Sunday, 1 April 2012

A Case of the Nolascos.

Yup, I've got 'em. There's no known cure for the Nolascos. Penicillin doesn't do a thing. Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation or RICE just makes 'em worse. If you've been playing fantasy baseball more than five years, I bet you've got 'em too.

There are just some players out there that you cannot avoid. Every year, you pick 'em. They're like scabs that just won't heal.  If Doctor Gregory House (who's finally back to my internet tv tomorrow) were my doctor, his white board would read as follows:

Ricky Nolasco: Every year he posts a FIP in the 3.50 range, a walk rate under 2.00 batters per 9, and a half-decent K-Rate. Every freakin' year. Last year Nolasco posted a WHIP of 1.40 and I still can't avoid taking him in deeper leagues.

Brandon Morrow: Since joining the Blue Jays, he's struck out more than a batter per inning and posted back-to-back xFIPs of 3.50ish.

Zack Greinke: It's not a bad thing to have Greinke on your roster, but I've spent years assuming he's probably the best pitcher in the game. I was rewarded in 2009, but since then random chance has decided that another Cy Young award just isn't in his cards.

Chad Billingsley: Just when I thought he was on the verge of making the hump to 8.00 K/9 and lowering his BB/9 to under 3.00, 2011 happened and he sucked. It's not like that'll stop me from drafting him, though.

Matt Garza: Hrm. His playoff performances really made a name for him, but up until last year, he was routinely average. Finally his fastball-slider combination lived up to the hype and he had a pretty solid year.

Daniel Hudson: Hudson has actually looked pretty sharp and I think 2012 is the year he gets that K-Rate above 8-per-9 while maintaining a BB-Rate of under 2-per-9. Should make the jump from good to great this year.

Trevor Cahill / Brett Anderson: Cahill got traded and while the move out of Oakland will hurt, facing a pitcher rather than DH will certainly help. He's a ground-ball pitcher, but there's no reason why he shouldn't be able to get Ks with his slider, curve and change. They all have respectable whiff/swing rates. Could be in for a break-out year.  As for Anderson, he's hurt and hasn't been able to ever put it together. I love the former Oakland duo and maybe Anderson comes back strong. I've been stashing him on my DL in a handful of leagues.

Derek Holland: He broke out in last year's playoffs, but I fear he might be overvalued because of it. I still think that Holland's five pitch arsenal is one of the better ones in the game and his control is only going to get better.

James McDonald: Still Waiting. McDonald was awful to open the season and awful to close it, but everything in between was stellar. Remove his 7.66 ERA in March/April and his 4.95 ERA in Sept/Oct and you've got a pretty solid pitcher.

Josh Johnson: I'm sure you can guess why.

Mike Minor: I've got a feeling that he'll be a mainstay on this list. With Atlanta's current rotation he's already undervalued. Toss in Delgado, Teheran and Vizcaino and Minor will be overlooked for the next ten years.

A few more and then guys that'll probably be on this list next year: Jon Niese, Phil Hughes, Brian Matusz, Kyle Drabek, Nathan Eovaldi.

Yah, this basically accounts for the majority of my pitching staffs in almost every league that I'm in.

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