Weekly #streameroftheday Update
Bret takes a look at his streamer picks for the prior week and sees what he's learned.
I ran my introduction to the season long #streameroftheday recommendations I provide last week, so rather than rehashing it too much, I'll just link it here. In essence, I recommend one starting pitcher per day who is owned in fewer than 10% of leagues (lower than your typical standards) and post it on Twitter at @dynastyguru. This is where I stand in front of the firing squad, fully accountable for these recommendations. Unfortunately, this past week, the firing squad is a little angry. Here were the details for the last seven days:
Like I said, it wasn't my finest week. I can deal with the Happ, Richards and Tillman all giving up four runs. I can even deal with throwing Joe Blanton out there again for another "favorable" match-up--though he's going on my no-fly list for the time being. What I can't deal with is throwing a supposedly healthy Chris Capuano out there only to find out after the fact that he was dealing with a calf injury due to his role in the Dodgers-Padres brawl last week. That one really hurt. Though I was mildly bailed out last night with Pat Corbin impressing again, this time at Yankee Stadium. He's a guy I really liked this pre-season and continue to really like now.
April 18, 2013 11:00 PM
Why Pull J.D.?
What did the Astros outfielder do to get yanked from the game?
On April 8 Astros manager Bo Porter pulled J.D. Martinez from the game after a fourth-inning at-bat. Afterward neither Porter nor Martinez divulged the intricacies of the yanking, though Martinez did offer a hint, according to Brian T. Smith of the Houston Chronicle:
“From a baseball standpoint, I made a mistake (Monday),” Martinez said. “I had a mental error going up to the plate. It was totally my fault. I understand everything Bo did taking me out. I hold nothing against him, because what I did was unacceptable. It was a mental mistake that will never happen again.”
Asked if his mistake was related to swinging on the first pitch, Martinez didn’t deny it. But the outfielder again said he’d prefer not to reveal the exact reason he was pulled by Porter.
What did Martinez do? Nothing obvious stood out in reviewing the play; no hustle-related injustice or anything of the sort. Yet by the time Martinez returned to the dugout Porter was signaling for someone on the bench. So what sparked this whole thing? Here's a guess: Martinez broke a team rule by making the second of back-to-back first-pitch outs. (Chris Carter, who batted before Martinez, had also popped up on the first pitch.)
After digging through the gamelogs I found that Houston hasn't made back-to-back first-pitch outs at any other time this season. They have had other instances where consecutive batters put the first pitch into play, however, at least one of those at-bats resulted in a hit in each occasion. To compare them to two other randomly selected AL teams: Seattle has zero back-to-back first-pitch outs this season, and Kansas City has two.
If the Astros do have a rule like this then it comes close to the minor-league rule some teams install that mandates batters to take until they get a strike. (For what it's worth, the Astros put the ball in play about as often on the first pitch as the rest of the league does; 10.1 percent for Houston, 10.7 percent for the league.) With Martinez saying he doesn't want his teammates to believe he's selfish he's implying that there's either a rule or a heavily suggested understanding in the clubhouse that batters will be aware of others' at-bats and not make quick outs.
That or Martinez did something out of sight to everyone but Porter.
April 18, 2013 4:32 PM
Fringe Average: Episode 3
Jason Parks & Mike Ferrin, drink beer, talk baseball, and then talk baseball and drink beer.
Trot Times for April 17
The tater trots for April 17: Jason Giambi's first Cleveland home run, Everth Cabrera says "me-ow!"
Three games were postponed due to rain on Wednesday. Seems fitting to have an abbreviated post today in their honor.
April 18, 2013 10:20 AM
Effectively Wild Episode 184: Brett Gardner Makes an Adjustment
Ben and Sam discuss Brett Gardner's new approach at the plate, and how hitters adjust to pitchers.
Ben and Sam discuss Brett Gardner's new approach at the plate, and how hitters adjust to pitchers.
Games of Wednesday, April 17
Dodgers prospect Joc Pederson is showing added thump in the early going.
Pitching Prospect of the Day: Timothy Berry, LHP, Orioles (High-A Frederick): 6.0 IP, 4 H, 4 ER, 0 BB, 11 K; Berry uses a three-pitch mix (fastball/curveball/changeup), and all three of the offerings could be solid-average; 21 strikeouts in 17 innings pitched.
Position Prospect of the Day: Joc Pederson, CF, Dodgers (Double-A Chattanooga): 3-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 4 RBI, K; Pederson has always a knack for making loud contact, and he has started 2013 with a power surge that will become critical if he must slide to a corner; .308/.327/.712 in 52 at-bats this season.
Other notable prospect performances from April 17:
- Javier Baez, SS, Cubs (High-A Daytona): 3-6, HR, 3 R, 2 RBI, K; With one of the fastest bats in the minors, Baez should be right up there with Oscar Taveras in terms of prospects with the highest fantasy upside. Once he starts to slow the game down, watch out: Of his 12 hits, eight have gone for extra-bases.
- Corey Dickerson, LF, Rockies (Triple-A Colorado Springs): 4-5, 2B, HR, 2 R, RBI, K; Though he’s stuck in left field, Dickerson has a potential solid-average hit tool and gap power; .422/.449/.711 in 45 at-bats.
- Edwin Escobar, LHP, Giants (High-A San Jose): 4.2 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K; Escobar’s fastball sits in the low 90s, and he complements it with an effective changeup and a below-average curveball, keeping hitters off-balance and missing a lot of bats; 20 strikeouts in 14.2 Innings pitched this year.
