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Are you there, Dr. Andrews? It’s me, Jacoby. Red Sox Nation and fantasy owners around the world took it in the you-know-where Friday when Jacoby Ellsbury slid into second base and Tampa Bay shortstop Reid Brignac fell onto the outfielder’s shoulder. You could tell by the look on Ellsbury’s face – or maybe it was the obscenities that he was screaming as he lay there in pain – that this was going to be bad. He was helped off the field and immediately rushed for an MRI. A shoulder subluxation is what they’re calling it right now and owners are looking at missing their first-round draft choice for a minimum of six weeks. Further tests are going to be run – it won’t be less time, but it certainly could be more.
If you caught me on the Fantasy Alarm Podcast on Tuesday night with Jeff Mans and Ashley Couturier, you heard me saying that I was getting ready to sit down and watch a series of games I had taped on the DVR and was gearing up to talk about middle infielders. And while I think we’ve got an excellent crop of young guys to discuss such as Dee Gordon and Jason Kipnis, I find myself being drawn to a relative old timer in the fantasy world. In all my years of playing fantasy baseball, I’ve never once owned this guy and yet, for all of the reasons I can give to avoid him, especially these days, I still find myself highlighting him at various points of the season.
So it was Opening Day on Thursday….again. And while some people will mock the fact that MLB pretty much has four different Opening Days, I’m going to relish in it. For me, the offseason drags on for far too long. Sure, football is a nice distraction, but I’ll take a heated pitcher’s duel for nine innings any day. And that’s exactly what we saw on Thursday – outstanding pitcher’s duels. Roy Halladay squaring off against Erik Bedard, John Lester versus Justin Verlander, Johan Santana against Tommy Hanson, and Stephen Strasburg taking on Ryan Dempster. Some of the other matchups were good, but the show that these eight pitchers put on the other day was top notch. Maybe some of the offenses each guy faced were a tad anemic (yes, Pittsburgh, I’m looking in your direction), but overall, you have to love watching a guy standing on the hill pulling strings on pitches left and right, making hitters look just plain silly in the batter’s box.