Eddie Rosario hit 27 homers and stole nine bags last year.  This should disqualify him from being a sleeper.  You might be thinking.  “Sure, uh-huh, but what was his average?”  He hit .290.  So, now you might be thinking, “Okay, okay, got it, but what was his BABIP?  Was he lucky?”  His BABIP was .312, his career BABIP is .325.  You might now be thinking, “Fine, but the Twins, I mean, blech, right?”  The Twins were the 7th best offense in baseball last year, just ahead of the Diamondbacks, Rangers and Red Sox.  Now, you might be thinking, “Well, Rosario isn’t a big part of that offense.”  He’s their cleanup hitter.  Now, you might be thinking, “His HR/FB must’ve been insane.”  It was 16.4%.  Far from insane.  Now you might be thinking, “He hits a lot of ground balls.  He’s gotta, right?”  About the same as Gary Sanchez and Travis Shaw.  “He strikes out a lot?”  Nope, about the same as Freddie Freeman.  “I feel like he’s been around a while, he’s old, right?”  He’s 26.  “So, why is he a sleeper?”  Better yet… So, what should we expect from Eddie Rosario for 2018 fantasy baseball and what makes him a sleeper?

If I had to put my finger on one thing that is artificially suppressing Eddie Rosario, I think there’s a confirmation bias saying the Twins are bad, so anything related to them must also be garbage.  It’s inaccurate, but you can’t fight City Hall, unless you’re Batman and City Hall’s been taken over by the Joker.  Let’s have some fun with math!  In 2015, 40.6% of the balls Rosario hit were fly balls.  He was younger than (no dur), so he didn’t have as much power.  If this surprises anyone, I suggest having someone else check your closets for cats jumping out of them, because you’re easily shocked.  If he has a modest uptick in fly balls this year to 40.6 from 37.4%, he will hit 183 fly balls.  If he holds his HR/FB% of 16.4, he hits 30 homers this year.  I have not said one number that would be challenging for him to reach.  If he has a slight uptick in more power– he is only 26 — he hits 35 homers with ease.  So, a .290 hitter with 30 homers, who is likely not drafted until after 150 overall?  I mean, I know there’s been an offensive explosion, but this is an easy top 100 hitter.  In fact (Grey’s got more!), he was the 72nd best player last year on our Player Rater.  There were 16 pitchers in front of him, so Rosario was the 56th best hitter last year.  One thing I haven’t mentioned (hey, why mention the negative stuff), he was caught eight times in 17 steal attempts.  That’s a worst percentage than LiAngelo Ball.  I watched some film on Rosario, and, honestly, he looks slow as dog balls.  However, Paul Molitor won Manager of the Year honors with a team that was top ten in steals, while mentioning his 39-game hitting streak incessantly, so the Twins might keep sending Rosario.  I think he could be anywhere from a two-steal guy to a ten-steal guy.  Everything else, though, should be purdy.  For 2018, I’ll give Eddie Rosario the projections of 88/30/96/.286/4 in 551 ABs with a chance for more.

  1. JB says:
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    Grey –

    What can we expect from Dansby Swanson this year? More of the same garbage?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @JB: I’m projecting all players and ranking all positions now… Swanson doesn’t look like a breakout candidate…

  2. Coach K says:
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    OBP keeper league… What do you think about Trea for either Corey Seager or Sano plus the 2nd pick overall after 80 guys are kept?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Coach K: I’d want Trea for either and pick

      • Shawn McLaughlin says:
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        @Grey: Me, too. I just traded Seager and two guys I wasn’t goingto keep (Zimmerman and Cozart) for Turner. VERY happy about it.

  3. FrankGrimes says:
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    Do you find it as funny as I do that Ohtani has an injury already?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @FrankGrimes: It is so hilarious… Wheels came off that hype train lickety split

      • MattTruss

        MattTruss says:
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        I only wish we had gotten to do some drafts first so everyone could overspend on him before we got this news. Oh well.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          I know, hashtag me too… I think he’s still going to be overpriced, thankfully…

        • Ralph Lifshitz

          Ralph Lifshitz says:
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          @MattTruss: I wouldn’t be so sure that won’t still happen. He had an injection, and probably still pitches this year. If he has a good camp people might not pump the breaks that much.

  4. Cheese says:
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    I’m not gonna lie, when I first saw “Eddie Rosario” as a sleeper, I rolled my eyes thinking there is NO way this bum is a sleeper. But, you’ve me convinced me and I will be drafting him everywhere next year if his ADP sticks around 150. Your first paragraph was dope.

