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I don’t practice Santeria. I ain’t got no crystal ball. Well, if I had $6, I’d spend it all…

…I’d spend it on these Corner Infielders (owned <10% on ESPN as of 4/3)! They are placed in the order of my zeal, because my zeal smells nice and fresh. What does that even mean? Post now includes bonus CI Prospect list as well! (And maybe thermal packaging. What can I say? It’s a demand-driven commodity.) Follow me after the jump to find out what this all means… maybe.

1)   Cody Asche (9.7%) – a huge first game upped his %-ownership by 9+%. The concern is the next day when new manager Mr. Sandberg officially platoon-tagged him. I personally think he can be a poor man’s (because of the contact rate) Chase Utley if he gets the full-time opportunity, but 2014 ETA Maikel Franco mentioned below might ensure otherwise.

2)   Mitch Moreland (2.0%) – anyone batting sixth after Shin-Soo Choo, Elvis Andrus, Prince Fielder, Adrian Beltre & Alex Rios is an asset. If he can get back to his 2011 contract rate and 2013 popup rate with even the same amount of discipline as last year, he should have solid surface stats in all league types. We’re asking for a bit here, but there really is a chance of 65-25-85-255. Think Chris Davis before Chris Davis, but 2 years older and without the elite HR/FB ratio.

3)   Marcus Semien (0.2%) – he’s Brad Miller without the high BABIP potential meaning he won’t post the same rate stats and he won’t have the same lineup spot or lineup in general but he could still post the same HR & SB counting stats (or more) if Beckham’s oblique issue persists or the ChiSox 3b situation doesn’t pan out.

4)   Darin Ruf (0.1%) – Get ready for a bunch of ‘IFs.’ IF Ryan HowardDomonic Brown or Marlon Byrd goes down with an injury and IF you’re in an OBP/SLG/OPS League, this guy is a must-stash. He had an ugly 30+% K-rate in 2013, but his minor league numbers weren’t as ridiculous. The other positive…I could see a HR/FB ratio as nice as the K-rate is ugly. Let’s hope an opportunity arises by the time he returns from his oblique injury. If you’re in an NL-only league and can stash him on your DL, do it. DO IT.

5)   Mike Olt (0.6%) – Listen, if he’s the starter in Chicago for a lengthy period of time, he’ll have “prodigious” power value. And honestly, he could walk enough to get on base 32% of the time. It seems like the Cubs are committed to keeping Javier Baez in the middle of the lineup and Kris Bryant won’t be ready until 2015. Let’s see if HR#1 (on 4/3) instilled some confidence.

6)   Casey McGehee (2.0%) – If you’re in a deep NL-only field, then fine. He’s had solid contact rates, but his balls in play approach isn’t all that impressive. I’d expect the groundball rate (without speed) to be an issue, which will drag down his BABIP and average and value.

And for your CI prospect impact:

1) Garin Cecchini – Think Monster: he’s an OBP monster and should enjoy the green monster. His discipline and high BABIP propensity should all but guarantee a .270+ BA even if he were to spend time in the bigs this year. He probably won’t have a significant impact this year, but if something happens to Will Middlebrooks (assuming they don’t move Xander Bogaerts over), he could man 3B. Eventually he’ll rack up the Runs Produces (R+RBI-HR) even if he doesn’t produce a ton of HR or SB.

2) Maikel Franco – His value will be putting the ball in play – eh? He won’t strike out a ton, but he also won’t walk much meaning he’ll put the ball in play quite a bit. I just think it’ll take time for him to do so with authority. I also think Cody Asche will provide more value than expected and the Phillies shouldn’t amount to much so why rush Franco? Let’s see how he handles triple A before consuming a bench slot with him if you’re trying to win this year.

3) Jon Singleton – His own contact rate will block him from significant 2014 impact. I’m not touching him with a 14-man-active-roster pole this year.

4) C.J. Cron – If you’re in a deep AL only league, I’d stash Cron. There’s no one backing up Albert Pujols on the Angels’ 1B depth chart and his power should be translatable by this year.

5) Matt Davidson – It’ll take a big BABIP for a playable batting average but 3B ain’t deep and he’s worth a stash in AL only’s for sure. I wouldn’t be surprised if Beckham continue to consumes time at 2B when he returns and Semien keeps the 3B job to himself initially.

