Three teams under-performing so far in 2017

On the flip side of teams outperforming their preseason rankings are a number of teams that, so far, aren’t living up to their respective expectations. Some are less drastic than others, but let’s take a look at three teams that aren’t perhaps where they expected to be in July.

  1. Detroit Tigers (30-28, 15th place).

Going into the season, Detroit was ranked 10th overall, so sitting at 15th isn’t too drastic a fall. That said, this is a team that was a playoff team and a division winner in 2016. So to be sitting at 3rd place in your own division is slightly disappointing. Things can change though, so let’s see where the Tigers are in about a month.

2. New York Mets (21-37, 19th place).

Heading into 2017, the New York Mets were ranked 12th, just ahead of the current 4th place Marlins. At this point, I cited the team’s offensive depth. At the time, Jason Heyward, Gerardo Parra, Michael Brantley, and Brett Lawrie were all on the team’s bench. Parra is hurt, Lawrie is not on an MLB roster, Heyward got hurt for a while, and even though Brantley has been playing well, he also got hurt. He is getting nice contributions from Renfroe, Simmons, JBJ, Realmuto, DeGrom, and Fulmer, but has been hurt by injuries to players like Hernandez, Syndergaard, and Harvey. However, he now has a healthy Matz, and with some luck with players like Lugo and Felix, maybe his pitching staff could look a lot better.

  1. Chicago Cubs (36-22, 13th place).

So, yeah, the Cubs are still very good. But they won it all last year and were ranked #2 going into the season. I wouldn’t say there is anything glaring that stands out as to why the Cubs aren’t quite as dominate this year. They did trade away players like Carlos Carrasco and Hanley Ramirez, but there is still plenty of talent. There are a lot of injuries on the pitching staff too, with expected key contributors like Kyle Hendricks, Mark Melancon, Tyler Thornburg, and Ryan Dull on the DL. So despite being in 2nd place in his division (with the Cardinals looming behind), the Cubs probably aren’t a team to count out.

Note: I went with three since I really couldn’t come up with five. These aren’t as drastic as the overperforming teams, but I still thought it would be worthwhile to point out, or to at least get a conversation going.

Five teams defying preseason expectations

Maligned as it may be—particularly by owners in areas with high populations of Cubans—the preseason power rankings were rather accurate. Out of the predicted top 15 from the preseason, 9 teams are currently sitting in the “actual” top 15: Yankees, Marlins, Royals, Astros, Indians, Diamondbacks, Red Sox, Cubs, and Brewers. Not bad. That said, the predictions certainly have their outliers in the form of teams that are both defying expectations, and failing to meet them.

Here are the five teams that are defying the expectations most drastically thus far:

  1. Los Angeles Dodgers (25-15, 348 points)

 

This isn’t as drastic a difference as the other teams, but in the preseason, the Dodgers were ranked #18, and as of now, they sit at #12 overall. The preseason prognosis suggested that they team may be negatively impacted by starting three players that were currently in the minors, but the team added Aaron Hicks and saw some timely call-ups, so they find themselves with a winning record as we approach the summer.

  1. Colorado Rockies (24-16, 9454.779 points)

Projected to be the 22nd best team this preseason, the Rockies are currently sitting in 15th overall. As noted in the preseason, though, the pitching staff is still lacking. A very strong offense led by Charlie Blackmon, Corey Dickerson, and Eduardo Nunez has propelled them to a winning record, however. If you factor in a ‘bounce back’ from Trevor Story, there is no reason to believe that the Rockies won’t be able to win plenty of games throughout the season.

  1. Miami Marlins (34-6, 11092.757 points)

For whatever reason, the preseason points projections had the Marlins at #13. Right now, they are the #4 overall team, and #2 in points overall. As I pointed out this preseason though, the Marlins were a lot likely to be in the top 5-10 than they were outside of it by the mid-season, and here they are. Barring injuries, I expect Miami to stay here for the remainder of the season, being led by someone pretending to be Ryan Zimmerman, Corey Seager, Christian Yelich, Mark Reynolds, Dee Gordon, and of course, Mike Trout, when he returns.

  1. New York Yankees (28-12, 10651 points)

Preseason rankings had the Yankees sitting at #14 overall, but here they are #6, and one of only 7 teams to score 10,000 points or more at this point in the year. Last year, the Yankees made 59 mostly non minor-to-majors trades. Players acquired in these deals that are currently helping the team sit just outside of the top 5 include Justin Upton, Chris Carter, and Brandon Phillips. Goes to show that if you have the ammo and you think you can make a run, go ahead and trade those picks and prospects!

  1. St. Louis Cardinals (25-16, 9232.787 points)

Sometimes, the predictions are way off. The Cardinals were predicted to be the 7th-worst team in the league in the preseason, but here they are, battling for playoff position, at #10 overall, at 25-15. Preseason notes indicate that the Cardinals had too many rookies in starting positions, and that the pitching staff was too thin. In looking at the roster now, all the starting positions have players that are active and scoring points (some more than others, granted). That said, the staff still looks thin, but once healthy, the Cardinals have a lot of depth on offense to either make up for it, or to trade for some pitching help. Consider this, if these players get healthy, between his current DL and bench he has: Marwin Gonzalez, Kolten Wong, Martin Prado, and Yasmany Tomas.

2017 Real Deal Dynasty Baseball Preseason Power Rankings: Top 10

  1. Detroit Tigers

Starting out the top 10 for us is the Detroit Tigers, a 2016 playoff team and division winner. The Tigers have only made minor moves thus far, shipping out Matt Holliday for draft picks, as well as some swapping of draft picks. That said, he is carrying a talented roster into this season, so maybe he hasn’t seen the need to shake things up too much. On offense, carrying the load will be Miguel Cabrera, a healthy Nick Castellanos (who is having a nice spring), Victor Martinez, Brad Miller, Rajai Davis and Curtis Granderson. Dexter Fowler is no slouch either, and another step forward from Javier Baez would be huge. There is some promise in the pitching staff too, though there is one open spot, and two spots occupied by minors’ players. Still, he’s got Scherzer, Verland, Salazar, and Dyson. I think Norris takes a step forward this year too. Plus, if Boyd can put forth some improvements, things are looking pretty good for a team that may only be a few acquisitions (free agency or trade), away from another run.

  1. Washington Nationals

Last year, the Nationals were a wildcard team, coming in second place in the division to perennial powerhouse Miami. They were also a team that eclipsed that elusive 23,000 mark, which was a number that netted all teams who hit it a cash reward last year. The Nationals come back this year with a strong team. In the offseason, the Nationals made a few moves, highlighted by a major deal in which he sent AJ Ramos, Adam Jones, a 5th round pick, and Danny Duffy to the Braves for the 1st overall pick, which brought him Carlos Santana. This is in addition to an offense that has a good mix of talent and promise, with names like Anthony Rendon, Jean Segura, Bryce Harper, and Jurickson Profar. Some nice names on this pitching staff, too. I like Jon Gray taking the next step, and he’s got Strasburg, Britton, Kimbrel. Smyly’s injury doesn’t help, and Ryu hasn’t been the same for a while, but he could be a dark horse to have a nice year. Promising prospect Gioloto is in the minors too, though he hasn’t matched up to the hype that’s surrounded him for a while just yet. Overall, probably a team that has ammo to be a top scoring team again this year.

