Sunday, April 30, 2006

Free Agents - April 30

Sorry I'm late. We had company.

This week's free agent activity:

Brian waives Wilson Betemit and Tomo Ohka and signs Ben Broussard for $2 and Ervin Santana for $5.

Mike signs Shannon Stewart for $1 to fill his open bench spot.

Doug places Brian Bannister on the DL and signs Akinori Otsuka for $5.

Todd and Joel waive Aaron Hill and Jose Guillen and sign Jose Lopez for $1 and Corey Patterson for $2.

Pandas place Juan Rivera on the DL and sign Howie Kendrick for $1.

That's all.

UPDATE: Jon placed Rich Harden on the DL and signed Kyle Davies for $2.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Today's Injury Update

A.J. Burnett (RHP, TOR)
Burnett is back on the disabled list with more pain in his pitching elbow. Both Burnett and the Blue Jays are speculating it is scar tissue problem again. He's scheduled to see Dr. James Andrews on Monday, the surgeon who performed his Tommy John surgery a couple of years ago.

There are three likely scenarios:

(1) The injury is related to scar tissue that may or may not need to be surgically removed. It's unlikely the Blue Jays will continue with this roller coaster ride with his elbow. They need to get it fixed soon. A minimum 15-day DL stint is possible but not the best long-term solution.
(2) The ulnar nerve in his pitching elbow is inflamed due to the scar tissue and the prior surgery. While this scenario is possible, we've heard nothing regarding numbness in his forearm or hand, a typical symptom of nerve involvement. If this is the cause, then surgery would be the likely option and the loss of at least two months of the 2006 season.
(3) The ulnar collateral ligament is damaged and he either needs an extended DL stint or surgery to repair the damage. Surgery would cost him the entire 2006 season. This is the least likely outcome based on the available information.

Julio Lugo (SS, TB)
In a classic case of swimming in quicksand, Lugo struggles to make noticeable progress from an intercostal muscle strain in his ribcage on his left side. He's illustrating how difficult it is to predict a return date or see players rebound quickly from this ailment. It just doesn't happen. The Devil Rays are speculating he won't be back for another three weeks. This puts his return date around May 15, meaning he would miss about six weeks with the injury, which is about two weeks longer than the average recovery time. What makes his situation more troubling is that this is the second 'adjustment' the Devil Rays have made with his recovery rate. They're either afraid to term it a setback when they announce the return date, or, the ailment just isn't responding to treatment as quickly as they expected. He needs to get to the level of recovery where he can go out on a rehab assignment. The longer he is out of the lineup, the longer he'll need to play in minor league games to get his swing down and feel comfortable at the plate. This isn't the kind of news you want to hear if you are Logo owner. Any kind of setback might push his return to the end of May or early June.

Huston Street (RHP, OAK)
The strained pectoralis minor muscle that has had Street on the shelf for five days and counting is improving, albeit very slowly. During a weekend throwing session, he cut short the scheduled workout due to arm fatigue. He stated it wasn't pain, just the fact he got tired while throwing. It is a little worrisome when he hadn't thrown more than a dozen pitches when he was shutdown. The Athletics list him as day-to-day but we aren't likely to see him for a couple more days. This isn't a common ailment, so there isn't a track record to compare it too. At what point does Oakland place him on the disabled list? One would think if he's not back by Wednesday they would place him on the DL retroactively. If you have the opportunity, place him on the reserve roster until he starts pitching again and we can better judge his health.

Todd Helton (1B, COL)
Helton's current medical situation is pretty scary. He's struggled with stomach pain the past few days and was just recently released from the hospital. While at the hospital, he was tested for just about everything under the sun. As of now the medical staff hasn't revealed the results of those tests. I won't speculate on what his condition is because it is unproductive to do so. We'll report on his condition once the team provides more information.

