In an industry, ‘pert 12-team mock draft that I recently participated in, I grabbed Max Kepler with the 194th overall pick, and, quite honestly, I could’ve likely took him in the final round, or just grabbed him off waivers if there were waivers in a mock draft, which there’s not.  No one cares about the Twins.  I’d say Twins lives matter, but I’m not trying to incite riots.  One quick point on that, when someone says “Save the whales” they’re not saying, “I hope a dolphin gets caught in a tuna net and is fed to a group of Japanese tourists as they watch The Cove.”  It’s save the whales, not save the whales and eff all other fish.  Here’s my 2017 mock draft team, if anyone’s interested.  I’d put little to no weight on my draft.  I had zero prep and was asked about an hour prior to participate.  Last year in 113 games and 396 ABs, Kepler went 52/17/63/.235/6.  Obviously, the average is puke-green trying to play itself as Fern Green, Army Green or Avocado.  You’re puke-green, and you’re caught.  The rest is not bad at all.  Mr. Prorater, the assessor of missed time, would put his line at 67/21/79/.240/8.  Though, we must remember, when one assesses, they make an ass out of esses, and that’ll get you killed in some hoods.  So, what can we expect from Max Kepler for 2017 fantasy baseball and what makes him a sleeper?

Ideally, Kepler will play from Opening Day on, and hit fifth.  Last year, he hit a wall in the 2nd half of the year as his average and power dipped.  Or as they say in Kepler’s hometown of Berlin, “Walls are for balls to be hit over, not ideals.”  With a full season under his belt, I expect Kepler to hold up better over the course of a season and have a better feel for opposing pitchers.  Or as they say in Berlin, “I will guten tag that ball.”  Likely, the biggest surprise from his minor league time and major league games is his lack of walks.  He had seasons above .400 OBP in the minors, and, last year, he barely cracked .300 with .309.  Outside of OBP or Points Leagues, I’m not sure we care, as long as he continues to hit for power and steal bases, which I think he will do.  One year he stole 18 bases, and I think he can approach that in the majors too, as soon as this year, because the Twins have nothing to lose.  With modest gains on Kepler’s strikeouts and walks, he’ll be on base more.  Then, throw in a bit more BABIP (was .261 last year which is low for him), and he could approach .280/.350 for batting average/OBP.  That takes him from his six steals to 14 SBs without even trying.  The power is there too.  He ropes bombs.  He averaged about the same distance on his homers as McCutchen, Cano and A-Gon.  22 HRs over the course of the season feels a bit conservative, but I don’t want to gas people up too high, so I’ll give Kepler the 2017 projections of 74/23/85/.266/14, which is a solid third to fourth outfielder with room for upside.  Or as they say in Berlin, “Auf wieder-schwing!”

 
  1. Packers says:
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    I saw the whole draft and added Kepler to my reserves in most leagues.

    In a 12 team dynasty weekly league keep all, with wins and net wins (I know, luck categories ) I scored 1 point last year in each but still managed a 4th place finish overall due to bats, saves and K’s. Here is my current staff. We start 10 pitchers so I usually have 7 SP and 3 closers.
    Kershaw, Archer,Ray,Pomeranz,McHugh,J. Ross,Stroman, Velasquez and Gsellman.
    Closers I have Allen,Jansen,Thornburg and Ramos. All set there.

    1. Do you think this staff can compete considering two categories are tied to wins along with K’s, ERA and WHIP?
    2. My most obvious trade chip is Kershaw. I was thinking of offering him in trades. What’s your thoughts of asking for D.Duffy, Quintana,K. Hendricks and W. Contreras (he has 4 catchers) for Kershaw, Stroman,and Ramos?
    The wire is picked clean with 120 pitchers on rosters plus more on reserves. I’m always in the razzball mode of win now.
    Thanks, and have a good day.

    • Malicious Phenoms says:
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      @Packers:
      I don’t like that trade for you.

      Kershaw & Stroman have the best chance of getting wins for you, not a big fan of Duffy for 2017, Royals and Whitesox are not a good source of wins for 2017.

      I’d offer Ramos for Kendricks or Stroman & Ramos for Kendricks & Contreras, if you really need a catcher.

      • M says:
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        @Malicious Phenoms: random question re Duffy for 2017-what don’t you like about him? From what I see, Although he broke out with his K rate, the GB rate could be an issue next year

        • Malicious Phenoms says:
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          @M:
          I think last year was kinda of a fluke, don’t see a high ceiling with Duffy and some regression is in order for 2017, IMHO of course..

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Packers: 1. I think it can 2. Don’t love the trade

  2. Ralph Lifshitz

    Ralph Lifshitz says:
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    Save the rainforests and Eff the Redwoods. Those tall jerks are always stealing all the shine! Typical coastal Lib trees!

    • Malicious Phenoms says:
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      @Ralph Lifshitz:
      Eff saving anything, save your self, and get the F out of America, while you still can!

