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Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 29

Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 29
08/29/2011 11:54 AM - 

As we head into the final month of the season, one Tout Wars owner is finally starting to separate from the pack.  Nick Minnix has maintained a slight lead over myself and Tim Heaney for most of August but he has been slowly securing his grip on top spot and widening the margin.  Nick was silent in this week’s FAAB additions but several other owners made moves in an attempt to gain more points.  Because Tout Wars rules stipulate that each owners’ 2011 point total can affect their 2012 FAAB budget, this will be a motivated group all the way to the end.  Let’s take a look at all the bids:

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Analysis: 

Brandon Allen leads the way while these experts also tip off fantasy owners to an underrated Royals starter.

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Life In The Fast Lane, 8/25

08/26/2011 2:23 AM - 

By: Andrew Satriano

As the month of August comes to a close, it means there is one more month of excitement before the real fun begins.  That being said, it is time once again to look at some of the game’s top speedsters who can really help vault your team into the playoffs if you are struggling to get there.
Somewhat of a dark horse because he is rarely talked about for his speed, Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun has been a machine along the bases.

Coming into today’s action, Braun has 29 steals after recording just 14 a year ago.  Furthermore, Braun has stolen five bags in the last four days, which leads the majors.  The last three years Braun has averaged nine steals in September, the most in any month, so as August winds down, now would be a good time to make a play for him.  In the last three weeks, Braun has accumulated 10 steals and is steadily climbing his way up the charts.  Shifting gears, his production is always solid at the plate, and this year is no different as he is on pace for another 30 homer, 100 RBI season.  With the Brewers clicking on all cylinders right now, look for him to continue running at a high rate.  Obviously, he will be unavailable, so prepare to trade for him as he could really help your team with his speed among other things.

Another player coming on really strong in the second half of the season is Padres center fielder Cameron Maybin.  After swiping 11 bases at the end of June, Maybin recorded 14 thefts in July and 7 more this month, giving him a total of 32.  As he is now a full-time starter for the first time in his career, his 32 steals are easily a career high and there is no reason to believe he won’t finish the season with around 45 steals.  Most importantly, he is only 24 years old, so he has many years ahead of him to repeat this year’s success.

With the Padres long out of the race, expect Maybin to run when he wants, as there is no pressure.  Some slumps have occurred for Maybin at the dish, but he is still hovering around the .280 mark.  As the Padres will play divisional foes for the next month, Maybin may see an increase in steals because of the familiarity of those teams.  Maybin has a better chance of being available than Braun, so if he is on the market, swipe him up quickly for Rotisserie leagues.

Unfortunately, a handful of guys have looked dreadful the past couple of weeks and beyond and for that reason need to be steered clear of.  Cardinals shortstop Rafael Furcal is a player on serious decline, after finding much success around the bases in the past.  Though he is getting older, Furcal managed to swipe 22 bases last season, but this year has been a much different story, as he sits on just five steals as we head into September with his last steal coming one month ago to the day.

He is in serious danger of not recording double-digit steals for the first time in his career excluding 2008 when he was injured and missed most of the season with the Dodgers.  When he was traded to the Cardinals last month, the belief was that he would be more motivated to produce for a contending team, but that simply has not been the case.  With Furcal’s struggles running and hitting as he currently stands at .204, his value has steadily decreased to almost nothing in all formats, but especially in those that reward steals.

Wrapping up this week is center fielder for the Twins Denard Span.  After emerging as a starting player for the Twins in 2009, Span has tallied at least 23 thefts the past two seasons, but not this year.  Span has dealt with a concussion this season, forcing him to miss 64 of his team’s 129 games, drastically affecting his stats.  However, in the 65 games he has played in, he only pulled off six steals which would put him on pace for around 15 steals the whole season.  The effects of the concussion are still being felt by Span, as he is 1 for 31 since returning from the disabled list on August 2.  The Twins have sent him home for a week to try and get his mind off of baseball and they may shut him down completely, but either way it is not looking good for Span and consequently, Span owners.  If you do own Span, it is a no-brainer to let him go, as his season is a wash and should be forgotten about.  That concludes this week, see you again next week for more.


