Tuesday, March 31, 2009

American Idol "Top" 9

This is their moment! This. . . is aMERican Idol!

The judges! Paula's outfit is ridiculous. Kara is perfection. As is Ryan, as always. Is it possible I don't know the theme? I didn't even know after the show was over. Something about downloads? How did I not look that up already? "Down to our top nine." As if that's anything to brag about! That's more than two more months of this crap! Only 2 months until SYTYCD! Aw, Simon thinks Ryan is amazing. They are adorable. In the movie version of their lives, they will be played by Jason Segal and Paul Rudd. Wait, what's that? You don't say! I was going to say that Simon and Paula are totally work husband and work wife, but Simon and Ryan are totally work BFFs. You know, the guy you get along great with at work, but only hang out with once or twice a year outside of work and work related functions.

OK, WTF does Allison have on? Is she really that wide? That is weird looking. Here we go- what is the theme, Ryan! Don't make me go to Google! Any song that's popular on iTunes? What does that even mean? Is this any song that is available for download? Isn't that like any song ever recorded? And also, who cares? They should always get to pick whatever they want! Yeah, I think this is about any song ever, with a sponsor shoutout to iTunes. Enough rope to hang themselves- it's a beautiful gift. To them, and to us. Steph - you sounded like Jacob from TWOP just then!

Anoop! Usher! This is fun already. I secretly love Usher. Why is Anoop wearing Michael Jackson's jacket? I thought maybe he was just dressing like an usher, until I found out that he was singing Usher. Why are the backup singers not as good this year? Why does this performance seem flat? The reason this performance seems flat is because it is actually flat. Is it because there's no choreography? No, because Anoop did this show on a dare and can't get out of it. I guess in my head I see choreography when I hear this song. I think that was good, though- I love Anoop, I loved when he sang My Prerogative. OK, Randy kind of agreed with me, which is weird- the vocals were great, but that song is a miss without the dancing. Kara said something gorgeous. I didn't hear it, I was distracted by her cute freckles. Why are those frat guys booing her? Dude - she was like, your frat brothers are here cheering you on because they dared you to even try out. Also, yes - cute freckles, although sometimes she makes really sour faces. Paula: ". . . blah blah balladeer." Chip: "Oooh, a big word!" Simon actually looks at the judges while Paula is talking and is like, WTF? Simon goes to the "complete and utter mess" card early tonight! He's right, the arrangement wasn't awesome. That headache business was harsh, though. Anoop totally is like, I would just like Kara to know that she can go eat a dick. I say it every week, though- Anoop is so cute! I love him- whatever. I know he wants to be an R&B artist, but how can that happen? I dunno- weird. I've spent too much time on Anoop. So have the judges - odds are, they rush whoever goes last so that they can go to this stupid Ozzy show coming up next.

Megan- Says she is going to do a Bob Marley/Lauren Hill song, which shows that she only knows the latter version and just now found out it was a remake. OMG! I got a text earlier (around 7:15) from Heather that said, "Bob Marley? Really?" I had no idea what she was talking about, but I just suddenly got it. Ha! Megan thinks the judges will feel her this time. I don't know what that means - I have been feeling her this whole time! She is my Stranger! Shannon just made a dirty joke. Yeah. Let me just say - I would not want her voice operating on me - it is shaky enough that it would nick an artery and cause my ears to bleed. Really, I wonder if she is nervous because the judges keep beating her up and she has zero confidence. OK, it's just a shame that she's not a good singer. Her pitch is a disaster. At least she looks the part this week, quirky, cute, etc. But my ears are bleeding. Jinx. It's like my senses are competing- the eyes are happy, but the ears and my nerves are hurting. Chip: "Was that a little 'muppet' at the end?" No, Kenneth, it wasn't. Kara is like, "boobooboo", and I think she forgot the last "b". Oh, and some guy totally just got asked to leave the building. Oooh, "indulgent." Our favorite Simon word! Also, Simon says, "The problem was, is that..." Chip: "With Sarver gone, I can't imagine anyone will be worse than that." Ouch.

Gokey. I pour my second glass of wine. What Hurts the Most (is listening to any song) by Rascal Flatts. I'll assume that's a rhetorical question. I'll take this opportunity to discuss Tropic Thunder, which I saw this week. Hilarious! Robert Downey Jr. was fantastic, then did the audio commentary for the DVD in character. Back to Gokey- he should have done a Michael Bolton song! Sounds just like him. That violin is out of tune, so I'll let that answer the titular question. I'm sure the judges are going to say things, but I just can't care. Wait- they loved it? I guess I can't see past Rascal Flatts. Thank you. I felt so bored by this song that I zoned out and thought about how I prefer sea salt over kosher salt on fresh heirloom tomatoes. He sings well and all, but he is totally Carrie's guy this year. Yeah, Danny's voice is fine. But still. I really have about 2 notes on Gokey - Chicago apparently loves Gokey, according to several signs, and he totally has a fan club up front to pick wife #2 from. (My wife #2 just performed a Bob Marley song, btw.)

Allison- Guitar! Don't Speak! Fun. Oh no- she "grew up" listening to this song. My old ass just cried a little. (PS - my "feeling old" story from the week came from mgoblog.com, where they had a picture of a recruit for next year's class posing in a Michigan helmet when he was 10 - this was from 2002.) I spent my 20's wishing Gwen and Tony would get back together. Then she married the hotness that is Gavin Rossdale. FTW! I saw a picture of their older son on people.com this week, and he is just gorgeous- looks just like dad. The women of the world are in trouble. Anyway, I love Allison. Me too, even though she has the nose of a bulldog. That was awesome, despite how silly she looks tonight. Oh damn, Randy. You didn't have to say it out loud! See, Kara said it better- you're 16, you're trying too hard with the look, but you don't have to. OH SNAP! Maybe I was just the only people who wasn't bothered by the outfit. It really just seems like something she would wear. I am surprised that Randy and Simon were that bothered by it that they commented on it over her singing. They are out to get her - at least Simon didn't draw on Paula instead of offering any actual feedback. Paula just said "axe." Hee! My notes read: "Paula - axe? Who wrote that for her?" I'm voting for Allison. Shut up, Simon. She's precocious because she's 16.

Blindy McGee- I have to say, I totally want to hang out with Scott. He is hilarious. Last week with the whole pink jeans thing, and when he wanted Ryan to give him a high five...he just seems very self aware for someone who we assume isn't as self aware because of the whole blind thing. I would rather go play Snood that actually have to watch his performance, but I like this kid and suddenly want him to do well! Chip wants to know if we can just skip him. Billy Joel! Of course! Oh, he wants to show his heart and emotion. As opposed to other weeks, when he showed us what a hard-core rocker he was. What, do you want him to run around the stage? Sitting at a piano for a piano song is his ceiling! There is a reason why Jeff Healy, Ronnie Millsaps, Stevie Wonder, and Ray Charles all come on The River 104.5 FM. His hair is worse than Allison's, let's say that first. My notes - "did his own hair this week". Secondly, oh man this sucks. Cheesy, off-key, hold up- is that chest hair? Ooof- this is horrible to see and hear. Please, America, stop voting for him just because of you-know-what. Yeah - I like him personally, but it might be time to go. Let Megan Joy stick around for as long as possible so I can file away as many mental images as I can in our limited time together. Paula, "Scott, let me just say, of all the contestants who have graced the stage. . ." you are the blindest. "I am proudest of you." Then she says another music word that was fed to her by a writer who is laughing right now. Paula - domo, arigato, Mr. Legato. (Legato is the opposite of staccato.) Really, next week someone needs to write "San Diego - go fuck yourself" to see if she would say it. Does she have an earpiece where someone is feeding her lines? Legato? Really? Chip points out that there is nothing at all contemporary or relevant about Scott. No producer in the world could make him relevant to today's music scene. Period. President Chip does not like blind people. If Matty G wins, then Scott can take his old job.

Matty G- The Fray. Ugh. Did you know that you can't spell "The Fray sucks infected monkey balls" without T-h-e-F-r-a-y? Think about it. Someone from the iTunes era! Good choice for him, I think. Well, if he wants to sing a suck song by a suck band. Why did he start playing over Ryan? Show some respect, son! That started rough, but then settled down. Cool, playing the keyboard out in the crowd. Chip thinks he's impersonating the guy. I hope not - that band The Fray sure did suck last night. They just plain sucked. I've seen bands suck before, but they were the suckiest bunch of sucks who ever sucked. I gotta go - my damn wiener kids are listening. I don't know- they have a similar tone though. I'm voting for Matty. I also want Matt G to do well. Just stop with this bad poppy stuff. They say One Republic, but they are terrible in the same vein as these other guys. I just like that he sang song from the past five years. Come on, people! It wasn't jumpin' off for Chip. Paula is stuttering at this point. Paula knows the lead singer of the Fray's name - someone did that research for her. But she is making a valid point. He does better with runs and JT-ish stuff than he does with Chris Coldplay/Fray/Douchey stuff.

Lil- Oh, is she singing I Surrender? Yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That is my Idol audition song! Do it Lil, please do it! I love this song way too much. Don't think less of me. OK, because I love this song so much, I know that Lil has missed most of the words. Also, this isn't doing it for me. Maybe she'll pull it out on the big finish, though. Not really. Wow - she really did not do a good job. Carrie shared that same sentiment, but I almost think she was hesitant because we both want her to do well. Kelly Clarkson knocked this song out of the park when she sang it, with the flu, back in season one. Lil did not. Ugh. I'll vote for her just to spite Coach Cal (please don't get me started on that), but I won't feel good about it. Paula's right, again! She shouldn't be adult contemporary, she should be R&B. Why does she always pick the wrong song? Yeah, when the judges started in on song choice again, it was like, ugh. Always! Maybe next week. . .

