High Fives: Believe it or not?

High Fives: Believe it or not?
By Brandon Funston
June 2, 2005

Brandon Funston
Yahoo Sports
Headshot
Brandon
Funston
Headshot
Mike
Harmon
Headshot
Matt
Romig
Yahoo! Sports' trio of fantasy experts will each offer up, on a regular basis, a look at their top five lists dealing with a variety of topics.

This week's topics: Slow starts, believe it or not? Forecasting the top closers, players synonymous with their teams and a casting redux for the movie Major League.

Top 5 early-season disappointments who will remain in a funk
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
  1. Mike Lowell, Fla

    Has only nine HRs in past 400-plus ABs dating back to last season

  2. Carlos Beltran, NYM

    Power may pick up, but he's not going to run, and that's a crusher for those who drafted him

  3. Jason Kendall, Oak

    His bat is hot right now, but Oakland's ballpark hurts what little power he has and its philosophy hurts his steals

  4. Carl Pavano, NYY
  5. Preston Wilson, Col
  1. Steve Finley, LAA
  2. Barry Zito, Oak

    Run support will continue to sabotage him whether he pitches well or not

  3. Todd Helton, Col

    Given the minor-league talent around him, he's in baseball's version of hell

  4. J.D. Drew, LAD
  5. Al Leiter, Fla
  1. Mike Lowell, Fla
  2. Barry Zito, Oak
  3. Scott Rolen, StL

    Won't be terrible, but 2004 starting to look like a career-year

  4. Kevin Brown, NYY
  5. Preston Wilson, Col

    Trade rumors have fantasy owners exploring deals of their own

Top 5 early-season disappointments who will turn it around
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
  1. Victor Martinez, Cle

    HRs in back-to-back games to end May was encouraging

  2. Adrian Beltre, Sea
  3. Rafael Furcal, Atl
  4. Steve Finley, LAA

    Has always been streaky, and he's starting to turn things around

  5. Manny Ramirez, Bos
  1. Adrian Beltre, Sea
  2. Aubrey Huff, TB
  3. Manny Ramirez, Bos

    RBIs are already there, and the rest of his game is soon to follow

  4. Jake Westbrook, Cle
  5. Rafael Furcal, Atl

    See Ramirez's note (above), and substitute SBs for RBIs

  1. Aramis Ramirez, ChC

    Always heats up with the weather. Big RBI numbers on the way

  2. Eric Chavez, Oak

    Oakland is getting healthy; so is Eric's swing

  3. Hideki Matsui, NYY
  4. Todd Helton, Col

    3-for-44 rut is mind-blowing. No way this guy doesn't hit .300

  5. Victor Martinez, Cle
Top 5 closers with the most fantasy value for the remainder of the season
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
  1. Eric Gagne, LAD

    Return was a little rocky, but 13 Ks and 1 walk in 7 IP (3-for-3 in saves) has eased any of my concerns

  2. Trevor Hoffman, SD
  3. Francisco Cordero, Tex
  4. Mariano Rivera, NYY
  5. B.J. Ryan, Bal

    Edges out Brad Lidge because Orioles are the better team. Joe Nathan and F-Rod also considered.

  1. Eric Gagne, LAD
  2. Joe Nathan, Min

    Has become AL version of Gagne with his conversion from ho-hum starter to lights-out closer

  3. Jason Isringhausen, StL
  4. Mariano Rivera, NYY
  5. Francisco Cordero, Tex
  1. B.J. Ryan, Bal

    Absurd strikeout numbers separate him from the field

  2. Francisco Rodriguez, LAA
  3. Joe Nathan, Min

    Quietly becoming an elite closer

  4. Eric Gagne, LAD
  5. Brad Lidge, Hou
Top 5 Mr. (insert MLB team name here) players since 1970
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
  1. Cal Ripken = Mr. Oriole

    Most games played in ML history, and it was all with the Orioles. To further solidify this nomination, add in the fact he played with his brother and for his father.

  2. Robin Yount = Mr. Brewer
  3. Tony Gwynn = Mr. Padre
  4. Kirby Puckett = Mr. Twin
  5. Edgar Martinez = Mr. Mariner

    Sure, I'm biased, but M's the only team he ever played for in 18 seasons, and he stuck around when Griffey, A-Rod and the Big Unit didn't. He already has a street running next to Safeco Field named in his honor, not mention that the DH award is named after him.

