The Blue Sox are in serious trouble after dropping again in batting average. Right now I have a total of 39.5 points. Third place has 59, so I would have to gain 20 points (in only 8 categories) to finish in the money. What's so surprising is that I only have 18 hitting points, which is 7th. (I'm 6th overall.) I'm 8th in batting average, 7th in rbi and stolen bases, and 4th in home runs (thanks to Branyan). But I'm only 7 stolen bases out of 4th (13 out of 2nd) which would add 3 points, and could very easily move to 6th in average (2 points). I've been trying hard to make some trades for some steals guys, but haven't had any luck.
In pitching, I'm a little better off, having recently added CC Sabathia. I should slowly improve in era (I'm 9th with a team era of 4.69, but only .30 out of 5th) and strikouts. I now have CC, Beckett, Lackey, and Slowey, each his team's ace. I could easily move up a couple in wins, as well. With Fuentes doing well with saves, I may hold my tied for 2nd spot.
What's frustrating, though, is that I'm supposed to have a great offense. With Longoria, Kinsler, and Morneau, I have three top producers. And with Grady back and Branyan still on a tear, I've got a real chance for a big second half. My problem is is that I have too much dead weight, with guys like Navarro and Valbuena not producing and guys like Santiago, Raburn, Davis, and Redmond not playing regularly. Now, Lowell is on the D/L. That may put the nail in the coffin for worst trade ever: Lowell for Bailey. And to make it even worse, Frasor was a roster-balance throw-in in that deal and I cut him to activate Lackey. What I wouldn't give to have Bailey back.
So here's my plan: try to add one more big bat (or steals guy) via a trade, and maybe add a strong middle reliever to help with my era and maybe pick up a stray save or two and a couple of wins. Sonnanstine went on the D/L, so the new guy would take his spot. I may also look to add a bat for Lowell, but I do have Gordon coming back so I may just wait and see what happens there. Or I may keep Sonnanstine and Lowell on the active roster in case I can add a guy traded to the AL before the deadline.
I've got three guys going strong in the minors that could realistically give me a 12-15 homer boost if they're September call-ups, Lars Anderson, Justin Smoak, and Jeff Clement. But I really can't afford to have any of them called up before September. (Our rosters expand in September to include September call-ups without dropping another player.)
I'm open to suggestions.
Mike Mussina, Hall of Famer
4 weeks ago