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In May, Max Scherzer got dunked in the Triple-A holy Toledo water.  Before that spiritual awakening, he had an ERA of 7.29.  In 23 starts after that trip, 2.46.  Before that trip, a 5.6 K/9.  Afterwards, 9.3 K/9.  Before, he was hitting 91.8 MPH on the speed gun.  After, 93.5 MPH.  Before, his fastball was put into play 16.1% of the time.  After, 13.7%.  Praise the Lord!  Scherzer was cured.  When he returned from Toledo, the Tigers should have had him punch through one of those life-size, Biggest Loser finale cutouts to fully appreciate the Before and After.  You know what year major league pitchers tend to peak?  Their third season starting.  Know what year Scherzer will be in?  His third full season.  You old goat, you made me fall in love!  Someone get me a handkerchief because I’m going to put it to my forehead and faint.  So what can we expect of Max Scherzer in 2011 fantasy baseball?

Not his last 23 starts.  That would be too tidy.  I’ll take those numbers over the course of a full season; and you know that!  But I wouldn’t expect it.  He still has the occasional start or two or three where he takes a blowtorch to your team.  Usually those happen in May.  In 2009, his May ERA was 5.09.  In 2010, 9.45. With Verlander unable to pitch in April and Scherzer getting wrapped around the maypole, I’d assume they don’t like the cold weather, except there’s never sunshine in Detroit.  In 2011, I could see Scherzer line being 14-9/3.35/1.23/195.  It’s a near-carbon copy of last year with a few more innings.  What I’m thinking happens is he never hits rock bottom like he did last year, but he also doesn’t throw a 2.46 ERA over 23 starts.  Oh, and before you have a chance to say it, yes, I’m liking more AL pitchers this year than usual.  What’s it to you?

54 Responses

  1. Josh says:
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    What do you think of slow starters and guys with off months in head-to-head formats vs. roto. Any difference?

  2. Doug says:
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    In fantasy baseball paradise with Grey writing twice a day now! Thanks Grey for by far my favorite FB site…helped me win my league last year!

  3. Tom Thumb says:
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    Rank Name
    1 Tim Lincecum
    2 Roy Halladay
    3 Felix Hernandez
    4 Cliff Lee
    5 Jon Lester
    6 Ubaldo Jimenez
    7 Adam Wainwright
    8 Justin Verlander
    9 Clayton Kershaw
    10 Francisco Liriano
    11 Zack Greinke
    12 Tommy Hanson
    13 Dan Haren
    14 Yovani Gallardo
    15 C.C. Sabathia
    16 Josh Johnson
    17 Cole Hamels
    18 Jered Weaver
    19 Matt Cain
    20 Jonathon Sanchez
    21 David Price
    22 Roy Oswalt
    23 Mat Latos
    24 Matt Garza
    25 Max Scherzer
    26 Brandon Morrow
    27 Phil Hughes
    28 Wandy Rodriguez
    29 Jorge de la Rosa
    30 Ryan Dempster
    31 Shawn Marcum
    32 Ricky Romero
    33 Ricky Nolasco
    34 Brett Anderson
    35 Gio Gonzalez
    36 Dan Hudson
    37 Madison Bumgarner
    38 Ted Lilly
    39 James Shields
    40 Jhoulys Chacin
    41 Edinson Volquez
    42 Brett Meyers
    43 James McDonald
    44 Jordan Zimmerman
    45 Ian Kennedy
    46 Anibal Sanchez
    47 Wade Davis
    48 Mike Minor
    49 Jeremy Hellickson
    50 Jaime Garcia
    51 C.J. Wilson
    52 Jeff Niemann
    53 Jair Jurrgens
    54 Javier Vazquez
    55 John Danks
    56 Trevor Cahill
    57 Edwin Jackson
    58 Ervin Santana
    59 Wade Davis
    60 Dallas Braden

    What do you think of these SP ranks? Quick and dirty calculations

  4. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Josh: Almost all players go through dry spells. Just have to know what you have. Don’t want a whole team of slow starters.

    @Doug: Thanks for the kind words!

    @Tom Thumb: Not really sure what you want me to say with this. My SPs ranks are coming soon.

  5. TJ says:
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    I get to keep both Joey Votto and Carlos Gonzalez this year.
    However, before the season starts, I need to assign one to be a two year keeper (2011 and 2012 seasons), and the other to be a three year keeper (also get the 2013 season).

    So which one do I pick for the three year keeper?
    Sort of torn. I see the depth at 1b and think that gives me reason to toss Votto back after only two years.
    But even though Cargo is younger, I worry he won’t ever have a season as good as he did last year.

  6. Rank Stank says:
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    @Tom Thumb: Don’t know how one can process *all* of that, but you left off Colby Lewis, who should be mid-30s IMO.

  7. Eddy says:
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    @Grey:

    Nice post! Just finished grabbing him in one of the mocks before even reading this bad boy. What round do you feel comfortable taking him? Or, better yet, how far would you reach?

  8. Eddy says:
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    ****2 SPOTS LEFT IN THE YAHOO RAZZMOCK****

    It takes place this Thursday at 7pm EST!

    password is pianowmusic.

