Rougned Odor, Member of the Elite Club

On Sunday, the Rangers’ second baseman went 1-for-4 in team’s 3-1 victory against the Royals, and on Wednesday, he became the youngest player in MLB history to notch a grand slam in a dominant Texas victory over Seattle. The Venezuelan middle infielder has now piled up over 300 plate appearances in his rookie season. A rookie having a 300 PA season itself  doesn’t seem that rare and impressive. In fact, there are 16 rookies, including Odor, with 300 or more PA in 2014 as of this writing. But considering Odor, whom we call “Roogie,” won’t turn 21 until February, what he’s doing this season is quite an accomplishment.

Tony Gutierrez/AP
Tony Gutierrez/AP

Let me show you some of Odor’s career stats:

  • AVG/OBP/SLG: .248/.282/.376
  • Home runs: 6
  • BB/K: 11/56
  • Beers purchased legally in the States: 0

Yes, he’s that young. Had he attended a college in the U.S, he would’ve just started his junior year. Remember what you were doing when you were his age? Probably not as impressive as yanking 6 long balls in the big leagues.  Not many other 20-year-olds have done what Odor’s done in 2014.

 

Below is a list of players 20 or younger with at least 300 PA in a season since World War II, sorted by the greatest OPS+:

Rk Player OPS+ ▾ PA Year Age Tm Lg G H 2B 3B HR BB SO HBP SB CS BA OBP SLG
1 Mike Trout 168 639 2012 20 LAA AL 139 182 27 8 30 67 139 6 49 5 .326 .399 .564
2 Al Kaline 162 681 1955 20 DET AL 152 200 24 8 27 82 57 5 6 8 .340 .421 .546
3 Mickey Mantle 162 626 1952 20 NYY AL 142 171 37 7 23 75 111 0 4 1 .311 .394 .530
4 Alex Rodriguez 161 677 1996 20 SEA AL 146 215 54 1 36 59 104 4 15 4 .358 .414 .631
5 Frank Robinson 143 667 1956 20 CIN NL 152 166 27 6 38 64 95 20 8 4 .290 .379 .558
6 Tony Conigliaro 137 444 1964 19 BOS AL 111 117 21 2 24 35 78 5 2 4 .290 .354 .530
7 Ken Griffey 136 666 1990 20 SEA AL 155 179 28 7 22 63 81 2 16 11 .300 .366 .481
8 Tony Conigliaro 133 585 1965 20 BOS AL 138 140 21 5 32 51 116 5 4 2 .269 .338 .512
9 Bryce Harper 133 497 2013 20 WSN NL 118 116 24 3 20 61 94 5 11 4 .274 .368 .486
10 Jason Heyward 131 623 2010 20 ATL NL 142 144 29 5 18 91 128 10 11 6 .277 .393 .456
11 Vada Pinson 129 706 1959 20 CIN NL 154 205 47 9 20 55 98 1 21 6 .316 .371 .509
12 Orlando Cepeda 125 643 1958 20 SFG NL 148 188 38 4 25 29 84 3 15 11 .312 .342 .512
13 Bob Horner 124 359 1978 20 ATL NL 89 86 17 1 23 24 42 2 0 0 .266 .313 .539
14 Willie Mays 120 523 1951 20 NYG NL 121 127 22 5 20 57 60 2 7 4 .274 .356 .472
15 Claudell Washington 119 635 1975 20 OAK AL 148 182 24 7 10 32 80 5 40 15 .308 .345 .424
16 Bryce Harper 118 597 2012 19 WSN NL 139 144 26 9 22 56 120 2 18 6 .270 .340 .477
17 Giancarlo Stanton 118 396 2010 20 FLA NL 100 93 21 1 22 34 123 2 5 2 .259 .326 .507
18 Mickey Mantle 117 386 1951 19 NYY AL 96 91 11 5 13 43 74 0 8 7 .267 .349 .443
19 Johnny Bench 116 607 1968 20 CIN NL 154 155 40 2 15 31 96 2 1 5 .275 .311 .433
20 Cesar Cedeno 114 377 1970 19 HOU NL 90 110 21 4 7 15 57 2 17 4 .310 .340 .451
21 Eddie Mathews 113 593 1952 20 BSN NL 145 128 23 5 25 59 115 1 6 4 .242 .320 .447
22 Butch Wynegar 109 622 1976 20 MIN AL 149 139 21 2 10 79 63 2 0 0 .260 .356 .363
23 Ken Griffey 108 506 1989 19 SEA AL 127 120 23 0 16 44 83 2 16 7 .264 .329 .420
24 Clint Hurdle 108 481 1978 20 KCR AL 133 110 25 5 7 56 84 1 1 3 .264 .348 .398
25 Justin Upton 107 417 2008 20 ARI NL 108 89 19 6 15 54 121 4 1 4 .250 .353 .463
26 Ruben Sierra 107 411 1986 20 TEX AL 113 101 13 10 16 22 65 1 7 8 .264 .302 .476
27 Joe Torre 106 441 1961 20 MLN NL 113 113 21 4 10 28 60 4 3 5 .278 .330 .424
28 Miguel Cabrera 106 346 2003 20 FLA NL 87 84 21 3 12 25 84 2 0 2 .268 .325 .468
29 Roberto Alomar 105 611 1988 20 SDP NL 143 145 24 6 9 47 83 3 24 6 .266 .328 .382
30 Hank Aaron 104 509 1954 20 MLN NL 122 131 27 6 13 28 39 3 2 2 .280 .322 .447
