The tater trots for July 23 (and the weekend): Mike Napoli hits a bomb, Carlos Gonzalez takes a stroll, and Chase Utley edges out Josh Rutledge.
It's been a few days since the last Tater Trot Tracker post. And though I was able to time each trot over the weekend, I missed highlighting a few special home runs. The biggest homers of note came on Saturday, when Cole Hamels served up a home run to Matt Cain in the top of the third inning and then, in the bottom of the inning, Cain returned the favor to Hamels. It was the first time two starters had hit home runs in the same inning since 1990. Hamels, who had never hit a home run before, won the race between the two pitchers, besting Cain's 21.51 second trot with a 21.13 second trot of his own.
In order to become more right, we have to be wrong. But we also have to acknowledge that we're wrong and attempt to figure out why.
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.
The regular season kicks off, but the Mariners have already suffered multiple casualties.
B.J. Upton, Tampa Bay Rays, (Lower Back Soreness)
Upton was still feeling the effects from his collision with Desmond Jennings in the outfield two weeks ago; Tampa Bay elected to place Upton on the disabled list to allow him to fully recover. The injury is being listed as lower back soreness, but the root cause of the soreness could be related to muscle strains, ligament sprains, or even bone bruising in his spine.
Strains and sprains can last for more than a few weeks but usually heal just fine. When there is a collision between two diving fielders and soreness lingers, concern about a bone bruise in the spine rises. In severe cases, this trauma can cause small fractures, but usually the player is in a lot more pain than Upton appeared to be in. While the Rays do not believe Upton’s injury will necessitate a long recovery period, they’re refusing to nail down a timetable.
In his continuing exploration of keeper options at the infield corners and designated hitter, Michael looks at two namesakes--Morse and Young--as well as Ryan Zimmerman and Andruw Jones.
This week was light on fantasy-relevant news, as general managers are still taking down their Christmas lights, putting the tree out on the curb, and waiting to see who can wrap Prince Fielder as a belated gift to their teams. But we at BP Fantasy can still start your New Year off right with a look at some under- and over-performing keeper options from 2011.
If you’d like to see someone else written up here, please leave your suggestions in the comments field—and if I’ve covered them before, I’ll point you towards the appropriate column.
A look back at the best and worst outfield VP picks of 2011.
Value Picks is such a mixed bag, especially before NL-only and AL-only players were separated out. Sometimes, a “Value Pick” is a player the authors think should be owned in every league, even shallow mixed leagues, because they're just that good. Other players are more appropriate for deeper mixed leagues or shallow single-league leagues. And, of course, some players are total bottom-of-the-barrel shots in the dark (here's looking at you, Trent Oeltjen!)
A later bloomer seems to be emerging in the nation's capital, while Motown may be finding the hits with a sophomore.
Today, I thought I’d look at a couple players who are having surprising seasons but who I’m buying into almost completely.
Brennan Boesch | DET | OF: I’m buying into Boesch’s terrific season. I was impressed with his power as a rookie last year, and I was a little surprised when there was talk that he would not begin 2011 with the big-league club. He made the team in a part-time role, but that didn’t last long; Boesch is starting most every day now.