If by some slim chance your shallow league has Aaron Harang on the wavier wire maybe you should go grab him right now. That was a joke, no league would be that shallow. But anyway here's a little for the lucky guys that have him on their rosters this season. He said today he was just going to relax and not worry about the team scoring runs for him, he was going to let the hitters worry about that. I am actually playing against him today in one of our leagues....but what the hell I'm a Reds fan first.
Make no mistake about Aaron Harang was and still is the ace of this pitching staff. Aaron threw a complete game three hit shutout over the Pittsburgh Pirates this afternoon to get the Reds a split in this rain shortened two game series. Not sure when the rain out will be made up, they were saying on FSN that the next trip the Pirates makes to GABP will probably be the make up date. Aaron DID NOT walk a batter and fanned nine as he had total control over his fast ball today. Harang actually only allowed one runner to get past first base today......That's spells dominance.
Brandon Phillips provided all the offense Harang would need today with his first HR of the season, a two run shot off hard luck starter Ian Snell. Willy Tarveras also got his first of many steals this season as well.
The only thing I didn't like about today's game was the fact they are still not scoring runs for Harang. The younger players are still swinging at the first pitch way to often. Is this what you want them doing when you are telling the world that we are now playing small ball. The Reds did manage five walks today, but they also were impatient at the plate most of the time. The Pirates also turned in a triple play against our Reds, maybe the easiest triple play I have ever seen.
Just announced that the Reds have traded a very good player that had no where to play on this team. The Reds have traded Jeff Keppinger to the Houston Astros for the "player to be named later" No idea who this is going to be. I do wish Kepp well and if he gets a starting gig in an Astros uniform, well you could do a lot worse for your MI spot on your fantasy team. This is a blue collar player who won't hurt your fantasy team, watch how this plays out. Good Luck Jeff
Well in a move many find not too surprising, because after all it's a business not a game for the fans, David Price was optioned to AAA Durham. If you ask the Rays they will say it's a baseball move, if you ask me I will say it's a money move. As we all know sending Price down will make him have to wait an extra year before he can file for arbitration. This moves makes less sense when you consider the fact that the AL East will most likely be a three team run for two playoff spots. If the Rays have a slow start and finish a couple of games out of second place this move will look more and more stupid on their part.
If there is anything the Rays can hang this hat on it's looking at how the Chicago Cubs over worked some young pitchers over the past eight years. I am not for throwing Price 'all in' just yet, but if he was good enough to pitch for you in the World Series last year.....well he just might be good enough to pitch for your team to start the regular season. The Rays should do the right thing here and give him a spot on the twenty-five man roster and let him open the season with the big league club. If he needs to miss a start here and there to limit innings so be. There's plenty of off days in April where you could keep him fresh but not over work him.
This is not a fantasy baseball issue for me as I didn't get lucky enough to grab him in my draft but I can hear people screaming foul ball already over this. At what point does the worse commissioner of all the major sports stand up and do his job for the players. Oh yeah he likes that term "in the best interest of baseball" as long as he doesn't piss an owner off. Oh yeah he was an owner....AN NOW HE IS BY FAR THE WORSE COMMISSIONER BASEBALL HAS EVER HAD.....RESIGN BUD SELIG RESIGN
Well Japan did it again. They beat the Korean team 5-3 night in ten innings to take the second World Baseball Classic. I think I took the Japanese team from the start but hoped the USA could pull the mild upset this time around. So after two of these WORLD events the Japan team is two for two. Not good if you are an American baseball lover like the writers of this site are. I have to say congrats to the way this team played and to the way Japan takes their baseball. I would say this country is as serious about baseball as any country in the world, the US included. Can you say NFL, it makes me sick to see MLB take a back seat to the NFL. Well in my eyes it doesn't, but I do have BIG RED MACHINE blinders on at times.
The title was won on American soil, Dodger Stadium no less and there were plenty of Japanese people there rooting their team to victory. Hell the Empire State Building is going to light their world famous tower in honor of Japan winning this classic. The Crown of the building will be lit in red and white to honor the Japanese flag. Would the Babe drink to this........I think not.
My question to you as American Baseball fans is do we still have the right to call the World Series the World Series. Wasn't this the real World Series. Well to answer the question about what we should call 'our' World Series, is yes it should still be called the World Series as this is still the place where the best players in the world play the game. They don't have on a Japanese uniform or a Cuban uniform they have a Major League Baseball uniform on and they play for the Major Leagues and this is really where the best baseball is still played. You might divide the MLB players up for a world tournament but when all is said and done the real World Series is settled in the USA.
Did you pay much attention to the World Baseball Classic. How does it mix in with MLB in the future. Is it here to stay. Will it continue to grow.
Well the writers of this blog had our draft on Saturday afternoon and for the first time in my fifteen years of playing fantasy baseball we finally pulled the trigger on a keeper league. (I love draft day so much, getting together with the guys I fully expect to kick the asses of.) We actually set the ground rules last season at the draft and this was the first year we got to keep players drafted last year.
We only had a couple of rules. One you can't keep anyone drafted in the first two rounds. You could keep one pitcher and two hitters. So I decided to keep Carlos Beltran and Justin Morneau. For my pitcher I kept Felix Hernandez, is this the year he finally puts together the year the experts have talked about for what seems to be five years now. I was thinking a keeper league would make for a faster draft....wrong.....not sure what takes the longest our fantasy baseball draft or the Cubbies to win a World Series.
OK, all you experts tell me how I did....here is my starting lineup in a ten team league. We start nine position players and three pitchers of your choice....starters, relievers doesn't matter.
SP: Hernandez.....Johan Santana.....John Lester OF: Beltran.....Carlos Lee.....Jay Bruce 1B: Morneau MI: Robinson Cano.....Ryan Theriot 3B: Aramis Ramirez DH: Prince Fielder C: Ramon Hernandez.....with Matt Wieters waiting in the wings as my backup.
Yes the BIG RED MACHINE is again looking like a fine tuned machine ready to roll. How does your league roll. Do you play in a keeper league. What kind of rules does your league have. Opening day is just right around the corner......PLAY BALL
Well, A-Rod's wonderful spring continues. First, he's finally caught and has to admit the steroid use, now he's out 6-9 weeks after undergoing surgery on his hip. Now, you've got to decide if you will draft him and when. It'll be really interesting when somebody pulls the A-Rod trigger on draft day. I'm guessing 4th to 5th round.
Is Baltimore catcher Matt Wieters ready for the bigs? It was widely speculated that the Os would start Wieters in AAA ball but he may be playing the O's into a corner. So far this spring, the #1 prospect is batting .417 and leads all of baseball with 10 total bases. The Os want to start Wieters in Triple A. If he stays in the minors until June, they will save 1 total year towards his arbitration year. It's looking more and more like the big lefty batter will have to be in your draft day plans.
Put him back on your draft board, oh he was never off or in my case never on. There are just some guys I won't draft and this ass is one of them.
On my way home from work tonight I was listening to one of my favorite sports shows, JT The Brick on Fox Sports and they are reporting that Manny will continue to be Manny in MannyWood again this season. After turning down the $45 million a few days ago, supposedly because Manny needs his money NOW instead of some of it being deferred for a few years. You know a man has to be able to feed his family in these tough times.
Not real sure about the details at this hour but they were saying it was still for $45 million. I guess maybe the Dodgers are going to give it to him on time so he can feed his family. Hopefully after signing for $45 million he won't have to be selling his grill on EBAY again this year. He has enough money to buy his family's food so he should keep the grill so he will have something to cook the family's food on.
Manny is not wearing Yankee pinstripes or Boston Red, look for him in LA Dodger blue. I wonder if any DodgerDogs were part of this deal.
I know you have heard the phrase: 'Money Talks and Bullshit Walks'. Well let's take a look at the player pulling down the most money at each position THIS season. Note as much money as CC Sabathia got he is still not the highest paid SP in 09. As you strugle to fill out your checks each month, here's a few guys that won't struggle signing any checks. The question is can they cash the check on the field. Do they make your fantasy draft board as that spots best?
