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I had a dream last night that I was fifteen and Derek Jeter was caught with steroids and suffered the same consequences as Ryan Braun and those who will be suspended from their Biogenesis connections. Smart, interesting people dream about other worlds, space, love, mustaches, breasts, and loads and loads of money — I, on the other hand, seem to be stuck thinking back on my adolescence and how neurotic, nervous, and unconfident it eventually made me. I grew up in New York as a Yankee fan — 2001 ALCS game 7 is my fondest moment that doesn’t involve sex, alcohol, or gambling — and if Cap Jeets was indeed ever connected to PEDs, HGH, IGF, ATD, or any other incriminating acronym, my entire perception of good and evil would be forever skewed. All the Luke Skywalkers, Frodo Bagginses, and Disney Worlds on Earth would be incapable of convincing me genuine goodness exists. I’d probably become homicidal. I’m not even really sure if I can say I’m kidding. All underdog stories would be a joke, right? Did Luke really use his targeting computer? Did Frodo actually just fly one of those giant eagles all the way to Mordor?! (and why didn’t he just do that?) Did Rudy take steroids?! The possible deceptions are endless! My faith wouldn’t keep. I’d be an empty soul. I’d be… Ryan Braun, the soulless rat who could grow back into a prince if we play our keeper cards right.

 

 

There’s a lot of debate about how much of who Braun was is because of his “illegal intake”, and how much is because he’s, well, a rather good baseball player. Was he always taking steroids? I mean, he did hit 37 homers in 2007 as a rookie. It’s not like he just shot out of nowhere like Brady Anderson and was quickly caught juicing afterward. He’s been good for a while and you can bet your booty that he was getting tested ever since his matriculation to the Bigs — league testing began in 2004. That means he either beat the tests all those years or he hadn’t mustered up the courage (cowardice?) to actually starting PED’ing.

We don’t know and probably never will know, but you know that already. What actually matters is what your league-mates think of Braun’s “real ability” and what you think his “real ability” is.

You paid a steep price for Mr. Braun this year if you got him. And in auction leagues, would have to pay a steep price next year if you traded for him this year. The price tag attached to 2013 Braun is a whole lotta bucks or a top first-round pick. And regardless of how legitimate you think Braun actually is, it’s safe to say that steroids do indeed improve someone’s ability to hit a baseball, which in turn makes it safe to say that Braun will not be as good as he was, even if you think there won’t be too much of a difference between the former and the current.

Whether it be because Braun’s salary will increase next year despite his suspension, because guys like Matt Kemp are demanding his MVP award revoked and Max Scherzer demand his contract voided, or because most people simply feel “betrayed” by a guy who cheats, there will be uber-super-duper hate on Braun when the 2014 draft comes around. And you know how none of that actually matters in fantasy? Well, not everyone realizes that, or they do and just can’t compartmentalize their minds. Remember Jayson Werth‘s ignominy because the Nationals were stupid enough to sign him to that outrageous contract?

Side: More people have played organized baseball than any other sport during their childhood. In those sports, it seems that nobody cares about PEDs or, at least, doesn’t care enough to “question” players who are crushing the league like a Chris Davis is crushing the league. Meanwhile, baseball has the strongest and most thorough testing system out of any major sport in the U.S. Is this because it’s “easier” to see and quantify stats that “signify power”, like the home run does? Or is it because, ever so slightly, we, “all former ball players” feel ever so slighted by guys who cheated? Does jealousy play a part? Purhayps.

Braun’s still good for a .285 BA, 25 homers, and 15 steals when he’s healthy and off whatever it was Bosch-bag was peddling. That means he could reasonably be drafted in the middle of a 12-teamer’s second round. Not everyone will realize that—especially if you take the temperature of the water at this very moment. Not to mention “eff you” mode is some scary crepe. Next year, when you go into your draft, don’t make the same mistake that a lot of your league-members will make—don’t undervalue him just because he’s a lying, stuck-up, half-witted, scruffy-looking, nerfherder. Get him there in the second and have him at slight value for years!

