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Yes, I will continue to call Brandon Allen a fantasy sleeper every year until he breaks out.  I will also continue to say his name sounds like a furniture store.  I’m just having a hard time writing off this mollywhooping, two-hundred and thirty-five pound behemoth that had an OBP of .405 in Triple-A last year.  The OBP won’t translate into a great average; he’s more in the Adam Dunn mold.  He strikes out, walks and hits homers.  There’s even a few surprising steals in his game.  That sounds downright donkeyish!  No wonder I like him.  Since he’ll already be 25 when the 2011 season opens, the D-Backs have to give him his shot soon.  They just gotta, man.  Seriously, please don’t play Parra or Nady over him.  In Triple-A last year, he had 25 homers, 14 steals and a .405 OBP.  If that doesn’t get your blood flowing, check your pulse.  You might be dead.  So what can we expect of Brandon Allen for 2011 fantasy baseball and what makes him a sleeper?

Expect nothing.  That’s always a good way to start.  At least that’s what I tell the ladies.  If the Diamondbacks give Allen 500 ABs, which I do think they will, Allen will get 25 homers and a few steals.  That’s the baseline.  When you hear the baseline and see his average draft position, you nod your head.  Or maybe that’s bassline.  You know when your leaguemates start to leave the draft because they promised their wife they’d go to Hometown Buffet for their 30th anniversary?  I.e, the last rounds of the draft that some people invariably autodraft.  That’s when you’re taking Allen.  He might not give you anything, but it doesn’t matter.  You can drop your last draft pick before Opening Day without any of that pesky guilt.  You’re drafting him because his upside is, say, Carlos Quentin.

  1. Steve says:

    Imagine a world where Alex Gordon is traded to Arizona, has a .400 OBP, steals second and trots home on a Brandon Allen home run every other day.

    Can you, Grey?

    Can you?

  2. Terrence Mann says:

    @Grey: Guess I posted this too late in the other thread:

    Here’s my team from the most recent Razz mock. Getting tougher to draft as guys realize who fell in the first drafts.

    C Buster Posey R5 P6
    1B Paul Konerko R6 P7
    CI Ike Davis R18 P7
    2B Chase Utley R2 P7
    MI Neil Walker R22 P7
    SS Troy Tulowitzki R1 P6
    3B Pedro Alvarez R7 P6
    OF Nelson Cruz R3 P6
    OF Justin Upton R4 P7
    OF Bobby Abreu R8 P7
    OF Carlos Quentin R9 P6
    OF Garrett Jones R20 P7
    Util Austin Jackson R21 P6
    SP Hiroki Kuroda R10 P7
    SP Ricky Romero R11 P6
    SP Brandon Morrow R12 P7
    SP Gio Gonzalez R14 P7
    SP Dan Hudson R15 P6
    SP Johnny Cueto R17 P6
    SP C.J. Wilson R19 P6
    RP Neftali Feliz R13 P6
    RP David Aardsma R16 P7

    Pretty happy with my team. Wanted to prove to Grey you can wait until round 10 to draft your first starter and still end up with a nice staff. Looking back, I think I’d be more comfortable if I would have taken Oswalt as my #1 a round earlier. Outside of that, I’d take this team. Reached a little bit on Alvarez but he was the guy I was targeting after not getting a stud 3B.

  3. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Steve: Are you teasing me, Steve? How dare you!

    @Terrence Mann: Don’t think your pitching staff is necessarily bad considering how late you waited, but I also don’t think you proved to me you don’t need a number one. You have four or five number threes with the potential for a one or two number starter. It could work out, it could also blow up in your face pretty easily. Off the top of my head, I’d say they probably had a combined 4.50 ERA going into May last year.

    @VinWins: Cool…

  4. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Terrence Mann: Oh, and re: your hitting. It’s obviously fine, but instead of Konerko or Abreu that’s when I would’ve grabbed an SP.

  5. Hey Grey, happy holidays, good sir! You like Allen or Mitch Moreland more as a breakout candidate next year? I have them lumped together on my 1B sleeper list. Keeper league w/ OBP, Ks count against. Thanks

  6. Ray says:

    Grey-I agree on Allen. They seem to be doing everything not to play him, but his bat will play in Arizona. He walks more than Laroche and Reynolds….almost 18% in AAA is very good.
    Does he get more ABs than Miranda at 1b? I think he should.

  7. joe from pt pleasant says:

    12 team H2H points league… League is pitching heavy due to a 15 start max that everyone tries to hit to maximize points. Pitchers who log alot of IP, and K’s, as well as wins are very valuable.

    You keep 5 players.
    Other teams in the league are actually keeping slightly more SP than hitters so the average is close to 3 pitcher keepers per team…

    Votto, Tulo, Felix are my three no brainers.

    Here are my other choices: Zimmerman, Uggla, Oswalt, Greinke…

    Which two guys would you keep?

