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Did you realize that there was an epic breakthrough in the world of baseball analytics this week?  Well, it happened!  We did it!  On Thursday, Ken “The Hawk” Harrelson joined Brian Kenny on MLB Network’s “MLB Now”, offering his thoughts on these newfangled sabermetrics.  According to Hawk, WAR, and VORP, and OPS+, and all other products of science and reason fall short of his fresh new statistic — something he calls TWTW, or “The Will To Win”.  Evidently, Hawk understands how to quantify this unmeasurable attribute, and he truly believes it is the most telling component of player evaluation.  You can check out the video here, but most importantly, please make sure you apply Hawk’s lessons to your two-start browsing this week.  Before you grab one of these guys off waivers, ask yourself:  Is this a TWTW guy, or is this a non-TWTW guy?  We only want the TWTW’s here.  Choose wisely.

As always, probable pitchers are subject to change.  For a look at all fantasy baseball streamers, click that link.

MUST START

Adam Wainwright (CIN, @MLW); Stephen Strasburg (@ATL, @PIT); Yu Darvish (CWS, BOS); Matt Harvey (@MIA, @ATL); Jon Lester (@TOR, @TEX); Max Scherzer (MIN, @HOU)

  • Not much to consider here.  Start ‘em if you got ‘em.

FIRST TIER

Mat Latos (@STL, @CHC); James Shields (TB, CWS); Andy Pettitte (HOU, OAK); Jeff Samardzija (SD, CIN); Wandy Rodriguez (@MLW, WAS); Ian Kennedy (SF, @SD); Anibal Sanchez (MIN, @HOU); Roy Halladay (@CLE, MIA); Gio Gonzalez (@ATL, @PIT); Jose Quintana (@TEX, @KC); Alex Cobb (@KC, @COL); Jaime Garcia (CIN, @MLW); Jorge De La Rosa (@LAD, TB)

  • Jose Quintana (28% owned in Y! leagues) and Jorge De La Rosa (17%) are your best chances to pluck from waivers in this first tier.  Quintana faces a tough assignment at Texas to begin the week, but things ease up for him with a start at Kauffman Stadium next weekend.  He wasn’t at his sharpest last time out, but his two outings prior were outstanding.  I’m comfortable using him in the coming week.  I’m also adding De La Rosa in weekly formats — he’s allowed only four hits and two runs through his last two starts, while whiffing 14.  De La faces the Rays and the Dodgers, two offenses that are struggling in the early going this year.  In shallower formats, you might be able to find Wandy Rodriguez (63%) or Jaime Garcia (63%), but I’m assuming the rest of this group is owned.

SECOND TIER

Lucas Harrell (@NYY, DET); Ricky Nolasco (NYM, @PHI); Yovani Gallardo (PIT, STL); Ted Lilly (COL, @SF); Wade Davis (CLE, CWS); Brett Anderson (LAA, @NYY); Tommy Hanson (@OAK, BAL); Tim Hudson (WAS, NYM); Kevin Slowey (NYM, PHI); Edwin Jackson (SD, CIN); Eric Stults (@CHC, ARZ); Hiram Burgos (PIT, STL); Garrett Richards (@OAK, BAL); Jason Hammel (@SEA, @LAA); Brandon Morrow (BOS, SEA)

  • Looking for counting stats?  Look no further.  Seriously.  Don’t look further than this second tier unless you’re desperate.  But there’s plenty of value to be had here if you’re in a points league, and the majority of these guys are widely available on waivers.  Ted Lilly (4% owned in Y! leagues), is the guy I’m most excited about here.  Eric Stults (8%) has my interest too, with his 17/3 K/BB on the season.  And of course, there’s always the potential for slow-starters like Gallardo and Morrow to rediscover their rhythm — I’d still use both in H2H formats this week.

THIRD TIER

Mike Pelfrey (@DET, @CLE); Julio Teheran (WAS, NYM); Zach McAllister (@KC, MIN); Zach Britton (@SEA, @LAA)

  • It’s probably best to shy away from this group, but in deep H2H leagues and NL/AL-only, you might consider these guys.  Julio Teheran is coming off of his best start of the season, and he always brings nice upside, given his pure stuff.  Britton, too, brings a little bit of upside, pitching in two friendly ballparks next week.  He’s been summoned from Triple-A Norfolk, where he allowed only three runs in three starts.