  5. Tweak says:
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    Love me some Rosario(s) going into 2018. Amed, too!

    To your point on Rosario being overlooked or discounted, I picked him up off waivers at the end of the season in two of my dynasty leagues, as he was dropped in favor of prospects. I don’t get it. He’s a free OF3 with OF2 upside.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Tweak: Every Rosario! Exactly! Nice grab!

  6. Fungazi says:
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    Nice Eddie Rosario, leaned on that guy hard to take home the championship. I find you look at guys more closely in the last couple of weeks because every day matters so much more.

    His splits were strange. He bats at home like it’s Coors 20 ding-dongs and .332 avg and only 7 homers and .245 on the road. Also had 16 homers in the last two months which would be on pace for roughly 48 homers compared to 11 over first 4 months pacing at 17 homers. Not sure if he changed something mid-season or one of the halves was fluky.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Fungazi: He cut his Ks, hit balls harder and more in the air in the 2nd half… I think it’s real…

      • Fungazi says:
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        @Grey: I believe. Another guy you gotta check out is Castellanos, but I know you are already a fan of his for a long time.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          A little birdie told me a sleeper post for him is coming too

  7. Duda Want to Build a Snowman? says:
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    Wow – loving this! Would you still take an $11 Devers as your final keeper over a $5 Rosario? Inflation is +$3 annually. I guess the logic behind Devers over Rosario would be to bet on the big breakout . . . but your Rosario projection sounds an awful lot like my ideal Devers projection for 2018 . . .

    I guess the other question is whether people will pay $11 or more for Devers at auction (Jake Lamb went for that price last year).

      • Duda Want to Build a Snowman? says:
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        @Grey: Touche! Yeah 150th pick is definitely under $10 . . . probably even $5 or less.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yup

  8. brian says:
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    Hey Grey,

    16 ESPN dynasty lg 7×7 that uses H, AVG, and OPS in addition to traditional counting stats. the extra pitching cats are holds and BAA.

    Been offered my odor for his mccullers. My other 2B are dan murphy and merrifield. my SPs are archer, cole, kluber, shark, salazar, quintana, jon gray, kyle gibson.

    rest of my lineup is gary sanchez, bour, kyle seager, trea, bryce, betts, mike taylor, khris, brantley, franco, semien, healy, nick williams.

    Would you do the deal? I may counter for paxton but would think that would be rejected.

    thanks.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @brian: I’d take McCullers, it’s fair

  9. Curious George Springer says:
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    Are we going to get an Albies sleeper post? Albies. Albies.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Albies!

      • Curious George Springer says:
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        @Grey: Tell me I’m a liar when I say Albies can easily go 20/30 next year. Albies!

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Liar sounds so harsh, insanely optimistic?

          • Curious George Springer says:
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            @Grey: you’ll eat those words, Albright.

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Good, because I’m hungry!

  10. Coach K says:
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    OBP league…. Trea or Betts?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Trea

      • Anthony says:
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        @Grey:

        Really interesting, Grey… you think Trea’s crazy BABIP is sustainable? How’s he ever gonna outpace Mookie without the power or RBI potential?

        I’m taking Mookie Cookie all day over Turner!

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Trea’s a 15/50/.300 guy

          • Anthony says:
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            @Grey:

            Sure… But isn’t Betts a 290/350/500 guy who will get you 100/100, 25 bags, and 25 bombs? Isn’t Bett better in every category except SBs?

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              15/50/.300 is better than 25/25/.290 — Last year, Betts was a .344 OBP and Turner was .338…

  11. TJ says:
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    Hi Grey. Desperate Cardinals fan here. I’m curious as to what you think about Ozuna’s performance last year as it seems that will be the bat we get. Do you think it was an outlier (due to the juiced balls last year), or do you think this is the Ozuna to expect for the future?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Nah, I like Ozuna, solid get by Cards, but they don’t need OFs

      • Tweak says:
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        @Grey: He is a solid get; we’ll see about the return. I’m hoping neither of my homies in Weaver or Flaherty go to Miami. Ick.

        There’s also chatter that St Louis might bite the bullet and pay for Machado. Then again, apparently he really wants to play SS instead of 3B, and some folks were talking about Colorado getting into the Machado hunt. Imagining Machado in Denver makes me think about stealing your Giancarlo body massage oils and scented candles.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Haha, Machado in Colorado would be insane, but kinda makes no sense for the Rox…But I’m sure they’d find a place for him, maybe they’ll send Story…

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          The O’s getting Story would be a very O’s thing to do

          • Tweak says:
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            @Grey: Story would be the second coming of JJ Hardy, this time with twice the Ks!

