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Jake Westbrook had everything going against him.  No schools in his area had an athletic program.  His mother was strung out on drugs.  His father was absent from his life.  Then he met Sandra Bullock.  Wait, those aren’t my notes, that’s the back cover of The Blind Side DVD.  Yesterday, Westbrook threw 8 IP, 0 ER, 9 baserunners, 3 Ks.  Okay, in the broader sense, Westbrook is the dog’s breakfast, but you mix that with one certain pitching coach and, well… For his next trick, Dave Duncan will turn a cucumber into a pickle…mobile!  I don’t think it lasts for Westbrook, but he gets the Pirates next.  It’s September, you shouldn’t need more.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Tim Stauffer – 5 IP, 4 ER, 8 baserunners, 2 Ks.  You don’t get them wet, you don’t expose them to light, you don’t feed them after midnight and you never start a hodgepadre away from Petco.

Aaron Cunningham – 1-for-4 as he continues to hit leadoff for the Padres.  He’s also batting .400 over the last week.  I’m not picking him up yet, but I’m watching Mr. C.

Edinson Volquez – 6 2/3 IP, 3 ER, 8 baserunners, 7 Ks.  After the game, when asked about his playoff rotation, Dusty said, “(Edinson’s) throwing it as well as anybody we have right now.  I’d like to throw him for another 250 innings, but time does not permit unless we can get ourselves into an extra inning game that goes 200 innings.  Are you finished so I can put my toothpick back in my mouth?  I’m wasting artificial mint flavor.”

Jonny Gomes – 2-for-4 and now 4 for his last 8… Okay, like I tell my girlfriend, beware the small sample size.  But it’s the final weeks of the season.  Play the hot hands!

Drew Stubbs – 1-for-4 with his 25th steal.  He’ll be in this afternoon’s Buy/Sell.  I have a feeling which way Late Afternoon Grey is leaning.

Delmon Young – 3-for-5 with his 2nd homer in three games.  I think this season is Delmon Young’s amuse bouche.  Next year, we’re going to get the meal.

Alexei Ramirez – 2-for-4 with a homer and two steals for the slam and double side of legs.  If he could only get his act together in April… If it’s the cold weather, maybe we have him sleep in an incubator for a month.

Angel Pagan – 3-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 34th steal.  I wanna get excited about him for next year, but you know there’s a 60% chance he’s going to get injured and miss three-quarters of the season just because he’s on the Mets.

Hideki Matsui – 2-for-5 and his 20th homer.  Okay, this is my third time this week talking about him.  He’s obviously hot.  Say Hideki, bye other 5th outfielder.

Rodrigo Lopez – 7 IP, 1 ER, 8 baserunners, 4 Ks.  If there were more games yesterday, I wouldn’t even bother mentioning Rodrigo.  In fact–

Fausto Carmona – 7 IP, 2 ER, 5 baserunners, 8 Ks.  He gets the Twins and Royals next and he hasn’t been terrific against either this year, but he has been incredible in September.  I can only walk you to the table, you have to decide if you want to roll the dice.

Michael Brantley – 1-for-4 with a steal.  Stop me if you’ve heard this before.  Too late, I already started.  Brantley’s hit in every game since the beginning of August, except for 4 (stutterer!).

Ted Lilly – 3 1/3 IP, 6 ER.  Frank McCourt said Jamie could have him.

Jonathan Sanchez – 7 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 12 Ks.  Have I mentioned lately how much I love Filthy Sanchez? 3.21 ERA on the year, 188 Ks in only 176 2/3 IP and a 1.23 WHIP.  He’s the poster boy for why you should just start your pitchers every single time out.

Nyjer Morgan – Will begin serving his 8-game suspension on Friday.  On his time off, he’s going to start filming the Ice Cube-directed comedy “I’m Smoking A J Up In The Middle Of My Name” with Elijah Dukes.

  1. Mike says:

    I know I’m a bit biased about this, but I think Konerko taking one to the face and then come back to take one deep deserves a mention. Last time I saw that sequence play out it was in reverse order and on redtube.

  2. Steve says:

    @Mike: That is the best first comment on a post of this – or possibly any other – year.

  3. Hi Grey — I know you suggest a wait-and-see attitude toward Aaron Cunnigham, but would you rather have him than Carlos Quentin in a 20-one-year roto team league? It’s a 6×5 league and I am close enough to make up ground in every offensive category except RBI.

    Other waiver candidates don’t offer much help: Mark Ellis, Carlos Gomez. Kalish was just dropped, and so I can make a claim that’ll be processed Sunday.

    Or do you think Quentin could still finish strongly?

  4. That first graf in the previous message got garbled: 20-one-year roto team leage” should read “20-team one-year roto league”. Damn fingers!

    Also, wasn’t Aaron Cunningham Richie’s brother on Happy Days?

  5. Tony says:

    threw westbrook

    sonovabenched dirty…..

    damn H2H league, couldn’t pass the other guy in BB or have a blow up and westbrook gave me a solid outting so i benched, efff…. next time out 6BB, thats dirty’s only downfall…..

