I’m staring out on a prairie in the middle of Palm Springs.  Okay, it’s not a prairie.  It’s more of a dirt field with a bingo card blowing through it.  But let’s pretend it’s a prairie.  Why am I standing in a prairie that’s not really a prairie?  Because all great baseball moments happen this way.  Just one man and rows of corn.  Except those aren’t rows of corns, but walkers lined up against the window of a Starbucks.  But let’s pretend they are cornfields!  I’m pulling off my cap (not wearing a cap; don’t want to mess my hair), staring directly into the sky (wearing sunglasses) and screaming at the Fantasy Baseball Overlord, “Why do you have to make the rest of us suffer for the childhood you never had?!”  Okay, I need to move on before the OPP (Old People Police) come after me.  We should’ve known a rather pedestrian 7 IP, 4 ER from Masahiro Tanaka was a sign that he was hurt.  We should’ve known!  Or an even worse 6 2/3 IP, 5 ER start the next time out.  We should’ve known!  Alas, we didn’t know.  So, Tanaka’s going for a variety of tests, and hopefully it’s nothing, but any time there’s something wrong with a pitcher’s elbow it’s something.  Are we sure he didn’t inflame his elbow using Hideki’s porn collection?  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Jacoby Ellsbury – 3-for-7, 2 runs and his 6th homer.  Ellsbury is one of three Native American players in the majors and this game was against the Indians, while Ellsbury plays for the Yankees.  Traitor!

Brett Gardner – Out with an ab strain and could miss the rest of the week.  But we had a love thang!  It was so real I had to use thang instead of thing.

Mark Teixeira – 2-for-6, 3 RBIs and two homers.  Were the Yankees wearing throwback uniforms yesterday?

Danny Salazar – Could return to the Indians rotation on Saturday for Messterson.  Just when fantasy baseballers started losing faith in the world after the Mookie Betts disappointment, along comes a new guy to put our hopes and dreams into who was an old guy we already had our hopes and dreams crushed over.

Brett Anderson – Could start on Saturday.  I could care never.

Troy Tulowitzki – 2-for-4 and 2 homers (19, 20).  Had it been a week since the last time he hit 2 homers in a game?  Time flies when you’re owning Tulo instead of Gerrit Cole, Elvis Andrus, Dallas Keuchel and Rafael Soriano.  Sorry, Jay(wrong)!

Charlie Blackmon – 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 14th homer.  2nd day in a row with a homer; this one came off of Eric Stults.  This homer was payback for the lack of diversity in John Hughes movies.

Wilin Rosario – 1-for-4 and his 9th homer.  *lifts arm once, it falls, lifts arm again, it falls, lifts arm a third time, it starts to fall, then, as if the power of God himself possesses it, the arm slowly raises and his index finger points to the heavens*

Corey Dickerson – Sat out with a sore wrist.  It wasn’t bad, and he might’ve been able to play but he said to Weiss, “I have a sore–”  And Weiss cut him off and put Stubbs into the lineup immediately, and he, naturally, homered.

Seth Smith – 2-for-3 and his 10th homer.  The Lisper’s Nightmare in Coors makes me think of the quote Franz Ferdinand made on the eve of World War I, “So this is how you welcome your guests — with bombs?”  In Coors, you do.

Adam Lind – Will miss 6 to 8 weeks with a fractured foot.  It happened while he was watching the World Cup.  This is called irony.  When you most need to get up, you got no energy.

Jose Reyes – 2-for-5, 1 run.  Says he’s been playing through a shoulder injury.  Ah, keeping an excuse on layaway for when he wants to shut it down for the year.  Pretty sneaky, Reyes.

Nolan Reimold – 2-for-4, 3 RBIs.  Great, now he’s gonna have to be in this Friday’s Buy column.  Has Reimold ever not been in the Buy column when he’s had everyday playing time?  Not to answer, but to ponder.

Marcus Stroman – 3 2/3 IP, 5 ER, ERA up to 4.05.  Ah, the joys of the roofie.

Kole Calhoun – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 10th homer.  KC is the Sunshine Man!  I was saying this on our TV on the Radio thing the other day, but Calhoun, due to the Angels and leading off, makes me Malcolm Gladwell Blink him into thinking he’s a Victorino-type — you know, 12 HRs, 25 SBs.  Calhoun isn’t this type of player.  He’s more of a 20+ homer, 10 steals guy.

Albert Pujols – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 20th homer.  I get it; he’s overperforming according to his peripherals.  The thing is, I just want 32 homers from him and the rest is gravy.  Which is similar but different than Prince Fielder in the ESPN Body Issue that looked like gravy with tattoos.