Chris Young (RHP, SD)
Young indicated recently that part of the reason he's struggled at times early this season is due to a jammed pitched thumb. Young says he can't get a good feel for the ball because his thumb feels like it has been in a freezer. Young has actually pitched pretty darn well overall this year. Hitters are batting under .200 against him and his Ratio is 1.12. He was scheduled to have an MRI Monday to determine the damage to the thumb. The concern by Young and the Padres is that the thumb is not getting any better and they wonder if the condition will deteriorate as the season moves along.

Mark Teahen (3B, KC)
The Royals were counting on Teahen to step up his production this season. So far he's been a huge disappointment, and maybe now we know why. He's admitted to having a sore right shoulder, a condition that's been getting worse rather than better. If the shoulder has been an unreported problem for a while, that might explain the drop in power he's exhibited so far. The lack of home runs is somewhat expected because he'll never be a big home run hitter, but his lack of doubles may be as a result of the injury. His anemic .213 BA doesn't help matters either. The Royals haven't talked about placing him on the disabled list yet, but this could change in the next few days if he doesn't rebound physically.

Eric Milton (LHP, CIN)
In 2003, Milton lost a season to left knee surgery and now he has developed more problems with his troublesome left knee. He was scheduled to undergo surgery to clean out damaged meniscus cartilage on Monday. The Reds medical staff isn't worried about the surgery, comparing it to the same level that Jason LaRue underwent in March. LaRue came back in 23 days and the Reds expect the same timetable for Milton. Working against Milton is his past history of left knee problems. This factor could push his return to four weeks.

Esteban Loaiza (RHP, OAK)
Loaiza left his latest start with spasms in his left trapezius muscle. This is the muscle that runs from the neck to the top of the shoulder. The tightness started while he was warming up and he was unable to get loose during the game. It started to spasm during the game and he had to be removed from the start. The spasms caused a noticeable drop in his velocity and a change in his mechanics. In some cases, this type of injury doesn't allow a pitcher to get full extension on their delivery. There is no word on if he'll have his next start pushed back a few days to allow his shoulder rebound.

Ray Durham (2B, SF)
Durham suffered a strained left hamstring tendon over the weekend while running out an infield hit. Durham described it as a "grab" rather than a pop, which is a good sign that he didn't tear the muscle or tendon. He's listed as day-to-day and will be evaluated further on Monday.

Juan Rivera (OF, LAA)
The Angels placed Rivera on the disabled list with tightness in his rib cage. The ailment got worse over the weekend when he attempted any activity, which led to the DL stint. The Angles don't have a projection on how long he'll be out until another round of tests are done and they can get some of the pain to subside.

Monday, April 24, 2006

A Couple of Things

First, the free agent bidding cycle now ends at 6 PM SUNDAY. The 12 midnight Saturday thing wasn't working for me and, since there were some concerns with 10 PM Saturday not giving sufficient time to submit bids, this seemed to make sense. I thought about Friday, but this time allows for all but the Sunday night games to be played and you can set your rosters for the coming week.

Second, last year I mentioned that I receive regular updates on players as a Baseball HotSheet subscriber (there's a link on the right if you want to subscribe). I suggested sharing some of those updates and received no negative feedback to the idea. So, here's your first player update:

Headline: Loss of Lee shakes up Cubs

As you surely know by now, Derrek Lee suffered a broken wrist in a collision at first base on Wednesday and is expected to miss 8-to-10 weeks of action. With a .318 average, three homers and five steals, Lee appeared on his way to another monster season, and his loss is an enormous one for the Cubs.

Todd Walker has started three straight games since Lee's injury, two at first base and one at second. Walker was a semi-full-time player before this injury but will basically play every day now. When Walker is at first base, Jerry Hairston will usually start at second (provided he can stay healthy, which is never a sure thing with Hairston). John Mabry also stands to pick up some extra action with Lee out.

The big difference for Walker is that he'll probably get starts against lefties that he would not have otherwise.

