I wonder if Freddie Freeman has Fletch-like dreams where he pictures himself with a huge afro and his name is Freddie World B. Freeman.  “He’s actually 6-5, with the afro, 6-9.  Pretty good hands, loves to hit ones deep.  His club is behind by three, and World B. Freeman drains a three-run homer!  Wow, was that some kind of hit.  You know this kid from the gritty streets of Orange County, California sure can play.”  By the way, gritty in Orange County refers to a Sonic Drive-In that has a B grade from the Health Department.  So, yesterday, Freeman put up those stats that I told you to pay a 2nd round price for — 4-for-5, 3 runs, and a double slam (1, 2) and legs (1), hitting .346 on the year.  I was truly perplexed how low I saw some people ranking Freeman in the preseason.  If anything, I think a stronger case could’ve been made to have Freeman ranked above Miggy, who was a consensus top 12 pick everywhere.  Guess Freeman could use the name Mr. Under-ranked when he sneaks into country clubs to visit Dansby Swanson (1-for-5, 1st homer, hitting .179).  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

PSYCHE!  Before we get to the roundup, just wanted to announce that all Player Raters are now running with rest of the season stats, and all player pages now have injury news at the top of their pages.  Click a player’s name, say Ian Desmond, and you’ll see it.  I have faith in you!  Anyway II, the roundup:

Julio Teheran – 7 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 0.00 vs. Gerrit Cole 6 IP, 3 ER, 10 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 6.55 – This matchup was of one pitcher you expect to be worse than he always is, and one pitcher you expect to be better than he always is, and the pitcher who is always better was better, and the pitcher who’s always worse was just that.  Sometimes, the dress is blue and gold and looks blue and gold.

Starling Marte – 4-f0r-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 1st homer, a game-winner.  He hit for the fake news cycle — three singles and a home run.

Collin McHugh – Shut down for six weeks with a posterior impingement of his elbow.  WebMD defines a posterior impingement of an elbow as getting your elbow stuck in your rear.  Gives a whole new meaning to elbow grease!

Dallas Keuchel – 7 IP, 1 ER, 3 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 0.64.  Got the tough-luck no decision though, because Luke Gregerson gave up six runs in a third of an inning, which had fantasy owners wishing they didn’t grab Gregerson just so they could imitate Darth Vader with, “Luke, you are my waiver fodder.”  Being a nerd gets you in trouble, that’s rule one.

Lance McCullers – 7 IP, 3 ER, 6 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 2.77.  I’m crushing so hard on McCullers I’m buying a Trapper Keeper just to write “Grey McCullers” all over it to see what our married name would look like.

George Springer – 2-for-6, 2 runs and his 4th homer.  Between him and Marwin Gonzalez ( 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and 3rd homer), the Astros have been able to buoy themselves with Bregman (0-for-5, hitting .167) and Altuve (2-for-5, 1st steal, hitting .200) struggling early.  They’re getting Marwin pardons.

Danny Duffy – 7 IP, 2 ER, 10 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 2.08.  Two starts, two sparkles.  I’m about to apply a unicorn sticker to my computer where Duffy’s name is.

Mike Moustakas – 2-for-5 and his 3rd homer.  Moistasskiss!

Salvador Perez – 1-for-5 and his 4th homer, which was his 4th HR in 4 games.  He’ll cool off at some point, but I’ll give Perez this, he’s like the Doc Martens of catchers.  Not always pretty, but they are durable.

Nate Karns – 5 2/3 IP, 1 ER, 8 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 7.11.  I prefer Kwik-E-Mart.

Aaron Sanchez – 7 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 6 Ks in Tampa.  Aaron Sanchez opened the basket, saw a Ray, tofu and sofrito, and made a dish he called Rays so-FU’d.

Chris Archer – 7 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners, 8 Ks, ERA at 2.45.  Archer tries to take from the rich teams and give back to his poor team, but he just returns with no decisions.

