RotoGuru Menu
Daily blurbs
Message Forum
Forum Keepers

MLB Schedule
Favorite links
Base Advances
Player Lookup

TSN Baseball
Sortable TSN Stats
Yesterday's TSNP
Team Rankings

Swirve Baseball
Sortable Stats
Yesterday's SvP
Team Rankings

PSC Baseball
Sortable Stats
Yesterday's PSP

Favorite links
NFL Schedule
Field Goals
Player Lookup

Football Pickoff

TSN/SW Football
Sortable TSN Stats
Weekly SNP
Team Rankings

Swirve Football
Sortable Swirve Stats
Weekly SvP
Team Rankings

PSC Football
Sortable PSC Stats
Weekly PSP

[SW Hockey Stats]

Favorite links
Hoop Pointers
Player Lookup

NBA Schedule
Full Season

Next 4 weeks

TSN Hoops
TSN Stats
Yesterday's TSNP
Team Rankings

PSC Basketball
PSC Stats
Yesterday's PSP

Market Madness
Contest Site

Historical Stats
Favorite Links
Recap of Entries
Unit Returns

Home page
Hall of Fame

This site's features are best exploited using Netscape Communicator 4.0 or higher. You can download a Netscape browser free by clicking on the Netscape Now icon.
Netscape Now!

[RotoGuru logo]
[RotoGuru subtitle]

Daily blurbs from the Guru
If this is your first visit to this site, you should first stop by my home page to find out what this site is all about. And please support this site's advertisers. They make free sites like this one possible.

Go forward to more recent blurbs.

6/28 - The Oakland/Seattle series was a tough one for popular pitchers. After Freddy Garcia was lit up for -121 TSNP on Monday, Barry Zito returned the favor last night with -79. Who'd have thunk that those two would combine for -200? Anyone who skipped both of them should be having a good week. Unless, of course, you played it "safe" with a steady closer like Byung-Hyun Kim, who got hammered with -104 TSNP this week in Houston.

Tough luck if you had one of the starters in the Braves-Mets game last night. The game went three innings before being washed out, so the starters (Astacio and Moss) effectively miss their turn this cycle. Gary Sheffield also lost a home run. Bummer.

As a Tribe fan, it's tough to see the team already throwing in the towel, even though this may turn out to be the right move in the long run. It's particularly odd to see Cleveland dumping payroll and picking up prospects, with Montreal going the other direction. Of course, if Montreal ends up getting contracted, what use do they have for prospects? It's also curious that the team that is dumping players is only 7 games out of first, while the team that is presumably tooling up for a pennant run is currently 6.5 games back. Clearly, games behind doesn't tell the whole story in this situation.

6/27 - After a month of May in which he was disappointing, Randy Johnson has re-emerged in June. He's now at the top of the list for total TSNP over the past 30 days, boosted by last night's 150 TSNP result, and averaging almost 110 TSNP/start this month. If last night's game had been close, he probably would have completed it, as he only threw 103 pitches in 8 innings.

That same game saw the return to action of Junior Spivey. Spivey dropped more than $1 million during his stint on the DL, and looks poised to recover a lot of that in short order. Even Soriano may see a little pullback in the near term. While there aren't many players who have been as productive as Soriano during the past two weeks, some will make the move for the sure gains, and others will look to redeploy the $3 million price savings in some other slot. I've got Soriano on 2 teams, and will probably just hold on - I hate to bail on someone who is producing well - but I understand the motivation for the switch. Time will tell.

6/26 - Tampa Bay made 10 roster moves before yesterday's game, demoting or releasing 5 players, and calling up 5 others. Apparently, it wasn't enough, although their 11 runs scored should have been sufficient, you would think.

It looks like the Odalis express is chugging along at full speed. Last night's one-hitter was his fourth straight 3-digit TSNP outing, during which he's averaged 134 TSNP/start. It moved him up to rank as the second most productive pitcher over the past 30 days, just 4 TSNP behind Jason Schmidt . Barry Zito had been ranked #1, but he dropped a few spots when one of his starts dropped off the other end. He now has only 5 starts during the past 30 days, while Schmidt and Perez have 6. Suffice it to say that you would be very happy with any of those guys of late.

