I realize that nobody wants to hear about my fantasy team, and probably even less about other people's fantasy teams, but I thought it'd be cool if I gave a rundown of the AGM Fantasy Baseball League. In what could become a regular feature (we'll see how it goes), here's a rundown of the top 5 teams in the Yahoo! ArmchairGM Fantasy Baseball League.
The standings (as of Wednesday, April 23) are:
|1||Tyler's Salt Shakers||Tylersalt||247.27|
|2||Rented Mules||Not sure||214.68|
|5||Goose Bay Killers||Again, Not Sure||191.23|
|7||Long Wooden Bats||Bobbyjim45||178.13|
|8||British Lions||Alex Holowczak||172.47|
|19||The Brew Haus||Coreyisarealboy||121.12|
There are at least 4 users that apparently are not taking part in the league, despite having a team. Patrickburke1980, BBB15, Agent0, and BlueCarp have not made any attempts to change their rosters, so I assume that they've missed the draft, forgotten about the league, are too busy to spend time on it, or some combination of the three. Which just means there's less competition for me, at least. Basically, what I'm trying to do here is give a brief synopsis on the five best active teams, and if you people like it, I'll do it on a regular basis. If you don't like it, well, I can't really blame you.
Tyler's Salt Shakers
Tyler's team has jumped out to a huge lead, as he's up 30 points on the next closest competitor. He's done it mostly through pitching, as he is carrying 10 pitchers. Because pitching is so highly valued in our league, it's given him a huge edge over the rest of the field. He should receive a large boost when his best pitcher, Erik Bedard, returns from his DL stint. That should most likely occur on Thursday. The offense for Tyler's team is solid, but mostly devoid of star power. David Ortiz is, by far, the best offensive player on his team, and it's lucky for the rest of us that he hasn't been hitting so far, or else the Salt Shakers may have an astronomically large lead. J.R. Towles (.220/.396/.537) has been, despite his low batting average, a very good offensive catcher. He is a rookie, though, and he may fade down the stretch as he catches his first full season in the majors. Overall, Tyler's got a good, very young lineup (Ortiz is the only player above 30), and players like Nick Markakis, Carlos Quentin, Conor Jackson, and Billy Butler should provide valuable production. Too bad it's not a keeper league.
One possible issue with Tyler's team is his prodigious use of pitchers. Our league has an innings cap of 1450, and right now, he's projected to go over that cap by 67.2 innings. I personally think he should have named his team something witty involving a Dusty Baker reference (I'm not that clever, so somebody will have to help me out here). However, I'm sure he's considered this (he's a smart guy), and I'm guessing that he's decided that taking the early lead is crucial.
I don't know who owns this team, but it's a very good one. The pitching is particularly robust, as Felix Hernandez, Fausto Carmona, Zack Greinke, A.J. Burnett (he loves him some contract year), and Gil Meche are all members of his staff. His outfield is also very good, with Josh Hamilton, Matt Holliday, Adam Dunn, and Lastings Milledge. The middle infield, consisting of J.J. Hardy and Rickie Weeks, has a ton of potential. He may be in second place, but I might like his team even better than Tyler's, if only because it has more balance. He's also over his projected innings cap, albeit by a less staggering 21.2 innings.
Davis, who set up the league and all of the parameters for it, has a very very talented pitching staff. Tim Hudson, Brandon Webb, Roy Oswalt, and Tom Gorzelanny and a surprisingly effective Nick Blackburn are the highlights of this stacked rotation. However, his weakness is obviously his outfield depth, because Jason Bay isn't the player he used to be and Andre Ethier, Josh Willingham, and Melky Cabrera are not superstars. Although his offense is a little suspect, his pitching depth will probably make up for it. After all, the man made the league, so he probably knows what's most important to achieving victory.
For whatever reason, I really like this guy's team. After pulling off a gutsy blockbuster trade (sending Mark Teixeira and Mike Lowell to Kelsdad for David Wright and James Loney), his starting offense is very potent. Carlos Beltran, Pat Burrell, the emerging Adam Jones, and the rookie Joey Votto are other strengths. The ace(s) in the hole are the suspended Mike Cameron, who's scheduled to return to the Brewers on April 29, and Moises Alou, out on rehab assignment, could return as early as next week. The pitching is solid, and if Justin Verlander manages to turn his season around, it could be more than that. Besides Verlander, Andy Pettitte, Jon Garland, Dan Haren, and Oliver Perez are all good pitchers. Unfortunately, the aggravating Aaron Heilman mans the bullpen, along with Brad Lidge, Jeremy Accardo, and the resurgent Duaner Sanchez. Of the top 4 teams in the league, this is the only one that is actually under the projected innings limit (even if it is only by 14 innings).
Goose Bay Killers
I have no idea who is running this team either, but they're also doing a good job. To be honest, though, I'm not sure how they're doing it. The pitching staff has names that are solid, but don't exactly jump off the page, like Aaron Cook, Mike Pelfrey, Micah Owings, Rich Hill, and Brandon Lyon. His early success could be due to the hot-hitting Nate McLouth, the consistent Michael Young, and the powerful Carlos Lee. If Ryan Howard decides to hit above .200 at some point this season, then his team might be able to stay in the race long-term.
- Missing the draft had very detrimental effects on several people. Romi, Kelsdad, and Corey all missed the draft, and they're still playing catchup from that, as they're ranked 10th, 14th, and 19th respectively.
- Pitching seems to be disproportionately important (which seems realistic to me, and I don't know if that would make it proportionally important or not. I'm sticking with disproportionately, because it's a bigger word), and the top teams seem to have a lot more of it than the lower tiers. For instance, I mentioned above that Davis' team has Brandon Webb, Roy Oswalt, and Tim Hudson, all of which are better than, say, Yakob's best pitcher, who is Chad Billingsley. If Yakob were here, I'm sure he would agree.