I’m not sure what the L stands for, but Josh Hamilton obviously felt LAA was a good fit for him. Â What I’d like to know is how is California a bankrupt state? Â The Dodgers and Angels’ salaries combined are equal to the GDP of every country, except China and Switzerland. Â Mozambique couldn’t afford just Pujols and Hamilton. Â Forget Greinke, Hanley, Vernon Wells, Matt Kemp and Carl Crawford. Â Alone, Arte Moreno could sell the Angels and buy Africa. Â Africa Moreno, that’s what they would call it. Â Burundi would become Aybarundi, Djibouti would become Dbootyhole and Chad would stay the same name, because that’s a badass name for a country, but Arte would put a country-wide golf course there, because anything named Chad and golf go hand-in-hand. Â The Angels now have Trout, Aybar, Pujols and Hamilton at the top of their lineup. Â October 1st called and said Aybar just scored his 197th run. Â Batting fifth, Kendrys could hit .220 and drive in 100 RBIs. Â Howie Kendrick… Well, he’ll still disappoint, but this is slightly bizzonkers to have three of the top hitters in baseball all in the same lineup. Â Trout, Hamilton and Pujols alone hit 103 homers last year. Â The Astros whole team only hit 146. Â Specifically about Hamilton,Â I could throw a lot numbers at you about about how his June through September were well short of his April/May. Â How his BABIP in April/May buoyed his season average. Â How not quoting these exact numbers but saying how I could quote them is a lot easier. Â Honestly, none of these numbers matter. Â I’d take six months straight of 5 homers/month and a .280 average. Â I don’t need a .380 average month with 12 homers. Â The bigger issue for me is you have no idea what you’re going to get from Hamilton year-to-year. Â One year, he hits 10 homers; one year, he misses 30 games; one year, he misses 55 games. Â Last year, his K-rate wasn’t good and his homer/fly ball rate was obscene. Â His swinging strike rate was the worst in the majors. Â This wasn’t just bad for this year. Â He had the worst rate since 2002. Â Mark Reynolds set a strikeout record one year and had a better swinging strike rate. Â Oh, and he’s 32 years old as of May 21st. Â He could be in for a huge year, but he’ll probably be drafted before I’m willing to look at him. Â For 2013, I’ll give him the line ofÂ 92/29/109/.277/7. Â You think adding a top hitter to an already stacked lineup will make it exponentially better, but for fantasy it just spreads out the wealth, as the Angels and Dodgers should do. Â Anyway, here’s some more offseason moves for 2013 fantasy baseball:
Mike Olt – Before we start giving each other a reach around about the prospects of Olt playing every day, the Rangers and LaRoche rumors are gaining steam. Â Usually I don’t talk about rumors because I’m not TMZ, but this rumor makes a lot of sense and would send fantasy ripples through the Rangers lineup. Â Stay tuned. Â Or not. Â Your choice!
Ryan DempsterÂ – Signed with the Red Sox. Â This is such a recent Red Sox-type move. Â John Lackey takes offense to that comment, and all AL teams take offense to Fenway. Â Last year, Dempster was the same pitcher for the Cubs as he was for the Rangers. Â Unless he and Matt Garza visited an old Asian man and made a wish to switch bodies. Â In Chicago, Dempster was the good kind of lucky to have a 2.25 ERA in 104 IP. Â In Texas, he was the bad kind of lucky to have a 5.09 ERA in 69 IP. Â Last year in Great American, his BABIP was .143; in Wrigley it was .240; in Miller Park it was .143. Â Then in the AL, his BABIP in Arlington was .361; .400 in Anaheim and .500 in Oakland. Â That’s why he was terrible in Texas last year. Â His K-rate actually went up in the 2nd half of the year. Â None of this is meant to say Dempster is going to be terrific in Bahston. Â He’s just not going to be terrible, either. Â Hold on, someone’s knocking on my door. Â “Hello?” Â “Just say Dempster’s an average pitcher with better-than-average Ks and move on!” Â Oh-kay…. In 2013, I’ll project a line of 13-10/3.90/1.31/188.
Ichiro SuzukiÂ – Signed a deal to stay with the Yankees for $12-13 million. Â $12 million if he plays for them. Â $13 million if he cleans the porn out of Hideki’s old locker. Â Unlike when he was under stadium arrest in Seattle, Ichiro will enjoy hitting at home. Â Last year, he hit 5 homers after his trade and they were all in The House They Built Across The Street From The House Ruth Built. Â He also hit .338 in New York. Â At worst, he’s going to be a great guy to slot into your lineup when he’s home. Â At best, he might hit 14 homers, .300 and steal 30 bases. Â I’m thinking Ichiro might be slightly undervalued this year for the first time in his career. Â For 2013, I’ll give him the line 88/12/62/.289/22.
Jack Hannahan – Signed with the Reds. Â If only Barbera couldâ€™ve been alive to see this. Â Did you know the key to Hannahan’s swing is he stands perfectly still and just the background changes? Â This is one of those whatever moves that could come back to haunt fantasy baseballers (<–my mom’s term!). Â Let’s form a prayer rectangular that Dusty doesn’t give Hannahan too many at-bats at the expense of Frazier.
Skip SchumakerÂ – The Dodgers traded for him. Â Kids, do you see what happens when you spend $500 million on your pitching staff? Â Now, the Dodgers are trying to move Nick Punto because Schumaker made him expendable. Â Ain’t that the appendix calling the tonsils black?