Brian, Fantasy Prophet

Fantasy Prophet: Week 4


by Brian Dorsey

Week 3 has come and gone, so let’s go ahead and find out what’s on our plate for this week. Here are the Top-10 Two Start Pitchers in each league, some interesting notes, and the weather reports.

Two Start Pitchers

AL Top-10

  1. Jared Weaver (OAK, at TB): Put it all together last year. Continued success this year. Look for a big week.
  2. Justin Masterson (KC, DET): Favorable home match ups for a team and pitcher who are surging.
  3. Clay Buchholz (at BAL, SEA): Needs to keep the ball in the park. Seattle is looking tempting.
  4. Matt Harrison (TOR, at OAK): Outside of Jose Bautista, Harrison should have a good week.
  5. A.J. Burnett (CHW, TOR): Striking fools out again. Early season successes continue.
  6. Gio Gonzalez (at LAA, TEX): Proving last year wasn’t a fluke.
  7. Colby Lewis (TOR, at OAK): Been getting rocked lately, but the A’s should be stifled.
  8. Gavin Floyd (at NYY, BAL): Nothing seems to be working in ChiTown. Floyd should pitch well, but don’t expect any wins.
  9. Zach Britton (BOS, at CHW): Baltimore’s youth movement is headed by this guy.
  10. Bartolo Colon (CHW, TOR): He’s big. He’s fat. And he’s pitching well again. AL’s version of Aaron Harang.

NL Top-10

  1. Cliff Lee (at ARI, NYM): Remember what the Doc did last week? It’s Lee’s turn.
  2. Matt Cain (at PIT, at WAS): Got hit hard last week, but don’t anticipate on that happening against WK 4 opponents.
  3. Derek Lowe (at SD, STL): Looks like Lowe from 8 years ago, and I could strikeout 14 Padres.
  4. Jaime Garcia (at HOU, at ATL): In total control. Proving to be a must start, no matter the opponent.
  5. Ricky Nolasco (LAD, at CIN): Horrible in his career vs. the Dodgers (6.00 ERA), but throwing the ball extremely well.
  6. Matt Garza (COL, at ARI): Has never pitched well against the Rockies, but great source of Ks.
  7. Chris Narveson (CIN, at HOU): Not sure I’m ready to jump head first into Narveson’s pond, but I’ll test the waters.
  8. Jordan Zimmerman (NYM, SF): Youngster is up and down, but he’s also facing anemic offenses.
  9. Jon Garland (at FLA, SD): One bad start, one good start this year. You could pencil him in for 10 Ks against the Friars.
  10. Dustin Moseley (ATL, at LAD): Look, he’s not going to get a win this week, but the kid is dealing.

Weather Report

OK. Any game could get rained out this week. Except for…

Games that Won’t Rain-Out: Cardinals at Astros (3, Tue-Thu); Brewers at Astros (3, Fri-Sun); Reds at Brewers (3, Mon-Wed); Phillies at Diamondbacks (3, Mon-Wed); Cubs at Diamondbacks (4, Thu-Sun); Angels at Rays (3, Fri-Sun).

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Weather provided by espn.com

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Butler, Players of the Week

Players of Week 3


by Ryan Butler

Juan Uribe (5/2/9/0/.450): I’m shocked that this renowned speedster didn’t swipe even one bag this week. He sure finally woke up at the plate, though. I had been feeling rather silly about drafting him at all, and even worse about making him my starting SS in one of my leagues. Then week three happened and I am sleeping much better.

Jose Bautista (10/4/4/0/.474): As great as he was last season, no player had more doubters entering the season than did Bautista. He seems hell-bent on proving them all wrong, making week three the best week yet of what has been a very strong start to 2011.

Ryan Braun (9/3/9/1/.480): “Ryan Brawn” is more like it, and he displayed his namesake in spades, helping my opponent in week three’s matchup, rotobrian, salvage some respectability in what would have otherwise been a shameful defeat. He started the year hot and hasn’t looked back.

