I made an executive decision over the weekend when I was away drinking champagne and sitting in front of the fire with my friend in Carmel (she was decidedly better looking than the Peep that you see in main photo, and she is even sweeter than my sugary friend as well). I decided that every Monday I’d run through my seven main leagues that I’m doing this season and regale you with my personal FAAB decisions. Hopefully it won’t be as boring as it sounds and you’ll all be able to get something out of my personal decisions on many of the same players you will all be looking at each week.
To see how others are evaluating players don’t forget to go to Fleaflicker.com where you can check out the owned percentages of all your favorite players.
Oh, and before I get to my moves. Remember this – IT’S EARLY. If you want to tweak your roster, fine. But one week of games is far too early to do anything rash like blowing your club up. Patience. Now where is my robe, room service and snuggle time? Am I the only one that thinks returning to the real world blows chunks sometimes?
TOUT WARS (15 team mixed): I didn’t make any moves this week. I tried to release Mike Adams for Jim Henderson but my $6 bid (out of $100) fell well short of the $13 that he went for. Chris Heisey went for $9, Jose Fernandez for $8 and Jose Valverde going for $7. No other player cost more than $3.
LABR (12 team, AL-only): Slim pickings in a league specific setup. I added Matt Lindstrom for $2 (out of $100) as I put Jeff Niemann on the DL. Other adds in a rather quiet week (I had Jose Valverde on reserve in this league and that could turn out to be huge if he gains the closer’s role): Blake Beaven ($1), Jayson Nix ($1), Eric Sogard ($6), Sam Fuld ($3), Kevin Correia ($4), Shelly Duncan ($2), Brett Cecil ($2) and Drew Smyly $13 (I bid $8 for him).
FSTA (13 team mixed): Seventeen players were added here. Part of the reason for that is that this league drafted in January which leaves many more options to add early in the year that have since our draft gained roles. Jim Henderson ($56), Jeremy Guthrie ($71), Rajai Davis ($99) were the highest adds ($1,000 budget). I added one player – Sergio Santos ($9). I put Shaun Marcum in the DL to make the move.
SIRIUSXM EXPERTS (12 team mixed): I had to place Hanley Ramirez on the DL so I needed a middle infielder. I really wanted Eduardo Nunez, but given his biceps issue, and the fact that I couldn’t afford another injured middle infield option, I added Chris Nelson for $5 (out of my $100 budget). The big add of the week in the league was Jose Fernandez ($19) with only one other player in double-digits (Jose Valverde at $11).
SIRIUSXM LISTENER LG (11 team mixed): I didn’t make a single move in this league. This is the only league I’m in that moves can be made on a daily basis so there is no pressure to set up FAAB – you just free for all with it (which you all know I hate). There have been a ton of moves in this league – hello John Buck, Jackie Bradley and Jaime Garcia – but it’s only 11 teams and it’s a long season.
K-BAD (12 team mixed): Eleven total players were added this week. The big money guys – $1,000 budget – included Kelvin Herrera ($167), Jose Valverde ($62) and Jim Henderson ($62). Obviously trolling for saves eats up a lot of a FAAB budget as you’ve seen in many of the leagues listed here. That’s why it always makes sense to try and attach the position a week early. You could have gotta Herrera or Valverde or Henderson for a $1 a week ago. Now look what you have to spend to get the. My add of the week – I only went $32 for Henderson and $31 for Valverde since I’m not convinced either ends up leading his team in saves – was Drew Storen for $3. He’s an elite talent who is one injury or a couple of more bad outings from Rafael Soriano from working the 9th inning for the Nationals. I released Shaun Marcum.
FANBALL (13 team mixed): I added one player in this league – Jose Valverde ($3 of $100). Now I don’t love Valverde by any means, but after the Rockies decided to demote Tyler Colvin I thought I’d take a shot on adding a guy who could end up as the Tigers’ closer by the end of the month (letting go of a minor leaguer for a potential closer can’t be viewed as a bad move). If not, I’ll just use that spot to rotate weekly depending on need. In fact, only nine players were added by the 12 others in the league. The most cost add was a tied between Jim Henderson ($4) and Chris Heisey ($4). Mark Buehrle and Jeff Francoeur were dropped, two moves I have no problem with.
By Ray Flowers
Justin Fensterman and Trevor Ray discuss the start of the fantasy football playoff season. They will discuss some strategies they use to win championships and debate which fantasy football playoff format is best.
