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And David Ortiz goes pop.  For Patriots’ Day, the Sawx had a special throwback day where Varitek went yard, Pedroia acted like an MVP and David Ortiz acted less jenky than he had all season.  Fulfilling their end of the bargain was Mark Hendrickson and the Orioles bullpen.  *SCHMALTZ ALERT*  Rudy and I went to college in Boston and Patriots’ Day was a time of general drunkenness as we mocked people who had just run the Boston Marathon all the way to Kenmore Square (about 25 miles).  They may have been more fit than us, but at least our nipples weren’t bloody.  R.I.P. Johnny Kelley.  Hopefully they have you in the giant pace car in the sky.  So I already labeled Ortiz a fantasy schmohawk this year, but some might see yesterday’s game as a positive going forward.  Nope.  If that was the case, the title would’ve been “GrandPapi Shows Signs Of Life.”  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Joe Mauer – Will be back in two weeks.  There’s the good news you need to trade him, auto drafters.

Mark Reynolds – HR yesterday to take the lead in his battle with Chris Davis.

Ian Stewart – Hit his third home run.  Hmm… Let’s see, play young prospect that could be the future of your franchise or play Seth Smith?  May 15th called, it says it wants Seth Smith on the bench by then.

Garrett Mock – This is funny.  The Nats supposedly brought him up to potentially insert him in the closer role because Hanranhananan has been awful.  Mock’s Triple-A numbers were 3 2/3 IP, 7 ER and 5 walks.  Yep, that fixes that problem.  In related news, Joel Hanranhananan got the save yesterday.

Brian McCann – Off to see an eye specialist — isn’t that an oxymoron?  This could be bad news for teams who bucked advice and drafted McCann.  The Disabled List Informer informs us that McCann could be out a week or two.

Cameron Maybin – To say he looks lost is like saying Corey Haim’s a trainwreck. (Full disclosure, I had to Google to see if Haim was still alive.)

Mike Hampton – 6 1/3, 3 ER.  Someone in the comments yesterday asked if Hampton may have one more run in him like Mussina last year.  As with Mussina last year, I’m not paying to find out.  Doesn’t interest me whatsoever.  I can grab Ricky Romero, Porcello, etc. and try for some upside with a 5th or 6th starter.  Hampton’s yawnstipating at best and unusable at worst.

Ryan Doumit – Bad day to be a squatter.  Doumit has a right wrist injury.  He’s the type of player to turn a sore wrist into a 15-day DL stint at the drop of a hat.  Doumit owners, hold onto your hats.

Justin Masterson – 5 1/3, 1 ER. He’ll make at least two more starts and I like him for both.

Brian Bannister – Sounds like he might be getting the call up.  Wink, wink, nudge, nudge to those in the Razzball leagues, Bannister sucks.

Andrew Miller – Not sure if he’s going to the Disgraceful List or just the regular 15-day DL, but either way, he’s outta here.  Burke Badenhop should replace him.  On the Marlins.  Not on your fantasy team.

Jordan Zimmermann – 6 IP, 2 ER.  The positive is he won.  The negative is my girlfriend had some kind of rash and I didn’t get to watch the game.  “Grey, can we go to the store to get lotion?”  “Girlfriend, can I finish watching this game?” “What inning?” “1st.” His numbers from the game look good.  Maybe if someone saw the game they can fill me in in the comments.  I’m still buying, just as I was when I said Jordan Zimmermann is a fantasy sleeper.  Move over, Acta, I got an idea.  The Nats should make their 5th starter their 1st starter.  Revolución, Che!

Ross Ohlendorf – I did watch this game… unfortunately.  8 Ks through 18 innings for this -dorf is about all you need to know.  I wouldn’t even take a flier on him in an NL-Only league.  The only league I’d try him in is a Dorf-Only league.  And try to find one of those ever since the Dorf oversaturation of the late 80s… Dorf on Golf, Dorf on Fishing, and when he went all meta with Dorf on Dorf.

  1. Steve says:
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    26 miles, 385 yards if you’re keeping score at home.

    The distance, it is said, that was covered by a messenger who ran from Marathon to Athens to announce that the Persians had been defeated at the Battle of Marathon.

    The veracity of this legend is, however, disputed.

    Here endeth the lesson.

    Oh – how much time are we giving Cameron Maybin? Does my acquisition of Rollins and Damon in the RCL make him a bit more expendable?

  2. Steve says:
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    No history this time, just baseball. Ibanez plus a closer for Al-Ram?

