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Di Fino: Test your Fantasy wits

Senior Fantasy Writer
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It's time, once again, for the Fantasy quiz. Sharpen your pencils -- and your minds -- and be wowed at the weird anomalies and quirks of the 2012 season. When you're through, check your answers at the bottom, and then rush to the waiver wire to adjust rosters based on day games, bullpen shifts and speedsters who are facing certain pitchers.

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(All stats are through games played on Thursday, August 9):

1.Which pitcher has given up the most home runs (10) since the All-Star break?:

a. Ian Kennedy
b. Jordan Lyles
c. Phil Hughes
d. Travis Wood

2. Which batter has seen the most pitches so far this season?:

a. Adam Dunn
b. Michael Bourn
c. Curtis Granderson
d. Ian Kinsler

3. Which relief pitcher has the most points this season -- without having started or saved a game?:

a. Robbie Ross
b. Craig Stammen
c. Vinnie Pestano
d. Darren O'Day

4. Which of these catchers has the highest OPS since the All-Star break (min. of 25 at-bats)?:

a. Michael McKenry
b. Erik Kratz
c. Carlos Santana
d. A.J. Pierzynski

5. Who leads MLB in sacrifics bunts this season?:

a. Johnny Cueto
b. Elvis Andrus
c. Lance Lynn
d. Alcides Escobar

Bonus Pop Culture Question #1: How much does Boardwalk cost to buy in Monopoly?

a. $350
b. $400
c. $450
d. $500

6. Of this group, who has the most Quality Starts this season?:

a. Matt Cain
b. Ian Kennedy
c. Cole Hamels
d. Jason Vargas

7. Which of these second basemen has the most runs scored since the All-Star break?:

a. Aaron Hill
b. Ryan Theriot
c. Dustin Pedroia
d. Robinson Cano

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8. Which Davis has more Fantasy points this season?:

a. Chris Davis
b. Rajai Davis

9.: Since the All-Star break, only two players have five home runs, double-digit steals, and are batting .300 or above. One of those players is Mike Trout. The other is:

a. Drew Stubbs
b. Jose Reyes
c. Carlos Gomez
d. Jason Heyward

Bonus Pop Culture Question #2: According to Buddy the Elf, which of the following is not a food group?:

a. Candy
b. Candy canes
c. Candy buttons
d. Candy corn

10. The player who has received the most at-bats since the All-Star break is:

a. Nick Markakis
b. Michael Bourn
c. Stephen Lombardozzi
d. Derek Jeter

11. Of players with 50 or more at-bats in day games this season, who has the highest batting average (.409)?

a. Paul Konerko
b. David Ortiz
c. Juan Pierre
d. David Wright

Bonus Pop Culture Question #3:: According to imdb.com, who didn't supply a voice for a Mogwai or Gremlin in Gremlins?

a. Howie Mandel
b. Michael Winslow
c. Michael J. Fox
d. Peter Cullen

12. Who is owned in more leagues?:

a. Kris Medlen
b. Chris Carter

13. Who has more Fantasy points?:

a. Kris Medlen
b. Chris Carter

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14. Which is greater: the combined ownership percentages of Michael Pineda and Victor Martinez -- who each have yet to play a game this year -- or the ownership of Cubs closer Carlos Marmol -- who has five saves, a 2.08 ERA, and 11 strikeouts in his last 8 2/3 innings pitched?:

a. Pineda and Martinez
b. Marmol

15. The following four pitchers have allowed the most steals this season. Who ranks first?:

a. Tommy Hanson
b. A.J. Burnett
c. Ubaldo Jimenez
d. Madison Bumgarner









How'd you do? Check your answers below. Anything over five correct should be considered a rousing success:

1. D
2. C (Granderson has seen 2,148 pitches)
3. A (Ross has 153 points. Stammen was second with 149.)
4. B (Kratz has two home runs and five doubles, with an OPS of 1.254)
5. A (Cueto has 13 sacrifices this season)
6. D (Vargas has 16)
7. B (Theriot has 18 runs scored)
8. A (...but it's close: 226.50 to 226)
9. C
10. C (Lombardozzi has 123 at-bats)
11. C
12. A (Medlen has 144.5, Carter has 105.5)
13. A (Medlen is owned in 30 percent; Carter is owned in 29 percent)
14. A (Pineda/Martinez are owned in 26 percent of leagues, each; Marmol is owned in 50 percent of leagues)
15. C (Jimenez has allowed 26 steals)
BONUS 1: B
BONUS 2: C
BONUS 3: C

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Nando Di Fino at @NandoCBS . You can also send our staff an e-mail at fantasybaseball@cbsinteractive.com .

