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In our 2011 fantasy baseball rankings, we’ve gone over so many flippin’ players I’ve lost track.  This is, I believe, the top 60 starters for 2011 fantasy baseball, but you’re best to check the title to be sure.   If it is indeed the top 60 starters, then you’re in luck.  Only a few more top 20 rankings posts.  What is it, February?  March?  Why don’t I have an app for this?  Or do I want a hashtag?  App ‘n Hashtag would be a good name for a 50s style diner with wifi.  As with the other rankings posts, tiers and my projections are mentioned.  Anyway, here’s the top 60 starters for 2011 fantasy baseball:

40. Jhoulys Chacin – This is a new tier.  This tier goes from here until de la Rosa.  I call this tier, “One of these guys is going to be my fourth fantasy starter.”  I already dazzled your retinas with a Jhoulys Chacin fantasy post.  Reading it is like the inside of your mouth right after you dump in a packet of Pop Rocks.  Go see for yourself.  2011 Projections:  12-8/3.60/1.24/180

41. Ian Kennedy – He ended up falling just below Daniel Hudson for a few reasons.  A) Hudson has more upside. B) Hudson’s less prone to gopher balls. C) There’s no C.  2011 Projections: 11-10/3.75/1.25/180

42. Johnny CuetoJohnny Cueto sounds like an 80’s movie villain and he will kick you in the head if you get too close to him.  Believe that.  Hopefully, he doesn’t metaphorically kick you in the head with his ratios from time to time like he’s done in the past.  For instance, his 5+ ERA in April last year.  Also, I might be being stubborn here, but I think Cueto has an 8 K/9 in his arm like he showed in 2008 instead of the below 7 he threw the last two years.  It doesn’t hurt my optimism that he’s only going to be 25 in 2011.  2011 Projections:  12-8/3.65/1.26/160

43. Brandon Morrow – Are you an older man with ugly brown spots on your neck, face and hands?  Liver spots that make your grandkids cry?  Then read my Brandon Morrow sleeper post.  It won’t help your aging, but it might distract you.  2011 Projections:  12-9/3.80/1.38/195

44. Edwin Jackson – As with a lot of guys in this tier, Edwin also got a sleeper post.  Only his sleeper post hasn’t been posted yet.  You’ll get it later today.  Prepare your jowls for smiling.  2011 Projections:  13-10/3.80/1.30/190

45. Jonathan Sanchez – In a moment of honesty, I’m going to tell you a little secret.  We got lucky as crap last year with Filthy Sanchez.  I knew he was capable of a great strikeout season, but the 3.07 ERA against a 4.11 xFIP and a 1.23 WHIP against a 4.47 BB/9 was us cashing in a winning lottery ticket without even remembering buying one.  Assuming our luck goes south, Sanchez will still be great for Ks but don’t expect the same ratios.  2011 Projections:  12-11/3.90/1.33/200

46. Madison Bumgarner – Really not a bad crop of starters this year, prolly cause hitting is so atrocious.  The only thing that stopped Bumgarner from being in the top 40 starters was his innings last year.  I’m willing to overlook it at the draft while preparing myself mentally that I may need to drop him by August.  But that’s no big deal, that’s why guys like Brian Duensing are made to fill in at the end of the season.  2011 Projections:  12-7/3.60/1.25/140

47. Jorge de la Rosa – dlR is either going to get lucky in 2011, strikeout 200 and have a terrific ERA or, more likely, he’s going to have a 4-something ERA with solid Ks.  His Ks have me being overly optimistic, but as long as you know I’m being overly optimistic you shouldn’t be too disappointed.  2011 Projections:  11-9/3.80/1.30/175

48. Colby Lewis – This is a new tier.  This tier goes from here until Wilson.  I call this tier, “I really don’t want a Ranger pitcher, but will consider them if they fall far enough.”  When Lewis returned from the Far East, I turned my nose up at him and told him to talk to the ‘stache.  Turned out, I was dead wrong about Colby last year.  He’s a survivor!  Lewis’ ERA was actually better at home last year than away, but I’m still pretty hesitant.  The potential 200 Ks could be the only thing making me draft him.  Oh, who are we kidding?  Of course that would be the reason.  2011 Projections:  15-9/3.85/1.22/200