    Guy with Al-Ram has him benched and only has one closer.

  3. Start Baker against Boston or let em sit one more start and see how he does?

  4. VanHammersly says:
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    I caught the middle innings of the Nats-Braves game last night. The Nats’ announcers were pretty complimentary of how Zimmerman was handling himself, considering the game was delayed for 2 hrs.

    The Diaz homer was on a dumb pitch in an 0-2 count with 2 outs. Zimmerman was throwing like 95-96 and he left that pitch right out over the plate.

  5. Schlitzy says:
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    I caught a few innings of JZ’a debut. He threw strikes, pitched to contact and had a nasty curve working. Got Chipper to K swinging at a curve in the dirt- Larry probably pulled a quad on the swing.

  6. big o says:
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    johnny kelley …. perhaps the greatest amateur athlete of all time .
    maybe more .
    @Steve:
    hell no .

  7. @Steve: You might be able to get Al-Ram for just the closer. Depends how nervous the other owner is. But Ibanez + closer is an offer you’d have to make when Alexei’s hitting over .125.

    In fact, there’s a point at which players are so buy-low they actually get harder to acquire — you can’t approach someone about them without obviously seeming like a vulture. Though it’s worth making the overtures. Even Ibanez straight up seems reasonable, given their respective starts.

    @danimal35: If this helps, I picked up Baker to start him against Boston — in my Razzball league. i.e. the one where I hope Baker gets spanked.

    Speaking of spanking, Marquis finally looked like Marquis last night. Though Felipe (who I own in a regular league) came up against Marquis (who I own in Razz) with sacks drunk — and grounded out to end the inning.

    Does that count as dropping a deuce?

  8. cubbies299 says:
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    dear god Gray. Me and my friends watched the Dorf on Auto Racing/Dorf on Baseball dual feature. Within 10 minutes, we had to watch it on 16x fast forward. Word to your mother, it’s actually kinda entertaining if you watch it that way.

    On JayZ. Cat looked good. Had a 94 mph heater working for him in the strike zone. Looked like he was mixing and matching with a curve/slider combo that did not get hit very often. He made a few mistakes with his fastball, but was throwing strikes (usually the biggest problem with rookie pitchers). On the other hand, Derek Lowe looked like a Rick Ankiel the pitcher out there. He apparently didn’t get the memo that all he has is his control and his sinker, neither of which he decided to bring to the ballpark yesterday.

  9. Billy says:
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    I dumped Maybin yesterday after that performance, i have Fowler so it wasn’t that hard of a decision…

  10. Billy says:
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    Are the Yankees going to give Hughes a chance now that Wang has sucked?

  11. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:
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    @Gray – “Mark Reynolds – HR yesterday to take the lead in his battle with Chris Davis” – I have both of them in one league. What an exciting show they are putting on. It’s sad when I am waiting for Melvin Moron to get off the DL to start at third.

    @Steve – What you forgot to mention is that the legend has it that the guy croaked immediately after giving the news of the battle. A great reason never to run marathons.

    @ 3 danimal35 – I have Baker and am following the Baron’s advice. He gave up a bushel of dingers last time around – how many do you think he will give up to the Bosox? Let us both allow him to have a quality start before we use him for real.

    Big Papi is something like a Latin 40, and is probably succumbing to Mo Vaughn Syndrome – the precipitous decline of portly players as they age. I am waiting for one good week from Big Pappy before I try to unload in the league that I own him.

    @Gray or other expert Fantologists: Should I make this trade. It is a 14 team 5X5 Keeper League. I would give up Utley and Cruz, and get Luddwick, Huff, Lowe, Volquez, and Velarde. I would likely cut AJ (Baker my other catcher), and 2 of the following three pitchers – Sanibel/Davies/Pelfrey. My bullpen at present consists of Broxton and Manuel Corpse.
    Any advice appreciated.

  12. rich says:
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    A a rook, I still expect JayZ to have a high whip, and low W’s. Which makes him a two category SP (ERA, and K’s). He is still pitching for the Nats, and they have a single A bullpen. Giving Zimmerman a contract extension is not the answer to turning around that franchise. They would do better to find the front office that was in place when they resided in Montreal. At least those guys could mine talent, they just didn’t have the riches to hold on to it.

  13. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:
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    @Gray – Two more questions:

    Is Trading Alexei Ramirez for Michael Young a good idea?

