Friday, May 15, 2009

Home Aloney

Due to time constraints, tonight's article may be a bit abridged, so we'll try to cover any mid-tier players even remotely close to waiver material.  I'll admit, I spent most of my time last night watching the home teams win their respective game sixes in the NBA Playoffs (mind you, I was rather surprised by both outcomes).  I did watch some frustrating baseball in the afternoon, and have fully scoured the remaining box scores.

I know I'm not the only person out there comtemplating homicide due to Tigers' implosion in the 7th inning in Minneapolis.  I'm not a Tigers fan (and thanks to yesterday, I probably never will be), but I spent half my morning researching the game to make sure I had all the variables accounted for, then took what appeared to be a pretty solid line of Tigers -110.  Verlander took the Twins to school for 6.1 innings, then allowed a single and a walk, and was pulled from the game.  I read a few betting forums where folks were losing their minds about Leyland's choice to remove Verlander, and to a certain degree, I concur.  But Verlander was at 122 pitches, and even though he's the definition of a horse, 122 of his high-octane deliveries can take a toll.  So, let's say for a moment that removing Verlander was the right decision.  The choice that sent me into a rage-filled attack on some local shrubbery was Leyland's obsession with left-left matchups.  The Tigers bullpen was overextended after some long games, and Bobby Seay, normally reliable, was summoned to face a couple of the Twins lefties.  On paper, makes sense.

Seay looked awful.  More accurately, he looked like a pitcher that was completely gassed.  His fastball was completely without movement and the velocity was down to 84, and his breaking ball was just fluttering, belt-high, to a series of accomplished Major League batters.  Jim Leyland has been a great manager for a long time, but I just couldn't quite fathom why he let his poor reliever twist and turn in a game the Tigers should have won.  If current broadcasts didn't the have the score listed on-screen, I could have been convinced pretty easily that Detroit was down 9-2, and Leyland just figured they were cooked and preferred to just let his one struggling lefthander get his clock cleaned.  By the time that mayhem was done, the Twins had plenty of momentum, and powered on to the victory.  Yesterday should have been a 2-win day at the virtual sportsbook, but back we go to square one.

Today's trophy for the Biggest Chump goes to Big Papi, who posted a delicious 0-for-7 in the Sox extra-inning loss to the Angels.  Ouch.

JAMES LONEY - Loney is not a power guy, let's get that straight.  He is a line-drive hitter that doesn't mind batting with 2 strikes; sort of a Todd Helton-esque feel about his plate appearances.  He has homered in 2 straight games, though, which may be an indicator that Loney is going to smack a couple more before slipping back into a long homerless draught.  Consider adding him, as his average will be decent, and he often bats with 2 guys on base, so the RBI totals are solid as well.

HANK BLALOCK - This may be another case where we missed the boat just a bit.  Blalock has been a hot pickup for a few days, and I overlooked him because of name recognition.  I just figured he'd be drafted in most leagues, but upon inspection last night, he wasn't.  10 homers thus far may be a sign of a return to Blalock's golden days.

WANDY RODRIGUEZ - For whatever reason, most teams still aren't trusting The Magic Wandy.  He picked up a win at Coors yesterday, allowing just 2 earned runs over 7 inning.  Wandy's for real.  

MICHAEL BOURN - Another guy I assumed would be drafted, but such is not the case in a number of leagues.  He's got his average up around .300, which means (pardon the expression) a crapload of stolen base opportunities.  Bourn's up to 13 already, and could singlehandedly win you steals in a head-to-head league on a weekly basis.

EMMANUEL BURRISS - We listed him a couple days back due to his move into the leadoff spot, and he stole another base last night.  If Bourn isn't available, Burriss might be a nice backup, along with JUAN PIERRE, if he hasn't already been plucked in your league.


Sheri Fresonke Harper said...

Good coverage of some of the major players
:) Sheri

Danno said...

Thanks Sheri! Please let me know if you want me to cover anyone in particular!

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