49. C.J. Wilson – For those of you worried about the drastic jump in innings from 2009 to 2010, that concern is for younger pitchers and I’m not even sure we’ve proved beyond a reasonable doubt that it’s a concern for anyone, no matter the age.  I think Wilson might have to wait another year until I draft him though, as Dempster had to wait a few years before I felt he was safe.  2011 Projections:  12-6/3.95/1.28/165

50. Brett Myers – This is a new tier.  This tier goes from here until Pelfrey.  I call this tier, “It’s been a few tiers since I’ve done a tier that I’m avoiding so here we are again.”  Last year Myers’ men left on base was high, his homers allowed per fly ball was low, his K-rate was whatever and he’s on the Astros.  If you grab Myers at a draft, you’re going to get beat up.  Not metaphorically.  2011 Projections:  8-10/4.20/1.30/160

51. Ervin Santana – He might surprise this year (read:  get lucky), but he’s now had two years in a row that have been so yawnstipating that I’m not touching him in any leagues this year.  2011 Projections:  13-10/4.30/1.32/150

52. Bronson Arroyo – Eh, I have nothing against Arroyo once the calendar strikes July, but I’m not messing with a pre-All-Star Break Arroyo.  2011 Projections:  15-9/4.00/1.22/115

53. John Lackey – I’ll draft Lackey again…. If he’s traded to the NL.  Until then, someone else can enjoy him on their team.  2011 Projections:  14-12/4.35/1.32/145

54. Carl Pavano – His placement in this tier was almost offset by his full-as-shizz mustache.  Unfortunately, his stats last year were full-of-shizz.  2011 Projections:  13-10/4.20/1.25/110

55. Jaime Garcia – I’m not only worried about his innings last year, but also about the FIP Gods throwing fire and brimstone at his ERA in 2011 for defying them last year.  2011 Projections:  9-10/4.15/1.35/130

56. Mike Pelfrey – The FIP Gods are wrathful and the 5 K/9 Gods are spiteful.  Together they’re like watching a marathon of Storage Wars.  Actually, that’s terrific, who am I kidding?  Why doesn’t Jarrod listen to Brandi?  2011 Projections:  12-10/4.30/1.35/105

57. John Danks – This is a new tier.  This tier goes from here until Shields. I call this tier, “Not bad options, but I see no upside.”  Manages to put together very usable stretches of the season, but he’s only a 7 K/9 and 4.00 ERA pitcher.  Without luck, there’s no upside.  2011 Projections:  14-8/4.00/1.26/170

58. Carlos Zambrano – I might be the only one thinking this across all ‘perts and five continents, but I think Big Z can put together one more big season this year.  His big season is still only a 7 K/9 and just under a 4.00 ERA.  And you have to assume he’s going to miss at least 4 starts at some point for beating up an inanimate object.  2011 Projections:  14-9/3.85/1.35/155

59. James Shields – Shields’ K-rate was purty last year even as his luck was ugly.  Shields and I took a break last year, but could see giving him a go again this year.  He’s not a huge upside guy though.  Expect more than a 4.00 ERA and around a 7 K/9 and you’ll get burned.  2011 Projections:  12-8/3.95/1.30/170

60. Ricky Romero – This is a new tier.  This tier goes into the top 80 starters for 2011 fantasy baseball.  I call this tier, “Grey’s going upside your head.”  I felt people falling asleep towards the middle of that post and for that I apologize.  I needed to get some of those boring names out of the way.  Let’s count the ways we love Ricky Romero, shall we?  7 ways!  Okay, maybe I should count them out loud.  1) Will only be 26 years old.  2) Will be entering his third big league season, a time when pitchers tend to hit their stride.  3) His K-rate was 7 and half and can get better. 4) He cut his walks last year.  5) Golden rings.  6) Pitches in the AL East… Hmm… That’s not a positive.  7)  There was really only 4 reasons that I stretched out to 7.  2011 Projections:  13-6/3.65/1.30/180 (<–optimistic, but whatevs)

