Monday, May 19, 2008

Hot or Not: Opposites...

The universe is filled with equal and opposing forces. Good and Evil. Yin and Yang. Hot and Not. Which side are your fantasy players on?

Returning to Form Hot

You knew they'd come around. And now you're being rewarded for your patience.

Ryan J. Braun

Stats over the last seven days: 6 HRs, 10 RBIs, .349 BA

This guy needs more friends

I like the trend of young guys signing long-term contracts with their clubs. I also like the trend of these guys having MySpace pages. How else would we know Braun's interests include, "Playing left field, hitting home runs and winning"? But only 290 friends, RJB? Even Yovani Gallardo has more friends.

Adam T. Dunn

Stats over the last seven days: 4 HRs, 9 RBIs, .263 BA

Nothing if not consistent

Check out Dunn's splits for the season. The guy hits for roughly the same (terrible) average in every situation. And somehow he'll still end up with 40 homers and 100 RBIs. It's safe to say there's nobody else like him playing today.

Alfonso G. Soriano

Stats over the last seven days: 7 HRs, 14 RBIs, .516 BA

The "G" stand for...

Guilleard. Now you know.

Returning to Form Cold

It seemed too good to be true. And you know what? It was.

Paul Bako

Stats over the last seven days: 0 HRs, 0 RBIs, .133 BA

When you hit like Paul Bako...

This is one of my favorite baseball articles ever. Jim Baker from espn.com was forced to watch the 2006 Royals - a legendarily bad offensive team that prominently featured Paul Bako - every day for a week. It wasn't pretty.

Jason Isringhausen

Stats over the last seven days: 0-1, 3 ER, 1 karate-chopped television

No Paul Bako, but...

In Isringhausen's case, the "too good to be true" refers to him being healthy, not effective. This isn't even his first punching-related injury - as a young Metropolitan, Isringhausen smashed a trash can in the dugout, breaking his wrist. He's also been sidelined with tuberculosis, which has an incidence rate of just 41 per 100,000 in the Americas.

Sidney Ponson

Stats over the last seven days: 0-0, 10.1 INN, 9 ER

The wisdom of crowds is BS

Tell me if this sounds good on paper - an overweight 32 year-old with a history of alcohol problems and high ERAs, throwing in a hitter-friendly park where pitchers routinely burn out during the scorching summers. It doesn't? Really? And yet, he was owned in 17% of Sportsline leagues just two weeks ago.

Special K (Good)

If strikeouts were vegetables, these guys would have exceeded their daily recommended allowance.

AJ Burnett

Stats over the last seven days: 1-1, 15 INN, 15 K

Getting better

Burnett's ERA has dropped more than two and a half points over the last month (7.27 to 4.71).

Ryan Dempster

Stats over the last seven days: 1-0, 14.1 INN, 17 K

Did you Know...

About the Tip O'Neill award? It's given out by the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame (did you know about that, too???) to the best Canadian ballplayer each year. Dempster won it in 2000. Larry Walker won the award nine times.

Rich Harden

Stats over the last seven days: 1-0, 10.2 INN, 13 K

Potential Tip O'Neill Award-winner?

The British Columbia native has looked strong since coming off the DL. And he's already on pace to shatter his average for innings pitched (36.2) over the past two seasons.

Special K (Bad)

Currently making Adam Dunn look like a contact hitter...

Wladimir Balentien

Stats over the last seven days: .182 BA, 11 K

Better as a Scrabble word?

Spelling "Wladimir" on a Scrabble board would earn you at least 14 points.

Evan Longoria

Stats over the last seven days: .296 BA, 11 K

He had them at "Hello."

Remember what I said about liking the trend of signing young players to long-term deals? Well, let's add a corollary to that: wait until they've had more than a hundred big league at-bats. Nevertheless, I'm sure the pride of Rio Hondo CC will turn it around soon enough.

Hanley Ramirez

Stats over the last seven days: .200 BA, 8 K

$70 million won't get you any closer to Hector El Father

Han-Ram may have the cash, but he's not in Hector El Father's video for Pa La Tumba, which features Jose Reyes, Robinson Cano and Melky Cabrera.

The placebo effect strikes again

You may have already read this disturbing story about Jason Giambi and his most intimate performance-enhancer - a bright gold thong that he wears to break out of slumps. What's even worse is that other Yankees, including The Captain and Johnny Damon, have donned the thong when they themselves were slumping. My question is this: what about Giambi's performance over the past few seasons would suggest that these underwear have any positive impact?

Ok, that's it for this week's installment. Wishing you Hotness instead of Notness for the upcoming week. Later.

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