Posts Tagged ‘Mike MacDougal’

Brian Bruney Strikes Fantasy Gold

December 14, 2009

Saturday night was the deadline for teams to tender players with less than six years service time contracts. There were a lot of quality players who were non-tendered contracts that night.

One of those players who was non-tendered a contract was Mike MacDougal of the Washington Nationals. MacDougal, by default became the Nationals’ closer last year after original closer Joel Hanrahan was ineffective.

Bruney could be the Nats closer in 2010

MacDougal picked up 20 saves and had a respectable 3.60 ERA in 50 games for the Nationals in 2009. However, his one-to-one strike out to walk ratio and hip surgery in October was probably the reason he was not tendered a contract.

Now that MacDougal is gone for now (the Nationals could still bring him back), the Nationals need a closer for 2010. Enter recently acquired Brian Bruney.

Bruney was acquired from the New York Yankees for a Player To Be Named Later (Jamie Hoffmann) and now stands to be the Nationals’ closer in 2010. As scary as that seems, there is nobody else in Washington right now who even remotely looks capable of closing games.

Bruney needs to limit his walks and of course, stay healthy in order to be effective for the Nationals. For a guy with decent stuff, Bruney walks way, way to many batters.

Bruney for his career has averaged 6.2 walks/9 innings. It’s hard to rely on a guy who goes to a 3-2 count on every batter and almost walks as many as he strikes out (8.9 K’s/9 for his career).

However, that is what the Nationals might have to do in 2010.

The Nationals gave their bullpen 58 save opportunities last year, which ranked towards the bottom of baseball. I don’t think the Nationals will rush Drew Storen to the majors, so Bruney should have the opportunity to save between 25 and 30 games in 2010.

Bruney went from afterthought with the Yankees, to a fantasy option in 2010. Draft Bruney as a low-end, number two closer in most fantasy formats.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Which Players Were Non-Tendered Contracts Last Night?

December 13, 2009

Last night at 11:59 pm est was the deadline for major league teams to offer players with less than six years service time contracts. These players are often referred to as tendered or non-tendered players.

Here is the list of players last night who were non-tendered a contract:

Kelly Johnson, Atlanta Braves. In my free agent primer, I had Johnson has my biggest non-tender sleeper. I think he has a lot to offer a team.

In 07′ he had an .831 OPS and in 08′ he had .795 OPS. In 09′, he was put in Bobby Cox’s doghouse. I think he could have a bounce back 2010 if given the opportunity. He would make sense with the Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Dodgers, or the Minnesota Twins.

Jack Cust, Oakland A’s. Cust is a classic “Moneyball” player–lots of walks, lots of strike outs, lots of home runs, and can’t play defense. Cust hit 22 out of his 25 HR’s last year against right-handed pitching.

Cust could sign with a team as a left-handed power hitter off the bench.

Garrett Atkins, Colorado Rockies. Atkins was non-tendered a contract on his birthday. That hurts.

Atkins’ OPS has dropped four years in a row and now can probably latch on to a team as a backup 1B/3B off the bench. He could be a fit with the Twins.

Wang was non-tendered last night

Chien-Ming Wang, New York Yankees. Wang really hasn’t been the same since he hurt his foot running the bases in Houston a year and a half ago.

At 29, Wang should have something left. I would say there is a 75 percent chance he ends up with the Dodgers and Joe Torre. The other 25 percent says he ends up with the Yankees on a minor league deal.

Jonny Gomes, Cincinnati Reds. All Gomes did with the Reds in 2009 was hit 20 HR’s and had an .879 OPS in just 98 games–now he is out of a job.

Gomes crushes left-handed pitching (.914 OPS in 2009) and it wouldn’t shock me if he returned to the Reds on a discounted deal in 2010.

Jose Arredondo, Matt Brown, and Dustin Moseley, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. I am very surprised the Angels would give up on this 25-year-old. It was reported yesterday that Arredondo would need Tommy John surgery and would miss the entire 2010 season.

A team will sign him and store him away until he is ready in 2011. He is too good of a talent not to be given a chance.

D.J. Carrasco, Chicago White Sox. Carrasco had a 3.76 ERA with the White Sox in 2009, but his peripherals weren’t great–9.9 hits/9, 1.41 WHIP.

There is a shortage of pitching in baseball, so he should get a chance somewhere.

Ryan Garko, San Francisco Giants. When Garko slugged 21 HR’s in 2007, he looked like he could be a very good first baseman for a long period of time.

Garko was traded to the Giants near the July 31st trading deadline last year and really provided no offense for the Giants. He hit .235 with just two HR’s in 40 games.

Ryan Langerhans, Seattle Mariners. Langerhans played in 38 games with the Mariners last year and hit just .218. He has always been a good OBP guy.

Brian Anderson, Boston Red Sox. Anderson was once a top prospect with the White Sox. Now he is a fringe major league player.

Brian Bass, Baltimore Orioles. Bass had a 4.90 ERA in 48 games out of the pen for the Orioles in 2009. He is probably looking at a minor league contract.

Neal Cotts, Chicago Cubs. Cotts had Tommy John surgery in July of this year. He will probably be ready to pitch again in the 2011 season.

