Fantasy Baseball

Plouffe leads fantasy waiver adds

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Ryan Fowler

Ryan Fowler has spent the past 10 years covering and talking sports on TV and radio, in newspapers and on the web. He joined FOXSports.com as lead Fantasy Sports Editor and also acts as Digital Content Manager at WhatIfSports.com. Follow him on Twitter. Listen to his FOX Sports Team Report Podcasts on SoundCloud and iTunes

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After last week's Transaction Trends hiatus, we're back and better than ever. With 11 weeks in the books, here are 10 of the most added fantasy baseball players.

Fun Fact: 14 of the 20 most-added fantasy players over the last week were starting pitchers

Note: the following "changes" are week-over-week percentages.

Trevor Plouffe

Change: +10.4 (54.9 percent ownership)
Analysis: No big surprise here. Over the last 14 days, Plouffe led all shortstops in runs (12), home runs (7) and RBI (12) while carrying a .500 OBP. Will his hot streak continue? Well, he’s walked six times in his last three games (as of June 20), but still managed to go 4-9 at the dish. Pitchers are respecting his ability.
Buy/Sell: Buy

Phil Hughes

Change: +9.3 (33.8 percent ownership)
Analysis: A little over a month ago, I sat here at my desk and said aloud, and I’m paraphrasing, “Phil Hughes in the bane of my existence.” At the time, his ERA was north of a touchdown (plus extra point). The ebbs and flows of Hughes’ career over the past couple seasons have been stressful for Yankees’ fans and fantasy owners who still believed this one-time prospect could reach the 20-win plateau (he won 18 games in 2010).

Then, on or around May 12, something clicked. Since then, Hughes has allowed two or fewer runs in six out of seven starts, his ERA now sits at 4.50 and he’s won four out of his last five starts with one no decision. He’s also averaged more than six strikeouts a game in his last six starts.
Buy/Sell: Keep on believing

Trevor Cahill

Change: +8.8 (37.1 percent ownership)
Analysis: I’m not sure what shocked me more, the fact that Cahill is available in 63 percent of all fantasy leagues or that owners have ignored him for this long. The D-Backs’ starting pitcher has won three straight starts and allowed only two earned runs in 23.1 innings pitched with 20 punch outs.
Buy/Sell: Worth a look

Colby Rasmus

Change: +5.8 (15.9 percent ownership)
Analysis: His 2012 OBP leaves little to be desired (.319), but Rasmus has been mashing in June. He’s hitting .319 with 14 runs, 14 RBI and six home runs. He knocked 23 out of the park in 2010 for the Cardinals. So, there is a ceiling Rasmus can easily reach (at 12 bombs right now) and, if he keeps it up, eclipse in 2012. It helps when Jose Bautista is hitting behind you.
Buy/Sell: Just bought

Brandon McCarthy

Change: +5.7 (29.8 percent ownership)
Analysis: If you need wins and a pitcher to help lower your ERA/WHIP, McCarthy is your man. He hasn’t lost a game since April 21 (6-3 record in 2012). That’s not a typo. He just threw seven shutout innings against the Dodgers. Something to note is he was dealing with a shoulder injury that forced him to miss a start and hasn’t thrown more than 100 pitches since May 2.
Buy/Sell: Buy if you don’t mind a low strikeout rate

Hiroki Kuroda

Change: +5.5 (58.9 percent ownership)
Analysis: Like Hughes, Kuroda has begun to brush off a slow start as a new member of the Yankees’ rotation. He’s 2-1 with a 2.67 ERA in June and averaged six strikeouts in four starts this month.
Buy/Sell: Hold

Matt Harrison

Change: +5.3 (71.1 percent ownership)
Analysis: The seasons R.A. Dickey and Lance Lynn have put together have overshadowed an impressive stretch by Harrison. He’s only allowed one run in his last 22 1/3 innings pitched. On May 2, his ERA was 5.40. As of June 20, it sits at 3.41 with the Rangers’ offense ready to rake behind him.
Buy/Sell: Drafted

Scott Diamond

Change: +4.9 (23.8 percent ownership)
Analysis: Not sure what to make of Diamond. His last four starts he’s posted the following: 0 ER (7 IP), 0 ER (6 IP), 4 ER (6 IP), and 4 ER (5 1/3 IP). He only struck out two batters in those last two starts. Not a fan.
Buy/Sell: Sell

Aaron Hill

Change: +3.8 (63.4 percent ownership)
Analysis: Hill hit for the cycle on Monday night. He’s raking at a .361 clip in June with 12 RBI, four home runs and 10 runs scored. With Dustin Pedroia (thumb) leaving the game on Tuesday night, Hill’s a guy who could take DP’s place should he hit the DL.
Buy/Sell: Buy because he plays second base

Brandon Belt

Change: +2.9 (28.8 percent ownership)
Analysis: The power numbers aren’t there (three home runs in 142 at bats), but now that Belt is earning consistent playing time at first base, he’s begun to find his groove again. For the month, Belt has hit .333 with a .442 OBP and 10 RBI. I would monitor him for another week or so, but if you have an open roster spot, he’s worthy of an add.
Buy/Sell: Buy
 

Tagged: Twins, Yankees, Athletics, Rangers, Blue Jays, Giants, Diamondbacks, Aaron Hill, Brandon McCarthy, Phil Hughes, Colby Rasmus, Trevor Cahill, Trevor Plouffe

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