MLB Weekly Risers and Fallers: 5/25/15-5/31/15

Risers

Josh Donaldson, Toronto Blue Jays: Donaldson was incredible this past week, batting .440/.483/1.240 with six home runs and 11 RBI in six games with three walks and just one strikeout. He now has 15 home runs on the season, with a healthy .312 batting average. If he can keep up his hot start, he could be an early candidate for American League MVP.

Carlos Martinez, St. Louis Cardinals: Martinez was outstanding last week, allowing six hits, no runs, and five walks in two starts over 14 innings, striking out a league-leading 16 batters. Martinez's most recent start was emotional after a tribute to his passed friend, Oscar Taveras. He allowed one hit over seven dominant innings in that start. Martinez has been an unexpected reward for St. Louis this season, as he was just a reliever last season.

Cody Asche, Philadelphia Phillies: Asche got off to a terrible start to the season, batting just .245 with two home runs, four RBI, and five runs. Phiadelphia ended up demoting him for a couple weeks in order for him to become a left fielder. When he returned, he went 4-11 in three games last week, including breaking up Chad Bettis' no-hitter in the eighth inning. If he can stay "hot" (for him, at least), Asche will likely get more playing time for the last-place Phillies.

Eduardo Rodriguez, Boston Red Sox: Rodriguez made his major-league debut last week as a spot-start for Boston. He was quite impressive, allowing just three hits and two walks with seven strikeouts over 7 2/3 innings. Rodriguez is scheduled to pitch on Wednesday for Boston, and he will look to prove his worth and remain in the struggling Boston rotation.

Josh Hamilton, Texas Rangers: Hamilton made his season debut last week after being activated from the disabled list. He went 6-22 with a pair of home runs (in the same game) and five RBI, including a pinch-hit walk-off two-run double on Sunday against the Red Sox.

Fallers

Jeremy Guthrie, Kansas City Royals: Guthrie made one start this past week, becoming just the second pitcher in history to allow 11 runs in one innings pitch. Guthrie exited the game against the Yankees after allowing an eight-run first inning and three runs with no outs in the second inning. He struck out one, walked three, and allowed nine hits, increasing his season ERA to an ugly 6.70.

Sean Doolittle, Oakland AthleticsDoolittle was finally cleared from the disabled list this past week after four months of rehabbing, only to return to it three days after his season debut. He pitched a scoreless inning on Wednesday, but was placed on the disabled list with a strained left shoulder, a different muscle than his previous injury.

Jon Lester, Chicago Cubs: Jon Lester is a great pitcher, as everyone knows. However, hitting isn't quit his forte. Lester set the record for the longest hitless streak to start a career, as he is now 0-59 with just one walk and 35 strikeouts in his 10-year career. Lester is now a career .000/.016/.000 batter, and he has not reached base since 2010.

Edwin Encarnacion, Toronto Blue Jays: Encarnacion has been slumping recently, as he went 1-24 last week. He has managed to hit 12 home runs on the season, but his .216 batting average is nothing to boast. He is sitting out of Monday's games in hopes of regaining his lost power.

Philadelphia Phillies: Aside from Asche, the Phillies haven't been too hot. They went 0-6 last week, extending their losing streak to seven games. They scored two runs or less in four of their six games, and in the other two scored just three and four runs. Philadelphia is 10 games out of first place in the National League East, and their 19-33 record is only better than the Milwaukee Brewers.

VAVEL Logo