6) Kyle Parker – no experience in Triple A and a slew of outfielders are blocking the way for Parker meaning it would take an injury from both Michael Cuddyer and Justin Morneau to perhaps open a spot at 1B. It’s not impossible but it’s a lot to hope for.

 …Tell Sanchito that if he knows what is good for him he best go run and hide. Daddy’s got a new CI.

 

Follow Dano on Twitter @RotoBanter , or buy thermal packaging from him. 

  1. Joe says:
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    When Middlebrooks comes off the DL I have to drop Todd Frazier or Cody Asche. I can only keep two of the three of my roster, and want to keep Middlebrooks because I control him for more than this year. Also, everyone else on in this article is on the waiver wire except for Olt, Singleton and Franco. Thoughts?

    RIP Warrior

    • Dano

      Dano says:
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      @Joe: honestly, if middlebrooks continues to miss time and or lacks the discipline i’d truly be inclined to start rostering cechhini even in redraft leagues. id prob keep frazier over asche…i do like asche to be a poor man’s chase utley, but frazier could provide more short term power ROI. dont be baffled if he goes 65-22-75-.255

  2. Shake N Bacon says:
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    This is gonna be a little lazy of me, but is Youkilis a good comp for Cecchini. He was an OBP monster in the Sox minor league system. Wasn’t known for a lot of power or speed.

    • Dano

      Dano says:
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      @Shake N Bacon: i can see that – i think cecchini will translate pretty quickly based on his approach/discipline/eye but think he’s more of a 15/15 in his prime than youkilis which was more like 25/0 in his 2-year prime

      • Shake N Bacon says:
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        @Dano: Cool. Appreciate the input. 15/15 at 3B isn’t too shabby. BA around .280ish as soon as this year a possibility?

        • Dano

          Dano says:
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          @Shake N Bacon: i think a .260ish this year is doable…would take another year for .280+ with increased discipline, but the power/speed combo and a propensity for linedrives could inflate his BABIP some

  3. MB says:
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    Who do I ride at 3B in shallow league until Seager gets it going? C Johnson, Frazier or Semien?

    • Dano

      Dano says:
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      @MB: do you prefer 25HR potential(Todd Frazier) or 17/17potential (Marcus Semien)? I can see Semien’s end seasons stats as pretty darn idential to what he’s done so far even in a small sample size – i mean from a K%,bb%,hr/fb%,babip,CT%,etc. The problem is when beckham returns, but i think Semien continues to consume time.

      • MB says:
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        @Dano: Yea I think Semien can get steals right and runs and C Johnson average; Frazier is just scary since he can be crap at times.

        Thanks

  4. Swfcdan says:
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    $6 for some thermal packaging?

    • Dano

      Dano says:
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      @Swfcdan: ha. $6 – $1 for each waiver wire option.

      …$6 if it was for some single-use EPS/Gel pack solution. Not what we offer. But we’ll keep that discussion off here.

  5. shibboleth says:
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    Hey Dano, thanks for this. I’m in a 12-team OPS league and CI dried up pretty quickly. Would you recommend any of Asche or Moreland over Morneau?

    C1/2: Wieters/Suzuki
    1B/CI; Fielder/Morneau
    2B/MI: Hill/Miller (Wong)
    SS: Segura
    3B: Alvarez
    OF: Choo, Kemp, Holliday, Swisher, Pollock (Saunders, Polanco)

    • shibboleth says:
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      @shibboleth: Oops, Semien is out there, too. So to rephrase, would you prefer Asche, Moreland or Semien over Morneau? or Wong, I guess?

      • Dano

        Dano says:
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        @shibboleth: id probably prefer morneau…colorado and that babip inflation…cuddyers a monster…morneau might do 75% of him.