Finish Reading: 2017 Real Deal Dynasty Baseball Preseason Power Rankings: Top 10

  1. Tampa Bay Rays

Surprise, surprise. The Rays were in one of the least competitive divisions in the league last year. Even after selling off a number of pieces in that Dansby Swanson deal (with me), he still almost made the playoffs. Tampa has been crazy busy this offseason. (Seriously, go check out the trade history for this season). Major or notable acquisitions include Ian Kinsler (who he just traded to me for Johnny Cueto, by the way), John Lackey, Brian Dozier, Addison Reed, and David Freese. Make no mistake, this (like most teams), will be a team carried by its offense. In addition to Dozier and Swanson, and led by Mookie Betts, the team also has Andrew McCutcheon, Howie Kendrick, Nori Aoki, and some bit players who will help too. In addition to Cueto and Lackey, the staff has guys that will help, like Odorizzi, Colome, and to a lesser extent, Boxberger, Gallardo, and Gibson. Miranda, with the injury of Smyly, has the chance to pitch his way into the permanent rotation. He could end up being a nice player that would really help the Rays in their efforts to go on a run and make the playoffs this year.

  1. Texas Rangers

Another team that has made a ton of transactions this offseason, having acquired players lik, Lorenzo Cain, Masahiro Tanaka, Ken Giles, Dan Straily, Kendall Graveman, Drew Pomeranz, Jeurys Familia, Jorge Soler, and prospects like Josh Bell and Anderson Espinoza. The rather-deep offense includes Travis d’Arnaud, Mike Napoli, Starlin Castro, Adrian Beltre, Elvis Andrus, and Kendrys Morales, as well as bench players like Wilmer Flores, Adeiny Hechavarria, Soler, Delino Deshields (acquired this year), and Steven Souza. Some serious depth. The pitching staff will rely heavily on new guys Tanaka, Giles, and Familia, but will also get contributions from Straily, Casilla, Graveman, and Buchholz. Looks like a team that benefit by adding another starter, but whether or not they do, this team will be putting up points again in 2017.

  1. Houston Astros

The Astros, another 23,000-point club from last year and a team that went 44-4 in their division, bring back a stacked lineup. Jose Altuve, Chris Davis, Alex Bregman, Carlos Correa, Adam Duvall, Yoenis Cespedes, and George Springer. Whoa. On top of this, they added Yuli Gurriel and Danny Duffy. Pitchers for the Astros, one of only two teams to win 80-plus games last year, include Chris Archer, Gio Gonzalez, Lance McCullers (breakout?), and David Robertson, but still has plenty of guys that will contribute, like Gregerson, Devenski, and Guerra. I don’t see any reason why the Astros won’t once again be one of the top scoring teams in the league—poised to go on another deep playoff run, and possibly ready to unseat Boston in the AL.

  1. Cleveland Indians

You all know the story by now. Jeff’s movements have been the main offseason story line. Let’s take a look at some of his main acquisitions: Jonathan Lucroy, Jose Abreu, Jose Quintana, Chris Sale, Jake Arrieta, Hector Neris, Aroldis Chapman, and Edwin Encarnacion. Whoa. Who else is on the offense you ask? How about Trea Turner, Francisco Lindor, Nomar Mazara, Tyler Naquin, Max Kepler, and a stashed Wilson Ramos on the bench. On the pitching side, joining the aforementioned pitchers are guys who will contribute, like Joe Ross, Brandon Maurer, etc. This has to be the quickest turnaround we’ve seen in this league right? I’d tell Boston, and maybe the NL too, to watch out for Cleveland come later this year.

  1. Arizona Diamondbacks

A little odd to do your own team’s preview, but here we go. I’ve made a few offseason moves that are worth mentioning, having moved Adam Eaton and Joe Blanton for Asdrubal Cabrera and Francisco Rodriguez; then Todd Frazier for Austin Hedges and Jedd Gyorko (who I flipped for Robert Gsellman), then Archie Bradley, Bryan Shaw, and a pick for Andrew Miller. Then I moved Hector Rondon for Brad Brach, Greinke for Bauer in a salary dump, and Johnny Cueto for Ian Kinsler. In addition to the players mentioned before, I’ve got Goldschmidt, Lamb, Desmond, Pollock, Cruz, Solarte, and Inciarte. Even moving Cueto, I think the staff looks solid. Carlos Martinez, Tanner Roark, Tyler Skaggs, Shawn Kelley, Fernando Rodney, Jason Grilli, and Drew Storen. Desmond is already injured, and there are a few question marks in guys like Skaggs, Storen, K-Rod, and possibly Roark, as well as Hedges and Pollock, but I do feel confident in my ability to make it back to the playoffs. From there, I may need some luck, some moves, or some breakouts.

  1. Boston Red Sox

        

Two out of the last three seasons, Boston has made it to the championship round. Could this be the year they finally win it all? Let’s have a look at their chances. First, the offseason moves. Boston acquired catching prospect Jorge Alfaro by moving Jonathan Lucroy, and also acquired Archie Bradley, Bryan Shaw, and a prospect for Andrew Miller. Other notable additions include Steven Wright, JD Martinez, Brian McCann, and Miguel Sano. Some nice offseason moves, for sure. Looks like a powerful offense, with guys like Xander Bogaerts, Evan Longoria, Joey Votto, Andrew Benentendi, joining those other players. But there aren’t really holes in the offense, as they round out the roster with Odubel Herrera, Mitch Moreland, and Chris Young (With Blake Swihart waiting in the wings.) He probably needs another pitcher or two, but the staff looks good. Rick Porcello, Jameson Taillon, David Price, Patrick Corbin, Edwin Diaz, Joe Kelly (who will have sneaky good value early), as well as Wade Miley and the other players mentioned above, will all contribute this year. In total, I expect Boston to be competing with Cleveland, Houston, and so on, come the end of the year.

  1. Chicago Cubs

The reigning champions aren’t number one? They probably should be, but still, I am strictly going off of the point projection system that was developed. Will Chicago repeat this year? Well, they have as good a chance as any team to win it all this year. Notable offseason acquisitions include Adam Eaton, Neftali Feliz, and Tyler Thornburg. So maybe not an overly busy offseason, but maybe they didn’t need to make too many moves. This is an offense that boasts Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant, Hanley Ramirez, Ben Zobrist, Logan Forsythe, Stephen Vogt, Denard Span, and Addison Russell. Then on the bench, he’s got Luis Valbuena, Seth Smith, and Josh Phegley. Deep. That’s more than 650 points (from 2016) on the bench. The pitching staff is strong, too. Jon Lester, Carlos Carrasco, Mark Melancon, and Kyle Hendricks anchor the staff, but every other pitcher will be contributing points too, with names like Joe Blanton, Ryan Dull, Jason Vargas, and Kyle Barraclough. On paper, they are as strong a team as any, and barring any major injuries, should be right in the thick of the race later this year.

  1. Milwaukee Brewers

       

Last year, the Brewers didn’t even win their division. It’s fun to point out, only because even though this is true, they still had the fifth most wins in the league, and the third most points (eclipsing the 23,000-point mark.) It doesn’t look like this year is going to be a letdown for Milwaukee, either. Notable offseason additions include Kole Calhoun, Blake Snell, and Francisco Liriano. If you want to talk about having a deep team, how about the fact that this guy has Troy Tulowitzki on his bench, along with Keon Broxton and Tom Murphy. Then on the rest of his offense, he has Evan Gattis, Travis Shaw, Josh Donaldson, Jonathan Schoop, Jhonny Peralta, Khris Davis, Marcell Ozuna, Jose Bautista, and the players mentioned above. Over to the pitching staff, where a group of Toronto pitchers are leading the way: Aaron Sanchez, JA Happ, Robert Osuna, and Marco Estrada. He’s also got Jeremy Hellickson, Rich Hill, and others who will help throughout the year. And you know that Tony has more moves up his sleeve. Just try to make sure you don’t end up scratching your head, wondering how he got your best player for so little.

 

2017 Real Deal Dynasty Baseball Preseason Power Rankings: 20-11

This posted is continued from page 1, rankings 30-21.

