Friday, April 30, 2010

Your League Probably Sucks: 04/30/2010

...IF players like these are still available on waivers:
  • 1B Paul Konerko, CHW is the major league leader in HR with 10, yet is only 69% owned in Y! leagues. Can I get an invite to those other 31% of leagues?
  • 2B Kelly Johnson, ARI is only hitting .320 with 17 R, 9 HR, 18 RBI and an OPS of 1.202. What more does a guy need to do to be owned in more than 72% of Y! leagues? Walk on water? Good luck finding any in the deserts of Arizona.
  • SP Kevin Correia, SD has four wins in five starts with some nice peripherals (3.86 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 8.36 K/9). His ownership numbers are baffling (13% E; 77% Y!). Yes, he's averaging less than 6 IP per start, but he's winning. Period!
  • RP Matt Lindstrom, HOU is the closer and should be owned, so why is it that he's only 60% owned in both ESPN and Y! leagues? Houston has put their 0-8 start behind them and are now winning ballgames. Do people not like his six saves and 9.90 K/9 ratio?
  • OF Austin Jackson, DET strikes out a bunch (32 K in 22 G). So what! He's hitting .330 with 18 R, 1 HR, 7 RBI and 4 SB. Those numbers aren't worth owning in more than 32% ESPN and 35% Y! leagues? Unreal.
  • OF Marlon Byrd, CHC. What's everyone got against a guy that's hitting .333 with 12 R, 3 HR, 15 RBI and 1 SB? Only 55% ESPN and 56% Y! owned? I have this guy on three of my four teams and enjoying the benefits.
  • C Miguel Olivo, COL has performed so well, the Rockies sent Chris Iannetta to AAA and gave him the starting job. So why isn't he on more fantasy rosters? Just 13 % ESPN and 60% Y! owned, he deserves better and his numbers prove it (.314 BA, 1.004 OPS, 10 R, 5 HR, 13 RBI, 1 SB).
  • 1B/2B/3B Ty Wigginton, BAL has done nothing but produce since being inserted into the everyday lineup when 2B Brian Roberts went on the DL. His .323 BA, 11 R, 6 HR, 12 RBI and 1.064 OPS plus three-position eligibility have been fantasy gold for the 41% of ESPN and 55% of Y! managers that grabbed him off waivers. With as bad as Baltimore is playing, Wiggy will continue to play even after Roberts is activated.
  • SP Jaime Garcia, STL is 4-for-4 in quality starts and posting some awesome statistics (2-1, 26 IP, 16 H, 3 ER, 0.96 WHIP). What are people waiting for? Just 12% owned in ESPN leagues is embarrassing.
  • SP Colby Lewis, TEX has already posted two 10 K performances in only four starts. He's averaging below 6 IP per start but has managed 3 wins. If he can get his stamina up and his pitch counts down, be ready for a lot more 10 K performances. Oh, take your time picking him up. He's only 10% ESPN and 43% Y! owned (not for long).
Are there other players in your league(s) that you can't believe are just sitting there on waivers? How do you explain such low ownership rates for such highly performing players?

Any questions, comments and feedback are greatly appreciated.
* All statistics accurate through 04/29/10

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Did You Know? 04/25/2010

Here's some statistical* randomness to enjoy in the initial installment of Did You Know?
  • Miguel Cabrera, Michael Cuddyer and Justin Morneau are all higher-ranked first basemen than Albert Pujols in ESPN leagues. And Jorge Cantu is ahead of him, too, in Yahoo! leagues.
  • No disappointment in drafting Joe Mauer early (.381 BA, 11 R, 1 HR, 12 RBI, 0 SB) but you could have gotten Ivan Rodriguez (.434 BA, 10 R, 0 HR, 8 RBI, 1 SB) and Miguel Olivo (.297 BA, 7 R, 4 HR, 8 RBI, 1 SB) at the end of nearly every draft if you passed on the top tier of catchers.
  • Here's a look at the top five players leading MLB in total bases: (1) Vernon Wells (2) Jose Guillen (3) Matt Kemp (4) Miguel Cabrera (t5) Nelson Cruz (t5) Ryan Braun. Mull that list over for a bit.
  • Matt Capps' MLB leading seven saves will solidify people's beliefs that you "never pay for saves", but are people that paid for Mariano Rivera's six saves, 0.00 ERA, 0.57 WHIP, .208 OBA and 6:1 K:BB in 7 IP disappointed that they paid for those saves? (I think not).
  • No surprise that Adam Wainwright, Roy Halladay, Felix Hernandez and Tim Lincecum are 4-for-4 in quality starts but so are these guys: Andy Pettitte, Barry Zito, Jeremy Guthrie, Roy Oswalt, Fausto Carmona, Jered Weaver, Ubaldo Jimenez, Dallas Braden and Ricky Romero.
  • Everyone likes to talk about how shallow the third base position is in fantasy baseball but only three shortstops qualify in the top 100 using Yahoo! rankings: Rafael Furcal (17th), Derek Jeter (45th) and Alex Gonzalez (58th).
  • Only five pitchers have a K:BB ratio of 6:1 or better: Carl Pavano (17:1), Roy Halladay (9.33:1), Kevin Millwood (6:1), Carlos Sliva (6:1) and Hiroki Kuroda (6:1).
  • Matt Kemp has 7 HRs and 7 SB attempts. Unfortunately he's been caught stealing 5 of 7 times. This seems like a guy that is out to prove he can go 30/30 or even 40/40.
  • Vernon Wells and Kelly Johnson lead the majors in extra-base hits with 14 each. Alex Gonzalez and Miguel Cabrera are next with 13 each.
* All statistics accurate as of 04/24/2010

A Steady Stream: 04/25/2010

A Steady Stream will be a semi-regular column that looks at probable pitchers starting games tomorrow and owned in approximately less than 50% of all ESPN and/or Yahoo! leagues that could be "stream-worthy" if they are available in your league. My goal is to revisit the streamers to see how accurate (or not) my assessment of the risk was.