        • shibboleth says:
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          @Dano: I love it when you guys agree with me! Thank you sir

  6. Clint says:
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    Got a unique trade off in my 12 team roto 5×5 (5 keeper) league today. I snatched Machado off waivers a few weeks ago & stashed him in my DL spot. Today I received an offer straight up of Josh Hamilton for him. Here’s my team’s hitters in total:

    C: M. Montero
    1B: Pujols
    2B: Gyorko
    3B: Longoria
    SS: Desmond
    OF’s (3): Adam Jones, A. Gordon, Crisp
    Utilities (2): M. Adams, Rizzo
    Bench: Aoki, Rajai, Moustakas, D. Gordon, Fowler
    Prospect: G. Polanco
    DL: Machado

    • Dano

      Dano says:
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      @Clint: i can only assume this is not a keeper league! this is actually kind of rough…i would have said do it if it wasn’t for hamilton’s injury this week. i’d prefer manny considering the 3b eligbility and he could be back in May while Hamilton won’t be back until June.

      • Clint says:
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        @Dano:

        It’s a starter keeper league where we’ve agreed to keep 5. I know Grey had Ham Bone ranked quite a bit higher than Machado overall but I feel like this is kind of splitting hairs unless there’s a big age difference I’m unaware of (we haven’t decided how long we’re gonna keep guys for yet).

        • Dano

          Dano says:
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          @Clint: then i def keep machado (keeper league for one; two, hamiltons out until june now

  7. Not Corner, still asking says:
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    Dano,
    10-team H2H Cat. (9Hit,7Pit cat) 5 Bench (use 4 for pitching)
    T. Walker is available on the wire, IYO should I drop M. Estrada for him? (are they close?)
    Thanks, Jim

    • Dano

      Dano says:
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      @Not Corner, still asking: id keep estrada but walker still needs to be owned so figure something out.

  8. flo-g-money says:
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    Arenado middlebrooks or asche?

    • Dano

      Dano says:
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      @flo-g-money: i love arenado. it might not be until next year that his contact translates to utter gloriousness, but i think there’s a chance for 70-20-85-280 this year

  9. Rags says:
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    Points league that has heavy emphasis on hits and RBIs, and minus points for Ks, you’d rather have Braun than Beltre if there’s no need for a 3B, right? Even with the bad thumb?

  10. Some guy says:
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    Keeper roto league. 10 keepers, limited roster moves, so no riding the hot hand. Pagan, Blackmon, ozuna, or Abraham almonte replacing avisail? Of is ellsbury, aoki, Leonys and rios.

    • Dano

      Dano says:
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      @Some guy: blackmon and his early season ride. you’ll want to ride your hot hand from having him. gew.

  11. wOBA the Hutt says:
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    DJ Lemahieu is a sneaky option as well if your team lacks speed and you have a hole at 3B. Yahoo has him as 2B/3B eligible and he should swipe around 20 bags or more this year while hitting close to .300. If he can get out of the 8 spot in Colorado’s order his counting stats should get a big boost as well. Plus, Coors man, Coors.

  12. Joe G says:
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    Dano alex gordon or melky cabrera?

    • Dano

      dano says:
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      @Joe G: Kelly until Gordon reverts back to linedrive/groundball approach. Fb’s going to kill his babip/avg…and hr/fb won’t be good enough to offset loss in avg

      • Alan says:
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        @dano: You like Melky more than Gordon?

  13. Harris says:
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    love the Sublime refernce.

  14. Dead Head says:
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    Another CI to keep an eye on is Jesus Aguilar 1B for the Indians. He’s in AAA right now, went to the winter league and absolutely destroyed baseballs ( slugged .585 if I remember that correctly) and so far has continued to do so in AAA. He could get called up at some point and DH since he’s not a great fielder, but if someone is injured or not performing he could slot in at 1B. The power seems legit so just someone to keep an eye on.

    And Cron worries me. His hit tool is just not good at all so I’m not sure the power will ever play to be honest. The only place he has displayed power in the minors is the California League, the power disappeared last year when he moved away from the Cal League so that has me thinking it might not play that great in Anaheim.

    Good stuff though Dano, enjoyed the read!

  15. Rod says:
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    Dano,
    12 team H2H. Yesterday I traded Trumbo and Pineda for Kershaw. I’m looking to trade again, but currently I need a 1B. List of availables are: Morneau, C. Hart, LaRoche, M. Morse, C. Johnson, C. Colabello. Who do you like for the next several weeks?
    Thanks in advance.
    -Long live Bradley Nowell

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