Tag Archives: Mets

Will David Wright K 234 times?

david-wrightBy nichols33

Yes, I know, I know, we are a little over a week into the season. BUT, David Wright is on pace to strike out 234 times!?! Owners of DW in points league are seriously worried right now.

Wright is striking out at more than double the pace he walks. With the exception of Wright’s first year in the league (2004: 4o Ks; 14 BB) DW has had very solid K/BB ratios. Check out his ratios over the last few years:

2008: 118 Ks / 94 BBs

2007: 115 Ks / 94 BBs

2006: 113 Ks / 66 BBs

2005: 113 Ks / 72 BBs

Lets be real, David Wright is not going to strike out 234 times. He probably won’t even approach 150 Ks, but this is a very alarming start to the season. Wright has put tremendous pressure  on himself after two straight Mets collapses and the New York media never lets him forget his .243 average with runners in scoring position last season. Wright may be pressing. Brand new stadium, back-to-back collapses, rivals winning the World Series, etc.

Wright will turn it around and will put up top 5 fantasy player numbers, but right now, it is frustrating to be a Wright owner. Just sit back an remember Wright had his worst month of the season last year in April.

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Filed under NL News, Observations

Observations (4/13)

By nichols33

Citi Field, the new home of the New York Mets, plays big…..real big. Both David Wright and Carlos Beltran smoked balls to dead center but they were just a can of corn for center fielder Jody Gerut. Down the lines are short but power alley to power alley, that place is big. Comparable to Petco park in San Diego.

Josh Johnson and Johan Santana had a good ole fashion duel in Miami on Sunday. One of the best games I’ve had a pleasure to watch recently. Johan struck out 13 Marlins and was only done in by a Daniel Murphy horrendous error. Johnson matched him frame for frame going the distance and nearly pitching a shutout. Peter Gammons predicted Johnson to win the NL Cy Young award this year. Some of Gammons’ recent predictions have been WAY off, but this one may come to fruition.

The Padres pitching staff after Jake Peavy and Chris Young might as well be a page ripped out of the yellow pages. Who are these guys? Frankie De La Cruz, Jae-Kuk Ryu, Kevin Correia, Luke Gregerson, Justin Hampson, Cla Meredith, Edwin Moreno, Edward Mujica, Luis Perdomo, Walter Silva!!??!?!? Bueller? Anyone?

Kevin Gregg will not be the closer for the Cubs on May 1st. It was ridiculous that he even won the job in the first place but you can see the frustration in Lou Pinella’s face as he watching Gregg pitch. Gregg had a 4 run lead last night versus the Brewers and had to strike out Prince Fielder who was the tying run to end the game. Carlos Marmol looked unhittable in the 8th.

Aaron Harang is an ace again. He threw a complete game shutout yesterday versus the Pirates after a very nice start against the Mets on opening day. He looked very good against the Mets in bad weather and followed that up with the gem yesterday. Harang will get a number of starts against poor teams like the Pirates, the Astros and the Brewers and is a low end #1 fantasy pitcher.

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Votto, Delgado, Beltran, Webb – Observations (4/8)

By nichols33

Brandon Webb is going to miss his next start this weekend versus the Dodgers. Big red flag for all Webb owners. No medical tests are scheduled at the moment and the Diamondbacks are playing it day-to-day. Fantasy Baseball Advice: Bench Webb in all leagues until he throws in a game and throws effectively. This is not good news. Hope for the best.

Joey Votto is good. He is real good. The 24 year old led all rookies in homers last season and he got his season going tonight. After a tough opening day versus Johan Santana, Votto had 3 hits tonight including an opposite field bomb off of Mike Pelfrey. Fantasy Baseball Advice: If you have this guy, sit back and enjoy. If you don’t have this guy….get him while the price is still relatively low.

Carlos Beltran and Carlos Delgado both had very good springs for both the Mets in Port St. Lucie as well as Team Puerto Rico in the WBC. Normally I don’t pay too much attention to spring stats for established veterans especially stars like Delgado and Beltran. But both of these guys are locked in and putting very good swings on the ball pretty much every at bat. Fantasy BaseballAdvice: I really like both of these guys this year. Delgado will be somewhere between his 1st half and 2nd half last year while I think Beltran will be slightly better than what he was last year which was the 2ndor 3rd best all around outfielder in the game.

David Wright looks lost at the plate. He is flailing at outside fastballs late in the count and swinging at off speed stuff int he dirt early in the count. To be fair, this is a very small sample and it was against a very sharp Aaron Harang and Edison Volquez. Wright did rip a double down the third base line and give a ball a good ride to the wall in right off the Reds bullpen tonight but an observation from a Mets fan who watches Wright daily….he looks lost at the plate. Fantasy Baseball Advice: Don’t worry, Wright will hit and he’ll hit soon. He is susceptible to long slumps where he looks lost for 10 or so games, but he always comes out of those slumps with a bang.

