Posted on: March 1, 2008 1:28 am
Edited on: May 8, 2008 8:06 pm

Jack *%@&!

I love Jack Cust. In fact, you could say I have a man crush on Jack Cust, if you believe in such things.

Can you say "Dear Diary?"

You know that player outlook on his Fantasy page? I wrote it. If you haven't seen it, go look at it now. I compared him to Adam Dunn. Emack and Gonos must have thought I was nuts.

So you can understand how his two-homer spring opener Friday at the Brewers would have special meaning to me. Yes, he hit two home runs -- one of them a grand slam -- and in two official at-bats, I might add. And oh, by the way, he missed the previous game with the flu. Said he still felt a little sick from it, in fact.

Can you say hoss?

Or at least horse? Seriously, strap a plow to this guy, and see how many trees he can drag with him. I'm guessing eight. He's what we in Georgia call "country strong."

(Post-production note: I have never before used the term "country strong" and have only once heard its use.)

But Cust doesn't just have raw power, no. He has a discerning batting eye too. That one unofficial plate appearance he had? You guessed it: walk. For that reason, A's GM Billy Beane has a man crush on him too. As often as he walks, Cust is a .900 OPS waiting to happen.

Look, I know he won't hit higher than .250, and I know he'll strike out 200 times, but Dunn hits only .260, and in most Fantasy leagues, strikeouts don't count. If Cust gets a full season of at-bats, he can hit 35 home runs. And with the A's already batting him cleanup and Beane in love with is skill set, what makes you think he won't get those at-bats?

And since no one else thinks it, even better. Let him drop and drop and drop before you eventually snag him late. Just don't wait too late, like I did in a couple drafts. You know what happened then?

Scott Cust.
Category: MLB
Posted on: February 26, 2008 10:16 pm
Edited on: May 8, 2008 8:06 pm

The boy wonder?

As you've probably read by now in Gonos' and Emack's blogs, the three of us checked out the Orioles' intrasquad game today. It didn't set a new standard for competitive baseball, but it was baseball nonetheless, and it felt good. We all got our fill, and the two of them have already filled you in on most of it. I notice Gonos even submitted an ode to my youthful good looks, which he considers more befitting a member of the Mickey Mouse Club.

Clearly, I have to fight an uphill battle to credibility.

Anyway, you've probably heard enough by now of Adam Jones' misplayed ball in center, and I don't want it to grow into the biggest fielding folly since Bill Buckner by bringing it up again. It was an intrasquad game, after all. Really, I don't even like Jones from a Fantasy standpoint this season. I foresee many, many strikeouts and a somewhat low batting average. If you need some steals, I guess he works.

Instead, I'll talk about another Scott in Florida, more specifically Mr. Kazmir in Tampa. The kid (look, he's only a couple months older than me) felt a twinge in his elbow while warming up for the Rays' intrasquad game and ended up needing an MRI. He thinks he just hyperextended the elbow, and considering the Rays have always handled him with kid gloves, I don't suspect the MRI will reveal a serious injury. But this incident shows you exactly why most Fantasy experts suggest you stockpile hitters before pitchers. Pitchers' arms can go at any time, and in this day and age, they often do. And as healthy and fit as an up-and-coming strikeout hurler like Kazmir can look one day, he can end up paying a visit to Dr. James Andrews the next. You need to invest your early-round picks in something reliable, and hitters come with a lot more reliability than pitchers.

That's all for now
Category: MLB
Posted on: February 25, 2008 6:40 pm
Edited on: May 8, 2008 8:07 pm

My inaugeration and thoughts on Bonds

I've never had a blog before. I'm from Georgia. (Not that that means anything, but people like to joke, and I like to accommodate, so there you go -- fuel for the fire.) But now that I've joined up with, they've given me a blog space and told me to use it, assigning me a topic on which to direct my focus: baseball -- or, more specifically, spring baseball ... as it relates to Fantasy.

Good thing I really like baseball, huh? I mean, they could have told me to blog about werewolves ... or corned beef hash.

So baseball it is, and baseball it shall remain. It might have a distinct stream-of-consciousness feel to it at first, but I hope to establish some sense of order eventually. I like order. Oh, and I also hope to work in a Lost reference whenever I can. I like Lost.

Of course, what does it say about me that the two most important things of my life are Fantasy Baseball and Lost?

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand break!

Word out of Tampa -- or, more specifically, the St. Petersburg Times -- has the Rays interested in Barry Bonds. We could argue for days about whether or not the Rays should want him or whether or not they'll actually get him, but regardless, this news has Fantasy implications because, for the first time, I get the feeling Barry might actually play this year. Before, all the talk of steroids and perjury and his suspected involvement in either or both had me under the impression that no team would touch him with a 39 1/2-foot pole. Now, low and behold, someone might actually want this guy.

So knowing he apparently wants to play and some teams might actually want him to play, how should we approach him in Fantasy? I wouldn't go crazy. Even if he officially signs somewhere, you could still probably wait until the latter rounds to draft him. But he deserves to start for someone in your league. He did hit 28 homers last year. And in leagues that count walks, he might ultimately rank in the top 30 outfielders, assuming he stays healthy. So I'll start to think about drafting him now, at least with my last-round pick -- or maybe my second-to-last-round pick if everyone else gets the same idea. I still wouldn't bother with him in NL-only leagues, though. If he's signing, he's signing to DH.

With this news, I also get the impression the Rays must think they have a chance to compete this year, and I wouldn't totally dismiss the idea. I think as things stand now, they could at least compete with the Blue Jays for third in the division.


Phillies closer Brad Lidge caught his spikes on the pitcher's mound Saturday, joining Yovani Gallardo in the I-hurt-myself-before-spring-games-e
ven-began division, and ended up needing arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. He might not recover in time for opening day, which certainly doesn't wreck his Fantasy appeal. It does, however, cause me to shy away from him a little on Draft Day. I'm not saying I don't want anything to do with him, but I saw him as nothing more than a No. 2 Fantasy closer to begin with, and now he just had a procedure on his knee. Players don't always bounce back from those so quickly (see Bay, Jason -- 2007). For now, I think I'll slot Joakim Soria ahead of Lidge in my rankings -- yes, I mean the Royals closer. Don't totally sleep on the Royals either. They'll probably finish last, sure, but it'll be a good last, if that makes any sense.

That's all for now.
Category: MLB
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