Saturday, July 5, 2008

It's so hard to say goodbye

I'm dedicating this song to a few fantasy mainstays we've been forced to part with in the past couple days:

Jeff Francoeur has a bit of a reputation as a free swinger. The story's no different this year: 20 walks to 62 strikeouts, which puts him just about on pace for last year's K/BB rate (42/129). No surprise there. Problem is, Francoeur's hitting just .234, whereas last year he finished at .293. That dip caused the Braves to demote him to Double-A to work on his swing for a couple weeks, a pretty embarrassing move for a guy in his third season who's coming off two 100-RBI seasons. If you're in a shallow league you may consider dumping Francouer, as you can probably find another OF who can do what he does in the free-agent pool. But those in deeper leagues or NL-only formats have to hold onto Frenchy, who could give you 50 or so RBIs in the second half.

Looks like it could be a lost season for Rafael Furcal. The Dodgers SS was batting a robust .366 with five homers and eight steals in his first 32 games before some back problems flared up. He's been on the 15-day DL since early may, and on Friday, L.A. moved him to the 60-day DL, meaning he'll be out at least another eight weeks. Bummer.

Matt Capps will be gone for at least eight weeks, too, thanks to a shoulder injury. The Pirates closer got off to a great start (15-for-15 in save opportunities) but had blown five of his last seven chances before the injury flared up. Romulo Sanchez got first crack at the team's next save opportunity, but veteran Damaso Marte is probably the better choice if you're speculating for saves. Then again, how many chances do you really expect Pittsburgh to offer him?

Joe Borowski, what happened to you? Fourty-five saves for the guy last year ... six this year, with four blown saves, a 7.56 ERA, one strained right quadriceps and now a designation for assignment. That means the Indians will go to a closer-by-committee situation (again). We've already seen Rafael Betancourt and Masa Kobayashi fail in ninth-inning duties this year, so I'm not sure if I really want to try either of them again unless I'm desperate.

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