Chris Tillman‘s line yesterday was nothing to sneeze at — 6 IP, 5 ER, 10 baserunners — more like gag.  Sometimes it takes one to get roofied before you fully understand what rookie pitchers can do to you.  I point the rookie pitchers out.  They have upside — hey, look at Happ, he’s been good — but I haven’t owned one since Hochevar.  I love rookie hitters though.  As mentioned before, rookie hitters go 0-for-20, you drop them — no harm, no foul.  You get a Tillman start and you end up walking like you were just jumping hurdles.  So that brings me to, Brian Matusz.  He’s been dazzling in Double-A.  As with most young pitchers, he’ll probably be limited on his pitch count/innings, so I wouldn’t expect more than 8-10 starts.  Then throw in the fact that he’ll have tough matchups and you should proceed with caution, but worth a flier in 12 team leagues?  Sure, if expectations are in check.  Or you can do like I did when I pulled the ol’ “You gotta use your waiver claim, sucker” trick with Matusz.  Let me explain the unfortunately named “You gotta use your waiver claim, sucker” trick.  I rushed out and grabbed Matusz off waivers, then the next day I dropped him so someone (<– the sucker) uses their waiver claim to get roofied.  Ah, yes.  That stings.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Zach Greinke – 5 IP, 6 ER, 9 Ks, 13 baserunners.  For the first time in a long time, I’m actually interested in who will win the AL Cy Young.  Sorry, just being a normal baseball fan there.  Won’t let it happen again.

Justin Verlander – 8 IP, 5 ER, 8 Ks, 10 baserunners.  Will see Greinke there at the AL Cy Young finish line.

Willy Aybar – 2 HRs.  I looked at him on waivers in one of my leagues on Sunday, but his playing time is so erratic I decided against it.  Sonavawaivers!

Scott Kazmir – 6 IP, 3 ER, 5 Ks.  I’ll take this start every time out from Kazmir.  Whether I get it is a whole different thing.

Edinson Volquez – Out until 2011 with Tommy John surgery.  During the preseason, I said to avoid Volquez.  Can’t blame me.  Blame Dusty.

Adrian Beltre – His return is earmarked for Tuesday.  If you find yourself salivating at the thought of Beltre’s return, you might be a St. Bernard.

Andrew McCutchen – The Dread Pirate hit 3 HRs on Sunday.  One homer yesterday.  Tomorrow, The Dread Pirate cures scurvy.

Carlos Marmol – Got the save yesterday because Gregg has a tired arm.  Somehow a tired arm is worse than when an arm falls to sleep.  Weird!

Mat Latos – 7 IP, 2 ER vs. the Braves.  Maybe the Braves are *pinkie to mouth* Latos intolerant.

Will Venable – There couldn’t be a more yawnstipating outfielder, but the Padres hit him third yesterday and he’s been hot (3 homers in his last five games, almost .350 in his last 7 games.).  If he reminds you of Hairston, then lambda! (Lambda is the Greek letter for wavelength.  When someone says something you are thinking, you say lambda.  In other words, you’re on the same wavelength.  The girls love it…. Really, really nerdy girls.)

Elijah Dukes – 2-for-4 as he continues to start every day.  If you’re reading this while you’re standing, sit down.  I want to talk to you.  After you’ve been burned a few times, I know it’s hard to trust again.  I’ve been there.  But this isn’t a trust exercise.  Dukes doesn’t need to catch your falling body.  Stop using stall statements such as, “I’ll pick him up when he gets hot.”  Those are counterproductive, friend.  Pick him up now, if you need outfield help.

Aaron Harang – 7 1/3 IP, 4 ER, 10 Ks. Maybe I’m a strikeout whore (as I pimp myself out for saves), but I’ll take 10 Ks with 4 earned. By Harang, I’ll take it and like it.

Brett Anderson – 7 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 8 Ks.  Other than two starts vs. the Sawx and the Yanks, when he should’ve been benched anyway, he’s been dominant since his last start of June.  He gets the Royals next.

Matt Cain – 8 IP, 4 ER, but took the loss.  He’ll be in this afternoon’s post about FIP.  You can hardly wait.  Yes, you can.

