Tag Archives: Prince Fielder

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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5×5 Draft Recap – Part 4

By notebookguy

If you have read the “About Us” page on this blog you know that we are 5 guys that have been doing fantasy baseball together for over 10 years and this weekend was a BIG weekend. Saturday was a 12 team H2H points league draft that all 5 of us participated in and Sunday was a 15 team 5×5 Rotisserie league that all 5 of us participated in.

Since the H2H points league is a keeper league that allows draft pick trading it would be tough to explain why we did things where since each team had vastly different situations on draft day. But….the 5×5 draft was a start from scratch 5×5 league with 20 rosters spots where everybody starts. Over the next few days each of us will give a recap of our draft and hopefully provide some insight on what we were thinking and how it all panned out.

Team: Named after Hamsterdam in “The Wire”

Draft Position (Typical Serpentine Draft): 15th

My strategy going into the draft was to load up on bats early, preferably 5 category bats, and wait to fill out my pitching staff until the later rounds. Having the last pick in the draft, having a double pick, meant I couldn’t really set my sites on a particular player not knowing who would fall to me. In my mock drafts I mostly drafted 2 of Soriano, Beltran, and Prince, so that was the group I was prepared to take from, two 5 cat guys, and a slugging 1B, all 3 of which I obviously liked a lot. Position was not a huge concern but I did want to grab a decent SS before they all fell off the board.

Well my first 2 picks I never expected to fall to me. At the 15th and 16th picks I drafted Ian Kinsler(ADP 9) and Lance Berkman(ADP 15), 2 guys that rarely fell to me in my mock drafts. In fact, I never saw Kinsler at 15 in my mocks, and Berkman occasionally got to 15 but not very often. I was ecstatic about these picks a 5 category 2B, the best 2B in fantasy baseball in my opinion, and a slugging 1B that is a rock for 30 HR’s and 100 RBI’s, not to mention contributing very well in the other 3 cats most of the time.

I continued to get 5 category producers in the 3rd and 4th rounds with Brandon Phillips and Alex Rios. Phillips(ADP 30) being around 15 picks after he’s usually picked was a nice surprise, although I already had a 2B, I had to scoop this underrated potential 30-30 man, because everyone starts in this league and the numbers were too good to ignore. Rios fell into my plan as well, a 5 cat OF with upside. Needless to say I loved my first 4 picks, all fell into what I was looking for and were good values at the places I got them.

For my pitching staff I grabbed an ace, John Lackey, in the 5th round, filled out my top 3 of my pitching staff with Matt Cain(9th rd.), and Derek Lowe(11thrd.). Not a dominant top 3 but a good top 3 with some upside in Cain. Grabbing BJ Ryan(10thrd.) and Heath Bell(13thrd.) was better closers than I expected, but it may have cost the back end of my rotation because I ended up with Manny Parra(15th rd.) and Wandy Rodriguez(17thrd.) both of which I would’ve liked as a 5th starter but needing one of them as my 4thstarter was not in the plan, a problem I will fix with a deal for a starting pitcher.

The offense rounded out nicely getting some thunder in the middle rounds, Carlos Pena(5th rd.) and Jermaine Dye(8th rd.), will be nice power compliments to my top 4 picks. I also picked up one of the SS’s I was eyeing, Rafael Furcal(7th rd.), which was key giving me more SB’s, just have to keep an eye on his health. Jason Werth was a steal in the 12th round, another 5 category player to add to the mix.

My late round bats were guys I snagged late in most of my mock drafts Edwin Encarnacion(14thrd.) a 20+ HR 3B with upside, Shin-Soo Choo(16th rd.) a big upside OF, and Mike Jacobs(18th rd.) couldn’t believe this 30 HR 1B was still sitting there in the 18th round.

I am very happy with how my draft went. I would’ve liked to have drafted a better 4th starter and 3B, but no draft is going to go perfectly. I feel I have good balance in power and speed, good closers, and a good top 3 to my rotation, and I think I’m right there with anyone from day 1.

Projected Finish*: 3 out of 15 (89 total points)

(R: 14, HR: 12, RBI: 12, SB: 6, BA: 8, W: 2, Sv: 6, K: 6, ERA: 14, WHIP: 9)

* Based on Sportsline.com projections

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Big time players with question marks.

By notebookguy

The first 5 rounds of any draft is key to building the core of your offense and pitching staff.  Teams that lose one of their top 5 picks have a hole to dig themselves out of and though it can be accomplished, it’s easier to do your best to avoid being in that situation.  Here are some players that will go in the first 5 rounds of your draft that may dissapoint.  Average Draft Position(ADP) courtesy of mockdraftcentral.com.

Alex Rodriguez, 3B, Yankees, ADP 2.85

I have Arod ranked 5th overall right now behind Hanely, Pujols, Wright, and Reyes.  I did have him 2nd overall behind Hanley until the steroids story broke and now there is word that he’s having trouble with his hip.  The pressure of the steroid story and the hip injury make me shy away from him slightly and go with a surer bets in the top 4.  I’m not saying avoid Arod, I would take him if he slipped to 5, but be wary of his situation with steroids and keep a close eye on the hip news.

Manny Ramirez, OF, Dodgers, ADP 22.85

The idiot savant of hitting turns 37 in May and plays in cavernous Dodger Stadium.  Without the luxury of DH’ing to give his old legs a break you can expect Manny to miss time at various points in the season with a strained hamstring or sore knee as he did in Boston.  Don’t expect a full season like his final 2 months for the Dodgers, you will be dissapointed.  Take players like Prince Fielder, Carlos Beltran, Justin Morneau, Jason Bay, and Carlos Lee before Manny, you’ll get more production and less headaches.  I’d wait till the 3rd round on Manny but he probably won’t make it out of the 2nd round.

Cole Hamels, SP, Phillies, ADP 40.58

The World Series Champion’s ace thew 265 innings last year including the postseason, an astounding 80 innings more than he pitched in any other season in his career.  This is an extremely large jump in innings for such a young hurler and history tells us that players with this big a jump don’t fair as well the following season.  He is only 25 years old and he is one of the best pitchers in the game, but don’t be surprised if that work load catches up with him a bit this year and the numbers are a little down or he misses some time.  I think he’ll be one of the best pitchers in the game for many years, but this year I’d proceed with caution.  Alternatives could be Brandon Webb, Roy Halladay, CC Sabathia, or Dan Haren safer bets with consistent innings over the last 3 years.

Jake Peavy, SP, Padres, ADP 45.21

Peavy was limited to 27 starts in 2008 due to elbow inflammation, 2 words you never want to hear in connection with your ace.  Combine the recent elbow woes with a terrible offensive team behind him and you can see why I think Peavy will dissapoint those that take him as their ace.  Webb, Halladay, CC, and/or Haren are better alternatives then the Pads ace.

Vlad Guerrero, OF, Angels, ADP 42.28

It’s tough to put him on this list.  He guts it out almost every year with knee, shoulder, and back problems getting 520+ AB’s every year he’s been an Angel but eventually the injuries pile up too high and the player succumbs.  I’m afraid that’s where we are at with Vlad the Impaler.  Offseason knee surgery has him taking it slow this spring training and he lost his protection in the lineup with Mark Teixeira cashing his checks in the Bronx.  So a weaker lineup, offseason surgery, and another year off the calender make Vlad riskier than ever.  Great alternatives to Vlad are Nick Markakis, Curtis Granderson, Alex Rios, Corey Hart, Carlos Quentin, and Shane Victorino.  All are younger and in or entering their primes, Vlad is well past his.

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