31 Edgar Renteria 103 471 1996 19 FLA NL 106 133 18 3 5 33 68 2 16 2 .309 .358 .399
32 Manny Machado 102 710 2013 20 BAL AL 156 189 51 3 14 29 113 2 6 7 .283 .314 .432
33 Adrian Beltre 102 614 1999 20 LAD NL 152 148 27 5 15 61 105 6 18 7 .275 .352 .428
34 Rick Manning 101 535 1975 20 CLE AL 120 137 16 5 3 44 62 2 19 11 .285 .347 .358
35 Starlin Castro 100 506 2010 20 CHC NL 125 139 31 5 3 29 71 6 10 8 .300 .347 .408
36 Ed Kranepool 100 461 1964 19 NYM NL 119 108 19 4 10 32 50 2 0 1 .257 .310 .393
37 Cesar Cedeno 97 649 1971 20 HOU NL 161 161 40 6 10 25 102 3 20 9 .264 .293 .398
38 Buddy Bell 97 505 1972 20 CLE AL 132 119 21 1 9 34 29 3 5 6 .255 .310 .363
39 Ron Santo 97 382 1960 20 CHC NL 95 87 24 2 9 31 44 0 0 3 .251 .311 .409
40 Bill Mazeroski 96 568 1957 20 PIT NL 148 149 27 7 8 27 49 1 3 3 .283 .318 .407
41 Boog Powell 95 441 1962 20 BAL AL 124 97 13 2 15 38 79 2 1 1 .243 .311 .398
42 Ed Kranepool 94 575 1965 20 NYM NL 153 133 24 4 10 39 71 2 1 4 .253 .303 .371
43 Andruw Jones 93 467 1997 20 ATL NL 153 92 18 1 18 56 107 4 20 11 .231 .329 .416
44 Robin Yount 90 607 1975 19 MIL AL 147 149 28 2 8 33 69 1 12 4 .267 .307 .367
45 Alan Trammell 89 504 1978 20 DET AL 139 120 14 6 2 45 56 2 3 1 .268 .335 .339
46 Rickey Henderson 88 398 1979 20 OAK AL 89 96 13 3 1 34 39 2 33 11 .274 .338 .336
47 Ivan Rodriguez 87 454 1992 20 TEX AL 123 109 16 1 8 24 73 1 0 0 .260 .300 .360
48 Rusty Staub 84 585 1963 19 HOU NL 150 115 17 4 6 59 58 5 0 0 .224 .309 .308
49 Oscar Gamble 84 305 1970 20 PHI NL 88 72 12 4 1 27 37 1 5 4 .262 .330 .345
50 Rougned Odor 83 302 2014 20 TEX AL 84 70 9 5 5 11 55 4 2 5 .251 .286 .373
51 Bob Bailey 82 640 1963 20 PIT NL 154 130 15 3 12 58 98 5 10 9 .228 .303 .328
52 Elvis Andrus 82 541 2009 20 TEX AL 145 128 17 8 6 40 77 6 33 6 .267 .329 .373
53 Gary Sheffield 82 405 1989 20 MIL AL 95 91 18 0 5 27 33 4 10 6 .247 .303 .337
54 Curt Flood 81 461 1958 20 STL NL 121 110 17 2 10 31 56 4 2 12 .261 .317 .382
55 Edgar Renteria 80 691 1997 20 FLA NL 154 171 21 3 4 45 108 4 32 15 .277 .327 .340
56 Al Kaline 80 535 1954 19 DET AL 138 139 18 3 4 22 45 0 9 5 .276 .305 .347
57 Cass Michaels 80 330 1946 20 CHW AL 91 75 8 0 1 29 36 4 9 3 .258 .333 .296
58 Robin Yount 79 364 1974 18 MIL AL 107 86 14 5 3 12 46 1 7 7 .250 .276 .346
59 Cass Michaels 78 499 1945 19 CHW AL 129 109 8 5 2 37 28 3 8 7 .245 .307 .299
60 Rusty Staub 78 320 1964 20 HOU NL 89 63 10 2 8 21 31 3 1 1 .216 .272 .346
61 Roberto Clemente 77 501 1955 20 PIT NL 124 121 23 11 5 18 60 2 2 5 .255 .284 .382
62 Robin Yount 76 690 1976 20 MIL AL 161 161 19 3 2 38 69 0 16 11 .252 .292 .301
63 Bob Didier 76 397 1969 20 ATL NL 114 90 16 1 0 34 39 0 1 3 .256 .321 .307
64 Jurickson Profar 76 324 2013 20 TEX AL 85 67 11 0 6 26 63 5 2 4 .234 .308 .336
65 Ted Simmons 74 324 1970 20 STL NL 82 69 8 2 3 37 37 2 2 2 .243 .333 .317
66 Lloyd Moseby 73 430 1980 20 TOR AL 114 89 24 1 9 25 85 4 4 6 .229 .281 .365
67 Eddie Yost 71 485 1947 20 WSH AL 115 102 17 3 0 45 57 2 3 5 .238 .314 .292
68 Ken Hubbs 70 716 1962 20 CHC NL 160 172 24 9 5 35 129 3 3 7 .260 .299 .346
69 Dalton Jones 67 401 1964 20 BOS AL 118 86 16 4 6 22 38 1 6 3 .230 .274 .342
70 Bobby Del Greco 60 385 1952 19 PIT NL 99 74 14 2 1 38 70 3 6 5 .217 .301 .279
71 Putsy Caballero 59 382 1948 20 PHI NL 113 86 12 1 0 24 18 0 7 .245 .293 .285
72 Tim Foli 59 312 1971 20 NYM NL 97 65 12 2 0 18 50 1 5 0 .226 .272 .281
73 Ted Kazanski 52 392 1953 19 PHI NL 95 78 17 5 2 26 53 3 1 1 .217 .275 .308
74 Jack Heidemann 51 495 1970 20 CLE AL 133 94 14 2 6 34 88 2 2 4 .211 .265 .292
75 Danny Ainge 50 331 1979 20 TOR AL 87 73 7 1 2 12 58 2 1 0 .237 .269 .286
76 Tony Bartirome 48 386 1952 20 PIT NL 124 78 10 3 0 26 37 0 3 3 .220 .273 .265
77 Jose Oquendo 42 353 1983 19 NYM NL 120 70 7 0 1 19 60 2 8 9 .213 .260 .244
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 8/25/2014.

