Thursday, July 31, 2014

Welcome Aboard, Tommy Milone!

You know what's awesome?  Getting a serviceable, if back of the rotation, starting pitcher in exchange for a completely expendable outfielder you signed off waivers for nothing.  In a complete coincidence to what I just posted, the Twins picked up Tommy Milone today in exchange for Sam Fuld in a trade with the A's, the team who waived Fuld earlier this year.  But Oakland needed another outfielder after trading Yeonis Cespedes, and had more starters than one team needs after acquiring Jon Lester, Jeff Samardzjia, and Jason Hammel in trades, so off Milone went and the Twins were the lucky recipient.

Don't get me wrong, Milone is probably not going to win a Cy Young any time soon, but he's made 78 career starts, been in Oakland's rotation for the past 3 years, and has put up an ERA of 3.84, a WHIP of 1.26, and a FIP of 4.13 - solid #4 starter numbers on a contending team.  The big knock on him is he doesn't throw very hard (average velocity 86.5mph on his fastball) and as a result doesn't strike anyone out (5.7 K/9 this season), and he's an extreme fly ball pitcher.  Those K numbers, however, fit in right with the rest of the starters, and Phil Hughes is also an extreme fly ball pitcher and playing in a pitcher's park like Target Field has worked out for him for the most part.  He's a solid pitcher, and he's under team control through 2017.  Really, a quality acquisition by the Twins, especially since they had to give up just Fuld.

Not that Fuld is worthless - he's not or Billy Beane wouldn't want him - he's just not going to be a part of the Twins future as contenders, whenever that may be (hopefully 2016) and as such was expendable.  He's a serviceable hitter with a keen batting eye who can run well and is an excellent fielder.  He should serve the A's well as a fourth outfielder/pinch runner/defensive replacement type, but the Twins really had no need for him.  Plus maybe this means Aaron Hicks gets another chance.  You guys know he's going to be a superstar, right?

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Two Fake Sharks for the Price of One (A DWG Live Movie Blog)

Sup dudes.  Been a long time since we've watched a stupid movie.  Since I refuse to watch Sharknado 2 because it's a blatant cash grab that's intentionally stupid, I'll fill that void by watching something on Netflix.  And not just any something, but something called Mega Shark vs. Mecha Shark.  If you think this is the stupidest sounding movie you've ever heard of, well, it is.  Let's rock and roll anyway.

-  I would give you the synopsis of the movie here, but I don't think the title left any great mysteries.

-  We're starting in Egypt.  Maybe there's a giant shark encased in a pyramid or something.  Don't tell me one of these movies wouldn't jump all over that idea.

-  This boat is towing part of a glacier.  Is that a thing?  Then the glacier breaks and a giant shark broke free and it appears to be the size of a house.  I'm guessing this is the titular Mega Shark.  It then flipped its tail which sent the boat flying into the desert where it hit the Sphinx and knocked its head off.  I'm already regretting my decision to watch this.

-  All sea traffic and air traffic has been suspended in the whole world because of the shark.  That seems a bit drastic.

-  The UN "is working on a weapon to combat the giant shark."  I bet I know what it is, and I bet I'm going to hate my life for the next hour and a half.

-  And boom.  Mecha Shark, piloted by hot blonde scientist who used to be on Law and Order and speaks in a total monotone.  So we're six minutes in and we already have our sharks.  What's left to do?  Oh, right.  They probably battle for an hour and 24 minutes.  This was a really bad idea.

-  Mecha Shark just got attacked by two giant squids, which don't eat sharks, wouldn't attack a hunk of metal that didn't smell like food, and don't attack in pairs.  So we got that going for us.  Mecha Shark wins by the blonde lady switching to either "Eel Skin" or "Seal Skin" and something changed on the outside of the shark sub and the two squid went flying away.  I was going to rewind to figure out what she said but since neither makes even a lick of sense I figured why bother.

-  Mecha shark has torpedos.  Feels like cheating.

