Results tagged ‘ Pablo Sandoval ’

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.

What to Do About Third Base

by Eno Sarris // 

This past week has been a tough one for the third base position. Ryan Zimmerman underwent abdominal surgery and will be out up to another six weeks. Pablo Sandoval will miss at least that much time with a broken hamate bone. David Freese also broke his hand. Scott Rolen is having shoulder issues. Ian Stewart was sent down to the minor leagues. Pedro Alvarez is struggling with the whiff. If you have multiple teams, odds are you are looking for a third baseman in at least one league. We’ll break down some options here, tiered by league depth, so that you can sort through the mess.

Shallow Leagues
It’s hard to know exactly which players are available on your waiver wire, but chances are, if you’re in a ten-teamer, Chase Headley is out there for you. Ideally, you’d like to play him against righties and away from home – so if you can platoon him in this manner, go ahead. As a batter, Headley has made some strides. He’s showing the best walk rate of his career and his power is up from last year. He has a lifetime BABIP of .330, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see him get a little luckier on balls in play despite owning a current .301 BABIP. By the end of the year, Headley should be hitting around .260 with double digit home runs and steals, so he’s a decent stop-gap player. Of course, if you are lucky enough to find Chipper Jones on your waiver, he’s a much better option. But Headley’s no bum. Finally, the best option is probably Jed Lowrie, who made his fifth start (eighth game) at the position on Tuesday night. If he’s available and eligible, he’s your man.

Standard Mixed Leagues
Edwin Encarnacion is doing everything he’s always done in terms of his plate discipline and hit trajectory stats, but the power hasn’t been there. It’s a little much to ask him to recover his power so soon after a wrist injury, but that might be what you are stuck with. If power is your sole goal, you may want to go with Ian Stewart, who is now back in the major leagues. In interviews he has practically demanded that he play every day. If the team allows him that – it’s not like Jose Lopez is a better option (with his 1 OPS+!), and Ty Wigginton is also a flawed player – he could go back to striking out a little less than a third of the time, which would probably result in an Encarnacion-ish .250 batting average with power. If every hit counts, Danny Valencia has had bad luck so far this season and should at least be able to hit .265 or so going forward.

AL- and NL- Only Leagues
In these leagues, you’re mostly just screwed. In my 11-team AL-only, the best waiver option is either Omar Vizquel or Matt Tolbert. I’d take Tolbert, mostly just because he’s playing often because of the current state of the Twins infield. If Andy LaRoche is available in your league, he’s been seeing more time for the Athletics and has been acquitting himself well. On the NL side, Mike Fontenot is getting more playing time at shortstop and, because of his position eligiblity, actually create some trade value for himself by stealing the starting shorstop role in San Francisco while your third baseman is out. That’s how bad Miguel Tejada has been this year. Over with the Reds, Daniel Descalso is probably the man taking over for Freese right now, but watch Allen Craig if he’s available, as he’s the best bat in this paragraph – but he’ll have to build up eligibility at the positon, most likely.

Third base is hurting right now, literally and figuratively. Hopefully some of these free agent options will help you survived until you get your third baseman back.

For more check out Bloomberg Sports’ Front Office 2011.

What To Do About Third Base

by Eno Sarris //

This past week has been a tough one for the third base position. Ryan Zimmerman underwent abdominal surgery and will be out up to another six weeks. Pablo Sandoval will miss at least that much time with a broken hamate bone. David Freese also broke his hand. Scott Rolen is having shoulder issues. Ian Stewart was sent down to the minor leagues. Pedro Alvarez
is struggling with the whiff. If you have multiple teams, odds are you
are looking for a third baseman in at least one league. We’ll break down
some options here, tiered by league depth, so that you can sort through
the mess. 

Shallow Leagues
It’s hard to know exactly which players are available on your waiver wire, but chances are, if you’re in a ten-teamer, Chase Headley
is out there for you. Ideally, you’d like to play him against righties
and away from home – so if you can platoon him in this manner, go ahead.
As a batter, Headley has made some strides. He’s showing the best walk
rate of his career and his power is up from last year. He has a lifetime
BABIP of .330, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see him get a little
luckier on balls in play despite owning a current .301 BABIP. By the end
of the year, Headley should be hitting around .260 with double digit
home runs and steals, so he’s a decent stop-gap player. Of course, if
you are lucky enough to find Chipper Jones on your waiver, he’s a much better option. But Headley’s no bum. Finally, the best option is probably Jed Lowrie, who made his eighth start at the position on Tuesday night. If he’s available and eligible, he’s your man. 

Standard Mixed Leagues
Edwin Encarnacion

is doing everything he’s always done in terms of his plate discipline
and hit trajectory stats, but the power hasn’t been there. It’s a little
much to ask him to recover his power so soon after a wrist injury, but
that might be what you are stuck with. If power is your sole goal, you
may want to go with Ian Stewart, who is now back in the
major leagues. In interviews he has practically demanded that he play
every day. If the team allows him that – it’s not like Jose Lopez is a much better option, and Ty Wigginton
is also a flawed player – he could go back to striking out a little
less than a third of the time, which would probably result in an
Encarnacion-ish .250 batting average with power. If every hit counts, Danny Valencia has had bad luck so far this season and should at least be able to hit .265 or so going forward. 