Alfredo Amezaga, Florida Marlins. Amezaga played all three OF positions and SS for the Marlins in 2009. He is a career .251 hitter over eight seasons in the major leagues.

Raul Chavez, Toronto Blue Jays. Chavez hit .258 in 168 AB’s with the Blue Jays in 2009. I am sure he will get a two-year contract somewhere as that is the trend for mediocre catchers these days.

Clay Condrey, Philadelphia Phillies. Condrey–no relation to Dennis Condrey of the Midnight Express tag-team back in the 80’s–has posted an ERA below 3.26 the last two years.

Gabe Gross and Shawn Riggans, Tampa Bay Rays. Gross, the former University of Auburn QB, hit .227 in 115 games for the Rays in 2009. Gross should get a bench job somewhere.

Mike MacDougal and Scott Olsen, Washington Nationals. MacDougal found a second life with the Nationals in 2009 and ultimately became their closer.

MacDougal had 20 saves and a respectable 3.60 ERA, but his one-to-one walk to strike out ratio is not impressive at all. He should get a chance with a small market team.

Injuries and some off the field issues have really hurt Olsen’s career so far. Since everyone loves a lefty, he should get a minor league deal.

Tim Redding, Lance Broadway, Jeremy Reed, and Cory Sullivan, New York Mets. Redding has pitched eight years in the majors and has never been good. This might be the end of the road for him

Like Brian Anderson above, Reed was once a top center field prospect. He might get a job as a defensive replacement somewhere.

Mark DeFelice, Mike Rivera, and Seth McClung, Milwaukee Brewers. I like McClung–especially as a reliever. Once the Brewers were forced to put him in a starting role last year that’s when all hell broke loose.

McClung should get plenty of interest as a reliever.

Mark Worrell and Jackson Quezada, San Diego Padres. I can honestly say I have never heard of Jackson Quezada before. I am not even going to try to lie and write like I know something about him.

John Buck and Josh Anderson, Kansas City Royals. Buck looks like a better player than he is. In eight seasons with the Royals, Buck hit .235 with seven HR’s in over 2,000 AB’s.

Matt Capps and Phil Dumatrait, Pittsburgh Pirates. After having solid 2007 and 2008 seasons, Capps really fell off in 2009. Capps had a 5.80 ERA and registered the highest BB/9 rate of his career (2.8/9).

Capps should see interest

He also registered the highest K/9 of his career as well (7.6/9). Perhaps Capps just needs a change of scenery. Once he finds that change of scenery, expect Capps to be a set-up man not a closer.

Dumatrait was once a first-round pick of the Red Sox back in 2000. He has a 7.06 ERA in three major league seasons.

Adam Miller, Jose Veras, and Anthony Reyes, Cleveland Indians. What a sad story Adam Miller is. As late as 2008, Miller was the Indians’ top prospect. But a hand injury has pretty much stopped his once promising career.

Veras could end up back with the Yankees on a minor league deal. Veras pitched with the Yankees for four years compiling a 4.47 ERA and a 1.39 WHIP in 103.2 innings.

There are a lot of players on this list who can help a team in 2010. Now that the non-tenders are on the market, I think we will see activity really pick up.

I think a lot of teams were waiting to see who was non-tendered before they made a move.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

New York Yankees Trade Brian Bruney To Washington Nationals

December 7, 2009

The baseball winter meetings are underway and there is nothing to better help to kick off the meetings than a blockbuster trade.

Well, not exactly.

There was one trade today so far, but a blockbuster it is not.

Today, the New York Yankees traded relief pitcher Brian Bruney to the Washington Nationals for a Player To Be Named Later. This is probably a good thing for Bruney’s career.

Going to Washington is good for Bruney

Bruney, who is 28, strikes me as a guy who can’t pitch in a big market. Every single time the Yankees gave him an opportunity to do something in the Bronx, either Bruney got hurt or imploded.

Remember, it was Bruney who came into the 2009 season as the eighth inning set-up guy to Mariano Rivera. But of course Bruney struggled, got hurt, Phil Hughes took over in the eighth, and the rest is history.

Bruney will go to Washington and have a chance to be the eighth inning set-up to current closer Mike MacDougal. There is an outside chance of Bruney getting a shot at being the closer in Washington if the Nationals non-tender MacDougal.

Bruney needs to limit his walks and of course, stay healthy in order to be effective for the Nationals. For a guy with decent stuff, Bruney walks way, way to many batters.

Bruney for his career has averaged 6.2 walks/9 innings. It’s hard to rely on a guy who goes to a 3-2 count on every batter and almost walks as many as he strikes out (8.9 K’s/9 for his career).

Bruney has pitched six seasons with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Yankees and will be under the Nationals’ control until after the 2011 season.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Fantasy Week In Review, August 3-9…

August 10, 2009

We are getting down to the “nitty gritty” as the late, great Gorilla Monsoon used to say. We are right in the middle of the dog days of August and there is only about a month and a half left in baseball’s regular season and fantasy season.

