NL West

Arizona Diamondbacks: RP Jimmie Sherfy

The Diamondbacks have the best bullpen in the majors so far this season with a 2.09 ERA and 1.05 WHIP while going 6-for-6 on save chances.

There’s always room for more bullpen help, though.

The 26-year-old posted a 3.12 ERA, 0.96 WHIP and 11.2 K/9 with 20 saves in Triple-A last season, capping off the season with 10.2 scoreless innings in the big league bullpen.

Colorado Rockies: 1B/OF Jordan Patterson

The first base position has produced a brutal .110/.177/.219 line with just four extra-base hits this season for the Rockies.authentic nfl jersey wholesale

Ian Desmond, Pat Valaika and Ryan McMahon have all made starts at the position, but continued struggles could be enough for the team to give someone else a chance.

That someone could be Patterson.

The 26-year-old posted an .887 OPS with 32 doubles, 26 home runs and 92 RBI in his second go-around at the Triple-A level last year. He’s also capable of playing the corner outfield spots, and with little left to prove in the minors, he’s ready for a call-up.

Los Angeles Dodgers: SP/RP Walker Buehler

The Dodgers moved Buehler to the bullpen midway through the 2017 season and he made his MLB debut on Sept. 7 after racking up 125 strikeouts in 88.2 innings in the minors.

The 23-year-old is now back in the minors and back in a starting role, and he’s gone 1-0 with a 2.08 ERA, 1.08 WHIP and 16 strikeouts in authentic nfl cheap jerseys 13 innings over his first three starts in Triple-A.

Whether he returns to a bullpen role in the short term or a spot in the rotation opens up, he has the makings of a future frontline starter and the stuff to make an immediate impact.

San Diego Padres: 2B/SS Luis Urias

Urias has one of the best hit tools of any prospect.

The 20-year-old hit .296/.398/.380 with more walks (68) than strikeouts (65) in a full season at the Double-A level last year.cheap nfl jerseys from usa

He also played primarily shortstop for the first time in his career after typically lining up at second base to start his pro career, holding his own at that new position.

Carlos Asuaje and Freddy Galvis make up the current Padres middle infield, but neither player will stand in the way once Urias is deemed ready.

San Francisco Giants: CF Steven Duggar

It’s looking more and more like it might be time to move 35-year-old Hunter Pence (61 PA, .172 BA, .386 OPS, 22 K) to a backup role.purchase nfl jerseys

That would open up a spot for Duggar in the starting lineup.

The 24-year-old was limited to 44 games last season with forearm and hamstring injuries, but he still impressed with an .810 OPS that included 18 extra-base hits and 10 stolen bases in 192 plate appearances.

The former sixth-round pick followed that up with an .813 OPS, four home runs and 10 RBI this spring, proving he’s ready for a shot at the next level.

NL Central

Chicago Cubs: RP Dillon Maples

Most of the Cubs’ top prospects are still in the lower levels of the minors. However, two that could make an impact this season are Jen-Ho Tseng and Dillon Maples.

Tseng would likely be the first minor league pitcher called upon to fill a spot in the rotation, but reliever Mike Montgomery is the true next man up, so it would take more than one injury for his opportunity to present itself.

So we’ll go with Maples, who was signed to a $2.5 million bonus as a 14th-round pick in 2011—still a record for a player taken after the third round. The 25-year-old has an electric fastball/slider/curveball mix and his swing-and-miss ability was abundantly clear last season when he struck out 111 batters across 68.2 innings in the minors and majors.

His command still needs work, but he’s ready to make an impact now.

Cincinnati Reds: 3B Nick Senzel

Here’s what Reds GM Dick Williams told reporters recently on the topic of Senzel:

“The most important thing is to make sure we’re all convinced that he is ready to be here and playing productively. A lot goes into that. It’s just making sure his confidence is in the right place and the approach we’re seeing is right and he is doing it consistently. Bringing a guy like that up, you want him to come and stay. You want it to be more dictated by his performance and confidence as opposed to being dictated by the situation here.”

