Fantasy Baseball

Hedges Proving Low-Risk Worth

Thursday, 1 June, 2017

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Drafting a catcher in fantasy baseball is a painful roster spot to deal with. They typically bat at the bottom of the order and aren’t well-rounded statistically.

Therefore, many took the chance at drafting projected elite catchers such as Buster Posey and JT Realmuto. Posey has resurfaced to have top value while Realmuto and others haven’t been the projected stalwarts.

Ones that seem dependable one week can fade out of the picture completely for weeks on end. Twins catcher Jason Castro hasn’t lived up to his under the radar hype at all. He’s hit just four home runs with a batting average floating around .220.

Indians catcher Yan Gomes has turned around a horrid first five weeks to regain respectable numbers.

Perhaps one of the more consistent catchers has been down in Kansas City. Salvador Perez has built off last year’s solid production to the tune of eleven home runs and thirty RBI’s.

Even the hot hitting Astros are churning together a dynamic duo of production with Evan Gattis and old man Brian McCann. Benefitting from a change McCann has hit for six home runs and twenty-five RBI’s. Not to be outdone Evan Gattis in a DH role has hit for 24 RBI’s and four home runs.

Yet the cream of the crop in terms of value off of drafted position is Austin Hedges. While he may not be the glutton one would want with his batting average (.209), he has fulfilled more than adequately in terms of home runs (9) and RBIs (25).

It’s safe to say many would be perfectly fine with Hedges production as their top catcher from his average drafted position.

We are only two months in but it’s safe to say the merry go round circus of drafting quality catchers will continue for fantasy owners next season.

Fantasy MLB Profile: Whit Merrifield

Monday, 29 May, 2017

At the end of May,finding a good return off the waiver wire is a circus of sorts. Typically one can find a short term value player that can be of use for a short stint. Landing a player that has produced top worthy stats for one month is not supposed to happen.

With holes plaguing the Kansas City Royals bats, adjustments were made towards the last stretch of April. Sent down was Raul Mondesi Jr and brought up were Jorge Bonifacio and Whit Merrifield. Both have been a part of a Royals mini turn around that has brought a bit of hope to a season headed towards a dead end.

Power numbers are available with Bonifacio. Overall he has hit seven home runs in just over a month.

Yet the intrigue lies with Merrifield whom is owned in less than six percent of CBS leagues. Since being put into the daily lineup on April 18th he has stolen five bases, hit five home runs, produced fourteen runs and ten RBI’s.

Stout production hard to find in nearly all fantasy competitive leagues.

So why is Merrifield widely available?

For one the Royals poor stretch placed a label of non fantasy worthy attachment. Secondly, Merrifield was batting just .230 on May 17th. With more at bats we’ve seen that average round up to a range he’ll likely fall into.

While Merrifield’s eighth spot in the lineup is not attractive, I’d ignore that here.

Grab the value on Merrifield before he becomes a hot waiver wire bid.

LUDWICK HELPING EMERGE REDS LINEUP

Thursday, 7 August, 2014

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Before the Reds Miami Marlins series they were in an extreme funk at the plate. Protecting their starting pitchers great outings could only be secure if the Reds gave up zero runs. Suddenly though wins the Reds have ignited at the plate.

They’ve won five of their last seven games and are doing so by producing runs. Against the Marlins they ended the series with a seven run finish. Against Cleveland they’ve had a game where they produced nine runs and eight.

One guy that has helped in this turn around has been Ryan Ludwick. He has had an RBI in four of the last six games for the Reds. Including a huge two run single against the Marlins. After a controversial run was overturned, the game was tied. That left runners on 2nd and 3rd and Ludwick took advantage to help propel the Reds to a win.

With key bats set to return soon in Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips the Reds are in prime position to overtake the NL wild card race. Can Ludwick and the rest of the Reds keep their bats hot or will the July slump reemerge?

FREE MLB PLAY: DBACKS VS CUBS

Monday, 21 April, 2014

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Maybe starting your season in Australia is not such a good idea. The Arizona Diamondbacks lost both games in Australia to the Dodgers and have found it difficult to muster any success early on in 2014.

Kirk Gibson must be counting down his days, as faith amongst fans dwindles by the day. It’s hard to restore belief in a team that struggles behind the plate and on the mound. Arizona’s woes are traced to a pitching staff that up until a few days ago, had surrendered runs in each game before the 5th inning.