  6. MrHappyTime says:

    Who should I go with for my weekend head to head playoff finale. Adam Lind, Wilson Betemit, or Russell Branyan? Pick two, I’m looking for power and rbi’s. Thanks

  7. TJ says:

    Definitely playing the hot hand right now, as I’m in a tight H2H matchup. Down by small amounts in each category- 2 hits, 3 RBI, 1 HR, etc.

    My lineup today will include Emilio, Eric Young, Ike Davis and David Murphy.

    Do I pick up any of these SPs for a spot start tomorrow:
    Braden vs Minnesota (Slowey)
    Masterson vs KC (O’Sullivan)
    McDonald vs AZ (Enright)
    Guthrie vs NYY (Sabathia)

  8. Chris says:


    Do you sit any of these SP tonight:

    Blackburn v. Oak, Dempster @ Fla, Scherzer @ CWS, MadBum v. Mil

  9. big o says:


    here , i did the math for you :

    0-5 vs lhp c.j. wilson
    0-7 vs lhp cliff lee
    0-4 vs rhp tommy hunter

    against all lhp’s .190 ba (100 ab’s) … with 6 home runs
    home ba .224 …. 7 home runs … 19 rbi in 165 ab’s

  10. MrHappyTime says:

    @big o: So your basically telling me all these guys stink vs lefties lol?

  11. big o says:


    those are branyan’s stats .

  12. BryanK says:

    Championship is coming down to the wire, I need to take back ERA and hold on to WHIP (Ks and Ws are lost). Is it worth starting Max Scherzer tonight? He’s been struggling lately, so I was considering benching him. Other than him, the weekend finishes out for me with Latos, Felix, Lincecum, and Liriano.


  13. Godzilla says:

    12-team H2H 6×6 (OBP, QS)
    I need to spot start some absolutly horrible pitchers for K, QS, and W… I already lost ERA and WHIP…Who would you start tomorrow if you had to pick one:

    Chris Young @STL
    Ely vs COL
    Lucas Harrell vs DET
    Sean O’Sullivan vs CLE
    Casey Coleman @FLA
    Jeff Suppan vs SD

  14. tHe sHiT says:

    @Mike: One of the best comments ever!

  15. Back to Minors says:

    Haren @ TB…thoughts. what’s your got telling you. anyone. smoke em if you got em right? cause if i bench him, i know he’ll throw a gem.

  16. Back to Minors says:

    @Back to Minors: I know i should bench him. he doesn’t do too well on the road, especially against TB.

  17. papasmurf says:

    Looks like Dirty Sanchez is over the little smelly stretch he had some weeks ago.

  18. Tony says:

    @Back to Minors: ya im in a bind, i have 30 innings logged, we need 32, the other guy has like 18 in, and i’ve got like 4-5 sp’s going including haren tonight, tough call, he’s one I think i’m benching, but i’m playing H2H, so depends….

    i also have cueto vs. wandy HOU

    wade davis, who is throwing vs. Haren

    scherzer vs. CWS

    and Blackburn vs. OAK

    so cueto and blackburn look good to me, i’m not throwing scherzer vs. chicago and the wade davis vs. haren is scary, i hate it when two of my pitchers face each other….

  19. Mike says:

    I’m in the same place many of you are. I’m projected to be +11 on my innings at this point (roto mixed, 15 teams), and I have King Felix, Wandy, Scherzer, and Haren all going tonight. Felix is a no-brainer, Wandy is at home so I like that, but I’m back-and-forth on Scherzer and Haren. Can anyone push me in the right direction with those 2??


  20. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Mike: That’s hilarious!

    @Enrique: It was Chuck. Go with him over Quentin then grab Kalish.

    @Tony: Yeah, but look at those season stats, that’s worth starting every start out.

    @MrHappyTime: Betemit, Lind…

    @TJ: McDonald

    @Chris: Maybe all of them, don’t know your situation. In vacuum, I’d start them all.

    @BryanK: Bench him.

    @Godzilla: Why not start all of them? Young…

    @Back to Minors: I’d start him.

    @mapwheel: That link was broke for me.

    @papasmurf: Yup

    @Mike: Sit both.

  21. Well Jaime talking his way back into the rotation may have cost me a chance at the title. Ironic. The kid was so good and now this…

    Had to take Jaime back after dropping him for Pelf – as per our “the guy’s gotta be out for the season rule.” Of course Pelf got the W and QS as I expected and with my opponent throwing Sanchez out there for the game of his life, I’m now tied in W and QS and trailing in K by a handful. Thankfully Westbrook came through.

    Down 7-3 going into the final weekend. Here’s hoping Swish and Gardy get back out there and my opponents pitchers shit the bed…

  22. Grey

    Grey says:

    @3FingersBrown: Man, that’s a tough rule. Is that so people don’t stream? I mean, what if the scenario is like Hamilton where he’s not coming back for a few weeks but says he is? People have to hold him?