With Eugenio Suarez sidelined with a fractured thumb, there’s a clear path to playing time at third base.

It might simply be a matter of stringing together a few good games before he gets the call.

Milwaukee Brewers: SP Freddy Peralta

The Brewers failed to land an impact starter during the offseason, settling on signing Jhoulys Chacin and Wade Miley to supplement the team’s in-house options.

To this point, the team’s starters have gone 4-6 with a 4.07 ERA and 10 quality starts in 19 games, and only Opening Day starter Chase Anderson (4 GS, 1-1, 2.82 ERA, 0.99 WHIP) is off to a strong start.

Brandon Woodruff will get another look at some point, but we’ll focus on fellow right-hander Peralta.

The 21-year-old posted a 2.63 ERA and racked up 169 strikeouts in 120 innings between High-A and Double-A last season, where to find cheap nfl jerseys and he’s gone 3-0 with a 1.13 ERA, 1.00 WHIP and 20 strikeouts in 16 innings in his first three Triple-A starts this year.

Pittsburgh Pirates: SP Nick Kingham

Tommy John surgery limited Kingham to a combined 77.1 innings between the 2015 and 2016 seasons, and he largely fell off the prospect radar as a result.authentic nfl cheap jerseys

The 26-year-old re-established himself last season, though, going 10-6 with a 3.95 ERA, 1.26 WHIP and 93 strikeouts in 118.1 innings between High-A and Triple-A.

The 6’5″, 225-pound right-hander has an advanced three-pitch mix and plus command, giving him legitimate middle-of-the-rotation upside which he could realize this season for a Pirates team that is off to a surprisingly hot start.

He’s allowed just nine hits in his first 17 innings in Triple-A, walking four and striking out 21.cheap nfl jerseys from usa

St. Louis Cardinals: SP/RP Ryan Helsley

With the bullpen still in flux, the Cardinals could look to call on another young pitching prospect in Helsley to bolster the bullpen, a la Jordan Hicks.

MLB.com wrote: “Because of his size, arm strength and command, some have thought Helsley was destined to purchase nfl jerseys land in a bullpen. He’ll continue to start for now, with the Cardinals knowing that his fastball-curve combination would play up nicely in shorter stints as needed.”

The 23-year-old went 11-3 with a 2.72 ERA, 1.15 WHIP and 137 strikeouts in 132.1 innings over three minor league levels last season.

Jabari Parker on Lack of Playing Time: ‘I Have a Right to Be Frustrated’

Milwaukee Bucks star Jabari Parker is sharing his frustration at not being played as much as he would like through the first two games of the Eastern Conference playoffs against the Boston Celtics.

“I am human,” he said, via Stephen Watson of WISN 12 News. “I have a right to be frustrated. I’ve waited two years for this.”nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap

Parker has played a total of 25 minutes in each of Milwaukee’s first two playoff games against the Celtics. He has scored just two points on 1-of-7 shooting with six rebounds. cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

Gery Woelfel of 105.7 The Fan said last month that the Bucks were “very close” to dealing Parker at the trade deadline in February, and there was little chance the 23-year-old would be with the team next season.
After tearing his ACL in February 2017, Parker returned to the Bucks on Feb. 2. He averaged 24 minutes per game with 12.6 points and 4.9 rebounds per contest.cheap nike nfl jerseys free shipping

The Bucks return home Friday to host the Celtics for Game 3 of their Eastern Conference playoff series.

NFL Primetime Schedule 2018: List of Monday, Thursday and Sunday Night Games

The New York Giants released wide receiver Brandon Marshall after one season with the organization.

General manager Dave Gettleman announced the roster move Thursday. Gettleman said the team used the failed physical designation on Marshall, per Art Stapleton of The Record.

