With just a few weeks left before the start of the season, activity this spring is ramping up. The position battles that started in the first weeks of March are now becoming more settled and the impact is being felt by many players. Fantasy owners need to keep their ears to the ground to watch for the final outcomes.
First cuts that happened this week impact some dynasty leagues but the next few moves will have more reaching implications. It not only happens on the field, but on draft boards throughout the rotisserie world. Check out the movers and shakers from the past week.
The Blue Jays are still trying to firm up their left field spot. Indications are that they would like to give Travis Snider a legit shot to earn and keep the job. Many in the organization still believe that Snider has a high ceiling and can come around with consistent playing time. While Eric Thames struggled from August on, Snider can provide flexibility in multiple outfield spots.
The once top-prospect is garnering some interest. While still hovering around an ADP of 300, Snider has picked up 44 spots in the last week and represents some late-round upside for the fantasy owner willing to take a chance. Keep an eye out as winning the job will bump his value even further.
The trades of Jed Lowrie and Marco Scutaro have opened the door for Mike Aviles to take over as the starting shortstop for the Red Sox. Manager Bobby Valentine is making some moves with the lineup and the early games have seen Aviles hitting out of the leadoff spot as much as the latter portion of the order. In a lineup this deep, Aviles would be able to score runs in nearly any position, but being near the top would bump those numbers up.
So far, he has delivered and is making himself worth mentioning for deeper leagues and those that need a Middle Infield spot in their lineup. In the last two weeks, Aviles has jumped up 50 spots to number 244 overall. Pay attention to this one. Though he has not been named the starter yet, he has started seven of ten possible games.
The Tigers have shut down young starter Jacob Turner as he is dealing with shoulder tendonitis. Scouts indicate that there was a drop in velocity at the end of 2011. It continued into this Spring. Hopefully this diagnosis accounts for his problems he has seen in March. Turner is one of the top prospects in baseball and is a potential top of the rotation starter. Right now, there is little reason to worry. He will be shut down and get ready to throw in a week. Still, with an ADP that had already fallen to the mid-330’s prior to this injury and was down 30 spots in the last week, Turner is likely better served as waiver wire fodder. The Tigers will certainly be as cautious with him as they were with Justin Verlander during his early years.
Domonic Brown was sidelined for a week with a sprained thumb but jumped back in the lineup this week. The injury partially explains the initial drop in ADP over the last two weeks, falling 27 spots to 270 overall. It is not the whole story. Brown continues to struggle defensively and there are indications that he will be sent down again to work on his play in left field. While there is no doubt he can hit, the defensive issues on display are keeping the Phillies from putting him in the lineup on a regular basis. Be ready to cut bait and see his already disappointing ADP drop even further.