The Mets bullpen is sick. This is great news for all owners of Mets starters especially Johan Santana who had his bullpen blow 7 games last year in which he left the game with the lead. If Santana won 5 of those 7 games last year, Tim Lincecum might still be searching for his first Cy Young award.

The Braves bullpen is, well  not so good. They gave up 9 runs in the 7th inning today blowing a big lead over the Phillies including 4 bases loaded walks!?! Mike Gonzalez did not look so hot on opening night after Derek Lowe shut down the Phils for 8 innings. The Braves bullpen could cause a lot of hair lose for owners of Braves starting pitchers.

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Filed under Injuries, NL News, Observations

NL Round Up

By nichols33

A quick trip around the National League team by team.

Oliver Perez (SP, NYM) Ollie is in the Mets doghouse after returning to the team from the WBC where he pitched horrible for Team Mexico. Mets coaches commented that he is “overweight” and did not do his conditioning during his time away froris m the team. Hopefully that explains his 6 BBs and 6 ERs yesterday.

Kenshin Kawakami (SP, ATL) The Japanese import got back on the mound yesterday and threw 5 innings of 1 hit, 1 ER ball. The injury scare appears to be behind him and Kawakami could be a very useful fantasy pitcher this season. Don’ t draft him as a starter but take a flyer on him for your bench.

Cameron Maybin (OF, FLA) Maybin is hitting .313 this spring and will hit leadoff for the Marlins. Spring stats normally are not indicative to how well a player is going to perform during the season but it is nice to see a kid of this talent having success against major league pitchers. A very nice sleeper in all leagues, but don’t be counting on him as a starter.

Jayson Werth (OF, PHI) It looks like Charlie Manuel likes Werth in the 5 spot in the lineup breaking up the left handed bats (Utley, Howard & Ibanez). This should create more RBI opportunities for Werth but also allow him to hit quasi-leadoff at least 50 times a game (after Howard homers) where he can get on and steal a bag.

Nick Johnson (1B, WAS) It appears as Nick Johnson will be starting regularly at 1B for the Nationals. He may be a nice pick up during the season but he should not be drafted in any league outside a NL only league. Dunn, Milledge and Dukes appear to be the OF with Willingham & Kearns on the outside looking in.

Ryan Braun (OF, MIL) The apparent minor injury Bruan suffered in the WBC looks like it could be something of concern. Braun is headed in for an MRI today after being pulled in the 4th inning yesterday for a pinch hitter. Bruan insists it’s nothing but the Brewers staff seems very concerned. Perhaps that is why Braunfell to me at pick #11 in a 5×5 league this past weekend. He should be a top 8 pick in all drafts even with this injury.

Jason Motte (RP, STL) Looks like Motte has a leg up on the competition for the closer role in St. Louis. Chris Perez has been injury and Motte has outperformed veteran Ryan Franklin thus far. If you take Motte in a draft take him after nearly all other closers are off the board. He may open the season as the closer but Perez will be given an opportunity at some point this season.

Andy LaRoche (3B, PIT) LaRoche will be the starting 3B for the Pirates this season and he is having a fine spring. The former Dodgers prospect is hitting .375 albeit mostly singles (13 singles, 2 HRs). He is a breakout candidate and should be stashed away on a bench in every league that has benches. Perhaps he is this year’s Carlos Quentin.

Kevin Gregg / Carlos Marmol (RP, CHC) The Cubs have yet to name a closer but are said to be close to a decision. Kevin Gregg has out pitched Marmol this year but it’s hard to ignore Gregg’s failures last season in Florida. If Gregg wins the job, it won’t be long before Marmol is given a shot. Fantasy wise, I would take Marmol but I’m seeing him go far to early in nearly every draft. He should be the 16th or 17th closer off the board, not the 10th.

Jonny Cueto (SP, CIN) Cueto threw 6 innings yesterday with 5 Ks and 0 ERs against a number of Red Sox starters. Cueto had an excellent spring last year andtook his lumps during the season. With a full year under his belt, expect better numbers from Cueto and draft him as your 4th starter at the earliest. He’d be a better gamble as your 5th.

Ivan Rodriguez (C, HOU) Don’t let Pudge’s torrid spring fool you. He had an outstanding spring last year hitting 6 HRs in the spring only to hit 7 HRs during the season. Rodriguez is nothing more than a backup catcher in the fantasy world and even then, you have better options (Napoli, Pierzynski, Navarro, Suzuki).

Kyle Blanks (1B/OF, SD) Did I read that right?!? The Padres are trying Kyle Blanks in the OF? This is a very large man who scouts have said may not even be able to play 1B and the Padres are trying him in the OF due to Adrian Gonzalez being comfortably set at 1B. While he may be relatively fast for a big man, don’t expect Blanks to find a permanent home in the OF. He may be San Diego’s 1B in the near future if the cost-cutting franchise decides to move Gonzalez. Blanks will probably have no fantasy value in 2009 but keep an eye on him for 2010.

