ESPN fantasy baseball rankings are the same old shizz, different effin’ year.  We’ll get to them in a second.  I gotta build up my anger.  Right now, I’m feeling downright jovial because I just watched the coup de grâce of unintentional comedy — ESPN’s Rankings Roundtables.  If you have a few minutes, watch a part of one.  You don’t need to watch the whole thing, unless you’re into Gitmo’ing yourself.  A few things I noticed from watching a minute of one:  1) Cockcroft looks like he wants to stab Berry in the eye with Stephania Bell’s injury reports.  2) The general air surrounding the proceedings is everyone in the room knows what a bad idea the roundtables are because then people will get to see the methodology behind their rankings is Berry whining, “But guys!”  3) Brendan Roberts sits with his hands folded, trying not to get called on.  But what the casual viewer is missing is Brendan’s also mumbling to Cockcroft to nudge him if he falls asleep.  4) They are in a bare room, but sitting in what appears to be Louis Vuitton chairs.  5) Brendan Roberts gelled his hair for this.  6) I wish they sat Karabell and Cockcroft together so it would look like an Office Space reunion with Michael Bolton and Milton.

I don’t bring these videos up simply because there’s a lack of unintentional comedy since Kim Jong-il passed and can no longer look at things.  I think it gives you an eye into the belly of the beast.  There’s no methodology.  There’s no rhyme or reason.  If you held ESPN’s rankings in any regard before this, now you see their rankings come from a room of guys trying not to upset the head bozo.  So when you see ESPN ranks Michael Bourn 35th overall, you say to yourself, “Yeah, well, the head bozo must’ve wanted him early.”  Then when you see ESPN gives Desmond Jennings the projections of 82/16/51/.256/37, you think that’s great projections, but why is he ranked way down at 104th overall?  There’s no reason!  That’s the take away.  (Side note:  I Googled to see if take away was one word or two.  Didn’t really find a definitive answer, but I found this sentence as an example for take away, “The death of her mother removed the last obstacle to their marriage.”  Huh?  That doesn’t even use take away and the mother dying is the last obstacle for their marriage is the best example they can come up with?  I wonder if Free Dictionary dot com has definition roundtables.  Any hoo…)

There’s some players that stand out with a huge difference between me and ESPN.  One guy I’m going to happily own in multiple leagues is Howie Kendrick.  His ranking on most ‘pert sheets is as puzzling to me as Jay Bruce (which you’ll hear more of if you listen to the podcast that is coming later today.  You can hardly wait.  No, you.  The Razzball Podcast:  Where I sound as sharp as Brendan Roberts’s hair!).  People loved Kendrick for a bunch of years and he disappointed, then he has his best year, is 28 years old, gets Pujols into his lineup and NOW (caps for emphasis, not aesthetics) everyone is down on him.  Hey, Talking Heads, stop making sense.

Next guy that stands out is David Ortiz.  They ranked him 67th overall.  About 120 picks before me.  Then they ranked Adam Lind about 70 spots after Ortiz while giving them nearly the same projections.  Sure, Ortiz is 8 years older so, I guess, he’s got experience.  What he doesn’t have is position eligibility.  I guess it’s better to take a 36-year-old utility man in the 6th round and wait on a 28-year-old 1st baseman.  Yeah, I have no idea either.  My head is starting to hurt, so I’m gonna move on.

Boy, everyone hates Mark Reynolds.  I know, he doesn’t hit for average, but are we all playing in one category leagues?  If so, let a brother know and say brother like Hulk Hogan.  That would help explain Reynolds and Bourn’s rankings.  According to their own stupid Player Rater, Reynolds was more valuable than Wright, Zimmerman and A-Rod last year.  He was nearly as valuable as Longoria, according to them.  Sure, those other 3rd basemen had off years, but you know what Reynolds didn’t have?  An off year.  In fact, in his five year career, if you assume anything .220 or higher is fine for Reynolds, then he’s only had one off year.  I think Ryan Zimmerman has only had one ‘on’ year.  Reynolds ranks 156th overall at ESPN right after… Wait for it… Here it comes… Shoot, I think I left it in the other room… Hold on one second… Okay, here it is… Reynolds is ranked after Carlos Lee!  Wait, huh?!  Next year for their roundtables, they should bring in the real wizard behind the rankings:  The homeless person they bought lunch for at Benihana while they picked his brain.

Below is a rough and tumble charts of where some of the bigger discrepancies were between ESPN and me.  The first chart is where I’m higher on someone, which is 95% (no math done for that number) young guys who I see getting better.  The second chart is where I’m lower on players, which is 95% (still no math!) older guys or guys coming off career years that I don’t have much faith in.  The chart was provided by Fantasy Pros.  I’ll warn you; if you go to that site you might find yourself losing three hours of your life while your loved one threatens divorce.

Player Position Grey’s Rank ESPN’s Rank Difference
Peter Bourjos OF 95 239 144
Jose Tabata OF 149 280 131
Yoenis Cespedes OF 117 242 125
Trevor Cahill SP 158 269 111
Ike Davis 1B 98 208 110
Ryan Howard 1B 87 196 109
Danny Valencia 3B 167 268 101
Colby Rasmus OF 115 206 91
Austin Jackson OF 169 257 88
Danny Espinosa 2B 102 189 87
Emilio Bonifacio SS 126 213 87
Alex Rios OF 114 197 83
Delmon Young OF 170 252 82
Carlos Quentin OF 147 224 77
Jhoulys Chacin SP 157 232 75
Howie Kendrick 2B 46 118 72
Mark Reynolds 3B 84 156 72
Alcides Escobar SS 186 258 72
Derek Holland SP 174 244 70
Ian Desmond SS 166 235 69
Jair Jurrjens SP 187 256 69
Brennan Boesch OF 194 261 67
Justin Morneau 1B 205 270 65
Mike Leake SP 238 300 62
Aaron Hill 2B 151 211 60
Logan Morrison OF 94 153 59
Mike Moustakas 3B 135 190 55
Dexter Fowler OF 195 247 52
Adam Lind 1B 85 135 50
Mat Gamel 3B 214 264 50
Jesus Montero C 139 188 49
Jake Peavy SP 234 282 48
Kendrys Morales 1B 203 249 46
Jarrod Saltalamacchia C 247 293 46
Buster Posey C 82 127 45
Gio Gonzalez SP 88 132 44
Mark Trumbo 1B 182 226 44
Kevin Youkilis 3B 56 99 43
Vance Worley SP 209 250 41
Salvador Perez C 246 287 41
Carlos Marmol CL 143 183 40
Jonathan Lucroy C 250 290 40
Michael Young 3B 58 97 39
Drew Stubbs OF 73 112 39
Brandon Morrow SP 132 170 38
Kenley Jansen CL 176 214 38
Anibal Sanchez SP 101 137 36
Alejandro De Aza OF 258 294 36
Desmond Jennings OF 70 104 34
Jason Heyward OF 75 109 34
Russell Martin C 249 283 34
Krispie Young OF 74 107 33
Brandon Belt 1B 202 234 32
Matt Thornton CL 221 253 32
Madison Bumgarner SP 50 80 30
Jemile Weeks 2B 172 202 30


