Tuesday, April 17, 2007

2 For Tuesday #4: Agony & Ecstacy

Yesterday was one of those days which truly ran the gamut of emotions for me. It's not a day any of us will soon forget. As most of you know by now, a horrific tragedy happened at the campus of Virginia Tech yesterday morning - thirty-two people were shot in what was the worst shooting in America's history. I first became aware of the the shooting a little after 7:30am PT and followed it's progress the entire morning. As the day wore on, and more details about the seriousness of the massacre came to light, my heart ached more and more for those innocent people. Why would someone do this??? We will probably never know as the shooter then took his own life after taking the lives of the others. At this moment, all I can do is to try and keep these people, their families and friends in thought and prayer... I really want to do something else to help - perhaps a financial donation or contribution to the families of those who lost loved ones there. It's just hard to grasp the depth of this tragedy at the moment...

As horrible as the Virginia Tech tragedy was, there was an event last night that truly made me feel better - The CMT Music Awards. I made special arrangements to watch this live at 5PM PT, rather than wait for it to play on tape delay at 8PM. Jeff Foxworthy was his "normal" silly self, and the music talent truly shined. Outstanding performances by Rascal Flatts, Carrie Underwood, Toby Keith, Sugarland, Bon Jovi and Martina McBride highlighted the show.

The big winner of the night had to be Carrie Underwood. The 2-time Grammy award winner the won the coveted Video of the Year and Female Video of the Year awards for her crossover smash "Before He Cheats." The video's producer, Roman White, won the award for Video Director of the Year. Carrie's good friends, Rascal Flatts, took home the Group Video of the Year award for "What Hurts The Most" - a song which, like Underwood's hit, crossed over to become a multi-format smash. Taylor Swift was the very deserving winner of the Breakthrough Video of the Year award for her song "Tim McGraw". Kenny Chesney took home the Male Video of the Year for "You Save Me" in what was probably the most competitive category - all of the candidates and videos were VERY deserving. Sugarland took home the award for Video Duo of The Year for their hit "Want To." Jack Ingram came away with the show's new Wide Open Country Video of the Year for his hit "Love You." Kris Kristofferson won the Johnny Cash Visionary Award. All of the award winners were very gracious in accepting of the awards and they all were extremely appreciative of their legions of fans. The show truly made me proud to be a fan of Country music.


Some "Diamonds" in the rough to help out your fantasy teams this week:

1. Adam Lind (Util - Tor) 24% owned in CBS Sportsline Leagues - Lind was someone I REALLY targeted this year in my long term keeper leagues. I had the opportunity to see him play a few times late last year and was very impressed by what I saw - a .367 batting average, 2 HR and 8 RBI to go along with a very sweet swing in 60 at bats. Lind was also #7 on Ron Shandler's top 50 prospects for 2007... and as some of you know, when Shandler talks, I listen! Lind was sent down to the minors at the end of spring training this year as he would have been in a platoon role. The Blue Jays' manager Cito Gaston wanted to be sure he played full time and stayed fresh. With the recent injury to left fielder Reed Johnson, a slot has suddenly opened for Lind. All I know is the guy can hit! With Johnson out for three months, Lind will have more than adequate opportunity to display his hitting prowess.

2. Adrian Beltre (3B - Sea) 88% owned - Beltre is one of those players who can literally drive the fantasy owner crazy. When he is good, he is REALLY good, but when he is bad he is AWFUL! I've picked up on something over the years with Beltre though which seems to be the whole key to his success. When he is patient and taking walks, he suddenly becomes a much better hitter. When he gets impatient and swings at everything, he reverts to being this Mendoza-like hitter. Beltre has three walks in his last four games, and not surprisingly he has a .353 BA with 6 runs, 2 HR and 9 RBI to show for those efforts. While he may never duplicate that 48 homer season he had for the Dodgers in 2004, 30 homers is certainly not out of the question.

3. Zack Grienke (SP - KC) 66% owned - Greinke appeared on his way to becoming a household name in 2004 when he posted a 3.97 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP for the Royals. 2005 started OK for Greinke, but he was the victim of some very poor run support the first half of that season and then some just bad pitching in the second half. 2006 found Greinke back in the minors for most of the season and it seems to have done him good. In three starts this year he's posted a 3.95 ERA and an impressive 13 K's in 13 2/3 innings. Though he may not win a lot of games this year, his other numbers should help you a lot!

4. Ty Wigginton (1B/2B/3B - TB) 83% owned - Wigginton is one of those guys who has that very valuable multi-position eligibility. When injuries strike your team (and you know whey will at some point), players that can play three positions can be invaluable. "Wiggy" put up 24 homers and 79 RBI in only 444 AB last year... How many second baseman do you know who are capable of putting up 33 homers in 600 at bats? Can Chase Utley even do that?

5. Tom Gorzelanny (RP - Pit) 39% owned - Gorzelanny fell under the radar a lot last year pitching for the lowly Pirates. Pittsburgh seems to be a much better team this year and consequently, Gorzelanny may be in line for quite a few wins. In 61 2/3 innings last year, he posted an impressive 3.82 ERA and 1.323 WHIP. So far in 2007 he's posted a 1.50 ERA and 1.00 WHIP in his first two starts spanning 12 innings. More impressively perhaps is that he's only walked one batter while striking out nine.

No comments: