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We at Razzball realize that exporting our views across the country has damaging consequences on the blogosphere. To help make amends, we are reaching out to leading team blogs and featuring their locally blogged answers to pressing 2013 fantasy baseball questions regarding their team. We feel this approach will be fresher, more sustainable, and require less energy consumption (for us anyway). The 2013 Indians Fantasy Baseball Preview comes courtesy Lewie Pollis from Wahoos On First.

1) The Indians landed a talented, yet labelled ‘head case’ in Trevor Bauer in the off-season from the Diamondbacks in a three team trade that sent away Shin-Soo Choo.  Of course, robbing Arizona’s cradle like you were Nic Cage isn’t what concerns us.  We wonder if he’s ready to take the stage in 2013 and if so, are our Trevor Bauer projections in line with what you’d expect from the rookie?

As an expected value for his true talent level your projections look about right, but they’re off in that they don’t account for how Bauer will be used. At this point there are probably four other rotation candidates who have better chances to win the No. 5 spot out of Spring Training than Bauer, and unless injuries wipe out literally the entire rotation there’s no scenario in which roster demands will force the Tribe to call him up in 2013. The team brass wants him to refine his command in Triple-A and he won’t be called up until his control problems are, well, under control. The only way he gets to 166 innings is if he makes quick, substantial progress right out of the gate. So your projections are a nice middle ground, but they’ll almost certainly be either significantly low or significantly high. One of the two.

2) Jason Kipnis’ season was a tale of two halves.  His first half – .277 with 11 HRs and 20 steals – was the stuff of dreams while his .233, 3 HR and 11 steal second half was the stuff of Nightmare on Elm St.  So which half is the real player and what can we reasonably expect from Jason Kipnis in 2013?

Somewhere in the middle, but towards the higher end. Kipnis is a tremendously talented player and you can hardly blame him for slowing down towards the end of his first full MLB season when he was stuck in a wholly unmotivated clubhouse. Whatever happened at the end of last year, remember that Kipnis is a former top prospect who’s already an established, above-average MLB player and is entering his age-26 season. Bill James sees him hitting .274 with 18 homers—that seems like a reasonable baseline expectation to me.

3) Lonnie Chisenhall was labelled a must watch by plenty of fantasy baseball experts heading into the 2011.  Since then, the shine has worn off a bit as his brief career to date – 14 HRs with a .260 average in 374 PA – leaves something to be desired for fantasy purposes.  Is this a now or never year for Lonnie and what are your expectations for him for 2013 fantasy baseball?

The first two years of Chisenhall’s career have been a bit underwhelming, sure. But consider that in those two years he had to fight Jack Hannahan and Jose Lopez for playing time while dealing with serious but seemingly non-recurring injuries. This year, he’s got the starting job all to himself and (knock on wood) a clean bill of health. A .260 average and 15 homers seem like a good place to start, but he’s a 24-year-old former top prospect so he’s got some interesting upside too.

4) The Indians made some other off-season moves to solidify their lineup.  Name someone who’s either signed or traded for in the off-season or will be positively affected by the moves who you are targeting in fantasy drafts this year.  What’s your reasoning for this besides unbridled enthusiasm for your Chief Wahoo?

I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Zach McAllister emerges as the Tribe’s best starter in 2013. He’s the best strikeout pitcher the Indians have had since CC Sabathia, but the biggest knock on him last year was his (uncharacteristic for a Cleveland starter) trouble keeping the ball on the ground. Now that Michael Brantley is in left field and Michael Bourn and Drew Stubbs will be patrolling the big green at Progressive Field, the Tribe’s outfield UZR will be somewhere around a million. That means more fly balls will fall into glove leather (as opposed to the outfield grass), and McAllister stands to gain more from that than maybe anyone else on the team.

