Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market: Marlon Byrd, Francisco Cordero, Jon Rauch, more

by Nicholas Minnix on April 23, 2012 @ 14:56:03 PDT

 


Your fantasy baseball cheat sheets are no longer of use. KFFL.com's Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market series gives you candid ratings of fantasy baseball players making MLB news in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball league. If they're available in any of your fantasy baseball games as free agents, on waivers or for your FAAB dollars, you'll know whether they make the cut.

Acquire Add (in most circumstances)
Consider Add for speculation or because of need
Watch Track player, consider if trend continues
Pass Do not add player (in most circumstances)

Batters

Marlon Byrd, OF, Boston Red Sox

New Boston Red Sox OF Marlon Byrd
New nest for Byrd

The Chicago Cubs have no use for a 34-year-old replacement-level outfielder who's in a walk year - especially one who's posted a .070/.149/.070 slash line through 47 plate appearances. The BoSox's outfielders are dropping like flies, however, so they'll take what they can get.

Despite Byrd's awful start to the campaign, he's still capable of producing useful roto numbers in four or five categories for owners in deep leagues. The change of scenery, in a number of ways, should be good for him. Hitting at the bottom of Boston's order won't be the same as hitting at the bottom of the North Siders'.

Byrd's shelf life may not be more than a few weeks to a couple of months. Carl Crawford (recovery from wrist surgery) should return in May, and Jacoby Ellsbury (subluxation in his right shoulder) may be back well before the All-Star break. Ryan Sweeney and Cody Ross have hit pretty well thus far, too.

Shallow mixed: Pass
Deep mixed:
Consider
AL-only:
Acquire

Tony Campana, OF, Chicago Cubs

Dale Sveum plans to use the recent call-up Campana with Reed Johnson and Joe Mather to replace Marlon Byrd. Campana, the leading left-handed hitter in this arrangement, could benefit most. Johnson, 35 and the veteran, could receive some deference, but neither he nor Mather offers much to fantasy baseball managers, which would give him PT value.

Campana, 25, has already started a game since his call-up on Saturday. He's 2-for-4 with a walk in those affairs. He's the most enticing pickup of this troika because of his distinct ability to contribute heavily in one category: stolen bases. The small speed demon swiped 24 bases in 26 attempts despite amassing a mere 155 plate appearances last season. As a part-timer, he'll still be useful.

Johnson and Mather don't offer the prospect of such output in any category. Regardless, these three may just be keeping the seat warm for Brett Jackson, who could be up in a couple of months if he improves his plate discipline.

Shallow mixed: Pass
Deep mixed:
Watch
NL-only:
Acquire

Pitchers

Francisco Cordero, RP, Toronto Blue Jays

This past weekend, the Blue Jays placed Sergio Santos (shoulder inflammation) on the 15-day disabled list. For more on this situation, check out today's Closer Hot Seat.

Shallow mixed: Consider
Deep mixed:
Acquire
AL-only:
Acquire

Jon Rauch, RP, New York Mets

Frank Francisco seemed to dispel worries about his rough spring rather quickly to begin this season, but lately, things haven't gone smoothly. The two-year, $12 million deal the right-hander signed this past winter gives him a little breathing room, but bouts with inconsistency and injuries throughout his career should make his owners nervous enough to back him up.

Rauch has started well and has earned some fantasy cred for his work as a fill-in savior before. For more on this situation, check out today's Closer Hot Seat.

Shallow mixed: Watch
Deep mixed:
Consider
NL-only:
Acquire

Kyle Kendrick, P, Philadelphia Phillies

This righty will fill in while Cliff Lee (left oblique strain) is on the shelf. Lee thinks it's possible that he'll miss only the minimum, or close to it, because the strain is mild and he was already feeling better this past weekend.

Kendrick, 27, survives with solid control and an ability to limit damage via the big fly. Although he'll receive little fanfare from roto players, he could end up being useful in very deep leagues. Last season, in 15 starts, he posted a 3.14 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP.

Asking for Kendrick to repeat those marks is too much, but he's a capable arm. First up is the Arizona Diamondbacks on Monday. He'll earn more consideration if Lee's optimism proves to have been overzealous or the southpaw suffers a setback.

Shallow mixed: Pass
Deep mixed:
Pass
NL-only:
Consider

Wade Miley, P, Arizona Diamondbacks

This southpaw gets the nod in place of Dan Hudson (right shoulder impingement) on Monday night versus Philadelphia. There's no timetable for Hudson, yet. Arizona is probably reluctant to dip into its prospect pool this early, but Trevor Bauer heads a list of much more intriguing candidates who could become more of a long-term solution. Joe Martinez is an option, too.

Miley, 25, was effective in a couple of lengthy relief outings earlier this month, and he started seven games for the D-backs last year. Those facts likely earned him an initial shot, and his first matchup is juicy. He pitched poorly in those 2011 outings, however. He doesn't promise high-strikeout upside, and he nibbles too often to avoid piling up walks.

Miley's ability to generate ground balls may be enough to get him by in the short term, but he doesn't have the kind of stuff that lends itself to long-term success in the majors. The Snakes have alternatives, as noted.

Shallow mixed: Pass
Deep mixed:
Pass
NL-only:
Watch

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About Nicholas Minnix

Minnix is baseball editor and a fantasy football analyst at KFFL. He plays in LABR and Tout Wars and won the FSWA Baseball Industry Insiders League in 2010.

The University of Delaware alum is a regular guest on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio and Baltimore's WNST AM 1570.

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