Player Position Grey’s Rank ESPN’s Rank Difference
Carlos Beltran OF 145 115 -30
Jose Altuve 2B 267 237 -30
Mariano Rivera CL 104 73 -31
Tyler Clippard MR 282 251 -31
Dee Gordon SS 165 133 -32
Andrew Bailey CL 190 158 -32
Jim Johnson CL 274 241 -33
Sean Rodriguez 2B 278 245 -33
Jered Weaver SP 65 31 -34
Mike Napoli C 81 47 -34
David Freese 3B 228 194 -34
Mitch Moreland OF 261 227 -34
Brandon League CL 226 191 -35
Chris Perez CL 273 238 -35
Jason Bartlett SS 289 254 -35
Ian Kennedy SP 108 72 -36
Doug Fister SP 180 144 -36
Ryan Dempster SP 239 203 -36
Bud Norris SP 237 198 -39
Tim Hudson SP 179 139 -40
Jason Motte CL 177 136 -41
Joel Hanrahan CL 162 119 -43
Gaby Sanchez 1B 206 162 -44
Neil Walker 2B 211 167 -44
Ben Zobrist 2B 96 51 -45
Kyle Farnsworth CL 218 172 -46
Matt Moore SP 121 74 -47
Wandy Rodriguez SP 213 166 -47
Melky Cabrera OF 197 149 -48
James Shields SP 113 64 -49
Alexei Ramirez SS 136 87 -49
Daniel Murphy 2B 285 236 -49
Tim Stauffer SP 231 181 -50
Brandon McCarthy SP 230 179 -51
J.J. Hardy SS 164 111 -53
Jordan Walden CL 217 163 -54
Adam Wainwright SP 155 98 -57
Ichiro Suzuki OF 148 89 -59
Martin Prado 3B 229 168 -61
Carlos Pena 1B 253 192 -61
Michael Pineda SP 154 91 -63
Ryan Madson CL 163 100 -63
Chris Carpenter SP 142 78 -64
Ted Lilly SP 232 164 -68
Matt Capps CL 275 205 -70
Javy Guerra MR 280 210 -70
Scott Baker SP 233 157 -76
Jhonny Peralta SS 204 126 -78
Angel Pagan OF 262 178 -84
Freddie Freeman 1B 207 120 -87
Daniel Bard SP 272 185 -87
Yunel Escobar SS 288 200 -88
Michael Bourn OF 125 35 -90
John Danks SP 301 209 -92
Chris Sale SP 271 177 -94
Jeremy Hellickson SP 189 93 -96
Jason Kubel OF 295 199 -96
Josh Willingham OF 286 184 -102
Rafael Betancourt CL 220 114 -106
David Ortiz U 184 66 -118
Stephen Drew SS 293 160 -133
Carlos Lee OF 298 155 -143
Hiroki Kuroda SP 300 147 -153

  1. WilyMo says:

    I, for one, am ‘stoked’ (like back in ’83!) for the Razzball podcast. Perhaps you all will have humorously unexpected voices!

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @WilyMo, We sound like Lenny and Squiggy.

  2. ThirdBase says:

    So, some of the discrepancy seems systematic (e.g., you rank closers lower than they) – is that a function of their silly 10-team focus (I would think the opposite) or your studied SAGNOF-iness?

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @ThirdBase, My SAGNOF-ish.

  3. great article!

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Khang Do, Thanks!

  4. DrEasy says:

    Hi Guys, been away from fantasy baseball for a year and am feeling rusty. I did a mock earlier (standard mixed 5×5 10-team, not ideal, I know) and ended up with the following:

    C Miguel Montero ARI R10 P7
    C J.P. Arencibia TOR R16 P7
    1B Miguel Cabrera DET R1 P4
    1B Paul Goldschmidt ARI R15 P4
    2B Dan Uggla ATL R6 P7
    2B Brandon Phillips CIN R7 P4
    SS Jose Reyes MIA R3 P4
    3B Evan Longoria TB R2 P7
    3B Kevin Youkilis BOS R8 P7
    OF Josh Hamilton TEX R4 P7
    OF Jay Bruce CIN R5 P4
    OF Lance Berkman STL R11 P4
    OF Colby Rasmus TOR R22 P7
    OF Jeff Francoeur KC R23 P4
    SP C.J. Wilson ANA R9 P4
    SP Brandon Beachy ATL R12 P7
    SP Anibal Sanchez MIA R13 P4
    SP Yu Darvish TEX R14 P7
    SP Clay Buchholz BOS R19 P4
    SP Brandon McCarthy OAK R20 P7
    SP Scott Baker MIN R21 P4
    RP Carlos Marmol CHC R17 P4
    RP Sergio Santos TOR R18 P7

    I’m not used to 10-team leagues (and my real league will be a 12-team one), every team looks great! But how did I do? I kind of punted saves and SB, since the league’s so shallow that I guess you can in theory just pick up whatever you want on waivers.

    tl;dr, I should do a 12-team mock next time…

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @DrEasy, You seem to know the issue with the team… Yeah, do a 12 team mock…

  5. Howard says:

    @Grey Hilarious! I watched some of the videos, what a sterile environment except of course for the Louis Vuitton chairs! Did they ever relent and send someone to compete in the Razzball ‘pert’ league?

