The NL Wire – A look into some worthy roster additions
This week’s edition features some up-and-coming pitchers as well as some names you may have heard of already but have never considered as a worthy additions to your fantasy squad. It may be time to take a flier on these guys, especially if you need to fill some holes for the stretch run or if you’re looking for a few keeper prospects.
Thomas Diamond, P – CHC – Owned in 0% of CBS leagues
The former Sun Belt Conference Pitcher-of-the-Year and 2004 first round draft pick of the Rangers is going to get a look by the Cubbies—hopefully to fill one of their back-end rotation spots. By trading Ted Lilly to Oz where he can hang with Dorothy, the Cubs opened up a spot to get a glimpse (hopefully) of the future. In addition to Lilly’s trade, Carlos Silva’s premature departure from his last start (irregular heartbeat) and his unclear status leaves a void in their rotation.
Diamond was used exclusively as a starter by Triple-A Iowa this year and has already thrown 108 innings in 21 starts. He has posted 104 K’s with an ERA of 3.16 and a WHIP of 1.22 in those starts.
He was impressive in his first major league outing and lived up to his billing as a strikeout pitcher. He rung up ten Brewers in six innings, but the Cubs offense could not back him up. Diamond ended up taking the loss while the Cubs dropped yet another one-run game and now stand at 13-25 on the season in those games. Diamond will get a second shot at his long-awaited first victory this week against Cincinnati on Sunday. As long as he remains in the rotation, Diamond is worth a flier in deeper fantasy leagues and without a doubt in all keeper leagues.
Barry Enright, P – ARI – Owned in 13% of CBS leagues
Enright quietly moved into the Diamondbacks’ rotation and represents the winds of change out in the desert. As Arizona looks to build for the future (again), they have assembled an arsenal of young arms in Joe Saunders, Ian Kennedy and Daniel Hudson. Enright was summoned to the big league club in June and has done an admirable job of holding down his rotation spot. In six starts he has a 2.77 ERA and a 1.26 WHIP with a 25:13 K to BB ratio. Unfortunately the D’backs have not put him in position to win very many games and therefore, he has two wins to show for his efforts.
Enright showed plenty of promise in his ascent through the minor leagues compiling 346 K’s in 431.3 innings with only 92 free passes allowed. In two+ years as a starter in the minors, he has improved on his ERA from 4.42 to 3.98 to 2.89 (1.03 WHIP) before his call-up this season.
Enright has given up three earned runs or more only once this season and went eight innings a few weeks ago against the anemic Mets offense with a season high eight K’s. There is surely enough promise here for the former second round pick of Arizona to ride him through this season and next season in keeper leagues.
R.A. Dickey, P – NYM – Owned in 56% of CBS leagues
Unlike most of the other players mentioned here, Dickey is far from a rising star or a top prospect. Everyone knows the saga of the 35-year old journeyman knuckleballer. Dickey bounced between the bullpen and starting rotation in the AL (Twins, Mariners, Rangers) for quite a few years. Last year he posted the lowest ERA of his career for the Twins, a less than inspiring 4.63 to go with a robust 1.62 WHIP. In 34 games (one start) Dickey had 42 K’s to go along with 30 bases on balls.
He signed a minor league deal with the Mets and put up decent numbers for the Triple-A Buffalo affiliate this year. In eight starts he had two complete games; a 2.24 ERA along with a miniscule 1.04 WHIP. If that’s not convincing enough, he had a mind-blowing 37:8 K:BB ratio. It was only a matter of time before he was called up to replace one of the many struggling Mets starters.
That time came back in May when most scoffed at the notion of wasting a roster spot on Dickey (including yours truly). But all he has done since is to solidify his spot in the rotation with a number of impressive performances (most recently a 4-hit/0 ER 8.1 inning outing against STL). Dickey is 7-4 with a 2.36 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and a 64:28 K:BB ratio in 99 IP (15 starts—averaging almost 7 innings per start). It’s time to forget history and hop onboard the Dickey express if he’s still available in your league.
Aaron Heilman, RP – ARI – Owned in 8% of CBS leagues
De facto closer in Arizona since Chad Qualls was traded to TB and Juan Gutierrez was placed on the DL. He has a respectable 3.30 ERA with 37 K’s in 49 IP and has been more solid as of late.
Ian Desmond, SS – WAS – Owned in 31% of CBS leagues
Possesses a decent mix of power and speed for a SS (7 HR’s/9 SB’s). Batting .370 over his last eight games after putting up 3 HR’s/12 RBI/3 SB’s in July while batting .300.
Tom Gorzelanny, SP – CHC – Owned in 36% of CBS leagues
When Big Z went AWOL, Gorzelanny was thrust back into the starting rotation. Since then he has four W’s in six starts with 33 K’s. Overall as a starter he has six W’s and 3.63 ERA with 82 K’s in 86.2 IP.
Written by Rosti Satanovsky exclusively for TheFantasyFix.com. You can follow Rosti on Twitter @TheSportsFariah for more great NL Only advice!
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