Tuesday, July 29, 2008

HARL Stats for 7/27 are now Online

Hi Gang,
The HARL stats reports for 7/27 (stat period 17) are now online. Enjoy them! This week's reports include IMPACT RATINGS for hitters and pitchers, Team Stats for the month of July (from 6/30 thru 7/27 to be precise), and a corresponding Team Points Comparison over that same timeframe. Some interesting stuff to peruse to be sure.
It's hard to conceive, but there's only 5 weeks left in the HARL Regular Season (including this one). That means:
  • The HARL Trading Deadline approaches. It falls on AUGUST 11 this year. That gives you just 2 more weeks to swing any late season fantasy trades. It's been a very quiet year trade-wise. I'm not sure if it's just extreme conservatism due to a year where the point standings are pretty tight, with 7-8 teams battling for FIVE playoff spots. Or maybe it's simply owner apathy or mistrust of the other guys trying to screw you! Perhaps there just haven't been enough "good matches" between teams -- roster makeup, injuries, and what's available in the free agent pool all have a significant effect on trading. Whatever it is, I'm not clairvoyant enough to put my finger on the exact reason.     
  • The HARL Playoffs begin on SEPTEMBER 1st (Labor Day). The top 5 finishers as of the 8/31 stats will make the playoffs. At that point, the stats slate is wiped clean and it's a 4-week race to see who can accumulate the most points and win the coveted HARL Championship. Unless disaster strikes, I've gotta believe that the Cobras and Jokers will be 2 of those 5 teams. The rest is up in the air right now, coming down to a 5-week push through the Dog Days of August to see who plays in September and who sits on their couch and turns their attention to football and other pursuits.   
It has been quite a strange year in many respects. I've had an extremely busy summer and baseball (among other things) has moved by me like a blur. I haven't watched as many games as I've liked, although I've been fortunate enough to attend a handful of Phillies games this season (got another one coming up in early August). I've followed my team's stats via the box scores religiously, but I really haven't spent any appreciable time analyzing my strengths/weaknesses and formulating trades. It shows too. 
My offense has been pretty good (I expected it to be better though as Beltran and Weeks have really underperformed, and Andruw Jones has been a monumental bust). But my pitching has sucked more than a giant sponge in the Atlantic Ocean. Hindsights shows that I was too patient hoping for a statistical rebound from key starters like Francis and Gorzelanny, and now I've dug myself a huge hole in ERA and WHIP that I cannot possibly recover from. Pitching has been my Achilles Heel all season long, although my Fielding is starting to catch up with it! 
So I've sort of had a laissez faire attitude to my roster in some regards (although I have still mined for free agents, but have been outbid on several key ones). Perhaps 22 years of continual play and running the league has caught up to me? I still enjoy rotisserie baseball and want to win, but the excitement hasn't been as palpable for me this season for several reasons (I'll spare you the details). Part of it might just be frustration with my team as well. Life is always more exciting when you're contending for 1st Place. 
Speaking of 1st Place, it's unusual to see the COBRAS and JOKERS sitting 1-2 in the standings. I think it's good to see new faces atop the leaderboard. I'm pretty sure that Jack is enjoying his success. I'm not sure what's up with Cobra Mike. His wife is expecting in September and I believe it's been another busy year for him preparing his home for the new arrival. I'm not sure baseball is at the top of his mind right now. He's fortunate that his team has been fairly healthy most of the year and that his cheap holdover guys have played extremely well (hello Ryan Braun and Tim Lincecum). Getting Fred Lewis off the free agent heap early in the season was also a super move. It will be interesting to see if Mike can hold onto 1st Place thru Labor Day. I'm sure he'd like that prize money. Baby needs some new shoes! 
That's all for now.... Talk to ya later. 

Monday, July 28, 2008

FAD Results for the Night of JULY 27

Sunday Night FAD Results:
  1. CASEY BLAKE     3B-LA  3.20  MAYGAMERS   (TOP=4.55, NEXT=3.15 RHINOS)
  2. JOEL HANRAHAN   RP-WAS  .05  GRILLERS    (TOP=1.30)
  3. MIKE HAMPTON    SP-ATL  .05  RHINOS      (TOP=1.00)
  6. JOE NELSON      RP-FLA  .05  MUDHENS     (TOP= .50)
  7. JOSE TABATA     OF-PIT  .25  GRILLERS    (TOP= .30, NEXT=.20 RHINOS)
Lotsa bids on Casey Blake this week...
  • $4.55    = MAYGAMERS
  • $3.15    = RHINOS
  • $2.55    = GAMBLERS
  • $2.50    = MUDHENS
  • $2.50    = GRILLERS
  • $2.15    = BREWSKIS
  • $2.15    = JOKERS
MLB Trading Deadline is this coming THURSDAY. Send us some more good AL players to bid on!!!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Brewskis Additional Drops

The BREWSKIS had to drop 2 guys to get down to the 15-man Reserve/DL limit.
They dropped:
  • John Smoltz
  • John Lieber
These guys are now available on the WAIVER WIRE

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

HARL Stats Posted!

