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Fantasy Fix: Candidates For The Next No-Hitter

Two no-hitters in one week: It's 2010 all over again, when it seemed like almost anyone could throw a no-hitter at any time. First, it was Francisco Liriano, SP, Minnesota,a complete surprise, then Justin Verlander, SP, Detroit, less of a surprise because he already had a no-no on his resume and because he was already considered a top 10 pitcher.

Who's next? How can we make an educated guess about such a thing? A lot of the experts might say Josh Johnson, SP, Florida, because he actually has held opposing teams hitless into the sixth inning at least twice this season. Jaime Garcia, SP. St. Louis, who came close to a perfect game recently is another. Both Johnson and Garcia have low walks and hits per innings pitched, an important stat in many fantasy leagues.

However, if you start looking for other starting pitchers with low walks and hits per innings pitched, you'll come up with a few surprising names:

Josh Tomlin, SP, Cleveland: Maybe the most surprising pitcher on the most surprising first-place team. He has a WHIP of 0.81, tops in the majors among starters with at least 25 IP. Most of the WHIP is due to just 8 walks in 40.2 IP, but he also has given up just 25 hits. At 4-1, he is still available in 42% of Yahoo! leagues.

Alexi Ogando, SP/RP Texas: An unexpected starter. His effectiveness - 3-0 record with 24 hits in 37.1 IP and just 9 walks for a 0.88 - is not a secret anymore, but you can still get him in 33% of Yahoo! leagues.

Phil Humber, SP/RP, White Sox: He almost no-hit the Yankees in New York, and has a 0.94 WHIP, with 26 hits surrendered in 39.2 innings. His 2-3 record might be more a reflection of anemic run support. Available in a whopping 91% of Yahoo! leagues, but the caveat here is that he is keeping a seat warm for Jake Peavy, due back this week.

Josh Beckett, SP, Boston: Probably the least surprising name on this least, though he's coming off an injury-marred 2010. His 0.88 WHIP has him tied for second in the American League among starters. Generally not available on the waiver wire, but his WHIP and 1.99 ERA for a slow-starting club make him worth seeking in a trade.

Brandon Beachy, SP, Atlanta: A 0.97 WHIP for a guy who lives in the shadow of teammates Tommy Hanson and Derek Lowe. His other key stat may be 45 strikeouts in 42 IP. Available in 48% of Yahoo! leagues.

Kyle Lohse, SP, St. Louis: His National League-leading 52.1 IP help, but he still has the lowest WHIP on the National side at 0.86. He tends not to have a strong strikeout tally (29), and probably because of that is still available in 22% of Yahoo! leagues.

Expert Wire
* Bleacher Report asks if our new friend Brandon Beachy is the real deal?

* USA Today Fantasy Windup looks into the value of much-hyped call-up Eric Hosmer, 1B, Kansas City.

* Speaking of call-ups, Yahoo! Roto Arcade wonders when Philadelphia's OF stand-out Domonic Brown is going to get his.

* The Los Angeles Times has more on the sad story of Kendrys Morales, 1B, LA Angels, the huge talent who injured celebrating a walk-off home run almost a year ago and still not recovered. Morales was a tentative, buy-low late-round pick in many leagues, but if he doesn't get good news soon, he could prove to be a wasted pick.

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Dan O'Shea's Fantasy Fix appears in this space every Wednesday. He welcomes your comments. You can also read his about his split sports fan personality at his Beachwood blog SwingsBothWays.


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