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Howard, Nope…

  6. Moonlight's Grahams says:

    What will become of us when ESPN wises up and offers you a fulltime gig. Who will we mock?

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Moonlight’s Grahams, Reality TV people…

  7. Bryan says:

    Hey Grey,

    As usual, I love the site! Hands down best Fantasy site on the interwebs. Anyway, I just drafted my team yesterday. What do you think? Any advice/input would be greatly appreciated. (12 Team 7×7 H2H add XBH’s and OBP for hitters and Losses and QS’s for pitchers).

    C) Geovanny Soto
    1B) Adam Lind
    2B) Dan Uggla
    SS) Erick Aybar
    3B) Evan Longoria
    OF) Andrew McCutchen
    OF) Michael Morse
    OF) Jason Heyward
    Util) Brett Lawrie
    Util) Colby Rasmus
    Bench – Alex Rios
    Bench – Vernon Wells

    Sp) Gio Gonzalez
    Sp) Daniel Hudson
    Sp) Anibal Sanchez
    Sp) Wandy Rodriguez
    Sp) Mike Minor
    RP) Jose Valverde
    RP) Sergop Santos
    RP) Kenley Jansen
    Bench) Jonathan Sanchez
    Bench) Trevor Cahill
    Bench) Brad Peacock
    Bench) Brett Cecil
    Bench) Ryan Vogelsong


    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Bryan, Thanks for the kind words! Team looks very strong, nice balance of speed and power. Your pitching is a tad risky on the upside tip with your categories…

      • Bryan says:

        @Grey, Yeah, I figured it’d be way easier to manipulate pitching, especially in a H2H league. I wanted to make sure I had a solid foundation on offense before I started worrying about pitchers.

  8. chata says:

    @ everyone :

    i’ve said this before (under the yahoo player ranking thread) .

    i read’s player analysis , and ,
    i read Grey’s .

    i do not read yahoo’s nor do i read espn’s .
    they are like the wal-marts of this world , who take away our jobs and
    try and sell you china-mens’ shizz .
    they don’t care what they’re selling , just as long as you are buying .

    it’s strictly a matter of taking your hard-earned dollars and donating to our
    david , or succumb to the goliath’s of this industry .

    and , i don’t think it is by happenstance that a free thinker allows you the opportunity to freely express your opinions , either .

    i’ll admit that , sometimes , Grey really pizzes me off .
    but , you know what ??
    without him , you guys can all go and screw yourselves .

    • chata says:


      case in point :
      every single one of these espn “fantasy roundtable” pieces is preceded
      by a commercial .

      what’s Grey trying to sell you ?

      • El Famous Burrito says:


        Check your spam folder. It should be full of mustache wax ads like mine.

        • Hondo says:

          @El Famous Burrito, I’m a Dapper Dan man-those ESPN guys use Fop.

          • ChillmanCometh says:

            @Hondo, I with Hondo.

      • the Yankee HaTer says:

        @chata, An ebook, some shirts =)

  9. Steve says:

    Oh man – those videos.

    I’m probably about to commit blasphemy (Grey: Don’t you blaspheme in here! Don’t you blaspheme in here!) but I never realised how cringe-making an earnest discussion about fantasy baseball could actually be. I could barely watch.

    You don’t have to take it seriously to be taken seriously (I just made that up), which is why we like it here so much, I guess.

    Oh – and even though they’re probably props, only one of those ESPN characters – that I saw – had a Mac. Says it all.

    And Grey – please stop talking about Kendrick. You’re making me think I should have told royce! to take him in the keeper draft yesterday…

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Steve, Yeah, I think that’s the big issue, feels very earnest and self-important, like they’re curing cancer.

  10. Buge Hoobs says:

    I was up for a good laugh to start my monday, but couldn’t get the roundtables to load on my device. Luckily for me, I think I caught a commercial for their forum on the tube. Which one takes off their shoe and bangs it on the table to speed up the proceedings? Is that Cockcroft or B.Roberts?

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Buge Hoobs, Ha!

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Mr2Bits, Cool…

  11. The Gig says:

    Mmmmm….podcast. Cold filtered through Grey’s mustache. This may sate me to the point where I choose not to drink myself to sleep tonight. The voices shall be revealed. I sorta hope you guys sound like Ron Shandler. All fantasybaseballers (Grey’s mother’s term) should sound like Ron Shandler….all accountants too.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @The Gig, Ha… Yeah, that’s not happening…

  12. Project_Badass says:

    ESPN 10- team, H2H, 7×7, 8-keepers

    BATTING – RUNS; STOLEN BASES; HITS; WALKS; RBI’s; OBP-(on bases percentage); XBH-(extra base hits)
    PITCHING – ERA; WHIP; SAVES; HOLDS; K’s; WINS; and QS-(quality starts)

    Drafted last night…What do you think?

    C- McCann
    1B- Miggy
    2B- Utley
    3B- Wright
    SS- Andrus
    IF- Lind
    LF- Kendrick (LF, 2B)
    CF- Bourjos
    RF- Cruz
    OF- Pence
    UTILx2- Reynolds (1B, 3B), Butler (DH)
    BN- Logan Morrison (LF), Rios (CF), Cozart

    SPx3- Greinke, Bumgarner, Anibal Sanchez
    RPx2- Marmol, Street
    Px4- Frank Francisco, Chapman, Robertson, Holland
    BN- Chacin, Peavy, Cahill, Vogelsong, Leake, Peacock

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Project_Badass, Team looks very solid, a tad heavy on speed and light on power with how the lineup is set up right now… Pitching looks nice…

  13. TheNewGuy says:

    Will check this post out later, but in an OBP league Grey, where would Napoli rank for you amongst catchers. Does he move up to say 2nd spot?

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @TheNewGuy, Rudy’s OBP post is coming at 10 AM PST.

      • TheNewGuy says:

        @Grey, I see he’s going up by $1.2 but how many places in the rankings is that?

  14. Jamie says:

    How much, if any, bump in your rankings would you give Ortiz in a H2H league with total bases and OPS as categories? There are also two UTIL spots.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Jamie, Rudy’s OPS post is coming at 10 AM PST.

