Found May 08, 2012 on Fantasy Baseball 365:
There are a couple things that piqued my interest yesterday. So much in fact, I couldn't decide what to focus on for the main point of this mornings article. So rather than short change any of my thoughts (looking to give you your full penny's worth) I'm just going to kind go on and see where it take me.

First up, the Cole Hamels suspension. I'm not going to go into the reasoning for the suspension, that doesn't matter. I want to focus on the actual act of suspending. I feel that suspending pitchers is a joke. He has a five game suspension. So pretty much that means he pitches on an extra day of rest. It's dumb. it's not a punishment. If a position player is suspended for 3 or 5 games, he actually misses 3 or 5 games. A starting pitcher only plays once every 5 games, so in essence he is suspended for games he wasn't scheduled to be in anyway. If a player is going to be suspended from games, he needs to be suspended from games he is actually going to have an impact on. I'm not a lawyer so I don't know what kind of language the rule needs, or how to make the players union and MLB agree to it, but for a starting pitcher to be suspended and have it be an actual punishment, he needs to miss a couple turns through the rotation or something. Now, all that being said, I own Hamels on my 2nd place Blog Wars team, and I'm pumped that he will be able to pitch this week in the weekly lineup format we use.

Next Item on the agenda; Carlos Zambrano, another player on my Blog Wars team. I grabbed him with my 2nd to last pick in the draft. The definition of draft lotto ticket, he has paid dividends so far. This week (a two start week) is the first I am actually using him in my lineup. He has a rep for not being the most stable guy in the club house, but neither is his manager. The Ozzie and Carlos marriage is one I figured would work, and to this point everyone has to be happy. He picked up his first win last night, a complete game 3 hit shutout in which he struck out 9 Astros. It was his 5th quality start in a row. There is a lot to like about him this year. His K/9 is up from last year while his BB/9 are down. His ground ball rate is back to where it was when he was the ace of the Cubs staff from '03-'06/'07. His current swinging strike rate is the highest it's been since 2001. Looking at his Heat Maps on Fangraphs, he has the off-speed stuff working, keeping his slider in on righties and the change up low and in on lefties. Both pitches are avoiding the strike zone and batters are chasing. I haven't been able to watch any of this games, but I imagine it pitches are heading for the zone then breaking out of it forcing the batter to swing. At this point he has earned some trust despite the level of competition in his quality start streak. (HOU, WSH, ARI, SF, HOU again).
  • Kenley Jansen is finally the Dodgers closer. I actually ranked him 9th on my preseason RP ranks. His stuff was too good to not end up closing at some point. Look at me... so quick to point out when I get something right. Lets ignore my Liriano endorsement at the end of spring, shall we?
  • Jayson Werth had surgery on his wrist yesterday and it was reported that he will be out at least 12 weeks. Looks like Bryce Harper is going to be sticking around even when Zimmerman comes back from the DL. He will be in RF, while Nady and Bernadina will platoon in LF.
  • Will Middlebrooks hit two HR's yesterday giving him 3 HR's, 9 RBI, and 3 runs scored in the last two games. He is the top prospect in the BoSox system, and since he was called up to replace the injured Youkilis, he has batted .381/.409/.952 in 4 games. He has 8 hits, 3 each of the homer and double variety.

Pitching Match ups

Danks @ Masterson

Batista @ Blanton

Shields @ Nova - His only loss has come against the Orioles, which doesn't sound good, but then you remember that the Orioles have the 2nd best record in baseball and you forgive him.

Feliz @ Arrieta

Jackson @ Burnett - Burnett got lit up in his last outing, but the Nationals aren't a high scoring team. I'm looking for him to bounce back here.

Delgado @ Dempster - Delgado isn't the same guy he was in his first couple starts this year. I don't expect him to be in the rotation much longer with the prospects behind him. 

Sanchez @ A. Rodriguez

Haren @ Diamond

Bard @ Duffy - Duffy is getting hype love. He beat the Yanks the last time out, time for him to take down another powerhouse (even if it's in name only -zing!)

Bailey @ Gallardo

Westbrook @ Kennedy 

White @ Suppan

Romero @ McCarthy

Verlander @ Millwood

Vogelsong @ Kershaw


Vote: Should Cole Hamels Have Been Suspended for Beaning Bryce Harper?

Cole Hamels says he was just trying to bring back some old-time baseball. Major League Baseball says he was being dangerous. Hamels was suspended for five games Monday after hitting Bryce Harper with a pitch in Sunday night’s game. Hamels said after the game that the beaning was intentional, as he was trying to welcome the 19-year-old phenom to the big leagues. Many welcomed Hamels...

