And why do I always get sucked in? During this month's MLB draft, the Red Sox took St. John's closer Craig Hansen in the first round, a flamethrowing reliever whom everyone compares with Brad Lidge. By the time I was done reading all the articles, I was ready to put cyanide in Keith Foulke's water bottle. Screw the minor leagues! We need to make room for the next Brad Lidge! He's ready! Give him a jersey and a locker!

What are the odds Hansen actually becomes the next Lidge? One in four? What's important is Hansen has the potential to become the next Lidge. That makes him the right pick.

Granted, I'm the same guy who owns over 100 Todd Van Poppel cards, but I have a good feeling about the Hansen kid. And I have the same feeling about Seattle's Hernandez, a 19-year-old fastballer who "reminds some of a young Dwight Gooden." With my AL-only keeper team falling apart, I swapped Halladay to a contender for three prospects (including Felix the Great). Now I find myself scouring Tacoma's News Tribune for Felix's Triple-A pitch counts and generally treating him like a member of my extended family. When ESPN's Rob Neyer wrote last week that Felix "just might be the best 19-year-old pitcher in more than 20 years," I beamed like a proud father.

Finally, I have some tremendous upside potential in my life. It's about time.

Bill Simmons is a columnist for Page 2 and ESPN The Magazine. His Sports Guy's World site is updated every day Monday through Friday.



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