If your football senses are tingling then you are correct, the 2015 NFL Draft is just days away. April 30th is going to be a defining moment for many teams this season. And what better position to discuss than one of the most relevant in Fantasy Football? The Running Back.
The RB I see making the most immediate impact for teams in 2015 is the 6 ft. 200lb running back from Wisconsin, Melvin Gordon III (MGIII). Coming off back-to-back 1,500+ rushing yard seasons and averaging 7.65 Yards Per Carry (YPC). MG-III lead the Big10 in Rushing Yards in 2014 with an impressive 2,587-yard season. He also decided to make everyone feel inadequate and also lead the Big10 in Rushing Touchdowns, Yards Per Carry and Rush Attempts. If all that wasn’t enough MG-III came just 41 yards shy of breaking Barry Sanders single season rushing record. Seriously MG-III we get it, you know how to football.
It happens every year, and there is nothing we can do about it. A player slides too hard into second base or gets hit by a pitch or slams into the outfield wall… now they’re hurt. Now they have to do their time on the disabled list to recover from those injuries. 2015 has the same type of vibe to it, except for the fact that everyone getting hurt is a catcher. Usually there are a couple players from different positions who had a little bad luck but are able to return and maybe a couple with a little more bad luck that need to stay out a little longer, but it looks like the players decided to switch it up this year.
So far there are five catchers on the DL that were top ten catchers in their respective leagues. This is causing some major holes for a lot of teams out there and that’s why we are here. So let’s take a look at replacing your injured catcher in 2015. Continue reading
Early-season baseball observations often present paradoxes, and the Baltimore Orioles’ rotation has provided a great example. Mixed expectations surrounded the rotation, headed by Chris Tillman and back-ended by Ubaldo Jimenez. Tillman, the O’s ace, has been one of the worst pitchers this month; while Jimenez is defying expectations and pitcher aging-curves. Another pitcher in Baltimore’s rotation who has been a quiet, and pleasant, surprise is Miguel Gonzalez, who seems to finally be reaching his potential at the age of 30. Wei-Yin Chen and Bud Norris make up the rest of the Orioles’ starting rotation. I find this rotation interesting, especially from a fantasy perspective.
I would deem it a great injustice to mention an entire team’s pitching rotation without recognizing the part defense plays in their success. No injustices shall be done on my watch. In 2014, The Orioles defense ranked 2nd in the MLB in DRS (Defensive Runs Saved) and UZR (Ultimate Zone Rating). It is too early in the season to draw comparison to 2014, but I can almost promise they will be just as good, if not better—especially when J.J. Hardy returns to the lineup. Now…onto the guys that make this starting rotation go ‘round:
We’re still firmly in the early part of the season, but pretty soon you will have to choose whether to believe this year’s stats. Do you believe in Lorenzo Cain’s awesome start? Is this the new baseline for Ryan Braun? It’s hard to find a balance between overreacting and just reacting this early in a long season, but I still spy some opportunities for great value in the land of Fantasy Baseball. These three players might not have done anything yet in 2015 to amaze us, but they’re useful players who are being overlooked. Let’s do it:
Still find yourself yearning for those oh-so-hard to come by wins for your starting pitcher? Want to get hip with advanced statistics in fantasy baseball but don’t know where to begin? Well, fret no more because I’m here to talk about quality starts! If you already play in one of those leagues that throw in on-base-percentage or quality starts and know all about them, skip to the list. If not, read on my friend!
Quality starts is a stat category that is catching on as rapidly as a Tamagotchi in 1997. I personally love the revolution…just as I loved my Tamagotchi, Brandon. But enough about me.
To break it down simply, a quality start is merely when a pitcher throws 6 innings and gives up 3 or fewer earned runs. On the flip side, a win takes 5 innings of work, as many runs as it takes to beat the other side, and is sometimes controlled more by the rest of the team. Because the pitcher himself controls the quality start, this category rewards pitchers even when their teams just plain suck.
It’s important to note that quality starts happen a little more frequently than wins. This is the age of the pitcher after all. It may surprise you to find that some guys you may not have thought about are suddenly valuable. Great pitchers on bad teams are always gold mines for quality starts. They tend to get overlooked on draft day, and suddenly, you’ve got a guy in the top 15 for quality starts landing in your lap.
Here are three guys that I think gain tremendous value in quality starts leagues as opposed to straight wins leagues:
The University of Alabama is no doubt a great college football program. However, their skill players have been hit or miss when transitioning to the NFL. This year, yet another one of their skill players, WR Amari Cooper, seems to be a lock as a top-10 selection in this year’s NFL Draft. The only question is, will Cooper turn out like another wide receiver from Alabama Julio Jones or turn out like another “can’t miss” prospect Trent Richardson? I’ll break down Cooper as a prospect and see which potential fits in the NFL will allow Cooper to make an impact for the 2015 fantasy football season. Continue reading
Position eligibility is a huge factor in fantasy baseball. Where a player plays greatly impacts how valuable (or not) a player is. Owners in keeper leagues have to be mindful of not only how many serviceable years they feel they can get out of their players, but also what positions some of those players will be eligible to play in future years. This week, we delve into possible position eligibility changes for next year (and to an extent this year).
Well, that was quick. I’m ready to throw in the towel, wave the white flag, etc. Lorenzo Cain is making me look like a fool. In the preseason, I named Cain to my do-not-draft team, and at this point I’m genuinely hoping you did not take my advice. This article will explain why I’m bumpin’ Lorenzo Cain up in my rankings, examine the impact a second baseman with two first names can make on your team, and debate a pitcher with former control issues. So why is Lorenzo Cain making me look like an idiot, how can Devon Travis help you, and what should we make of Edinson Volquez? Let’s discuss. Continue reading
After two weeks of baseball, there has been much to be seen. Homeruns have been robbed and stars have failed, but that doesn’t determine the end of their season. Every year there are a group of players who perform under expectations and a group of players who perform over expectations. The trick is to buy the while they are cheap so here are your buy-low/sell-high candidates for after week two of 2015 baseball. Continue reading
Baseball players get hurt. Not all baseball players who get hurt remain hurt—in fact, most guys come back from quite serious injuries (the great resurrection of Buster Posey’s left leg). Fantasy owners are often scared to take a risk on a guy just because there is an ominous “DL” next to his name. I personally don’t mind if a player starts the season on the DL, especially if it is an isolated case and isn’t pitcher elbow/shoulder related. There are guys among all those stung with the injury bug that I think you should keep an eye on this season. Continue reading