Scott Pianowski

  • Closing Time: The Yankees offense bottoms out

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 51 mins ago

    In The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway described the sneaky onset of bankruptcy. How did it happen? “Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.” 

    Maybe that’s what we have with the New York Yankees, a lost offense in 2016. Gradually, this team became an old and overpriced one. And suddenly, these guys can’t hit, can’t score. 

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    After a couple of years in the middle of the pack in scoring, New York surged to No. 2 in runs last year. Alex Rodriguez had a glorious comeback season, Mark Teixeira conked 31 homers in 111 games, Carlos Beltran posted an .808 OPS. The Yankees were fourth in homers, fourth in slugging. 

    The three graybeards of the lineup (Rodriguez, Teixiera, Beltran) deserve the majority of the blame. Rodriguez pushed off to a .194/275/.444 start before landing the DL this week. Beltran has a .267 on-base and a .686 OPS. Teixeira has a .221 average and three measly home runs, though he has walked 19 times. 

    Where’s George Costanza when you need him? 

  • Closing Time: Waiting for Carlos Gomez

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 1 day ago

    For most of Wednesday night, it was a get-well party for the Houston Astros. A 16-4 laugher is like that. Their two biggest stars (Altuve and Correa) hit home runs, the offense collected 14 hits and seven walks, the fans could relax for three hours.

    But things haven’t come around yet for Carlos Gomez. Maybe they’re not going to.

    Gomez went 1-for-5 on the evening, tacking on a two-run double off Casey Fien in the fifth inning. Basically, garbage time — Houston already had a big lead, and Fien sports a 7.90 ERA. Gomez also struck out three times, and he ended the night with a .227/.253/.318 slash.

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    When does a bad start become a bad season? When do we have to significantly take down our Gomez expectations?

  • Closing Time: Cheap speed, Jonathan Villar and Danny Santana

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 2 days ago

    One of my goals during the baseball preseason was to stop you from drafting Billy Hamilton. He’s a speedster with almost no power, he’s a player with batting average risk, and heck, you can always find a commodity similar to Hamilton down the road — late in the draft, or perhaps in-season, for free.  

    Today, we talk about a couple of those guys. Come on down, Danny Santana and Jonathan Villar. 

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    Villar qualifies at shortstop and third base, if you’re so inclined. He opened the year at the bottom of the lineup, but he’s been hitting first or second over the last week. Given the depressed state of stolen bases these days, just rostering Villar alone gives you a fighting chance in that column.

    Anything past that is gravy.

  • Shuffle Up: Forsythe show he's legit in latest corner infield ranks

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 2 days ago

    Time to start the Shuffle Up series. Rest-of-season value is what we're after. What’s happened to this point is merely an audition.

    Today, we rank all those eligible at corner infield (first base, third base).

    Assume a 5x5 scoring system. Players in the minors or on the DL do not get ranked. I’ll add comments later in the evening, and reserve the right to make some changes. Win the discussion, win the rank.

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    If you have disagreement, I’m all ears — so long as you have a reason. Remember not to add or dock value from the players just because you like them, dislike them, roster them, etc.

    $15 Lucas Duda $15 Hanley Ramirez $14 Albert Pujols $14 *Alex Rodriguez $14 Kyle Seager $14 Mike Moustakas $14 Freddie Freeman $14 Victor Martinez $13 Miguel Sano $13 Eugenio Suarez $13 Brandon Belt $13 Daniel Murphy $13 Mark Trumbo $12 Stephen Piscotty $12 Travis Shaw $12 Mark Teixeira $12 Carlos Santana $12 Nick Castellanos $12 Wil Myers

  • Fantasy Freak Show: Zeke Elliott, David Price, Brandon Drury

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 3 days ago

    With an NFL Draft in the books and MLB pushing into May, there's much to discuss. 

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    Is Ezekiel Elliott an instant lottery pick in Dallas? What other rookie running backs do fantasy owners need to know? Will a rookie tight end be an exception to the usual development curve? What receivers improved and hurt their stock at the draft? 

    The second half of the show is all baseball, where we discuss and break down David Price, Brandon Drury and middle-infielder replacements for those who lost Dee Gordon. 