Jordan Raanan of ESPN noted the release saves the Giants $5.2 million in cap space.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china nfl nike jerseys for cheap

The 34-year-old UCF product finished the 2017 season on injured reserve after suffering an ankle injury in October that required surgery.

Marshall told Ralph Vacchiano of SNY in December he was close to getting full clearance and planned to play for at least a couple more seasons.

“I think I’m two great years away from … and I’ll say it: I want to be a Hall of Famer,” he said. “And I think I got two great years to go to be mentioned with some of the greats. I’m not playing this game just to be a guy. I want to be remembered for the product that I put on the field.”

His departure will likely make the Dez Bryant speculation grow louder.

Mike Fisher of 247Sports reported his “sense” after speaking with the former Dallas Cowboys wideout earlier this week was that he’d like to join the G-Men.cheap nike nfl jerseys free shipping

“The Giants got a helluva defense, they’re going to pay OBJ (fellow wideout and pal Odell Beckham Jr.), so coming back. Playing with him, Sterling (Shepard) … the tight end (Evan Engram), (QB Eli) Manning? Crazy,” Bryant said “… They draft (Penn State running back Saquon Barkley with the No. 2 overall pick)? That’d be crazy!”nfl cheap jerseys nike

Meanwhile, Marshall shouldn’t have much trouble latching on elsewhere as a No. 2 or 3 receiver as long as his medical check comes back clean after the failed Giants physical.

The Pittsburgh Pirates Are Waving the White Flag

The Logic

It wasn’t far-fetched to think the Pittsburgh Pirates were closing the door on contention when franchise cornerstones Andrew McCutchen and Gerrit Cole were traded during the offseason.

After making the postseason three straight years, the team had posted back-to-back losing seasons and seemingly slipped to a distant fourth in the NL Central behind the Chicago Cubs, St. Louis Cardinals and Milwaukee Brewers in the process.nfl jerseys from china

With a largely inexperienced starting staff behind veteran Ivan Nova and an offense that averaged a dismal 4.1 runs per game (28th in the majors) last year—and that was prior to losing its most productive hitter in McCutchen—a step backward seemed inevitable.

The Reality

The Pirates have stormed out of the gate with an 11-6 record that puts them atop the NL Central standings and a plus-13 run differential.nfl wholesale jerseys

The starting staff that looked like a question mark has instead been a strength, posting a 3.62 ERA that ranks 13th in the majors, with Jameson Taillon (3 GS, 2-0, 0.89 ERA, 0.69 WHIP) and Trevor Williams (4 GS, 3-1, 1.93 ERA, 1.20 WHIP) leading the way.cheap nfl jerseys china

Meanwhile, the offense paces the NL with 89 runs scored and ranks second with 5.2 runs per game.

Newcomers Corey Dickerson (.328 BA, .878 OPS) and Colin Moran (.298 BA, .763 OPS) have made an immediate impact, and Josh Bell appears ready to take a step forward in his second season.

The NL Central is going to be a battle all season, and there’s no reason to think of the Cubs, Cardinals and Brewers as anything but contenders at this point.nfl jerseys china

However, it’s looking more and more like the Pirates will be part of that conversation as well.

All stats courtesy of Baseball Reference and FanGraphs, unless otherwise noted, and accurate through Monday’s games.

The New York Mets Are Taking a Huge Risk Relying on Their In-House SP Options

The Logic

Jacob deGrom was one of the best pitchers in the NL last season, going 15-10 with a 3.53 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and 239 strikeouts in 201.1 nfl authentic jerseys  innings to finish eighth in Cy Young voting.

The rest of the New York Mets starting staff was a complete disaster, though.

Noah Syndergaard (7 GS), Steven Matz (13 GS), Zack Wheeler (17 GS), Seth Lugo (18 GS) and Matt Harvey (18 GS) all missed significant time to injury, and the team used 12 different starters on the year.

