Wednesday July 30, 2014: During our weekly foray into debauchery at our favorite watering hole (Griffin's) this past Sunday, my lifelong friend Tom Lynaugh mentioned to me that he may have lucked into a good keeper next year for $10 (in our $360-NL) in Jacob deGrom. I thought this was just another long suffering Mets' fan trying to grasp hold of something to live for! But then I find out today that deGrom was named the co-NL Player of the Week (with Steve Cishek) for his great work on the bump. In fact, his last 7 GS have been very prosperous with a 5-1 record and a 1.37/1.09 ERA/WHIP. But before we get swept off our feet, I'm here to remind you that in 21 Triple-A starts deGrom has a 3.87/1.40 ERA/WHIP, 126 HA, and a 92/34 K/BB in 114 IP. deGrom wasn't even mentioned in my 2 favorite pre-season magazines at all, including the Baseball Forecaster. I thought so much about deGrom this spring that I had him 4 notches below John Lannan and 7 spots under Kevin Slowey on my NL SP cheat sheets. I had him one spot above Clayton Richard who may never pitch again. So right now I don't really know what to think. And deGrom will be shut down at some point because of an innings limit. So being the kind of guy that I am, I'm hoping for the best here for my friend Tom yet part of me still has just a little bit of doubt that Jacob deGrom has suddenly found nirvana at the age of 26.
In fantasy baseball the Yankee and Padre trade of Yangervis Solarte and a low-level pitcher who was, at his apex, the #15 prospect in their system would be shot down by an arbiter. But only in real baseball would such a thing be allowed to happen. Just 2 short seasons ago, Headley batted .286 in 604 AB, with 95 runs, 31 HR, 115 RBI (led the NL), 17 SB, 86 walks and an .875 OPS. And that was in SD which has never been known as a hitter's haven. Yankee Stadium only has to help the LH hitting Headley in this more than likely 2 month rental.
From 2004-2007 Jeff Francoeur averaged 157 games played. It seems like a lifetime ago (and it is). He's long been one of my favorites and his arm is among the best in the business. His big bugaboo in the majors has always been his K/BB which is 906/248 over his career. His minor league numbers in '14 are pretty good with those 15 HR, 60 RBI, 10 SB, a .790 OPS and a .294 BA in 391 AB. His K/BB of 82/18 still sucks but Frenchie has added pitching to his resume. He's appeared in 7 games, 6 1/3 IP, a 4/3 K/BB, 5 HA, and a 4.26/1.26 ERA/WHIP. Francoeur is probably wondering himself where it all went wrong. He had a good season for KC in 2011 batting .285 in 601 AB, an .805 OPS, 47 doubles, 77 runs, 20 HR, 87 RBI, 22 SB and his usual 123/37 K/BB. He's at .226 in 806 AB with a .626 OPS since but in the right situation, Francoeur could once again find a little fantasy nirvana. And Francoeur may have found the light with his call-up to the Padres on Wednesday. I think now that we know his address for the next 25 games or so given the Maybin drug suspension, I don't think he's a terrible pick-up in NL-only leagues. Maybin has been a giant disappointment to real and fantasy owners for years now. I invested a "cool" $50 on Maybin in '13 in my $360-NL. I think he went for $11 this spring in that league. I always said that the 16 for 32 run Maybin had as a 21 yr old for the Marlins in 2008 would be the highlight of his career. Like I said, I too had Maybin last year in an expert NL league. But I also had B.J. Upton so what the hell did I know? Maybin's success can now be classified as a lifetime ago! I do also have a feeling that Chris Denorfia's days in SD are numbered. But given the right venue, he makes a pretty decent #4 OF and starter vs LHP's.