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Archive July 2010

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Stay For a Nightcap! - Swap Shop Saturday Edition

Lots of sound and fury at the deadline this year, but I'm not sure it signifies much.

Picks, 7/31/10

Season: 172-173-2, +16.997 units

Trade Deadline Live Blog

The Chris Snyder trade has been finalized, and the Rays have acquired Chad Qualls. Not exactly needle-moving stuff, but it's something. Let's see what happens in the non-Diamondback division of the game today.

Stay For a Nightcap!

I'm filling in for Carson, who is en route to Madison for the rest of the summer. Because it's usually his night, I'll do things a little differently than I usually do on the Nightcap. I won't be able to mimic his style, but at least maybe I can get into the spirit of doing it a little differently.

Oddly Possible Career Milestones

We all know Alex Rodriguez is likely to get to 700 homers sometime in 2013, but there are some other players you might not think of that could join some of the rare clubs like 3,000 hits or 300 wins. Here are a few:

Day Before the Trade Deadline Blog

On the day before the trade deadline, we've already seen a number of trades, with one left to be made official. What will the Astros get for Lance Berkman? Who will be next to go? Chime in with your thoughts on the trades that have happened so far, and what you're still looking to see happen.

Stay For a Nightcap! Oswalt Gets Dealt

The ball is now rolling as the trade deadline approaches - we had four trades on Thursday, with plenty of decent-sized fantasy openings resulting. Roy Oswalt, Matt Capps and Jorge Cantu were the highlighted players getting dealt.

MLB Notes

A look around the league:

Time Warner Cable League Draft

This went down last night on Mock Draft Central. It's a 12-team, 1 QB, 2RB, 3WR, 1 FLEX (RB/WR/TE) 1 TE, 1 K, 1 D league. PPR Scoring. Other participants: Herbie Teope, Jay Clemons, Michael Fabiano, David Gonos, John Hansen, William Del Pilar, Mike Beacom, Erin Skelley, Chris Weeks, Evan Silva and Dave Neilson. We'll discuss the draft on TV sometime in late August. I'm not at liberty to share the full results, but here's my team:

Picks, 7/29/10

Season: 171-171-2, +19.197 units

God Does Not Play Dice

Dave Cameron of Fangraphs had a good post entitled "Accepting Randomness" in which he used the example of the NFC winning 14 straight Super Bowl coin tosses to illustrate that Dan Haren's .350 BABIP could in fact be dumb luck and not have any cause, e.g., bad mechanics, tipping pitches, etc. that people tend to ascribe in those situations. And that's entirely true. BUT - it's also wrong to assume that his .350 BABIP *must* be dumb luck. It might well be, and it might not be. There could be a problem with his location, mechanics, etc. that partially or entirely explains it. I think the more common mistake in our circles is to assume bad BABIP or HR/FB rate is always bad luck. Sometimes it is, and sometimes it isn't. The hard part is knowing which is which.

Stay For a Nightcap! Finally, Trades...

Ok, so it was Scott Podsednik and Jhonny Peralta, but still, something to analyze. Plus the trade that wasn't for Derrek Lee and the maybe soon trade of Roy Oswalt. Finally, are the Angels out of it now?

There Goes Jhonnnnnny

Pinch me. Throw cold water on me. Is it a dream?

Picks, 7/28/10

Season: 170-170-2, +19.155

Stay For a Nightcap! The Grinch That Stole Strasmas

There were a ton of injuries on Tuesday night, starting with four pregame scratches - Stephen Strasburg, Jason Bay, Jorge Posada and Huston Street to a fluke injury. Then, among others, we lost both Uptons and Shane Victorino.

New Concussion Poster Could Have Effect on Fantasy Owners

The NFL has issued each team an updated poster outlining various details regarding concussions. In addition to listing the signs and symptoms of a concussion, the poster warns of the dangers associated with the injury. Any NFL player is susceptible to a concussion but fantasy owners can prepare for the newly instated rules and their effects on your impending draft.

Picks, 7/27/10

Season: 168-169-2, +18.055 units

Stay For a Nightcap! Yawn ... Another No-Hitter

Matt Garza threw the fifth no-hitter of the season, Joe Mauer and the Twins went crazy against Zack Greinke, and the Marlins lose a player on a freak injury.

