by Jared Cothren
(Editor’s Note: Stats through July 21)
↑Dustin Pedroia – The Laser show finally seems to be back after a disappointing and injury filled year in 2010. In the last 2 months, Pedroia has drastically cut down on his Ks and brought his average up 48 points to .293. His confidence has returned and with that my confidence has returned in him. Hitting in the heart of the Boston order, in front of RBI machine Adrian Gonzalez, should help his value and I expect him to score well over 100 runs this year.
↑Travis Snider – It appears the trip down to the minors helped him find his power stroke and consistency. Since his Independence Day call up, Snider is hitting .357 with 20 hits (11 for extra bases) and 17 RBIs. Over the last week, the dirty-mustached Snider has hit .346 with 9 hits and 9 RBIs. Get ’em while he’s hot folks, but beware of a cool down.
↑Emilio Bonifacio – I know what you are thinking, “Emilio Bonifacio? Seriously, The one month wonder from 2009?” Yes, he’s back and again proving fantasy relevance. Bonifacio currently has a 20 game hitting streak and has stolen 10 bases in July. He won’t drive in runs, but he will get on base and score them. Ride out the hot streak. My advice is when things get ugly…don’t stick around for the funeral, drop him immediately.
↓Adam Dunn – In April we all said, “It’s a new league, Dunn will come around.” In May we said, “Hey, he was always prone to Ks, but the power will return.” In June we all said, “OK, so his average might be in the gutter but he will hit 25 home runs.” Now as we are approaching the end of July we are saying, “F*&% Dunn, he is Done.” I know it isn’t a surprise to have him on the “Down” list, but he should not be owned in any format. For the month of July he has 24 Ks in 50 at-bats to go along 5 hits, 2 HRs, and 7 RBI for a whopping .100 batting average. The Mendoza line never looked so good.
↓Jayson Werth – We kind of expected for Werth to have less power production when he moved to Washington, but the drop in batting average was a little more unexpected. Hitting .212 on the season and under .200 for the last 2 months, Werth’s season is in a downward spiral and fantasy owners should be upset. This is a guy who could be in trouble for the remainder of the year.
↓Jhoulys Chacin – Chacin, who hasn’t won a start since June 15th, has had a terrible month of July. He’s compiled an 0-2 record in his four starts for a 5.87 ERA. In those four starts, he’s pitched 23 innings and given away 15 free passes to help drive his WHIP up to 1.48. Chacin’s a young pitcher and doesn’t have the proven track record to assure us that he’ll come out of this slump anytime soon. Keep an eye on him if he is on your team and don’t get left holding the bag.