  15. JG_ism says:

    @ Grey
    @ Fellow Razzballers

    Just finished our CBS Auction draft the other night. Pretty content with the results. Would love to hear any comments/thoughts. Does the team seem sustainable for the long haul?

    C- (1) -Salvador Perez
    1B-(21)-Mike Napoli
    2B-(17)-Brandon Phillips
    SS-(9) -Starlin Castro —keeper from 11′
    MI-(14)- D Gordon
    CI-(1) -Mike Morse——keeper from 11′
    OF-(17)-Alex Gordon
    OF-24)-Hunter Pence
    OF(27)-Giancarlo Stanton—keeper from 11′
    Ut-(18)-Lance Berkman
    Ut-(4) -Melky Cabrera
    BE-(1) -Alejandro de Aza
    BE-(1) -Alex Rios

    SP-(32)-Jered Weaver
    SP-(27)-Yovanni Gallardo
    SP-(15)-Jordan Zimmerman
    SP-(7) -Jhoulys Chacin
    SP-(1) -Brandon Beachy—-11′ keeper
    RP-(1) -Kenley Jansen
    RP-(1) -Jim Johnson

    BE-(2)-Brad Peacock
    BE-(1)-Chris Sale

    As always …thanks for any input.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @JG_ism, No idea how many teams…

      • JG_ism says:

        13 team…sorry

      • JG_ism says:


        • Grey

          Grey says:

          @JG_ism, You have a bit more risk on hitting than pitching, which isn’t terrific, but I do like the team and the hitting. A lot is riding on the Gordons and your keepers.

  16. JG_ism says:

    standard 5×5 roto categories.

  17. junker23 says:

    That table’s not very round.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @junker23, Ha!

  18. Fanthead says:

    Fine stuff as usual.

    Question: Which infielder should I prefer long-term: Danny Espinosa or Zack Cozart?


    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Fanthead, How long? Cozart…

  19. PublicEnemy#1 says:

    Any opinions welcome. Had my 16 team keeper auction draft last night. AKA The Best Night of the Year! It’s 5×5 but we use QS and SV/H instead of W and SV. $250 cap. I’m a little worried about my rotation, but the projections suggest it’ll be fine. What do you think of my roster as a whole?

    C) Ramos $5
    1b) AGonz kept at $28
    2b) Kipnis $9
    3b) Bautista kept at $1
    SS) Aybar $17
    Mi) Aviles $8
    Ci) Alonso $2
    OF) CarGo kept at $15
    OF) McCutchen $33
    OF) Adam Jones $27
    OF) DeAza $12
    U) BButler $21
    U) Boesch $1

    SP) Hamels $29
    SP) DHudson kept at $1
    SP) Marcum $8
    P) Danks $7
    P) Masterson $12
    P) Peacock $1
    RP) Storen $11
    RP) Addison Reed $1
    RP) LGregerson $1

    Our bench is selected in a supplemental serpentine draft and all guys count as $1 in terms of their keeper status:
    Trout $1
    Bauer $1
    Reddick $1
    IStewart $1
    HAlvarez $1
    Matusz $1

    Give it to me straight, Razzers! Thanks.

    • The Gig says:

      @PublicEnemy#1, I really like this squad. Well done. I think you might end up a little light in steals…the biggest weakness I see is with Marcum, Danks and Masterson. I don’t trust Marcum’s health, and Danks and Masterson are not exactly reliable. I actually Henderson Alvarez better than those two. Solid overall if you can get some saves off the wire.

      • Public Enemy #1 says:

        @The Gig, Thanks Gig! The closer issue should be okay for me I think as we use Saves + Holds as opposed to just using saves. Storen will be a solid contributor of course and I figured that AReed was probably a better investment as a possible closer eventually this year than some of the lower tier closers who just end up screwing with ERA and Whip ratios (eg. Myers, JJohnson, Capps, etc).

        You’re right about the Marcum, Danks, Masterson part of my rotation though. Those guys worry me somewhat. I’m cool with Marcum as long as he’s just having a repeat of his early spring arm trouble from last year. As long as he’s on the mound, I think the $8 investment was a good one there. Masterson is in that all important year 3 as a starter so I’m hoping he’s ready to improve upon the progress he made last year. As for Danks, his 2nd half last year was strong after he made us all throw up in our mouths and re-swallow during the first half of 2011.

        Maybe with my excess if offensive production I can swing a deal for a more legit SP. Thanks for the review of the roster. I pretty much so agree for the most part.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @PublicEnemy#1, You look light on power and a tad high on speed. Pitching looks fine minus the no saves thing.

    • chata says:


      how the heck do you get to keep bautista for a dollar ??

      really like your trout and bauer picks .
      and boesch for a dollar is a steal .

      • Public Enemy #1 says:

        @chata, Good question. We get to keep a player for two additional years after the initial year they were purchased. Bautista was a nobody when I first got him back in 2010. Then he blew up that year and I kept him in 2011. This will be my final year I get to have him as a keeper. Same thing with CarGo, AGonz and DHudson.

        Trout and Bauer will hopefully be my chance to re-stock on keepers since I have to release my sexy keepers I got to start this year with.

  20. Joe says:


    Just like with the yahoo article – great stuff. I personally despise ESPN more than yahoo, so this was just solid gold. There’s not enough Fu#& yous in the world for them.

    Can’t wait for the podcast my man! Talk about a pants tent!

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Joe, Ha! Thanks!

  21. Ghost of the Purple Porpoise says:


    To your point on Reynolds, I took him in the 10th round of my league draft yesterday to fill the Util spot (12-team,H2H, 5×5) and got the usual “whoa he’s terrible, if we got points for Ks that would be a great pickup blah blah blah blaaaaaaah”.

    This is a guy who will most likely go 80/30/80/5 with 1B/3B eligibility and the league does not penalize batter Ks AAAAAND is OBP instead of average! Yeah, keep drinking that Yahoo KoolAid guys, I’m good with my pick. My offense was already squared away save for SS and catcher at that point.

