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I have a secret to share with you (You: ‘Despite being the producer of Entourage, you still call Mark Wahlberg Marky Mark?’‘ Me: ‘Yes, but that wasn’t the secret I was referring to’).  My secret is 2B is chalk full of value plays this year.  There were so many overvalued players going into 2011 that busted, we’re left to buy low on multiple candidates this year.  A look over at Mock Draft Central tells me that a guy that gave us 21/16 and a bad average last year is worth 7 rounds less than a guy that went 21/17 with a bad average.  We’re talking about Kelly Johnson (ADP: 236) vs Danny Espinosa (ADP: 148).  That’s crazy glazed with a WTF and garnished with an LOL.  I can only guess having a girl’s name is the reason for the price tag difference.  In a perfect draft, I have Dan Uggla on my team and am taking either Johnson or Espinosa but would settle for a BA friendly Brandon Phillips over Uggla in that situation as well.  Because of the depth, I’m most likely avoiding the top tier 2Bs unless they fell to me.

I’ll Avoid:

Dustin Ackley – Don’t get me wrong, I like the kid and think he’s going to be a solid contributor this year and beyond but is he THAT much better than the guys behind him on the ADP list?  Solid average, low to mid-teen HR power to go with 10 to 15 steals.  ‘But he won’t hurt me anywhere’ you say.  ‘But he’s not your father’ I say ‘and I suggest you get therapy’.  Unless he’s your first 2B, you should already have a solid 2B on your team.  Live a little more dangerously and aim for higher counting stats later in the draft.

Ryan Roberts – Here’s a player I like more in real life than I do in fantasy.  I also enjoyed the movie and book series they did on him: The Second Basemen With Alotta Tattoos.  Roberts strikes me as a guy who could give Kelly Johnson numbers this year or could fall back into super-utility obscurity by the All-Star Break and compete with Willie Bloomquist for ABs.  I’ll go with the 2B that has more history and a cheaper ADP in that case.

I’ll go for:

Jose Altuve – If I’m still stumping for a 2B in the 20th round of the draft, I’ll gladly take Jose.  Altuve – Venezuelan for ‘Doomed to be an Astro’ – is getting the discount price because he plays for a Triple-A team.  It’s not his fault he’s major league ready and the rest of Houston is not.  Altuve has four things going for him: he should steal 20 bases, hit for a decent average, be near the top of the order, and there’s no one in Triple-A that could reasonably replace him.  Because the Astros are a Triple-A team already.  Didn’t we go over this already?  Dead.  Horse.  Beat.

Marco Scutaro – I’ve never drafted Scutaro before.  I may not even this year.  In fact, I have made fun of just about everyone and anyone in my league who’ve drafted him over the last 5 years.  That all said, what’s the difference between Ackley’s projections and Scutaro’s?  1 or 2 HRs and probably 10 steals.  Similar RBIs, similar Runs, similar average.  Only thing that’s not similar is their ADP as Scutaro is going after the 20th round.  Plus he’ll get to play half his games in Colorado in front of Tulo & CarGo.  I have no problem playing Marco Scutaro at the deep end of the draft pool.  Just don’t pull my trunks down while I’m at it.

2B Situation to monitor: Chi-Cubs

I will lead this off by saying yes, I know and understand this one is a stretch.  That’s why I say monitor, don’t buy in.  Sheesh, its like telling you JC Penney has a 50% off sale this weekend and you go camp out on Tuesday without finding out its just for lingerie.  Not that there’s anything WRONG with that…Anywho,  Chicago currently has the Purple Evolutionist, Darwin Barney, starting at second baseIf that doesn’t bore you, I have a recording of grass growing in slow motion for you to watch; the soundtrack is by Kenny G.  In February the Cubs picked up Adrian Cardenas off the wire when they waived Blake DeWittOnce considered a top 100 prospect, Adrian just never put a full season together.  At 6′, 205 pounds you’d think and hope for more power but he’s only 24 and does have pedigree on his side.  With Chicago rebuilding this year, Cardenas might get his shot if Darwin proves to be as sleep-inducing as he was last year.  We’re still in Spring training.  Long live hope!

  1. blue says:
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    Hey Grey-
    I’m being offered Hunter Pence for Mark Reynolds and Andre Ethier. Reynolds is my only 3B, so I’d have to grab some waiver wire crap to fill the spot (e.g., Chase Headley is available). Should I pull the trigger?
    Thanks!

