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Tuesday night was so loaded with action that it’s tough to know where to start here. Do I appeal to your traditional baseball side and talk about the hot, young starting pitching that we saw or do I go lowest common denominator and appeal to your inner thug? Decisions , decisions. Well, why don’t I do both and we can cover it all? And since that Dodgers/Diamondbacks game got pretty crazy and had some fairly big names involved, let’s just lead with that, shall we?
In 1983 Rickey Henderson ran his way to 130 steals for the Athletics, a modern day baseball record (Hugh Nicol actually stole 138 bases in 1887 for the Cincinnati Red Stockings). Others of the modern era have hit triple-digits – Lou Brock, Vince Coleman Maury Wills – but those just aren't numbers we see anymore. Nowadays we're lucky to find guys who steal half as many bags. So why is it that you hear so many people in the fantasy game say 'I don't worry about steals early, I can find them late.' Is that an accurate statement? How should you look at steals for the coming season, and which players should you consider targeting?
Every year we get the rush of people who, acting like it's a holiday sale at Walmart, aren't afraid to run over their competitor to add the hot new toy to their basket (in this case we're talking hot shot youngster to their fantasy team). Believe me I understand the temptation. Just look at what guys like Trout and Harper did last season. But for every successful rookie standout there are tons of youngsters who fail to live up to the overblown expectations of many in the fantasy game. I'll try to lend some sanity here. I'll then touch on some of the news of the day including will Manny Ramirez play in 2013? Is Joe Saunders a reliable innings eater? What were the Phillies thinking signing an unreliable veteran righty? Is Mike Napoli every going to sign with the Red Sox? Is Jose Valverde's career as a closer over even though he had 35 saves last year?
As we gear up for the second half, it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t get a chance to vent our frustrations and call out those players that fell way short of expectations and basically screwed us in the first half. We’re always so quick to praise those players who returned a significant value and helped us along (2012 First Half Best Value All Stars), but let’s also bring a little accountability to the forefront here and acknowledge those that cost us a bundle on draft day only to turn around and put up a stinker of a first half. I present to you the 2012 First Half Worst Value All Bust Team.
Desmond Jennings came into the 2012 season with an immense amount of hype. So far he has failed to live up to expectations. Will that change as we move forward or were expectations out of whack? Starlin Castro has been a terrific option this season, but does he have any room to grow? Who is the best pitcher in baseball? It may not be Justin Verlander or R.A. Rickey. Which five bullpen arms have impressed me to the point that I felt the need to tell you about them? Read on to find out.
Adam Jones has been an outright star over the first third of the 2012 season. What are the odds that he continues his assault on opposing pitchers? This is also a big week to ten days for some pretty important outfield pieces who are trying to work their way back from injury. You want power? We've got Yoenis Cespedes closing in on a return, and Michael Morse isn't likely to be too far behind. Need some speed? Cameron Maybin hopes to return this week. What about a combo player who helps with his bat and wheels? For those of you interested in that Desmond Jennings has been cleared to ramp up his activity. Today, in Round the Bases, it's a smorgasbord of outfielders for your perusal.
While I could sit here and run down the concept of interleague play and talk about how it cheapens the meaning of the World Series because these teams have now all played each other several times over a few year span, I’ll take the glass is half full approach here and relish in the fact that when we near interleague play, the week is filled with a full slate of games every day. No slow Monday or Thursday here; every team is playing. And with that full slate of games comes the usual excitement and fanfare that all full baseball days bring. But on Monday, we had the excitement of a number of firsts. And nothing’s better than your first, right?
Well, we might as well lead with this today, right?
Welcome to the very special Hurricane Irene Edition of the Tuesday Top Ten. Just days after many in the northeast felt the rumble from the earthquake, we were subjected to Hurricane Irene and all of its aftermath. Before you start thinking the end of the world is near because of all these natural disasters, just remember that Adam Dunn and Mark Reynolds both struck out three times since you began reading this article, so all is right in the world again. Now, without further adieu, here is this week’s edition of the Tuesday Top Ten fantasy baseball headlines for August 30, 2011.
Another week is in the books in the 2011 fantasy baseball season, and the news just never stops. The heat might have finally broken here in the Northeast, but divisional races are still heating up, and likely so are the standings in your fantasy leagues. We have news about an injured Mets' star that actually is ending in good news, a pitcher in the Bronx who spun a good tale today, and a closer in Philly who is looking good for now. We have news on a number of prospects, some good, some not so good, and some doing some things for the first time. Finally, we have news on an old train who seems to have finally found a destination spot, and that could be on your fantasy teams as we roll in tonight's version of Rounding The Bases.