Posted on: June 3, 2009 12:23 pm

Emack's All-Star Roster Projections

I followed the rules and had every team represented. Many were easy ... and I am sure I have some ommissions, but I had to. I still think the AL will take 12-plus pitchers, too.

AL -- 31
C -- 3
1. Joe Mauer MIN
2. Victor Martinez CLE
3. Jason Varitek BOS

1B -- 3
1. Kevin Youkilis BOS
2. Justin Morneau MIN
3. Mark Teixeira NYY

2B -- 3
1. Ian Kinsler TEX
2. Aaron Hill TOR
3. Dustin Pedroia BOS/Robinson Cano NYY

3B -- 2
1. Evan Longoria TB
2. Mike Lowell BOS/Alex Rodriguez NYY

SS -- 3
1. Derek Jeter NYY
2. Jason Bartlett TB
3. Marco Scutaro TOR

OF -- 6
1. Jason Bay BOS
2. Ichiro Suzuki SEA
3. Carl Crawford TB
4. Torii Hunter LAA
5. Adam Jones BAL
6. Nelson Cruz TEX

SP -- 6
1. Roy Halladay TOR
2. Zack Greinke KC
3. Justin Verlander DET
4. Kevin Slowey MIN
5. Mark Buehrle CHW
6. Matt Garza TB ... Rays manager will take one of his pitchers

RP -- 5
1. Jonathan Papelbon BOS
2. Frank Francisco TEX
3. Mariano Rivera NYY
4. Joe Nathan MIN
5. Andrew Bailey OAK

NL -- 31
C -- 3
1. Yadier Molina STL
2. Brian McCann ATL
3. Bengie Molina SF

1B -- 3
1. Albert Pujols STL
2. Adrian Gonzalez SD
3. Ryan Howard PHI

2B -- 2
1. Chase Utley PHI
2. Orlando Hudson LAD

3B -- 3
1. David Wright NYM
2. Ryan Zimmerman WAS
3. Mark Reynolds ARI

SS -- 2
1. Hanley Ramirez FLA
2. Miguel Tejada HOU

OF -- 6
1. Raul Ibanez PHI
2. Ryan Braun MIL
3. Alfonso Soriano CHC
4. Carlos Beltran NYM
5. Adam Dunn WAS
6. Brad Hawpe COL

SP -- 6
1. Johan Santana NYM
2. Chad Billingsley LAD
3. Dan Haren ARI
4. Tim Lincecum SF
5. Zach Duke PIT
6. Wandy Rodriguez HOU

RP -- 6
1. Francisco Rodriguez NYM
2. Jonathan Broxton LAD
3. Heath Bell SD
4. Ryan Franklin STL
5. Trevor Hoffman SD
6. Francisco Cordero CIN

Category: MLB
Posted on: March 30, 2009 5:58 pm

Emack's 2009 MLB predictions

AL East
Boston Red Sox
New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays
Toronto Blue Jays
Baltimore Orioles

AL Central
Cleveland Indians
Minnesota Twins
Chicago White Sox
Detroit Tigers
Kansas City Royals

AL West
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Texas Rangers
Oakland Athletics
Seattle Mariners

Wild Card: New York Yankees
League champ: Boston Red Sox
MVP: Grady Sizemore, Indians
Cy Young: Josh Beckett, Red Sox
Manager: Eric Wedge, Indians
Comeback player: Victor Martinez, Indians
HR champ: Miguel Cabrera, Tigers
Surprise: Howie Kendrick, Angels
Disappointment: Travis Hafner, Indians

NL East
Philadelphia Phillies
New York Mets
Florida Marlins
Atlanta Braves
Washington Nationals

NL Central
Chicago Cubs
St. Louis Cardinals
Cincinnati Reds
Milwaukee Brewers
Houston Astros
Pittsburgh Pirates