This is quite a long list, but lots of impressive names are on it.  There have been 77 instances by 65 players. Mickey Mantle and Al Kaline – who have their plaques displayed in Cooperstown – had 2 such seasons. Fellow Hall of Famer Robin Yount had 3. Bryce Harper is on his way to a 3rd such campaign in his young career. Rougned Odor is among some of the game’s greatest players, along with his colleagues Elvis Andrus and Jurickson Profar.

Roogie’s 82 OPS+ to date may not astound you, as it ranks on the top of the bottom third of the list. But, do you see some of the names below him? Two rows below him is his current double-play partner, Andrus. Gary Sheffield is a borderline Hall of Famer. Rusty Staub also had a borderline Hall of Fame career. You may or may not have heard of Robert Clemente. They weren’t what they were in their prime from the beginning.

 

Let’s take a look at another Play Index list. This time, players who played at least 70%  at 2B, with at least 300 PA in age 20 or younger seasons since 1914, sorted by the greatest OPS+:

Rk Player OPS+ PA Year Age Tm Lg G H 2B 3B HR BB SO HBP SB CS BA OBP SLG Pos
1 Roberto Alomar 105 611 1988 20 SDP NL 143 145 24 6 9 47 83 3 24 6 .266 .328 .382 *4/H
2 Bill Mazeroski 96 568 1957 20 PIT NL 148 149 27 7 8 27 49 1 3 3 .283 .318 .407 *4/H
3 Frankie Gustine 94 565 1940 20 PIT NL 133 147 32 7 1 35 39 2 7 .281 .328 .374 *4/H
4 Bobby Doerr 86 589 1938 20 BOS AL 145 147 26 7 5 59 39 0 5 10 .289 .363 .397 *4/H
5 Rougned Odor 83 302 2014 20 TEX AL 84 70 9 5 5 11 55 4 2 5 .251 .286 .373 *4/H
6 Cass Michaels 80 330 1946 20 CHW AL 91 75 8 0 1 29 36 4 9 3 .258 .333 .296 *45/H6
7 Ken Hubbs 70 716 1962 20 CHC NL 160 172 24 9 5 35 129 3 3 7 .260 .299 .346 *4/H
8 Dalton Jones 67 401 1964 20 BOS AL 118 86 16 4 6 22 38 1 6 3 .230 .274 .342 *4H/65
9 Danny Ainge 50 331 1979 20 TOR AL 87 73 7 1 2 12 58 2 1 0 .237 .269 .286 *4/HD
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 8/26/2014.

Just 9 players in the past century are on this list, with Roogie being ranked in the middle. Alomar, Mazeroski, and Doerr – 3 of 4 players above him – are enshrined.

As you’ve seen in this article, Rougned Odor belongs in the elite club. Despite his -0.3 WAR and minuscule 3.6 BB%,  an area in which he definitely needs improvement, we may be witnessing the dawn of the career by a great second baseman.

 

Kazuto Yamazaki is a Sports Contributor for The Scoop. Follow him on Twitter at @Kazuto_Yamazaki. Be sure to check out all of our great sports and entertainment content at TheScoopZone.com!

Advertisements

Raining On The Ice Bucket Challenge Parade

It takes a special kind of knucklehead to see a hornets nest, realize the worst thing they could possibly do is run head first at it and still lack the common sense to walk away.

So here you go, hornets. Sting away, because I’ve had enough of the Ice Bucket Challenge.

ice bucket waste
Credit: Some Jackwagon Without A Soul

Unless you’ve just time traveled from 1996, you know that 1) the Dallas Cowboys are a pathetic football franchise, and 2) people are falling all over themselves to post videos to Facebook where they dump gallons of ice water over themselves and maybe send some money to the ALSA.

For those of you not nuanced in the fine art of sarcasm, I’m aware that this insanely popular fad has generated $41 million plus and counting in under a month. I can’t even begin to comprehend the flabbergasting nature of that figure, mainly because I continue to underestimate the power of people wanting to see their friends and family (and especially famous people) make asses out of themselves in public.

Usually it would be perfectly fine to question why America has lost its damn mind over the most captivating thing to hit the interwebs since “Chocolate Rain” (too dated?), but this time it’s for charity. So get on board with the madness or get the F out of the way!

Trust me. It’s not a good idea to take the perceived stance that you hope the Ice Bucket Challenge ends up as a headliner at next year’s Summerbash, never to be heard from again as Lou Gehrig’s disease goes uncured.

It will cost you at least 4 followers on Twitter (and probably a few more after this hits The Scoop newsstand), and strangers on your friend’s Facebook thread will toss insults at you while questioning if you ever step out of your mother’s basement to make the world a better place. All this for daring to ask the question, “Has this bit gone too far?”

In fairness to the Twitter followers who abandoned the snark express, I did claim that nothing was being accomplished, but 140 characters doesn’t exactly leave room for clarity and reason.

Thankfully for me, I’ve found others who have been putting in the work of analyzing if Ice Bucketers are a group whose deeds are beyond questioning.

One of the first responses to my hastily worded assault on freedom of expression was a gentleman from the fine state of California bringing up the obvious – yet not so obvious point for some – that dumping 5 gallons of water over your head is a big waste of a dwindling resource. And this guy is an Angels fan, so he knows a lot about wasting resources! Hello Josh Hamilton’s contract…

Jason Ruiz from the Long Beach Post took on the impossible task of calculating how much water has been deposited on the ground as checks are being deposited into the ALS research bank account.

It’s not an astronomical sum, but it’s enough to make you consider ways to cancel out the water you’re throwing down the drain by conserving elsewhere.

So if the water waste isn’t going to cause the lakes to dry up in 2 years as opposed to 10, then what is the real harm?

It all comes down to disposable income, and how much of it is disproportionately flowing to ALS instead of the other wealth of charities that people would otherwise donate to.

