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Fantasy Baseball Odds - Hot and Not for July 22

Posted by Dale "Skip" Lalonde on 4/24/2012 9:57:20 AM
fantasy baseball oddsFantasy baseball odds players have to be sweating right now. Think baseball betting is in the home stretch? Well, fantasy baseball playoffs start a month before the real playoffs, so it’s really time for fantasy players to find those hidden gems – not to mention sell off their overachievers – before it’s too late. Let’s look at this week’s hot and not.

Fantasy baseball odds: Hot and not, July 22

  • Cliff Lee back in Cy Young form
  • Big weeks for Escobar and Aybar, the Little Shortstops that Could
  • Red Sox outfielders are ice cold

WHO’S HOT

Cliff Lee, starting pitcher, Cleveland Indians
(Last week: 18 IP, 2 W, 2 CG, 10 K, 1.00 ERA)

It’s hard to get hotter than back-to-back complete games. Lee, last year’s Cy Young winner, has quietly pitched well all season but hasn’t gotten the run support of last year, so his starts have left sportsbook players feeling empty. After allowing just two runs in 18 innings, though, he finally got some W’s.

Yunel Escobar, shortstop, Atlanta Braves
(Last week: .524, 2 HR, 9 RBI)

It seems everyone’s hitting in Hotlanta these days – even Escobar, who has respectable pop at his position. You could do a lot worse than plugging him in as your starter every day.

Miguel Montero, catcher, Arizona Diamondbacks
(Last week: .563, 3 HR, 5 RBI)

Montero deserves special credit since he’s a backstop. He’s beyond mashing right now - .563?! - and flashing the promise he supposedly had as a rookie. Fantasy baseball odds suggest he’s available on your waiver wire, as he’s owned in just 31 per cent of leagues.

Top Waiver pick (owned in less than 50 per cent of leagues): Eric Aybar, shortstop, Los Angeles Angels
(Last week: .542, 0 HR, 9 RBI, 2 SB)

While most fantasy baseball odds followers probably think he and Maicer Izturis are the same guy (aren’t they?), Aybar has carved a niche out for himself this week. He won’t keep up this pace but, if you’re in a deep league, he could help you at middle infield.

WHO’S NOT

Jason Bay, outfielder, Boston Red Sox
(Last week: .125, O HR, 0 RBI)

The MVP candidate will soon be an ex-MVP candidate if he doesn’t snap his 2/16 skid. Maybe he’s tired from carrying the load while Papi was slumping and Youkilis was hurt early in the season? The good news: August is his second-best month statistically, so he should rebound.

Jacoby Ellsbury, outfielder, Boston Red Sox
(Last week: .083, 0 HR, 0 RBI, O SB)

Speed and on-base skills are crucial for leadoff men and, since Ellsbury reached base once in the last week, it ain’t surprising that Ellsbury got dropped to the bottom of Boston’s order. The fantasy baseball odds of a turnaround are good, as July is Ellsbury’s worst month historically. Make sure you have him in your lineup in September, when he’s a .352 hitter.

Chad Billingsley, starting pitcher, Los Angeles Dodgers
(Last week: 1.2 IP, 32.50 ERA, 0 K)

If Billingsley isn’t careful, his fantasy baseball odds of winning the NL Cy Young will go out the window. After dominating in the first half, Chad has an 8.59 ERA this month and odds makers don’t know what to do when setting sports betting lines involving him right now. My guess: he’s fatigued. Hopefully, Joe Torre will give the big workhorse some rest. He’s a good enough pitcher that he’ll work out of the slump – even though he’ll always struggle with walks.

For more fantasy baseball betting tips and general betting advice, bookmark the Betting Edge at betonline.com.

Before his arm flamed out, Dale “Skip” Lalonde was famous for his high-90s heat and power at the plate. He retired young but never turned his back on baseball, earning the nickname “Skip” for his high-school coaching prowess. A true student of the game, he loves crunching the numbers when he handicaps baseball.

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