The combined result of the 11 starters not named deGrom: 34-59, 5.37 ERA, 1.59 WHIP.nfl jerseys from china

Despite that uncertainty, the only notable addition the team made was to sign 35-year-old Jason Vargas to a two-year, $16 million deal. The soft-tossing left-hander made the All-Star team but fell off dramatically with a 6.38 ERA after the break.

That raised plenty of questions about whether the front office did enough to address what was a glaring hole.official nfl jerseys cheap

The Reality

The Mets are off to a brilliant 12-4 start, thanks in large part to a 3.45 ERA from the starting rotation, and Vargas has yet to make his Mets debut.

Here’s a look at how the club’s incumbent starters have fared:

Noah Syndergaard (4 GS, 2-0, 2.95 ERA, 1.03 WHIP)
Jacob deGrom (4 GS, 2-0, 3.24 ERA, 1.08 WHIP)
Steven Matz (3 GS, 1-1, 3.77 ERA, 1.19 WHIP)
Matt Harvey (3 GS, 0-1, 4.80 ERA, 1.40 WHIP)
Zack Wheeler (2 GS, 1-1, 2.77 ERA, 1.00 WHIP)

Beyond those five guys, Seth Lugo and Robert Gsellman are pitching well in multi-inning roles out of the bullpen and are nfl authentic jerseys cheap capable of stepping into the rotation if the need arises.

Moneyball Makes the 2018 Draft Tricky to Predict

Quarterbacks are the most important players in football. This draft has a bunch of them, and flawed though each of the prospects may be, the best ones will all be selected near the top of the draft board.

So far, so good.nfl custom jerseys cheap

Cornerbacks, edge-rushers and offensive tackles rank next on the Moneyball leverage/marginal value scale. This year’s cornerback crop is solid enough, but both the edge-rusher and offensive tackle classes are thinner than phyllo dough.

Running backs, guards, off-ball linebackers and safeties rank at the bottom of the marginal value scale. As mentioned, cheap custom nfl jerseys running back talent is plentiful, while the difference between average, great and all-time great players at the other positions is less visible in the win-loss column than the difference between an average quarterback and a Tom Brady.

But this year’s class is overflowing with talent at those low-leverage positions. We’ve covered the running backs. Notre Dame’s Quenton Nelson is one of the best guard prospects ever, and there is depth behind him. Georgia’s Roquan Smith leads a tremendous linebacker class. Derwin James and Minkah Fitzpatrick spearhead a strong safety/nickelback class.cheap customized nfl jerseys884dc71330c9a2d353e689e7ae5c0492_crop_exact

Teams that follow the Moneyball “rules” will avoid the top players on the guard/running back/etc. draft lists, even if that forces them to reach or gamble on a second-tier edge-rusher or left tackle.

But teams that follow the underlying principles of analytics will seek the best values. That may mean gobbling up the guards,cheap nfl custom jerseys  running backs and linebackers who slip through the cracks (Barkley and Nelson won’t be overlooked for long, but Derrius Guice, Will Hernandez and others might), even if that means taking a low-leverage player higher than they are “supposed to.”

It makes draft prognostication tricky. It’s also a reminder that Moneyball isn’t a template laid out in a Brad Pitt movie. It’s an nike nfl jerseys cheap approach to team-building and a method for solving problems. Different teams can use the same methods and approaches to arrive at very different conclusions.

The Eagles, after all, are as committed to analytics as the Browns are. They traded up for Carson Wentz when the Browns were trading down to collect picks. nfl jerseys cheap nike

We’ll learn more about how analytics are shaping the market after the draft. Until then, we’ll use the numbers to make the best possible projections. Because that’s what teams do.

