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The last week of the spring always breeds injuries, demotions, and the occasional leap frogging.  Or in some cases, Dusty is going to be simply be Dusty.  But I will get to that little blurb in a few.  So with the injury news to T.T., the Red Sox order is now Joe Kelly, Matt Barnes, and then maybe Bob Stanley.  Joe Kelly is the interesting name here because I always thought he was at least in the conversation for the secondary chair behind Tyler.  This is interesting because if, and only if, Kimbrel goes down, the man on the spot may very well be Joe freaking Kelly.  The same guy that said that he could win a Cy Young last year.  Adjusting to a newer role is always a tough spot, even though he appeared in 14 games as a RP last year.  His K-rate spiked, his walk rate halved, and his ability to be touched for hits disappeared.  Not unusual for former starting pitchers, but this was kind of a drastic change from what we saw as a starter. He is not the second coming of Luke Gregerson circa 2012, but is a fine enough arm with enough quality in it to garner the counting stats needed in Thorny’s stead. Let’s see what else is happening in the set-up facet of the game and update the final preseason Holds chart before the games actually mean something…

Koda Glover – It will be he and Kelley in the set-up role… for now, or until Dusty breaks his tooth pick.  Treinen’s durability wins out for the closer.  In save only leagues, you can hold Glover for the first five games and then drop.  After that it should be safe.

Nick Vincent – With Sea-Shack starting the year on the DL, the order is Vincent then Altavilla… not really a change from anything that I have published before.  Just wanted you to know in case you were crossing I’s and dotting T’s.

Jeurys Familia – Buy him, everywhere you can while his suspension is everyone’s head.

Carter Capps – Drafting him late still is a great idea, patience pays off in the beginning of the year.  Great relievers can fill his spot ’til that sexy K-rate is back and jumping/pitching again.

And now some stat goodies from last year that still make sense this year…

  • The bottom  teams in saves last year: Minnesota, Cincy, S.D., Angels and D-Backs.  Quick, name five worse bullpens now that the season is here.  You can’t, minus Cam Bedrosian being the savior all these teams look abysmal for the counting stat again.
  • In the Holds department for that same thing, Minnesota and Cincinnati were worst two last year.  Things aren’t going to change.  Chase the stat elsewhere.
  • The Giants last year had 31 more save opportunities then the second place team.
  • You know how many players had over 31 holds last year?  One Addison Reed.
  • The difference between second place (29) holds last year and the 40th place guy was only 10 Holds.  Showing that there is always diversity and plenty of streamability to go around.
  • Back to the Giants, who had 43 saves last year and 32 blown saves, Their new closer this year Mark Melancon has 23 blown saves in the last 8 MLB years.

 

American League

Team First Chair Second Fiddle Three’s a Crowd
Baltimore Darren O’Day Brad Brach Mychal Givens
Boston Joe Kelly Matt Barnes Robbie Ross
Chicago Nate Jones Dan Jennings Zach Putnam
Cleveland* Andrew Miller Bryan Shaw Boone Logan
Detroit Justin Wilson Mark Lowe Bruce Rondon
Houston Will Harris Luke Gregerson Michael Feliz
Kansas City Joakim Soria Matt Strahm Scott Alexander
Los Angeles* Andrew Bailey Mike Morin Jose Alvarez
Minnesota Ryan Pressly Taylor Rogers Michael Tonkin
New York Dellin Betances Tyler Clippard Tommy Layne
Oakland Santiago Casilla Ryan Dull Sean Doolittle
Seattle Steve Cishek Nick Vincent Dan Altavilla
Tampa Bay Xavier Cedeno Danny Farquhar Shawn Tolleson
Texas Matt Bush Jeremy Jeffress Keone Kela
Toronto Jason Grilli J.P. Howell Danny Barnes


National League

Team First Chair Second Fiddle Three’s a Crowd
Arizona Enrique Burgos Randall Delgado Archie Bradley
Atlanta Arodys Vizcaino Mauricio Cabrera Ian Krol
Chicago Hector Rondon Pedro Strop Koji Uehara
Cincinnati* Raisel Iglesias Tony Cingrani Mike Lorenzen
Colorado* Adam Ottavino Mike Dunn Jake McGee
Miami Brad Ziegler Kyle Barraclough David Phelps
Los Angeles Sergio Romo Grant Dayton Pedro Baez
Milwaukee Corey Knebel Carlos Torres Jacob Barnes
New York Fernando Salas Hansel Robles Rafael Montero
Philadelphia Hector Neris Joaquin Benoit Pat Neshek
Pittsburgh Daniel Hudson Felipe Rivero Antonio Bastardo
St. Louis Trevor Rosenthal Kevin Siegrist Brett Cecil
San Diego Carter Capps Brad Hand Ryan Buchter
San Francisco Hunter Strickland Derek Law Cory Gearrin
Washington Koda Glover Shawn Kelley Sammy Solis

Remember these chats only reflect the HOLD situations and the closer is not included.

