With the first half now officially in the books, it is time to look back and get all nostalgic. Or in my case, look back at the guys on my team on the DL and the players I didn’t pick up. Also, being a bit… well… odd… I have taken it upon myself to compile some tidbits of (almost certainly NOT) useful information, clips, and thoughts on what was a very interesting first half. And so….
OF NOTE AT THE ALL STAR BREAK
-> David Dejesus is in the top ten (9th) in hits with 107. I feel as though I have mentioned him quite a bit. We should get him on our team…
-> Cliff Pennington (who?!) has 6 triples. This just seems odd to me. He has the pedigree (1st round pick in 2005) but man oh man is he playing well. This just got me thinking about my favorite statistic- triples.
-> Pennington has those 6 triples in 288 at bats. Dexter Fowler has 7 triples. In 189 at bats. That’s a triple every 27 at bats. Shane Victorino leads the ML in triples with 8. In 352 at bats (that’s almost double- 1.86 times- the at bats). That equates to once every 44 at bats. Your ML leader in homers (freakin’ Jose Bautista, the former Pirate great) has 24 homers in 304 at bats. That’s once every 12.7 at bats. I’m not sure what this means, other than Dexter Fowler and his crazy long-as-a-giraffe legs are wicked fast.
-> One of my favorite players, Jonny Gomes, has 60 RBI’s at the break and 8 of those have come from sac flies. In his career, Gomes has 295 RBIs and 29 sac flies. That’s 9.8% of his RBIs coming from the sacrifice fly. He can play for my team. More importantly, he is due for one of his hot streaks coming out of the break, so heads up. In a similar story, Troy Glaus has 58 RBI and is also not going to continue scuffling, I promise. Grab him if he’s been dropped. You heard it here, maybe not first, but you did hear it.
-> Juan Pierre has a major league leading 32 steals! That is impressive. His .615 OPS however, is murderous in the fantasy realm.
-> Speaking of steals, Pierre is usually part of my least favorite stat- caught stealing. I hate players who routinely get caught. I hate getting caught (wink, wink, nod, nod, cough, cough). This is interesting because I have Matt ‘Underachiever of the Year Award’ Kemp on my team, who is 15 of 25 stealing. That’s bad, Kemp. I thought I had Matt Kemp, not Shawn. At least he’s better than Torii Hunter, who must be dragged down by an extra ‘i’ and meager 7 of 17 stealing bases.
-> Your league leaders in caught stealings? In the NL that would be Nyjer Morgan. In the AL, returning to Shaggy-esque glory, the one, the only, Scotty Pods, tied with his partner in crimes, Juan Pierre! It’s like everything is right in the fantasy world! Single dimensional almost-players!
-> Daric Barton has 54 BBs and 59 K’s, a .378 OBP, and has played solid first base/DH. This just proves that when it comes to Oakland, sometimes boring works. Sadly, this strategy doesn’t really help your fantasy team. His name is also Daric, which sounds like an evil emperor of something.
-> Mark Reynolds has 119 k’s. Swing away, Merril. Yup, that’s a Mel Gibson movie reference AND a Joaquin Phoenix reference all in one!
-> Carlos Beltran has not struck out or been caught stealing…. Nor has he played a game… but did you really notice? Isn’t that saying something?
-> Sticking with K’s, two players to look out for in keeper leagues and in the second half if they can correct their K:BB ratios- Drew Stubbs (89 K : 31 BB) and Austin Jackson (86K : 23 BB). If these head closer to 50-50, look for their OBPs and other stats to jump…
-> Rickie Weeks (422) leads the majors in plate appearances. Mostly because that lineup turns over so much.
->Your leaders in singles: NL- Martin Prado. No way! Where did this guy come from!!?! Oh wait… nailed it. AL- Ichiro. Ichiro is going to go down as one of the most consistent fantasy and major league players of all time.
-> Weeks and Carlos Quentin lead the NL and AL in HBP, with 17 (WOW!) and 12, respectively. HBP is my second favorite category in all of the fantasy world. Just rub some dirt on it and jog to first, gentlemen.
-> No surprise here, but two tubby fellas lead in GIDP. Billy Butt-ler with 21 and Panda Sandoval with 19 (man, what a disappointing season he’s having…)
-> Jeremy Hellickson is still in the minors.
-> The two pitchers having the most phenomenal years fewer-than-there-should-be people are talking about lead in ERA+, which adjusts ERA for parks and such. They are Josh Johnson and Clay Buchholz (245, 182). Read that again. Someone should really write about how good Buchholz has been…
-> Some quick thoughts: Carlos Santana was WELL worth the wait/ Brennan Boesch is this year’s Garrett Jones and has the same name as a Step Brothers character/ WATCH OUT FOR DAYAN VICIDEO IN THE 2ND HALF. Seriously. Put him on the watch list right now/ Brad Bergesen hurt himself filming a TV ad for th Orioles. Do not let Arietta and Matusz anywhere near him Baltimore!
-> First Half rookie standouts (not yet ROY’s)
NL-> Leake honestly, this guy did what everyone thought Strasburg would be doing right off the bat, the leap from High School to the majors. It’s pretty incredible the stats he has amassed.
-> Who we predict will be the Rookies of the Year going foward:
AL: Carlos Santana (edging out Boesch)
NL: Strasburg, even if he falters at times, he has been nothing short of brilliant (with Leake and Heyward getting plenty of votes)
———-> My favorite catch of the year courtesy of Nyjer Morgan.
More musings to come, especially about some guys to nab in the second half. But until then,
I like candy, everybody likes candy, that’s why Halloween is such a popular holiday (yes, that’s a real Backyard Baseball HR call)