Do you know who the top hitter has been over the past week? Not Darin Erstad, who's been getting a lot of buying action the last few days. Not Alphonso Soriano, who's also rebounded nicely from a short slump. No, the top hitter over the past 7 days is Texas outfielder Kevin Mench, with a week's total of 201 TSNP that includes 4 HR, 11 R, and only 3 strikeouts in 27 AB, raising his batting average from .265 to .305. Is he the next cheapie outfield to ascend in price? Maybe. Will he turn out to be the next Adam Piatt? Perhaps. If so, don't climb aboard without keeping a trade in reserve.

6/25 - Yesterday, I mentioned that, with a "respectable outcome" Freddy Garcia could become the top ranked pitcher over the past 30 days. This morning, he's ranked #11. Fill in the blanks.

I also mentioned that Jason Schmidt could do the same in a home game vs. the Padres. Lo and behold, the game was played in San Diego. It looks like two games were shifted from Pac Bell to Qualcomm this week, and two games in September were shifted the other way. That's probably not of any major consequence. And Schmidt is at least still ranked #2 this morning, after garnering only 18 TSNP. If you had Schmidt, think of it this way: you saved 139 TSNP by not taking Garcia instead.

Darin Erstad was the top TSN Ultimate price gainer yesterday, and then went on to be the top hitting TSNP producer (81) last night. How often does that happen? He almost outyielded all of the pitchers, too, as Mike Hampton led all pitchers with only 88 TSNP. Of course, if pitchers also got credit for their hitting points, then Hampton would have earned an extra 30 TSNP. But they don't. So he didn't.

6/24 - The death of Darryl Kile cast a pall over the weekend's activities. There's certainly nothing I can add that will ease the grief. So I won't.

The second and third ranked pitchers over the past 30 days each start at home tonight. Jason Schmidt gets a Pac Bell start against the Padres, while Freddy Garcia faces the red hot A's in Safeco Field. With respectable outcomes, they'll both pass leader Barry Zito, who worked on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Curt Schilling gets a rare extra day of rest this time around. Today would be his normal turn to start, but Arizona is off. Whether this helps get him back on track is hard to assess. But it should definitely help to purge the worst day of his TSN trade history. Of course, with a Tuesday start in Houston, limited trade availability and ballpark concerns could easily keep most managers on the sidelines for this start, although a slight price gain would not surprise me. Looking ahead, however, his Sunday start at Cleveland looks pretty appetizing. If you like to buy low, tomorrow might be the time.

6/21 - If you had Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson, and Odalis Perez, you got off to a great start last night. And I'm sure some did. Those 3 combined for more than 400 TSNP. Add in 55 TSNP from Alphonso Soriano, perhaps 49 from Paul Konerko, 59 from Todd Zeile, and 49 from Johnny Damon - all reasonably popular hitters - and you could have topped 600. And that doesn't even require longshots such as Marvin Benard (78 TSNP) or Kevin Mench (73).

Soriano sure rebounded nicely from his recent slump. All it took was a trip to Colorado. Three games - 159 TSNP. (You didn't drop him just before this series, did you? Some teams did.) Makes you wonder whether Johnny Damon is the next one to bring on seller's remorse, especially after his 49 TSNP last night. If you have players that are established, it's often better to ignore the price swings and play for the long term. Otherwise, you tend to own the slumps but not the recoveries. At least, that's why I keep hanging on to Alex Rodriguez and Troy Glaus. So far, though, patience has been rather expensive, not to mention exasperating.

6/20 - I guess the Yankees never got the memo about Coors Field playing like a normal ballpark this year.

The monster start of the night was a complete game shutout by Sch... Schill... Schilling... Schmidt! Four of his last five starts have been better than 120 TSNP, including last night's 170 TSNP masterpiece. Granted, it was against the Devil Rays. But the D-Rays had just manhandled Livan Hernandez the night before. Schmidt is now the second ranked pitcher in total points over the last 30 days, but still more than 100 TSNP behind the leader, Freddy Garcia, who bagged 153 TSNP himself last night. Curt Schilling has now dropped to 6th over than span. And my mention of Scott Stewart yesterday was prophetic, as he notched another save, moving up to #8.