Robbie Rotten- again! Oh lordy. So did they have iTunes back in 1976? I don't really understand the theme, I think. I was very wrong. I think it was available for download for wedding DJs who like to play shitty music. I was hoping it would lead them to pick out contemporary songs. OK, he is a natural performer. I'll give him that. I can see where this is going to go over big with the crowd and the judges. Seriously? Not me. He sings a shitty joke of a song, and the fact that the judges are standing up and applauding him proves to me that I just don't get it. He is so screechy, annoying with his vocals - at least last week I could maybe see why people wouldn't think it was terrible. This week was laughably bad. If he wasn't a frontrunner, I would think every week that he might be going home. I don't hate him, I just don't get it. It is like Wilco, or Twitter, or Southern Baptist as a religion - I mean, I get that some people can like it, but is that really something to get this excited over? Seriously, they are saving their judges reversal for the week he accidentally gets sent home because his fan base gets lazy. Oh yeah. And it will happen. Except that teenage girls never get lazy on the phones! I want it to be in the finale when they save him. That was good, he's a good singer. Or, it was not good, and he is just a niche singer. I'm not going to vote for him or anything, but I'm not offended like I was with, say, Megan or Scott. I think he has bothered me in other weeks, but the fact that he sang a song that your 48 year old single uncle dances to drunkenly at a wedding made the praise really piss me off this time. Yeah Megan and Scott are objectively worse, but that is a terrible song! Hardly relevant! People would leave the radio on that song if it came on?

Cutie Patootie Kris- He's doing Anal Sunshine? Oh, Ain't No Sunshine. Congrats Kris - the 100th performance of this song on this show! Again, I'm confused about what this song has to do with iTunes. I guess someone downloaded it at some point? Yeah, it is a weird promotional tie in this week for sure. The iTunes week on AI is like when they had to make stuff with Quaker Oats on Top Chef. (Chip is stilllll laughing about the Butthole Surfers joke he just made.) Dude, Kris is on fire! Carrie says that this is a performance she will remember - I agree that it was his best. I like him this week- he might get his first ever Chockley vote! Chip: "He's a sleeper! He's so slick, never misses a note. . ." Yes, and he looks like that. Maybe the teenage girls will vote for him instead of Robbie Rotten! Yep, that was great, I now am on board the Kris train. Chip: "I dunno- I just like him better than Lambert." Exactly. I agree - I want to get excited about someone in this terrible, terrible season of Idol.

To recap- I really liked Kris, Allison and Anoop. For me, I say Kris was good this week, and Allison was also not bad. Megan is an embarrassment. She and Scott are the bottom two. Anything else would be a travishamockery. Let Lambert get the lowest number of votes. Seriously, let him play his immunity idol so the next time counts. I also voted for Matt and Lil out of loyalty, not out of tonight. Gokey is what we thought he was. And Lambert is the wild card. We just don't like him, but his performance was good. I wouldn't say that. We will never vote for him, but we can reluctantly see how he's the front runner. Not even objectively. I just can't see the appeal at all. I try - like when I listen to a song by Jason Mraz, I can see why people would enjoy his non-offensive tripe and all, but with Lambert, I actually see nothing appealing. He is like NASCAR to me - I don't remotely see its appeal, but I don't hate it, I am just really indifferent if not underwhelmed. I am both subjectively and objectively unimpressed. But I got 2 more months until dude's coronation and all, so I guess I gotta get over it, or just ignore it.

And the night is saved by a commercial from this fine establishment. Thank you and good night. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2MMAbtJcEo

Thursday, March 26, 2009


Outfield is the deepest position - tiers will be difficult, so I'll just break it down by who falls in what round on average.

5. Grady Sizemore - I don't know if I would take him at #5 overall. True, he is a 30/30 guy with 40/40 potential. He will get 100+ runs and RBI. But his EqAVG the last 3 years has not topped .280, and he is projected with an average of only .269 this year. He is a solid first round pick, don't get me wrong - it is just that it would be more of a slam dunk #5 with a higher average.
7. Ryan Braun - Another solid first round pick - 35-40 HR, 100 runs/RBI, 15 SB. The advantage he has over Sizemore is the average, which will be 25-30 points higher.
8. Josh Hamilton - Should come back down to earth this season, and that is not a drug joke. His average will be more in the .280-.200 range, don't expect another 130 RBI, and probably 25-30 HR. I wouldn't pick him over Kinsler/Rollins/Utley/Santana at this point. Then again, I could be proven wrong.

13. BJ Upton - Everyone has Upton in the teens in terms of overall rank, but I wouldn't do it. Could steal over 40 bases, but the 15 HR and .270 average don't make him a second rounder for me. Carl Crawford will be available in the third round if you want that production, but have a better average.
15. Alfonso Soriano - A much better second round pick. 30/20/.280, 100 runs/RBI. Falling to 19 overall in drafts because of his down year last year.
18. Carlos Beltran - Roughly the same as Soriano - His PECOTA projections: 27 HR, 18 SB, .293, 106 runs, 96 RBI. Really, if you want to take him over Soriano at this point, I say do it - Beltran will be on base more but will have a couple fewer HRs and SBs.
22. Carlos Quentin - Really exploded last year. I would be surprised if he could repeat his performance, and personally I would let someone else take that risk. Then again, that person might be rewarded with 35-40 HR late in the second round. PECOTA - 23HR, 77 RBI, 78 runs, .273 average - those are not second round projections. Let's just say - he was the highest ranked player not kept in my keeper league.

25. Carlos Lee - I am hoping he returns to form after his injury last year and posts another 30 HR 100 RBI .300 season. If he keeps the pace he had last year over the whole season, he is a second round pick next season. His age is somewhat of a concern though in terms of keeper leagues.
27. Carl Crawford - PECOTA is not keen on Crawford this year - 10 HR, 30 SB, .276 average. I think he will kill those projections though - a good third round pick, but I am not chomping at the bit to draft him there at the same time.
28. Manny Ramirez - Do it. Second round. He was the #3 overall guy last season. He is awesome - ignore the off the field stuff and draft him. He is being drafted ahead of the last 3 guys on average. 30+HR, 100+ RBI, .300 average. Boston thinks he was a "cancer" - let's compare: since 1918, with Manny, 2 World Series crowns; without Manny, 0 World Series crowns.
30. Jason Bay - Manny's "replacement" in Boston. He is just like Manny, minus about 25-30 points of average, 5-10 HR fewer, 10-20 fewer RBIs, and about 70 points off the OPS. So basically the same guy. I wouldn't spend a third rounder on him.
31. Vlad Guerrero - He is apparently a year older than we thought. Should be around .300, 20-25 HR, 80 runs, 100 RBI. No longer a threat on the basepaths. Third round is too high for Vlad too - I wouldn't.
33. Ichiro - Did you know he is 35 years old? I don't think he is a viable fantasy option anymore, mainly because of where he is ranked and where he is being drafted. Only hit .310 last year (I say "only" because we are used to like .350 with this guy), and he is only projected to steal 20 bases. Little to no power. Let the guy who is autodrafting get this guy in your draft.
34. Nick Markakis - Wow - the third round is really full of OFs that I wouldn't draft. 20 HR, 10 SB, .286 average, 96 runs 89 RBI - again, not a third rounder for me.
35. Matt Holliday - Will not play half his games in Colorado this year, but will be playing for a contract. If he can get his PECOTA projections, he is a steal, but they are based on him playing in Colorado. Should hit for a high average, 30 HR 100 runs/RBI. This is a third round outfielder for sure.
36. Matt Kemp - are we still in the third round range? Kemp has suggested he could go 40/40 at some point, and is a great keeper. Leagues just for this year though - 20 HR, 30 RBI, and a .290 average are more likely. A great third round OF again. Of the 9 OFs listed in the 25-36 range, I would rank: Manny, Lee, Holliday, Bay, Kemp, Crawford, Vlad, Markakis, Ichiro.

42. Curtis Granderson - You should like Curtis as a person - great guy, hard worker, etc. As a fantasy player, expect .275, 20/20. If he shows more patience at the plate, he could get to 100 runs. Solid, but I think 4th round might be iffy for me. If he slips to the 5th round, do it.
43. Alex Rios - .275, 20/20 guy. This is why he is ranked the same as Curtis.
47. Shane Victorino - .290, 15 HR, 30 SB. I would draft him before the last 2 guys.

51. Jacoby Ellsbury - .290, 40-50 SB. Will carry you in steals, help in average and runs. But 10 HR is a stretch, so the RBIs will be only around 50 or so. If you draft him, you need to grab a power guy to balance him out. If you do, you will be set.
53. Alexei Ramirez - Draft him as a middle infielder, not as an OF.
55. Nate McLouth - 20/20, .285. Good pickup here in the 5th round. My strategy is to grab 20/20 guys, and the Hardball Times just had an article saying McLouth is for real.
56. Corey Hart - More of a 25/25 guy, .290 average to boot. I like him over the last 6 guys, actually. If the 5th round sees you without an OF (which is a good strategy, btw), Hart is the guy I would want.

61. Hunter Pence - 25/10, .285 average. Solid for what you can get out of an OF at this point of the draft.
62. Magglio Ordonez - Stay away. I love the Tigers, but he is high risk, 35 years old, 20 HR .300 average.
66. Adam Dunn - I love Dunn in 5x5 leagues. He will carry you in HR. The guy to grab if you got Ellsbury in the last round. I would expect more of a .250 average instead of a .230 average, but 40 HR 100 RBI are par for the course with Dunn.

76. Jermaine Dye - 25 HR, .270 average, no speed, not a lot of runs. 7th round - look elsewhere.
78. Jay Bruce - .280, 30 HR, double digit SB - great 7th round pick. You can even target this guy and pick him up in the 6th if you want.
83. Ryan Ludwick - will not be available in the 7th round. His numbers last year were stupid. Even though he hit .299 last year, PECOTA has him at .264(!). He won't go 104/37/113 again this year.
84. Vernon Wells - Don't do it. Average is too low, won't get 20 HR or 10 SB this year.

94. Bobby Abreu - Don't do it. More like a 150 pick than the #94 guy, and is overrated because of his name. I don't see him putting up 100/20/100/20/.300 again. Another 35 year old - his numbers are on the decline.

102. Lastings Milledge - Slipping in drafts, but will give you what Abreu does, and has a higher ceiling. If you are a fan, wait until the 10th/11th round if you want.

