I am slightly distracted now that the World Cup has started. I know you’ll say, “Smokey, Americans don’t watch soccer.” True, but you should. The game yesterday between the U.S and England had more money wagered on it than the Super Bowl and will be watched by more people worldwide. That’s huge for a first round game in the Copa. Anyways, back to my true passion — imaginary baseball. This week sees several retread names to the Smokey posts and a couple that have been shown the door by you in your leagues (for good reason). So here we go with all the fanfare and glitz that it is supposed to have, the week 11 two start starters for fantasy baseball:

Freddy Garcia (@ Pit vs. Lincoln) (@ Was vs. Lannan)
Freddy, I apologize that I said you were crap 3 weeks ago, I’m glad my words motivated you recently. He’s the road warrior this week. Garcia is 19-8 with a 2.82 career in interleague play. Doesn’t K many and will be thankful for good run support. Still loved him more when he needed Soul Glo.

Chris Tillman (@ SF vs. Sanchez) (@ SD vs. Richard)
Gets away from the AL Beast to where the lineups get shorter. I like him a lot long term. Watched him twice in person and he has the goods to completely dominate a game. Two weaker hitting teams may be his kick start.  He still pitches for the Orioles, which is detrimental too anyone’s fantasy health.

Justin Masterson (NYM vs. Santana) (@ Pit vs. Lincoln)
Still love this kid, and he showed you why and how he can be helpful by completely dominating his former club. Gets a great ballpark and a great matchup for his 2 starts. The rebuilding has started around him so it may not get any better support-wise. 2 starts are worth the risk even if it might come with a 5 ERA for the week.

Felipe Paulino (@ KC vs. Davies) ( Tex vs. Wilson)
Gets a whole article written about him after I wrote about him… Hmm, we have some great “pirate” readers. His numbers are hidden behind a 1-7 record.  Shame he plays for a cellar dwellar. Last 6 starts since 5/14, he is 1-1 27 K’s 1.75 ERA. Yeah, that’s what I said.

Aaron Harang (LAd vs. Kuroda) (@ Sea vs. Snell)
Another guy that I have not spoke about glowingly.  It’s like a week of revenge 2 start guys. I’m not going to lie and say he is awesome now and his numbers are awesome. They aren’t. 2 decent matchups and 3 decent starts out of 4. Still gives up way too many hits and isn’t the K machine he once was.

Ian Kennedy (@ Bos vs. Buchholz) (@ Det vs. Porcello)
Has pitched way better than his record of 3-3.  Bullpen just kills his starts. Gets 2 starts away against teams who can either kill the ball or lay dead and let you tickle their feet. 7.8 K/9 and a WHIP of 1.18 is worth taking notice.

Joe Saunders (Mil vs. Wolf) (@Chc vs. Zambrano)
Pitched a Gem on Wednesday. 35/34 K/BB rate sucks all the life out if his fantasy value. 2 ER over the last 16 innings makes him semi-rosterable. Gets 2 pitchers that are scuffling and both have been, to be quite honest, sucking out loud.

Aaron Cook (@ MIN vs. Pavano) (Mil vs. Wolf)
Yeah, I know I’m running out of decent option to wax poetic about. He has lowered his ERA a run over his last 5 starts, which is still near 5. Uses his blinker as well as hand signals when making turns, so he has safety of others in mind.

  1. Hi Smokey — I’m an American in Italy and I couldn’t buy a drink last night after the USA-England game. A lot of getting slapped on the back and “bravo!” and that kind of thing. The Italians were so pleased to see the Yanks “embarrass” the loud Brits.

    Anyway, back to imaginary baseball: in a 20-team league where I need help with W, ERA, and WHIP, but where I’m in decent shape with Ks, who do you think makes a better speculative pickup between Paulino and Bumgarner? And are you worried about Ely’s last two games and the extra rest they’re giving him before the next start?

    Also, are you starting Cole Hamels @ the Red Sox in the same 20-team league?