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Haha, yup!

  12. Jack Deth the Jew Jew says:
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    Hey me and the Ralph had a dircussion about Rosario about a monnth ago and it went just like this post. Under valued is so sexy

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Undervalued, for what reason tho? What do you think?

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:
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        @Grey: Mostly what you said, we dug in on the HR/FB rate, then checked out the average for 2017 which turned out to be 14.5% if I’m not mistaken.

        – loved the increase in flyballs, with a very good IFFB%
        – Contact jumped by 5%, from 73.5% to 78.5%
        – Another big improvement in SwSTr%
        – The previous two numbers seem to be the product of him chasing less stuff outside the zone, which in turn boosted his O-Contact by nearly 7%.

        So in closing, Rosario hit the ball better, but the biggest improvement was in his pitch recognition and plate approach, which screams sustainability in his improved profile.

        Love that he hits the ball to all fields too. There’s a lot to like with Rosario. Might be your best sleeper of the year.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yeah, but he was good last year, so why is no one drafting him? Prolly the Twins thing I said in the post, was curious what others thought…

          • Jack Deth the Jew Jew says:
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            @Grey: to sum up my analogy below. He looks like a floor guy and everyone wants to own the ceiling guys

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Totally!

          • Ralph Lifshitz

            Ralph Lifshitz says:
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            @Grey: Like Jack said, boring floor guy. Everyone is chasing 20/20 upside, or overvaluing Luis Castillo.

            No one is drafting Zack Cozart either, little different cause he’s old, but he’s a better hitter than tons of SS going ahead of him.

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Cozart has some other issues with not playing a full year ever, but I agree, Cozart’s being undervalued… As he always is…

              • Ralph Lifshitz

                Ralph Lifshitz says:
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                @Grey: So does Xander even when he’s in the lineup.

                • Grey

                  Grey says:
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                  That’s true…

      • Jack Deth the Jew Jew says:
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        @Grey: In that he isnt a sexy name. People are not paying attention to him. Here are some highlights.

        1) dropped K rate from 25 to 18. As a year three player thats a good sign especially since he got full time AB’s. Is he the latest ferrari? No, but he’s a really reliable Camry.

        2) He still swings a lot, not as much as before, but in that he is chasing less out of the zone and making more contact

        3) I found it interesting that he had 11 doubles and only 1 dong in July. Promising for the extra homers you see possible in 2018

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yeah, agreed… I think it’s the Twins polluting his sexiness, and he feels like a guy that is going to do exactly what I predict, and he still won’t be respect for fantasy next year…

          • Jack Deth the Jew Jew says:
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            @Grey: but Sano was a Twin and the new Hummer to hit the road so everyone wanted him. I don’t buy that argument. I think every player will be related to a car today

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Maybe it is the floor vs. ceiling thing more than the Twins thing… You’re right on Sano…

          • Ralph Lifshitz

            Ralph Lifshitz says:
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            @Grey: Buxton is getting drafted Hella early!

            • Jack Deth the Jew Jew says:
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              @Ralph Lifshitz: Hella? stop talking to Mason that bay area crap is rubbing off on you

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Yeah, Jack the Jew brought a good point, prolly floor vs. ceiling than a Twins thing…

          • Curious George Springer says:
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            @Grey: I think you’re right. it’s that coupled with the fact that nobody was onto him before he became an every day player. Nobody was watching him in AA and waiting for him to arrive. Highly anticipated prospects get love regardless of where they play (see, Sano, Buxton, Berrios), but I think this type of player tends to get overlooked when they aren’t on the big stage.

            He feels sort of like Daniel Murphy or Justin Turner to me. Guys who were around for a while before they came into their own and became really good players. He doesn’t hit for as high of an average, but probably has more power than those guys. The big difference is that they played on big market teams and everyone noticed their emergence.

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Yeah, that might have something to do with it, or it’s the simple floor vs. ceiling argument… Though, that is true on Turner and Murphy…

              • Jack Deth the Jew Jew says:
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                @Grey: I was going to say something about him not being hyped coming up. They couple together like Cadillac and GM.

                • Grey

                  Grey says:
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                  Yeah, agreed with that, like CGS said above…

  13. Curious George Springer says:
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    Twins get Pineda. That’s such a Twins thing to do…

    That said, I’ve been unable to quit him in fantasy. His peripherals always seem to suggest he can turn a corner and be really good. Am I delusional here?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      He’s out for the whole 2018 season likely, so it’s a super Twins thing to do…

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:
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        @Grey: Or the Cubs… I mean they signed Smyly yesterday.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Cubs are just stockpiling arms for April thru August, when they move them out of the rotation…

          • Ralph Lifshitz

            Ralph Lifshitz says:
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            @Grey: Smyly is out until July no?