From Around The Web

  1. Mike from Jersey says:
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    I’m confused with your rankings this year. I agree with what you say about most of the guys, but the reason I’m confused is because I don’t understand how you can rank Brett Myers 50th but give him garbage numbers. If you’re certain he will not succeed, I feel like you should rank him lower.
    Also, I must add these 20 pitchers show something. 1. that yes, pitching is deep, but 2. there are A LOT of question marks. IMO outside of Cueto, and maybe Danks, I can all of these guys flopping. There’s also the luck factor. However, on the other hand, it wouldn’t surprise anyone if any single one of these pitchers had 15 wins, 3.50 era, etc etc. Now i’m in a more favorable league for pitchers, but in a re draft league I could see it being more hitter heavy early on than ever. You can go, just from this tier, Cueto Morrow Bumgarner Danks, pair that with 1 solid ace in the first 7ish rounds, and all of a sudden you have a potentially great staff.

  2. Mike from Jersey says:
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    i can see*

  3. Al Swedgin says:
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    FYI Grey, a clerical note: You have Dempster at #40 (ending the last list), and Chacin at #40 as well (beginning this list).

  4. byrone says:
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    happy Friday, Grey! love the rankings so far.

    so in my keeper league, I’m bringing miggy, reyes, kinsler, carlos santana, both uptons, cargo, ethier, marmol, and billingsley into next season. I can keep one more, and it’s between romero, garcia, and matusz. Thinking looooong term, who do u roll with?

  5. Dugan says:
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    You have Sanchez ahead of Lewis but predict more wins for Lewis, better ERA, much better whip and the same amount of strikeouts?

  6. Swagger Jackers says:
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    I agree that I’d rather take Romero than any of the guys in the tier above him. Sorry Big Z.

  7. Wilsonian says:
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    Good post, man. There are about 10-12 of those guys that I’ve been looking at in my 16 Teamer. I’ve been looking at Romero for awhile, would you overpay for someone like him with a 5th rounder (AKA 10th rounder after keepers, so roughly 160th pick)?

  8. PepeSilvia says:
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    @Mike from Jersey

    I think someone asks this every single day. Yesterday it was me, but I think I get Grey’s reasoning now. He prefers to group guys in tiers, and doing that means sometimes a guy he has ranked #39 is gonna have worse projected stats than a guy he has ranked at, say, #45. If he just ranked everybody exactly in the order of projected stats, he’d lose all of his neat little tiers, and it’d be a lot more confusing to read something like “59. Zambrano. No upside tier,” “60. de la Rosa. Now we’re back in the ‘Guys I want as a fourth starter’ tier,” “61. Danks. Back to the no upside tier,” etc.

  9. Carns says:
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    In response to an earlier request that I just read:

    Definition: The curious phenomenon of a rather portly player dropping a deuce all over your home run expectations for him, due to an unexplained lack of power.

    Grey, it is with great privelege I present to you….. the “Plump Dump”

  10. Groucho says:
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    Jordan Zimmermann belongs on this list

  11. AnotherFalstaff says:
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    @Grey – Just received the happy(?) news that I am picking first in my 12-team redraft league. I’m fine with Miggy but SS & 3B are just so darn thin. The top ones will be gone by picks 24-25. Roll with Miggy or try Hanley/Longo? Thanks!

  12. Tony says:
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    @AnotherFalstaff: i wouldn’t even consider Longo at #1. I love miggy, but still think until Pujols shows he’s not Pujols he’s the #1. You can’t go wrong with miggy/pujols or hanley IMO. Hanley just has that issue of does he want to play hard or not this year? Ya just never know with that guy….

  13. CT Old School says:
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    Storage Wars is the new crack!

  14. carlos marmLOL says:
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    the thing about Hanley is it looks like he’s trending down year to year. then you look at his numbers for his “awful” year in 2010 and you realize that the value is still there and he’s in his age 27 year.

    there’s always been attitude issues but to lock in those solid numbers at thin SS, even if he gives you another off year he won’t tank your draft.

  15. Eddy says:
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    @carlos marmLOL: @Tony:

    I agree with you both that Hanley is always questionable (personally I get concerned with his shoulder) and that Miggy or Pujols should go first, but let’s not bash Hanley too much now.

    In this link you can see how Rollins, Jeter, and Hanley are folliwng similiar paths in their career (3rd graph): http://www.fangraphs.com/graphsw.aspx?playerid2=8001&playerid3=826&playerid4=971&playerid5=

    You’ll notice a strong rise in performance (WAR) up until age 25, where they decline for two seasons only to have it go back up at age 27. I’d keep this in mind when drafting.

