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Jay Bruce has hit four homers in the last four days while hitting over .500 in the last week.  Now has 22 homers in only 74 hits with 73 Ks to go along with 3 steals.  I never thought Mark Reynolds would steal 24 bases.  I didn’t think he had 15 in him.  So, don’t take this comparison the wrong way, but Mark Reynolds is lucky he snatched up the Mini Donkey nickname because Jay Bruce looks like he could be headed that way next year.  Bruce is still very young, and his propensity to strikeout leaves him vulnerable to big slumps, so I won’t predict a huge breakout in 2010.   But he can hit 30 homers and steal 10 bases while batting .250.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Homer Bailey – 7 IP, 1 ER, 7 Ks.  Now we’re getting to the point where he might actually be touted by the analcysts over at ESPN, which would mean his 2010 sleeper status could be in jeopardy.

Rick Porcello – 6 1/3 IP, 1 ER.  He was in the borderline starters post for this week with a very mild recommendation.

Denard Span – 4-for-9 in the doubleheader.  Quietly having a very solid year.  Those Minnesotans are so modest!  He needs a spokesman.  His Wikipedia page is a third the size of the Wikipedia page for mutton.  He needs the mutton man!  His numbers are looking a lot like Victorino’s.  Let’s see, someone already has the nickname, Feign Victorino.  (I think I gave it to Fowler.)  So, Victorino’s The Flying Hawaiian.  Maybe The Flying Twinkie?  Hmm… That needs work.  Maybe The Flying Minnesotan?  Hmm, that sounds like someone on a roller derby team.  How about Wing Span?  Too cutesy?  Yeah, probably.  Forget it, this is a job for the mutton man.

Josh Hamilton – Shutdown for the season.  Back date this to April.

Mark Buehrle – Also shutdown for the season.  Back date this to his perfect game.

Jack Wilson – Lastly, shutdown for the year.  Back date this to the day he was drafted.

Ian Desmond – 2-for-4, HR and a steal yesterday.  He hit the longest homer (460 feet, which was not this homer, but I just heard this yesterday) for any Nationals player at home this year.  This is a team with Paul Bunyan aka Big Donkey aka Adam Dunn on it.  Ian Desmond’s a shortstop.  You ready for a math problem?  Come on, I hear Winnie Cooper from The Wonder Years loves math.  Okay, here it is:  A shortstop that can hit a ball 460 feet + speed = Fantasy Sleeper.

Cameron Maybin – Speaking of fast guys with sneaky power, Maybin has two homers in the past 4 games.  I was pushing him last March for a reason, and I’ll be pushing him again next March.

J.A. Happ – 5 2/3 IP, 3 ER, 6 Ks.  He has a 2.85 ERA on the year with 12 wins.  Is he generating Rookie of the Year buzz?  Is there such a thing as Rookie of the Year buzz?

Ryan Madson – 2 IP, 0 ER and his 10th save.  On Sunday, he got a four out save.  Manuel’s finally figured out how to make the set-up man comfortable in the closing role.  Start him in the 8th inning.

Huston Street – 1 IP, 3 ER.  Maybe he’s still injured?  I don’t know, that’s why I put a question mark on it.

Trevor Cahill – 4 2/3 IP, 6 ER as the A’s continue to flummox me.  I might need to reach out to Bubb Rubb to see if he can counsel me.

Tony Gwynn – Has 4 steals in the last week.  SAGNOF!

Cesar Ramos – 5 IP, 1 ER.  The latest HodgePadre.  Okay, close your eyes for a second.  Don’t worry, I won’t pickpocket you.  Now imagine Adrian Gonzalez is traded to the Rockies for Ubaldo Jimenez.

Miguel Montero – 2 HRs.  Speaking of trades, hopefully the Diamondbacks move Snyder this offseason.

Scott Kazmir – Scratched to ready himself for the playoffs.  He probably won’t see anything more than a tuneup before the end of the season.

Curtis Granderson – 2 HRs with the 2nd being his 30th.  He also has 20 steals.  Sure, his average is .252, but don’t get so tied up in average.  That’s how you ended up missing Mark Reynolds this year.

Grant Balfour - Now has saves in back-to-back games.  This could mean he doesn’t see another save this year, or it could mean he saves two more games.