Going on the DL

Eric Milton is scheduled to undergo arthroscopic knee surgery on Monday and will be placed on the DL. He will miss at least three weeks of action. The Reds plan to recall Elizardo Ramirez to start on Monday. Ramirez has 15 strikeouts and no walks in 16 innings for Triple-A Louisville this season and could get two starts this week.

The Rockies placed Todd Helton on the DL because of a stomach ailment that is still being diagnosed. Eli Marrero has started three straight games at first base in place of Helton. Ryan Spilborghs was recalled to replace Helton on the roster but probably won't play much.

The Angels placed Juan Rivera on the DL with tightness in his ribcage. So far, Tim Salmon, Edgardo Alfonzo and Maicer Izturis have picked up extra playing time because of Rivera's absence. Reggie Willits was recalled from Triple-A Salt Lake to give the team another outfielder, but he probably won't get much playing time.

The Blue Jays placed A.J. Burnett on the DL for the second time this season because of elbow problems. The team has decided to let Roy Halladay pitch on an extra day of rest on Friday, but it's not clear who will start against Baltimore on Thursday. Scott Downs is a candidate, as are minor leaguers Casey Janssen and Josh Banks. However, since both Janssen and Banks started for Triple-A Syracuse in a doubleheader on Sunday, Downs might be the best bet.

The Royals placed David DeJesus on the disabled list with a strained left hamstring. In the four games that DeJesus has been out, Esteban German and Shane Costa have each started two games in center field.

After seemingly establishing himself in the lineup for the Orioles, David Newhan suffered a broken leg on Monday. He had been playing regularly in left field, and his absence has opened up more playing time for Corey Patterson, Nick Markakis and Jeff Conine.

The Angels placed Bartolo Colon on the DL with shoulder inflammation. Hector Carrasco has replaced him in the rotation.

Coming off the DL

The Padres activated Mike Cameron from the DL in time for Sunday's game. Cameron started in center field and batted fifth, though he may bat sixth when Mike Piazza is in the lineup. Ben Johnson loses playing time with Cameron's return.

Nomar Garciaparra came off the DL to start at first base for the Dodgers on Saturday, but he was not in the lineup Sunday. Nomar may be back, but there's no telling how long he'll be able to stay healthy. James Loney was sent back to the minors to make room for Nomar.

The Giants activated Armando Benitez from the DL on Wednesday. It was thought that Benitez might be eased back into the mix, but Benitez earned his first save last night. Tim Worrell will go back to setup work.

The Tigers activated Todd Jones from the DL after Thursday's game, and Jones earned his first save on Friday. However, apparently not wanting Jones to work on back-to-back days, the Tigers gave Saturday's save chance to Fernando Rodney, and Rodney converted. Save chances should be few and far between for Rodney with Jones back, but he may still get a few. Jones earned his second save on Sunday.

The Mets activated Kazuo Matsui from the disabled list. Matsui has started three of the last four games for the Mets, with Chris Woodward getting the other start at second. With Anderson Hernandez out for a while, Matsui should be relatively safe.

Mark Hendrickson pitched five innings in an extended spring training game on Saturday. Barring a setback, he's in line to come off the DL and pitch against the Yankees on Thursday.

The Marlins are hoping that Jeremy Hermida can come off the DL next weekend, so he could play as many as three games this week. Matt Cepicky started his third straight game in right field for the Marlins on Sunday after Chris Aguila had started the previous six.

Bumps and Bruises

Kameron Loe is battling a chest cold but hopes to be able to make his scheduled start on Wednesday.

Carlos Beltran was out of the lineup once again on Sunday because of his tender hamstring, and Beltran remains day-to-day. The only good news is that he pinch-hit on Friday, which obviously means the Mets don't expect to have to place him on the disabled list.

Huston Street was unavailable for the fifth straight game on Sunday and may not be available for the next series against the Rangers because of his chest injury. It's probably safe to count him out until at least Friday. Justin Duchscherer and Kiko Calero will get any save chances in the meantime.