    Do you think i have a strong set of keepers?

  8. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Tarasco’s Secret Stash: Allen has better upside, Moreland is safer (read: a bit boring).

    @Ray: I think he should too, yeah. If Miranda plays over him, than Allen slept with Kirk Gibson’s daughter.

    @joe from pt pleasant: Zimmerman, Oswalt… Your keepers are fine. I’d be happy going to battle with them.

  9. The Vaporizers says:

    Dynasty League.

    Which side you like better?

    Ryan Howard


    Mark Reynolds and Jordan Lyles

  10. Smokey

    Smokey says:

    Allen=Kyle Blanks hype pre 2010 draft, which wasn’t all that bad of a ride if he didn’t get hurt. Similar stats in the minors, position elig. and both are huge guys who should have played defensive end.

  11. Eddy says:

    @Grey: Goodmorning Grey! Here’s my draft
    resuts from the 3rd Razzball mock. C Chris Iannetta R20 P5 CI
    Justin Smoak R16 P5 1B Adam Dunn R4 P8 2B Aaron Hill R8 P5 MI Omar
    Infante R18 P5 SS Ian Desmond R15 P8 3B David Wright R1 P8 OF Ryan
    Braun R2 P5 OF Lance Berkman R19 P5 OF Jay Bruce R6 P5 OF Michael
    Stanton R7 P8 OF Rajai Davis R14 P5 OF Jose Tabata R21 P8 SP Felix
    Hernandez R3 P8 SP Clayton Kershaw R5 P8 SP Shaun Marcum R10 P5 SP
    Jhoulys Chacin R11 P8 SP Ricky Nolasco R12 P5 RP Heath Bell R9 P8
    RP Joe Nathan R13 P8 RP Leo Nunez R17 P8 RP Kevin Gregg R22 P5 I
    know I reached substantially on Chacin, but I learned last year in
    the RCL that if you don’t reach for someone you love, you’re going
    to get stuck with the Brad Penny and the John Danks of the world.
    Anyways, let me know what you think!

  12. Eddy says:

    @Eddy: I’m posting this again because
    apparently it came out in paragraph form the first time (at least
    that’s how it shows on my computer). C Chris Iannetta R20 P5 CI
    Justin Smoak R16 P5 1B Adam Dunn R4 P8 2B Aaron Hill R8 P5 MI Omar
    Infante R18 P5 SS Ian Desmond R15 P8 3B David Wright R1 P8 OF Ryan
    Braun R2 P5 OF Lance Berkman R19 P5 OF Jay Bruce R6 P5 OF Michael
    Stanton R7 P8 OF Rajai Davis R14 P5 OF Jose Tabata R21 P8 SP Felix
    Hernandez R3 P8 SP Clayton Kershaw R5 P8 SP Shaun Marcum R10 P5 SP
    Jhoulys Chacin R11 P8 SP Ricky Nolasco R12 P5 RP Heath Bell R9 P8
    RP Joe Nathan R13 P8 RP Leo Nunez R17 P8 RP Kevin Gregg R22 P5 I
    know I reached substantially on Chacin, but I learned last year in
    the RCL that if you don’t reach for someone you love, you’re going
    to get stuck with the Brad Penny and the John Danks of the world.
    Anyways, let me know what you think!

  13. Terrence Mann says:

    @Grey: Sounds reasonable. Abreu felt
    like a reach in 8. That’s a spot in the draft where I didn’t like
    anyone. The draft room pretty much agreed with me. I could have
    taken Oswalt in 8 instead of Abreu. I’m pretty sure I could still
    grab Abreu in 9 in that scenario. I do like getting Konerko where I
    did. I don’t expect him to repeat last year’s numbers but the next
    1Bs off the board were Butler, Pena, and Huff. Pretty big dropoff

  14. joe from pt pleasant says:

    I’ve pretty much been torn over this decision since the Greinke trade went through. Everyone keeps telling me to keep zimmerman. Personally, I was actually leaning towards Greinke because it is a pitching heavy league and i think the change in scenery should def help him.

    But… 3B isssss super thin this year.

    I could see Greinke getting to 17-18 wins on that team which would be super valuable considering his peripherals.

    Do you think Zimmerman can put up a .300 90/30/100 line this year? In order to keep him over the Zack Attack, those are the numbers i would need to feel confident that he can attain this year.

  15. joe from pt pleasant says:


    Get stuck with the Brad Pennys and John Danks of the world? Okay, Penny i could see fitting there but John Danks was DIRTY last year. He was one of my most dependable SP last year.

    Maybe you got him mixed up with John Doe… You never know what to expect from that guy.

