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Kyle Seager, 2B/3B, Mariners
The Mariners have surprised us in recent weeks with an offense we did not know could exist in Safeco. While we’ve discussed Dustin Ackley and Mike Carp, another fine hitter to emerge this season is Kyle Seager. A third round pick in the 2009 draft out of North Carolina, Seager boasts a .313 average after a hitting binge that included 15 hits over six games. In 24 games at Triple-A Seager hit .387 with a .585 slugging percentage. So success at the dish is nothing new for the 23-year-old prospect.
John Mayberry, OF, Phillies
While everyone drafted Dominic Brown in their fantasy drafts this season, it’s instead the 2005 first round pick John Mayberry who is enjoying the better season in the Phillies outfield. The 27-year-old slugger has blasted 12 home runs with 41 RBI through 77 games. Best of all, Mayberry is not a one-trick pony, as he has swiped six bases already this season. Mayberry has blasted 18 home runs in 266 career at bats in the Big Leagues and while he can still improve his plate discipline and lift the average some, Mayberry has earned his way to your fantasy roster.
Chipper Jones, 3B, Braves
The Braves legend will not go away. Chipper Jones has been written off a number of times this season because of his usually array of injuries, but right now he is putting together a nice little hot streak with plenty of power. The batting average is up to .281 on the season with 13 home runs and 58 RBI. Since the All-Star break, Jones is batting .387 with five home runs. 51 home runs shy of 500 for his career, the 39-year-old Jones has already stated that he intends to come back for another season.
Derek Jeter, SS, Yankees
Since the All-Star break, Derek Jeter has hit .355 with 26 runs in 37 games. While that’s nice and all, what’s more remarkable to me is that on the season his average has soared all the way up to .299. So is Jeter back to being Jeter? Yes and no. The average is good and the 13 steals isn’t bad, but the limited power he once had is all but gone. During his hot streak, Jeter has just 10 extra bases including one home run. While he’s not a power guy, it seems that a lot of his hits are coming on grounders with eyes. Regardless, Jeter has played a large part of keeping the Yankees afloat with A-Rod. He also took away a lot of the pressure for next season, as fans will not be clamoring for a position switch.
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Brett Lawrie, 2B, Blue Jays
Exciting times in Toronto right now as the top prospect, Brett Lawrie, a Canadian himself, has finally made his Major League debut. In three games, Lawrie has racked up five hits including his first home run on Sunday in a 7-2 win over the Orioles. Just 21-years old, Lawrie is the real deal. He had 18 home runs with a .353 average at Triple-A after racking up 16 triples and 30 steals at Double-A last season. Acquired for Shaun Marcum in the off-season, Lawrie is a definite pick up, and likely a keeper in all fantasy leagues.
Jed Lowrie, SS, Red Sox
A personal favorite of mine early in the season, Jed Lowrie’s production slipped a great deal before missing a few months because of a shoulder injury. Now when he returns things won’t be any easier, as the Red Sox have acquired Mike Aviles and Marco Scutaro has played very well recently. Nonetheless, Lowrie does deliver a great deal of position eligibility and he does have some pop to his bat. I would only pick him up if you’re looking for depth as Lowrie will be relegated to part-time duties for the remainder of the season.
Eric Young, 2B, Rockies
We talk about him every few months because of the crazy potential he offers, and while he has yet to stick as an everyday player, the 26-year-old Eric Young is getting another shot and so far so good. Riding a seven game hit streak, Young has raised his batting average from .212 to .245. He has five steals over his last nine games and has been scoring runs as well. The Rockies are committed to Dexter Fowler and Eric Young at the top of the lineup, kind of like the Marlins old championship team that had Edgar Renteria and Luis Castillo. We’ll see if this works out for them, as there is little power in this combo with Young delivering just two extra base hits the entire season.
Johnny Giaviotella, 2B, Royals
This is the reason the Royal did away with Mike Aviles. Giaviotella is a former second round pick out of New Orleans who is off to a fine start in the Big Leagues with five hits including a home run through his first three games of his career. Giaviotella is the type of player who can offer a little bit of everything. He compares well to Angels second baseman Howie Kendrick. Giaviotella had nine home runs with nine steals at Triple-A this season, and most impressive was his .338 average and a .390 on base percentage. The future is now for the Royals, and Giaviotella is certainly a player worth picking up if in need of some middle infield help.