This post might only be for those in the back of the room who aren’t paying attention to things like BABIP. It’s all right with me. I ain’t mad at cha. In fact, it makes my job easier. Most people are gonna know going into 2011 that Aaron Hill was crazy unlucky last year. Like, for reals. His BABIP was .196, eighty-eight points off his career BABIP of .288. That career BABIP is also factoring in his Murphy Law-esque 2010, before that it was above .300. But as Ernest Hemingway once said, “You make your own luck.” I’m guessing he said that before he killed himself. Or in Hill’s case, you make your own unlucky. His fly balls went through the roof (not literally, I don’t think) with the percentage going from 41% to 54.2%. His line drives went from 19.6% to 10.6%. When you hit more fly balls, more fielders catch the ball. Hit more line drives and you get more hits. See how that could affect your average? Okay, I know too many numbers make your eyes heavy so I’ll get to the nuts. What can we expect of Aaron Hill in 2011 fantasy baseball and what makes him a fantasy sleeper?Please, blog, may I have some more?
San Diego Padres 2010 Minor League Review
Overall farm talent ranking via Baseball America (2010):
2010 (20) | 2009 (29) | 2008 (12) | 2007 (29) | 2006 (29) | 2005 (27) | 2004 (25)
Record of Each Affiliate:
Majors: [90 – 72] NL West
AAA: [59 – 85] Pacific Coast League – Portland
AA: [68 – 72] Texas League – San Antonio
A+: [81 – 59] California League – Lake Elsinore
A: [77 – 63] Midwest League – Fort Wayne
A(ss): [32 – 44] Northwest League – Eugene
R: [20 – 35] Arizona Rookie League
The Run Down
After a serious run for the playoffs, the Padres just traded the face of their franchise (See Grey’s Adrian Gonzalez trade ramifications).
Cliff Lee not only signed with a team finally, he signed with the team that would give him the most value from the three rumored suitors. (BTW, Rumored Suitors would be an awesome R&B album title. If you’re reading Jodeci, take it, it’s yours.) Carlos Ruiz got a new battery mate and the Philly fans don’t have to throw batteries at anyone until at least 2013. The Adverb’s return to Philly makes me think he can easily be a top ten starter in 2011. The Mess and Gnats can’t hurt that. Even in Citizens Flank he’s pitched, like, Excellent Lee — 2.52 ERA, 1.00 WHIP in 5 starts. The Phillies now have the top three WHIPs for starters in the major leagues last year, with The Adverb coming in first with a 1.00. A 1.00 WHIP in 212 1/3 IP goes a long way to helping a fantasy staff that is filled with Brain Freezes. Wins are obviously unpredictable. Somehow the Phillies have to lose at least 50 games. And Lidge can only realistically be relied on for 10 of them. For 2011, I’d give The Adverb the line of 16-6/2.95/1.05/190. I.e., Fo’ realz? I.e., Day-uhm. I.e., Yup. Anyway, here’s some more moves and what they mean for fantasy baseball:
J.J.Please, blog, may I have some more?
After April 14th, if you take out one start in Fenway and two starts in The House They Built Next To The House That Ruth Built, Brandon Morrow posts a line of 9-4/2.97/1.21/146 in 121 1/3 IP. And if Tom Cruise were taller, he could see the top of Katie Holmes’ head. And if I were 14-years-old, I’d be gettin’ slizzard in a G6. Or at least a vague understanding of what the hell that means. The fact is Morrow’s final line was 10-7/4.49/1.38/178, but if you’re rolling with Blue Jay pitchers, don’t you bench them vs.Please, blog, may I have some more?
I take this not-paying-actual-money job way too seriously. If I tell you a guy is a 2011 fantasy baseball sleeper, it could mean anywhere from he’s not even worth drafting in 12 team leagues to he’s a nice name to look in the 10th round of 10 team leagues that could give you 5th round value. With that said, I don’t want to tell you to go after Mariner hitters. I really don’t. Be aware that it pains me. It hurts me soul, Lupe Fiasco. But here we are — you, me and Justin Smoak. He arrived on the scene when the Rangers could no longer handle watching Bill James sob every time Chris Davis walked to plate and back to the dugout after 3 pitches. Smoak had Ranger fans no longer asking, “Where’d Davis go and all his strikeouts?” Instead, he had them asking, “Who’s this new guy that strikes out just as much?” Tis true, boo. Smoak was just as frustrating and didn’t get much better when he was traded to the Mariners. So what can we expect of Justin Smoak for 2011 fantasy baseball and what makes him a sleeper?Please, blog, may I have some more?
For all major league starters named Francisco Liriano and not named Francisco Liriano, he only ranked 37th overall in ERA, behind Anibal Sanchez, Chad Billingsley and The Wandwagon. Liriano only won 14 games, which ranked 25th overall, tied with Jon Garland, Lackey and Brett Myers, amongst other yawnstipating names. So on first glance, you may not realize how good he was last year. He had the fifth best K/9 for major league starters last year. Above him, Lincecum, Lester, Yovani and Filthy Sanchez. Of those five, guess which one had the best xFIP at 3.06. Go ahead, I’ll wait. *taps finger, scratches head, flosses* It was Liriano! C’mon, that was a gimme. Okay, of those five, who had the best BB/9? *takes out garbage, wipes dandruff off shoulder, uses dandruff to add ambiance to fake Christmas tree* It was Liriano again! Now for the next fifteen minutes, I’m also going to throw in that Francisco Liriano was drafted on average around 200th overall. That alone makes him a keeper for 2011 fantasy baseball but let’s see what we can expect from him in 2011 fantasy baseball?Please, blog, may I have some more?