5) What’s the most likeliest thing we’ll see about these Cleveland Indians in 2013?
A) Cleveland Indians recoup a little of the $6 million dollar contract with Mark Reynolds and go green, using the wind power created by his 200+ strikeouts to energize Progressive Field?
B) Brett Myers begins dating Rihanna?
C) Ubaldo Jimenez changes his name to Urogaine-o for endorsements and gains his confidence back, posting a sub 3.50/1.25 ERA and WHIP?
D) To complement his mullet, Chris Perez goes full white trash and has bumper nuts sewn onto his jersey?
E) Tired of playing second fiddle to Perez’ trailer park style, Vinnie ‘The Gun’ Pestano has ‘his people’ take care of the problem and becomes the Indians closer in 2013?

Well, Chris Perez already had to sit out the WBC with a shoulder problem…

  1. Jack Full of Hate says:
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    how do i get a picture next to my name, i never went to the site you gave me

  2. Jack Full of Hate says:
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    testing

  3. prezii says:
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    No mention of mini donk and his homer he hit that landed in my front yard? Thats understandable, you prolly wrote this in feb of 09… But no terry francona beer and chicken jokes? Cmon skyy you’re losin it!

    • prezii says:
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      Ps. The guy above my comment is a flamer! :)

      • @prezii: are we having some issues prezzi? it sounds like someone is having difficult coming to terms with who they are and lashing out at others accussing them of who you really are deep down inside…not that there is anything wrong with it

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @prezii: I’m surprised and saddened I didn’t make any Amish Girls Gone Wild references. You’re right, I’ve gone country!

      • @Sky: Are those the ones where they take Amish proverbs and use them as titles? like: “Very few burdens are heavy if everyone lifts”

        • Sky

          Sky says:
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          @Jack Full of Hey Now: It’s possible. But from my friend who lives in the area, it involves more illicit drugs and drinking.

          • JoeC says:
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            @Sky: I’m gonna assume Amish girls don’t shave so… ewwww.

            • Sky

              Sky says:
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              @JoeC: You wouldn’t shave either if you were going at your bikini line with a straight razor.

              • JoeC says:
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                @Sky: That makes me faint just thinkin’ about it!

                • Sky

                  Sky says:
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                  Just don’t faint mid-shave!

  4. Powerslave says:
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    ZZZ

  5. KCC26 says:
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    Which side?

    Hamels/ konerko
    Goldschmidt/gallardo

  6. Daniel says:
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    So just finished up my draft and was wondering how my team turned out. 14 team 6×6 with holds and obp. No bench now but will draft 7 players for bench and dl slots. 2C 6of 4sp and 6P slots. My team is as follows. We were able to keep up to 10 players. I kept Rizzo, Pedroia, Lawrie, Hosmer, BJ Upton, Craig, Martinez (DH only right now) Cueto, Miley, and Venters.

    Position Name Cost
    C salty 1
    C d’Ardaud 2
    1B Rizzo 1
    2B Pedroia 27
    SS segura 12
    3B Lawrie 1
    CI Hosmer 1
    MI lowrie 5
    OF BJ Upton 15
    OF Craig 11
    OF Stanton 42
    OF Pence 15
    OF Ethier 15
    OF Stubbs 17
    UTIL Martinez 1
    SP Cueto 4
    SP Miley 1
    SP bum 28
    SP gio 27
    P Venters 1
    P parker 13
    P perkins 9
    P betacourt 5
    P benoit 4
    P Doubront 1

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Daniel: Team looks decent for that size of league. Lot of avg risk but overall, you’ve created a solid team, especially considering Cueto is your SP3. Nice work!

      • Daniel says:
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        @Sky: Thanks! I should probably note that Martinez is Victor Martinez. Anyone or area I should look at for in our supplemental draft? Its one round a day for a week with one pick. Non snake. I’m pick 5 everyday. I know its kind of hard without seeing who else was drafted. Right now I think it might be a lot of MR and SP but was also thinking of Zunino.