3B: Alex Rodriquez.....$32 Million 1B: Mark Teixeira......$20 Million SS: Derek Jeter........$20 Million SP: Johan Santana......$20 Million LF: Carlos Lee.........$18.5 Million CF: Carlos Beltran.....$18.5 Million RF: Magglio Ordonez....$18 Million RP: Mariano Rivera.....$15 Million DH: Gary Sheffield.....$14 Million C: Jorge Posada.......$13.1 Million 2B: Chase Utley........$11 Million
Does making the most money mean this is the best fantasy player at his position. If you are checking my draft board the answer is no. We all realize both the New York teams overpay for talent, that's a given. Let's look at 3B I give A-Rod a slight edge over his New York counter part David Wright. At 1B as good as Teixeira is, not even close to Pujols. At SS as much as I love Derek Jeter and the way he plays the game the fantasy edge on my board goes to Hanley Ramirez. SP, again Johan Santana is an awesome talent playing in a pitchers ballpark, but I take the most underpaid player in the game today, Tim Lincecum, as my number one starter. As far as the OF goes this might be the hardest to argue, but as good as these guys are I would be at least as happy with Matt Holiday or Josh Hamilton for a lot less money. At DH, isn't Sheff already crying about getting hit on his arm or elbow, sit down and let Mr. Daivd Ortiz swing a bat. At catcher didn't the Cubs get a pretty good year out of the rookie Geovany Soto, but give me Joe Mauer coming into his prime. At 2B I can go with Utley. As for a closer, Rivera or Jonathan Papelbon another tuff call but I would again take the bargain Papelbon brings to the mound. Drafting you can't go wrong with anyone on this list. Is anyone else ready for draft day........
2b....Wow, what a horrible fantasy position after the top 5.
1. Dustin Pedroia 3.57 (Red Sox) Awesome SO/BB ratio. He's a contact guy. It's hard to find a guy not named Pujols that has an on-base of near .4o0 and is slugging near .500. .327/17/83
2. Ian Kinsler 3.91 (Rangers) the 3.91 puts him 2nd only to Pujols in fantasy average in 2008. In only 121 games before injury, Kinsler scored 102 runs and stole 26 bases. .319/18/71 from the leadoff spot isn't bad. He surely won't put up those type of numbers but if he's close.................
3. Chase Utley 3.32 (Phils) A hip injury limited Utley's pop in the 2nd half of 2008 but he still managed to ut up 100+ RBI for the 4th season and hit 40+ doubles for the 3rd straight year. Other than Josh Hamilton and Kinsler, he was the best hitter in baseball before the break. The Phils are bringing him along slowly but if he stays injury free, he could be the #1 2B in 09.
4. Brian Roberts 3.14 (O's) Still a big steal guy. 51 doubles in 08. He'll hit near .300 and give you a lot of steals.
5. Brandon Phillips 2.74 (Reds) Brandon has to start swinging for the gaps instead of the fences. There's no reason this guy isn't a 40+ doubles guy. Didn't have a great season after 30/30 in 07.
World of Fantasy Baseball-My top 10 Hitters TB+Runs+RBI -(BB-SO)+ (2*SB)/Games
1. Albert Pujols 1b Cardinals: (4.18) Easiest 1st pick in the history of fantasy baseball.
2. Jose Reyes SS Mets (3.70)
3. David Wright 3b Mets (3.64)
4. Dustin Pedroia SS (3.57)
5. Hanley Rameriz SS (3.51) I think he's going in the wrong direction. He's dangerous but not #1 to me.
6. Grady Siezemore OF (3.49)
7. Lance Berkman 1b (3.50)
8. Carlos Beltran OF (3.56)
9. Ian Kinsler 2b (3.93) Can he repeat 2008 minus the injury? He was fantasy #2 all year in 2008.
10.Carlos Quentin OF (3.58)
Others interesting numbers: You thought you knew but you have no idea............. A-Rod 3.44 Utley 3.33 Aubry Huff 3.28 Yep Aubrey Huff Ryan Braun 3.13 Not that good. SO a plenty. Nate McClouth 3.41 Carlos Lee 3.52
Let me start this off by saying that this isn't sour grapes because my Cincinnati Reds didn't think it was in their best interest to resign Griffey. Make no mistake I am a homer and I am proud of it. In a perfect world the Reds would have drafted him and he would have spent his whole career in a Reds uniform. Who ever said baseball was perfect....well to me the game itself is still perfect and always will be, at least in my eyes it will be. The things that go with game leave a little to be desired for sure. I am not going into the steroids here and yes deep down in my heart Ken Griffey Jr. did it the right way and was a clean player.