Here are my Stream-Worthy Starting Pitchers for games to be played on Monday, 04/25/2010 and the level of RISK associated with streaming:
  • Dana Eveland, TOR (3% E; 9% Y!) @ home vs BOS - You may be drawn to his 1.93 ERA and 1.23 WHIP over 18.2 IP, but look closer at his 9:7 K:BB and 4.34 K/9 ratios. He's hittable and BOS hits. Add in that he is facing Beckett and I want nothing to do with this matchup. RISK: HIGH
  • Oliver Perez, NYM (2% E; 2% Y!) @ home vs LAD - Don't be fooled by his 3.71 ERA. Look deeper at his 1.53 WHIP and 14:10 K:BB ratios in 17 IP. Perez isn't streamable until he proves he can get it done consistently. RISK: HIGH
  • Jeremy Bonderman, DET (2% E; 3% Y!) @ TEX - Bonderman is still trying to find his form but looked good in his last outing @ LAA (6 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 5 K). His ERA (7.20) and WHIP (1.40) are high but so is his K/9 (8.40). RISK: MODERATE
  • Matt Harrison, TEX (0.3% E; 1% Y!) @ home vs DET - Harrison started off well until running into BOS in his last start (4 IP, 6 ER). Regardless, he still has some decent numbers (4.24 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, .293 OBA, 5.29 K/9). RISK: MODERATE
  • Mat Latos, SD (78% E; 11% Y!) @ FLA vs J. Johnson - I added Latos as a streamer simply because he's only 11% owned in Yahoo! leagues. That's a head-scratcher. The Padres are hot and this has the makings of a classic pitchers duel. RISK: LOW
  • Carlos Silva, CHC (6% E; 21% Y!) @ home vs WAS - No one wants to believe Silva will continue to put up the numbers he has so far (3 QS, 2-0, 19 IP, 10 H, 2 ER, 12:2 K:BB, 0.95 ERA, .063 WHIP, .194 OBA), but I'm buying while he's hot. RISK: SLIGHT
  • David Huff, CLE (0.5% E; 3% Y!) @ OAK - Huff struggled with his control in his last start (6 IP, 6 BB, 1 K) but could benefit from pitching in spacious Oakland. Was his complete game a fluke? RISK: EVEN
  • Zach Duke, PIT (6% E; 13% Y!) @ MIL - I still can't recommend streaming a Pittsburgh starting pitcher. Do these numbers help (24 IP, 24 H, 10 BB, 8 K)? Duke is very hittable and the Brewers hit! RISK: VERY HIGH
Other possible streamers I'm simply avoiding:
  • Kyle Davies, KC (0.1% E; 0% Y!) @ home vs SEA Hernandez
  • John Lannan, WAS (0.4% E; 3% Y!) @ CHC
  • Kyle Lohse, STL (2% E; 17% Y!) @ home vs ATL Hudson
Streaming on Monday and Thursday makes sense in head-to-head leagues because there are less games and this is a nice opportunity to pick up an extra win or two, when selecting the right match up to invest in. GOOD LUCK!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

A Steady Stream: 04/22/2010

A Steady Stream will be a semi-regular column that looks at probable pitchers starting games tomorrow and owned in approximately less than 50% of all ESPN and/or Yahoo! leagues that could be "stream-worthy" if they are available in your league. My goal is to revisit the streamers to see how accurate (or not) my assessment of the risk was.

Here are my Stream-Worthy Starting Pitchers for games to be played on Friday, 04/23/2010 and the level of RISK associated with streaming:

  • Carl Pavano, MIN (30% E; 38% Y!) @ KC - Pavano was lit up for 11 H and 7 ER in just 3.1 IP in his last start at home against KC, so there is some hesitation to stream him again against the same opponent on the road. He's also not fared well in his career against KC (10 G, 7.84 ERA, 1.61 WHIP). I like his 12:1 K:BB ratio so far in 2010 but KC seems to have this guy's number. RISK: HIGH
  • Scott Feldman, TEX (29% E; 46% Y!) @ home vs. DET - Feldman started the year off with two quality starts but ran into NYY and was pounded for 4 ER and 7 H in just 2.1 IP. DET sports a top 5 offense and it could turn into a slugfest in Arlington. His career numbers against DET are frightening too (16.1 IP, 16 ER). RISK: VERY HIGH
  • Ervin Santana, LAA (14% E; 55% Y!) @ home vs. NYY - Santana looked strong in his last start, pitching a CG, 1 ER game at TOR. He has nice career numbers at home (70 GS, 3.77 ERA, 1.23 WHIP) too but this is a Yankee lineup that pounded him for 5 ER in 5.2 IP on 4/13. RISK: MODERATE
  • Justin Duchscherer, OAK (12% E; 61% Y!) @ home vs. CLE - Cleveland owns the worst-ranked offense in MLB and Duchscherer is riding a scoreless streak of 13 IP. 'Nuff said. RISK: LOW
  • Jaime Garcia, STL (8% E; 27% Y!) @ SF vs. Lincecum - Matching up against Lincecum comes with a certain level of risk, but Garcia has been phenomenal in his two starts so far in 2010 (13 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 5 BB, 10 K) and I'm buying what Dave Duncan is selling. RISK: EVEN
  • Kevin Correia, SD (5% E; 73% Y!) @ CIN - Correia needs to go deeper into games to be more widely recognized as a quality starting pitcher (6 IP, 5.2 IP, 5.2 IP) but 3.12 ERA, 1.15 WHIP and 8.83 K/9 are all very ownable statistics. RISK: LOW
  • John Maine, NYM (5% E; 12% Y!) @ home vs. ATL - I want John Maine to be fantasy-relevant again, but so far it's not looking that good (13 IP, 21 H, 15 ER, 10.38 ERA.449 OBA, 2.23 WHIP). Maine is now pitching simply to stay in the Mets' rotation. Good luck. RISK: VERY HIGH
  • Jeremy Guthrie, BAL (0.7% E; 2% Y!) @ BOS vs. Lester - Guthrie hasn't pitched as badly as his record indicates (0-2, 3 QS) and has put up decent ratios (3.15 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 14:3 K:BB) so far.  He's never pitched well against BOS (11 GS, 1-5, 4.74 ERA, 1.68 WHIP) and even worse at Fenway. RISK: DANGER!
Other possible streamers I'm simply avoiding:
  • Johnny Cueto, CIN (9% E; 45% Y!) @ home vs. SD
  • Kenshin Kawakami, ATL (1% E; 42% Y!) @ NYM
  • Ryan Rowland-Smith, SEA (1% E; 35% Y!) @ CHW
  • Paul Maholm, PIT (0.8% E; 22% Y!) @ HOU vs. Oswalt
  • Greg Smith, COL (0.4 % E; 2% Y!) @ home vs FLA Nolasco
Would love to hear if you've already resorted to streaming in your Rotisserie league to make up points or in your Head-to-Head league to capture a category victory. Also looking for opinions (for and against) the practice of streaming pitchers.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Waiver Saviors: 04/21/2010

Waiver Saviors will look at players available in a majority of leagues that are having a statistical impact over the last 7 days and could be worth owning, if you have the need. Waiver pickups are all about filling a need with a player(s) that is currently hot and beating your fellow owners to the punch. The stats in parenthesis are a summary of the past week's data.

