Monday, April 27, 2009

The Injuries Pile Up Quickly

posted by Jon Williams
Dealing with injuries is probably the toughest thing a fantasy owner has to deal with during the season. In deeper leagues it can be incredibly difficult to find replacements capable of putting up acceptable numbers, especially when it comes to pitchers. Sure, there are usually lots of arms on the free-agent list but rarely are they the types you want to have on your roster for a month or two. I judge whether or not to replace a particular player with a particular free agent on a few different criteria.

  1. Do the league rules allow me to drop a player at will? In leagues that force you to hold on to replacement players until the original player returns or the replacement is himself disabled or sent to the minors, I will often avoid picking up previously unknown quantities.
  2. Is the player being replaced expected to be out longer than two weeks? If a player is going to be out for the season (especially when the injury occurs in April or May) I will hold off on replacing them (as rules allow) until I can find a good long term replacement. I don't want to risk being stuck with Omir Santos all season if I have no chance of dumping him.
  3. How good is the team of the potential replacement? This can be tricky but I would prefer to find replacement on good teams. This is because a good team is unlikely to keep a player around who fails to produce. Unfortunately, the good teams will sometimes just keep the player on the roster (especially pitchers) and use them in the absolute worse situations --blow outs and in the 14th inning when there are no other options.
  4. Could the potential replacement win a regular role if he does well? I love when this happens. Right now, I'm hoping Garrett Mock and Omir Santos turn into regulars. Top prospects and older veterans are great for this type of speculation. At some point this season I hope to take a chance on Jim Edmonds and Pedro Martinez.
  5. How desperate am I am for at-bats or innings? Under normal circumstances I would not go near a player a like Augie Ojeda but when the injuries start to pile up at-bats become very important. You want to remain competitive in runs and rbi and even the worst players when they continue to receive at-bats can help you in these categories. When I'm desperate for innings things are a little different. Obviously you don't want to pick up a pitcher just because he pitches a lot. That's a good way to end up with the worst Rockies type starter who will almost certainly blow up your ERA and WHIP. If you can add/drop players at will you can just rotate between favorable starts. Otherwise I suggest you pick the pitcher with the highest combination of groundball rate and strikeout rate. Hopefully that pitcher will be on a good team with a good defense.

Orioles expect Mora back Friday

Soria tests shoulder, throws on Sunday

McLouth's return likely a few days away

Derrek Lee day-to-day with neck spasms

Mauer targets Friday return to Twins

Girardi hopeful Damon can return to action on Monday

With Drew on DL, D-backs shuffle roster

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1 Comments:

Blogger Mike Gianella said...

I like your Opening Day holiday idea. Failing that, baseball should take Patriots' Day and nationalize it and have a series of games that Monday with super early starts.

Friday, May 1, 2009 at 3:12:00 PM EDT  

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