QZ.com’s William MacAskill used a lot of fancy words to explain how the amazing boon of money going to ALS is not by default a wonderful thing, and that was before another $38 million rolled in.

Don’t want to believe some egghead? How about the Dallas Mavericks’ owner and Shark Tank’s very own Mark Cuban? Because he doesn’t know anything about the wise investment of money, right?

It turns out that Cubes is also concerned that the massive amount of cash being brought in for ALS has tipped the scales against other very worthy causes that need the attention and money this phenomenon has diverted away.

If you’ve taken part in the Ice Bucket Challenge, you’re probably not some mindless drone sucking at the teet of social media fame with reckless abandon, but you’re also not the Mother Teresa of your time who is about to rid the world of the disease that gave Baltimore Orioles fans something to take their minds off of not winning a playoff series since 1983.

So give jackasses like me the benefit of the doubt that while we may have the nerve to wonder aloud just how great this Ice Bucket thing really is, we do have a soul and a heart that hopes ALS gets its ass kicked off the planet.

We just think there might be a more efficient way to go about it.

 

Dustin Copening is a Sports Contributor for The Scoop. Follow him on Twitter at @PFUtilityMan.


Founder’s Note: As many of you may have witnessed my personal Ice Bucket Challenge video (more like “profanity-laden nightmare of a moment”), you will know that we at The Scoop obviously support raising money for ALS research. I am extraordinarily grateful to those who contributed to my fundraising drive, as well as the many charitable causes that we have supported over the past weeks. While we are all on the same team when it comes to raising money to support others, it is troubling to see how vicious people have become when it comes to dissenting opinions on something as simple as dumping buckets of icewater on our heads. With this subject, much like many sports topics we discuss on social media on a daily basis, there will assuredly be differing opinions. What’s different about The Scoop is that we support all opinions, even the opinion that this mechanism has inherent flaws and can be even better if improved upon in time. Bashing people for having an opinion, even if it is unpopular, is not what we do here. And we don’t support it elsewhere. –Jamie

Is every baseball fan happy now? You got everything you wanted!

Yankees-Red Sox Brawl
Associated Press

Based upon what people have been complaining about in baseball for the last few years, this should be considered a golden age for the sport. So many elements of the game that were considered problematic have been addressed. Some of the greatest drawbacks reversed.

With that in mind, I can only assume every single fan is thrilled with the product and can not wait to tell people that baseball is at its best.

Let’s look at what has been fixed.

 

I’m sick of the Northeast dominating baseball. It’s the Yankees or Red Sox every year. Borrrring!

Perk up little campers! We are about to have our first Northeast-free October since the advent of the Wild Card!

And while the Red Sox are technically the defending World Champions, they have as good a chance of defending that title as the Montreal Expos have of winning the World Series. Sick of Red Sox Nation? Well take solace in knowing that they are about to miss the post season for the 4th time in 5 years. Lots of time to cry in Chowder and wear down the ’04, ’07 and ’13 DVDs.

Meanwhile the Yankees are barely above .500, fading as contenders and have gigantic holes that even their deep pockets can’t fill in 2015. Unless they have a blistering September, the Yankees will not be a playoff team in back-to-back seasons for the first time since the Wild Card was created. This will be their third dark October in seven years.

As for the other Northeast teams, the Mets and Phillies, the less said about them the better.

So Northeast haters rejoice! You will have the October of your dreams.

 

Stars Always Leave Small Market Teams! It Isn’t Fair!

Well, talk to the Phillies and Yankees about how great signing stars to long-term deals can be!

That being said, more and more teams are locking up their key players to long-term deals. Andrew McCutchen, Felix Hernandez, Evan Longoria, Mike Trout, Salvador Perez, Madison Bumgarner, Buster Posey and Jonathan LuCroy won’t be hitting the open market anytime soon for a bidding war. Fans can actually get attached to these players.

Now sometimes that can backfire. Everyone thought it was great when Troy Tulowitzki stayed long term with the Rockies. Joey Votto and Joe Mauer signing long-term contracts warmed the cockles of everyone’s hearts. Will they regret it? They can’t all dump bad contracts to the Dodgers.

But hey! At least they aren’t all going to New York or Boston!

 

My Team Doesn’t Have A Chance! The Economics of Baseball Prevent Us From Making A Winner!

At one point this was a true statement. But if your team can’t put together a winner NOW, then blame your team’s management! As of now, both the Mariners and the Royals would make the post-season. If they do, it would mean every single baseball team would have made the post-season since 2005 with two exceptions: the Blue Jays and the Marlins.

And there are many ways to reverse your team’s fortune. The Rays, Pirates and Nationals built through smart drafts. The Athletics added through shrewd trades. The 2013 Red Sox slapped together a squad of bearded mercenaries. The Cardinals constructed a near-dynasty through the farm and letting players walk at the right time.

The Marlins and Blue Jays are building a solid foundation, and even the lowly Astros have hope for the future. So cheer up and be patient! Your team will give you an October before you know it.

 

Steroids Have Made A Mockery Of The Game

Have you noticed players look a little thinner these days? Have you noticed that testing has caught more players?

How about the 50-homer season? It hasn’t gone the way of the Dodo, but they are the outliers. Forty-some-odd homers will give you the league lead these days. The slug fests and toppling of records is all but over.

Scoring is down, and pitching duels are up, just like everyone wanted.

Plus the users are not getting into the Hall of Fame, so you can rest easy knowing that the great ballplayers, drunks, racists and bigots of the past won’t have their reputations sullied.

 

We Need Instant Replay!

Boom! You’ve got it! If we had this a few years ago, Armando Gallaraga would have a perfect game, Jorge Orta would have been out and we’d never had heard of Jeffrey Maier!

 

I Hate A-Rod!

Well then this year must have been heaven for you. Be prepared that he will be back next year.

 

Paul Sullivan is a Sports Contributor for The Scoop. Follow him on Twitter at @SullyBaseball. Be sure to check out all of our great content at TheScoopZone.com!

