How will the arrival of Stephen Drew affect the rest of the Red Sox infield?
Drew batted .253 with 13 home runs, 67 RBI, 57 runs scored and six stolen bases in 2013.
Robert Deutsch / USA TODAY Sports
By John Halpin
Stephen Drew has finally found a home ... and it's right back in Boston, where he played last season. After a rehab assignment of approximately 25 at bats, Drew will join the Red Sox, so figure that he's 7-10 days away from fantasy relevance. Great, right?
Hmm ... this is where things get tricky. For now, Drew will take over at shortstop, with Xander Bogaerts sliding over to third base. When the enigmatic Will Middlebrooks returns from the DL - probably in a month or so - "he could at least start at third base against lefties, with Bogaerts supplanting Drew at short for many of those games," according to the Red Sox' website." Things might not work out that way, as Middlebrooks could be banished to the bench or the minors or the Marlins, never to be seen again. But if he does come back in the role described above, we'll have three part-time players on our hands, and that doesn't help anyone reading this.
Between the time Drew is activated and the time Middlebrooks returns, Drew can be ranked somewhere around the 15th-best fantasy shortstop. Beyond that, we'll have to see how the playing time works out. As for Bogaerts, I'd hold him if I owned him. His real-life hitting production (.372 OBP, .378 SLG) hasn't been as bad as his subpar fantasy numbers would make it seem. The Sox will give him plenty of rope, and he's bound to improve for you. But again, when Middlebrooks comes off the DL, we don't know what will happen. I think Middlebrooks will pretty much be the odd man out, but I'm guessing at the moment.
On to the rest of the news:
Sean Doolittle - who is owned in just 5.6 percent of FOXSports.com leagues - is now the A's closer. He's been terrific, and could easily keep the job.
With Matt Lindstrom (ankle) on the DL, Ronald Belisario (0.1 percent owned) closed last night for the White Sox. He's probably not the best closing option in the world, but he's the best the White Sox have until my man Nate Jones returns ... whenever that is.
Streaming starters: Colby Lewis'bad outing dropped our record to 31-19 for the season. Today's selection is Phil Hughes (22 percent owned) at San Diego, while Thursday's pick is Jon Niese (21.1 percent owned) versus the Dodgers.
The Phillies have placed ace Cliff Leeon the DL with an elbow strain, and they're hoping he'll be back within a month.
It sounds the Reds might get both OF Jay Bruce (knee) and 1B Joey Votto (quad) back in the lineup by this weekend. Bruce hasn't started a rehab assignment yet, but he might not need one.
So, Justin Verlander's ERA is an okay 3.55, but he's got 49 strikeouts against 27 walks in 66 innings, and his fastball velocity is down (again). If you wanted to sell and could get an ace-level return, I wouldn't blame you.
Look for OF Oswaldo Arcia to be back with the Twins this weekend. Arcia suffered a wrist injury less than a week into the season, but he's been hitting well at Triple A and has 25-homer power.
The Mariners have called up Nick Franklin to replace Corey Hart (hamstring) on the roster, and while the M's are talking about Franklin playing multiple positions, he'll play shortstop regularly soon if Brad Miller doesn't start hitting.