10 – CC Sabathia returned to the New York Yankees’ rotation after a short stint on the Disabled List and was back to his usual self. He pitched six shutout innings against the Toronto Blue Jays and had six strikeouts. He got his 10th victory on the season and looks to be good to go for the second half of the season. Look for Sabathia to be a Top 5 pitcher the rest of the way as he’s getting great run support and looks strong.
9 – Carl Crawford made his 2012 debut Monday and boy is he already making an impact for the Boston Red Sox. He was 3-for-4 with a few runs and three stolen bases Tuesday night and could be just what Boston needs to make a run this season and get back on track. Get him back in your lineups immediately.
8 – Jose Bautista and Joey Votto have landed on the Disabled List this week, so plan accordingly. Bautista looks like he’ll just miss the mandatory 15 games, while Votto is out a good month. If you’re looking for some replacements at first base, check out Adam Lind. He’s owned in just 44 percent of leagues and has been on a tear so far in the second half.
7 – Mike Trout continues to be a beast in his rookie campaign. He went 4-for-6 Tuesday night with a two-run home run and three runs scored. He is now the No. 2 rated player in all of fantasy baseball behind Andrew McCutchen and is rising very fast. There is a great chance he’ll win the batting title, an outside chance he could win the Most Valuable Player this season as a rookie (which would be insane) and he already has Rookie of the Year and the stolen base crowns in his back pocket.
6 – As of Wednesday afternoon, New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano now has a 21-game hitting streak. There is no one more locked in at the plate right now in the majors, other than maybe Mike Trout. Cano is destroying every pitch, and even when he gets out, the ball is hit hard. The Most Valuable Player race in the American League could very well come down to Cano and Trout.
5 – Milwaukee has finally pulled the plug on closer John Axford and replaced him with Francisco Rodriguez. Axford was brilliant in 2011, but just hasn’t had the same stuff in 2012. He’s been struggling a lot and has his earned run average at 5.35 right now. Get Rodriguez if he’s still available.
4 – It’s hard to gauge Francisco Liriano right now. He’s been back in the big leagues for over a month and has pitched a lot better, but is still struggling with his command. He has walked 11 batters in his last three starts, but has 27 strikeouts. Add him, but be careful.
3 – Steve Cishek has gotten the majority of the saves for the Miami Marlins now that Heath Bell lost his closer duties. He’s been spectacular in the month of July and hasn’t allowed an earned run since June 23. Cishek has just one save in the month, but expect that to change. Pick him up if you need saves because he’s widely available.
2 – Yovani Gallardo sure put up an impressive stat line Sunday with seven innings of four-hit ball and 14 strikeouts. He’s been pitching great the last two months and has really turned his season around. Gallardo hasn’t allowed many hits at all. He just needs to keep the walks down and he will be a Top 10 pitcher the second half.
1 – Is anyone going to stop Andrew McCutchen? He’s now hitting .374 and has eight multi-hit games in his last 13. He is doing it all for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Not bad for a third-round pick.