Arrested Fantasy Development

the420Times.com
the420Times.com

Diane and I connected due to our shared love of comedy and fantasy football. She attributes her unique and off-kilter take on fantasy football to her being “off her meds.” If there is a funnier, more irreverent fantasy sports writer than Diane, it’s news to her. — Jay


 

Did you know an NFL player gets arrested every 23 seconds? That’s right. In the time it takes you to read this Pulitzer-winning article, over 3,500 NFL players will be incarcerated. How can this help you gain an advantage during your fantasy football draft? There are several practical applications that can lead to fantasy glory.

1. DON’T draft players who are currently serving time in prison.

No matter how much you love his chemistry with Tom Brady, Aaron Hernandez is NOT A GOOD PICK.  No matter how often he does push-ups or reads the playbook during his time in the Bristol County House of Correction, Hernandez has little fantasy value. Unless your league rewards players for shanking inmates or brewing prison wine, there is little chance Mr. Hernandez will help your team this season.

Is Rae Carruth on your draft day cheat sheet?  If so, remove him immediately. Carruth has been in jail since 2001 after being found guilty of conspiracy to murder a woman who was pregnant with his child. He is scheduled to be released in 2018, so unless there’s an almost-completed tunnel to freedom behind his Rita Hayworth poster, don’t look for Carruth to have much fantasy impact in 2014. Currently, Carruth holds value in only the deepest of dynasty leagues that award bonuses for rostering future 44-year-old ex-convicts.

2. Continuously monitor Twitter, Deadspin and your local police bandwidth during your draft.

If Le’Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount have taught us anything, it’s that “Le’Veon” and “LeGarrette” are actual human names. They’ve also shown us that football players need to leave Cheech and Chong impressions to trained thespians.

On a fantasy level, these two half-baked running backs might have already ruined your draft. The reports of their arrests surfaced just as many were selecting Bell in the second round of their draft. Although it’s takes FOREVER for the NFL to handle disciplinary matters, you’d have to be high to use a top pick on a player who could possibly see a suspension in 2014.

So how can you avoid selecting the NFL’s next Harold or Kumar? If you’ve heard of “the Internet,” you’re halfway there. The Internet is full of information about many things – INCLUDING FOOTBALL! If you use this World Wide Web to continuously monitor the legal status of each and every professional football player, you can avoid watching your draft go up in smoke

3. Send opposing players directly to jail.  Do not pass “Go.”  Do not collect $200.

There’s only one thing as rewarding during a fantasy season as watching your players stay out of jail, and that’s watching your opponent’s players get arrested. This will probably happen on its own, but why not help speed up the process?

Get involved immediately by framing opposing players for crimes they didn’t commit. Fill their trunks up with pure crystal meth, replace the diamonds in their Super Bowl rings with blood diamonds, kill a neighbor and blame the murder on former Harvard quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. The sky is the limit! Secrecy and execution are quite important in this process, and always remember not to leave any fingerprints.

4. Stay out of prison.

If you’re planning on framing your opponents’ players, you have to be super careful. Keeping yourself out of prison is essential to a strong fantasy strategy. Between group showers, cafeteria riots and forced sexual acts, you will not have much time to manage your team in prison. Remember, there’s nothing more difficult than juggling your fantasy football responsibilities with being Aaron Hernandez’s bitch.

 

Diane Sevenay is a writer and comedian who claims that she “invented the internet.”  Follow her immediately on Twitter at @diane_7a or face dire consequences.

Move Over Fellas: Fantasy Football is No Longer a Boys’ Club

Hey Guys! Newsflash: Fantasy Football isn’t just for you dudes anymore. In 2013, over 6 million females were among the legions playing fantasy football.

That’s right. Women were in YOUR fantasy football leagues, fellas, with team names like Victorious Secret, Brady’s Baby or Cleats and Cleavage. AND I bet some of you even got your asses handed to you by a woman or two. WHO knew? Have you recovered from it yet?

MVP Sports Channel

MVP Sports Channel

 

So, dudes, you may now be asking yourselves, “Is nothing sacred? Why can’t I just go to my draft party with the bros and not have to worry about some chick out-strategizing me by getting the stud RB I want? And for the love of all that is holy and sacred on a Sunday, two minutes before kickoff, why MUST my significant other be adding and dropping WRs and trolling for the ‘it’ defense of the week faster than I can get NFL Sunday Ticket cued up and ready?”

And now I know you’re saying to yourself, “I thought this was a man’s world?” Well, I’ll try to break it to you as gently as possible—that’s a James Brown song and SO 1967. Get over yourselves. BUT to be fair, I will let you in on a couple little known secrets about females and fantasy football.

We aren’t joining your leagues to ruin your lives or to cramp your style. We aren’t even joining so that we have something to talk about in the office on Monday morning when all you guys are talking about how many points Peyton got you and how many Eli lost you.

AND surprise … we aren’t simply joining because we think Eric Decker is hot or because we give a rip what Tom Brady is wearing in his post game presser. Well, maybe we do care BUT only because we want to tweet about how ridiculous he looked. Will save that story for another day.

Here it comes … the big fantasy football secret of the year. Why are we women becoming fantasy phenoms of the world? Are you ready? Can you handle it? It’s because we LIKE football; maybe some of us might even be a little obsessed with it. Hey, crazy notion, but women may actually like it as much or more than you, our testosterone counterparts.

And here’s another heart-stopping tidbit: we are actually knowledgeable and informed. We read about what happens in training camp. We know who got drafted, what team they went to and even in what round they were picked.

We subscribe to the same online news services that send you guys the “Studs and Duds” predictions for the season. We follow the Fantasy Football experts on Twitter just like you. [Hey there @YahooNoise (Brad Evans), @NandoDiFino, and @Chet_G.]

Now, I know I’m getting crazy here when I mention this … but some of YOU may actually follow females on Twitter that are considered experts as well. [Shout out to my girls @TheFFGirl (Liz Loza), @SimplySharona and @AllieFontana.] I hear the big, collective GULP. Tough one to swallow? I’ll let you all recover from that last one there for just a moment.