C.J. Wilson – 1/3 IP, 3 ER.  That killed my day yesterday.  Total staff inflection.  I guess it’s one way to get Frank Frank back in the closer role.

Neftali Feliz – 2 IP, 4 Ks.  His name sounds like an Aztec God… Neftali, from the town of Velocity, the creator of Ks…  He looked unhittable last night.  Will be fun to see him start next year. Until then…

Melvin Mora – Upset with a lack of playing time, he lashed out at manager, Dave Trembley.  So Trembley asked Mora to make out the lineup card for yesterday’s game and Mora benched himself in favor of Wigginton.

Miguel Montero – 2-for-5, HR yesterday.  Hey, maybe Hinch got the memo to bench Snyder indefinitely, though I’m suspicious.

Dan Haren – 7 IP, 5 ER vs. the Mets.  Is it bad that I took this as a good 2nd half Haren start?  Yeah, probably.  Can’t someone sneak into his house and turn the calenders back two months?

Mark Reynolds – The Mini-Donkey show is hot!  Yesterday, 2 homers for the Mini-Donkey, one to the opposite field in Metco.  As frequent commenter, Elijah, pointed out, Reynolds has 4 ding-dongs at Metco.  That’s one off the lead for all of Metco, including Mets.  Reynolds is also only two behind Pujols for the NL league.  That’s 32 salamis. (Yes, my attempt was to try and cover all possible Google searches for “donkey show is hot” + ding-dongs + salamis + “behind Pujols.”  Welcome, Google Searcher!  We won’t judge you here.)

  1. G says:

    Is there a chance that someone will accept a trade offer where I give up Aardsma, Qualls, Howell, David DeJesus and in return I get Sabathia, F-Rod, Soria. Is that a rip-off?

  2. Freak says:

    Pennies to nickels if I’m not drunk off vodka bomabs adn screwdrivers. Wzas that the right meessed up esxpression? Maybe dollars to diems? Wish I wouldn’th have abandoned Harang in Razzball early in the year.

    I traded Reynolds for Cain (basically) earlier in the the year. Kinda wishing I wouldn’t have dne that. Reynolds would have been a fantastic overrated keeper.

  3. Prince says:

    @Grey: Great writeup. “We won’t judge you here.” Hah! The whole Haren thing is bizarre to me; how can things change in the span of a week? Oh well.

  4. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:

    Grey – great post, but what else is new. When Karabell comes up with a great post, it will be the equivelant of man bites dog. Latos intolerant – Ha!

    Mini-Donkey has more dingers in Metco then any Met; he is also close to having more home runs then the entire Mets squad.

    Neftali Feliz… His name sounds like an Aztec God…Don’t know much about Aztec sports, but I visited Mayan sites two years ago. There was a large sports arena, with concrete hoops, somewhat equivelant to basketball, except that the participants couldn’t use their hands. The player who got the deciding basket was honoured by the gods and Mayans by having his heart ripped out while alive. My thought was – I’m the point guard.

    Do you think that Car-Ma will ultimately get the closer role? Gregg is awful, although Marmol was wild last night. My thoughts are that Gregg will wind up on the disgraceful list.

  5. Frack. How did I become a frequent commenter? Oh, right, blame the mini-donker.

  6. @Paulie Allnuts:

    Actually, Mark has 4 Metbonks, couple Mets have 5 at home. As I recall lacross is vaguely descended from that Aztec Bloodsport.

  7. ron mexico's papi says:

    From now on, when Adam Dunn, Mark Reynolds and Kyle Blanks go yard on the same day I propose we refer to this as “The Donkey Trifecta”.

    Carry on.

  8. ThePoonTycoon says:

    couldn’t ask for a better start to the week than the trio of pitching performances i got from randy wells, mat latos, and brett anderson last night.

  9. cnote says:

    I’m in a deep league and looking to address my UTIL spot. I currently have Blalock there, but E. Dukes is available. Should I drop Blalock for Dukes?

  10. Beat Stain says:

    Is it finally time to Ianetta go free and fall in love all over again with M. Montero?

  11. mike says:

    HO NELSON! Down with a ankle sprain on last play…WTF? now i need a replacement!