  16. SwaggerJackers says:


    1B Mark Teixeira NYY R2 P4
    2B Robinson Cano NYY R1 P9
    2B Martin Prado ATL R8 P4
    2B Gordon Beckham CHW R15 P9
    3B Adrian Beltre FA R6 P4
    SS Stephen Drew ARI R11 P9
    SS Jed Lowrie BOS R19 P9
    C Jorge Posada NYY R21 P9
    OF Jason Heyward ATL R4 P4
    OF Hunter Pence HOU R5 P9
    OF Brett Gardner NYY R9 P9
    OF Adam Jones BAL R14 P4
    OF Desmond Jennings TB R18 P4
    SP Adam Wainwright STL R3 P9
    SP Jered Weaver ANA R7 P9
    SP Mat Latos SD R10 P4
    SP Clay Buchholz BOS R12 P4
    SP Jeremy Hellickson TB R16 P4
    SP Bronson Arroyo CIN R20 P4
    SP Bud Norris HOU R22 P4
    RP Rafael Soriano FA R13 P9
    RP Drew Storen WAS R17 P9

    Every season I seem to be deficient in power and this year appears to be the same if I don’t change my drafting style. Stellar pitching has been part of all successful teams in my league however, so I can get by with average power if my SPs hold up.

  17. Elijah says:

    Actually, I keep hearing the GM wants to give Miranda playtime, and Xady if healthy will sap AB’s, not to mention the Dbacks offense in general looks poor. You can scoff at Miranda, but at his age they would want to see now if he has anything whereas Allen could still sit in AAA another year without much harm.

  18. Elijah says:


    “Nady, a 32-year-old right-handed hitter, says it does not matter where Gibson plays him. Towers said that would be a spring-training decision but envisions Nady getting 400 to 500 plate appearances. When he was the GM in San Diego, Towers drafted Nady as a third baseman out of California”

    “New GM Kevin Towers is rolling the dice on a few buy-low candidates: He likes first baseman Juan Miranda’s potential and seems keen on giving him an opportunity. Towers believes lefty Zach Duke is a good candidate to rebound from an awful season with the Pirates. And he always has been fond of outfielder/first baseman Xavier Nady, who is coming off a bad year, one perhaps precipitated by injury.”

    The local buzz is Allen will be on the bench, not saying its the right move, but I really don’t think he gets 500 ab’s. He might even be sent back to AAA at some point.

  19. JoeC says:

    You’re probably deficient in power every year because you do things like drafting Robinson Cano in the 1st round! :)

    And YMMV, but I’d rather have a big bat in Round 3 than Adam Wainwright (or any SP).

    But, you do seem to have a lot of “Razzball favorites” on your team! :)

  20. @joe from pt pleasant: personally, i’d keep zim and greinke and punt oswalt. i think people are getting too excited about oswalt’s year last year and the phillies rotation and all that. he’s good, and everything, but that 8+ K/9 was like a full K higher than anything he’s ever done in his career and he’s not young. if somebody wants to explain to me how he added a new pitch or something last year then fine but otherwise i don’t see any reason to expect it to happen again. and it’s not like with hitters, having three other awesome pitchers in the rotation with him doesn’t actually help oswalt’s numbers any. those guys are sitting in the jacuzzi playing indian poker with $100 bills on their foreheads whenever oswalt works.

    this time last year he was getting drafted in like the 17th round. he’s still the same dude.

    meanwhile i totally buy the greinke-was-bored-in-KC theory. it should be noted, i’m a sucker for greinke. but it’s worked out for me before. i think now that he’s pitching in games that actually matter for the first time in his life we’re a lot more likely to see at least some version of 09 greinke.

    just my opinion.

    @SwaggerJackers: yeah, your team has a lot of quality dudes on it but you’re a little light on power. cano in the first round is more of an across-the-board guy, and with both jennings and gardner in the OF you’d have to hope heyward is totally for real. he probably is, but he’s also 21.

    i hate wainwright and prado that high, and pence should justify a 5th i suppose but he seems a little replaceable there.

    on the other hand, love getting beckham and posada way down there.

    i actually kind of like bronson arroyo but is K rate is completely intolerable in any kind of roto innings-cap scenario. i’m not even sure what the scenario for that was in this thing, come to think of it.

    here’s my team –

    C Carlos Santana 8.12
    1B Albert Pujols 1.1
    2B Dustin Pedroia 2.12
    SS Rafael Furcal 10.12
    3B Jose Bautista 4.12
    MI Ian Kinsler 5.1
    CI Mitch Moreland 22.12
    OF Matt Kemp 3.1
    OF BJ Upton 6.12
    OF Travis Snider 12.12
    OF Carlos Beltran 19.1
    OF Andres Torres 21.1
    DH David Ortiz 11.1

    P Francisco Liriano 7.1
    P Max Scherzer 9.1
    P Ted Lilly 14.12
    P Edwin Jackson 16.12
    P Edinson Volquez 20.12