113. Torii Hunter - A perrenial 20/20 guy, may not get there this year. I would stay away, but someone will draft him before you have time to even debate it.
115. Chris Young - 25/20 guy, and if he gets his average up, he is a better pick than the last 4 guys. Tons of potential, only 25 years old.
116. Johnny Damon - Don't do it. Can score 100 runs because of the lineup he is in, but when he has 6 HR and 9 SB at the all star break, you will be wondering why you didn't draft Xavier Nady, who will share the Yankee outfield with him.

122. Raul Ibanez - His guitar has 7 strings! OK, follow me here - he will be overrated because of his history as an underrated fantasy player. His correct ranking this year is more like where he used to be rated when he was underrated. 20 HR, .275 average. Nothing special.
124. Nelson Cruz - By definition, a AAAA player. Meaning, he is awesome in the minors, then kinda so-so in the majors. Projected for 25 HR, 14 SB, 73 runs, 83 RBI, but only a .260 average. I would stay away, but I don't fault you if you draft him.
128. Jayson Werth - Injury risk, not a ton of reward. Stay away.
129. Justin Upton - I would do it in the 13th round here. Actually slipping to the 14th/15th range. 20/10 guy, .280 average. The league where I drafted him, he is my 4th outfielder, but a solid sleeper pick. Better than the last 4 guys.
131. Andre Ethier - .290 average, 15-20 HR - Solid pick here, especially if you need some help in the OF. Not a sexy pick, but he is 27 so he is about to hit his prime, and he won't hurt your team in any categories really.
132. Brad Hawpe - My pick for sleeper of the year in the OF potentially. He is a 14/15 round pick, but could have 30 HR. PECOTA loves this guy, and projects 23 HR in only 500 PAs. If he stays healthy, 100/30/100 is possible.

137. Connor Jackson - Good average, average HR - again, not a high ceiling type of pick, but you know what you are gonna get.

145. Mark DeRosa - No.
160. Milton Bradley - DeRosa's teammate, and a much better pick here. 80/25/80. Can get 8-10 steals, hit close to .300. Better than the last 2 guys for sure.
165. Xavier Nady - Won't run, but will hit .275 with 20 HR. Runs/RBI will just happen when you play for the Yankees.
168. Pat Burrell - 25-30 HR with a .230 average. If you need power, he is a great pickup.

169. Denard Span - Tons of potential, but overrated at this point in his career. I wouldn't do it, but at this point of the draft, you can take risks if you want.
173. Rick Ankiel - .260, but 25 HR. Plus, it is frickin' Rick Ankiel. Do it.
180. Hideki Matsui - Do not draft.

181. Adam Jones - No, not that one. Actually a big sleeper candidate - 20/10/.280. I like him. Great 4th OF to draft.
185. Shin-Soo Choo - Actually a potential sleeper. I am not huge on this guy, but 15/10/.280 is probable.
187. Elijah Dukes - Seperate real life from fantasy baseball for this asshole - 20/20/.280 potential.
188. Willy Tavares - Will steal 60 bases this year and hit 1 HR. If you have loaded up on guys like Ryan Howard, Adam Dunn, Mark Reynolds, draft this guy for your steals.
189. Nick Swisher - .230 average, 25 HR. If you can make up for the average, do it.
192. Adam Lind - 14 HR, 3 SB, .272 PECOTA. Meh.

OK - at this point, I am going to other notables:
193. Delmon Young - 15-20 HR and SB, .280 average - sleeper pick here.
201. Cameron Maybin - The Marlins gave up on Cabrera for this guy - 15-20 HR, 20+ SB, .260s average - solid pick if you need a 4th OF or an injury replacement.
214. Jeremy Hermida - 15-20 HR, decent average.
248. Travis Snider - PECOTA likes him for 23 HR and a .250 average.
253. Carlos Gomez - Cheap source of steals, but not much else.
254. Jack Cust - Could have 30 HRs, but won't hit .240.
275. Michael Bourn - Amnesia, but another cheap source of steals.
280. Randy Winn - Close to a .300 average and some SB.

All in all, by the end of the draft, you will have at least 4 guys who can play OF. There are so many. Hope this helps, but I really just did it so I could get ready for my 2 drafts on Sunday!

Coming next - pitchers!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

American Idol Top 10

Confession time- these recaps just aren't important enough to me to warrant watching all this opening crap. Maybe if I weren't racing to watch both this and lost on the same night. . . No, just not. Yeah - Carrie didn't make it to AI tonight, so this is just me on this end. Also, since Carrie is worried about other teachers at her school reading the blog, as well as her family and all, I have promised no sex jokes this week. This is gonna be hard, but I will stick it out and hope everything comes naturally.

Matty G- Smokey says that "Marvin would love that," because any dead performer would love a karaoke version of one of his meaningful songs sung in the context of a giant popularity contest on an extreme right wing network. Oh hell yes! I can't imagine much more will be better than this tonight. Outstanding. (He has sung this song for so many drunk bachelorettes in his lifetime at Silky's! He should know this like the back of Ron's hand!) They show Paula and Kara and they are giddy- hee! Chip: Nice. Uh, yeah! Kara actually makes a sex joke. I can't, but she does. Paula has some sort of arm/chest fat hanging over the top of her outfit - ouch.

Arkansas- He's so cute! Ryan says, "last week we saw his sensitive side" - really, is there another side? Is there anything else to him? I mean, this is okay, but didn't rock me like Matt did. Anyway, he's fine but he bores me. So let's talk about me. Chloe loved Matty G. Also, I found myself singing "our" song to her tonight a lot, because of the theme- My Girl. I really hope someone sings it so I can save it an play it for her! She's only really heard the song once- maybe I can fool her into thinking I wrote it! What's the over/under on how old she is before she figures out the truth? Macaulay Culkin dies at the end of this song. Back to this guy. What is with the way he sings and talks out of the right side of his mouth. Is he subconsciously thinking about the last time he went fishing? Bell's palsy? A stroke? Chip thinks he's "polished"- I guess. He doesn't know shit from shinola? Thank you! He'd like to hear it with the guitar only and not the band. OK, I can see that. But then it wouldn't be Motown. But that's okay, right DAUGHTRY? I love the way Kris' shirt makes it look like he has arm tattoos. You're so cool dude! Paula: blah blah blah, high A, I think? Oh, Paula. I hope you asked someone you trust, because that answer didn't come from you at all. Is that Padma in the crowd behind Simon? All in all, his version of "How Sweet it is" in no way compares to Chris Klein's in American Pie.

Guy who is blind (Me, trying to come up with a clever name: Chip, who's a famous blind guy? Chip: Ronnie Millsaps! Both of us: Spit-take. Man that shit cracked us up!) - Apparently all songs tonight start off slow, then go up tempo. Really, this is the third in a row. Oh lordy that was horrible. Goodness. Just make this stop, America! FF to comments This was my second straight FF - why is Paula with the technically talk tonight? She is so scripted! Paula says that he "pleased both Simon and I" - which, that's what she...said with bad grammar. Simon and me, not Simon and I. Simon- word. Rough. Wait, does Paula not know that Randy is agreeing with Simon? She is a disaster! Answer the question, Paula- he's not as good as the others. Whoa- WTF? Oh no. That did NOT just happen with the coloring books! Oh shit, and then Ryan had to describe it to Scott! Oh goodness. This is just bad all around. Chip just decided he doesn't want to watch AI anymore. I think I understand where he's coming from. I think that was a sketch, from start to finish.

Tim Commorford (anyone? Arm tattoo guy from RATM? OK - here's "Megan Joy") - My no sex comments/jokes will be pushed to the extreme here. She's just not a good singer. Oh Good God she is terrible - hot, but terrible. Chip doesn't like how they glammed her up. She is dressed in a way that shows off her body. Not that I have anything to say about that. He wants her to look quirky if she's going to sound and act quirky. She makes me want to never wear flats again. Flat is not the word I...caught myself. And also makes me want cheek implants. I'd implant in her che...can't do it. I'll sum it up- if I'm a guy, I don't ever want her to go home (I want her to go home -with me, so we can...I mean, yes, she is attractive.) because she is clearly the hottest Idol contestant ever. But me? Buh bye. Paula says that she "didn't find the pocket". Oh come on! Leather pants! Does nobody else see that Ross is wearing leather pants! People like Ross don't generally wear these types of pants! (Randy was about to start talking, and Chip said, It wasn't jumping off for me, dawg. Then Randy said it! Awesome.)

Anoop!- Chip deems Smokey worthless. He loves everyone! I agree- bring back Randy Travis! Great song choice. This is great. But why does he have that jacket on? The outfit is fine without it. I actually blacked out, and when I came to, I was cleaning out the fridge. I am dead serious here - I think I was looking for a Sprite Zero. Anyway, his falsetto is nice. Kara - "There were moments in your chest where you hit it" - at the end of the day, I must say that was the first time in my life I have ever heard anyone say that sentence. Chip, however, hates this song, thinks it's "lifeless." Aw, Simon likes him! Me too. I can't agree that Anoop had a "strong week".

Roughneck- Is it weird that I'm surprised when I see people? I'm like, Oh yeah- the roughneck! (I did this with Kris too.) Church! Oh, and Smokey finally redeems himself by criticizing Roughneck. Thanks, Smokey! If it's all the same to you, I'm going to use Ashlee Simpson's plastic surgeon and not yours when my time comes, okay? Okay. Hey - Smokey is 91 years old and looks like that. Freaky, but he could look much worse. Back to this one. Jacob: This song really sums up the experience. I'm surprised Adam didn't wrestle the Bear for it! (I haven't read him yet, of course- that was really just for you, Shannon!) Hold on- you can't really gospel that up- it's about sex and stuff! Sarver coughs a little at the end, and it looks like a soccer player taking a dive. Simon- why do people boo when he says Sarver has no chance of winning? He doesn't! Simon - ouch. He does say it was below par, which in golf is a good thing. So he's got that going for him.

