AP Photo/Elise Amendola
Not bad for a guy that was picked in the 16th round.
Adam Lind's average draft position (ADP) in ESPN leagues this spring was 156, after a season in which he hit .282 with nine homers in 88 games and didn't become a regular until June.
However, the 26-year-old capped off his breakout season on Tuesday by bashing three homers against the Boston Red Sox in Fenway to give him 35 on the season, to go with a .305 batting average and 114 RBIs. It was also his second multi-homer contest in four games, after hitting two against Seattle on Sept. 26. That's quite the return on a 16th-round investment.
Lind hit homers off Clay Buchholz in the first and fifth innings on a night in which the Red Sox right-hander was not commanding his fastball, as he surrendered a career-high five long balls. Lind then took Takashi Saito deep in the seventh to finish the trifecta. The Toronto Blue Jays needed every one of them as they barely held on to temporarily deny the Red Sox the American League wild card, which they got later in the evening when the Texas Rangers fell to the Los Angeles Angels.
Speaking of Buchholz, he had come into this outing with a 6-0 record and a 2.40 ERA in his previous eight starts, allowing one earned run or fewer in his past four. He'll get a chance to get back on track on the final day of the regular season against the Cleveland Indians at home.
As for Lind, you can make the case that he should be among the top 10 outfielders on draft day next year. That will be quite the ADP leap.
• Aramis Ramirez was out of the Chicago Cubs' starting lineup due to continued soreness in his shoulder, and it's likely he may not play again this year. "His shoulder is sore," manager Lou Piniella told the team Web site. "I don't know how much playing time he'll get the rest of the year. Ramirez has been playing with discomfort for a good while. We appreciate that. If he can play here sparingly the rest of the year, we'll see."
• The Kansas City Royals needed Kyle Farnsworth to close out a one-run game against the New York Yankees because Joakim Soria was still unavailable two days after throwing 46 pitches in a two-inning save on Sunday. Predictably, the Royals lost. Soria should be available again today.
• Cincinnati Reds starter Homer Bailey continues to finish the year strong, holding the St. Louis Cardinals to just one run over seven innings, walking just one and striking out seven. Over his past eight outings, Bailey has posted a 1.89 ERA. Since returning from the minors in late June with renewed velocity and a new splitter, the righty, who is still just 23, has turned himself into a pitcher to grab in the late rounds next season.
• Jay Bruce hit two homers in that game to back Bailey, and now has four bombs in his past four contests. That's a good late-season sign that Bruce's power is starting to come back after a serious wrist injury, as such injuries can sap a hitter's pop for a good amount of time. It will give a little more peace of mind to drafting Bruce in 2010.
• Is Miguel Montero a top-10 catcher next season? The answer is yes, especially as he already has been one this season, ranking seventh in our Player Rater at the position after going yard two more times on Tuesday. Montero is now hitting .299 with 16 homers this season and showing why his name was much discussed in preseason trade talks. Montero has also led all major-league catcher in homers and slugging percentage since June 17, shortly after he became a regular due to Chris Snyder's back troubles.
• Not to be outdone, San Francisco Giants catcher Bengie Molina also went deep twice in that same game to give him 20 on the season. We'll have to see where the 35-year-old free agent to be ends up for 2010 with Buster Posey waiting in the wings in San Francisco.
• On the same day that the Texas Rangers shut down Josh Hamilton for the remainder of the season due to a pinched nerve in his back, they also likely lost outfielder Marlon Byrd. Byrd left Tuesday's game with a strain in his right hip capsule, which he injured running out a grounder in the first inning. He had problems getting out to his position in the bottom half of the inning before being pulled. With five days left, it's hard to see him playing again. Expect Julio Borbon to get more playing time in center.
• After clinching their division, the Los Angeles Angels shuffled their rotation to get it set for the playoffs, and one of the results was Scott Kazmir getting scratched in favor of Sean O'Sullivan on Tuesday, eliminating Kaz's potential two-start week. Jered Weaver also will not take his next turn today in favor of Matt Palmer, and John Lackey's next start will also be pushed back. It remains to be seem how the Angels will set up their rotation this weekend against the Oakland Athletics, but Lackey, Weaver, and then Kazmir appears likely.