Fantasy football women know their stuff. We know the difference between a PPR and a standard league. We won’t take a kicker until the last round of the draft. And, we SURE won’t draft our teams based on who we think are the hottest players or what team’s uniforms we like the most.

The estrogen fan’s draft is based on talent and on who we think will be the best of the best this season because we want to win it all. Yes, we want to kick some fantasy ass just like the rest of you. We want to talk smack in the carpool line or while at lunch with the boss and the other dudes at work. We want the bragging rights to remind our boyfriends just how we dominated our fantasy teams. We want to be numero uno.

So, fellas, if you find yourselves in a fantasy football league this season with some football loving females … consider yourselves lucky. BUT watch out, because we’re gonna bring it. Balls to the wall. All or nothing baby.

 

The FFHottie is a frequent contributor on SIRIUSXM Fantasy Sports Radio, and a friend to The Scoop. Follow her on Twitter at @FFHottie.

 


 

Editor’s Note: As many of you know, The Scoop is led by … gasp … A WOMAN! As a fellow member of the “Girls Most Likely to Take Down a Fantasy League” club, having FFHottie’s perspective here on our site is simply fan-freaking-tastic.  As they say, “We’ve come a long way, baby!”  –Jamie

Yellow Is The New Pink: What’s The Deal With All These Flags?

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

 

I pride myself on having a keen eye when it comes to watching professional football. I don’t necessarily like to pat myself on the back, but that’s only because my elbow and shoulder agility aren’t what they used to be. Doggone it; if I was one of those little circus dudes who could contort his body … yeah, I’d be scratching my own back daily. Hourly. I’m a sucker for a soft fingernail scratch across my middle back and …

Wait. I digress …

When analysis of a running back’s burst through the hole is necessary, my sixth sense kicks in. Yes, I visualized the roadrunner speed at which CJwhattheK bolted through those double-wide sized running lanes. That one year.

When you need someone to scrutinize a wide receiver’s ability to catch a pass at the height of his catch radius, I’m your man. It seems one Jon Gruden concurs with my insight, that this Calvin Johnson fella sure seems to snatch a lot of passes at just below military low-fly zone.

When you’re in doubt as to the mood of a certain New York Giants quarterback, never fear. I can read the angst on the young rapper’s face, whether it’s due to his most recent interception thrown or thanks to Pey-Pey’s most recent commercial endorsement income being slapped in his face at the family reunion.

Needless to say, my football acumen ranks up there. So you’ve come to the right place for top-shelf expertise on this 2014 NFL preseason. Here’s all you need to glean from this pre-season’s money-maker scrimmage activities the NFL proudly pronounces as competitive games.

Wait for it … Wait for it.

Players are apparently breaking the rules. And getting caught. At an alarming rate.

It seems penalty flags are the new stars of the league. In fact, yellow may have already overtaken pink as the official NFL color this year. For those that don’t follow this, I’m referencing the gracious move the NFL has embraced the past couple of years to support Breast Cancer Awareness by encouraging every player, referee, popcorn bucket, wristband, cleat string and jock strap to include the color pink. [All kidding aside … a solid move, NFL.]

Those pesky penalty flags NFL officials use to signal infractions and other frowned-upon on-field activities—such as allowing a jersey to be untucked or not properly notifying Mr. Referee that one of your husky-boy lineman may have the opportunity to catch a pass down near the goal-line or having too many guys lean in to listen to the quarterback talk about after-game meal plans during a huddle—are a-flyin! Have you seen the number of penalties called during games?

The August 14 Jaguars and Bears game provided fans with a combined 21 penalties for 206 yards worth of penalties. The following night, the Titans and Saints stooped to an even more startling line of 32 flags, totaling nearly 300 yards of infractions. And, friends, these are just the accepted penalties. I watched a bit of both games, and believe me, there were another handful of unaccepted calls made in each. To put this in perspective a bit, the average 2013 NFL game had just under 13 penalties called per game.

For the sake of the fans—not to mention program directors at the television networks covering the games, fearing the necessity to scramble their after-game programming—let’s hope the NFL and players come to a quick and resolute understanding of some of this new rules enforcement. Otherwise, an NFL game may threaten the stronghold golf has on nap-worthy televised sporting events.

But hey. Maybe it’s all part of the master plan to garner a huge partnership with a new sponsor. That’s right. Should the little yellow flag barrage of 2014 persist, fans will ALL need some 5-Hour Energy.

Cue Roger Goodell’s Dr. Evil laugh.

 

Jay Marks is the Sports Lead for Fantasy Football at The Scoop. Follow him on Twitter at @FFHottieAsst.

How to Antagonize Every MLB Fan Base with a Single Sentence

 AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast
AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast

Baseball likes to pretend its appeal is pastoral and heart-warming and all about apple pie, summer days and playing catch with dad in the cornfield. In truth a lot of what baseball and its fans like to concentrate on is venomous, petty and making other people angry.

Pushing buttons of other fans and reveling in their misery is an essential part of baseball fandom today.

More people know Bill Buckner’s name or Steve Bartman’s than can name who won those infamous games. Rooting against the Yankees is an American tradition. The rest of the country seems to be tired of the Red Sox and their fans.

Yankee fan Michael Pacholek forwarded to me the sure-fire ways to anger Red Sox, Yankee and Met fans. I decided to take it to the next step.

Every single fan base can be predictably angered in a sentence. It could be a misconception that frustrates fans. It could be a fact they try to deny. Or it could be a shortcoming they cannot avoid, but wish people would stop bringing up.

I could be nice and not list which button to push for the fans of every single team. But I am not nice. I am a baseball fan.

 

 

downloadARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

“The Diamondbacks are a dirty team who hit players on purpose.”

Say that and watch them pull out charts showing how many times other pitchers pitch inside. Sit back and grin knowing they are trying to convince themselves and not you.

