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Justin Verlander is humming right along dominating batters as he always does. However, there are a few cracks emerging in the facade. Will the damn hold back the water, or is there reason to be concerned that we might be dealing with something that isn't quite as effective as one would think at first glance? Billy Butler started slowly but has picked it up of late. Were you honestly nervous? Howie Kendrick continues to get it done amidst little fanfare. Ike Davis is awful. Period. Michael Morse was white hot, then ice cold. What's the truth with him? On the bump Patrick Corbin has been fortunate, Matt Moore has one huge flaw he must overcome and Julio Teheran just might be figuring things out.
Whether they’re hot or cold, streaks play an all-important role both in the real baseball world and the fantasy one. You get a player who goes on a hot streak and he can carry your team for a pretty significant amount of time. If he’s on a cold one, you best be getting him out of your lineup fast or he’s liable to do some seriously damage to your team. Cold streaks are always feared, but when you’ve got someone on a hot streak, there’s nothing better. Not only do you reap the benefits in the standings, but the value of the player grows tremendously on the trade market. But like all good things, hot streaks always come to an end. It’s inevitable. And on Tuesday night, one of the better hot streaks we’ve seen recently finally came to a close.
One of the best illustrations of how history repeats itself is found in the closer situation for fantasy baseball owners. Every year we see the same thing over and over again. You’ve got your select few who have fantastic job security and the talent to back it up and then you’ve got the rest – a disgusting revolving door of blown saves and ratios that make you cringe and wonder how it could ever be that bad. Well, we’ve got one more joining the party this week as the Tigers have finally caved in and gone back to the well from which they drank last season. Yep, that’s right….it’s the return of Papa Grande.
At no point in the season do 50 at-bats or 18 innings mean more than they do right now. A guy goes out and hits .222 in spring and people drop that player 14 spots in their rankings. Another player hits .386 and guess what, he's now a potential breakout star in fantasy baseball. I always caution people not to read too much into small sample sizes, and I also tell people not to put an overabundance of value into spring stats. Maybe a batter faced a lot of Double and Triple-A pitchers and he hit .480 off them. Maybe he hit only .190 against big league arms. You see him hitting .320 and think he's had a great spring. Is that really accurate? Maybe a pitcher, unconcerned with the results, went out and threw his curve ball 40 percent of the time and got hammered because he was working on honing a new grip with the pitch. Does he all of a sudden stink? The bottom line is that spring numbers don't always tell the whole story. I'll touch on a few players though that really stood out this spring and give you my thoughts on what some reasonable expectations should be for the players in 2013.
Just a quickie again today, folks. Time constraints have a hold on me again today, so as much as I would love to ooh and aah about some killer young starting pitching, I’m going to have to keep it brief. One thing that I will reiterate to all you fantasy hounds out there is that if there’s one thing you can take away from yesterday and this first month of baseball, it’s that pitching will always be the deepest position out there, and if you do your due diligence prior to your draft, you can build yourself a spectacular pitching staff without having to invest in one of these top flight aces that will cost you an arm and a leg in bid dollars or a pick as high as the second or third round. We all know that offense wins fantasy championships, so if you load up on the big hitters first and then draft some of the better pitchers from the third or fourth tier or even lower, you can still come out ahead and win your league.
We are all looking for value at the draft table. One of the easiest ways to determine the value of a player is to consider what position he plays. With the growing trend toward people drafting based on “position scarcity,” I thought it would be worth my time, and my time is extremely valuable so it must be important, to give a list of some of the bigger name players who qualify at more than one position on the diamond (to be listed below the player has to have appeared in at least 20 games at each position – the standard qualifier in almost all fantasy leagues). To be clear, I'm not saying you should draft Mike Aviles before J.J. Hardy simply because he qualifies at more than one spot. What I am saying though is if you are trying to decide between Mike Aviles and Jason Bartlett that maybe you should lean toward Aviles because he will be able to help you out in two spots (in Aviles case he'll also qualify at middle and corner infield, further increasing his usefulness).
It was a shortened schedule in the Major Leagues which means there isn't much to talk about in Rounding The Bases, but we have one of the most devastating injuries to date happening, as well as a middle infielder who goes down, while one that just came back who left the yard. A few outfielders are showing more muscle than anticipated, while another Mets' player goes down due to injury. As we get closer to June it means that each game is more important, and your subscription to the Fantasy Alarm service is even more vital to your championship, so visit the homepage now and get all of your player updates sent to your cell phone or to your email inbox tomorrow!
It was a huge schedule on Wednesday as there were 17 games in total with doubleheaders included, and there is a ton to talk about. We have a elite player who takes a leave, one of the best back on the field, and a couple of younger hitters who won't be on it for a little while. We have one of the hotter prospects in baseball headed back to the farm, and a disappointing closer who seems to have found his groove. There is all of that news and so much more as we take you around the box scores and give you every piece of fantasy relevant happenings and how it should affect your team.