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The Fugs (Epic Beardmen Division) held on to the lead in the overall standings with an impressive 112 points, and are crowned the first half champions! Rank Railheads (RCL 40) pulled to within 1 with a 4-point gain. captainpyper (RCL 3) is 3rd with 108, followed by Beardcrabs (The Gaylords — Conshellation Prize) and panthers_freak (We’ve Got the Runs — Baseball Reasons), 1 point back. Chris (Retro Vertigo — ECFBL) grew his legend with a 9-point jump as he rocketed to 6th from 24th. Rounding out the top 10 are NYC Matthole (Ones are GOOD, right?), MattTruss223 (Rube Waddell’s Shiny Objects — Magnificent Mustachioed Men), Schmo Hawks (Beef SAGNOF!), and Big Magoo (Matthew Berry is a Tool). Congratulations to all of you on a great first half, and good luck to everyone in the second half!

Sugar Hill Pitbulls (Hotel, Dotel, Halladay Inge) had the biggest jump in the standings, gaining 16 points and moving 194 positions to sit in 259th. Ali’s Beard (Myrtle’s Acres) added 15 points and jumped 165 spots in the standings. They have now advanced from 491st to 162nd since June 4.

The ECFBL remains the Competitive Index leader at 104, two ahead of Matthew Berry is a Tool. We know the ECFBL will remain active in the second half; hopefully the rest of us will work to keep them from pulling too far ahead.

Last season 18 teams came from behind in the second half to win their RCL, so, keep the faith. Retro Vertigo struck from 20.5 points back to win the East Coast League. Afghanistan Buzkashi was even more impressive, winning RCL 7 after being stuck in 8th, 35 points behind, at the all star break. They hadn’t used many starts in the first half, so they had more opportunity to gain in the pitching categories.

Team Thompson (RAZZBALL ROTO LEAGUE) is the only team to make it to the break with a .300 batting average. And that’s without altering his lineup since the draft. Team Moore (Balls and Razz) leads in home runs, with 200. The most homers a team hit in the RCL last year was 342, so the Moore team is well ahead of that pace. Achilles (Tennessee Mash — RCL 25) has an amazing 2.87 ERA to lead that category. 6 other teams are at 3.00 or better, including one Mr. Rudy Gamble. You can find all the first-half stats in the fantasy baseball forums. Look for the RCL under “Everything Else.”

Expert League: Ryan Carey (Mastersball Carey) took back first place and then pulled away from the pack this week, stretching his lead to 11 points at the break. Rudy sits in 2nd, two and a half up on Dash Davidson (Steamer Dome). Mark Teixeira, Mike Trout and Mike Moustakas were Ryan’s top hitters, while Justin Verlander and Jake Peavy had good outings for him on the mound. Grey held steady at 63 points, but gained a spot in the standings, to 7th. The Experts’ third trade of the season saw Steamer Dome send Alex Rios to Dalton Del Don (RotoWire Del Don) for Rafael Soriano. Dash got 6 good weeks from Rios (32 Runs, 9 home runs, 27 RBI, and 8 steals with a .367 average) after he was dropped by an impatient owner in May.

Trades: There were just 10 trades this week, running the total for the season to 197 involving 642 players. Fenway Go Saux, who traded away Albert Pujols and Justin Verlander last week, sent Ryan Howard and Clayton Kershaw to The AmishGangster for Joey Votto and Wade Miley. Paulie Allnuts (Uncle Robbies Daffiness Boys) traded Fernando Rodney to EVIL EVIES for Zack Greinke, who proceeded to use up 2 starts and give up 4 runs in 3 innings. Craig Kimbrel was enough to snag Jay Bruce in Sphinctory Staff Inflection, while David Freese was traded to acquire Paulie’s latest subject, R.A. Dickey.

Weekly Leaders

Chris (Retro Vertigo) jumped to the top of the ECFBL this week, thanks in large part to his hitting. RV hit .306 with 23 home runs, 62 RBI, 63 runs, and 9 steals. Miguel Cabrera led the team with a .440 average and 9 RBI, while Ty Colvin hit .308 with 5 home runs and 10 RBI. Justin Ruggiano (.450/3 HR), Mike Trout (.364/7 HR/4 SB), and Dexter Fowler (.429) were also key. Chris picked up Pedro Ciriaco for the Boston – New York doubleheader Saturday, and was rewarded with a 4-for-9 day with 2 runs, 4 RBI, and 2 stolen bases.

Average: .359 (Team Thompson — RAZZBALL ROTO LEAGUE)
Runs: 64 (Turd Ferguson — Sphinctory Staff Inflection)
HR: 23 (Retro Vertigo– ECFBL)
RBI: 68 (Shot And A Beer — RCL 9 )
SB: 17 (seward bellman — RCL 16, Fart Factory — Soylent green is Allbright….)

