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Here’s what I wrote for Ryan Braun back in December when I wrote my top 10 for 2012 fantasy baseball:  1. Ryan Braun – Would I be happy to take Pujols third?  Oh, hecksfire.  I’ll bludgeon snitches for Pujols third.  Still doesn’t mean Pujols is first.  I’m not ranking Braun number one to be different than every Tom, Dick and Berry.  Braun’s gonna be 28 and he’s headed for a Hall of Fame career.  Pujols is a Latin 32.  The 1st base eligibility is nice, but outfield isn’t exactly stacked in 5 outfielder leagues.  I don’t think we’re going to get another season of 33 steals, but he steals 15 bases like a fat kid likes cake.  He gets little bumps and bruises, but he also hasn’t played in less than 150 games in his career (excluding his rookie year).  His average last year was on the high side, but he’s still a career .312 hitter.  Are you paying for an MVP year by taking him first?  Maybe, but his off year is better than 99% of players and he’s consistent.  Give me consistent and let me gamble later in the draft.  That’s not Rudy Gamble.  2012 Projections:  105/35/110/.310/15

That’s right.  I had written that before the suspension.  Then the drug test came and I put it away in my big virtual drawer of posts I’ll never use right next to my Elijah Dukes Fantasy Sleeper After Winning Humanitarian of the Year Award post.  It was done.  He was busted.  No one comes back from that– Well, you know the story.  Do I think it’s risky to take Braun first overall now?  Nope.  In fact, after all this mishegoss (The Hebrew Hammer will like me using that), I see Braun about to prove some snitches a thing or two about snitching.  My rankings are being updated as we speak.  As they said in the 90′s, Braun’s found serenity now:

131 Responses

  1. Donald Trump says:
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    Ryan Braun: 2012 Fantasy Schmowhawk.

  2. Disco says:
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    I am truly shocked. Still not gonna take Braun #1 overall on a Prince-less Brewers though. Give me a top-3 1B if you please.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Disco, Yeah, Braun at 30+/15+/.300+ is better…

  3. Steve says:
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    Interesting – sounds like the suspension was overturned on a technicality related to the testing process more than anything else.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Steve, So weird…. Wish it could read badly of Selig but it sounds like he didn’t like the verdict.

      • Steve says:
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        @Grey, Apparently MLB is furious about the whole thing. You could argue though that the testing process shouldn’t fall down on the basis that a courier doesn’t know the opening hours of his local depot.

        As for Braun he should thank his lucky stars and quietly go about his business.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          @Steve, Is that what the reason was for the overturning? (Sorry, I haven’t read anything other than it was overturned, just updated rankings.)

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              @Steve, Wow, that is so bonkers. That so sounds like a move the MLB would do, yet they’re not. It’s crazy.

              • Steve says:
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                @Grey, I could actually care less about the whole testosterone thing. It’s his t-shirts that are the real crime here.

                • Grey

                  Grey says:
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                  @Steve, I’d like to know if the collector put the sample right there next to his orange juice and yogurt.

  4. So…wait? Did you change your mind? IS THIS REAL LIFE?

    • @ChrisV82, Oh, I see, appeal won.

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        @ChrisV82, Yup

  5. junker23 says:
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    I’m fairly pissed. He was gonna be my savior on soooo many h2h teams this year.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @junker23, Huh?

      • thekingadrock says:
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        @Grey, he was gonna draft him late in the second and stash him. no more.

        • thekingadrock says:
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          @thekingadrock, i think?

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            @thekingadrock, Doubtful now…

            • junker23 says:
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              @Grey, Yup, that was the plan. Only real care about how good my team ends up for the playoffs for those leagues.

  6. jacks says:
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    Hey Grey: Keeper quandries. 12 max keepers but will have no more than 11 no matter what I do. $300 budget. Do I keep Zorilla for $19, of drop him cuz I can get Kipnis or Ultley for around $15 or under? I like Zo’s OF/2b eligibility, but is he too much at $19? And I have Marcum at $13 … I can still afford Anibal and Beachy at their likely $15 prices, but if I drop Meatball I can probably pick up Leubke or Moore for around $15 instead. No top 20 pitchers are gonna be available. I have Hamels and Hanson as definite keepers. I have Tulo as my MI keeper. I guess cuz it’s a keeper league i should look towards the future and exchange someone like zorilla for kipinis, marcum for moore etc?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @jacks, I’d want Moore, Marcum, Utley, Zobrist… Your question is confusing though…

  7. Trevor

    Tggq21 says:
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    Looks like we need a war room update as well. BLACK N YELLOW

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Tggq21, Black n yellow! It’s on JD to do that, not my thing.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Tggq21, You should ask him in his post.

