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Thread: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

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    Tired of talk. Win! Joseph's Avatar
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    Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    http://sports.yahoo.com/fantasy/mlb/...be-noise041008

    It's a contraption composed of mahogany, bronze and brushed nickel. It's fueled by Homer Bailey scouting reports, memorable Mark Prior performances, Todd Van Poppel magazine covers, Brien Taylor Topps Stadium Club rookie cards and Hideki Irabu cellulite. And its functions are to manufacture uninhibited excitement and foster unrealistic expectations.

    The name of this influential instrument: the hype machine.

    In less than two months, this seducing apparatus has transformed owner perceptions of Cincinnati's favorite son, Johnny Cueto, from intriguing top prospect to future Cooperstown inductee. From Sportscenter highlight reels to Baseball Weekly covers to our own hyperbolic endorsements, the buzz surrounding the Baby Bull is omnipresent.

    Why wouldn't it be?

    In two starts, Cueto, who has officially surpassed the once TE-eligible Marques Colston as the most controversial commodity in Yahoo! Sports fantasy history, has dominated opponents. Against rather potent lineups, Arizona and Milwaukee, he yielded just two earned runs on six hits and, most impressively, walked none in 13.1 dynamite innings. More intoxicating, his spectacular arsenal – mid-90s fastball, hard-biting slider and plus change – has completely embarrassed hitters to the tune of 12.15 strikeouts per nine.

    But, despite his two infatuating performances, the current king of the Queen City is a strong sell high candidate.

    Why?

    The historical baseball record is loaded with similar stories of ultra-hyped prospects that thrived initially, but eventually collapsed under the weight of inflated expectations. Some prime examples:


    Former 1989 No. 1 overall pick Ben McDonald tossed a complete game shutout in his first major league start on July 21, 1990. Although he finished that season with a sparkling 2.43 ERA, 1.04 WHIP and 65 Ks in 118.2 IP, his career ERA in nine seasons was 3.91.

    In his highly anticipated MLB debut in 2007, Daisuke Matsuzaka baffled the Kansas City Royals, allowing one earned run while striking out 10 in 7.0 IP. Dice-K was a stellar mid-rotation starter last season in 12-team leagues because of his 15 wins and 201 Ks, but many were disappointed by his end-season 4.40 ERA and 1.32 WHIP.

    Brandon Funston's fantasy fetish, Tim Lincecum, whiffed 10 Houston Astros in his third career start on May 17, 2007. The diminutive flamethrower was untouchable at times, but his sometimes erratic control (4.00 BB/9 in '07) proved costly in several outings. In five of his 24 starts he surrendered five or more earned runs, finishing with a respectable, yet unspectacular, 4.00 ERA.
    Yes, the Dominican dandy's early season ascendancy has been nothing short of magnificent, but the anticipation of his Y! availability coupled with the media's outlandish comparisons of Cueto to Bob Gibson, Juan Marichal and Pedro Martinez, have misleadingly skyrocketed his value to tier one/two levels.

    Sure, he's the ideal combination of Greg Maddux polish and old Pedro power. And, yes, the sweat from his brow could rid the world of disease. But there are numerous negatives working against him. For starters, he's still very green. The 22-year-old has pitched only 35.1 innings above Double-A. Second, the Great American Bandbox is very unfriendly for pitchers. If his flyball percentage remains above 45.0 – it's currently 50.0 – longballs could become problematic. Third, this is the first time many big leaguers have seen his stuff. As Dice-K proved last year, unseasoned pitchers are not nearly as effective the second time around. Finally, notorious arm destroyer Dusty Baker is his manager. Under Baker's guidance, it's certainly possible Cueto's arm could be amputated by midseason. Although, to be fair, Dusty has yet to allow his cherished hurler to surpass 100 pitches in a start.

    Without question, Cueto will be a terrific No.3 in 12-team mixed leagues. But it's absurd to think that come September he'll be more valuable than Adrian Gonzalez, Ryan Zimmerman or Billy Butler – all of whom he was recently dealt straight up for in solo Y! Plus league trades.

    Seriously, it's time to go "Office Space" on the Cueto hype machine.

    Expect the much ballyhooed youngster to finish with a line around, 4.00 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 175 Ks and 11 wins.

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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    So this guy's saying that Cueto is more likely to be an average-to-above-average #3 this year, as a 22-year-old-rookie, than the best parts of Maddux and Pedro rolled up into one? Um, okay. I'll take five, please.

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    Raaaaaaaandy guttle11's Avatar
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    Quote Originally Posted by Joseph View Post
    Expect the much ballyhooed youngster to finish with a line around, 4.00 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 175 Ks and 11 wins.
    Sounds great to me.
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    Making sense of it all Matt700wlw's Avatar
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    Quote Originally Posted by guttle11 View Post
    Sounds great to me.
    Yeah, he makes it seem like a bad thing.

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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    Quote Originally Posted by backbencher View Post
    So this guy's saying that Cueto is more likely to be an average-to-above-average #3 this year, as a 22-year-old-rookie, than the best parts of Maddux and Pedro rolled up into one? Um, okay. I'll take five, please.
    The guy is playing in hyperbole. I don't think anyone has seriously believed that Johnny Cueto is fast on the path to the Hall of Fame. Of course, one never knows a HOF career until much time has past and history is replete with flashes in the pan.

