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Nemeses: Benching the unbenchables - Through The Fence Baseball

Nemeses: Benching the unbenchables

by Russ Anderson | Posted on Saturday, February 5th, 2011
| 508 baseball fanatics read this article

There are a handful of hitters in the major leagues that you should pretty much never remove from a fantasy lineup unless they are on an operating table.   These guys are so consistently productive that benching one of them is about as risky as drinking from a glass clearly marked “ROOFIES” at Ben Roethlisberger’s apartment.  But even the steadiest slugger in baseball has his kryptonite – that one pitcher he just can’t seem to figure out.  Sometimes it is an all-around dominant arm, sometimes an otherwise obscure pitcher whose sole purpose seems to be this particular brand of giant-slaying.  Here are the Nemeses of a number of super-heroic fantasy hitters.  I’ve chosen villains that the batters have faced at least 20 times, and are likely to face at least a few times again this season.   If you’re the proud owner of one of these offensive behemoths, the only time you should consider benching him is when he’s facing his Nemesis.

Fantasy Hero: Albert Pujols, Cardinals
Nemesis: Cole Hamels, Phillies
Versus Villain: (in 20 AB) .150 Avg / 1 HR / 2 RBI / 0 BB / 3 K

Fantasy Hero: Alex Rodriguez, Yankees
Nemesis: Joel Pineiro, Angels
Versus Villain: (in 37 AB) .135 Avg / 0 HR / 2 RBI / 1 BB / 11 K

Fantasy Hero: Joe Mauer, Twins
Nemesis: CC Sabathia, Yankees
Versus Villain: (in 29 AB) .207 Avg / 0 HR / 2 RBI / 12 K

Fantasy Hero: Ichiro Suzuki, Mariners
Nemesis: Josh Beckett, Red Sox
Versus Villain: (in 24 AB) .208 Avg / 0HR / 1 RBI / 0 BB / 7 K

Fantasy Hero: Miguel Cabrera, Tigers
Nemesis: Jake Peavy, White Sox
Versus Villain: (in 22 AB) .091 Avg / 0 2B / 0 HR / 0 RBI / 10 K

Fantasy Hero: Vladimir Guerrero, Rangers (free agent)
Nemesis: Gio Gonzalez, A’s
Versus Villain: (in 21 AB) .190 Avg / 0 HR / 1 RBI / 1 BB / 5K

Fantasy Hero: Hanley Ramirez, Marlins
Nemesis: Johan Santana, Mets
Versus Villain: (in 21 AB) .143 Avg / 0 HR / 0 RBI / 7 K

Fantasy Hero: Mark Teixeira, Yankees
Nemesis: James Shields, Rays
Versus Villain: (in 33 AB) .182 Avg / 0 HR / 0 RBI / 13 K
Fantasy Hero: Matt Holliday, Cardinals
Nemesis: Aaron Harang, Padres
Versus Villain: (in 21 AB) .095 Avg / 0 HR / 1 RBI / 0 BB / 6 K

Fantasy Hero: Matt Kemp, Dodgers
Nemesis: Tim Lincecum, Giants
Versus Villain: (in 20 AB) .100 Avg / 0 HR / 0 RBI / 1 BB / 9 K

Fantasy Hero: Carlos Lee, Astros
Nemesis: Adam Wainwright, Cardinals
Versus Villain: (in 26 AB) .038 Avg / 0 HR / 3 RBI / 4 K

Fantasy Hero: Chase Utley, Phillies
Nemesis: Tim Hudson, Braves
Versus Villain: (in 45 AB) .222 Avg / 0 HR / 10 K

Fantasy Hero: Paul Konerko, White Sox
Nemesis: Justin Verlander, Tigers
Versus Villain: (in 38 AB) .105 Avg / 0 HR / 1 RBI / 12 K

Fantasy Hero: Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies
Nemesis: Livan Hernandez, Nationals
Versus Villain: (in 25 AB) .167 Avg / 0 HR / 1 RBI / 1 BB / 10 K

Fantasy Hero: Kevin Youkilis, Red Sox
Nemesis: Erik Bedard, Mariners
Versus Villain: (in 20 AB) .050 Avg / 0 HR / 1 RBI / 10 K

Fantasy Hero: David Wright, Mets
Nemesis: Carlos Zambrano, Cubs
Versus Villain: (in 24 AB) .125 Avg / 0 2B / 0 HR / 3 RBI / 11 K

Fantasy Hero: Prince Fielder, Brewers
Nemesis: Paul Maholm, Pirates
Versus Villain: (in 42 AB) .071 Avg / 0 HR / 3 RBI / 2 BB / 13 K

Fantasy Hero: Adrian Gonzalez, Red Sox
Nemesis: Jeff Francis, Royals
Versus Villain: (in 31 AB) .194 Avg / 1 HR / 3 RBI / 1 BB / 10 K

Okay, so billing Konerko, Lee and Kemp as “fantasy heroes” may be a stretch – they were included due to the level of domination.  And several current stars were obviously omitted due to insufficient or uninteresting data.  But this list should at least provide some direction in your quest to protect each top fantasy hitter in your lineup from his kryptonite.

Post By Russ Anderson (18 Posts)

Though numerous arm injuries ended his playing career partway through college, Russ still avidly follows baseball and lives out his broken diamond dreams through the successes of his former teammates and adversaries. His writing has appeared in a remarkably diverse range of publications, from the scientific journal "Current Medical Research and Opinion," to the anthology "Bruce Springsteen and Philosophy: Darkness on the Edge of Truth."

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