Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Stanton Down & Ozuna Up

With Giancarlo Stanton being shelved for a few weeks the Marlins have called up Marcell Ozuna.  Ozuna was a dangerous power hitter in the Marlins low minor’s organization. In fact, he has only played 10 games above A ball but in the last two years he has put nearly identical slash lines. 2011 and 2012 he hit .266 with 23 HRs and 24 HRs. He had slightly more Doubles too. This season in Jacksonville he was hitting .316 with 5HR. He will slide into right field and probably hit 5th in the lineup. This could be a showcase for the Marlins and if Ozuna can hit MLB pitching Stanton would be on the move for a boatload of prospects sooner than later.
Expect some occasional mammoth power and a very high strike out rate. I know it is hard to own anybody in a Marlins uniform but if you are desperate for some power in your lineup it might be worth picking up Ozuna for a week and try to get a couple of HRs. Ozuna does have some 10-15 SB speed so a nice parker and pilfer could happen in the same game.  The down side is his low contcat rate so your BA could take the brunt of the disappointment. Personally I will not be picking up Ozuna in any leagues because he is a true boom or bust fantasy player. If I had to compare him to a player it would be Dayan Viciedo but with more speed.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

The Magnificent Marwin Gonzalez...Who?

So who is Marwin Gonzalez? That’s what I said when I first heard his name. That time came when he was the one who broke up Yu Darvish’s perfect game earlier this month. Since then he has beaten out the career light hitting Ronnie Cedeno for the stating SS position in Houston.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

An Angel Will Be Stealing

I recently picked up Peter Bourjos in every league he was available. I had him on my watch list since the drafts ended and thought he would have increased fantasy value if he could hit in the 2 hole this year. Well, Scioscia has actually put him in lead off since the Aybar injury.

I didn’t have Bourjos on my radar for his BA but he is going into tonight hitting over .300 with an OBP of .380. Though he has not even attempted a SB this year he is one of the fastest men in baseball. Now that he is hitting leadoff I expect him to start running and showcasing his blazing speed on the base paths.   One reason he is now leading off is he has a modest 6 game hit streak and has more walks than Ks in the last 10 days. As I mentioned here back in February, Bourjos was the forgotten man in the Angels potent line up. Remember just a few years ago he was hyped as much as Trout was in the Minors.

If Bourjos can continue to draw some walks I am expecting a small explosion in SB in the next month. He once swiped 50 in the minors and 22 as recent as 2011. A top the Angels order the Runs should come in bunches too. A great pick up this week as he is only owned in 9% of Yahoo Leagues, 7% of ESPN. Do not expect the BA to stay north of 300 but as Bourjos matures, age 26 season, he gets better and better. He should beat out at least 1 infield hit a week. Remember that the Angels GM had every chance to move him once Hamilton signed but he was the one who stayed this winter…not Morales or Wells.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Closer News

The changes come quick and often in Detroit. Many thought Rondon would be the closer for the Tigers and I saw him scooped up in many leagues. Then Leyland told the media that Valverde and his post Save Dance had been signed and will be closing games starting Wednesday.

As you all remember Valverde had 35 Saves last year but fell out of favor after an atrocious post season. He then had trouble finding work and didn’t sign MBL contract. Well he’s back and to me the post season, big lights, high drama means nothing to the Fantasy community. Valverde can pitch, he can collect Saves with that team, and he has significant value.

In other Closer news it looks like Rodney has no way to replenish his pixie dust magic from last year as I predicted, as he blew the game tonight after a solid Price outing. Look for Farnsworth to make the jump back into his closer role that he held in 2011 sooner than later.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Most Added Analysis

Here is a compiled look at the most added players this week in fantasy baseball and my analysis on each.
% Change
Crawford, Brandon SS SF
Quintana, Jose SP CHW
Bailey, Andrew RP BOS
Corbin, Patrick SP ARI
Cingrani, Tony RP CIN
Villanueva, Carlos RP CHC
Johnson, Chris 3B ATL
Mujica, Edward RP STL
Detwiler, Ross SP WAS
Davis, Wade RP KC
Betancourt, Y. 2B MIL
Cabrera, Everth SS SD
Gattis, Evan OF ATL
Schierholtz, Nate RF CHC

Friday, April 19, 2013

Time to Get Un-Dunn

Has Adam Dunn become un-ownable in all leagues? The defensive shift, incorporated by all opposing teams against Dunn, has made the one time elite OPS hitter virtually worthless. The increase in Ks plays a part as it has yanked down the average over the last couple of years but those that integrate BABIP into analyzing hitters knows that is not the only culprit. Looking back at 2010, his last year with the Nats he had an impressive .329 BABIP, then last year it went down to .254 and to date in 2013 it is and unbelievable .114 with 10% of the season gone.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Starting at 2B...Brett Lawrie...Huh?

