Tag Archives: Injury

The all-contract year team

Every year there are a few guys who are in a contract year that put up crazy numbers that land them a large contract (Adrian Beltre and Richie Sexson come to mind). Sometimes, they are just guys who already produce while others are coming off poor seasons (or careers) and need to rebound (badly). But no matter what they did last year, everything they do this year will be watched and scrutinized, giving them extra incentive to have a huge year. Keep an eye out for these guys:

C: Dionar Navarro

Once the one of the top prospects in the Yankees system, Navarro has fallen on hard times and had a terrible season in 2010. However, he is poised to become the Dodgers starting catcher and may finally tap his talent to prove he can stay in LA for the long haul. He is playing for his major league life and might respond well to the pressure.

1B: Prince Fielder

This is an obvious choice in early rounds but he could put up even bigger numbers this year than he did last year. He has a lot of pressure on him after signing a record arbitration contract, but also has a lot to prove. He is out to prove that he is not an after thought in the 2012 first baseman free agent class which could include Albert Pujols and Adrian Gonzalez. Pujols and A-Gon are primed for huge seasons (and contracts) no matter what but Fielder is the real wildcard. He needs to show constant improvement especially after his down year last year in order to get the 7-10 year deal Scott Boras will be looking for.

2B: Rickie Weeks

Looking to build on his solid fantasy season last year, Weeks is in a great position to land a pretty big contract in the offseason. Weeks needs to prove that last year wasn’t a fluke and that he can be an elite second baseman in the league. He played more games that he has in any other season with the Brewers and his durability will be a factor. Rickie will want to put to bed any doubt that he is a soft player who can put up mediocre stats. If last year is any indication, he will rise to the occasion.

SS: Jose Reyes

Remember when this guy was a one of the top players in all of fantasy? I do too and it wasn’t that long ago. Like Weeks, Reyes put up solid fantasy numbers after a year plagued by injuries. At 27, Reyes is entering his “prime” and will want a contract that will reflect that. Look for him to be a bright spot on an otherwise pretty bad Mets team.

3B: Aramis Ramirez

Yes, he is 32. Yes, he had a bad year last year. But the contract he signs next offseason could be his last professional contract and he will want to make it count. The Cubs should be improved this year which will help him, and the addition of Carlos Pena to the line up will also do wonders. I am not saying you should draft him early (or at all), but look for him to put together a streaky season and pick him up while he is on a hot-streak. As I said before, he is 32 and he knows he has an expiration date, he needs to show teams he hasn’t already past his. This should motivate him to a better season than last year.

OF: Jose Bautista

Another guy who will go early in drafts but also another guy who has a lot to prove. Can he put up the same numbers he did last year or will come back down to earth. (Also, just a note, he is recovering form offseason hernia surgery so keep an eye out for his recovery from that.)

OF: Grady Sizemore

The Indians have an option for Sizemore for $8.5 million or a buyout of $500,000 in 2012. Sizemore needs to prove his worth to the Indians or he might be facing free agency a year early. Especially after two down seasons (including one almost completely lost last year) Sizemore has to come up big. He was once the next can’t-miss superstar, but now he is looking like almost the exact opposite of that. This is a make or break year for him, and he knows it.

OF: Josh Willingham

This should be an interesting season for Willingham who will have to adjust to a new league and a new coast. Other than Navarro, he has to most to lose this season. If he puts up big numbers, he will get a large contract. A real boom-bust guy.

SP: Edwin Jackson

Another guy who is entering his “prime” Jackson has a lot more questions than answers. He can throw the ball nice and fast but can he improve his ERA and WHIP?  There have been other pitchers who had control problems who put together a solid contract year season (see Wright, Jaret) and Jackson could be poised to do just that.

CL: Jonathan Papelbon

Talk about a guy who is pitching with a chip on his shoulder. Pap has more than enough motivation to rebound after last season’s subpar performance and especially after it was reported he would have been non-tendered had the Red Sox signed Mariano Rivera this off-season. This guy is really pitching for his contract because it looks like Daniel Bard (or Bobby Jenks) is poised to take over the Sox  closer role after next season. Paps will come out on fire and put together an extremely impressive fantasy season.