  1. George Brett = Mr. Royal
  2. Kirby Puckett = Mr. Twin
  3. Tony Gwynn = Mr. Padre
  4. Robin Yount = Mr. Brewer
  5. Don Mattingly = Mr. Yankee

    Would be happy to argue this point with all the Jeter supporters

  1. Willie Stargell = Mr. Pirate

    Fudged a little since he started in early 60s; When you think of The Family, you think of Pops

  2. Cal Ripken = Mr. Oriole
  3. Robin Yount = Mr. Brewer
  4. Kirby Puckett = Mr. Twin
  5. Jay Buhner = Mr. Mariner

    Seemed to connect with his city like few do; underappreciated figure in their success

If you were casting the movie Major League with real baseball players, who would you get to play the following roles: Jake Taylor, Willie Mays Hays, Pedro Cerrano, Ricky Vaughn, Roger Dorn
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
  1. Jake Taylor = Pat Borders
  2. Willie Mays Hays = Coco Crisp

    Cool name, already on Cleveland and, of course, he possesses the requisite speed

  3. Pedro Cerrano = Jose Guillen
  4. Ricky Vaughn = Derrick Turnbow

    Flame-thrower had more career walks than Ks coming into the season

  5. Roger Dorn = Jeff Cirillo

    A humorless guy whose bloated contract was a thorn in Seattle's side a couple years ago

  1. Jake Taylor = Sandy Alomar Jr.

    Still creaking around despite the aches and pains

  2. Willie Mays Hays = Carl Crawford
  3. Pedro Cerrano = Sammy Sosa

    The attitude seems to match, and Sammy has rituals, too

  4. Ricky Vaughn = Matt Anderson

    Wild fireballer with some off-field issues

  5. Roger Dorn = Mike Sweeney

    High-priced player in a small market; Seemingly always dissatisfied and at odds with management

  1. Jake Taylor = Mike Piazza

    Who would win a foot race?

  2. Willie Mays Hays = Willy Taveras

    He's the guy I want scoring from second on a bunt

  3. Pedro Cerrano = Barry Zito

    Need to teach him the righty uppercut, but crazy enough to have the voodoo down

  4. Ricky Vaughn = Derrick Turnbow

    Needs to work on his control – as in losing it

  5. Roger Dorn = Alex Rodriguez

Reader response to last week's High Fives
Love the hypothetical baseball World Cup rankings, but I think you and the fellas are slighting the Venezuelans a bit. They don't have the lineup depth that that the U.S.A. and Dominicans would, but look at the lineup the Venezuelans could muster to back Johan Santana, Freddy Garcia, Carlos Zambrano and Kelvim Escobar as a front four: Carlos Guillen, Melvin Mora, Bobby Abreu, Miguel Cabrera, Ramon Hernandez, Victor Martinez and Cesar Izturis and Omar Vizquel as table setters. That's not in the class of the U.S.A or Dominicans, but with that pitching, does it need to be? They'd give us a run for our money. – Sean, Greenville, FL

I'm hurt, Matt. You put down Venezuela as having the fourth-best chance to win a World Cup kind of thing. Perfectly fine. But then you don't even mention Bobby Abreu's name? Ouch! – Abhi, Newark, DE

I agree with some of these guys, but to still not give Japan its props and say that they will be top five in a baseball World Cup is absurd.

Funston, I have not seen anybody talk about Cesar Izturis. He is one of the top SS this year and no one has mentioned him. I said before the season started that he would be the biggest sleeper. I chose him for all of my 12 team leagues in the last round. A guy who has a .300-plus batting average and steals 25 bases at SS is very good. Why hasn't anyone talked about him? – John

Top five shortstops for the remainder of the season: What about Jose Reyes? I would take him over Khalil Greene and Felipe Lopez in a heartbeat. – Ryan, Redmond, WA

Regarding the top five non-baseball movies of all time: How can you all put Miracle or even Caddyshack on the list and totally neglect Slap Shot? The Hanson brothers and Paul Newman easily make that movie top five material, if not deserving of the top spot. – Carl, Istanbul, Turkey

Greatest non-baseball sports movies ever and all three of you miss the two best. Kingpin and The Longest Yard obviously rank up there. – Zachary, Pittsburgh, PA

RE: Top Five non-Baseball movies: Come on, not one mention of Slap Shot? What other sports movie has nudity, leather suits, mullets and enough foul language to make Bobby Knight blush? I am very concerned that the Yahoo! Sports fantasy staff has gone too soft. I personally blame it on the lack of fantasy hockey in 2005 – too much dribbling and foul balls and not enough major penalties for fighting! – Jeff, New Hampshire

Brandon Funston is a Yahoo! Sports fantasy expert. Follow him on Twitter. Send Brandon a question or comment for potential use in a future column or webcast.

Updated on Thursday, Jun 2, 2005 8:57 pm, EDT

Email to a Friend | View Popular