    That said, I'm liking what I've seen thus far and I'm hoping we have a decent pitcher for the long term. Not many end of Hall of Famers and there are quite a lot of very good pitchers who didn't have HOF careers. We haven't even sniffed anything good for so long out of our farm system. I'll take five along with you.
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    Quote Originally Posted by Joseph View Post
    http://sports.yahoo.com/fantasy/mlb/...be-noise041008


    Expect the much ballyhooed youngster to finish with a line around, 4.00 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 175 Ks and 11 wins.
    As a rookie, that would be excellent.

    Sort of a Aaron Harang lite.

    It would, in 2007, put him 20th in ERA and 10th in K's. (Note 178 K's would put him 7th).

    It would be similiar to what Snell and Zambrano did last year.

    Yet, this writer is saying, essentially, that Cueto is over rated and only exepct him to be as good as the Snell's and the Zambrano's were in 2007.

    It would appear that even this writer is swallowing the hype as well.

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    Member medford's Avatar
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    I for one wouldn't be too dissapointed w/ that ending line for JC. Sure he's more than likely going to come back down to earth at some point, but what this writer fails to mention is that every once in a while, a Dwight Gooden, Roger Clemons, Pedro Martinez type pitcher is brought before us with exceptional talent capable of shinning for several seasons dominating the league.

    Maybe, just maybe Cueto is that guy; lets look at his faults they auther gives us.
    1) He's green. Yes, but does that mean he's going to fail or he'll continue to improve as hes shown the willingness to soak in the wisdom of guys like Mario Soto.

    2) He plays in Great American. OK a lot of homeruns have been hit there. Personally I think that's a crutch too many writers use for the number of homeruns given up there in a moment of laziness. How many great pitchers has Cincy had on the bump during its tenure? How many swing for the fences prolific home run hitter have the Reds had during the same span? Few to the first, many to the second. I don't see GAPB significantly better/worse than many other parks around the NL, Houston, Milwaukee, St Louis, Pittsburgh, Chicago, the balls all fly out of those places. Sure its not Petco or SafeCo, but how many parks are?

    3) he's giving up 50% flyballs. But if he strikes 'em out at 12.15/9 that 50% isn't too many any more. besides, Harangatang has shown that you can give up a home run or 2 and remain successful in this ball park.

    meanwhile, I'm living the dream. JC for Cy Young!
    Last edited by medford; 04-10-2008 at 05:03 PM.

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    Box of Frogs edabbs44's Avatar
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    This is a fantasy league article...it is written for people who might not follow the game as closely as some do.

    I saw a fantasy baseball chat the other day where people were asking the "expert" such questions as "Should I drop Sabathia for Cueto?" That is a lot of the intended audience, I would imagine.

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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    I didn't think Cueto looked nearly as good against the Brewers as the Diamondbacks.

    What kept him from getting smacked was unfamiliarity and that is the key for now. Johnny has little room for error but he does throw very clean games.

    If he can do the 6I QS thing consistantly enough, nobody will care if he is overhyped. I would say the same for Bailey down the road.

    We have Harang,Arroyo and Volquez to do the inning eating dirty work.

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    You're soaking in it! MartyFan's Avatar
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    Quote Originally Posted by backbencher View Post
    So this guy's saying that Cueto is more likely to be an average-to-above-average #3 this year, as a 22-year-old-rookie, than the best parts of Maddux and Pedro rolled up into one? Um, okay. I'll take five, please.
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    Making sense of it all Matt700wlw's Avatar
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    Quote Originally Posted by Aronchis View Post
    I didn't think Cueto looked nearly as good against the Brewers as the Diamondbacks.

    What kept him from getting smacked was unfamiliarity and that is the key for now.
    Gotcha. Had nothing to do with his stuff. Not at all.
    Last edited by Matt700wlw; 04-10-2008 at 05:10 PM.

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    CELEBRATION TIME RBA's Avatar
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    wrong forum for fantasy league.

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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    Quote Originally Posted by Aronchis View Post
    I didn't think Cueto looked nearly as good against the Brewers as the Diamondbacks.

    What kept him from getting smacked was unfamiliarity and that is the key for now. Johnny has little room for error but he does throw very clean games.
    I assume you are being sarcastic.

    You have to be.

    8 K's and no walks is more than unfamiliarity.

  15. #14
    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    Quote Originally Posted by edabbs44 View Post
    This is a fantasy league article...it is written for people who might not follow the game as closely as some do.

    I saw a fantasy baseball chat the other day where people were asking the "expert" such questions as "Should I drop Sabathia for Cueto?" That is a lot of the intended audience, I would imagine.
    I like what I see from Cueto so far, but if I had him on my fantasy team now, I'd be shopping him, only because it's highly likely he'd get a return that was worth several times his actual value. I think that's what the author is saying.
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    Re: Brad Evans brings the buzz kill to Cuetos early success

    As with anyone in the majors...the key will be how Cueto adjusts to the league after the league adjusts to him.

    In the mean time, let's enjoy.
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