Advertisements

1 Comment

Filed under catchers, Closers, Fantasy Baseball, first base, MLB, offseason, Opinion, outfield, Pickups, second base, shortstop, third base

BREAKING: Soriano signs with Yankees

John Heyman if Sports Illustrated is reporting that Rafael Soriano has signed with the Yankees to set up Mariano Rivera. The signing is in contrast to previous statements made by Yankees GM Brian Cashman, who said he would not sign Soriano because he did not want to lose the Yankees first round draft pick.

This 3-year, $35 million deal is an interesting move. Soriano just lost a ton of value fantasy-wise. Yes, he will probably put up the same numbers, but without the saves, his overall value plummets. However, he would be an interesting guy to pick up for keeper leagues: there is a possibility that he could now be the Yanks closer of the future. If he is indeed the closer of the future in the Bronx, he will pay off not this year but maybe next year or the year after. Also consider this: Rivera is 41 and could go down with an injury. Soriano is a guy to take in the later rounds or pick up on the waiver-wire, depending on the size of your league.

Leave a comment

Filed under Closers, Fantasy Baseball, MLB, offseason

It hurts when I….

Do anything.  Peavy is hurt again.  This time it’s not an elbow or even an ankle.  Someone how Jake Peavy has managed to completely detach his right Latisimus Dorsi.  This injury is more common for hardcore bodybuilders than starting pitchers.  In fact, the surgery for this injury is uncharted territory. People are already considering Jake Peavy to be the new Tommy John.

Some pitchers are just fragile.  Whether its because  they were overworked as young guns or they are just genetically more susceptible to injuries, high-maintenance aces seem to drop like flies.  I consider a lot of them to be like pure-bred horses.  Years have been dedicated to finding and grooming these talents to do one thing and to be the best at it.  When injuries are this prevalent, people can’t help but have the nasty “S” word pop up in their minds.  Given the high level of competition in baseball, like horse racing, I really would not be surprised if the majority of players were looking for an edge.  Maybe Peavy and others are just more susceptible to injuries because of maximum-effort deliveries and tireless work ethics….or maybe there’s more.  I’m not making an allegations but only asking people to think.  Peavy is not Jose Canseco, but neither was JC Romero.

Now I’ll leave you with some meatheads talking about how painful an injury a torn Lat can be….and what not to do.

FRAGILE: Handle With Care

2 Comments

Filed under Fantasy Baseball, MLB, Opinion, Random Thoughts

Slams & Slips

Kendry Morales sustained a freak injury Saturday night during his walk-off grand slam celebration.  We have seen some impressive jumps on home plate in the past, but Kendry was keeping it simple.  Of all the injuries one could expect from getting mobbed by a group of testosterone-pumped, overly-excited men, a lower leg fracture is not what first comes to mind. 

What now? Morales is scheduled to have surgery and will be placed on the 15 day DL. The move to place him on the 15 day DL is just to avoid the infamous “60 day” tag.  The Angels will be faced with a challenge to replace their slugger.  With Jeff Mathis returning from injury in the next few weeks, Mike Napoli will be freed up to both  DH and perhaps play 1B.  Robb Quinlan is next on the depth chart but I’m not too sure how long the Angels will want to stick with this… The way Napoli has been playing, I think he is the player that benefits the most from this freak injury.

4 Comments

Filed under Fantasy Baseball, MLB

Jake Peavy- Making Owners Turn to the Bottle.

Not going to lie.  After watching the 4.1ip of Peavy’s outing last night, I hit the frig for a cold one (and another… and maybe a few more).

I wasn't the only one.

After striking out 4 Rays’ batters in the first 2 innings, I thought he had settled down after a rocky start to the season.  I guess not. As my co-author has pointed out several times, the transition from the NL to the AL can be rough for starting pitchers.  BUT Peavy did look solid for the White Sox last season after coming back from injury.  Nights like last night leave owners wondering what is wrong. A higher Whip and ERA is expected in the AL, but 7BB??!!  That could be a sign of lingering injuries for a pitcher that has a career BB/9 of only 2.9.  Peavy is the ultimate low Risk- high Reward player right now if you can find an owner who is ready to cut ties (I am one of them).  I am considering almost a throw-in at this point.  Is this going to be a 2008 Verlander-ish season for Peavy or is he just shaking off the rust?  I’m still debating.

2 Comments

Filed under Fantasy Baseball, MLB, Opinion