Anyway, Jaywrong is awesome. And his recent “keepers list” was awesome. And for the most part, I agree with everything he said. Just a few things:

Manny Machado

He’s a top-1o guy.

Josh Donaldson

Donaldson never hit more than 18 homers in the Minor Leagues, and that was in the launching pad of the Pacific Coast League—the same place that Brandon Belt got his reputation as a “good” player. He’s hitting 34 points higher this year than his career Minors batting average. His HR/FB is at 11%, which won’t last—especially in O.Co. Yeah, he wouldn’t be the first player to really break out at 27, but those guys are usually capped. Unless you’re Cliff Lee. I wouldn’t consider him a better keeper than Wil Myers, who’s younger and, well, better. Jay already heard this from Nick on the podcast, though. So I don’t mean to belabor, Jay. I love you.

Jurickson Profar

Don’t let his prospect status fool you into thinking he’s a fantasy superstar; those ratings include fielding and other thingamajigs. I really like Jay’s spot here.

Desmond Jennings and Starling Marte

I don’t think they should be so different in the ranks.

Follow Terse on Twitter and he’ll answer awl uv yer ?s. @TerseRazzball. Peace & love, y’all.

  1. Jay says:
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    in a keeper which side you like Strasburg or Machado/Jofer.

    It’s a H2H 10 tm lg. keep 5 currently in 3rd place currently keeping Votto, Longo, Stanton, Strasburg and either cespedes or Heyward.

    if i make the trade i lose stras burg but still have Cliff Lee, Greinke, Hamels, Minor, Homer Bailey, Nova, aad would add Jofer.

    Wold than keep Votto, Stanton, Machado, Longo, and one of Heyward?Cespedes?Jofer. Or could look to move Longofor some early post keeper round picks.

    Thoughts?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Jay: You most DEFINITELY want Machado/Jofer.

      • Jay says:
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        @Terse: Cool that’s how Im leaning.

        that wold allow me to do a little more with my roster too.

        assuming i make the trade who do you keep out of the possibilites?

        Votto, Stanton, and Machado would be definites for me. fill in the last two keeper spots Choosing between Cespedes, Longo, Heyward, Jo-Fer, Greinke.

        • Terse

          Terse says:
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          @Jay: Longo and Jofer, I think. Could do Heyward over Jofer, but might want one pitcher, especially considering how cheap Jofer is.

          • Jay says:
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            @Terse: thanks for the time. just an FYI, Grey totally disagrees. He prefers Strasburg here.

            • Terse

              Terse says:
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              @Jay: That’s really surprising, but he thinks what he thinks. You paid a lot more for Stras than you did for Macho or Jofer, and Stras has injury problems. I’m fully bought in on Jofer and Machado is one notch below Bryce and Trouty

              • Jay says:
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                @Terse: I agree. i’m pushing for the trade. thanks again.

                • Terse

                  Terse says:
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                  @Jay: no prob jaydawg

  2. FrankGrimes says:
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    only one rookie keeper for next year bogaerts or yelich?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @FrankGrimes: god that’s close. Bogaerts, though, because of Yelich’s platoon splits

  3. CL says:
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    Just got an offer… he sends me Alex Wood (ATL RP) for Alex Cobb. 10 team dynasty, all keepers. Relievers are king and we count holds. I love me some Braves pitchin’. Thoughts?

    • CL says:
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      @CL:

      Wood is starting tonight by the way… think he stays a starter, or is this just an anomaly because of injuries?

      • Terse

        Terse says:
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        @CL: All depends on Maholm, who might hit the DL soon. Are holds the only reason relievers are king? I’d prefer Cobb in a keeper league.

        • CL says:
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          @Terse: It appears the high-K rate, innings eaters really help with the bottom lines; WHIP, ERA, Ks, Holds, Saves, lastly Wins. Pretty much all closers, 7th-8th inning guys are owned. By far the deepest position owned all around.

          I do need starters too… might just hold Cobb for a minute. See how Wood does tonight. Thanks.

          • Terse

            Terse says:
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            @CL: Wood got hit. Even if he didn’t, though, I’d still go Cobb.

