MLB Offseason Scanner: Unit and Tex Start Fresh

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MLB Offseason Scanner: Unit and Tex Start Fresh

There are still some big fish left in the pond, but they are going fast after the two most recent big-name free agent signings.  If you haven't heard by now, Randy Johnson is now a Giant, and Mark Teixeira is now a Yankee.  And if you did hear about these deals, then chances are that you have heard about how those signings will impact their respective divisional races.

But do you know how they will impact your fantasy roster?  Here's a look not only at the impact on the Big Unit's and Tex's fantasy value, but their new teammates' value as well.

The Big Unit

So much for figuring out old pitchers, huh?

After a disastrous 2006 season with the Yankees, many held out hope that The Big Unit would rebound with a strong 2007 season by returning to some familiar surroundings, the Arizona faithful.  Johnson did, in fact, pitch well, but he threw only 56.2 innings.  That led some to believe that his career was perhaps at an end, and it didn't help when he missed the first couple weeks of this season. 

Funny thing though—once he started pitching, he didn't stop, and he ended up having a very strong year.  Posting a 3.91 ERA, he managed to throw 184 innings, striking out 173 in the process.  Unfortunately for those who managed to snag him off the waiver wire, Johnson still had only an 11-10 record, due in large part to Arizona's inability to score runs.

Want more bad (or at least not particularly great) news?  Don't look for much to change.  Johnson should benefit by moving to San Francisco, as AT&T park is well-known for killing high-scoring offenses.  Whether or not his strikeout rate stays at a good rate, his ERA should remain pretty steady as a result of pitching in AT&T park.

However, San Francisco has done little to improve their offense, and immediate help does not appear to be on the horizon.  That could mean another year in which The Big Unit pitches well, but struggles to reach double digits in wins.

Does Johnson's signing affect the fantasy value of any Giant?  It could help either Brian Wilson or Jeremy Affeldt, depending on who becomes the closer, since Johnson should keep the Giants close in many games.  His signing might also take a few starts away from either Barry Zito or Jonathan Sanchez, depending on who becomes the No. 5 pitcher.  Nonetheless, Johnson's signing mostly impacts Johnson himself, and everything else would be just gravy.

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