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Fantasy Baseball Insiders Tonight 4/13: Blue Jays’ Ricky Romero’s No-Hit Bid Comes Six Outs Short

Wed, Apr 14, 2010

Insiders Tonight

Photo: Chris Creamer, Sportslogos.net

After a two-day break, Fantasy Baseball Insiders Tonight is back with everything you need to know from Tuesday night’s action. Tonight, we’re featuring the Mets and Rockies at Coors.

Previous Fantasy Baseball Insiders Tonight updates:

Game No. 10 – New York Mets vs. Colorado Rockies

In an extremely lopsided game, David Wright was the lone bright spot for the Mets. New York’s third baseman reached base four times (two hits, two walks) and hit a solo HR to lead off the fourth, his second of the young season.

Jose Reyes recorded his first two-hit game in just his third contest of the season after returning from a short DL stint on Saturday.

Seth Smith busted out of his 2-for-11 slump, going 2-for-5 with a HR and three RBI in the leadoff spot for Colorado.

Miguel Olivo also went 2-for-5 with a run, though he did strike out three times. Despite splitting time with Chris Iannetta, Olivo whacked 23 HRs in just 390 at-bats last year, and already has two long balls in 2010. Given two-thirds of the starts at catcher, he can be a useful fantasy option again this season.

Todd Helton and Troy Tulowitzki each went 1-for-3 with two walks and two runs scored in Colorado’s 11-3 beat down of the Mets.

Ian Stewart also continued his fast start, going 1-for-3 with two walks, two runs, an RBI, and a stolen base. Stewart fell victim to an unlucky BABIP of .270 last season, and his .228 batting average made him nearly un-ownable. With any amount of luck, the second base-eligible third baseman could hit 25 HRs with a .260 average in 2010.

Rockies’ southpaw Greg Smith pitched one heck of a game, yielding just two runs on six hits and two walks in seven strong innings. The former LSU Tiger also struck out eight.

Despite Smith’s respectable 4.16 ERA in 190 1/3 innings in 2008 - his first and only season in the majors – his FIP (4.82) and xFIP (5.30) suggest he should not be trusted in 2010. Don’t waste your time with him.

Other news from around the league:

HITTERS

Hitter of the day: Carlos Pena (3-for-5, R, HR, 4 RBI)

Carlos Pena went 3-for-5 with the game-winning three-run HR in the tenth inning against the Orioles on Tuesday. He also had an RBI single in the eighth to give him four RBI for the game. Carl Crawford got the day off, as the O’s sent left-hander Brian Matusz to the mound.

Jose Guillen went 2-for-4 with a walk, two runs, and a solo HR against the Tigers on Tuesday. Kansas City’s DH now has four HRs and seven RBI in the last three days. If he’s still available in your league, pick him up and ride it out. The 34-year-old posted 20 HRs and 97 RBI as recently as 2008. If he can stay healthy, Guillen might be a decent utility option in 2010.

Nick Johnson went 2-for-3 with two walks, three runs, and a solo HR against the Angels on Tuesday. Though the Yankees’ DH is batting just .200 (5-for-25), he has a .428 OBP through seven games. If Johnson can stay healthy (and that’s a big if), the Yankees’ No. 2 hitter should be a great source of runs in 2010.

Mark Teixeira went 0-for-3 with two walks on Tuesday. The Yankees’ No. 3 hitter is now batting .111 (3-for-27) through seven games. If Teixeira’s slow start has you worried, don’t be. The recently-turned 30-year-old is a notoriously slow starter. In fact, Teixeira’s career totals in runs, HRs, RBI and batting average are lower in April than any other month.

Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier, and Manny Ramirez all homered against the Diamondbacks on Tuesday afternoon. The Dodgers’ No. 2, 3, and 4 hitters are batting a combined .324 (23-for-71). Casey Blake also went yard for the Dodgers.