Lajka Bejka (The Dread Pirate Returns) put up a nice pitching line with 5 wins and 13 saves, 51 strikeouts, an ERA of 1.21 and a WHIP of 0.83. James McDonald led the starters, winning 2 and striking out 14, while posting an ERA of 1.93 and a WHIP of 0.93. Joel Hanrahan had a win and 3 saves; Kenley Jensen also saved 3 games..

Ks: 110 (Ali’s Beard — Myrtle’s Acres)
Wins: 9 (Sugar Hill Pitbulls — Hotel, Dotel, Halladay Inge, The Scoobies! — Cracking The WHIP, The Secret Weapon — Schmohawk in Training, U of L AL KOHOLIC — ECFBL)
Saves: 14 (Fec Mode Squad — Toads n Wet Rocks)
ERA: 1.21 (40 IP min) (Lajka Bejka — The Dread Pirate Return)
WHIP: 0.82 (40 IP min) (Flaming Chickenheads — Myrtle’s Acres)

RCL Logo
TEAM OF THE WEEK — July 2 — July 8
Urine Sample (RCL 44)
80/301 (.266)
52 R/20 HR/62 RBI/13 SB
70.1 IP
59 K/7 W/2.69/1.19/9 S
Urine Sample made a big move this week gaining 8 points in their league standings to 99.5. Ian Desmond (.409, 5 Runs/4 HR/8 RBI/3 SB), Mike Trout (.364/6 Runs/3 HR/7 HR/4 SB), and Mark Teixeira(.348/7 Runs/2 HR/10 RBI/1 SB) had great lines, while Aramis Ramirez (.355/7 RBI) and Ryan Braun (7 Runs/6 RBI/2 SB) made significant contributions. Gio Gonzalez, Yovani Gallardo, Jake Peavy, and Homer Bailey each picked up a win and combined for 27 strikeouts with an ERA of 1.73 and 1.04 WHIP. Jim Johnson and Casey Janssen each added 3 saves..

From Around The Web

  1. Chris says:
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    Help me decide what to do on my dilemma.

    My league has contracts and a salary cap for keepers going into the offseason (along with restrictions on how many players you can keep)

    I have M. Moustakas and Melky Cabrera as DL replacements for N. Markakis and J. Ellsbury so I need to make decisions.

    Here’s what I can do with them, what would you do with who…I am not competitive this year and only looking towards next year.

    1. I have K. Morales as V. Martinez’s DL replacement, I can move either guy into this spot and hold them in limbo until either Martinez comes back or the season ends.

    2. I have D. Stubbs for 2 years, $1. I can drop him and add one of them into this spot at a $1 cost.

    3. I have R. Weeks for 2 years, $3. Same deal as above.

    4. I have R. Zimmerman for 2 years, $1. Same deal.

    • VinWins

      VinWins says:
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      @Chris, I’d lose Week, and Morales, if I’m understanding the rules correctly. But, you should definitely consult with an expert, say Grey, on an earlier post as I am just a reporter. Good luck!

      • Chris says:
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        @VinWins, Hopefully this makes it more clear…

        Basically, I will probably not be able to keep all my good contract guys so I need to maximize every dollar. So who should I move into what contract? If I put someone into Morales’ spot I can delay that decision for one of the two players.

        For instance…I could drop Weeks and put Cabrera in his spot and put Moustakas in Morales spot and decide later on if I’m keeping him in place of Stubbs or Zimmerman.

        • VinWins

          VinWins says:
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          @Chris, I think Moustakas is going to be the best keeper of the group, so give him the most favorable contract. But, like I said, I’m not an expert. (I foolishly dropped Moustakas from my team a while ago.)

  2. Adam says:
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    Team Thompson has a .300 avg and hasn’t set his lineup once all season, wow! Who the heck did this guy draft?

    • VinWins

      VinWins says:
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      @Adam, Yeah, it’s kind of unbelievable.

      Alex Avila, Det C
      Miguel Cabrera, Det 1B, 3B
      Daniel Murphy, NYM 2B, 1B, 3B
      Martin Prado, Atl 3B, OF
      Alexei Ramirez, CWS SS
      Marco Scutaro, Col SS, 2B
      David Freese, StL 3B DTD
      Giancarlo Stanton*, Mia OF
      Melky Cabrera, SF OF
      Jason Kubel, Ari OF, DH
      Mike Trout, LAA OF
      Ben Revere, Min OF
      David Ortiz, Bos DH

      • Paulie Allnuts

        Paulie Allnuts says:
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        @VinWins, The question – is this guy active, or just drafted superbly? I can’t imagine not making any player moves whatsoever. Last year Fred investigated a team that hadn’t made a move all season. That team finished in 6th place. I took a look at it; the team drafted a terrific squad, and then dropped out of the league before play began.

        • VinWins

          VinWins says:
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          @Paulie Allnuts, Well, he’s done absolutely nothing; has a couple pitchers in his lineup who are on the DL, so I’d say he drafted and checked out.

          His pitching isn’t bad either; he has 5’s for both ERA and WHIP, but 0 saves. He’s already used 150 starts, so assuming he doesn’t show up, he’ll soon be done with pitching. Maybe he’ll turn up before the deadline and trade all his starters for closers. But, not likely.