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @blue, that is not a good e.g. to fall back on. I’d hold. Not huge on Pence this year, just to give you some background on my thoughts.

  2. Sambo Jenkins says:
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    Speaking of Entourage…Jose Altuve looks like Turtle in his ESPN mugshot

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Sambo Jenkins, haha, very true!

  3. royce! says:
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    What do you think of drafting Ackley at 216?

    And what do you think of the first regular season game airing at 3 am, pacific?

    I hope your answer is not the same for these two questions.

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @royce!, I don’t have a huge problem with him down at 18. Just feel most leagues are overdrafting him when guys like Kipnis or Scutaro could give just as good of stats later in the draft on average.

      I think 3 am is the most appropriate time of day for an M’s vs A’s matchup.

      • royce! says:
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        @Oregon Nut Cups, Wow, I guess you proved me wrong- your answers were the same! Though the latter answer was funnier. The A’s and M’s exhibition games v. Japanese teams really highlighted how they should be playing each other. Yeesh.

        • Oregon Nut Cups

          Oregon Nut Cups says:
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          @royce!, If you could see it, my Bones avatar has a tear rolling down his cheek. Hard times for a Mariners fan.

  4. Charles says:
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    @Mr. Nut Cups: how would you rank these 2Bs: Kipnis, Hill, Aviles, Scutaro, Ackley, K Johnson, Altuve. Thanks!

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Charles, Johnson, Ackley, Kipnis, Scutaro, Hill, Altuve, Aviles.

      Johnson in a tier all his own, Ackley & Kipnis in their own, Scutaro thru Altuve 3rd tier and Aviles in the lonely 4th (but only because we can’t book him for 600 PA). Aviles would be in the Ackley Kipnis tier with guaranteed ABs.

  5. Bourne says:
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    You don’t think aviles has 500 pa locked up yet? Ackley +/- 600 at bats?

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Bourne, I want to believe he does, but has a career high PA of 448 plus he’s not batting near the top of an order at the moment. +600PA for Ackley. Probably batting in the 2 spot most of the year.

  6. Veezy says:
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    What’s the deal with Neil Walker? Why is he considered in some parts as bottom of the barrel? I drafted Kipnis, Cuddyer, & Aviles and was able to pick up Walker. Who should I move?

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Veezy, If we’re talking someone to move (i.e. trade), you could move Aviles unless you need someone w/SS eligibility.

  7. Joe says:
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    Does anybody believe that Hill has tons of upside this year?

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Joe, He’s so all over the place, it’s hard to place what the upside is. Will he hit for average, give you steals or give you power? I like him in deep leagues as a wildcard but can’t say for sure what you’re going to get.

  8. PrinceRudyNasim says:
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    what up bones…Barney said he on close to 20lbs of muscle in the offseason because of how badly he faded last yr down the stretch….does this making him any less kenny g?

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @PrinceRudyNasim, Roger Bernadina put on about 10 pounds of muscle before the 2011 season and looked flat out RIPPED. He went back and forth between AAA and the team as a 4th OF all year. Barney doesn’t even give counting stats so he’s still not going near my team this year. I’m still hearing smooth jazz. Ignore the spring training fluff.

  9. Dan Frank Francisco says:
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    Would love everyones opinion on my twelve team head to head draft. Best and worst picks, steals, guys I should add+drop
    1. (6) Robinson Cano 2B
    2. (19) Clayton Kershaw SP
    3. (30) Josh Hamilton OF
    4. (43) Matt Holliday OF
    5. (54) Matt Cain SP
    6. (67) Eric Hosmer 1B
    7. (78) Shin-Soo Choo OF
    8. (91) B.J. Upton OF
    9. (102) Jason Heyward OF
    10. (115) Brandon Beachy SP
    11. (126) Jose Valverde RP
    12. (139) Emilio Bonifacio 3B,SS,OF
    13. (150) Max Scherzer SP
    14. (163) Jhonny Peralta SS
    15. (174) Joe Nathan RP
    16. (187) Mitch Moreland 1B,OF
    17. (198) Yunel Escobar SS
    18. (211) Austin Jackson OF
    19. (222) Edwin Jackson SP
    20. (235) Wilson Ramos C
    21. (246) Mike Minor SP
    22. (259) Jose Altuve 2nd
    23. (270) Matt Capps RP
    24. (283) Vance Worley SP
    25. (294) Bryan LaHair OF

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Dan Frank Francisco, How many teams? H2H or roto? How many do you play at each position?

