Posted on: June 28, 2009 4:07 pm



Posted on: June 27, 2009 6:49 pm

get som stats

Even though he wasn't missing many bats, Trevor Cahill did a respectable job in the first two months of his big league career.

Though his strikeout rate was just under four per nine innings at the end of May, Cahill was still the owner of a nearly-league-average 4.45 ERA. Given his lack of whiff power and an ERC north of 5.00, June looked like an implosion waiting to happen, but it hasn't worked out that way. Instead, Cahill has chiseled his ERA down to a svelte 3.68, his once-bloated WHIP is now at 1.34, and he has logged a 3-0 record for the month. Put all that together, and you've got the most popular free agent pitcher pickup in the American League, at least for the coming week.

Cahill hasn't increased his strikeout rate appreciably, so how has he done it? He hasn't taken any tips from the bestselling "How to Succeed as a Contact Pitcher" by Chien Ming-Wang (2007 edition) or from the updated version written by Joel Pineiro. At their best, pitchers like Wang and Pineiro succeed because of miniscule walk rates and astronomical ground ball rates. Cahill has accomplished neither. A .261 BABIP has been doing much of his heavy lifting, and it's doubtful he can sustain it much beyond the All-Star Break. Until Cahill starts striking out major league hitters, owners should be cautious about activating Cahill, even in AL-only leagues.

More guys in demand

J.P. Howell, RP, Tampa Bay
Week 12 Ownership:
26 percent
Week 13 Ownership: 34 percent
Rank in AL Most Added: 9th
The Skinny: There is a lot to like about Howell as a closer. He strikes guys out, has reasonably good control and keeps the ball in the infield. The only negative is that Howell is part of a Rays' closer committee that is larger than the Obama cabinet. It just so happens that his skill ratios are the best of the bunch, and more important, Howell has been Joe Maddon's go-to guy of late. Because he can contribute to your team's strikeouts, ERA and WHIP, you can carry him in an AL-only bullpen, even if he doesn't provide many saves. It would behoove mixed league owners to reserve Howell for another week to see if he remains as Maddon's closer du jour.

Year Team BB/9 K/9 HR/9 BABIP ERC 2007 Tampa Bay 3.7 8.7 1.4 0.381 6.84 2008 Tampa Bay 3.9 9.3 0.6 0.252 2.51 2009 Tampa Bay 3.4 10.9 0.3 0.289 2.21

Scott Rolen, 3B, Toronto
Week 12 Ownership:
52 percent
Week 13 Ownership: 64 percent
Rank in AL Most Added: 5th
The Skinny: While Rolen's owners have spent the season waiting for the injury that hasn't come, he's been quietly putting together his best campaign since 2006. Though his power has yet to return, Rolen has been gathering hits and runs at rates we haven't seen in years. Part of his success is due to a more patient approach that he had abandoned over the last couple of seasons, but it's what Rolen has been doing when bat meets ball that has really made the difference. He has become a line drive-hitting maniac, searing pitchers with a 29 percent liner rate. Though this rate has hovered around 30 percent for much of the season, it's unlikely he can keep this going through the second half. Not one single everyday player has had a full season rate this high over either of the last two seasons. Just three players have maintained a rate as high as 26 percent: Ryan Ludwick (2008), Ryan Howard (2007) and The Artist Formerly Known As Garrett Atkins (2007). Enjoy Rolen's roll in all formats while it lasts, but his usefulness in mixed leagues will endure only as long as his line drive binge does.

Year Team Walk Rate Whiff Rate Iso Power BABIP RC/27 SB 2007 St. Louis 9% 14% 0.133 0.293 4.4 5 2008 Toronto 10% 17% 0.169 0.294 5.3 5 2009 Toronto 9% 12% 0.153 0.360 8.0 3

Other guys drawing interest

Rank Player Week 12 Ownership Week 13 Ownership Percentage change 1. Juan L. Rivera, LF, L.A. Angels 47% 73% 26% 2. Trevor Cahill, SP, Oakland 37% 53% 16% 3. Michael Cuddyer, RF, Minnesota 64% 78% 14% 4. Nick Blackburn, SP, Minnesota 63% 76% 13%