  16. The Vaporizers says:
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    YES! A Storage Wars shout out! At first I was like “What? Grey is hating on Storage Wars?”, then I read the next line and was like “phhhewww” I just seen that show for the first time like 2 weeks ago, I think a Sunday night. I stumbled upon it during a marathon of course and I’m hooked.

    Darryl is my favorite.

    I can’t imagine anyone being a fan of Dave Hester……. YUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUPPP!!!!!!!

  17. Tony says:
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    @Eddy: Im not bashing him i’d love to own him again (haven’t had him since he was a rookie and then i got to keep him a yr or so and then the keeper system disapated (sp?) in my league). He could put up a 30/30 season easy and a .330 average at SS, i just question his attitude. It’s actually disappointing someone that good gives you that feeling.

  18. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Mike from Jersey: I’m being optimistic with guys below Myers that I like. There’s more risk.

    @Al Swedgin: Thanks for pointing it out, but I’m not going to change it. Everyone gets an extra one.

    @byrone: Matusz

    @Dugan: Lewis is in Texas and riskier in my mind.

    @Wilsonian: Sure

    @Carns: Ha! It’s funny, but I think Biggie Smalls works better.

    @AnotherFalstaff: Miggy

    @CT Old School: Yeah, it really is. I watched 4 episodes yesterday that I had on my Tivo and was really sad when I finished them.

    @The Vaporizers: YUUUUUUUP!

  19. camram003 says:
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    wow still no garza or matusz, i would definitely take those guys over myers or arroyo.

  20. Arrec Bardwin says:
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    16 team h2h points keeper league. we keep 8 w/ no restrictions. current keepers are votto/tulo/zimmerman/f-her/latos/wandwagon/cahill/feliz.

    thinking about trying to trade latos for another hitter, but pitching is so scarce, it gives me pause. What kind of player would you trade him for? Choo/Dread Pirate/Posey?

  21. Tony says:
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    @Arrec Bardwin: i doubt you can pull choo or the dread pirate for latos, but if u think you can because of pitching scarcity, etc I’d go for it…. those two are both pretty young and more valuable than latos this year. Although if Latos makes it thru this year with no arm issues, in san diego, which means whales vagina BTW, then he’s going to be a monster…. tought call, whats your keeps rules? can you always keep 8 no restrictions on how long?

  22. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Arrec Bardwin: Agree with Tony. Even about whale’s vagina. And I’m not even sure what that means.

  23. cubbies299 says:
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    Hey, does this trade seem vetoable?

    Team A: Chris Carter ($7 for 5 years), Jordan Zimmerman (5 years, $7)

    Team B: Andre Ethier ($20 for 3 years)

    14-team mixed. Minor league system. 6X6 w OPS/Holds
    Is this trade vetoable for competitive balance reasons?

  24. Swagger Jackers says:
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    @Grey: Yuuuppppp! F*in Dave Hester.

  25. Tony says:
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    @Grey: u stay classy san diego….

  26. Scherzersnitzle says:
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    In a bubble (no $$ value or draft round considerations) which ONE of the following would you keep:

    Corey Hart
    Daniel Hudson
    Curtis Granderson
    Max Scherzer

  27. Carns says:
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    You guys think Latos’ size might help prevent him from being a 2010 Anderson (who was still kinda valuable if you had the patience)?

  28. Smokey

    Smokey says:
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    “The human torch was denied a bank loan”

  29. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Scherzersnitzle: Grandy

    @Carns: Here’s my question to you, with at least 40 starters to choose from for your 5-7 SP spots, why do you care about Latos for where you have to draft him? It’s worth the risk? Maybe he’s fine, let someone else be his huckleberry.

  30. Back To Minors says:
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    2009 – Mini Donkey
    2010 – Mini, Mini Donkey
    2011 – ???

  31. Arrec Bardwin says:
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    @Tony we keep 8 every year no restriction on how long you can keep a player. Pitching isn’t exactly scarce per se, but with 16 teams in the league and pretty deep rosters. the waivers are pretty barren even in terms of viable spot starts. hitting in general is pretty weak this year, which is why I was exploring the idea of trading Latos considering the injury risk.