  4. DILinator says:
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    I posted this today on an older thread, but maybe this is a better place for it…

    I’m LM in a Keeper league with 10 Keepers per team, and it’s been around for a while. The Braun owner, the top team in the league, just traded him to one of the last place teams, for Shin Soo Choo.

    What is your opinion of this trade? Fair, considering it’s a Keeper League, and Braun is the better player long term? Or too unbalanced, because it helps the top team too unfairly this season, and Choo was having a better season before Braun was suspended anyway?

    There are calls from various members for it to be vetoed, but I’m not sure if it’s really veto worthy. Any help is appreciated!

    (BTW – Both members involved in this trade are Razzball readers, FWIW…)

    • CL says:
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      @DILinator:

      Trades should be trades. Nothing about this trade is collusion (the only time a trade should be vetoed). Don’t get into complaining about trades. Waste of energy.

      • DILinator says:
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        @CL: Thanks! That’s pretty much how I feel about trades these days (unless there’s something egregiously wrong with it), but I’m getting a lot of grief from some activist league members who don’t want to see the team on top better itself this season. Ugh… Thanks again CL!

        • CL says:
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          @DILinator:

          Yup. Think about all of teh trades you see go down throughout sports and yer like “Daaaammmmnnnnnn so-and-so just got off on that owner!” or “Damn, that team got HOSED!”

          We all want to be on the winning side of a trade. And if you complain about a trade, in my opinion, you are jealous you couldn’t pull it off yourself.

          • Terse

            Terse says:
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            @CL: The trade is definitely permissible.

    • JoeMorgan'sMustache says:
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      @DILinator: Trade is fine, especially in a keeper. If the league as a whole ends up wanting to veto this deal, then maybe they should think about not being in a keeper.

      • JoeMorgan'sMustache says:
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        @JoeMorgan’sMustache: Also, just an annoyance of mine. It really bothers me when someone wants to veto a deal because the best team just got better. Or because a team better than them just got better. Kudos to that team and manager for being good, and for making the deal…don’t hate on him. Unless a deal is clearly lopsided and or some collusion may be going on…then there is no reason to veto a trade.

        • DILinator says:
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          @JoeMorgan’sMustache: Thanks to all for their response! I agree with you all about this trade, but I just get tired of dealing with people’s complaining, and I figured I’d at least ask some other opinions to back up what I’ve been telling them. So I feel confident now that my initial feeling that there was nothing wrong with the trade, was indeed correct. I definitely think some of these complainers do not factor in the difference between a Keeper and Re-Draft league when they keep complaining about every little thing…

          • Terse

            Terse says:
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            @DILinator: love the discussion

        • philthebluntman says:
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          @JoeMorgan’sMustache: I just made a trade in a twelve team auction keeper where you keep six and the league is going batshit over it. Traded harvey a jackson g parra erasmo Ramirez darin ruf and ike davis for joe mauer m bourne r Zimmerman j helickson j hamilton and h kendrick. Im in 2nd place amd the team I traded is in last with no chance for the playoffs. Harvey can be kept at the low price of ten$ and jackson at 3 $. Combined that’s probably a 45 $ savings of what they would go for. None of the other players in this trade can be kept. The other owner is looking to rebuild for next year. Was the trade too much.

          • philthebluntman says:
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            @philthebluntman: also the last place team offered the same trade to the owners of mike trout and chris davis and was denied. Trout can be kept for 7 and c davis at 3 . This lets you know how valuable cheap star keepers are.

            • Terse

              Terse says:
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              @philthebluntman: That trade definitely helps you, but if you’re playing for this year and he’s playing for next year, then it makes complete sense for both of you. The context is what makes it passable.

              No problem w/ this trade, it should be upheld.

              • philthebluntman says:
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                @Terse:cool. I didnt think the deal was that crazy. thanks for the quick response. These keeper posts sure help with player evaluation. Keep them coming.

    • philthebluntman says:
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      @DILinator: no question. Fair trade. Unless its a keep forever league I like the choo side more. Who knows how braun plays if he stops juicing. Hes probably been on roids since he was in the minors.

