Tag Archives: Kevin Youkilis

06.21.11 Box Score Breakdown: Fantasy MLB News and Notes

Today we celebrate Minnesota fans across the country.

Onto the tidbits…

4th and Home Player of the Day: Madison Bumgarner – 0.1/9/8/1:0…Thank you Mr. Bumgarner for destroying my ERA this week. Today is the Minnesota edition of the BSB, so YOU are the POD.

The Bats:
Seth Smith
– 3/4, 2 R, 2 HR, 3 RBI…This guy is getting no love despite his overall line of .316/36/8/32/3.

Jose Tabata – 2/5, 2 R, 2 RBI…I am feeling a strong summer from Tabata.

Kevin Youkilis – 4/5, RBI…Greek God of Walks upped his average to .276. Room to grow.

Torii Hunter – 4/5, R, RBI…Remember when Bonds picked him up over his shoulder after Torii robbed him of a home run at the All-Star game? Yeah, that was the last time he was relevant.

Jason Bay – 3/3, R, HR, 2 RBI…Earning that contract!

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05.15.11 Box Score Breakdown: Fantasy MLB News and Notes

A rough weekend to be a writer here at 4th and Home. I apologize if you waited patiently for a Breakdown and I did not deliver. Shame on me. I hope it never happens again.

Anyway, onto it…

4th and Home Player of the Day: Jose Bautista – 3/5, 3 R, 3 HR, 4 RBI…Ridiculous!!! Nothin’ else to say.

The Bats:
Lance Berkman
– 2/4, 2 R, HR, RBI…There he is! First HR since May 5th. And you thought he reverted to Puma 2010…

Ramon Hernandez – 2/4, R, HR, RBI…Three HR in his last two games. Need a backstop?

Dan Uggla – 2/3, 3 R, HR, RBI…Hit the game winner off Doc Halladay. Maybe this gives him some confidence to hit another 30 this year before Brian pulls his hair out.

John Mayberry – 1/2, R, HR, 2 RBI, SB…Keeping it warm for the injured (again) DomBrown.

Matt Joyce – 2/3, 2 R, HR, RBI…Pick him up, YET? If it makes you feel better, yours truly owns him. Actually dropped Luke Scott for him. Feel better? Good, now pick him up.

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05.08.11 Box Score Breakdown: Fantasy MLB News and Notes

Thanks to Jesse for getting me caught up on baseball over the weekend. Was a nice read after being in the car seven hours. I can’t believe New York drivers get such a bad wrap, because Massachusetts drivers are by far the worst!

4th and Home Player of the Day: Derek Jeter – 4/6, 2 R, 2 HR, 3 RBI, SB…Box score filler-upper! Nearly won Jesse his game over future bro-in-law Chris, but no-can-do.

Here’s what else I saw:

The Bats:
Hanley Ramirez
– 1/5, R, RBI, SB…Still batting under .200 and as we’re well into May, his season is reminding me of David Wright’s 2009.

Gaby Sanchez – 4/4, 3 R, HR, 3 RBI, BB…Gaby is up to .328 with 4 HR and 20 RBI as the Fish’s clean-up hitter. In OBP leagues he is the MAN!

Andre Ethier – 2/4, R, HR, 2 RBI…A one-game hit streak is ALIVE!

B.J. Upton – 2/4, 4 RBI…Upton is racking up the ribbies. He might break Hack Wilson’s record if he faces the Orioles weekly.

Jacoby Ellsbury – 3/5, R, SB…17-game hit streak and hitting close to .300 now thanks to a .371 May.

Adrian Gonzalez – 3/5, 2 R, HR, 2 RBI…A-Gonz is heating up.

Kevin Youkilis – 2/4, 4 R…The Youka! or The Greek Gawd of Waks! if you will. Didn’t know he had the legs to get 4 runs in a game. First time since July 11th, 2009.