Today I want to look at the reason he went back to Seattle. We can all say yeah Jr proved you can go back home...that's so much BS. Griffey will not be in Seattle to lead this team to the playoffs in 2009. Will he even be drafted in fantasy drafts this year? As much as I love this future Hall of Famer his production has fallen off way too much for that to happen. And let's face reality here, when you get past the age of 37, 38 or 39 your production IS suppose to decline. All steroids users please take note of this fact. The simple truth of the matter is that the Seattle Mariners signed Griffey because they are too cheap to go out and sign some good free agents to try to get back to the post season. Seattle's signing of Griffey was no more than a scam to sell tickets. Yeah it's a feel good story as well, but this team will make millions from this signing and still be on the outside looking in come October. If Seattle fans just want to feel good they get their wish with this signing. If they are hungry to get back to the playoffs they should feel insulted and used by the management of the Mariners. This is probably a one year deal here and maybe next off season they sign someone that can actually help their ball club and not their bottom line. Yes, it's ALWAYS about the money and once again this signing proves that.
With all this said I still wish Griffey all the luck in the world. Sometimes scams can turn into feel good stories!!!!!
OK. So what happens if you get the number 1 pick in your draft. No pressure right? Wrong again. If you get the #1 pick, you are looking at 18 to 20 picks before you get to pick again so you better make a good choice. Luckily for you, there is only three to four possible picks.
You could go with Albert Pujols. This is as near a guarantee as you can get. He's a lifetime .334 hitter with a .425 OBP and oh yeah, the NL MVP in 2008. Even with a bum elbow, he still batted .357/37/116 last year and scored over 100 runs. He's playing to stay in St. Louis for the rest of the year. He's the safest pick of all.
You could go with Hanley Ramirez. The middle infield isn't exactly loaded with big boppers. Hanley had his worst year of the last three in 2008. Hanley isn't an RBI guy but he'll get you your share of stolen bases. In 2006 and 2007, he had 51 steals. He only had 35 steals in 2008 although he did have his biggest homer year of 33. He raised his walks by 40 over the previous season but he still struck out 122 times which is 30 over 2007. Hanley is great, but to me, he's still risky. I'll pass. I'd take him #3.
A-Rod? Well, that's a crap shoot. He may have a chip on his shoulder and go buck wild in 2009. I don't know if he's made up like that. If it was Barry Bonds, I'd say he'd would stick up his middle finger and hit 50. I don't know if A-Rod has it in him. I'm not saying he's going to be bad, I just don't see him having a career year after all of this mess. Last year's numbers: .302/35/103. I'll pass. I'd take him #????? Probably 4.
Possibly David Wright? Another thin 3B year. .302/33/124 in 2008 which were darn near identical numbers to 2007. The last four years, he's played 160, 154, 160, and 160 games. He's also going to get you over 100 runs. One problem is that I'm hearing the new Mets Stadium may be MORE of a pitchers park than Shea. WOW. Good player, not #1. Definitely a top 5. My #2.
This is really an easy choice. If you don't pick Albert with the #1 pick, you may be smokin crack. He's the only SURE thing. The #1 pick is easy, the #2 pick however...........That's going to make you sweat.
"In the early '90s, the federal government came into pro wrestling and tried to put (WWE Chairman) Vince McMahon in prison for steroid use of wrestlers," Ventura told NBC's affiliate in Denver. "My question is: They've now determined 104 baseball players failed their steroid test in 2003 — 104. They indicted Vince McMahon, why aren't they indicting Bud Selig? He's the head of baseball, it happened on his watch."