Friends, winter has come. An entire set of Meetings in Nashville has been dedicated to ringing in the season. The air is cold, there is no baseball, and it is all we can do to keep ourselves occupied while trying not to be driven mad by the latest Ken Rosenthal rumor about Justin Upton, or Jon Heyman report on Zack Greinke. We are forgiven, then, for turning to food. After all, food is frequently warm, cooking it makes us busy, and it does not require the presence of baseballing men on our televisions or radios.
Which is not to say that food and baseball don't make a natural pair. A bite and a beer, both the eating and the acquiring, can ease the boredom of a slow fifth inning in a meaningless August blowout, particularly as the hot dogs in many ballparks have been supplemented by more upscale options and the available beers have expanded from the usual selection of Bud, Bud Light, Bud Lime, Bud Dark, Bud Plus, and Bud Unleaded. Still, when I say "upscale," I for the most part mean "hamburgers from Shake Shack instead of Carls Jr." As far as I know and have been able to Google, nobody's yet offering escargot in the mezzanine on the third-base side. What I would like to demonstrate for you, if you'll permit me, is that some classic dishes in French cuisine can provide a gateway to thinking about baseball and baseball players while simultaneously making you ravenous.
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Finding it is fleeting, which suggests strategies for when and who to draft.
Drafting the right relievers presents an annual problem for fantasy owners. Sure, you can always take a look at their saves totals-or holds, if that's part of the game in your league-but this often ends with a few owners getting the shaft and drafting closers who have poor peripherals that drag down their other categories, just for the sake of picking up extra saves. If you overdraft for a guy guaranteed to get you saves rather than some of the poorer options that are picked up towards the back end of the draft, you may miss out on important contributors elsewhere. Today we're going to run a little exercise using WXRL, in order to see how often top relievers replicate their success, and whether it is worth it or not for you to spend (or waste) high draft picks on them.
The A's are trying to convert a little-known minor leaguer into a Chad Bradford-style submariner.
In 2005, he led the Oakland organization in pitching strikeouts. This year he had the second-best ERA in the Texas League. If anything, however, Athletics righthander Brad Ziegler is a realist.
"I'm just a generic overhand righty," he jokes. But the A's see something in the minor league veteran who turns 27 years old next month, and Ziegler has come around to the idea as well. Oakland still remembers how valuable Chad Bradford was in the A's bullpen for four years; while other teams stay away from unconventional pitchers like the plague, and while many minor leaguers are preparing for the offseason or winter ball, Ziegler is back in the instructional leagues, working on a submarine delivery.