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04.18.11 Box Score Breakdown: Fantasy MLB News and Notes

Well, Jake Peavy had a rehab start cut short due to injury. Wait, you’re surprised? Is this your first year playing fantasy baseball? Anymawho, Peavy can be placed in the Rich Harden and Brandon Webb file until further notice. Don’t bother wasting a roster spot – and probably not even a DL spot. A waste I tell you!

Daisuke Matsuzaka – 7 IP, H, 3:1…Oh man. He is reeling you in. You know you shouldn’t, but it might feel so good to pick him up. Come back! Don’t go towards the light! This is Dice-BB we’re talking about. Pick him up and he will use you, make you do the walk of shame to the waiver wire the next day.

Jed Lowrie – 4/5, 2 R, HR, 4 RBI…This guy is on fire. Scutaro who? The only thing Marco had going for him was his wife. Nevermind, they’re divorced. If you’ve seen A Player to be Named Later you know what I’m talking about.

Kevin Youkilis – 2/5, 2 R, HR, 2 RBI…The Youka!!! Still batting under .200 on the season, so buy low if you can.

Aaron Hill – 0/3…Read Chris’ article yesterday? Go ahead, I’ll wait…Yeah, call Brett Lawrie up already!

Kevin Correia – CG, 4 H, 2 ER, 5:2…Could this last all year? Sure. Will it? Hells no!

Travis Wood – 3.1 IP, 8 H, 6 ER, 3:1…Mike Leake gets arrested for stealing t-shirts and Travis Wood gets rocked by the Pirates in the same day. What were the odds on that? Betting a nickel I would’ve been able to retire. Oh well. Travis, get ready to kick back and enjoy the AAA bus rides.

Chris Heisey – 1/2, R, HR, 2 RBI…Wondering if Dusty can create a softball-style defense to make sure Heisey gets in the lineup more as a 4th OF. Love the guy, but Gomes had to juice before the season and screw it all up. Free Heisey!

David Price – 8 IP, 4 H, 9:2…Hey now. Very nice start from Killboy’s nemesis. Last start vs. Boston was decent, but this one had lots of Ks. So it was decenter.

Felipe Lopez – 3/4, 2 R, HR, 3 RBI…Wow, things are bad in the Bay when journeyman Felipe Lopez is your cleanup hitter. Somewhere Manny is laughing while bra-shopping.

Sam Fuld – 4/4, R…Closing in on .400. I don’t know what to say.

Carlos Zambrano – 8 IP, 3 H, 10:1…What a tease that Big Z. I do not like green eggs and ham! Start him next week and he will give you 6 walks and a fight with your catcher.

Francisco Liriano – 6.1 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2:5…Fastball velocity is way down and the brass thinks he’s out of shape. No winter ball equals crApril. I did not want Liriano this year, mainly because the Twins were trying to trade him for a bag of peanuts. If you own him you can’t sell low, but I wouldn’t even try to acquire him if you don’t. My crystal ball says injury coming soon. Yes, the same crystal ball that said Oswalt would be out 3 weeks, smart ass.

Tim Lincecum – 7.2 IP, 3 H, ER, 10:3…Mitch Kramer with a brilliant start against the Rockies. Now sporting a 1.67 ERA and 0.89 WHIP.

C.J. Wilson – 7 IP, 9 H, ER, 9:1…If your league doesn’t count WHIP, CJ will be a 2nd tier SP this year. In the other leagues, he’s still nice. Just have to wonder if the innings bump will catch up to him from last year.

Adrian Beltre – 2/4, R, HR, 3 RBI…Beltre is seeing the ball real well right now. That’s like 20 RBI in his last 3 games.

Shaun Marcum – 6 IP, 5 H, 5:0…Marcum is just crusing through the NL. Yes, I think he can keep it up. 1.90 ERA and 1.10 WHIP now.

Joe Blanton – 7 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 4:1…That other Phillies pitcher with a nice start. No, do not buy this. Sell it.