 

atlanta-braves-logo

ATLANTA BRAVES

“The Braves are the Buffalo Bills/Susan Lucci of baseball.”

Watch the Braves fans say, “At least we won!” and “14 Division Titles in a row is the greatest achievement ever” and repeat it. When they pause, just ask, “Remember Mark Wohlers pitching to Jim Leyritz?” and then avoid the Tomahawk coming your way.

 

 

Baltimore_orioles_logo_2012_-_present

BALTIMORE ORIOLES

“Cal Ripken was a selfish player.”

Insulting Cal Ripken is the most dangerous thing to do in Baltimore short of getting Omar mad at you. Try it anyway. If you are feeling even more adventurous, imply he was on PEDs.

 

boston-redsox-logo1

BOSTON RED SOX

“PED’s invalidate the three championships.”

Oooooh you can get Boston fans pissed this way. There is no way Red Sox Nation will have the greatest moments of their collective lives erased by some pesky details about the pee of Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz. “We will NOT go back to 1918!”

 

chicago-cubs-logo

CHICAGO CUBS

“You guys are happy being losers.”

The whole image of Cub fans being content with a nice effort from the team while getting trashed in the bleachers may have had validity in the 1980s and 1990s. But the close call of 2003 and the disappointment of 2008 have raised a sense of urgency in Wrigleyville. Keep in mind they always had company in their misery. But the Red Sox have won 3 times since Bartman, and the White Sox and their fans have 2005. More than a century of losing is more than any beer can cure.

 

white-sox-logo-white

CHICAGO WHITE SOX

“I thought all Chicago fans were Cub fans.”

Say that to a die hard White Sox fan. Not even winning the 2005 World Series removed the chip on their soldier about the White Sox lack of attention in the city.

 

cincinnati_reds_logo

CINCINNATI REDS

“Pete Rose was the biggest disgrace in baseball history.”

That one will really land. Go ahead and try to explain why betting on games is bad, even to win, and that the Reds could have won the Division in 1986, 1987 and 1988 if Pete wasn’t betting. You will get fans yelling about steroids, Pete’s stats and a lot of other unrelated topics while their faces will be redder than anything on their uniforms.

 

cleveland-indians-logo

CLEVELAND INDIANS

“Your logo is racist.”

The best part of this one is that no matter which opinion an Indians fan would have on this matter, it won’t be subtle. Either it will be embarrassment for the incredibly un-PC image, or they will say “IT HONORS THEM!” while getting their face so red, you’ll wonder if they have war paint on.

 

500px-colorado_rockies_logo

COLORADO ROCKIES

 “You can’t count the offensive numbers Coors Field.”

Deep down, Rockies fans must know that all offensive numbers in Denver need to be taken with a grain of salt. But say that out loud and they will bring up humidor and Troy Tulowitzi’s stats on the road faster than a Dante Bichette homer leaves the yard.

zhpefl9igzlfjc8j7yql0qewy

DETROIT TIGERS

“Mike Trout deserved those MVPs.”

Oh, I am sure there are a few Tiger fans who understand the great value of Mike Trout. But for most, let’s just say you are insulting Miggy’s Triple Crown. And that won’t fly in Motown.

9503_houston_astros-primary-2000

HOUSTON ASTROS

“Bagwell and Biggio were juicers.”

Bagwell seems like a more likely suspect but, man! Don’t bring it up around any Astros fans anytime soon. Yeah, there were no positive tests… just a couple of guys hanging out with Ken Caminiti and showing great endurance during the steroid era.

kansas-city-royals-logo

KANSAS CITY ROYALS

“You didn’t REALLY win the 1985 World Series.”

If there was instant replay in 1985, you know and I know that Jorge Orta would have been called out. That 9th inning of game 6 of the 1985 World Series would have played out a lot differently. Chances are they lose to St. Louis. And the only thing keeping the Royals from being a Championship-free franchise and never winning a title for George Brett or Mr. Kaufmann was a blown call that would overturned today. Royals fans know it, even if they can’t admit it.

Los-Angeles-Angels

LOS ANGELES ANGELS OF ANAHEIM

“It’s the Los Angeles California Angels of Anaheim in Orange County
in the United States on Earth!”

The Angels have the stupidest name in baseball. Their fans know it. And they have heard about it for the past 10 seasons. You know how a tall person rolls their eyes when someone mockingly asks, “How is the weather up there?” or, “Why don’t you play basketball?” That’s the Angels fan base when you refer to that stupid name.

tayw0n3tsg72i7bwr6ef4u5y3

LOS ANGELES DODGERS

“You all just show up late and leave early.”

Just say that to a die hard fan wearing a Fernando or Garvey or Koufax jersey, and you will get a lecture about the 110 and 5 freeways and the off-ramps leading into Chavez Ravine. Just kindly nod and remind them of all the cars seen leaving the parking lot during Kirk Gibson’s homer.

miami_marlins_logo_detail

MIAMI MARLINS

“Tell me about Jeffrey Loria.”

The odd thing about Loria is they have actually won a World Series under his ownership. But any goodwill with the fans was crushed, smashed and put into the foundation of the taxpayer-swindled stadium as he cut payroll.

brewers

MILWAUKEE BREWERS

“Ryan Braun is a cheater and a jerk.”

There are lots of jerks and cheaters in baseball. Why should people care so much about Ryan Braun? Why should people try to discount the 2011 Division Series win because Braun used PEDs? That was the only Brewers post season series victory since the 1982 ALCS. Who is to say there weren’t Diamondbacks using PEDs? OK, Braun crowed too much and threw some people under the bus while lying. Brewers fans don’t have a lot of history to cheer about! (On the other hand, there is no denying he is a cheater and a jerk.)

Minnesota-Twins-Logo

MINNESOTA TWINS

“Joe Mauer should try to hit more homers.”