  3. rough week for my team. lost about 10 points in the standings and didn’t even have that bad of a week: 35/7/40/8/.278 and 1W/7SV/3.62/1.21/43 K. hopefully i gain ‘em all back next week now that I’ve got Sparkakis.

    • VinWins

      VinWins says:
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      @Rudy Gamble, Yeah, that’s the nature of the game, right? You can gain a bunch of points in a couple categories one day, and then lose them all the next.

      You sure have made the right decisions on closers. You’ve had 23 saves in the 3 weeks since you traded Casilla. I’ve totaled 21 on my 2 teams in that period.

      • @VinWins, Yeah, I’ve had an embarassment of Saves on this team this year. Looks like in the short-term I might’ve dumped Casilla at the right time but I could still see him getting 15 saves in the 2nd half.

    • RV says:
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      @Rudy Gamble,

      Sparkakis!

      What do you/Grey expect from him in the 2nd half?

  4. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:
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    “Paulie Allnuts (Uncle Robbies Daffiness Boys) traded Fernando Rodney to EVIL EVIES for Zack Greinke, who proceeded to use up 2 starts and give up 4 runs in 3 innings.”

    Vin, thanks for reminding me! Well, that can’t work out worse then trading the Beachy Boy for Trout. That one will haunt me for years to come.

    It looks like Chris (RV), also known as the Living Legend, is making his move early – usually he waits until late August to dash our false hopes of somehow sneaking by him for a victory.

    Thanks for the work you do. Hey, BTW, thinking of trading Cruz, Joey Bats, and the Panda straight up for Plouffe. Just because I love the name. Wadda ya think?

    • VinWins

      VinWins says:
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      @Paulie Allnuts, Well, if you can find some sucker, go for it.

    • RV says:
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      @Paulie Allnuts,

      It’s actually a very strange feeling to be doing well at the ASB. I’ve never made a conscious effort to hold back or do poorly in the 1st half, but that’s always been the result these last few years. I do wonder what effect this quicker start will have on my final standings, even if anecdotal.

  5. KCC26 says:
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    ok…general strategic question that ive been struggling with. 12 team mixed league. ive had one of the better pitching staffs this year mostly through a combination of luck (waiver wire scraps due for regression) and avoiding the closerpocolypse thus far. Yet after losing Beachy, I can’t help but feel as though I should move offense for SP. What do you think? (FYI—the highest ranked starting pitchers on the wire are Colon, Estrada, Villanueva…you get it) anyway, heres my roster:

    C Ruiz
    1B Butler
    2B Uggla
    3B Encarnacion
    SS A. Escobar (Tulo on DL)
    INF Goldschmidt
    OF Kemp
    OF McCutchen
    OF Choo
    OF Victorino
    Ut: rotation of Pagan, Colvin, and Aoki

    SP: Greinke, A. Sanchez, Beckett, Burnett, S. Diamond, F. Morales, J. Quintana, F. Liriano
    RP: Motte, Betancourt, Frieri, and Clippard

    • VinWins

      VinWins says:
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      @KCC26, I’d see if you could get something useful for 1 of your 1B – Butler, Goldy, or Colvin.

      But, please ask more experty types for better advice.

      • KCC26 says:
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        @VinWins, thanks for the response! I’ve been exploring trade opportunitie and was also thinking along those lines. Best offer on the table is Wainwright for Butler.

        • VinWins

          VinWins says:
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          @KCC26, That seems like a pretty good option to me.

          • KCC26 says:
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            @VinWins, better than Niese for Goldschmidt?

            • VinWins

              VinWins says:
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              @KCC26, Yep.

  6. Well – it was nice to end the first half on a high note and take control of the Experts league again. I have no doubt that Rudy and some of the others lurking will make charges soon. I have waited for Matt Kemp to return, and will get him back soon. Mike Trout has no doubt been my team MVP so far, and to think he wasn’t drafted in our league and was an April 1st waiver add for my squad.

    Pitching will be key for me – and I took a hit the last two weeks in ERA with a bunch of lousy starts from Romero, Fister and Masterson – but I was due to get nailed there I guess.

    We are going to try to bring it home for Mastersball.com in the second half. Thanks Vin for the updates.

    • VinWins

      VinWins says:
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      @Ryan Carey, Yeah, Trout was only drafted in a third of the leagues, but of course, we’re not experts. I’m kicking myself for missing out on him.

      Good luck in the 2nd half, and thanks for reading.

  7. RV says:
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    Thanks for the update, Vin!

    I’m really hoping that Ty Colvin is this year’s Mike Morse. He’s certainly been on fire lately, and his most recent outburst has been on the road too. I’m feeling optimistic!

    • VinWins

      VinWins says:
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      @RV, If you’re optimistic, then I’m optimistic! I’ve only had Colvin for 30 ABs, and he’s given me 5 HRs and 10 RBI. Even if he slows down in the 2nd half and only gives me 4 HRs every 30 ABs, I’ll be satisfied.

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