  • 2B Alberto Callaspo, KC (9/25, .360 BA, 4 R, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 1 SB) continues to perform and should see regular playing time while Chris Getz is on the DL. 3B eligibility in Yahoo! leagues. (9% E; 31% Y! owned)
  • 1B/3B Ty Wigginton, BAL (7/23, .304 BA, 6 R, 3 HR, 8 RBI, 0 SB) is making the most of his playing time as a fill-in for Brian Roberts and Miguel Tejada. 2B eligibility in Yahoo! leagues. (15% E; 29% Y!)
  • C Ivan Rodriguez, WAS (12/26, .462 BA, 7 R, 0 HR, 6 RBI, 1 SB) is hitting. Any catcher that is hitting should be owned! If you are hanging onto a guy like Ryan Doumit, why not bail on him and take a shot at where Rodriguez goes. Odds are no one is dying to pick up Doumit, at this point. (43% E; 53% Y!)
  • 2B Mike McCoy, TOR (6/15, .400 BA, 4 R, 0 HR, 1 RBI, 3 SB) is filling in for the injured Aaron Hill and making the most of his opportunities. If your team is decimated by injuries or you play in a very deep mixed league with large rosters and positions like INF, MI or 2B/SS, McCoy could be a nice temporary filler. (0.1% E; 0% Y!)
  • OF Josh Willingham, WAS (5/22, .227 BA, 7 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 SB) has walked 9 times over his last 7 games and continues to produce. Definitely worth owning at this point. (61% E; 55% Y!)
  • 3B/OF Jose Bautista, TOR (7/23, .304 BA, 4 R, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 0 SB) has been dropped to 6th in the Blue Jays lineup, leading to more RBI opportunities. (1% E; 4% Y!) 
  • OF Jim Edmonds, MIL (7/18, .389 BA, 5 R, 0 HR, 2 RBI, 0 SB) keeps stealing at-bats from Corey Hart and making the most of those opportunities. Hopefully he finds his power stroke soon. (1% E; 2% Y!)
  • SS Cristian Guzman, WAS (11/27, .407 BA, 5 R, 0 HR, 5 RBI, 1 SB) is getting playing time at SS and 2B and making it count. Either Ian Desmond or Adam Kennedy could be in danger of losing their starting job if Guzman continues to perform. Already 2B eligible in Yahoo! leagues. (2% E; 23% Y!)
  • DH Andruw Jones, CHW (6/16, .375 BA, 3 R, 2 HR, 2 RBI, 0 SB) is performing and could be a nice source of cheap power while he's hot. He's a little more versatile in Yahoo! leagues, having already become OF eligible. (3% E; 11% Y!)
  • 1B Casey Kotchman, SEA (6/18, .333 BA, 4 R, 2 HR, 6 RBI, 0 SB) is the only Mariner hitting right now. He accounted for both of the teams only HRs this past week (let that settle in) and should be owned in deeper leagues with a CI position. (5% E; 8% Y!)
  • SP Jason Vargas, SEA (13 IP, 2 QS, 2-0, 2.08 ERA, .204 OBA, 0.77 WHIP, 7.62 K/9) is doing his best to stay in the rotation once Cliff Lee is activated from the DL. (0.3% E; 1% Y!)
  • RP Fernando Rodney, LAA (5 IP, 1 H, 5 SV, .063 OBA, 7.20 K/9) did an incredible job filling in for Fuentes as the closer and shouldn't be dropped until Fuentes proves he's healthy or if your league uses Holds. (31% E; 51% Y!)
  • CL Matt Lindstrom, HOU (4 IP, 3 SV, 13.50 K/9) is raking up the saves quickly (3 in the last 3 games) and has a firm hold on the closer role, for now, ha. (44% E; 41% Y!)
  • SP Mike Pelfrey, NYM (15 IP, 2 QS, 2-0, 0 ER, .236 OBA, 0.87 WHIP, 7.20 K/9, 1 SV) has done it all this week and looks to be living up to fantasy expectations. Stream him if you are afraid to lock him up as a starter on your staff. (17% E; 43% Y!)
  • SP Randy Wells, CHC (12.1 IP, 1 QS, 0-0, 3.65 ERA, 1.54 WHIP, 8.76 K/9) has gone at least six innings in all three starts this season and has some nice potential. (11% E; 74% Y!)
  • RP Kevin Jepsen, LAA (3 IP, 4 HLD, 15.00 K/9, 5.00 K/BB) is a must-own if your league uses Holds and worth keeping an eye on for your bullpen with a 10.29 K/9 this season. (0.1% E; 4% Y!)
  • SP Brad Penny, STL (14 IP, 2 QS, 2-0, 1.29 ERA, .231 OBA, 0.86 WHIP, 5.79 K/9, 9.00 K/BB) is flourishing in St. Louis, having thrown 7 IP in each of his 3 starts this season with a 13:3 K:BB ratio. (49% E; 51% Y!)
  • RP Burke Badenhop, FLA (3.2 IP, 0 H, 1 SV, 1 HLD, 9.82 K/9) is working his way into the bullpen mix for Holds and opportune Saves. Deeper, mixed leagues using Holds are made for guys like this. (0.4% E; 6% Y!)
  • SP Jaime Garcia, STL (7 IP, 1 QS, 0-0, 1 H, 0 ER, 6.43 K/9) is proving he's legit with his 13:5 IP:H ratio. He's flying under the fantasy radar for most, so now is as good as time as ever to give him a start. (7% E; 21% Y!)
  • RP Joba Chamberlain, NYY (4.2 IP, 2 HLD, .188 OBA, 0.64 WHIP, 13.50 K/9) is back to his old self as the Yankees' setup man and should be owned in leagues utilizing Holds. Would be next in line for Saves if Mariona Rivera can't go or suffers an injury. (30% E; 28% Y!)
Any other guys out there that you've picked up off waivers recently that are paying off dividends?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Ultimate Lineup: 04/19/2010

Ultimate Lineup will be a weekly column looking at the players currently ranked highest at their respective positions over the last week of action. I'll be using ESPN's Player Rater and Yahoo!'s current rankings to determine my starters and reserves based on position eligibility.