Some interesting news from Blue Jays GM Anthopoulos about Brett Lawrie today; “Lawrie will continue to play 2B during his rehab assignment to give Toronto the option of playing him at 2B if needed.” Lawrie gaining 2B eligibility could be huge. He would move from a middle of the pack 3B to a top 5 2B after he gains eligibility. Lawrie, only 23, had a disappointing Rookie campaign with 11HR and 13 SB after being touted as a true 20/20 man at 3B in 2012 drafts. One reason for his less than stellar numbers in 12’ was that he missed significant time with a bad shin after diving for a ball in the camera pit.

So what is the fallout if Lawrie moves over to 2B? As the dominoes fall into place around the diamond, after Reyes' severe injury, I would predict Jose Bautista moves back to 3B. That would increase his value having the dual eligibility. Lawrie is no stranger to 2B because he played there regularly coming up through the Brewers organization. Then when Joey Bats goes to 3B that opens up a spot in the OF and we could see Anthony Gose get the call. Gose is hitting .313 to date in the minors. If you do not know Gose, he once put up a 70 SB season in the minors and is Jays top prospect. He has also been ranked Toronto’s Best defensive OF, Best OF arm, and Best base runner. So if you need help in your infield you may want to trade for Lawrie and if you want to add to your Dynasty Farm team look at Gose.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

2 Start Pitchers...Time to Stream

With over 40 SP getting 2 starts this week; we have many options to do some streaming and take advantage of the dual starts. These are all the 2 start pitchers that are owned in less than 50% of leagues. Those listed in Bold are must pickups this week, if not for the long term. I have already picked up Wood in as many leagues as I can today. This is a good week to pick up an extra 10+ Ks and an extra Win by running a couple of these pitchers out this week.

Tommy Milone: 4/15 vs. Houston | 4/21 @ Tampa Bay

Bronson Arroyo: 4/15 vs. Philadelphia | 4/20 vs. Miami

Rick Porcello: 4/16 @ Seattle | 4/21 @ Los Angeles Angels

Chad Billingsley: 4/15 vs. San Diego | 4/21 @ Baltimore

Travis Wood: 4/16 vs. Texas | 4/21 @ Milwaukee

Jake Westbrook: 4/16 @ Pittsburgh | 4/21 @ Philadelphia

Brandon McCarthy: 4/16 @ New York Yankees | 4/21 @ Colorado

Wily Peralta: 4/16 vs. San Francisco | 4/21 vs. San Diego

James McDonald vs. STL, ATL

Ubaldo Jimenez vs. BOS, at HOU

Gavin Floyd at TOR, vs. MIN

Joe Blanton at MIN, vs. DET

Kyle Kendrick at CIN, vs. STL

Juan Nicasio vs. NYM, ARI

Jake Arrieta vs. TB, LAD

Jeremy Guthrie at ATL, BOS

Erik Bedard at OAK, vs. CLE

Jeff Francis vs. NYM, ARI

Roberto Hernandez at BOS, vs. OAK

Eric Stults at LAD, SF

Alfredo Aceves at CLE, vs. KC

Wade LeBlanc vs. WAS, at CIN

Blake Beavan vs. DET, at TEX

Mike Pelfrey vs. LAA, at CHW

Jeremy Hefner at COL, vs. WAS

Dylan Axelrod at TOR, vs. MIN

Aaron Laffey at COL, vs. WAS

Alex Sanabia vs. WAS, at CIN

Jonathan Sanchez vs. STL, ATL

Friday, April 12, 2013

Gaining Additional Eligibility

Roster construction in fantasy baseball is like piecing together a puzzle. The more pieces you have the bigger the puzzle, the more pieces (possible positional maneuvers) in fantasy baseball the more versatility you have and thus the more successful you can be. This is especially true in H2H leagues where by the end of the week you have options to target specific categories. tYou ten can secure a win in that counting stat. In daily leagues, having flexibility in roster changes benefits those with the most choices. Having a player with 3 or 4 positions of eligibility is like having additional players on your bench. This is so heloful on those Mondays and Thursdays with a small schedule of games.