  1. Baltimore Orioles

Baltimore needs a 1st baseman. This is the first thing I noticed when looking at the team. First base is a position that can represent a fantasy cornerstone player.  (See Miguel Cabrera, Anthony Rizzo, Paul Goldschmidt, Joey Votto, etc.) Without one, it will be hard. There are a few bright spots on the offense though, with DJ LeMahieu and Stephen Piscotty. The rest of the outfield should be decent, but probably not quite strong enough. On the pitching side, it’s hard not like Gausman going into the year, especially on that contract. Bundy could be a break-through, too, but I feel like I have been saying this for years. Overall there is some talent, but it feels like a stretch to say this team will be competing this year, especially in that division.

  1. Philadelphia Phillies

Philly is a team that has yet to make any moves this year, which is curious. On offense, Pedroia, Franco, and Trumbo are good bets to be solid consistent producers. Franco could even be someone who could improve drastically. Rupp is someone I like this year too, at a thin position. The rest of the offense is more of a question mark. Hernandez and Joseph, if they progress, could be nice. Bourn, Werth, Guyer, and Lowrie, not as exciting, though they will at least provide some points, unlike some teams who have rookies or injured players in these slots.  For the arms, not much stands out beyond Hamels and Watson, though I do think that Greg Holland has the chance to be a steal, and would make for excellent trade bait, or a good keeper. Nova should be okay too, but is a little expensive. In fact, this team is more than $20 over the limit, so moves already have to be made. In summary, probably not a staff that can be a huge difference maker.

  1. Los Angeles Dodgers

       

On first glance, I notice that this is certainly a team with talent, but there are also three minor league players in starting positions. This helps in terms of fielding a compliant roster, but that’s about it. Still: Manny Machado, Jose Ramirez, Clayton Kershaw, and to a lesser extent, Adrian Gonzalez, Yadier Molina, and maybe even Puig and Duda, who knows. There are some guys I like on that staff that could be sneaky good, too. Walker (NL now…could be in for a big year), Baez, Strop, Ottavino, and in particular, Matt Moore. Still, there are some holes on the roster in the form of those minor leaguers. And if a team is going to be carried by its offense, that outfield isn’t all that intimidating. Don’t sleep on the Dodgers, though. There’s a large farm system, with some good names. Trades or call-ups could change this team’s outlook, as obvious as that may sound. Though he would have to make some changes, after not making a single trade in 2016. Finish Reading: 2017 Real Deal Dynasty Baseball Preseason Power Rankings: 20-11

  1. Toronto Blue Jays

Starting with the offense, this is a pretty solid roster. Not really a glaring hole, but aside from Carpenter and Polanco, there are some question marks. Will Buxton will emerge? Will Vargas reach his power potential? Can Reyes still play at a high level? I’m willing to guess that for at least one of these, the answer will be yes. On the pitching side, there are certainly some steady contributors. For one, I am a believer in Marcus Stroman, and think he comes back strong this year. Manaea is another player I like to take a jump this year too. The bullpen is unspectacular, but there are players that will contribute. Keep an eye on Cam Bedrosian, who has been lights out this spring. His name is one that could be a lot more popular come mid-season. Lastly, this is another deep farm system, with multiple top-100 prospects, which provides hope for the help in the future, or ammo for in-season trades for a more immediate run.

  1. San Francisco Giants

The future down we get, the more you see a “complete team.” And by that I mean literally, a team with all spots filled. In every spot on this offense, there are players that are going to contribute consistent points, or will at least be given the opportunity to do so on a regular or semi-regular basis. Some more (Posey, Seager, Pence), than others (Mahtook, Jay, Smoak), but still, points are points. In looking at the pitching staff, your eyes may first go to Bumgarner. Hard not to. But Ian Kenndy, and then bullpen names like Jeffress, Madson, and Strickland should put up some good points. And maybe Keuchel has a year closer to 2015, or at least better than 2016. Of note here, too, is the fact that the Giants also have plenty of players in the farm system.

  1. Atlanta Braves

I think this could be a sneaky good offense. Let’s start with the obvious contributors: Wieters, Pujols, Jones, Kemp. But what about Thames, Haniger, Polanco, and maybe even Saladino? You’ll also have some decent contributions from Gomez and Garcia. Could potentially be a deeper offense than it seems, if one of those aforementioned question marks can break out. Regarding the pitching staff, though, this isn’t as much depth. Sure, Teheran and Ramos will offer plenty of points, but some of the other names are quite average, Dickey, Garcia, Koehler, or even just not very good, Peralta, Knebel. German Marquez could be a nice sleeper though. Not a bad minors’ system here, either, with top 100 names like Albies, Allard, and Anderson in the mix.

  1. New York Yankees

Last year, the Yankees made 59 trades, most of which were non minor-to-majors moves. The team improved from 8-85 to 37-56 last year. Expect another jump this year. Since last season, the Yankees have acquired, among other assets, Justin Upton, Chris Carter, Brandon Phillips, Eduardo Rodrigez, Brandon Finnegan, Mike Montgomery, and Jerad Eickhoff. He also has a healthy Greg Bird for 2016, a player that many people look at as capable of having a star-turning breakout season. In his active minors, he has some players that could help soon, too, in guys like Aaron Judge and Jose De Leon, as well as guys that can help now, like Eduardo Rodriguez. Other certain players, if they pan out, could end up helping too. Names like Severino, Refsnyder, Mitchell. Still, even by slotting in Rodriguez, Severino, Holder, and Mitchell, there will be two open roster spots to fill. Free agency is looming though, so things should pan out. A solid roster coupled with a breakout season or two could help to improve the Yankees, a team on the upswing, once again.

  1. Miami Marlins

Last year, the Marlins made to the NL Championship against the Cubs, but ultimately fell short. Since then, the team has moved Chris Sale, Drew Pomeranz, Neftali Feliz, Steven Wright, Shelby Miller, Eduardo Rodriguez, JT Realmuto, Rougned Odor, Addison Reed, Francisco Liriano, and David Freese. In those deals, he’s added, among others, Corey Kluber, Yu Darvish, Shin-soo Choo, Nathan Karns, Chris Owings, CJ Cron, Dee Gordon, and Jeff Samardzija. Points prediction wise, the system didn’t seem to favor these moves, but knowing Miami, there are multiple moves to be made. Not to mention, this is a team has Mike Trout, Dee Gordon, Corey Seager, Christian Yelich, in addition to some of the other names mentioned above. I’m trying to steer clear of predictions here, but I am guessing that Miami’s mid-season power ranking is going to be a bit lower on the list. (That is, closer to the top 5-10.)

  1. New York Mets

Check out the offensive depth here. Some teams don’t have full rosters. The Mets have Jason Heyward, Gerardo Parra, Michael Brantley, and Brett Lawrie on their bench, along with a few others. The roster, aside from (promising) rookie Hunter Renfroe, all contributed more than 200 points last season. When healthy, Matt Duffy should be a nice player, too. Beltran, Pederson, Realmuto, and Simmons will put up steady points all year. To the pitching staff we go, where deGrom, Syndergaard, and Matz (if healthy) will anchor the starters. Will Hernandez improve like Verlander, or will he slide more? That determination will have an impact on this team, for sure. Harvey is hitting 97 MPH on the gun too…. The relievers are less impressive than the rest of the team, though he does have Gsellman as an RP available, along with Seth Lugo, who could be decent.  The Mets regressed from 2015 to 2016, but we could see and upswing this year if people stay healthy.