  2. Bring Back Pluto says:

    Hey Smokey, after Enrique’s more interesting 20-team league question, I hope you won’t mind a much less interesting shallower-than-Blaire-from-Facts-of-Life-league question:

    Please bench one for the week (there is an IP limit for the year that I am running up against, so 2 starts is not necessarily an advantage here):

    Greinke @ ATL
    Lester v ARI
    Price @ ATL, @ FLA
    Sabathia v PHI, V NYM
    Johan S. @ CLE, @ NYY
    Vazquez v NYM
    Verlander v WAS

    I’m assuming that benching Greinke makes the most sense? But if somehow appears to be back to his old self tonight, is Johan the best choice to sit? What do you think?

    Thanks a lot (and I’d love comments from others as well)

  3. nick m. says:

    Who do you like for a DL stash – Jurrjens or Volquez?

    And do I add Masterson for his two-start week, or use the pickup on the likes of Slowey, Hammel, or Niese?

  4. akk says:

    Quentin or Adam lind for the rest of season ??? thank you

  5. Smokey

    Smokey says:

    @Enrique: Free beer is always a good thing. Ely does worry me a little the dodgers are lying in the rough a little and are nearly playing 600 ball so i think they want to save the best of Ely for August-Sept. Any dcent pitcher ina 20 teamer like Hamel should be started. I’d also go with Paulino. Too many parts i feel like Thorton Mellon in “Back to School”.
    @Bring Back Pluto: Greinke and it wasn’t even hard. I would probably sit CC vs Philly if you have the chance to. Great staff of Pitchers in your 6 team league.lol
    @nick m.: Jurrjens. Masterson based on volume.
    @akk: tough one they both suck equally, Id say Lind, but he needs to figure out lefties again.

  6. UW says:

    Trade question before I shout “Bolshevick”

    16 team Keeper league the #15 guy traded Shaun Marcum and Clay Buchholtz for……. (drum roll)
    John Buck and Joe Saunders from the #7 guy (the commish)

    We don’t vote on trades it is up to the commish….. the commish gets Marcum and Buch

  7. Eric says:

    Is Masterson a better streaming pick than Paulino for Tuesday? Both are pitching well, and both are facing teams that do poorly against RHP. But is there much chance either gets the win?

  8. Smokey

    Smokey says:

    @Eric: If your looking for justa win i would say Paulino has the better match up vs KC.

  9. Fletch says:

    Leake or Niese the rest of the year?

  10. akk says:

    napoli+butler+price or kemp+felix+mcclelian(for hold) thank you!!

  11. Smokey

    Smokey says:

    @Fletch: Niese, i love me som eLeake but he is going to hit the wall in about 4 starts.
    @akk: kemp side for me

  12. BSA says:

    @Fletch: Do you have to commit for the rest of the year?
    Leake gave me some nice numbers and then I dropped him before he crashed back to earth. I usually leave a spot or two on my pitching staff, Niese is in the spot now, that I am willing to add/drop/stream. Rookies are risky, fun but risky.

  13. BSA says:

    @Smokey: Do you find that riding rookies is more about balancing the hype and being on the right side of the correction?

  14. John C says:

    For pure value, would you drop Soto for Miguel Montero? And how far apart are they in terms of value, really?

  15. Smokey

    Smokey says:

    @BSA: well you have to take into account that rookie pitchers are up against it more than hitters, due to innings limit, how good their team is doing..etc.
    @John C: They are both C and they arent named Mauer, McCann or Vmart. After them i really think everyone is lumped together, i like Montero moving forward. We have seen that Soto is an up and down ride.

  16. Black Beard says:

    Is Wandy worth owning anymore with guys like Masterson or Morrow on waivers?

  17. nick m. says:

    i know last year was the anomaly, but should greinke rebound to some extent and trend more toward last year?

  18. BSA says:

    @nick m.: I wanted to get my hands on either Lincee or Grienke – thank goodness the ace on my staff is FHer – uh, wait a minute now!
    What an odd year this is shaping up to be for both hitters and pitchers.

  19. Terry Felton says:

    Smokey, could you help with my “Schmohawk of the Week” competition (get well soon Jimmy R!):

    I have been great at being the week-too-late guy. This week I watched Yunel suck my average a tad closer to the abyss. Should I stick with Yunel, or grab Theriot, Alexei, Scutaro, Uribe. . . um Yuniesky? Trevor Plouffe?