Hi Guys...
HARL Stats thru 7/21 have been posted. I kept to just the basic stuff this week (so there's only 10 web reports) since last week was only a HALF WEEK due to the All Star Break and there wasn't a lot of stats accumulated.
Anyway, there ya have it. It's been a hectic past 2 weeks for me, and I really haven't had any time to focus on rotisserie baseball. Soooo... I really have nothing to write this week. These are the times when I wish we had a "communal blog" and someone else (or several other team owners) could step in and write commentary instead of me. Maybe some day...
Anyway.... COBRAS are in 1st Place!!! Although Head Snake Boy Mike Hughes hasn't said a peep lately. I suppose he's full blown into "baby prep" as his wife Karen is expecting fairly soon. Let me know what's up MIKE!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Sunday Night's FAD Results

FAD Results for Sunday, JULY 20:
  1. JOE BLANTON    SP-PHI  2.20  ASSASSINS    (TOP=2.45, NEXT=2.15 RHINOS)
  3. IVAN OCHOA     2B-SF    .05  BREWSKIS     (TOP= .25)
Everyone else bid on Joe Blanton and was outbid. Bids included Rhinos @ $2.15, Grillers @ $1.95, Jokers @ $1.10, and
Maygamers @ .95.

Saturday Waiver Claims

Waiver Claims from Saturday:
  1. Scott Podsednik        OF-COL    BREWSKIS
  2. Johnny Estrada          C-WAS    RHINOS
Commissioner... Out!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Rule Change Proposals

I'm not sure when I'll get to revisiting my proposed ideas for HARL rule changes. I've just been too busy with other things over the past month (especially game design work) to really give it any additional thought. So it's being put on the backburner until I have enough free time to address it. That's sure not going to be this week (got playtesting and a wargame convention coming up).
Anyway, just wanted you guys to know what's happening on that front. It's weird, but my usually relaxing summer doesn't feel relaxing at all this year. Guess that's just life in 2008!
Kennesaw Mountain BigHorn
HARL Commissioner

HARL Web Reports Posted

HARL web reports for the All Star Break have now been posted. 

Friday, July 18, 2008

All-Star Break PSR Reports

The PSR reports set for the ALL STAR BREAK have been posted for download at HARL Central.
The reports include YTD Dollar Values for all HARL batters and pitchers.
WEB reports will be posted later on (either FRI Night or SAT morning).

Monday, July 14, 2008

HARL FAD Results -- JULY 14

All-Star Break FAD Results:
  5. CHAD GAUDIN    RP-CHC   .15  RHINOS     (HIGH= .80, 2ND= .10 GAMBLERS) 
  6. JOHN BAKER      C-FLA   .15  LEMMINGS   (HIGH= .55, 2ND= .10 MAYGAMERS) 
  7. NICK EVANS     OF-NYM   .05  GAMBLERS   (HIGH= .15)
  9. ALEX ROMERO    OF-ARZ   .05  ASSASSINS  (HIGH= .10) 
As expected, lots of bids on the 2 AL import pitchers this week, and some solid bidding on Fernando Tatis as well. 
SABATHIA = $4.50 (Lemmings), $4.15 (Stampeders), $4.05 (Gamblers), $2.75 (Assassins), $2.45 (Maygamers),
$2.10 (Jokers), $2.05 (Rhinos), $2.00 (Grillers). 
HARDEN = $4.20 (Lemmings), $4.15 (Stampeders), $4.05 (Gamblers), $3.00 (Assassins), $2.50 (Jokers),
$2.45 (Maygamers), $2.05 (Rhinos), $2.00 (Grillers).
Enjoy the ALL STAR break! Remember, your roster moves are not due until THURSDAY NITE (7 PM) this week.     