  1. Kansas City Royals

The last of the middle group is the Royals, who were a playoff team last year. Looks like the team is poised to once again put up points, with a roster that includes Wil Myers, Robinson Cano, Yasmani Grandal, Jackie Bradley Jr, Jonathan Villar, Jay Bruce, and a healthy Mike Moustakas. If the Royals are going to make another run, though, they will be relying quite heavily on the offense. This a staff that, if we are looking at last year’s numbers, only has two players that eclipsed 200 points, both of which are relievers (Will Harris and Kenley Jansen, the latter of which should once again put up monster numbers, to be fair.) Maybe a Robbie Ray breakout season could assist here, otherwise the Royals will be looking to acquire pitchers, or just stack up an already formidable offense to win games.

2017 Real Deal Dynasty Baseball Preseason Power Rankings: 30-21

Rejoice, fellow baseball fans. The 2017 Major League Baseball season is almost here, and with it comes a fresh chance for all of us to once again chase the Real Deal Dynasty Baseball crown.

Will the Chicago Cubs, both the MLB version and the Real Deal version, have a chance at repeating this year? Sure. But there will be plenty of other teams and owners that will doing their best to prevent that. In an attempt to show just which teams have the best shot at unseating the Cubs and making out of the long season as the league champion, I’ve put together a Power Rankings list that factors in the projected points for each team.

Since the league’s current projections are different from what our actual point scoring system is, primary league Commissioner Jeff Hemlick helped me come up with a calculation that would help give us a good idea (but not perfect idea, mind you) of where all of the teams stack up. The method is inexact, so I will omit the actual numbers, but please do note that these rankings are entirely based on the numbers, and not any predictions. Also consider that the calculation is not perfect, and that these are just projections. (Which is to say, don’t take it as gospel.)

First, the projected top offense this year is the Boston Red Sox, who just edged the Milwaukee Brewers. The top projected pitching staff this year is the Arizona Diamondbacks by a good margin. Who has the second best projected staff? Again, the Milwaukee Brewers. More on them much, much later in the list.

So without further ado, the 2017 Power Rankings.  Finish Reading: 2017 Real Deal Dynasty Baseball Preseason Power Rankings: 30-21

  1. Seattle Mariners

       

This probably isn’t too surprising. This is a team that doesn’t have a full offense, and the majority of its players are rookies. There are some pitchers on the staff that are likely just there to fulfill roster requirements, and a few that will likely be trade bait later in the season, in order to obtain more prospects, because the cupboard is quite bare there, too.

  1. San Diego Padres

Sometimes it can be tough to keep the minimum amount of franchise players for your fantasy team. This is a good case, as San Diego is basically going into the season with one franchise player who will contribute. The weather in San Diego is beautiful. This fantasy season for the Padres may not be. That said, if you are curious how this team is being built, go check out the farm team. Absolutely loaded, including big names like Brinson and Robles. Oh, and he also has Yoan Moncada. So the long-term picture isn’t so murky.

  1. Los Angeles Angels

Another team in transition with a number of young players in key positions. Not a team that is necessarily going to be competing this year, but also a team with a good amount of prospects in the pipeline, headlined by Manny Margot and Rafael Devers, etc. There are also some pieces here that will be tradeable during the season, so if a team like this remains patient, the team could be in much better shape in a few years.

  1. Chicago White Sox

This is an interesting team. There are some stud names on both the offense and defense, but overall the depth isn’t quite there, since the team some spots to fill. Empty spots definitely impact projections, hence why Chicago is here. Still, the team could choose to try and compete this year by acquiring some MLB-ready talent, or to move names like Frazier and Greinke (and others) to acquire younger talent, and punt to next year. Keep an eye on this team if you are a buyer, or a seller.

  1. Pittsburgh Pirates

Not exactly a sexy roster, but there are certainly some names here that are going to be highly-tradeable commodities, if that is the path that is chosen. A big minor league system here, too, with top 10 talent Austin Meadows leading the pack.

  1. Minnesota Twins

This is a tale of two teams. The offense looks like it could put up some serious points. Stanton, Walker, Odor, Hosmer, Crawford, and Braun. Not bad. Scroll down a bit further, though, and you’ll see a pitching staff with only five names, one of which just had Tommy John surgery. Of the remaining four, only Paxton has true upside, unless you see Wacha having a bounce back season. To compete, Minnesota would need to make a lot of moves for pitching, and I am not sure he has the ammo to do so, even with Joey Gallo in the minors.

  1. St. Louis Cardinals

Well, he’s got a full team. So he’s got that going for him. There are some real solid players on the roster, for sure, mostly on offense though. There are also four rookies in starting slots, and the pitching staff, particular the starters, look a bit thin. But there is young, inexpensive talent on the offense, so it may not be crazy for this team to be turned around sooner rather than later.

  1. Cincinnati Reds

Tough blow to see Reyes needing Tommy John so early in the offseason. I personally had a lot of faith in him having an excellent season, both in real life and in fantasy, but these injuries do happen. Again, this should be another rebuilding type season for the Reds. There will be some in-season trades for the Reds, I am betting, as he looks to bolster an already deep minor league.

  1. Colorado Rockies

The pitching staff leaves a lot to be desired here, but there are some bright spots on the offense. Colorado will have some weeks where there are a ton of points put up, I am guessing, but overall I just don’t see the team being deep enough to make a serious push.

  1. Oakland Athletics

This should be a decent offense. Acquiring Schwarber probably feels pretty good right now. Sonny Gray came in that deal too, and who knows, he could easily have a bounce back season as well. That said, the A’s aren’t there yet, in terms of being able to compete with the teams that will be outlined later on in the rankings. Things can happen quickly, though. Ask Jeff/take a look at the new Cleveland Indians roster…

Parts 2 and 3 coming soon…

2016 Real Deal Dynasty baseball season retrospective and awards

With the 2016 Real Deal baseball season in the rear view, let’s take a look back at the year, which was dominated early and often by just a handful of teams.

2016 culminated in Red Sox vs. Cubs, with the Cubs emerging

First, congratulations to all of those who won money this year, led by the championship-winning Chicago Cubs and runner-up Boston Red Sox. And well done to the division winners, the Houston Astros, Detroit Tigers, Arizona Diamondbacks, and Miami Marlins, as well as the Cubs and Red Sox. Lastly, a tip of the cap to the wild card teams, the Washington Nationals, Milwaukee Brewers, Texas Rangers, and Kansas City Royals.

Real Deal World Series MVP Asdrubal Cabrera

Finish Reading: 2016 Real Deal Dynasty baseball season retrospective and awards

To start, I’ll discuss the divisional races a bit. As a result of team building strategy, patience, luck, and whatever else you’d consider in terms of what makes a fantasy team successful; most divisions were not that close. In fact, four out of the six division winners won by double digit wins: Miami Marlins, Arizona Diamondbacks, Boston Red Sox, and Houston Astros. In addition, the Cubs won their division by 9, though noting this may not be all that fair, since the runner up Milwaukee had the fifth most wins in the league, and the third most points.

That leaves just the AL Central, which was an interesting to follow in terms of the battle between Kansas City and Detroit. Interestingly enough, the Tigers won the division on the last day of the year despite having scored less points (20,780 vs 21,294) oveall. This was a fun division to watch and should be next year as well, with Cleveland stacking up, a new owner in Minnesota, and a White Sox team that is also making moves in an effort to improve upon 2015’s last place finish.

Despite not being all that close in terms of wins, the NL East was still competitive, as the second place Nationals—a wildcard playoff team—still had 31 wins in the division compared to Miami’s 39, while also scoring more than 23,000 points, a number that I will touch on later in this article. Despite a vast improvement in Philadephia, going from 17 wins to 45, that seems to still be a team that is in the process of rebuilding. The Mets, on the other hand, had a tough go of it, as they went down in wins from 67 (A 1st place finish in 2015), to 45 in 2016. Much like the real-life counterpart, these Mets were bit with injuries to a number of key players.