DON’T START

Clayton Richard (@CHC, ARZ); Joe Saunders (BAL, @TOR); Phil Humber (@NYY, DET)

  • Just don’t.

From Around The Web

  1. Fister Furbush says:
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    Nice post,

    De la Rosa is not a two start though…nice try :)

    • Fister Furbush says:
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      @Fister Furbush:

      I was wrong, he jus got the two start in my league.

      • chunky prince says:
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        @Fister Furbush: Is De La Rosa for sure a two starter this week? My yahoo league says he isn’t.

        • Scott Evans

          Scott Evans says:
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          De La’s next start moved to Tuesday, so Chatwood lines up for 2 this week.

        • goodfold2 says:
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          @chunky prince: yahoo leagues are notorious for often only posting the arrow above a pitcher in like a 5 day window, not 7. Just go to espn mlb schedule, theirs is better.

  2. RyKo says:
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    I’m guessing you have Fernandez bumped back either Monday or after? And would you grab him or Cashner.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Fernandez goes Monday, yeah… ROS I like him better than Cashner because of huge injury risk w/ Cash.

  3. Curt says:
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    I have Hanson and McCallister……I was leaning torwards McCallister, Hanson hasnt been lighting it up and is coming off bereavement leave…….Are you basing this on the match-ups???…..

    • Curt says:
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      @Curt: After yesterdays postponement, McCallister will only pitch once next week, so I guess my decision has been made, thanks.

      • Scott Evans

        Scott Evans says:
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        I had Hanson rated higher because of the match-ups, yeah…

  4. Hondo says:
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    People don’t voluntarily watch Ken “The Hawk” Harrelson unless they are a White Sox fan,have a player on the opposing team or are being held at Gitmo. Listening to Harrelson is light years beyond waterboarding.

    • TheNewGuy says:
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      @Hondo: the whole ground seems lifeless whenever I (rarely) watch a game there on TV. Little atmosphere, only noise is made from fireworks when the chi sox homer. Plus what the heck is Dunn batting high in the order when hes batting around .100, I have Konerko and Rios in one league and there never seems to be anyone for them to drive in.

      Always prefer watching the cubs outta the two when im following my fantasy players, by far the better and greater fan numbers.

      • Scott Evans

        Scott Evans says:
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        Yes, but I sat 10 rows behind home at last night’s Sox game for $35, which is quite a bargain. Watching their home broadcast on TV is unbearable, and very true that their fan turnout is weak. But cheap, good seats always available & the food at US Cellular is top notch…

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Ha! He really is unbearable…

  5. mcBlunty says:
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    brandon mccarthy or bartolo colon? thanks

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      I’m banking on McCarthy righting the ship & posting stronger numbers than Colon ROS

  6. TheNewGuy says:
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    You missed my comeback question so might aswell post it here. What kind of player is Hansen of the buccos, a 15/15 type or more of a 5/30 type like Altuve/Segura? Has he started the season well? Think im gonna make the splash and add him and cut Olt loose on my farm.

    Whats the deal on Teheran? Huge spring vaulted him up draft boards but very uninspiring so far. Feasting on weaker hitters before, or are the results gonna come? Available in one league where I could pick him up, but not sure if im gonna get roofied.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Sorry man — Hanson’s off to an OK start at A+. Only 6 XBH (no HR) through his first 80-something PA… projects like a speedy MI w/ pop, so hoping he finds his power stroke before long…

      I’m still believing in Teheran, but I’m not going out of my way to add him anywhere… last two starts his velocity has been down a few ticks, which hurts badly. I’m hoping that as the summer sets in, he’ll get back to working the fastball around 93-94

  7. Ian Williams says:
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    From here forward, in a 12 team 5×5 with QS, K, ERA, WHIP, S, would you rather have Homer Bailey, Alex Cobb or Shelby Miller? Slight emphasis on K’s given the other arms on my team… Thanks

    • TobiasFunkeAnalRapist says:
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      @Ian Williams: Miller,

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Miller brings the most upside, but I think Bailey is your safest bet…

  8. SenoreRossi says:
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    Drop Ian Kennedy for Cashner or Wandy? Need a Win to secure the W for this week, so I would stream Doubront first. Legit move or is Kennedy too good to drop him?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Hold Kennedy… drop a bench bat if you need to make the move.

