By Andy Behrens
May 17, 2007
Roto Arcade This Week : May 14
| May 15 | May 16
Let's say you're a Jose Reyes owner. Life's been very good, fantasy-wise. Your shortstop is hitting over .330 and he's on pace to become the first member of the 100-100-100 club – that's 100 runs, 100 RBI, and 100 stolen bases. Which is ridiculous.
So it's Thursday morning and you've just arrived at work. Before reviewing the inventory replenishment reports, you decide to check yesterday's fantasy stats. All those rain delays led to late finishes. You launch your browser, bring up the main fantasy page, and click on your team name, "Easy-Bake McBride." Then you click on "Wed, May 16."
| POS || BATTERS || OPP || STATUS || H/AB || R || HR || RBI || SB || AVG |
| SS || Jose Reyes || ChC || W, 8-1 || 2/5 || 1 || 0 || 0 || 0 || .400 |
Eh, not bad. No steals, but whatever. You can't really complain about 2-for-5.
Maybe you idly wonder how, exactly, the Mets managed to score eight runs without Reyes driving in any of them, so you click through to the Cubs-Mets box score. And then you see it. Scrolling down to the bottom of the page, you find the Yahoo! game note that you've been dreading all year:
NEW YORK SHORTSTOP JOSE REYES LEFT THE GAME IN THE BOTTOM OF THE EIGHTH INNING DUE TO A TIGHT LEFT HAMSTRING.
Damn the replenishment reports. You need Jose Reyes information, and fast. There's a STATS, Inc. note on his player page offering this nugget:
"I felt a little cramp, no big deal," Reyes said. "I've had so many injuries to my hamstring before, I just have to be careful." Manager Willie Randolph was noncommittal about whether Reyes would play Thursday. "We'll see how he feels tomorrow," Randolph said.
Phew. You feel a wave of relief … but only for a second.
Jose Reyes has cramping in his hamstring. You're suddenly claustrophobic. More information is needed. Frantic mouse-clicking ensues. Every website has the same information, the same quotes, the same speculation. Nothing definitive. More panic, more anxiety. "I've had so many injuries to my hamstring before," Reyes said. No kidding. That's like Derek Jeter saying "I've had so many bad actresses before." Everyone knows. The plague of hamstring pulls that affected Reyes in 2004 caused no small amount of fretting in the fantasy community.
You begin to wonder if maybe it's time to trade him. Sell high. That's what the fantasy dorks are always writing. But even if you do try to trade Reyes, that stupid (expletive!) note is on his player page for everyone to see. Thanks, Yahoo! So you're not exactly selling high. Still, it's misery owning a player whose tendons can explode at any moment. Hmmm. Maybe if you can get, say, a hot-hitting Rafael Furcal or J.J. Hardy plus a pitcher or two … hmmm … that wouldn't be so bad …
Here's my opinion, just in case you hadn't figured it out: Today is an excellent day to acquire Jose Reyes. Make an offer right now. There might not be a better time all year. His owners are sweating the hamstring injury a little, and it's understandable. There's a history to consider with Reyes. But this isn't quite like acquiring a pitcher with elbow pain. Even if Reyes sits today, he certainly doesn't sound like a player who's day-to-day. "I told Willie I don't want to come out of the game," Reyes said Wednesday night.
The trade packages for Reyes have just been extraordinary this season. For example, in a recent three-for-one Yahoo! trade, Reyes was dealt for Miguel Tejada, Ryan Freel, and Adrian Gonzalez. In another deal he went for Tejada, Carlos Zambrano, and Ichiro Suzuki. That's what it can take to pry away a player who's having a potentially historic season. But now, with just a little bit of doubt creeping in about the health of the 23-year-old shortstop, he might have just become a bit more acquirable.
Believe me when I tell you that there's at least one owner in every public league who freaks when one of their players tweaks a muscle, gets a routine day off, or goes 0-for-5. How do I know this? Because they use that "Send a question or comment" link at the bottom of the page, and their emails end with a desperate "*PLEASE* respond!!!!!"
Experienced fantasy owners generally understand that it's a long season, and you really have to think beyond today's games. But if your league's Reyes owner doesn't get that, today – right now – is the time to propose a deal.
Finally, you're waking up to Hunter Pence. He's been added in over 9000 leagues so far Thursday, after going 4-for-4 with a home run and a steal Wednesday night. He's now hitting .355 with four HR and two SB in only 16 games for the Astros. Pence began the week owned in 8.1 percent of Yahoo! leagues.
Mets outfield prospect Carlos Gomez clears waivers Friday in most leagues. He's someone that owners in keeper formats need to consider. Gomez stole 41 bases at Double-A last year, and had 64 steals the year before at Single-A. He's not yet playing every day, so this isn't someone you need to invest waiver priority in if you're in a mixed league. But he, along with 0.9 percent owned Fred Lewis and 1.2 percent owned Willie Harris, are worth a look if you need stolen bases in NL-only leagues.
Hey, Kevin Kouzmanoff (0.4 percent owned) had a three-hit game. And he had two hits in his previous start. Keep an eye on him. The 25-year-old Kouzmanoff was a .332/.395/.556 hitter in the minors.
Decent interleague streamables include Cliff Lee (51.1 percent owned) versus Cincinnati, Jon Lieber (4.6) versus Toronto, Boof Bonser (8.7) at Milwaukee, and Chad Gaudin (36.3) versus San Francisco.
Andy Behrens has written for ESPN.com, the Chicago Sports Review, NBA.com, the Chicago Reader and various other publications. In all likelihood, Andy owns more Artis Gilmore memorabilia than you. Follow him on Twitter. Send Andy a question or comment for potential use in a future column or webcast.
Updated on Thursday, May 17, 2007 1:42 pm, EDT
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