After hours of research, 3624 mock drafts, endless Grey roster autopsies and a restraining order from Dr. Funstonstein, you finally find yourself ready for opening day of the 2013 Fantasy Baseball season. Hey, you’re not the only one with a little Bonifacio in his pants.
“But wait, I auto-drafted a team full of stiffs, injured guys and people named Iglesias and Puig!”
Hey, let’s leave the Cubans out of this. To the waiver wire. There’s still time. Maybe.
Back in my Top 40 radio days (think Roxette, Dee-Lite and yikes… Milli Vanilli) we had a nightly feature called “Jam it or Cram it”. My clever fantasy gurus know the drill: play a song, listeners vote to jam it (yay) or cram it (insert flatulence sound effect here). That’s some damn clever radio! I seem to recall “Blame it on the Rain” beating out Billy Idol’s “Cradle of Love” one particular night (insert sneer and rebel yell here). So sit back, remember the 90’s, mmmm…Yasmine Bleeth…and enjoy “We Didn’t Start the Fire” on repeat and jam or cram these potential fantasy hits you may have missed.
**Remember, your votes count toward purchasing a van for Scott Shannon to live in somewhere on the Jersey Shore.**
Rankings: Razzball #237, Yahoo #278, ESPN #280
Razzball Projections: 56 R, 24 HR, 71 RBI, 4 SB, .239 BA
Availability: He’s out there in 89% of Yahoo leagues.
The Gist: Traded from the cavernous Coliseum of Oakland to the more hitter friendly park in Houston over the winter, Chris “the truth is out there” Carter has 30-HR potential at a very affordable price. Ok, ok, we all know the Colt .45s… errr… the ‘Stros are going nowhere, but bank on high homers, low average and… wait for it… 2-position eligibility. If Carter can manage 30/80/.250 you will be left wondering why you drafted Lance Berkman 100 spots earlier just to DL him for half the season. “But I like big pumas.” Nooooo, you like grey panthers my friend. Now go pick Carter up off waivers and hope for a new X-Files flick.
Key Stats: Slugged .514 with an OPS of .864 in 67 games last year. Had 31 HR with AAA Sacramento in 2010.
Spring Training Don’t Mean @$#%: Carter hit .268 with 4 HR this spring to go along with 20 K’s. Astros skipper Bo “manager for life” Porter says Carter will play left, first, DH and may start in the slot on third downs.
The X-File: With the Astros coming over to the AL, Carter will play everyday. J.D. Martinez has already been sent off to AAA Oklahoma. Minute Maid Park’s short porch in left should be enticing for the righty who just loves “choo choos”. How cute.
Now you decide: Jam it or Cram it?
Our second potential hit maker is the guy the A’s dumped Mr.Carter for — Jed “MASH Unit” Lowrie.
Rankings: Razzball #235, Yahoo #229, ESPN #236
Razzball Projections: 52 R, 17 HR, 62 RBI, 2SB, .254 BA
Availability: You can still snag him in 57% of Yahoo leagues.
The Gist: Lowrie is only SS eligible for now, but will be the A’s 3B at some point depending on the health/mental state of import Hiroyuki Nakajima. Lowrie has also played 2B and 1B in his career with the Red Sox and Astros. It will not surprise me if he gains eligibility at all infield positions before the season is over. Four positions? Nice. But here’s the rub (yes, please). That’s almost as many positions as injuries he’s suffered over his career; wrist, back, ankle, shoulder and mononucleosis. Mono?! Did I miss a Peter Gammons report of Lowrie licking the inside of the Green Monster or something? No, that would give you “Mannynucleosis” and a 50 game suspension. *Insert moob joke here*
Key Stats: When healthy, Lowrie produces. In 340 AB’s last year he hit 16 HR, 42 RBI, scored 43 runs and had 43 walks. That’s a 10% walk rate for those in OBP and points leagues. There is power in those brittle bones. His HR/FB rate was just over 11% last year. For the Red Sox in 2010 he had a .970 OPS until he choked on a Fenway Frank and blew out his uvula in a Heimlich maneuver gone wrong.
Spring Training Don’t Mean @$#%: Lowrie hit .313 with 12 R, 3 HR, 13 RBI with 9 walks this spring.
The X-File: It’s high risk vs high reward with Lowrie. So many possible infield positions, so many possible body parts to shatter. Ouch, my coccyx! I’ll take the reward. Lowrie has the potential for a 25-homer season. Me likey. And if you find yourself stuck with an injured Hanley (you were warned), Lawrie, Headley or Freese (who might be out a week) grab Jed “Glass Joe” Lowrie off the wire, have another Zima and remember the 90’s weren’t all that bad. Except for Creed.
Now you decide: Jam it or Cram it?