Results tagged ‘ Brandon Phillips ’

Bloomberg Sports National League Fantasy All-Star Team

 

Twitter: @RobShawSports and @BloombergSports

 

Bloomberg Sports Anchors Julie Alexandria and Rob Shaw discuss whether the fans’ selections for the National League All-Star team were right and who should be starting the All-Star Game in Kansas City on July 10.

 

Catcher

Buster Posey was not the right choice for the All-Star team. Phillies backstop Carlos Ruiz is having a sensational season, hitting .357 with 13 home runs, 46 RBI and a surprising three stolen bases. He has definitely been the best catcher in baseball this season.  

 

First Base

The fans got this one right by selecting Reds first baseman Joey Votto, who is probably the MVP of the first half of the season. He’s batting .350 with 14 home runs and 47 RBI.

 

Second Base

Brandon Phillips of the Reds should be starting rather than Dan Uggla. Phillips has a .279 average, 10 home runs and 47 RBI. He is also a good defensive player, which Uggla is not.

 

Third Base

The fans made the wrong choice by selecting Pablo Sandoval, who has missed plenty of time this season due to injury. David Wright of the Mets should have been the pick, as he has been an MVP candidate so far this year with a .350 average, 10 home runs, 55 RBI and eight stolen bases.

 

Shortstop

Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro should be starting in place of Rafael Furcal. Castro is batting .291 with six home runs, 40 RBI and 16 stolen bases. Despite those numbers, he can be frustrating because he makes a lot of boneheaded plays but he is young and will hopefully grow out of that. 

 

Outfield

Not one of the three outfielders chosen by the fans was the right pick. Carlos Gonzalez of the Rockies should be starting instead of Melky Cabrera. Gonzalez is batting .340 with 17 home runs, 58 RBI and 10 stolen bases, though he is helped out by playing at Coors Field.

Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun should have been selected over Matt Kemp. Braun is once again putting up MVP numbers with a .309 average, 23 home runs, 59 RBI and 13 stolen bases.

Finally, Pirates centerfielder Andrew McCutchen should have been chosen rather than Carlos Beltran. McCutchen is batting .360 with 16 home runs, 54 RBI and 14 stolen bases. Beltran would have been a good selection if the National League had a designated hitter. He has a .304 average, 20 home runs, 63 RBI and eight stolen bases this season.

 

For more insight, visit BloombergSports.com.

Fantasy Baseball Sleepers: Jhoulys Chacin, Mat Latos, Matt Moore

BY ROB SHAW

Twitter: @RobShawSports

There was once a time when drafting a Colorado Rockies pitcher in your fantasy league was nothing but trouble, but after we saw Ubaldo Jimenez not just tame the altitude, but dominate in it, fantasy managers are willing to invest in a Rockies hurler.  One pitcher who is drawing a great deal of interest is Jhoulys Chacin.

The 24-year-old hurler was hurt last season by a lack of defensive and offensive support as his record was just 11-14 and more than 10% of runs scored against him were unearned.  However, some of his struggles were self-inflicted.  Chacin walked 87 batters and surrendered 20 home runs.  Though he still managed a solid 3.62 ERA, he was flirting with danger despite the stellar .231 average against.

What makes Chacin so effective in Coors is that he keeps the ball on the ground.  In fact, of all pitchers in the Majors last season with at least 100 innings pitched, Chacin ranked seventh with a 57% ground ball rate.

While Chacin is a solid pitcher the question is whether he will become a great pitcher.  In order to do so he has to improve his control, which would result in a lower WHIP, better ERA, and a career-high in wins.  At 24 years old, there is a great deal of upside for Chacin and it is fair to assume that he’ll take a step in the right direction this season.

Typically pitching in a pitcher’s park is more advantageous than a hitter’s bandbox.  There is an argument to the contrary for Reds hurler Mat Latos who makes his way from San Diego’s PETCO Park to Cincinnati.  The greatest liability in Latos statistics last season was the 9-14 record.  Otherwise, the second-year hurler was stellar with a 3.47 ERA and 1.18 WHIP.

