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May 7, 2012 posted by Dan Stack

2012 Fantasy Baseball: Players To Watch (Week 6)

2012 Fantasy Baseball: Players To Watch (Week 6)
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David Robertson, New York Yankees, P

This past week was rife with both heartbreak and opportunity as several closers lost their job due to injury or ineffectiveness.

None was more devastating than seeing the greatest closer of all time, Mariano Rivera, go down with a torn ACL while shagging fly balls. Now David Robertson, who likely will assume the closer role over Rafael Soriano, will get an opportunity to make a name for himself.

It wasn’t just the Yankees who had to switch closers, as the Cubs, Padres, Marlins and White Sox all made changes at closer and thus fortifying the notion that you should always wait for closers on draft day.

So, let’s look at Robertson and some other players to watch this week.

 

David Robertson: New York Yankees

The Yankees have yet to find themselves with a game on the line sans Rivera, but the time will come. On Saturday in a 6-2 win over the Royals, Robertson threw a scoreless inning while striking out the side.

Robertson has an electric fastball and has the stuff to make for a dynamic closer. While Soriano also has closer experience, Yankees’ management will be more inclined to give Robertson the ball on most-if not all-occasions.

It shouldn’t need to be mentioned that Robertson ought to be a must add off the waiver wire. The Yankees will be at home all week hosting the Rays and the Mariners.

Chris Sale: Chicago White Sox

Sale is back on this list as White Sox Manger Robin Ventura has had enough of Hector Santiago and is now jettisoning the promising lefty Sale back into the bullpen and making him the designated closer.

The White Sox want to take every precaution with Sale, and considering he experienced some elbow soreness recently, they want to decrease his workload. So, back to the pen Sale goes.

This week the Sox will take on the Indians on the road before hosting the Royals, so there may be some chances for some save opportunities.

Andrew McCutchen: Pittsburgh Pirates

After coming back on Saturday after a stomach bug, McCutchen was out of the lineup again on Sunday. Although, he’ll likely push through it and play this week, McCutchen’s power struggles bear watching.

So far this year, McCutchen has yet to go deep and has only seven RBI’s on the year. While the five stolen bases and the .298 batting average is admirable, a lot more was-and is- expected.

If McCutchen is to break out this week, he’ll have to do it against the Nationals’ (Edwin Jackson, Ross Detwiler and Stephen Strasburg) and Astros’ (Bud Norris, J.A. Happ and Wandy Rodriguez) staffs.

Will Middlebrooks: Boston Red Sox

Once Kevin Youkilis was placed on the DL, Middlebrooks’ name couldn’t have been called any faster.

The talented prospect has had a productive debut thus far (5-16) and his impact was capitalized when he hit a grand slam in Sunday’s game. He should make for a quality add off the waiver wire.

This week the wide-eyed rookie will go up against some mediocre staffs in the Royals (Jonathan Sanchez, Danny Duffy and Bruce Chen) and the Indians (Derek Lowe, Ubaldo Jimenez, Josh Tomlin and Justin Masterson).

Jered Weaver: Los Angeles Angels

Weaver was absolutely masterful on Wednesday no-hitting the Twins and seems to be on cruise control.

Weaver is now 4-0 with a pristine 1.61 ERA and miniscule 0.78 WHIP.

Weaver is now set for two starts and will face off against the Twins again on Monday before ending his week with a tough matchup with the Rangers, with both contests on the road.

Jason Kipnis: Cleveland Indians

Currently riding a 10-game hitting streak, Kipnis seems to be raising his game to another level this season.

Now comfortable in his second season in the bigs, Kipnis is starting to deliver. In his last 10 games, Kipnis is 16-38 with two home runs, seven RBI’s and three stolen bases.

Kipnis and the Indians will take on the White Sox (Phil Humber, John Danks and Jake Peavy) at home before traveling to Boston (Josh Beckett, Clay Buchholz, Felix Doubront and Daniel Bard) to end the week.

Lance Lynn: St. Louis Cardinals

So when do you start believing and hop on the Lynn bandwagon for good?

Lynn has been nothing short of marvelous and is 5-0 with a dazzling 1.60 ERA and 0.77 WHIP.

Lynn’s control has been impeccable and has 30 strikeouts to only seven walks in 33.2 innings pitched.

Lynn will get two starts (@Arizona, vs. Atlanta) and has now become a must start.

Adam Dunn: Chicago White Sox

Where was this production last year?

Dunn is finally living up to his contract and slugging his way back into the hearts of many fantasy owners. After a week in which he went 8-24 with five home runs and nine RBI’s, Dunn has fully regained the trust of fantasy owners worldwide.

Dunn should be able to keep it up this week with a seven game slate that includes four games (including a doubleheader on Monday) at Cleveland (Josh Tomlin, Zach McAllister, Justin Masterson and Jeanmar Gomez) before returning home to take on the Royals (Felipe Paulino, Luke Hochevar and Jonathan Sanchez).

Cliff Lee: Philadelphia Phillies

After a brief stint on the DL, Lee is set to come back on Wednesday to take on the Mets at home.

Lee had a bullpen session on Saturday that went swimmingly, so you should trust him to pick up where he left off. Suffice to say, get him active for this matchup (Lee has a career 1.61 ERA vs. the Mets)

Thus far on the season, Lee is 0-1 with a 1.96 ERA.

Pedro Alvarez: Pittsburgh Pirates

It took long enough, but Alvarez finally seems to be tapping into his vast potential.

In his last 12 games, Alvarez has gone 15-40 with five home runs and 11 RBI’s.

Alvarez will look to keep it going this week with games against the Nationals and the Astros.

Follow me on Twitter @Stacdemon

My name is Dan Stack and I live in Nyack, New York, which is about 20 miles north of New York City. I am a writer/blogger who is passionate about many things, namely sports. I am also very passionate when it comes to fantasy sports, whether it be baseball, football or basketball. You can find me writing/blogging here at FantasyPros911.com, BleacherReport.com, Mets360.com, GiantsFootballBlog.com and WeAreDePaul.com. I have also been the Managing Editor of my county's weekly newspaper (Rockland County Times). I hold a BA degree in Journalism/Broadcasting from C.W. Post University in Brookville, New York. I have other passion besides sports as I am big in to music, pop culture, dogs and and other fun stuff. I love New York and all that it has to offer. You can often find me writing/blogging, watching TV, attending movies or at a ballgame. E-Mail if you have any questions or comments.
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