AL- and NL- Only Leagues
In these leagues, you’re mostly just screwed. In my 11-team AL-only, the best waiver option is either Omar Vizquel or Matt Tolbert. I’d take Tolbert, mostly just because he’s playing often because of the current state of the Twins infield. If Andy LaRoche
is available in your league, he’s been seeing more time for the
Athletics and has been acquitting himself well. On the NL side, Mike Fontenot
is getting more playing time at shortstop and, because of his position
eligiblity, actually create some trade value for himself by stealing the
starting shorstop role in San Francisco while your third baseman is
out. That’s how bad Miguel Tejada has been this year. Over with the Reds, Daniel Descalso is probably the man taking over for Freese right now, but watch Allen Craig if he’s available, as he’s the best bat in this paragraph – but he’ll have to build up eligibility at the positon, most likely.

Third base is hurting right now, literally and figuratively.
Hopefully some of these free agent options will help you survived until
you get your third baseman back.

For more check out Bloomberg Sports’ Front Office 2011.

Pablo Sandoval In 2011: Sink Or Swim?

By Tommy Rancel //

Despite having just over two seasons under his rather large belt, Pablo Sandoval has seen the ups and downs of the major leagues. The Kung-Fu Panda made his debut for San Francisco in 2008, hitting .345/.357/.490 in an abbreviated 41-game rookie season. In his first full season at the big league level, he hit .330/.387/.559 with 25 home runs, 44 doubles, and somehow legged out five triples. For his efforts, he was rewarded with a top-10 finish in the 2009 National League MVP vote – placing seventh. Sandoval entered the 2010 season as a 23-year-old with a career batting average of .333 in over 700 at-bats. Then the season started…

Not only was Sandoval unable to replicate his 2009 success, but he did not even come close. In 152 games, he posted a slash line of .268/.323/.409. His home run total was pretty much cut in half (13), and he drove in just 63 runners compared to the 90 from the previous year. By season’s end, he was replaced by Juan Uribe in the lineup and totaled just 19 plate appearances in the playoffs as the Giants’ marched to a World Series title  Such a steep drop-off for a player with Sandoval’s experience immediately brings up the word fluke. However, when looking past his fantasy stats, there are not many signs of fluke.

In terms of plate discipline, he was still a free swinger last season, but did not rack up a ton of strikeouts. He walk rate declined a bit, however, nothing substantial. Overall, he displayed the same patience as he did in 2009. In terms of batted ball data, he hit about the same number of line drives as well as ground and flyballs.

The areas where he experienced steep regression were batting average on balls in play and home run-to-flyball ratio. He was unlikely to be a career .330 hitter anyway so some correction was expected. In terms of the HR/FB issue, he might have regressed a bit too much leaving the potential for positive regression in the future.

With similar peripherals yet differerent results over the past two seasons, what can we expect in 2011? Another near-MVP caliber season or another mostly disappointing and average campaign?

sandoval_projected.jpg

According to Bloomberg Sports’ projections, Sandoval should fall right in between. Our projections peg the Panda with a .293 average and an OPS of .825. In terms of power, the system projects him to once again top the 20 home run plateau with a steady dose of doubles mixed in.

After the season, Sandoval was told to lose weight by Giants’ management or face a demotion to the minors. We don’t know if he is the best shape of his life, but reports say he is in much better condition than he was a few months ago. In addition to working with trainers, he has also picked the mind of Giants’ great Barry Bonds about improving his swing and plate approach.

With the fresh stench of his 2010 lingering on some draft boards, Sandoval may linger around a bit longer than his true value. That said, he becomes a prime target in the mid-rounds as a bounce back sleeper with multi-position flexibility.

 

MLB Season in Review: San Francisco Giants Hitters

By Eriq Gardner //

Biggest Surprise

Andres Torres spent 13 years in the minors before finally getting a shot to play every day in the majors this season. His numbers on the farm were decent, but nothing that hinted he’d be any better than a serviceable backup. He showed some promise in 2009, hitting .270/.343/.533. This year, Torres has hit 15 homers, knocked in 61 runs, scored 83, and stolen 23 bases in 549 plate appearances. He’s certainly earned an outfield spot again next season, even though he’ll be 33 with a light pedigree. The guy who came out of nowhere edges the spectacular comeback year of Aubrey Huff as the team’s biggest surprise.

Biggest Bust

Pablo Sandoval was coming off a 25-HR season in 2009 and looked like a good bet to develop as one of the league’s most valuable corner infielders. After all, Kung Fu Panda has an elite ability to make contact with the ball — hardly ever striking out. So what happened in 2010? Sandoval hit only a dozen home runs and his batting average dropped from .330 all the way down to .267. It’s hard to explain his complete absence of power this year except to speculate about his body weight, a hidden injury, or just pure bad luck. It’s also possible that Sandoval enjoyed a career year in 2009 (including a very high .350 BABIP) and that he had little to no shot to repeat that performance.

2011 Keeper Alert

Buster Posey arrived on the scene in late May and quickly established himself as one of baseball’s top catchers. This season, in just 426 plate appearances, Posey has hit 16 HR, knocked in 64, and hit .311. Posey was highly touted coming into the league, but few catching prospects are ever this good, this quickly. Now, he has made a case that he could possibly be the most valuable catcher in baseball next year, especially if Joe Mauer fails to regain his 2009 power stroke. Posey’s value is helped by the fact that he plays nearly every day — another rarity among catchers — and hits high up in San Francisco’s lineup.

2011 Regression Alert

Expect better things from Sandoval next season. He’s still making contact and putting the ball in the air, but a 6.6% HR/FB rate is flukishly low and bound to improve.

For more on Buster Posey and the San Francisco Giants lineup, check out Bloomberg Sports’ Fantasy Tools.

 

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