Lil Rounds- Smokey just sprouted wood (Smokey wood is great for mesquite), then did the whole "phone book" thing. It's the alphabet, Smokey! I have that EXACT joke written down in my notes. Samesies! Wait- Lil is black? I'm kidding- I appreciate this. (The Onion this week- In one of many historic firsts, Barack Obama becomes the first black president to TiVo MythBusters. LOL!) Chip mentioned that Smokey didn't need all that work in order to look young- he carries himself and dresses much younger than he is. OK, she is so cute, dressing the part and all. This is great- very effortless. Like, if she misses a note, it doesn't bother me because she doesn't seem to be trying too hard, ya know? Anyway- Lil: Hey skinny white boys, this is Motown. Snap, bitches. Yeah, she sang the shit out of that. She is awesome - the judges suck.

Adam- Barf. Chip says, If he undersings something, I might like it! He's the king, I mean, Queen Oversinger. Nice. Oh my lord. What is going on with him physically? Chip: He looks like a character on Lazytown! HHAaaaaaaaaaahahaha!!!!!! OK, I'm ruined now. I have no idea what is happening other than Lazytown. LOLZ! Chip just won this blog post. I had written down kd lang and Extreme jokes, but they don't compare. OK, I can't understand what the judges are saying, it's all muffled with Adam's dick all in their mouths. (talk about jealousy, infidelity...) Eh, I guess it was alright. But I think. . . OMG- look at him! Bwaahahaaa! Sportacus! OK, I'm back. I just hate that he's going to win. I mean, I'm sort of happy because we need an openly gay Idol (um...), but eh. Still don't get this guy's appeal. (PS - thanks to Chip, I have youtubed "You are a Pirate", and the double entendres really fit with Adam Lambert. PPS - I put "You are a Pirate" between Arcade Fire's "Intervention" and Sigur Ros' "Hoppipolla" on my favorite songs of all time. OK, not really.)

Liam Neeson - Smokey has actual advice! That is promptly ignored. PWN3D, Robinson! I do like his voice, and yes, I understand people see him as a Yamin type. But I LOVED Elliot Yamin. I do not love this guy. Chip says, Yeah, just like Adam is good but we just don't "like" him. Damn, Chip's right- we don't like these people! Ugh. Almost an immediate FF. Hopefully, a real, true fave will emerge for me soon. Right now, it's really Matty G, Lil, and Allison and a bunch of people who bug me. Lil is far and away my favorite. Then Megan, for obvious reasons. Like the MUTE button on my remote. (And Anoop- but he's just aaallmmooooost there for me.) Why are the judges rushing? There are 15 minutes left!

Speaking of- Allison! Dude, the band is so happy about this song! They have been a bit sub-par this season. I was hoping Motown night would bring them out of their funk. Fast Forward again. Yikes - Can't they have hair band week next week, or Irish drinking song week? (Skid Row's Wasted Time, and The Irish Rover are the songs I would choose for those 2 weeks, btw. For Motown - I Want You Back, the Jackson 5. Easy.) OK, Allison. Yes ma'am. Secretly, she's my favorite. I think she's emerging as the one I have an emotional investment in. I mean, g-damn! I can't believe she's 16. I agree - I hope she does well, but I REALLY hope this season gets more bearable.
(Emotional investment in years past: Kelly, Kim Locke, Latoya London/Huddy, Bo Bice, Chris Daughtry/Yamin, Blake/Doolittle, David Cook. For me - Kelly Clarkson, Bob Ice, Fantasia, McPhee's legs, Michael Johns.)

Anyway, watching the playback you watched the playback?- Lil and Allison are just so much more comfortable on stage than most of the others. I'm not holding my breath when they're out there. They are confident and fun, and don't sound like they're in a HS talent show. But I really like Matt too, and Gokey did well, and Anoop. I still think Alexis has a chance. And Adam? As much as I hate Adam, I don't fast forward him. His hair! Yar har fiddle dee dee, being a pirate is alright with me! Also - Wednesday night does NOT work for us. Lost takes so much precedence. Tonight's episode - no way that ending sticks. Dude!!!
Seacrest- OUT!

Middle Infielders

The key to fantasy baseball is being solid up the middle - 2B and SS. These are strong defensive positions, so finding someone here to contribute fantasy-wise is crucial, especially with the depth at other positions. This is why I would take Kinsler or Rollins late in the first round over someone like Teixeira.

Second Base:
10. Ian Kinsler - I am partial to Kinsler because I have him as a keeper. If you are drafting anywhere from 8-12, I would target Kinsler despite his injury last year. 20/20/.300 potential.
21. Chase Utley - Really ranked low because of the hip injury. But a steal - you should grab him at any point in the second round if he is available. He is playing now and is expected to be ready for Opening Day. 30 HR, .300 guy. I have seen him go in the first round even.
23. Dustin Pedroia - Will score a ton of runs. His average should come down a couple of points from last year, but has 20/20 potential. Could be the next Kinsler, but also this season could finish more in the 10-15 HR/SB range, and you could do worse, but second round is a maybe for me. Third round, grab him for sure if he is available.
24. Brandon Phillips - He is Pedroia realized, if that makes sense. I mean, he actually has gone 20/20 and doesn't just have the potential for that. Average could be better - .261 last year, but a .282 PECOTA means that I would take him over Pedroia at this point. If you are in the 1-4 draft spots, the last 2 guys are definite late 2nd/early 3rd range for you.

37. Brian Roberts - 10-15 HR, 30+ SB, but his projected average is down a bit. Otherwise, he belongs in the same discussion as the last 2 guys. Don't let him slip past you in the 4th round.
53. Alexei Ramirez - Another solid pick. Listed as SS, 2B, and OF, but don't play him at OF unless you have Utley and Rollins up the middle or something and he slips to you. He will post just under .300, and is a 15-20 HR guy and should get double digit steals.

71. Dan Uggla - This dude is a 30 HR guy for some reason. He may even slug .500. You aren't going to get that from a lot of MIs, so if you have guys like Carl Crawford on your team and need HR, you can get them from Uggla in the sixth round from a position where you don't normally get that production.
82. Chone Figgins - His lack of power and average won't kill you at 2B like it would at 3B, so if you draft him, you are set on steals - now focus on finding some guys to bring up your other stats. Personally, I hate steals guys on my team - I would rather be loaded up with 20/20 guys than a guy who will hit 4 HR and steal 40 bases, and another guy who hits 35 HR and doesn't steal a base, but that is just my preference. Especially since steals guys (Taveras, Pierre) kill you on HR and RBI.
92. Howie Kendrick - Can carry you in average, in theory. That theory being that he can finally get more than 400 PAs in one season, which he hasn't yet. Doesn't provide much otherwise. Has potential at 25, but let him be someone else's headache.
93. Robinson Cano - Again, high average, 10-15 HR, no SB. Probably safer than Kendrick, but same production. At this point, if you don't have a 2B and you missed out on Uggla, don't worry about 2B for a couple of rounds.

130. Mike Aviles - 10-15 HR, .265-.275 average, few steals - I don't know. 60 runs, 60 RBI - Meh. Nothing too exciting for the eleventh round.
143. Kelly Johnson - Could hit 15-20 HR, hit .280 with double digit steals - Solid pick for the 13th round, where he is slipping too. Definitely the best 2B prospect since Uggla.
145. Mark DeRosa - Do Not Draft.

172. Jose Lopez - Not stellar, but better than the guys who will be available on the waiver wire after the draft. Don't draft him to play 1B.
174. Kazuo Matsui - Slipping to about 200 overall, but could steal 20 bases. Really unfortunate injury last year. If you need a cheap source of steals from someone who won't kill you in average, pull the trigger in that 15-17th round if you need a 2B.
191. Rickie Weeks - Yes. Here is your sleeper - if you want a good 2B backup, or if you missed out on Kelly Johnson, Weeks is your guy. 15-20 HR and SB, .270 average. Is being drafted behind a bunch of guys at 2B who are worse options. You can wait until the 18th round if you need.

209. Placido Polanco - Good average, but not much else. Don't do it, but root for him regardless. I love that guy.
213. Orlando Hudson - 10/10 .290. Emergency pick. Whoever drafts him will release him in a few weeks, so he is a solid injury replacement.
225. Ian Stewart - Great sleeper pick here. Listed at 3B too, so stash him on your bench. Heck - you can even start him at 2B if you want, especially for home games.
241. Mark Ellis - 10/10/.250. Don't, unless your guy gets injured.

That was just the top 20 - here are the other mentionables at 2B:
257. Felipe Lopez - Could be a cheap source of steals, and could have a rebound year.
259. Alexi Casilla - Could steal 20 bases, but weak average.

1. Hanley Ramirez - No matter where you are drafting, draft him if he is available. Really, he could have 30 HR, 40 SB, 100 RBI, 130 Runs, and hit .330. That's not even his ceiling. Only 25. Best player in fantasy right now.
3. Jose Reyes - Again, draft him if Hanley and Pujols are gone. 15-20 HR, 65-70 SB, .300+ average, 125 runs, 75 RBI - really, you draft him and you are probably gonna win SB, and you really don't have to make up much else, because his HR are par for the position.
11. Jimmy Rollins - If you are late 1st round drafting, take him in the 8-12 range if Kinsler is gone. If you can grab Kinsler or Utley and Rollins with your first 2 picks, you are set up the middle and are looking good. He will rebound from last year and get back in the 20 HR range, with 40 SB and an average in the high .200s.

53. Alexei Ramirez - Yeah, that was some dropoff. SS is a very top-heavy position, and if you don't get yours in the first round, don't worry about it for a few rounds. I will probably not draft Alexei for SS, but that is just me. If you do, I would draft him in the 5th round.
57. Rafael Furcal - Don't do it. You know who he is, and he has a track record of success, but let him be someone else's headache. If someone drops him around the all star break, pick him up because he always has a good second half, but don't draft him.
60. Troy Tulowitzki - Do this instead. Injuries derailed last year, but he should do .280 plus, 15-20 HR, and he plays in Colorado.
67. Stephen Drew - Another good 6th/7th round SS. 25 HR potential, could be Utley without the steals. I say 6th round if you don't have a SS at this point.
80. Michael Young - If he wasn't a SS, he would be ranked in the 150s. .280 10/10 type of guy, may not reproduce this 2006 numbers again in his career. Let's put it this way - I wouldn't draft him, but I drafted him in one league. I don't know if that makes sense.
87. JJ Hardy - I would draft him over Young. 20+ HR and a .270 average. Solid, and you can get him a round later than Young.