      Realize my response comes with a philosophy and without fully knowing some things so take as you will:

      I don’t want to draft a pitcher in the first 5 rounds because it hurts your offense so the Kershaw & Cain picks don’t work for me. That coupled with your later speed picks really leave you thin in power, a stat that is hard to come by after the draft. Outside of that, reaches for me were Cano with the 6th pick and Holliday in the 4th (he’s not really a 25/15 .300 guy anymore). Good value will be Shin-So Choo & BJ Upton. Having 2 SS and a third qualifier at the position in Bonifacio seems unnecessary. Bonifacio as your starting 3B is tough. What do you have out on the waiver at 3B? I’d try and package an SS & Holliday for an upgrade at 3B and Hosmer + another SS for an upgrade at 1B. All and all, it’s not a bad team, but you went a very different direction than I would’ve.

      • Dan Frank Francisco says:
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        @Oregon Nut Cups,
        For this team it was:
        12 team. Extremely competitive. Being doing this league for 8 years now.
        100 dollars a person. 1,000 to the winner. 200 for second place. Head to Head league.

        I know I am thin on power. How can I upgrade? Who should I target

        • Oregon Nut Cups

          Oregon Nut Cups says:
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          @Dan Frank Francisco, Who is thin at SS and what type of 1B & 3B do they have? If there’s a team out there high on Hosmer that needs an SS, see if you can upgrade with them. You won’t land a top 12 1B but might sneak in on Mark Teixiera depending on the owner. Your OF is fine without Holliday, make him trade bait coupled with one of your SS for an upgrade at either 3B or 1B. Unfortunately, I’d link you to the razzball rankings for 1B or 3B but I’d go to spam. What 3B/1B are in the waiver pool at the moment? That’ll give me an idea of what you have to work with.

          • Oregon Nut Cups

            Oregon Nut Cups says:
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            @Oregon Nut Cups, the ‘top 12 1B’ comment was meant as in ‘a player that goes in the top 12 overall’. Sorry for the confusion.

          • Dan Frank Francisco says:
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            @Oregon Nut Cups,

            I just proposed Holliday and Capps for Tex.

            The team who has Tex already has Votto and is thin in outfield and RP. Hope it works

            • Oregon Nut Cups

              Oregon Nut Cups says:
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              @Dan Frank Francisco, Hats off if you land it.

  10. 3FingersBrown says:
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    @Oregon Nut Cups, in a 12 team 6×6 mixed H2H keeper that counts OBP and AVG I drafted Ackley in the 8th and immediately regretted it. OBP gives him a boost but you’re right he’s really not much better than any number of 2B I could have gotten for cheaper. Funny thing is that I planted on essentially punting 2B (I have Asdrubal and Castro kept as MI and SS) but simply vapor locked during the draft and took Ackley.

    …Fortunately Chase Utley’s owner also has Ike Davis – who I should have picked in the 8th, so I’m talking about a swap of the two. Altuve’s still available on waivers, so I’d pick him up. I’ve got Craig with 2B eligibility too.

    Think Ackley and Carp for Ike Davis is fair? Maybe even giving too much, but I believe in Ike and the shorter rightfield in Queens. He’s also got serious OBP skills and I’m a Mets fan so it’d give me a reason to watch aside from rooting for opposing players on my teams.

    • Dan Frank Francisco says:
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      @3FingersBrown, You got yourself a met fan here with Dan Frank Francisco and as a fan how can you possibly trade Ackley and Carp for Ike Davis?

      We as met fans know that whatever “experts” predict for our players, we will never ever have that type of season. I refuse to draft mets. Why would you want a heartbreak on the field and on your fantasy field.

      Don’t be so down on Ackley. He’s a stud even if he’s over hyped and will put up better numbers than Davis alone

      • 3FingersBrown says:
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        @Dan Frank Francisco, You’re so right. I was determined to get Ike or Duda and I couldn’t pull the trigger for just that reason. Last time I drafted a Met, Billy Wagner’s arm exploded.

        I hope you’re right about Ackley. The M’s offense couldn’t be any worse than last year and he held his own… By the time my next pick came around in the 10th (I traded my 9th round) Ike, Goldschmidt and Freeman were gone and I eventually ended up with Gaby Sanchez for my CI.

