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To come up with the 20 biggest draft busts — pitcher’s edition! — I used Rudy Gamble’s fantasy baseball player rater. Some of the schmohawkiest pitchers, like Carlos Silva, I left off. Not because he was better than expected, but because he was as expected. That’s not a bust. This is similar to Tim Gunn’s monkey house analogy that goes something like this, “If you visit the monkey house, it smells like crap. If you live in the monkey house, it no longer smells like crap.” In each entry of the 20 biggest draft busts of 2008, you’ll find the Average Draft Position (ADP) and the Forget the Plunger, Call the Plumber (FPCP) metric, which I made up to illustrate how badly some of these fantasy baseball pitchers shat your proverbial house. Anyway, here’s the 20 biggest draft busts of 2008, the pitchers:

20. Daniel Cabrera – No, this is the year for the breakout! No, wait… I mean, next year!… Or 2010! Yes, definitely by 2010. ADP, 329 — FPCP, 1.3

19. Matt Cain – His numbers are actually close to what I was worried Lincecum would do. Good Ks, decent ERA but an 8-14 record. ADP, 131 — FPCP, 2.1

18. Jeremy Bonderman – Frankly, I don’t know anyone that drafted him, so maybe he doesn’t deserve to be on this list. Then again, he has an average draft position of 169 so someone drafted him. Hmm… Maybe fantasy baseball is really popular in Michigan and these numbers are skewed by Tigers fans. I’ll need a statistician with lots of free time to figure this out. Email me at totallyeffinbored [at] razzball.com. ADP, 169 — FPCP, 2.5

17. Josh Beckett – Not really an awful year, but you wanted more than a 12-10 record. This is the problem with Wins. “When I say no rhyme, you say no reason…” “No rhyme…” “No reason…” “No rhyme…” “No reason…” ADP, 44 — FPCP, 3.7

16. Carlos Zambrano – 130 Ks in almost 190 innings is a major problem. Another problem, never knowing if you were going to get “Thanks for the no-hitter, Big Z!” or “Z just soiled my team’s linens.” ADP, 66 — FPCP, 4.9

15. Johnny Cueto – Hey, it’s the wunderkind! Hey, wunderkind, how are ya doing? Say hello to ya mother for me. Undrafted according to Mock Draft Central, but you know you drafted him. FPCP, 5.5

14. John Maine – I had high (big) apple pie in the sky hopes for this schmohawk. He gave you some stretches where he was decent. Other times, he gave you stretch marks on your ulcer. ADP, 133 — FPCP, 6.2

13. Jeff Francis – Luckily for fantasy baseballers (<–that sounds like something my Mom would say), Jeff Francis pitches at Coors so it makes dropping him feel much easier. ADP, 152 — FPCP, 6.9

12. J.J. Putz/Chad Cordero – This was supposed to be for just starters, but, well, these closers busted. Why did I put them at 12? Cause it’s my list. ADP, High — FPCP, 7.4

11. Francisco Liriano – What, you drafted him in March for six solid starts in August? Yeah, a’ight. ADP, 112 — FPCP, 9.1

10. Pedro Martinez – Watching Pedro this year, Nelson de la Rosa rolled over in his shoe box. ADP, 160 — FPCP, 9.5

9. Yovani Gallardo – At least he had the decency to go down early in the year. It still hurt watching him grab his knee like he was just put in the Figure Four Leg Lock. ADP, 135 — FPCP, 10.1

8. Ian Snell – He was supposed to be a hidden gem at the end of the draft. Instead, he was the backwash at the end of a draft beer. ADP, 154 — FPCP, 10.3

7. Chien-Ming Wang – If you drafted Wang, his injury was a blow. And that’s the only time it’s upsetting to see “blow” and “Wang” in the same sentence. ADP, 146 — FPCP, 11.2

6. Rich Hill – Right now Rich Hill is reenacting spring training using vegetables, and whenever Sweet Lou Potato tells him he’s going to the minors, he mashes him. Or not! ADP, 113 — FPCP, 12.1

5. John Smoltz – Sadly, this might be the last we see of him. Hey, I just got schmaltzy for Smoltzy. (<–alliteration in lieu of wit) ADP, 82 — FPCP, 13.9