*Denotes team in a closer by committee.

 

 

   
  1. Tehol Beddict says:
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    Can you write more about 6th and 7th inning guys? That’s the only way to win in RCL leagues

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Tehol Beddict: sure i am sure i can touch on that some more…. i mean I have only been here for the better part of a decade

  2. Biff says:
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    Thoughts on Strahm in KC. I like the cut of his jib and KC always seems to grow RPs.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Biff: I do as well and herrera may not be there all year long if the royals go blue…..

  3. RD says:
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    Awesome stuff Smoke!
    Great read!

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @RD: word, thanks

  4. The Flamed Man says:
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    Hey Smoky,

    We can only start 2 relievers and only count saves (no holds)

    I have Britton. Who would be best bet for second reliever?

    1. Miller
    2. Bentances
    3. Bedrosian

    Thank you.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @The Flamed Man: Bedrosian, the one stat is more important and if you draft accordingly the k’s and periphs will take care of themselves

  5. RJd2 says:
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    I’m in a roto league with Holds. Pitching categories are: Ks, ERA, WHIP, QS, and NSV.

    Have F. Rivero, K. Siegrist, D. Betances, A. Miller, K. Giles, and S. Dyson as my current RP. Someone recently dropped D. Hudson.

    Drop Siegrist to add Hudson for the SAGNOF and because I already have Rivero or Hold? Limited moves, for what it’s worth.

    Thx.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @RJd2: I would hold, the lack of a straight hold and limited moives deter anything crazy. Siegrist is just as good if not better then Hudson just behind a more secure guy

      • RJd2 says:
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        @Smokey:

        Thanks, Smokey. I mistyped above in that Holds are also a category. Change your answer, or still hold?

        • Smokey

          Smokey says:
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          @RJd2: still siegrist.

  6. PED Inc says:
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    Thanks for the report buddy, what tier would you put Terinen in now that he has Dusty’s blessing?
    I’m in a 10 team 5×5 redraft league for the first time in this format so this will be a learning year for sure. The minimum innings pitched per week is only 10 and I am able to make up to 5 roster moves throughout the week.

    My rotation looks like this
    SP Carrasco
    SP Tanaka
    RP Watson
    RP Betances
    P Paxton
    P Maeda
    P McCullers
    P Stroman
    BN Nova
    BN Wacha
    BN Holland

    I have a couple extra bench bats I could swap out and I have Desmond who I will place on the DL so I can pick up Treinen if you think it would be a good addition and Reed is also on the WW I could use in the short term while Familia is in the shelf.
    What are your thoughts on my relief pitchers at this point?

    Thanks as always!

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @PED Inc: He’s employed for now

  7. Brian Blacklow says:
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    In a league the has holds and saves as separate stats, would you rather have Daniel Hudson or Koda Glover? Right now, my five RPs are: Cam Bedrosian, Addinson Reed, Francisco Rodriguez, Nate Jones, and Koda Glover. Hold Koda for a week or grab Hudson?

    Thanks!

  8. Malicious Phenoms says:
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    Great info Smokey!

    Who would you roster of these guys for holds:
    Hudson
    Soria
    Strickland
    Wilson

  9. JVanSlyke says:
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    Great insight, thanks Smokey
    I’m in a holds league where Sp/Rp is a massive advantage. I drafted Kimbrel so only logical that I drop Grant Watson for Kelly, right? Hopefully since I just did. Thanks again!

    • JVanSlyke says:
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      @JVanSlyke: grant Dayton, I meant

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @JVanSlyke: yes cuffing yourself even in holds leagues is clutch

  10. hothot says:
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    12-team 6×6 (Holds) Keeper League

    Rank these: Strickland, Bush, Knebel, Romo

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @hothot: Bush, Romo, Strickland, Knebel

  11. Doug Fuhr says:
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    Lowe is in Seattle now. Rondon moves up.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Doug Fuhr: indeed, move em up!

  12. Anodyne says:
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    Hey Smokey, great stuff as always. I appreciate your reminder about teams that don’t get a lot of save or hold opportunities. To that end, for the first month or so of this season, would you rather own Xavier Cedeno (who has the 8th inning, but with a team that doesn’t give a lot of holds opportunities) or Hansel Robles (probably more of a 7th inning guy, but on a better team for holds)? Just curious to hear your thinking on the subject.

