Interrogate the Industry No. 3: Dennis Esser, Ricky Sanders

May 21

Interrogate the Industry No. 3: Dennis Esser, Ricky Sanders

As I write this weeks Interrogate the Industry there is news of even more pitching injuries. This season has been disastrous for many teams, and Fantasy owners. On the bright side, there is always a bright side with me, several pitchers are coming back too, or coming back in to form such as Cole Hamels, Alex Cobb, Anibal Sanchez, Tony Cingrani, and HOPEFULLY Chris Sale. Keep tabs on waiver wires, ask questions and consult rankings on fantasypros to keep tabs on solid replacements. Worst case there is always a trade, but if you are in a situation as I am in one particular league there isn’t much else to do. I have five starters out for the year, possibly another with the potentially terrible Cliff Lee news tonight. Also, if you enjoy podcasts, I will be a guest on The Fantasy Forecaster this week with @tking978 and @rickygangster. Keep an eye out for links, or listen in live here The Fantasy Forecaster 5-22! That’s it for now, as there is plenty to cover with this weeks contributors.   Interrogate the Industry #3 Fantasy Contributor: Dennis Esser www.coachesser.com Itunes link to The Fantasy Coach Podcast https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-fantasy-coach-podcast/id877693921 Stitcher Radio link to The Fantasy Coach Podcast http://www.stitcher.com/s?fid=48991&refid=stpr @Coachesser on Twitter https://twitter.com/coachesser 1. Jose Fernandez is out for the season. Owners are panicking and rightly so, are there any pitchers you’d be targeting on the waiver wire after this week(end)? With all of the starting pitcher injuries (including Andrew Cashner and Gio Gonzalez this past weekend) the Starting Pitcher waiver wire looks a bit picked dry. The good thing is arms are always coming up to take the place of struggling pitchers and injured starters. Believe it or not Garret Richards was available is some 10 team leagues just a week ago. The first name that jumps out is Trevor Bauer who gets two tough opponents on his return to the big leagues this week. I think the Indians will give him an extended run and even if he struggles this week you should stick with his talent. The rest are streaming options that may catch on for at least a short while. Rafael Montero of the Mets, Drew Pomeranz of the Oakland A’s, and Danny Duffy...

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Fantasy Lagniappe: Same Hobby, Different Collection

May 05

Fantasy Lagniappe: Same Hobby, Different Collection

I recently turned 42 years old (which is twice as cool as turning 21!), and I turned introspective for a bit, looking back at my long life. I thought back to when I lived on Walton Mountain (ask your parents), churned my own butter and watched TV with the aid of an antenna covered in tin foil. Since we’re in the heart of Fantasy Football season, my thoughts turned to my view of sports as a kid. My sports cards meant the world to me in the late ’70s and early ’80s, and whenever I’d watch games with my father, I’d sort through my cards, again and again, looking for the players on the field and up at bat, making sure I dinged every corner hundreds of times. My father once bought my brothers and I a box of baseball cards in cello packs in 1978 (still my favorite Topps set). And since you could see which players were on the top and bottom cards, my brothers and I took turns on which packs we wanted to open. It was my very first Fantasy draft. My First Bad Fantasy Pick! Yankees P Ron Guidry was the No. 1 pick in that draft. And 6-year-old me passed up Steve Garvey to excitedly pick Royals P Steve Busby. HAA! Busby. What a funny name! … I was a dumb kid. I collected for the next few decades and built my collection up to 135,000 cards — almost $10,000 worth! That’s right, I’ll pay you $10,000 to take them all! I bring up my card collection because if you are around 30 years old or older, you most likely built up a nice collection of your own, in the early ’90s, when the card industry went nuts. Then the industry busted, like dot-coms would a few years later and the housing industry would a few years after that. Now, bring up sports cards to anyone born in or before the ’80s, and you’ll hear guffaws and laughter from people that got burned on their “investment.” With over 30 million people playing Fantasy Sports these days, or about one in every 10 Americans, people wonder if the industry is officially saturated. Are all...

