Monday, March 31 – 8:05 PM
Closer upheaval already? Well, in the case of the White Sox, it isn’t exactly closer upheaval, as the club never formally announced who their ninth inning man would be in 2014. Most assumed that Nate Jones would be the guy, but assumptions are dangerous, and Jones owners are finding that out the hard way. Outside of AL-only leagues, Matt Lindstrom is almost certainly available, and the veteran righty did successfully convert his first save opportunity today. But I’m not sold on Lindstrom. This is a guy who has been given multiple chances to close in the past, and he’s never managed to hold onto the job. He’s there for the taking in Mixed Tout Wars, and I’ll definitely place a bid on him, but I won’t go crazy with my bid. I could really use a third closer though.
Monday, March 31 – 8:23 PM
Oh, and I forgot to mention Francisco Rodriguez, who surprisingly notched the save for the Brew Crew today instead of Jim Henderson. Brewers manager Ron Roenicke says that he will use K-Rod in the ninth inning “for now”, whatever that means. But, it does sound like the club would prefer to go with Henderson as their ninth inning man, which presents a tough decision for fantasy owners when it comes to weekly FAAB bidding. I’m still unsure as to what I’m going to do in Tout. Who do I place a higher bid on: Lindstrom or K-Rod? The risk with Lindstrom is more performance-based while K-Rod’s situation has more to do with job security. I think it’s safe to say that Rodriguez is fairly familiar with the closer role.
Tuesday, April 1 – 9:44 PM
For some reason, I thought that Wilson Ramos would stay healthy this year. I was wrong…again. Back in 2012, my first season in Tout Wars, my $10 auction day investment in Ramos bought me a grand total of 25 games, and that was bad enough. This year, my $14 #1 backstop couldn’t even make it through one game. Ramos will now miss the next 4-8 weeks after undergoing hamate bone surgery on his left hand, and players returning from this type of surgery often experience a loss in power. This is just terrific. Even worse, a quick glance at the waiver wire reveals that there are zero available catchers that offer any sort of inspiration.
Time to make a trade. And here I was thinking that Fred Zinkie would be the first owner to both propose and complete a trade this year.
Wednesday, April 2 – 1:31 PM
Luckily for me, David Gonos drafted three catchers, and he was starting A.J. Pierzynski at UTIL, and that’s not exactly the ideal way to use your UTIL slot. In fact, Gonos was the only owner with three catchers in his active lineup, making us the perfect trade partners. So it is with great excitement that I welcome A.J. Pierzynski to my squad and bid adieu to Jason Kubel. A.J. is nothing special and he’s kind of old, but he is Boston’s starting backstop. Pierzynski is durable (but who knows how much longer that will last) and he still carries 15-plus home run potential. In other words, he’s way better than any of the waiver wire options out there, and it’s not like I gave up a whole lot for him. But the biggest reason why I opted to swing this deal is for peace of mind. I feel a lot better about my catcher situation now than I did a few hours ago, and that’s important.
Friday, April 4 – 12:02 PM
Peace of mind? What peace of mind? We haven’t even finished the first week of the season and my Tout Wars team is already dealing with a crisis. Ryan Braun is hurting again. His thumb is numb and he’s gripping the bat too tight, which has resulted in blisters. This is the same issue that sidelined him for a good chunk of last year before he finally accepted that season-ending 65-game PED suspension. Of course, the one year that I decide to go a little outside of my comfort zone in making my most expensive player a player with a decent amount of risk but a tremendous amount of upside, this happens. What a disaster. Although Braun will try to play through the injury for now, surgery is a distinct possibility if things don’t get any better. And, who knows how long he will be sidelined if he eventually opts to go the surgery route. One month? Two months? The rest of the season? And, who knows how productive he will be if he opts to go the non-surgery route. And, who knows if surgery will even fix the problem.
But, the one thing I do know is that it’s a long season.