Unlike last year in the NL West, where the top three teams were within 7 games and less than 1,000 points of one another, this year was not as close. The Arizona Diamondbacks (My team, if anyone is wondering), led the pack with 20 more wins than the second place Dodgers, as well as nearly 4,500 points. Still, things can change quickly, and as I work to get under budget for 2017, nothing is taken for granted.

Next we go over to the juggernaut-led NL Central, which had the highest scoring team, the Cubs, and the third-highest scoring team, the Brewers. While the Brewers were once again a dominant force, the Cubs were something else this year. At 83-10, the best record in the league, the Cubs were also tied for second with Houston (Behind Boston) for division record, at 44-4, while also scoring the most points in the league by 1,365 points. More on the Cubs later, but the two-headed monster at the top of the division didn’t leave much room for the Cardinals, Reds, or Pirates, all of which fell under the .500 mark while failing to reach 19,000 points for the year. Looking torward the future though, let’s not count any of these teams out. If you take a look at the jump that Cincinatti made from 2015-2016 (more on this later), there is room for optimism going into 2017.

Shifting back over to the AL, where the AL East was among the least competitive division in 2015. To put it into perspective, the second-place Rays sold off major MLB-level talent and a slew of prospects all for one top 5 prospect (more on this deal later), and yet still somehow almost made the playoffs. But it’s not really the Rays we should be talking about here, in terms of 2015, as the Boston Red Sox once again had a dominant season, running through the competition all the way until he fell to the Cubs—the second year in a row in which Boston had made the finals, only to fall short. Will 2017 be his year?

Lastly, we had the AL West, which had one of the league’s two 80-game winners in Houston, leading the pack. Behind them was the Texas Rangers, also a 2015 playoff team, who despite having 16 less wins that the division leader, was not a team to be taken lightly. In fact, Texas made it into the playoffs and managed to beat KC in the opening round, then upset rival Houston by less than 4 points in the second round, only to fall to Boston Round 3. Still, an impressive season by both teams. The other teams in the division, Oakland, Los Angeles, and Seattle, will look to improve upon disappointing seasons in 2015.

At this point, I’d like to give out a few different awards from the season. I took a look back at the season from a high level and reached these conclusions, so do try your best to not get mad at me for them!

Let’s get started.

Best trade:

Jonathan Villar likes this

Oakland Athletics send:

Jonathan Villar
Travis Blankenhorn

Kansis City Royals send:

Jorge Bonifacio
Tyler Mahle
Preston Tucker
Mark Canha

For my money, the best trade of the year, and one that helped Kansas City make it into the playoffs. At $1.2 and having scored more than 552 points on the year, Villar may be one of the top value-output players in the league, this side of Mookie Betts.

I should be clear in stating that I think this trade was a win for KC. From the Oakland side, I don’t really understand it is as much, as he received 0 prospects from the top 100. Jorge Bonifacio looks like a decent prospect and is ranked #2 in the KC system, whild Tyler Mahle is likely the second best player coming back in the deal, and he is #7 ranked in the Astros system. Villar, on the other hand, was the 25th ranked overall player last year.

That said, prospect rankings are not necessarily gospel, so who knows, maybe this trade looks nice for both teams this year or soon. But in looking right now, it’s a clear win for the Royals.

Biggest /most controversial trade:

I hate to involve myself in any of these superlative mentions, but I would say that this was most likely, in fact, the biggest and perhaps most controversial trade, given the amount of players.

Dansby Swanson

In the deal, I sent Dansby Swanson over to Tampa Bay, who set back:

  • Zack Greinke
  • Chris Davis
  • Shawn Kelley
  • Christian Bethancourt
  • Johnny Giavotella

As well as the following prospects:

  • German Marquez
  • Andrew Velazquez
  • Jomar Reyes
  • Jake Fraley
  • Dustin Fowler
  • Chris Betts

Now, to put this deal into perspective, Malcolm and I were engaged in trade talks for a while before it got to this. I basically told him I wasn’t going to trade Swanson to him, but he countered with a deal that I just could not refuse.

If you boil this down, I’ve already dropped Bethancourt and Giavotella, and I traded Chris Davis last year for Todd Frazier, who I traded this year for catching prospect Austin Hedges and Jedd Gyorko. I also plan to keep Greinke. But in return, Malcolm has (what we both believe to be) a young, cheap, cornerstone player at a premium position. Yes, it looked big on the surface, and it was, but ultimately, we both though it to be more than fair.

Least active trader:

This award goes to the Los Angeles Dodgers, who made 0 in-season trades, and only one offseason trade that involved the swapping of draft picks. Still, this is a team that won 55 games last year, so maybe with a few strategic moves, they will be right back in the thick of things in 2017.

Most active trader:

This goes to the New York Yankees. Christian Tobler, who took over in 2015, made a whopping 59 trades. This includes activations of players from the minors to majors, but upon closer look, a vast majority of these moves are actual trades. In 2015, the team was 8-85, and this year, 37-56. A 29-game improvement is a big one, and these moves played a big role in that.

How many more games can the Yankees win this year?

Biggest turnaround:

Speaking of big turnarounds, nobody had a bigger one than the Cincinnati Reds, who went from 3-90 in 2015 to 37-56 in 2016.

This was also a team that made a good deal of trades last year. Again, can the rebuild project continue, and gain momentum into 2017? Time will tell.

23,000 club

Lastly, I wanted to recognize the teams that scored 23,000 or more. I chose this number because all teams reaching this mark won money, and were right at the top of the standings throughout basically the entire season. Whether or not this number will be a similar benchmark for 2017 is yet to be seen, but there is no denying that the following teams, which all scored 23,000 or more, had success this year: Cubs, Astros, Brewers, Marlins, Diamondbacks, Red Sox, Nationals.

Closing

In terms of making predictions for next year, that will come in a separate article later in the offseason. This article was meant to provide a year-in-review type of retrospective, and to hopefully motivate teams who are either looking to repeat upon past success, or to achieve it for the first time.

Regardless of which category you fall into, the 2016 season is now over, and we are looking into 2017 with new hope and optimism. Good luck to everyone in their offseason preparations, and thanks for a great year.

We’re onto 2017.

Jimmy Carroll (Arizona Diamondbacks)

Real Deal Divisional Championship Series

Even Prince Fielder was scratching his head when he found out he was the top Real Deal scorer in the Divisional Series with 42.833pts.
Even Prince Fielder was left scratching his head when he found out he was the top Real Deal scorer in the Divisional Series with 42.833pts.

Last week was the League Championship Series and it featured a little bit of everything. From a blowout win for the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Championship to a back & forth battle that finished by less than 10pts with the Houston Astros beating the Tampa Bay Rays in the AL Championship.

The Brewers ended up beating the Colorado Rockies by a score of 282.762 – 164.028 Milwaukee used both offense and pitching to secure the Divisional Championship. They even used a one-two punch at first base. Prince Fielder led all players in this playoff week with 42.833pts and Edwin Encarnacion jumped in with another 32.265pts. The Brewers seemed to have the whole infield covered with offensive stars. Dee Gordon led all 2B with 39.474pts, and Matt Carpenter had the hot corner covered with 41.373pts. The two games had 3 players score over 40pts and two of them were Brewers. On the mound, it was Josh Tomlin leading all pitchers with 29pts. For the Rockies, it was tough to write up the highlights when they were the only team to not break 200pts. Brandon Phillips did lead all Rockies with 24.260pts. On the mound, Jorge De La Rosa did what was asked of him as he scored 15pts in his only start. However, the Rockies needed more than a 2 man show to advance to the Real Deal World Series.