Picks, 7/26/10

Season: 167-165-2, +22.185 units

Stay For a Nightcap! - Double Dip Edition

When the Blue Jays and Tigers get together for a double-header, there's just no telling how Jim Leyland will fill out his lineup card. 

The Thieving Angels

Highway robbery happened today.

Stay For a Nightc... Err, Hair of the Dog! - Leopard Spots and Old Dogs Edition

Mets manager Jerry Manuel once again did not use Francisco Rodriguez in an extra-inning game. The Mets lost in 13, with Oliver Perez on the hill. Mets fan forehead, meet wall. Wall, meet forehead.

Picks, 7/25/10

Season: 163-162-1, +17.785

The Nightcap! (German Vocab Edition)

Schadenfreude is the German word to describe the happiness you feel when Alex Rodriguez fails to hit his 600th career homer.

Picks, 7/23/10

Season: 157-150-1, +29.35 units

14-Team PPR Mock Draft Results

We held the first of several summer mocks leading into the start of the regular season on Thursday at Mock Draft Central. The draft included representatives from Yahoo, Sports Illustrated and NFL.com (among others) and the full results are available here.

I had the eighth overall selection this week, picking in the middle of each round with our 14-team, PPR (one point per reception) format. The scoring was very standard otherwise, with four points for passing TD, six points for rushing/receiving TD, 25 passing yards yielding one point and 10 rushing/receiving yards yielding one point. The starting spots were 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 TE, 1 RB/WR/TE flex, 1 K, 1 D and six bench spots.

Here's how my team turned out:

Stay For a Nightcap, SP Solid Thursday!

Solid starts from Thursday  plus end-article Payne ramblings.

Sirius XM Fantasy Draft

In NY for this event that took place yesterday at the Hard Rock Cafe in Times Square. Have to say it was more fun than I expected - drafting a 12-team standard scoring 1-QB, 2-RB, 3-WR league (with headset and mic) live on the radio and in front of about 200 people. I realized that while it's nice to create fantasy content for a living, it's even better when your job is actually to *play fantasy football.*

Is Backlash to LeBron's Decision Hypocrisy?

When LeBron James made "The Decision" it kind of bugged me.  Still does.  But after reading what Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson had to say I am bugged in another way.  I wonder how much of the LeBron backlash is ted into pure hypocrisy, because in choosing to make his own luck LeBron is forcing us to pay attention to how much most of us want to ignore luck when building our sports heroes.

Stay For a Nightcap! *Not* an Instant Classic

The Mets and D-Backs take a ride on the FAIL train, Bobby Jenks blows another save and Randy Wolf becomes the latest Brewers starter to nearly get Kazmir'd.
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Do Analytics Take the Fun Out of Sports?
Apparently that was the topic of one of the presentations at the Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in Boston last week. The presenter, Yale's Edward Tufte, opined:

Don't let people tell you analytics are reductionist and take the joy out of sports. They mostly just take the stupidity out of sports.

Is he right?

RotoWire's AL LABR Squad
The 2014 AL LABR auction went down at the Arizona Republic offices in downtown Phoenix Saturday night. It's a 12-team, 5 x 5, AL-only league with 2 C, 1 1B, 1 2B. 1 3B, 1 SS, 1 CI, 1 MI, 5 OF, 1 U and 9 pitchers. Everyone has $260 to spend.
The Problem With Drafting Billy Hamilton
Billy Hamilton went for $28 in the NL LABR auction this past weekend. I discussed this with a fellow writer who participates in Tout Wars with me later this month and we discussed the problem with investing heavily into Hamilton.
Payne's Daily Fantasy Basketball Experiment
Let's see if I can make any money doing daily fantasy hoops.
My 12-Team NFBC RotoWire Online Championship Team
I drafted out of the 11-hole for the "Beat Chris Liss" league. I had done a fair amount of research on optimal roster construction from that slot, and I decided I'd go hitter in the first round, three pitchers in 2-4 and then hitting for the next 10 rounds or so before filling in with upside pitchers late. Of course, few battle plans survive the actual war. Here are the results:

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