Wednesday, July 24 – 11:45 PM
There’s no such thing as a mulligan in fantasy baseball. But if there was, it wouldn’t take me longer than about five seconds to decide who to use mine on. His name is Ian Kennedy, and for some reason I was so bullish on Kennedy heading into the season that I drafted him in four of my five leagues. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t expecting a repeat of his Cy Young worthy 2011 campaign. I was, however, expecting an improvement from last year, a season in which he pitched to an uninspiring 4.02 ERA yet still managed to post a stellar 8.1 K/9 and 3.4 K/BB. If he could just cut down on those home runs allowed, his ERA would drop significantly.
Well, things haven’t worked out for Ian, and since I went Kennedy crazy back in March, things haven’t worked out for me. At some point, I’ll have to give up on waiting for him to figure things out, call it a lost season and move on. Fresh off yet another ugly outing tonight (five innings, six runs), Kennedy now resides on the waiver wire in both of the 12-team mixed leagues in which I owned him. Mixed Tout Wars? Not quite, as it’s a 15-team league, and there’s no question he would get scooped up in FAAB. I’m not about to let another owner reap the rewards of the best part of his season. Things are bound to get better for him, right? Not necessarily. But he’s due for a hot stretch. Wait, what makes me think that? I honestly don’t know, but maybe the fact that only two of his six runs allowed tonight were earned runs is a good sign, a sign that I should stay the course with Kennedy, at least for a little while longer.
Thursday, July 25 – 3:28 PM
My attachment to Jeremy Hefner pales in comparison to my loyalty towards Ian Kennedy. After all, Hefner has been on my Tout Wars roster for less than two weeks. Good thing I didn’t start him for yesterday’s game against the Braves, as Atlanta roughed up my eight dollar FAAB investment to the tune of five earned runs over 4 1/3 innings. Unfortunately, Hefner has already ruined my team enough, as Tout rules forced me to pitch the Mets’ righty last week, when he got absolutely torched by the Phillies (2 IP, 10 H, 8 ER). It was a nightmarish scenario, a scenario where an overachieving player suffered through a stat correction while on my active roster. Not fun. And, since my relationship with Hefner has been a short-term one, I have no problem with simply cutting ties with him now that he seems to be coming back down to earth. But he’s a two-start pitcher next week, and the matchups (@MIA, vs. KC) are promising. Hmm, maybe I’m better off holding onto this guy, at least for a little while longer.
Friday, July 26 – 8: 16 PM
If I had a second mulligan, it wouldn’t take me longer than about 30 seconds to decide who to use it on. His name is Jason Kubel, and while the mistake of drafting Kubel in two leagues doesn’t come anywhere close to the Ian Kennedy blunder, it’s plenty frustrating, as even when Kubel was hitting well (.296 AVG in June), Diamondbacks’ manager Kirk Gibson simply refused to give him consistent playing time, instead using him as the left side of a platoon with Cody Ross. Now that Jason is batting .128 with a mere two extra- base hits in July, it’s a miracle that he’s still playing at all, especially considering that the D-Backs, with Adam Eaton back in the fold, have five healthy starting-caliber outfielders for three spots. There’s no way around it. This is a mess. A few days ago, I reluctantly cut ties with Kubel in one of my 12-team mixed leagues, and I feel so much better already. I should probably do likewise in Tout. Common sense tells me that I should do likewise. But common sense also tells me that with less than a week to go before the July 31 MLB trade deadline, there’s a chance Kubel gets dealt to free up some room in that packed Arizona outfield. Wouldn’t that be nice, especially if he gets sent to an AL team where he could DH.
Common sense tells me that I should keep Kubel on my Tout Wars roster, at least for a little while longer.