When to part with the one you loved.
By Jared Norris<o:p></o:p>
If you are anything like me you study your three year trends, search for the new season projections and tier your players long before the draft for the new fantasy baseball season. By doing this you get exposed to all types of amazing stats. Did you know that Gary Sheffield led all baseball players in doubles when games were played at night on a Tuesday and he was wearing black socks? Not sure how stats like the one above influence us to get attached to players while making our cheat sheets, but they do.<o:p></o:p>
This was the case for me this year with Placido Polanco. I know what you’re thinking: Polanco is not a sexy-type player with his lock for barely edging 10 Home Runs and 10 Steals a year. He doesn’t hit the long ball, isn’t fast and doesn’t look like a ball player. Hell you can even say Placido Polanco is your everyday balding mechanic at Jiffy Lube. But because our league penalizes you for striking out and awards a point for every walk you get, Polanco stuck out like a blonde girl in freshman P.E. You think 39 strike outs in a year is almost 1/3 of the strikeouts sluggers like Dan Uggla or Kelly Johnson gets a year at second base. Then you add in his knack for extra base hits and a high average with about a 1:1 B/K ratio and he looks like a sexy type steal in the 13th round. <o:p></o:p>
I made sure to snag Polanco around this time in all my leagues and focus on pitching in the middle rounds, where second tier 2B typically went. I will let the “other guy” pick Uggla in the 8th while I pick a Tim Lincecum or a Ben Sheets. Now what do you do three weeks into the 2008 season when your spring crush is not crushing the ball at all? Do I sell out on Polanco my fun-fling for the last two months to grab an equally type player who is heating up like a ‘Dustin Pedroia’? Does anyone else in this league have the same attraction I have for Polanco? If so, will this attraction be a strong enough one to force owners to use a waiver or pick him up while we wait for him to get his figure back?<o:p></o:p>
These are all questions I pondered when my bench looked to good to drop and Polanco's name stood out as the smart drop. I think in reality the perceptions we formed while studying our secret steals or value hunks were over-hyped by our inner dreams of a long happy season with a white picket fence around it. At this point we feel entitled to stick with our “Polanco” until he gets hot because if we drop him now everyone we went bragging to, will just laugh in our face and chuckle at the bold top five prediction we made pre-season. At this point we are just dragging the relationship out when we both know it has lost its lust. Why would I want to go back to a .148 batting average when I can have something new and exciting?<o:p></o:p>
When you reach this point it is time to finally suck it up and take one on the chin and make the smart move. So I broke-up with Polanco and took all loyalty away from my brief stalker stint. I made the smart move and grabbed the scorching Pedroia who was also in my top 8 2b My Space friends. So the bottom line is this when you get to the point where you are starting to ask questions and starting to feel embarrassment for still being with a girl you once told your friends was a dime piece but they think looks like Topanga from Boy Meets World; you need to move on from that girl and find yourself the smart lab partner, whose beauty was hidden by our ignorance and greed…We were talking about women and not Polanco right?<o:p></o:p>