  32. Eddy says:
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    @Grey:

    I know I asked you several months before on which 4 guys I should keep, but we’re about to submit our keepers and there’s no turning back now.

    Which four? 6×6 H2H (BB and QS), 3 year inflation per year. Can be kept a maximum of three years.

    Miguel Cabrera- 1st
    David Wright- 2nd
    Carlos Gonzalez- 13th
    Matt Holliday-3rd
    Jose Reyes-4th
    Jennings-23rd

    Jared Weaver-10th
    Jon Lester-5th
    Jeremy Hellickson-23rd
    Daniel Hudson-23rd

  33. Tony says:
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    @Arrec Bardwin: gotya, i’d explore and see what you can do… I play in a 20 team basketball league so i know what you mean, the waiver pool is slim.

  34. Tony says:
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    @Eddy: i’d go miggy/cargo and wright for sure…. then i dont know. you can gamble on a guy like hudson, but whats the point? Are you losing that draft slot then is what you’re saying? I guess alot of your 4th keeps decision depends on what will go back into the draft…. i mean you could keep lester in the 5th but would there be something better there?

  35. Eddy says:
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    @Tony:

    Yea, we lose the round next to the player’s name.

    And I agree on the hitters. It’s that last keeper I’m undecided on. I want a SP. Grey had said keep Weaver before. And I think it makes sense for me because I can draft a Lester-type pitcher (if not Lester himself then Gallardo or Kershaw) in the 6th round or so.

    But Hellickson and Hudson in the 23rd round is so tempting.

  36. Eddy says:
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    @Eddy:

    And there should be plenty of SP. I know Halladay is being kept, as well as Liriano. But my league mates favor hitters, so I know the pitching will be plentiful.

  37. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Eddy: Micro Donkey – ha! First four players are your keepers.

    *********THERE’S A NEW POST FOR FOLLOWUPS.******

  38. Al Swedgin says:
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    @Back To Minors:

    I’m pretty sure that this year we move to maxi-donkey: Mike Stanton

  39. Black Beard says:
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    @Eddy: Nice one.

  40. steve v says:
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    Grey – In a 5×5 10 team roto, would you take Morrow as high as the 13 round?

  41. Mick Mac says:
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    Colby Lewis stands out to me as the best pitcher on this list, even if he pitches in Texas. I also like Kennedy, and Morrow has intriguing upside if he can improve his command, but he won’t last on my team for long if it looks like he’s going to finish with a 1.38 WHIP. A lot of the guys in this tier seem to have WHIP issues that make me want to avoid them.

    Regarding Latos’ (and Bumgarner’s) likelihood of an arm injury and our discussion yesterday about the credibility (or lack thereof) of the Verducci Effect, I decided to look at what happened the following season for all of the players that have made Verducci’s list over the last four seasons. The article is here, for those who are interested:

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/587170-verducci-effect-fact-or-fiction-evaluating-red-flags-for-price-latos-hughes

  42. Simply Fred

    simply fred says:
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    @Mick Mac: Interesting and telling. Were we all to possess the crystal ball…

    Article similar to Rudy’s after “Risky Pitchers” results. Think Rudy has transitioned away, given the mixed bag of results.

  43. derek says:
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    Great question Grey! Why doesn’t Jarrod ever listen to Brandi? Dude’s as hard-headed as they come. He’s probably drafting Alfonso Soriano in the sixth round and telling all the other managers “Just wait and see guys….”

  44. Jason Marcinkoski says:
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    Grey; Thank you for your good/ humorous work. I have been visiting the Razzball site for a couple of years, and always enjoy reading the extracurricular commentary you provide. You often make me chuckle, which I need, as I’m finding researching for this upcoming season tedious.

  45. tommy says:
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    I gotta tell you I think Danks is a lot better than 57. He didn’t have a career year or a resurection like some of the previous contestants. He’s not overwhelming w/ his numbers but he’s pretty solid and consistant….boring I guess. He’s stayed healthy so far. On a pretty good offensive team he should be good for 12-16 wins while providing solid ERA and whip totals. I’m ranking him 40th. Yes limited upside, but you know what you are getting: 3rd or 4th starter.

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