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @3FingersBrown, I’m not very high on Carp this year so I don’t see it as much of a reach. If you can get Altuve, I think you’d be sitting pretty nicely with Ike. Unless the Valley Fever that was not Valley Fever gets changed by the Mets doctors to a slight case of decapitation. As a Mets fan, you have to hate those medics, no?

      • 3FingersBrown says:
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        @Oregon Nut Cups, You’d think Dr. Spaceman from 30 Rock was the team physician. I’m not sure what’s stranger: Valley Fever that’s not Valley Fever or Jose Reyes’ getting mercury poisoning from eating too much shellfish a few years back… (hmmm a reason to stay away from Jose this year? Damn that tasty Florida seafood!)

        Yeah Carp’s not much more than a Monday/Thursday guy but he might surprise with 20 or so HR and should have decent OBP. He’s 1B/OF too which is nice.

        • Oregon Nut Cups

          Oregon Nut Cups says:
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          @3FingersBrown, As a Mariners fan, I hope you’re right but as a Mariners fan I also have little faith in Carp and his 20+ K%. For both our sakes, I hope you’re right :)

  11. Yep, I said it! says:
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    In my super-deep league, all the guys you mention above are already owned (even Cardenas). Yes, Freddy Galvis is owned. With Utley going to the DL, the only FA options I have are Orlando Hudson, Juan Uribe, and Alexi Casilla. Oy, this stinks. Does you magic 8-ball say anything other than ‘I’m screwed’?

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Yep, I said it!, It also says ‘Eat at Burger King’, but that’s only because it’s where I got it from. Damn capitalists.

      That is a crazy deep league. Alexi has major speed potential if he can put things together so he’s THE guy in your set. Did anyone draft then drop Giavotella? Keep your eye on him if they did. Yuni and Getz are not the answer at 2B for KC for this year and beyond and if they are, well, my prayers go out to KC fans.

      Keep your eyes on the Nats. Rendon eventually but probably an Espinosa move to SS while they start Lombardozzi. I see Desmond getting moved via trade or bumped to the bench. Lombardozzi won’t be much more than empty average if/when that happens, but I have a hard time seeing Rendon down on the farm for long this year. All gut here, take and use as you will.

      • Yep, I said it! says:
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        @Oregon Nut Cups. Thanks for the suggestion and detailed feedback. I was leaning towards taking a chance with Uribe, but I’ll think tonight about picking up Alexi instead. Yes, the league is deep. Even Yuniesky Betancourt is owned (Giavotella and Rendon too). Getz and Lombardozzi are free agents, but I don’t see them getting me anywhere. The difficult thing is not knowing how long Utley will be gone, and whether or not I should just bite the bullet and make a trade. Other than this mess, my team seems ready to compete right now, so I’d rather not give up a piece of the puzzle if I don’t need to. :::exhale:::

        • Oregon Nut Cups

          Oregon Nut Cups says:
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          @Yep, I said it!, haha, breathe! I wouldn’t swing a trade at this point. Too early to know much about Utley. Just use filler as needed until things get clearer.

      • Charley H says:
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        @Oregon Nut Cups, I keep wondering if KCR will use Bourgeois at 2nd base at all. He was close to getting regular time there last season, in Houston, before getting hurt.

        • Oregon Nut Cups

          Oregon Nut Cups says:
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          @Charley H, I’d love to see it but it’s pretty unlikely. Getz and Yuni – for whatever reason – have solidified that spot. Even if they bomb, I can’t see them keeping Giavotella down for long. I like your idea, though. I have an eye on him in the off chance it happens.

  12. Side says:
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    Deep 16 team league. Hitting is awesome but pitching (starters & relievers) needs help. Putting G Sizemore my last pick on the DL & can take….
    H Rodriquez
    Vogelsong
    Floyd
    Hughes

    I am leaning torward Hughes 4 upside & only start him w good matchups. However if HRod has a real chance 2 close he is the pick. Opinion?

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Side, I’d go HRod for now but monitor Hughes.

  13. Steven says:
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    Hello-
    I don’t know if you will get to answer this before the games get going tomorrow morning but i’ll submit anyways. I have no players that play for Oak/Sea and also do not have any for opening night for Mia/STL. With that said i’m playing on yahoo and the opening week goes from March 28th-Apr 8th leaving me only 3 days (Those who play on the 5th don’t play on the 6th and that happens to be my whole team) of stats to fill categories. Would you consider picking up any players from OAK/SEA off waivers to try and grab some stats?

