Comments

The last twenty comments in true blog fasion, with the links to their authors and the player commented upon.

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J.D. Drew Boston Red Sox
What on earth is J.D. Drew doing on the Longest Average Home Run list? The full list: Travis Hafner 410, Jonny Gomes 408, Adrian Beltre 406, Mark Teixeira 404, Jack Cust 404, J.D. 403, Justin Morneau 403, Carlos Pena 402, Vladimir Guerrero 401, Jim Thome 401.

Maybe it's the small sample size.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 5 '08
Strange season. Big boost in walk % accompanied by drop in batting average. One of the more extreme flyball hitters in the American League (0.82 G/F ratio, fifth in league), and fastest runners, grounded into DPs at one of the highest rates (3.16 %, sixth in league). More ribbies despite big drop in SLG.

Easily could earn $40 this year.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 5 '08
Curtis Granderson Miami Marlins
Fifth-lowest First Swing %, behind Willits, Abreu, Damon and Youkalis. Seems to have given his BA a big boost, even if thereafter he became much more impatient than Willits, Abreu, Damon and Youkalis. However, fewer walks than the year before are at least partly explained by putting more balls in play.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 5 '08
Chipper Jones Atlanta Braves
It's all about the AB. No one's letting you have him for under $20; how Chipper do you feel as you go past 25?
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 5 '08
Dmitri Young Philadelphia Phillies
Matched his younger bro in doubles and homers last year. What were the odds of that?

Beat him in triples.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 5 '08
Ian Kennedy Kansas City Royals
I love Santana and I think the Yankees are a little nuts not to grab him if only to keep him away from the Red Sox or the Mets, but if Hughes has the potential everyone seems to think he does, giving up Hughes and Kennedy for Santana is a mistake, especially if he might end up on the free agent market next year anyway.

And the Twins aren't trading Santana for Kennedy alone.

Peter Kreutzer Rotoman
Jan 5 '08
Jeremy Guthrie Washington Nationals
Second half fade will chase a lot of people away. It seems to me more likely that he wore out than that hitters got wise to him, so I'll be in the hunt until it gets heated.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 5 '08
Todd Helton Colorado Rockies
Was close to, if not quite, vintage Todd Helton at home (.533 SLG) and vs. RHP (.551 SLG). But the Rockies do go on the road and Todd will be in the lineup against LHP. He's going to stay second or third fiddle on this team.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 5 '08
Willie Harris Cincinnati Reds
Hit .369 in the first half, and thoroughly deserved to with an ungodly liner rate of 31 percent. It dropped to 14 percent in the second half and the average fell to .196.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 5 '08
Ian Kennedy Kansas City Royals
Held MLB batters to a .191 batting average, after holding them to .183 in 63 IP in Single A, .163 in 49 IP in Double A, and .205 in 35 IP in Triple A. So we're looking at another Kennedy who has Conquered All at an early age. But we're also looking at a fastball that tops out at 92 mph, and that's his best pitch. Beats me why he's been the sticking point so far, according to all the New York papers, in the Yanks' acquisition of the best pitcher in baseball by a wide margin. Only thing I can think of is, salary-capless Yanks plan to keep bidding next year untilt they get him.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 5 '08
Ryan Sweeney Chicago Cubs
He hasn't looked so hot but he's young and athletic and just hasn't hit his stride yet. If that doesn't happen soon, however, the problems will start mounting, so he and Billy Beane are rooting for a fast start this spring.
Peter Kreutzer Rotoman
Jan 4 '08
Nick Swisher Atlanta Braves
According to Kenny Williams Swisher wasn't put on the block, but he went and got him anyway. Depending on what you think about Ryan Sweeney he either overpaid or wildly overpaid, but Swisher is signed through 2012 for a little better than $5M a year, a good price now and sure to be a bargain in a year or two. He should get a bit of a boost from the ballpark, too, though I won't bump his price.
Peter Kreutzer Rotoman
Jan 4 '08
Omar Vizquel Toronto Blue Jays
Mike lives in the Bay Area and he seems to think Omar's got some decent baseball left. But it looks to me like the years finally caught up to him. (Vizquel, I mean.) RC/G in 2006: 4.99. In 2007: 3.50. Runs Above Replacement in 2006: 10.2. RAR in 2007: -7.1.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 4 '08
Shane Monahan Seattle Mariners
An authentic voice who makes a lot of good points in an interview with Mike Fish of ESPN. Excerpts:

Monahan, now 33 and living with his family in Vail, Colo., openly admits to being a juiced player in baseball's steroids era.

He says he used anabolic steroids when he played for the Mariners. He says Deca-Durabolin and Winstrol were his primary enhancers. He says he got them from "guys" who regularly hung around the clubhouse. And he says he regularly used amphetamines...

A decade ago, Monahan came to professional baseball with talent and pedigree, though the pedigree was heavy on the hockey side. His hockey roots go back generations to his great-grandfather, NHL Hall of Famer Howie Morenz; and his grandfather, Bernie "Boom Boom" Geoffrion, father of the slap shot. His uncle, Danny Geoffrion, played for the Montreal Canadians. His cousin, Blake Geoffrion, was a second-round pick of the Nashville Predators.