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:
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        @Grey: Yeah me too haha

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Nuh-uh! I’m downright snobby!

          • Ralph Lifshitz

            Ralph Lifshitz says:
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            @Grey: So! I have IQ parties where we only eat imported cheese and drink wine from the previous decade.

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Cute, I’m doing a Sudoku right now

              • Ralph Lifshitz

                Ralph Lifshitz says:
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                @Grey: I just quoted french literature in a conversation about the Pacific-Rim Economy. All my quotes were in French, and I refused to translate after.

                • Grey

                  Grey says:
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                  I’m dressed in Vineyard Vines and talking about my father’s yacht, and I call him father

                  • Ralph Lifshitz

                    Ralph Lifshitz says:
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                    @Grey: I have the ugliest Patagonia fleece ever on. It looks like a skinned an Ewok.

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      I’m wearing a bow tie, b/c I do every day

                    • Big Odio says:
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                      you two actually made me laugh today. Why in my ind do i see you rolling around the condo with a t-shirt that has the bow tie printed on it

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Yeah, with track pants… I own a bow tie (wore one for my wedding), and tried to put it on again this summer for another wedding, and I couldn’t get it on with the help of a YouTube video

                    • Big Odio says:
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                      have you ever worn one with no shirt like Brutus Beefcake?

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Right after booty-takin’ time

                    • Big Odio says:
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                      takin as in you just robes her of a spoke or as in shakin like doing the mating dance?

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Like the African Anteater Mating Ritual!

                    • Big Odio says:
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                      thats quite a snout

  3. Nick says:
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    What order would you rank these guys in dynasty leagues going forward? Dahl, benintendi, and bregman

    • Malicious Phenoms says:
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      @Nick:

      1. Dahl
      2. Benintendi
      3. Bregman

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Nick: Dahl, Benintendi, close

      • Nick says:
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        @Grey: thank you! Love your stuff!

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Thanks!

      • Big Odio says:
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        @Grey: I hate to be that guy but I lean Bregs slightly above the others, actually coin flip with him and Dahl. Actually all three are pretty even. This is one of those you cant go wrong questions

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yeah, I could see that, hence the close

          • Big Odio says:
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            @Grey: I think if its close always go IF only because there always to be OF’s to be had and we can patchwork something in a bind where at the hot corner you can go years without someone decent if you miss the boat

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Yeah, but OF is shallower now than IF

              • Big Odio says:
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                @Grey: I think its an anomaly right now. I can still patchwork a platoon for OF better than IF

                • Grey

                  Grey says:
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                  Yeah, it’s close either way

  4. Malicious Phenoms says:
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    Nice early mock draft, some solid pickin!

    Baseball Winter meetings comin up..

    It’s startin to feel a lot like baseball 2017 is gettin closer everyday!

  5. Tweak says:
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    I dig Kepler going forward. His minors numbers are all pretty solid (usually near 10%BB and 15%K) and with 20/20 upside. His performance this year was impressive considering that he’s 23 and facing guys like Sale, Quintana, Verlander, Carrasco, and Salazar in that division.

    Two Twins players as fantasy sleepers going into next year? This is weird.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Tweak: Yeah, this might be the last mention of a Twin player for a while

  6. danny almonte says:
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    Sup Grey…making a roster cut in my dynasty…i know its apples n oranges but would u rather have Paxton or Asdrubal for 1 yr? QS league. Or is it tomato tomahto based on need

  7. Squat Cobblers says:
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    To paraphrase what the AT&T CEO said on the topic recently…God Bless America doesn’t mean you’re saying God doesn’t bless other countries. Saying All Lives Matter is as dumb a retort as saying All Fish Matter.

  8. Ante GALIC says:
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    Grey!

    Great write-up, almost in mid-season form. Pace yourself!!!

    a. Watched Hell or Highwater over the weekend on your recommendation alone. Wanted to watch it with someone but no one cool enough so watched it on my laptop! Fantastic movie! Give me more recommendations, please!

    b. Saw The Cove, agreed totally on Green Peace whale fanatics not caring about dolphins at the same time.

    c. Gonna love Kepler too! He should at least have the physics of hitting down, if he could ever listen to his father or grandfather whoever the master physicist is in the family.

    d. Sorry for arriving late. Got all tangled up in a web of SNAFU. Riddle me this one.

    1. A staff member claims to have received a phone call from some guy mimicking a woman’s voice.

    2. Staff member claims to have never seen the number and does not know the individual caller.

    3. Staff member says ‘Who is this?’ To which they reply ‘Who are you?’ To which he (dumbly) replies ‘I’m Hissein (aka his name)’. And then the caller hangs up.

    4. Moments later the local sheriff calls him over from his car without telling him what for. Standard fare here in Chad, there are no Miranda rights therefore no requirements to read them.