Ted Lilly – 7 IP, 4 H, 6:2…Well, Lilly sure looked like the guy the Dodgers acquired last year for the playoff push. I had Lilly down as a top starter this year. Flyball pitcher in spacious park? Tasty.

Jerry Sands – 1/3, RBI…Dodgers called up the young buck yesterday and he doubled in his first at bat and hit a sac fly in his second. Right now you need to monitor him. He absolutely raked last year in the minors, had a decent spring training and then raked in AAA before the call-up. Sounds like Ryan Braun’s path…

Jason Heyward – 0/4…Well, he was slotted into the 2-hole while McLouth rested and was there last night while McLouth played. Me likey, but J-Hey needs to hit so he can stay there and approach 100 runs.

Grady Sizemore – 3/5, R, RBI, BB…It’s the old Grady! He’s back!

Justin Smoak – 1/5, R, HR, RBI…Ok, I nearly wrote about him after his 2-hit performance but I figured I should definitely mention him now. The “Smoak-monster” (I hate that nickname he was given) could be heating up. His average actually dropped after last night to .291. Keep one eye on ‘im.

Brennan Boesch – 2/2, R, RBI, 2 BB…I don’t know what to make of this guy (I said that last year too), but he’s now batting .302 with a 9:10 BB:K ratio.

Max Scherzer – 6 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 7:4…Can’t complain too much about the results. Scherzer is now (3-0) with a 1.70 WHIP!

2011 Fantasy Baseball Rankings: THIRD BASE

Well, I’ve been called a lot of things but our 3B Fantasy Baseball Rankings have now earned me the taunting of being a Homer. Yes, I may be the only one ranking David Wright ahead of Evan Longoria this year, but my own projection system has them so close with a minimal edge given to Wright for 2011. I think their numbers will be similar with Wright getting a slight advantage in SBs. In a keeper, yes, Longoria is the clear #1. Let’s see where everyone else is ranked…

Longoria celebrates his 4th and Home Composite Rankings


RANK PLAYER Brian Mike Killboy Jesse Eric COMP
1 Evan Longoria – TB 1 2 1 1 1 1.2
2 David Wright – NYM 2 1 3 2 2 2
3 Alex Rodriguez – NYY 4 5 2 3 3 3.4
4 Ryan Zimmerman – WAS 3 4 4 4 4 3.8
5 Kevin Youkilis – BOS 5 3 6 5 5 4.8
6 Jose Bautista – TOR 6 6 5 7 6 6
7 Adrian Beltre – TEX 7 9 7 6 7 7.2
8 Michael Young – TEX 9 12 8 10 8 9.4
9 Aramis Ramirez – CHC 8 13 9 8 12 10
10 Martin Prado – ATL 10 11 12 11 9 10.6
11 Pablo Sandoval – SF 14 8 13 9 11 11
12 Mark Reynolds – BAL 11 7 11 13 13 11
13 Casey McGehee – MIL 12 10 10 14 10 11.2
14 Pedro Alvarez – PIT 13 14 14 15 14 14
15 Scott Rolen – CIN 16 20 18 12 15 16.2
16 Ian Stewart – COL 15 15 16 16 16.6
17 Chris Johnson – HOU 17 18 17 17 18
18 Chone Figgins – SEA 15 16 19 18.4
19 Michael Cuddyer – MIN 16 19 18 19
20 Chase Headley – SD 19 17 19.8

 

PABLO SANDOVAL

Kung Fu Panda is coming off a disappointing season and it seems to given him motivation to get his act in gear this winter.  He’s lost 38 pounds and dropped his body fat percentage by over 10%.  The 5′-11″ third baseman is down to a svelte 240lbs.  He’s also spent some time working on his hitting with Barry Bonds.  Expect his numbers to be closer to his 2009 debut than to 2010’s let down. .305/70/20/80/5

CASEY McGEHEE

McGehee silenced his critics by following up his 2009 career year with a very solid 2010 campaign. McGehee finished 9th among fantasy 3B in 2010 while improving his strike out rate. Expect more of the same from McGehee in 2011 unless Ken Macha moves him to 2nd in the order. This move would hurt his RBI opportunities and slightly diminish his value, but right now I have him at .288/79/21/96/1.