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12 Ways to Know You Are at a Crappy Super Bowl Party

Jan 30

12 Ways to Know You Are at a Crappy Super Bowl Party

An old football-watching buddy of mine emailed me a few years ago reminiscing about a bad Super Bowl party or two that we had been to together. Tom reminded me of the time my brother-in-law invited us over to his house for the ’99 Super Bowl (Falcons and Broncos), and then when we got there, he had a 20″ TV and a bad cable connection. We were also together at a Super Bowl party in ’94 (49ers and Chargers) when some guy had a karaoke machine. And he kept yelling, “Fumble-aya!!!” During the ’96 Super Bowl (Steelers and Cowboys), some chick sat in a prime seat (you know the ones: direct viewing angle, cushy bottom, short reach for snackage) and she talked about everything else in the world except the game, which she could care less about. This was also the party that my brother-in-law (same one) was using a red laser pointer to play with the cat in front of the television for like, I don’t know, six hours. Tom remembered all of these — apparently I had blocked them out of my memory until he brought them back up. I need counseling again. Thanks Tom. This does explain why I’m quick to snap on someone nowadays, though. There’s no way I let some Chatty Cathy go on and on during the whole Super Bowl again. A karaoke machine would have no chance. I’m less of a man for even being associated with that now. So Tom explained to me that he and another friend (Carl) got together to make a Super Bowl pact: They will always do a Super Bowl together only at their houses for the next 10 years. This is a great idea! Another rule they added is that the people invited to the Super Bowl party had to have come over at some point during the season to watch a game. That weeds out the looky-loos and the Bruno Mars fans. And if they did come over at some point during the season, they: Did not talk more than 10 percent of non-football related topics Brought good snacks Didn’t bring noisy kids And they proved their football knowledge. As Tom mentioned, the midseason game...

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10 Super Bowl Party Dos and Don’ts

Jan 30

10 Super Bowl Party Dos and Don’ts

The Super Bowl is finally here — which means you might be in danger of violating some major Super Bowl Party Dos and Don’ts.  DO wear a jersey of a team that is playing in the big game. DON’T effin wear the jersey of your team that not only did not make it to the Super Bowl, but didn’t even make it to the playoffs. Don’t be that guy (or gal). While we are on the subject of jerseys, ladies, please stop wearing pink jerseys. It’s not cute when Jessica Simpson does it and it certainly isn’t cute when you do it either. Pink is for baby showers and Pepto, not football. DO bring some beer over to the house where you will be watching the game. Chances are there will already be beer, but who cares. You can never have too much. DON’T opt out of bringing beer then proceed to complain about the kind the host is offering. “Oh, all you have is Bud Light? Eeee, um, I’m all set. I’ll just drink some milk.” DO ask the host prior to Sunday if they’d like you to bring over some sort of food or chips. Just like beer, there is no such thing as too much food. DON’T bring over something stupid and/or gross like a veggie platter or chopped liver with rye bread squares just to say you brought something. You’re not sitting Shiva, this is the Super Bowl, idiot. DO feel free to discuss the commercials that air during the Super Bowl. DON’T wait until the game is back on to talk about a commercial that just ended and expect everyone to turn their attention to you doing an impression of the E* Trade baby doing a touchdown dance in his highchair. DO ask the host at the end of the game if they need help with anything, such as cleaning or taking some food or beer off their hands. DON’T just start grabbing as much food and beer as you can carry and make a beeline for the door. Chances are you’ll be drunk and probably trip on your way out and embarrass yourself more than you already have — you scavenger. Good luck! Hopefully, these...

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This Thanksgiving, Go Straight to Sandwiches

Nov 28

This Thanksgiving, Go Straight to Sandwiches

The game that started it all, that Turkey Day classic between the Detroit Lions and the undefeated Chicago Bears was broadcast in 1934 on a paltry 94 radio stations. The young Detroit Lions sold out their 26,000 seat stadium that year, and even though they lost the game, they have played on Thanksgiving Day ever since. The Dallas Cowboys joined the day’s lineup in 1966, pretty much for the same reason, to boost their popularity, and General Manager Tex Schramm ran with the opportunity. America’s team, and its cheerleaders, still grace television screens for happy fans. They’ve only missed that Turkey Day game twice in the intervening years. The Cowboys host the Oakland Raiders at 4:30 p.m. ET Thursday, Nov. 28, on FOX. This Thanksgiving, the Lions meet Green Bay for the first game of the day beginning at 12:30 p.m. ET, broadcast by CBS. The prime-time slot this year will be filled by the Pittsburgh Steelers/Baltimore Ravens contest, slated for 8:30 p.m. ET on NBC. A Twist on Thanksgiving Tradition As you embrace the football tradition this year, why not have hearty sandwiches as your primary Thanksgiving feast, instead of waiting for the leftovers? You know you’d love the ease of preparation, and what’s not to enjoy about a day-long television and eating festival with a group of friends and family? The most important preparation you can make is to arrange for plenty of comfortable seating in front of the big-screen. If you’re currently a subscriber to direcTV, you already have the basic ingredients for a great party. You probably already know about the advantages of NFL Sunday Ticket — it’s not just football, you know. If you don’t have Sunday Ticket, there’s time to contact www.Direct.tv to activate your service before the big day. How to Feed the Crowd For the best possible pigskin party this year, you can plan to eat all day — provide plenty of grazing options and let guests cruise past the food tables as their appetites dictate. But save yourself the hassle of preparing a “sit-down” dinner, and eliminate the L-triptophan-induced stupor that too much food produces. Instead of roasting a turkey, try smoking one. Slice smoked turkey for do-it-yourself-sandwiches on a...

