Sunday, July 6, 2008

Troy Percival – Buy this Closer Now for Fantasy Baseball Stretch Run

Troy Percival (pictured Topps 2008 Gold Parallel baseball card) is one of the feel good stories of the baseball season. After being forced from baseball, presumably for good, in 2005, Troy Percival came back last season to pitch great as a setup reliever for the Cardinals. This year Percival was picked up by the Tampa Bay Rays and assumed a full time closer role for the first time since 2004.

On the season Troy Percival has 19 save a 3.54 ERA and sub-1.00 WHIP. He also boasts a K rate of better than 9 per 9 with 30 strikeouts in 28 innings. Everything was in place for a Percival’s comeback including the Rays maintaining first place in the AL East ahead of the Red Sox and Yankees before hamstring injuries started to derail his season.

His hamstring was first tweaked several weeks ago and he was pulled from a game last week when it flared up again. I actually think this is good news for fantasy baseball teams in head to head leagues. I would assume that the greater the workload the greater the chance that Troy Percival’s bum shoulders starts to act up – it doesn’t take a lot of imagination to see him breaking down late in the season. However, the hamstring injury is limiting his workload greatly in the first half and he has proved that he can dominate as a closer once again. Percival was probably picked up cheap at the beginning of the year in your fantasy baseball league and his owner might feel like he got his nickel’s worth and be ready to unload him due to the injuries. I say buy, Troy Percival could be poised for a solid stretch run in August and September.

Buy Troy Percival baseball cards and autographed memorabilia on eBay!

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