This is great to get fans mad because it cuts both ways. Minnesota’s favorite son stuck around instead of going to the Red Sox and the Yankees, and now he is a first baseman with no power eating up the payroll. Some fans want him to try and jack balls out and earn his money. Others want him to remain a good pure hitter and not change. Either way, you will test the whole “Minnesota nice” thing.

nuudzbqeegyh2w4vef9q6025s

NEW YORK METS

“Fred Wilpon… discuss.”

To understand how hated Fred Wilpon is by the Mets fan base, just do this simple exercise. Imagine Donald Sterling, and replace his sex scandal with getting swindled by Bernie Madoff, and you have a good idea why burning him in effigy is a daily event in Flushing.

300px-NewYorkYankees_PrimaryLogo.svg

NEW YORK YANKEES

“You just buy all your championships.”

Before you finish your sentence, Yankee fans will remind you that Jeter, Posada, Pettitte, Rivera, Bernie et al were home grown. Then they will preface every other sentence wit,h “27 rings” and, “You are jealous” and then rattle off all the players they expect the Yankees to sign in the next few years.

6xk2lpc36146pbg2kydf13e50

OAKLAND ATHLETICS

“It is a bunch of nobodies on that team!”

The A’s currently have the best record in baseball, will no doubt make the playoffs for the third straight season and probably make it 3 division titles in as many seasons. They have more All Stars than any team in baseball. And yet people still talk about them like they are a rag tag bunch of anonymous misfits managed by Morris Buttermaker and whose playoff run is a million to one shot. Maybe it will take 4 straight division titles for anyone to notice.

10314684_10154378920200492_5270327209548450125_n

PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES

“You boo Santa and vomit on little girls.”

Every team has fans who are drunken jerks (even in San Diego.) But it always seems dopey in Philadelphia. Phillies fans resent that label and refuse to be painted with the same brush as the biggest slobs. But inevitably something stupid will happen at a game in Philadelphia and the reputation will look justified.

pittsburgh-pirates-logo

PITTSBURGH PIRATES

“Francisco Cabrera -“

You might not even be able to finish saying that particular third string catcher’s name before you get clobbered or at best given a stern look. The whole, “They haven’t had a winning season since Francisco Cabrera” narrative is over. But until they get to the World Series, his shadow will loom over the franchise… and every Pirate fan knows it.

SanDiegoPadres_SMK1a_2012_SCC_SRGB

SAN DIEGO PADRES

“Trevor Hoffman was overrated.”

Hoffman was one of the most beloved Padres of all time, which shows you what a different market San Diego is than other baseball towns. Hoffman lost big games in the 1996 and 1998 postseason and almost single-handedly kept them out of the 2007 postseason with a pair of blown saved. But hey, as long as he piled up regular season saves that nobody remembers, then go ahead and love him.

San_francisco_giants_alternate_logo

SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS

“Remember Dusty Baker?”

Just say his name and watch Giants fans react like they just bit a lemon. The Giants had some of their most successful San Francisco seasons under Baker. And yet his managerial style seemed to age the entire Bay Area. When he let his son run on the field in the 2002 World Series, it wasn’t even the 4th dumbest thing Dusty did that October. And no, two World Series titles this decade haven’t let Dusty off the hook.

645_1370556044

SEATTLE MARINERS

“They spent a lot of time making sure the Safeco Experience is great.”

For too long the Mariners seemed more concerned with making the experience at Safeco a great one than putting a quality product on the field. Yeah, the seats are great, the views ideal and the food is awesome. Griffey, Edgar, Big Unit, A-Rod and Ichiro have come and gone without a World Series appearance. Time is ticking on Felix. A World Series experience would be even better!

St_Louis_Cardinals_1998-present_logo

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS

“You are the best fans in baseball.”

You know the kid in class who keeps getting praised by the teacher sometimes gets resentment from the other students? You know the office mate who the boss always praises starts to get on everyone’s nerves? That’s kind of what is happening to Cardinal fans now. This title has led to an inevitable backlash, and some on the internet go out of their way to point out the BAD Cardinals fans. This won’t end well.

qiru2jftx1a378eq8ad0s4ik4

TAMPA BAY RAYS

“What is up with your attendance?”

Man, the few real Rays fans that exist get really sensitive out of their horrific attendance. They will counter with their local TV ratings and how hard it is to get to the Trop and all other other stats. And none of those will wipe away the facts that their attendance, including postseason, is pathetic.

rangers

TEXAS RANGERS

“Wait, you were one strike away twice in the same GAME?”

Not to mention one very poorly timed Nelson Cruz leap from winning the 2011 World Series title. That would have been nice. It won’t take much to get under a Rangers fan’s skin. Drop these two bombs and run. (Oh, and here’s a bonus – keep referring to their location as “Dallas” and watch what happens.)

toronto-blue-jays-logo-300x300

TORONTO BLUE JAYS

“It is tough to win in that Division.”

At one point, playing in the AL East was an act of futility for teams not playing in New York or Boston. So the narrative went that only the Yankees and Red Sox could afford to get the players to win and the other teams were there as punching bags. And the Blue Jays had some winning squads in the late 1990s and early 2000’s but couldn’t make the playoffs since the divisions expanded. But then the Rays ended that talk in 2008. Since 2012, the Blue Jays are the only AL East team to not play in October. And if the Royals make it this year, they will have the longest postseason drought in the game. Don’t remind Blue Jays fans.

washingtonnationals

WASHINGTON NATIONALS

“They should never have benched Stephen Strasburg in 2012.”

The best chance the Nationals have ever had to bring a World Series to Washington, and they decided to play innings limits with Strasburg? Either Nats fans will grumble, “We know, we know” or they will scream that the bullpen blew the series! And then ask, “So, you want Strasburg to throw his arm out?”

So there you have it! Go out to the world and make a baseball fan angry. It is part of your duty as a fan!

Paul Sullivan is a Sports Contributor for The Scoop. Follow him on Twitter and check out his podcast at @SullyBaseball.