    P Francisco Rodriguez 13.1
    P JJ Putz 15.1
    P Craig Kimbrel 17.1
    P Joel Hanrahan 18.12

    i kind of hemmed and hawed about taking pedroia quite that high, especially after i wound up with kinsler also. but if not him i probably would have taken bautista there and he wound up coming back around, so it worked out i suppose.

    thought about taking bill hall instead of moreland with the last pick. just so i could come back on here and argue with grey some more. but decided it was too risky.

    i actually usually wind up with more of a combination of power-upside guys like jay bruce and then rabbits like rajai, but here i ended up getting a really nice collection of balanced power-speed guys. ortiz is the only complete sluggard, and there’s plenty of speed without anybody who’s completely incapable of double-digit power. wasn’t even really trying to do that, but it felt good.

  21. Steve says:

    @Grey: That’s kind of how it came out,
    wasn’t it? Not my original intention – just inviting you to drift
    away to a happy place for a moment.

  22. Mike Morse says:

    wheres the love?

  23. joe from pt pleasant says:

    @Mike Morse:

    Good black eyed peas imitation!

    But seriously, ill name my first born child after you… and my second.

  24. SwaggerJackers says:

    @Willy Mo: I don’t have a problem with a first/second round combo of Cano and Tex. I don’t think that damned me in the power department.

    Prado/Gardner probably was the issue. Instead of going with them back to back I could have picked someone like Corey Hart, Quintin, Reynolds or Pena.

  25. Steve says:

    @Grey: And Eugenio Velez would be hitting leadoff.

  26. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Eddy: Ugh… I think there’s something wrong with the ampersand arrow. Your hitting looks fine… Infante’s bleh, Tabata and Davis aren’t both necessary and your average could be an issue. Your pitching looks very strong though.

    @Terrence Mann: I’m not a huge fan of Konerko, but I hear ya.

    @joe from pt pleasant: Zimmerman’s a no brainer over Zack.

    @SwaggerJackers: Your hitting is weak and your pitching is way too strong. You don’t need three top starters and a fourth borderline number two.

    @Elijah: Allen’s a last round pick. If it doesn’t work, who are you missing? A handcuff closer that you would drop anyway? I don’t buy Miranda is going to be their man, but I could be wrong.

    @Mike Morse: You didn’t get the Xmas card?

  27. Steve says:

    @Grey: Is this thing on?

  28. Al Swedgin says:

    Assuming Aardsma is fine after hip surgery, are we assuming the closer’s job is his to lose in SEA?

  29. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Steve: Oh, it’s on!

    @Al Swedgin: That’s the current assumption, yeah.

  30. Al Swedgin says:

    I’m trying to figure out why the FanGraphs community projections have Brandon League projected to get 20+ saves. And these were made before the Aardsma surgery announcement. Do you figure it’s just fans making assumptions because they heard Aardsma was getting shopped?

  31. Steve says:

    @Grey: Love is all around for Konerko. He just went at #53 in the slow mock I’m in with big o and vinko.
    Andrus for me at #59, o took Weeks at #60.

  32. Steve says:

    Correction. Konerko went at #63.

  33. Brede says:

    I have two picks coming up in a Dynasty league. Who would you take out of these: Werth, Ethier, Andrus, Ellsbury, Pence, Gallardo, Liriano or Weaver?

  34. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Al Swedgin: Not sure what they’re thinking, maybe that.

    @Steve: Maybe people are drafting for last year.

    @Brede: Liriano, Andrus…

  35. @SwaggerJackers: yeah, no, cano and tex don’t doom you in power. that’s a perfectly legit 1-2 pair. the power problem is coming from having prado, gardner and jennings all on the same team plus a lot of guys with just-ok power (adam jones, s drew, g-bex, pence) and no true pillars of slug after teixeira. it’s just kind of an aggregate thing.

    @Al Swedgin: yeah, the reports coming out of seattle were really making it sound like the mariners were hell-bent on trading aardsma for about a month there, which kind of got the league bandwagon rolling. seems quieter lately.

  36. Mine as well…for giggles…

    C V-Mart -r3
    1B Huff – r9
    2B Figgins – r10
    SS Scutaro – r14
    3B Longoria – r1
    CI Reynolds – r11
    MI Castro – r17
    OF Holliday – r2
    OF Sizemore – r7
    OF Hunter – r8
    OF Markakis – r12
    OF Ibanez – r19
    UTIL Wigginton -r20

    SP Carpenter – r4
    SP Ubaldo – r5
    SP De La Rosa – r13
    SP Beckett – r16
    SP Ervin Santana -r18
    SP Zimmermann – r21
    RP Marmol – r6
    RP Franklin – r15
    RP Gonzalez – r24

    Don’t like my team honestly…shoulda grabbed either Morneau or Kinsler instead of Carpenter in the 4th…

    oh well just for fun right?

