It’s Father’s Day, and as a father of three, there’s nothing I’d rather do than ignore my children for a few hours in order to write glowing prose about an overweight guy named Dan. Could this exercise of self indulgence ultimately lead to my demise when my daughter seeks employment at the local gentlemen’s club? Or when my two sons decide to pursue careers in baseball well into their mid-30’s on the independent ball circuit? Then again, what could make a father prouder than watching his boys player/coach the Massapequa I-Roc Z’s? I know what you’re all thinking “Ralph we care not about this tired exercise of projecting a future of unmet expectations. The Simpsons beat that theme into the ground years ago. So tell us more about this overweight Dan fellow.” Absolutely!! Verbose and demanding reader, I’d love to. Portly Cubs prospect Dan Vogelbach is at it again, reminding us that the Northsiders have an embarrassment of riches and not nearly enough positions on the major league level.

Over the past week he’s hitting .357 with 3 homers and 7 rbis, raising his season slash-line to .306/.431/.544. The biggest area of growth this season for Vogey has been the power, having previously topped out at 19. So far this season he has 12 homers over 253 plate appearances at AAA Iowa. He’s also walking 17% of the time, which is downright ludicrous. So when’s he coming up right? Well unfortunately best case scenario for Vogelbach is he gets traded to an American League team before the trade deadline, because the chances are slim (pun intended) that he sees any extended time with the Cubs. Either way he’s worth keeping an eye on, and if he does end up in Tampa Bay or another AL destination he’s worth adding immediately.

 

Mark Zagunis, OF Cubs: Another Cubs prospect on the rise, Zagunis is a converted catcher with an excellent OBP profile. After slashing .302/.408/.453 at AA Tennessee, Zagunis was promoted to AAA Iowa back on June 8th. In the 9 games since the promotion he’s hit .405/.488/.595 with 10 runs. Much like the aforementioned Vogelbach, Zagunis is a player that needs trade or injury to make an impact this year. Regardless, he’s very much worth owning in any dynasty that includes OBP as a category.

Chris Paddack, RHP Marlins: JB blew up my spot on last week’s Podcast, when he let the Paddack cat out of the bag. I keep my Paddack cat in a very plush, very posh bag, in case you wondered. As for Paddack the pitcher, he’s fresh off an 11 k performance in his last start. He’s an interesting prospect that floated under the radar during the pre-season in many dynasty leagues. He was drafted by the Marlins in the 8th round, having dropped in draft due to sign-ability concerns. He then scorned Texas A&M, and signed well above slot for Miami. He’s got huge potential, but is years away. Worth a look though.

Socrates Brito, OF ARI: Remember this preseason darling? Well he’s caught fire in AAA and could be back in the desert before you know it. After snapping a 15 game hitting streak on Tuesday with three consecutive 0-fers, Brito had his second 4 hit game in 9 days Friday. In fact over the last month he’s hitting .339 with 10 multi-hit games, 5 of which were three or more hits. The speed has been less than expected though, and Brito at best posses 12 homer power. He’ll make his bones as a batting average boost with counting stats upside.

Austin Meadows, OF PIT: The Pirates top positional prospect has been promoted from AA Altoona to AAA Indianapolis, where he’ll team with Josh Bell and Tyler Glasnow. After a slow start this season Meadows really turned it on, embarking on a 24 game hitting streak that now stands at 25 following a 3/4 performance in his first AAA appearance. Over the last month Meadows is hitting .404 with 6 homers and 6 steals. It might not be shocking to see Meadows touch the bigs this year should injuries strike the Pirates outfield in abundance.

Jake Thompson, RHP Phillies: Looks like Thompson could be the next Phillies pitching prospect to grace the rotation. After a rough April, Thompson has settled down in his last 9 starts, going 4-2 with 2.20 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP. The K rate leaves much to be desired at a puny 6.12, but he could help with the ratios. After being passed over for Zach Eflin “A”, my guess is Thompson gets the next call.

Ryon Healy, 1B/3B Oakland: The corner infielder has had a monster year across two levels, slashing .340/.398/.607 with 13 homers, 52 runs and 57 RBI’s between AA and AAA. He’s knocking on the door in Oakland and looks like a player worth inquiring on in Dynasty leagues. Worth an add in any league where 125+ minors are owned.

Chad Pinder, 2B/SS Oakland: Helay’s AAA teammates has also taken well to the PCL this season flashing power (8 homers), average (.284), and counting stats (44 runs, 35 RBIs). He’s knocking on the door in Oakland as well, but he’s blocked presently by Marcus Seimen and Jed Lowrie. He’s handled the position of SS pretty well since being moved there last season following the Daniel Robertson and Addison Russell trades. He belted homers in three consecutive games this week, and has been hot overall following a tough April.