  9. Minor Leaguer says:
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    Matt Cain is not 2-start?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      He totally is… spaced on that one, sorry. I have Cain in two leagues as my ace, so it’s painful to even think about him. Perhaps my subconscious wouldn’t allow me to write his name.

  10. Al Bundy says:
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    First post, first year fantasy, love this site – Thanks!
    H2H points, 10 teams

    Sit one for Sunday:
    Masterson @KC
    Fister vs Atl
    Vogelsong @SD

    Is this trade worth bolstering a rotation of mostly streamers? Offense is best in league so far.
    Braun + Milone for Cliff Lee + J Bruce

    • TheNewGuy says:
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      @Al Bundy: If youre trading Braun then id do it. Great return getting the adverb and Bruce.

      • Al Bundy says:
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        @TheNewGuy: Thanks. How do you like Masterson’s chances in KC?

        • TobiasFunkeAnalRapist says:
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          @Al Bundy: Id sit Vogelsong personally I already dropped him in my 12 team league, he hasn’t looked right.

          • Al Bundy says:
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            @TobiasFunkeAnalRapist:I agree, just dropped him to stream Doubront against Houston.

        • TheNewGuy says:
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          @Al Bundy: Not a clue, Im not Grey am I! I only pick questions which I can answer.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Sit Vogelsong & hold Braun. Love Lee, but I’m really down on Bruce…

  11. Al says:
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    Starting Wily Peralta today vs the Dodgers, please talk me out of it…

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      The match-up is a little enticing, but I’m leaving him benched in a very deep roto.

  12. AbAdMaN says:
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    I have Daniel Murphy at 2nd. But also drafted David wright. Should I stick with murph or pick up one of the following:
    Kipnis/scutaro/m Ellis/ Betancourt/ k Johnson/ r Roberts
    Thanks

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Kipnis

  13. Wake Up says:
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    COL ? here…why did the Rockies call up Wheeler over Arenado? They just didn’t want to start the clock? Or Wheeler’s 1B experience?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      I suspect that decision was almost entirely based on service time.

    • joeg414 says:
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      @Wake Up:
      Or even T.Colvin

  14. Wake Up says:
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    Not a fan of this either or argument made by many sabermagicians. Or the fact that they are called that by the old school scout-types. It is pretty clear that the way forward is a blend of both. I choose both.

    • RobbyD says:
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      @Wake Up: I get what you’re saying, but it seems like a straw-man argument. No one is calling for a removal of instincts or gut feelings completely from the game. if there is a side that wants to eliminate the other completely, it’s the Hawks and Joe Morgans. They routinely discount any added value of sabremetrics. I’ve not heard one spokesman for sabremetrics say the human element is irrelevant and coaches should be replaced by cyborgs (although in Jim Leyland’s case….)

      The Sabremetrics side is calling for both. Giving managers and GMs all the information but letting them still make the decision based on situational strategies. It may not be smart to bunt most of the time, but if you as the manager have a feel for the guy coming up to the plate, and know he’s been slumping and reaching for balls on the outside and rolling over them, then it may be smart in that case to bunt despite the percentages. But long term, it’s a shitty strategy to bunt and play small ball all the time, because the odds are against you historically. Hawk has it entirely backwards. The main goal of baseball should be to not make outs. The longer you go not making outs, the higher the chance that you score runs. When you bunt, you give the other team one of your precious 27 outs without having to work for it. There is no limit on hits or walks, but a strict limit on outs, and if you don’t give them away you have a better chance of winning.

      • Wake Up says:
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        @RobbyD: I started to reply…then, I noticed what Scott said below and believe it is well said…I’m staying away from the silliness…

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      A blend of both is the best way to go, for certain. I’m always impressed by the analysts because what they do is fascinating, but having a team of savvy scouts & using their reports in conjunction with the data is how teams are approaching things these days. No need for silly old-school/new-school debate.

      • Wake Up says:
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        @Scott Evans: Tommy Hanson is an good example of this in my opinion. #’s man’s dream….but, all you had to do was take a look at him to realize he can’t last.

  15. TobiasFunkeAnalRapist says:
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    Hey Scott, quick question. 12 team h2h category 6×6 keeper league my pitching sits as: Moore, Harvey, Price, Morrow, Ryu, Cashner, Jose Fernandez and Travis Wood. I’m streaming Wood for today but was wondering whom I should drop for Kyle Kendrick or if you think I should just hold for now. He’s been solid, and I was thinking either Wood or Jose Fernandez but Fernandez still has a lot of value since it’s a keeper league. Thanks.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      I’d drop Wood for Kendrick.