Sunday, July 13, 2008

All- Star Break Deadlines

Since it's the ALL STAR BREAK, there are 2 things I wanted to make note of:
  1. I will do the FAD results on MONDAY afternoon (once I complete my morning stats service work and after lunch).
  2. You do NOT need to send your ROSTER MOVES in for this week until THURSDAY NIGHT at 7 PM. That's because there are no NL games on Mon/Tue/Wed due to the All-Star Break. 

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Stats N Stuff

About 40 minutes ago, I was crunching numbers & editing web reports and babbling all kinds of really interesting stuff about HARL to myself while I was at it. And then it hit me like a ton of bricks... MENTAL FATIGUE.... BURNOUT.... TIREDNESS.... You know, that sudden yawning feeling that follows the 15 minutes of utter ephoria you feel after you've slept with the entire squad of Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. Okay, maybe you don't know that feeling. I'm not a MAN WHORE either. But at least you get the general idea.
Geoff and I spent the whole day creatively playing with numbers trying to devise a sensible point value system for the wargame me and the guys have been developing for the last few years. Yeah years. So it wasn't a simple task. I'm starting to see tiny yellow octal digits (0 to 8) float across my field of vision when I close my eyes. I'd rather see boobies. But then, that's just me.
Anyway, I'll save any meaty commentary for another time and just leave you with some dribs & drabs of random thoughts before I go doze off for the night. My pillow is looking good right about now. 
I hate CODY ROSS. I drafted him because I predicted he'd be semi-decent; a nice low-cost power source. Then I dumped him just a few weeks into the season when he wasn't getting to play and seemed basically worthless. Kev scarfed him up. Last week he went nuts and had 15 RBI. FIFTEEN. Not a typo. He's sitting at around 15 dingers and 45+ RBI for the season. And I dumped him like a complete jackass. I HATE YOU CODY ROSS!
Speaking of Cody Ross and Kevin's association with him, the BREWSKIS offense went FRICKIN BONKERS last week. Absolutely crazy nuts. I looked at the team stats after clicking the button and letting the magic sabermetric computer elves generate the results for me. I saw 71 Runs, 26 HR, 86 RBI. Crikey I said, those look like 2 weeks worth of stats!!! Weird. But then I studied the individual team results for the Brewskis from last week. Everyone had monster weeks. Kev has lots of Rockies and Marlins hitters, and they had a supernatural weekend series filled with scoring, scoring, and more scoring. It was a MIRACLE WEEK sent from Heaven itself. That vaulted the Brewskis 10 points ahead of their prior offensive points total. That's almost impossible to do in early-July. Crazy, but awesome all the same time. Now if I could just get 2 miracle week's worth of PITCHING like that!!! 
Hey Dave, stop trading with Geoff dammit! The newly acquired Griller trio of HOWARD-ETHIER-BAUTISTA had a great week. Geoff's team would have led the league in offense quite easily last week had it not been for the God-sent Hitting Mana from Heaven that drifted down and showered its golden beauty across the Brewskis dugout last week. Meanwhile Michael Bourn is still trying to figure out how to steal 1st Base, and Brandon Jones and Max Scherzer are still toiling away in the minors waiting for a second chance to make a splash on the major league scene. Yeah, this could be a very good Next Year trade for Dave, but I hate when my closest competitors get something that will beat me THIS YEAR! As they say... DAT'S LIFE! I shoulda tried to snag Howard and/or Ethier first! 
All Star selection time always creates some controversy. David Wright not on the team? WOW. Soriano and Fukudome as STARTERS over Pat Burrell, Corey Hart, and Carlos Lee? LUDICROUS. Do we really need 12 Pitchers? Wouldn't TEN be more than enough? Jeez. Christian Guzman made the team? REALLY? Over Jose Reyes or Brandon Phillips? SAD.
And as for C.C Sabathia.... Okie dokie... Ain't touching that one again.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

HARL stuff coming WED Night

Since I'm working OT tonight to prepare for a daytime project meeting with Geoff tomorrow, HARL stats and reports will be done on WED Night rather than tonight.

Sorry, but work comes first.



