Its the last week of May. After eight full weeks of fantasy baseball, FBD knows team owners at the bottom of their leagues are fighting the urge to abandon their teams altogether.
Luckily for you, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Cincinnati Reds have called up two potential saviors for your under-performing fantasy team. The top minor league pitching prospect (Clayton Kershaw) and top minor league hitting prospect (Jay Bruce) in Major League Baseball are now in the bigs.
Clayton Kershaw, the 20 year old Los Angeles Dodgers lefty, was a 2006 first-round draft pick and has a sick curveball that has been named “Public Enemy No. 1″ by Dodgers broadcaster Vin Scully. His won-loss record at AA Jacksonville was unimpressive (0-3) in 10 games and 9 starts, but the Dodgers don’t care (and neither should you).
In 43.3 innings of work, Kershaw logged 47 strikeouts against 15 walks, carried a 2.28 ERA and 1.08 WHIP. In his Major League debut Sunday at Dodger Stadium against the St. Louis Cardinals, Kershaw pitched six innings and allowed two earned runs, striking out seven and walking one.
Kershaw’s numbers will likely be the most impressive to fantasy owners in the next few weeks, before team’s get a working scouting report on his pitching tendencies. Former (or current) fantasy owners of Johnny Cueto will understand this phenomena. The potential is certainly there for Kershaw to be a 10-game winner with a high strikeout total if he stays in the bigs. At this point, he’s worth a roster spot on most mixed-league pitching staffs.
Jay Bruce played well enough in spring training to make the Reds, but they sent him to AAA Louisville and waited to call him up until they knew he would play. His playing time likely starts today after being called up on Tuesday.
In 49 games At AAA Louisville, Bruce was an absolute monster. On 67 hits, Bruce took 10 pitches deep, scored 34 runs, and drove in 37. He batted .364 and even stole 8 bases.
Is Bruce the Ryan Braun of the 2008 fantasy baseball season, sans 3B-eligibility? FBD thinks so. In comparison to Evan Longoria, another fantasy baseball savior from earlier this season, Bruce has more power at the plate. His numbers at AAA are so ridiculous that we have to recommend finding a spot on your roster for him.
Fantasy Baseball Dugout loves giving fantasy baseball owners tips on sleepers or prospects that will give you the edge in winning your league. With the hype machine surrounding these two, they aren’t exactly “sleepers,” but the prospect of these two saving your fantasy baseball team is too great pass up. Keeper league owners (and everyone else) should add both of these players today.