Jimmy Nelson – Ron Roenicke said there’s been discussion about bringing up Jimmy Nelson.  Hey, sounds like Roenicke’s been in the comments of Razzball!

Carlos Ruiz – Finally passed concussion tests and can resume baseball activities.  I picture a doctor walking into a hospital hallway to tell Ruiz’s mom that Carlos can now spit and scratch himself.

Chase Utley – 2-for-4 and his 8th homer, and 2nd in as many games, and Jimmy Rollins (1-for-4, 2 RBIs) hit his 9th homer.  If Frank Darabont was managing the Phillies, it would’ve been perfect.

Roberto Hernandez – 8 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA down to 4.22.  If you streamed Roberto in this game in Milwaukee, you’re crazy.  The good kind of crazy.  I like that.  That doesn’t mean touch my hand, get off!

Addison Reed – Kirk Gibson said Reed will remain the closer.  Well, at least he’s discussed it this time, unlike last week when he said he never even talked about switching Reed with Brad Ziegler.  Get on with the five stages of the SAGNOF closerousel:  Denial that Reed sucks, Anger that Reed sucks, Acceptance that Ziegler is better, Denial that Ziegler isn’t really that great, Anger that Ziegler now sucks.  Oh, and Ziegler gave up two runs yesterday because Gibson wanted to rush along our stages and left him in for two innings.  Though he did get the vulture win because I’m charmed, snitches!

Josh Collmenter – 7 IP, 1 ER, 8 baserunners, 6 Ks, lowering his ERA to 3.80.  Has a 3.13 home ERA with a near .200 Batting Average Against, and a 4.70 away ERA with a .313 BAA, so he’s a non-traditional home schooler, which is like when your mom hired you a hooker.

Steve Cishek – 0 IP, 3 ER and his 3rd blown save and 3rd time he’s given up multiple runs in his last seven appearances.  Honestly, if there was someone worthwhile to look at in the Marlins bullpen besides Cishek, I’d be the first m*therfuc–Whoa, I almost asterisk the wrong word.  I’d be the first person to say grab Chris Hatcher or Mike Dunn or, oh please no, Kevin Gregg, but Cishek will probably be given plenty of rope to Hutchence himself.

Nathan Eovaldi – 7 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 2 Ks.  Stream-o-Nator didn’t like this matchup, but I think the Diamondbacks are on the safer side of matchups this year if you avoid Au Shizz.  Eovaldi should get the Giants and Braves (or Astros; hard to say) right after the break, so he could be a short-term guy.

Jayson Werth – 2-for-3, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 9th homer.  When I saw he was lifted for McLouth late in the game, I had a little DLzebub blocking out all of my good, handsome thoughts.

Wilson Ramos – 1-for-4 and his 3rd homer.  They should allow anyone who breaks a hamate bone three months of steroids.

Doug Fister – 7 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners, 3 Ks vs. Bud Norris (4 IP, 5 ER).  Fister vs. Norris was billed as a reinterpretation of The Way of the Dragon, but it ended the same way.

Manny Machado – 3-for-4 and his 9th homer.  Macho Macho Machado!

Anthony Rizzo – 2-for-3 and his 20th homer.  December Grey gets points.

Alfredo Simon – 6 2/3 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 8 Ks, lowering his ERA to 2.70.  Due to scheduling, Simon could replace Cueto on the All-Star team.  Yes, due to scheduling, not due to the 9mm that Simon ‘accidentally’ dropped in front of Matheny.

Billy Hamilton – Left yesterday’s game with a tight hamstring.  Damilton!  Hopefully, it’s day-to-day.  You may want to consider forming a prayer decagon with some of his owners.

Brandon Phillips – Left with a left sprained thumb.  If smiles were healthy thumbs, he’d be fine, but it sounds like he’ll be out until after the All-Star game.

Yadier Molina – Left with a right thumb sprain.  Hey, him and Phillips are like Prince Charming and Cinderella!

Kolten Wong – 1-for-2 and a slam (4) and legs (10), that was his 3rd homer in his last four games.  Wong you done moved my wang!  Yes, grab him.  Yes, now.  This will be here when you get back.

Starling Marte – Left the club due to the death of his mother-in-law.  I’m not going to touch that one with a ten-foot pole.  Maybe Single Grey would’ve had some wisecrack to say, but not this man.  Nuh-uh.

Francisco Liriano – Will return to face the Reds on Sunday.  I was a Liriano proponent in the preseason, but now I’d want to see something from him prior to letting him use my fantasy curtains to clean his excrement.

Neil Walker – 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 12th homer.  Snooze.  I mean, he’s fine.  Snooze.  No, seriously, nothing wrong with him.  Snooze.

