h2h Corner ~ Katy Perry (Hot ‘N’ Cold Fantasy Baseball) All-Stars

Players get hot and cold over a seven-day period, it’s as sure as the samples are small.

That is why Katy created the Hot ‘N’ Cold All-stars.

Cause you’re hot…you’re yes…you’re in…you’re up

Jason Bay – Well, for a week at least, Jason Bay earned his contact with the Mets by going 10/27 with three homers and a steal. Bay now has 18 HRs for the Mets over the last two years – 1/6 came over the last seven days. I was hoping this was part of a longer trend with Bay, but he’s been hovering between.230s and the low .240s in average since early May really. The 12 HR, 11 SB campaign isn’t actually all that bad, but the atrocious average makes him less useful than someone like Will Venable. Bay has hit a gargantuan amount of ground balls this year (at the expensive of fly balls, which isn’t a horrible trade off given his home ball park). Unless he can turn some of those ground balls into well struck batted balls, his BABIP and average will continue to be only useful in NL-only leagues. I don’t know if he’s lost bat speed, but he is suddenly getting eaten alive by fast balls, a pitch he dominated in his heyday. Oh well, the week was nice.

Jon JayI kind of hate but kind of like Jon Jay. I like him because I’m a fan of the Federalist Papers, I dislike him because I get into a lot of e-arguments about his merits versus Colby Rasmus. Well Jay, the ballplayer, has been great lately, going 11/18 with two homers over the last seven days and has five straight multi-hit games. Jay’s .354 BABIP is eerily similar to last season’s .350 and he appears to be hitting the ball a tad sounder this season – his line drive rate is up. He doesn’t swing and miss a lot, so he’ll put a ton of balls in play. He seems like a decent average source going forward with light power/steals – someone like Placido Polanco.

Brent Morel – Watch out for the Morel morsel! Or something like that. Morel was filthy over the last seven days: 9/25 with three bombs. Of course, he now has five homers on the year. He is by no means an option in anything outside of AL-only leagues. This time of year it makes sense to grab the hot hand, but Morel will never do anything like this last seven day stretch.

Marco Scutaro – As someone who was high on Jed Lowrie in the preseason and most of the year (with the omnipresent injury caveat everywhere), I’ve been slow to hop on the Scutaro bandwagon. After he went 12/20 with 11 RBIs over his last seven days, I can ignore him no longer, especially when shortstop is the worst position ever.  Leading up to the play-offs, I imagine Francona is going to try to ride the hot streaks of his marginal players. So, as long as he hits, Scutaro will play. He probably won’t get 11 more RBIs all year, but he’ll post a user-friendly batting average and maybe a homer or two while scoring some runs. In short, he’ll be serviceable. Not a ringing endorsement, but he could be a good Jeter/Rollins (or insert other shortstop) fill-in as it appears they might get some rest down the stretch.

Austin Jackson – The Tigers have throttled the American League Central. While the heavy hitters and flamethrowers deserve most of the credit, Jackson has been key to that offense. If he gets on base in front of Miggy, V-Mart and Avila, good things happen. Over the last seven days, Jackson is 11/31 with a homer and a steal. Since August 11, in 126 plate appearances, Jackson has a .306/.355/.514 line with 25 Ks to 9 walks. His .353 BABIP during that stretch isn’t actually that unreasonable, especially when he sustained a near .400 BABIP last year. I’m riding Jackson and really enjoying it. At this moment, he’s everything I thought Chris Young/BJ Upton would be.

Scott Sizemore – I was just doing some research on Grady while watching the football game, so I have Sizemore on the brain. Anyway, I’ve always liked Scott for some reason. He did go 6/21 with two homers over the last seven days and is 24 for his last 90 with four homers – good signs. However, his .243/.339/.399 is somewhat uninspiring. The walks are great but the whiffs (26.6% k-rate) are borderline untenable. He can be an asset at 3b in OBP leagues, but, in standard leagues, he likely won’t bring enough counting numbers to the plate to make the investment worthwhile.

Yonder Alonso – Yonder is a clodhopper, pure and simple. But man can he mash: 9/19 with a dinger over the last seven days and 16 for his last 42 with three bombs. He can’t field a lick, so his playing time is sporadic at best. However, if it looks like they’re just going to start throwing him out there, his bat belongs on most fantasy teams. Also, you should look to him in keeper leagues as he has to get moved in the off-season to a team (in the AL most likely) who can use him. If he ends up in an advantageous situation, he could be a solid outfielder for you. He looks very stashable.