Shawn Green continued his hitting assault. Over the past month, he's averaged 30.4 TSNP/G. He'd be the top-ranked hitter over the last month even without that 160 TSNP game, as his lead over Brian Giles is currently 171 TSNP. In fact, even with his terrible start, Green now ranks 4th in total TSNP for the full season. One month ago, he was ranked 152rd among all hitters in total TSNP. Perhaps it wasn't "easy bein' Green" for the first month and a half, but he's certainly leapfrogged the field since then!

6/19 - Oakland has been on a tear recently, and the law firm of Koch, Mulder and Zito are three of the key reasons. Over the past 15 days, they rank 1st, 5th and 6th in total TSNP, and over the last month, Zito ranks 2nd (to Glavine), while Koch is 5th and Mulder 17th. In fact, over the past 30 days, Zito, Mulder and Koch have outpointed Schilling, Johnson, and Kim by 172 TSNP, and the aggregate price savings for the A's trio is more than $12 million (TSN Ultimate). Those are the only two teams with 3 pitchers ranked in the top 25 (total TSNP over 30 days).

Perhaps the best (and most undiscovered) pitching bargain over the past 30 days has been Montreal's (that explains it!) Scott Stewart, who ranks #12 during that period at the minimum price of $500K. Koch is the only closer with more points over the last 30 days. Check out Stewart's point history. I could sure have used some of that!

6/18 - Guess who added Geoff Jenkins to his Swirve roster yesterday? At least it was only for the 5 day minimum.

Looking over the latest pitcher trade sampling data, Curt Schilling appears poised for an ugly price loss today. If you already own him, just grit your teeth, as it will be a one-day hit. But if you are going to buy him, wait until tomorrow. It looks like there are a lot of potential Randy=>Curt trades waiting for the trade refresh.

If you are playing TSN golf for the second season, trade conservation will be very important for the first four weeks. The 5th event is the British Open, and you may need 4 trades to move into an active foursome for that event, and another four for the following week. If so, you need to get through the first four tournaments using no more than 4 trades. Plan accordingly.

6/17 - The weekend's two most anticipated matchups both had similar endings. Estes took his shot at Roger Clemens, but missed. Phil Mickelson took his shot at Tiger Woods, but missed. Both were close calls, but neither quite got the job done. But the drama was entertaining.

Who swung the biggest stick this weekend (other than Tiger)? Shawn Green, with 153 TSNP in 3 games, including 4 homers. The next two most prolific hitters barely register on the price scale, however. Toronto's Chris Woodward had TSNP games of 47, 51, and 31. And Pittsburgh's Craig Wilson had 32, 36, and 53. I doubt if the weekend outburst will generate much fantasy respect for Woodward, but Wilson should start to see some buying interest, as he's ranked 5th in total points over the past 15 days. Who knew!?

Not much entertainment today, however. Only one baseball game. And not much else. If you're looking for something to do, you can take a look at the midseason price analysis for the midseason TSN baseball games. I've got them loaded in the sortable stats and the Assimilator. The price change column shows the difference between the midseason price and the current Ultimate price, so you can see who has the biggest price differences vs. the current game. If you're only planning to play the free (Basic) TSN game, the draft prices are the same as for the pay game, so the same stats analysis should be helpful. (I won't be setting up a separate set of midseason Basic stats, since I can just segue directly into season 2 when the first Basic season ends.)

You can also sign up for the second season of TSN golf, which starts this week with the Greater Hartford Open. If you do, make sure you frequent the golf message forum, where the advice is invaluable.

6/14 - The golfers weren't putting up many negative scores yesterday. But there were plenty of (non-)hitters in the Baltimore-Cleveland game to fill that void. If you had a zero yesterday, you probably gained on the field.

Today, the AL pitchers get to hit - or get to get hit, in some cases. The fantasy consequences aren't significant, unless it causes a pitcher to get tossed. And, of course, AL designated hitters will have trouble getting their normal quota of ABs. But I'm sure you've got your rosters appropriately configured by now.

As I draft today's blurb, Tiger has just finished his first 9, and is threatening to run away from the field again. If you're playing fantasy golf, this has dire implications for the cut line. This doesn't look like a course where you want to be too shorthanded in a best ball format. Unless, of course, one of them is Tiger.

