Thursday, July 26, 2012

Help Coming at 3B

With A-Rod on the mend with a shattered left hand and Sandoval heding to the DL after doing the splits earlier this week  many Fantasy players are scrambling to find a 3B replacement. Someone who is flying under the radar is widely available. That would be Arizona’s recently called up 3B Ryan Wheeler.
The 5th round selection in 2009 by Arizona has moved steadily through their farm system. In 2011 Double A he posted a .294 average with 16 HR and 89 RBI. This year in Triple A he has been on fire. In 93 games he is hitting .351 with 15 HR and 90 RBI. Granted it is the PCL but those are still top notch offensive numbers.  This year he has also posted incredible OBP and SLG% numbers that are .376 OBP (he takes walks and has a great eye) with .482 SLG.  What really sticks out as I was researching him was his .442 batting average in June along with his 1.122 OPS that same month.
This kid can flat out hit from the left side. Scouts say he is a true gap hitter with good balance and great bat speed. At 6’3 240 lbs he is in the mold of a Ryan Zimmerman type but from the left side. A good pick up because the job at 3B is Wheelers to lose. Since letting Geoff Blum go and trading Ryan Roberts there is no one in Wheelers way at the hot corner.


  1. Gyorko should be up soon as well with the Padres shopping Headley, Gyorko or Wheeler? Would you put Ryan Roberts ahead of either of them ROS?

  2. Thanks for the comment Ed!!
    The short answer is no. The reason being is the crowded IF in Tampa. Longoria is coming back soon but will probably only DH for the next 20 games. Elliot Johnson is a switch hitter and will take some ABs from Roberts. Then with Zobrist and Rodriguez needing playing time it gets quite crowded even though Rodriguez has been awful.
    Between Wheeler and Gyorko, as of today, I would have to give the nod to Wheeler just becasue he has the everyday gig with no competition. What I do not like about Wheeler's situation is he will be stuck in the 8th hole for the time being. Once Gyorko gets called up he will be inserted in the 6th or 7th hole not the 3 hole like Headley. If you are on the fence over these 3 give it another week to see if the SD trade happens, Longoria is healthy and if Wheeler can hit his way out of the 8th so he can put up some Fantasy relevant numbers.