  5. Chad Donaldson says:
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    I agree about Machado being a top 10 keeper. The possibility of him gaining SS eligibility plus some of those doubles will turn into HR’s when he fills out that frame. Kid is special, I own him in my dynasty league and field trade offers with what seems like hourly.

  6. Kevin says:
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    I just sent d Robertson for Braun in a 12 team, 6 keeper league. 8×8 obv with holds. I’m prob going to make playoffs this year, but good investment, eh?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Kevin: Of course. You kicked that kid’s ass.

  7. Brendan says:
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    14 team mixed points league where SP are a little overpowered K=1 QS=8 W=3 L=-3 H/W=-1 and ER= -2
    I have E5, McCutchen, Kemp, Price and Wainwright and we only get to keep 3.

    Another league 12 mixed points league.

    We get to keep 7.
    I have Votto, Kipnis, Beltre, Verlander, Beachy, and Wheeler. Competing for the last spot I have Jennings, Marte, Lawrie, Minor, E. Ramirez, and Gattis.

    Let me know! Thank you!!

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Brendan: No problem Brayndayn.

      In your first league, I’d be keeping E5, Cutch, and Wainey.

      In your second league, I’d keep Jennings. Gattis is worthless, I’d trade him to someone who sees value in him.

  8. timmyk93 says:
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    Keeper league… Was offered Verlander for J Upton. Should I bite?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @timmyk93: Sigh… I suppose.

  9. FMFBL says:
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    Great stuff, thanks!

    Keep 4, lose the pick you took them in, waiver wire = final round…
    Harper – 1
    Encarnacion – 4
    Scherzer – 7
    Machado – 10
    Segura – waiver add
    Jose Fernandez – waiver add
    Dominic Brown – waiver add

    Thanks!

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @FMFBL: Thanks!

      Machado, Segura, Jofer, Brown

  10. josh says:
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    H2H Keeper(keep 12) 10-team,
    Just traded Cuddyer for Rizzo and Chapman. My only concern is Chapman as of late, and if Rizzo will ever wake up. Thoughts?

  11. Bill says:
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    Was this trade horrible on my end in my keeper league? I gave up Ryan Howard & Jurickson Profar for David Ortiz & Miguel Sano. I am in win now mode for this year. Am I the only one who thinks Profar will be a great real life player but not a great fantasy option?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Bill: Nope: “Don’t let his prospect status fool you into thinking he’s a fantasy superstar; those ratings include fielding and other thingamajigs. I really like Jay’s spot here.”

      If you’re in win-now mode, you had to do the trade. I like Sano’s power—it’s already Big League-ready—and Ortiz is still an animal. Good job.

  12. Joe says:
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    Talking about making this deal:
    I send – Wright/Profar/Verlander
    I receieve – Kuroda/Shelby Miller/Adam Jones

    It’s a 12 team standard 5×5 league where we can keep seven guys each year. I’d be losing Wright and Verlander as keepers but I’d have Trout, McCutchen, Kemp, Jones, Machado, Bumgarner, and Jose Fernandez as my probable seven plus guys like Miller, Wheeler, Kinsler, Freeman, Samardzija and Chapman hanging around. I could always flip Miller later too. Without posting my full team (which I can), do you think you would do the deal?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Joe: Nah, I’d probably sit tight and keep Wright. Why aren’t you considering keeping Profar?

      • Joe says:
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        @Terse: We can only keep seven players so there’s no way I’d be able to hang onto him. I drafted him hoping to flip him at some point.

        If I don’t make that deal then I have Machado, Wright, Trout, Kemp, McCutchen, Verlander, Bumgarner, Ferndandez. That’s eight right there plus Freeman, Kinsler, Gyorko, Eaton, Wheeler and a few others I had listed. Not sure who I’m leaving out to keep Profar. I wouldn’t mind dealing Wright since I have Machado to take over 3B. We start C, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, OF, OF, OF, UTIL

        • Terse

          Terse says:
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          @Joe: How’s your spot in the standings?

          • Terse

            Terse says:
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            @Terse: Def no room for Profar.