4. Fausto Carmona – When Sabathia stood up from the Indians seesaw, Carmona fell and never recovered. ADP, 106 — FPCP, 15.6

3. Erik Bedard – It could’ve been worse. He could’ve been healthy and terrible. BTW, I picked Bedard to win the AL Cy Young. See Verlander, Justin. ADP, 39 — FPCP, 17.1

2. Aaron Harang – Instead of 184.1 innings of a 4.78 ERA with a 6-17 record, Harang should’ve put a sweaty glass down on my Reggie Jackson rookie card while recording a sex tape with my girlfriend. ADP, 72 — FPCP, 19.5

1. Justin Verlander – 200 innings of suck?! For crimey’s sake, man. Help a brother out — get injured! Take a knee! Something! BTW II, Rudy picked Verlander to win the AL Cy Young. Ladies and gentlemen, your Razzball ‘perts! ADP, 62 — FPCP, 19.7

From Around The Web

  1. Garrett says:
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    I think Phil Hughes needs a shout out here. He did an incredible job of putting me in a deep hole (usually not a bad thing, but in fantasy baseball a terrible thing) in ERA/WHIP. Maybe I was the only one who drafted him.

  2. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Garrett: Hughes literally just missed the cut. According to Point Shares…

    http://razzball.com/razzball-2008-player-rater/

    …and his ADP of 174 he should’ve netted you about the same as Bonderman and you’ll see Bonderman on the list. Hughes was a judgment call on my part because I felt like he went down so early with injury that the chances of replacing him were better and it was less torturous to lose him. Bonderman made the list because he was drafted at 169, five before Hughes on average. So you see, very close.

  3. Oh the humanity! says:
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    I actually drafted Bedard, Harang and Cain (rather high!), and traded for Gallardo.

    Suffice it to say, my attempt at a pitching-heavy strategy failed catastrophically this season…

  4. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Oh the humanity!: Sometimes you get the breaks and sometimes you get the skidmarks…. Or whatever that cliche is that says your luck was crap.

  5. peter says:
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    Snell was bad. Worse? I thought I was going to get a BETTER hidden gem in Tom Gorzelanny.

    I was also going to complain about Chris R. Young. BUT, outside of Pujols’ ball hitting him in the face, I guess he did exactly what was expected: a very nice ERA at home – atrocious on the road. Literally, he’s a bigger homeschooler than Wandy Rodriguez.

  6. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @peter: True and yes. Gorzelanny and Young just missed the cut too. There could’ve been a bust list of 30, but I must call it somewhere, ya know? Oh, and good call on Young, he’s a total home schooler.

  7. peter says:
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    @Grey: Ha – why stop at 30?

    Out of curiosity, what do you think of Kelvim Escobar’s bust size? [wocka wocka wocka] He was out all year, but a whole lotta drafting happened before he got hurt.

  8. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @peter: Let’s see Escobar was drafted on average 162.47, which rounds down to 162, which is real close to Pedro. Escobar didn’t do a damn thing, which meant you should’ve bailed on him early or at least had him DL’d, so you basically threw that draft pick away. That hurts, but the less someone played I actually marked in their favor. My reasoning was if someone’s hurt, you fill him in and start getting value in that spot. Whereas someone like Pedro, he was healthy enough to give you a bunch of games of very little value that ended up hurting you.

    Also, the guy who played poorly for a part of the season then was hurt (Wang, Bonderman), I concluded hurt your team more.

    And the higher a pitcher was drafted and got hurt (Smoltz) or didn’t play (Liriano) was also more of a bust. Because the replacement player off the draft board would’ve had a higher impact.

    Finally, Escobar’s ’07 was a bit of a fluke and I felt the general feeling was he would not repeat it.

  9. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Big Game James gonna step up?

  10. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @BigFatHippo: I hope so.

    BTW, I just noticed something. Eric Byrnes got the boot from the announcing team. “Nobody shows up Jeanne Zelasko’s hair!”

  11. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Wasn’t Byrnes one of your busts? Razzball curse strikes again.

  12. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Grey: He busted himself. I just reported it. I missed the announcement, who were those guys that sang the national anthem? Boys II Men?

  13. Steve says:
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    @Boyz: Some classic Elias-type stats in the build-up I’m seeing. Apparently it is the first time since ’63 that a team has started four different pitchers. In a series that were under 27 or some shizz.
    Elias are also reporting that the Phillies are the first World Series team with a 2B with slicked-back hair who has a predeliction for hookers, to sport blue buttons on their caps.