89. Jeter - Do Not Draft. 10/10, .280 - not a top 100 guy.
109 - Jhonny Peralta - 20 HR, .260 - Meh. I phrobably whouldn't dhraft him here unless I was dhesperate for a SS.
118. Miguel Tejada - Do Not Draft. Could be in jail for lying to Congress or something.
130. Mike Aviles - Again, nothing to get worked up about.

184. Khalil Greene - 15-20 HR, .250 average - roughly what you could get from Peralta at 75 places later.
186. Ryan Theriot - 20 SB and a good average - not bad for this late. Good sleeper pick, can get some runs in a potent lineup. Will hurt in power though.
200. Orlando Cabrera - No. Stay away. Nothing to get excited about.
212. Yunel Escobar - Again, good average but not much else.

OK, that is only the top 17, but there really isn't much else. Here are some other notables:
257. Felipe Lopez - Getting tired of talking about this guy, but has a lot of positions listed, so a good bench guy.
288. Christian Guzman - Great average last year. Good injury fill in.
646. Jason Bartlett - The fantasy magazine I get really wants him to have a breakout season. Could be a cheap source of steals, but not much else.
687. Elvis Andrus - Again, draftable for the name alone. But if he gets to play in the bigs this year, could steal 30+ bases.

So, shortstop is a position where you need to grab someone good, because there aren't many sleepers. If you miss out on the big 3, target Tulowitzki or Stephen Drew, the JJ Hardy if you don't get them. Don't be ashamed with Ramirez, Young, Peralta, or Greene though. If worse comes to worse and you end up with Jeter or Tejada, good luck with that.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Corner Infielders

I am going to list 1B and 3B in one post, because of the overlap in players and average production. I will try to separate with tiers when possible, just because it is easier to read.

First Base:
2. Albert Pujols - Draft him no later than #2 overall. If you land him at 2, make a joke involving "Poo Holes" and "Number 2" on the chat feature.
6. Miguel Cabrera - OK, I like Cabrera here. He had 26 HR in the last 3 months last season, and reached career highs in HR and RBI. His AVG was down somewhat, but should rebound. He is slipping to about 8 on average, but gets dual 1B/3B listing, meaning you can draft him in the first round and decide where you are going to play him later. Talented Mr. Roto is projecting a huge season for Miggy.
9. Ryan Howard - 50 HR is awesome, but .250 average last year was a roto killer. I would draft him as high as 9 in a head to head league, but early second round in a roto league. I would rather take Kinsler, Rollins, or Johan Santana at 9. But just know what you are getting here.
12. Mark Teixeira - Again - take Kinsler, Rollins, or Santana at 12/13 if that is where you are drafting. Tex will have 35 HR, 100 runs, 100+ RBI, .300+ AVG and all, so it isn't like he is a bad pick. It is just that 1B is so deep a position, and he isn't playing for that contract anymore.

17. Lance Berkman - Another 30, 100, 100, .300 guy - what separates him from Tex is the 18 SB last year. Solid second round pick.
19. Prince Fielder - OK, I would stay away here. He is falling to the late second round on average, but I would rather go elsewhere here. Not a bad pick or anything, but that is too high based on his production last season, and his projections for this year.
29. Justin Morneau - Has high RBI numbers because he comes up to bat with men on base more than anyone else in the league. 25 HR, .280, 100 RBI - not bad, but I don't know about the third round.

40. Kevin Youklis - His 29 HR last year should come down a little, as should his average, based on his high BABIP. I think 40 is too high for him.
49. Adrian Gonzalez - Solid. But, who will he drive in this year? SD has no one else really, and half his runs scored may come from his own HRs. Good keeper, and if it is the 5th round and you need a power guy, go for it. I would take him at 1B over Youklis, and he is on par with Morneau, but ranked 20 spots lower.

63. Victor Martinez - Should not play 1B for you this year. Maybe not even Catcher.
64. Garrett Atkins - I like his chances for a rebound year. Plays in Colorado and makes the most of it. Will put up Morneau numbers, ranked 35 spots lower. I would grab him in the 5th, definitely the 6th, and put him at either 1B or 3B depending on the rest of your team. Slipping to 72 overall on average - a 6th round steal. You can even push your luck and try for early 7th round if that is where you are drafting.
66. Adam Dunn - Controversial guy because his AVG is low but his OPS is insane because of his walks and his power. A stats geek type of guy. Should hit .250 or above, but hit 40 HR and have 100 RBI. Again. Late 6th round for sure - plus, he plays OF if you need him to.
68. Chris Davis - You will draft him in the late 6th/early 7th round, and some dork in your league will write "good pick" to try to sound like he knows what he is doing. Davis is a solid pick and projects to 29 HR , but a .259 AVG. Listed at 3B also. If you can grab him in the 7th round, do it, but he probably won't be there because someone will reach for him in the 5th round.
77. Aubrey Huff - Really, he had 32 HR last year. 108 RBI. .304 average. Probably won't approach any of those this year. Overrated because of his huge year last year, best to just stay away and let someone else pray that he repeats.

95. Derrek Lee - I drafted him in my keeper league in the hopes that he would be my keeper, but he wasn't. Should hit .290, 20 HR, .800+ OPS. But I don't know about the 8th round for Lee. As a Cubs fan, I hope he hits .400 with 40 HR though.
101. Carlos Pena - 30 HR, 90 RBI projections, but a .240 average is killer. If you still need some power in the 9th or 10th rounds and don't have a strong 1B, you can grab this guy.
103. Joey Votto - Draft Votto as your 1B over Pena, Lee, or Huff. Should have 25+ HR, 85+ RBI, hit .290, slug .500 - especially in a keeper league, this guy is gold. If you reach the 7th round and everyone Davis and earlier is gone, just wait until the 9th or 10th round and grab Joey.
119. Carlos Delgado - Ranked really low for a guy who had such a good year last year (38.2 VORP!). If someone steals Votto from you, Delgado is your backup plan. 25 HR, 95 RBI, .275, .500+ SLG - almost the same as Joey. Going 11th round on average.

137. Connor Jackson - Married to a Chloe Harper, if I'm not mistaken. Don't overrate this guy based on his awesome name, and don't pick him out of desperation of Votto and Delgado are gone and you don't have a 1B. Should hit close to .300, but 16 projected HR from a 1B is killer. 141. 141. James Loney - See Connor Jackson - really, exact same numbers, don't do it.
142. Jorge Cantu - Quite a comeback year last year. Should have more HR than the last 2 guys, hit about .270 however, and is probably a better panic 3B pick than a panic 1B pick.
155. Carlos Guillen - Ah, Carlos. 15/10/.270 guy. Just, stay away, and root for him every time he comes to the plate.
172. Jose Lopez - Better 2B pick than a 1B pick. Actually, a better pick for someone else in your league, but whatever.
189. Nick Swisher - Again, if you need power and are set at average, take a flyer on Swish at this point of the draft. Will hit under .250, but could have 30 HR.
194. Billy Butler - Could have a breakout year. 15-20 HR, .290+ AVG - not a bad pickup at this point. Upside galore, 23 years old. Probably a better pick than Guillen or Lopez.

That is the top 25 1B according to yahoo. Others of note:
195. Paul Konerko - Worth a flyer maybe. 20+ HR, .250-.260 average.
220. Adam LaRoche - I like LaRoche - 25 HR with a .270 average, after Delgado, has the most HR potential other than Swisher, and with a better average.
226. Jason Giambi - 20 HR, .230 AVG. At your own risk.
265. Casey Kotchman - Good average, but bad power.
293. Mike Jacobs - Won't have 30 HR again. OBP is terrible for a 1B. Stay away.
900. Todd Helton - What year is it?

Third Base:
4. David Wright - Yeah, #4 sounds about right here. With ARod out, really he owns the top tier of 3B with Cabrera.
6. Cabrera - If you draft him in the first round, he will probably be your starting 3B. Focus on 1B if you do so.
14. Evan Longoria - Could be a 100/30/100 guy, but his average will keep him in the second round. I would only draft him late in the second round - that average will be tough to overcome, and he hasn't hit 30 yet. 80/25/90 is probably closer to what you'll get. Draft him 2nd round if it is a keeper league though.

38. Aramis Ramirez - If you have a late 3rd round pick, go for him. .290, 26 HR, 101 RBI projetions. You can wait to try to grab Atkins or Chipper if you don't want to pull the trigger on Aramis here.
39. A Rod - Really belongs in the top 3, but the injury and the fallout and everything. The best baseball player any of us will see in our lifetimes, PEDs or no. I would draft him in the second round. I actually have.
40. Youklis - Again, grab him as your 3B over 1B.
41. Russel Martin - If you draft him, never play him at 3B.

64. Garrett Atkins - Seriously, grab this guy if you can.
65. Chipper Jones - Chipper is injured a lot, but really will hit for average and for power. Solid pick for the 6th round, but maybe grab him in the 5th if you want.
68. Chris Davis - See above.
69. Ryan Zimmerman - Still young, having Dunn in the lineup will help. You will get .290, 20 HRs and some solid run/RBI production here. Good keeper too.
77. Aubrey Huff - Again, I say NO, but if you are desperate for 3B. Actually no, just stay away.
82. Chone Figgins - Tons of steals, will carry you in that category. Don't reach for Figgins - he will drag you down in AVG and HR, especially at 3B. If you draft him, start him at 2B.

108. Edwin Encarnacion - If you want a 3B sleeper, go here. 25 HR, .280 average, around .500 slugging. Getting drafted around 140 on average, which is the 12th round, meaning you can even wait a round if you want and grab him 10th/11th. I like this guy's ranking versus his production.

139. Adrian Beltre - If you missed out on the last guy, wait a couple of rounds and take a flyer on Beltre. PECOTA .270, 20+HR, 88 RBI. You could do worse.
142. Jorge Cantu - Even as a 3B, kind of a risk.
145. Mark DeRosa - Go ahead and put him on your Do Not Draft list.
146. Alex Gordon - Some good power, but a poor average. Still - 23HR is worth a .258 average at this point of the draft.
155. Carlos Guillen - Still, don't.