  9. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @TJ: Keep Votto for 3 years.

    @Eddy: Go two to three rounds above his ADP.

  10. Al Swedgin says:
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    Grey, isn’t Max Scherzer one of the ones you said sounds like a Michael Chabon character? Still amuses me…

  11. polczek5 says:
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    @Grey: @Eddy:
    Just make sure you use the right ADP. Last I checked, MDC had him at 138 (and that’s waaay higher than a week ago at 180!). The razzball mocks have seen him go a little earlier (as you probably know). I just watched someone snatch him in a slow draft at 100 overall. I thought he’d get back to my next pick for sure.

  12. polczek5 says:
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    @Eddy: How long have the mocks been taking? Any chance of starting one an hour later? And it seems like MDC isn’t allowing you to join an in-progress mock to take over an AI agent. Do you know if that’s still possible? My night schedule is usually crazy (due to the kids), but there’s always a chance I can join up later if that’s an option.

  13. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @polczek5: Yeah, hopefully he doesn’t move too far up draft sheets. At a 100 overall seems like it’s pushing it.

  14. So I should trade for Herr Max sometime around May 20th, that’s what I’m thinking. Maybe I can get some over performing NL Central pitcher to use as bait.

  15. John says:
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    In a head to head points league how do you rank Scherzer? An SP4? Is he worth investing in knowing I’ll probably have to deal with 4 or 5 -10 weeks from him?

  16. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @ChrisV82: You’re a sly robot.

    @John: SP3. As I said above, all pitchers after the top 10 are going to give you some issues.

  17. skeezy says:
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    Best keeper for the price….Looking for my last 5th keeper.

    Options
    Konerko – $1
    Chris B. Young – $1
    Scherzer – $6
    Rasmus $7
    D. Young – $1
    S. Drew – $1

    Current Keepers
    Ethier – $13
    Alex Rios – $14
    Josh Johnson – $19
    Jared Weaver – $7

    Minor League Keepers
    Jhoulys – $1
    Carlos Santana – $1

  18. Eddy says:
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    @polczek5:

    Well we’ve been doing these mocks for about a month now. I usually set them up for Wed. or Thurs. in the evening. As the offseason pregresses, I’m most likely going to open two mocks a week. For now, however, one seems fine. And yea, I agree that MDC has to change the in-progress joining thing. Next week I’ll see if I could start one up at 8:30pm EST.

  19. The Vaporizers says:
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    Who do you want as your minor league stud in dynasty league?

    Desmond Jennings or Mike Moustakas.

    I have Jennings and am thinking about going after Moose so that I have a 3B for the future.

  20. GopherDay says:
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    @Grey: Which group of keepers would you rather enter the draft with? (16 Team 5X5 ROTO)

    Group A:
    Howard
    Youk
    V-Mart
    Stanton
    Granderson

    Group B:
    Crawford
    Utley
    Sabathia
    Cruz
    Papelbon

  21. sean says:
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    @TJ: I like Votto for 3, especially in light of the deal he just signed. His third season will be a contract year.

  22. sean says:
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    @Steve: I’ve spent a lot of time in Detroit and it’s one of the saddest things you’ll ever see to see these once great buildings disintegrating into nothingness, symbols of a bygone era of the opulence of the once proud American manufacturing industry. In some areas it’s like spending time in the middle of the ruins from a war or a natural disaster. Highland Park, which is featured in a few of those photos, is notorious for being one of the most dangerous areas in the country.

  23. Eric W says:
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    Gil meche retired today at the age of 32 with a year left on his contract. Cant believe it took that amateur Trey Hillman 3 years to completely shred Meche’s arm. Baker could have done it in one spring training

  24. Steve says:
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    @sean: They are incredible images, to be sure. One thing I can’t really get my head around is that this happens and seemingly no one with any authority or responsibility cares about it.

    Someone must own them – I’m not saying they should be sinking millions into maintaining them or anything like that, but it does make you wonder what their thought processes are.

  25. GopherDay says:
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    @Eric W: Sometimes people just need to learn to do it the right way. Word on the street is that Hillman has been taking notes on Baker.

  26. Eric W says:
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    @GopherDay: oh yes I thought Trey Hillman had a chance to break out when he got Gil to throw 128 pitches after he had been complaining of a dead arm all week. But the gem was no more then a flash in the pan like the Dallas Braden perfecto

  27. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Heilman signs with the D-Backs, sounds like he could start. Doubt he’ll do a Wainwright, but does that set your mustache a-twitching at all?

  28. GopherDay says:
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    Group A:
    Howard
    Youk
    Sabathia
    Stanton
    Papelbon

    Group B:
    Crawford
    Utley
    V-Mart
    Cruz
    Grandy

    What about now?