            Acquiring Jones would leave you with four keepers in the deepest position—not something you want. I’d rather have two studs at a thinner position and just stick one in the CI/Util spot.

        • danny almonte says:
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          @Joe: Dude I’d definitely pass on that deal. You’re downgrading.

      • Joe says:
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        @Terse: We had also talked about Wright/Profar for Adam Jones/Lester so that’s also an option. Do you think that’s any better?

        I’m probably overpaying again but I have a few young pitchers who will probably be shut down at some point (Fernandez, Wheeler) and, like I mentioned, I don’t know how Profar fits in to my keeper plans. I’ve also offered Profar to two other teams and they had zero interest in him (which made no sense to me but I guess I continually win this league for a reason).

        • Terse

          Terse says:
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          @Joe: Still sit. Continue to try to push Profar so you can help yourself this year. Keep Machado and Wright. Too many OF w/ Jones, like I said above. I wouldn’t want Wheeler and would try to push him to someone who might want to keep him—I’m bearish on him and a lot are bullish.

        • Joe says:
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          @Joe: Thanks for all of the responses, I really appreciate it.

          What about a different direction. I have Nick Franklin and Jeter as my two SS. Another owner has zero quality 3B but has Reyes and Segura. Would you deal Wright straight up for one of them?

          • Terse

            Terse says:
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            @Joe: No problem bud. If you can get Reyes straight up, I would—he’s a top-3 SS—but I do really like Franklin. If you can keep Segura, try getting the guy to package him for Wright.

            If not, you should still be happy with Mr. Wright.

  13. birrrdy! says:
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    @Terse: Need some trade advice for a tough keeper league. 12 team, 5×5 NL only. 13 hitters, 10 pitchers, no reserve but a DL. Empahsis on elite players as we keep 8 each year at 90% of a listed magazine price, then take what’s left of our $300 into an auction draft. If a player is traded to the AL in-season, we get rights to incoming players. If it happens in the off-season, we get nothing. (important for this discussion because of Choo and Stanton)

    I’m in 3rd place overall, but screwed because of Braun and the slow arrival of Taveras (neither of whom I can drop). Here are the current trades I’m looking at:

    A. Kemp(DL)/Tanaka/Valbuena/Morton/Cueto(DL)/Marisnick for my Stras/Choo/Adams/Alonso. [Offered by the team in second place right now.]

    B. Stanton/Blanks(DL)/Medlen/Cole for my Stras/Choo/McCarthy(DL)/Coghlan(DL)

    C. Cole/Blanks(DL) for Alonso.

    D. Reproposing something else.

    E. Do nothing.

    My current keepers for next year would be: Braun/Wright/Choo(if in NL)/Taveras/Stras/Wheeler with the last 2 spots going to 2 of Matt Adams/Uggla/Cozart/A.Soriano(if in NL)/Alonso/Olt/Revere/Locke/Beachy/C.Martinez. I’m kinda sweet on Matt Adams with some hopeful love for C.Martinez, but who knows what can happen by next Spring. Olt may even be keepable by then (and at a great pre-season magazine price)….

    Any help you can offer up most appreciated!

    • birrrdy! says:
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      @Terse: Forgot to mention trades B and C have been offered by the team in 1st place.

    • birrrdy! says:
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      @Terse: Sorry, and it’s a 10-team NL only (not 12) for what it’s worth. Can you tell I’m typing nervously? Not often I get Kemp and Stanton dangled in front of me in a playoff run.

      • Terse

        Terse says:
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        @birrrdy!: Hey birdo,

        If you’re playing for this year, why not trade Braun to someone who’s playing for next year? He’s also going to cost you a pretty penny going into next year. I’d probably avoid doing A and B as Choo and Stras can help you huge down the stretch.

        Right now, like I said, I’d try and dangle Braun in front of some hopeless guy with some now trade chips—you can probably get a pretty big return.