Monday, July 7, 2008

REVISED FAD Results for JULY 6

Here are the REVISED FAD Results from JULY 6. The Sabathia pickup was disallowed since his trade to the Brewers did not become official until this morning according to MLB.com. Also, I made a typo on Chan Ho Park's draft salary (thanks to Mayer for catching that and giving me the heads-up).
  1. DAMIAN EASLEY    2B-NYM   .05  LEMMINGS    (TOP=1.10) 
  2. CHAD DURBIN      RP-PHI   .05  RHINOS      (TOP= .75) 
  3. CHAN HO PARK      P-LA    .20  GRILLERS    (TOP= .75, 2ND=.15 BREWSKIS)
  5. GEOFF GEARY      RP-HOU   .05  BREWSKIS    (TOP= .25) 
  6. ROGER BERNADINA  OF-WAS   .05  JOKERS      (TOP= .25) 
  7. JASON PERRY      OF-ATL   .05  BREWSKIS    (TOP= .10)
  8. BRYAN ANDERSON    C-STL   .05  LEMMINGS    (TOP= .05) 
Two things to note regarding bids on players that are already on someone else's team.
    <> Omar Infante = is on the Rhinos reserve list
    <> Collin Balester = is on the Stampeders active roster
Kennesaw Mountain BigHorn
HARL Commissioner

Commissioner Ruling on SABATHIA

HI Guys,
After some further investigation this afternoon, I have made a Commissioner's ruling against the pickup of CC Sabathia in this weekend's FAD. Sabathia is still a free agent, and remains in the HARL free agent pool. Let me explain... 
When I was doing the FAD results this morning, I really wasn't sure if the Sabathia to the Brewers trade was really OFFICIAL or not. Like many of you probably did, I read on RotoWorld last night that Sabathia was being traded to the Brewers for Matt LaPorta and several other prospects. So I put in a bid for him in the FAD. But nothing said the trade was "official" or not. It was an inside scoop that the trade was about to be completed.
I was thinking about that issue this morning when I did the FAD. I rushed through everything because I had to start work, and I probably should have investigated it thoroughly more before sending out the FAD results.
Looking at the news on MLB.com a few minutes ago, it appears that the Sabathia trade really didn't become official until this morning. The RotoWorld info was a premature announcement -- they are always looking to give you the inside scoop, and their heads-up was another example of that. So considering that the trade didn't officially go down until MONDAY MORNING, I must make the correct ruling and disallow anyone from picking up Sabathia in Sunday night's FAD. Sorry to Gambler Joe for the reversal of my earlier FAD posting, but it's not fair to break the rules and I want to get this right as it was confusing to several other owners (not just me).
ALSO, since folks asked me to clarify this: Our official deadline for submitting FAD bids is 9:00 PM (it was published in an earlier note regarding the 1st FAD of the season this year). The deadline used to be 7:00 PM in previous years, but so many people sent stuff in late (and I never processed the FAD until late Sunday night anyway), that I pushed the deadline back to make it easier on everyone.
Any players who come over from the AMERICAN LEAGUE into the NL, must be officially on an NL team BEFORE 9:00 PM on Sunday Night's FAD deadline. Guys that don't officially sign or get traded by that deadline, are not allowed to be picked up until next week. Jacque Jones was a good example of this from earlier in the year --- he was rumored to be signed by FLA on Saturday/Sunday, but didn't officially sign until Monday morning, so he wasn't eligible for the FAD as quickly as some folks had thought (because they read RotoWorld again!). 
Anyway I will re-post the revised FAD results in a minute.
Kennesaw Mountain BigHorn
HARL Commissioner

FAD Results for Independence Weekend

Here are the FAD Results from "Independence Weekend". Sorry that I didn't get to these last night; I was watching the Fireworks downtown with Anna and my Mom.  
As suspected, there were lots of crazy bids on new AL-import, CC Sabathia. It took a wacked-out bid to fetch him!
  1. C.C. SABATHIA    SP-MIL  2.75  GAMBLERS    (TOP=4.05 OTHER=2.70 2.55 1.80 1.05) 
  2. DAMIAN EASLEY    2B-NYM   .05  LEMMINGS    (TOP=1.10) 
  3. CHAD DURBIN      RP-PHI   .05  RHINOS      (TOP= .75) 
  4. CHAN HO PARK      P-LA    .05  GRILLERS    (TOP= .75, 2ND=.15 BREWSKIS)
  6. GEOFF GEARY      RP-HOU   .05  BREWSKIS    (TOP= .25) 
  7. ROGER BERNADINA  OF-WAS   .05  JOKERS      (TOP= .25) 
  8. JASON PERRY      OF-ATL   .05  BREWSKIS    (TOP= .10)
  9. BRYAN ANDERSON    C-STL   .05  LEMMINGS    (TOP= .05) 
Two things to note regarding bids on players that are already on someone else's team.
    <> Omar Infante = is on the Rhinos reserve list
    <> Colin Balester = is on the Stampeders active roster
I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday weekend!  