    • Anodyne says:
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      @Anodyne: (In a league that counts both saves and holds as separate categories.)

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Anodyne: cedeno

      • Anodyne says:
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        @Smokey: Cool, thanks!

  13. Dave says:
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    Who is the Closer for the Reds?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Dave: everyone,,,iglesias, Lorenmzen. Until we get some accumulating stats to say who we don’t know. it’s a bad situation

  14. Lary says:
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    Over/under 2 saves for Glenn perkins this year?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Lary: over but I’ll say he gets 4

  15. Brett says:
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    12 team 6 x 6 we have category for holds and a save category

    Current relievers are Nerris Giles and Will Harris. Would you rather have Capps or Romo?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Brett: Romo for now, Capps for the long run

  16. swaggerjackers says:
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    @Smokey: Please pick three for a SVHD H2H league:

    Nate Jones, Neris, Phelps, Matt Bush.

    Thanks man!

      • swaggerjackers says:
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        @Smokey: Thanks guys. I’ll boot Phelps.

  17. Crabman says:
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    Strickland>law?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Crabman: yup

  18. Swfcdan says:
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    Sounds like a dreaded comittee in Oaktown. As a Madson (Im a mad man) owner, is it wise to take Dull as backup with Doolittle owned? Dull is their best righty arm and im Madson fails I could see him taking over that job. Casilla is owned, but no good anymore anyway.

    Story short can you rank for save a’chasin: Dull, Kelly, Vizcaino, D Hudson.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Swfcdan: I kinda agree with the Dull analysis, but way too many options to try and guess. Hudson, Vizcaino, kelly, Dull for right now.

      • Swfcdan says:
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        @Smokey: Hudson and Vizcain gone. You really think Kelly is a better saves stash than Dull? Sounds like you’re worried about Kimbrel.

        • Smokey

          Smokey says:
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          @Swfcdan: with doolittle and Casilla there yea. I like Dull just think the options for the A’s are abundant

  19. S-wilk says:
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    In a NFBC 12 man how much of my FAAB should I blow on Trienen?

    I have:

    Jansen
    Iglesias
    Doolittle

    Buncha questions outside of Jansen I know

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @S-wilk: 250 to 300

  20. ryanoger says:
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    Smokey, nice write up man!

    After Reed who are your top 3 guys to eye for holds?

    thanks man
    ryan

    • ryanoger says:
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      @ryanoger:

      I was lazy, I should have caught up on past posts, my bad. Which TWO out of this bunch should I add to get some sweet sweet holds? Thanks Smokey!

      Siegrist, Thornburg, Barraclough, Rivero, Brach, Strickland, Romo, and Phelps

      • Smokey

        Smokey says:
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        @ryanoger: give me Siegrist and Brach for hols and sexy rates

  21. CJ says:
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    Not a fan of CJ Edwards if Wade Davis falters? You’ve got three guys listed in front of him.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @CJ: he has 3 guys who all have closed (sorta) in front of him

  22. Steve Stevenson says:
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    The Braves were terrible for holds (among many other things) last year, but am I crazy to think they may in line for off-the-radar improvement there this year with their moves in the rotation and lineup?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Steve Stevenson: they could be, Cabrera is on DL but as a pen they could be quite good

  23. Hugman says:
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    Did we ever coin a term for when closers are denied their destiny and then pitch horribly? I know Grey was taking submissions. I bring it up because I’m afraid of that happening to Kelley and Glover.

    Capps will get DL’d come Sunday, yeah? At least 10-day retroactively?

    Is Hudson really a better option than Watson? He’s looked good in spring, but his career stats so far are yucky.

    • Hugman says:
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      @Hugman: PS: thanks for all the great writing! I’m in an unfamiliar position of save-scrounging this year so you’re my main pert this year.

      • Hugman says:
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        @Hugman: Haha. There’s a “don’t get fooled by these fantasy tips” article on MLB.com today that seems to be at least partially aimed at SAGNOFF.

        • Smokey

          Smokey says:
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          @Hugman: Haha of course there is. Then again I go to the circus to look at clowns, so why not do that for fantasy advice also

      • Smokey

        Smokey says:
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        @Hugman: my pleasure, saves are my bag

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Hugman: I don’t know if we did actually. Yes on sunday, but he may be down for longer then 10.
      I think Hudson is a better closer then Watson, not a better reliever.

  24. vinodole says:
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    Yo Smoke! Isn’t Holland closing in Mile High?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @vinodole: yes he is

  25. Ryan says:
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    Smokey, you da man! Thanks for these updates!

    6×6 redraft with saves and holds. I have bedrosian, neris, Rivero, Harris. Need one more.

