Sunday, June 30, 2013

Weekly fantasy baseball: Brandon Beachy and Michael Pineda on comeback trail

Note: This is a guest column courtesy of daily and weekly fantasy baseball site

Here are some pitchers to consider for later on this season if you play season-long, daily or weekly fantasy baseball:

Brandon Beachy, SP - Atlanta Braves
Brandon Beachy last pitched for the Braves in June 2012 and has been out since then after undergoing Tommy John surgery.  But he’s now back making rehab starts in the minors and on track to return to the Braves soon.

Beachy, now 26, has only 41 major-league starts. But in 25 starts in 2011, Beachy struck out 169 in 141 2/3 innings for a K/9 of 10.7. Beachy had a 3.68 ERA and 1.21 WHIP.

Beachy made 12 starts in 2012 before getting hurt, during which he had a 2.00 ERA and 0.96 WHIP.  His K/9 fell to 7.6.

When Beachy returns, the Braves may not have an obvious candidate to drop from the rotation. Mike Minor is having a great year while veterans Tim Hudson and Paul Maholm are unlikely choices for the bullpen. That leaves Julio Teheran and Kris Medlen.

After a rocky April, Teheran had a 2.60 ERA and 1.04 WHIP in five May starts. On June 5, Teheran had a no-hitter against Pittsburgh broken up with two outs in the eighth inning. Teheran ended up allowing no runs, one hit and two walks in eight innings while striking out 11. On June 10, however, Teheran allowed five earned runs in six innings against San Diego.

Medlen had a WHIP around 1.35 in April and May with the help of 24 walks in 64 2/3 innings, but in his first two starts in June, Medlen allowed no earned runs in 13 2/3 innings with 12 strikeouts and just one walk. However, on his June 13 outing, he experienced elbow inflammation and was shut down temporarily. He recently threw a bullpen session to get back on track.

Michael Pineda, SP- New York Yankees

Michael Pineda last pitched in the majors in 2011 when he was a rookie with the Seattle Mariners. Traded to the Yankees in January 2012 for Jesus Montero, Pineda has still not pitched for the Yankees as a result of tearing his labrum and undergoing shoulder surgery.  But Pineda made his first rehab start on June 9 and could finally join the Yankees some time in July.  

In his only season to date, Pineda made the All-Star team and finished fifth in voting for 2011 AL Rookie of the Year. His 9.1 K/9 was second-best in the AL behind Toronto’s Brandon Morrow.  Pineda had a 3.03 ERA and 1.04 WHIP at the All-Star break, but went 5.12 and 1.22 after the break to finish with a 3.74 ERA and 1.10 WHIP.  Pineda’s ERA in Seattle was 2.92 vs. 4.40 on the road.   

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