With this weeks 3 Up, 3 Down I am writing with a head that feels like a balloon. If you have never had a sinus infection be thankful, and if you have I feel your pain (Usually in your cheeks, eyes and even gums/jaw area). I am usually good for at least one a year, and I knew I was doomed when both of my daughters were sick last week. Like week 3 there is a brightside with antibiotics and nasal steroids, much like some of the great pitching performances (Johnny Cueto, Martin Perez, Julio Teheran). The darkside of course being the painful sinus pressure, phlegm, and losing your voice, much like week 3 hitting performances from (Jason Heyward and Carlos Gonzalez).
Either way another week is almost in the books and there was plenty of excitement. Some dominant pitching performances, a top 5 prospect got called up, and yet another significant loss to Tommy John surgery with Matt Moore. Toss in the Yasiel Puig saga and Week 3 could have been another episode of your grandma’s favorite soap opera.
All statistics provided by fangraphs.com
These three items are trending upward and we should react accordingly.
3. George Springer, OF, Houston
The Astros top prospect got the call earlier than expected, and he started off well getting a hit in his first game. He also stole a base and is hitting .287. The sample size is small, but the real story is the call-up itself, and that another much hyped prospect is making a splash in the big leagues
2. Brian Dozier, 2B, Minnesota
Dozier started heating up in week 2, and continued in to week 3. Although he should have been owned in most leagues already, if you are in a shallow league and he is out there you should snag him now. He slashed .267/.421/.467 in week 3, and cranked out another home run putting his total at 5 for the year. He also swiped a few bases which is hopefully a sign of things to come.
1. Johnny Cueto, SP, Cincinatti
There were a bundle of great starts over the week, but Cueto’s may have been the start that gave owners and Reds fans the biggest sigh of relief. Only giving up 2 runs all season, he just tossed a complete-game shutout along with 12 strikeouts. For now it looks as if Cueto is back to normal, and when healthy he is an ace.
Now for the bad news–These three items are struggling.
3. Carlos Gonzalez, OF, Colorado
Gonzalez is still in the top 5 for fantasy players this season, but his Week 3 performance was nothing to write home about. He even got a rare day off this week. It is nothing to worry about, he will bounce out of this funk, but if you needed him this week you were disappointed without a doubt. .167/.286/.167 is a rough week for the superstar, but hopefully only one of a few horrendous weeks to come.
2. Jason Heyward, OF, Atlanta
One of my potential breakout players in 2014 has had his ups and downs already this season. Week 3 was definitely a down week. His totals are dismal and his owners have to remain frustrated owning him at this point. It is early of course, so no need to panic, but I wouldn’t hesitate putting him on your bench if you have that option until he pops out of it. Slashing .083/.214/.083 isn’t going to cut it, nor is it even close to breakout numbers. Again, it is only Week 3.
1. Instant Replay
Instant replay is a new thing, and there have been some growing pains along with it. More often than not it has worked, and reversed over 20 challenges from MLB managers to date. For some more numbers and details I enjoyed this article from the Denver Post.
There were plenty of blunders as well, primarily in the Boston/New York series last weekend with calls that were wrongfully upheld. Now, I do think that these two major market teams are nauseatingly over-covered by the media, but the replay mishaps only fanned the flames over this week.
As with all new systems and processes there will be mistakes and it will take time to grow on people. I think it is a good thing to have in the league, but needless to say it is off to a rocky start.