In the AL Championship, the Houston Astros defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 223.606 – 215.356 In this tug of war battle, it ended up matching the Rays offense versus the Astros pitching. For the Astros, they got a pair of 23pt games from 2B Jose Altuve & 3B Todd Frazier. Todd is the hottest non-Brewer in the Playoffs with 64.379pts in two weeks. On the mound, Julio Teheran led all Astros with 22.5pts. The Astros also had 4 SP’s score in double digits. The Rays used the bats to keep pace. Shin-Soo Choo was the top scoring OF of the week and the only outfielder to score over 30pts as he had 40.004pts. Evan Gattis more than tripled any other catchers score as he had 33.395pts. 3B Carlos Santana also had a solid week as he scored 29.481pts. The Rays biggest problem was the pitching staff as it struggled all week. Chris Archer was their only SP in double digits as he scored 10.5pts.

The Real Deal Championship Series is now set with the Houston Astros taking on the Milwaukee Brewers. Not really sure how the Real Deal execs are handling this series with no real big market team in the series. We’ll have to wait and see how the tv ratings pan out.

 

Here are the Real Deal 3 Stars for the Divisional Championship Series:

 

FIRST BASE:

Prince Fielder…………….Brewers……………..42.833

Edwin Encarnacion…….Brewers……………..32.265

Chris Davis……………….Rays…………………..22.639

SECOND BASE:

Dee Gordon……………….Brewers………………39.474

Brandon Phillips…………Rockies………………24.260

Jose Altuve………………..Astros…………………23.563

THIRD BASE:

Matt Carpenter……………Brewers………………41.373

Carlos Santana……………Rays……………………29.481

Todd Frazier……………….Astros…………………23.159

SHORTSTOP:

Carlos Correa……………..Astros………………..19.469

Jose Reyes………………….Rays…………………..8.404

Josh Rutledge……………..Brewers………………1.333

OUTFIELDER:

Shin-Soo Choo…………….Rays…………………..40.004

Jose Bautista………………..Brewers………………24.214

George Springer…………..Astros…………………21.278

CATCHER:

Evan Gattis………………….Rays…………………..33.395

Chris Iannetta………………Astros…………………10.390

A.J. Pierzynski…………….Astros………………….7.000

STARTING PITCHER:

Josh Tomlin………………….Brewers………………29.000

Julio Teheran………………..Astros…………………22.500

James Shields……………….Brewers………………17.250

RELIEF PITCHER:

Ryan Webb………………….. Rockies………………11.250

Will Smith…………………….Brewers………………10.500

Sergio Romo…………………Brewers………………..7.250

Real Deal Baseball Playoffs / Week #1

Todd Frazier points to the Twins bench and tells them the Astros will win, even if I have to fight all of you.
Todd Frazier points to the Twins bench and tells them the Astros will win, even if I have to fight all of you.  He then went on to score 41.22pts.

 

The first week of the Real Deal Baseball League Playoffs was a two part series. It included the Wild-Card matchups that were on Monday & Tuesday. Then the next series ran from Wednesday thru Sunday. As for the stats, I really only tracked the teams that were making a run for the Championship. Sure, there’s a Consolation Bracket. I’m not one for tracking those stats. It feels like a bracket to where every team gets to participate and then gets a nice ribbon as they get called up to the podium. League officials will say it’s more than that. The winner of the Consolation Bracket get a $50 or it pays for next season’s entry. I guess that’s more than a ribbon, but it’s still not enough for me to track the numbers. It’s all about the Championship, so that’s where this number’s guy/reporter is going to spend his time.

There were 2 Wild-Card games and they had the AL matchup with the Boston Red Sox pummeling the Texas Rangers 103 – 42.4. For the Red Sox, they got help from both the offense and defense. 3B Evan Longoria led all players with 19.848pts in just 2 days. On the mound, Francisco Liriano led the way with a 17.5pt start. Patrick Corbin had a solid start as well as he scored 12.5pts. For the Rangers, their lone bright spot was 1B Adam Lind as he scored 8.608pts.

In the NL matchup, it was the Milwaukee Brewers beating the Arizona DiamondBacks 91.4 – 71.4. For the Brewers, it was the offense that led the way with 2B Dee Gordon scoring 14.741pts and C J.P. Arencibia scoring 12.333pts. The D-Backs tried to keep pace on the mound as they were led by Dan Haren and his 13.25pts.

Then on Wednesday, it was onto the 5 day series from Wednesday thru Sunday. That pitted the Boston Red Sox -vs- Tampa Bay Rays / Minnesota Twins -vs- Houston Astros / Colorado Rockies -vs- New York Mets / Milwaukee Brewers -vs- Chicago Cubs.

The Tampa Bay Rays led all teams with 251pts as they beat the Red Sox 251-173. It was the OF’s that led the way for both teams. For the Rays, it was Mookie Betts with 35.751pts and the Red Sox led with Lorenzo Cain and his 33.52pts. Chris Davis also chipped in with 33.304pts for the Rays. The SP combo of Felix Hernandez & Zack Greinke led the Rays and all SP’s with 17pts each.

In a closer game, the Houston Astros defeated the Minnesota Twins 170-137. The difference had to be 3B Todd Frazier for Houston. He led all Real Deal players in these series matchups with 41.22pts. That’s nearly 10pts a day. You wouldn’t expect the catching position as an offensive position but the Twins relied on C.J. Cron as he led all catchers with 29.278pts. OF Yoenis Cespedes also helped the Astros with 28.752pts. The top SP performace was led by the Twins and Kyle Gibson’s 15.75pts.

In a matchup of NL Central rivals, the Milwaukee Brewers defeated the division champ, Chicago Cubs 214-184. A pair of offensive stars led the Brewers as 1B Edwin Encaracion scored 31.31pts and OF Jose Bautista scored 30.023pts. For the Cubs, they were led by SS Ben Zobrist with 27.056pts and OF Josh Reddick with 24.668pts. Another catcher with a big series was Kyle Schwarber as he scored 23.712pts for Chicago. OF Carlos Gomez also chipped in for the Brewers with 22.821pts.

The final series was the Colorado Rockies beating the New York Mets 158-127, in the lowest scoring series. Another catcher was the offensive star as Travis D’Arnaud led all Met players with 15.5pts. From the pen, Jeurys Familia came in with 14.25pts and that was the identical score for their top SP, Noah Syndergaard. The Rockies bullpen was top notch as the top scoring RP of this series was John Axford with his 21.25pts. Chad Bettis also chipped in with 14.25pts. The offensive star for Colorado was OF Nelson Cruz as he scored 17.25pts.

It’s now onto the NL & AL Championship series with the Milwaukee Brewers -vs- Colorado Rockes and the Tampa Bay Rays -vs- Houston Astros.

 

 

3 Stars Real Deal Dynasty Baseball Week #21

Nolan Arenado(SDP) is all smiles as he finished the 2015 Real Deal season with a league best 72.25pts in Week #21
Nolan Arenado(SDP) is all smiles as he finished the 2015 Real Deal season with a league best 72.25pts in Week #21

 

Week #21 Recap: Week #21 was the final week of the Real Deal Regular Season. Man, how summer has just flown by! The season ended with the Tampa Bay Rays winning the AL East and have the best record in the league with a 76-17 record. The Boston Red Sox finished 5 games back but still made the playoffs with a 71-22 record. In the NL Central, the Chicago Cubs came in with the 2nd best record in the league with a 75-18 record. They needed every single win as they outlasted the Milwaukee Brewers by a single game as the Brewers finished 74-19. The Houston Astros of the AL West also finished with 70+ wins at 71-22. It wasn’t a cake walk season for them as they took the division by 5 games over the Texas Rangers at 66-27. The New York Mets had the biggest cushion in all of the divisional races. They won the division by 9 games as they finished at 67-26. The Miami Marlins finished their regular season at 58-35. The Washington Nationals also finished above .500 in the division with a 51-42 record. The NL West season has been like the Great Dust Bowl of the Midwest. However, the Dust has finally settled! Now that the dust has settled, you can once again see the Rockies on the horizon. The Colorado Rockies, that is. They won the division with a 63-30 record and took the division by 4 games. The Arizona Diamondbacks finished second at 59-34 and took one of the Wild-Card slots by 1 game over the Marlins. The San Francisco Giants also finished with better than a .600 winning percentage, at 56-37. The AL Central had the lowest winning percentage divisional winner as the Minnesota Twins took the crown with a 61-32 record. The Kansas City Royals did finish above .600 too with a 56-37 record.

