Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market: Mike Morse, Hector Santiago, more

by Nicholas Minnix on August 1, 2013 @ 14:30:00 PDT

 

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KFFL.com's Fantasy Baseball Diamond Market gives you candid reviews and ratings of fantasy baseball players making MLB news in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball leagues. Are they trade bait? Are they worth your FAAB dollars in your fantasy baseball games?

Hottest Pickups
Most frequently added in leagues polled

OF Mike Morse, Seattle Mariners

Chicago White Sox SP Hector Santiago
Santiago working out as SP

Fantasy owners have come swarming back to the recent returnee from the disabled list. He missed approximately five weeks, an unexpected length of time considering that his quad strain didn't seem that severe when it occurred.

Following three straight seasons of a BA near .300 and a slugging percentage approximating .500, Morse has been a disappointment with the M's. Seattle has made it clear that they're willing to deal him, presumably via waivers as well now that July 31 has passed. A few teams seemed to show interest.

Whether Morse stays or goes, he's capable of better than his .241/301/.435 slash line in 236 plate appearances suggests. If he avoids the trainer's room, he can still be a top-150 mixed asset -- or better -- for the rest of the season.

OF Nate Schierholtz, Chicago Cubs

Perhaps he was just trying to help the Cubbies' cause, pump up his barter value as the non-waiver trade deadline approached. In his last 12 contests (nine starts), the left-handed batter has hit .289 with three home runs and eight RBIs, giving fantasy owners a taste of the superb numbers he was handing out in April and May.

Schierholtz has cooled off in his last few, unfortunately. The 29-year-old will end up with the best numbers of his career when 2013 ends, but most of that production has already occurred, likely. Schierholtz is a fringe asset in mixed leagues, so folks looking for April-May redux may be disappointed.

OF Juan Lagares, New York Mets

Terry Collins stuck with his essentially professed plan to give Lagares more PT and a chance to prove that he should play every day. It's not clear if that's a credit to the skipper, Lagares' results with the stick or the Mets' uninspiring lack of alternatives.

In the past two months (on the dot), the right-handed hitter has batted .312 with a home run, 13 doubles, two triples, 18 RBIs and two stolen bases. He's spent most of his time in the bottom third of the order, and that probably won't change. Folks in 15-team -- and maybe even 12-team -- mixed leagues shouldn't expect much in the counting cats, but they may have stumbled upon one of those decent fillers in the outfield.

Best Available
Owned in fewer than 50% of league polled

SP Hector Santiago, Chicago White Sox

Houston Astros C Jason Castro
Castro: steady

Fantasy owners who pick up this southpaw would have to be willing to live with the fact that he toes the line because of his iffy control (4.3 BB/9). The defense behind Santiago is inconsistent, occasionally awful, too.

He seems to be demonstrating that he's more cut out for the rotation than the bullpen, however. Santiago's numbers as a starter this season and overall in the bigs are considerably better than his marks as a reliever. Contrary to what one would expect, the differences include his K/9.

Now that Jake Peavy is in Beantown, the ChiSox have no reason to remove Santiago from the rotation for the rest of the season. This 25-year-old's diverse arsenal is made to start, and in such a role is where he was pretty successful as a minor leaguer. He's a better mixed league supplement than fantasy owners have realized.

C Jason Castro, Houston Astros

Few seem to have been willing to trust the numbers (a .265 average and 13 home runs in 340 at-bats) that Castro has put up in his breakthrough campaign. Until recently, that is. Fact: The 26-year-old is a top-10 fantasy backstop in mixed leagues through four months.

This isn't a suggestion to drop a disappointing Matt Wieters for this guy, but in a 12-team, one-catcher league or any two-catcher setup, Castro has been one of the most dependable options from month to month. Momentum picked up following his Wednesday performance: 3-for-4, with a homer, two doubles and four RBIs. Are you still hanging on to Miguel Montero, by chance?

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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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