Diary of a Fantasy Baseball Madman: Stormy weather
By Zach Steinhorn
Tuesday, August 23 - 10:15 PM
So much for Tommy Hanson returning to a big league mound anytime soon. Tommy was set to make a minor league rehab start this coming weekend, but today's scheduled bullpen session was canceled as Hanson continues to experience soreness in his throwing shoulder. This is absolutely terrible news for my NL-only head-to-head keeper league squad, which seems to be steadily unraveling with each passing day. Oh yeah, Colby Rasmus was also injured tonight, and the extent of his jammed wrist is currently unknown. Not to mention that my closer duo of Brian Wilson and Huston Street are both on the DL. The good news? I've clinched a first-round playoff bye, so my group has a little more time to get healthy before the upcoming two-week long semifinal round. But I have to admit I'm very concerned that a once promising season filled with championship aspirations could come to an ugly and premature ending. Oh, the joy of head-to-head leagues!
Thursday, August 25 - 9:40 PM
Stick with what has worked for the past five months or try something different? That's the decision I'm facing now as I enter in my FAAB bids in preparation for next week's playoff battle. For much of the season, I've gone with a six starting pitcher, three relief pitcher alignment for my active lineup and followed a defensive approach, avoiding inconsistent starters with risky matchups as a poor performance could mean negative points. But with Brian Wilson still on the shelf and Huston Street bound for temporary setup duty upon his return from the DL tonight, my bullpen is no longer a strength. So I'm thinking I'll be better off scooping up as many decent two-start pitchers as possible and just hope that the solid outings outweigh the bad ones.
Randy Wells has been doing OK of late, registering a 3-0 record to go along with a 4.26 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP in August, and has two favorable matchups on the horizon next week, on the road vs. the Giants and at home vs. the Pirates. He's a must-add. I'll also take a flier on Charlie Morton. I'm not a huge fan, but prior to his most recent outing, Morton had notched four straight quality starts. He'll square off against the Astros and Cubs on the road. Throw in a claim on Jeremy Affeldt and I'm all set.
Friday, August 26 - 5:25 PM
Success! I won all three players, and though I might have overbid on all of them, now is not the time to be stingy. The bottom line is that I got all my guys. Next week, I'll play seven starting pitchers who are projected to make a combined 12 starts. This should be fun.
Friday, August 26 - 10:46 PM
Remember when my Kyle Blanks for Colby Rasmus trade was considered a no-brainer, a deal that one owner even wanted to veto? Well, a lot can change in a few weeks. Since becoming a Blue Jay, Rasmus is batting a paltry .216 over 23 games. Blanks? He's got six homers in just 32 games this year.
Rasmus was placed on the DL tonight, and although his stay is not expected to last long, my trade deadline swap is looking like a monumental mistake.
Saturday, August 27 - 11:22 AM
What else can go wrong in this league? Now, word comes down that even though Huston Street has been activated from the DL, the Rockies plan to continue using Rafael Betancourt as their closer indefinitely. "I'm not going to pull the plug on Betancourt right now," manager Jim Tracy told The Denver Post. "It's a decision that's being made in the best interests of the players and the club, period." Unbelievable. What happened to the unwritten rule that closers returning from the DL will automatically reclaim their old job? I still expect Street to be closing again sometime soon, but there's no way around it. This bye week has been littered with gloomy news.
Saturday, August 27 - 7:22 PM
Is this fair? Hurricane Irene has already wiped out three National League contests scheduled for today in addition to tomorrow's Mets-Braves game. Imagine being eliminated from your fantasy playoffs because you own multiple players on these teams. While the players will get their chance to make up for their lost stats weeks later, the fantasy owner is out of luck. That's what I call cruel. Sure, my bye week was full of frustration, but at least it was a bye week. See, I really am a glass half-full kind of guy. So, as I write this from the 24th floor of my New York City apartment, rain pounding on my windows and the media hysterical as Irene's eye approaches, I can't help but think that this is a bit overblown. But just in case, let me post this entry real quick before I'm sitting in the dark with no Internet connection for who knows how long.
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