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In their first match-up, Philladelphia Phillies starting pitcher welcomed the 19 year-old Washington Nationals rookie phenom, Bryce Harper to the Majors with a thud, rather than the cheers and whistles he has been recieving all across the baseball world.With 2 outs in the 1st inning, Cole Hamels let a fastball fly - right into the small of Harper's back.In post game interviews...

Leyland critical of Hamels suspension

Tigers skipper Jim Leyland feels the Phillies pitcher got off easy with only a five-game suspension for plunking Bryce Harper and was particularly troubled by Cole Hamels' post-game comments.

Hamels plunks Harper, then admits aiming for him

Cole Hamels admits it: He plunked rookie phenom Bryce Harper on purpose. ''I was trying to hit him,'' the Philadelphia lefty said. ''I'm not going to deny it.'' That startling bit of honesty came after Hamels nailed the Washington teen with a fastball in the small of the back his first time up during the Phillies' 9-3 win Sunday night. The...

Harper handling beaning the best?

Who knew that Cole Hamels, the spindly San Diegan, was a Don Drysdale protege and distinguished chair of the Old School Department at Baseball University? Hamels drilled the brassy Bryce Harper with a fastball to the back on Sunday night. Hamels did it on purpose, maybe because he thinks the 19-year-old rookie is arrogant, maybe because he's upset about the current National...

Cole Hamels is Suspended

Suspended Major League Baseball has suspended Cole Hamels, of the Philadelphia Phillies, for intentionally hitting Bryce Harper in the first inning of last night’s game. Without Hamels’ own admission, it is highly unlikely that any suspension would have been rendered. After yesterday’s game, Hamels openly admitted that he threw at Harper. Without his admission, MLB would have...

Phillies Pitcher Cole Hamels Should Expect Suspension for Intentionally Plunking Bryce Harper

Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels has nothing against Washington Nationals phenom Bryce Harper. After intentionally plunking Harper in the first inning of a Phillies’ 9-3 win over the Nationals last night, Hamels came out and stated “I was trying to hit him. I’m not going to deny it.” Nothing personal, bro. It was a sort of throwback way of welcoming...

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This is where we talk about Cole Hamels trying to lose the giant ***** street cred he’s built up via multiple ***** photoshoots over the last few years. It’s where Cole proves he’s an old school, Bob Gibson style pitcher who doesn’t like young punks like Bryce Harper walking into his sport and going balls to the walls. So of course Hamels thinks plunking Harper is the way...

Cole Hamels Violated Baseball's Honor Code Admitting Intent, Not Throwing at Bryce Harper (Video)

Cole Hamels has been suspended five games for intentionally hitting Bryce Harper in the back, and the debate is raging over whether or not he deserved it. Not if Harper deserved to be hit, mind you, but whether or not Hamels deserved a suspension. NESN Nation's Dan Duquette asked our Twitter followers whether or not there's a place for intentionally throwing at players in...

Cole Hamels admits he hit Bryce Harper on purpose

Since being called up from the minors a little over a week ago, Bryce Harper has proven to the National that he deserves to stay — at least for now. Harper has come up with clutch hits and made a few tremendous plays in the field, and he’s part of the reason Washington continues to win. Perhaps the problem for opponents has been that the 19-year-old is too comfortable. Cole Hamels...

Bryce Harper steals home after getting plunked by Cole Hamels

The world watched Bryce Harper on ESPN Sunday night, and they got the show one can expect when watching a rookie phenom when Harper stole home on a Cole Hamels pickoff attempt to first base. Harper got on base via a hit by pitch courtesy of Hamels, who said after the game that he went after him intentionally. Watch the video below of Harper stealing home before the MLB has it removed as usual.

Hot Corner Howard & Other Stuff

Hot Corner Howard:Earlier this season the catchers littered The Howard 2012 standings, but now the hot corner has caught fire.  The 4 players currently atop the Howard leaderboard are all 3rd basemen.  Don't look for Longoria to boost that total any higher, as he's on the DL.  Do keep an eye on rookie Will Middlebrooks who has committed 2 Howards in his first 4 games of...

Cole Hamels admits he hit Bryce Harper on purpose. Let's watch Harper steal home on him again...

Your browser does not support iframes. "It’s just, ‘Welcome to the big leagues. I was trying to hit him. I mean, I’m not going to deny it." (Cole Hamels, via CSN, 5/7/2012) "I'm not going to injure a guy. They're probably not going to like me for it. But I'm not going to lie and say I wasn't trying to do it." (Cole Hamels...

FanGraphs Audio: Dave Cameron

Episode 178 Managing editor Dave Cameron makes his weekly Monday appearance — this time on a Tuesday. Topics discussed: the sanest possible discussion of the Cole Hamels-Bryce Harper kerfuffle; the NL East, who Cameron regards as the favorite in it; and Jose Altuve: a franchise player, perhaps, but of how good a franchise? Don’t hesitate to direct pod-related correspondence to...
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