        • Sky

          Sky says:
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          I know it’s a deep league, but holds guys always come out of the woodwork. In a 14 team that’s this deep, I’d want to have a minimum of 2 bench bats to deal with injuries/matchups, preferably 3 if they’re worth it. Pitching I’d only target as needed or if there’s any value. As you said, hard to say without knowing what players are out there but strategy wise, that’s how I’d lean.

  7. Gareth says:
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    I just traded Andre Ethier and Michael Cuddyer for Starlin Castro and now have a spare roster spot. I am set at ALL my positions so its just a case of who to grab as the best available bench guy with upside. Basically someone useful and productive that may be a valuable trade tool going forward.

    Here is a list of some players on the Free Agent list:

    C Jaso, Castro, Flowers
    1B Belt, Reynolds, Berkman, Garrett Jones, Carter
    2B Murphy, B Roberts, Infante
    3B Nelson, Arenado, Luis Cruz
    SS Cozart, Lowrie, Drew, Yunel Escobar
    OF Stubbs, Brantley, Hicks, Viciedo, Quentin, Rasmus, Dirks, Morrison, Pierre, Joyce
    SP E Jackson, Hammel, Bucholz, Petite, Billingsley, Holland, Romero, J Garcia, Wandy, Worley.

    I think I’ve narrowed it down to either Belt, Berkman, Hicks, Cruz and Stubbs.

    Please let me know who you would choose.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      If you’re talking upside, you should go Arenado

  8. Gareth says:
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    It doesnt have to be from my top 5. Basically anyone on that list and reasons why you would choose the player.

  9. AL KOHOLIC says:
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    Sky +,Rudy or anyone else,my man-10 team roto 7×7,k,s against hitters and obp,im stuck with to many middle infielders and need to add sp depth,ive got Espinosa(k,ave drain)Gyorko and Valdespin(i like) with Zolbrist at ss,no one biting on any trades at all and i need to cut 1,or i could cut cain,any thoughts are appretiated

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Assuming you’re playing in a league where Valdespin is multi-position eligible and has OF as one of those, I’d drop Cain assuming we’re talking Lorenzo.

      • AL KOHOLIC says:
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        @Sky: yes and thanks

        • Sky

          Sky says:
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          NP good luck!

    • Dump valdespin. He has espinosa’s faults and less upside and playing time

      • AL KOHOLIC says:
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        @Rudy Gamble: i actually did drop him,wanted Teheran and after todays game needed to jump on it,thanks

  10. Draft in 2 hours… Keeper league

    Who would you take first Eaton, Taveras Myers Adams???

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Tavares

  11. AdamH says:
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    Got a keeper league draft later tonight and need to know who you guys would take…

    My keepers are: McCutchen, Pujols, Cespedes, Heyward, R. Zimmerman

    Top available players:
    King Felix, Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, Bumgarner
    B. Butler, A. Craig, Zobrist, Sandoval, Kipnis, I. Desmond, Phillips…

    I have 1st pick and 10th pick. I should take Felix right? And then target a MI with my 2nd pick?

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Yeah your strategy makes sense with your keepers.

  12. Wifes got my nuts but I got fantasy sports says:
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    I need to pick up another SP the crap on the WW is fairly thin how would you rank the follwing as worth picking up for a 6X6 (QS):
    Worley
    Niemann
    Arrieta
    Bedard
    Eovaldi

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Think you have them ranked correctly. Really like Arietta, keep an eye on him if he gets a shot at the rotation

  13. Spike says:
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    Having a hard time deciding my keepers this year — need to pick from:

    Posey
    Rasmus
    Moustakas
    Kershaw
    Weaver
    Scherzer
    Zimmerman
    Latos
    Moore
    Morrow
    Chapman

    Leaning toward Posey, Kershaw, Scherzer, Zimmerman and Latos (Weaver’s decline and Moore’s wildness give me pause). Thoughts?

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      Zimmerman is the 3B or are you talking about Zimmermann the pitcher? Either way, Moore is your SP3 or SP4 and could strike out 200. I’d give him a shot over Latos.