    I also then proceeded to take Adam Lind in the 20th Round (pick 235) for my bench because Adam Lind was still sitting there in the 20th round…I had to check his player notes quickly to make sure he didn’t break both legs on ski trip or something else that would explain him still being available then…

    12-team,H2H, 5×5

    OF-Justin Upton
    BN – LoMo, Lind, Danny Espinosa (my health insurance for Kinsler)

    P-Gio Gonzalez
    P-D Holland
    P-F Salas
    P-A Chapman
    BN-Juan Abreu

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Ghost of the Purple Porpoise, Yeah, people are crazy down on both of those guys. Your team looks very solid. Surprised you could get someone of the guys you got, looks like a much shallower league team.

      • Ghost of the Purple Porpoise says:


        My thoughts as well, seemed like most of the guys drafted based on real life performance & sexy/veteran name recognition, and I found I often had several good choices per round based on your rankings. One person drafted pitchers from round 3 thru 12, stopping only to take Desmond Jennings in the 6th Round. Three of those guys were relievers and one was Chris “Bulging Disc” Carpenter.

        Normally I take your advice and draft only pitchers as bench players, but given injury concerns w/ Kinsler & Zimmerman it seemed too good to pass up my bench guys.

        • Grey

          Grey says:

          @Ghost of the Purple Porpoise, Gotcha…

  22. Jeff says:

    Can you give me some insight as to why you have Bonifacio (70/2/40/.265/30) 39 spots ahead of Dee Gordon (80/0/30.265/45)? Seems like I’d take Gordon’s stats all day.

    • royce! says:

      @Jeff, The projection for Gordon is more risky.

    • MattTruss

      MattTruss223 says:

      @Jeff, yea, could have something to do with the doode weighing 1.5 spins and likely landing on the DL following being hit by a stiff breeze.

      • Jeff says:

        @MattTruss223, Ok but shouldn’t the projections reflect that?

        • MattTruss

          MattTruss223 says:

          @Jeff, Good call, I defer to Fred Barker’s response below then. And that Dee’s projections are optomistic of him playing everyday.

  23. Chuckles Tiddlesworth says:


    These tables are interesting, I guess. The ESPN guys are doofuses, and you’re cool, so, yes, as a meek follower, I put more trust in you (even though I play in an eight-team NL 6×6 league that makes most rankings less valuable to me).

    However, I’d like to see another table that shows your 2011 pre-season rank, their 2011 pre-season rank, and ACTUAL 2011 full-year value. Then, give us the hard numbers about who was closer.


    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Chuckles Tiddlesworth, I went over my preseason rankings and where they ended up back in October.

  24. Simply Fred

    Fred Barker says:

    @Jeff, Bonifacio eligible at SS, 3B, and OF.

    • Jeff says:

      @Fred Barker, I hear ya, but why would you ever play him anywhere but SS, by far the weakest position….and the same position as Dee

      • chata says:

        what if your 3rd baseman had monday off ?
        or one of your OF-ers ??

        • Jeff says:

          @chata, I was definitely thinking about weekly leagues but it’s a great point for daily transaction leagues….especially NL- only. Thanks

  25. Wilsonian says:

    Pick two of this group:

    Guerra, Thornton, Myers, Jim Johnson

    *of those guys, I think Myers and Johnson are the only ones with the “for sure” closer gig

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Wilsonian, They’re all the closers… Thornton, Myers…

      • Wilsonian says:

        @Grey, I’d been reading a lot about Crain and/or Reed usurping (big word for me) Thornton from the role…and obviously Guerra has Kenley to contend with, although it appears the No Longer Moustached Manager of the Dodgers is sticking with Guerra (for now).

        • Grey

          Grey says:

          @Wilsonian, Thornton’s not good, but he’s the closer right now.

  26. RealMcCoy says:

    My “Money League” drafted last night. 10 Team 5×5 Yahoo Standard, H2H.

    1. (9) Evan Longoria 3B
    2. (12) Adrián González 1B
    3. (29) Josh Hamilton OF
    4. (32) Félix Hernández SP
    5. (49) Yovani Gallardo SP
    6. (52) Madison Bumgarner SP
    7. (69) Brandon Phillips 2B
    8. (72) B.J. Upton OF
    9. (89) J.J. Putz RP
    10. (92) Lance Berkman 1B,OF
    11. (109) Billy Butler 1B
    12. (112) Jason Motte RP
    13. (129) Gio González SP
    14. (132) Kenley Jansen RP
    15. (149) Max Scherzer SP
    16. (152) Adam Lind 1B
    17. (169) Erick Aybar SS
    18. (172) Jim Johnson RP
    19. (189) Wilson Ramos C
    20. (192) Mike Moustakas 3B
    21. (209) Edwin Jackson SP
    22. (212) Mike Minor SP
    23. (229) Francisco Liriano SP

    My strategy was to win Power and Pitching, which I think I can do. Any useful tidbits you can bestow on a razzball sheep?

  27. Bourne says:

    From experience, do rcl drafts more follow grey’s rankings, host site (ESPN) or a balance in the middle of the two?

    • royce! says:

      @Bourne, In my experience, I’d say 2/3 grey/ 1/3 defaults.

      • SwaggerJackers says:

        @royce!, I’d say mainly Grey. If he doesn’t like a player, they’ll sit up at the top of the list of “best available” for a long time.

  28. schlitzy says:

    Oh I hope the podcast has lots over produced cheesy radio voice intros to different segments like all of espn’s shitty sports podcasts where they spend 90 percent of their time talking about non-sports stuff that no one gives a shit about. If not, I have a very good cheesy radio voice and can yell “Sleeper Alert!” with reggae mix tape lasers and sirens blaring in the background.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @schlitzy, Ha! Yeah, it’s the radio version of Wayne’s World…

  29. johnny o says:

    My money league 5×5 roto with 10 keepers
    * c santana
    d mesoraco (20)
    1b * Votto
    2b *Kendrick
    Ss *Tulo
    3b *longoria
    CI butler (12)
    MI johnny G (k.c.)23
    Of* kemp
    Of peter bourjos (16)
    Of d young (21)
    Of l cain (22)
    X m reynolds (14)
    X j bourgous(24)
    Sp *gio
    Sp *kennedy
    Sp *beachy
    Sp garza (11)
    Sp ubaldo (13)
    Sp marcum (17)
    Sp dirty sanchez 25
    Rp motte (15)
    Rp k jansen (18)
    Rp f francisco (19)
    Bench m thornton
    Rate my team: free agents. Quentin, fowler, ian desmond, a. Escobar,m brantley, doumit,smoak,carp

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @johnny o, No idea how many teams…

      • johnny o says:

        @Grey, we have 10 teams

  30. Chris says:

    Less risk in Bonifacio’s stats….Gordon is much more likely to get sent down or lose playing time due to ineffective play.