  37. barker says:

    here’s my mock from last night let me know what you think grey
    light on closers but overall i think its alright great speed decent power

    R1 P3 SS Hanley Ramirez, FLA
    R2 P10 1B Kevin Youkilis, BOS
    R3 P3 2B Brandon Phillips, CIN
    R4 P10 OF Andrew McCutchen, PIT [CF]
    R5 P3 1B Kendry Morales, ANA
    R6 P10 OF Curtis Granderson, NYY [CF]
    R7 P3 OF Jacoby Ellsbury, BOS
    R8 P10 SP Roy Oswalt, PHI
    R9 P3 SP Tommy Hanson, ATL
    R10 P10 SP Matt Garza, TB
    R11 P3 3B Casey McGehee, MIL
    R12 P10 OF Michael Bourn, HOU [CF]
    R13 P3 SP Philip Hughes, NYY
    R14 P10 2B Ben Zobrist, TB [RF]
    R15 P3 RP Huston Street, COL
    R16 P10 C Matt Wieters, BAL
    R17 P3 RP Aroldis Chapman, CIN
    R18 P10 SP Madison Bumgarner, SF
    R19 P3 RP Matt Thornton, CHW
    R20 P10 OF Angel Pagan, NYM [LF, CF, RF]
    R21 P3 1B Logan Morrison, FLA [LF]
    R22 P10 RP Koji Uehara, BAL

  38. Grey

    Grey says:

    @the fake tom: Yeah, I don’t like your team either. Not very good hitting or pitching.

    @barker: The Bourn pick seems like a throwaway pick, also not crazy about the Garza pick… Otherwise, it’s a solid enough team. Oswalt, Hanson and Hughes are a solid enough three and your hitting looks good.

  39. @VinWins: btw, love the mock stats. appreciate the work.

    apparently i reach quite a bit. out of the 21 picks (not counting pujols), i picked my guy earliest out of the 3 mocks (reaches) 11 times, split the uprights 5 times and got the guy latest (droppers) 5 times. droppers were bautista, kinsler, torres, edwin jackson and beltran (but considering he’s going in the 200s it’s bizarre how tight beltran’s pattern is – 206, 214 and 217 – autodraft artifact?). splits were ortiz, liriano, lilly, k-rod and hanrahan. so i reached for all of pedroia, kemp (both only slightly), beej upton, santana, scherzer, furcal, snider, putz, and kimbrel, and am so far the only guy to even draft volquez or moreland.

    but i like all of those guys, so it’s cool.

  40. SwaggerJackers says:

    @Grey: I agree that it appears my pitching staff is too strong but consider the team that finished first the last two season in my league. His staff consists of Halladay, Wainright, Carpenter, Verlander, Scherzer, Wandy and Marcum. It’s INSANE but that’s what I’m competing against.

    While everyone else is fighting for power, he’s dominating all the pitching stats.

  41. Terrence Mann says:

    @Grey: Admit it, Grey. You like my draft best. Even with Kuroda as my #1 starter!

  42. joe from point pleasant says:

    @Grey: One more concern about Zimmerman is that the NL East is LOADED with pitching. More so than ever. With divisional foes like the phillies, marlins, braves, and mets that is going to make for a lot of tough matchups. Halladay Lee Oswalt Hamels JJohnson Nolasco Vazquez Anibal Hanson Hudson Lowe even Minor. The Mets staff isn’t impressive but that park is terrible to hit in.

    Does this bother you at all when you are ranking Zimm? Do you even take it into consideration? or am i just over-analyzing. Sorry if im beating this decision up, i just want to make sure i get it right.

  43. JoeC says:

    Who cares? Let that other guy dominate pitching. Your goal should be to shoot for 3rd place in each category, not to dominate one or the other.

    Let him win ERA by half a point and Ks by 200. Obviously if he’s won 2 years in a row then he’s not exactly neglecting the offensive side of the ball, but you have to find a way to combat his great staff by out-offensing him and fielding a “good enough” pitching staff. Don’t try to have an arms race with him in pitching (see what I did there?)!

  44. Al Swedgin says:

    Grey, I’m sorry if this was covered in the comments already, but are you assuming Allen will have OF eligibility (which he should, I think, in most leagues, right?). Or are you calling him a sleeper as a 1B?

  45. Al Swedgin says:

    @Grey: Thanks for the clarification. I only ask but several projection systems still classify him as a 1B only, and I suppose some fantasy sites (that require 20 games started at a position) could make executive decisions to classify him as a 1B only, especially if they see Nady as an OF or whatever. Anyhoo, thanks.

  46. Al Swedgin says:

    ^^^”I only ask *because*…”

  47. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Al Swedgin: Yeah, he could get 1st base eligibility and then be good for your corner spot, but right now he’s only at OF.

  48. Al Swedgin says:

    Also: Happy New Year, Snitches!

