The Orioles will call up 20-year-old prospect Manny Machado today. Machado, a shortstop who figures to spend most of his time at third base in Baltimore, is batting .266 with 10 homers, 13 stolen bases and a .789 OPS at Double-A Bowie.
As prospects go, Machado is top-notch, probably one of the 10 best in baseball. However, he's very young, and hasn't exactly been tearing it up at Double A (though he's started August extremely well). Machado might be an upgrade over the current third-base platoon of Wilson Betemit and Robert Andino, and while that's good for the Orioles, it doesn't mean you need to run out and pick him up.
In an AL-only league, most everyday players are worth grabbing, and that goes for Machado as well (he currently qualifies at SS on FOXSports.com). Deep mixed leaguers can also consider him depending on who their incumbent is. Beyond that, don't get too excited about Machado's fantasy prospects in the short term, since being 20 doesn't automatically make him the next Mike Trout. He's 16th on my SS list, and that doesn't count DL residents Ian Desmond, Jed Lowrie and Troy Tulowitzki, all of whom could return later this month. Guys as young as Machado usually encounter bumps in the road; check Bryce Harper's stats if you don't believe me.
Clayton Richard - wooooooo! With the streaming starter record up to 71-44 on the season, today's pick is Mike Leake (owned in 7.1 percent of FOXSports.com leagues) against the Cubs at Wrigley, and Friday's selection is Twins' strike thrower Cole De Vries (0.2 percent owned) versus the Rays.
On to the rest of the news:
- Marlins' manager Ozzie Guillen sounds ready to make Heath Bell his closer again. Try to grab Bell now if you're looking for saves. Sorry, Steve Cishek owners.
- White Sox 1B Paul Konerko missed Wednesday's game after suffering a mild concussion on Tuesday, and with the team off today, they'll wait until Friday to decide if he needs a trip to the seven-day concussion DL.
- Blue Jays 3B Brett Lawrie (rib) will sit again today, and might be headed for the DL. Teammate Jose Bautista got some good news on his wrist and plans to start hitting balls off a tee again on Monday, but that doesn't necessarily make his return imminent.
- In other Jays' news, Brandon Morrow threw 51 pitches over five innings in his latest minor-league rehab start, allowing two runs on three hits and a walk and striking out two. Morrow figures to need at least one more rehab appearance, and could be back next weekend.
- Jim Henderson saved a Brewers' win for the second consecutive day. Manager Ron Roenicke hasn't named Henderson as the team's closer, but he's saying some nice things.
- There are five afternoon games on today's schedule, beginning with Marlins-Mets at 12:10 p.m. ET. Set your lineups accordingly.
- The Cardinals hope to get 1B Allen Craig (chest) and SS Rafael Furcal (back) back in the lineup today. Both players missed Wednesday's game.
- White Sox OF Alex Rios missed Wednesday's game with a stiff back, but thinks he'll be back tomorrow.
- Not that this is really a surprise, but OF David Murphy is officially an everyday player for the Rangers. It was sort of unofficial until recently.
- Mariners SS Brendan Ryan (elbow) missed his fourth straight game on Wednesday, but should be back on Friday.
- Mets OF Jason Bay is about to start spending more time on the bench.
- Astros C Jason Castro aims to come off the DL next week.
- Minor-league update: Reds Double-A SS Billy Hamilton stole his 129th, 130th and 131st bases last night. Hamilton makes Michael Bourn look like David Ortiz on the basepaths. In 2014, he could be a one-category fantasy monster.
See you back here tomorrow morning.