Daisuke Matsusaka (15.0/2/12/0.00/0.40): The highly unpredictable little right-hander from Tokyo had himself a great week. He was a huge help to the BoSox in their efforts to right the ship after a disastrous start to the season. He wasn’t a great help to most fantasy owners, though; he is only owned in 16% of Yahoo! public leagues.

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Poll, Rotoballs

Fast and Slow


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Jared, Three Down, Three Up

Three Up, Three Down


by Jared Cothren

↑Three Up

↑Starlin Castro- The slick fielding shortstop for the Chicago Cubs is off to a fast start this season. 15 games into the season and he’s still batting over the .400 mark (.418) and leading the league in hits (28). The Cubs have a lot of confidence in the young 21-year old and placed him in the leadoff spot in the order and he responded by hitting .536 this last week. He’ll have opportunities to score lots of runs and has potential to hit well over the .300 mark for the year.

"I dont look good in pinstripes."

↑Lance Berkman- Berkman must have taken a sip from the fountain of youth as he’s swinging the bat as if he were 7 years younger. Berkman is on a tear (.417 with six homers and 12 RBI’s this past week). If he is available in your league, pick him up and enjoy it while it lasts as his deal with the devil could run out soon.

↑Aaron Harang- Harang needed to get out of hitter friendly Cincinnati and there is no refuge better than the pitcher friendly alleys of Petco Park. So far this season, Harang is 3-0, with a 1.50 ERA and 0.94 WHIP, with his best start coming on the road last week against Houston (6 IP, 3 H, 1 ER and 8 K). For a pitcher that was always susceptible to the long ball, he has not given up a home run yet this season. He’s still available in most leagues and worth an add in 10+ team leagues.

↓Three Down

↓Joe Nathan- One of the first closer casualties of the 2011 season, Nathan has lost his job as the primary closer of the Twins. He’s been awful, blowing back to back save opportunities. He actually approached Ron Gardenhire to have himself removed as closer and out of the backend of the rotation. This means he will not be the 7th or 8th inning guy, unless there is a considerable lead.

"Money, money, money!"

↓Carl Crawford- Crawford is off to a bad start in Beantown and the prized off-season free agent has already found himself demoted to the 7th hole in the batting order. Although it’s too early to consider him a bust, his start is very troubling. He has seven hits in 55 at bats with only one extra base hit. Add that he only has one RBI, three runs scored and two stolen bases, he is definitely downgraded in our player rankings.

↓Francisco Liriano- The Minnesota Twins are lucky it didn’t get the “three down hat trick,” as I considered adding Joe Mauer to this list as well. I cut Mauer some slack due to the viral infection, but Liriano has definitely earned his way onto this list. In three starts this season, Liriano is 0-3 with a 9.42 ERA, nine BB, and only 12 K. He has not made it to the 6th inning in any of his starts and his worst outing came last week against Kansas City when he gave up seven earned runs in only five innings. Keep him on the bench until he pulls it together.

ßBuster of the Week: Manny Ramirez- As you heard, Manny Ramirez retired for once again failing to pass the league mandated drug tests for PEDs. He was not off to a blazing start anyways (1-for-17 and batting .059). This closes the book on another storied slugger who, like Bonds and Sosa and Palmeiro, turned to performance enhancers and eventually got caught.

ωWAG of the Week: Minka Kelly (Girlfriend of Derek Jeter)- Jeter is the modern day Mickey Mantle. With the quality of women he’s been linked to, nobody would mind being his Eskimo Brother. Follow these links:

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Butler, Players of the Week

Players of Week Two


by Ryan Butler

Here they are, the best performances from Week Two:

Matt Kemp- I didn’t think it would be possible for him to match his outstanding Week One performance, but he actually bettered it in Week Two. He hit .520 (13/25) with five runs scored, eight RBI, two homers, and two steals. I have never been a fan of him or the team he plays for, but it is nice to see a great talent play up to (or over) his level of ability.

Lance Berkman- No one saw this coming. After a dismal 2010 (48/14/58/3/.248) the Cardinals inexplicably gave him $8 mil to play for them this season. It looked like a bad contract, but if his Week Two production is any indication at all, he may end up being a bargain. He went 10-for-24 on his way to an incredible 9/6/8/0/.417 week. Ownership of Berkman has risen 7% over the past week on Yahoo! leagues.

