Archive for May, 2012

Bullpen Report: May 31st, 2012

J.J. Putz was unavailable for Wednesday night’s game against the San Francisco Giants due to a stiff neck. The Diamondbacks’ closer received treatment prior to and during the early innings of last evening’s contest, but informed manager Kirk Gibson he wasn’t available when his neck didn’t loosen after trying to play catch in the fourth frame. David Hernandez came on in relief of Ian Kennedy with two outs in the eighth for the four-out save opportunity. Hernandez yielded two hits, but held the Giants scoreless to earn his first save of 2012.

In 24 appearances this season, Hernandez has been inducing swinging strikes at a career high 13.5% clip, which indicates his 12.52 K/9 (4.00 K/BB) looks to be real. In addition to the whiffs, solid ratios (1.93 ERA and 1.07 WHIP) make the Dbacks set-up man more than just a handcuff in deeper leagues.

Although Putz indicated he should be fine for Friday’s contest, Hernandez could get the call should there be any setback with his stiff neck.
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Platoon Options: Moreland, Dirks, Aoki

With injuries disabling stars around the league, the time in the year to scoop up the waiver wire for valuable pieces that can be utilized in different ways is beginning. Using players who do not play every day or are put into platoons can be a good way to find value where others look over, especially if they are on the good side of the platoon (lefty hitters who mash righty pitchers). Here are three guys I like in a platoon role going forward.

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Smoak and Pacheco: Waiver Wire

Justin Smoak (ESPN: 6 percent owned; Yahoo!: 14 percent owned)

The last few weeks have been good to American League first basemen named Justin, but whereas Messr. Morneau is owned in virtually every ESPN league in which he’s eligible, the Smoak Monster is widely available and is in the midst of an equally impressed stretch of play. After an April that almost bad enough to induce vomiting — .200/.247/.325 with just three home runs — Smoak has been much better in May, hitting .255/.303/.451 with six home runs, and while that’s still not a sparkling line from a first baseman, he’s been even better as the month has come to an end. Over his last four series, Smoak has put up a solid .302/.362/.674 line with five home runs including a pair at home. Read the rest of this entry »

Kicking Rocks: Stupid Human Tricks

One of the biggest criticisms of saber-enthusiasts is their tendency to ignore the human element of the game.  Their breakdown and analysis of the game is all about the numbers, statistical trends, replacement values, etc.  These aren’t robots here on the field playing the game, yet often during a study of it, they are, in a way, treated as such.  And for me, I have to agree with the critics.  You simply can’t ignore the human element.  It must be accounted for in some way.  Why?  Because humans are inherently stupid and common sense is the least common thing in this world. Read the rest of this entry »

Andrelton Simmons, Nate Eovaldi, Garrett Richards: Mining the Minors

It’s not quite on par with Bryce Harper and Mike Trout being promoted within hours of each other in late April, but this week has seen its share of promising prospects getting the call, including a new shortstop in the A-T-L and a couple of quality arms out in Cali.

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AL SP: The Youngins

The great thing about having a weak pitching staff, as opposed to a poor offense, is that there are always new pitchers being called up who could potentially generate some fantasy value. This is why I have always trumpeted going cheaper than everyone else on your pitching staff during your draft/auction. Let’s take a look at some of the younger guys who have

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Roto Riteup: May 31st, 2012

It’s not Friday, but cheer up, because it’s only a day away! Let the Roto Riteup take up a bit of your morning, and hey, feel free to write an angry comment if you feel like wasting even more time at work.

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Bullpen Report: May 30th, 2012

Dale Thayer entered in the bottom of the ninth this afternoon with the hopes of preserving a 6-6 tie to send the Padres and Cubs to extras. Thayer surrendered a lead-off single to Bryan LaHair before serving up a walk-off two-run long ball to Darwin Barney.

Huston Street took to the bullpen at Wrigley Field this afternoon for a high-intensity session, and if he feels well tomorrow, the Padres’ closer could head to Class A Lake Elsinore on Friday to begin his rehab assignment. Prior to hitting the disabled list earlier this month with a right shoulder strain, Street converted each of his four save opportunities while strutting a 6.50 K/BB and a 2.10 xFIP in just under ten innings. Street, the Padres’ highest paid player at $7.5 million, figures to regain the closer’s role once given a clean bill of health.
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Omar Infante – 2B Stock Up

Omar Infante is possibly having the most productive season of his career. He is currently hitting 0.321/0.352/0.532 with 6 HRs. While it may be tough for him to hit 16 HRs like he did in 2004, he is seeing a nice power spike. Have any of his core attributes changed that will help keep this break out sustainable?

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Three Relievers With Higher K/BB Than K/9

The key to having a K/BB higher than a K/9 is having a BB/9 under 1. That usually means a walk percentage below 3%. To put a walk rate that low into perspective, the league average walk rate for relievers is 9.3%, so a rate under 3% is just tremendous. Here are three relievers who have walk rates so low that their K/BB rate is better than their K/9 rate. These guys can help a fantasy team due to the low amount of base runners they allow on along with relatively high strikeout rates. In a linear weights league like ottoneu, relievers like this become even more valuable.

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