-  Ooh, there's a new version of the shark sub that hasn't had it's artificial intelligence program installed or had sea trials done, but the guy in charge says they have to get moving because "that thing killed my brother, and I don't like to lose" and hot blonde is like "let's go" and her husband is like "wait no" but she does it any way.  Women.

-  Lobster boat captain steals a line from Jaws, "Harbor master going to have a heart attack when sees what we brung him" which is probably meant as an homage but screw this movie.  Then the megalodon ate the boat.  Good.  Screw those guys.

-  Husband guy is going to known as Hootie.

-  Wait how was their a lobster boat on the water when all sea traffic has been banned?  Anarchy.

-  Holy shit Debbie Gibson!  Debbie Gibson!  I'm going to have to look up if she's playing the same character from that other movie or that other one, but she's definitely playing a scientist who must informed the Navy that the meg wouldn't be going anywhere without a mate so they're going to be dealing with one horny shark.  Yeah that happened.

-  It's a pretty fancy sub.  Looks like shark but it's all computer-y inside.  Too bad it's going to get raped.

-  Ooh the two sharks found each other.  First encounter.  This is like when Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man meet after level 2.

-  Robo Shark just hit real shark with a tracking tag.  Is that shark foreplay?

-  I can't figure out what happened here.  Some other sub, not the shark sub, was there and fired a torpedo at the real shark and hit it.  Then a torpedo started flying the other way and it hit that sub and it died.  I am not nearly drunk enough to not be able to figure this out if it made sense, so I'm going to assume it didn't make sense.  I also spent WAY to much time rewinding, which is just prolonging how far the end of this movie is.

-  So Debbie Gibson is playing the same character from Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus, who was different from her character in Mega Python vs. Gatoroid.  She's got a ton of range.

-  Admiral guy, "I had friends on that sub."  This guy is really hung up on his friends dying.  What a pussy.  I still have no idea what happened to blow that sub up.  I'm going to assume the shark swallowed the torpedo and then barfed it back up at the sub.  Makes as much sense as whatever their actual explanation is.

-  OMG hot blonde lady pilot with the baritone has a bottle of vodka in her travel bag.  Like I wasn't already in love.

-  This megalodon is hyper aggressive.  It just ate an oil platform.  Because that's what sharks do, you see, eat things that in no way resemble their natural prey.  Nature's serial killers, that's what I always say.

-  One hour left.

-  Ok so remember how the sub didn't do "pressure tests" or whatever?  Well they just did this horrible scene where the pressure started affecting the systems and everyone was worried it would sink.  Luckily everything worked out ok and they docked it and started fixing the problem.  Ha ha just kidding after everything seemed regular again they started chumming to attract the meg again.

-  Now there's an oil leak.  This movie is moving at 100 miles per hour, but it's terrible.  Like putting an asian woman in a race car.

-  Some plane had a fuel emergency and needed to divert to some island that was in "restricted air space."  Naturally the meg jumped out of the water to try to eat it because that makes sense since a shark that just de-froze from a glacier would know that planes = food, but even better the shark sub followed it up into the air and bumped it off course like some kind of fancy hockey goalie guy so the plane was safe.  That was one of the dumbest things I've ever seen, and even worse I can picture two SyFy executives high fiving about it.

-  Megs mad about not getting eat a bunch of metal and fuel, so it attacks the shark sub, which fires a torpedo at it, which then gets slapped away by the Meg with its tail (this must be what happened early and totally makes sense because this is the kind of thing sharks do all the time in real life).  And it hits some aircraft carrier that was there and everyone dies.  I bet that admiral guy had friends on that boat.

-  This real shark is a lot more bitey than that fake shark.

-  Ok so the real shark was riding the fake share like rubbing up on its side and stuff (probably horny) and the monotone chick decided to remedy this by firing a torpedo into an underwater mountain which makes lots of rocks and stuff fall.  Those rocks and stuff sank the sub and knocked out the communications equipment.  And I'm guessing missed the real shark since there are 45 minutes left of this crap.

-  Wait it only knocked out the communications for 3 minutes.  This movie is horrible.