198. Mark Reynolds - Sleeper. 198 is way too low for a guy who will have 30+ HR. Yeah, he will hit .240 if he is lucky, and he struck out 204 times last year, but still. Do it.
202. Troy Glaus - Hit as many HR as Longoria last year (in about 100 more PAs). Still - 22 HR and a .257 average projection - compare that to Alex Gordon 56 spots higher. Another sleeper.
204. Hank Blalock - Should get 15 HR andhit .265. Don't.
225. Ian Stewart - Could hit 20 HR, .270, half his home games in Colorado - not a bad sleeper.
233. Pablo Sandoval - If you are lucky to grab this guy, start him at catcher. He will go in the 15th round though, and probably be drafted ahead of the last 9 guys on this list. And should be.
238. Melvin Mora - Conventional wisdom predicts another solid year from this guy, but PECOTA doesn't, and PECOTA is better than conventional wisdom. I would stay away.

Other 3B of note (are there any?):
257. Felipe Lopez - Could return to fantasy glory this year, and is listed at about every position. Decent source of SB.
271. Kevin Kouzmanoff - Wow - I just looked at his PECOTA - 24 HR, 92 RBI, .275 AVG - Do it. A new sleeper for my 3B sleeper list.

If somehow, all these guys are gone and you need a 3B, look at...oh hell, just hope you don't. Kouzy should be available at this point, grab that guy if you need. Seriously - I would take him over Felipe Lopez, Mora, Stewart, Blalock, Guillen, and DeRosa.


So I have decided to post about my upcoming fantasy baseball draft as a way of thinking out loud and doing research at the same time. I think maybe literally no one will care about what I am about to write, but whatever.

With Yahoo drafts, the drafting is different than if you get 12 guys in a room to randomly pick their teams. You have to follow yahoo's rankings, see where people are getting drafted, draft the guy you want in the round before he is normally going, and let others draft the overrated guys. It is simple, and I am just going to share my strategy which leads me to win a lot of the time, because I love fantasy baseball like a huge stats geek should.

All the rankings will be Yahoo's; PECOTA is a way of forecasting a player's stats for the upcoming season using a bunch of factors; VORP is Value Over Replacement Player; PA = plate appearances; OPS = OBP + SLG. Hopefully that covers it.

Top 12 - this allows 1 per team, which is important because not many teams will carry an extra catcher. (Catcher is not a position where there is a lot of depth, but there is a danger of drafting too high.)
41. Russel Martin - My fantasy magazine also has him ranked as the highest catcher. Of course, they have him 93 overall. He will be the only catcher to contribute in terms of stolen bases - 21 and 18 the past 2 years. Could hit .300. He is listed as 3B too, but you shouldn't play him there ever.
44. Brian McCann - I would have him ranked as the #1 catcher. Martin is cool because of the stolen bases, but a catcher can't keep that pace up over a career. And 10-15 more stolen bases are fun, but McCann will also give you .300, then 25 HR and 100 RBI as opposed to Martin's 12-15 HR and 70 RBI. The thing is, I would never take Martin #41 overall, but I can see McCann here at 44 - that is late 4th round. If he is available in the 5th round, I would pull the trigger (same with Martin).
52. Joe Mauer - Yikes. The injuries scare me. He helps out a ton in average, even though PECOTA has him at .307 with only a 43% chance of improving. His projected 88 runs and 68 RBI will be fewer if he misses some time here at the beginning of the year. He will hit fewer than 10 HR too. I mean, not a bad catcher to have on your team, but 52 is way too high. Let someone else draft him.
54. Geovany Soto - Rookie of the Year and a Cub! I would consider him top 3 with Martin and McCann. Projects to 25 HRs, 85 RBI, and a .288 average, but has a high Breakout rate and should at the minimum improve. I would also go 5th round on Soto.
63. Victor Martinez - Nope. Not at 63. He had 2 HR in 294 plate appearances last season. I now there were injury issues and all, but I just can't justify drafting him this high. Sure, he may have 25 HR and 114 RBIs like in 2007, but his PECOTA is just too low. Especially with pick #63 in the early 6th round - there are plenty of better and safer picks available here.
90. Ryan Doumit - Eh. 15 HR last year, high average though. Not an 8th round pick.
107. Matt Wieters - The guy I covet most in my keeper league draft. 23 years old, he hit .365 in AA last year. That is an EqAVG of .349 - PECOTA has him at 31(!!) HR, 102 RBI, and a .311 average. Plus, he is starting the year in AAA because of something about salary arbitration, so people may not want him and he could slip. Ranked 107 but average draft position is 114 - 10th round. I would draft him immediately in the 10th round if not in the 9th.
138. Chris Iannetta - Solid. At 138, he is being drafted in the 12th round. Should have 15-20 HR next season, hit .285 or more, and he plays half his games in Colorado. May not get the same number of plate appearances as other catchers, but is a great keeper.
147. Bengie Molina - Iffy. Had a career high in PAs last year, but is 35 this season. People will draft him on the 15-20 HRs he has been hitting the last few seasons, but he should decline now as a mid-30s catcher. PECOTA has him with 10 HR and a .276 average. I say stay away - pick him up if your starter gets injured.
150. Jorge Posada - Hmm...37 this year and coming off an injury, but will get playing time and it is a good Yankees lineup. I say stay away based on his low projections and his low Breakout/Improve rates.
164. Mike Napoli - 20 HR in 274 PAs last season, 27 years old - I like this guy as a sleeper catcher. Especially with a 14th round average draft pick. Red flag is his relatively low BAs coming into last season, combined with his apparent bad throwing arm which will cut into his PT. If you have filled out your lineup pretty well but still need a catcher in rounds 13/14, pull the trigger.
205. Dioner Navarro - God knows why he is ranked as the 12th catcher. He is the 14th catcher taken on average, and is probably drafted by people who autodraft and don't prerank. PECOTA: 381 PA, 7 HR, 43 RBI, 38 runs, .259 avg.

Those are the top 12 - probably all are on teams if you are in a league. Here are the other notables:
207. AJ Pierzynski - Don't.
233. Pablo Sandoval - Yes. 22 years old, you will get him at catcher this year only because of the 11 games he played at that position last year. SF's starting 3B, projects to 15 HR, 74 RBI, .289 avg, 565 PAs. If you miss one out on Napoli, he is the next best available. A yahoo anomaly because of the catcher listing, so not a great keeper though. But whatever. But, the rest of the world has this secret too - he is drafted on average in the 15th round at 184.
239. Ramon Hernandez - Um, if you want. Maybe if your starter gets injured, but probably not even then.
240. Kelly Shoppach - Yes yes yes. I would rather have him over Victor Martinez. 21 HR last year in 403 PA. If you miss out on Sandoval, come here next.
246. Jeff Clement - Solid PECOTA projections of 16 HR in 426 PAs. If all else fails.
258. Jarrod Saltalamacchia - I drafted this guy to be my keeper catcher last season, but he didn't have the breakout season I wanted. I say stay away until he proves himself.
264. Yadier Molina - Just don't.
850. Pudge - Looked good in the WBC, but I just wouldn't. Remember, he was a Tiger last season - I saw firsthand. Trust me.
985. Jason Varitek - he is the 12th catcher drafted on average! WTF? Should hit .230 with 5 HR this season. There are better options.

So, in summation, McCann 4th-5th round, Martin 5th round if available, Soto 5th round, Wieters 9th-10th round, Iannetta 11th-12th round, Napoli 13th-14th round, Sandoval 14th-15th round,
Shoppach if all else has failed, in the 18th-19th round. If you miss them all...grab Jeff Clement Chris Snyder, Brandon Inge, or heaven forbid Pudge.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

American Idol Top 11

First off, Happy St. Patrick's Day, and Welcome Jackson!

*Again, me in black, Steph in Blue*

Tonight is important because the top 10 make the tour, but it is unimportant because it is country music night, which is terrible. I see a lot of fast forwarding in our future.

The skeleton of Randy Travis will be advising the contestants tonight. Randy Travis is a doll. His teeth! I could just eat him up with a spoon. Carrie wants him to be her grandfather.

Roughrider: Randy Travis' advice - "Don't lose the words in the lick" - that's what she said. I hate that song on Idol. It's just an exercise in saying a bunch of words. It's like The End of the World As We Know It, etc. I didn't care for that. Yeah, this song combined the worst elements of country and rap. It is called, "Ain't goin' down 'til the sun comes up," which I believe is the country remake of Elton John's "Oh let your son go down on me." (Still my joke.) Simon says, "Can't understand a word. Am I right Steve and Eydie?"

Allison: Sings a song by Linda Lovelace? Will it sound all gargly? She's so awesome. I like how the corners of her smile make her look a little like the Joker. Oh Kara- the cliche is "sing the phone book," not "alphabet." Singing the alphabet isn't a crazy notion- I do it daily! Carrie: "sings the alphabet - I hate that! Oh wait, that's the phone book." Simon: "Precocious". Randy: "Dope"

Cutie McYoungLife: Is this show over yet? I haven't recognized a song yet, and this bored me to tears. More Garth. Oh, this song is a cover, right? It was on the Hope Floats soundtrack. So embarrassing that I know that, but not any more embarrassing than the fact that I'm watching AI. OK, time to fast forward- I'm tired! Yes, this is the third straight we have fast forwarded. I'll just agree with whatever Simon says. . . Oh, he liked it? OK then. I guess it was good. Not only did the judges like it, but Randy said "tender moment from my dog Kris," which made me wish that Kris' name was Rover or something. Oh, and Paula has that weird cleavage separation thing working tonight. Paula looks good tonight. You just never know what she's going to bring to the table fashion-wise.

