Baseball is back! With all 30 teams returning to the diamond last night, there was plenty of fantasy baseball action for everyone. The Royals and White Sox played a crazy extra-inning marathon while the Blue Jays and Indians played a quick 2:40 game that finished with the tribe on top 1-0. Besides those two games there was just three games that were within two runs as most teams that won did so comfortably to start the second half.
There were the expected fantasy stars with Clayton Kershaw pitching well for the Dodgers and Mark Teixeira connecting on a pair of home runs. However, there were also a number of players that had good games that are most likely unowned in your league. Check out today’s Sleeper Central for the best performances by players owned in less than 50% of ESPN leagues in case you find your fantasy roster in ened of an upgrade.
Dayan Viciedo – CHW: In last night’s extended game in KC, Viciedo connected on home run number 15 on the year. He’s shown himself to be an extremely streaky hitter batting .206 in April, .351 in May, and .179 in June. Overall, his average is a decent .257, but his value comes from his power numbers. He has 42 RBI and 36 runs scored to go with his 15 home runs and has a everyday starting position in the White Sox lineup. He had two doubles in three games going into the break and could be on the verge of another power binge. Since Viciedo is owned in just under 25% of leagues he is one of the few power-hitting outfielders that are widely available ont the waiver wire.
Sleeper Starting Lineup
C- David Ross – Atl: (0.1% owned in ESPN leagues) 1-2, R, 4 RBI, HR, 3 BB. Ross is hitting .282 in limited time as the Braves backup catcher but is worth a look as a bargain in daily leagues when he starts.
1B- Brandon Belt – SF: (24%) 1-3, R, BB. The Giants are committed to Belt at 1B despite his recent offensive struggles.
2B- Pedro Ciriaco – Bos: (8.6%) 3-3, 2 RBI, SB. In four games, he’s batting .625 with 6 RBI, 3 SB, and a 1.397 OPS. He’s a solid short-term pickup while Dustin Pedroia is out.
3B- Todd Frazier – Cin: (0.9%) 1-2, 2 R, RBI, HR. He has 10 homers on the year now with 30 RBI in 61 games played. He’ll battle for playing time with Scott Rolen.
SS- Stephen Drew -Ari: (15.6%) 2-3, 2B. He’s returning from injury and starting to rediscover his swing.
OF- Dayan Viciedo – ChW: (23.6%) 2-5, R, 3 RBI, HR, BB. See Above
OF- Drew Sutton – Pit: (0.3%) 2-5, R, RBI, 2 2B. He’s leading off for Pittsburgh in the short-term and is batting .321 since joining the team.
OF- Brennan Boesch – Det: (21.1%) 2-4, R, 2 RBI. Battling for playing time in a crowded Tigers outfield.
AL Starting Pitcher- Derek Holland – Tex: (33.2%) 7.2 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 4 K. Nice outing against the light-hitting Mariners.
NL Starting Pitcher- Christian Friedrich – Col: (0.3%) 6 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 7 K, W.
Relief Pitcher- Vinnie Pestano – Cle: (3.2 %) 1 IP, 0 H, o R, o BB, 2 K. He pitched a perfect inning to get his 24th hold of the year with a 1.70 ERA and a 1.00 WHIP.