-  I bet the admiral had friends on that shark sub.

-  Totally horrible throw-away scene about launching fighter jets top gun style.  I wish could write more but honestly there's no way to do it justice.

-  Somehow that artificial intelligence program that's park of shark sub got the shark sub working again even though hot blonde who speaks in a monotone is still unconscious.  That AI thing almost has to turn evil at some point, right?  Isn't that the whole point of putting an AI program in a movie?

-  You want to know why this shark is attacking aircraft carriers like it's doing right now?  Because of the high frequency emitters.  Damn those commercial airplanes for testing their high frequency emitters.

-  So then the aircraft carrier currently under attack turns off it's high frequency emitters or whatever and then the shark jumps on top of the carrier and breaks it in half.  I don't know.  Shit's gotten really weird.

-  Blonde girl is still knocked out, according to the admiral the "only two other pilots who can pilot that sub were on that aircraft carrier and are now dead" (probably friends of his) and the AI program is agitating to go out on it's own.  That can't be good.  Everyone knows you can't trust machines.  My oven burns me every chance it gets.

-  Oh.  My.  God.  They let the AI program take the shark sub out by itself.  And get this.  IT HASN'T BEEN DEBUGGED.  David Kahn must be in charge over there.

-   The sharks are fighting and it looks as dumb as you'd think.  I still haven't figured out why this dumbass fish is attacking a robot.  I know the horny theory, but I'm pretty sure you need pheremones or something like that.  Or at least high frequency emitters.

-  Blondie is now pouring the vodka down the drain (which makes my heart hurt).  So that plot point never had anything to do with anything.  She never took a drink.  It never came up in conversation.  I feel like they're just toying with me.

-  37 minutes to go!

-  Debbie's back!

-  She knows where the Meg is heading, which seems like something they don't need to know since it seems to follow the shark sub like it's stuck in the friend zone.  He's heading towards Sydney, Australia because millions of years ago it was a Megalodon breeding ground.  I guess he really is horny.

-  Text from Snacks, "I get so bored watching most of these breaking bad episodes."  What's the procedure for disowning a brother?  Or murder?

-  Jesus another aircraft carrier.  And remember those fighter jets from before I referenced?  Either nothing happened with them or I wasn't paying enough attention and missed it.  Both equally likely.

-  AI program questioning its masters.  WHO COULD HAVE SEEN THIS COMING?

-  They need to get the sub there because if the meg shows up and there are no females it's going to be pissed.  I don't really think sharks have the capacity to get pissed, but even better they're evacuating Sydney.  The city.  Not the harbor, the city.  On land.  The people on land have to evacuate because a horny shark is in the water.  On land.  The people on land.  Because of a shark.

-  Shark showed up.  Did that thing again where it jumps in the air and lands on an aircraft carrier and it explodes.  Maybe it thought the ship was a female shark and it was going for some kind of fancy pile driver move.  I don't know.  I need to invent a new word for this movie.

-  Some lady can't find her daughter during the evacuation so blond monotone lady is going to help find her.  Nice work mom.

-  Shark just rammed the Sydney Opera House.  Probably on account of the high frequency flutes.  Or horny.  I had friends in that opera house.

-  Blonde lady found the kid who is now running away from her.  I would too.  She's clearly some kind of robot with all the monotone and stuff.

-  Once again, Debbie Gibson makes the point that the shark is horny and won't leave without a mate.  So basically the AI is going to decide to become a real shark and then it and the actual real shark and going to swim off into the sunset to go screw, right?  25 minutes!

-  Wait so now the metal shark (in full rogue, ignoring it's human masters, not responding to computer commands mode) jumped onto the remains of the opera house.  This movie is worse than Hitler.

-  Ok so there are two robot sharks now.  One must be the earlier model from the beginning of the movie.  I don't know.  I clearly missed something.  Maybe that would be the key to making this movie not horrible.  I'm terrible at movies.