Here’s a look at some of the top players for the week:

1B It wasn’t the high-powered scoring from the position that 1B is known for, but there were still some big games. Joey Votto(BOS) led the way with 46.393pts. Votto has to be the hottest 1B in the last month with just over 160pts. He’s also been over 30pts in 6 of the last 7 weeks of the season. He finished with 614.805pts and moved all the way up to 2nd at the 1B position. Chris Davis(TBR) came in with 43.438pts. He had slumped the last 2 weeks with only 9.8pts. Before that, he had scored 128pts the previous 3 weeks. He has 462.258pts and finished 10th for 1B.

2B Brandon Phillips(COL) was the only 2B to finish above 40pts as he scored 41.578pts. It was his second solid week in a row as he scored 34pts last week. It was sort of a De-Ja-Vu performance for Brandon as it was similar to his Week #16 & 17 showings, with 46 & 30pts. He has 416.35pts and is ranked 7th for 2B. Yangervis Solarte(ARI) came in with a 37.130pt showing. It was his 2nd best week of the season after he scored 40pts 2 weeks ago. He didn’t really start seeing any Real Deal playing time until Week #10 and he finished with 262.401pts.

3B Nolan Arenado(SDP) had a monster week as he led all Real Deal players with 72.25pts. He also had a big week with 69pts in Week #12, but hadn’t broke 30pts since then. He only had 4.8pts last week but finished the Regular season with a bang. He finished with 562.947pts and was the #2 ranked 3B in the league. Ryan Zimmerman(WAS) didn’t have a spectacular but has been playing solid lately. He had over 25pts in Week’s 18&19 and finished the season with a huge 65.43pts. It was the 3rd highest output in the Real Deal this week. Ryan ended up with 273.49pts on the season.

SS Jed Lowrie(PHI) only appeared in 9 weeks this season. That didn’t stop him from having the only 40pt+ week from a SS. After scoring less than 1pt in the last 2 weeks, he scored 48.495pts to finish the season. That gave him 158.035pts on the season. Veteran, Jose Reyes(TBR) also had a solid week with 36.52pts. Age has not slowed Jose down as he scored 95pts in the last 3 weeks of the season and looks to keep the streak going in the Playoffs. He finished the regular season with 369.075pts. He is ranked 5th among SS.

OF Bryce Harper(WAS) was the top OF early in the season, then he relinquished that to Mike Trout. Bryce took back over at the end of the season as he finished with a 65.792pts. It was the 2nd highest point total of the week. That gave Bryce 618.88pts and he was the only OF to finish over the 600pt mark. Carlos Gonzalez(COL) was the only other OF with more than 50pts as he scored 57.721pts. A nice turnaround after scoring less than 8pts last week. He finished with 465.426pts and was ranked 13th for OF’s.

C The #1 catcher in the Real Deal finished the season as the top catcher in Week #21. Buster Posey(SFG) scored 34.812pts as he led all catchers. That’s more points than the 32pts he scored in the last 3 weeks combined. He was the only catcher to finish above 500pts as he has 504.242pts. Pretty impressive considering that his teammate Brian McCann(SFG) finished the season as the #2 catcher with 401.139pts, over 100pts behind Buster. Travis D’Arnaud(NYM) was the only other catcher over 30pts this week as he scored 32.106pts. He finished the season with back to back 30pt weeks. He has 187.028pts on the season and is ranked 16th for catchers.

SP What about this old geyser? Instead of being worried about getting his colon checked, he’s more worried about throwing strikes. Bartolo(my)Colon(is fine) led all SP’s with 39.75pts as he even surprised his team, the Tampa Bay Rays with his resurgence. He was the only SP over 30pts and he finished the season with 327.5pts. With a nearly 60pt finish in the last 2 weeks, is he going to be having a off-season colonoscopy (necessary for somebody his age)? Or is he going to be working on getting back into shape(round) for the 2016 season? Dallas Keuchel(SFG) came in with 29.25pts. It’s his first 20pt game since Week #15. Dallas has 327.5pts on the season and is ranked 4th for SP’s.

RP Three weeks ago, Tom Wilhelmsen(NYM) only had 49pts in the 2015 season. Last week, he scored 17.5pts and this week, he led all RP’s with 25pts. That pushed his season point total up to 91.75pts. Andrew Miller(BOS) has been way more consistent as he scored 21.75pts. He was the only other RP over 20pts and he finished the season with 218.5pts. That ranked him 5th among all RP’s.

To see all the players listed as the 3 Stars, check them out below:

FIRST BASE:

Joey Votto………………….Red Sox………………46.393

Chris Davis………………..Rays…………………..43.438

Kendry Morales………….Pirates………………..40.880

SECOND BASE:

Brandon Phillips…………Rockies………………41.578

Yangervis Solarte………..D-Backs……………..37.130

Asdrubal Cabrera………..Rays…………………..36.202

THIRD BASE:

Nolan Arenado…………….Padres……………….72.250

Ryan Zimmerman………..Nationals……………65.430

Kyle Seager…………………Giants……………….43.675

SHORTSTOP:

Jed Lowrie………………….Phillies………………48.495

Jose Reyes………………….Rays………………….36.520

Alexei Ramirez……………Cardinals…………..34.564

OUTFIELDER:

Bryce Harper……………….Nationals……………65.792

Carlos Gonzalez…………..Rockies……………..57.721

Yoenis Cespedes………….Astros………………..49.437

CATCHER:

Buster Posey………………..Giants…………………34.812

Travis D’Arnaud…………..Mets…………………..32.106

Brian McCann……………..Giants…………………29.222

STARTING PITCHER:

Bartolo Colon……………….Rays…………………..39.750

Dallas Keuchel……………..Giants…………………29.250

Clayton Kershaw…………..Dodgers………………27.750

RELIEF PITCHER:

Tom Wilhelmsen……………Mets………………….25.000

Andrew Miller……………….Red Sox……………..21.750

Aroldis Chapman…………..Mariners…………….19.750

3 Stars Real Deal Dynasty Baseball Week #20

Edwin Encarnacion(MIL) was flexing his muscle when he was the #1 Star at 1B in back to back weeks.
Edwin Encarnacion(MIL) was flexing his muscle when he was the #1 Star at 1B in back to back weeks.

