Fantasy Notes: Dellucci Not Delivering
I haven’t hammered out any fantasy notes for a bit, and with us still trying to dig our way through piles of boxes this weekend, I’ll try to keep things fairly simple today.
- David Dellucci left the Phillies this past offseason because he wanted to be considered more than just a fourth outfielder. Well, Dave, maybe it’s time for you to start performing like one. The Indians are rolling in the Central, but Dellucci can’t get much of the credit despite his game-winning hit Friday. He’s batting just .239 with a lowly .299 OBP as the left-handed side of the left field platoon for the Tribe. Of course, considering Cleveland handed him $11.5 million for three years, Dellucci has plenty of rope, but I wouldn’t be shocked if he began to lose more PT to Jason Michaels if this poor play continues. Last year, it was Dellucci fighting to take time away from the starters, but this year, he could be on the flipside of that equation. The Indians are without a second or third round pick in this week’s first-year player draft thanks to the signing of Dellucci, so he better deliver. Two homers so far? No wonder he lost his two-hole slot and had been dropped to seventh in the order. The fact that Dellucci still can’t hit southpaws (.420 OPS) isn’t a shock, but here’s a really bad sign: he’s hitting .250 with bases empty, .229 with runners on, .175 with runners in scoring position, and even worse when there’s two outs and runners are in scoring position. Simply put, his failure rate goes up the higher the stakes. You can’t touch Dellucci right now except in deeper AL-only leagues.
- Did you happen to catch the line that Todd Jones put up on Friday? Brought in to protect an 11-7 lead in the bottom of the ninth against the Indians, the team struggling Detroit is chasing, he proceeded to give up seven hits, two walks and five runs as the Tribe prevailed 12-11 in a wild affair. That gem saw Jones’ ERA shoot up almost two runs per game to 6.04. This is crappy timing if you’re a Joel Zumaya owner, because you’d have to believe had he been healthy, this might have been the excuse Detroit needed to install Zumaya as the closer. Jones is 1-3 with 15 saves in 19 chances, but he’s labouring this year. It’s taking him 16.5 pitches to get through his innings — a significant increase from last year and conclusive evidence that he is not fooling opposition hitters as he has in the past. But what options do the Tigers have with Zumaya out for another couple of months? If you really believe Jones may be in trouble in Detroit, Tim Byrdak could be worth a flyer. He’s been lights out so far with 17 Ks in just 11 2/3 innings. Nasty. Another interested name to watch is Zach Miner, who could be quite effective in a late-inning role.
- Still with Detroit, wouldn’t you love to see the incriminating photos that Neifi Perez has on Jim Leyland? (Err, on second thought, ignore that request.) But how else do you explain the fact this guy is still a major league player? Perez walked and scored on Friday — his first run since May 6 when he actually managed two in a rare start. But he’s as unproductive a major league player as can be imagined, and how about those on-base skills? A .205 OBP? Yikes. Strangely, he drew a walk on Thursday as well, giving him his only two walks of the season in back-to-back appearances. How long until Leyland makes Perez his lead-off hitter at this pace? Dude, tear up the photos, destroy the negatives and retire with some dignity.