Manny Ramirez (OF, LAD) Manny played the OF yesterday with no complications, he even man a slick play cutting off a ball before going to the wall holding the runner to a double rather than a would be triple. Manny will be ready when the season starts and will be an absolute monster when in the lineup. Manny should go late in the 2nd round or early in the 3rd in most drafts.

Ryan Spilborghs (OF, COL) Spilborghs appears to have the CF job in Colorado andis hitting .386 this spring with 5 SBs. He does not strike out and provides some speed that could be very useful to a fantasy team. Take a flyer on him late in the draft if you have a bench or a number of OF spots to fill in your starting lineup.

Matt Cain (SP, SF) Cain is really struggling this spring giving up 9 runs and 12 hits in his last 2 starts. Not that spring stats matter all that much to a guy that has a job but as you get closer to the start of the season you like to see young pitchers put together some solid starts especially when they disappointed as much as Cain did last year. Cain would be a solid 4th starter in most leagues but I’d be very nervous if he was my 3.

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Filed under Injuries, NL News

Good News – Bad News 3/10

gnbn

By nichols33

Good News:
Bobby Crosby (SS/3B, OAK): 
Surprise, surprise, Eric Chavez is hurt. Chavez is out “for the time being” according to ESPN and Bobby Crosby will be filling in at 3B.  FANTASY BASEBALL ADVICE: With rumors surrounding Crosby being traded to the Yankees or Cardinals it looks like his best bet might be to stay in Oakland. Chavez can’t stay on the field and Crosby could be a useful player in AL only leagues as a 3B or a SS.

Pedro Martinez (SP, Free Agent): Pedro threw 3 innings of one hit ball on Saturday with 4 Ks versus the Netherlands in the WBC. He followed that up with 3 perfect innings tonight with 2 Ks. FANTASY BASEBALL ADVICE: Pedro is pitching for a job and his results in the WBC (Dominican Republic was eliminated tonight) probably secured him a spot on some major league roster. Depending on where he signs, Pedro is somebody to keep an eye on, especially if he signs with the Dodgers or Mets, both rumored suitors.

Francisco Liriano (SP, Twins): Liriano threw four perfect innings the other day improving his spring stats to 9 innings pitched, 2 ER, 7 Ks and 1 BB. FANTASY BASEBALL ADVICE: Liriano is showing he is healthy and has his command and can still be effective with a slightly slower fastball. His spring stats combined with the way he finished last season should erase all worries in prospective fantasy owners. He may never be the fantasy ace he once was, but he could very well be a very solid #2. Take him before Justin Verlander, Dice-K, Eric Bedard, Chien-ing Wang and Matt Garza among others.

Bad News:
Ervin Santana (SP, Angels):
 The LA Times reported today that Santana may miss the entire month of April with a sprained ligament in his pitching elbow. FANTASY BASEBALL ADVICE: This is horrible news for a guy coming off a monster season. I had him ranked as the #17 Starting Pitcher before this news. He certainly needs to be moved down all lists and should not be considered until you have at least 3 other healthy options in your rotation.

Chipper Jones (3B, Braves): Chipper pulled his oblique muscle in WBC action this week. It does not appear too serious as he is staying with Team USA with hopes of playing in the next round. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: Get used to this if you are going to be an owner of Larry. When he’s in the line-up Chipper is as good as they come at 3B minus the guys in the Big Apple. He can be absolutely maddening for leagues with weekly lineups….he could get hurt on Monday or Tuesday and you are playing a player short for that week. Chipper is my 5th 3B with Wright, Longoria, Ramirez and ARod being ahead of him. If you think ARod will be out longer than Mid-May and it’s not a keeper league, move Chipper to #4. I wouldn’t hold it against you if you passed on Chipper and took Adrian Beltre, Michael Young or Garrett Atkins with a later pick or less auction dollars.

Fausto Carmona (SP, Indians): Keith Law of ESPN.com  had a great note on Carmona today. He is throwing great out of the wind-up but as soon as he allows a base runner and has to throw from the stretch his fastball is elevated and he becomes far less effective. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: Carmona still has plenty of time to refine his mechanics but this is some great data that you won’t see in the box scores this spring. Carmona had a dreadful season last year and he is a very nice bounce back candidate. Don’t buy too high on him. I have him as the #55 SP behind Scott Baker, Jered Weaver & Brandon Morrow and right ahead of Aaron Cook, Joe Saunders and Armando Galarraga.