  14. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Los Lonely Boys, don’t know anything about em cept they’re Mexican, they’re country, they’re lonely, and they can sing.

  15. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: Ha! Wow, Elias was busy today, but I think Tommy Herr like him some hoes too.

    @BigFatHippo: You knew more than me.

  16. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: @Steve: If the Rays don’t win this Elias will be reporting the first time in history a Phillie Phanatic shit on a Rayhawk and a pigeon shit on a Rocky statue in the same day.

  17. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Pointless factoid: Utley was 15-1 here to be the first player to go deep (on the field) in the World Series.
    Some pretty poor odds-making there…

  18. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @BigFatHippo: Too bad no one’s thought of combining the Rayhawk and the Rally Monkey. Shaved monkeys are great inspiration.

  19. BigFatHippo says:
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    Pitching and defense wins championships Boyz.

  20. Steve says:
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    @Grey: There aren’t many things funnier than a monkey doing human-type stuff.
    I’m ignoring all the anthropological implications of that statement, obviously.

  21. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: I don’t follow. Is that why it’s pointless? Like, sixteen days since the last Monday is next Tuesday.

  22. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Shaved monkeys taste better, according to Bucky in the comic Get Fuzzy. Don’t know if you read the funny papers but I’m a fanatic.

  23. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Should have said trivial ;-)

  24. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: Did you see the monkey bartender that I linked to the other day? It was wonderful!

    @BigFatHippo: And better teams. They never mention that when they talk about what wins championships.

  25. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Good point, not to mention hotter teams. Marlins in 97 as a wild card comes to mind. Doesn’t seem to factor into this series, we don’t really know who the better team is. Should be a good one.

  26. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @BigFatHippo: The Rays do have the better pitching which should be enough, but Citizen’s Bank could turn this into a slugfest, which the Rays might lose.

    I wouldn’t surprise if it goes 7 games.

    @Steve: Are you watching? BTW, what do they call New Zealand? Like Australia is Down Under, is New Zealand “Down Under and a little to the Right?”

  27. Steve says:
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    @Grey: I was in a bar having a couple of beers in a bar at lunchtime (it’s Friday here!) and was watching. Back to my ‘workspace’ and the big screens by the desk now, though :-)

    Do you have that monkey bartender link to hand? To throw a bit of pop culture back at ya – are you familiar with the work of Lancelot Link – Secret Chimp?

    As far as ‘Downunder’ goes, we don’t really have our own descriptor, as it were. We just get lumped in with Australia (Razzballers excpeted, obviously).

  28. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: @Steve: Lancelot Chimp? I’d pay to see a Monty Python skit with Sir Lancelot the Chimp.

    Shields looks good bee tee dubayoo.

  29. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Steve: You need to start a movement to give New Zealand a nickname.

    Here in the Bootheel they’d call it Down Yonder, or down there past Florida. Anything south of the country is “down there past Florida”.

    Flyin Hawiian? He’s from down there past Florida.

  30. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: The Baron’s up to no good! The Duchess is pretty! What’s Lancelot going to do? What can he do? Looks funny, but, and no offense to any chimp readers, an hour long?

    @BigFatHippo: I’d like to see Lancelot the Chimp in an episode of Inside the Actor’s Studio.

    BTW, this is Tim McCarver, “You’re right that was a safety squeeze. Here’s how I know, besides the fact that you just said it was.” Doode’s an idiot.

  31. Steve says:
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    @Grey: You do wonder what’s going through a commentator’s mind sometimes.

    Dave O’Brien just crapped on for about a minute or so about Myers’ boxing history – that he was pretty handy as a junior, that his Dad helped train Larry Holmes and Michael Spinks (which, let’s face it, is pretty notable) and that Holmes said that Myers (Brett) could have been a pro.

    Did you not hear? The guy beats women…

  32. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: Dave O’Brien? Wow, ESPN Internacionale (<– there should be an accent on that somewhere) goes all out. That’s actually much more interesting than what we’re getting. I wonder what Spinks had to say about Myers’s domestic abuse charges. “You should never hit a woman… With an uppercut. Too many obstacles!”