    Just a few hours more until the long-awaited arrival of January Grey, one of my most favoritest Greys!

  49. @joe from point pleasant: uh, if anibal sanchez has reached “put him in the list of guys i’m worried about my elite hitter facing next year” status then why isn’t anybody drafting him.

    all of those guys pitched in the same division last year except for lee, vazquez, minor and half of oswalt, plus johan was healthy, and zimmerman seemed ok then.

    you’re over-analyzing. people are only talking about this because of how crazy philly’s rotation is because they added one guy.

  50. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Al Swedgin: Happy New Year! January Grey is sunbathing somewhere in the Caribbean but I’ll send him your best.

  51. Steve says:

    It’s 2011 here. Happy New Year y’all!

  52. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Steve: So we make it out of 2010 all right? Thanks for ruining the suspense! Emoticon. Happy New Year!

  53. Steve says:

    @Grey: Everything looks much as it did yesterday so I guess we did. Though if something did happen at midnight I wouldn’t know. I was snoring my head off long before then.

  54. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Steve: Wow, what an old fart. I’ll probably be doing the same at midnight tonight.

  55. Al Swedgin says:

    Technically you and Steve will actually be asleep AT THE SAME TIME!

  56. Steve says:

    D-Lee to the Orioles.

  57. you know, i’m looking at the o’s lineup for next season and it’s actually… decent.

    bet they wish they had a pitching staff now

  58. VinWins

    VinWins says:

    @wily mo: Glad you like it. It’s something I like to do, so I’ll keep them coming.

  59. big o says:

    steve and grey sleeping together ?

    say it ain’t so !

  60. Ray says:

    I was in the liquor store this afternoon-12/31-and saw that Bacardi has a rum called Bacardi RAZZ!!

  61. Al Swedgin says:


    God I wish MLB had a relegation system. It’d be a blast watching the Orioles (and the Nats) move up to Division A or whatever this year. As it is, the Orioles just pushed their playoff contention elimination date back a couple days. :-(

  62. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Al Swedgin: Whoa now!

    @Steve: That’s a fun move to yawn at.

    @big o: Careful.

    @Ray: Might need a patent attorney to send them a cease and desist.

  63. Al Swedgin says:

    Grey and anyone so inclined:

    For (my own) shits and giggles, please indulge me. In one 12-team league I am in we keep 5, but have to narrow it down to 8 at this point. I’ll show you some teams and see what you think.

    The stupid thing is that it’s an 8*8 H2H league, counting the normal 10 cats, plus hits (kinda redundant), BB, offensive Ks, and also holds, IP, and losses.

    Anyway, please rank group I:

    Team A:

    Carlos Gonzalez
    Matt Holliday
    Joe Mauer
    Kendry Morales
    Aubrey Huff
    Jon Lester
    Josh Johnson
    Ricky Romero

    Team B:

    Adam Dunn
    Ryan Howard
    Hanley Ramirez
    Brandon Phillips
    Vladimir Guerrero
    CC Sabathia
    Ryan Dempster
    Jonathan Sanchez

    Team C:

    Jay Bruce
    E Santana

  64. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Al Swedgin: I like B the best, A’s not bad, C’s kind of a mess.

  65. Al Swedgin says:

    @Grey: Yeah, C’s kinda brutal. Surprised you took B over A though.

    Next group (feel free to ignore me at any time):


    Adrian Gonzalez 1B/BOS
    Dustin Pedroia 2B/BOS
    Jose Reyes SS/NYM
    Josh Hamilton OF/TEX
    Justin Upton OF/ARZ
    Justin Verlander SP/DET
    David Price SP/TAM
    Tommy Hanson SP/ATL


    Jose Bautista 3B/TOR
    Miguel Cabrera 1B/DET
    Buster Posey C/DET
    Troy Tulowitzki SS/DET
    Tim Lincecum SP/SF
    Adam Wainwright SP/STL
    Jered Weaver SP/ANA
    Yovani Gallardo SP/MIL


    1. Chase Utley
    2. Kevin Youkilis
    3. Jacoby Ellsbury
    4. Prince Fielder
    5. Richie Weeks
    6. Nelson Cruz
    7. Shin Soo Choo
    8. Carlos Santana

  66. Al Swedgin says:

    OK, this is the last batch for now, cuz I think 3 teams haven’t submitted yet:

    Team A:

    J. Morneau
    D. Uggla
    D. Wright
    T. Cahill
    C. Hamels
    Z. Greinke
    T. Hudson
    Jason Bay

    Team B:

    1. M. Teixeira, NYY, 1B
    2. M. Kemp, LAD, OF
    3. J. Heyward, ATL, OF
    4. A. McCutchen, PIT, OF
    5. R. Zimmerman, WAS, 3B
    6. H. Pence, HOU, OF
    7. J. Rollins, PHI, SS
    8. C. Carpenter, STL, P

    Team C:

    1) Albert Pujols
    2) Evan Longoria
    3) Roy Halladay
    4) Felix Hernandez
    5) Ian Kinsler
    6) Victor Martinez
    7) Andre Ethier
    8) Chris Young

  67. Al Swedgin says:

    Ok, so of the three you chose, please rank and I promise not to bother you again until next year.

