Week 25 Fantasy Stars

Paul Goldschmidt is fantasy MVP for the penultimate week of the season, hitting .370 with 3 HR, 6 R, 9 RBI, and 1 SB, earning $58.97 in the 5×5 Mixed League rankings, $50.59 in the deeper 4×4 NL Only, and $48.67 in the 5×5 NL Only, all comfortably the highest RotoValues in each format.
Rays’ starter Alex Cobb was runner-up to Goldschmidt in the 5×5 Mixed, earning $54.77 with 2 wins, a 1.65 ERA, 0.857 WHIP, and 22 Ks in 16.33 IP. While this was the top AL week in the shallower mixed league, the deeper AL-only formats, Coco Crisp had the most value. Crisp hit .286 with 3 HR, 6 R, 8 RBI, and 1 SB, earning $46.18 in the 4×4 AL Only, and $47.63 in the 5×5 AL Only, and he ranked 3rd in the 5×5 Mixed League at $51.39. Cobb’s stats earned $38.34 in the 5×5, second best, but just $32.28 in the 4×4, where his league-leading 22 strikeouts aren’t an explicit category.
Alexi Ogando pitched even more effectively than Cobb in his two starts (0.500 WHIP, 0.75 ERA, 9 Ks in 12 IP), but he had just one win, as after beating the Rays Tuesday, he was locked in a pitchers’ duel with James Shields Sunday. Neither factored in the decision, as Ogando tossed 7 scoreless innings, and Shields 8, in a game the Royals won in the 10th. Ogando’s week earned $25.39 in the 4×4 AL, second-best among pitchers, and $23.71 in the 5×5 AL, which was 3rd best, also behind R.A. Dickey ($24.31; 0.867 WHIP, 3.00 ERA, 1 win, 19 Ks). Dickey’s relatively high ERA hurt his 4×4 value ($16.73), where he ranked behind several relievers and one-start pitchers John Lackey ($21.29; 9 IP, 8 K, 0.444 WHIP, 1.00 ERA, 1 W) and Hisashi Iwakuma ($18.54; 8 IP, 6 K, 0.750 WHIP, 0.00 ERA, 1 W). The 5×5 format especially rewards 2-start pitchers in a weekly ranking, as they get not just another crack at a win, but usually a lot more strikeouts, as well as more innings of a good ERA and WHIP.
The AL’s top reliever for the week was a close call between Casey Janssen (0.375 WHIP, 0.00 ERA, 3 Sv, 5 Ks in 2.67 IP) and Al Alburquerque (0.750 WHIP, 0.00 ERA, 2 Ws, 4 Ks in 4 IP). Janssen’s extra strikeout gave him a slight edge ($19.19 to $18.89) in the 5×5 AL, while Albuquerque’s 2 relief wins gave him a little more value ($23.79 to $23.24) in the 4×4 AL.
In the NL-only leagues, Matt Holliday was the runner-up to Goldschmidt in the 5×5 NL Only despite missing Sunday’s game with back spasms. His week earned $40.17 as he hit .500 with 1 HR, 7 RBI, and a league-leading 8 runs scored, just ahead of Jay Bruce ($39.20; .333, 1 HR, 5 R, 1 SB, and a league-leading 14 RBI) and Chase Utley ($37.40; .400, 2 HR, 5 R, 10 RBI). Holliday’s RotoValue fell to $33.10 (8th best) in the 4×4 NL Only, where runs scored don’t count, with Bruce ($41.57) and Utley ($38.95) ranking 2nd and 3rd.
The NL’s most valuable fantasy pitcher was Andrew Cashner, whose two dominant starts (16 IP, 0.00 ERA, 0.312 WHIP, 14 Ks) netted just one win. He actually took the loss Sunday, as he gave up one unearned run but the Padres didn’t score against the Dodgers and Zack Greinke. Cashner’s week topped both the 4×4 NL ($34.77) and the 5×5 NL easily, but he’s being shut down now, as the converted reliever rose from 46.33 IP in the majors last season to 175 this year. Cliff Lee ($29.04; 2.40 ERA, 1.067 WHIP, 1 W, 22 Ks in 15 IP) had the second-best 5×5 week, while Trevor Cahill ($28.62; 1.64 ERA, 1.273 WHIP, 2 Ws, 9 Ks in 11 IP) ranked second in 4×4 by virtue of winning both his starts. Jordan Zimmermann‘s 2-hit shutout of the Marlins was his only start (0.333 WHIP, 0.00 ERA, 9 Ks), earning $24.39 in 4×4 and $22.39 in 5×5.
No reliever had a truly dominant week, with Javier LopezLaTroy Hawkins, and Kenley Jansen in a virtual tie in the 4×4 NL rankings. Lopez ($27.82; 0.00 ERA, 0.00 WHIP, 3 Ks, 1 W, 1 Sv in 2 IP) wound up on top by a penny, while Hawkins ($27.81; 0.00 ERA, 0.667 WHIP, 3 Ks, 2 Sv in 3 IP) and Jansen ($27.81; 0.00 ERA, 0.667 WHIP, 5 Ks, 2 Sv in 3 IP) posted identical lines from a 4×4 league perspective. Lopez pitched one less inning, but also gave up 2 fewer baserunners, with his extra win offsetting their extra save. The extra 2 strikeouts gave Jansen ($21.43) the clear edge in 5×5 otoValue, with Lopez ($19.72) and Hawkins ($19.71) virtually identical.

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