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TGIF: Time for a Second Chance

As the baseball season winds down, several of us are on the lookout for a spark to our offense or our pitching staff. Odds are the trade deadlines in your leagues are coming to a close and the free agent pool is shallower than the shallow end of a swimming pool (wow, that one really sucked). Instead of combing said shallow pool for a player that would probably go undrafted any other day of the week, why not give a pair of hot, young players a second look.

Jay Bruce (LF,CF,RF), Cincinnati Reds:

Bruce burst onto the scene in May and had the fantasy world buzzing. In his first week he hit .577 with 3 HR, 7 RBI, 2 doubles, 6 BB, 2 SB, and 12 runs scored. That was the good. During the entire month of June, he hit .223 and had 3 HR (two of which were part of his first week), and 11 RBI (three were part of his first week). Then in July he hit .253 with 3 HR and 9 RBI. To say that he fizzled out is an understatement. No wonder he was the winner of the “Oh You Tease!” award.

Well, hop back on the bandwagon. Since the All-Star break, Bruce has five longballs and 11 RBI. His month of August is sizzling with a .364 avg, 4 HR and 8 RBI. The reason? Well, since Ken Griffey Jr. was traded to the White Sox, Bruce has seen everyday time batting 3rd in the order. He hits right in front of Brandon Phillips and Adam Dunn which assures that he sees good pitches. The majority of time, before the Griffey trade, Bruce was hitting leadoff (where he hit .232 in 95 AB) for some demented Dusty Baker reasoning that nobody can comprehend. Well anyway, Bruce is currently riding an 11-game hitting streak after just coming off of a 12-game hitting streak. So, don’t be scared to take another chance on Bruce Almighty.

Clayton Kershaw (SP), Los Angeles Dodgers:

A favorite waiver wire add in most leagues, Kershaw was a hyped prospect for the Dodgers. In 61.1 IP in Double-A, Kershaw had a 2-3 record and an ERA of 2.49. The lefty made a good first start with 6 IP, 2 ER, and 7 K’s. Hopes were high…but then were quickly smothered.

In his next eight starts, Kershaw never made it to the sixth inning and gave up 3.25 walks per start. In all of those starts, none of them were quality outings. During this time, he did not pick up a win, and compiled an 0-3 record.

Recently, a switch has been turned on. In his last three starts, Kershaw has surrendered only one run in 19 IP (0.47 ERA) and has picked up two victories to bring his record to 2-3. His performance against the Cardinals was outstanding. He baffled St. Louis with his curveball and consistently hit 94 mph while striking out seven batters. His job in the rotation is set for the season and with the added offensive help of Manny Ramirez’s bat, this bright young stud is a great add for your team.

Don’t forget, the Sports of Boston Fantasy Football League wants you! If you want to join, email me at: pete ATsportsofboston DOT com and I will send you the league information.

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