    Available are: siegrist, Dayton, Strickland, Hudson, hand, soria,

    Thanks!

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Ryan: Siegrist, but don’t fall in love early in season. Pitch twice and ditch.Stream whenever possible with holds guys

  26. dubjay says:
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    I was at 35000 ft flying from London to Vancouver when the Nationals closer got announced so obviously I couldn’t grab Treinen in time. I had a feeling dusty would go that way but grabbed Glover earlier for his upside.

    Question is, would you drop Glover to grab someone or hold onto him for a week or so to see if Treinen implodes. I have Chapman and Giles as well so Im not suffering but it is a H2H league so saves are important.
    Best available replacements are
    K.BARRACLOUGH
    D.HUDSON
    S.DOOLITTLE
    S.CASILLA
    H.STREET

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @dubjay: I would hold for a week, all those guys are neutral moves so if one sways you more then Koda I wouldn’t mind it

  27. Bobby says:
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    Hey man! Great post! Are you pumped that it’s just about the start of baseball season??
    H2h pts / weekly

    We start 2 RP’s mine are neftali feliz & AJ Ramos. Hold onto them both to start the season with them?
    Or drop one or both for any of these available RPs? Ryan madsen, Addison Reed, Blake Treinen, matt Boyd who’s listed at both SP & RP, Brandon Maurer,

    Thanks !!

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Bobby: Thanks, hells yea. Treinen over Feliz, but i never recommend dropping saves to the wire

  28. chris says:
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    Smokey, I love reading your stuff. I own 3 closers. Giles is the only one I like. Which RP would you add out of Neris, Capps, N Jones, Barraclaugh, M Bush? I am looking for K, ratios and the likelihood of getting a good chunk of saves from one of them in 2017. I only have room for one and don’t want to miss on this so I need your expert advice. Thanks

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @chris: Thanks man. Jones

  29. Jon says:
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    Thanks, Smoke! I’m also in one of those lgs where SP-elig for high-leverage relievers is a crucial piece because we only have 3 RP spots. So with Kelly sniffing the late innings, that feels like enough for me to try him over BearClaw in the meantime.

    Kelly: better team, huge K potential, walks issues, 2nd in line, SP-elig, good closer ahead of him (but cracks in the armor?)

    Claw: has done it before, big Ks, worse team, 3rd in line, iffy closer in front of him, walks issues.

    Am I missing anything?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Jon: Nope not missing anything

  30. Swfcdan says:
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    Seasons not even started fully yet and closers are already crapping the bed. Both Oh (shizz) and Melonhead looked awful, who’s the best saves stash on their respective teams?

    Chasing saves has already begun peeps!

    • Swfcdan says:
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      @Swfcdan: Strickland already taken ha, welcome to the fantasy season. Rosie back soon?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Swfcdan: Yup, everybody panic!

  31. Brett says:
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    Smokey,

    Thoughts on Gregorson pitching the 8th on opening day over harris? I already have Harris but if I cut Deshields I have room for picking up either Romo or Gregorison for holds. Who do you like more?

    Thanks

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Brett: I think both are rosterable, and could flip flop on viability. It is just a matter of owning the right guy on that third straight save day.

  32. Slick says:
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    I’m just salivating at the idea of the Brew Crew placing Archie Bradley as their closer. With that K rate, he could be a slam dunk on that job. I know it’s far fetched but I think it could work.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Slick: be interesting to transition him there, power arm good pedigree. I like the idea, for when everyone else like Nando fails

      • Slick says:
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        @Smokey: Sorry. I meant the DBacks. But you get the point.

  33. Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey says:
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    holds, and relief appearaces and relief wins here. K/9 as well. dynasty. start 7 RP. which 2 out of
    hembree (used in 8th last time for a hold),
    gearrin (possibly most talented of group, used in semi-leverage thus far NOT the LR he’s listed as in rosterresource)
    ross
    mcgee (i had him till dunn stole his job for 2 straight games, and dunn was obtained while i had mcgee starting so i couldn’t do anything about it)
    jc ramirez (probably best role right now)
    l.hendricks (many ahead of him but possibly most talented on list and axford just went down)
    sipp

    • Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey says:
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      @Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey: 20 teamer and i also have farq right now. so 3 of those with him in it. have barrett in DL spot and kela in NA spot (have no clue why TEX keeps around bums like claudio/leclerc but throw him down.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey: Hembree, while Thorny is out is a must I think, JC Ramiez is in a nice spot with zero qualit around him and I would lean Hendriks just on m love affair with his stuff

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