      • Trevor

        tggq21 says:
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        @Grey, Will do. If I knew how I would but that thing scares me. I think Fred updated War Room every week or two before the Opening Day. That would be cool if he could do the same.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          @tggq21, Email Simply Fred and tell him to get on it!

    • tHe sHiT says:
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      @Grey, They all look fine to me. I finally got a new computer, the big 27″ iMac desktop. Pretty sweet. Gonna get it hooked up to the internet within the next couple of days. I am so stoked for fantasy baseball season, that is the number one reason why i got the computer. (Just dont tell my gf, shhh.)

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        @tHe sHiT, Great thanks! Congrats on the new hardware, excellent choice.

        • Dexter says:
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          @Grey, Top 100 has two #12s

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            @Dexter, Thanks!

  8. Daniel says:
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    The top tier should now be “the top 5″ instead of top 4. That’s if you still have that tier ending with bautista

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Daniel, Good call…

  9. Tom says:
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    Is it just me or is no one worried about him getting anything to hit now that fielder is gone… Grey I would love to hear your thoughts on his “protection”

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Tom, I like what Rudy said in this post:

      http://razzball.com/what-is-ryan-braun-worth-in-2012/

      R/RBI would seem to be the most impacted (by Prince’s departure) but they vary so much anyway. Look at Prince Fielder’s RBI the last 4 years: 102, 140, 83, 120. And the 83 year was when Rickie Weeks managed 160 games while the 140 RBI year Weeks played 37.

      • JoeC says:
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        @Grey, Not to mention that ARam, assuming health, is not a bad hitter at all.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          @JoeC, True

  10. theguarantee says:
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    Would you still rank him #1 in a 3 OF league? If not, whereabouts?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @theguarantee, Still the first tier… I wouldn’t hate you if you went a 1B first…

    • james d says:
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      @theguarantee, I put him 3 in 3OF leagues, for whatever that’s worth to you

      Pujols 1 Miggy 2

  11. xxxthetoadxxx says:
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    Ive asked before but things have changed now. I need to keep 6 guys. C, 1b, 2b, ss, 3b, ci, infield, 4 of, util.

    Bautista
    Braun
    Cano
    Cargo
    J Up
    Fielder
    Votto

    Do you boot out Fielder (CI) or Cargo (3rd OF)?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @xxxthetoadxxx, Fielder…

      • xxxthetoadxxx says:
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        @Grey, it seems so crazy to be throwing away Fielder in a keeper. But Votto is great and I can find a good CI and not a good OF later, right?

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          @xxxthetoadxxx, As crazy at is, yeah… You have good power from Bautista, Cano, Upton, Votto and Braun… Some power/speed in CarGo wouldn’t be bad.

          • xxxthetoadxxx says:
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            @Grey, the next ranked player getting thrown back is Jennings so blah. But thanks!

    • Skeptic says:
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      @xxxthetoadxxx, Have you talked to your leaguemate about expanding your league to three (or more) teams?

      • xxxthetoadxxx says:
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        @Skeptic, we are a 10 man now, but doing keepers is tough when you add teams. Dont ask why everyone insisted on trading me good players last year.

        • Skeptic says:
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          @xxxthetoadxxx, Haha bully to you, sir! I like your chances this season. I would be concerned that your league dissolves after this year due to competition issues though…

          • xxxthetoadxxx says:
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            @Skeptic, if you can believe it, we have been going strong since 2000. Wish me luck!

            • Skeptic says:
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              @xxxthetoadxxx, Fwiw I don’t think I’ve ever seen a situation where luck was less necessary… :p

              (good luck all the same because you seem like a nice guy :))

              • xxxthetoadxxx says:
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                @Skeptic, guys can always have a bad week. I lost in the finals to an awful team 2 years ago. But thank you.