  29. James Dickson says:
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    Had an opportunity to do the following trade:

    Rd 11 Josh Johnson (1 year left to keep)
    Rd 15 Geovany Soto (2 years left to keep)

    for

    Rd 3 Nelson Cruz (2 years)
    Rd 20 Tommy Hanson (1 year)

    Normal 5×5 h2h league

    I’d be getting the Hanson side. I like the deal but I’m interested in your thoughts Grey from a pure value perspective

  30. GopherDay says:
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    @Grey: Thanks, I just got voted into a *very* competitive league where you get kicked out after 2 years in the bottom 5. There are two openings and the other manager and I will draft, and I was just simulating the way that draft may go.

    Thanks Grey!

  31. Eddy says:
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    @Grey:

    Is James McDonald relevant this season? Worth drafting in a 12 teamer?

  32. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Eddy: I imagine he will become relevant, but I don’t see him necessarily being drafted in a 12 team league.

  33. Mike from Jersey says:
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    I said it on facebook, and since u said u rarely check that, ill say it here: happy birthday! Now my question to you is how do i start my draft off. i’m going to list the players , and don’t worry about what else is available because this is how im starting my draft b.c it helps flow with the guys im keeping. so round 1 and 2 i want to start 2b-of, or of-2b. The outfield i’ve narrowed down to shin-soo choo and andrew mccutchen. And 2b there’s pedroia, phillips, kinsler, uggla. i am assuming pedroia gets taken (otherwise ill take him). so finally, my question is- do i take mccutch/choo round 1 and not chance losing both of them, followed by a phillips/uggla round 2.. or do i go with upside and kinsler round 1 and follow it with the hope that one of those Of’s is there round 2?

  34. GopherDay says:
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    @Grey: Didn’t know it was your birthday Grey! Happy Birthday! Mine’s tomorrow!

  35. Steve says:
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    Fun fact of the day – Curtis Granderson is in New Zealand on some baseball promo gig. Think he’s putting on some hitting exhibition in Auckland (where I live) tomorrow.

    Hope they don’t get any left-handers to pitch to him or the people will go home very disappointed.

  36. LMack says:
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    I get the AL pitcher love Grey, seems like a bunch of high K rate pitchers are establishing themselves over in the American League, and a lot out of them are outside the AL East to boot.

  37. Eddy says:
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    @Grey:

    Thanks for the McDonalds reply.

    I wanted to get your thoughts on a Yahoo mock I did. 12 teams.

    Pos Name Team Pick
    C Matt Wieters BAL R13 P4
    1B Ryan Howard PHI R2 P9
    1B Billy Butler KC R9 P4
    2B Ian Kinsler TEX R4 P9
    SS Hanley Ramirez FLA R1 P4
    3B Pedro Alvarez PIT R8 P9
    OF Justin Upton ARI R3 P4
    OF Andrew McCutchen PIT R5 P4
    OF Jayson Werth WAS R6 P9
    OF Ryan Raburn DET R16 P9
    OF Travis Snider TOR R20 P9
    SP Francisco Liriano MIN R7 P4
    SP Max Scherzer DET R11 P4
    SP Jonathan Sanchez SF R12 P9
    SP Jhoulys Chacin COL R14 P9
    SP Brandon Morrow TOR R18 P9
    SP Carlos Zambrano CHC R21 P4
    SP Edinson Volquez CIN R22 P9
    RP Joe Nathan MIN R10 P9
    RP Francisco Cordero CIN R15 P4
    RP Craig Kimbrel ATL R17 P4
    RP Octavio Dotel TOR R19 P4
    RP Joel Hanrahan PIT R23 P4

    Butler was drafted with a glitch on my computer. I don’t think I’d ever have his moobs on any team.

  38. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Mike from Jersey: Thanks! McCutchen and Phillips or Uggla.

    @GopherDay: Thanks! Happy Birthday!

    @Steve: That would be hilarious.

    @LMack: Yup

    @Eddy: Surprised Butler was still around in round 9 though. Weird draft though with Howard going that late. Anyway, love your team. Pitching staff looks great considering the amount of hitting you have. Not crazy about Werth but can’t really fault it in the 6th round. Kinda looks like a 10 team league.

  39. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Of course it’s a tailor-made situation for me to go along and yell at him about how he killed me on every single team last year.

    But I doubt he gives a hoot about that…

  40. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: Oh my God, you’re Daniel Stern in Celtic Pride.

  41. Eddy says:
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    @Grey:

    Might as well have been with 2 auto-drafters. I was just worried that my SP was waaaay to high-risk, high-reward.

    Thanks!

    Happy birthday!

  42. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Well, I am wearing a green shirt, but I’d appreciate it if you could cast me in something better next time.

  43. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Eddy: Thanks!

    @Steve: Or handsomer, right?

  44. MAC DADDY says:
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    Happy Birthday Grey. May you be even wiser now than before! Thanks to you and all of you razzballers for such great reads.

  45. Steve says:
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    @Grey: Whatever helps with the ladies.

  46. Bob says:
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    @Eddy: I didn’t know Yahoo was doing mocks yet. I can’t navigate my way to that.

  47. Quintero says:
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    Once known as Jobacum!

  48. Esteban Blondet says:
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    rick Porcello? u kidding me he’s a young ace at least top 40 whats wrong with u the guy won 14-9 2008 10-12 lat year
    david price
    tommy hanson
    rick porcello
    trevol cahill

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