NL West
Arizona Diamondbacks
Los Angeles Dodgers
San Francisco Giants
Colorado Rockies
San Diego Padres
Wild Card: New York Mets
League champ: Chicago Cubs
MVP: Jose Reyes, Mets
Cy Young: Johan Santana, Mets
Manager: Dusty Baker, Reds
Comeback player: Chris Carpenter, Cardinals
HR champ: Ryan Howard, Phillies
Surprise: Daniel Murphy, Mets
Disappointment: Chipper Jones, Braves

World champ: Chicago Cubs


Category: MLB
Posted on: March 6, 2009 3:50 pm

Stat of the Week

The John Dewan Stat of the Week, reprinted by permission:

Who are the top 10 projected hitters for the 2009 season?

March 6, 2009

Twice a year we project the upcoming season for the most important hitters and pitchers. First, we run the earliest projections in The Bill James Handbook. Then we run them again around this time of year, updating them for the latest transactions and playing time estimates. We do it because it's fun and we learn something from it. Below we show the highlights from The Bill James Handbook: Projections Update 2009 Excel spreadsheet available at

Hitter  Age  2009 Team  Runs Created 
Albert Pujols  29  Cardinals  159 
Miguel Cabrera  26  Tigers  135 
Ryan Braun  25  Brewers  134 
David Wright  26  Mets  134 
Josh Hamilton  28  Rangers  131 
Hanley Ramirez  25  Marlins  131 
Ryan Howard  29  Phillies  130
Mark Teixeira  29  Yankees  130 
Alex Rodriguez  33  Yankees  128 
Lance Berkman  33  Astros  127 

Note: Age is seasonal as of June 30, 2009.
Copyright © 2009 by John Dewan.
Permission to reprint or broadcast this information is granted only if used in conjunction with the following citation: "Used with permission from John Dewan's Stat of the Week™,"

Posted on: March 2, 2009 11:32 am

John Dewan's Stat of the Week

The latest Stat of the Week, reprinted with permission:

Who has the best outfield defense?

February 27, 2009

In 2008, it wasn't close.  The New York Mets clearly had the best defense, based on Defensive Runs Saved from The Fielding Bible—Volume II.  Outfielders saved 56 runs for the Mets last year.  Using the rule of thumb that the value of a win is about 10 runs, that's five to six extra victories based on outfield defense alone for the Metropolitans in 2008.  Fielding Bible Award and Gold Glove winner, Carlos Beltran, led the way in center field. He was flanked most often, on either side, by defensive stalwart, Endy Chavez. Beltran saved 21 runs, but Chavez saved eight runs in left field and eight more in right, for a total of 16 runs. That's just a few runs less than Beltran in over 100 fewer games started in the outfield. That's defense.

The Baltimore Orioles and the Cleveland Indians were the American League leaders. Baltimore outfielders saved about 45 runs and Cleveland's saved about 37, both well short of the Mets total of 56. The leading American League outfielder in defensive runs saved was the Fielding Bible Award winner in right field, Franklin Gutierrez of the Tribe. He didn't start as few games as Chavez, but his runs saved total was equally remarkable. He saved 22 runs in 85 starts in right field in 2008.

For those of you following the transactions, you may know where this is going.  Endy Chavez is no longer with the Mets and Franklin Gutierrez is no longer with the Indians.  Where are they?  Both of them are now members of the Seattle Mariners.  Add Ichiro to the mix and you have a pretty good idea of where the best defensive outfield in 2009 is going to be.  Gutierrez is moving to center field where his right-field-class arm will be a tremendous asset and his pure athletic ability will serve him, and the Mariners, well.