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Saturday Waiver Claim

One waiver claim from Saturday:

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

I Am a True Patriot

Alrighty then on to the.... Wait a minute....

Is that our nation's flag I see over there on the right-hand side of the blog-post? Well, I'll be damned.

In times like these, with July 4th around the corner, who cares about HARL? All I can say is this....


Oh and by the way, the JOKERS are still in 1st place. For those who can pull themselves away from staring at Miss Liberty over there, here are the standings as of June 30th:

101.1 = JOKERS
92.8 = COBRAS
82.9 = RHINOS
81.3 = MUDHENS


There was one blockbuster trade to report this week, which happened while I was away in Gaming Heaven. It was between the GRILLERS and STAMPEDERS.

GRILLERS swapped 1B-John Bowker, OF-Michael Bourn, OF-Brandon Jones, P-Max Scherzer, and SP-Anibal Sanchez to the Stampeders.

STAMPEDERS swapped 1B-Ryan Howard, 3B-Jose Bautista, and OF-Andre Ethier to the Grillers.

On the surface, this is very good "THIS YEAR" trade for Griller Geoff, who adds some much needed offensive pop to his lineup and finally fills his weak-link at 3B. For the Wild Horsemen, they got a windfall of inexpensive and up & coming talent for 2009. I'm especially high on the upside of Brandon Jones and Max Scherzer, and Bowker has done well as an out-of-nowhere rookies this year (showing good power). If Bourn could ever grow to hit around .270 or so, he could easily lead the league in Stolen Bases with his blazing speed. He's the next Wily Taveras, and that's not a bad guy to have for rotisserie purposes. Sanchez flashed his potential prior to getting injured, and may be back for a 2nd-half audition this year.

Interesting trade guys!


Now that June has passed, any players you acquire in trades will get that extra "Option to Extend" clause added into their contracts. So if you trade for a PF1 guy, he'll become AO1 for you. If you acquire a MY2 guy, he becomes an OE2 guy for you.


Pretty soon, I'm going to followup on last week's overview of prospective rule changes to shake-up and re-energize the league. HARL isn't as vibrant as it used to be years ago. There are lots of reasons for that.

For starters, many of us have been playing rotisserie baseball for a very LONG time, and like anything else in life, enthusiasm tends to wane over time when things become too familiar and too routine. So I'm certain that change would be a very good thing for us. Bring back the excitement of new challenges and new twists to our favorite game.

Secondly, all of our lives have gotten busier as we've gotten older. Whether it's caring for kids, marriage commitments, job stress, or other extracurricular activities, none of us seem to have as much free time as we used to. Things change, that's life, and we all must learn to deal with it. While some members of HARL wish there was more trading activity, more interleague banter, and more roster changeover, I just don't forsee things returning to the way they were years ago (rule changes can improve this a little bit, but they can only do so much). I'm very accepting of all of this. With the current group of people in HARL, the days of rabid, uber-competition are probably not going to be seen again anytime soon. I think that everyone wants to win, and tries to dedicate time & effort to get there (as much as they can spare with everything else that's going on). And I'm well aware that the amount of time and effort spent on HARL varies from person to person. But hey, you pay your money to play, and you'll get out of it what you put into it. I've been in a lot of fantasy sports leagues, and not a single one was perfect from a team owner perspective.

Thirdly, I think the social dynamics of fantasy sports has greatly changed with the advent of internet-based leagues. There's much less face-to-face contact and verbal communication than in the old days when owners chatted over the phone and got together to talk shop. That tangible communication has been replaced by cold, impersonal emails. I feel that all rotisserie leagues have suffered somewhat from a social perspective as a result of that. Technology is great in many ways, but it's no replacement for live, human contact.

So what do we do to recapture the magic so to speak? Is it even doable? Your input and ideas are always welcomed.

I would still like to play in HARL next year. I've committed so much time and energy into doing this (making it part of my business even), that I can't imagine NOT playing. I've been playing ever since I graduated from college!

But what about you? Is there anyone who is seriously considering dropping out next season? If so, could you let me know fairly soon? Finding new people that we know to join HARL has become harder & harder each year, so I would really appreciate any heads-up if you're planning to bail out for whatever reason. Before I undertake a lot of work refurbishing HARL into something new & shiny, I want to be certain we'll have enough people to play in 2009.

So let me hear from you. I'm taking the pulse of the league. Your time to speak is NOW.