Wade Davis – 7 IP, 1 ER.  He’s still going to be too young and prone to major mistakes in the AL East for me to get that excited about him in 2010.

Adam Lind – 3 HRs yesterday.  Now has 35 homers on the year.  I already went over my Lind for 2010 campaign.

Clay Buchholz – Had a 3.21 ERA coming in, now has a 3.74 ERA.  7 earned runs in 5 innings is one way to make your 2009 stats look worse than they are.

Josh Beckett – Supposed to start on Saturday.  I wouldn’t be surprised to see him pitch 5 innings and then get pulled from the game.  Or as Dodgers fans say, “A Kershaw start.”

Edwin Encarnacion – Out with groin tightness.  Sounds like an injury that would sideline a porn actress.

From Around The Web

  1. royce! says:
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    How about the Spanish Fly?

  2. royce! says:
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    Oh and SONAVABENCH!!!!: started Buck (0-4) over Bengie (2-4, 2 HR). But at least I came up with “Spanish Fly”!

  3. TheGreatVeto says:
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    That’s funny that you compare Span to Victorino. I replaced Victorino with Span mid-way through the season after I traded him for pitching help, and he quietly outperformed him the rest of the way. He does it at an unnoticed rate.

    As for a name… the Unloved Twin from Minn? Eh, I tried

  4. Steve says:
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    You can add Duensing to Cahill and Buchholz.

    A veritable tsunami of earned runs, if you will.

  5. Big Mike says:
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    @Grey: you told me to grab Montero. But NOOOOO… I had to wait one more day and watch Olivo get a DNP.

  6. winnawinnachickendinna says:
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    agon in COL would be great, but ubaldo in petco with NO AGON, ehhhh…. i agree tho, agon needs out, san diego sucks…

    @Big Mike: i’ve been holding both monterero and olivio, if whoever in the earlier game is in I put them in, if not i swap in the other guy, deep bench daily transactions league…. its been working beautifully… if ones much hotter, keep him in, haha….

  7. Tony says:
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    @grey- so Lind hits his 35th, we were hoping he’d stop, he’ll officially be HYPED next year… would you rather have Lind in the 3rd to early 4th round or Carlos Quentin in the 5th to early 6th round? To me they seem like very similar players (other than CQ needs to stay healthy, which is a big concern)…. and are you still thinking Lind’s a 3rd rounder? 12 teamer?

    Where do you see Markakis falling in drafts too after this semi-disappointing season for where he was drafted….? Guys like CHOO were better or similar and drafted 10 rounds later….

    thanks

  8. Antrim Warriors says:
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    What’s the deal with Dusty not playing Stubbs!?

  9. VanHammersly says:
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    Bubb Rubb: “That’s only in the mornin’. ‘Posed to be up cookin’ breakfast or somebody, an’ so, [razzball]’s like an alarm clock!”

  10. Big Mike says:
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    @Grey: I’m in full streaming mode with just days to go in H2H championship round. What do you think of Gorzelanny in Thurs’ grudge match against the Pirates?

    @Grey and @Tony: Bigger question is who is 2010’s CHOO (a.k.a., earned dramatic increase in quality AB in ’09 for ’10)?

  11. big o says:
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    @ Grey :
    winnie’s friend , corky , called … he likes minnesoarin’ .

  12. Lines says:
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    Any day’s a good day, if you can work in a good Jack Wilson joke.

  13. Denard Span nickname suggestions:

    – The Low Key Twinkie

    – Denard Dawg – for all The Office fans – http://tylerstanton.com/2009/02/15/the-nard-dog/

    – The FlySpan HawaiiSpan

    – Span The Man

    – Denardest Working Man in Minnesota

    – The Man of Nard

    – Chronicles of Denardia

    – Victorino’s Denardleganger

  14. airlifting says:
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    in the voice of lester freamon….”i dooo believeeee” mark buehrle is starting game 2 of the double header today.

  15. stumanji says:
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    @Rudy Gamble: Denard Dawg…AWESOME.

    Also, I dropped Montero for Olivo on 9/21 and this is what he’s done for me: 1 R, 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0 SB, .167 Avg, .500 OPS, and a whole bunch of DNPs. Just picked Montero back up, so Olivo will prob go bonkers.