Even if you feel you might be out of it, there is still some time to make some moves and make one last push. As always, here were the fantasy studs, the players who were a little off last week and some potential pickups from the week of August 3 -9…

Reynolds has been mashing lately

Reynolds has been mashing lately

Fantasy Studs

Mark Reynolds: .448/6/10. Is anyone realizing the year Reynolds is having? If the Arizona Diamondbacks weren’t so terrible, he would be getting MVP consideration.

Elijah Dukes: .348/1/11. Hopefully Dukes has gotten it together. It would be a big boost to the Washington Nationals if he did.

Adam Dunn: .375/4/9/.483. If the Nationals were smart, they would trade Dunn in the offseason and get some solid value for him. Are you listening Dayton Moore?

Billy Butler: .538/2/10. It has taken Butler longer to develop than the Kansas City Royals had hoped, but he has taken massive steps forward this season.

Carl Pavano: 2-0 with a 0.60 ERA and 10 K’s in 15 IP. Gets traded from the Cleveland Indians to the Minnesota Twins and then goes out and throws a gem for the Twins on Sat. Every Yankee fan just choked on their coffee.

Cliff Lee: 2-0 with a 1.93 ERA and 13 K’s in 14 IP. I think every pitcher should pitch in the NL just once so they can see how much of a difference it is.

Clayton Richard: 2-0 with a 2.63 ERA and eight K’s in 13.2 IP. I had Richard as a potential pickup last week and he has done nothing to disappoint since. This guy will be a good pitcher in San Diego.

Mike MacDougal: Four Saves with a 0.00 ERA and three K’s in Four IP. That’s three fantasy studs for the Washington Nationals last week for those of you scoring at home.

Reasons for Concern

David Ortiz: .056/0/0. Ortiz has one hit in his last 18 AB’s. Ortiz had a brief spurt in June where he batted .320 with a .409 OBP, but other than that he has been terrible this year.

With his age (33) and with the steroid allegations weighing on his mind, you have to wonder if Ortiz will have anything left for the last month and a half of the season.

BJ Upton/Justin Upton. It was a bad week for the brothers’ Upton last week. First, Justin Upton landed on the 15-day DL with a right oblique strain and then older brother BJ was dropped to ninth in the order. I am not worried about Justin so much as I am with BJ.

BJ Upton called the move to ninth a “kick in the face.” Really BJ? Last time I checked you were batting .239 with a .314 OBP. Let me know what you have done this year to deserve to stay in the leadoff spot.

Unless he goes off on a tear, I am going to consider this a lost season for Bossman Junior. If you have BJ Upton in a Keeper League format, hold on to him as he could be in line for a huge bounce back season next year.

Aaron Cook: Cook will miss his start next start on Tuesday because of what he is calling turf toe. How on earth does a pitcher get turf toe?

He is scheduled to start on Saturday, but keep an eye on this. Remember, turf toe ended Dion Sanders’ career.

Holland threw a CGSO yesterday

Holland threw a CGSO yesterday

Potential Pickups

Derek Holland: I said from day-one that Holland reminds me of Steve Avery. The good Steve Avery on the Atlanta Braves, not the bad one on the Boston Red Sox.

Yesterday, Holland tossed the very rare complete game shutout against a tough Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim lineup. If you are in a Keeper League, he is definitely worth picking up.

I think he will be a good one.

Softball Update

As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, The Ghost of Moonlight Graham was going to donate $50 to the V Foundation for Cancer Research for every homerun hit during the fifth annual Ocean Beach Softball Tournament was taking place in Ocean Beach, NY.

With the tourament concluding yesterday, I am proud to say that we raised $2,100 for cancer research. There were 42 HR’s hit in the tournament including six by tournament MVP Eric Samulski (1B/OF Trinity University, 2003-2007) and Matt Manewal (P Yale University, 1996-2000).

I chipped in with three big flies (all grand slams by the way) in five games.

Thanks to everyone who played this year and we are already looking forward to next year’s tournament and raising even more money for the V Foundation.

Another National’s Closer…

June 7, 2009

It’s a pretty good sign that your team is not doing so well if they have gone through three closers just 55 games into the season. Such is life for the last place Washington Nationals, as yesterday they named former Royals and White Sox pitcher, Mike MacDougal as their new closer.

First it was Joel Hanrahan, then it was Joe Beimel, then it was back to Hanrahan and now it is Mike MacDougal. This is the same MacDougal that was  released by the White Sox at the end of April because he had an ERA of 12.46 and walked seven batters in 4.1 IP. And this is the same MacDougal who is 32 years old and hasn’t closed games since 2005 with the Royals. These are real desperate times for the Nationals.

MacDougal peaked in 2003 when he had 27 saves and was an All Star with the Kansas City Royals. Unfortunately, that was six years ago and MacDougal  offers little value to fantasy owners in 2009. Even if you needed cheap saves, I still wouldn’t pick up MacDougal.

My guess is that MacDougal’s time as closer will be short lived and the Nationals will go back to Hanrahan or Beimel at some point. That is a fantasy owners nightmare – rotating closers.

Stay away from MacDougal for now. If you want cheap saves, try David Aardsma (9 saves, 1.91 ERA) or Andrew Bailey (three saves, 2.03 ERA).