Jerome Williams – I love Jerome Williams. If you don’t remember the young (now old) hurler for the Giants back when Barry Bonds was a DemonGod, then I don’t know what to say. He was killer in 2003/2004. Of course I didn’t know back then that a sub 2.00 K:BB was a bad thing. I sure didn’t care, as he was as flashy as El Duque, but young and promising. Then, as often happens in this devilish game, the wheels came off. Well, Williams has resurfaced and patched up a struggling Angels’ rotation, going 9.1 IPs with five Ks, a 0.96 ERA and 0.43 WHIP over the last seven days and posting a 3.51 ERA and 1.05 WHIP over his 25.2 MLB innings this year. But, his three starts include two outings against the Mariners, so he hasn’t faced a ton of premium talent. Well, so far, he hasn’t walked a lot of guys (1.66 per 9), is getting a massive swinging strike percentage (15.1%) and poor contact (14.3% line drive rate). Things look real good for Williams. I can’t stop you from starting him and might look to him myself, but it’s hard to trust. It’s a realistic gamble to make.

Zach Britton –Spot starter down the stretch? You bet. He had eight Ks over the last week in 11 innings. Sure his ERA (4.91) wasn’t pretty but his 1.27 WHIP was just fine. Plus most of the damage was done by the Yankees who should be avoided at all costs. I’d totally use his next start against the Rays.

Then you’re cold…then you’re no…then you’re out…then you’re down

John Danks – Who would have thought that Brandon McCarthy would have a better year than John Danks – that trade looked so lopsided once, maybe not so much anymore? Over the last seven days, in 10.2 IPs, Danks had a 10.13 ERA and 1.78 WHIP. He hasn’t been great lately – posting a 4.80 ERA over his last seven starts, but he has 41 Ks to only 10 walks. While that K:BB ratio is nice, Danks just hasn’t been good typically toward the end of the year. He has a 6 K/9 rate and a 1.96 K:BB in September/October. I’m not sure the 135 innings are that big of a sample, but I’m certainly a little weary of Danks – I just have no idea what he is capable of (especially if he can find a way to give up four runs to the Twins). Tread with caution at best or dump him for someone with a good spot start, it’s that time.

Brandon Morrow – My love for the Blue Jays holds no bounds, or maybe it does. I’m about ready to combat roll off the Morrow bandwagon. His miserable last week (9.58 ERA and 1.55 WHIP over 10.1 IPs) was dulled slightly by the massive K numbers (13). He’s been pretty bad since July 20 (his last ten starts), posting a 6.33 ERA and 67:21 K:BB rate. While it is only 74.1 IPs, his line in September/October is pretty bad – his Ks go down and his walks go up. Unless he has a choice match-up, I’m avoiding Morrow the rest of the way.

Dillon Gee – Shockingly, or not at all, Gee was killed on the road by the Nats and pitched well at home. On the year, he has a 3.18 ERA and 1.16 WHIP at home and a 5.59 ERA and 1.45 WHIP on the road. His K:BB rates (1.79 and 1.56) at home and on the road, respectively, are pretty atrocious. This makes Gee, at best, a spot starter when he is at home. Otherwise, I just don’t trust the fella.

Chris Narveson, Bruce Chen, and Fausto Carmona – they all suck and they are ruining your fantasy team.

Chris Young – A sterling first half made my near universal Young investment look Maddoff-esque! Of course his second half has been the true Maddoff doppelganger. He is one for his last 20, five for his last 37 and 10 for his last 83. He has been battling a wrist injury much of the second half which seems to be the Hamburglar. Still, you date someone out of pity, you don’t own a player because you pity him. I’m dumping Young for any living, breathing outfielder and would consider dumping him for Jason Bay.

Kelly Johnson – Johnson’s last seven days weren’t pretty: 3/26 but he’s been hitting well for the Jays overall: .250/.333/.446, for a second baseman at least. I like him going forward, but don’t have a problem with you dropping him for a surging player like Sizemore.

JD Martinez – he should not be on your team.

Yadier Molina – At this point, it’s really time to just shuffle catchers in and out of your line-up. Look ahead a day to match-ups and pick the guy facing the worst pitcher. Unless you have Avila, V-Mart, McCann, Napoli, Carlos Santana or Montero, just shuttle them in and out of your line-up. It works.

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