    Adrian Gonzalez 1B/BOS
    ?Dustin Pedroia 2B/BOS
    ?Jose Reyes SS/NYM?
    Josh Hamilton OF/TEX
    ?Justin Upton OF/ARZ
    ?Justin Verlander SP/DET
    ?David Price SP/TAM
    ?Tommy Hanson SP/ATL

    Team B:

    Adam Dunn?
    Ryan Howard?
    Hanley Ramirez?
    Brandon Phillips?
    Vladimir Guerrero?
    CC Sabathia?
    Ryan Dempster
    ?Jonathan Sanchez

    Team C:

    1. M. Teixeira, NYY, 1B
    ?2. M. Kemp, LAD, OF?
    3. J. Heyward, ATL, OF
    ?4. A. McCutchen, PIT, OF?
    5. R. Zimmerman, WAS, 3B
    ?6. H. Pence, HOU, OF?
    7. J. Rollins, PHI, SS?
    8. C. Carpenter, STL, P

  68. Al Swedgin says:

    woah where did those ??? come from?

  69. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Al Swedgin: A then B if Vlad has OF eligibility, C if not.

  70. Al Swedgin says:


    Aww, shucks, my team is ‘C’. As you can probably guess, they underperformed last year. Oh well, at least they are in the upper level. Thanks so much for putting up with the tedium.

    I’m sure I’ll be showing you my 8 again soon. We are at the stage where we can trade keepers before cutting down to 5. I thought I had enough depth to trade 2 or 3 for one upgrade, but I’m not looking all that deep anymore.

  71. Mike from Jersey says:

    Same league as joe from point pleasant, pitching friendly league.
    I already have my 5 keepers picked out, but im just wondering who you’d pick. please pick 5 out of:
    josh johnson, mike stanton, matt garza, kevin youkilis, yovani gallardo, cole hamels, dustin pedroia, ryan braun, andre ethier.

    Also, if your final decision came to youk vs pedroia, who would you keep and why?

  72. Al Swedgin says:

    I’m not Grey, but while you wait, I think I’d take:

    Youk, Pedroia, Braun, Ethier, Johnson, in no particular order.

  73. @Mike from Jersey: well, not garza.

    that’s the easy part. braun yes, garza no.

    the rest of those guys, man, you can make an argument for or against any of them.

    i’m probably off on my own a little bit on this but i actually like gallardo the best out of the other three pitchers. it’s a riskier play to keep him because you’re gambling on upside, but i think JJ and hamels are already at their cruising altitudes whereas gallardo can still climb. of course, i’m kind of a slut for K rates. if the league is so pitching-heavy you probably want at least two of these guys.

    then youk and pedroia are both hard to let go. if it came down to that i’d go pedroia just because of age. then there’s ethier vs. stanton, well-rounded current studliness vs. huge future power upside. but you already have braun and there may not be room to keep 2 outfielders in a pitching-oriented 5-keeper situation.

    i think if it was me i’d go braun – youk – pedroia – JJ – gallardo. but they’re all hard choices after braun. hamels over gallardo is safer. or you could go the other way, whole-hog for upside with braun – stanton – ethier (thinking of his big start before the finger injury) – JJ – gallardo. or go even harder after pitching with braun + hitter + all 3 pitchers. all of those seem like valid strategies. might depend some on exactly what you think the available draft board is going to look like.

    or, trade them all for pujols

  74. @Mike from Jersey: forgot to list one more strategeric option, which would be to cut against the grain of the pitching-orientedness of the league and keep 4 or even all 5 hitters, with only one or zero pitchers, and then focus on astute pitcher selection in the draft. that might well be what i’d end up doing if i was really in this situation, but i’d have to see how the drafts tend to shake out to really know for sure.

    anyway, i hope this narrows it down and clarifies things for you. i’ll see if i can come up with seven more options later and then make sure not to take a stand

  75. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Mike from Jersey: Youk, Pedroia, Gallardo, Braun and Hamels… Could see JJ instead of Hamels.