Garret Atkins has missed the last two games with a virus. It is not believed to be anything serious.

Bobby Crosby strained his right triceps on Friday night and missed games Saturday and Sunday. He is expected to work out before Monday's game and could be available. The injury is not considered serious.

Jake Peavy is expected to make his start this week despite a bruised shin.

Craig Counsell missed his fourth straight game on Sunday because of a tight right hamstring. He's day-to-day, and Damion Easley has been starting in his place.

Luis Castillo has been bothered by a sore knee and missed his third straight game on Sunday. However, he was available for late-game defense, so after Monday's off day he could be ready to play Tuesday.

Esteban Loaiza left Sunday's game with a spasm in his upper back. The AP reported that Loaiza was clocked at only 80 to 82 mph on his fastball. If Loaiza goes on the DL, Brad Halsey, Kirk Saarloos and Joe Kennedy would be the top candidates to replace him in the rotation. Halsey is clearly the best pitcher in that group.

Marcus Giles (finger) and Edgar Renteria (side) were both out of Atlanta's lineup once again on Sunday night, but both could return as soon as Monday.

Rosters and Roles

The Cubs optioned Jerome Williams to Triple-A Iowa. Angel Guzman was called up to take his place on the roster and could start in Williams' slot on Wednesday. Guzman has given up 12 earned runs in 16 1/3 innings over three starts for Iowa this season, but in those innings he also allowed just 15 hits with 23 strikeouts and only three walks. If Guzman doesn't get the nod, Rich Hill could be recalled.

Jeff DaVanon seems to have established himself as an everyday starter against right-handers at the expense of Eric Byrnes.

Miguel Asencio will replace Zach Day in the rotation for the Rockies. We shouldn't have to tell you that you want no part of Asencio on your team - though both of his starts this week are at least away from Coors Field.

Brandon Phillips started his eighth straight game at second base for the Reds on Sunday and hit his third homer and drove in four more runs. Phillips has an incredible 17 RBI in just 41 at-bats this season. So long as Ryan Freel is in center field, Phillips can play second every day. If he's still hot when Ken Griffey comes off the DL, the Reds will have to figure out how to keep both Phillips and Freel in the lineup.

The Red Sox recalled Willie Harris from Triple-A Pawtucket, and Harris has started two of the last three games in center field. He'll continue to see regular action there until Coco Crisp returns in a couple of weeks and could provide some stolen base help in AL-only play.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Free Agents - April 23.

Free Agent activity for this week.

Note: The change to a 12 midnight Saturday cutoff for bids means that I will be doing updates either Sunday morning or afternoon, which probably means you won't be able to set your rosters yourself on Sundays. If you have a specific plan for who you want active/inactive pending your bid results, let me know as part of you bid e-mail and I'll set your roster for you.

Note 2: In reviewing some moves this week, I saw that players who were put on the DL were reserved by you guys. If a player is placed on the DL, you have the ability to Disable the player, which does not count against your weekly 5-move allotment. If I see the player as being Reserved, that move counts.

Here's this week's activity:

Brian waives Shannon Stewart and signs Brandon Phillips for $2.

Mike places Dmitri Young, Ken Griffey and Jeremy Hermida on the DL and signs Dave Roberts, Ryan Langerhans and Trot Nixon for $1 each.

Matt signs Xavier Nady for $2 to fill his open bench spot

Doug places Derrek Lee on the DL and signs Todd Walker for $7. Doug also waives Mike Cuddyer, Chris Reitsma and Chad Orvella and signs Casey Blake for $3, Bronson Arroyo for $4 and Brian Bannister for $2.

Austin places Bartolo Colon and A.J. Burnett on the DL and signs Jason Marquis and Jarrod Washburn for $1 each.

Pandas place Ryan Doumit on the DL and sign Toby Hall for $1.

Scott signs Ty Wigginton for $5 to fill his open bench spot.

