The trot times for 6/8-6/10. Harper's sprint, Martin's walkoff, Cabrera's inside-the-parker.
I was out of town this weekend, busy watching some low-A baseball, Star Wars Night fun up in Appleton, Wisconsin. Sadly, Minnesota uber-prospect Miguel Sano didn't actually walk up to the Imperial March. He did, however, get a nice Darth Vader headshot up on the video board.
Plouffe, Barajas, and Drew join the VP ranks this week.
It brings a tear to my eye to bid adieu to my first two Value Pick graduates, Jarrod Saltalamacchia(Yahoo! 59%, ESPN 51.7%, CBS 79%) and Gordon Beckham(Yahoo! 23%, ESPN 50.2%, CBS 72%). Their continued strong play has pushed their ownership above the self-imposed soft cap for inclusion. May both turn into fantasy roster mainstays.
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Do early-season phenoms fade once the rest of the league learns to stop giving them pitches to hit?
Believe it or not, most of our writers didn't enter the world sporting an @baseballprospectus.com address; with a few exceptions, they started out somewhere else. In an effort to up your reading pleasure while tipping our caps to some of the most illuminating work being done elsewhere on the internet, we'll be yielding the stage once a week to the best and brightest baseball writers, researchers and thinkers from outside of the BP umbrella. If you'd like to nominate a guest contributor (including yourself), please drop us a line.
This is a review of my 2010 shortstop rankings. This time around, not only will we use auction values for mixed leagues, but also the dollar value for AL- and NL-only leagues. These dollar values come from Graphical Player 2011, and I think these will do a good job illustrating how much I missed by on the players I missed, though, broken record style, the why is more important than the result when it comes to these rankings. All PECOTA projections, dollar values and statistics in the parentheses are from 2010.
Making some tough choices doesn't have to mean being non-competitive.
So, the Padres came up short, if only just, and the legacy of their big finish in 2009 just heralded a nice surprise and second-place irrelevance in 2010. That's the heartbreak of transient happiness for you, but with a roster stocked with plenty of passing fancies and the clock ticking on most of the club's big-name ballplayers, there are few one-day fixer-uppers more challenging than trying to sort out what to do with the Padres.
Placed RHP Vicente Padilla on the 15-day DL (bulging disk - neck), retroactive to 8/16; recalled RHP Travis Schlichting from Albuquerque (Triple-A). [8/20]
Activated LF-R Manny Ramirez from the 15-day DL; designated INF-R Juan Castro for assignment. [8/21]
Placed RHP Travis Schlichting on the 15-day DL (shoulder); activated RHP Jeff Weaver from the 15-day DL; claimed C-R Rod Barajas from the Mets off waivers. [8/22]
Activated C-R Rod Barajas; optioned C-R A.J. Ellis to Albuquerque. [8/24]
Noted the loss of LF-R Manny Ramirez on a waiver claim by the White Sox; recalled RHP Ramon Troncoso from Albuquerque. [8/30]
Activated RHP Vicente Padilla and SS-S Rafael Furcal from the 15-day DL; recalled C-R A.J. Ellis from Albuquerque. [9/3]
Recalled RHPs John Ely and Jon Link and MI-R Chin-lung Hu from Albuquerque; purchased the contracts of 1B-R John Lindsey and UT-R Russ Mitchell from Albuquerque; transferred C-R Russell Martin from the 15- to the 60-day DL. [9/6]
Purchased the contract of OF-L Trent Oeltjen from Albuquerque; designated INF-R Ronnie Belliard for assignment. [9/7]
Released INF-R Ronnie Belliard. [9/9]
Traded RHP Octavio Dotel to the Rockies for a PTBNL. [9/18]
Traded OF-R Preston Mattingly to the Indians for OF-L Roman Pena. [9/26]
As expected the flurry of trades has continued, and we have more fantasy impact to discuss because of it. Let's dig right in with what's transpired since last we wrote.
Miguel Tejada was sent to the Padres, which doesn’t make fantasy waves but is worthy of a few ripples. This leaves third base open for Josh Bell in Baltimore, and cuts into Chase Headley and Everth Cabrera's playing time in San Diego, though all of those things could be a positive. Bell is hitting .278/.328/.481 for the Triple-A Norfolk Tides and is the third baseman of the future for the O's, so bringing him up to the majors and giving him a chance to show off during this lost season is both good for the Orioles and for fantasy owners in need of some help at third. He's not a sure thing for 2010, but he's someone to keep an eye on or grab in deep leagues where you don't have time to worry about whether he's going to hit right away or not.
Checking out which teams have benefited most from increasing their Defensive Efficiency this season.
Defense has been on my mind lately, and not just because I've covered it in the context of my recent So-Called "Year of the Pitcher" investigations. It has been a topic I've followed closely over the past few seasons, particularly in terms of the relationship between teams' year-to-year improvement in the field and their overall success. While clubs' hitting and pitching upswings are often attributed to the work of individuals in our conversational shorthand-the Redsare winning because Joey Votto is having an MVP-caliber season and because Johnny Cueto and Mike Leake have anchored the rotation-defense is rarely mentioned in such a manner; indeed, it often slips under the radar entirely. Nonetheless, the past few seasons have seen some interesting turnarounds anchored by defenses, so the question is which ones have improved and declined the most since last year.
Ramirez and Tulowitzki are the cream of this crop, according to our expert.
Moving through the infield, we will look at the shortstop rankings. Shortstop is easily the worst position-the number of one-star players is depressing-but there is plenty of production to be found if you are willing to select it early or spend the auction money on it. As for the previous rankings in the series, check out first basemen, second basemen and third basemen. Now, here are the changes to this year's ranking system: