The First Week Episode of the Beat the Shift Podcast – a baseball podcast for fantasy baseball players.
Guest: Glenn Colton
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You may remember, in the before times, a game called Beat the Streak. The game challenged baseball fans to hypothetically beat one of the greatest records of all time. The idea was to pick one player each day to get a hit and to do that 57 consecutive times, beating Joe DiMaggio’s 56 game hit streak record. Way back in preseason 2020 I wrote about my ambitions of becoming a millionaire by using predictive, machine learning models to aid in winning the competition. The game’s 2020 cancellation gave me time to think, time to read, time to learn how noisy my upstairs neighbors are, and time to build a better model.
After a couple of years cutting back, I have a total of 13 teams this year – seven Ottoneu, one other keeper, one dynasty, and four redraft. I am running 10 of those on my own and three I am working with a co-manager. Across those teams, I have 471 players rostered, including 257 unique players. Of those 257 unique players, there are 12 who appear on at least five of the 13 rosters or at least four of my seven Ottoneu rosters.
On Tuesday, I shared the names of the eight starting pitchers who had seen their fastball velocities rise most versus 2020. Obviously, not every starting pitcher had made their first start yet, so let’s dive into the velocity gainers once more. I’ll exclude the names I discussed the first time, so this is an entirely new list of pitchers.
The 2021 version of Bullpen Report includes five different sections, as well as the closer chart, which can be found at the bottom of the page.
The “RosterResource” link will take you to the corresponding team’s RosterResource depth chart, which will give you a better picture of the full bullpen and results of the previous six days (pitch count, save, hold, win, loss, blown save.)
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There’s this phenomenon in writing where you have an idea and you start putting together the piece. In the midst of writing it, you may take a random break and pop onto your Twitter feed. Whilst scanning said feed, you may run across an article posted with not only your exact premise, but damn near the same title, too. This is what Nick Pollack and Alex Fast at PitcherList have termed “Getting Sullivan’d” based on outstanding Fangraphs alumnus Jeff Sullivan.
Well, PitcherList got one back on Fangraphs:
• A.J. Puk will only work out of the bullpen.
Puk, 25, will work out of the bullpen, providing aid to an exhausted relief corps that worked 16 2/3 innings over the last four days against Houston. The situation was so dire that the A’s even had to call upon rookie outfielder Ka’ai Tom to pitch the ninth inning on Sunday.
I am just not sure if Puk will end up being fantasy relevant this season.
• Andrés Giménez is expected to be the full-time shortstop …
“Giménez, he’ll be right back in there,” Francona said. “I just want to keep Amed in the lineup today. We’ll be doing some mixing and matching. Amed’s gonna move back and forth a little bit. He’s not just a platoon player, for sure. We’ll make sure we keep everybody to a point where they can be productive.”
… while Amed Rosorio is easing into his outfield role.
If the team is expecting to play Giménez regularly, that means Rosario’s time in center field could be coming soon.
Yesterday, I listed and discussed the starting pitchers whose fastball velocities have increased by at least 1.5 MPH versus 2020 during their first starts. This is an early indicator of a breakout, though it requires this new higher velocity level to be sustained. Let’s now move to the fastball velocity decliners. Just like the surgers might not sustain those gains all season, don’t panic just yet about these decliners. Velocity does bounce around from start to start and early in the season, it’s possible these pitchers are still building up their arm strength. However, these are big holes to climb out of, so these could be early signs of a disappointing year.