero & Shaun Marcum, TOR, SP

With the departure of Roy Halladay to Philadelphia this offseason, the Blue Jays desperately needed someone to step up and be their ace. Fortunately for the Jays, two pitchers have.

The first is second year starter Ricky Romero is 4-1 with a 2.71 ERA and 64 strike outs in 63 innings. Romero had been labeled a failed prospect until finally showing signs of life last season. This season Romero is putting it all together and pitching like one of the bets in the game. Expect Romero to come down to earth a bit, but he can still help out fantasy rosters.

The second guy is Shaun Marcum. Some people remember Marcum from his 2008 season when he had a 3.40 ERA in 150+ innings. Regrettably for Marcum he could not build off that season as he had Tommy John surgery in 2009. This year he is back looking better than ever. Marcum is posting 2.61 ERA with an amazing WHIP of 0.968. Many people have gone on to have successful careers after Tommy John, it looks as if Marcum can do the same.

Carlos Lee, HOU, OF

Last year Carlos Lee hit .300 with 26 HR’s and 102 RBI’s. This year he has looked terrible. Lee is currently hitting .197 with 5 HR’s. However he has 3 HR’s in the past five games. It could be a good time to buy low on Carlos Lee.

Neftali Feliz, TEX, RP

Earlier in the season Feliz earned a share of the closer job with former closer Frank Francisco. As time has went on in it looks more and more like Feliz is firmly imbedded as the team’s closer. He is currently tied for 2nd in the AL with 11 saves while averaging over a strike out per inning.

Meanwhile former closer Francisco has not recorded a save since May 1st. Feliz has a great arm and most people believe his future is as a starter. However it does not look like it will be this year. Look for Feliz to hold the closer job down all year.

Fallers:

John Maine, NYM, SP

In his last start against the Nationals on Thursday he was pulled after just five pitches. Reports are his fastball was being clocked at 82-85 miles per hour. His average fastball velocity was over 91 miles per hour in 2009. Maine was placed on the DL on Friday because of what the team said to be weakness in his throwing shoulder. Maine proclaims there is nothing wrong with him. However with the lack of velocity and a 6.13 ERA, something is not right.

Andruw Jones, CHW, DH

The once feared slugger Andruw Jones was showing glimpses of his former self early in the season. On May 5th Jones was hitting .270 with 9 HR’s. However in the last 10 games Jones is batting .179 with 0 HR’s. Some of the slump may be contributed to a stiff neck which kept him out of two games from May 12th to the 14th.  Jones can be a streaky hitter, bench him in all leagues until he starts to heat up again.

Rickie Weeks, MIL, 2B

This guy has always had the talent. Unfortunately for him he would always get hurt. In the first 16 games of the season Weeks showed his potential. He hit .344 with 3 HR’s and 12 RBI’s. In the 25 games since then Weeks is hitting .175 with 2 HR’s and 8 RBI’s. There is no doubt Weeks has the talent if he is healthy. Try and find a fill in 2B until Weeks starts to come around again.

Derrek Lee, CHC, 1B

Lee has to be one of the hardest players to figure out. One season he plays at an all-star caliber level and the next he shows how average he can be. This season Lee is hitting .226 with 5 HR’s and 18 RBI’s. Those number are on pace to total 19 HR’s and 69 RBI’s.

This would be a considerable fall off from last season’s .306 batting average, 35 HR’s and 111 RBI’s. Do not look for Lee to repeat upon his 2009 numbers, but he has hit over .290 for the past three seasons. If nothing else expect a rise in his batting average and hope for some HR’s along the way.

Randy Wolf, MIL, SP

The Brewers made their free agent splash this offseason by picking up veteran pitcher Randy Wolf. Last season with the Dodgers Wolf had a 3.24 ERA and 160 K’s in just over 214 innings. The Brewers hoped he could pick up where he left off in Los Angeles. However Wolf has struggled so far this season with a 5.10 ERA. He may not repeat his numbers from last season, but he should find a way to lower his ERA and be more effective.

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