A little over a month ago I wrote a piece on Jose Abreu. I tried to persuade owners to lower their expectations for the Cuban slugger. His start had been fantastic, but I tried to convince readers that his peripherals couldn’t keep up with his hefty production. Well, here we are on July 29th and Jose Abreu is still one of the top performers in fantasy baseball. He leads the league with 30 home runs and has climbed up to 10th most valuable player in Yahoo leagues. In light of this, I figured it’s a good time to give him another look.
The one constant in the NFL is change. From year to year the league is completely unpredictable. The Falcons go from a playoff team to 4-12 while the Chiefs go from 2-14 to the playoffs. You get the idea. Fantasy Football is no different. Last year’s stud can easily become this year’s bust. With each passing season new stars are born and others flame out. Sometimes all it takes is a little change of scenery to change the fortunes of player or franchise. Take Marshawn Lynch for example. His first two seasons with the Bills were decent enough as he averaged right around 1,075 rushing yards and had 16 total TDs in those two years. But then, in 2009, the wheels fell off and it looked like his career was about to go belly up. All it took was a trade to Seattle, a highlight reel run against the Saints and Beast Mode was born.
A few weeks before Brandon McCarthy was traded, I made a point to mention the fact that he might be an attractive trade target for a GM who wanted an upgrade at SP without having to empty the farm system. As it turned out, my guess was pretty good and McCarthy was shipped off to the Yankees. Since the trade, he’s has shown just how good he can be when his approach isn’t messed with.
Hit the jump to see just how good McCarthy has been and what to expect going forward.
We’ve all chased saves on the waiver wire. You hate it and I hate it. It’s a frustrating and annoying task, but it’s also a necessary one.
You’ve probably also trolled for some cheap speed (I’m looking at you, Jarrod Dyson), but there are several valuable assets out there that most people foolishly ignore: The set-up man.
“The final results”, “the end of the draft” and “your final team”. After weeks of preparation, this is where it is all supposed to pay off, or does it? With every draft, it is important to analyze the team you are developing with each pick. Sometimes, in the heat of the moment, this can be difficult too. I find team owners drafting the best player available, filling out roster positions and depth but sometimes missing the whole overview and big picture of the team that is actually being crafted. Previously, I wrote a five part analysis of a fourteen team slow draft performed June (found here: I, II, III, IV, V). I split this article into two different parts (one of which will be posted to follow shortly) and illustrated the strengths, weaknesses of each team. I analyzed the bench and gave a final overall review of the team as a whole. Most of my individual player stats and feelings on the players picked can be found in my previous articles, the purpose of this two part series is to illustrate the results.
This week Ryan and Steven discuss how awesome Clayton Kershaw is, What do you do with Zimmerman in redraft and Keeper leagues, and tell you which pitcher you should own and ask why is he not already owned?
The basics: I look at tons of stats and identify the best available options of the pitchers in the free agent pool. My goal will be to find pitchers who are scheduled to make 2 starts a week, are available in over 40% of most leagues (12 team head to head), and are in favorable matchups.
I’ll keep a running tally of stats here going forward to monitor success (and failure).
So here we go
7/28-8/3 Continue reading
Why You Should Wait On Drafting A Quarterback
In a 12 team, non ppr league with quarterbacks getting four points for passing touchdowns, it’s wise to wait on drafting a quarterback this year. Don’t get me wrong; getting one of the big three (Rodgers, Brees, Manning) early will land you a top quarterback, but your team will look a lot better if you wait to take your quarterback later in the draft. Let’s look at three reasons why it’s best to wait on taking your quarterback for 2014 and that will help you win your league. Continue reading
Let’s start this piece with an interesting fact: More people are rostering Matt Cain than these underowned pitchers: Ian Kennedy, Jake Arrieta, Jose Quintana, Phil Hughes, and Jacob deGrom. If only 2012′s stats counted towards this year’s fantasy titles…
One of my favorite things to do when I’m bored is filter the whole set of MLB pitchers so I can see who’s actually doing well. By doing well, I mean a pitcher is amassing strikeouts, limiting walks, and not getting lucky when balls are hit. Everyone knows that wins and losses are mostly unpredictable, so those three features are all we can really look at when we evaluate pitchers. To be specific, here’s what I want out of a pitcher: more than 7 K/9, less than 3 BB/9, BABIP greater than .275, and FIP/xFIP below 3.25. When a pitcher meets these criteria, they are doing very well.
Here’s a quick list of “elite” pitchers who are meeting that (very selective) filter over this whole season:
Pablo Sandoval was downright awful when the season began. Through May 7th, he was hitting an uncharacteristically low .174, with only 2 homeruns, and 6 RBI. With his impending free agency coming after 2014, Sandoval altered his approach, trying to see more pitches and walk more frequently. While he accomplished some of those goals, it led to larger issues, and robbed Sandoval of what makes him so great, hitting awful pitches. By trying to stay inside the zone and not chase, exactly what hitting coaches preach at every level of the game, Sandoval seemingly lost his ability to hit.
Fortunately for baseball lovers and fantasy players everywhere, Sandoval went back to his free swinging approach, and is back to what we’ve come to expect from the Panda.