-  Holy crap the rogue sub shark thing apparently has an "amphibious mode" and it just went all transformers on the bit (while ignoring its human masters) and it now has tank treads for feet and it's now rolling through the streets of Sydney eating stuff.  I apologize for making fun of the whole "city evacuation" thing earlier.  Clearly the admiral saw this coming.

-  For some reason blondie and Hootie have that kid from earlier, who is supposed to be six years old but is like 5 feet tall.  The mom isn't there and since she said "I'm not leaving without my daughter" I assume she's dead now.  Way to go Hootie.  First you ruin music, now this.

-  Everything's on fire.  I have no idea.

-  Debbie Gibson's plan is to get tank sub shark back in the water and then the meg will think it's a mate.  That's the whole plan.  Maybe a real shark humping a mechanical shark will make them both die.  That seems to be her plan.  Pretty hot in those playboy pics back when though.

-  They found the mom.  Another plot point that really went nowhere.  This is like shakespeare.

-  OMG you guys the shark sub has high frequency emitters on board!  Blonde lady can trigger them if she just can get on board the tank shark sub thing.  Which she did by jumping in its mouth.  Honest to god, I've watched some really bad movies, but I just don't even.

-  Man nothing went right for the Navy.  Not since Beau Morgan spurned them for Air Force has the Navy faced such a disaster.

-  Admiral guy is dropping depth charges on the real shark.  I feel like people really aren't communicating effectively here.

-  Speaking of Admiral, he just started firing a hand gun at the shark.  Fucking brilliant.  Guess what the shark did?  Yep, it jumped on the aircraft carrier (AGAIN!) which caused to explode.  The admiral had a lot of himself on that boat.

-  I will say the CGI shark actually looks better than anything else I've seen out of these shitty movies throughout the years.  I think that's where the budget for plot and writing and directing and choreography went.

-  All the Navy planes and stuff are shooting missiles at sub shark, which currently contains blonde lady.  Hootie's not happy.  Those two sentences make me hate my blog.

-  I rewound this twice to get it right, but the reason the AI malfunctioned is because of a "the system was hijacked my a drone mode overlay."  When I was younger I would have looked this up to figure out if it was a real thing, but at this point I"m going to assume it's not.  Much like all the rest of this scene where they throw out fancy words like "I need you to empty the jump stores."  Jump stores can't be a thing right?  At least not a computer thing.  I mean maybe you could go to a jump store and get fancy shoes like Reebok pumps or a trampoline or something, but it's can't be computer related.

-  I'm sure there was a reason for this but the real shark bit the fake shark and they both exploded and I admit to not knowing why but everything bad is dead.  This movie gave me glaucoma.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Adios, Kendrys. We hardly knew ya.

The Twins got the ball rolling today, trading Kendrys Morales, one of the three guys I said absolutely must be traded at this deadline, to the Seattle Mariners for middle reliever Stephen Pryor.

Morales was a bit of a weird signing by the Twins, grabbing him mid-season after his "you have to give up your #1 pick if you sign him status" had expired for $7 million.  It didn't make a ton of sense to me because the Twins don't really throw around that kind of money, they already had a glut of slow DH/1B/corner OF types, and signing someone like Morales seemed like the kind of move a team on the verge of the playoffs would make, which the Twins clearly weren't.  Then again, at the time I said it makes sense to see if he can move the needle on your offense at all, and if not hope you can flip him at the deadline, so all-in-all a good signing.

Naturally Morales didn't really cooperate.  After a hot start he's now hitting .234/.259/.325, by the far the worst season of his career (you probably don't remember this, but back in 2009 he finished 5th in AL MVP voting).  He's never OPSed below .785 in a full season, yet is at .584 this year with just one home run in 162 plate appearances.  He's basically been a disaster at the plate, walking at about half his career rate while popping up twice as often, and combined with poor defense he's actually played at a level below replacement level this year.  Obviously this kind of performance torpedoed his value in the trade market, but the Twins were at least able to get back a young, capable reliever who is somewhat proven and under their control through 2018.