This article was spurred on by seeing Steve Clevenger get the nod today for the first time at 3B for the Cubbies. He already has C eligibility and with no clear cut 3B in Chicago the career .308 hitter in the minors could be a sneaky C option by month’s end. Think position eligibility is overrated? Think again.

The following players will be gaining new position eligibility by next week. Current position listed next to name and the qualifiers needed to gain new eligibility.

Chris Johnson 3B: @ 1B after 6 appearances or 1 start. Johnson is hitting .304 and had a 3 hit game earlier this week. He is the man until Freeman returns from the DL.

Alex Gonzalez SS: @ 1B after 6 appearances or 1 start and 3B after 6 appearances and 2 starts. With both Hart and Aramis down and out, super sub and 15 year veteran Gonzalez will see a lot of action all over the diamond. He will be the only player in Fantasy to have SS and 1B eligibility. Not a great pick up in all formats but he has hit double digit HR in 6 of his 15 years.

Martin Maldonado C: 1B after 7 appearances and 4 starts. Just another C who can gain additional eligibility. Not much power but he did put up a .948 OPS in the PCL last year.

Alberto Gonzalez 3B& SS: 2B after 3 appearances and 1 start. A 30 year old journey man with no real value in fantasy except for the deepest of leagues.

Sean Rodriguez 2B, 3B, SS: OF after 5 appearances or 3 starts. As we all know Madden in Tampa is the Mad Scientist with moving players around the diamond. Tampa has more players with multiple position eligibility than any other team in baseball. Rodriguez has only collected 2 starts this year but he is a useable option against lefties.

Kelly Johnson 2B: OF after 8 appearances and 3 starts. Just another Madden move. Johnson hadn’t played OF since his rookie season in Atlanta. He is player who can go 15/15 when getting everyday ABs.

Hector Rondon SP: Needs 1 appearance to gain RP eligibility. A possible Holds guy with a current 14.72 K/9 on the year. He is someone you can fill a SP slot with and pick up some needed Ks when you have no SP that day.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Big Timber Worth a Look

Who in MLB has a .643 BA with 2HR, 7 RBI and an OPS at 1.881 currently? It’s Matt Adams in St. Louis. I wrote a piece almost a year ago on Adams when Berkman went down and now he is relevant again. No, he is not going to take Craig’s place at 1B but he can slide into 1B if the often injured Beltran goes down or gets traded.
Adams had a dazzling MiLB career. In his 4 years in the Minors he never hit below .300 and never had an OPS under.896. He was a smasher while in the Minors, cracking 84 HR in just over 1400 ABs.
The new fan favorite in St. Louis has been dubbed Big City but to me he is more like Big Timber. A 230 pound left handed hitter in the mold of Dave Parker. At this time he is only owned in 6% of leagues and may not be an immediate pick up but soon St. Louis will have some away interleague games. That means a DH is needed and Adams will get the call in those games. Those 10 games do not start until late May, but until then Adams may only get 10-15 ABs a week. Not enough for Roto Leagues but a helpful player to have available in H2H leagues. I actually drafted Adams in 1 league this year but will be picking him up in the next couple of weeks in many leagues.  I feel Beltran is on the outs in St. Louis and will not be resigned so he is sure trade bait and when he is gone Adams gets everyday ABs.

Monday, April 8, 2013

New K Record for the AAAstros

Last week during my predictions here, I mentioned just how bad the Astros will be in 2013. From this point on I will refer to the Astros as the AAAstros…get it…Triple A team. Anyway, the AAAstros are on pace to crush the all time team strikeout record set by the 2010 Chris Young and Mark Reynolds D’Backs. That year they whiffed 1529 times. To date the AAAstros have 74 Ks in just 6 games. That works out to be 12.33 per game and a pace of 1998 for the season. A historically bad work in progress that we will witness this year. So why do I mention this feat of ineptitude? Because you need to take advantage of their incompetence by running out any and all SP that face the AAAStros all year. With 6 of their regulars having a K rate over 20%, the Ks for your SPs will come easy and often. You have no need to worry about your peripherals or who you are streaming. Take the Ks and 65% of the time getting a Win to boot. Here are the career K rates for the AAAstros starters:

Altuve             12.1%

Wallace           27.9%

Carter              33.3%

Pena                26.8%

Ankiel             25.3% 

Dominguez      14.9%

Castro              20.2%

Gonzalez         13.5% 

You can pick up Maurer for Seattle on 4/9 only 3% owned.

You can pick up Beavan on 4/10 only 1% owned.

You can pick up Hanson on 4/12 only 42% owned.