    Please rate these four pitchers: Davies, Porcello, Sanibel, Romero

    Thanks

  14. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:
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    Not Sanibel; Anibel Sanchez

  15. Eric says:
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    Who do you guys like better Porcello or Romero?

  16. Griff says:
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    I saw Big Papi’s triple on sportscenter…er, maybe Baseball Tonight. The ball was decently hit to left center, but nothing special. Jones, or whoever was in center, misplayed it off the wall. A center fielder comfortable in Fenway might have caught it. I’m still hoping Ortiz can pull off 30/100, but it’s looking more and more like 20/80/.260

  17. knighttown says:
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    I dropped Stewart last week over Good Face but now I”m having droppers remorse. Do over?

  18. @Paulie Allnuts: Cruz and Ludwick could more or less be a wash (Luddy will give better avg; power numbers likely similar) so you’re trading Utley for Huff, Lowe, Volquez and Valverde (?).

    You are getting a lot of usable parts back, but I’m not a fan of trading top talent for bags of hammers this early in the season.

    If “Velarde” is in fact not Valverde (Randy Velarde, is that you?), then I like this even less. Swapping one great player for a bunch of middling players is a great recipe for a team full of middling players.

    @Paulie Allnuts: Not if you’re getting Young. Wait on Alexei, plug hole temporarily with hot youngster, e.g. Zobrist.

    @Eric: Romero, and it’s not that close.

  19. p0rk burn says:
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    @Steve: Nerd.
    @Steve: As in Alexei? I think you’re giving up too much even when you consider Alexei is going (should?) break out of the funk.

    @Paulie Allnuts: I don’t like that trade for you at all.

    @Paulie Allnuts: I like Alexei over Young.

    The rest of the questions I don’t have an opinion on or don’t feel informed enough to offer one. Suck it, Trebek.

  20. ZK says:
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    102nd overall in this one, but I’ve got to be top-5 in the Razz League. Here’s to Gavin Floyd, baby.

  21. Sabonis says:
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    I watched most of Flash Jordan’s game. He has the stuff to get out big league hitters, no doubt. Looks like he’ll pitch deep into games too with his control. Caught a bit too much of the plate a few times. Kotchman really helped him out by getting thrown out at third after leading off with a double. Zimm got two double plays too which helped. But thick-legged, strong, nasty breaking stuff. Looks like Kevin Slowey control but with finishing pitches. I’m buying.

  22. NoonTime says:
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    @Paulie Allnuts: Re: Alexei for Young – It could depend on your team and where you would play him but I like Young. He has 3B eligibility now and anyone with his average in the Rangers lineup is going to produce. I liked him even more as a 10th rounder vs. Alexei’s 4th round status. Unless you are doing it to play Young at a CI spot and you have extra MI to plug in for Alexei it’s pretty much a best guess as to who will produce more the rest of the season. I’d go with Young’s track record and the Rangers lineup.

  23. AL KOHOLIC says:
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    papi`s triple was corn Pie aided,zimm looked strong and dukes is lucky someone other than fantasy owners will play his lazy dumb butt

  24. PhillyYorker says:
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    Who to play in utility spot tonite? Chris Davis going against Halladay at Toronto OR Stewart when he could possibly not start against the Diamondbacks?

  25. GhostfacePrzybilla says:
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    @anyone

    Is there any reason to hold on to C. Ray and Motte? The only reason I have them rostered is because we run big benches and the competition for even next in line guys is quick. All I’ve got is Rodney and Hanrahan, and I’d like to trade Rodney while he’s worth a Kelly Johnson.

  26. Ethan says:
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    In my outfield I have Quinten, Hamilton, Milton Bradley, Victorino, Fukudome, Nelson Cruz, and Shin-Soo Choo, but i need speed. Who should I keep and who should I trade for speed? What speed is fair in a one-to-one?

  27. Zebo says:
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    Votto is going against Harden today, should I start Kubel or Snider instead?

  28. NoonTime says:
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    @Zebo: Stick with Votto. Harden will get pulled after 2 2/3 with something and you’ll have 5 innings of Heilman.

  29. p0rk burn says:
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    @Ethan: Try to flip Bradley, although you might want to wait until he gets a few games under his belt. Fukudome is also another sell-high candidate right now. I’m believing in Abreu this season, but I doubt either of those guys will get you Bobby Abs.

    @Zebo: I’m playing him in two leagues, Harden be damned!