Stephen Vogt – 2-for-2 and his 3rd homer.  I believe in Stephen Vogt!

Jed Lowrie – 2-for-4, 1 RBI.  He’s hot, y’all.  Like fo’realies.

Jason Hammel – 5 IP, 2 ER, 9 baserunners, 3 Ks.  Somewhere, Tommy Milone sighed, “I could’ve done that.”

Hunter Pence – 2-for-5, 2 RBIs and a slam (12) and legs (8).  Was an optical illusion though because it looked like he had an extra side of legs due to gait of this manic gangly man-bird.

Robbie Grossman – 4-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 3rd homer.  He was 0-for his last 33 entering this game.  Here I thought a Grossman would’ve been 0-for-144.

George Springer – 2-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 19th homer.  Since it worked so well for Wil Myers this year, let’s see where Springer is ranked right now for next year… I’m gonna say 70th overall, but will go up 4 spots with every homer and down two with every 0-for-4.

Chris Carter – 2-for-4, 1 run, 2 RBIs, after hitting two homers on Tuesday.  I’d say, hot schmotato, but I feel like he could go 0-for-5 with 5 Ks at any moment.

Dallas Keuchel – 6 2/3 IP, 4 ER, 9 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA up to 3.20.  Still respectable, but I wonder if his wrist is still bothering him because he just doesn’t look the same, and has now given up at least 4 ER in each of his last four games.  I’d say exercise patience, but Keuchel and exercises gives me the willies.

Yu Darvish – 6 IP, 6 ER.  Not Yu too!  Please, FBO!

Miguel Rojas – 1-for-3 and his 1st homer.  Seriously, what else could he have done with a name like Miguel Rojas?  Plumb pipes?  Teach algebra?  Miguel Rojas just knows how to sound like a major league baseball player!  Too bad, he’s not actually good at baseball too.

Zack Greinke – 7 IP, 3 ER, 7 baserunners, 8 Ks.  When he gave up two runs within the first five hitters, you were worried.  Yes, you were.  You weren’t?  Wow, good fortitude, young prematurely balding man.

Victor Martinez – Won’t play until after the All-Star break.  Damn, being a Latin 35 finally caught up to him.  Seriously, how is this guy 35 years old?  He looks like he’s easily 54 years old.  Eugenio Suarez is his grandchild!

Austin Jackson – 2-for-4, 2 runs.  So he made an adult diaper of your bed sheets on Tuesday when the Tigers scored 14 runs, but Jackson has been hot for about a week now and leading off.  You have my approval.  Now if you could only get your father’s.

Max Scherzer – 7 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 7 Ks, lowering his ERA to 3.35.  Then it will be 3.18, then 3.42, then 3.27 and so on and so forth.  That’s just how Scherzer does ERA.  You know exactly what I’m talking about and that’s what scares you.

Alex Gordon – Scratched with a sore wrist.  Scratching would probably be the last thing I’d do with a sore wrist, but what do I know, I was only Jonas Salk in a former life!  What, my psychic told me.  This sounds like terrific news for a guy that’s already struggling for power.  He did get into the game as a defensive replacement, so hopefully it’s not too bad.

Jason Vargas – Will miss 3 to 4 weeks after an emergency appendectomy.  Bruce Chen will take his spot.  Translation:  Vargas is having something useless removed; the Royals rotation is having something useless inserted.

Eric Hosmer – 1-for-2, 2 runs and his 5th homer.  Maybe Hosmer has been training with his identical twin, and he can now start hitting for some power.  Or at least start making out with a big-breasted girl.  Hey, Billy Butler!

Salvador Perez – 2-for-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 11th homer.  Now leads the Royals in homers.  Oy.

Lorenzo Cain – 2-for-5, and his 12th steal and fifth steal in the last five games.  What?  You don’t need steals?  You so crazy!

Omar Infante – 3-for-4.  Yes, I have mentioned him every day for the last week.  Thanks for reading!  Hope it isn’t because your eyelids are being held Clockwork Orange-style.

Yordano Ventura – 5 IP, 4 ER, 9 baserunners, 5 Ks vs. Alex Cobb (6 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners, 7 Ks).  The clash of my preseason crushes became the trash that crashes my ratios.

Kevin Kiermaier – 4-for-4, 4 RBIs and his 8th homer.  Am I bad person because I wish I had him instead of Longoria?  No, Longoria is the bad person.  A very bad person.

Joel Peralta – 2/3 IP, 1 ER and the blown save.  After the game, Joe Maddon found out that Peralta actually had dressed Jose Molina up like Madea and helped him cross a street.  You can’t fake good karma!

