Renaissance Man [ren' i-sans' man] n - a man who knows a lot about many different subjects and has many practical skills and abilities.
At the beginning of each week I am going to take a look at some Rotisserie Renaissance Men from the previous week. Stats in this edition cover the week of May 10th - 16th. These are the hitters that are solid contributors to all 5 roto categories and pitchers who are doing things right in 4 - and possibly 5 categories some weeks. Whether these guys are sitting on your bench or your league's waiver wire, they probably need to be in a starting line-up while they are staying hot.
Cody Ross - OF, Florida Marlins
(24 AB, .417 AVG, 8 R, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 2 SB)
When did strike outs become a Renaissance category? Seriously though, Cody has stepped up his game in the past ten days or so and seems to have fought his way out of his early season slump that he found himself in out of spring training. He has turned into one of those after thought players with where he is in the order and has been taking advantage of the possible lack of respect and loss of concentration that the opposing pitchers are displaying when he is at the plate. He is going to see a few lefties this week so he could be listed here again next Monday if he keeps up this hot streak he is currently on.
Travis Snider - OF, Toronto Blue Jays
(14 AB, .357 AVG, 3 R, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 1 SB)
Travis Snider started the week 6 on fire, but was forced to cool off when he encountered an achey wrist. Snider has been mentioned quite a bit in the last two weeks around the site and on the podcast. He is a player that is definitely coming into his own and starting to show the potential that everyone knew that he had. As long as he is healthy you should be able to expect some more weeks like this in the future, just maybe not in week 7 with the wrist situation being what it is.
Mike Sweeney - DH, Seattle Mariners
(11AB, .455 AVG, 3 R, 3 HR, 3 RBI, 1 SB)
Maybe being booed in his old stomping grounds, when the Mariners visited Kansas City a couple weeks ago, sparked a small fire that decided to come full flame this last week. Actually it was probably a combination of opportunity with Ken Griffey Jr. losing at-bats and a veteran taking advantage of a situation. You can probably see Sweeney finding more at-bats with the DH situation being what it is out in Seattle, but don't expect many more weeks like this but I had to include a veteran to the game like Sweeney here when he had the numbers to earn him a spot.
Chad Billingsley - SP, Los Angeles Dodgers
(12.2 IP, 2 W, 13 K, 1.42 ERA, 0.95 WHIP)
The inconsistent Billingsley was able to put together 2 good starts last week keeping two offenses in the Diamondbacks and Padres that have done their fair share of damage as of late, in check. Now he didn't do it in an extremely efficient fashion, but really that isn't Chad's style. He has been a worrisome pitcher to owners since his second half struggles last year but he has had some encouraging signs of improvement so far this year. He gets Detroit at the end of this week with inter-league play starting and really that start could go either way for him.
Jake Westbrook - SP, Cleveland Indians
(15 IP, 2 W, 10 K, 1.20 ERA, 1.13 WHIP)
I am with you, there have been some pretty bizarre names this week. Westbrook is just another one to put on the list of "never thought he'd be listed here" but he did the job last week. Not to make light of his performance last week any more that I already have, but it has to be mentioned that he collected his two wins against the Royals and Orioles. Now for the positive points, he was able hurl a complete game and has seemed to put his troublesome elbow behind him for the immediate future. He does have a tougher match-up this week, going against Bronson Arroyo and his Cincinnati Reds team that is playing very well right now, so don't expect another stellar performance until at least week 8.
Leo Nunez - RP, Florida Marlins
(5 IP, 1 W, 4 SV, 6 K, 3.60 ERA, 1.00 WHIP)
Now I know that 3.60 ERA isn't anything great but giving up a couple runs to go along with the counting numbers he put up this week still makes him Renaissance worthy. His season ERA is sitting at 1.56 with a WHIP under 1.00. He was a low end closer coming into the season but his control has been improved and strike out numbers are up. He very well could hold onto the job all season, which wasn't thought to be the case coming into the season. Seven games this week gives Leo a good chance to keep racking up those saves and possibly another vulture win.