  12. Scott says:

    Cody Ross, Podsednik, Dukes, rest of the year?

    Thanks. Amazing stat about Reynolds btw.

  13. big o says:

    again , i had no access to the site , from 10pm edt to 330 am .

    buy grey and rudy some daquiris before it’s too late .

  14. AL KOHOLIC says:

    @cnote: i wouldnt drop blaylock there,dukes hasnt shown anything

  15. Bostonbeerman says:

    I don’t want to upset Rudy, but do you like LaRoche, Blanks, or Garko at 1B.

  16. ThePoonTycoon says:

    @Bostonbeerman: i’d go blanks while he’s hot. plus we don’t know his ceiling like we do with laroche and garko.

  17. Josh says:

    Reynolds is more than hot my man. In his las 7 games he has 9 hits, for 7 HRs. I though about selling high, but am too much of a donkey lover.

    With kinsler going down I had enough MI depth that i just need to fill my UTIL slot. Pick your Bowden Fluffer, Milledge or Dukes? Barmes, Span, Burrell and Blanks are also on the wire.

  18. Mark says:

    Hey I used Latos tolerent the other day! I’m totally stealing the donkey show material. Fair is fair!

  19. I'm Keith Hernandez says:

    Got offered Morneu/Ibanez for Kemp/Howard, probably gonna pass. I think Ibanez is hurt and not that exciting anymore.

  20. Denys says:

    so… who’s starting Derek Holland today?

  21. Critter Nagurski says:

    i have never been able to escape the siren song of the rook pitcher. it’s rare that 1. my staff will be healthy through august and 2. i can swing a last minute trade that won’t sink my hitting.

    what do you do? myers gets hurt, slowey gets hurt, nolasco takes the express train to shittown and gets sent down… all of a sudden i’m bleeding innings in a deep pitching league with a high IP limit.

    what i have just described is my personal hell and i experience it every july.

    at least it’s a keeper league. i repeat that sentence to myself each night while i soak my pillow with tears

    PS it is rare that people in espn leagues have to waste their waiver priority on these guys (tillman was an exception i think). who really uses yahoo any more?

  22. Eric H. says:

    I try to be a hands-off commish, but should these trades even be allowed to stand? Need an honest opinion here. Two guys way out of the mix made the following trades:

    Brian McCann for Max Scherzer

    Hanley Ramirez/B.J. Upton for Jayson Werth/Derek Jeter/Edwin Jackson

    I think it’s bush-league but I need some thoughts on it.

  23. airlifting says:

    @Critter Nagurski: espn is retarded. i’ll use yahoo until they start charging for it.

  24. Dingo says:

    I’m sure I’m not alone in this, but there are some players I have a hard time getting excited about based on nothing besides their names. Some players have strong names that inspire confidence, like guys with two first names (Jay Bruce, Alex Gordon, Stephen Drew) or guys with names that have an elegant latin flow to them (Bobby Abreu, Yovani Gallardo, Mariano Rivera), but then there are guys whose names make you wonder if you’re really talking about a professional athlete. Guys like:

    Casey McGehee (looks like “tee-hee”)
    Yunel Escobar (“you-smell”)
    Reggie Willits (whatchu talking about?)
    Shairon Martis (Sharon?)
    Will Venable (untenable)
    Cesar/Maicer Izturis (sounds like “tsuris”)
    Dustin Nippert (as Scott Adams knows, anything ending in “ert” sounds weak)
    Wiki Gonzalez (self-explanatory)

    Any others?

  25. ThePoonTycoon says:

    @Denys: in a daily lineup league i would. not weekly lineup though cause he gets the angels later this week.

    @I’m Keith Hernandez: yeah i’d keep kemp/howard

    @Josh: like 2 weeks ago i was trying to swing cruz + another player for reynolds, telling the reynolds owner cruz would give him the equivalent production, he’d plug figgins from his util spot to his 3B spot and i’d throw in another player to make it worth his while. now after reynolds’ explosion, he’s damn near untouchable in a keeper league.