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  • Closing Time: A shopping list for Dee Gordon owners

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 7 days ago

    Thursday night in Los Angeles, Dee Gordon helped the Marlins beat the Dodgers. He had a hit and a double, scored a run, nudged his OPS up a couple of points.

    Before the team could get back to the hotel, Gordon was on the suspended list. He’ll miss 80 games, without pay, for violating the league’s drug policy. According to MLB, Gordon tested positive for exogenous Testosterone and Clostebol, performance-enhancing drugs. Gordon claims he took the substances unknowingly

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  • Closing Time: Joe Smith steps in for Huston Street

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 8 days ago

    There’s nothing particularly exciting about Joe Smith, veteran relief pitcher. He has an ordinary name, ordinary stuff, a somewhat forgettable role as a set-up man. But the Angels know he’s the stand-in closer for when Huston Street needs a maintenance break, something we come to expect at least once a season. 

    And now we’re at that period of the time, the temporary changing of the guard. 

    Street is dealing with an oblique injury and will go on the disabled list at some point before the weekend. This comes with the territory when you draft Street — he’s averaged 55 innings per season since 2009, and has never gone past 62.1 innings in that period. He’s not the king of durability. This isn’t a six-month cruise. 

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  • Closing Time: Keep targeting the Braves until further notice

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 9 days ago

    Eight days ago, I spent a day on the Alex Wood bandwagon. I was in for a night, ready to dial him up with confidence.  

    That’s what the Atlanta Braves on the schedule will do to you. 

    As it turns out, Atlanta kicked Wood around that Tuesday evening — scoring an easy 8-1 victory. That’s the last highlight we’ve seen for the Braves. 

    How bad is the 2016 club down in Hot 'Lanta? How much time do you have? The 4-16 record is easily the worst in baseball. Atlanta is 1-12 at home, winning only that game I mentioned above. The pitching has been a mess, posting a 4.85 ERA (fifth-worst in the majors).

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    And then there’s the offense, which goes past bad — this could be a historic disaster. The Braves rank dead last in scoring, slugging percentage and weighted on-base average. They’re near the bottom in several other categories. And they’ve hit just three home runs, an absurd total through 20 games. 

  • Daily Dime: Taking swings against Detroit's Mike Pelfrey

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 9 days ago

    As always, be sure to  watch the weather  and  stay on top of MLB lineups as you build your DFS dynasty. 

    SP Kyle Hendricks, $42, vs. Milwaukee: We get the second-highest pitching favorite on the board, and at a reasonable price (it’s 16 bucks cheaper than Kershaw and Scherzer). It’s refreshing to be backed by what looks like the deepest, most formidable offense in the National League (if not the majors).

    SP Johnny Cueto, $51, vs. San Diego: Big park, strong defense, unthreatening opponent, pitch-framing ace behind the plate (assuming Buster Posey goes). And with Hendricks at a thrifty price, it makes sense to pay up for the other pitcher. 

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    2B Enrique Hernandez, $12, vs. MIA (Koehler) 

    OF Billy Burns, $10, at Detroit (Palfrey): More lefty exposure to Pelfrey, someone likely to be near the top of the lineup. 

  • Fantasy Freak Show: Trying to solve Wainwright, Story, Rasmus

    Scott Pianowski at Roto Arcade 11 days ago

    Player values are constantly changing. Up and down, ebb and flow, boom and bust. What’s real and what’s imaginary as we hit the end of April? When does a good start become a good season? When does a bad start become a real problem?

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    The scuffling Adam Wainwright is the lead item for Andy Behrens and Scott Pianowski as we open Week 4. Also discussed: Trevor Story (in a slump); Colby Rasmus (on a tear); Justin Upton (striking out constantly); available two-start pitchers; and brand-name pitchers in a funk (Chris Archer and Dallas Keuchel owners, we’re here to help).

    We'll also explain why fly-ball pitchers might be misunderstood, and why fly-ball hitters (with contact issues) are likely to drive you crazy. Run around the diamond with us. 

    Give it a listen, make it a habit

    And dig our iTunes and RSS feeds