  30. BigFatHippo says:
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    Anybody starting Weaver vs. Detroit at home? Weaver pitches well at home, but geez, it’s Detroit.

  31. p0rk burn says:
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    @BigFatHippo: I’ve been trying to decide that myself. I have him going but thats partly because the H2H league scores IP and I’m sitting Parra against the Phillies already today. Unless someone talks me out of it I’m rolling Weaver out there tonight.

  32. Eric says:
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    What size of league is considered to be a deep mixed league or a shallow mixed league? I play in a 10 team league. Not sure if that’s deep or shallow.

  33. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Eric: It’s fairly shallow. 12 mixed is considered norm on difficulty. 8′s considered too easy.

  34. p0rk burn says:
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    @Eric: Thats shallow. Deep is 14 or more.

  35. Eric says:
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    Thanks. I had been discussing it with a friend. He said it’s a deep league. I argued it was shallow. He wanted it to be deep so he could justify some of his pickups that are recommended only for deep leagues.

  36. Zach says:
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    I start Weaver for sure.

  37. Zebo says:
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    i feel bad holding Kubel and Snider, because my OF is Carlos Lee, Adam Jones, Ellsbury, my Utils are Votto and Derrek Lee. I can’t insert Kubel or Snider. Do you think Adam Jones will be effective today with his injury? If not, who do I play, Kubel against Wakefield, or Snider vs. a right hander?

  38. p0rk burn says:
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    @Eric: I have a friend just like that. Makes moves based on advice that doesn’t apply to his situation and then refuses to ever admit he made a mistake. Last year he wasn’t going to keep Pujols (we keep 3 bats and an arm) because of all the talk about his elbow, this year he kept Cantu and Nolasco and let go of far better talent. Sometimes you just have to let them screw up their own team.

  39. NoonTime says:
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    @Eric: Sounds like an argument you shouldn’t be having….. “Why yes my friend….it is deep, verrrrry deep”

  40. Eric says:
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    This is my 3rd year playing in a league with these guys. I won the league in 2007 and 2008. This year I’m off to a solid start. Pitching is dominating, and the batting is sluggish but picking up. I have a lot of underperformers who will come around (Iannetta, Phillips, C. Lee, Teixeira, Atkins). My friend is one of those owners who goes with his gut and thinks of himself as an expert. He does okay, but usually he has an unbalanced roster and finishes somewhere in the middle. I know I’m not an expert. I trust other experts (this board is one expert source), and I trust stats coming off of spreadsheets that I make or others make. Going with your gut is the way to lose.

  41. Tony says:
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    @NoonTime: @p0rk burn: Yep i let people think whatever they want. People all have their own opinions and strategies, and compared to mine they’re all WRONG!!!!!!

    MUUUWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA……

  42. Tony says:
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    @Eric: Yeah i had a buddy that traded Isringhausing the other year for CAPUANO, because he said CAP was gonna have a big second half after his poor first half. I think he posted something like a 5.00 ERA and ISRING went on to save 35+ games, not a huge deal, but those type of gut feelings just don’t make sense. Don’t trade a for sure thing for something thats very unknown and has no track record.

    I mean buying low is great, but buying dumb, is….. DUMB

  43. @Tony: It’s true that one danger is out-thinking yourself. Sometimes it’s boring to say “Of course I’ll keep Pujols,” while it’s more exciting to say “I’ll punt Pujols because everyone else would keep him and I read something about his elbow somewhere, so I will prove to be smarter than everyone else by keeping Cantu instead.”

    There is a very strong desire in Fantasy not just to win, but to win by being unconventional and outsmarting everyone and proving your surpassing cleverness for all eternity.

    It’s also unconventional to go all-in from middle position with an 8-5 unsuited. That rarely works out, either.

    @Eric: That’s a good approach and an excellent track record. But I should warn you, here’s what people say when you keep winning your league:

    Year One: “Congratulations!”
    Year Two: “You must be really good at fantasy baseball!”
    Year Three: “Dude, you need to find a harder league.”

  44. NoonTime says:
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    If you ain’t won Taco Bell, you ain’t won schmodiddley!

  45. Rick Dempsey says:
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    Long time listener first time caller. Big fan, big fan…….Anyways, Mark Reynolds definitely over Chris Davis, isn’t it obvious. Davis even might need a little Evan Longoria-esque time off in the minors to get his head straight yes/no?

    Stop beating up on Joe Mauer already, I mean he’s probably a great human being despite being loved by the auto-picking drones.