Calvin Ridley, D.J. Moore and the Analytics of Playmaking

Successful NFL receivers almost always start out as successful college receivers. They catch a high percentage of their college team’s passes, score a lot of touchdowns, rack up high yards-per-catch rates and run fast and jump high in their predraft workouts.
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Boy, Moneyball sounds more like plain-old common sense with every new header, doesn’t it? But college production can be tricky to interpret because of all of the different systems, levels, calibers of quarterback and other variables.4b3677cadc41934f836633fb4ff59fc3_crop_exact

Calvin Ridley’s raw stats look pretty good—224 career catches, 2,781 yards and 19 touchdowns in three seasons—especially factoring in Alabama’s run-heavy offense and option-style quarterbacking. But for someone touted as a DeSean Jackson-level deep threat, Ridley caught a relatively low percentage of his team’s touchdown passes, cheap custom nfl jerseys and his vertical leap at the combine (just 31″) suggests that he may not be as explosive or capable of hauling in a contested pass as the NFL’s elite receivers.

By contrast, D.J. Moore’s raw numbers in three seasons at Maryland are less impressive than Ridley’s (146-2,027-17), cheap customized nfl jerseys but his career yards-per-catch rate is higher (13.9 to 12.4) and his production came in a Maryland scheme that’s even more run-oriented than the Alabama offense. Throw in a 39.5-inch vertical leap, and there are many reasons to believe Moore will outperform Ridley at the start of his NFL career.

Football Outsiders’ Playmaker Score takes the variables mentioned above, and others, and turns them into projection cheap nfl custom jerseys ratings for all of the top wide receiver prospects. You can read more about the method and find this year’s ratings here.

Keep in mind that variables like the vertical jump weren’t chosen randomly or picked by some Alabama hater who wants to see Ridley fail. They were selected based on years of analysis to determine what variables were true indicators of future success.

That’s analytics in a nutshell: finding useful variables and eliminating meaningless or misleading ones. Often, the results end up sounding a lot like common sense.

Jacob Pugh, Florida State

POSITIVES

—Long, lean athlete with good speed on a 6’4″, 232-pound frame.

—Has experience as a defensive end and could fill out and be used as an edge-rusher.

—Shows good agility in space and has the hips to redirect and recover on the edge.

—Runs down ball-carriers easily and chews up yardage with a long stride.

—Pugh looks natural moving on the field and could intrigue teams with his athletic potential.buy authentic nfl jerseys

NEGATIVES

—Needs to fill out his frame to better take on blockers.

—Has to better learn to use a long arm to keep blockers away; can be timid at the point of attack.
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—Looked timid and unsure of what to do at times.

—To make an NFL roster, he has to get stronger and better use his strength on the field.

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OVERALL

Jacob Pugh looks the part but is built like a small forward and needs to fill out his long frame. If he can add bulk and strength, it’s not out of the question that he could develop into a quality backup situational pass-rusher. He’s worth a look late if teams are OK with his work ethic and motor.

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GRADE: 5.00 (Priority Free Agent)

PRO PLAYER COMPARISON: Koa Misi, free agent

Chris Worley, Ohio State

POSITIVES

—Started two seasons as an outside linebacker.wholesale nfl jerseys outlet

—Shows toughness and instincts on the field and makes up for a lack of athleticism with aggressiveness.

—Smart, disciplined player who will perform his assignment; reliable.

—Strong tackler who can wrap up, come to balance and secure the hit with few misses.

NEGATIVES
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—Timed at 4.86 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

—Lacks the athleticism or size to dominate. Was an average college player.

—No twitch to his game.

—Allows himself to be easily blocked if he doesn’t beat the block with force.
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—Stiff as a board and lacks the lower-body flexibility needed to run in space with NFL talent.

OVERALL

Chris Worley was a solid performer for Ohio State but is limited athletically and lacks the size (6’2″, 230 lbs) to make up for his deficiencies. He has the tools to be a strong backup or special teams player as a priority free agent.

GRADE: 4.99 (Camp Body)nfl jersey wholesalers

PRO PLAYER COMPARISON: Jordan Evans, Cincinnati Bengals