Archive for Simon Jones

10 Important Stories From 05/20/17 Box Scores: Wood Impresses, Quintanta Posts Strong Start & More

by Simon Jones

Friday marked a nice change where there were a number of great pitching performances for a change. Stand out performances from the likes of Alex Wood, Chris Sale, Jose Quintana and more, actually made it difficult to choose who to include from Friday, instead of the usual power bursts. Friday also say the Rangers closing in on a club record.

So let’s look at some of the bigger stories from Friday’s games.

1) Another scoreless outing for Alex Wood….
Alex Wood’s amazing Los Angeles renaissance continued yesterday as he blanked the Marlins across 7 1/3 innings. He didn’t quite match the crazy strikeout totals of his previous few starts, but this did mark the first time this season that he’s been able to go more than six innings. In the process he’s lowered his ERA to 1.88 in the process with peripherals to match. If it wasn’t for the injury history, then Wood would be climbing into the higher tiers of starting pitching. Read more

10 Important Stories From 05/13/17 Box Scores: Berrios and Happ Debut, Sale Makes History & More

By Simon Jones

Saturday marked the MLB debut of Ian Happ and the season debut of Jose Berrios, and both more than lived up to expectations. There were yet more power explosions, a big walk-off for Bryce Harper and Chris Sale making strikeout history.

So let’s look at some of the bigger stories from Saturday’s games.

1) Berrios Shines in Season Debut….
Jose Berrios was recalled this week to a certain amount of hype, but with expectations tempered after some serious struggles in his 2016 rookie campaign. Yesterday’s season debut against the Indians was more than encouraging as he held Cleveland to a single run on only two hits and a walk across 7 2/3 strong innings. Berrios has dominated the minors in 2017, so the hope is he can translate some of those numbers to the big leagues this time around. Read more

The Trade Counsel: Trust the Process & Recognizing Players To Avoid (Arrieta & More)

By Simon Jones

One of the obvious by-products of writing a trade column is that I do spend an inordinate amount of time discussing fantasy baseball trades. It’s rare that an evening passes where my inbox doesn’t have an offer or a response or two, or that I’m not on some sort of IM chatting about baseball and trades. To be fair, this happened a lot before I started writing too, but it has probably reached a new high point this year.

I was involved in one such conversation a few days back. My friend was bemoaning an early season trade where he swapped Ryan Zimmerman for Greg Bird, and how horrible that trade was looking back. It got me to thinking about how we judge trades and what constitutes a good or bad deal. It’s very easy (and only natural), with the benefit of hindsight, to look back at the trades any of us have made and isolate whether we made a clever or stupid decision. Read more

10 Important Stories From 05/05/17 Box Scores: Bellinger’s Big Week, Nats Bullpen Chaos & More

by Simon Jones

Friday was another reminder of how great baseball can be. Huge hitting, come from behind wins, some great pitching and a couple of big clutch hits, including Joe Mauer’s first career walk-off home run!

So let’s look at some of the bigger stories from Friday’s games.

1) A big week for Bellinger….
The last 7 days could have been career defining for Cody Bellinger. The initial assumption was that his call up was only going to be brief and he would be sent down again once Joc Pederson was fit. However Bellinger’s form forced the Dodgers’ hand, and Bellinger justified that faith by hammering another two home runs last night against the Padres. Not only was this his second multi-homer game this week, but also represented his fifth multi-hit game in the last seven, raising his OPS to 1.127 for the season. Read more

10 Important Stories From 04/28/17 Box Scores: Maeda’s Bounce Back, Giving Up On Gausman & More

by Simon Jones

One word seemed to dominate Friday night’s games – power! Pretty much every game was dominated by the long ball (and the related pitching implosions), highlighted by the Yankees’ stunning comeback against Baltimore. All-i-all, there were 48 bombs hit, the most of any day this season.

So let’s look at some of the bigger stories from Friday’s games.

1) Is there any hope for Gausman….
Kevin Gausman was a popular break out candidate after a promising 2016, but it has all fallen apart for him this season. Early last night, it appeared he may have turned a corner, after blanking the Yankees for 4 inning and taking a 9-1 lead into the bottom of the sixth. However he served up two long balls to Aaron Judge (more of that below), and was eventually tagged for five earned run on 6+ innings. Though he left the game with an 11-4 lead, the O’s bullpen would implode, and the Yankees walked away with an improbable 14-11 win. I’m already seeing Gausman dropped in leagues, and it would be really brave to be starting him in any league at this point. Read more

The Trade Counsel – How April Stats Influence Our Rankings (Souza, Heyward & More)

by Simon Jones

I was asked a few days back, at what point do I start changing my rankings around once the season begins? It’s an interesting question and highlights one of the most contentious areas of rankings throughout the season, as individual owners have very different approaches.

When we sit down and do our preseason draft preparation, we are all looking at the same data set based off the prior year. Our preferences and prejudices might sway our rankings somewhat, but there is a general pattern to most rankings. Similarly, once we get into July and beyond pretty much all our rankings will largely be based around the current season. Last year’s numbers might influence us a little, but the 3+ months we’ve seen will form the basis of our valuations.

Right now we are in that strange grey area, where we have nearly four weeks’ worth of data but our opinions are still very much colored by our predraft rankings. It is this part of the season where the opinions of owners diverge the most, and where some of the biggest trade opportunities lie. However, there also are some of the biggest risks. Are you buying into a hot spell that might disappear by mid-May or disregarding a trend that might last all year? Read more