Brandon Phillips went 4-for-6 with two runs and two RBI. Teammate Jonny Gomes went 2-for-3 with two runs, a HR, and four RBI.

Cody Ross went 2-for-4 with two runs, a HR, and four RBI against the Reds on Tuesday. As I’ve mentioned before, Ross and his 46 HRs over the last two seasons qualify the Marlins’ right fielder as “sneaky good.”

Milton Bradley went 2-for-4 with the game-winning three-run HR in the eighth against the Giants. The former Expo, Indian, Dodger, Athletic, Padre, Ranger, and Cub is batting .115 ( 3-for-26) through eight games.

Garrett Jones raised his batting average from .185 to .258 with a three-hit, two-RBI night against the Giants. Teammate Aki Iwamura went 2-for-5 with a HR and two RBI.

PITCHERS

Pitcher of the day: Ricky Romero (W, 8 IP, H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 12)

Ricky Romero came up six outs short of a no-hitter against the White Sox Tuesday night. Alex Rios broke up Romero’s bid at history with a two-run shot in the eighth. The former first-round pick finished with eight innings pitched, two runs on one hit and two walks. Oh yea, and he struck out 12 batters.

After 15 innings, the 25-year-old has a 1.80 ERA and 0.67 WHIP with 16 strikeouts and just four walks. The once highly-touted lefty no longer has the upside the Jays expected when they drafted him in 2005, but his start to 2010 signals a glimmer of hope. He should be added in all leagues.

Brian Bannister pitched 6 1/3 innings against the Tigers on Tuesday, allowing two runs on four hits and two walks. Though he left in the seventh with a four-run lead, the Royals bullpen imploded, handing Bannister a no decision.

Through two starts, the 29-year-old has a 2.19 ERA and 0.97 WHIP. While you may be tempted to add the Royals’ No. 4 starter, don’t be fooled. Bannister posted a 0.69 ERA and 1.00 WHIP in 13 innings last April.

Clayton Kershaw picked up his first win of the season, allowing two runs on three hits and five walks in 5 1/3 innings. He also struck out seven. The only thing standing between Kershaw and fantasy stardom is his alarmingly high walk rate. Last year, the 22-year-old posted a 4.79 BB/9. Through two starts in 2010, he’s walked 13 batters in 10 innings.

Brian Matusz was brilliant through seven innings against the Rays Tuesday night. As he trotted out to the mound for the eighth, Matusz had allowed no runs on two hits and one walk.

The 23-year-old then allowed four straight singles, and was pulled from the game with one out and the bases loaded. Josh Johnson and Will Ohman failed to preserve the two-run lead, leaving Matusz with a final line of: 7 1/3 innings, four runs, six hits, one walk and eight strikeouts.

Brett Anderson was fantastic in his second start against Seattle Tuesday night, though he didn’t figure into the decision. In six innings, the 22-year-old southpaw allowed no runs on six hits and two walks while punching out six. He has yet to allow a run through 12 innings this season.

I said it last week, and I’ll say it again: Anderson is going to be ridiculously good. If you can still get him at a decent price, pull the trigger.

Doug Fister (who?) pitched eight stellar innings against the Athletics Tuesday night. The 26-year-old allowed just three hits and no walks with four strikeouts. Another similar start is necessary before Fister deserves an add, even in deep leagues. Seriously, who is this guy?

RELIEVERS

Kevin Gregg pitched a perfect ninth to record his third save of the season. Gregg has allowed one hit and no walks in 4 1/3 innings. Jason Frasor, who also has three saves (and two blown saves), may be in trouble. Gregg should be considered the favorite for Toronto’s save opportunities from here out, and should be owned in all leagues.

Rafael Soriano allowed his second run in four innings this season, but managed to nail down his second save.

Octavio Dotel earned his second save in as many chances, despite allowing a two-run bomb to Giants’ pinch-hitter Eugenio Velez in the bottom of the ninth. No worries here, Dotel’s job remains safe.

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