Cecil Shorts, Montell Owens and Mike Thomas
I’m not a huge fan of waiver-wire bingo. I think too often we go for the quick fix when slow and steady often wins the race. You know what I’m talking about. Some guy goes 5-for-8 with a homer and a steal and you’d knock over your mother to get to the computer first so you could add him to your team (I know which one of you out there would do it to, so don’t B.S. me and say you wouldn’t). So it’s with trepidation that I throw out the following names based upon their work the past two weeks. Still, it’s Monday and you need to get your lineup in shape for the week, so if you have injured players, or guys that you simply can’t stomach for another week, here are some options you could turn to.
Alexi Casilla – .432-0-5-9-5 in 44 ABs
Finally. This guy can hit and steal a base, just look at his minor league numbers at Triple-A over 168 games: .278/.370/.371 with 38 thefts. However, after hitting .281 in 2008 with the Twins he’s struggled to get significant playing time in the bigs. With the Twins in desperate need of offense you can’t think he will be sitting any time soon, though it will be interesting to see what happens when Tsuyoshi Nishioka returns from the DL. For now, Casilla is white hot, and since he qualifies at 2B and SS there could easily be a spot for him on your club.
Freddie Freeman – .378-1-7-4-1 in 45 ABs
The problem for any solid first base hitter is that first base is the land of the titans. Solid just won’t cut it unless you are in a deep league or one that starts corner infielders. However, the Braves’ rookie is doing his best to make you consider his name for a starting spot. In six of his last eight games he has at least two hits, he’s driven in seven runners in that time, and lo and behold his season long batting average is now .277 – not bad when you consider it was sitting at .220 less than a month ago (May 13th). If you need an injury fill in he seems primed to help, but again, make sure you don’t make the mistake of thinking Freddie’s ready to be a starter at first in a 12 team mixed league.
Chase Headley – .354-0-5-5-2 in 48 ABs
Most will look at Headley and see one homer and 23 runs scored and think – why even bother with this third baseman? In retort I’d point out the following. (1) Headley is hitting .280, a solid mark. He’s also working on a 15-game hitting streak. (2) His OBP is strong at .385. In fact, that’s the best mark of any NL third baseman. (3) He has seven steals. Only two third base eligible players have more – Ryan Roberts and David Wright have nine each. Headley isn’t a difference maker, but he’s a solid add if your lineup needs a boost.
Adam Kennedy – .342-1-8-7-0 in 38 ABs
Kennedy came out of nowhere to hit .289 with 11 homers and 20 steals in 2009 after it seemed like his career was heading off into the sunset. He predictably slumped last year down to .249 with three homers, but he’s back at it again in 2011. The Mariners’ offense is atrocious, so Kennedy should continue to see time until he slows down. The pending call up of Dustin Ackley is a concern, they won’t call him up to have him watch from the bench, but until then Kennedy is a moderate add for those of you who need some batting average help up the middle, and he’s always good for a few thefts.
Miguel Olivo – .350-4-13-7-1 in 40 ABs
Over the last three games he has three homers and seven RBI, and he’s posted a hit in 6-straight to raise his average .012 points. Consistent. That’s what Olivo is. I’ve said and written it before, but here it is again. Over the past five years only two catchers in baseball have 11 homers and 41 RBI each season. They are Brian McCann and Miguel Olivo.
Cliff Pennington – .349-0-3-5-1 in 43 ABs
If you are a Jimmy Rollins or Hanley Ramirez owner you might look this guys way. He’s clearly hitting well, and he’s shown the ability to swipe plenty of bases (he had 29 steals last year). He’s nothing more than a place holder in mixed leagues, but you could do worse in the short-term.
Ruben Tejada – .326-0-8-5-0 in 43 ABs
Limitations are the name of the game here. In 17 games this year he has zero homers. In 95 career games he has only one. In 17 games this year he has zero steals. In 95 games he has only two. He’s also hit a mere .232 in 272 career at-bats. OK, maybe I shouldn’t have mentioned him at all.
Ty Wigginton – .326-3-5-8-0 in 43 ABs
He somehow always goes underrated while somehow getting enough at-bats to blast 20 homers. Ty qualifies at 1B, 3B and 2B in every league, so he is a great guy to have at the end of your bench. When he’s getting regular playing time, like he is now, and is also hitting well, as he has since he returned from injury, then it makes a lot of sense to have him in your starting lineup.
By Ray Flowers