6/13 - Patience is a virtue. And I guess more patience is more virtuous.

On one of my TSN teams, I stuck with Preston Wilson through his recent 5-game slump during which he totaled -49 TSNP. I even hung on for a couple more days. But I finally decided that he just not hitting at all (duhhh!!!), and decided to switch to the hot bat and money gains from Randy Winn. Of course, as a general strategy, swapping from Wilson to Winn is a lunatic move. But in this case, Preston was historically 0-8 against Byrd, so I thought it was time to cut bait, at least temporarily. And so far, after one day I'm up $120K and down 72 TSNP. Sometimes, this game drives you crazy.

While on the subject of bad timing, I'll bet there are a lot of former Pineiro owners who are gnashing their teeth after last night's shutout over the Cards. Three weeks ago, his impending matchups against Tampa Bay (twice), Baltimore and the Cubbies looked pretty appetizing. If anyone held him through those four starts, they earned a total of -26 TSNP. So now that he faces supposedly stiffer competition, he cranks out a +158. Go figure.

Only one game on tap today, an afternoon affair in Jacobs Field. Sounds like a good day to turn on ESPN and watch the golfers flail at the U.S. Open. Glancing at the early morning scores, bogeys (and worse) will be plentiful.

6/12 - The top pitcher over the past 30 days is no longer Curt Schilling. With 7 shutout innings in Minnesota, Tom Glavine now has 712 TSNP in the past month, vs. 701 for Schilling. And the third ranked pitcher over that period also worked last night, as Barry Zito racked up 139 TSNP against Milwaukee. In one of my TSN divisions, the first place team had Glavine, Zito, Colon, and David Wells all going last night. I had Jeff D'Amico. Suffice it to say that I got smoked. So much for differentiation.

Yesterday I asked for a list of the 17 hitters who had homered on their first major league pitch. Thanks to JeffG, who found it yesterday afternoon. Not many familiar names on the list, so Marcus Thames may be in select company, but not stellar company. Of the previous 16, 6 were pitchers. And one of those pitchers - Esteban Yan - has only batted that one time (so far). The most prolific home run hitter on the list is Jay Bell, with 193 in 16 seasons (so far). The player with the greatest longevity is Bert Campaneris, who hit only 79 HRs in his 19 year career. The ten hitters have an average career span of 7 years, and an average career total of 50 dingers.

6/11 - All those popular pitchers going yesterday. Yet the best one was one that hardly anyone had.

Jamie Moyer had the only complete game of the evening, a 5-hit shutout over St. Louis. He shouldn't really be obscure, as it was his 4th 3-digit TSNP score in his last 5 outings. Yet he is barely out of gravity. Meanwhile, the four more popular pitchers that I mentioned yesterday - Johnson, Lowe, Wood, and Vazquez - didn't even combine for 100 TSNP, with Lowe being the only one to have a moderately respectable result. And thus, the widespread pitching woes continue for many fantasy managers.

At least I do have Moyer on one of my roto teams, the same team that also has Lowe. Needless to say, that team is doing well in the pitching categories. It just lacks power. But there's still plenty of time - assuming the season runs to completion. On the other hand, the way some of my teams are going this year, a strike would provide a graceful exit.

The Yankees provided a number of oddities for the day. It started when they put 2 Riveras on the DL, Juan and Mariano. Then Juan's replacement, Marcus Thames, homered on his first major league pitch (off Randy Johnson, to boot), only the 17th player to do so. (Does anyone have the list of those 17 players?) And then the dramatic 8th inning slam against Arizona, reminiscent of the last World Series. Quite a day in Yankee-land.

One final schedule-related note. Thursday (6/13) won't be a completely empty day after all. Cleveland and Baltimore managed to insert a last-minute make-up game, which your schedule may not reflect unless you updated it very recently. Jason Johnson against Chuck Finley. What better matchup to spend your new trades on?

6/10 - Last Tuesday, I pointed out the four starters who had yet to suffer a negative TSNP outing. Since then, Damian Moss fell from grace with a -22 on Friday night, and John Burkett held on by the narrowest of margins with a +1 yesterday.