Marco Estrada – 5 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 5.73 vs. Jake Odorizzi – 6 IP, 2 ER, 3 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 4.50.  This game was billed as Ponch vs. Not Poached, but Ponch was the one who had his goose eggs broken.

Josh Donaldson – Hit his 2nd homer, but left the game with a problem with his calf that bothered him all spring.  I ranked him lower than most, and I wasn’t about to draft him, but I should’ve ranked him even lower and wrote a schmohawk post for him.  I blame no one but myself.  Actually, I blame you, but pretend to blame myself.  As I said all preseason, the Jays are not going to be good this year and Donaldson is about to come back to earth.  He says he can return on Tuesday, but we’ll see.

Jesus Sucre – 2-for-4, 3 RBIs and his 1st homer.  Sweet Jesus!

Steven Souza – 1-for-2, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 1st homer, hitting .417.  On one of my teams that is doing slightly, insanely, adverbly well so far, I’ve been playing the sweet tunes of Souza all season.

Corey Dickerson – 1-for-4 and his 2nd homer, hitting .360.  He was in Friday’s Buy, prior to that he was mentioned as a hot schmotato, and now he’s moving towards, “How do you not own him yet?” territory.

Ervin Santana – 6 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 0.69.  Apparently, someone’s in the business of teaching me a lesson for not ranking them.  Lesson learned, class dismissed at University of California at Ervin.

Miguel Sano – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 2nd homer.  Could he help Buxton (0-for-4, hitting .077)?  Because right now Buxton’s not swinging it, he’s winging it.

Jorge Polanco – 2-for-4 and his 1st homer, hitting .389.  Hot schmotato alert!

Cam Bedrosian – 1 2/3 IP, 0 ER and the save on Saturday.  The Sciosciapath said Bedrosian wouldn’t be limited to pitching the ninth and used in high leverage situations in the 7th and 8th.  He added, “Your fantasy teams can suck it!”  Then danced around flapping his arms.  I own Andrew Bailey in one league for the occasional save.

Matt Shoemaker – 4 1/3 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 7.71.  The Cobbler got eaten alive.

Albert Pujols – 2-for-5, 3 RBIs and his 1st homer.  Not bad for the 9th round!  Wait, that was last year, I don’t own him this year.  Carry on.

Mitch Haniger – 1-for-4, 2 runs and his 3rd homer, and 2nd in as many games.  Mitch don’t kill my vibe!  Not like, “Hey, Mitch, don’t kill my vibe,” but more like I’m talking to a third person and telling them that Mitch is good and keeps my vibe going.  Perhaps I should say, Mitch does not kill my vibe.

Edwin Diaz – 2/3 IP, 3 ER to cap off a 7-run ninth loss.  That was epic in the bad way.  Like taking four hours to illegally download The Avengers, only to realize at the end you’ve downloaded a Ralph Fiennes/Uma Thurman movie.

Hisashi Iwakuma – 6 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners (3 BBs), 2 Ks, ERA at 2.25.  Hisashi my dashi — slurp SLURP!  If you can pull it off, I’d do an early season sell on Iwakuma with his six walks to four Ks thru two games.

Gary Sanchez – Hit the 10-day DL with a biceps strain.  True story, I mumbled something about Gary Sanchez being out, and Cougs was like, “I didn’t know your agent got your script to Will Ferrell.”  And I was like, “Men are from Mars yadda and all, but what are you talking about, woman?”  Then she reminded me Gary Sanchez Productions is Will Ferrell’s company.  Ah, Cougs, Ted and I had a good laugh over some fro-yo.

Aaron Judge – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 1st homer, hitting .211.  The pitch screamed out of the park, “…jury and executioner…”  Was hard to make out the first part.

Kevin Gausman – 4 2/3 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 5.40.  In, like, your 4th professional season, you can’t be having blow ups like you’re a rookie.