Dillon Gee – 7 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 4 Ks, lowering his ERA to 2.56 as he returned from the DL.  Big fan of Gee.  Sounded like I was on Sesame Street there.  I like Dillon, safe middle of the rotation fantasy starter.  Not a whole lot of Ks, but solid ratios.

A.J. Pierzynski – Was designated for assignment by the Red Sox.  He wasn’t even there long enough to get a nickname.  Could’ve been Pez to Yastrzemski’s Yaz.  Christian Vazquez was called up to take his slot and to work in a platoon with David Ross, Tyson’s Ross brother from a separate mother and father.  Vazquez is a defensive-minded backstop, which is useless.  And they say fantasy bastardizes real baseball.  Pfft.

Mookie Betts – 2-for-3, 2 runs.  So you’re telling me if he plays, he could get hits?  That’s just so weird.

Rubby De La Rosa – 5 IP, 3 ER, 6 baserunners, 3 Ks.  But he’s not guaranteed another start, that’s the Rubby.

Jose Abreu – 2-for-4 and his 28th homer.  The Grande Dolor!

Conor Gillaspie – 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 3rd homer and 2nd in as many games.  I promise you like When In Rome, he won’t stay hot long, but he’s hot now.

Alejandro De Aza – 3-for-4, and 5-for-8 in his last two games.  I keep willing him to get hot, because I know what he’s capable of and he’s available in a ton of leagues, but it’s too early to say he’s actually hot.

Jake Petricka – 0 IP, 2 ER.  It’s Petricka to get rocked around, rocked around right on time, it’s Petricka!  Javy Guerra and 2/3 IP, 2 ER, looking like the Picasso painting he’s named after.  Not Guernica, but Picasso’s lesser known work, Javy Sucks Balls.  Zach Putnam…Step on down!  You’re the next contestant on How Bad Can The White Sox Bullpen Look?!

Chris Sale – 7 2/3 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA down to 2.08.  Unfortunately, he’s starring in the South Side production of the O. Henry-inspired play, “You Can Have ERA, But Not Wins.”

Chris Colabello – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs.  Now has 36 RBIs, which is eight more than Mauer in 134 less at-bats.  Cust kayin’.

Taijuan Walker – Optioned to Triple-A.  I should’ve questioned things more when Joseph Campbell agreed to do the intro for my Taijuan Walker sleeper post.  I don’t want your stupid hero’s journey!

2020 Draft Kit
 
  1. Mordacious Levator says:
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    in 12 team h2h dynasty with ops/slug/k’s and bb’s as categories should i drop odor for kike or marwin g? i have no backup for reyes at SS (till mondesi gets his drivers license) and pedroia as the starter at 2b.

    • Yescheese says:
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      @Mordacious Levator: where does Odor slot next year, when you think about it? I’m terms of talent, that’s a steep drop off though….

    • Mike

      Mike says:
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      hold Odor

      • Jiggy Nits says:
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        @Mike: HOLDODOR! HOLDOR! HODOR!

  2. KillerB says:
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    How do you rank the following in dynasty leagues (assuming roughly equal cost): Wong, Betts, JD Martinez, Singleton, Profar, Josh Harrison, Dom Brown, Machado, Jason Heyward and Starling Marte?

    • Good Will Hunting 2: Hunting Season says:
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      @KillerB: ranking profar isn’t an easy task. dude’s supposed to be huge but so far never got a large enough sample (she (the lady at the urinalysis clinic) said)

    • Yescheese says:
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      @KillerB: machado singleton profar betts Wong/Heyward, and now you’re getting into a pretty deep league where they are all worth something…

    • Mike

      Mike says:
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      Machado…Heyward/Marte/Profar…Wong/Singleton…rest

      • KillerB says:
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        @Mike: you’re not impressed with betts or JD? You think they’re real assets at $1 unrestricted going into next year? Or you think they’re not worth keeping? Wonder how you think they stack up against Harrison at the same price and contract.

        @grey — would love your opinion too.

        • Mike

          Mike says:
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          I like both over Harrison at $1 for sure. Going deeper with the rankings I’d put them Betts/JD…Brown/Harrison

  3. SMLV1 says:
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    My Stats – 4 Wins, 6 Saves, 32 Ks, 2.75 ERA and 1.02 Whip
    Opponents Stats – 2 Wins, 0 Saves, 20 Ks, 2.28 ERA and 1.31 Whip

    Im in 1st place, he is in 2nd

    Im starting Gio @BAL
    Opponent starting, Smyly @KC, Bailey @Home VS. CHC and S. Miller @Home VS. PIT

    Bench Gio or start Gio?