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              My bad, yeah

      • Curious George Springer says:
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        @Grey: God. I totally forgot about that. Surely this means they’ll trade Dozier this winter…(they won”t)

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Ha, they should (you’re right, they won’t)

  14. Speill says:
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    Hi Gey what’s going on. Thanks for making yourself available to those that have nothing else to do but think of baseball. Lol. Keeper league question. I was offered Goldie at$47 and my choice of either Dozier at$3. Abreu at $13. Ozuna at $3 or Andrus at $3 for Arenado at $37. I have the Blackman rostered also. Thinking Goldie little high salary but with add on player of choice might me worth it. I can keep 8 keepers and usually like to stock up on offense. Leaving pitching to bid for in draft. Would you sit tight or make a move. Thanks again

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Goldie and Ozuna or any of those guys is kinda insane… I’d tae Ozuna…

      • Speill says:
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        @Grey: but would you say it’s a no brainer or risky

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          No brainer

  15. Scott Kimmel says:
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    Grey,

    Is Brad Hand going to be the closer in SD next year?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Too early to say

    • Scott Kimmel says:
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      also who is closing for Angels? Parker, Johnson or someone else?

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        Parker right now

        • Scott Kimmel says:
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          Somebody wants me to get David Robertson then flip him to get lester. would you do that?

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            Sounds fair

  16. Scott Kimmel says:
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    I like Joe Smith in Houston. Also Kinsler traded to Angels.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Yup

      • Scott Kimmel says:
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        i have devenski. should i bid on smith?

        Also I am looking for a bench OF. my choices are: Peralta, Fowler, Carlos Santana, Reddick, SPan, Schwarber,

        Who should I bid on in order of preference

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          No on Smith… Fowler, Peralta, Santana

  17. David says:
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    In an insane league, 2nd year of it. This league is arguably the oldest in existence, I’m told. The members are old, they still run things old school. The rules are convoluted, there are so many categories, its crazy for me growing up on 5×5 roto. Its an 11×11 keeper league. Categories are:

    Hitting:
    2b, 3b, AB, BA, BB, G, H, HR, R, RBI, SB

    Pitching:
    APP, ERA, HD, INN, INN/9, K/9, S, W, WHIP, W%

    It gets better…at the end of the season, players are rated as 1’s, 2’s, or 0’s based on a system (???) and we can keep up to 11 players. There are also convoluted rules on how many combos of rated players that can be kept. For instance, at the 4 CI spots can’t keep more than 3 #1’s, and, between MI & C, can’t keep more than 1 #1 & 2 #2’s. Bored yet?

    So, winter meeting time, is synonymous with opening of trading period, followed by roster cuts down to 18 keepers. Rules are combo of max 6 #1 + 6 #2 + 6 0’s, or 5 + 7 + 6.

    OK… my roster w/ designation

    C Lucroy
    1B Encarnacion (1)
    1B Myers
    MI Segura (1)
    MI Gennett (2)
    MI Simmons (2)
    3B Turner (2)
    3B Healy
    OF Bruce (1)
    OF Eaton (2)
    OF Rosario (2)
    OF DeShields
    OF Marwin Gonzo
    OF Choo
    OF Gamel
    Bench: Swanson, Guerrero, Pirella, Tucker

    Pitching:
    Greinke (1), Strasburg (1), Ray (1), Archer (2), Quintana (2), Clevinger (2), Godley, Grey, Kuhl, Reyes, Iglesias

    Minor League: Puk, Wright

    My 18 right now are:
    1: Encar, Bruce, Segura, Strasburg, Greinke, Ray,
    2: Eaton, Rosario, Simmons…working on flipping the rest but Archer, Turner, Clevinger
    0: Myers, Guerrero, Tucker, Godley, Reyes, Iglesias

    Still trying to upgrade my position. I think I need 3B and OF and willing to leverage my pitching for that.

    Thoughts? Questions?

  18. Jack Deth the Jew Jew says:
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    Rosario is a total Big Magoo type player. Which like I said above is a floor guy. He loves his floors

  19. Old Fart says:
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    Should I deal Jameson Taillon and Orlando Arcia SS for Eddie Rosario and Miguel Cabrera 1B in a salary cap keeper league?
    Really Like Rosario but hate to give up Tallion.
    Thoughts?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      I like it

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