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OK, so we’re pulling in a little late to the station today. What can you do? Father’s Day weekend had a few more festivities than I expected and like a good dad I was sound asleep on the couch by 8:30 pm on Sunday. So again, rather than just stick to the top and bottom performances from Sunday, we’re going to splash in a few random fantasy baseball thoughts and some news for today that might be integral to setting your lineups for the week. Remember, the games don’t start until 7:00pm (ET) today so there’s plenty of time. And away we go…
Another Happy Sunday to you all and I hope you’re having an enjoyable Memorial Day Weekend. I’m aware that this weekend is likely filled with all sorts of barbecues and celebrations and your time is limited here so we’re going to make this recap short and sweet today. With so many other distractions in life, including a significant other who is likely standing over you right now wondering why in the world you could be sitting in front of a computer when it’s time to leave for your brother’s house and your kids are in the car waiting, sometimes you just want the straight news. Give me the important stuff, short and sweet, and we can move on from there. So while you’re slathering yourself full of sunscreen right now, here’s a look at the Saturday highlights.
Given the way the Red Sox pitching staff has opened the season, it’s hard to argue against any decision John Farrell makes. So when he opted to go with Junichi Tazawa for his new closer instead of the well-proven Koji Uehara, there was little backlash from the fantasy community. Sure, there were some grumblings from the eager-beaver waiver hounds who remain glued to their league’s waiver wire and snatched up Uehara moments after Joel Hanrahan was hurt, but most of them were still fairly quick on the draw the following morning when it was announced that the choice made was actually Tazawa.
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.
Though the events from Monday remain unresolved and our thoughts linger with those affected in both the city of Boston and around the world, the show must go on. Major League Baseball is not pausing the season and your fantasy leagues aren’t shutting down. Obviously it’s okay to be distracted but you still have to pay attention to what’s going on. There are job battles still being fought over, players coming on and off the DL, hot starts to consider and cold starts to shake off. You need to make sure you’re still dialed in and up to date on all the latest happenings.
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.
Offense first – that’s what they say. Pitching may win championships in the real world, but this is fantasy baseball we’re talking about and in fantasy, it is a dominant offense that wins it for you. It’s said so many times that you would think it would be ingrained in people’s heads by now, yet we still see starting pitchers get taken in the first round and people reaching for “aces” faster than they really should. It’s an age old debate that leaves most scratching their heads as to how and why it is still even up for discussion. Well, if there were ever a day to prove the point for the pro-offense side of the argument, it was Sunday.
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.
This is a big week we’re heading into as interleague play is almost upon us and every team is gearing up to play a full slate of games. Hard to believe we’re already at that point as the season just seems to be flying by. Since yesterday’s format seemed to give way to me covering a little more information, we’re going to stick with it in an effort to make sure that you have everything you need to set up the strongest lineup possible for the week. There’s plenty to cover, so let’s get started.
“Sometimes you win. Sometimes you lose. Sometimes…it rains.” Truer words were never spoken, especially if you were one of the many that was sucked into the hype of the C.J. Wilson/Yu Darvish match-up that was supposed to take place on Friday night. Though it was hardly Sandy Koufax vs Don Larsen, people were building the drama with constant talk of “the pitcher who left them and the guy who took his place.” For fans of the game, it was a marquee match-up, but for fantasy owners, it was really just another start.