  76. Mike from Jersey says:

    @wily mo: @Grey:

    Hmm you guys seem to want hitters more than me. My idea on my keepers so far has been: Braun, JJ, Gallardo, Hamels, Pedroia/Youk. About 30 pitchers are being kept. There are a couple sleepers i LOVE at pitcher (wont name them b.c frequent poster joe from point pleasant is a big rival of mine in the league), so I can focus on that. However if Johnson is healthy he’s my favorite player and has a great shot at #1 pitcher so i cant pass him up. He was the overall #1 player around the middle of the year. Hamels i love being the #4 and if wins evens out (as the #4 if he gets close to a 3.00 era and 200 k’s its hard to see him falling outside of the top 15) he can be great. Gallardo i think will also go nuts, and his first half splits are great. If he stays like that i can deal him mid year for almost any player i want (pitching is THAT valuable).
    I’m keeping Braun because with the new manager who’ll let em’ run, I can see him being a top 5 overall player.
    It comes down to, in my mind, youk vs pedroia. As a die hard sox fan I dont want to let either go. Originally i was thinking pedroia all year, but now im not sure. Youk will have ducks on the pond all season long, and if papi is like last year, he will have very good protection. Health’s an issue, but if healthy he can easily be a top 3 3b, .315-32-115 line is probably within reach (he was pretty much on pace for something around that last year)

  77. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Mike from Jersey: Yeah, I’d go both Sox infielders over one the pitchers. If I had to make Sophie’s Choice on the infielders, I’d go with Youk.

  78. Al Swedgin says:

    I guess it’s hard for me to say without really knowing what “pitching friendly” means, but I highly doubt I’m taking Hamels or Gallardo over Ethier in any of my leagues this year unless I am somehow already set at OF/U. I think Hamels especially is overrated, at least a little bit.

  79. @Mike from Jersey:

    Hitters more than pitchers…yes welcome to the site :D

    But my two cents:

    No Brainers…

    Youk at 3B – yes please
    Braun – 2nd round pick
    Gallardo – back to back 200k’s <3
    Dustin – 3/4/5 best 2B on a big hitting club…

    to me it's between JJ or Hamels for the 5th spot…and I can argue that either way…Ethier is also in there, but I've never liked him personally…

  80. by the way, and not to pick on… anyone, but i’m starting to see this “hamels goes big as the #4 starter feasting on other teams’ dregs” buzz crop up in more than one place. there was one guy in a MDC mock who was going crazy for it and i really couldn’t talk him out of it. guys… everybody… that’s not how it works. pitchers don’t match up 1 vs 1 and 5 vs 5 all year. that lasts about a week at the beginning of april. teams have different off days. rainouts exist. rotations get shuffled because of injuries. teams slot their rotations in dumb veteran pecking orders with no relationship to actual talent.

    people have studied this. it’s completely irrelevant. rotation slotting is a meaningless, made-up thing that does not affect the numbers at all. or certainly not even 5% as much as random, unpredictable year-to-year pitcher variance does. i like hamels a lot, but he’s just hamels. he’s not going to “feast on” anything but chicken and guys who can’t hit a changeup.

  81. Grey

    Grey says:

    @wily mo: Yeah, Hamels still had a 3.06 ERA and 200+ Ks last year. He’s not exactly terrible.

  82. big o says:

    @ Grey :

    i know it’s early , but ,
    do you have c. young ranked above granderson , for 2011 ??

  83. Grey

    Grey says:

    @big o: You’ll see when the rankings come out next week.

  84. Steve says:

    January Grey is a tease.

  85. big o says:

    @ steve ….. yes .

    did you get a double post for my pick @fsw ?

    @ grey …… these weeks are draaaaagin’ .

    also , i seem to have lost my arrow thingy (the one that relieves my from
    having to type “@ grey”) .
    anyone else ?

  86. big o says:

    actually , if i run my cursor to the right-hand corner of your comment box ,
    a hidden reply arrow pops up …. but it goes like this :

  87. big o says:

    oops .
    never-mind .
    i can deal with that .

  88. Steve says:

    @big o: Only got one email from you if that’s what you mean.

  89. big o says:

    yeah , another guy got 2 .
    i think there’s a snafu somewhere between you and me .

    not sure what’s going on , but it’s probably some residual stuff from
    y2k ,

    or that harmonic convergence thing .

  90. when we say brandon allen’s upside is carlos quentin, are we talking about the good carlos quentin or the bad carlos quentin?

  91. Mike from Jersey says:

    @wily mo:

    bein #4 will take pressure off of him too. I think his stats were much better post oswalt trade, all tho he was good before, he was even greater after.

  92. Al Swedgin says:

    @wily mo: Wasn’t that the plot of Superman 2?

  93. Steve says:

    @Grey: Always.

  94. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Steve: Wow, well played, Steve.

  95. Earl Battey says:


    In Simon’s case, SAGNOF seems to stand for something else now. Most of the acronyms buzzing around in my brain start with “shoot another guy”…

  96. Steve says:

    @Grey: Perhaps he’s a high-calibre reliever after all.

  97. Earl Battey says:

    Shoot another guy? Not on Friday.

    Shot another guy. Now Orioles fulminate.

  98. Terrence Mann says:

    Any truth to the rumor the name of the guy Simon killed was Peripherals?

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