SCOTT ROLEN

Rolen’s career peaked in ’04. 2005 was a lost season, ’06 a bounceback and since a poor ’07 he has steadily improved to fantasy respectability. Call it the career death rattle, but FanGraphs career paths show a consistent spike leading to the Age 37 season – Rolen will be 36 in 2011. Just be sure you milk his production early in the season and sell high as he always fades in the later months. Another season of .280/70/20/80/3 would not be a surprise and it could be higher.

SLEEPER: MARK REYNOLDS

If you listened to The 4th and Home Show this past Saturday, you heard me talk about the drop in home runs across the league. That will not change, so jump on HR before you have to start paying a premium for them via trade. In that O’s lineup, Reynolds will kill the ball – along with your average so make sure you have some .300 hitters on your team. Reynolds is currently being drafted as the 11th 3B off the board (much like the jokers here!) and that is way too late for a guy who has averaged 35HR and 14 SBs the past 3 seasons. I have Reynolds down for .240/85/35/95/10.

BUST: JOSE BAUTISTA

16, 15, 15, 13, 54…which of these numbers don’t belong? He’s a career .244 hitter that had never had more than 16 home runs in a season. Even with his swing adjustments, expect pitchers to figure him out this year and those power numbers to come back to Earth. I think we’re looking at an upside of low 30’s in homers. .250/85/30/95/5

2011 Fantasy Baseball Draft Strategies: The Position Scarcity Effect

No doubt that all of us who have been playing fantasy baseball for at least a few years have heard of position scarcity. Over the last several seasons I think the popularity of this theory has become even greater. Prior to it getting a cool name, I think most players acknowledged the fact that there were few great shortstops to choose from, but I’m not sure how many people actually factored that into their draft strategy. Well, like many good ideas, once they get into the popular conscience they tend to be overblown and after time settle into a nice useful medium.

The basic premise behind position scarcity is that there are few elite players at some positions and therefore the elite players at those spots should have their value elevated somewhat to account for this fact. I agree with the logic whole-heartedly. Where I think we may have gone slightly astray is in determining the amount these values should be adjusted by versus those elite players at roles that have more depth. For example, when someone tries to convince me that Jose Reyes should be drafted ahead of Adrian Gonzalez because of position scarcity, I think we may have gone too far. While I would tend to classify them both as tier 2 players at their respective positions and admit that short stop is an extremely shallow spot, I don’t see the justification for the move when runs and average will be about a wash and Reyes only gets the edge in steals. Unless you have a dire need in steals, it seems to defy logic. Personally I believe the best available player in the draft will usually be the best player for your team. This won’t always be the case, but about 90% of the time this logic will serve you well.

Now for the 3 most scarce batter positions and their elite players (either tier 1 or 2):

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2011 Fantasy Baseball Rankings: FIRST BASE

Is it any surprise that Albert Pujols is our consensus #1? Didn’t think so. Much like the catchers, we all agreed that there is clearly a #1 at the position without question. We may never know Albert’s true age, but one thing is certain, he is getting older and two guys last year made a run at dethroning him: Miguel Cabrera and Joey Votto. In 2011, we may even see Adrian Gonzalez join them in the chase.

(Image: Zuma Press)

Does your Top 10 look like ours?