  23. Jah says:

    I need help choosing 3 starts for next week:

    Happ @ WAS
    Happ @ PIT
    Bumgarner @ CHC
    Matusz @ TOR
    Cecil v. SEA
    Holland @ OAK

    To rack up points I need Wins, Innings and K’s, in that order. I’m leaning towards Bumgarner, Cecil and Matusz since Bumgarner is great in away games and TOR and SEA are awful vs. Lefties. What do you think?


  24. Tarasco's Secret Stash says:

    Sunday h2h playoff week capper, need a start to make minimum innings…who ya got?

    Barry Zito @ MIL
    Jeff Niemann @ ANA
    Andrew Miller @ CHC
    Bobby Cramer @ MIN

    I’m fairly tempted by Cramer, though that’s a tough matchup. He looked mildly intriguing in his debut on Monday though…

  25. MrHappyTime says:

    @big o:

    Ohh, I was confused. Thank you, I’m taking your and Greys advice.

  26. Back to Minors says:

    thanks Grey, leaning towards starting Haren, but I will be nervous as heck.

  27. Back to Minors says:

    after all this thought on Haren, watch Oswalt go out and blow up tonight;-0

  28. tHe sHiT says:

    @Grey: Throw Anderson @ MIN, right?

  29. and1mcgee says:

    grey, do you think Jason Schmidt, Mike Hampton, or Darren Dreifort will be in this afternoon’s “sell” portion of “Buy/Sell” ? just trying to get a heads up…

  30. Howard says:

    @Grey Debating whether to start Wandy vs Cincy and Anderson @ Minny.
    I can’t really get too cute with my matchups. Am currently leading in WHIP, K9, W but need ERA and QS. Down to the wire!

  31. big o says:


    i need andy laroche to be awfully proud of his big brother this weekend .

    not being a scherzer owner , so i haven’t been paying close attention ,
    but isn’t he the guy whose main trouble was not pitching inside to lefties ?

    so , who to fear in that chisox line-up … pierz ??
    that , and the fact that the chisox are now eliminated ,
    or , do people think that clowney will be a strong motivator ?

    seems to me , scherzer might get 11 k ‘s .

    caveat , of course , is to remember that the cuban missile is a sucker
    for high heat (no sense letting the little guy beat you … like so many ,
    recently have) .

    so , is my thinking convoluted here ?
    isn’t his start a no-brainer ?

  32. Shmorgie S. Board says:

    Re: Delmon Young, it’s hard to know what to make of him. When you look away from the RBIs, his power and OBP are tres “meh.” He’s either a star on the rise, or an average OF with great RBI opportunities.

    Re: Alexei the Cuban Missile, he seems destined to forever be a little bit over- or under-rated. I’ve rostered him a few times in my OBP-keeper league. I always have a few OBP beasts, so I can live with his OBP and still lead the league. That aside, his power-speed combo is really nice and he’s consistently around the 7th best SS overall. That’s good stuff.

  33. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Howard: Start both.

    @big o: There’s no safe starts with Scherzer. I’d start him though in a vacuum.

  34. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Shmorgie S. Board: Agreed on both. Will come down to where people are taking Young next year. I’m guessing as a third outfielder and he could shoot to a second or fall off to a fifth.

  35. Nuke LaDouche says:

    @Grey: Sorry that this is just a take on a bunch of questions you’ve already been asked. I’m eleven innings over right now so I can afford to be a little choosy. Do you feel really good about either Haren or Anderson? I know its impossible to guess who will get wins but I’m close enough to the top there that with a good stretch run I could take the lead. I consulted my magic 8-ball first but it just said “Piss off and ask grey. I’m on my smoke break.”

  36. slam says:

    who do you like more tomorrow, slowey, enright, or masterson? or none in a tight match up…

    we’re tied in wins, i have one more quality start, he has 5 starters left on the week I have 4…I’m well ahead in K’s, whip and era are close

  37. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Nuke LaDouche: Stupid 8 Ball. I’d start both.

    @slam: The order you have them.

  38. jamesllegade says:


    So here are my possible keepers and prices in a all MLB standard 5X5 260 dollar budget with 4 players kept (we have an inflation clause where each keeper has $3 added every year). Most expensive players were Hanley Ramirez at $49 (Har Har), Ryan Braun (double Har Har for a Har to the 4th power) at $48 and Pujols at $45. I THINK people may realize they overbid these guys as this was our first year doing and auction.

    Matt Cain $9
    David Price $3
    Delmon Young $4
    Robinson Cano $28
    Elvis Andrus $4
    Migeul Cabrera $38
    Colby Rasmus $4
    BJ Upton $26
    Brett Anderson $4

    Please skoolz me Grey… you are my only hope.

  39. Grey

    Grey says:

    @jamesllegade: Can go a few ways. As of right now, I’d go Cano, Price, Andrus, Anderson… Will set you up up the middle and have two anchors for your staff. Case could be made for others though.

  40. VinWins

    VinWins says:

    SP ERAs since Westbrook joined the Cards: Westbrook 3.26, Adam Wainwright 3.38, Jaime Garcia 3.61, Chris Carpenter 3.94, Kyle Lohse 8.75.

  41. Grey

    Grey says:

    @VinWins: Interesting…


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