The boys check out Jason Parks, Bartolo Colon, and an inadequate shirsey section.
Jake Mintz and Jordan Shusterman, the proprietors of Cespedes Family Barbecue, are taking another baseball trip and chronicling their travels at Baseball Prospectus.
The world we live in is full of amazing natural wonders. Anybody can go to a computer and find a picture of the Grand Canyon or Mount Everest or even Mount Everth. But experiencing these things in person elevates you to an entirely different level. Live viewings provide a deeper appreciation for the physicality of these amazing sites. While on a computer or TV you can only utilize your eyes, but in person you can smell, hear, touch, and even taste the magic. Last night, we watched Bartolo Colon hit in person and it was downright beautiful.
The latest on Mookie Betts, Javier Baez, Noah Syndergaard, and other players who should be on your fantasy radar in case they earn promotions.
The Graduates: Neftali Feliz (22)
This past week saw the sad-sack Rangers finally deal off their closer (who had been one of the best in baseball to this point) Joakim Soria to the Tigers, freeing their former star closer to retake the role. Unfortunately, Feliz still doesn’t have his pre-Tommy John velocity back and it’s manifesting itself in diminished strikeout numbers (he has four in 11 1/3 innings). He can keep the job without the whiffs, as they don’t really have a great alternative, but his value will be diminished if it doesn’t pick up a little.
The Departed: Joey Gallo (HM)
As much fun as this would be, there’s just zero incentive for the Rangers to rush Gallo when he hasn’t even gotten a half-season’s worth of at-bats at Double-A.
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Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Phillies third baseman Maikel Franco and Tigers lefty Kevin Ziomek.
Hitter of the Night: Maikel Franco, 3B, Phillies (Lehigh Valley, AAA): 4-4, R, HR, SB.
It’s been a rough season for Franco, who entered the season with some questions about his swing that he made up for with strong bat-to-ball skills. Those questions still remain and have been exposed by Triple-A pitching, though he appears to be making adjustments and is hitting .321 in July. Even with his struggles this season, it’s hard to believe he won’t get a taste of the majors this September on a struggling Phillies team.
Pitcher of the Night: Kevin Ziomek, LHP, Tigers (West Michigan, A-): 6 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 13 K.
Ziomek, a second-rounder in last year’s draft, is excelling in his first taste of full-season ball despite too many free passes and secondary stuff that hasn’t played as well as it did in college. He has premium velocity from the left side, however, which gives him a high ceiling if the bite can return on his other offerings.
"You can't just trade him for nothing!" Sure you can.
Last week, I saw what I thought was an Onion headline. After all, The Onion has gotten so good at what they do, I now assume that anything in my Facebook feed is satirical. The story said that the Phillies were “working hard” to tradeRyan Howard. I don’t often use “LOL” when I type, because I don’t often laugh out loud.
How many players will be negatively affected by a change in voting rules?
On Saturday, the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame made its most significant rule change to Hall of Fame voting rules in nearly 30 years, reducing the amount of time a candidate can spend on the ballot from 15 years to 10.
How would this change have impacted earlier Hall of Fame candidates? Would reducing the eligibility requirement from 15 years to 10 years have eliminated worthy candidates for the Hall? Is this change relevant to the Hall of Fame landscape now?
The Pirates lefty has fared well in July, but is that reason to believe that the tide has turned on his 2014 season?
It’s no secret that Francisco Liriano remains one of the more electric arms in baseball. He still has a lively fastball, as well as a devastating slider-changeup combination that can induce a myriad of swings-and-misses. When he throws strikes consistently and stays healthy, he can be dominant. Last year, he missed a few starts and only threw 161 innings, but he decimated the NL Central with a 3.02 ERA (2.92 FIP) and struck out more than a batter per inning. Ultimately, he was a top-30 starter and a wonderful surprise in all formats.
Fantasy owners remained skittish when drafting Liriano this spring. His average draft position didn’t reflect his 2013 performance, as owners worried about his health and whether he had truly discovered something that would lead to consistent, reliable performance on the mound.
Mike digs into some league-mates' strategies when bidding on NL-only imports Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel.
Every decision influences the next set of decisions that we make. Like a pebble in a pond, what we do today has a definitive impact on what we do tomorrow.
In fantasy baseball, this is true in every facet of the game. The auction or draft we have impacts what kind of trades or free agent moves we make during the season. The trades we make impact whether or not we make additional trades. The free agent pickups we make impact future free agent pickups and future trades. This series of actions and subsequent actions goes on until the season is over. In keeper leagues it goes on until you leave the league or the mortal coil.
Looking at the upcoming AL-vs-NL and NL-vs-AL matchups, and how they might affect teams' lineups.
Please note that in the “DH” column, the player listed is the player that has been added or removed from the lineup, not necessarily the player in the DH slot. For example, if the Phillies move Dominic Brown to DH and put Tony Gwynn Jr. in the OF, then I will list Gwynn Jr. in the “DH” column because he is the player that is gaining at bats.
Notes on prospects who stood out over the weekend, including Addison Russell, Bradley Zimmer, Jose Peraza, and Julio Urias.
Friday, July 25
Matt Olson, 1B, Athletics (Stockton, A+): 1-3, 2 R, HR, 2 BB, 2 K. This is a very Matt Olson day, taking five plate appearances and achieving one of the three true outcomes each time. That’s Olson’s game, hitting home runs and drawing walks. The strikeouts will keep his average down, but as long as he’s walking in almost 20 percent of his at-bats and slugging over .500, no one will care. It will be interesting to see how his power holds up when he transitions to Double-A Midland, as that jump has been trouble for A’s power prospects in the past, but his power is more legitimate than many of his predecessors’.