  • Starter - Ivan Rodriguez, WAS (28% E; 37% Y!) - 10/21 (.476 BA), 7 R, 0 HR, 7 RBI, 1 SB
  • Reserve - Bengie Molina, SF (91% E; 86% Y!) - 9/17 (.529 BA), 6 R, 1 HR, 5 RBI, 0 SB
  • Reserve - Nick Hundley, SD (0.3% E; 2% Y!) - 5/16 (.313 BA), 4 R, 1 R, 6 RBI, 0 SB
  • Starter - Ty Wigginton, BAL (3% E; 8% Y!) - 8/23 (.348 BA), 6 R, 4 HR, 10 RBI, 0 SB
  • Reserve - Carlos Pena, TB (100% E; 93% Y!) - 7/24 (.292 BA), 6 R, 3 HR, 9 RBI, 1 SB
  • Reserve - Michael Cuddyer, MIN (100% E; 88% Y!) - 9/24 (.375 BA), 4 R, 2 HR, 9 RBI, 0 SB
  • Starter - Chase Utley, PHI (100% E; 99% Y!) - 7/21 (.333 BA), 8 R, 5 HR, 8 RBI, 0 SB
  • Reserve - Ty Wigginton, BAL (3% E; 8% Y!) - 8/23 (.348 BA), 6 R, 4 HR, 10 RBI, 0 SB
  • Reserve - Dan Uggla, FLA (100% E; 95% Y!) - 13/28 (.464 BA), 7 R, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 0 SB
  • Starter - Ty Wigginton, BAL (3% E; 8% Y!) - 8/23 (.348 BA), 6 R, 4 HR, 10 RBI, 0 SB
  • Reserve - Casey McGehee, MIL (90% E; 71% Y!) - 10/22 (.455 BA), 5 R, 2 HR, 6 RBI, 0 SB
  • Reserve - Alberto Callaspo, KC (4% E; 25% Y!) - 9/27 (.333 BA), 4 R, 2 HR, 8 RBI, 1 SB
  • Starter - Derek Jeter, NYY (100% E; 98% Y!) - 11/22 (.500 BA), 5 R, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 0 SB
  • Reserve - Yuniesky Betancourt, KC (2% E; 4% Y!) - 11/24 (.458 BA), 6 R, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 0 SB
  • Reserve - Ryan Theriot, CHC (88% E; 57% Y!) - 8/28 (.286 BA), 4 R, 0 HR, 3 RBI, 4 SB
  • Starter - Shin-Soo Choo, CLE (100% E; 96% Y!) - 11/19 (.579 BA), 5 R, 3 HR, 11 RBI, 1 SB
  • Starter - Matt Kemp, LAD (100% E; 99% Y!) - 8/24 (.333 BA), 8 R, 4 HR, 8 RBI, 1 SB
  • Starter - Jose Guillen, KC (60% E; 59% Y!) - 12/26 (.462 BA), 7 R, 3 HR, 5 RBI, 1 SB
  • Reserve - Ryan Braun, MIL (100% E; 99% Y!) - 11/26 (.423 BA), 5 R, 2 HR, 8 RBI, 1 SB
  • Reserve - Andre Either, LAD (100% E; 95% Y!) - 11/26 (.423 BA), 4 R, 3 HR, 9 RBI, 0 SB
  • Starter - Adam Wainwright, STL (100% E; 98% Y!) - 17 IP, 1 CG, 2 QS, 2-0, 1.06 ERA, 0.76 WHIP, 5.33 K/BB, 8.47 K/9
  • Starter - Ricky Romero, TOR (65% E; 72% Y!) - 16 IP, 2 QS, 1-1, 1.69 ERA, 0.63 WHIP, 4.50 K/BB, 10.13 K/9
  • Starter - Matt Garza, TB (100% E; 94% Y!) - 16 IP, 2 QS, 2-0, 0.56 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, 2.00 K/BB, 5.63 K/9
  • Reserve - Andy Pettitte, NYY (77% E; 59% Y!) - 14 IP, 2 QS, 2-0, 1.29 ERA, 1.07 WHIP, 1.67 K/BB, 6.43 K/9
  • Reserve - Mike Pelfrey, NYM (7% E; 24% Y!) - 8 IP, 1 QS, 1-0, 1 SV, 0.00 ERA, 0.88 WHIP, 6.00 K/BB, 6.75 K/9
  • Reserve - Ubaldo Jimenez, COL (100% E; 98% Y!) - 9 IP, 1 CG, 1 QS, 0 H, 0.00 ERA, 0.67 WHIP, 1.17 K/BB, 7.00 K/9
  • Starter - Fernando Rodney, LAA (24% E; 48% Y!) - 3 IP, 0-0, 3 SV, 6.00 K/9
  • Reserve - Jonathan Broxton, LAD (100% E; 98% Y!) - 4 IP, 1-0, 1 SV, 13.50 K/9
  • Reserve - Rafael Soriano, TB (100% E; 92% Y!) - 4 IP, 0-0, 3 SV, 9.00 K/9
  • Reserve - Mariano Rivera, NYY (100% E; 98% Y!) - 2 IP, 0-0, 3 SV, 13.50 K/9
Most of these players are owned in the majority of ESPN and Yahoo! leagues, but there definitely are waiver wire opportunities out there (Rodriguez, Guillen, Wigginton, Romero, Pettitte) to help improve your team(s). Smart, successful owners are always looking at the stats for the "last 7", "last 15" and the "last month" to see who's hot (and not) and where they can improve their team(s) off waivers.

Good luck assembling next week's Ultimate Lineup.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Ups and Downs: 04/17/2010

Ups and Downs will be a semi-regular column looking at players with the greatest percentage of adds and drops, according to ESPN's fantasy leagues (simply because that data is easily accessible to me), and the fantasy impact (positive and negative) of those decisions.

