Fantasy Baseball


Thursday, 7 August, 2014


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?


Monday, 21 April, 2014


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

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

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.

MLB: Fast Starts, Sell High

Friday, 29 April, 2011

By Zack Cimini

Jumping out the gates in April is always great. If you’re an owner that has shot to the front of your league, you can further yourself from the pack with proper moves. Deciding on the right players to deal out and capitalize off their hot start is the tricky part. Being in a competitive league, you almost have to nowadays play your leverage to further differentiate your team. If not, owners can capitalize off their waiver position and gain on you by August.

In every league there are going to be owners quick to make changes that are suffering out the gate. Making a sneaky proposal just to break the ice is the norm. A good percentage of the time no deal is going to be done after the first offer. If a guy has a major need and he continues to see your offered players do well, he will bend. Give it some time.

Here are some players that have started off very well, that you may be able to get high value for before they dip back down to reality.

Lance Berkman– Berkman seemed buried alive with the New York Yankees last year. The notion figured to be another overpaid big name turned bust. Age seemed to have caught up to Berkman. He went undrafted in many leagues and figured to be an after thought with the St. Louis Cardinals. While other big names on the Cardinals started off rocky, Berkman was the bat the produced. An owner with him is probably thinking when will he slow down? It’s going to happen, and his numbers will likely tail off drastically. Offering him up for desperate owners on the other side, may be the route to go.

Travis Hafner- Injury issues sometimes just never leave a player, until it causes the exit of his/her career. That seems to be the number one issue for Hafner. Health. Cleveland as a whole has exceeded April’s expectation with their start. Hafner is widely available in 46% of Yahoo leagues, which is a troubling number in itself. This is a guy that can produce and if he can sustain for another month, will be worth dealing to give yourself extra depth in a necessary area.

Ike Davis- Talk about a guy having a career year. When a young player has a start like this, it’s hard to project if he can sustain it. Often times though, it’s just a streaky run. Pitchers and managers will figure out Davis’s weaknesses and expose them. Once a rut begins, Davis could tail back off to his earthly averages of a year ago. Which were abysmal. Davis already has five home runs, when he only hit nineteen last year. Every statistical category he is on pace to crush exponentially. With Davis’s age, leveraging should figure better for the fantasy owner.

Ben Zobrist- The key with Zobrist now is that he is getting on base and the whole Rays lineup is delivering. With Evan Longoria returning to the lineup, numbers could continue to soar. On the contrary, Zobrist has never been a great hitter. A career .253 hitter. His power numbers have never jumped out at you either. There’s no questioning that he could be on the brink of a career year. Will he turn that corner completely, and shake off career averages?

MLB: Diamondbacks Heating Up

Thursday, 28 April, 2011


By Zack Cimini

The Arizona Diamondbacks have been buried in the depths of major league baseball over the last several years. Management changes, poor attendance, and constant shuffling of youthful prospects. Now Kirk Gibson gets his chance to resurrect a franchise that just a little over ten years ago won a world series. He has made it known that no ones job is safe. He will make just as many risks as the franchise has made over the last few years. What he won’t do is let inconsistency stay apart of his lineup.

A guy right now that is driving the franchise and fantasy owners crazy is Chris Young. Limitless talent as a strong defensive center fielder, he has struggled to be consistent at the plate. Over the baseball off-season he rededicated himself to becoming a better hitter. Countless hours of work hasn’t translated on the field in the first month of the season. He is still showing the boom or bust at the plate. Striking out, creating an out, or going deep. Owners can’t let go of his power numbers. He hit two home runs yesterday to boost his total to seven home runs now. It’s safe to assume that he should easily get between twenty five and thirty home runs.

Will he be able to progress at the plate? Currently he has a .216 batting average. What may me the biggest problem for Young is the fact that he hasn’t been settled in a spot in the batting order. Gibson has shuffled him up and down the order. Once Gibson figures out a proper batting order, Young should calm down and hopefully get his scary average to a respectable number.

Another Diamondback that didn’t figure to play a large role but has made the most of his opportunities is Ryan Roberts. He is only 49% owned in Yahoo leagues. Another couple of solid series for him and that should change drastically. Roberts is doing it all. At home he has been a force. Finding a groove and batting .344 overall at home. Away his numbers aren’t too bad but dip down to .276. He gets on base regularly, and now the Diamondbacks must find a way to keep him in the lineup. Five home runs, a .311 batting average, fifteen RBI’s, eleven runs, and three stolen bases. Tell me that you don’t have a fantasy roster spot to fit Roberts on your team?