Here’s what I said last November about Theo Epstein, “A new GM can toss out the used-up-and-spit-out pieces he inherits, right? It’s like when a new boss comes into a flailing company and all the employees start quaking in their boots that they’re gonna get fired because they’re unproductive. Alfonso Soriano, Marlon Byrd and Tyler Colvin should be worried about their parking spots. Soriano, “Hey, there’s a Segway in my spot.” Epstein, “Bowden was liquidating. There’s parking on Waveland for $35 a day.” And that’s me quoting me! Since then, Byrd — gone! Colvin — gone! Soriano should be gone, but he’s refusing to hand over his parking permit. Yesterday, Paul Maholm and Reed Johnson gone. They went to the Braves for Jaye Chapman and Arodys Vizcaino. What the hell was that flying out the window?! Oh, it was just Kris Medlen’s value. Three of us should form a prayer triangle for Medlen. Maholm is definitely getting a Chanukah card (the C’s silent; no, not the C in card) from Epstein this year after boosting his trade value with a post-All-Star Break 1.21 ERA. Maholm isn’t much more than a fifth fantasy starter when going well, which he has been. Though, he’s exciting as corduroy pants. The Cubs fire sale continued with Geovany Soto going to the Rangers. This will make Soto the backup for Napoli who will be the backup for Moreland and Michael Young, who was the backup for Moreland, who was the backup for Young. Where’s Mike Olt? Third base! (In the minors.) If anything Soto will lose some value with the trade, but he had 6 homers and a .199 average, so he wasn’t exactly making a case for Catcher of the Year award, and there’s no such award, so there’s that. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
Brett Jackson – Could be called up to the majors to fill in for Reed Johnson. He had hideous strikeouts last year. This year, more of the same. His walks are even down and he hit .255 in Triple-A this year. But — and this is a J. Lo-sized but, he also had 15 homers and 24 steals in 100 games. I’d grab him in all leagues as a flyer to see if he gets called up and comes on hot, but be ready to move on quickly in shallower mixed leagues if he’s not called up and don’t drop anyone too precious, Gollum.
Justin Germano – 5 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 3 Ks. That’s what I’m talking about S.O.N. Now, who’s got the crazy (insert played out expression that Charlie Sheen made famous for a week) to start Blake Beavan?
Darwin Barney – 3-for-5, 4 RBIs and his 5th homer. This is also his second three-hit night in a row. Could be the start of a hot schmotato that you leave in a turned-off oven overnight that still retains some of its warmth.
Travis Snider – The Blue Jays sent him to the Pirates for Brad Lincoln. Snider will now be able to share with the Pirates his special brand of slow outfield play. You remember Clemente? Well, here’s Cement Shoes. Power is a little easier to come by in Toronto, but, as long Snider doesn’t forget everything Dwayne Murphy taught him, he should be able to hit 30 homers in Pittsburgh (over a full season; well, dur). For this year, his value doesn’t really change, assuming the Pirates play him every day and don’t platoon him out with Presley or Marte. One of the three is gonna lose ABs. My guess is Presley will become a bench option, leaving him as a hunka hunka burning crud.
Brad Lincoln – Has a 2.73 ERA with 60 Ks in 59 1/3 IP and could give the Jays some great real world value, but, for now, he’s not ready to be thrust into the rotation. If he is, he’s liable to drop some Lincoln logs.
Carlos Zambrano – Moved to the bullpen. In related news, the Gatorade cooler was moved to the dugout.
A.J. Pierzynski – 1-for-5 with his 17th homer as he returned from his sore oblique. Wanna hear something crackers? In the preseason, we traded Norris, Berkman and A.J. for CC and held onto Jesus Montero. Norris and Berkman have been whatever, but A.J. was actually the guy who we should’ve held onto instead of Use His Name In Vain. Fantasy baseball: For when everyday life isn’t stressful enough.
Alejandro De Aza – 4-for-5, a run, 2 RBIs and his 19th steal. He now has 6 homers on the year with a .285 average. Kinda like a poor man’s Victorino. I’d call him Feign Victorino, but that’s Fowler. Alejandro does have less power, so I will call him Needs-To-Hit-The-Gym-And-Train Victorino.
Chris Sale – After back-to-back mediocre starts, the White Sox announced that Sale would get an extra day or so of rest to try and preserve his innings. This is the start of a two month process of shutting Sale down. You know those Going Out of Business Sales that last for six months? That’s what this is gonna be like. He’s at 124 innings now, I’d be surprised if he gets to 160, i.e., that’s 36 more innings, I before E except in Teixeira, that’s about 6 more starts.
Jose Altuve – 2-for-3, 3 runs, 1 RBI and his 19th steal. I’m beginning to think the Astros made a smart decision to rid their team of anything resembling a good player. A bunch of good players would give the Astros fans false hope. False hope is worst than no hope. See every movie John Singleton’s done since Boyz n the Hood for examples of what hope can do to you. Awesome, the guy who did Boyz n the Hood is gonna remake Shaft. No, not awesome. Terrible. Thanks a lot, false hope!
John Axford – He got the save after Francisco Cordero gave up two runs in an inning for the Astros. With these two bullpens, it’s a wonder the game wasn’t called like that All-Star Game where they ran out of pitchers.