HITTER ADDS (data as of 04/17/2010)
  • OF Jeff Francoeur, NYM (+49.7%) - It's not hard to see why Francoeur is at the top of the ADDS list. He's currently the #5 ranked hitter on ESPN with a .457 BA, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 7 BB(!) and a 1.302 OPS. What is surprising is that he's still only 63.7% owned overall.
  • OF Chris B. Young, ARI (+47.7%) - Young looks to be living up to the potential people were drafting for in 2008 and 2009. A hot start (.325 BA, .989 OPS, 3 HR, 15 RBI, 1 SB) has boosted his ownership up to 89.3%. This ship has probably sailed if your league has any value at all.
  • SS Alex Gonzalez, TOR (+46.5%) - A .340 BA and 34 TB (2nd in MLB) easily explain why Gonzalez is such a huge ADD. Question is, "How long will this last?". As long as you don't dump an under-performing star to add him, ride this wave all the way to the shore. Was only 1.4% owned before this week.
  • OF Jose Guillen, KC (+44.4%) - His 5 HR, .350 BA and 1.195 OPS explain all the love being thrown his way. More incredible is the news of the off-season battle to save his life. Only 44.8% owned, you may have a chance to grab him before he hits any more bombs.
  • OF Scott Podsednik, KC (+43%) - Virtually undrafted unless for his SB potential, Pods is has not disappointed. His 6 SB are tied for the ML lead but the .436 BA is what can't be overlooked. Still only 50.6% owned. Get him for the steals and enjoy the peripherals while they're hot.
  • OF Magglio Ordonez, DET (+32.9%) - His ADP was 191.1 and for that, all he's done is give you a .341 BA with 3 HR, 8 R, 8 RBI and a 1.035 OPS. He's healthy and hitting but probably not available in any league worth being in (93.6% owned).
PITCHER ADDS (data as of 04/17/2010)
  • SP Ricky Romero, TOR (+46.9%) - He's started off with 2 QS, 1 W in 15 IP with a robust 16:4 K:BB ratio with a 1.80 ERA and a 0.67 WHIP. Still only 50.3% owned, now might be the time to pick him up and see if this is for real or not.
  • RP Kevin Gregg, TOR (+42.6%) - Started the season in the closer mix, he's now been anointed the Closer after Jason Frasor imploded. A must-own in all formats. Shocking he's still only 51.1% owned.
  • RP Neftali Feliz, TEX (+37.4%) - Another newly-crowned Closer, Feliz was a must-own even before this with his 13.50 K/9. Can you believe this guy is still only 65.1% owned? If you need saves, holds, K's or stellar ratios, get him! Get him now!
  • SP Dallas Braden, OAK (+33%) - Another virtually undrafted player that is off to a hot start, his 3 QS, 2 W, 2.70 ERA, 0.75 WHIP and 16:3 K:BB make him ownable in all formats.
  • SP Carl Pavano, MIN (+25.5%) - Pavano has recorded 2 QS against two quality opponents (@LAA, vsBOS) with a 10:1 K:BB ratio. His next start is versus KC, so he should continue to succeed.
HITTER DROPS (data as of 04/17/2010)
  • OF Kyle Blanks, SD (-20.1%) - Blanks still has 25+ HR potential as a 4th or 5th outfielder in deep leagues but his low average (.229) and high strikeouts (13 K in 10 G) may be too much to stomach for most owners.
  • OF Chris Coghlan, FLA (-18.6%) - Coghlan started off poorly (.132 BA and .307 OPS) and has  been battling a ribs injury. These factors may have caused the mass bails. If you have the roster flexibility, he may be a good stash (especially if he's forced to the DL) until he rights the wrongs.
  • C Mike Napoli, LAA (-17.6%) - Jeff Mathis somehow stole all of Napoli's ABs and it doesn't look like it will get any better. Definitely a dump in single-catcher formats. Rumors of a trade may make him ownable in two-catcher formats.
  • C Miguel Montero, ARI (-17.2%) - I truly don't understand this one unless your league does not include DL slots. If some frustrated owner in your league can't wait four-to-six weeks for a top 5 catcher to return from injury, get him and stash him on your DL until he's back. Some people's kids...
  • OF Julio Borbon, TEX (-14.2%) - Another head-scratcher here. Yes, Borbon has started off slowly (.097 BA, 1 SB), but his ADP of 144.6 means people are already giving up on a 12th round pick. Again, grab him and be patient. Texas has committed to Borbon and so should you.
PITCHER DROPS (data as of 04/17/2010)
  • RP Mike Gonzalez, BAL (-23.8%) - The Orioles were slow to put him on the DL, which probably caused frustrated owners (of which I was one) to dump him for RP Jim Johnson.
  • RP Frank Francisco, TEX (-20.6%) - Another closer that lost his job and was worth the drop unless your league utilizes Holds.
  • RP Matt Lindstrom, FLA (-18.8%) - Lindstrom and Brandon Lyon were expected to battle it out for the closer role but what good is a closer if you aren't winning games. Not sure he was worth the drop already, so pick him up if you are desperate for potential saves.
  • RP Jason Frasor, TOR (-16.2%) - Not often that a closer with three saves loses his role within the first ten games of the season, but the numbers don't lie: 2 BSV, 5.06 ERA, 2.06 WHIP, .407 OBA
  • SP Stephen Strasburg, WAS (-13.6%) - Not surprising that he's being dropped. The real fun is when he becomes the guy to add. Keep an eye on all news related to Strasburg's call up and jump all over the chance to own him.
What players are you adding or dumping this early in the season and why?

Friday, April 16, 2010

200 Visitors!

I just wanted to take a moment to celebrate a personal milestone for COSFBA. 200 VISITORS is a big deal to me. It's nice to know that I am no longer writing about fantasy baseball for myself and that hopefully others are appreciating what I do.

I'd really appreciate some feedback to those of you that are popping through my little, tiny corner of cyberspace.

Daniel aka daCommish

Thursday, April 15, 2010

A Steady Stream: 04/15/2010

A Steady Stream will be a semi-regular column that looks at probable pitchers starting games tomorrow and owned in approximately less than 50% of all ESPN and/or Yahoo! leagues that could be "stream-worthy" if they are available in your league. My goal is to revisit the streamers to see how accurate (or not) my assessment of the risk was.

Streaming pitchers is a practice that is hated by many fantasy baseball managers and is often used to exploit a hole in your league's settings and configuration. If there is no cap on innings pitched, a "streamer" can attempt to chase Wins at the expense of categories such as ERA and WHIP. Personally, I stream pitchers in every league and every format because on draft day I usually go after several front-of-the-rotation pitchers and then use my late round picks to fill holes I may have with my hitters. Usually only one or two of those players will pan out, so I'll start using those other roster positions to stream pitchers with favorable match ups and obviously available on waivers.