  26. airlifting says:

    @Eric H.: don’t know why that first trade would make you throw your arms up…mccann has hardly been special, while the same can be said for scherzer.

    the second is pretty bad, but i’m guessing team A needs pitching. bj upton is turning in another yawnstipating year for all the hype he gets.

  27. Dingo says:

    @G: I wouldn’t necessarily call it a rip-off, but I don’t understand why someone would accept that trade. Give up two $12 salads and an underperforming star pitcher for three donkey-corns and a mediocre outfielder? Would that really satisfy a need?

  28. ThePoonTycoon says:

    @Eric H.: i don’t think those trades are that awful. unless of course the team trading mccann away has no backup catcher and doesn’t even pick one up off the wire. maybe the other guy is tired of bj upton batting .240 and believes in edwin jackson.

  29. jamiesonmj says:

    “Maybe the Braves are *pinkie to mouth* Latos intolerant.”


  30. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:

    @Denys: Mt wife. Yesterday she insisted on getting a streamer. She really wanted Yosemite Petit; I pleaded with her not to take him, so she relented and took Holland. For my own safety, I pray that Petit gets rocked in Razztastic style, or I will hear about it for weeks to come.

    @Dingo: Tony Suck, who has been called the worst player to ever play baseball. He played two years of pro ball, playing the 1883 season for the Buffalo Bisons, and the 1884 season with the Chicago Browns and the Baltimore Monumentals.

    Tony Suck, who has been called the worst player to ever play baseball. He was born Anthony Zuck in Chicago in 1858. He played two years of pro ball, playing the 1883 season for the Buffalo Bisons, and the 1884 season with the Chicago Browns and the Baltimore Monumentals.

    @airlifting: Actually, Yahoo does charge for Stattracker, which is notoriously slow at posting stats. ESPN is for free. I never played on ESPN before this year, but like it a lot better.

    @Eric H.: The first trade appears fair to me. The second is a bad deal, but I have seen a lot worse that weren’t vetoed.

    You can look it up.

  31. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:

    Correction – You can look it up comes after my blurb on Tony Suck. The guy really existed. • He hhad a lifetime BA of just .151 and had a slugging percentage of .161.
    He made 53 errors in just 58 games.

    That’s pretty bad

  32. Dingo says:

    @Paulie Allnuts: Nice! I noticed that he died tragically of pneumonia at the age of 36. Poor Tony Suck! He never really had a chance to realize his true potential!

    I also liked how your post about such an error-prone ballplayer had its own errors in it. That was a nice touch.

  33. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:

    Just noticed that Mini-Donkey is now ranked #5 overall in Yahoo! for the year…..unreal.

  34. Dingo says:

    @mgeoffriau: Even better, he’s #5 for the year, #5 for the past month, and #5 for the past week. He’s got the consistency of a … mule?

  35. Frogurt says:

    Desperate for HR. I have Phillips at 2nd and Fielder at 1st. Trade off Pedroia+Votto to get Big Tex for my Utility? Votto’s #s the last month are similar to Tex, but is Tex going to explode Aug/Sept? Fair deal?

  36. Denys says:

    alright, guess i’m rolling with Holland. it’s the A’s for Pete’s Sake.

  37. Curly Day says:

    @Eric H.: I tried asking for Werth last week and got a counter proposal of Longoria straight up. Some people think Werth is a top 20 player, based on the ESPN player rater. It is too bad you don’t have Werth.

  38. Is the Garrett Jones joyride coming to an end?

    And if so, who do you like going forward as a replacement, especially donk-wise? Blanks, Milledge, Wigginton, other.

  39. airlifting says:

    @Paulie Allnuts: yahoo was bad for about a two week strech this year, but has been pretty much perfect for posting stats. yahoo’s interface is 10x more user friendly than ESPNs and i’d rather give them $10 for stat tracker than use ESPNs maddening system.

  40. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:

    @Dingo: Yeah, sometimes I rush and submit errors in my post. This particular error was unconscious, however.

    One caveat – in the days Suck played, most players didn’t use gloves, or if they did, the gloves had no fingers. So I don’t know what the league fielding percentages were at that time. The gloves they did use had no padding; catchers often put a slab of raw steak inside their gloves to deal with the fast ball pitchers of yore.