Troy Tulowitzki- He killed it in Week Two, going 7/4/8/0/.519. He finished last season as the hottest hitter in baseball and he has started 2011 in similar fashion. He has usurped Hanley Ramirez as the best fantasy SS. Health is the only concern with Tulowitzki.

Dan Haren- The 1-2 punch of Haren and Jered Weaver is looking mighty tough to beat thus far. Haren’s K/BB rate of 27/2 is unreal, as is his 1.17 ERA and 0.65 WHIP. He won two games this week in 15.1 IP with 14 Ks.

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Brian, Pick Ups

Pick Ups of the Week (Week 3)


by Brian Dorsey

Every week we will be posting players who are worthy of picking up and are owned in under 50% of Yahoo! public leagues.

Catchers:

1. Nick Hundley, SD (43% Y!): Hundley wasn’t on anyone’s radar coming into the season, but Big Nick swings a Big Stick. Despite hitting in Petco, he’s got three HR with nine RBI and a .348 BA.

First Basemen:

1. Justin Smoak, SEA (18%): In his last seven games, Smoak is hitting .421 and his K/BB ratio is 3/6. He’s seeing the ball very well.

2. Mark Trumbo, LAA (4%): Kendrys Morales will be coming back, so Trumbo might not be the Angels starting baseman for much longer, but if he keeps hitting the way he did this past week (two HR, four R), he’ll have a spot somewhere in the lineup.

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Brian, Fantasy Prophet, Weather

Fantasy Prophet: Week 3


by Brian Dorsey

Week 2 has come and gone, so let’s go ahead and find out what’s on our plate for this week. Here are the Top-10 Two Start Pitchers in each league, some interesting notes, and the weather reports.

Two Start Pitchers

AL Top-10

  1. David Price (CHW, TOR)
  2. Max Scherzer (SEA, CHW)
  3. Edwin Jackson (TB, DET)
  4. Brett Anderson (BOS, SEA)
  5. Ricky Romero (BOS, TB)
  6. John Danks (TB, DET)
  7. Francisco Liriano (BAL, CLE)
  8. Colby Lewis (LAA, KC)
  9. Carl Pavano (BAL, CLE)
  10. James Shields (CHW, TOR)

Notes: Jackson has played for both Tampa Bay and Detroit. His career ERA vs. Tampa and Detroit? 1.44 (TB) and 3.33 (DET)

NL Top-10

  1. Roy Halladay (MIL, SD)
  2. Cliff Lee (MIL, SD)
  3. Josh Johnson (PIT, COL)
  4. Tim Lincecum (COL, ATL)
  5. Shuan Marcum (PHI, HOU)
  6. Carlos Zambrano (SD, LAD)
  7. Tim Hudson (LAD, SF)
  8. Travis Wood (PIT, STL)
  9. Hiroki Kuroda (ATL, CHC)
  10. Wandy Rodriguez (NYM, MIL)

Notes: A lot of top tier pitchers going twice this week, so be thankful if you’re not playing a manager who has one or more of the top five from this category. Rodriguez is interesting here because both of his starts are on the road, and he’s been terrible on the road thus far and has never been a great road pitcher. But I have a feeling CitiField, with it’s enormous dimensions and it’s strikeout happy hitters, will be a nice place for him to pitch.

Weather Report

Potential Rain-Outs: Pirates at Reds (50 percent, Monday); Padres at Cubs (80, Tuesday); Diamondbacks at Reds (50, Tuesday); Indians at Royals (40, Tuesday); Astros at Mets (50, Tuesday); Nationals at Cardinals (80, Tuesday); Diamondbacks at Reds (50, Wednesday); Indians at Twins (40, Friday); Reds at Cardinals (40, Friday); White Sox at Tigers (50, Saturday); Yankees at Orioles (50, Saturday); Nationals at Pirates (60, Saturday).

You’ll notice the Reds might not play a single game this week due to weather. If you have a lot of Reds on your team, you might want to find some replacement players.

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Weather provided by espn.com

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