Seattle drafted Pryor as a reliever in the 5th round of the 2010 draft, and although he was never at the top of any of their prospect ratings on the lists I saw he usually fell somewhere in the teens.  He was a definite strikeout pitcher in the low minors, appearing in the closer role and putting up K/9 numbers in the 14s and 15s.  Those numbers dipped as his competition level increased, but remained respectably around 10, however his walks went up to a concerning level.  In 2013 he got hit with a couple of injuries and ended up only throwing 11 innings between the majors and minors, and has spent most of this season at AAA, with a little bit of time in AA and one appearance of 1.2 innings in the majors (against the Twins).

In 31 innings at Tacoma (AAA) he struck out 27 and walked 18, a horrible ratio, which helped lead to a 1.42 WHIP and 4.65 ERA.  Really though that's not the point because he's clearly a different pitcher since the injuries.  His fastball in 2012 averaged 96.3 mph.  His fastball this year, his first back from the injury, averaged just 91.7 mph.  That is a major, major drop.  I realize his 1.2 innings in the majors this year is a teeny tiny sample size, but he did throw 23 fastballs so it's not completely insignificant either, and the reduction in strikeouts in the minors, just 7.8 per nine this year, backs it up.

So the Twins traded Morales for a bit of a gamble, a bit of a reclamation project, but one with significant upside.  If he returns to his pre-injury form he has closer potential, perhaps even as Glen Perkins replacement when he gets too expensive.  If he never recovers, all you've lost is a couple months of a player who you weren't going to re-sign anyway, and who wasn't that good this season any way.  Would have been nice if Morales would have actually, you know, hit this year and the Twins could have nabbed a mid-level type of prospect at least, but this is a worthwhile gamble, for sure.  Now let's hurry up and trade Josh Willingham to the Royals for Christian Binford, Kurt Suzuki to the Orioles for Mike Wright and Drew Dosch, and Jared Burton to the Blue Jays for L.B. Dantzler.

It's going to be awesome if any of those trades actually happen.

FUN FACT:  Remember in 2012 when Seattle pitched that weird no-hitter with six pitchers being involved?  Kevin Millwood started and pitched 6 no hit innings, but then hurt his groin and couldn't continue so six relievers came on and closed out with a combined 3 more no hit innings.  Those relievers were Charlie Furbush (tee hee), Lucas Luetge, Brandon League, Tom Wilhelmsen, and............Stephen Pryor.  Yep, our Stephen Pryor.  He pitched two thirds of inning, walking two guys before getting a strikeout to close out the seventh.

And he got the win.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Welcome aboard, Kevin Dorsey!

Well that happened quick.  Last week, Kevin Dorsey (the #97 ranked player and #17 PG according to 247sports industry composite ranking) came out and said he was down to Minnesota, Maryland, and Nebraska.  All the experts said he was a Maryland lean.  Then on Monday I got an email tipping me off to the fact that in all the excitement that was my nephew's 2nd birthday party on Saturday I missed that Dorsey chose the Gophers.  So welcome aboard Kevin Dorsey, a great start to the class of 2015 for Richard Pitino.

Dorsey is a great get, not just because, depending on who you ask, he could be the highest rated Minnesota recruit since Royce White and top rated pure PG in a super long time, but also because he continues a trend of Pitino grabbing players who fit the system he wants to run, but this time with a little more pedigree to go with it.  Dorsey is a lightning quick, can get into the lane in a flash, passes well, and is already a great defender.  Sounds about right.

It sounds like he's not exactly going to set the world on fire with his jump shooting at this point, but he's known as a great finisher around the rim, and Nate Mason and Zach Lofton should be able to shoot well enough along with whoever else comes in 2015.  It's worth trading shooting for all the other skills he brings to the table, and if he ends up somewhere between an Al Nolen and a Rajon Rondo we should all be pretty happy.