Jim Thome – Went for an MRI on his neck. The image of Thome having an MRI makes me giggle. Hope his steel buttons on his overalls don’t mess up the results.
Joey Votto – Began light baseball activities. Hey, I love baseball, so don’t get me wrong, but aren’t all baseball activities light? He’s standing at first base for the majority of games or waiting on the bench to hit.
Ryan Braun – Out yesterday with hand blisters. Put a white sock on that thing, man!
Roy Oswalt – 5 1/3 IP, 8 ER. I’m pretty sure Oswalt would take this as a compliment, but I don’t mean it as one. He needs to be put out to pasture.
Josh Hamilton – 3-for-4, 2 runs and a solo homer. The move, obviously, was to trade Hamilton at the end of May.
Nelson Cruz – 2-for-4, 3 RBIs and his 15th homer. Nelly has been a bit of a disappointment so far, but it looks like it’s getting hot in herrre. It might be fun for Cruz’s owners in the 2nd half as he gets another 15 homers in the last two months. Or not fun if he gets hurt. All right, enough Negative Nelly-isms.
Erik Bedard – 4 1/3 IP, 8 ER. He’s French, but this start was a Dutch pantry, which is the act of locking someone in the closet after you’ve farted. Why is Dutch an adjective that equals kinky shizz dealing with farts? Or you “can go Dutch,” which is splitting a check. Are the Dutch cheap, gaseous people?
Chris Johnson – 1-for-4, 4 RBIs and his 9th homer as he joined his new team. I believe this was the first home run by a Diamondbacks 3rd baseman all year. In fact, I’m not sure they had a 3rd baseman all year.
Scott Hairston – 2-for-5, 3 runs, 3 RBI, 2 homers and a steal. Too bad you’re not related to Hairston, or you would’ve owned him on your fantasy team.
Bobby Parnell – 1/3 IP, 2 ER. Way to run with the job! Oh, wait, I mean way to run over my pitching stats with the job! He gave up two runs yesterday. Actually, one was given up by the next reliever, Edgin, because Collins didn’t even stick with Parnell through lefty hitters. Yeah, that means Parnell’s useless. Frank Francisco will return any day now, and until then Rauch might see saves. FWIWuertz, I dropped Parnell in a 12 team league. We’re donzo.
Mark Trumbo - Out yesterday with a dislocated rib. As frequent commenter, Carnac said, “The report was actually that Trumbo MIS-located a rib. He’s day to day while he empties out the clubhouse fridge.”
Dan Haren – May be scratched on Wednesday due to his back. I say go to your nearest Chinatown. They have great deals on backscratchers.
Kendrys Morales – 2-for-5, 6 RBIs and 2 homers. Mike Trout is leading off and he has more RBIs than Kendrys Morales, who’s played in four more games. Sorry to harp, but Trout’s the best Angel ever. Pun point!
Maicer Izturis – 3-for-5, 3 runs and his 2nd homer. Hey, hey, how ya doing? Maicer, what goes on, Maicer? In five days, it’s Saturday, Saturday, it’s a Saturday. And it’s time for some bleh stats from Maicer.
A.J. Griffin – 7 IP, 3 ER, 7 baserunners, 6 Ks. That’s a quality start for Alfredo Jettuccine. Cust kayin’.
Mike Leake – 1 2/3 IP, 5 ER. Try Mike Flood.
Hisashi Iwakuma – 8 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 13 Ks. Who has two thumbs, a well-groomed mustache and owns Iwakuma in a league? This guy!
Brandon League – The Dodgers acquired League from the Mariners for the jerseys of players they’ve traded away in the past: Adam Jones, Chris Tillman, Shin-Soo Choo, Asdrubal and Rafael Soriano. Oddly enough, those jerseys on eBay are worth more than the Mariners current team.
Yonder Alonso – 4-for-5 with a run and RBI. Padres fans watching their hitters in road games is probably like when Bart tried on the Beer Goggles at Duff Gardens. “Hey, Lisa, Yonder’s got some power.” “Bart, that’s Selma!” As I mentioned in Monday’s roundup, Alonso’s probably gonna be geared up for the next few days playing against the team that jettisoned him to the Padres.
Dan Uggla – 1-for-4 with 2 RBIs. He always seems to play better against his former team. And, with the year Uggla is having, 1-for-4 with 2 RBIs is a huge day. That’s all right, he cools up your team. BTW, that’s the third Giambi brother in the background.
Tommy Hanson – 5 IP, 1 ER, 9 baserunners, 4 Ks. Pretty much the same game he threw last week vs. the Marlins, only this time he didn’t walk seven. Maybe because this week the Marlins showcased their young stud 3rd baseman, Donnie Murphy, but last week it was Drew Solano. Nah, they both suck. Donnie Murphy is the 2nd worst accidental pick up when you think you’re grabbing the Rangers outfielder. Obviously the worst pick up is grabbing the reliever, Ryan Braun. We should start a league where you can only grab guys who sound like All-Stars. Call it the Stubby Clapp Fantasy League. No one did less with such a great baseball-sounding name as Stubby Clapp. Or maybe call it the Rue McClanahan Fantasy League, since that is a serious baseball-sounding name with no baseball ability (that I know of).