  16. james d says:
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    Anibal is not going twice next week as he pitched this Friday 4/26. Or am I missing something?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Clearly I’m missing something… got my probables mixed up somehow. Apologies. Wonderful start out of him last night, huh?

  17. sanfran1966 says:
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    CBS has Marco Estrada as a 2 start guy next week…

    Estrada, Marco
    (P) MIL Home: 7 (PITProbable Start,STLProbable Start)

    Can you clarify and thoughts on Estrada in general ???

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Yeah Estrada goes twice, not Hiram Burgos… sorry. Estrada is giving up too many homers, but I still slot him into the second tier. Solid play in weekly formats.

  18. Gareth says:
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    I have a roster crunch for week 5. My pitching is pretty stellar so I have some tough decisions on who to start and who to bench. Only 9 Spots available for 13 pitchers. the 4 other pitchers sit on the bench in a WEEKLY Cbs Format.

    Here are my 13 pitchers:

    starters:

    Felix (@ Toronto)
    Gio (@ ATL, @ Pit)
    Gallardo (PIT, STL)
    Estrada (PIT, STL)
    Morrow (BOS, SEA)
    Cobb (@ KC, @ COL)
    Lynn (CIN)
    Lincecum (@ Arizona)
    AJ Burnett (Washington)

    Relievers:

    Holland (7 home – CLE, TB, CHW)
    Betancourt (3 Home, 3 away TB, @ LAD)
    Street (3 Home, 4 away ARI, @ Cubs)
    Frieri (4 Home, 3 Away BAL, @ OAK)

    I am currently second on my league. The categories I need to catch up on are wins, Whip and Era. I am 4th in Saves and 3rd in Strikeouts.

    So which 4 out of these guys would you put on the bench this week?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Tough call, but I’d sit Morrow, Lincecum, Estrada & Lynn.

  19. Riff Raff says:
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    Talk about an old timer who refuses to evolve. He needs to understand that part of “twtw” is reflected in a players metrics.

    • sanfran1966 says:
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      @Riff Raff:

      he prolly had a buddy fired from a front office somewhere, a dinosaur like himself, and blames the concept of integrating sabermetrics to the overall process as the reason why…

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Absolutely. Hawk’s very thick-headed when it comes to these matters.

  20. AbAdMaN says:
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    Utility spot rest of year: Kyle seager or Todd frazier?

    • sanfran1966 says:
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      @AbAdMaN:

      Grey had Frazier ranked way up the charts this preseason and he has produced so far…

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Frazier, no doubt.

  21. bossmanjunior says:
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    Scott,

    Who should I start at UTL today? Brief one sentence rationale would be much appreciated.

    Gardner v. Happ (pro: Gardner hits lefties better and its Yankee stadium; con: Happ is tough on lhh and Gardner has one steal)

    Rutledge @ Miley (pro: Good power/speed combo and good hitters stadium; con: Rutledge has nuetral splits and Miley has been good this year).

    • sanfran1966 says:
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      @bossmanjunior:

      Garner hit a dinger off a lefty last night & Rutledge sat – play the hot bat, imo, although both are solid choices…

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      I’d roll with Gardner but it’s truly a coin flip situation. Rutledge doing more damage on the bases, but you gotta figure Gardner is gonna get things going in that department before long.

  22. Roger says:
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    Scott it’s not about the two start week pitchers, but a dynasty question,if there was no real need for pitching on your team but you just wanted a flier pick, just to sit there in your farm team, no taking into consideration who arrives first, which one would you take Robert Stephenson or Carlos Rodon?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Stephenson

  23. Bump Bailey's Ghost says:
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    Alright, two trades to think about:

    1) I was offered BJ and Hellickson for my Matt Harvey.
    (I’m trying to sell Harvey high before his innings limit kicks in and I need a bat)

    2) I was offered Nick Markakis for Kyle Seager.
    (I have Zobrist and Longo in Seager’s spots and a good OF so position eligibility is not a factor here as they’d both be UTIL in my lineup)

    Thanks all!

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      1. I’d hold Harvey. Think you could get a better package.

