Fantasy Baseball Final: August 21st, 2015
There was a very interesting article about the dip in offensive statistics. In particular, walks are down considerably this year as compared to recent years and certainly since the last decade when offense was at its peak. Billy Beane cited capitalism but that’s just a fancy way of saying the sport goes through cycles. Teams increased their scouting efforts on finding pitching and they found it. That idea comes to the fore as the sport has seen another season with multiple no-hitters. Mike Fiers was the latest to do it tonight in Houston.
If you read only one thing…..
Very few teams are truly out of the running in the American League. Following the deadline, the Blue Jays went on a huge run and part of that was at the expense of the Minnesota Twins. Pundits were counting them out of the AL Wild Card picture, but they have managed to scrape together a few wins and are threatening to get right back in the playoff picture. People who like competition call it competitive balance. Those that are unimpressed call it parity. Call it what you want, but there are more teams involved in the playoff races that ever before.
Just as we expected….
There’s an expression that the ball always seems to find the fielder that just checked into the game. In the case of Marlon Byrd, the ball seemed to find his bat in his first game as a Giant. He had three hits (including a home run) and two RBI. The home run was his 20th on the season and he helped the Giants to a 6-4 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates. They now inch one game closer to the NL West leading Dodgers.
Sometimes life just isn’t fair. The Indians seem to be swimming in young starters and yet can’t get out of their own way. Carlos Carrasco threw another gem when he held the Yankees to one run in six and two-thirds of an inning. He also came up with 11 strikeouts on the evening. The Indians won this one 7-3, but their overall record just doesn’t add up when you consider all that good starting pitching.
But we didn’t see this coming….
Obviously, the story of the evening was the 134 pitch no-hitter hurled by Mike Fiers. He had more than 90 pitches through five innings, but managed to get through the last four innings in about 40 pitches. He pitched around three early walks and added ten strikeouts. He now has a 2.42 ERA as a Houston Astro. I called it when we profiled the trade, but clearly he is feeling the benefits of better fielding behind him.
Remember the name Byron Buxton. Most fantasy owners already know the name. He was supposed to finish out the season in AAA, but the Twins couldn’t resist calling him up and inserting him in center field. He had two hits on top of the Twins order and even though his numbers look terrible, he is getting valuable experience and could be a fantasy stud as soon as next year.
The Rest of the Details
- Kevin Jepsen (converted)
- Hector Rondon (converted)
- Santiago Casilla (converted)
- Shawn Tollenson (converted)
- Brad Ziegler (converted)
- Mark Teixeira missed his third consecutive game. Xrays were negative, so he continues to be day to day.
Everyone is focused on August 31st and rightfully so, but there really is no deadline at this point. As long as players clear waivers, teams can continue to make trades through the end of the season. Teams must set their playoff rosters by August 31st, so that is why people set their sights on that date. Stay tuned as we cover the fantasy impact on all of the trades leading up to that magic date. We’ve already seen the Dodgers and Giants make trades in advance of that date. Who knows who else might move in between now and then.