Here are my Stream-Worthy Starting Pitchers for games to be played on Friday, 04/16/2010 and the level of RISK associated with streaming:
  • Wade Davis, TB (53% E; 15% Y!) @ BOS vs. Josh Beckett - Pitching in the potent AL East is always risky and opening the season against the NY Yankees proved that point (6 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 4 BB, 3 K, L). Matching up versus Josh Beckett in Boston and the potent Boston lineup could make the start of the 2010 season a forgettable one for Davis. RISK: EXTREMELY HIGH
  • Derek Lowe. ATL (47% E; 65% Y!) @ home vs. COL - Lowe has won his first two decisions of 2010 but not in pretty fashion (6:10 K:BB, 6 ER, 12 IP). Colorado's lineup has some injuries (Hawpe, CarGo) but their replacements (Spilborghs, Fowler, Seth Smith) can still do damage in a hitters park. RISK: MODERATE
  • Dallas Braden, OAK (38% E; 47% Y!) @ home vs. BAL - Braden should be a definite own after starting the season with 12 K, 2 BB, 9 H, 4 ER in 13 IP. Baltimore should be an easy mark for this up-and-coming pitcher. RISK: LOW
  • Shaun Marcum, TOR (35% E; 46% Y!) @ home vs. LAA - Marcum has already flirted with a no-hitter and has posted two strong outings so far, amassing 11 K versus 2 BB and 10 H in 13 IP. The Angels have a lineup that can do a lot of damage on any given day. Another strong outing by Marcum could solidify him as a must-own pitcher in all formats. RISK: SLIGHT
  • Zack Duke, PIT (5% E; 12% Y!) @ home vs. CIN - Duke has 2 wins already in 2010 and I wouldn't be surprised if those were his only two wins this year. I've been burned way too many times by streaming a Pittsburgh starting pitcher and can't bring myself to recommending anyone but the loyal or foolish to stream him. RISK: DANGER!
  • Mike Leake, CIN (3% E; 8% Y!) @ PIT - Streaming against Pittsburgh usually has its benefits and Leake didn't fair as poorly as his numbers might suggest in his debut (6.2 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 7 BB, 5 K, just 57 of 107 pitches for strikes). Not a game for the faint of heart. RISK: HIGH
  • Jeremy Bonderman, DET (2% E; 6% Y!) @ SEA vs. Felix Hernandez - This game has the feeling of a 3-2 outcome and can go either way. Seattle is not scoring runs and Bonderman is still regaining his strength but his first outing was encouraging (5 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, W). RISK: MODERATE
  • Carlos Silva, CHC (0.4% E; 1% Y!) @ home vs. HOU - The Astros look hapless so far and are a good team to stream against. Silva had a nice debut at CIN (6 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 3 K) and could be a steal in virtually all leagues. Just remember that he still is Carlos Silva. RISK: SLIGHT
  • Todd Wellemeyer, SF (0.2% E; 1% Y!) @ LAD - Sometimes streaming isn't about how well a pitcher is pitching (6.1 IP, 5.68 ERA, .387 OBA, 1.74 WHIP) but about how poorly his opponent (Padilla - 8.2 IP, 14 H, 11 ER, 2.08 WHIP) pitching. The Dodgers lineup is capable of putting up a lot of runs, so tread lightly. RISK: HIGH
I'm looking forward to seeing how these picks pan out and to hear other opinions on the pros and cons of the streaming strategy. What policies have been put in place in your leagues to curtail such practices?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Waiver Saviors: 04/14/2010

Waiver Saviors will be a semi-regular column that looks at players owned in approximately 50% or less of all Yahoo! or ESPN leagues, are currently having a significant statistical impact, and may be worth owning especially if your team has gotten out of the gate slowly. Here are some inaugural candidates:

  • OF Scott Podsednik, KC (27% E; 41% Y!) - If you drafted him, it was for his speed and so far he has not disappointed (6 SB; 0 CS). What you probably didn't expect is a .452 BA and a 1.012 OPS. Grab him if he's still available in your league and stolen bases are a stat category.
  • SS Alex Gonzalez, TOR (27% E; 32% Y!) - Toronto is winning and Gonzalez has been a big part of that with 4 HR (all solo), 27 TB, .324 BA, 1.155 OPS and 1 SB. If your primary shortstop (Alexei Ramirez)  or middle infielder player has gotten off to a slow start, grab Gonzalez while the "gettin' is good".
  • SP Carl Pavano, MIN (19% E; 36% Y!) - Pavano has won both of his starts (@LAA, vsBOS), going 13 IP with 10 hits allowed while posting an incredible 10:1 K:BB ratio. Definitely worth owning going into his next start against Kansas City.
  • RP Kevin Gregg, TOR (16% E; 35% Y!) - Gregg has accumulated 3 SV while CL Jason Frasor (3 SV, 2 BSV) struggles. He should definitely be owned, especially while Toronto is winning and Frasor is shaky.
  • OF Jose Guillen, KC (5% E; 13% Y!) - His 4 HR, 25 TB and .313 BA are all very usable stats while you wait for other bats on your roster to heat up.
  • SP Ricky Romero, TOR (15% E; 49% Y!) - He's currently posting Halladay-esque numbers (15 IP, 16 K, 6 H, 1.80 ERA, 0.67 WHIP, 16:4 K:BB) against two tough opponents (@TEX, vsCHW). His next start is vsLAA, so you may want to wait and see how he fares against that lineup but he may not be available much longer if he keeps throwing up these kinds of numbers.
  • RP LaTroy Hawkins, MIL (1.3% E; 12% Y!) - He's tied for the MLB lead with 4 HLD with some nice peripherals like 16.20 K/9 and a 6:1 K:BB ratio. CL Trevor Hoffman is 1-1 with 2 SV and 2 BSV. Hawkins could be in line to pick up some saves while Hoffman works to get back on track.
  • OF Jeff Francoeur, NYM (46% E; 52% Y!) - Francoeur is currently 4th in the MLB in Runs Created (RC) with 11.38. The rest of the Top 5 are guys you may have heard of: Nelson Cruz, Albert Pujols, Vernon Wells and Ryan Howard. He'll never be a "sexy" fantasy outfielder to own, but should be owned while posting a .440 BA and a 1.380 OPS.
  • 3B Scott Rolen, CIN (10% E; 27% Y!) - Third base continues to be a shallow position, especially if your league uses a CI or INF. Rolen's 3 HR are tied for the MLB lead amongst 3Bers and his respectable .280 BA won't kill you.
  • C Miguel Olivo, COL (5% E; 33% Y!) - Everyone that guessed the Colorado catching job was Chris Iannetta's guessed wrong (1/12 .083 BA). Olivo's 2 HR and robust .438 BA and 1.346 OPS should keep him getting regular ABs. He should definitely be owned in all two-catcher formats at this point.
  • 1B Daric Barton, OAK (8% E; 10% Y!) - His 7 RBI, 11 BB and .346 BA are very nice from a guy that's not going to hit you many home runs (think Nick Johnson). If your league uses OBP, Barton's .526 makes him a definite own at this point.
  • 1B/3B Ty Wigginton, BAL (0.9% E; 1% Y!) - Filling in for the injured Brian Roberts at second base, Wiggington has 4 hits, 2 of which were home runs, in the two games since taking over. Doesn't hurt that he's batting second in a lineup that should score some runs. Depending on your league settings, he should gain 2B eligibility before Roberts returns.
  • OF Josh Willingham, WAS (29% E; 34% Y!) - Willingham is a great 4th or 5th OF option, depending on your leagues depth, and has done nothing but produce so far this season: 2 HR, 8 RBI, 3 R, 17 TB, 5 BB, 1 SB, .391 BA, 1.222 OPS
Just to be clear, these are simply suggestions of guys that may be out there on waivers depending on the size of your league and/or knowledge (or lack thereof) of the other owners. Now is time to start reevaluating your roster, not destroying it.

Good luck!