      2. Pull the trigger.

      • Bump Bailey's Ghost says:
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        @Scott Evans: What do you think would be a good value for Harvey? Aren’t they going to limit his innings this year? I need a good bat and I have decent/strong pitching. I know BJ doesn’t hit for average, but I haven’t won that category a single time this season and don’t really expect to. Hell Boy only had 4 starts last year of 4 runs or more allowed and isn’t a bad get. Either way, who would you aim for with Harvey? All other things being equal and I don’t expect you to list guys, but what caliber of player? Thanks so much for the insight!

        • Scott Evans

          Scott Evans says:
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          Harvey threw 170 innings last year & should be able to post 200 IP this year without much trouble. Not concerned about the Mets limiting his workload. I’d look for a 1-for-1 if you’re gonna sell high on Harvey. Look for a better OF than BJ, is what I’m thinking. That package isn’t awful, but in general, I’m not a fan of 2-for-1 trades.

  24. Project Merkin says:
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    Hey Scott! What do you think about Niese tomorrow against the Phils?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Not liking it much…

      • Project Merkin says:
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        You think he’s becoming just a matchup guy, or is this just because of the ankle? The Phillies aren’t very good are they?

        • Scott Evans

          Scott Evans says:
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          They’re saying the leg is fine, but between that & unspectacular play in general this season, I’m not putting much trust in him tomorrow. Phillies offense has not been good, so the match-up is decent… it’s not a sure-thing sit, but I’d definitely be cautious with it…

  25. AbAdMaN says:
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    I picked up Villanueva for a spot start against Marlins sun. Should I stick with him the rest of the year or pick up one of the following:
    Burnett, Gallardo, Holland, Kennedy, p corbin, b colon
    Thanks

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Gallardo is a notorious slow starter. He’ll get things going before long & be very valuable. I’d do anything I could to add him if he’s sitting on waivers.

    • stumanji says:
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      @AbAdMaN: League seems really shallow, but I feel like Gallardo, Kennedy, and even Burnett should be owned in all 10+ team leagues. Gallardo always has bad Aprils but should be a lock for 200+ Ks.

  26. Stantonovation says:
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    Have cespedes coming off dl. Drop Duda for Teheran or aj?

    • Stantonovation says:
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      @Stantonovation: 12 team mixed btw

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      AJ

      • Stantonovation says:
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        @Scott Evans:

        Thanks…. Someone dropped pierzinski – worth waiver pick? Have wieters

        • Scott Evans

          Scott Evans says:
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          Maybe not worth it if it’s a shallow league & you’re already sitting pretty w/ Wieters…

  27. joeg414 says:
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    Beckett, WY.Chen, Hammell or Grimm. 13 team deep 6×6 mixed daily roto

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Beckett

  28. fri-guy says:
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    Please pick 2 for next week h2h/points:
    Estrada x2 starts
    Moore @Col
    Romo
    Andy Bailey

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Estrada & Romo

  29. raul says:
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    do you think Spending more moves in the first half of the season on streaming is a good idea? It’s my first season, and I’m not sure if the quality of stream pitchers will remain the same in the second half of the season.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      In roto, I’d save the moves for streaming in the second half… much easier to gauge the streamers after the dust has settled & hot/cold starts have had a chance to correct themselves.

  30. Gareth says:
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    Following on from the question I asked earler:

    I think I’m definately benching burnett, lynn and lincecum who all have one start against good offences.

    The last bench spot is between 2 dicey 2 start pitchers (cobb – rockies away, morrow – a hot red sox) or 2 relievers (a scuffling streer / frieri homer prone).

    Who sits?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Street.

  31. Jason says:
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    Would you drop cashner to get wandy?

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      No

  32. gareth says:
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    Actually scott. I’m siting morow? Cobb, lynn and. Estrada.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      That’s ok by me… Morow is a volatile dude

  33. Bosmosis says:
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    Is Estrada a first tier starter this week? Thanks.

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      Second

  34. Cutch's Dreads says:
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    12 team mixed, h2h. Drop Brett Anderson for straily? Losing confidence in him quickly and fear a DL stint soon, with a possibility of more. Going back and forth of it’s worth it. Thanks!

    • Scott Evans

      Scott Evans says:
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      hold until DL stint is official… looks like just a spot start for Straily

  35. Trailblazin says:
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    JoFer not a 2-start?

    Also, Kendrick or Wade Davis?

    • Trailblazin says:
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      @Trailblazin: or Westbrook

Comments are closed.