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- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

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Player News
Padres' Bud Black: Jedd Gyorko 'learned a lot' from 2014 struggles
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(12:07 pm ET) Padres second baseman Jedd Gyorko definitely went through a sophomore slump in 2014 after belting 23 home runs as a rookie in 2013. Although, dealing with plantar fasciitis in his left foot certainly didn't help his cause.

Still, Gyorko seems to indicate the injury wasn't the main reason he struggled offensively last season. He hit .210 with 10 home runs in 111 games.

"I think I maybe put a little too much pressure on myself," Gyorko said, per MLB.com. "We were struggling as a team. And I think all of us, not just myself, felt like we needed to come up with that big hit to get us going. It's hard to hit when you put that kind of pressure on yourself."

Gyorko missed nearly two months of games last season due to the foot injury, but once he returned, his numbers began to improve. He hit .260 with a .347 on-base percentage over his final 55 games. 

"He was better. I think he started making some adjustments, some mechanical, some at-bat to at-bat in terms of pitch selection," manager Bud Black said. "Before, you saw him chasing pitches up in the strike zone and also sliders away. I think that a lot of that was him wanting to be aggressive and wanting to help the team."

The Padres are expecting better results from Gyorko in 2015, especially with a revamped lineup that includes Matt Kemp, Justin Upton, Wil Myers, Derek Norris and Will Middlebrooks.

"We saw in 2013 what Jedd can be, and I think there's more to Jedd based on 2013," Black said. "I think last year there were a lot of factors that went into his season that he expected or adjusted to, but that is something he's hopefully learned from. It's a tough game. You've got to work and stay on top of it. In that regard, I think he learned a lot."


Infield shifts have become an issue for players like Reds' Bruce
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(11:46 am ET) Reds outfielder Jay Bruce is not going to use infield shifts as an excuse for his low batting average, but he admits it does play a factor, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer.

"That's definitely taken some hits away from me," Bruce said. "I don't use it as an excuse. But the bottom line is it takes hits away. You smoke a ball up the middle and you think it's a hit. But the shortstop is playing right behind second base.

"It's definitely cut down on average. You look at a player like Mark Teixiera. He was a .300, .280 hitter. You put the shift on him. He's a guy who drives the ball, pull hitter. He uses the other side of the field some. But guys like that are hitting in the .250s."

Bruce added that beating the shift is difficult. 

"Everyone's like, 'Hit a ground ball to shortstop or hit one down the line.' Like you can do whatever you want." he said. "A lot of times, pitchers pitch to the shift. And shifts are getting more sophisticated. In New York, (shortstop Derek) Jeter was playing third, in on the grass. So you can't bunt. Ideally, you want to get a hit. It's hard to do."

Reds hitting coach Don Long said eventually hitters will be taught in the minors to beat the shift.

"Not everybody's going to be the perfect hitter and be able to do everything," he said. "But I think you're going to find guys who want to have the ability to hit to both sides of the field."


Royals invite C J.C. Boscan to spring training
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(11:38 am ET) The Royals signed catcher J.C. Boscan to a minor-league contract with an invitation to spring training, according to multiple reports. Boscan, 35, spent 2014 with the Dodgers' organization, batting .259 with a homer and seven RBI in 52 games for Double-A Chattanooga.

Adrian Gonzalez confident in 'deeper lineup' for Dodgers
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:26 am ET) Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez had an MLB-best 116 RBI in 2014, mostly batting in front of the likes of Matt Kemp and Hanley Ramirez. While both players are no longer part of the Dodgers' batting order, Gonzalez is not worried about lineup protection, per the Los Angeles Times.

"I think we're deeper, so I don't think we're going to be so dependent on the middle of the order," Gonzalez said Monday. "People say that we lost power, but I think we just put the power in different areas of the lineup."