  16. Tony says:
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    @Antrim Warriors: its annoying me, the dude was mashing and stealing (sounds like a B&E)….

    @Big Mike: i’d go with guys like fowler, robot jones, mccutchen, carlos gonazalez…. all of them might even, actually yes they do, have more upside than choo…. choo was a nice late rounder tho, nothing like a 20/20 .300 hitter in the 15th round on….

  17. Tony says:
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    choo- 19hr/20sb over 568 ABS!

    cargo has 12hr 16 sb in 265 AB’s and plays @ coors, bonus

    fowler- 4 hrs/ 27 sbs over 400+ ab’s

    robotJ- 21hrs/ 10 sb in just under 300 abs (he’s 6’4″ and 245lbs WOW)

    mccutchen- 12 hrs/ 17 sb’s over 417 AB’s….

    The more i just looked into them the more I like ALL FOUR…. wow especially cargo for his home turf and limited ab’s and robot for his power potential, he could hit 30 easy?

  18. Ben says:
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    Who’s a better keeper for next year: Cameron Maybin or Dexter Fowler?

  19. Tony says:
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    @Ben: i think i’d rather have Fowler, maybin has only taken about 150 big league AB’s, and he’s struggled… i’m not sure what maybins power outlook is, but fowlers seems like he’s going to be a 10-15 HR guy and 40 sb’s, victorino’esque…. ? AGAIN fowler plays at COORS, with a good young crew developing around him, tulo, cargo, seth smith, etc…. next year could be a big year for rockies players.

  20. Razzin says:
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    Anyone know what happened with Kazmir’s scheduled start against TEX yesterday? Is he shut down?

  21. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @royce!: The Spanish Fly…. That’s not bad.

    @TheGreatVeto: Eh

    @Steve: I think you picked the worst day to grab two of my borderline starters and you grabbed the worst two. Not sure I’d get on a plane with you and and Papa Smurf from the forums.

    @Big Mike: That sucks.

    @Tony: Lind seems to me like a 4-5th rounder. Guy that could give you 35 homers, but you’re not totally safe with him. Markakis will probably be around the 7th-8th round.

    @Antrim Warriors: Dusty’s a moron.

    @VanHammersly: Ha!

    @Hamburgler Mijares: Hmm… I nicknamed Mike Moustakas and Kila Ka’aihue The The Spam Kebab.

    @Rudy Gamble: You are the mutton man! Denard Dawg!

    @airlifting: Hmmm… Really? I got misinformation then. Don’t blame me, blame AP.

    @Tony: Yup, I’m liking all of them too. Hard to argue with a possible 30 from the Robot when he’s hit 21 in such a limited time.

    @Ben: Fowler

    @Razzin: In the above roundup.

  22. Tony says:
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    @Grey: ya 3rd round on LIND is too early in my eyes for next year. 4th to 5th sounds about right, hopefully…. I doubt markakis slips to the 7th or 8th, he should but on name alone you watch he’ll go in at least the 5th… people are just hoping/praying he’s got more power and speed than he really does… 25/25 is his max and 20/20 is more likely IFFFFF he can get to 20 steals, because he’s at 17 HRS (weak) and 5!!!!! STEALS right now (WEAK SAUCE!)

    Plus last year he walked 99 times, this year 53? Major slide, i’m pretty sure he wont be on my team next year because he’s still gonna go higher than where he should.

  23. penpen says:
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    Best shot at a win today:

    Penny, Shields, Lannan, Hammel, Smoltz, Pavano?

    Wow what a godawful selection, but that’s what I’m working with.

  24. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Tony: Agreed on Markakis. Doubtful I’ll own him next year.

    @penpen: Shields

  25. Tony says:
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    @Grey: thank you for saying shields, now be right…. i need 7 strong.

  26. Tony says:
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    wedge fired by the indians! thank god…. can we get someone good now… can the front office go with wedge too?

  27. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Tony: Luckily for you, Dusty has a job.

  28. Tony says:
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    @Grey: LOL ya i dont want dusty coming in and killing all our pitchers arms, he can stay down in the nasty….

    maybe we can bring back borowski or eric plunk to manage? LOL two names that give me chills….

