- Matthew Berry, Fantasy
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We are now six weeks into the season, and by now you should have a pretty good idea of what your team is. And more importantly, what it is not.
Most full-time hitters have more than 120 at-bats or so at this point, most starters have six starts or so. It's not a great sample size, but at least it's something.
My general rule is that I don't like to make a trade until June 1. Another one is to never date a woman who majored in psychology, but that's off the subject.
My point is this: You need to start thinking about your team in a serious way now. Scan your roster and the other teams in your league, and start planning. Lay the groundwork now for what needs to be a productive June for you. That is the month that you can improve your team the most. You have enough of a sample size to make a (reasonably) accurate analysis of your team's strengths and weaknesses and enough time left in the season to make a meaningful impact.
Speaking of sample size, I have enough from personal experience and friends on the psychology major rule, so save the hate mail. I also have more than enough of that, which we will delve into in Wednesday's TRUM blog. Lots of crazy girl dating stories to get to, as well -- I horde them like a squirrel with nuts -- so hopefully I'll get to one of those this week, too.
In the meantime, it's been a while since we've done a round of...
Just Saying ...
... That Robinson Cano has two home runs and is hitting .310 in eight games in the month of May.
... That his teammate Jason Giambi has two home runs and four RBIs in his past three games.
... That I keep mentioning him, but Ryan Freel is hitting .340 with four steals over his past 17 games.
... That Carlos Delgado is hitting .355 in the month of May with two home runs and five RBIs in eight games.
... That Max Scherzer threw six solid innings over the weekend, allowing just one unearned run, while striking out six and walking only one. Get off his back. And mine. He's a stud.
... That Augie Ojeda of the Diamondbacks keeps getting playing time at second and keeps producing. He's hitting .414 with eight RBIs in his past 10 games.
... That while Ryan Dempster did just pitch well against Arizona, it was at home. His previous starts were against the Brewers, Reds and Pirates twice and the Nationals once. It's a stretch of pathetic offenses like that that inspired the phrase "Even Ryan Dempster could beat those guys." A 36-to-23 strikeout-to-walk rate also screams sell high.
... That Kevin Millar of the Orioles has a home run, five RBIs and is hitting .333 in his past seven games. In May 2007, he hit .290 with four home runs and 11 RBIs.
... That maybe it is just me, but five dollars for a foot-long doesn't sound like it's that good a deal, you know? Seems about the right price, but would you really go crazy promoting that? And sing about it? In a creepy way?
... That in his past two starts, Andrew Miller of Florida is 2-0 with a 1.38 ERA and 0.69 WHIP and 11 strikeouts in 13 innings. With only three walks. It was against San Diego and Washington, but still. He's now spot-start worthy.
... That Jason Bay has four home runs, nine RBIs, two steals and 14 runs scored in his past 18 games. He is hitting .303 over that time frame. He's hitting .333 over his past 11 games. And .412 over his past five.
... Tadahito Iguchi has three steals in his past five games. He's hitting .324 over his past 18 games, .356 over his past 11 and .400 over his past five.
... That Hanley Ramirez is now batting third, not leadoff, for the Marlins.
... That I can't believe my Lakers lost. That I still say they win this thing in six, but it should not even have gone this far.
... That I hate the fact he doesn't strike anyone out, but I do believe in Aaron Cook and am amazed he's still available in about 20 percent of ESPN.com standard leagues. A 2.26 ERA and 1.13 WHIP in eight starts, three of which were at Coors.
... That Jermaine Dye now has three home runs and five RBIs in his past six games, while hitting .350 over that span. That last year, he hit .214 pre-All-Star and .298 post-All-Star.
... That Garrett Olson of the Orioles is now 2-0 with a 2.95 ERA and 1.25 WHIP in his first three starts. He has 15 strikeouts in 18 innings pitched.
... That since Evan Longoria was called up, he has played 27 games. When Longoria was recalled, I got folks all fired up by suggesting that Aubrey Huff will have similar numbers as Longoria, if not slightly better. Here are their numbers over those 27 games:
Longoria: 11 Runs / 4 HR / 15 RBIs / 2 SB / .211
Huff: 13 Runs / 4 HR / 12 RBIs / 1 SB / .260
... That Longoria's teammate, the underrated Akinori Iwamura, has 10 runs scored in his past 12 games. He is hitting .327 over that time frame. He is hitting .393 over the past seven. He is hitting .356 in the month of May.
... That Shawn Hill has a 2.84 ERA and a 1.26 WHIP over his past four starts.
... That even while getting rocked yesterday, Rich Harden was still striking out more than one guy per inning.
... Omar Vizquel was activated this weekend. He's available in pretty much every ESPN.com standard mixed league. He's had double-digit steals each of the last four years.
... That I realize Shawn Chacon has a 3.53 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP in eight starts and a K/9 over six. I'm just not ready to fully believe yet. A 35-to-23 strikeout to walk rate in 51 innings is what's holding me back.
... That you guys will enjoy Wednesday's mailbag/blog.
... That all these stats are as of Monday morning, May 12.
Matthew Berry -- The Talented Mr. Roto -- is ESPN's senior director of fantasy. He was just as surprised as you to find out it's a real job. He is a multiple award winner from the Fantasy Sports Writers Association, including a Writer of the Year award. He has been playing fantasy sports for more than 20 years, writing about it professionally for more than 10. He currently appears on or in ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNEWS, ESPN the Magazine, ESPN.com, ESPN Mobile TV and, as soon as he learns to say "ground-ball/fly-ball ratio" in Spanish, ESPN Deportes.
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