Lil: Sings that song about Bill Pullman. Randy Travis again says something to her about having more room for the licks you do - they are reaching Golf Channel amount of double entendres tonight. Looks like she's going to prom again. She's black and doesn't know country? What are the odds? Independence Day is awesome- she might be able to sell this. I don't want her to sing straight country, though. That seems counter-productive. She should have done I Will Always Love You! This started okay, then ended great. You just nailed that shit, Lil Rounds. Man, she can sing. But I can't look at this objectively in the least. I've got the Tigers winning my bracket and Lil winning AI. There is no limit to the Memphis pride right now. OK, I think Lil is short for Lillian and not Little. Whatever, Simon! Although I secretly agree with his assessment. (Shhhh! Don't tell Coach Cal.) Carrie and I had the same talk about objectivity with the Memphis girls, but it happened on the skinny chick, not Lil. (Which I think is short for Lilly. Although I am intrigued by naming our daughter Little and calling her Lil for short - would you need an apostrophe?)

Trainwreck: Takes a song about Johnny Cash's succumbing to his own desires, and subtly makes it about butt sex. OK, I can't believe this guy is a front-runner. Randy Travis, I agree with you- I don't need this. He does have a nice blouse/necklace thing going on. I am worried that the judges are going to fall all over themselves to praise this, since he is doing what they just told Lil she should have done. Kara said it was strange, but she liked it, which is not only what she said, but also jives with what I think Adam is making the song about. Simon- "WTH was that?" Ha! Love you, Simon! Chip loves when Simon uses the word indulgent. Score! But really- that was just horrible. Horrible! Indulgent is an understatement. Chip and Simon and me and Carrie and everyone else is right about that. (BTW - we paused and had a 20 minute discussion about why he is the front runner, and the following words were used: Twilight, androgyny, Pete Wentz, gay, bisexual, 14 year-old girls, Boy George, burning man, ecstasy, Hot Topic, the Jonas Brothers, and the phrase, "yeah I just don't get it either.")

Blindy McWonderCharlesHealy: Seriously, our 4th fast forward of the night. I love that Randy Travis is such an old-school guy- he's like, You can't sing a girl song! Hee! Hey Randy- what doesn't sound quite right is that Scott isn't a good singer. OK, I just don't like his singing, so I'm going to fast forward here. Ugh- Simon and Paula are arguing. I don't have time for this. Scott says that he keeps "losing hat picks" and doesn't get to sing his original song choices - maybe he should have someone supervise those in the future...

Memphis 2: We most certainly do NOT all like country down here in the south! No kidding - we both were like, speak for yourself, woman! I do love this song, though- it's my pick each year for country week! That is exactly what I told Carrie - I was like, I get Cold Cold Heart, Steph gets Jolene. I guess I do like some country. Just not the Toby Keith kind. Here's my other Tiger in the Final Four. Make it happen girl! OK, I feel like she is emotionally connected to the song, the first person I can say that about tonight. She strangely looks a little like Dolly to me tonight. THANK YOU - I mentioned it to Carrie, then more and more as the song went on, it became uncanny. Am I projecting, or has that always been the case? Never noticed before, but it was very odd and I am so happy you agree with us. I liked her, of course. What can I say. When they showed her family, it was strangely a cross section of every white person I see when I come into Memphis.

Gokey: Oh no- not this song. Make it stop. I like Carrie Underwear okay, as a person, but she's the kind of country I don't like to listen to. I mean really, there are okay country songs. Why sing this one? I think it is because it is about a woman who almost dies. I hate to say that, but the association was there for me, so I can imagine it stirs up sympathy again among voters, even if it is subliminally. Oh, I see- so that he can belt out the chorus and blow the roof off this mother. That too. If I didn't hate this song so much, I'd be impressed. But I'm not. Yeah, it is like, the woman in the song loses control of the car with her kids in it, and stops trying to save their lives and leaves it all in Jesus' hands? If your house is on fire, do you try to get the kids out, or do you toss your hands in the air and just leave it up to Jesus? It is so irresponsible. (You see where there are just one set of skid marks? It was then that I was driving for you.) I hate country music. I agree with Kara, and I'm not just saying that because she's hot- dude - the first half of that song sucked. Paula wants to be the next Mrs. Gokey. Simon and Kara really hate each other, don't they? Oh yeah, Carrie thought he was nasal-y.

Anoop: Randy Travis - "hard to get Willie out of your mind." I believe that was a direct quote from She. They are killing me for TWSSs this week, seriously. Anoop - please don't suck again this week. I need you to stick around to balance out the douchiness of the other male contestants. He is actually really good this time! I like this. I like Anoop. It is like, he stopped coasting and actually tried! As an aside, I'm really glad they're getting country night out of the way early this year. But then again, we have to hear 11 country songs instead of like, fewer than 11 country songs. Make next week "Disco" and we can get the uncomfortable crap out of the way. You are thinking of SYTYCD here - I don't mind disco if they choose the right songs. I mean, except for what Lambert is gonna do. I hate when country or disco knock out a real contender towards the end of the season- it's just not fair. Simon loves him too! Yay!

Teh Hawtnass - I love hearing Randy T. try to be diplomatic. Whatever - he said that Megan "has been done every way possible," agreeing with my assessment from last week. Oh, wait, he was talking about the song. Wow- she is freaking gorgeous. Really, it is starting to get ridiculous. Good job putting the girls front and center- it almost distracts me from the debacle of what's coming out of her mouth. My thoughts exactly - oh, did you say coming "out of" her mouth? But still - remember in The 40 Year Old Virgin when he says that breasts feel like a big bag of sand? That is what they look like this week! Chip is speechless. And wow- she's got a nipple ring! Oh yeah - I don't know about Chip, but my peenie just went "huh?" I agree with Simon- she looks flawlessly gorgeous and not quirky anymore. Chip said something to that effect earlier, actually. Like we expect her to sound better because she looks so good. It's weird. I will give the vocals a pass because of two reasons - one, she sounded good when working with Randy Travis, and two, the flu thing, for which I am guessing about half the coughs were caused by (the other half was for sympathy).

WMU G - This is fine. Carrie really likes him - again, I feel some sort of kinship based on regionalism, even if I have only been to Kalamazoo once, and that was just the interstate. I just hate modern country music that's not by the Dixie Chicks, especially the ballads, so I can't really comment on this. I like Matt. Kara says, "there's nothing small about you", which is again exactly what she said. Paula says that she likes his authentict...authenct...she thinks he is authentic. Simon seems to like him, but then compares him to Michael Bubbly, which is about as low of an insult as you can give, unless you compare him to a certain popera-star-who-shall-not-be-named. (Not even in a comment on this post!!!)

My top five are Allison, Memphis 1&2, Anoop and Matt. I don't care about the rest of them. Really I'm just glad country night is over.
I am starting to get disappointed in this season. Then again, I think that every year after country week. I like the Memphians and Chateau Giraud, and especially Teh Hawtness, but I just know that I have like 6 to 10 more weeks of Adam's douche-terity, VisionQuest sticking around longer than he should, Gokily Dokily following an Elliot Yamin tragectory, and Kris Allen's Mormonstrosity. I say the Roughrider goes home this week, but whatever.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

American Idol Top 13

So AI is back - here are my thoughts and Steph's thoughts - hers are in blue.

Seacrest walks on stage and says, "Last week the judges upped the ante - now up yours!" Kara, looks really hot. Italian chick top 5 for sure. 2 are going home this week, which is nice because I was worried that a top 13 would push SYTYCD back a week. Loved the judges intros! I'm such a dork. I just can't believe Simon actually dresses like that. I really do love him.

I've spent the day trying to figure out which MJ song I'd sing. Probably Working Day and Night! Just kidding. Say Say Say, obviously. (Or that duet with Janet from a few years ago, with the cool video? Or maybe Don't Let Your Son Go Down On Me? That's my joke! This is tough.) Man- I've already had a whole glass of wine and no one has sung yet! I would totally sing I Want You Back by the Jackson 5, if anyone cares.

Lil Rounds: Let's head down to Memphis! Hell yes! And drive across that bridge into Arkansas that no one actually ever drives over except maybe once every few years to a wedding in Hot Springs. Growing up in Memphis IS great! It is second only to growing up anywhere else in the world. Her house was destroyed in this tornado. That hotel is right by the Hickory Ridge Mall. Lil- your body is KICKIN! She's got an itty bitty waist and round thing in my face- Chip is sprung. Sweet Jesus her ass. Rounds, yes. Lil, no. Plus, yikes on the outfit! Glad to see she didn't need to use anything from wardrobe, unless wardrobe exists at a PTA conference in 1987. The way you make me feel is like voting, Lil Rounds! She said "baaayby" like she's from Memphis. She just sounds like home to me. Nice job, Lil. Must be so hard to open this show on the big stage, but she looks and sounds like she's done this forever. Chip just did the Vince Carter "it's over." Wooohooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yeah, seriously - this competition is hers to lose. I might have just booed Simon for the first time. Yeah, Simon - how is that a lazy song choice? What, did you want Thriller or something? She sang the hell out of that. But he did say, "give me 5 minutes, I'd sort her out." Which is much creepier when Clive Davis says it.

Blindy McGarfunkel: I would be more impressed if he was deaf, right? If this were a painting contest, I'd vote for him. They show his parents, who are like, "sucks that he is blind". His sister is blind too. At least Erin Brokovich got them that settlement money. OMG- the dancing with the also-blind sister almost melted my cold, cold Memphis heart! But not quite. Hey - that gets them triple the money begging in India! Slumdog FTW! OK, I've heard worse singing (me, earlier, singing Livin on a Prayer on Rock Band) but still- this can not be my next American Idol. Ooof. And the crowd goes wild! Whatever. Kara: "I'm so glad we get to see you. . . at the piano." Nice. Kara also compliments his "vision" - make that, his "message", sorry. Whatever, Paula- if I had a nickel for every time I've seen a man's instrument at his finger tips. . . Paula - tonight for her is what Hugh Laurie would call a "3 Vicodin scene" when shooting House. Seriously, her face is swollen. Elvis is embarassed by her tonight. Simon: "It's fine being artistic, just not on this show." FTW! Simon actually called a spade a spade and is right, that was kinda suck. We hit the fast forward for the first time on that performance.