        • Terse

          Terse says:
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          @Terse: nice trade chips*

        • birrrdy! says:
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          @Terse: thanks… this one is indeed a tough one. I’m not sure the hopeless guys are putting too much value on Braun yet, but it is worth a try. Price is never an issue for top keepers like Braun. They only cost in the high $30′s, and if they were to go up for auction, they would fetch in the $60′s. Stanton probably in the $50′s.

        • birrrdy! says:
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          @Terse: Plus, I lose Soriano in a matter of hours to the AL with nothing coming back it would seem. I’m not sure my chances this year are that good.

        • birrrdy! says:
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          @Terse: plus I just lost Garza to the AL and am clinging to another dead roster spot in Olt. Just not my year on that front, so hoping to cash in before I lose Choo for nothing too in the offseason… But I won’t do it recklessly. Can’t complain with Stanton and Kemp being offered up.

          • Terse

            Terse says:
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            @birrrdy!: Together, let’s hope Soriano doesn’t come to the Yanks.

            That’s a pain with Garza, but next year keep in mind that nice trade chips on bad teams will be headed elsewhere (a lot easier said than done).

  14. Roy says:
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    One to keep for next year. Got to choose from goldy, Stanton, and jupton. Thoughts?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Roy: Goldschmidt

  15. dansuggla says:
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    12 team. $260 5×5

    Who would you rather have for 2014 pick 5:

    Wainwright $14
    JoFer $10
    Puig $5
    Segura $5
    Machado $19
    Freeman $15
    Wil Meyers $10
    Chapman $9
    Dextr F $10

    Thanks!

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @dansuggla: Segura, Jofer, Myers, Machado, Puig

  16. SmokeTNT says:
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    In a 8×8 where you can keep 5 with no restrictions I just traded Verlander and Justin Upton for Stephen Strasburg and Todd Frazier. Frazier is inconsequential and I can’t see a scenario where I would keep J-Up and I couldn’t even give him away. Also Verlander has been absolutely terrible lately minus one or two good starts and looks like 2012 Lincecum to me.

    Good deal?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @SmokeTNT: Well, if you’re playing for next year and weren’t keeping Upton anyway, then sure, it’s fine. I do think you could’ve gotten a bit more, though.

      If you were playing for this year, I don’t really like it.

      Ver/Stras though, I do like Stras more.

  17. Junior Ortiz says:
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    I might be able to get Braun as a keeper next year in lieu of my 23rd-round (last) pick. Worth giving up Pedroia, who will be a 13th-round pick?

  18. WhiteRabbit says:
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    thanks for all the great insights! I’m in a standard 5×5, 10 Team, NL Only keeper league … for some reason i keep holding onto Trevor Rosenthal – he’s great for extra K’s, whip and ERA and i was hoping he got moved to closer but Mujica has been lights out. Eovaldi is available – ROS and for future, would you keep Rosenthal or go with Eovaldi?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @WhiteRabbit: hey sir, no problem! thanks for reading them. Rosenthal. He’ll be a starter next year, I believe. Eovaldi isn’t reliable enough—somehow a guy who throws 99 gets his fastball shelled.

      • WhiteRabbit says:
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        @Terse: Sir?! – that might be a stretch but thanks and keep on keepin on.

  19. stumanji says:
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    I’m out of contention and have been targeting Machado ($5) in my 10 tm keep 5 (+120% of previous year’s price) league but the owner will only move him if Puig ($3) is included, and I think he’d ask for more too. His love for Machado knows no bounds.

    My keepers right now look like Puig ($3), Goldy ($12, just traded a haul of non-keepers plus JoFer $3 for him), Rizzo ($3), Gio ($10), and then probably one of Hanley ($11) or A Hill ($4).

    Deal my little Puiggy or sit tight?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @stumanji: Deal your little Puigy, then laugh all the way home.

  20. Terse

    Terse says:
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    Deal your little Puigy, then laugh all the way home.

  21. Psychedelic says:
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    I think people are down on Profar because he’s not blowing up as a 20 year old in the bigs? He could hit 20 HRs with a .300 avg from a premium position… That’s pretty solid if you ask me. Whether he’s at SS on a different team or 2B with the rangers.. That’s still a great player. Just might take a year or so to get there.

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