    That + Bonifacio has 3 position eligibility, including SS.

    • Chris says:


      Oops, the above response was meant for Jeff.

    • Jeff says:

      @Chris, Bonifacio hasn’t even locked down the CF job. Already in his career, He has gone back and forth several times between starting role and bench player. So I’m not sure why he’s any more of a sure thing for ABs

  31. mets fan says:

    Grey espn has Josh Johnson ranked in the 120’s I know your not high on him but say he falls to the 9-10th round would you draft him there?

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @mets fan, Very doubtful…

  32. The Spaceman says:

    Grey good sir,

    Haven’t posted in some time, but have been diligently studying your posts through the offseason and want to thank you kindly for them.

    My 15 team keeper league drafted 2 weeks ago. My rotation is very strong, my batting is above average. Reynolds is currently my starting 3B, but I was offered a deal for Zimmerman. The owner wants Freese, Morrison & Gio for Zimmerman & Cahill. My rotation now is Greinke, Darvish, Hudson, Gio, Minor. My question is; do you think it’s worth breaking up that strong a rotation to acquire Zimmerman? Other notable bats aside from Reynolds are Fielder, Stanton, Phillips, Butler.

    The league tends to value SP highly. Thanks a ton for the time man and enjoy your day!


    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @The Spaceman, No problem! Where would Zimmerman play?

      • The Spaceman says:


        Hey there Grey, Zimmerman would become my starting 3B. While Reynolds would become occupy 1 of 2 Util spots. I figure it couldn’t hurt to have a legit backup 3B, but am apprehensive about dealing Gio from a strong rotation. Thanks again man! Much appreciated,


        • Grey

          Grey says:

          @The Spaceman, You should hold…

  33. dingbat says:

    Ugh, I had to go watch one of those videos, and I think this one quote (from the Youkilis debate) says it all:

    Brendan Roberts: “Aramis is coming off a good year. Youkilis is not.”

    When you can say flat-out stupid things with complete earnestness, you know that ESPN will find a home for you.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @dingbat, Ha!

  34. Loved the reference to Kim Jong-Il’s looking at things blog. Didn’t know about that one. :)

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Frank Kim, Yeah, it’s good stuff.

  35. Great post as usual and yes Fantasy Pros is the Bee’s Titties.

    So I draft 4th in 6×6 league, OPS and CG’s are the extra catagories. I am looking at Votto with the first pick maybe even over Pujols,
    A is that crazy and
    B if Teix is there I am thinking of grabbing him for my CI…Totally insane?!

    Why yes I finished last in 2011 in HR’s RBI’s why do you ask?!?!

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Shea Sera Sera, Thanks! A and B are both kinda insane.

      • @Grey, Yup, I am feeling Nutty, and the draft is on Saturday so my Irish ass will be drunk any how…

        Hope all is well and best of luck this year.

        • Grey

          Grey says:

          @Shea Sera Sera, You too!

  36. Scottie O. says:

    Just had my 12-team H2H draft and was hoping to get your insight as to how I did, what I can improve on, etc… here’s my squad with the draft rounds in parentheses:

    C Jesus Montero (13.1)
    1B Miguel Cabrera (1.1)
    2B Dan Uggla (5.1)
    3B David Wright (3.1)
    SS Dee Gordon (14.12)
    IF Mark Reynolds (9.1)
    OF Justin Upton (2.12)
    OF Jay Bruce (4.12)
    OF Peter Bourjos (15.1)
    UTL Kendrys Morales (17.1)

    SP Madison Bumgarner (6.12)
    SP David Price (7.1)
    SP Gio González (8.12)
    RP Ryan Madson (10.12)
    RP Sergio Santos (12.12)
    P Jordan Zimmermann (11.1)
    P Mike Minor (18.12)
    P Brad Peacock (19.1)

    BN Javy Guerra (16.12)
    BN Bryce Harper (20.12)
    BN Brett Myers (21.1)
    BN Brandon Belt (22.12)
    BN Daniel Bard (23.1)
    BN Ricky Nolasco (24.12)
    BN Ryan Doumit (25.1) – Just need till Jesus gets C eligible

    As you can see, I went hitting heavy the 1st 5 rounds and then went pitching heavy the middle rounds.

    I will say that having both Uggla & Reynolds is probably gonna kill my BA, but their power should make up for that…or at least draw some trade interest for Reynolds.

    Thanks as always

    • Scottie O. says:

      @Scottie O., forgot to mention it’s a 6X6 league:

      hitters = R, RBI, HR, SB, BA, OPS
      pitchers = W, K, ERA, WHIP, QS, SV

      • Grey

        Grey says:

        @Scottie O., Team looks insanely strong from top to bottom. Uggla and Reynolds are fine in an OPS league…

      • L-Boogie says:

        @Scottie O., Justin Upton with the 24th pick in a 12-team league? We should all be so lucky.

        • Scottie O. says:

          @L-Boogie, yeah, I just about shizz’d myself when he fell to me. I had planned on McCutch there, but there was an early run on SP’s which left Upton for me… couldn’t pass that up!

  37. joe from point pleasant says:

    12 Team, 5 Keeper, H2H **Points** League
    (Notes: SP very important, Holds get you points as well)


    SP-King Felix

    What do you think of my squad this year? Any suggestions other than to get another closer? (which i am currently looking to do)

    Thank you very much Grey!