Guys Dropping Like Flies

Jason Varitek, C, Boston
Week 12 Ownership:
68 percent
Week 13 Ownership: 60 percent
Rank in AL Most Dropped: 2nd
The Skinny: Back-to-back seasons of high whiff rates and declining power led me to believe that Varitek was done as a viable Fantasy catcher, if not as a real world one. As with Rolen, a surprisingly good start has kept Fantasy's grim reaper at bay, but a cool June has raised doubts anew. Owners might be getting down on Varitek, but I'm not quite ready to give up on him a second time, and here's why. Now in his fourth straight year of low batting averages, it's clear that Varitek has joined the club of chronic low BABIP hitters like Jason Giambi, Ken Griffey, Jr. and Bengie Molina. Consider his recent 4-for-32 slide as a correction that brings his BABIP down from .257 to a more natural resting place of .241. The encouraging thing is that his skill indicators, including Isolated Power, have held up during the slump. Now that he has bottomed out and still ranks seventh among major league catchers in Fantasy points, Varitek can reasonably be considered a mixed-league catcher, especially in Head-to-Head leagues.

Year Team Walk Rate Whiff Rate Iso Power BABIP RC/27 SB 2007 Boston 14% 28% 0.166 0.318 5.5 1 2008 Boston 11% 29% 0.139 0.278 3.6 0 2009 Boston 12% 22% 0.245 0.241 5.2 0

Guys wearing roster repellant

Rank Player Week 12 Ownership Week 13 Ownership Percentage change 1. Carl Pavano, SP, Cleveland 53% 41% -12% 3. C.J. Wilson, RP, Texas 33% 26% -7% 3. Kyle Davies, SP, Kansas City 19% 12% -7% 5. Jeff Niemann, SP, Tampa Bay 34% 28% -6%


Glossary Runs Created per 27 Outs (RC/27) -- An estimate of how many runs a lineup would produce per 27 outs if a particular player occupied each spot in the order; ex. the RC/27 for Miguel Cabrera would predict the productivity of a lineup where Cabrera (or his statistical equal) batted in all nine spots; created by Bill James
Component ERA (ERC) -- An estimate of a what a pitcher's ERA would be if it were based solely on actual pitching performance; created by Bill James
GO/AO -- Ground out-fly out ratio
GB/FB -- Ground ball-fly ball ratio
Batting Average per Balls in Play (BABIP) -- The percentage of balls in play (at bats minus strikeouts and home runs) that are base hits; research by Voros McCracken and others has established that this rate is largely random and has a norm of approximately 30%
Isolated Power -- The difference between slugging percentage and batting average; created by Branch Rickey and Allan Roth
Walk Rate -- Walks / (at bats + walks)
Whiff Rate -- Strikeouts / at bats
Category: Fantasy
Posted on: June 24, 2009 4:56 pm


Hey Jabronies,

I think that andy murray looks good in the opening rounds. Like i said before this is a hands down victory for Roger Federer. It will be fun to watch people battle just to lose to him. I think Jancovic on the womens side has a good opp. but i need to stop working and see some early coverage.
Posted on: June 18, 2009 9:10 am

GOLF Bethpage Bliiz

Oh 6Am line up deadline thank god I plan ahead. Its not going to be nice weather up on the Island. I hope Ogilvy Pulls hard because I would love to whoop BAD BURD. Haven't heard from the TOP1K in like 24 hours, maybe all my good natured ribbing was too much for him. He'll get over it. Anyone need gamble picks? ROGER
Posted on: June 17, 2009 5:32 pm

This Pirate Ball Jabronie

Anyone read this guys shit? I mean, ya gotta be socrates to understand where hes goin half the time and a extra stregnth NO Doz wouldnt help either. He recently posted that i was No OFG, well let me and my fans tell you mr. Pirateball that I took many years fightin the hard fight in the minors, gettin banged up losing seasons, not being invited back to leagues cause i was Simple Jack Fantasy FULL RETARD. I worked my way to where I am over years on this horrible site. I have strategies that are older than the pirates losing seasons streak. I have visable public history spelling out my rise thru the ranks to level three while also maintaing my Superstar level on the boards and in the community. I am Certainly OFG-SUS, the term was invented FOR me. Post away, it wont win you any chip PirateBall, You are still learning the ways of the OFG. One day we may see things from the same prospective but for now hand me my 9 iron and step aside.
Posted on: June 15, 2009 11:08 pm


He will clean sweep the entire tennis year, nobody will challenge him now that nadal is knee hurty. too bad, I love watching RF dominate. I dont care what youthink nerd
Category: Tennis
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