Saturday, March 31, 2007

Setting the line up and Roster

It’s the weekend before the season starts. Remember I recommended to you to wait until just before the start of the season to move your players from “Players Requiring Assignment” to either the 25 man roster or the minors. If you went on right after the draft set your active roster and in the process you sent a few SPs to the minors thinking you had your 6 SPs already set – then imagine your surprise when you picked up the paper on Friday. There you are reading about your number 4 SP (Kenny Rogers) going to the DL. Oops!! What are you going to do now you think; oh I can just bring up one of the SPs from the Minors – wrong! Once they are at the Minors they have to stay there until week 2 – hard lesson from the first year of GDR.

Now is the time for you to shift your players to the Active Roster, DL and the Minors. Most teams have made position decisions and you will have the health status on most players. Your top 9 position players, top SP and RP is an easy choice and will fill up the core of your active roster. Here comes the fun. You have to use what ever method works best for you to fill in the rest of the rotation, bench and bullpen. This is where having multiple position players come in handy. Also you need to consider the number of options you have between the majors and minors. Unless the younger player is proven or looks like that can’t miss kid you might be more incline to keep him in the minors while keeping a known veteran on the active roster. This at least gives you a few weeks to see how things settle out during the real games and see who is really going to start the season out hot.

Some choices of who to shift to the minors will be easy, but there will be the ones that will be a toss up. We have already seen some chat about keeping reserves on the bench – I agree because you never know when J. Reyes will go down – at least having a decent SS backing him up will get you a couple of points for that week and give you time to figure out what to do. If the rest of your team is playing well, you may be able to squeeze out a win. Again find those decent players to put on the bench that have multiple positions.

I started setting my roster yesterday and will finish up tomorrow morning. What I found helpful was to open up the lineup next to the contracts page and analysis each position for strengths or weakness. Right now I have a full 25 man roster and will need to move a hitter down to the minors so I can add a 6th starter to fill the spot position.

Right now my roster is
1B C. Delgado (S. Hillenbrand back up)
2B O. Hudson (K. Matsui back up)
3B C. Jones (S. Hillenbrand back up)
SS H. Ramirez (B. Crosby back up)
OF A. Soriano (L. Scott back up)
OF J. Damon (L. Scott back up)
OF H. Matsui (S. Sosa back up)
DH M. Cameron (H. Blalock back up) * Blalock is the most likely to go to the minors. UPDATE:
BLALOCK DID GO DOWN AND SOSA IS NOW THE BACK UP

SP1 J. Schmidt
SP2 J. Beckett
SP3 M. Cain
SP4 J. Garland
SP5 J. Saunders
Spot TBD UPDATE: S. HILL NOW SPOT STARTER
MR B. Jenks
SU O. Dotel
CL B. Wickman
FR M. MacDougal
*****UPDATE: YES, MR DOES NO GIVE PTS FOR SAVES BUT I WAS IN THE PROCESS OF GOING AFTER B. STOKES OF TB (YES A RAY). I DID NOT LIKE MACDOUGAL'S SPRING I DID NOT HAVE ANY CONFIDENCE IN HIM -- GOT TO EARN IT -- SO TO THE MINORS WITH HIM. SO I WAS STUCK WITH 3 CLOSERS AND NO RELIABLE SET UP MAN. SO TO PREVENT TIPPING MY HAND TO ONE OF MANY SMART OWNERS HERE IN RUTH' I LEFT THE RP POSITIONS AS THEY WERE UNTIL WAIVERS WERE DONE. NOW THE PUG'S BULLPEN LOOKS LIKE THIS:
MR B. STOKES
SU B. JENKS
CL B. WICKMAN
FR O. DOTEL
Minors
SP S. Hill (possible spot)
RP E. Jackson (possible spot)
OF J. Gomes
C. R. Barajas
RP E. Gonzalez
1B W. Helms
2B D. Pedroia
3B H. BLALOCK
RP M. MACDOUGAL
DL
SP K. Rogers (yes I had him)
RP K. Wood

Now that your lineup is set and you have found a home either in the minors or on the active roster for all your players; you’ll still got work to do. 1st off keep scanning your resources for possible FAs – I still have $3.5M and 6 roster spots going into the season. Next you need to set the batting order – Use the suggested line up as a guidance but take note of bonuses different players get and how the players are hitting. Lastly you need to go to the strategy page and review how your line up matches up with your opponent for the coming week. Make sure you take advantage of the pitch around option – you should use this most of the time. Yes there will be one or two weeks in which you can not find any a good match to pitch around.

That’s it. Good luck! Play Ball!

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