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @joe from point pleasant, Morneau…Noooo… Your pitching is a lot strong than it needs to be which hurts your hitting a bit. You don’t really have a lot of great arms after the top 3 either… Not in love with the team…

  38. 3FingersBrown says:

    @Grey, Thanks for raping my eyes. Good god those videos are awful. Pitty the editor and producer that had to cut that. Whoever directed them should have his director chair taken away. Why did they shoot that in a bare office? Couldn’t it have been lit… at all? Why the reverse shots of Berry and Karabell’s intense curing cancer stares?

    Anywho… this is the results of the 6th annual Yahoo 6×6 (OBP and QS) keeper draft.

    C – Montero
    1B – Pujols (k)
    2B – Ackley
    SS – Starlin (k)
    3B – Panda (k)
    MI – Asdrubal (k)
    CI – Gaby Sanchez
    OF – Bruuuuce
    OF – Gordon
    OF – Hunter
    OF – Bourjos
    UTL – De Aza
    SP – Haren
    SP – Latos
    SP – Kennedy (k)
    SP – Masterson
    SP – Cahill
    SP – Stauffer
    SP – Nicosio
    SP – Bedard
    RP – Motte
    RP – Street
    RP – Farnsworth
    BN – Carp
    BN – J.D. Martinez

    – I was shocked that Bruce fell to me with at the 4th pick. I had the 5th pick as well and took Haren. Holliday went first, than Konerko (all the good 1B’s are kept), than Grienke.

    – I didn’t have a 6th or 7th round pick, when a 2B run developed. In the 8th, I had a choice between Ackley, Kipnis and the Weeks bros. I didn’t have a 9th round pick, so I figured I’d be left overpaying for Johnson, Hill (both of whom I hate) and Altuve. Suddenly my brain farted and I ended up overpaying for Ackley. I immediately regretted it and offered him up for trade to the silenced room. Kipnis ended up going in the 11th. FML

    – Ike and Goldschmidt – who I targeted for CI – took time off from hunting Nazis in South America and went in the 9th round. I ended up with Gaby in the 10th, who’s glad he can find good smoked whitefish in Miami.

    – I was going to punt C until the end but saw others punting too creating what I saw was a bargain in 12th round Montero.

    So I should have gone Ike or Goldy, than Kipnis. Other than that I’m pretty happy with this team. What say you?

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @3FingersBrown, Ha, yeah, not sure on those videos creatively… Ha : re: Goldschmidt — How many teams?

      • 3FingersBrown says:

        @Grey, Sorry 12 teams. 5 Keepers and 5 man bench (my last 3 starters and BN).

        • Grey

          Grey says:

          @3FingersBrown, You look a bit light on power, which is coming from your pitching that looks a bit strong than it needs to be… Team doesn’t look bad, but Pujols and Bruce may be the only guys that give you 25+ homers…And Sandoval may barely get 20+…

          • 3FingersBrown says:

            @Grey, Power is definitely at a premium this year and I was bummed to not get a young upsidey CI. LoMo and Swish (another two guys I like) went much earlier than I thought they would.

            I’m thinking that the little extra pop I’m getting out of MI and C will help but you’re right. I need some more power. I have a hard time drafting low AVG guys like Uggla and Reynolds, so it’s a familiar theme to my teams.

            Speaking of power. Do you think Chris Davis gets enough AB’s to be relevant? Maybe one of these days Bill James will be right about him.

            • Grey

              Grey says:

              @3FingersBrown, I’m not too optimistic on Davis, but he does have power upside worth sitting on in your case if you have room…

              • 3FingersBrown says:

                @Grey, I’m thinking MMD may have some value as the starting 3B for The Cubbies.

                Would you take MMD or Davis over Carp or J.D. Martinez?

  39. Jamie says:

    Have you followed this Espn Mock Draft on Twitter…..Granderson went 5th overall. Thats all you really need to know. Also on Berry’s Love/Hate column he listed Jennings as a “hate” and said the 10-11th round (10 team) was too early.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Jamie, Ha!

  40. McGibblets says:

    I think I finally understand the name of this site now! You “razz” others, and that razzing requires that you have “balls” (metaphorical machismo).

    Why isn’t it called “Razzballs”? Had you participated in a tragic sharpened-pencil-in-the-pocket pickup basketball game?

    I’m all for big-ball razzing, but I suggest that you fill some gaps in your grammar. Please start with researching the differences between “less” and “fewer.”

    Apologies if I sound too razzy – I check this site approximately 20 times per day.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @McGibblets, You should check it 21+ times/day. For shame…

  41. ChillmanCometh says:

    10 team, H2H with standard 5×5, 4 player keeper but in offseason can trade draft picks for keepers. C, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, 3 OF, UT, 2 SP, 2 RP, 3 P, 5 bench, 2 DL

    And the team:

    C–J.P. Arencibia
    1B–Miguel Cabrera (keeper)
    2B–Ian Kinsler (traded for)
    3B–Ryan Zimmerman (keeper)
    SS–Troy Tulowitzki (keeper)
    OF–Drew Stubbs
    OF–Howie Kendrick
    OF–Logan Morrison
    UT–Pablo Sandoval

    SP–Clayton Kershaw (Keeper)
    SP–Mat Latos
    RP–John Axford
    RP–Huston Street
    P–Jason Motte
    P–Matt Thornton
    P–Vinnie Pestano

    B–Anibal Sanchez
    B–Jhouyls Chacin
    B–Brandon McCarthy
    B–Edison Volquez
    B–Sergio Romo

    My first pick was the 58th overall, and I took Sandoval based on value.

    Kendrick fell all the way to the 103rd. Felt he could be comparable to Shin-Soo Choo, who was selected 79th.

    According to the War Room, I fielded the best team, but I have my concerns:

    A) I have a lot of 3rd basemen and relievers
    B) In comparison to the league (there are 5 teams that are rostering an offensive bench player), I fall toward the bottom in RBI and SB.
    C) I have a ton of relievers.

    I have an offer of Jon Lester for Ryan Zimmerman out there, and currently Nick Swisher, Lucas Duda, and Josh Willingham that I have targeted on the Waiver Wire.

    Also, there is a team in our league that has 3 1B on his bench (2 of whom are Mark Reynolds and Billy Butler), and two closers. By having that many 1B, he has driven down their value to him, and increased the value of my horde of closers. Hoping to land either or those 2 (preferances anyone?) in exchange for Thornton once he is ‘officially’ named the seat warmer for Addison Reed.