    Or, if there’s someone you want me to jinx, let me know and I’ll pick him up.

    Oh, it’s a 5×5 league. I need help pretty much everywhere. I just would like to avoid another 2-23 week out of my SS, as I’ve been riding those for awhile.

  20. YourMom'sBoyfriend says:

    based on your information in your post, isn’t Lincoln a two start pitcher as well?

  21. KVC

    cleaver596 says:

    I was just offered Mike Stanton in exchange for Manuel Corpas. I all ready have Pena, Dunn and Stewart, so I might have my fill of power/K guys. But Corpas will probably only have value for another couple weeks. Should I go ahead and trade him while his value is still high? My closers would be Fuentes and Axford, with Mike Gonzalez on the DL still. I could probably turn around and trade Stanton for a different closer if I wanted to. Any thoughts? 12 team 5X5 Roto

  22. nick m. says:

    @BSA: 10 k’s today…

  23. Chris says:


    Smokey, I’d appreciate your thoughts on a couple weekly decisions.

    Sit 1: Price (@Atl, @Fla), J Sanchez (Bal, @Tor), Kershaw (@Cin), Strasburg (CWS), Hamels (Min), Greinke (@Atl)

    Pick 2: Hart, Coghlan, Markakis, Krispie, A Hill

  24. chet steadman says:

    Guys- Would you take Posey, Montero, Soto, or Ruiz for the remainder of the season?

  25. BSA says:

    @nick m.: 12 to end the day and Stanton stole another base. hmmmm

  26. Jay says:

    Just wanted to point out that Masterson’s game against the Mets is a home game, so it’s in Cleveland, not Metco. Progressive Field is not exactly a “great ballpark” for a pitcher. Plus he gets a Mets DH instead of a pitcher in the lineup.

  27. Big Nate says:

    @ Smokey: I’ve been looking to move a closer for starting pitching and have been offered Torii Hunter, Kennedy and Oswalt for Rios, Rauch and Scott Baker. Do I make the trade?

  28. sean says:

    what do you think is better lester and justin upton or kemp and jaime garcia

  29. Big Nate says:

    Or – the other deal is sending Rauch for both Kennedy and Kuroda. Which way should I go?

  30. Bring Back Pluto says:

    @chet steadman:

    I like the order you have them in.

  31. peter says:

    Time to cut bait w/ Aroldis Chapman? It’s a keeper league, but I’m 90% sure I wouldn’t be able to keep him for next year, anyway (unless he proved himself THIS year). I’d drop him for the likes of Carmona or CJ Wilson…

    Also, generally: Carmona over Cueto? I have a hard time going with Carmona because of lots of BBs and so few Ks/Ws. Then again, I have a hard time watching Cueto pitch at all…

  32. peter says:

    @sean: I’d rather have the Lester/Upton side. I’d want Lester over Garcia more than enough to make up for the loss in avg between Kemp and Upton.

  33. Smokey

    Smokey says:

    @UW: Shenaningans
    @Black Beard: Wandy is droppable at this point for me he has shown me nothing, loss of velocity no location.
    @nick m.: Yea he will, stand pat with him he will give you some lights out performances like today.
    @Terry Felton: Scutaro
    @YourMom’sBoyfriend: Yep, just cat write about everyone.
    @cleaver596: I would do it Manny has been descent though.
    @Chris: Hamels
    @chet steadman: Either Posey or Montero granted he hits like we drafted him to.
    @Big Nate: Yea i like it.
    @Jay: Thanks i noticed my errror. Mets dont really have a lefty that would scare me so that evens it out.lol
    @sean: lester side
    @peter: Depends on how many keepers, try and spin him to a cellar dwellar for a low end sp. I d prefer Cueto.

  34. Seequinn says:

    I think my box scores are broken and are putting Mike Stanton’s home runs in the stolen base column

  35. Campbell says:

    Need some advice on which two to start

    Hammel – MIL
    E. Jackson- @Det
    Slowey- @Philly

  36. Eddie says:

    So how about that Terrible Ted Lilly, eh? Cubs still lost the series though.

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