Wade Miley – 5 IP, 0 ER, 8 baserunners (7 BBs!), 5 Ks.  Who ordered the Official Wade Miley Range Model Air Rifle BB Gun?

Kyle Hendricks – 6 IP, 4 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks.  He gave up four runs three times last year, and his April ERA was 3.91 in 2016, so there might be some sweet ‘buying low’ action in a couple of weeks.

Robert Gsellman – 5 IP, 3 ER, 8 baserunners, 7 Ks.  As of right now, we hear all of Gsellman’s elbow tendons are still intact.  I repeat, still intact.

Michael Conforto – 1-for-3, 2 RBIs and his 1st home run.  Took him a week to get a start and a homer.  I say it takes him about three weeks to have the job full-time and about six weeks to be on all mixed league teams.

Adeiny Hechavarria – Hit the DL with a strained oblique.  What’s more oblique, the Marlins called up a Riddle?  J.T. Riddle, that is.  Though, Miguel Rojas will become the everyday starter and is as questionable as Riddle, though more literally than figuratively.

Michael Wacha – 6 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 6 Ks.  He was in my Friday Buy, and the Stream-o-Nator turned his lonely eyes to him.

Stephen Piscotty – Out after banging his knee, which happened the game he returned from being out for banging his head three times in one inning.  Piscotty is quickly turning into the “Merely a flesh wound” guy.

Bronson Arroyo – 4 IP, 6 ER.  This start was appropriately enough against the Cardinals since starting Arroyo is its own form of a Hail Mary.

Adam Duvall – 3-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 2nd homer, hitting .348.  I got the sense in the preseason no one wanted back in on Duvall, though he seems like a younger Trumbo, who is a younger Encarnacion.  The Russian nesting dolls of power.

Kendall Graveman – 7 IP, 1 ER, 3 baserunners (1 BB), 5 Ks, ERA at 2.08.  I ignored Graveman so much coming out of the preseason, I didn’t even mention him in my roundup after his first start.  If you haven’t noticed, I skip starters that don’t matter for fantasy, unless they did something of note (Guthrie), or starters are skipped if they’re so good they’re owned everywhere and had no value change (Kershaw).  The ones that we should be focusing on are the starters that are unownable and getting better.  With that said, Graveman should’ve been mentioned after his first start, and should be owned in all leagues.  For whatever reason, Graveman went from being a weak contact, 5+ K/9 guy to one now throwing a 95-MPH sinker that can induce grounders and a 8+ K/9.  I just gulped.  He suddenly has Cy Young Keuchel-type possibility.

Sean Manaea – 5 1/3 IP, 5 ER, 5 baserunners, 10 Ks.  Someone’s been hanging out with Robbie Ray and Pineda!

Joey Gallo – 2-for-4, 5 RBIs and his 2nd homer.  He’s going to get sent down or to the bench any day now for Beltre, which is criminal, like chewing gum in Taiwan.  *someone on the streets of Taiwan opens their trench coat*  “Psst, you want some Bubblicious?”

Charlie Blackmon – 2-for-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 1st homer.  Blackmon hit that homer off Maeda, and you know someone was watching this game back in Japan thoroughly confused why the announcer was calling the hitter Blackmon.

Zack Greinke – 6 2/3 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 6 Ks.  I’m sure JB will talk about Greinke on our next podcast, and I’m sure I will dismiss him with something like, “Yeah.  Okay.  Cool.”  That sounds like a podcast I need to tune into if I were you!

Patrick Corbin – 6 IP, 0 ER, 6 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 1.80.  It would be my luck that I was all-in on this guy last year, and now this year he puts it together.  I’m not picking him up in mixed leagues yet, but I am eyeing him like a cyclops with a monocle.

Chris Owings – 3-for-4, 2 runs and a slam (1) and a double legs (3, 4), hitting .360.  Feels like the type of guy who you love in NL-Only leagues, but doesn’t stop you from looking at the newest shiny toy on waivers in mixed leagues.