- Joey Gallo, 3B, Rangers (Low-A Hickory): 2-3, 2 HR, 4 R, 2 RBI, 2 BB; Sure, Gallo has swing and miss in his game, but the power could be special; 10-for-49, 4 HR, 7 RBI, and 20 K.
- Joan Gregorio, RHP, Giants (Low-A Augusta): 6.0 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 10 K; The 6-foot-7 Gregorio has extreme length and pitches from a three-quarters slot. With a plus-velocity fastball and developing secondary offerings, he’s one to keep an eye on; 17.0 IP, 12 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 23 K thus far.
- Jesse Hahn, RHP, Rays (High-A Charlotte): 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 K; after he was drafted in 2010, a spate of poor health (Tommy John surgery, broken foot) kept Hahn off the mound until 2012. Hahn’s fastball could be plus-plus, his curveball has plus potential, and his changeup is still developing. Once he shows scouts more of what he has, he could shoot up the rankings.
- Kyle Jensen, RF, Marlins (Double-A Jacksonville): 3-5, 2B, HR, 2 R, 4 RBI, K; Jensen has solid-average power to all fields, but his swing can get long and he’s a below-average runner. Defensively limited to a corner, Jensen will have to maximize his power to stay in the prospect conversation.
- Eric Jokisch, LHP, Cubs (Double-A Tennessee): 6.0 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K; A fringy fastball, average curveball, and solid-average changeup give Jokisch a back-end starter ceiling; 18.0 IP, 10 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 17 K.
- Taylor Jordan, RHP, Nationals (High-A Potomac): 7.0 IP, 6 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K; Jordan’s fastball can work in the low 90s with life, his slider has a chance to be solid-average, and his changeup already usable. He had Tommy John surgery at the end of the 2011 season; 19.0 IP, 13 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 15 K.
- Nick Kingham, RHP, Pirates (High-A Bradenton): 6.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K; Like many Pirates pitchers, Kingham has a big, strong frame with a steep plane to the plate. His fastball works in the low 90s with plenty of sink, and his changeup—on which he has good arm speed—projects to be solid-average. Kingham’s curveball, though, is still a work in progress.
- Gregory Polanco, CF, Pirates (High-A Bradenton): 3-3, 2 BB, SB; Polanco has loud tools (easy 5 hit and power, 6 run), but is working to smooth out his hitting mechanics as he finds his way into the upper-tier of prospects; .327/.379/.442 in 52 at-bats.
- Robert Refsnyder, 2B, Yankees (Low-A Charleston): 3-4, 3B, 2 RBI; Refsynder, the 2012 College World Series hero, is making the move from the outfield back to second base. Sticking at the keystone could be important to his prospect stock, because the hit tool may only end up being average and Refsnyder has limited over-the-fence power; 20-for-54 with 4 2B, 3B, and 9 R thus far.
- Jameson Taillon, RHP, Pirates (Double-A Altoona): 7.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 6 K; Taillon’s curveball is an absolute hammer, his fastball is up to 97 with life, and his changeup is improving. Taillon and Gerrit Cole will be an impressive combination at the front of the Pirates rotation, and both could reach the big leagues in 2013; 18.0 IP, 11 H, 2 ER, 7 BB, 20 K this season.
- Alex Wood, LHP, Braves (Double-A Mississippi): 7.0 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K; after skipping High-A, Wood has excelled in his first three starts in Double-A. He throws from a low-three-quarters slot, using a fastball that can touch plus velocity with heavy sink and a potential-plus changeup that has good fade. Wood’s delivery and lack of a solid breaking ball gives most the impression that his meaningful innings will be out of the bullpen; 16 IP, 10 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 17 K.
- Brandon Workman, RHP, Red Sox (Double-A Portland: 7.0 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K; With a four-pitch mix (fastball/slider/curveball/changeup), Workman relies on his fastball and slider to miss bats. Workman is an extremely hard worker and profiles best as a back-end starter who will eat up innings; 18.0 IP, 10 H, 6 ER, 2 BB, 25 K thus far.
- Ismael Guillon, LHP, Reds (Low-A Dayton): 3.1 IP, 1 H, 4 ER, 9 BB, 5 K; Needless to say, command is a major question mark for Guillon.
- Roman Quinn, SS, Phillies (Low-A Lakewood): 0-3, BB, 3 K; Quinn has struggled to make contact thus far; 13-for-52 with 17 strikeouts.
- A.J. Schugel, RHP, Angels (Triple-A Salt Lake): 3.0 IP, 11 H, 9 ER, 1 BB, 3 K; did not miss the zone much, but found a lot of barrels.
- Jacob Turner, RHP, Marlins (Triple-A New Orleans): 5.0 IP, 5 H, 5 ER, 4 BB, 5 K; after being bypassed by Jose Fernandez, Turner, the main piece in the Anibal Sanchez/Omar Infante trade, was sent to Triple-A to work on his mechanics.
April 18, 2013 2:28 AM
The Week In Albert Pujols Playing Through Pain
Albert Pujols is having a hard time running
In case you missed Albert Pujols getting thrown out at first to end the game last night, don't worry, it's not too late to catch him running the final few yards.
April 17, 2013 3:04 PM
Trot Times for April 16
The tater trots for April 16: David Wright's shots in majestic Coors Field, two speedy trots from Heyward and Gomez.
Jackie Robinson Day continued throughout the league on Tuesday, with many ballparks playing "Sweet Caroline" or other Boston staples in support of the city (the Brewers played the theme song from "Cheers", for example). It was a nice gesture from the league and the individual clubs.
April 17, 2013 2:08 PM