The Fielding Bible—Volume II is all about runs, just like the game itself.  We've taken our defensive methods that we've developed and converted them into Defensive Runs Saved.  For outfielders we measure range with the Plus/Minus System and use baserunner kills along with the frequency of baserunner advancement to up come with runs saved based on arm strength.  We've done the same sort of thing for other positions factoring in defensive ability fielding bunts, turning double plays, preventing stolen bases on the part of both the pitcher and the catcher, and the catcher's ability to hold down his pitcher's ERA by calling a good game.  The top defenders based on runs saved at each position in 2008 were:

              Pitcher - Kenny Rogers, 15 runs saved
              Catcher - Jason Kendall/Jose Molina, 12
              First Base - Mark Teixeira, 17
              Second Base - Chase Utley, 33
              Third Base - Adrian Beltre, 24
              Shortstop - Jimmy Rollins,15
              Left Field - Carl Crawford/Willie Harris, 13
              Center Field - Carlos Beltran, 21
              Right Field - Franklin Gutierrez, 22

Source: The Fielding Bible—Volume II (now shipping).

Copyright © 2009 by John Dewan.
Permission to reprint or broadcast this information is granted only if used in conjunction with the following citation: "Used with permission from John Dewan's Stat of the Week™,"


I found this one very interesting. Outfield defense has a huge correlation with pitchers' ERAs. I think you will be surprised by the teams with the best outfield play, including the Orioles, Mets, Indians, Mariners. There are some sleeper pitchers on those teams to pick up in Fantasy.


Category: MLB
Posted on: March 2, 2009 11:26 am

Emack's WBC preview and picks

I love the WBC and as MLB players report to their teams for this weekend's openers, I wanted to map out the event. Can't wait to see the Dominican Republic monster play the O's on Wednesday, too.

Round 1

Pool A in Toyko -- Japan, South Korea, China and Chinese Taipei

Japan and South Korea got through last time fairly easily and were tough in the semifinals. The Red Sox's Dice-K and O's Koji Uehara pitched Japan to the title last time around.

Pool B in Mexico City -- Cuba, Mexico, Australia and South Africa

This is easily the weekest pool of the four. Cuba and Mexico figure to cruise. Cuba was tough last time with Yuinesky Gourriel and company. They will be in the final four, if not the championship again.

Pool C in Toronto -- USA, Venezuela, Canada and Italy

Canada beat Team USA last time with Dontrelle Willis getting exposed, but USA and Venezuela should make it through. Both those teams are a threat to win it all ... or go quietly like they did last time.

Pool D in Puerto Rico -- Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Panama and Netherlands

The Dominican is the favorite in my eyes. Their pitching staff of Edinson Volquez, Ubaldo Jimenez, Johnny Cueto and Pedro Martinez is arguably as good as any. And that lineup is strong as always, even without Manny Ramirez. A-Rod is on board, though, and he is plenty motivated to stick it to Team USA and Derek Jeter. DR and Puerto Rico are too proud to stumble. They will dominate here and cruise.

Round 2

Pool 1 in San Diego -- Cuba, Japan, Korea and Mexico

Korea was a real live 'dog last time around, but you have to figure Cuba and Japan will survive to the Final Four. You shouldn't be shocked to see any two come out of this group. Wow, is this event great or what?

Pool 2 in Miami -- Dominican Republic, USA, Puerto Rico and Venezuela

I struggled to determine the order here, but the Dominican is my favorite to win and Team USA should be deep enough to overcome the immense pride of PR and Venezuela. Geez, I hope USA gets out of pool play this time around. It will serve the event a huge favor, because if USA is in the hunt, it will create buzz here. This tourney deserves it.

The Final Four

This is a single-elimination round, which means great teams will be done in by their starting pitcher, perhaps. My four are Dominican Republic, USA, Cuba and Japan (in that order). DR defeats Japan and Team USA defeats Cuba. The sleepers to reach this group are Puerto Rico and Venezuela. Those teams are good enough to win it all, even if I didn't pick them for the final four. Korea was a big factor last time, but you have to figure the depth of my top six will be better prepared for those upstarts this time around.

The Championship

Dominican Republic vs. Team USA

Edinson Volquez vs. Roy Oswalt. I like our chances, but I cannot be too homerish to pick Team USA. The tournament was decided last time by stud pitching and hot bats. The Dominican team will have both.