Some of the key acquisitions this offseason for the Dodgers have been shortstop Jimmy Rollins, catcher Yasmani Grandal and second baseman Howie Kendrick. Gonzalez is confident in the new additions to the lineup.

"They're going to battle every at-bat," Gonzalez said. "They're going to be prepared. I'm not saying that we didn't before, but I think the guys that we got are guys that are going to be tougher to game plan for. From that end, it will be a deeper lineup."


Orioles' Matt Wieters has goal of being ready by opening day
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:15 am ET) Orioles catcher Matt Wieters, who is throwing from 150 feet in his recovery from Tommy John surgery, said he is preparing to be ready by opening day.

"The rehab's going well and going how it's supposed to from all the talk I've gotten with Dr. (James) Andrews and my physical therapist down here and Richie (Bancells)," Wieters said, per MASNsports.com. "Everything's kind of moved along and we're preparing for me to be ready for opening day. We still have a good couple of months before we're there, so it's still going to be a lot of work to put into it, but that's what I'm preparing for. We're trying to get all the steps checked off before we get there.

"We'll see when I'm actually going to be able to get behind the plate and catch in games during spring training, but it's just a matter of making sure the arm has been tested enough to where when we do get into games with adrenaline and a little bit of pressure that we're ready to go."

Wieters added making sure his shoulder is also in good shape is part of the rehab process coming off elbow surgery.

"(Monday) we went out to 150 just to test it out a little bit," he said, "and everything has kind of checked out and we've had nothing really major to set back the progression."


Indians want Michael Bourn to get back to his base-stealing ways
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1/26/2015) The Indians want outfielder Michael Bourn to get back to his base-stealing ways, according to the Plain Dealer

Prior to joining the team, Bourn had compiled five straight seasons with at least 40 steals. Since joining the team, he's stolen 33 bases in two seasons. Injuries have played a role in his decline. Bourn admitted he had some trouble adjusting to the American League in his first season with Cleveland. He tore his hamstring on the final day of the season, and had offseason surgery, but the issue still plagued him in 2014. 

Manager Terry Francona agreed, saying "When he gets on base, he has to disrupt the game." Francona added, "he wants to do it really bad, he just wasn't in position to do it the last couple of years. Hopefully, those injuries are limited and he can use his legs because he's a huge part of what we do."

Bourn, 32, hit .257/.314/.360 over 444 at-bats last year.


Rockies, Adam Ottavino avoid arbitration
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1/26/2015) The Rockies have avoided arbitration with pitcher Adam Ottavino, according to MLB.com.

Ottavino agreed to a one-year deal with the club. Ottavino will make $1.3 million next season, according to CBSSports.com Baseball Insider Jon Heyman.

The 29-year-old posted a 3.60 ERA over 65 innings last year.


Astros looking at pitcher Kevin Correia
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1/26/2015) The Astros are looking to add pitcher Kevin Correia, according to CBSSports.com Baseball Insider Jon Heyman.

Houston is said to be seeking a backend starter, and Correia fits the bill. The 34-year-old posted a 5.44 ERA over 154 innings with the Twins and Dodgers last year. 


Angels hopeful Garrett Richards will be ready for opening day
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1/26/2015) The Angels are hopeful that pitcher Garrett Richards will be ready by opening day, according to the Orange County Register

If Richards isn't ready for the start of the season, the team expects him to be back shortly after that. Richards had knee surgery in August, but he's been able to make progress. General manager Jerry DiPoto said he was "optimistic" about Richards' status. Richards has been able to increase his running on a treadmill, and hasn't experienced any issues with his throwing program, according to DiPoto. Richards is currently throwing from 125 to 150 feet about five times per week.

Richards posted a 2.61 ERA over 168 2/3 innings last year.


Orioles' Matt Wieters throwing from 150 feet
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1/26/2015) Orioles catcher Matt Wieters has begun throwing from 150 feet, according to MASN.

Wieters underwent Tommy John surgery last season, and is working his way back from the surgery. He was cleared to start throwing from 150 feet on Monday. Wieters had previously been throwing from 120 feet. He said he's preparing as if he'll be ready for opening day.

Wieters hit .308/.339/.500 over 104 at-bats last year.


 
 
 
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