Analysis: 

As the month of August comes to a close, it means there is one more month of excitement before the real fun begins. That being said, it is time once again to look at some of the game’s top speedsters who can really help vault your team into the playoffs if you are struggling to get there.

Life In The Fast Lane, 8/17

08/26/2011 2:16 AM - 

By: Andrew Satriano

The dog days of summer are certainly upon us, as we have recently passed the middle of August. With the hot weather here to stay, some of the game’s best players may find themselves struggling to do what they do best. That being said, we will take a look at the base stealers who haven’t let the heat get to them as well as those that have struggled and need to be avoided.

Opening up this week is Padres center fielder Cameron Maybin, who has been lights out along the bases. After playing half a season last year, Maybin has really proved his worth in his first full season as he has 31 thefts and is now in the top ten in that category. Maybin leads the majors with four steals in the last seven days and is on pace to finish the season with 41 steals. It should not go unnoticed that he has been caught stealing just three times this season and only eight times in his career compared to 50 career steals, so he definitely knows how to pick his spots. Looking further at the stats, he is finding himself on base a lot and he is starting to hit for power. With the Padres out of the race months ago, look for Maybin to continue to do what he’s been doing and he should never be counted out because of his speed. If available, pick him up immediately and use him in Rotisserie leagues.

Another young and possible star in the making who has had a great past couple of weeks is Jose Constanza, right fielder for the Braves. Since being called up at the end of July, Constanza is among the league leaders with five steals this month. If Constanza was with the Braves at the start of the season, he would have tallied close to 48 stolen bases by the end of the season – an amazing feat. He has hit safely in 14 of his career 18 games and is hitting .385, a very encouraging sign. Constanza seems to be getting better with every passing day and as long as he remains in the big leagues next year, it could be the start of a very promising career for the youngster. Because it is so early in his career, he may not turn into a big steals guy, but based on what has been seen so far, there is no reason to believe he will not continue using his legs advantageously this season and beyond. He could be valuable if you are trying to make a push for the playoffs in your league where steals matter, so don’t hesitate to
strike while the iron is hot.

Though Maybin and Constanza have looked good lately, there are guys who have looked equally as bad. The first example of a player who has not looked sharp around the bases this season is center fielder for the Phillies, Shane Victorino. After posting more than 25 steals the last four seasons, Victorino currently sits on 16 stolen bases and will really have to push himself if he wants to extend that streak to five. He missed a handful of games earlier this season because of a thumb sprain and is currently playing among an appeal of a three-game suspension, but one would expect his stolen base numbers to be higher than what they are. Over the last three years, Victorino has averaged more steals in the first half of the season than the second half, so that’s another negative for him. Victorino is hitting the ball very well and reaching base regularly, but before last night, his last steal was at the end of July. For this reason, don’t waste time on him right now as he simply does not look comfortable stealing.

Finally, after a hot start running the bases, Pirates left fielder Jose Tabata has cooled off significantly. After April 23, Tabata had nine steals, but nearly four months later, he has picked up just five more, bumping his season total up to 14. Most of that can be blamed on his quadriceps injury which has sidelined him since late June. Still, in the months of May and June, he was not running as much as he had in April. Tabata has recently returned to the Pirates lineup but as he recovers from his leg injury, it will be difficult for him to try and steal. He had much promise entering the season, but unfortunately his injury has damaged that. Hitting has also been a problem for Tabata, so don’t be surprised if he gets extra time off to clear his head and get back on track. At this time, Tabata cannot be trusted to run or perform on a consistent basis and the most logical idea seems to go after him next season. That wraps up this week – hope to see you back again next week.


Analysis: 

The dog days of summer are certainly upon us, as we have recently passed the middle of August. With the hot weather here to stay, some of the game’s best players may find themselves struggling to do what they do best. That being said, we will take a look at the base stealers who haven’t let the heat get to them as well as those that have struggled and need to be avoided.

Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 22

Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 22
08/22/2011 8:40 AM - 

As we head down the stretch run, the Tout Wars Mixed League owners are definitely addressing specific categories in an effort to jockey for position in the league’s final standings.  Hitters who get regular playing time are at a premium right now and their demand will likely be even greater once rosters expand in September.  Replacement closers are also in high demand, as are middle relievers who could help to lower a team’s ERA and WHIP.  Let’s take a look at all of this week’s bids:

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Analysis: 

Find out which disappointing rookie shows signs of life in the past seven days and warranted the top bid in this experts league!

Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 15

Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 15
08/15/2011 12:05 PM - 

It was a busy Sunday night for the Tout Wars Mixed League owners.  16 players were added to rosters and most drew bids in the $3-6 range despite the small amount of money remaining in most accoutns.  Surging young hitters like Jose Constanza and Eric Thames were popular names, as were two-start pitchers such as Guillermo Moscoso and Jake Westbrook.  However, it was Casey Kotchman and his elite batting average that drew the highest bid.  Let’s take a look at all the action:

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Analysis: 

Casey Kotchman, Erik Bedard and Jose Constanza led the way this week, while one sneaky owner added Stephen Strasburg in advance of his September call up!

Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 8

Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 8
08/08/2011 11:48 AM - 

As we roll into the dog days of August, this Tout Wars Mixed League group is looking in one direction – youth!  Rookies dominated this week’s bids, monopolizing the top five spots.  We will likely see more young players at the top of this list in the coming week, as Major League teams look to the future and Tout Wars owners take chances on young players to tries to rise of the league standings.  Let’s take a look at all the bids.

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Analysis: 

Rookies dominated the waiver claims – find out who these experts were targeting!

Eye Openers

Eye Openers
08/04/2011 11:44 AM - 

Fantasy baseball may seem like a name game but in reality it’s a game of numbers.  You don’t win your league by rostering popular players, you win it by finding players who produce the goods.  Take a look at the eyeopening facts listed below and it might change your impressions of some players.  All statistics are accurate as of the beginning on play on August 4.

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Analysis: 

Check out these hitting statistics that can help you to see certain players in a new light!

A Trade Odyssey – Tout Wars Style

A Trade Odyssey – Tout Wars Style
08/02/2011 10:02 AM - 

It started with trade talks involving Carlos Gonzalez, Jered Weaver, Kyle McClellan, Carlos Beltran and A.J. Burnett in late June.  Over 200 emails were exchanged in slightly over a month, including close to 50 in a 24-hour period ending at 7:00 pm on August 1st.  And finally, Nando DiFino and Fred Zinkie were able to complete a fantasy baseball trade!

This deal came closer to the deadline than the U.S. Budget Crisis, with the final trade being agreed upon by a slightly sweaty DiFino following his Monday gym workout while an exhausted Zinkie forwarded the details to the league commissioner on an overused and slightly greasy Iphone before finishing making Monday’s dinner.

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Analysis: 

Find out about the trade that took over 200 emails to complete!

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Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 1

Tout Wars Mixed League FAAB – August 1
08/01/2011 8:25 PM - 

The Major League Baseball trade deadline produced its share of big deals but Sunday’s Tout Wars Mixed League bids weren’t nearly as aggressive.  A few recent call-ups were hotly contested but overall just ten players were added to rosters this week.  Five of those players went for $8 or more so these owners are hoping that there is quality even if there was a lack of quantity on the waiver wire this week!  Before we jump into the gory details, one note – look for my trade recap with Nando DiFino to come up on this page on Tuesday.  It was a long and winding road with Nando and my final punishment after spending a month working out a trade with him is to have to write about it!  But for now, let’s take a look at all the bids.

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Analysis: 

There were some big bids in this experts league – Goldschmidt, Guzman, Turner, Altuve – should you follow their lead?!

Fantasy Fallout – The Three-Team Mega Deal!

Fantasy Fallout – The Three-Team Mega Deal!
07/27/2011 8:04 PM - 

The Blue Jays creative general manager Alex Anthopolous struck again on Wednesday, giving up several players to acquire Colby Rasmus.  While I question whether or not the Cardinals got enough for Rasmus, let’s just stick to the basics and look at the deal from a fantasy baseball perspective.

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Analysis: 

Breaking down all the changes in fantasy baseball value from Wednesday’s three-team trade between the Blue Jays, Cardinals and White Sox.