Dillon Overton, LHP Oakland: Apparently this is the Minor League Update: Oaktown Steve Edition Vol.1. Overton a former college star whose pro career got off to a slow start following TJ, has been on a roll of late. In his last 6 starts Overton is 6-0 with an ERA of 1.67. He’s not a big strikeout guy, but fits the profile of a safe minor league option in deeper dynasty leagues.

Andrew Benintendi, OF Red Sox: Since hitting his first homer at the AA level last week, mi amor has been slashing .393/.433/.714 with 2 homers over his last 7 games. Perhaps he’s figured it out, or just breaking out of the first slump of his pro career. I envision his floor as Nick Markakis in his first 5-6 seasons. Through his first 115 games, about 500 plate appearances, Benintendi’s numbers are excellent slashing .308/.389/.519, with 14 homers, 22 steals, 77 runs, and 78 RBIs.

Amed Rosario, SS Mets: Following a decent season at high A St. Lucie in 2015, many were shocked to see the Mets top prospect return there to start 2016. So far it looks like a smart decision. Rosario has shown growth in several areas hitting .306/.357/.444 with 3 homers, 38 RBIs, and 13 steals. That’s improvement across the board in half the at bats. The call to AA Binghamton is eminent, I wouldn’t expect him to see AAA this year, unless he really rakes upon promotion. Up until recently I’ve been pretty underwhelmed by Rosario, but he looks like he’s justifying the projection hype.

Touki Toussaint, RHP Braves: The young righty the Braves stole from Dave Stewart last season has put up consecutive strong starts in A Rome. On Monday he went 8 strong allowing one run (HR) on three hits with no walks. The previous start Toussaint punched out 9 over 6 innings.

 

Follow me on twitter @ralphlifshitzbb

 

  1. Branta says:
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    Vogelbach and some others to the Yankees for Chapman. Drool, drool

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Branta: Oh god that would filthy on all fronts.

  2. Mr. Snrub says:
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    Your creative prose imbued with crapulence embiggens me somehow.

    I’d pray to the god I don’t believe in for your children, but I think they are better off without your “fatherly” guidance. Jk, bff!

    Seriously nice work. You are spelling it out for us Ralph, but that is not enough, we are readers of Razzball and these coconuts we call brains are hollow and useless. I’ll just give you links to my teams and the passwords, if you could pick up this years Mike Trout that would be great. Love ya!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Mr. Snrub: Ha yeah my fatherly advice is subpar.

      Ralph Lifshitz team management consultant

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Embiggens, indeed

  3. Chud says:
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    Happy Father’s Day! Maybe Nick W will be called up for a nice FD gift for us all!

    I need your advice: 10 team full keeper salary league trade offer. I’m in 1st n going for it this year.

    I get Verlander ($36) & Victor Martiniez ($6).

    I give Eduardo Rodriquez ($2) & Archie Bradley ($1).

    Could use reliable arm n UT hitter but I hate dealing youth w upside…….

    Thanks

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Chud: A dream of Nicky Will!

      I’d do it if you’re competing hate to give upside but winning is paramount.

  4. Ralph Lifshitz

    Ralph Lifshitz says:
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    **Updating my Benintendi blurb, he went 2/5 with a homer and couple of rbis. That’s 3 homers in 8 days.

  5. Mike says:
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    Almora, Judge, Meadows, Brinson, Dahl. Keep 3 for dynasty to compete in 2018…who you got?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Mike: Meadows, Dahl, and Brinson.

  6. James T Kirk says:
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    Meadows…top 5 prospect at year-end?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @James T Kirk: Yeah he could climb up there for sure. Particularly if he rakes at AAA. Crazy to think he Clint Frazier played high school in the same town, different schools though.

  7. James T Kirk says:
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    Bradley Zimmer, reason for concern with the high k rate!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @James T Kirk: Yes and no, he’s walking a ton and getting on base at a great clip. The speed/power profile is exciting.

  8. James T Kirk says:
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    Willie Calhoun, last month he has been insane! Even with bad defense, the Dodgers have to keep him at second as long as possible. He could be a perrenial all-star if he sticks there!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @James T Kirk: 100% agree, Willie Calhoun snitches!

  9. The JoGarza says:
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    Just picked up Healy a couple days ago, nice to see him get some love. And thanks for shining a light on Zagunis. I’ll admit I had no idea who he was, but I’m in an OBP league so I’ll be paying close attention. Now to find a way to trade for Vogelbach….

    Also, in a 16-team dynasty with QS, who wins: Cueto for Taillon and Quinn.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @The JoGarza: Roman Quinn? Long term it’s the Taillon side, but this year it’s Cueto.

      • The JoGarza says:
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        @Ralph Lifshitz: Yeah, it’s Roman.