That's all.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

A few updates

First, good news. I have been informed by The Sporting News that I am receiving a full refund from them. The bad news is that Austin is going to have to now live in the land of TQS on a full time basis. Oh, well, at least we should get some quality rants to read from time to time.

Second, regarding TQS, I have learned that any moves made after the first game of the day is underway will not be applied until the following day. Please check the date at the top of your roster page. If the date has already ticked over, e-mail the commish and I'll make your move for you. Also, please make sure you select "reserve" and not "waive", which is right below it in the pulldown. I've had to do a couple of fixes for that.

OK, that's all.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Free Agents - April 16

Free agent moves for the week:

John Benoit waives Keith Foulke and signs Roberto Hernandez for $4.

Austin places Ian Kinsler on the DL and signs Craig Wilson for $1.

Brian waives Kyle Davies, Dave Dellucci and Jacque Jones and signs Tomo Ohka for $1, Wilson Betemit for $2 and Brad Hawpe for $4.

Pandas waive Anderson Hernandez and sign Jose Castillo for $1.

Todd and Joel waive Matt Clement and sign Dave Weathers for $3.

Doug signs Bill Mueller for $3 to fill his open bench spot. Also, I made a mistake last week. Doug did not sign Dan Miceli, but Tim Worrell for $2.

Coming later this week, the first salary cap updates.

Friday, April 14, 2006

A Note From Your Beloved Commish

I am going to start tracking move activity NEXT WEEK. Given all of the aggravation with getting things underway, I am not going to be tracking the first two weeks. With the announcement of this week's free agents, I will start tracking activity.

Interesting note from Baseball HotSheet

Regarding Chris Ray, the O's and their win over Tampa Bay last night:

Chris Ray owners are probably wondering why their closer didn't get a save last night despite coming into the game in the ninth inning with a one-run lead. The answer was reported in the Baltimore Sun, and it comes from a little-known exception to Rule 10.19 (c4), which reads:

Do not credit a victory to a relief pitcher who is ineffective in a brief appearance, when a succeeding relief pitcher pitches effectively in helping his team maintain the lead. In such cases, credit the succeeding relief pitcher with the victory.

In this case, Jim Brower entered the game in the bottom of the eighth inning with a runner on second and the score 4-3 in favor of the Devil Rays. Brower allowed an RBI single to Jonny Gomes, and then Gomes was caught stealing to end the inning. So since Brower quite literally did nothing that could be viewed as positive to his team's cause, the official scorer determined that Ray - who pitched a 1-2-3 ninth after Melvin Mora's three-run homer gave the Orioles a 6-5 lead - should get the win.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

We're Up!!!!! Also, Free Agent Activity 4/9

Man, it's like coming home after a really long, unpleasant business trip.

OK, I have rebuilt the rosters on TQS and updated rosters for those who sent me a list of changes. I have also applied the last two weeks of free agent changes, rerun the stats and registered everyone (under your nicknames). You will see three invitation e-mails per team. Sorry about that, I was making a farce of setting up the teams and updating e-mail addresses. Please re-verify your team information and check that moves were made correctly.

Before I explain how you manage your roster, here's last week's free agent activity:

Mike places Noah Lowry on the DL and waives Ervin Santana. Mike signs Danys Baez for $15 and Fernando Rodney for $5.
Doug places Julio Lugo and Kerry Wood on the DL and signs Jack Wilson for $1 and Dan Miceli for $2.
Austin signs Adrian Gonzalez for $4 to fill his open bench spot.
Todd and Joel waive Joe Randa and sign Lance Niekro for $1.
Scott places C.C. Sabathia (and the Music Factory) on the DL and signs Jon Papelbon for $10.
John Benoit signs Omar Vizquel for $5 to fill his open bench spot.
Pandas place Armando Benitez on the DL and waive Corey Patterson. Pandas sign Paul Maholm for $1 and Nick Markakis for $1.

Now, to manage your rosters.