  41. Paulie Allnuts

    Paulie Allnuts says:

    Bench George of the Rose against the Phillies at home?

    @Baron Von Vulturewins: Garret has only had one bad week. I would give him at least one more week before dropping him.

  42. black love says:

    Cruz is listed day-to-day, but with my luck im sure he’ll be on the DL. Anyone know if Chris Davis is gonna get called up? hes been pretty good in the minors, not striking out as much.
    and when are the Jays gonna bring up Snider?? what the F are they waiting for??

  43. RIP Harry says:

    Where’s mini-donkey going in drafts next year? 3rd round?

  44. Grey

    Grey says:

    @G: Probably not, and yes.

    @Freak: Potatoes to chips…

    @Prince: Thanks!

    @Paulie Allnuts: Thanks! I think Gregg will be back in a week to reclaim his job. Marmol didn’t look good last night.

    @ron mexico’s papi: Ha!

    @cnote: Sure

    @Beat Stain: Go for it

    @Scott: Dukes, unless you really need steals then Pods.

    @Josh: Hmm… That is Sophie’s Choice there. I’d go with Blanks while he’s hot.

    @big o: The server was being upgraded. We should be fine now. We shall see.

    @Mark: Go for it.

    @I’m Keith Hernandez: Pass is fine there.

    @Denys: I am. But the league’s kinda deep. I’d be careful in a 12 team league.

    @Critter Nagurski: Understood, I think Yahoo was better this year for not making people wait on waivers. Otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to pick them up and drop them.

    @Eric H.: Hanley one is pretty lopsided, but they seem okay to go through.

    @airlifting: I wouldn’t start Matusz, but he might be okay. The others are fine.

    @Dingo: That’s an awesome list.

    @jamiesonmj: Hehe

    @Frogurt: It’s not fair, I’d hold tight.

    @Baron Von Vulturewins: Blanks is the new Jones.

    @black love: Not sure what the Jays are waiting for. Maybe it’s a financial decision. Chris Davis should come back within the next week or so would be my guess.

    @RIP Harry: Unfortunately too high for my blood.

  45. with frank 2 having a vagina, can you see feliz getting saves down the stretch and with high K’s and low ratios, kinda like price last year…at least vs righties (cj wilson to consider)??

  46. Frogurt says:

    Unfair? Meaning I should get more than Tex? What if I got a decent SP too?

  47. black love says:

    Anybody gonna start Kuroda tonight?

  48. anon says:

    Should I trade CJ Wilson and Peavy for Aramis Ramirez and Liriano? I already have Wright, so Aramis would be replacing Damon at UTIL.

  49. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Frogurt: I’d take Tex and a decent starter, but you probably won’t get it. You’re better off keeping Votto and trading Pedroia for a different piece.

    @black love: I would.

    @anon: I’d take the Aramis side.

  50. RIP Harry says:

    @Grey: True he will be going too high most likely. Would you rather have Mini Donkey or Kung Fu Panda in a keeper?

  51. ThePoonTycoon says:

    @Frogurt: yeah i agree with grey. see if you could get cruz or someone for a pedroia believer. maybe even target a guy like hamilton and hope that he at least puts together a good 2 months? maybe you can catch a kendry morales owner thinking they are selling high by getting the preseason #3 2B?

    i like texeira, but i just think votto + another high quality bat will outproduce teixeira.

  52. anon says:

    Have you guys ever actually clicked on the “Fantasy Scout” ESPN Hindsighter add-on in ESPN leagues? According to that thing, I should drop Pena for Scotty Pods, Upton (or Holliday) for Denard Span, and Werth for the Dread Pirate. It even says I should drop Uggla for Crapolanco. Whoever is responsible for not only making that thing, but getting it to appear on every ESPN league’s page ought to be ashamed of themselves.

  53. black love says:

    who do you like better for the near future?
    Blanks, Venable, or Wigginton?

  54. Grey

    Grey says:

    @anon: That’s made solely to make Berry’s advice sound better.

    @black love: Blanks for pop. Venable for a (very) little bit of everything. Wigginton for the biggest gamble/payoff.

  55. ThePoonTycoon says:

    @black love: blanks. go with the upside who has been heating up when you veteran choices are the ty wigginton’s of the world.