But... go USA, regardless!



Category: MLB
Tags: Emack, WBC
Posted on: September 18, 2008 11:02 am

Video notes for Pitching Planner

-- Ben Sheets was scheduled to a two-start pitcher, but he walked off early Wednesday night. What to do?
-- There currently are a lot of aces on the two-start pitchers report. It is pretty timely in the crucial final week for Fantasy owners, right?
-- Freddy An. Garcia made a pretty nice return Wednesday and might be a two-start pitcher himself. He has to be a guy to trust, no?
-- Well, it finally happened -- probably too little, too late -- but David Price is here and might actually start now. Maybe even two starts.

Must-start, two-start pitcher
Ricky Nolasco FLA
(09/22) @ CIN Aaron Harang
(09/27) @ NYM Jonathon Niese
93 percent owned 72 percent starting

Two-start pitcher to sit
Tim Wakefield BOS
(09/23) vs. CLE Cliff Lee 
(09/28) vs. NYY Mike Mussina
52 percent owned 27 percent starting

Two-start sleepers
Edwin Jackson TB
(09/23) @ BAL Radhames Liz
(09/28) @ DET Freddy Garcia
48 percent owned 25 percent starting

Jonathon Niese NYM
(09/22) vs. CHC Jason Marquis
(09/27) vs. FLA Ricky Nolasco
7 percent owned 3 percent starting


Posted on: September 11, 2008 10:47 am

Video notes for Pitching Planner

-- The Angels have clinched and they are slowing their starters down now, can we trust them in crunch time?
-- It is like this with all teams this time of year? Some teams have six-man rotations (Angels, Pirates), some have four-man rotations (Mets). It is a case-by-case basis.
-- Another contender made a switch with their No. 5 man, Max Scherzer is in for Yusmerio Petit.
-- And about closers ... Chris Carpenter is now closing games for the Cardinals, do we trust him at this point?

Must-start two-start pitcher
Mike Pelfrey NYM
(09/15) @ WAS John Lannan
(09/20) @ ATL Jorge Campillo
87 percent owned 67 percent starting

Two-start pitcher to sit
Andy Pettitte NYY
(09/16) vs. CHW Gavin Floyd 
(09/21) vs. BAL Brian Bass
91 percent owned 61 percent starting

Two-start sleepers
Doug Davis ARI
(09/15) vs. SF Brad Hennessey
(09/20) @ COL Aaron Cook
34 percent owned 18 percent starting

Chris Volstad FLA
(09/16) vs. HOU Brian Moehler
(09/21) vs. PHI Brett Myers
43 percent owned 19 percent starting

Posted on: September 4, 2008 10:17 am

Video notes for Pitching Planner

-- Cubs have some injury woes. Big Z, Rich Harden... Are these guys toast for Fantasy purposes?
-- Another contender, the Angels, have some struggling starters. They are slotting Dustin Moseley in the rotation and moving back Jered Weaver. Are these guys in operation shutdown with the big lead in their division?
-- OK, we have some September call-ups making mess of rotations, are there some more on the way? Phil Hughes/Ian Kennedy/Price graphic
-- Who are the No. 5 starters for the Mets and Red Sox? Bartolo Colon graphic

Must-start, two-start pitcher
Clayton Kershaw LA
(09/08) @ SD Cha Seung Baek
(09/14) @ COL Livan Hernandez
59 percent owned 28 percent starting

Two-start pitcher to sit
Edwin Jackson TB
(09/08) @ BOS Jon Lester
(09/14) @ NYY Carl Pavano
54 percent owned 32 percent starting

Two-start sleepers
Anthony Reyes CLE
(09/10) @ BAL Chris Waters
(09/14) vs. KC Kyle Davies
37 percent owned 22 percent starting

Jeff Suppan MIL
(09/09) vs. CIN Josh Fogg
(09/14) @ PHI Joe Blanton
42 percent owned 31 percent starting


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or