Band of Boxscores 4/27

All is fair in love and fantasy baseball. If you’re new to the game, the only hope you have is to accept the fact that you’ve already lost. The sooner you accept that, the sooner you’ll be able to function as a manager is supposed to function: without mercy, without compassion, without remorse. Winning depends upon it. Arm yourselves and be ye men of valor; for we few, we happy few, we band of brothers shall embark upon a land of bullets, triple slashes and pulled hamstrings.

No, Brett Anderson, no!!!!!!!!!!! Vicious rumors are being spread; Brett could be out for the next four to six weeks. That would leave all of us hanging until late May to mid-June. No!!!!!!!!!!! The MRI results have not been reported though, there is a little room for hope. One has to wonder if the forearm strain and elbow irritation are the result of Anderson throwing all those sliders. He throws that sucker 32.4% of the time; only Ervin Santana (35.8%), Hiroki Kuroda (35.2%), Ryan Dempster (33.8%) throw their sliders more often. The workload increase (105 IP in 2008, 175.1 IP in 2009) could be another factor at play. This does not make me happy.

Baltimore sent down Kam Mickolio to AAA and called up Alfredo Simon. Simon got the Save tonight vs the Yankees. Jim Johnson pitched the 8th and then Simon came in, struck out Granderson, gave up a single to Swisher, walked Nick Johnson, struck out Jeter and then it got a little messy. Gardner reached on an Izturis error, Teixeira singled and then Simon got ARod to ground into a fielder’s choice. Two runs scored, both unearned, but Simon got his first Save. Simon pitched 4 games (3 starts) in AAA before being called up, the 2.6 BB/9 and 7.4 K/9 aren’t bad, but his minor league career numbers are ugly and he is coming off Tommy John surgery. No one really knows how the Save opportunities are going to shake out here, the coach said, “Whoever can get outs is going to get a chance. I don’t think there are any roles. There is no closer right now for me. Who wants it? Somebody take it. There is no set-up guy. Who wants it? Somebody take it”. I grabbed Simon in one league, I’m not very excited about it. He won’t be starting until I see more from him.

In other Closer news, Frank Francisco came in and got his first Save of the season and claims he is locating his fastball better than before. He went 1 Inning, no hits, no walks, no strike outs. Neftali Feliz was not available after pitching in back-to-back games and 3 of the last 4 and according to Ron Washington, Feliz is still his closer and then added the closer is “anybody we put out there in the ninth inning.” Good stuff Ron, good stuff…. Ramón Ramírez got the Save for BOS, while Okajima, Bard and Papelbon got the day off…. Jason Motte got the Save for STL, Ryan Franklin got the day off after pitching in back-to-back games…. Trevor Hoffman was rocked for 5 ER (2 HR) in 1 Inning and ppl are wondering, where is the change up? His Changeup usage (and value) has definitely dropped and his F-Strike% is up. I’m not sure what to make of his troubles, I’m not too worried.

I was able to catch part of the Liriano/Verlander game today. I was expecting Verlander to walk up to Liriano and hand him the ROY award he stole from him. Francisco Liriano was untouchable. He had a no-hitter going until Miguel Cabrera hit a double in the 5th Inning. Miguel came into the day with only 8 Ks in 80 At Bats, he left with two more. Liriano made him look silly on a strike 3 slider. If we drafted today, where would Francisco Liriano be in your SP ranks? Coming into the season I was on board the Liriano bandwagon and had him ranked 26th. Now? He’s got to be creeping inside the Top 10, pushing Ubaldo/Wainwright territory.

Mitch Talbot has pitched 3 good games in a row (CHI, @MIN) after beating the Angels tonight. The 3% owned Talbot is an under the radar guy who can help deep leaguers. He’s not blowing away batters with his 91 mph fastball or racking up big K numbers, but he can still be useful. Talbot is more of a control pitcher who induces a lot of ground balls. His current 2.70 K/9 is misleading, his O-Contact% is an absurd 93.1%. So hitters haven’t been missing the ball much when swinging at outside pitches. That’ll even out and Mitch will likely end the season with a K/9 near 5.00. Talbot is basically a poor man’s Joel Pineiro. Like I said, he is for deep leaguers. People in thinner leagues need to be grabbing Shaun Marcum (43% owned) and Clay Buchholz (48%).