Are there others I may have missed? Some of these players may have been late-round picks for you that are paying off. Feel free to boast about your successes here.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Eggs defines an "Easter egg" as a "hidden feature in computer software, a DVD, or a video game." I'll use some poetic license in applying the theory of an "Easter egg" to fantasy baseball as a "hidden or unknown statistical gem based solely on hope."
Here are some of the Easter eggs I hope to find in my fantasy baseball Easter basket this year from guys I'm heavily invested in:
  • 30 HRs, 20 SBs, .280 BA from NYY OF Curtis Granderson
  • 40 HRs, 100 RBI, 90 Rs, 100 BBs, .270 BA, .400 OBP, 10 SBs from WAS 1B Adam Dunn
  • A Cy Young award from SEA SP Felix Hernandez
  • 10 HRs, 10 SBs, 100 Rs, 70 RBI, .310 BA from PHI 2B/3B Placido Polanco
  • TB 2B/OF Sean Rodriguez becomes this years Ben Zobrist
  • 20 HRs, 20 SBs, .290 BA from CHW OF Alex Rios
  • BAL CL Mike Gonzalez stays healthy and delivers 30+ Saves
  • 30 HRs, 90 RBI, .280 BA from SD OF Kyle Blanks
  • 32 GS, 22 QS, 15 Ws, 170 Ks, sub 3.50 ERA for MIL SP Randy Wolf
  • 20 HRs, 70 RBI, .300 BA from BAL 3B/SS Miguel Tejada
  • TB 2B/OF Ben Zobrist performs like he did in 2009
  • 15 HRa, 70 RBI, 70 Rs, 15 SBs, .275 BA from TOR OF Vernon Wells
  • .275 BA, 15 HRs, 65 RBI, 65 Rs from OAK C Kurt Suzuki
  • 15 HRs, 15 SBs, .275 BA, 90 Rs, 50 RBI from MIL 2B Richie Weeks
  • 25 HRs, 80 RBI, 90 Rs, 15 SBs, .290 BA from COL OF Carlos Gonzalez
  • 20 HR, 70 RBI, 70 Rs, .290 BA from ARI C Miguel Montero
Who are some of the guys you're heavily invested into for the 2010 season and what are your statistical expectations?

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Injury Bug Bites Hard This Spring

Many teams are fighting the injuries this Spring (none harder than the Mets) and all have fantasy baseball impact. Here's a look at some of the more significant injuries and the replacement players that may benefit in the short-term.
  • CL Joe Nathan, MIN (elbow) - Nathan is done for the year. No surprise here. There was speculation that SP Francisco Liriano would step into the closer role until he came out and said he didn't want it. The surprise is that in a matter of days, manager Ron Gardenhire went from a "closer-by-committee" approach including RHP Matt Guerrier, RHP Jon Rauch and LHP Jose Mijares to "officially" naming Jon Rauch the closer. Rauch needs to be 100% owned.
  • 1B Lance Berkman, HOU (knee) - Not a good sign when the player says he's not sure he'll be ready to come off the DL when eligible. Hopefully he only misses a couple of weeks, but be prepared for this injury to linger if he rushes back. says, "The plan calls for 3B Pedro Feliz to stay at third against righties with UTL Geoff Blum playing first base. When the Astros face a lefty, rookie 3B Chris Johnson will start at third with Feliz shifting over to first."
  • OF Carlos Beltran, NYM (knee) - Beltran could be out until June. Hopefully you were aware of this fact when you drafted him and planned your outfield accordingly. OF Angel Pagan and OF Gary Matthews Jr. are expected to pick up the slack until Beltran returns. Neither is a viable fantasy option unless one of them gets off to a hot start.
  • SS Jose Reyes, NYM (thyroid) - Reyes had already slipped down many fantasy draft boards after his horrendous 2009 season and the discovery of a thyroid condition this Spring isn't helping his value. Not officially on the DL yet, it's hard to figure out what to do with him on your roster. A wait-and-see approach will provide you with nothing but waiver fodder. I hope you planned ahead or just avoided Reyes all together for 2010. MI Alex Cora is expected to fill in during the Reyes absence.
  • SP Cliff Lee, SEA (abdomen) - A timetable hasn't been determined for his return and a trip to the DL hasn't been ruled out. Toss in a "pending" five-game suspension and it could be a while before Lee returns. Not wait Mariners fans and Lee owners were hoping for in 2010.
  • 2B Ian Kinsler, TEX (ankle) - Kinsler hasn't participated in drills recently and there is no timetable set for his return. Assume a few weeks unless positive news starts coming out of Texas.
  • CL Brad Lidge, PHI (elbow) - Reports are that he'll be out until "at least" mid-April. RHP Ryan Madson has been named the interim closer and could claim the job long-term if Lidge comes back and falters like he did in 2010. Sleeper closer candidate - RHP Danys Baez averaged 32 saves over 2003 - 2005.
  • SP Joe Blanton, PHI (oblique) - He's expected to miss 3-to-6 weeks. RHP Kyle Kendrick is the beneficiary of Blanton's injury but has limited fantasy value other than a spot start for a possible favorable match-up.
  • OF Coco Crisp, OAK (finger, hamstring) - Crisp was dinged up before fracturing his pinkie. OF Travis Buck makes the team but it's unclear who benefits from Crisp's injury.
  • 1B Russell Branyan, CLE (back) - Branyan was nothing more than a late round flier at best but his injury ensures OF Matt LaPorta gets a chance to shine and could be a very valuable late roound/waiver wire pick up.
  • 3B Alex Gordon, KC (thumb) - Gordon is a favorite "bounce back" candidate for 2010 and shouldn't miss much time. Stash him on the DL and pick up anyone that won't hurt your team in his absence (as if someone could do worse than him).
  • SP Scott Kazmir, LAA (back, hamstring) - Scott should only miss one start as he looks to regain strength. He's owned in 100% of ESPN leagues because everyone keeps hoping he reaches his potential. Grab him if he was dropped and stash him.
  • SP Gil Meche, KC (shoulder) - Meche shouldn't be out long and is the perfect guy to spot start with favorable match-ups, at best.
  • SP Erik Bedard, SEA (shoulder) - Bedard could have been had cheap in the late rounds or even better, off waivers after drafts. He won't be ready to go until June, at best, but could be a valuable starter down the stretch, if healthy. Stash him on the DL and be patient.
  • CL Houston Street, COL (shoulder) - The Rockies recently shut him down and that can't be good. Estimates originally had him returning by May. Pay close attention to his rehab process if you own him. In the mean time, LHP Franklin Morales and ex-closer RHP Manny Corpas should be owned by someone in your league.
  • 2B Freddy Sanchez, SF (shoulder) - He's expected to miss 3-to-4 weeks but has little to no fantasy value except for his batting average in a deep mixed league with a middle infielder roster spot. 2B/3B/SS Juan Uribe benefits from Sanchez's injury but also has limited fantasy value in deep mixed leagues.
  • 1B/OF Daniel Murphy, NYM (knee) - Murphy was shaping up to be a nice late round pick until being sidelined 2-to-6 weeks with a knee injury. 1B Mike Jacobs and 1B/3B/OF Fernando Tatis are expected to platoon in his absence.
Are there other injuries (large or small) that are impacting your team(s) or have you benefited from a waiver pickup at some other managers expense?

