Players of the Night
Ian Kinsler, Texas Rangers
vs. Baltimore Orioles
6-6, HR, 4 RBI, 5 R, SB, 2 2B, 3B
Hitting for the cycle is one of the most impressive feats in all of sports. And for guys like us, it's a fantasy feast that only comes along every once in a great while.
There's no doubt about it, Kinsler can straight rake for a second baseman. He's coming off his best year as a pro and it looks like his 2009 season could be even better. In the first week of any season, there are going to be plenty of proven and no-name players who fill up stat sheets like crazy.
Most of the time I'd suggest you sell high and get something while you can for players like Yankees outfielder Nick Swisher. But Kinsler is in a world of his own and I would have to be presented with a Loch Ness Monster-sized trade offer to part with him.
Anthony Morrow, Golden State Warriors
vs. Phoenix Suns
33 points, 12 boards, 3 dimes, 3-for-5 from long distance
Well my fantasy friends, that'll do it for the regular season of fantasy basketball. It's been a good run and we've had one hell of a season to enjoy from a fantasy perspective. Next year is going to be very interesting with so much young, promising talent around the league that will make draft day that much more difficult.
With that in mind, I give you Anthony Morrow of the Golden State Warriors. Despite the negative connotations about a player that produces gaudy stats in a Don Nelson led offense, in fantasy we embrace the Nellie offense.
Morrow has thrived in the system this season, showing flashes of impressive offensive abilities every month. Last night against the Suns, in March against the Mavs (29 points), in November against the Blazers (25 points) and Clippers (37 points, 11 boards), Morrow showed what he is capable of.
Consider him a sleeper for the 2009 NBA fantasy draft.
More after the jump...
Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers
vs. San Francisco Giants
7 IP, 1 H, ER, 13 K
Mike Cameron, Milwaukee Brewers
vs. Cincinnati Reds
3-3, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 3 R, BB, 2B
Torii Hunter, Angels
vs. Seattle Mariners
3-4, HR, 2 RBI, 2 R, SB, 2B
Caron Butler, Washington Wizards
vs. Boston Celtics
39 points, 4 dimes, 7 boards, 2 steals
Shawn Marion, Toronto Raptors
vs. Chicago Bulls
34 points, 11 boards, 3 dimes
Danny Granger, Indiana Pacers
vs. Milwaukee Bucks
35 points, 9 boards, 4 dimes
Bust of the Night
Mark Teixeira, New York Yankees
vs. Tampa Bay Rays
0-4, 3 K, 0 H, 0 BB, 3 LOB
Trust me, we're not trying to pick on the Yankees here at the Fantasy Factor.
They just keep giving us a reason to with performances like this from guys that were one of the first selected at their position. And Teixeira hasn't exactly made his presence felt in that once vaulted Yankees lineup.
But again, it's only the first week of the season and patience is a virtue rewarded most in fantasy baseball. Trying to predict a player's performance over an entire season after only one week is absurd and any writer out there who claims to be able to do so is just plain ignorant.
He's a great buy low candidate if his owner in your league is already panicking. Make him a halfway decent offer and who knows, you might just land a whale for two cents on the dollar.
At this point in the NBA season, the premier players in the game who we expect so much from are getting some much needed rest in anticipation of the playoffs.