Robert Downey Widower: While they are showing his family - Me: "He has like 400 people in his family. Used to be 401." Carrie: "Thanks, now I am going to die. Haven't I taught you about karma?" He was great as the Comedian in Watchmen. Widower != Jeffrey Dean Morgan. PYT! Oh, this is so fun. Dude, he BUSTED OUT with PYT! That was awesome. I hope the sympathy voters hitch their ride to this star and not the previous one. Go Paula- get down! Hard not to- really, this song rocks. The other guys are totally jealous right now. Chip: "He's been in front of a few worship services." Just like Kevin Paige! Also, ahem, this performance was better than just Gokey! Like Okay!? Anyone? Blog five!!!

You should know, I am just not going to be listening to all four judges every time. I'll listen to Simon, possibly Paula just to laugh, but I can't do it. I mean, that's 52 judges comments TONIGHT. Not gonna happen. Whatever - Simon just said that he is like Michael McDonald - a white man with soul. That led to a bunch of Michael McDonald impressions all over the country.

Roughneck: He was an oil rigger? A roughneck? You don't say! Eh. He's pleasant. Simon, again, with the money quote! "I just wish we knew what you did for a living." Yeah, Simon stole my joke. At this point, I think Paula's outfit is a knockoff of something Bjork wore at the Ice Capades. Brenda Warner is on line 2, calling to see where she bought that.

Jasmine: Cute black girl with Memphis connections. She is cute, but she has 270 degrees of vision - her eyes are so far apart. She has no blind spots while driving. When she gets pink eye, it doesn't spread to the other eye. "Let's go down South now." Tunica! Seriously- her family is GORGEOUS. That is the thing we remember the most about her, even from her very first audition. Chip would consider leaving me for that one sister, I think. Jasmine sings I'll Be There, a song that came out 70 years before she was born. Chip thinks this song is too big for her, before she even starts. Predicts that she'll go the Mariah route. Chip, with the shocking knowledge of pop music! Carrie had to tell me that Mariah did a version of this. This is a little pitchy for me. But really, she's such a doll! Oooh, Randy with the Mariah name drop. Well played, sir. Carrie doesn't like her shoes. Meow!

Kris Allen: Didn't someone by that name date Clooney? OK, he's cute, the guitar is cute, he sounds fine. He will get the J-Rich vote. Jason Richardson? Are Suns fans big AI watchers? Maybe shouldn't have shown us his wife, though. Yeah - he seems to be married to a chick in a scarf. They totally are active in Young Life. Chip: "Dude- he's kind of relevant! Could be douching it up like Jason Mraz!" Ouch - I am not a fan, but a comparison to Jason Mraz is kind of harsh. Yep. He sings a song that can apparently only be sung out of the right side of his mouth. Kara: "A whole other side of you." Yes! Not a whole nother! We sadly made this exact same comment, 700 miles away from you two. Simon- agrees with me about the wife! Randy- agrees with Chip about Mraz, heir to the Massingill fortune! Dude- we should be judges on this show! We're a great team. Kara notes that he helped the other contestants - odds are, it was by "saving" them.

Alone- It's just like, it's just like, a (Mexican) mini-mall!
I said that it was the Mega Lo Mart. What's this song now? Um, is it Give It To Me, or Given To Me? I want to say the first, because it is funnier. I like her, I really do. Carrie likes her "rockin' attitude". Don't know this song at all, though. She should be doing Dirty Diana instead. But really, I like her. Carrie says that she should stop talking - then Paula totally motions for her to zip her lip. Nice.

Anoop! Anoop - totally tried out for this show as a joke, and now he can't get out of it. Chip: "Anoop shall COME again." That turns me on a little. Plus, if I met him, I would be like, Freida Pinto - I would wreck that chick. OK, I love Anoop. I'm letting the whole "Tarheel" thing slide. He's working the crowd, rocking the Members Only jacket- I love him. I wish I had been in the fraternity with him - oh, wait, UNC - maybe not so much. OK, I wish he was my drinking buddy when I was in my early 20s. Simon rocked Paula's world by making her go first. Oooh, negative from Paula! Wow. Simon is right about how it wasn't aggressive enough, but I still love Anoop. The judges totally don't get the joke. Ryan with his mom and nana is about the cutest thing I've ever seen.

Jorge- if I'm Hillary, I'm going with this and not Jackson. Just to be clear. It is a first name. JK - we get to meet Jackson sometime between now and the 23rd! Oh, I love when English is subtitled. Yes - it is a way of "othering", like when they subtitled on the Children of Appalachia 20/20. We can understand them! It is English! This is nice, the accent adds a little something to the song. Carrie - "so many eyebrows in tonight's episode". His voice is fine, but I am just not a fan. We actually fast forwarded. Simon is on fire! Jorge: "I'm not gonna sing Bad by Michael Jackson." Simon: "You kind of did." You know, my least favorite part of AI is when you can actually see someone's heart break, like Jorge's did when Simon said that. Jorge already seems on the verge of tears at all times.

Tattoo Sleeve- Okay, she is soooooo cute. And Shannon's right- I'm sure anything goes with her, with that tattoo and all. She is ridiculously hot. Seriously - she is already divorced, has a kid, and has tattoo sleeve. A note of advice for the next guy who dates her - when you have been together with her for a while, and you two are drinking, and you start talking about sexual fantasies, and she coyly asks you what your sexual fantasy is - dude, you probably can shoot for the moon here. This is the moment you have waited for your whole life. Nothing, I mean nothing, is off the table. You can probably go a little less Princess Leia in the gold bikini and a little more 2 Girls 1 Cup.

Her brother is her best friend! Me too!
Aw! But her brother is apparently a 21 year old Phillip Seymour Hoffman. Utah, huh. I can't believe Utah hasn't kicked her out yet. BTW - I googled her, and there is apparently a porn star named Megan Joy. Another +1 in the WIN column. Dude- Mom. MILF. Her mom is a total MILF. Carrie said that before I could say it. What a hot family- too bad brother got fat. I think she's crying about her son because she feels guilty about how much fun it is to be away from him. Oh, just kidding Connor! Chip and I do her little dance all the time, BTW. I think it freaked out the people in the gas station the other night. OK, I like this. It's fun, she's cute, she sounds good, different, interesting. She's relevant for sure. But yeah, she is awesomely hot. Did she just caw at the end of that? WTF? There is a part of the song when she sings "every little swallow", and it totally worked in an NLP kind of way for me. Anyway, Chip can't get over how hot she is, and I can appreciate that. He thinks she should not worry about singing and just model- and he even liked her singing okay! We actually thought it was pretty cheesy! But yeah, I can't get over teh hawtnass. If something does happen to Carrie now since I made that unfortunate Gokey joke earlier, I have my backup ready to go.

*PS - really, if you are an older reader of this blog and are someone that I know or am related to, if you didn't get a joke from those last 2 paragraphs, just let it go. Seriously.

Gay- Hey - he climbed Mt. Everest! Wait, that was the second guy. OK, take those gross earring things out now before your ears are stretched beyond all recognition. Hate that shit. Unless it is in Incubus! OK, he's okay, but I don't love him as much as everyone else seems to. I think he forgot the words on one part. But wow, this is terrible. Over the top and terrible - Carrie is covering her face. What a horrible song choice too. I think he'll rock on 80's metal night, though. (Seriously though- when are they going to have one? That would rule! And be so challenging for the singers!) I have to say, I appreciate Paula's whole thing about letting each performer "take it all in." This really is his moment, and each of their moment- first time on the big stage, first time being cheered like this by a big crowd, etc. Wait, the judges think he's that good? I don't know about all that. The judges really liked that? Really? That was one of the 10 worst performance ever possibly. I don't get it.

Matt G: Kalamazoo in the house! They have a ping pong table in the garage - odds are, they have a pool table in the basement also, along with a bar they built with a keg fridge (with Bell's in it) and a dart board nearby. At least one person in his family owns a Red Wings starter jacket, and most of the people he went to high school with ended up at Western because either their applications were rejected by State, or they just wanted to save money by living at home. Matt has a much older brother who has a mullet and plays defenseman in an over-40 hockey league. Wait, is his mom black? I didn't know. Justin Timberlake is so jealous right now. I think she is just Michigan. But I think maybe that counts against him- it worked better when he was the funky white guy. (But come on, we've seen Lynn's hair- JT has a brotha somewhere on his mom's side.) Anyway, I like him- I hope he doesn't suck. He doesn't! He sings Human Nature - swish! Maybe that is the MJ song I would have chosen. I loved it, because that song makes me happy anyway. Good- I liked that. Chip did too. Chip thinks he lost a little control at the end, but overall was awesome. He likes him too. If he goes home early, then Carrie and I will lobby Frank and Hillary to stop by his piano bar on the way out to South Haven the next time we all go. Ah, Western Michigan. The home of Dutch settlers and a lot of Republicans.

Memphis 2: Memphis opens and closes the show! Hell yes again! I could tell by the external shot that her house is in Cordova. Dirty Diana! Suck it, Alone! Oh yes, she is rocking this. Damn she is skinny! And a little hot too. Seriously- the Memphis girls rule. I don't even think I'm biased. (BTW- man there are a lot of words in this song!) She totally went for it and nailed it. We liked her performance. Chloe has the same shirt her daughter is wearing- Old Navy in the house! Oh, shut up Simon. Oh crap- why did they screw her like that on the numbers? It isn't fair that she gets cut off since they are short on time. Also, when she is over the top, it is a bad thing, but when Lambert does it it is a good thing? Even though she sang well and Lambert was the gawd awful?

Chip: I have to say, I thought this season was going to be weak, be Lil and everyone else, but this show was jumpin off tonight. Was much better than I thought. It is still Lil and everyone else, but the gap wasn't as large we all thought. That's what she said.

OK, at this point in the season, it's hard to separate who was best from who I'm pulling for. Yeah, at this point, I don't care really. I just don't want Lil or hotness to go home yet. So I think the best two girls were Lil and Alone, but I voted for Alexis too. Plus I like Tattoo Sleeve. Guys, I think Robert Downey Wdr. was actually great. Silky Sullivan's was good too. Anoop is my man, so I like him even though he wasn't one of the best. I just didn't like Gay as much as everyone else- sorry about that. I think at this point, it's more about who I'd like to see go. Blind, Roughneck, Jorge, borderline Miss'ippi and Mormon. Any of those 5 would be fine by me.

Wooohooooo! I love American Idol! And I love recapping!