RANK PLAYER Brian Mike Killboy Jesse Eric COMP
1 Albert Pujols – STL 1 1 1 1 1 1.0
2 Miguel Cabrera – DET 2 2 3 3 2 2.4
3 Joey Votto – CIN 3 4 4 2 3 3.2
4 Adrian Gonzalez – BOS 4 3 2 5 5 3.8
5 Mark Teixeira – NYY 5 6 6 4 6 5.4
6 Prince Fielder – MIL 6 5 5 6 7 5.8
7 Ryan Howard – PHI 7 7 7 7 4 6.4
8 Kevin Youkilis – BOS 8 11 9 9 8 9.0
9 Justin Morneau – MIN 9 9 8 13 11 10.0
10 Kendry Morales – LAA 10 8 14 14 9 11.0
11 Buster Posey – SF 12 13 12 8 10 11.0
12 Adam Dunn – CHW 13 10 10 11 13 11.4
13 Victor Martinez – DET 14 12 11 10 14 12.2
14 Paul Konerko – CHW 11 15 13 15 12 13.2
15 Billy Butler – KC 15 14 16 12 17 14.8
16 Aubrey Huff – SF 17 19 18 17 15 17.2
17 Derrek Lee – BAL 17 15 18 16 17.4
18 Mike Napoli – TEX 16 16 19.0
19 Adam LaRoche – WAS 18 20 20 18 19.4
20 Carlos Pena – CHC 16 20 19.8

 

PAUL KONERKO

Since it’s Valentine’s Day I’m going to come out and say it, I love Paul Konerko.  The 34 year old has averaged 31HR, 95 RBI and a .280 average for the the past 10 seasons, and last year was one of his best (39HR, 111RBI, .312).  The best part about Konerko is that he always slips in drafts, which makes him a middle round bargain to fill out one of your utility spots.

BILLY BUTLER

Billy Butler is one of the best young players you don’t know due to his playing for the woeful Royals.  None of his individual numbers will blow you away but his above average production across all categories (except SB) makes him a valuable fantasy contributor that can be had as a bargain in middle rounds.  He is also a September Star that you’ll want during your playoff run.

IKE DAVIS

My Ike Davis ranking doesn’t show up on our list, but I had him ranked 18th, right behind Derrek Lee. His MiLB career BABIP suggests he has room to grow even from where he was last year (.321), which means his AVG will rise, as will the rest of his counting stats. With a healthy Mets team, I don’t see why Ike can’t go .280-85-23-85-4 (along with 35-40 2B & 80BB if your league counts them). For a 24-year old, that is pretty solid and a low cost option in the later rounds.

SLEEPER: GABY SANCHEZ

First full season in the bigs he hits .273 with 19 HR’s! Only 27 to start the season, I think we can expect bigger things this year from Gaby. Gotta be better than the slim pickings at the bottom of the 1st Base list.

BUST: ADAM LAROCHE

Career high K%(30.7) and BABIP(.330) both suggest major decline. Washington is tougher on lefties with a 94 HR park factor versus Arizona’s 114. Take a chance on a high ceiling guy and don’t waste it on LaDouche.

 

American League East Previews – Red Sox

Today’s focus: Boston Red Sox


The story for the Red Sox last season was injuries. When you have Jacoby Ellsbury, Dustin Pedroia, Kevin Youkilis, Jason Varitek, and Marco Scutaro all injured during the course of one season it definitely becomes tough to keep up in a division as talented as the American League East.

This year, if they can keep everyone healthy the Red Sox should be the team to beat. They have a great combination of speed and power, especially with the additions of Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez. Moving Youkilis to third and bringing in Gonzalez at first will improve the offense, while losing Beltre at third will definitely be a liability in the field. Overall, still a plus for the Sox though. Additionally, bringing in former closer Bobby Jenks definitely helps to solidify the bullpen.

Notable Losses Include: Adrian Beltre

Notable Pick Ups: Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Bobby Jenks

The obvious weaknesses to focus on at this point are the question marks in their starting rotation. John Lester and Clay Buchholz will anchor the rotation, but John Lackey was up and down last season and Josh Beckett was clearly not his Cy Young self. I think we have seen about the best we can expect from Daisuke Matsuzaka, so the Sox are counting on Lackey and Beckett to be back in form. Assuming minimal improvement there, I see the Red Sox offense carrying them to another divisional crown.