So, it’s now all of a sudden September. Wow, where did the time go?
With fantasy playoffs set to start in head-to-head league and with this month being a pivotal stretch for rotisserie players, things are set to get very interesting.
There is no time for second guessing, as every decision you make this month is critical.
So let’s look at some hot, trendy and intriguing names to watch this week.
Alex Rodriguez: New York Yankees
With the Yankees in need of some stability and pop in the order with Mark Teixeira and Curtis Granderson recently being sidelined, the return of Rodriguez could not come at a more opportune time.
Out since late-July, there will be some rust to shake off for A-Rod, but he still possesses a powerful bat and could help owners down the stretch.
This week A-Rod and the Yankees take on the Rays (James Shields, Alex Cobb and Matt Moore) and the Orioles (Wei-Yin Chen, Chris Tillman, Joe Saunders and Zach Britton) on the road in an important week for AL East supremacy.
Kris Medlen: Atlanta Braves
There is perhaps no hotter pitcher in baseball than Kris Medlen is right now.
Medlen is working on a 28.1 scoreless inning streak and is 5-0 in his last six starts, while allowing just three earned runs in 40.2 innings pitched.
Medlen has been a scorching name off the waiver wire and at this point he has to be considered a must start pitcher. With two starts (vs. Colorado, @NYM) on deck this week, Medlen is a pitcher to count on this week.
Jurickson Profar: Texas Rangers
One of the more exciting September call-ups, Profar had a fantastic debut on Sunday vs. the Indians when he went 2-4 with his first ever home run in his first at-bat.
While it’s unclear how much time he will get going forward since he has no set position (he was filling in for Ian Kinsler, who could be back soon), but he is a player that bears watching.
He is a must-own in dynasty/keeper leagues, but he could do enough in yearly leagues to help out in at least stolen bases.
This week Profar and the Rangers will face the Royals (Bruce Chen, Jeremy Guthrie, TBA and Will Smith) and the Rays (Jeremy Hellickson, David Price and James Shields) on the road.
Matt Harvey: New York Mets
Enjoy him while you can, because just like Stephen Strasburg, Harvey is on the verge of being shut down. But not before he gets two starts this week against the Cardinals on the road and the Braves at home.
Harvey has been spectacular of late and is 2-0 in his last four starts while giving up just six earned runs in 26 innings. Harvey also boasts 49 strikeouts on the year to just 17 walks.
Tyler Colvin: Colorado Rockies
While not much has been going right for the Rockies of late, they have found a nice slugging hitter in Colvin.
Colvin has been picked up in a lot of leagues of late on the account of him going 13-42 in his last 11 games with three home runs, three doubles, two triples and 11 runs batted in.
While he does face a challenging slate, having to go on the road and face off against the staffs of the Braves (Kris Medlen, Tommy Hanson, Mike Minor and Tim Hudson) and the Phillies (Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels and Tyler Cloyd), Colvin could help out if you find yourself in a pinch.
Edwin Jackson: Washington Nationals
Jackson has been on a bit of roll of late.
While Jackson has only won two starts in his last six tries, he is keeping his team in games. Jackson has given up only five earned runs in his last 21 innings while also striking out a whopping 29 batters in that time.
With Strasburg about to get shut down, Jackson will be leaned on a bit more heavily in the last month.
This week Jackson will draw two winnable starts at home vs. the Cubs and the Marlins.
Mark Reynolds: Baltimore Orioles
It’s either boom or bust when discussing Reynolds.
Well, with the week Reynolds is coming off of, we’re talking a whole lot of boom here. Reynolds was 7-22 with four home runs and seven RBI’s in the last week.
Reynolds is a streaky player and that streak could extend into this week when he and the Orioles square off against the Blue Jays (J.A. Happ, Carlos Villanueva and Brandon Morrow) on the road before tangling with the Yankees (David Phelps, Phil Hughes, C.C. Sabathia and Freddy Garcia) at home to end the week.
Yu Darvish: Texas Rangers
It has been an uneven season for the much-hyped Japanese import this year, but Darvish is starting to hit a stride as we approach the stretch.
Darvish is 2-1 in his last three starts, while allowing just six earned runs in 20.2 innings pitched. In that time Darvish has also amassed 28 strikeouts while allowing 15 hits and eight walks.
This week Darvish should be in a line for a solid week when he faces two offensively-challenged teams in the Royals and the Rays on the road.
Delmon Young: Detroit Tigers
It has been an inconsistent season for Young this year, but right now he is on the right side of the ledger.
Young is swinging a hot bat of late and is 13-30 in his last eight games with four home runs, three doubles, one triple and 11 RBI’s.
While this hot, Young is a player you must ride. This week Young and the Tigers will go up against the Indians (Corey Kluber, Justin Masterson and Ubaldo Jimenez) at home before heading out west to Los Angeles (Ervin Santana, Jered Weaver and C.J. Wilson) to end the week.
Shaun Marcum: Milwaukee Brewers
Since coming off the DL on August 25, Marcum has been so-so while not lasting past the fifth inning in any outing and allowing seven runs (three earned) in nine innings.
If you’re a risk taker, this may be the week to take a flier on Marcum since he’ll be due for two starts on the road (@Miami and @ St. Louis).
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