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2012 Fantasy Baseball Round-Up: Ryan Braun, Ernesto Frieri, Jake Peavy and More

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Ryan Braun hit his 29th home run of the season in the Brewers 13-4 win over the Astros on Wednesday. Braun's homer ties him for 2nd in the league with Josh Hamilton and he sports a .310/.393/.595 line on the season. Braun is 5th in the league in wOBA with a .417, 5th in the league in slugging percentage and 8th in the league in ISO at .285.

Remember how Braun failed that drug test this offseason, then got out of suspension, because baseball's urine courier kept Braun's sample in his refrigerator over the weekend? Shouldn't we be discussing MLB testing policy, when we almost missed 50 games from a reigning MVP, who can clearly rake without whatever mysterious substance that got him in trouble in the first place? Seriously, what the hell was that all about?

No, just kidding, I hate steroid discussions and drug testing discussions in general. Nothing is worse than MLB's ridiculous, revisionist crackdown and all the wasted ink on the “steroid era” and the Mitchell Report. What I do want to discuss though, is the courier who had Braun's urine sitting in his fridge for a whole weekend. Say you are a huge Brewers fan and you happen to be friends with this courier and he lets it slip that he has this sample at his house; don't you immediately race over there to at least look at it?

Admit it, you'd probably smell it too. I'm a Red Sox fan and I'd be fascinated by David Ortiz's piss. Or Manny's. Oh man, that would be amazing. I imagine Manny's has a very aloof hue. I'm sure we are at the point where an Angels superfan would take a sip of Mike Trout's sample. I'm fascinated by that underreported part of the story. Did this courier just go about his business that whole weekend? You can't get your hands on memorabilia like that and not at least have a viewing party.

Ernesto Frieri has allowed 4 earned runs since he was traded to the Angels in May. All 4 came in July, after a perfect May and June, 3 of which came in one game against the Yankees on July 15th. One day into August and he's already doubled his Angels' season total, by allowing 4 ER against the Rangers on Wednesday, in 1 IP. This was a wild one in Texas, with the Rangers erasing a 7-1 deficit, getting a game tying solo homer from Ian Kinsler in the bottom of the 9th, falling into a 10-7 hole in the top of the 10th (thanks to Pujols' 2nd HR of the day), then finally getting a walkoff, 2 run hit from Elvis Andrus, to win 11-10. Don't underestimate this win for Texas, who saw the rival Angels win the trade deadline (Grienke > Dempster), then win the first two games of this 4 game series in Texas.

Remember Brett Wallace, the former Cardinals stud prospect who ended up going from St. Louis to Oakland to Toronto to Houston in the span of 2 seasons, then dropped off the face of the Earth? He's up with the Astros big league club and he might be worth a look in deep leagues. Wallace is a AAA stud whose never hit in the show. Perhaps bouncing around the big leagues delayed his development. Houston is in full rebuilding mode and will probably give Wallace a long look through the remainder of 2012. All of which is a big buildup to saying he was 3-4 on Wednesday night with 2 HR and 3 RBI.

Anyone want a slugging Canadian, signed to a contract that extends out to the Big Rip, because the Reds ain't need Joey Votto. Cincinnati beat the Padres 6-4 to push their record to 63-41, best in Major League Baseball. Since Votto's injury on July 15th, the Reds are 13-3, including a 10 game winning streak. Wednesday's win was keyed by Ryan Ludwick, who was 3-4 with a HR and 4 RBIs on the day.

Jake Peavy went 8 IP, with 1 ER and 8 K, in the White Sox 3-2 win over the Twins, for the best pitching performance in the majors Wednesday night. Matt Holliday remembered how nice it is to hit in Coors, leading the Cardinals to a 9-6 win, going 3-4 with 2 HR and 5 RBI. Hunter Pence was 0-4 with 2 Ks in his San Francisco debut and Shane Victorino was 0-4 with 1K in his LA debut, both earning a sad trombone sound effect from me, just now. Oh crap, trade them back.

Link of the day:

Check out Jonah Keri's breakdown of the trade deadline for the American League:

http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/33623/trade-deadline-breakdown-american-league-edition

then, tweet at him and ask him to please change his twitter icon.

Written by Ryan Coombs exclusively for TheFantasyFix.com. Follow Ryan on Twitter @RMCoombs

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