    5. The sheriff confiscates his laptop and mobile phone and demands a 20$ (a small fortune here, btw!) guarantee as bail (more or less) to release him.

    6. The complainant says that my staff member knows the woman (aka the complainant’s wife) and that is grounds enough to sue him for God knows what – almost always relates to some kind of cash punishment.

    7. The sheriff has called both my staff member and the couple (the complainants) to his office tomorrow morning to straighten the matter out. If my staff member is innocent they will refund him the fee and (more importantly) his company-issued laptop and the mobile phone. If he is guilty, I will go to jail with him so they will be unable to put him in jail.

    8. Using Sherlock Holmes methodology, only 3 possibilities exist.

    a. My staff member knows the woman and the husband found his number on her mobile phone and tried calling my staff member in a disguised voice to see if he could catch him saying something like hey mon cheri or something similar.

    b. My staff member does not know either of them.

    c. The woman has had an affair with someone. In need of a fall guy, she contacts her friends to give her the name of a dummy (aka my staff member) which she gives to her husband to defend herself.

    What do you think? Could be enough material for a nice short thriller.

    Cheers,
    Ante

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Thanks! A. Glad you liked it! Moonlight, Arrival, Manchester by the Sea B. Yup C. All Germans are physicists, fact! D. I don’t know, I’m gonna go B, they don’t know either and it’s just Chad being Chad

      • Ante GALIC says:
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        @Grey: Grey!

        Thanks! Will let you know anon on (stutterer) the outcome.

        Cheers,
        Ante

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yes, I look forward to the mystery being solved

  9. #blackholesmatter

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Stephen Hawking, that you?

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          No way! E40=St. Ides

          • Ralph Lifshitz

            Ralph Lifshitz says:
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            @Grey: Wrong again E-40 = Sizzle I-dizzle

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              So how do you account for Sizzle l-dizzle is the middle name on Drake’s license?

  10. Ryan says:
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    Hi Grey- Question for you. 16 team keep 6 forever. I have a offer on the table. Machado for Bryant. Here is my roster of poss keeps: Do I take Machado or do I need more like picks?
    Thanks in advance

    Bryant
    Abreu
    Posey
    Polanco
    Yelich
    Freeman
    Longo
    Seagura

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      I’d want Bryant

  11. PublicEnemy#1 says:
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    Too early for SAGNOF? With Benoit now on board, who gets saves to start the year in Philly?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      My guess is it would be Benoit

  12. Duda Want to Build a Snowman? says:
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    Hey Grey! In a keep 7 forever, $3 inflation league would you trade:

    1. your $30 Kershaw for a $10 JD Mart + one of $11 Carrasco or $12 Degrom?

    2. your $4 Ozuna, $5 Schoop, or $8 T Anderson for a $5 Rich Hill or $3 VMart (love those prices)

    Thanks!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      1. Sure, Carrasco 2. Yeah, Hill side

  13. Malicious Phenoms says:
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    Does Jake McGee get the closer job in the mile ‘HIGH’ city?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Ottavino is current closer in Colorado

      • Malicious Phenoms says:
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        @Grey:
        I know, just wondering if you think McGee could eventually take the job.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          McGee didn’t do much in Colorado to warrant it last year, and he’s a lefty, so meh, maybe

          • Malicious Phenoms says:
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            @Grey:
            ok, fair enough, thanks!

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              No problem

  14. Zeus says:
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    Grey. I’ve been away from baseball a bit as I need to decompress but I loved your save the whales bit.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Ha, thanks!

      • Zeus says:
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        @Grey: Fuck those dolphin assholes with their squeaking

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          HA

  15. Peacecoast says:
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    hi grey

    miss u

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Hey, you too, Peacecoast!

  16. Zeus says:
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    I’m not fully caught up on westworld but have been loving it. Thoughts?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      I’d compare it to Lost, but I was more emotionally involved with Westworld…I’m enjoying Westworld, but feel kinda detached from caring about the characters

      • Zeus says:
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        @Grey: interesting. I kind of feel similar but I cared about the characters on lost

        • Zeus says:
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          @Zeus: I’ll admit it. I cried like a baby when sun and Jin and sawyer and Juliet got together in the final episode

  17. Spyre says:
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    Hey Gray. Loved Kepler last summer, when he was hot he won me several weeks mid-summer in my h2h Points league all on his own..

    Anyway who are the 6 keepers from this lot? Rounds 1-6, can keep anyone forever. I don’t like any of my pitchers as an “ace”, but there definitely won’t be any better pitchers on the board by round 6, nearly all top pitchers are kept, they’re highly valued in my h2h (Scherzer had the most points in the league last year).

    Trout
    Arenado
    Rizzo

    F. Lindor
    Trea Turner
    Bautista
    Cutch
    Salazar
    Duffy
    Britton (?)

  18. jack says:
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    Fuck save the whales, you speciest!

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