The last thing I’m going to do is sit here and tell you that I’m a ‘Fantasy Sports Expert.’ I believe those titles are reserved only for those who must study an ungodly amount of statistical data that makes me want to go into the fetal position as I often did during 11th grade algebra. Admittedly, I’m an old-school guy when it comes to baseball. You can have your WAR and your WHIP all you want to and while I do agree they are useful tools I still like the straight-forward numbers of batting averages, on-base percentages and quality starts.
I also like ‘feel’ too. I think it’s important to look at a guy’s numbers over certain period and see what he is or isn’t doing. Take Oakland A’s shortstop Jed Lowrie for example. I’m in a keeper league with players ranging from extremely knowledgeable and aggressive to players who check their rosters once every three-four weeks. We play for an undisclosed amount of money that will not bankrupt us but certainly allows for serious bragging.
Back to Lowrie… I picked him up early in the season when my shortstop, Yunel Escobar was not producing. Lowrie started the season hot hitting three home runs in the first week! Just my luck because he hasn’t hit one since April 7th. With that said, in a 12-team league, he is still a guy you need to have on your roster because while he isn’t hitting for power, he does hit the ball.
Lowrie is now hitting .305 on the season and continues to collect RBIs and score runs. If I’m in a six to eight team league then Lowrie isn’t near my lineup at all but when you get into the 12 and higher leagues he becomes an extremely valuable asset to have. At this point in the season, you need to find guys like this who can compliment your power and big number guys.
Here’s a look at some guys to consider and those you should send packing.
Guys you should send packing yesterday… Rick Porcello/Jose Valverde, SP/RP Detroit. Valverde is self-explanatory while Porcello is a little more complex yet related to Valverde. Porcello was having a strong year with improved innings and strikeout numbers until disasters in his recent starts. That could be because he knows he is trade bait as the Tigers look for a legitimate closer… Heath Bell, RP Arizona. With J.J. Putz coming back from injury I expect Bell to be removed from the closer’s role. He’s been very up and down in that spot anyway so dumping him might be a good move… Kelly Johnson,UTIL Tampa. Johnson has been mainly used at second base but Wil Meyers will hold that down now and despite 11 home runs, Johnson will spend even more time on the bench.