For those of you that don’t know, I’m in Chicago for the next couple of days for the Fantasy Sports Trade Association Conference. It’s a coming together of the greatest minds in the industry, and me, to touch base, share business thoughts, discuss the direction of the fantasy sports industry, and to enjoy some fun together (I’m not naming names, but some of us may party a little harder than others). While at the event we will also hold the annual FSTA Experts League for Fantasy Football. It’s a 14 team PPR league, and yours truly is drafting 9th (hopefully I’ll have some better luck than I’ve had in the baseball league this season as injuries have beaten me down to 10th place). I’ll certainly try to post some thoughts from the event, but it might be hit or miss (I’m literally going to be in Chicago for less than 48 hours). In fact, this is going to be a mostly Oracle free period of about 10 days. For the first time in literally seven years I’m taking a real vacation. Yes, that is sad – no vacations in seven years. Hey, you have to work hard to get ahead. Here’s my upcoming schedule
Chicago (FSTA Event), Hawaii (beach time, maybe some booze too), San Diego (Wedding – not mine, don’t panic ladies).
I’ll try to come back with a savage tan. What am I saying, I won’t try, I will. I wonder if copious amounts of Vodka & Redbull in Chicago, and tons of Pina Colada’s and Lava Flows in Hawaii will help speed up the tan. I’m willing to try.
On to more pressing matters…
Tony Cingrani may be sent back to the minors as the Reds appear to be hopeful that Johnny Cueto (lat) will be able to return to the rotation for his next turn (Sunday). Cingrani by the way looked really sharp needing just 92 pitches to go seven innings while walking one batter and allowing two runs to the Cubs to improve to 3-0. He was as impressive as Matt Garza was pitiful (nine earned runs in five innings). Nice job rook.
Bryce Harper did not have surgery on his knee. That said, he may or may not be back on the field in June. Harper’s knee injury required a cortisone shot and the ever growing in popularity platelet-rich plasma injection. Harper will wear a brace for the rest of the week before the Nationals decide on the next step.
Kenley Jansen is now the Dodgers’ closer as it should have been from day one. For the second straight season it appears that Jansen will start the year as the setup man and then end up leading his team in saves.
Derek Jeter is visiting a doctor Thursday and he hopes his ankle gets the thumbs up so he can return to full activity. Seems like we’re looking at about six weeks of rehab work for Jeter once he gets thus thumbs up, so late July for a return? So much for Jeter missing the first week of the season this year as reports initially suggested.
Matt Kemp still isn’t running after suffering a setback with his hamstring. He’s not going to be able to return this week. It’s uncertain if he will be back next week either.
I watched Tim Lincecum throw Tuesday, and it was yuck all over again. He threw 4.2 innings and only allowed two runs that were earned (four overall), but man was it terrible. He couldn’t locate his pitches, walked the impossible to walk Starling Marte, and just couldn’t get it done. He has the stuff to get batters out. There is no doubt, none. His secondary stuff is really good (as I keep telling you). The problem continues to be his inability to consistently locate hit pitches. He’s not gone Rick Ankiel on us, but man, brutal. The biggest hit against Lincecum in this outing by the way? How about the bases loaded two run single by — Gerrit Cole. Brutal like I said. As for Cole, he throws hard (he was sitting at 95 and touching 97-98 at times), and he threw strikes (52 of 72 pitches were strikes and he didn’t walk a batter over 6.1 innings). Just like in the minors though, he didn’t generate any strikeouts as he punched out just two batters. Cole left the game without allowing a run, but the Pirates bullpen ended up saddling him with two runs on his record. All and all a great first game, but where are those strikeouts?
Jacob Turner went seven solid innings against the Brewers allowing four run (three earned) while striking out six. Through three starts this year he has a 1.80 ERA and 1.05 and maybe, just maybe, he’ll have some mixed league value in the second half.
By Ray Flowers