They’ve found no success whatsoever amongst their starting pitchers and recently sent Trevor Cahill to the bullpen in favor of Collmenter.

Tonight Bronson Arroyo heads to the mound and this should be a good spot for him to shake off his early cobwebs. He has an ERA over 9. The veteran gets to face a Cubs team that isn’t a force with their bats like the Mets, Giants, and Dodgers.

That doesn’t mean that Arroyo will pick up a win tonight, but I am in favor of a play on the under. I just don’t see the Diamondbacks being able to string together runs off of base hits in multiple innings.

MLB: Trend or Mirage?

Wednesday, 11 May, 2011

By Zack Cimini

notjustagame23@gmail.com

The Minnesota Twins are off to an atrocious start. A new ballpark and bolstering their team by resigning mega contracts with their stars has thus far backfired. Joe Mauer is out for an extended length of time until mid-May, and Justin Morneau has struggled to regain his former self at the plate.

They were the studs that the lineup fed off of. Instead of timely hits being made by the rest of the Twins, they’ve all faltered. Their batters from the three to seven spot have lacked any type of consistency, even Cuddyer who has risen over the last few years. Pitching was supposed to ride on the arms of Francisco Liriano. Sure he had a no hitter, but besides that start he has been rocked. This is not the direction the Twins were expected to go with their big three. Are they stuck with the mega contracts of these players? It appears so. An overhaul with their farm system, or trades for other teams prospects is likely.

One pitcher that has been able to manage outings well is Scott Baker (2.97 ERA). Minnesota’s defensive efficiency has struggled, but not when Baker has been out there. Baker has had solid command, and is making owners satisfied for drafting him in later rounds. He is getting his bang for his buck, but you’d have to say his first six starts are a mirage. Baker has been known for getting hit around and having short outings on the mound on a regular basis.

You can pick your spots with Baker, but he definitely shouldn’t be starting each time he is due to pitch for your fantasy team. Depth at pitcher is vital but you also need to manage your innings pitched. Having a pitcher like Baker can make that easier. The outing where Baker lasts three innings and gets lit up was just a matter of time. Today against Detroit he lasted just four innings. Unable to command his pitches, which led to five walks and six hits. Giving up a total of five runs.

Likely if you were trying to sell Baker high, no other owner bought it. They’ll definitely not now. Use Baker as an occasional starter and you’ll be fine. Just don’t expect him to put together five to six solid outings like he started the year off with.

What To Do With Mat Latos?

Tuesday, 10 May, 2011

By Zack Cimini

notjustagame23@gmail.com

When an ace is inconsistent you know it’s only a matter of time before he snaps out. They get that solid start and from there build upon it. An 0-5 start though, won’t just get into the pitcher’s head, it’ll also drive fantasy owners crazy. This is definitely a tough scenario to deal with as a fantasy owner.

You can trade him now, but what will you get back for him. Likely not much. So instead of selling him high, maybe you should break down his statistics. He is on a San Diego Padres team that has offered little to nothing in terms of run support. They’re obviously digging and searching for replacements since the Adrian Gonzalez departure. Heck, even with Gonzalez in the lineup, they often struggled for runs. Their team leader for batting average is Chase Headley at .245.

So the frustration shouldn’t be pinned completely on Latos. A young lineup like the Padres is going to take time to develop. It may not happen this year, but the bats should come out and spike at a more frequent rate.

Breaking down Latos statistically is where you can see that he still can be a strong factor. His WHIP is up but it has more to do with a few extra walks than it does hits. The hits have also been big blows, as six of the thirty one giving up have been home runs. What jumps out at you, is that he is still averaging a strikeout per inning.

Latos should not be giving up on just yet. His last three starts have been atrocious. Not lasting barely past the sixth inning and giving up a combined five home runs. So he could be headed down a bad lane for fantasy owners. Most of you should be over your projected season totals for innings pitched. Instead of throwing Latos out each start, sit him and see how he does.

Being in the NL West, he’ll get to face favorable matchups throughout the season. So far he has pitched against dynamic offenses, including the Phillies, Braves, and Reds. Tough outings for any pitcher. Don’t sell him low. When September comes around, you’ll forget that Latos was even in this poor stretch.