        I mean, we’re competitive right now but also own Salazar, Hamels, deGrom, Liriano along with Taillon. So I think Cueto would be a luxury. I’ll hang tight, as Taillon is one of the few young guys on my pitching squad.

        Also, I know questions like these are hard to answer, but what type of major league quality SP would you want if you owned Vogelbach? You can give me a few names so I can get a grasp on a tier. Same league, we use OBP instead of AVG.

        • Ralph Lifshitz

          Ralph Lifshitz says:
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          @The JoGarza: Probably someone like E-Rod, Severino, or Wisler. Probably a young guy that’s struggling with big upside. You could also target an upcoming guy in the high minors like an Amir Garrett type. I’d prefer the Garrett type myself.

          • The JoGarza says:
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            @Ralph Lifshitz:

            Hmm, Garrett would be nice considering Tate is my only SP in my minors system with Taillon being promoted.

            • Ralph Lifshitz

              Ralph Lifshitz says:
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              @The JoGarza: Yeah, he’s been really good.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Rendell Locke: That guy is a boss! Happy Father’s Day Locke

  10. Matt Thomas says:
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    Hey Ralph – Great stuff as usual!

    In a league where we can keep 7 minor leaguers. I have Willie Calhoun, Harrison Bader, Andrew Benintendi, Lewis Brinson, David Dahl, Nick Williams, & Josh Hader. I also have AJ Reed on my bench. The following are available on the wire: Ronald Guzman, Josh Ockimey, Travis Demeritte, Kevin Newman, Eloy Jimenez, & Tyler O’Neill. Would you drop any of the prospects I have rostered for any of the prospects on the wire?

    Thanks!

    Matt

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Matt Thomas: No I’d hold on those guys.

  11. Bill says:
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    thoughts on Moya?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Bill: He’s had power in AAA, has a shot to be a useful player, good team setup, could be a AAAA type too.

  12. Robert says:
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    Glasnow or S. Gray?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Robert: About even, Glasnow has the k upside and he’s younger, Gray has the control and experience, but he’s still young.

  13. Robert says:
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    Another one : 10 team h2h league, Frazier is at 3rd for me. Do you think J. Lamb has comparable power with better avg when the season is over? Frazier is destroying my avg the past few weeks.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Robert: Leas power but much better average. I have both in a lot of leagues.

  14. Grey

    Grey says:
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    Happy Father’s Day, Ralph!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Grey: Thanks Grey! Now get back in your car seat!

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        Please, while you and mommy are in Foxwoods, crack the windows

            • Ralph Lifshitz

              Ralph Lifshitz says:
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              @Grey: Ha noice!!!!

              • nick the dick says:
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                @Ralph Lifshitz: So good. Way better Father’s Day present than the no card I recieved.

                • Ralph Lifshitz

                  Ralph Lifshitz says:
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                  @nick the dick: That’s a pretty sweet gift!

                  Ayo, that Non-Phixion show is one of three. They’re playing Webster Hall, somewhere in Philly, and that Worcester one. I need to see this one. If you’re interested let me know.

                  • nick the dick says:
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                    @Ralph Lifshitz: Definitely interested, would loove to see that show. Just have to see if I can situate it, get the night off from work and kids shit and what have you. The 7th you said?

                    • Ralph Lifshitz

                      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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                      @nick the dick: Yeah it’s a Thirsday. Let me know. There’s the Rae and Ghost show in Aug too. That’s a Friday

  15. Slimbo says:
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    Merrifield or peter Obrien in a keep forever dyno?

    Thanks

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Slimbo: O’brien by a nose

  16. BastardBowl says:
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    Hey Ralph – Great stuff as usual!

    In a league where we can keep 7 minor leaguers. I have Willie Calhoun, Harrison Bader, Andrew Benintendi, Lewis Brinson, David Dahl, Nick Williams, & Josh Hader. I also have AJ Reed on my bench. The following are available on the wire: Ronald Guzman, Josh Ockimey, Travis Demeritte, Kevin Newman, Eloy Jimenez, & Tyler O’Neill. Would you drop any of the prospects I have rostered for any of the prospects on the wire?

    Thanks!

    Matt

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @BastardBowl: Answered above

  17. Ralph Lifshitz

    Ralph Lifshitz says:
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    Spec grabs of Kuhl and Glasnow encouraged with Nicasio going on the bereavement list.

  18. malamoney

    malamoney says:
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    Which pitcher that will end this year in the minor leagues will have most fantasy value next year? And how about hitter?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @malamoney: Amir Garrett and David Dahl.