  29. Prince says:
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    Denard Dog! Awesome….

    Similar list, but I can choose 2, maybe 3 —

    Penny, Shields, Lannan, Hammel, Arroyo, Smoltz, Pavano, Holland

    Thanks

  30. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Prince: Shields, Arroyo, Smoltz…

  31. To my mind Grey is one of the more acute baseball commentators. This is valuable to know because baseball fans are awash in commentary. Everybody has a quick opinion.

    That said, Grey’s view on Miguel Tejada yesterday was knee-jerk:

    “At 13 homers, 5 steals and a .313 average, he’s been one of the biggest surprises this year for me. Since those numbers aren’t that overwhelming, you can imagine how much I expected of him this year.”

    Sure, just look at homers and steals and average if you wish. But other information is available including the fact that Tejada has 45 doubles, 82 RBI, and 80 runs (and those 192 hits).

    If you accept those numbers you have to praise him more than what Grey did–especially when you consider how cheaply Tejada could be had at auctions or drafts. Thanks to generic “expert” advice Tejada has been greatly undervalued for years.

    Now I am not suggesting that you build a team around Tejada. But for the right team, with strengths elsewhere, Tejada is nothing but a PLUS. Not a superstar anymore but a legitimate PLUS.

    If Stephen Drew had Miguel Tejada’s numbers you’d all be wiggin’ out.

    Moral: Don’t underrate certain players just because it’s trendy to do so. Or do so at your own loss.

    MAS

  32. Grey is one of the more acute baseball commentators.

    That said, Grey’s view on Miguel Tejada yesterday was knee-jerk:

    “At 13 homers, 5 steals and a .313 average, he’s been one of the biggest surprises this year for me. Since those numbers aren’t that overwhelming, you can imagine how much I expected of him this year.”

    Sure, just look at homers and steals and average if you wish. But other information is available including the fact that Tejada has 45 doubles, 82 RBI, and 80 runs (and those 192 hits).

    Also consider how cheaply Tejada could be had at auctions or drafts. Thanks to generic “expert” advice Tejada has been greatly undervalued for years.

    Now I am not suggesting that you build a team around Tejada. But for the right team, with strengths elsewhere, Tejada is nothing but a PLUS.

    If Stephen Drew had Miguel Tejada’s numbers you’d all be wiggin’ out.

    MAS

  33. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Smirnoff: You’re right his Runs, RBIs and average were helpful. Fair enough, but 13 homers and 5 steals aren’t good. Tony Gwynn had 4 steals last week alone. I’d take Clint Barmes with his 23 homers, 12 steals and lackluster average over Tejada.

  34. zombie says:
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    Would you recommend a start of Morrow @ home versus the o-so-dangerous A’s? Or, would Lannan versus the Metropolitains be a better option? Or would neither (as none of the above were listed on your Borderline Starters list) be most advisable? Thanks.

  35. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @zombie: I’d go with neither, but Morrow over Lannan.

  36. TheGreatVeto says:
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    Most of my starts are done, so I’m dumping them for relief pitchers who could get me K’s and possibly W or 2. I already picked up Affeldt and Neftali. Any other suggestions?

  37. Tony says:
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    GREY-

    where would you take JUSTIN UPTON in a 12 team H2H league next year (total redraft)? We’re starting a new 3 year contract league, keep 2 at years end….

  38. Tony says:
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    is J-UP worthy of a second round spot…. i’m thinking NO, and that he’ll be there in the 3rd or 4th for sure……

  39. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Well, you’d better fold up your tray, return your seat to the upright position and strap on that oxygen mask, because I have 6 raggedy-assed losers going today.

  40. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Tony: Early 3rd round. Probably even reach for him a bit earlier in that league because of the contract.

  41. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: I threw 8 guys on Sunday in one league and got 5 Wins and a Tillman disaster.

  42. Steve says:
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    @Grey: I’d throw more but I’m clinging to some irrational hope that I can catch the next guy in saves.

  43. Tony says:
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    @Grey: cool, if i could get him 3rd or 4th round then i would have the option to sign him if he outperforms one of my first two picks…..