Friday, April 2, 2010

Chicago White Sox: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DON'T plan on seeing a single White Sox player drafted in the top 75 (unless a "homer" grabs Beckham (87.6 ADP) or Quentin (99.4 ADP) early).
  • DO expect a breakout season from 3B Gordon Beckham (90/25/90/.300/10) and his value increases once he reaches 2B eligibility.
  • DON'T be surprised to see a healthy OF Carlos Quentin make a serious run at 40 HRs. If he can stay on the field for 140 games and hit near .280, he's a steal in round 8 or 9.
  • DO watch OF Juan Pierre run and run and run. His 162 game averages are 626 AB, 52 SB and a .301 BA. Pair him up with a homer/no steal guy and you have yourself two very good outfielders.
  • DON'T get me wrong, I like SP Jake Peavy and the 30 GS, 20 QS, 15 Ws potential of him, but a move to the AL and a hitters home park could inflate his ratios.
  • DO gamble that OF Alex Rios bounces back to a 20/20 threat. Add in 80 R, 80 RBI and a .280 BA and he's a valuable 2nd or 3rd OF option.
  • DON'T draft CL Bobby Jenks unless you're in a league where you can handcuff him to SU Matt Thornton. Thornton will step in if Jenks falters and he brings Holds and ratios (2.74 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 10.82 K/9) regardless.
  • DO enjoy steady production from SP John Danks and SP Gavin Floyd. Each has 13 win potential with  sub 4.00 ERAs, 1.30 WHIPs and 7+ K/9s.
  • DON'T bother with 3B/OF Mark Teahan (12 HR/50 RBI, .270 BA) until he can prove he's fantasy relevant.
  • DO grab SS Alexiei Ramirez as a top 10 shortstop. He could reach 20 HRs, 80 RBI and 15 SBs hitting in the middle of a lineup that will score a lot of runs in 2010.
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • 1B Paul Konerko (30 HR, 100 RBI, .280 BA, overlooked, bargain producer)
  • SP Mark Buehrle (13 W, 4.00 ERA, low K/9 rate though)
  • C A.J. Pierzynski (10 HR, 50 RBI, .280 BA)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Detroit Tigers: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO draft 1B Miguel Cabrera as an elite first baseman. Expect his numbers to be better than 100/30/100/.300 across the board.
  • DON'T expect 24 HRs from OF Johnny Damon in 2010. A regression should be expected due to a larger home park and a less potent lineup.
  • DO you know who faced the most batters and threw the most pitchers last season? SP Justin Verlander. He did lead the majors in strikeouts, though.
  • DON'T waste a pick on 3B Brandon Inge. Without catcher eligibility, his 20 HR/.230 BA line is unusable at third base.
  • DO grab CL Jose Valverde as your primary reliever if you miss out on the elites. Enjoy 30+ Saves and respectable ratios (2.33 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 9.33 K/9).
  • DON'T over-value SP Max Scherzer (he's being selected before HOU Roy Oswalt. Really?!?!). He will bring the Ks and hopefully the Wins (10+), but moving from the NL to the AL could be rough.
  • DO snag 2B Scott Sizemore as late as possible. He projects at .280, 15 HRs, 80 RBI with 10 SBs.
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • OF Magglio Ordonez (15 HR/80 RBI/.300 BA)
  • SP Rick Porcello (15 W, 4.00 ERA, 1.30 WHIP)
  • OF Austin Jackson (10 HR/50 RBI/20 SB)

New York Yankees: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO expect MVP numbers from 3B Alex Rodriguez in 2010. With the post-season monkey off his back, look for a relaxed AROD to reach his career averages of 44 HR, 128 RBI, 126 R, .305 BA and a .965 OPS.
  • DON'T panic if 1B Mark Teixeira starts off slow again. He has a career .249 BA in April. If you stuck with him in 2009, you were rewarded with 103 R, 39 HR, 122 RBI, .292 BA and a .948 OPS.
  • DO draft SP CC Sabathia as the ace of your pitching staff. He's a legitimate 20-win candidate workhorse with 200 K stuff.
  • DON'T HATE! If you refuse to draft Yankees players for whatever reasons, you WILL NOT succeed in fantasy baseball. It's a game based on collecting the best numbers and Yankees are among the top number producers in baseball. Get over it!
  • DO realize that SS Derek Jeter is the 3rd shortstop being drafted within the top 25 picks. Jimmy Rollins (ADP 28.7), Jose Reyes (67.1) and Elvis Andrus (95.6) are your next 3 options. I'm taking Jeter if he's there when I pick.
  • DON'T know what to expect from OF Curtis Granderson as a Yankee? If Johnny Damon managed 24 HR, 82 RBI, .282 BA, I'm expecting better for Granderson (30 HR, 85 RBI, .270 BA, 20 SB).
  • DO enjoy 40 Saves and stellar ratios from CL Mariano Rivera. He's shown no signs of slowing down or breaking down at 40 years old and there's no reason to assume he will.
  • DON'T get me wrong, I love the numbers 2B Robinson Cano put up in 2009 (90/24/84/.321) but second base is a very deep position this year. I'd rather use my 3rd round pick on a guy like Zimmerman, Votto, Werth or Youkilis.
  • DO expect some regression from SP Javier Vazquez coming back to the American League but realize he's going to be a #4 starter for the Yankees after being a #1 in Atlanta. He'll get some favorable match-ups which should keep his win total up.\
  • DON'T feel like gambling on SP A.J. Burnett making 30+ starts (135.7 ADP)? Skip him and grab the upside of ATL SP Jair Jurrjens (ADP 132.7) instead.
  • DO you really want to draft C Jorge Posada (142 ADP)? He's one of the most frustrating guys to own and watch play on television. I'm grabbing ARI C Miguel Montero (142.4 ADP) instead. I'd rather take a player on the rise than one on the decline.
  • DON'T want anything to do with the Yankees #5 starter, regardless of who it is (Hughes, Mitre, Joba). I will spot start off waivers if the match-ups look worthy.
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • 1B Nick Johnson (15 HR, .280 BA, .430 OBP)
  • OF Brett Gardner (30 SB if he gets 400 ABs)
  • SP Andy Pettitte (12 Wins)
  • RP Joba Chamberlain (Only if your league uses Holds and K/9)