With, I think, 4 scholarships available for 2015, getting a quick early signing from a highly regarded player is a good step in the right direction.  Jarvis Johnson, the highly rated and talented De La Salle point guard, is still in play as Pitino pushes the idea of creating a Russ Smith/Peyton Siva or Shabazz Napier/Ryan Boatright kind of back court - you know, the guards for the last two National Champions.  Getting Johnson, Alex Illikainen, and Chris Clarke would be an absolutely amazing class.  Clarke is quickly rising up recruiting rankings, however, so hopefully the Gophers can grab a quick commitment before more heavy hitters get involved.

Plenty of other back-up plans out there as well, and rather than rehash everything you can read this terrific round-up from the Gopher Report.  Should be a fun summer, and suddenly there's a lot more optimism in the air.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Twins and the Trade Deadline

We're nearly at the all-star break, which means we're a fair way past the first half of the season but everyone's required to refer to it as the first half anyway.  It's also a good time to look back on what has transpired thus far and what I hope to see in the 2nd half, mainly because that's what everyone does at the all-star break.  The most exciting part of the second half for a non-contending team is the trade deadline, so here's what the Twins should be looking to do:

First off, the Twins are not contending for the Wild Card, so put that out of your silly little head right now.  They are currently 9.5 out of the second Wild Card spot with six teams either ahead of tied with them.  It's not happening, no matter how optimistic Dan Gladden wants you to be.  In that case, the Twins need to be ready and willing to sell off anybody and everybody who isn't a clear part of their future plans.  That means everybody outside of Joe Mauer (untradeable in any case), Brian Dozier, Danny Santana, Oswaldo Arcia, Kyle Gibson, and probably Eduardo Escobar (just in case he's actually good) should be available for the right trade, and yes I'm including Glen Perkins.

Perkins is an elite level closer - yes elite - who is having the unluckiest year of his career (career high BABIP and career low LOB%) and is still putting up good numbers including a career best K/9 and BB/9.  Considering he'll make just about $17 million through 2017 with a team option for $6.5 mil in 2018, he's an extremely valuable commodity - assuming you can find a team who overvalues relief pitching.  The Twins won't be a contender until at least 2016 in my opinion, so if you can get a monster offer for Perkins you have two more seasons to develop a new closer.  The Tigers, Jays, Yankees, and Angels all rank in the bottom 10 in the majors in bullpen ERA and all have deep pockets and are known to make splashy moves when deemed necessary.  It's probably worth making a phone call, or at least answering the phone.

The other player I'd consider tradeable, but only for a great offer is Phil Hughes.  Not because I think he's suddenly become Cy Young, but because you do need to field a full rotation next season and with any luck they find a way to unload Ricky Nolasco and Kevin Correia for.......something.  Hughes has looked rejuvenated this year, and there's enough behind his numbers to at least suggest this isn't a fluke.  He's signed to a very affordable deal ($8m per) and is signed through 2016, so if the Twins hold on to him they'll have him through that first season where I'm hoping they're competing for a playoff spot (2016).

The only other guy I would even consider holding out and passing on trading if you don't get a really good offer is Trevor Plouffe.  It's pretty clear who he is at this point - a .240ish hitter with good pop, decent plate discipline, and decent defense at 3B - not a monster asset but a pretty decent player.  Considering he's under team control through 2017 and is making just $2.4m he's a pretty good value, so there's no reason to rush on him.  That being said, with Miguel Sano theoretically on the way and hopefully entrenched at third by 2016, he's not a necessary cog so any above market trade offer should be jumped on.

Literally everyone else is eminently tradeable, although most either have an unwieldy contract (Nolasco) or are just plain old too crappy to be considered desirable by anyone (everyone else).  Two guys who should hold enough value who absolutely need to be traded are Josh Willingham and Kurt Suzuki.  Willingham is a free agent after this season and it's doubtful the Twins will resign him, so come trade deadline dangle him out there and take whatever the top offer is - there's absolutely zero reason for Willingham to finish the season on the Twins' roster.