  33. Steve says:
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    @Grey: They obviously go for guys who don’t know too much about baseball (Ric Sutcliffe is with him) so as not to confuse us internationals with too much detail.

  34. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: Nice… Lancelot takes on Bond. Ha!

  35. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Ha

    What’s Brett Myers’ favorite jokes?

    What do you say to a woman with 2 black eyes? Nothing, you done told the bitch twice.

    What’s the first thing a lady does when she gets out of the battered women’s shelter? The dishes if she knows whats good for her.*

    *I’m against violence towards women and I don’t approve this message.

  36. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Here I’ve been eating mine raw all this time, who knew?

  37. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Nice subject change, wouldn’t want to piss off Cruisin KC.

    Wheeler in, lets hope the Rays pen gets it done. I wanna see Price in this game, think he’ll go against Utley and Howard?

  38. BigFatHippo says:
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    Shields threw 104 pitches in 5.2. That’s disturbing. That’s Kazmir-like.

  39. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @BigFatHippo: I think Price will shutdown Howard and Utley and, if he saves a few more in this series, everyone’s going to be writing about how he’s going to be the closer next year.

  40. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @BigFatHippo: Philly isn’t the most patient team either.

  41. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Don’t know about that, Howard and Utley hit fastballs, weak on off-speed.

    Price should be groomed as a starter, he’s 23 right? Don’t waste him as a closer, that can break a young pitcher. Long relief early in the season would be the best place to put him.

  42. Steve says:
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    @BigFatHippo: @Grey: A great middle reliever with SP eligibility? I like the sound of that!

  43. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Jim Hickey must have been in Shields ear all day, “don’t give up the long ball”.

  44. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @BigFatHippo: I agree that he wouldn’t be best used there. Just think that there will be people saying that’s where he’s going to go. And he just might. He hits his spot with his slider and Howard has no chance. Utley’s a great hitter that I wouldn’t ever count out.

    @Steve: There he goes again!

  45. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Just for you, Grey.

    My H2H days are over, remember.

  46. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: Ah, yes. That’s right.

    @BigFatHippo: re: commercial “Go Fans” — Why do we show up two hours before the game? Cause we wanna get drunk, right?

  47. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Good call, didn’t want anything to do with Utley cause he knew he could get Howard out. Kids a stud horse, put him out to pasture with Big Brown in the offseason.

  48. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: YES!

    Five hours before game time. Used to show up at Rams games at 8am. Cook some mean meat and drink some wet beer.

    Cooked marinated teriyaki dove wrapped in bacon on the grill one time. The whole parking lot could smell it and came over wanting a taste. I had plenty, we shot 56 the day before. One guy told me it was the greatest thing he ever tasted, course that could have been the beer talking.

  49. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @BigFatHippo: Okay, we have this show where a guy is a douchebag like House but instead of a doctor he’s a guy who can tell if you’re lying. I call it Lie to Me. We love it!

    You didn’t mention their secret weapon — Bruntlett!

  50. BigFatHippo says:
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    @Grey: Bruntlett, if he steals home in this series he’ll have a career like Glenn Brummers.

    I actually watched House for the first time this week, loved it. Don’t know what to make of that Lie to Me show. But I like Tim Roth, Pumpkin. Is Hunny Bunny in it?

  51. BigFatHippo says:
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    Wow, Maddon’s leaving Price in? Don’t break the kid.

  52. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @BigFatHippo: Yeah, seriously. I don’t want his confidence hurt at all. I wish he’d pull him. Be precious!

  53. Grey

    Grey says:
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    He’s getting touched up by right handers. Pull him!

  54. Grey

    Grey says:
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    Cut his eye!

  55. Grey

    Grey says:
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    Phew… Confidence builder. Nice. Huge game for Price’s ego. We’re going to Philly, tied.

  56. BigFathippo says:
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    @Grey: Maddon said “go get em kid”.

    Guess that’s why we’re not a Major League manager.

    Go Rays, I’m gettin a Rayhawk tomorrow. And a shaved monkey.

  57. Steve says:
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    @Grey: @BigFathippo: We need to find out from Elias when was the last time a team won the World Series without doing something ludicrous to their hair.

  58. BigFatHippo says:
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    And a clown.

    Might be underestimating the creepiness factor.

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