  46. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Rick Dempsey: Davis to the minors would be a real humdinger. Don’t think it’ll get that bad. Blalock isn’t long for the world of the healthy and Andruw Jones is less a .400 hitter and more a .240 hitter. Davis will come around with some bombs. It’s hard not to hit them in Arlington.

  47. Vince says:
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    Would you trade Josh Johnson and Heath Bell to get Chad Billingsley?

  48. Vince says:
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    @Grey: What if I replace Bell by Frank Francisco or Fernando Rodney?

  49. NoonTime says:
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    @Grey: What’s your thinking on saying no to this Grey? You love Bills…. JJ is nice but no Bills….#39 on the top 40 pitchers by your ranking coming into the year, and Bell was just on your Sell list.

    @Vince: I’d do it… especially if the dude would take one of the other closers instead.

  50. Billy says:
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    I know that there has been a lot of coverage on the “wind-tunnel” at the new Yankee Stadium, but what is the deal with Citi Field? Do you think it will play like Petco or is the sample size too small?

    Beltran and Wright are killing me!

  51. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Vince: One very good starter to one great starter is an apples to apples trade, more or less. There’s no point to it. You’re slightly upgrading by trading away a guy that could get you a piece you actually need, i.e., trade Bell for Alexei Ramirez if you need a SS. It’s not a bad trade, it just seems like a waste of resources.

    @NoonTime: See above.

  52. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Billy: Too small a sample.

  53. NoonTime says:
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    @Grey: I see what you are saying… I am not as high on Johnson I guess. I think the hallmark of successful team building is taking two (or more) replaceable/expendable silver pieces, and trading up for the one golden nugget. Do this multiple times and your team is full of nuggets!

  54. Vince says:
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    @Grey: Gotcha!

  55. Joel says:
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    I just traded Ortiz and Sabathia for Lance Berkman.

    I might regret this move, because I think more highly of Ortiz than Grey does and Sabathia is probably going to be very good, but I hate Sabathia and having a DH only player absolutely kills in a league with only 3 bench spots.

    Also, Yankee stadium is playing like a hitter’s park so far, so you never know.

  56. yak says:
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    How horrible is it that I was visibly distraught this morning when somebody beat me to John Buck? John Buck!!! It’s like going to the bathroom at 1:45 am at the bar, and when you get back, the 9-fingered, cross-eyed, 85% sure its a woman, girl that you’ve been buying drinks for all night is walking out with another dude.

  57. Griff says:
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    Give me some thoughts on Justin Upton vs. Elijah Dukes. At what point do you buy a breakout season for Dukes over Upton?

    @Joel: Ortiz looks replacement-level thus far. If he stays that way, then you’ve just traded Sabathia for Berkman straight up. Potentially a very good trade, pending Ortiz’s performance.

  58. Billy says:
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    @yak: your team has problems if you’re worrying about Buck

  59. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @yak: Ha!

    @Griff: Dukes is currently over Upton. Long term, Upton has a higher ceiling. Not necessarily this season.

    *****Comments that are not specifically for this post can go on the newest post, that is now live. It’s alive!

  60. yak says:
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    @Billy: I know, right? I’m waiting on Weiters, and Crapoli is pissin in my cream o wheat.

  61. I'm Keith Hernandez says:
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    Atkins just got dropped in my league. Drop Zimmerman, Randy, Lilly or Wandy for him? Crappy waiver claim priority argh!

  62. I'm Keith Hernandez says:
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    @Grey: what’s a better offer, Bell for Ludwick (I get ludwick) or Davis and qualls for Aramis (I get Aramis)?

  63. Doug Ault says:
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    @Grey: Is it time to put a fork in Maybin?……..Cameron, we hardly knew ye

    I’ve scooped Foster and Gardner, so he is a little redundant even if he rises from the dead

  64. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Doug Ault: Yeah, in your situation I’d lose him.

  65. Joel says:
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    Mauer was my 10th round (slider) pick. He went after Martin, McCann, Martinez, Soto and Doumit.

    I drafted eyeballs McCann in the 6th round. I liked the value.

    Figured I could trade Mauer when he got back, but right now, eyeballs is scaring me. I’m wondering if McCann is the one that needs to go.

  66. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Joel: Sounds like McCann is going to be fine. He needed new contacts.

  67. Doug Ault says:
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    @Grey: Guess who has risen from the dead. Zombie Maybin has a dinger tonite, just before I pulled the trigger and cut em lol

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