    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @ChillmanCometh, Your team looks very solid… SBs can be made up in season and you do have a lot of relievers, probably too many. Could trade one for an upgrade somewhere….

  42. papasmurf says:

    I am not that high on Kendrick but it’s cuz I play in an OBP league. I didn’t think he could hit 20 homers last yr even though he started off red hot. This year, even with Pujols and expected career progression and all that, I still don’t think he eclipses 20. That’s not to say he’s not one of the better 2b options out there, but I trust Cuddyer more than I do Kendrick.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @papasmurf, Yeah, 20 seems like the ceiling…

  43. MrHappyTime says:


    What’s the baseball podcast under on ITunes? I
    Keep searching Razzball and all I get is the football podcast.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @MrHappyTime, From my (limited) research, I can’t put it in iTunes until I’ve published it on site… Which is happening at 11 AM PST… Really not sure with iTunes, may take a few days for it to end up there….

  44. letsgobravos says:

    Grey & co.

    Just found out I have the #2 overall pick in my 12 team 7×7 (standard cats+OBP, 2b, GIDP, HRs allowed) H2H draft on Wednesday night.

    Question 1: I know you have Braun and Miggy as your top 2 overall so is Braun the definite pick if he’s available? I like Miggy a little more between those two because I don’t really want to be stuck with a 2nd tier 1st baseman.

    Question 2: Can you give me a few names you’d be targeting in the 2nd round with the 23rd pick?

    Thanks in advance. Looking forward to another fun season of humorous commentary and solid advice.

  45. Son of a Beachy says:

    Ha, great article. I love seeing the disparity between your rankings and yahoo/ESPN’s. I will make sure to use these in my upcoming draft to get some steals (pun point?).

    Anywho, I was wanting your opinion on my 14 team H2H keeper league with OBP and Total Bases added for offense and L added for pitching…we kept 14 (yes, 14!) from the year before, and I kinda blew up my team in trades. Here’s the roster:

    C: Salvador Perez
    1B: Albert Pujols
    2B: Michael Cuddyer
    SS: JJ Hardy
    3B: David Wright
    IF: Adam Lind
    LF: Vernon Wells
    CF: BJ Upton
    RF: Shin-Soo Choo
    OF: Dexter Fowler
    Util (2): Coco Crisp/Jason Kubel

    SP: Zack Greinke/Jon Lester/James Shields/Josh Beckett/Jordan Zimmermann/Tim Stauffer
    RP: Joel Hanrahan/Rafael Betancourt/Jim Johnson/Brett Myers

    Thanks, and also, thanks a ton for these almost daily articles. You guys helped me a ton last year with finding those diamonds in the rough.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Son of a Beachy, Cool, no problem… Your pitching looks stronger than your hitting, which isn’t a great thing. Lester was overkill with Greinke… Then don’t love Shields and Beckett…. Fowler and Crisp are the same thing, don’t need both.

  46. Grey

    Grey says:

    ***THERE’S A NEW POST***

  47. James L Legade says:

    Hey Grey-

    Howzabout giving us a spreadsheet we can sort with this info. I’d like to make a list of “Grey’s Guys” in order of the round they are likely to be picked. I like this format to as it tells us how much more you like/dislike each individual dood… but I have to be able to sort this shizz.

    I guess I could enter it by hand but you and I BOTH know that ain’t gonna happen.


  48. Grey

    Grey says:

    ***THERE’S A NEW POST***

  49. Amish G says:

    I see you like Valencia this year? I have him a bargain basement price in a 3 year keeper league. What are you projecting? I’m thinking of throwing him back to get the extra year out of him…worth the gamble? I have to draft 1st/3rd this year…not likin who’s out there at 3rd. Have Freeman at my corner slot.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Amish G, My projections are in my rankings. ***Take followups for me to the newest post****

  50. James L Legade says:

    thanks Grey! I just downloaded the podcast and will listen to it in the gym.

    I don’t drive an iPhone so yer iTunes ranking won’t pop… but when you are talking to advertisers feel free to tell them “And you can +1 those rankings due to this guy I know listening on some cheap assed android phone…”

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @James L Legade, Thanks!

  51. junker23 says:

    Holy shitballs. Newest segment’s on Hanley Ramirez and almost made my head blow up.

    AJ Mass argues Ramirez won’t reach the number of steals ESPN projects (30) because he’ll be batting third now, and too preoccupied with driving Reyes in, second won’t be open if he’s intentionally walked to load the bases (!?), etc…

    To see if this blathering might actually be based on any real data regarding lineup position and steal attempts, I did some Googling. Three seconds or so, in fact. Only article I read was penned by someone literally sitting across the table from Mass – His conclusion? Probably shouldn’t worry about Hanley’s steals because of his lineup spot.

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      The Mass-hole up to his old tricks…

    • He seems to be over-thinking it. I remember worrying about that kind of thing with Carl Crawford when he was on TB. Or with Carlos Beltran. Never mattered.

      Hanley has been about 30 SBs the last 3 years and players tend to creep down on SB vs. up. I’d say best bet is 25 except for the Ozzie Guillen wildcard factor which maybe gets him to 30….

      • junker23 says:

        @Rudy Gamble, Agreed. Why Cockcroft didn’t say anything, beyond me.

  52. RK says:

    Which ranking of yours are you talking about? I see Kendrick at 146 in your Point Shares, not 46. Excluding positional arguments, I’ve got his projections ranking him #121 overall.

      • RK says:

        And I see your projections have 19 more runs; that actually brings him up from the to the 6th ranked 2B, all the way up from 9th, which is in the ballpark of Brandon Phillips.

        So, if you are thinking about taking Phillips, just wait for Kendrick.

        (FYI my math is based on extrapolating 2012 projections into player rating values like ESPN does, since they don’t provide player ratings for 2012)

  53. Eng says:

    Please answer this: if you could only play in 1 12-team league league for the rest of time, would it be a non-keeper or a 4-keeper league?

    • Grey

      Grey says:

      @Eng, Non-keeper

  54. Grey

    Grey says:

    ***Take followups for me to the newest post****

Comments are closed.