  44. Tony says:
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    Its looking like I’ll draft 12th next year and be the champ this year so i’m hoping for a KEMP/FIELDER or KEMP/POWER combo on the turn in my draft then maybe a TULO/J-UP combo in the 3rd and 4th rounds coming back…. I’m pretty sure by the time the hype on kemp comes out he’ll be going around pick #7 and i’ll be screwed though. I’ve already seen debates on taking him over BRAUN, thats not good.

  45. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Tony: Kemp might but probably won’t be there at 12, unfortunately.

  46. Mister Flakowski says:
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    Although wouldn’t groin tightness be a good (if not rare) condition for a pornographic actress?

  47. Steve says:
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    Is there anything more futile than begging the Nationals for some run support?

  48. GTS says:
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    What kind of numbers should we expect from Desmond next year?

  49. Elijah says:
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    @Grey:

    Eh, I think I said 15-20 steals for Reynolds at the start of the year. 24 was a bit much to expect tho yeah. But Gibby is a good guy to learn from and steals are less about speed than about want-to-ness. And Mark has a lot of want-to.

  50. Steve says:
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    According to an exploding post-it note, Weaver is not starting tonight.

    Which is annoying to me.

  51. Elijah says:
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    @Grey:

    As far as Snyder goes, not sure hes even under contract with Az for next year hmm. Either way, MM has answered the only real question left, whether he can hit lefties, and he will start 100+ next year. That HR into the Cove last nite was a thing of beauty.

  52. Steve says:
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    @Steve: Apparently not.

  53. Vince says:
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    12 teams, H2H, 5×5, Championship matchup

    Please pick one SP for Thursday and one for Friday (I know these are not great options, but I just need Wins and Ks) :

    Thursday :
    Parra @ Col
    Mock @ Atl
    Felipe Paulino @ Phi

    Friday :
    Liriano vs KC
    Snell vs Tex
    West @ Phi
    Purcey @ Bal
    Lehr vs Pit
    Looper @ StL
    Buckner @ ChC
    Gio Gonzalez vs LAA

  54. big o says:
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    watching yuniesky betancourt fly out to center vs the yankees tonight reminds me of what a worthlesss piece of crap he is …..
    for not coming to the aid of gus dominguez .
    shame … shame .

  55. CocoPoolies says:
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    May 17, a day that will live in infamy (5 days before the Razzball headline, but way after the first mention of the man), the day I picked up Ben Zobrist.

    The Zo is putting my fantasy team on his shoulders and dragging us towards the finish line.

  56. big o says:
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    @Steve:
    following your exploits here .
    am in a quite similar situation .
    went to work today , starting both lannan and morrow in an attempt to approach 1550 innings .
    my six starters go friday .
    after lannan’s 7 today , i’m at 1537 .
    have to monitor my closers closely tonight and tommorow , as a guy is only behind me by one .
    am hoping for a 6 inning win for morrow vs my beloved A’s tonight .

    @ anyone :
    was hoping to pitch tony pena in the 2nd half of the double-header .
    why won’t yahoo let me ??

  57. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Mister Flakowski: Hmm…I see your point. I was thinking… Eh, it’s better left unsaid.

    @GTS: Maybe 12/20, but he needs a job. Hard to say right now.

    @Elijah: Want-to-ness, true.

    @Vince: Thursday — None? Parra… Friday — None? Purcey.

  58. penpen says:
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    Nolasco has faced 15 batters through 5 innings and struck out 12 of them… and he’s got a streak of nine in a row going at the moment (!!!)

  59. Vince says:
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    @Grey: Lol yeah I know those are ugly choices but my ERA and WHIP is already through the roof, so I need to win Wins and Ks (we’re tied in wins and I only have a couple more Ks than him).

    Thanks

  60. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:
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    @Grey: “Now imagine Adrian Gonzalez is traded to the Rockies for Ubaldo Jimenez.” Not sure what that wet spot in my pocket is.

  61. Vince says:
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    I need a SS to fill in for Hanley tomorrow . Michael Young @ LAA or Orlando Cabrera @ Detroit? I coul use some Runs and AVG help, and both could give me some so I’m torn lol

  62. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:
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    RE: Bruce. That 30 HR, 10 SB line is pretty tantalyzing. Easily attainable (at least the HRs) given his 08 PASB (the weaker half) of: 15 hr, 2 SB in 64 games. The rest of the story though is only 9 2B and 18 BB. .244 AVG/.300 OBP/.468 SLG not good enough overall. Maybe he improves over that 2nd half. But, I need more than one week of late season performance.

