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My apologies if you were hoping to come here this morning and get your usual fantasy highlights from the day before. Believe me, that was certainly my intention. After all, it was Jackie Robinson Day – a day to be celebrated on a number of levels. I even had a couple of paragraphs written out about the time I got to meet Yogi Berra, talk to him one-on-one for about 15 minutes, and how he actually brought up Jackie Robinson’s steal of home during Game 1 of the 1955 World Series. For the record, Yogi still swears that Jackie was out and after watching footage of that moment a number of times, I have to agree with him.
Tony Cingrani and Jose Fernandez have grabbed the imagination of the fantasy baseball world. Two elite prospects who are now ready to make their mark, there has been a borderline hysteria to add each to fantasy squads across the land. Is spending a good deal of your free agent resources to add either arm a good move? We'll investigate the outlook of both rookies. We'll then move on to the ever changing role of the bullpen. Three teams in particular – the Cardinals, Cubs & Red Sox – are spinning their wheels once again trying to figure out who the best man is to hand the ball to in order to get the last three outs of the game.
When the Toronto Blue Jays began their roster overhaul during the offseason, things were looking pretty good for the Great White North. The deal with the Marlins landed them an elite shortstop in Jose Reyes, a highly touted starting pitcher in Josh Johnson, a speedy super-utility guy in Emilio Bonifacio and a veteran lefty in Mark Buehrle all for very little. They then brought in Melky Cabrera, R.A. Dickey and Maicer Izturis to add to a fairly strong core group that already consisted of Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion, Brett Lawrie, Brandon Morrow and J.P. Arencibia. They immediately went from also-rans to top contender in the American League.
I wanted to sit down tonight and finally write about some fantasy baseball for the first time in far too long. Since our show, The Fantasy Alarm Show has gone to five and sometimes six days a week it has gotten hard to encapsulate any additional thoughts into text. But alas I have a belly full of some weird Mike’s Hard Mango Punch crap that my wife stocked the refrigerator with (it’s just so yellow and yummy looking!) so here comes two weeks work of fantasy baseball angst.
While the fantasy baseball highlights from Friday’s games are still coming, I’d like to take a quick moment for a self-indulgent rant that has more to do with my disdain for most baseball announcers than it does with the actual game of baseball. By now, everyone knows the details of the Carlos Quentin/Zack Greinke saga, unless of course you’ve been trapped in a Chilean mine for the past 24 hours. You can’t sit for 10 seconds in front of ESPN or the MLB Network without seeing excessive lead-ins, replays and reports on the events which took place Thursday. I can understand highlight shows such as Baseball Tonight and Quick Pitch using it to lure in viewers for the entire show, but what’s bothering me right now is that in-game announcers and wrap-up commentators are using the event in a form of yellow journalism. They are bringing far too much focus to the incident and using it to incite fans, and possibly even teams, to overreact to every hit batsman or inside pitch we see. Their inability to move past something like this is merely a tool to either push forward their own agenda or to boost their own feelings of self-importance. Either way, they need to learn when to shut up and let something go.
Hi everyone. I’m thrilled to be contributing to Fantasy Alarm’s coverage of this part-time hobby, full-time obsession we call fantasy baseball. I’ll be dropping by each week to share some thoughts, discuss some strategy and hopefully have a little fun. Today we will take a look at Starting Pitching and the numbers you need to remain competitive in your league as well as which players have become eligible at new positions this week.
Albert Einstein once said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results. As I watch and listen to so many fantasy baseball owners make the same mistakes each and every year, I can’t help but think of that quote. However, in this case, because this is supposed to be a fun game, my declaration of people’s insanity has much more of a Montgomery Burns “Oh Ziggy, will you ever win?” spin on it. It’s more of a sympathetic sadness than it is contempt. So when I now give you a list of potential pitfalls, don’t be insulted or get defensive. Just listen, digest and know that it’s all coming from a place of love. Fantasy baseball love that is.
Everyone wants to get their hand on this years Mike Trout or Bryce Harper. Folks, there isn't going to be a Trout or Harper this season. That doesn't mean that one, two or a handful of rookies won't have a significant fantasy impact – they certainly will – but elite production like that duo offered last season rarely comes for from guys in their first full season. In this piece we'll discuss some of the youngsters that everyone is asking questions about on a daily basis. A couple are already in the big leagues trying to make the case that they deserve to be every day player this season, while a handful of others are chomping at the bit in the minors trying to prove they deserve a shot in the bigs.
Now I don’t want to get all religious on you here, but as I look at one of my teams sitting at the very bottom of the standings in one league, I am reminded of a very important biblical quote that you should always pay very close attention to, especially if you’re dealing with a certain amount of fantasy frustration. “Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves.” You know how some coaches have inspirational quotes hanging in their offices? Well, this one is hanging in mine and it is specifically directed towards the sharks in every league who think they smell blood in the water just one week into the season. Three guys hurt on my roster isn’t exactly chum, but there they are, circling and ready to strike.
OK, yes, I saw the final strike called in the Texas/Tampa Bay game on Monday. Yes, it was an ugly call. Was it the worst call I’ve ever seen to end a game? Maybe. There have been so many over the years. But rather than dwell on something that has very little impact on your fantasy baseball team and will, in the grand scheme of things, mean absolutely nothing, I’d rather discuss something that may actually help you this season. I know it’s painful – like dentist chair painful – but let’s talk closers.