Melvin Upton Jr. – Signed a minor league deal with the Giants.  Too bad he no longer goes by his nickname.  That would’ve been a hit in San Fran.

Wil Myers – 2-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 2nd homer, and Yangervis Solarte (3-for-4, 2nd homer) helped the Padres to a close loss, which is a small victory!

Jordan Zimmermann – 6 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 3 Ks.  Luckily he went against a Sawx team that was fighting the flu like a drunk chimney sweep.

Nicholas Castellanos – 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 2nd homer, hitting .263.  Is this the worst name change since Kendry added an S?  Did Castellanos’ mom yell at him this offseason that his great-grandfather, who he was named after, hated the name Nick?  Did he get met by some Mexican women in an alley and they insisted he add ‘cholas’ to his name?  I got questions, y’all!

Daniel Norris – 6 1/3 IP, 3 ER, 10 baserunners, 2 Ks. I like how the first suggestion in Google for this guy is “Daniel Norris van.”  There should be a Daniel Norris VanGraphs.  Could have Heatmaps about where in the van is the hottest during winter months, Plate Discipline about what he can’t eat because he doesn’t have a fully-functioning kitchen, and Spray Charts to show what the random stains around his van are.  As for Norris’ start, his velocity was fine, but his command was shaky.  I’d give him another start.

Eduardo Rodriguez – 5 IP, 4 ER, 8 baserunners, 5 Ks.  Ed-Rod was hurt by homers from Iglesias and McCann, i.e. church and almost Arizona state.

Rick Porcello – 6 IP, 3 ER, 12 baserunners (11 hits), 8 Ks, ERA at 4.38.  The funniest (not funny) is accusing Prospector Ralph of liking the Sawx, which is his favorite team, then asking him if he likes Porcello.  He’ll be like, “I don’t like the Red Sox any better than any other team for fantasy, but Porcello is gonna be a mahnster.  Go Sawx!”

Jackie Bradley Jr. – Headed for an MRI as he deals with a hyperextended knee.  He says he can play through it, though he would like his right cleats about a quarter of an inch longer so he’s not walking like a penguin.

Hanley Ramirez – Out until at least Tuesday with the flu.  The flu bug that’s going around the Red Sox clubhouse is like the chicken pox episode of The Brady Bunch.  No one is safe!  And Brock Holt is totally Alice.

Sandy Leon – 2-for-4, 1 run, 2 RBIs, hitting .438.  Cousin Oliver!

Jake Arrieta – 7 IP, 3 ER, 5 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 2.08.  All I’ll say is he was great until June last year too, throwing no-hitters and shizz.

Kyle Schwarber – 2-for-5, 2 runs and his 2nd homer, hitting .231.  I know it’s against the sports website law to say multiple negative things about the Cubs, and never second-guess Joe Maddon, but why is Schwarber batting leadoff?  Are we living in a time now that historians will look back on as the era when guys who shouldn’t be hitting leadoff hit leadoff?  Is Michael Lewis writing a book?

Domingo Santana – 1-for-3 and his 1st homer.  Well, we know he can hit on Sundays.  Got six more days to prove out.

Jeremy Hellickson – 5 IP, 0 ER, 2 baserunners, 2 Ks, but left Sunday’s game with a forearm cramp.  No need to cue Eddie Vedder yet for a, “Jeremy’s broken….”

Jeanmar Gomez – 1 IP, 3 ER, though not even the sphinctory can help this FEMA.  For a while last year, he was the best closer who sounded vaguely like a Swedish auteur.  This year, he looks like what his name translates literally into, Levi’s in the ocean.  You know when you get jeans wet?  That’s how comfortable Jeanmar has looked in the closer role all year.  I’d own Hector Neris in every league, and I’d even back him up with Joaquin Benoit and Pat Neshek.  There’s no way Jeanmar gets another opportunity.