  12. jacks says:
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    Sorry, too many conditionals in my first question. To simplify, in an auction Keepers league how would u rank by value:
    1) Marcum $13, Moore (probably $18), Anibal (prob $14), Leubke (prob $13), Beachy (prob $16). I have Hanson and Hamels as keepers.

    2) Zobrist $19, Utley (prob $19), Kipnis (prob $14), Uggla (prob $17), Rollins (prob $15). I have Tulo already at MI.

    Thanks as always! Nice day here in socal huh?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @jacks, Beautiful day… 1) Beachy, Anibal, Moore, Leubke… 2) Uggla, Utley, Zobrist, Rollins…

  13. Bourne says:
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    You did write this before Fielder signed to Detroit. Braun is votto plus a few sb. That is why hr should be 3rd.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Bourne, Huh?

      • Bourne says:
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        @Grey, My Fiance keeps telling me my phone is smarter than me. Eh.

        Anyway. Was trying to say I see Braun as a Votto plus a few SBs. So I can’t see him above Cabrera and Pujols. But the tiers are supposed to be interchangeable, right?

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          @Bourne, Oh! Yeah, I see what you’re saying now. Yeah, guys within tiers are interchangeable. Braun is Votto plus some steals, but Votto is at 1st base so it’s Braun above him, but only by a tad.

  14. Ned Shakeshaft says:
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    How’s about a good draft pairing for Braun? Similar to Kemp’s perhaps?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Ned Shakeshaft, Yeah, but better average and better power… He goes with anyone, but no outfielder…

      • Ned Shakeshaft says:
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        @Grey, yeah I hear you loud and clear on that. In my main mixed draft last year I went Braun/Kemp, then grabbed Beltre plus …Morneau. Euchred.

  15. Disco says:
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    MLB is apparently considering challenging the ruling via litigation… don’t know if this is the last of this story yet or not. I highly doubt they’ll get anything done before the start of the season, but suppose they get it overturned yet again eventually and Braun is all of a sudden out 50 games in the middle of the season?

    • Skeptic says:
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      @Disco, Fwiw unless the arbitration was somehow nonbinding or the arbitration clause in the collective bargaining agreement was unenforceble as a matter of contract law or some other contract formation issue or some sort of fraud in the process, that litigation is going nowhere.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Disco, I agree with Skeptic. If anything the MLB should say, you know what we screwed up, our great star, Braun, is fine. But Selig’s an idiot, so who knows?

  16. SwaggerJackers says:
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    1) Got off on a technicality so he may have been on PEDs after all
    2) Has Mat Gamel instead of Prince Fielder in the lineup
    3) Has added pressure to perform from the media and fans

    Add them up and that means there’s no way I’d take him first overall.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @SwaggerJackers, Eh, and Miggy’s a drunk and Pujols has a new league and bad elbow tendons and Votto hits line drives and not home runs…

      • SwaggerJackers says:
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        @Grey, Good point. I don’t want any of those guys either. Stanton time!

    • JoeC says:
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      @SwaggerJackers, Also has Aramis Ramirez vs. Casey McGehee in the lineup, so that makes up some for the Fielder/Gamel deficit.

  17. Tony says:
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    some are making way too much of the “no protection/no prince”

    They did get Aramis ramirez, braun was a good hitter because he’s BRAUN, not just because there’s a guy behind him, in front of him in the line up. Could his stats dip a little, SURE, but enough to warrant him anything other than top 5? No way. #1 overall? I dont know. I’d still rather go with miggy or Pujols.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Tony, Agreed

  18. BamBam says:
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    Hi Grey. Teaches those super-early draft leagues a lesson…

    Trade question.
    $260 6×6: 5×5 + TB & K/BB. OBP replaces AVG
    Keepers go up $3 per season. Prices are for this season.

    Been offered:
    His $32 J Upton
    For my $4 Beachy & $8 Kennedy

    My concern is that I don’t know what pitching will be avail in the draft and if I’d be able to afford it to reach the numbers these two starters would have put up. Thoughts?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @BamBam, I’d hold…

  19. Awesomus Maximus

    Awesomus Maximus says:
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    I’m no Braun apologist, but let me play devil’s advocate for a moment:

    Let’s suppose Braun was not using any PEDs. He gives a sample, it tests positive, immediately demands another test (which is negative), and then he (or his camp) finds out that the first test’s sample was sitting in Puck’s refrigerator for two days. And why was it there… because a guy whose job it is to transfer things to and fro doesn’t know what FedEx’s hours of operation are?