This strategy will get out quickly so remember you heard it here first and take advantage of a historically bad team.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

What To Do After Week 1

Well if you own Chris Davis, congradulations... you should be leading your league. If you are already fighting injuries I have some help and info. Our 1st Closer goes down and its time to stream.

Injuries: Coming and going from DL

Freddie Freeman just went to DL with sprained oblique. It looks like Chris Johnson will move from 3B  to 1B for the time being.

Aramis Ramirez was placed on DL due to sore left knee. As you and I know he gets injured every other year and it last longer than first reported. Look for a month on the down side. Brewers brought up Josh Prince. He is up for his defense versatility not his bat. He is not worth a pickup in Fantasy. As far as replacing Ramirez with another 3B the wire is nearly depleted. For the short term I would grab Polanco, Callaspo or Chris Johnson who will also gain 1B eligibility by week send

Brian Roberts is another often injured and slow to rebound. He is being sent back to extended spring training and is only expected to miss a short time. A short time in Orioles speak in 30+ days.

Ryan Ludwick is out until All-Star break at the least. This would be a good time to stash Billy Hamilton because if he hits at all over the next 2 weeks he is getting called up. He went from 2% owned to 14% since Ludwick went down.

Stephen Drew is expected to be off DL by week’s end. The concussion is behind him and he is a super MI to have and he is only 9% owned.

Davis Freese is expected back for the Cardinal Home opener. Owned in 90% of leagues there is slight chance you could pick him up if you owned Aramis.

Waiver Wire Fodder: A useable pick up after week 1

Catcher: Wilson Ramos. He is not an everyday player as of yet but if he continues to hit like this week he will push Suzuki to the bench more often. For the week he hit .444 with 2HR.

Outfield: Nate Shierholtz. The Cubs platoon RF has both power and some speed and could move into the everyday RF sooner than later. He put up a 1.227 OPS this week.

Middle Infielder: Chris Getz. Put up a 3 hit 3 RBI game earlier this week What you want from you MI is R, SB, and not a drain on your Average. Getz fill the bill.

Corner Infield: Chris Parmelee. The Twins everyday RF and left handed hitter can put up some surprising power and RBI.

Starting Pitcher:  Wandy Rodriguez. He is the best option for 2 starts this week. If you need to stream Rodriguez get the D’Backs and the Reds at home. I have picked him up in a couple of Leagues this week.

Starting Pitcher: Travis Wood. Don’t get too much wood over picking up Wood but he is one to keep   on your radar. He gets the Braun and Ramirez less Brewers this week.

Closer Carrousel and Hot Seats

Marmol out and Fujikawa in. Fujicawa could just be the flavor of the week in Chicago but he is worth a pick up at this time. Owned in 54% of leagues.

Holland on hot seat after blowing lead on Saturday. Look for Herrera to be next in line with his 6Ks and WHIP of 0.33.

Axford and his diminishing velocity has put him on hot seat. Henderson will get 1st crack when Axford gets demoted.

Rodney and his magic pixie dust from last year has been used up. Look for Rodney to be gone by month’s end. Peralta should slide in as Closer and excel.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Visionbusters Asks To Get Rated...‘Soitenly’

Visionbusters contacted FBV and wanted his team rated (good or bad). This is a 12 team 5X5 Roto League with 1C, 4OF, CI, MI 9P and 5 Bench. This league also has unlimited innings pitched and weekly line-ups. This current league consists mostly of the same managers for the last decade and Visionbusters won this league last year.

Mike Trout(LAA - OF)
Evan Longoria(TB - 3B)
Justin Upton(Atl - OF)
Adam Wainwright(StL - SP)
Allen Craig(StL - 1B,OF)
Mat Latos(Cin - SP)
Aroldis Chapman(Cin - RP)
Matt Wieters(Bal - C)
Roy Halladay(Phi - SP)
Chase Headley(SD - 3B)
Rickie Weeks(Mil - 2B)
Derek Jeter(NYY - SS)
Dan Uggla(Atl - 2B)
Carl Crawford(LAD - OF)
Ichiro Suzuki(NYY - OF)
Brett Gardner(NYY - OF)
Alex Cobb(TB - SP)
Trevor Cahill(Ari - SP)
Clay Buchholz(Bos - SP)
Shaun Marcum(NYM - SP)
Al Alburquerque(Det - RP)
Lance Berkman(Tex - 1B)
Wil Myers(TB - OF)
David Murphy(Tex - OF)
Adam Lind(Tor - 1B)
Daniel Straily(Oak - SP)