Suzuki is a bit more complicated, given that he's having a career year, made the All-Star team, and seems so much like Gardy's kind of guy it's actually painful.  On the other hand, he's on a one year deal and some of his numbers look pretty fluky.  Suzuki could be an ideal fill-in for a contending team needing catching help, whether just for depth or because of an injury, and Suzuki has hit well enough this year that he could offer help at DH or simply pinch hitting as well.  The Orioles lead the AL East but have very little at catcher now that they've lost Matt Wieters, while they're getting chased by Toronto who has gotten nothing this year from the position.  The Dodgers are another potential trade partner considering Drew Butera leads all Dodger catchers in plate appearances this season.

In the bullpen there's probably some potential to move Jared Burton, Casey Fien, and Brian Duensing.  Burton is putting up career worst numbers but should have enough of a track record to garner some interest from a pitching starved quasi-contender.  He's on the hook for a $3.6m team option next year with a buyout of just $200k, so it's not like any team would be making a major investment to acquire him. Fien is putting up his third straight solid season and is under team control all the way through 2018 so I could see holding on to him - maybe he's the future closer if they get a overwhelming offer for Perkins and actually pull the trigger.  Duensing has pretty much established who he is at this point, but his ERA is at his career low even if his peripherals aren't any better than usual and he's been very good against lefties in his career so he could draw some interest.  Hopefully.

Simply put, the Twins aren't going anywhere for at least another season and they have enough trade chips here that they should make this next month pretty interesting - SHOULD.  Willingham and Suzuki really should be traded and if the management likes them that much they'll have the opportunity to bring them back a la Rick Aguilera.  At least one out of Burton and Duensing should be traded, and there are other guys who could draw interest including blockbuster potential with Perkins.  It should be fun leading up to the trade deadline.  Yet somehow I get the feeling it will be all anticipation with no pay-off.  Again.  At some point this organization needs to realize they aren't developing players like they used to, and get more aggressive with trades and free agency (to be fair we did see a little of this last offseason) in order to get back to being competitive.  Or just keep missing the playoffs.

[EDIT:  Just realized I somehow completely forgot Kendrys Morales.  Absolutely needs to be traded.  Hopefully he gets hot again.]

Monday, July 7, 2014

Guest Post Time! Early Look at NBA Rookies.

Since I'm swamped lately, a nice guest post for you all by Nathan Shellstein

Early Rookie Projections For Fantasy Basketball

The 2014 NBA draft received quite a bit of hype prior to the event, and now we finally know who will be playing where. Trusting a rookie in fantasy basketball can be a bit risky, but there are going to be a few worth taking a gamble on. Here is a closer look at what to expect out of the guys expected to do the most in 2014-2015.

Jabari Parker

Before the draft was even held, many thought that Parker would be the most NBA ready to play at a high level. He is already a very efficient scorer, and he is going to go to the Milwaukee Bucks and be a main threat from day one. The only issues with him right now happen to be on defense, so that is good news for anyone in fantasy basketball.

Julius Randle

Even though he slipped to the 7th overall pick in the draft, Randle is going to be going to a perfect situation with the Los Angeles Lakers. No one knows what the lineup is going to look like just yet, but he should get playing time in the post. With refined post moves and a big, NBA body already, it could be time for him to take off.

Andrew Wiggins

The wing player is raw, but extremely talented. He should be able to scratch the surface of his potential as a rookie, simply because he will be surrounded by other solid players. Kyrie Irving surrounding him means that he won’t have to be the best fantasy basketball player for Cleveland, but he will still get plenty of chances to score.

Nik Stauskas

Quite a few people thought it was a reach for the Sacramento Kings to take Stauskas with the 8th overall pick. However, he certainly fits into the system they have right now as a shooter they desperately need. As long as the other players actually pass him the ball, he should put up some decent numbers as a late round pick in fantasy basketball.

Elfrid Payton

There are still some things for him to work on, but the point guard will have an opportunity to start right away for the Orlando Magic now that Jameer Nelson is out of the picture. This is a guy who really needs to work on a shooting, but he will put up decent numbers elsewhere for a point guard. The fact that he is going to be getting solid minutes makes him a rookie of the year candidate.