    Thanks so much

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Steven, there are very few ownable players for either team and they have most likely already been drafted. You might luck into a 2/4 night with some RBIs or runs, but most likely, you’re just hurting yourself.

      • Steven says:
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        @Oregon Nut Cups,
        The only options that i have to pick up off free agents would be-Kurt Suzuki, Mike Carp, Miguel Olivo, Cliff Pennington, Chone Figgins, Josh Reddick, or Jonny Gomes. Any of these guys worth it???

        On another note I am in a 1 catcher league and picked up both Soto and Ramos in the draft. Which would you rather have?? I would probably be dropping one of these to pick up any of above players.

        Thanks so much

        • Oregon Nut Cups

          Oregon Nut Cups says:
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          @Steven, I’d want Ramos. Similar power upside with less average downside.

          I’m not high on Carp, but he might be a 20 HR hitter. Since you have two and you probably don’t have any advantage to try and trade from with a leaguemate, I could see dropping Soto for him to give him a whirl. But don’t be surprised with an 0/4! That said, go M’s :)

          • Steven says:
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            @Oregon Nut Cups,

            Thank you for your time

            • Oregon Nut Cups

              Oregon Nut Cups says:
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              @Steven, No prob, thanks for reading!

  14. Aaron says:
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    I just dropped Brian Roberts to add Allen Craig (via waiver claim so I did give up something).
    I went to Fantasy Pros and compared Craig to Roberts and the results are much closer than I thought they would be.

    ONC what do you think about Craig or Roberts for a MI spot?

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @Aaron, I wrote up a sleeper post on him. If you google ‘Under the Greydar: Allen Craig’, you’ll feel the love oozing out of me for him. He’s a legit 20 HR guy with a .280 average as long as he gets at-bats. You made the right move.

      • Eric Riptide says:
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        @Oregon Nut Cups, Hey man, I think you could stop my brain from hurting since you seem to be a west coast baseball guy. I mean, that is Jay Buhner in your photo, right? Anyways, is there any way to get an internet stream for the Mariners game in Japan tomorrow morning? I simply can’t believe that MLB opening day isn’t even on live television. That stinks.

        Also, do you believe that Felix Hernandez and Brandon McCarthy are going to start again in the USA home opener the following Friday which is like 9 freakin’ days later? I should think both teams would want to trot out their best pitchers again to maximize wins, even though both teams may sense that they’re not contentders….which makes me think maybe McCarthy might not start again until they go through the whole rotation once, even though he’ll have plenty of days off to start on Friday April 6th in Oakland.

        Very confusing.

        Your thoughts?

        • Oregon Nut Cups

          Oregon Nut Cups says:
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          @Eric Riptide, what’s more sad is they choose the A’s and M’s to start the season at all. Seriously, who made this schedule? Trust me when I say the real opening day comes later. This comes from a Mariners fan.

          Start of the year pitching is a little rough on those 200 inning arms. I wouldn’t be surprised either way but I don’t have any inside info. Sorry.

          • Eric Riptide says:
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            @Oregon Nut Cups, Either way, I guess my main problem is deciding between McCarthy tonight or Francisco Liriano next week (I’m in a weekly league that locks rosters for teams who have played a game already.) It should be a low-scoring game so I’ll probably go with McCarthy even though Liriano is purportedly looking great in the spring. If McCarthy pitches again next week, it’s a bonus. I’ll let Liriano prove it to me, at least for his first start.

            • Oregon Nut Cups

              Oregon Nut Cups says:
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              @Eric Riptide, Ah,didn’t understand it was a weekly. You’re right in going with McCarthy. Good luck!

  15. The Once Great Lane Meyer says:
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    NL-only 12-team keeper league. Standard 5×5 cats. Probably 25-30% inflation in the league. Pre-draft…. Been offered $20 Jay Bruce for my $8 Jose Altuve. Both effectively have same contact status cuz of ‘stros moving to AL next year.

    Going into the draft with Dee Gordon at SS and Uggla at 2B already, Cargo is my only OF. Should I trade away Altuve to get Bruce?

    Thanks!

    • Oregon Nut Cups

      Oregon Nut Cups says:
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      @The Once Great Lane Meyer, Do it and don’t look back.

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