Joe Mauer (C, Twins): Mauer’s back is acting up on him and he was going in for some magnetic tests that required him to be injected with dyes. He is out indefintely. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: Mauer has had his fair share of injuries in his young career. Catcher is not a very forgiving position and it appears that Joe has a little “Mr. Glass” in him. A back injury is never good for a guy who makes his living with a bat. I immediately move him behind Russell Martin and Brian McCann and strongly consider Geovanny Soto over him until I hear some more news.

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Filed under Good News / Bad News, Injuries

Good News – Bad News 3/7

gnbn

By nichols33

Good News:
Travis Hafner (DH, Indians):
Hafner returned to action yesterday going 0 for 2 in his first spring action this year. Travis saw Dr. James Andrews this offseason for his shoulder. FANTASY BASEBALL ADVICE: I don’t see Hafner ever getting back to his MVP-caliber days of .300 with 35 HRs. But if his shoulder is healthy and he shows something this spring, he is certainly worth a late round flyer.

Todd Helton (1B, Rockies): Helton is scheduled to return to action tomorrow at 1B. Helton underwent back surgery on Sept. 30th and is expected to be ready for opening day. FANTASY BASEBALL ADVICE: If healthy, Helton is a solid back-up 1B for leagues with benches. He should go right around the same time as Paul Konerko, Jason Giambi and Casey Kotchman. A healthy Helton keeps Garret Atkins at 3B and Ian Stewart looking for ABs in the OF.

Tim Redding (SP, Mets): Redding has yet to throw a pitch in a Spring Training game but he is winning the Mets’ 5th starter spot by default. Jon Niese gave up 2 runs in 2 innings yesterday while Freddy Garcia and Livan Hernandez have been atrocious. FANTASY BASEBALL ADVICE: Redding, Garcia or Hernandez should not be on any fantasy rosers outside very deep NL only leagues. If Jon Niese wins the job there is some upside there and he could be a very useful fantasy starter.

Bad News:
Vlad Guerrero (OF, Angels):
The MLB Network is reporting that Vlad Guerrero admitted that he was born in 1975 in his upcoming biography. That would make Vlad a year older than the 33 he is on record for. FANTASY BASEBALL ADVICE: Vlad’s numbers have been on the downturn for sometime as he has not hit over 30 HRs since 2006. Vlad has yet to play in a spring game and is targeting Mid-March for his first game. He should no longer be one of the Top 10 OFs off the board but don’t let him fall too far. He is in a contract year and still very capible of hitting .320 with 27 HRs, 120 RBIs.

Garret Anderson (OF, Braves): Anderson was pulled from yesterday’s spring game before it began with a pulled calf muscle. It was to be Anderson’s first spring action. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: Avoid Anderson in most leagues. He is a 36 year OF switching leagues and looks to be in a platoon situation with Matt Diaz. Expect Anderson to miss time here and there this year with a couple trips to the DL. Don’t waste a pick on him outside NL only leagues.

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Filed under Good News / Bad News, Injuries

Good News – Bad News 3/2

By nichols33

Good News:

Johan Santana: He will not fly to New York for a MRI after all. Bullpen session on Sunday appears to have gone well. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: Still a Top 5 SP, my #1 if healthy.

 

Brandon Webb: The Arizona Republic quoted Webb as saying he “felt great” after a Sunday bullpen session. Webb will throw again on Wednesday and appears to be fine. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: Stiffness is very common early in spring, and this good news should erase all fears on Webb. Take him before all pitchers but Sabathia, Lincecum and Santana.

 

Carl Crawford: Crawford hit 2 triples on Sunday and has started the spring off hot. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: Crawford suffered through bum hamstrings last season and was a major fantasy disappointment. Crawford is still young enough (27) to have his best season yet. If he’s healthy he will be a top 10 OF in all leagues.

 

 

Bad News:

Jeremy Bonderman: The Tigers are shutting him down for 2 to 3 days after experiencing stiffness in his pitching shoulder. Bonderman had surgery on the shoulder last year. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: If you had thoughts of taking a flyer on Bonderman hoping he returned to his 2006 form (he threw 214 innings with 202 Ks and an ERA of 4.08) hold off until he shows he’s healthy. At this point he should not be drafted.

 

Justin Duchscherer: Duchscherer has reported a sore elbow and has yet to throw in a spring game. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: Huge surprise last year as he converted from a reliever into a starter and had great success early on. His season ended abruptly with hip surgery. Only draft him if you play in a league with plenty of bench spots. If you are expecting anything better than last years stats (10-8, 2.54 ERA, 1.00 WHIP) please join one of my leagues!

 

Rich Hill: He was scratched from his Sunday start with elbow and forearm stiffness. Early rumblings don’t sound good. FANTASY BASBALL ADVICE: Rich Hill ruined a number of fantasy owners’ drafts last year as going into last season he was a potential stud and ended up in the minors. Hill should be avoided at all costs. If he does pitch this season, he’s now pitching in the AL East.

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Filed under Good News / Bad News, Injuries, Position Battles