  14. Slappy says:
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    I’m going with 5(F): Scott Kazmir wins the All-Star game, the ERA title, and the Cy Young. Kid K is back…

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      You go man! I’m not following…

      • Slappy says:
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        @Sky: Forgive me, but I wasn’t asking you to follow. Let me leave you with:

        http://www.baseballnation.com/2013/3/22/4133268/scott-kazmir-indians-rotation

        Got lit up today in the 1st and 5th, so 5 ER over 87 pitches over 5 IP. Good news is that throwing almost exclusively fastballs, he K’d 5 and walked 0. And if the scout says that his velocity is mostly back…i.e., if he can keep on walking 0 with most of his velocity back… In 13 IP so far, he’s 3.46 with 13K and 1 BB.

        • Sky

          Sky says:
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          Oh trust me I know. Depending on depth of league, I think he’s intriguing. I’m looking at him now in a deep/competitive keeper league. Was just goofing with ya.

          • Slappy says:
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            I didn’t say you had to pick him either. I was just trying to give the Tribe fans some hope. And you make for an interesting and uplifting story if he did come back and do reasonably well. Lastly, I might take him a couple of teams, where the min is 60 IP, so he’d be the no. 10 or 11 starter. Just waiting on word from Cleve.

            • Sky

              Sky says:
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              Yeah I hear ya. Pretty sure he’s SP5 in CLE this year. Will be interesting to see how it plays out.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @2 Cups 1 Braun: You can’t make me read ESPN information…it will warp my reality. I agree, they’re crazy in the coconut. I’m avoiding Konerko like the plague this year.

  15. JoeC says:
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    Speaking of things that are doomed to fail (like the Injuns!), your projections for our “bet” are incomplete. I have you down for (with my picks in parentheses):

    AL East: Rays (BJs)
    AL Central: Tigers (Tigre)
    AL West: ? (Angelos)
    Wild Card1: Blue Jays (Rays)
    Wild Card2: ? (Mariners)

    NL East: Nats (Braves)
    NL Central: Reds (Cards)
    NL West: Giants (Dodgers)
    WildCard1: Braves (Nationals)
    WildCard2: Cards (Reds)

    Man-up, oh ye of the sky!

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @JoeC: Ha, ok let me fill in the question makrs:

      AL West is tough but if I had to choose a team I guess I’ll go with Oakland. I do think the pack has pulled back dramatically. The Angels pitching staff isn’t that impressive and Texas seems like a team that could struggle this year

      Wild Card2: White Sox; it’ll take Peavy and Sale staying healthy but I think it’s possible and I’m not all that thrilled about many other teams from the AL.

      There, I’ve show my manliness for the year. And I’m spent!

      • JoeC says:
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        @Sky: Take a nap, you’ll feel better.

        • Sky

          Sky says:
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          Cool just give me 30 minutes and I’ll be up and ready to go again…wait, what are we talking about

          • JoeC says:
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            @Sky: I’m currently in Vegas for the live draft for my main league. As is wont to happen in this shiny town, I met a pretty lady the first night I was here and we made beautiful love. Afterwards (which means after 5 minutes had passed!), she asked me “What are you gonna do the rest of the night?” It was about 3am at the time. I told her “I’m gonna go to sleep”. She got mad! What a party foul! Don’t the womenz realize it’s biological?! I need recovery time, baby!

            BTW, I am making one edit to my picks (don’t worry, I’m actually recording them!). I’ve decided to be brave and pick the Royals to win the Central, instead of the Tigers. I have to do this because the Tigers are stupid for giving Porcello a rotation spot over Smyly. Plus, it gave me a sad face and for that I must have revenge.

            I promise that will be my only edit. My picks are now locked in STONE (cold, austin).

            • Sky

              Sky says:
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              @JoeC: Wow, Royals over Los Tigres, eh? Sounds like there were two angry lovers in Vegas that night!

              I put mine in the carpet with wine so it’ll take me a bit to change yours but I’m with ya!

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