In the last night before the All-Star break, the Pirates absolutely went off. Neil Walker managed a 5-5 game with a homer, McCutchen hit two out with 4 RBI’s and 3 Runs, and one of my favorite pitchers, A.J. Burnett, had another good start and managed his 10th (TENTH!!!) win of the season (on the Pirates) so far. He never had more than 13 on the Yankees. Really guys, you need to follow @cantpredictball.
The Yankees beat the Red Sox. I am a Red Sox fan, so I had to turn off this game off after the second inning due to frustration. I don’t know much about this game, however, I can tell you that a guy named Pedro Ciriaco had the best offensive day for the Red Sox. I do not know who Pedro Ciriaco is, nor do I ever want too. All I do know is that the Red Sox effing suck and Jon Lester, like he has all season, got rocked again, earning 4 runs in 4 and 1 third innings. Yeah, it was against the Yankees, so you do have to cut him a little bit of slack, but I don’t think we’re ever going to see the old Lester.
Pujols hit his 14th homer, Trout hit his 12th homer, and Trumbo hit his 22nd homer. I’ve spent the better part of the year telling people Trumbo is going to regress, but I think I’ve changed my mind a little; he’s going to regress, but only in the average department. Power-wise, I think he’s got legit 35-45 homer power. Trumbo reminds me of the new Ryan Howard—low on base skills, high strikeout totals, but a ton of RBI/HR power. Also of note: Trout is the most fun-player to watch in baseball other than Jose Altuve.
In my favorite game of the day, a young man named Jurickson Profar excelled. No, this wasn’t a major league game, but The Futures Game, a game full of MLB’s top prospects. In the game, Alan Harrison's favorite Billy Hamilton showcased his ridiculous speed with a triple, although he also showcased his bad shortstop defense with an error. The underrated Scooter Gennet (who I wrote about here) went 2 for 3, and reminds me of the next Jose Altuve, thanks to his small stature and great hit tool. On the pitching side, there wasn’t a whole lot of domination, but I was particularly impressed by Marlins’ pitcher Jose Fernandez, who I had never seen before. I am going to be paying much more attention to him, and the guy looks like an absolute stud.
Link of the Week: My favorite prospect writer, Jason Parks, has been writing a series called ‘Bring me the Head of ____’. This series is about prospects that haven’t worked out the way we’ve hoped or expected. This piece is called ‘Bring Me the Head of Justin Smoak’ and it examines how he became a stud prospect, what has gone wrong, and if there’s hope in the future. It’s amazingly well written, as all of Jason’s work is, and extremely interesting.
By Moe Koltun, exclusively for TheFantasyFix.com.
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