Seriously, it’s cool and all for fans of the Yankees and Red Sox but doesn’t Bud Selig in his infinitesimal wisdom see that maybe something needs to be done to level out the playing field? It’s all so short-sighted, kinda like how he turned a blind eye to steroids. Diamondbacks give away Reynolds so they can save a few million. Meanwhile, the Red Sox sign Carl Crawford for $142 million with a developing country bonus. If he wins the MVP, they’ll buy him Guatemala. “El Presidente can you steal a base for us?” That’s what they’ll say in Guatemala.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Washington Nationals 2010Minor League Review
Overall farm ranking via Baseball America (2010)
2010 (21) | 2009 (21) | 2008 (9) | 2007 (30) | 2006 (24) | 2005 (26) | 2004 (30)
Record of Major and Minor League Teams
MLB: [69 – 93] NL East
AAA: [76 – 67] International League – Syracuse
AA: [77 – 65] Eastern League – Harrisburg
A+: [70 – 69] Carolina League – Potomac
A: [65 – 75] South Atlantic League – Haggerstown
A(ss): [36 – 38] New York Pennsylvania League – Vermont Lake
R: [24 – 32] Gulf League
The Run Down
In the 2009 Nationals Minor League Review, I said, “It wouldn’t be a stretch to see the team win 10 more games this year with a slightly improved rotation.” They did win exactly 10 more games this year, too bad that was still good enough for last place in the NL East. Jordan Zimmermann’s return from Tommy John surgery was met with losing Stephen Strasburg to the same surgery. The Nationals have an excessive amount of mediocre pitching in the minors and in the majors as they had no starter who threw 100 innings with a strikeout rate over 6 Ks per nine-innings (e.g.
Mark Reynolds was traded to the Orioles for two bullpen arms. This hurts simply because I like to watch the Diamondbacks and don’t particularly enjoy watching the O’s. Sorry, Jim Palmer can’t hold a candle to Mark Grace. Reynolds and I had a bit of a love/hate thing the last two years. Loved him prior to 2009, told everyone to avoid him prior to 2010. So if I were a straight Saberhagenmetrician, I’d say we’re check raising to the bettor again for 2011, but I’m worried about how many bales of brays I want to heap on Mini Donkey (say that fast 117 times!). Will he reach the highs of 2009 again or will he blunder his way to another 2010? Like Monie and Malcolm, 2011 will probably be somewhere in the middle. He’s not a sub-.200 hitter even whirling his bat at everything. He was unlucky last year. He’s not really a .260 hitter either, as he was in 2009. He’s somewhere in the .230-.240 range. His HR/FB last year wasn’t that far off his career average. He’s a 35-homer guy, give or take some luck. In some crazy small sample sizes like you’d find at a midget second hand store, he hasn’t been good in AL East ballparks, but I wouldn’t worry too much about that. In a large sample size, he wasn’t good in Petco or Dodger Stadium either. He’ll lose Coors and gain a slightly worse offense. Though I think the O’s can be slightly better with a Wieters, Sparkakis and Jones bounce back. At least 2 out of the 3 wouldn’t be bad, Meatloaf. The AL East is a tough division, but it’s not like the pitchers in the NL West are a walk in the park. All in all, it feels like a push on value with the league change, but a slight bounce back from 2010 should be expected. Anyway, here’s some more moves and what they mean for fantasy baseball:
J.J.Please, blog, may I have some more?
The Padres finally put their offense on the offensive. Only here the offensive definition is “causing anger, displeasure or resentment.” Thanks, Merriam-Webster! Adrian Gonzalez gets a small boost in value, if ‘small’ meant ‘could there be a better place for him to play?’ You don’t have to be a rocket scientist who gave up his job at JPL to study baseball stats to see the difference between Petco and Fenway. In Fenway, there’s a giant freakin’ wall 310 feet down the line. In Petco, there’s a memorial park in left field with a giant Nate Colbert statue that no one’s ever reached. Wait, that was Kyle Blanks. Last year, Fenway was 7th for most offense. Petco was 26th. I think A-Gon’s Home/Away splits over the last three years say all you need to know. In 832 home ABs, 112/37/127/.257. In 927 away ABs, 168/70/192/.310. Yes, A-Gon can win the MVP in Boston. I’m not going to belabor (any further) this point. It’s a huge boon for A-Gon’s value if boon means what I think it does. Youuuuk gets a small boost in value too now that he’ll be playing 3rd base, eligibility he was about to lose going into 2011. Anyway, here’s some more recent moves and what they mean for fantasy baseball:
Casey Kelly – The prized piece in the A-Gon trade. Stephen already went over his Casey Kelly fantasy. Now that he gets to (eventually) pitch in Petco, his value bumps up, but he still looks at least a year away, if not more. There’s probably at least three dozen prospects worth looking at before him in dynasty leagues. There’s a few pitchers in the Padres system alone that are more interesting, in the short term at least.Please, blog, may I have some more?