Warning: I've been up for 96 straight hours.
Or maybe it just feels that way.
No, I'm not a closet crack addict (far as you know). I haven't been traveling the country attending whirlwind funerals for recently deceased celebrities (the saddest, to me anyway, was Billy Mays. Had the chance to shoot an ESPN campaign
with him and he couldn't have been friendlier, harder working and more of a class act.) And I'm not jet lagged from yet another romantic visit with my Argentenian mistress, trips funded by monies Bernie Madoff and I pilfered from Rotoworld Season Pass memberships. Suckers! If Rosenthal ever finds out, I'm screwed! Good thing he's so deep into fantasy football prep that he can barely tie his own shoes, let alone track who's embezzling what from whom. I mean, have you seen his new Twitter profile picture
? Get a haircut, hippie! Then again, it's not any worse than this clown's
"Saved By the Bell" reject headshot.)
Rather, I'm in this ongoing state of forced narcolepsy because, after a false alarm last Tuesday literally as I was finishing my column, our son was born Friday night. Yes, little Mordecai "Three Fingers" St. Amant has arrived! (Send money in lieu of cigars.)
While I'm ecstatic to welcome the cute little guy into our lives, his arrival has thrown a brief wrench into my all-important fantasy sports writing schedule. Case in point, I'm writing this at 3:37 a.m. on my bathroom floor because we live in a small apartment in which Bedroom 1 is occupied by my daughter, Bedroom 2 by my wife/newborn, and my mother-in-law is crashed on an air mattress (yup, only luxury accommodations here at Chateau St. Amant!) in Living Room/Kitchen. Hence, the bathroom is my de facto office, the only place where I can have a computer on (i.e. laptop glow) and not bother anyone but my dead relatives who appear from time to time, though this might be the exhaustion talking.
So I apologize in advance for the brevity of this week's column, and for any bleary-eyed typos, hallucinations and rambling stream-of-consciousness asides that might occur therein. Case in point, I almost started the "Risers" section with Eric Chavez
, Boog Powell, Linda Lavin, and ex-Khmer Rouge leader Pol Pot.RISERSDan Meyer
: Everyone jumped on the Leo Nunez
wagon when Matt Lindstrom
went down, but it could be the lefty Meyer who emerges from the wreckage with the closer gig . . . at least until Fredi Gonzalez trusts Nunez and his balky ankle again. Sporting 1.99 ERA, 0.85 WHIP with a 30/7 K/BB rate, Meyer's already notched a save in Lindstrom's absence. Worth a speculation grab if you need help there.Nolan Reimold
: Lost in the hype surrounding a certain Baltimore teammate and rookie catcher, Reimold has belted 9 HRs in 130 ABs, with a respectable .285 average. Scouts have always envisioned 30 HRs/season for the former 2nd rounder (2005) and he could prove them right with regular playing time. And while he's not as tough as fellow Bowling Green alum Robert "T-1000" Patrick
, he's making sure that while the AL Rookie of the Year might be an Oriole, it might not
be one named Matt Wieters
: .274/18 HR/51 RBI/46 R from a C-eligible human? Yeah, I'll take that.Ricky Nolasco
: 8 Ks, 0 BBs, 8 strong innings last night against the Junior Varsity Nationals. Still, that makes four straight strong starts (7+ Ks per, 2 total BBs) since being brought back up. Hope you listened to me and everyone else here when we begged you to buy low toward the end of his banishment to Triple-A New Orleans.Tommy Hanson
: He hasn't been blowing hitters away and his control hasn't been stellar (18/17 K/BB), but he's now 4-0 after shutting out the Red Sox on Sunday, with the flu no less. (It wasn't Jordan vs. the Jazz in Game 5 of '97, but still pretty impressive). He hasn't allowed a run in his last three starts and gets those same J.V. Nationals next. I'm not a betting man, but I'd wager my own internal organs on him moving to 5-0.Mark DeRosa
: Hitting behind Pujols is like being Josh Duhamel's wingman -- you're bound to get some very attractive residual love that you might not otherwise deserve. DeRosa's on pace for 23-25 HR, 90-100 RBI, 85-90 R, and should finish at or above his semi-respectable .278 career average.Dudes on "Intervention" Who Can Still Somehow Afford Starbucks
: Mrs. Man-Crush and I were watching one of our favorite shows recently, A&E's "Intervention." This one featured a raging heroin addict-slash-speedballer who made his living by (A) manipulating family members/enablers and (B) begging for money at a local gas station, spinning the usual "I need a buck for gas to take my sick mother/sister/son to the hospital" yarns to gullible strangers who, inevitably, pitched in. Guy cleared about $200 per day and, while I appreciate his enterprising ways and creativity, when he wasn't buying smack (which was all the time), he appeared to have a penchant for Starbucks triple venti latte, which he was drinking in what seemed like every single morning scene. And that's when it hit me: a heroin addict living on the streets and manipulating friends, family and strangers to feed his habit can enjoy Starbucks, but I've
been forced to cut expensive coffee from our budget? Screw that. I'm off to get a $28 octuple shot uber-venti fog-thick foam lattechino. Or do heroin.Derrek Lee
: After hovering in Mendoza territory, Lee's raised his average up to .284 thanks in part to a 21-game hit streak through June 24. And the power has returned, too, with 6 HRs in 99 ABs this month, which isn't exactly 'roid rage, but a HR/16.5 ABs is at least a start for a guy who'd seemingly morphed into a doubles hitter.