Joe NathanNationals re-signed him to a minors deal.  Considering Dusty’s throwing every reliever every day, shortly they’re gonna have nothing left but lips and ass, which made Nathan’s famous.

Trea Turner – Likely out a few days with a hamstring pull.  Dusty said, “I don’t think he pulled it too badly.”  Hopefully Dusty doctors better than he manages.

Jeremy Guthrie – 2/3 IP, 10 ER, the Saturday start that happened on his birthday.  If you’re going to drop a ten-spot that quickly on your birthday, it should at least involve some exotic dancing.

 
  1. Jonathan Velasquez says:
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    Two questions.

    A. Who would you play on Monday? Austin Hedges at Coors or Sandy Leon who has been hitting decently on recent days?

    B. Which side would you prefer in a Polanco for Freeman deal?

  2. Matt says:
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    Hi grey. Two questions

    A. Trade offer. Freeman for my Polanco. Which side do you prefer?

    B. Who would you play today? Sandy Leon at DET or Austin Hedges at Coors?

  3. Illuminatty says:
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    Hey Grey,

    Currently have Daniel Norris as the weakest pitcher out of my pitching core. Joe Ross and Blake Snell are on waviers. Would you drop Peraza or Ryon Healy to picked up either Ross or Snell or drop Norris for one of those 2? Thanks

    • Eric J Lyman says:
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      @Illuminatty: Seems like a no-brainer to drop Norris for Snell.

  4. Shitwolf says:
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    hey Grey enjoyed the write up! had a few questions…. prepare for my quizmastering!

    A) weekly league do i start D Travis or hope turner gets back?
    ‘B )if Hector Nerris gets the job would you rather him or Treinan?
    C)Current weakest hitters: Travis, Margot and, Bird would you swap any for Dickersonn, Solerte Piscotty or Dahl?
    P and Dahl would be off WW but I’m not sure I want to use my #2 on them
    D) worth the WW?

    thanks homie

    • Andrew Edenbaum says:
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      @Shitwolf: Was at the Padre home opener. Drop Margot ? Seriously ?
      Dahl is rehabbing. He’s a stud. Margot’s a stud. You must be in an 8 team league if their your weakest hitters. Yeah, everyone knows that Bird has sucked. Turned sprained his hammy. A good hammy is necessary to steal bases. Solarte for Bird is a no brainer. Dahl may be back in early May.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Shitwolf: A. Devon B. Neris D) Yeah, Piscotty over Travis, Dahl over Margot

      • Shitwolf says:
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        @Grey:

        Dahl higher priority for ww correct?

        Hugs and kisses

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yeah

  5. TTRA1N says:
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    Sooo.. You only like Chris Owings in NL only leagues?

    • Cram It says:
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      @TTRA1N: That’s not what he said.

  6. Fister Furbush says:
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    Nova
    Wacha
    Duffy
    Bundy
    Fulmer

    Go figure that this rotation would help get me a win the first week of the season! I’m either really lucky or really have no idea what I’m doing.

  7. Nick says:
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    Grey

    Piscotty doesn’t know, i’ll drop him for Dick-erson?

    trade offer : (in regular league: no Keepers / dynasty)
    DeGrom + Wainwright for my Bundy + Paxton ?

    DG should be a top fantasy ace for 2017
    Bundy and Paxton are HOT…

    • JeF WiTh 1 F says:
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      @Nick: deGrom

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Nick: Hold Piscotty… Agree w/ F

  8. Fister Furbush says:
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    Also, do you have any faith in Brantley becoming a useful asset any time soon?

    I know that the Indians are batting him 2nd and they’ve talked about moving him to first base…
    I’ve got him in multiple leagues and I’m already thinking of dropping him like it’s hot.

  9. Matt says:
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    Buxton is driving me insane! Hopefully he and Kepler put it together. I don’t want to drop anybody less than a month into the season.

    On the bright side someone did drop T. Story and I gladly added him off waivers.