      • malamoney

        malamoney says:
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        @Ralph Lifshitz: Thanks Ralph! Do you see either of them breaking camp with their teams out of Spring Training? Any other names to add to that list? We can keep any minor league player next year as long as they ended the previous season in the minor leagues…

        • Ralph Lifshitz

          Ralph Lifshitz says:
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          @malamoney: Neither will break camp. There’s certainly a handful that will begin the season in the minors that could be up in Spetember.

          Yoan Moncada, Andrew Benintendi, Bradley Zimmer, Clint Frazier, Austin Meadows possibly, JP Crawford, Sean Newcomb, Dansby Swanson, Ozzie Albies, Albert Abreu, David Paulino.

          This season is/will be a stronger year for pitching promotions. Next season will be more bat heavy.

  19. J-FOH says:
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    I like seeing commenters loving on my boy Willie calhoun. It’s about time. You like fogelberg that much?*looks him up on mlb farm* okay I get it. Solid BB profile, good vs other top prospects, hits dongs both ways and I saw Daryl Strawberry last night at dinner!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @J-FOH: The Straw!!

    • goodfold2 says:
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      @J-FOH: i actually (true story) am almost related to strawberry now (one of my godfather’s many daughters is married to him) and have in fact eaten dinner with him once. first thing i asked him about was how cool was it to meet groening. my dad talked college basketball with him for hours. good guy, tall, and somewhat rounder since last in public eye.

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:
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        @goodfold2: Good, means he’s off that blow.

        • goodfold2 says:
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          @Ralph Lifshitz: yeah, he seemed quite sobber, didn’t drink anything either of course.

  20. Ballin says:
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    What is your estimated arrival time to the bigs for Alex Reyes SP STL

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Ballin: Post all-star break.

  21. goodfold2 says:
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    holy crap, healy is somehow unowned in 30 man dynasty with 30 minor league slots? how did this happen (i.e. i’m guessing this guy had little to no prospect grade when drafted or went undrafted?)

    • goodfold2 says:
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      @goodfold2: can’t add him unless called up, would have to wait to draft him in january.

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:
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        @goodfold2: He could very well be called up, stay on that.

        • goodfold2 says:
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          @Ralph Lifshitz: paddack also unowned, these 8th rounders or however late they are can often be not owned, on no radars/lists back in january.

  22. Ballin says:
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    With the news about AJ reed being far from the big league still would you consider dropping him for Garcia or Gallo

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @Ballin: Whoch Garcia? Gallo for sure.

      • Ballin says:
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        @Ralph Lifshitz: Orlando Arcia or Josh bell too

        • Ralph Lifshitz

          Ralph LIfshitz says:
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          @Ballin: I’m reading that Reed is ready and Ludlow said as much.

          • Ralph Lifshitz

            Ralph LIfshitz says:
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            @Ralph LIfshitz: Luhnow* my phone autocorrects to Ludlow!!!!

  23. S.H says:
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    Ralph my man . I have a guy who really wants Stroman. It is a 12team dynasty. Would you deal Stroman a first round pick in the first year player draft(pickk 10-12) and G.Torres from the Cubsfor THe Shark or S.Gray and Robertson from the Sox.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:
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      @S.H: So you’d get Shark, Gray, and Robertson? Do that.

  24. Brian says:
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    2 questions if you don’t mind ralph.

    1. 20 team, 6×6 with OPS and K/BB extra cats plus QS instead of W. We’re in the middle of our prospect draft. I’ve won 3 straight championships and need to restock my farm. We have 6 spots. Need to make my last pick. i have acuna, nottingham, eloy, luis ortiz, kopech. For my next pick I’ve “narrowed” it down to these guys…can you give me your top 2? Faria, sandy Alcantara, Ockimey, chris Shaw, mitch keller, spencer adams, cease, junior fernandez, tyler o’neill, kilome, soroka, justin dunn, will benson, greg bird.

    2. looking to spec on potential saves in 16 team dynasty since i don’t want to pay full price for mediocre closers. looking to win this year. my relievers are pap, kelley, madson, strop, neris, melancon. no holds, just saves. would you give up 2 young arms a looong way away (kilome and dylan cease) for seung oh and a mid rd prospect draft pick?

    Thanks.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph LIfshitz says:
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      @Brian: Keller and Bird

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph LIfshitz says:
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      @Brian: Yes to the second part, why not.

  25. Dan says:
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    Mazara and castellanos for hosmer ?? I have hosmer in a keeper league where we keep 6.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph LIfshitz says:
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      @Dan: I like the Mazara and Nicky C side, but Hosmer in keep 6 is gold. Would you keep the other two?

      • Dan says:
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        @Ralph LIfshitz: i have donaldson as a keeper so i was thinking to keep mazara. We can keep more than one at the same position if i were to keep nicky c. I currently have hosmer and belt at 1b. So id have to choose between hosmer mazara or nicky.

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