    I’m not saying I think the above story is what happened… I’m just saying that the “he got off on a technicality” does not prove his guilt. There is a reason why those technicalities exist (it’s to protect innocent people, by the way, not to get guilty people off the hook).

    • Cheese

      Cheese says:
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      @Awesomus Maximus, If you’re suggesting evidence can be tampered with, those samples are kept sealed until they reach the lab.

      • Awesomus Maximus

        Awesomus Maximus says:
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        @Cheese, I didn’t suggest anything. I just said that there’s a reason why the “technicality” of getting the sample to the testing facility in a timely manner is in place and must be enforced.

        • Cheese

          Cheese says:
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          @Awesomus Maximus, Oh ok, I completely agree with that then. I highly doubt the evidence was tampered with, or changed in substance, but I definitely agree that protocol must be followed.

          • Awesomus Maximus

            Awesomus Maximus says:
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            @Cheese, Exactly… gotta’ follow the rules.

  20. Awesomus Maximus

    Awesomus Maximus says:
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    To save face, Selig should release a statement that Braun did not participate in any Winter League games, so he’s counting those as him serving out his suspension. Time served… welcome back Ryan and Manny!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Awesomus Maximus, I think Selig should just say he agrees with the decision and stop denigrating one of his top stars.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Awesomus Maximus, Selig is in a bit of a no win situation though.

      • Awesomus Maximus

        Awesomus Maximus says:
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        @Grey, Judging by history, then, he’ll throw up his hands and call it a tie.

        But yeah, this is one time I don’t envy his position in the slightest. Donuts to coffee (I don’t know what that means), I’d just say I’m disappointed that the correct protocol wasn’t followed, but this issue is too serious to allow any room for error… and leave it at that.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          @Awesomus Maximus, Yeah, agreed. Man’s life and name are at stake, you don’t mess with that or let a stoned FedEx guy put his urine in with the produce, as the case may be. In this case, shoot the messenger.

  21. Wake Up says:
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    Yessssssssssssssss!!!!!!!!!!!!

  22. Wake Up says:
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    keepah league hey!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Wake Up, Nice!

  23. drew says:
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    What if Braun was using PEDs and now he stops and his production drops? Is this feasible?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @drew, He’s not an old guy, was he using it his entire time in the majors? Can’t he just use better, undetectable drugs? Maybe his production drops, but lots of what ifs.

  24. PWNightmare says:
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    It’s not too often that a YouTube link is found on this blog. Serenity now.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @PWNightmare, Yee-haw!

  25. Hats For Bats says:
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    @Grey – can you name a few SP/RP eligible middle relievers to consider drafting for deeper leagues with pitching heavy stats?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Hats For Bats, Can you give me some possibles to choose from?

  26. Bombo Rivera says:
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    I’m scraping the bottom of the barrel in a 2-catcher keeper league. I’d just use your rankings, but it uses OBP instead of average.

    Perez? I like him the best overall (especially in a keeper), but I believe he walked 4 times last year.
    Doumit? He will be the Twins’ primary DH. I’m not sure if that’s a good or a bad thing. His OBP will probably be better than Perez’s.
    Ruiz? The best OBP of the bunch, but other than that, not very exciting.
    Suzuki? I don’t like Kurt Suzuki.

    Who do I go with first?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Bombo Rivera, Doumit, Perez, Ruiz… In that order…

  27. whampwhamp says:
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    why do you hate kemp this year?

    • Wake Up says:
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      @whampwhamp, his stache is related to Rihanna…

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @whampwhamp, Why’d you hate him last year?

  28. Paul says:
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    In a keeper league (standard yahoo, but only 1 util). I have Braun and Tulo. Need to keep 2 of the following; Aramis Ram, Victorino, M. Young.

    I will also be keeping Ike Davis and Avila.

    • Harry Caray's Kid says:
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      @Paul: i vote for Aramis (3b pool gets fugly quick) and Victorino (OF pool gets fuglier quicker)…..i feel 2B has good depth

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Paul, Agree^

      • Paul says:
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        @Grey,

        I just got offered Rickie Weeks for Young. I can now keep 2 of Aramis, Victorino, or Weeks (should I choose to trade Young for Weeks)

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          @Paul, Aramis and Victorino still…

  29. Harry Caray's Kid says:
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    alright, with Braun back in play at the top of drafts, I have a predicament. am joining a 10-team keeper league (4 keepers per squad, roto, no MI/CI, 3 OF: rf/cf/lf) with another guy via mini-draft of the players from the two teams we’re replacing. I have 1st pick in mini, giving me picks 1, 4, 5, 8.