The idea here is that Latos could use a little run support.  With Adrian Gonzalez having left the west coast for Boston last season, Latos had few batters to offer the run support needed for a winning record.  That should not be an issue this season as he once again will have an MVP candidate manning first base with Joey Votto, plus the presence of Brandon Phillips and Jay Bruce among others in the lineup.

Expect a rise in the ERA as the hitter-friendly ballpark can’t be ignored, but it will come with nearly 200 strikeouts and around 15 wins.

The Rays will compete once again in the AL East thanks to the fine young talent making up their starting rotation.  While the Yankees and Red Sox acquire talent in trades and via free agency, the Rays secure their stars via drafts.

The next top prospect to follow the path of David Price and Jeremy Hellickson as prospects turned stars is rookie Matt Moore.  In his first taste of the Big Leagues, Moore actually pitched more post-season innings than he did in the regular season.  In 19.1 combined innings, Moore fanned 23 batters compared to just six walks.

In the minor leagues, Moore dominated while fanning batters at a shocking rate.  The sunshine state southpaw surpassed 200 strikeouts in both seasons despite pitching 155 innings or fewer.  Similar to Hellickson last season, Moore will likely make an immediate fantasy impact, though with more K’s.  On the other hand, the Rays will likely play it safe and limit him to around 180 innings.

While most fantasy managers prefer proven commodities when it comes to fantasy drafts, there are very few hurlers with the upside of Moore’s, and yet you can likely nab him as late as the 10th round.  For more fantasy insight visit BloombergSports.com.

Top 10 Safest Draft Bargains

By Eriq Gardner //

We’re all familiar with the concept of “sleepers,” players who represent draft day bargains because for whatever reason — a lack of track record, inconsistency, or injury concerns — aren’t going as high in drafts as their potential value.
Let’s be greedy for a second. 
Is it possible to find great players who are both cheap AND represent little risk?
Using the Bloomberg Sports Front Office Tool, I took this year’s list of sleepers (players whose B-Rank outpaces their average draft position) and filtered the group for “Durability” and “Consistency.” What follows are the Top 10 Safest Draft Bargains for the upcoming season:
  1. Josh Johnson
  2. Dan Haren
  3. Brandon Phillips
  4. Billy Butler
  5. Carlos Marmol
  6. Nick Markakis
  7. Joel Hanrahan
  8. Sergio Romo
  9. Rafael Soriano
  10. Daniel Bard

Josh Johnson has a little bit of a reputation for being injury-prone, having a Tommy John surgery a few years back, and missing the last month of last season with shoulder inflammation, but he’s also pitched nearly 400 innings these past two seasons as one of the elite hurlers in the game.

Dan Haren had a rough first half last season, and is known for some streakiness, but he always ends the season in good shape overall, with three consecutive seasons of at least 200 strikeouts, and an ERA in the 3s. He’s moving to the AL this year, but moves to a better pitcher’s ballpark.
Brandon Phillips is never a sexy option. He’s never finished as the top second baseman in baseball, and probably won’t ever. He’s just as consistent as they come in delivering positively in five categories every year.
Billy Butler and Nick Markakis probably represent disappointments to many competitors expecting better power numbers. Last season, each of these players languished in the power department, though it should be noted, they weren’t alone. Nevertheless, both hit in prime positions in the lineup, make good contact with the ball, and hold the promise of a very good average with nice runs and RBIs. The stock drop for the lack of demonstrated power may be a bit of an overreaction.
Carlos Marmol and Joel Hanrahan are two solid closers less favored than the supposedly elite ones in the league, yet both bring something tasty to the table in 2011. For Marmol, it’s his huge strikeout rate. Last season, Marmol had 138 strikeouts, which bested quite a few starters in baseball in nearly a third a starter’s workload. For Hanrahan, he’s probably overlooked because he closes for the Pirates, but he’s another reliever who hit the 100 K mark in 2010 while demonstrating good command and a bright future.
Sergio Romo, Rafael Soriano, and Daniel Bard are probably overlooked because they are middle relievers at the moment, and most competitors would rather take a bad closer than a great reliever who doesn’t get saves. The data says this is bad judgement. Each of these three relievers post ERA, WHIP, and strikeout rates that definitely hold strong value in each of these categories. The prospect of getting saves given a turn of good fortune is just a bonus for these three.
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