 

Week #20 Recap: We are down to the final 4 regular season games of the 2015 season. Is it just me, or has the season flown by? I still remember the month of December and the Winter trading frenzy like it was yesterday. Wasn’t Corey Kluber traded to every team but the Astros & Blue Jays? Being my first season in the league, it was fun and flew by fast. Even though we have played 89 of the 93 regular season games, some of the Divisions still haven’t been decided. For example, the Chicaco Cubs are tied with the best record in the league at 72-17, yet they still haven’t clinched and hold a slim 2 game lead over the Milwaukee Brewers at 70-19. However, being the last week is all divisional games and no other team in the NL Central is above .500, I don’t see the Cubs losing grasp of their lead. In the AL East, the Tampa Bay Rays is the other 72-17 team in the league and they have a 4 game lead over the Boston Red Sox at 68-21. I don’t see the Rays going 0-4, so they can safely raise the Divisional Championship Banner. The Toronto Blue Jays are sitting at 47-42 and will finish the season above .500. In the AL West, the Houston Astros have clinched the division with a 68-21 record and a 6 game lead over the Texas Rangers at 62-27. The NL East has also been clinched as the New York Mets took the division with a 64-25 record. They currently hold an 8 game lead over the Miami Marlins, who are sitting at 56-33. Another .500 team in the division are the Washington Nationals with a 47-42 record. With the way the team have battled each other in the NL West, it is still too close to call. Currently, the Colorado Rockies are atop the division with a 59-30 record. They hold a slim 2 game lead over the Arizona Diamondbacks and their 57-32 record. The San Francisco Giants are still above .500 with a 53-36 record and are looking to play the Spoiler role. Here’s an interesting stat I noticed. A lot of times I look at teams points scored and see if how it compares to where they are in the standings. After over 20,000pts scored, the Rockies & Diamondbacks are only separated by about 500pts. Then sometimes I think a team is only of another team because they played weaker opponents and allowed a lot less points. Now I know all teams in a division play the same teams every week, but still, check this out. After allowing over 18,000pts, the Rockies have only allowed 18 more points than the Diamondbacks. We’re talking a mere 18pts when you’re talking about over 18,000 total points. Am I the only one that finds that truly staggering? I highly doubt it. Now, back to the divisional races. In the AL Central, the Minnesota Twins have clinched with a 58-31 record. They lead the Kansas City Royals and their 52-37 record by 6 games. The Detroit Tigers will finish above .500 with a current record of 50-39.

There are going to be 4 Wild Card teams and I’m assuming it will be two in each league (NL & AL). If that’s the case, the Milwaukee Brewers have clinched one spot at 70-19. The second spot is a 1 game battle between the Arizona Diamondbacks at 57-32 and the Miami Marlins at 56-33. In the AL, the Wild Card teams are set with the Boston Red Sox at 68-21 and the Texas Rangers at 62-27. Good Luck to all the teams with Post Season aspirations!

Here’s a look at some of the top players for the week:

1B Edwin Encarnacion(MIL) is no stranger to the 3 Stars listing. After a big 42pt last week and the #1 Star, he came in as the top scorer this week in the Real Deal 69.335pts. It was his biggest week of the season and it was the 3rd time in the last 4 weeks where he scored over 40pts. He now has 479.311pts on the season and is the 4th ranked 1B in the league. Kendry Morales(PIT) had his best week of the season as he scored 36.73pts. It was his 3rd time scoring over 30pts this season and he did it all within the last 7 weeks. He has 307.491pts and is ranked 18th among 1B.

2B Brandon Phillips(COL) led all 2B with 34.092pts. He scored 29pts in the previous 2 weeks after scoring 76pts in weeks 16 & 17. He has 375.057 season points and is ranked 7th for 2B. Daniel Murphy(BOS) came in with 32.182pts and it was only the second time this season over 30pts. His first time was just 3 weeks earlier. He has 338.138pts and is ranked 13th among 2B.

3B Only two 3B scored over 40pts in Week #20 and they were led by a Moose. Mike Moustakas(KCR) scored 45.14pts. It was the second time he scored over 40pts as he had 45.699pts in Week #15. He has been hot lately as he’s scored 104pts in the last 3 weeks. That has raised his season total to 415.754pts and have moved up to 7th overall for 3B.

SS Only one SS scored over 40pts. Didi Gregorius(SFG) scored 41.25pts. Did he? Yes, Didi did. He’s only scored over 30pts twice this season and both times it was over 40pts as he scored 47.624pts in Week #16. He has 289.078pts and is ranked 16th as that puts him right in the middle of the SS pack. Francisco Lindor(CLE) didn’t make his Real Deal debut until Week #11. It took him a few weeks to get into the fantasy groove, but once he figured it out, he took off. Since Week #14, he’s scored over 20pts every week. That a streak of 7 straight weeks. Because of that explosion, he has 218.25pts and is already ranked 23rd even though he’s only played half the season.

OF There were only 2 OF’s that scored over 40pts and there was only 1 OF over 50pts. That was Michael Brantley(MIN) as he scored 52.55pts. It was this week’s third highest score in the league. It was also his best week of the season and his first time over 50pts. He has 477.708pts and cracked the Top 10 for OF’s as he is now ranked 10th. The only other OF over 40pts was Andrew McCutchen(TBR) as he scored 41.065pts. It was the third time this season that he broke 40pts. He did that after a pair of 17pt performances in the last 2 weeks. He does have 500.563pts and is ranked 6th overall for OF’s. He’s also ranked 11th overall among all Real Deal players. That also means there are only 11 players with over 500pts this season.

C Behind the Dish, there was one player that scored over 40pts. Jonathan Lucroy(BOS) led the way with 40.160pts. It was his second time over 30pts and his highest score of the season. He only scored 14pts in the first 3 weeks and then missed the next 5 weeks of the season. Still, he has 243.471pts and has now cracked the Top 10 for catchers as he’s ranked 9th. Travis D’Arnaud(NYM) had a solid week with 39.255pts. It was also his best week of the season. He has played sporadically this season. He played the first 2 weeks, missed the next 7, played 2 more, and then missed 4. He has now played the last 5 weeks. He has 154.922pts and is ranked 20th for catchers.

SP Jake Arrieta(TEX) threw a masterful no-hitter and scored 57.25pts as he had the second highest score in the Real Deal this week. By far his best week of the season and he climbed all the way up to the #2 SP with 345.25pts. Derek Holland(TEX) completed the Rangers 1,2 ranking in 3 Stars this week with 30.25pts. He just came back last week with his first game since Week #1. He now has 38.75pts.

RP Kenley Jansen(ATL) was the only RP to score 20pts as he was 20pts on the nose. A nice turnaround after scoring negative points last week. He did have over 20pts the week before that. He has 176.5pts this season and is ranked 22nd for RP’s. Jeurys Familia(NYM) had a 18.25pts for the week. It was his third best week of the season and he raised his season point total over 200pts. He has 204pts and is ranked 6th for RP’s and there are only 6 RP’s over 200pts.

To see all the players listed as the 3 Stars, check them out below:

FIRST BASE:

Edwin Encarnacion……..Brewers……………..69.335

Kendry Morales………….Pirates………………..36.730

Joey Votto…………………..Red Sox……………..36.636

SECOND BASE:

Brandon Phillips…………Rockies………………34.092

Daniel Murphy……………Red Sox……………..32.182

Jose Altuve…………………Astros………………..31.911

THIRD BASE:

Mike Moustakas………….Royals……………….41.140

Eduardo Escobar………….Rockies……………..43.325

Kyle Seager…………………Giants……………….36.141

SHORTSTOP:

Didi Gregorius……………Giants………………..41.250

Francisco Lindor…………Indians……………….37.970

Ketel Marte………………..Yankees……………..29.234

OUTFIELDER:

Michael Brantley………..Twins………………….52.550

Andrew McCutchen……Rays……………………41.065

Jose Bautista………………Brewers……………….39.247

CATCHER:

Jonathan Lucroy…………..Red Sox……………..40.160

Travis D’Arnaud…………..Mets…………………..39.255

Evan Gattis………………….Rays…………………..37.249

STARTING PITCHER:

Jake Arrieta………………….Rangers………………57.250

Derek Holland………………Rangers………………30.250

Justin Verlander…………….Tigers…………………28.750

RELIEF PITCHER:

Kenley Jansen……………….Braves……………….20.000

Jeurys Familia……………….Mets………………….18.250

Tom Wilhelmsen……………Mets………………….17.500