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Fantasy Basketball Projections: Top 69 Player by Basketball References Simple Projection System

Oct 23

Fantasy Basketball Projections: Top 69 Player by Basketball References Simple Projection System

In this post we will discuss Fantasy Basketball projections for the 2013-14 season. As I discussed in my last post about Fantasy Baseball ranking based off of the 2014 Steamer projections, I love rankings based off of quantitative analysis. Rankings that take a statistical approach to value ascription lack the histrionic overtones and biases that are present throughout most of the fantasy fodder online, and they provide market inefficiencies that owners can take advantage of when drafting. While there are very few quantitative NBA projection systems, compared to the amount of MLB projection systems, there are two that I found. Perhaps the most well known, Kevin Pelton’s SCHOENE projection system is available to ESPN Insiders, and I succumbed to the forces of the evil empire and subscribed to a 30 day free trial to procure the necessary information to write this article. Alas, ESPN Insider does not provide SCHOENE projections in an exportable format: BOOO! The second NBA Projection system that is widely available is the Basketball Reference Simple Projection System (SPS).  The SPS takes into consideration playing time, aging curves, and the last three years of player performance. Most importantly, the SPS has been proven to be accurate in its projections, and slightly more effective than the SCHOENE projection system. I took the SPS projections, translated them into fantasy value for a standard eight category rotisserie league—points, rebounds, assists, steals, blocks, three pointers, field goal percentage, and free throw percentage—and then weighted those projections with the total amount of minutes ESPN projects that player to play; the SPS weights all stats on a Per-36 minute performance rate, and you get weird results when you don’t take into consideration the amount of playing time a player will realistically be on the court. For example, Manu Ginobili projects to as a top twenty player when you don’t take into consideration the brief amount of minutes he plays. Here are the results of the Simple Projections System (Note these rankings do not have positional adjustments weighted into their projections, so all the centers need to get a huge boost): RkPlayer3PTRBASTSTLBLKPTSFG%FT%tMINwzSCR 1Kevin Durant0.920.400.520.500.513.681.714.46 3,080 20.35 2LeBron James0.150.482.021.360.023.382.940.50 2,865 16.17 3Chris Paul0.28-0.933.873.97-1.111.320.662.37 2,622 14.21 4James Harden1.44-0.651.151.36-0.622.640.153.45 2,902 13.46 5Stephen Curry2.73-0.931.961.36-0.952.190.401.89 2,865 12.89 6Kyrie...

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The Ultimate Man Cave: Build a NFL-themed Sports Bar in Your Home

Sep 24

The Ultimate Man Cave: Build a NFL-themed Sports Bar in Your Home

The concept of the “man cave” has been revived to refer to a sanctuary where the man of the house could retreat and rejuvenate. Of course, the original man cave was an actual cave. Always got horrible satellite dish reception, though. Things have evolved quite a bit since then. Modern man caves now come equipped with pool tables, shag carpet, pinball machines, full bars — or at the very least, a decent TV and a couch. And a bathroom! Don’t forget access to a bathroom. While having your own man cave is sanctuary enough for most men, why settle for ordinary? You can take things to the next level by building a full-on sports bar in your own home. Getting Started on the Ultimate Man Cave First, decide where you want the bar. The best location will likely be the basement, but the den, garage or a spare room are possible choices. Consider an accessible spot so that visitors can enter and leave easily. Choose the place most conducive to entertaining company as well as a good spot for a personal retreat if needed. Next, measure the area thoroughly and precisely so that you’ll be able to outfit it properly. Bars come in straight, free standing and L-shaped designs. Buy or create your own plan for the bar — you’ll need at least a basic blueprint to follow. Check out barplan.com and bar-gear.com for ideas, plan options and accessories. If You Build It, They Will Come Choose a design and wood tone for the bar that you will love looking at for years to come. Select a style that suits your tastes and will also withstand the level of partying you and your friends plan to enjoy. Browse sites like Houzz and HomeBars.com for ideas and inspiration. Choose bar stools that will keep you and your guests comfortable throughout the entire Sunday football lineup (and into overtime, if needed). Now comes the really fun part — decorate and stock your home sports bar to your own tastes and preferences. Browse sites like Pinterest and Pottery Barn for ideas. Buy barware and accents that fit your personal style. This is your sports bar — make it the environment of your...

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