• Ronnie Belliard missed his second straight game with a groin injury, and the Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman remains day-to-day. Orlando Hudson is getting the starts again while Belliard is out. Casey Blake (hamstring) also remained out of the Dodgers' lineup for the seventh straight contest.
• Jorge Posada's at-bats may be limited for the final few games as he deals with a lingering neck injury.
• Derrek Lee (neck) returned to the Cubs' lineup after missing three games, going 1-for-2 with two walks.
Brian Roberts, Orioles
Roberts earns this honor for breaking Lance Berkman's record for most doubles by a switch-hitter in a season on Tuesday, hitting his 56th in a game in which he went 1-for-4 with a run scored. Earlier this season, Roberts joined some select company when he became just the fourth player to record three seasons of 50 doubles or more. The other three are Hall of Famers Stan Musial, Tris Speaker and Paul Waner.
Justin Verlander, Tigers
Verlander lived up to every definition of the term "ace" for the Detroit Tigers on Tuesday, pitching his team to victory in the second game of a doubleheader on Tuesday after a Minnesota Twins' victory in game one pulled them to within a game of Detroit's division lead. Verlander won his 18th of the season with an eight-inning effort in which he allowed eight hits, four runs and struck out eight.
That was how many pitches Verlander threw on Tuesday, and fantasy owners hope those last few won't come back to haunt them in the standings. Under normal circumstances, the Detroit Tigers' right-hander likely would have departed the game after seven innings of work and 110 pitches, having allowed just two runs. However, after Brandon Lyon worked two innings in the first game of the doubleheader, and with the division lead on the line, Verlander was asked to squeeze out one more inning, and he allowed three more hits and two more runs on his final 19 pitches before finishing the frame.
• The Seattle Mariners activated Russell Branyan (back) from the disabled list on Tuesday, but it's still unlikely he will play in any of the remaining games, as he is still not 100 percent. He's been taking batting practice, and the team would like to at least give him a token at-bat before the end of the season so the fans can recognize his contributions this year.
• The Boston Red Sox called up pitcher Fernando Cabrera, and the Kansas City Royals called up infielder Tug Hulett, but both just provide some depth for the final few games and shouldn't be of any interest.
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Rob Neyer: One of my friends does, too. I mentioned Sanchez disparagingly at some point last week, but that was just me being ignorant. He's actually been pretty brilliant since the perfect game, and has to be considered a solid No. 4 (or 3) for next season..
-- Full chat transcript
Wednesday's fantasy chat schedule:
Tristan H. Cockcroft, 11 a.m. ET
Eric Karabell, noon ET
• As ESPN's Jorge Arangure Jr. reported, the Minnesota Twins are expected to sign Dominican shortstop prospect Miguel Angel Sano, regarded as the top amateur talent in Latin America this year, to a $3.15 million deal this week. The 16-year-old is obviously many years away, and of interest only to dynasty league players at the moment.
• After being outstanding in his first four starts since joining the Kansas City Royals' rotation, Robinson Tejeda fell back into old habits in his most recent outing, which for him meant control problems. Tejeda walked seven and was knocked out in the fifth. It will be interesting to see how he bounces back in the Bronx against the New York Yankees, as he tries to show that he's worthy of fantasy consideration again next season.
• A solid bet for Wednesday is the Los Angeles Dodgers' Jon Garland, who has a 3.15 ERA and 1.25 WHIP since the All-Star break and a good matchup on Wednesday, taking on the San Diego Padres in Petco.
• While other members of his team's rotation have gotten the attention, the Colorado Rockies' Jason Hammel has been reasonably effective for them as a starter this season. The 27-year-old righty has a 4.30 ERA and 1.39 WHIP, but is not necessarily a good play at home against the Milwaukee Brewers. Hammel's home ERA of 5.64 this year is almost two and a half runs higher than his 3.19 road mark.
• For more on Wednesday's games, check Daily Notes.