From your team page on TQS, under the heading Transactions, you will see a pull-down box with "Make Moves" in it. Click on the arrow and select "Lineup Changes". You will see a lineup display almost exactly like the TSN one. Your active roster is on the left and your bench on the right. You can disable/activate/deactivate/change positions from here. Please remember that you have 5 moves per week back and forth from your bench. Position changes and DL moves do NOT count against the 5. I have access to a bloody GREAT interface to tell me what moves have been made by each team this week, so I can check that nobody's exceeded their limits.

Please check your rosters ASAP. Also, if there are retroactive moves you need to make that are not yet recorded, please let me know through the commish message board (same process as previous years). I'll make the necessary updates and re-run the numbers.

Lastly, thanks to Scott for his offer to help get things back up and running as well as to those of you who have written to encourage me and support this decision. It is really appreciated.

I Made My Decision

I have received NO feedback from TSN and DID get word from TQStats that they will start us from Opening Day. I read around the TSN site last night and there appears to be no way to recover the first week and a half of stats. Since I need to re-enter the rosters anyway, I am moving us back to TQStats and am initiating the process to get our money refunded. I appreciate that the vote was 4-3 in favour of staying put, but at least one of the votes seemed to be based on me doing less work and having less aggravation. Believe me when I say that I would be aggravated every time I looked at TSN knowing that our league was not operating at a level I consider acceptable.

To address some concerns, I am making a few amendments to our operations:

** I am allowing teams to do their own bench moves. Free agents/trades will still be done through me. I will have the ability to monitor moves (which I didn't on TSN) to ensure no one exceeds their allotted 5 moves per week. This relieves my workload considerably.
** Weighting for pitching is back in, but I have changed net wins and net saves to just wins and saves.

To those who liked TSN, I'm sorry. There just wasn't enough flexibility or support for my satisfaction. I am much more at ease with TQS. As far as the money goes, I will not ask anyone for anything at this point in time. However, if I cannot get resolution from TSN, I will leave it up to the individual teams to decide whether or not they wish to voluntarily help defray my cost of setting us up on TQS. Nobody is required to pay again.

Monday, April 10, 2006

New Poll on TSN Website

Gents, I have drafted a new poll regarding how you want to proceed for the remainder of the season. I don't know how or if TSN will be able to help us out with fixing our league. If they do, then terrific. If they don't, we have two choices: Stay with things the way they are for this year or go back to TQStats. If we go back to TQStats, there will be an additional $10 per team charge. I would try to get our money back from TSN, but I am not holding my breath. Please let me know how you want to proceed.

I also would like to know what you think. Please comment.

Sunday, April 09, 2006


I'm going to lose it soon.

So I spent two hours today re-entering the draft results and fixing up the scoring (Changed ER to ERA and added K/BB). THEN I find I can't go back and rerun the stats from the games leading up to today. I have a request into TSN to fix this. If I do not get a response by EOD Monday (or if they tell me it cannot be fixed), I am going to ask for our money back and register us on TQStats.

Further updates as events warrant.


Still no word from TSN, but I have erased the rosters again, since it's the only way I can see the commish controls. There is nothing there that seems to allow me to set the season start date. Hopefully we'll have resolution tomorrow.

Thursday, April 06, 2006


Anybody else notice that we are using Earned Runs instead of ERA?

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Free agent activity - week ending April 2

Here's what I got:

Brian places Adam Eaton on the DL and signs Mike Mussina for $2. Also fills empty bench spot by signing David Dellucci for $2.

Todd and Joel fill their empty bench spot by signing Aaron Hill for $2

Peter places Mark Prior on the DL and signs Odalis Perez for $2

Scott waives Mike Timlin and signs Bruce Chen for $1

Pandas waive Aaron Heilman and sign Scott Baker for $1. Pandas also fill their open bench spot by signing Anderson Hernandez for $1.

Jon fills his empty roster spot by signing Jeremy Reed for $5.

That's all