Universal Soldiers
Francisco Liriano [8 IP, 0 ER, 4 H, BB, 10 K, Win]
Ubaldo Jimenez [6 IP, 0 ER, 2 H, 2 BB, 6 K, Win]
Zack Greinke [7 IP, 0 ER, 6 H, 0 BB, 5 K]
Johan Santana [6 IP, 0 ER, 4 H, 3 BB, 6 K, Win]
Justin Verlander [5.2 IP, 0 ER, 4 H, 3 BB, 7 K]
Chris Carpenter [6 IP, 2 ER, 3 H, 3 BB, 4 K, Win]
Phil Hughes [5.2 IP, ER, 2 H, 4 BB, 2 K]
Hiroki Kuroda [6 IP, 2 ER, 5 H, 3 BB, 4 K]
David Wright [4 for 6, 2 R, 4 RBI, SB, triple]
Jorge Posada [1 for 3, HR, R, RBI]
Vernon Wells [2 for 4, RBI, double]
Jason Bartlett [3 for 5, 2 RBI, CS]
B.J. Upton [2 for 3, 2 R]
Carlos Pena [1 for 3, 2 R, RBI]
Michael Bourn [2 for 3, R, SB, CS]
Jay Bruce [2 for 3, 2 R]
Vladi Guerrero [2 for 4, 2 R, double]
Prince Fielder [1 for 3, HR, R, RBI]
Ryan Doumit [3 for 5, HR, 2 R, 4 RBI, double]
Ryan Ludwick [2 for 4, HR, R, 2 RBI, double]
Troy Tulowitzki [3 for 3, 3 R, RBI, 2 doubles]
Carlos Gonzalez [3 for 5, R, 5 RBI, double, triple]
Asdrubal Cabrera [4 for 5, 2 R, double]
Shin-Shoo Choo [2 for 5, 2 R, 2 RBI]
Pablo Sandoval [2 for 4, 2 RBI]
Jayson Werth [1 for 3, R, SB]

Mercs: Soldiers for Hire
Clay Buchholz [8 IP, ER, 7 H, 2 BB, 4 K, Win]
Shaun Marcum [7 IP, ER, 4 H, 3 BB, 5 K]
Tom Gorzellany [7 IP, 2 ER, 5 H, 2 BB, 3 K]
C.J. Wilson [6 IP, 2 ER, 5 H, 3 BB, 5 K, Win]
Mitch Talbot [6.1 IP, ER, 6 H, 3 BB, K]
Aaron Harang [6 IP, 2 ER, 8 H, BB, 6 K, Win]
Kevin Millwood [5.1 IP, 2 ER, 5 H, 3 BB, 4 K]
Livan Hernandez [7 IP, ER, 6 H, BB, K, Win]
Jon Garland [6 IP, ER, 3 H, 3 BB, 10 K, Win]
Ike Davis [1 for 2, 3 RBI, double]
Nick Swisher [3 for 4, 2 R]
Ty Wiggington [1 for 3, R]
Pat Burrell [1 for 4, HR, R, 3 RBI]
Reid Brignac [1 for 4, HR, R, RBI]
John Jaso [3 for 4, R, RBI, double]
Cliff Pennington [4 for 5, HR, R, 4 RBI, 2 doubles]
Cameron Maybin [1 for 3, R, CS]
David Eckstein [3 for 5, R]
Tony Gwynn [2 for 2, R, 2 SB]
Orlando Cabrera [2 for 4, 2 R, SB]
Ryan Hanigan [2 for 3, 3 RBI]
Ian Desmond [2 for 4, R, 2 RBI, 2 SB]
Matt Treanor [2 for 3, HR, R, 3 RBI, double]
Andy LaRoche [4 for 5, R, .400 AVG]
Lastings Milledge [2 for 5, R, double]
Jeff Clement [3 for 5, HR, R, RBI]
David DeJesus [2 for 5]
Milton Bradley [2 for 3, RBI]
Eric Young Jr. [2 for 4, 2 R, 2 RBI]
Dexter Fowler [2 for 4, 2 R, RBI]
Miguel Olivo [1 for 2, 2 RBI, double]
Seth Smith [2 for 4, 2 R]
Brandon Wood [3 for 4, HR, 2 R, RBI]
Austin Kearns [3 for 6, HR, 2 R, 5 RBI, 2 doubles]
Matt LaPorta [2 for 5]
Édgar Rentería [3 for 4, R, 2 RBI]
Andres Torres [1 for 3, 2 R, SB, double]
Aubrey Huff [1 for 4, HR, R, RBI]
Matt Downs [1 for 3, HR, R, RBI]