    12 team H2H standard Y! league

    Up Coming…My Team – Arrieta @Home VS. ATL, A. Wood @CHC, Shields @Home VS. DET and Cueto @Home VS. PIT.

    Opponents Up and coming – Smyly @KC, Bailey @Home VS. CHC, S. Miller @Home VS. PIT, Wainwright @MIL, Leake @Home VS. PIT.

    My closers – Rosenthal, Papelbon and J.Smith
    Opponent – Reed, Romo, and Soriano.

    Question…Start all mine VS. start all his…Sps and RPs?

    • Mike

      Mike says:
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      start Gio…start all yours. The only one I’d think about is Shields vs. DET

  4. EnglishMetsFan says:
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    “You weren’t? Wow, good fortitude, young prematurely balding man.”

    Thanks for the kind words.

    Selling CJ Wlson? 4 of the last 5 have been bad.

    • Mike

      Mike says:
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      ha…depends what you can get for him. I’m not a big fan.

  5. costaricanchata says:
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    @ Grey :

    and if yu had been wearing that special gazoo cap ,
    during batting practice the other day ???

    cust concussion .

  6. Chris L says:
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    Great post,
    My relief pitchers for a 12 team keeper league 5×5 (std pitching) are:
    Cishek (MIA)
    Robertson (NYY)
    Jansen (LAD)
    Watson (PIT)
    Should I drop Watson for Ziegler?

    Thanks

  7. I believe the the security for the NY Yankees is provided by the OPP..

  8. I would like to take credit for George Springers 2 bombs in 2 days. After I made my 4 for 2 trade, I added him in my roto league after he was dropped by the guy I traded him too just as he started to go cold after that last great run..Me and Springy Springer are tight..

    • Good Will Hunting 2: Hunting Season says:
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      @Malicious Phenom: what sized league exactly was springer dropped, and yes it better be no bigger than 8 team. or maybe counts K’s against if bigger

        • Good Will Hunting 2: Hunting Season says:
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          @Malicious Phenom: i love those leagues, those types are much more common in hockey.

    • Mike

      Mike says:
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      nice!

  9. Ante GALIC says:
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    Hey Grey!

    Gr8 shizz, as usual, slightly outdid yourself today so better than your usual self but only slightly!

    On Machado, you wrote ‘Macho Macho Machado’. You should have wrote, Mucho Macho Machado. Get it? Like the pony that lost me a big one at the Santa Anita this year…Mucho Macho Man!

    For your B-Ham prayer decagon, I have one of his pubes that he left behind in the Best Western he stayed at (I asked specifically for his room). Maybe it could help. Just kidding. I could Fed Ex to y’all.

    On the Grossman, I bet that one went over the heads of more than 50% of your readership including all of the four girls. Oh, it didn’t? For those who got the joke, please blink once. Those who did not continue staring at the screen in the hopes of finding the riddle of the Sphinx!

    On Chen, he is just a tampon to be used for this interim useless 28-day period. Get it?

    I dropped Quintana to pick up Samardzija. Then I realized I should have dropped Cole who may or may not make it back and then who knows how many starts he gets. Awaiting the results of the following transaction…Dropped Cole to try and get back Quintana. What do you think of both moves?

    Cheers,
    Ante

      • Toe Knee Arm Ass says:
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        @Malicious Phenom: I had the same thoughts about Springer in your post

      • Ante GALIC says:
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        @Malicious Phenom: Some dumbass dropped him to pick up Carlos Martinez. Then the same dumbass dropped Carlos Martinez to pick up Koehler just before lineups locked for this week AND started him for his gr8 start Monday!!! That’s just dumb, but I was numb from the dumbness and almost let someone else pick up the Shark because i was away at my mother-in-law’s to pick up the kids (she does not have internet) and when I got home the Shark had cleared waivers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (I’d continue with the exclamation marks if I could, need the wrist power!)

        Cheers,
        Ante

        • Phil of the Future says:
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          Hey Ante!
          Dont’ take any guff from MP, someone dropped Springer in his league and now he’s taking credit for his HRs. Congrats on the Shark! I wish I had him. Maybe we can do a cross-league trade. What do you need?

            • Phil of the Future says:
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              Glass house, stones. That’s all I’m sayin’, dude. ROFLMAOLOL

              • Ante GALIC says:
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                @Phil of the Future: Hey, Phil! Good for Hughes in trying to turn around his bad luck. Hope you had benched for his losing streak. Carter still hitting homers, so there’s that. On the cross-league trade, man that would be really cool. I’d trade you whatever you needed man just as long as you send him back to me at the end of the week, lol!

    • Mike

      Mike says:
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      ha! …the moves sound fine