    Players on the table: Braun, Pujols, Longo, Fielder, Pedroia, Cruz, Felix, Sabbathia, Greinke

    Prior to Braun being cleared, my strategy was to grab Longo 1st and hope for Fielder & Braun at 4th/5th picks. I also like Grey’s take on getting Longo wherever you can given the 3B pool. Is it crazy to take Longo 1st, even with Braun available and legitimate? Or do I take Braun and deal with the likelihood of not getting Longo on the turn around?

    any thoughts/comments would be appreciated gents

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Harry Caray’s Kid, I’d take Braun then hopefully Longoria…

      • Harry Caray's Kid says:
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        @Grey: much obliged

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          @Harry Caray’s Kid, No problem…

  30. Wake Up says:
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    I’m listening to Braun right now…either he really didn’t do it or he is one hell of an actor…

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Wake Up, He does act like he likes his t-shirt line.

      • Wake Up says:
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        @Grey, Ha. So does Rampage…and he proved that he can’t act!

  31. Wake Up says:
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    The Lloyd Braun montage was classic!
    Serenity now! The Affliction, still to come…

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Wake Up, It’s gold, Wake Up, gold!

      • Wake Up says:
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        @Grey, I was in a Seinfeld based FBB league a couple years ago. SS was stop short, not shortstop.
        my team name = Mr Pitt’s Sox…we won it all because we were comfortable and stayed up!

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          @Wake Up, That’s awesome… Did everyone draft with their shirts off?

          • Wake Up says:
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            @Grey, We all wore mansierres. And everyone’s first round draft pick was Billy Butler.

            • larryjoebird says:
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              @Wake Up, It’s the “Bro” not the mansierre.

  32. Kel says:
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    Grey, i’m in a 12 team roto 5of, 1util, obp league. I picked 10th and i ended up with – c- sal perez, 1b- lind, 2b- uggla, ss- aybar, 3b- longoria, of- cargo, bruce, berkman, heyward, ad jones, util- perralta, sp- sabathia, latos, beachy, leubke, an sanchez, sc baker, rp- street, farnsworth, j johnson, balfour, guerra, fuentes. Do you think I did ok? where do you think I can improve? much thanks!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Kel, I think your pitching is too strong, which hurt your hitting. You might hit .260 and you look pretty light on speed.

  33. Grey

    Grey says:
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    Drafting our first team and I just drafted Morneau… BLARGH!

    • Steve says:
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      @Grey, You better be well into it.

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        @Steve, He went for $7 and I was in the bathroom. Was a Rudy bid.

        • Steve says:
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          @Grey, Damn Point Shares!

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            @Steve, Tell me about it…

            • Steve says:
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              @Grey, AL only?

              • Grey

                Grey says:
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                @Steve, Yup

                • Steve says:
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                  @Grey, You literally pissed away $7.

                  • Grey

                    Grey says:
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                    @Steve, Exactly

                    • Steve says:
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                      @Grey, Are either of you guys at the auction or is it online?

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      @Steve, Both on the online draft…

  34. joe from point pleasant says:
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    @Grey:

    Hey Grey, what’s up? Hope the stash is doin well.

    So I need to make a decision on my first round pick in my 12 team H2H points keeper league.

    I decided to go with a SP, and here are the choices i’m between:
    Brandon Beachy
    Max Scherzer
    Yu Darvish

    I’m having a really tough time with this decision, so i figured who better to ask than my mom. She picked Beachy because she likes the beach. Seemed like a decent enough reason, but ultimately, i decided to ask the MANNN.

    But unfortunately John Stamos didn’t pick up.. Now I am asking you, the sultan of stash. Who would you take out of those three SP in a keeper league?

    Thanks!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @joe from point pleasant, Thanks, it is doing well. Beachy…

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @joe from point pleasant, Plus, your last name is a beach community.

  35. Grey

    Grey says:
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    ****THERE’S A NEW POST****

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