Today is a rare Monday. As a frequent travel day, Mondays generally have reduced schedules. But everyone plays tonight, and there are some popular pitchers throwing as well, including Randy Johnson, Derek Lowe, Javier Vazquez, and Kerry Wood. Vazquez looks particularly tempting against Detroit, a team that has given opposing starters an average of +110 TSNP over the past 5 games. The only thing that gives me a little pause in that matchup is that Vazquez threw 123 pitches in his last start, and he hasn't fared as well in games after which he has thrown more than 115 pitches. So far this year, he has two such outings which produced 0 and 17 TSNP. Last year, outings following 115+ pitches resulted in +34, -53, +160, and -33 TSNP. Aside from that +160 (a complete game shutout over the Phillies on July 23), the numbers are not compelling. So tonight may be the true test of the Tigers' futility. If Vazquez shuts them down, then they really suck. If he has an uninspiring result, then the pitch count theory may be the issue. Either way, I've got my explanation lined up!

TSN has announced their midseason baseball games, which include both free and Ultimate versions. I'll soon set up a version of the sortable stats with draft prices, so you can begin to noodle if you wish. The seasons don't begin until after the All-Star break, so there is certainly no rush to figure out your lineup.

This is the last week for the first TSN Golf game. Season 2 begins next week, starting with the Greater Hartford Open. If you haven't tried this fantasy golf alternative, I recommend it as an interesting, low intensity game with a lot of subtle nuances. Season 1 was my first at fantasy golf, and I have a shot to crack the top 100. Not bad for a rookie. A lot of credit has to go to the folks at the golf message forum, where there are plenty of statistical tools, insights, and research. And there's no strike looming on the horizon!

6/7 - Last night's scheduled slate of 10 games got reduced to 8 due to lousy weather. Looking outside my window in New England this morning, I'd think that games in the northeast are doubtful for tonight. But if the weather forecast is right, the rains will move offshore this afternoon, and we'll get all of tonight's games in.

The weather didn't hurt Tom Glavine, though. Neither did the Mets. Glavine now ranks third in total TSNP for the year, behind only Schilling and Johnson. Yesterday's output of 92 TSNP was his worst result in his last five starts. Wish I'd have had him through that period.

The surprise pitcher of the day was probably Rolando Arrojo, who threw 7 shutout innings against the slumping Tigers in Detroit. I guess that matchup attracted some interest, as he broke free from gravity in yesterday's price change. Nice call.

Weather permitting, every team plays on each of the next six days, followed by a rare across-the-board off-day next Thursday. I presume that day is designed to quickly take care of any postponed interleague games during the next six days. (I guess we'll just have to watch the U.S. Open that day.) Then four days later, only one game is scheduled. With most teams having only 3 games during that 5-day period (6/13-17), we'll have to be careful about pitching rotations. I suspect some 5th starters will get skipped. Maybe even some 4th starters. Pay attention.

6/6 - I thought that I might have jinxed Derek Lowe when I pointed out on Tuesday that he was one of the few remaining starters who has not yet posted a negative TSNP game. But he instead hurled his seventh 3-digit start, a 110 TSNP 6-inning blowout over Detroit. Had the game been closer, he might have pitched longer, too.

Lowe wasn't the high point man for the night, though. Javier Vazquez, who had barely topped 100 TSNP in his last three games combined, finally cranked out a monster, good for 170 TSNP and 201 SvP. In looking at his game-by-game history this year, I see that he also belongs on the short list of pitchers without a negative TSNP outing. He did have a zero once, but the last time I checked, that's not a negative number.

Interleague play begins tomorrow, with matchups that we haven't had during the first few years of interleague scheduling. From a fantasy perspective, the biggest issue to watch relates to the lack of a DH when AL teams play in NL parks. That won't happen immediately, as the first two series are exclusively played in AL parks. But starting next Friday (6/14), every AL team plays three consecutive series in NL parks. Check you rosters, and if you have guys who stand to lose playing time, it's not too early to begin to plan ahead.

6/4 - No pitchers have been totally consistent this year. But Curt Schilling has come awfully close. Last night's 134 TSNP outing was his 10th 3-digit result in 13 starts. His three lesser outings produced 75, 63, and -15. Without that -15, his record would be unbelievable. I suppose it is, anyway.

