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Week That Was

Week That Was: What A Story

by Nick Nelson
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Things could have hardly lined up better for Trevor Story heading into this season.

The uncertain status of incumbent Rockies shortstop Jose Reyes, stemming from offseason domestic abuse charges, created an opening. Story, a 23-year-old with an impressive minor-league track record, locked up the job with a monster spring (1199 OPS, 6 HR).

His power potential at Coors Field was beyond intriguing, and since he's still a relatively unknown name, Story quickly become a prime target for savvy drafters. Those who took a chance on him are feeling pretty good about their decision one week in.

In his major-league debut on Opening Day, Story smashed a pair of home runs and drove in four. He added homers in each of his next two games and then went deep twice again on Friday, totaling six long balls in his first four big-league games. 

Obviously he'll cool down at some point, but the start of Story's career is already one for the history books.

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* The victim of Story's explosive start to the season was Zack Greinke. Arizona's $200 million man got shelled in start No. 1 for his new club, coughing up seven earned runs on three homers (two by Story) and nine total hits over four innings.

It was later revealed that the right-hander was pitching through flu symptoms, which might help explain the ugly outing. Still, Chase Field is one of the most hitter-friendly environments in baseball so this probably won't be the last time he encounters problems in his new home park.

Fellow newcomer at the top of the D-backs rotation Shelby Miller didn't fare a whole lot better in the club's second game, surrendering three long balls of his own against a Rockies offense that is off to an excellent start.

* Kyle Schwarber was carted off the field Thursday after hurting his left leg in an outfield collision with Dexter Fowler. An initial X-ray on his ankle came back negative, but after undergoing an MRI it was discovered that the slugger had a torn ACL and LCL in his knee. He will miss the entire 2016 season.

It's obviously a huge blow for the Cubs and for his fantasy owners. Schwarber was a Top 40 pick in most drafts. The injury does open the door for Jorge Soler, who figures to be the primary left fielder for Chicago going forward.

* Kevin Gausman opened the season on the disabled list for Baltimore after battling shoulder tendinitis during spring training, but it looks like he's pretty close to returning. He was scheduled to make a rehab start at Double-A on Saturday. If all goes well, he's in line to make his season debut for the Orioles on April 19th against Toronto.

Gausman, 25, possess arguably higher upside than any other member of the O's rotation, and he is presently owned in only 21 percent of Yahoo leagues. Give him a look.

* Last year, Paul Goldschmidt was an All-Star, a Gold Glover, a Silver Slugger and runner-up in the National League MVP race. It looks like he's motivated to add more hardware to the shelf here in 2016. In his first game for Arizona, the first baseman homered, tripled and drove in four runs.

With his power, speed and patience, Goldschmidt is a premium fantasy asset. It's all been on display here in the early going.

* It was an ominous sign when Matt Garza left his final spring start early due to shoulder tightness. As it turns out, the veteran righty has a lat strain that is expected to sideline him for four to six weeks. He'll be back in early May at the soonest.

The Brewers called up right-hander Tyler Cravy to fill Garza's spot on the active roster, although with three off days mixed into their first 20 games Milwaukee has the luxury of rolling mostly with four starters in April if they so choose. Cravy has some experience in the majors, having made 14 appearances (seven starts) last year, but he offers little upside.

* Andrew Heaney had the makings of a breakout candidate in the Angels rotation this year, but we'll have to wait to see what he can do, at least for a little bit. The 24-year-old southpaw came away from his first start of the season with a sore left flexor muscle and was placed on the disabled list immediately.

The good news is that an MRI showed no ligament damage, so he's not expected to need surgery. Still, it may be a month or more before we see him again, even if all goes well.

* Ben Revere landed on the DL with a strained right oblique. Tough break for those who were counting on his steals. Obliques usually take at least four weeks to fully heal. If you can, snag Michael Taylor, who figures to get the lion's share of Revere's playing time in the outfield and offers a nice speed/power combo.

* Juan Nicasio: BUY, BUY, BUY. Coming off a sensational spring in which he racked up 24 strikeouts over 15 scoreless innings, the right-hander came up big in his regular-season debut for the Pirates, with six innings of one-run ball that included seven whiffs and no walks.

Since making his escape from Coors Field, the strikeouts have been piling up fast and steady for Nicasio. Grab him while he's still available in a decent chunk of leagues.

* The Dodgers were forced to start the season without two key contributors, second baseman Howie Kendrick and catcher Yasmani Grandal, but it looks like they'll be getting both back soon. Both players started minor-league rehab assignments this week and both are expected to be activated next Tuesday.

Grandal is available in more than 70 percent of Yahoo leagues despite hitting 16 homers with a 756 OPS last year – strong production from the catcher position. Kendrick, who hasn't batted lower than .279 in any of his 10 big-league seasons, is always a good source of hits.

* After being cut by the Rays late in camp, James Loney signed a minor-league deal this week with the Padres. He'll probably be up in the majors before long, but his already limited fantasy value is further diminished at Petco.

* Texas Heat: Through his first four games, Houston first baseman Tyler White is 9-for-13 (.692) with two doubles, two homers and seven RBI.  

* Brandon Belt signed a five-year contract extension with the Giants, who bought out his first year of free agency.

Nick Nelson
Nick Nelson is a frequent contributor to Rotoworld's baseball coverage and regularly blogs about the Minnesota Twins at Twins Daily. Follow him on Twitter @NickNelsonMN.