Monahan, who grew up in the suburbs north of Atlanta, was the ACC's baseball player of the year at Clemson in 1995. In baseball's draft that year, the Mariners selected the speedy outfielder in the second round, passing on notable future big leaguers Carlos Beltran, Sean Casey and Mark Bellhorn to get him...

Monahan says he began taking steroids late in the 1998 season.

"I saw what kind of money it is going to get you," he says. "I had great minor league seasons, but I wanted to stay in the big leagues. I know my teammates and I know guys on other teams are doing it, and they're hitting home runs left and right. And I'm sitting there going, 'All right, well, what I'm going to do?'

"I read up on it. I learned how to use it. I started lifting weights and I went from like 190 pounds to 215. I mean, muscles on my body where I didn't know you had muscles. I already ran fast. I could hit. I had a good arm. But all of a sudden now, recovery time felt better. Everything was a lot better."

Even so, the steroids didn't take his baseball skills to superstar heights...

By the end of the 1999 campaign, Monahan says, he moved away from steroids; and he didn't stay around the game long enough to experiment with human growth hormone, which gained popularity in clubhouses after baseball began testing for performance-enhancing drugs in 2003. HGH is undetectable in current urine testing procedures...

During his brief time in Seattle, Monahan came to believe steroid use was widespread in the Mariners' clubhouse, although he refuses to identify those he suspects were using...

Monahan says that back then, Major League Baseball had yet to tighten access to clubhouses, and that many players regularly worked out with their personal trainers while using team facilities.

"In locker rooms," he says, "you kind of look at your teammates and go, 'Well, he is on it. He's on it. Well, he might be on it.' And it is kind of like you don't really say anything. You don't go up to somebody and say, 'Hey, are you taking steroids?' They'll slap you."

Sources for steroids and amphetamines, he says, floated freely through the Seattle clubhouse. They were friends of team members who, at the time, had access to the players' sanctuary. He remembers paying cash, and even bartered baseball gear, for steroids and amphetamines.

"There were two or three guys," he says of the suppliers... "You'd go up to them and say, 'Hey, I need some greenies. What is it going to take?' Well, it might be 100 bucks here. It is a jersey here, or a dozen baseballs and two bats. And you'd give it to him."

... Monahan suggests it's disingenuous to offer up a history of the game's doping culture and leave out a chapter on amphetamine use, which dates back half a century and, most certainly, involves some of the game's most storied names. In his autobiography, "I Had a Hammer," former home run king Henry Aaron admitted to having experimented with greenies. And Sen. Jim Bunning, who has been outspoken about the game's steroid issue, is another Hall of Famer that investigators might have interviewed...

"If Sen. [George] Mitchell wants to brush that off, then basically they have accomplished nothing," Monahan says about amphetamines. "Almost everybody takes greenies. I was in the locker room for two years with the Mariners, and I'll be honest with you: The only person that I didn't see take greenies was Dan Wilson. He was a big Christian guy, big moral guy. He just didn't believe in the stuff.

"I took greenies -- the amphetamines and that stuff. It is tough. We get beautiful accommodations, let's say that. But flying from Tampa to Seattle, three time [zone] changes, and then playing the next afternoon or night … all these guys are using them."
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 3 '08
Dave Concepcion Cincinnati Reds
This is Davey's 15th and final year on the ballot, and it looks like he won't be getting into Cooperstown. I won't argue too long or too hard for a player with a 679 career OPS, but Davey was a nine-time All-Star, a five-time Gold Glove winner, and has two World Series rings. More than a few baseball fans insist that Concepcion held that infield together.
Mike Gianella MikeG
Jan 3 '08
David Wright New York Mets
You know what? He hit .294 in May, .323 in June, .333 in July, .394 in August and .352 in September. So, uh... hem... haw... I think you're right. He could easily set another career high in batting average this year.

I've added a dollar to my bid, but can't follow Mike into the $40 stratosphere because he's a stealth SB guy that pitchers are going to get wise to.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 3 '08
Jeff Francis Toronto Blue Jays
No significant difference between his home/away splits. To predict he'll win 20 is a bit of a stretch, since so few pitchers do these days, so let's just leave it that he could win 20.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 3 '08
Miguel Cabrera Detroit Tigers
For some reason, there was a homer bump at Comerica for righty hitters last year (RHB-HR index 128). But more to the point, he's proven pretty much oblivious to park effects in his career so far, positively thriving in pitcher-friendly Dolphins Stadium last year (.336 BA, .616 SLG). In his free-agent year, a hitter whose work ethic has been questioned could have a monster season.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 2 '08
Slightly higher K/W, much higher HR/AB, and -- I'm guessing -- 10 more pounds or so than the official weight shown here. While It's hard to imagine him moving to an even higher level, he's more than matched the expectaions of the scouts who insisted, during all his years of failure with the Indians, This guy can play.
Alex Patton Alex
Jan 2 '08
James Loney Atlanta Braves
The average should drop, but I can't see Loney going below $20 in any leagues, and some owners will push him to $25 in the hopes of a $30+ season.
Mike Gianella MikeG
Jan 2 '08

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