  56. RIP Harry says:

    @Grey: Good call, Mini Donkey probably will go too high. Would you rather have Mini Donkey or Kung Fu Panda in a keeper?

  57. Dingo says:

    @anon: It can’t be much worse than Yahoo’s Player Ranker, which is listed under the “Research” tab. According to the highly scientific method of asking volunteers to compare two randomly-chosen players, Matt Cain is the 3rd-most-valuable player in fantasy baseball. Also, Mark Buehrle is worth more than Hanley Ramirez, and Todd Helton is worth more than Kendry Morales.

  58. GTS says:

    Any chance Neftali Feliz will be a starter this season?

  59. Martin says:

    @grey- lannan vs Marlins or Vandenhurk @ WAS. My other options are lohse @ NYM but I think ehhh with him and padilla @ OAK

  60. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:

    @Baron Von Vulturewins: Jones is facing AZ at home who he recently faced away. Should repeat 1 HR and 5/11 batting. That was against a combined 4.42 ERA from Petit, Scherzer, Davis (facing again). However, he runs up against a combined 3.15 road ERA from Carpenter, Wainwright, Pineiro. Plus they give up a pretty stingy .5 HR/game between them. I wouldn’t expect the type of production you have been seeing from Jones for this next week.

  61. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:

    Guys, RE: G. Jones breakdown above. Is this helpful? If not, it takes time and I will quit providing.

  62. Grey

    Grey says:

    @GTS: Doubtful

    @Martin: Lannan, but I’d punt on all of them.

    @Simply Fred: Of course it’s helpful. More information is always wanted.

  63. Dingo says:

    @Simply Fred: I agree — it’s very helpful. Thanks for taking the time to put it together.

  64. GTS says:

    @Simply Fred: I own Robot Jones so this is very helpful! Thanks!

  65. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:

    @Grey: For comparison: Blanks: OK you missed his HR yesterday facing Kawakami’s 5.7 ERA and giving up 1.1 HR/game. His next two matchups against Vazquez and Hanson should be tough ones. If you can get Blanks after (projected) tough production from these two, for the next series he faces Hernandez, Pelfrey, Perez with combined 6.57 ERA.

  66. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:

    @Simply Fred: Edit, Redding is a part of that 6.57.

  67. mc serch says:

    @Simply Fred: Very helpful, thanks!

  68. Simply Fred

    Simply Fred says:

    @Simply Fred: The “OK you missed..” was generic.. for any player that hadn’t picked him up yet. Not intended toward, Grey, who had said Blanks is the new Jones.

  69. Martin says:

    Votto and danks or holliday?

  70. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Martin: It’s fair. I’d take the Votto side if I needed a 4th starter.

  71. timSTi says:

    @Grey: Which 2 of these from here on out: Jones, Wigginton, Blanks, Milledge, or McCutchen. Don’t need any one category moreso than the other.

  72. Grey

    Grey says:

    @timSTi: McCuthchen, Blanks…


  73. anon says:


    I have also had the misfortune of clicking the research tab in my YAHOO league. Until you just explained it to me, I never even had the slightest clue what the hell I was looking at. So that is really just random volunteers voting on who they like the most? hahahahahahaha. That is the worst “research” I’ve ever heard of in my life!!

    Also, what is the percent started thing all about? What if I play in a 20 team league and you play in a 10 team league? Wouldn’t that drastically skew the numbers and make them completely useless?

    Who am I kidding.. they’d be useless anyways even if done correctly

  74. Dingo says:

    @anon: Agreed. This is definitely one area where the “wisdom of crowds” is not helpful. Some information is worse than none at all.

    The only semi-interesting part of Yahoo’s research is the Transaction Trends feature, which lets you see which players are being added or dropped by the most people, but they made it a “Plus Feature” so it’s no longer available for free.

  75. Frogurt says:

    Derek Lowe or Dempster rest of season? Don’t care about

  76. Frogurt says:

    Pick two for rest of season: Furcal, S. Drew, Beckam
    Need a little bit of everything.
    Great site!!!!

  77. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Frogurt: Lowe — Furcal, Backham


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