Which begs the question, are there any starters who have avoided any negative TSNP outings so far this year? The answer is "yes". Among pitchers who have at least 7 starts this year, there are four who have thus far avoided red numbers:
Derek Lowe (11 starts)
Kazuhisa Ishii (11)
Damian Moss (11)
John Burkett (8)

Of that foursome, Lowe has been the best, with 6 games above 100, and an average of 96.5 TSNP/start. His worst outing was +24 TSNP on May 25. The most surprising name on this list is Damian Moss, who is only averaging 48.5 TSNP/start. His last start resulted in +4 TSNP, so he just barely made the cut.

Schilling has the most 3-digit starts, followed by Randy Johnson with 7. Like Schilling, Johnson has only one negative game. Pedro Martinez has six 3-digit starts, to match teammate Lowe. No one else has more than 5.

How about relievers? There are three relievers (with at least 10 appearances) that have never had a negative result:
Eric Gagne (28 appearances)
Byung-Hyun Kim (25)
Trevor Hoffman (20)

All three of those guys are averaging in the mid-30s. Gagne and Kim both appear on a fair number of rosters, but Hoffman has been mired in gravity for awhile.

Are these the guys to own if you want consistency? So far, they certainly are. They also might be the ones that the proverbial "law of averages" is bound to catch up with, especially if you are a firm believer in Murphy's Law.

Let me provide an early alert for tomorrow (Wednesday). I expect to be out almost all day. I'll get up before the crack of dawn to update stats, but I may not get back to my computer until late at night. This means that Wednesday's price updates won't get included in the sortable stats and Assimilator until very late. If you are planning roster moves tomorrow afternoon, just be aware. And I'll probably not post any blurb tomorrow either.

Back to normal on Thursday, though. Ciao!

6/3 - Know who the top hitting TSNP producer was for the past 7 days? It's a first baseman, and it's not Todd Helton.

Try Jim Thome, with 192 TSNP. Right behind him is another first baseman, Jeff Conine, who delivered 185 TSNP in just 6 games (vs. 7 for Thome). Interestingly, Helton ranks only 8th among first baseman, behind such other luminaries as Craig Wilson and Randall Simon (remember him?). And yet Helton ranks #20 for all hitters this week, so he hasn't exactly been slumping. Of the week's top 25 hitters, 10 are first basemen. So if you've been hanging in there with Erubiel Durazo this week, it's been costly from more than just a price standpoint.

I see that Curt Schilling has been battling strep throat this weekend. Sounds like he still might start tonight, but you should probably temper your expectations for his innings pitched. If you already have him, there's not much to do. But if you were going to pick him up for tonight, this gives you something to think about. Just what you needed, right?

I'll be out-of-office for most of this morning and afternoon, so price updates won't be posted in the sortable stats and Assimilator until late afternoon.

And by the way, Robert Person's hitting points on Sunday (which, of course, don't count) were 90 TSNP, 105 Swirve, and 67 PSC. Not quite Shawn Green dimensions, but it did qualify as the top hitting output for Sunday. And not too shabby, considering he only batted 3 times.

Click here for prior daily blurbs, by month:

2002: May. . . April. . . March . . . February . . . January

Click here for prior daily blurbs, by month:

2001: December . . . . . November . . . . . October . . . . . September . . . . . August . . . . . July . . . . . June . . . . . May . . . . . April . . . . . March . . . . . February . . . . . January

2000: December . . . . . November . . . . . October . . . . . September . . . . . August . . . . . July . . . . . June . . . . . May . . . . . April . . . . . March . . . . . February . . . . . January

1999: December . . . . . November . . . . . October . . . . . September . . . . . August . . . . . July . . . . . June . . . . . May . . . . . April . . . . . March . . . . . February . . . . . January

1998: December . . . . . November . . . . . October . . . . . September . . . . August . . . . . July . . . . . June . . . . . May . . . . . April . . . . . March

RotoGuru is produced by Dave Hall (a.k.a. the Guru), an avid fantasy sports player. He is neither employed by nor compensated by any of the fantasy sports games discussed within this site, and all opinions expressed are solely his own. Questions or comments are welcome, and should be emailed to Guru<>.

© Copyright 1998-2002 by Uncommon Cents, LLC. All rights reserved.