  63. penpen says:
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    wowwwww Ronny Paulino ftw.

  64. TheGreatVeto says:
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    @penpen: I overthought this afternoon and benched Nolasco minutes before the game started…. that pretty much cost me the championship. Wade Davis better get 20 K’s and a W this sunday

  65. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:
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    @Simply Fred: Not totally down on Bruce. The 30 HR will be legit. However, in 08 Reynolds had 11 SB and 2 CS. Given the success he was having, not surprising he jumped to 24 this year. Bruce had 4 SB and 6 CS in 08. In 09 he has 3 SB and 3 CS. Low number of 2B supports lack of speed. Can’t see SBs above single digits.

  66. I'm Keith Hernandez says:
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    For Sunday mass spot start, needs k’s and wins most importantly. Please rank the following

    Kuroda, Maquis, Feldman, Romero, Duensing, Pineiro, Narveson, Mujica

    thanks for all the help this year!

  67. Mr Baseball says:
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    Ian Desmond – picked him up on Sep 11 6:22pm Ian Desmond (Was – 2B,SS) Add Free Agents – in my 20 team keeper league THANKS FOR THE ADVISE – they all are scratching their head – how did he know ?

  68. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @I’m Keith Hernandez: No problem. Bailey, Narveson, Mujica, Marquis (if the Rockies haven’t clinched), Kuroda, Duensing….

  69. The Real Quiz says:
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    Gray – long-time, 3rd time. Thanks for all the help.

    So tomorrow (Thursday) I haven’t heard much regarding how smart it’d be to start Dice-K, Rowland-Smith, or Wolf (yeah, Wolf’s available, I just don’t know about the LA run support). I have 6 starts left, so I’m not hurting there – but I really need to make ground on all pitching stats.
    Thanks again!

  70. Detuned Radio says:
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    Which RP(s) to drop to make room for spot starter(s)!
    -F. Fransisco
    -Nunez
    -Phil Hughes
    -J. Nathan
    -Hoffman
    -J. Gutierrez

    Thanks a million, Grey!

  71. struggler says:
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    so much for Nolasco and his bad start.

  72. I'm Keith Hernandez says:
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    @Grey: i need one more after duensing, bailey is owned, in case the rockies dont seal the deal. Rank these too if you can: Piniero Feldman or romero.

    Seriously thanks for the help. In my money league I drafted Reyes, Beltran and Peavy, traded for Quentin, Hamilton, Johan during the season and I am in a battle for 2nd with an outside chance at 1st. And now that I am gainfully employed I will prob buy you another margarita!

  73. I'm Keith Hernandez says:
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    @I’m Keith Hernandez: dang it looks like Kuroda might not be starting to the playoffs

  74. big o says:
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    reyes still getting hurt ?
    tough times ahead for february grey , when it comes to shortstops .

  75. big o says:
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    @Grey:
    did the sign on the door say “12-step program” ??

    hello
    my name is big o
    and i just dropped jon lester
    for ryan theriot .

    screw the pitching .
    if you just give me 2 runs , and maybe a stolen base , tomorrow ,
    i will never : drink/gamble/swear/shoot heroin/ or diddle myself in public , ever again .

  76. Elijah says:
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    eh heh heh. Gracie barely made it back for the postgame show, was probably busy huffin down several smokes before rushing back to the booth.

  77. penpen says:
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    Picked up Cook; do I pick up Parra too and hedge my blehs?

  78. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @penpen: I wouldn’t.

  79. penpen says:
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    @Grey: yeah, picked up the Gorz instead. Here’s hoping he continues his little mini revival by screwing his old team.

  80. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Pavano might have made you reach for the sick bag, but Lannan, Penny, Richard and Shields? You’d have got on the plane with me today, no?

    And thanks for helping me pick those guys, BTW.

  81. Elijah says:
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    @Grey:

    Span= Bridge over the River I?

    (That Sucks) <— Hush up random italicized 'stache, its a wonk in progress.

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