    Would you add Neris and drop: Feliz/Grilli?

    Also do you start players on your bench on off days? It feels like my BA is getting murdered expecially with Buxton/Joesph/Rendon.

    • Mr. Sweat Necklace says:
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      @Matt: Drop Grilli for Neris.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Matt: Do I start players on my bench on off days? Own Neris

  10. Chris says:
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    Took Freeman as my first round pick in 7 player keeper league so pretty happy with his output today. Question: next period sees me in a bind. Do I start Pineda at home vs Rays or Dylan Bundy at Boston? Third option is Jharel Cotton at Kansas (yeah nah). Fourth option is bench the lot of them. I’m leaning towards Pineda but he’s f**ked my team so many times in the past…

    • Cram It says:
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      @Chris: If you’re not starting Pineda there, you might as well drop him.

    • Chris says:
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      @Chris: Thanks Cram It and Grey. Went with your advice and scored 41 points.

  11. Grey:

    Do you think there’s anything wrong with Shoemaker? I couldn’t watch the game. But he seems to be having control issues so far compared to last year.

    And are you writing Maeda’s start off to Coors?

    Last question: Would you drop Broxton for Souza in a 14-team roto league? Or do we need to be more patient with Broxon?

    Thanks!

    • Shoop Da Whoop says:
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      @Enrique: Shoemaker is getting ahead of hitters but can’t put them away. He’s getting swinging strikes for strikes 1 and/or 2, but once he gets to 2 strikes, hitters focus on his fastball and ignore the splitter. And if he hangs a splitter, like with Cano, it can get taken for a ride.

      He needs a cutter or a slider that he can use with his fastball/splitter like a traditional pitcher would use a changeup if he can’t regularly put his splitter where he wants it.

      • enrique says:
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        @Shoop Da Whoop: Thanks a lot for the insights!

        He was so effective and accurate last year, and what I read from spring training seemed to have the same stuff. Have you seen anything to indicate what has changed?

        • Shoop Da Whoop says:
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          @enrique: Nothing has changed. His velocity might be down 1 MPH or so. He was occasionally hitting 93-94 last season, and I haven’t seen that yet.

          He’s really a mediocre pitcher with a great strategy – throw your best pitch as frequently as possible, and get ahead of hitters. If he can get to 93 consistently or add a third pitch, he could be great. As it is, he’ll still have excellent games and stretches of starts.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Enrique: No, yeah… I’d give Broxton another week

  12. Cabby says:
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    Hey Grey. What are your thoughts on my 12 team keeper league. Keep 10 players
    OBP, Total bases, Rbi, R, SB
    Era, whip, K, qs+wins, holds+saves

    C- Norris, Soto
    1b- jose Abreu
    2b- jose altuve
    Ss- diaz (stl)
    3b- Arenado
    Ci-tommy Joseph
    Mi- Devon travis
    Of- harper, Marte, Bautista, Mazara, O. Herrera
    U- Max Kepler
    Bench- Napoli
    Sp- Kluber, maeda, salazar, stroman, manaea, shoemaker
    Rp- Herrera, Bedrosian, Neris
    Bench- Joe Ross, Ian snell, perdomo, Mike montGomery

    Minors- Gleyber Torres, Eloy Jimenez, Anthony Alford, Tom murphy, Derek Fisher, Josh hader, Mitch Keller

    Im hoping tom murphy can come back healthy and take over one the the catching spot? Thoughts on my team?

    Thanks

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Cabby: Looks solid, Soto didn’t do enough for you this week?

  13. Stephen Lyon says:
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    SON rather likes Skaggs v TEX on Tuesday. It’s got a screw loose, right?

    • Damon says:
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      @Stephen Lyon:
      I picked him up based on SON. Interestingly doesn’t like the next start at KC, though.

      • Jensen says:
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        @Grey: Holding him and benching him vs TEX or drop him?