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The longest journey begins with a single step then, of course, an oblique injury.  Can we get a team of crack scientists working on a cure for the obliques?  The other day someone asked me for money for Doctors Without Borders so they could help people in The Congo.  Why isn’t there a guy in front of Whole Foods asking me to donate to find a cure for Jose Reyes‘ oblique?  It might be an everyday item that could fix this.  Maybe a steady diet of cucumbers is all he needs.  How do we know if no one’s doing the leg work?  Film a PSA with Chipper Jones and Julie Andrews and show that shizz before movies.  We need money to stop the spread of oblique injuries.  Now!  The Mets are saying Jose Reyes’ newest flare up is mild.  They said the same stupid thing with their same stupid mouths two months ago when he missed three weeks.  I’m hoping for the best; I’m expecting the worst.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Jon Niese – 5 2/3 IP, 7 ER, 8 baserunners, 8 Ks.  I’m probably give him more of a benefit of the doubt than maybe I should, but Niese was done in by a bloop ground rule double that was barely fair and Dessens allowing inherited runners to score.

David Wright – 2-for-3 with his 21st homer.  Just think, if he played in Toronto, he’d have 41 homers.

Stephen Strasburg – The Nationals announced they will probably shutdown Strasburg for the season.  Backdate this a week.  Of course they’re shutting him down.  The Nats announced this while Bryce Harper was taking batting practice.  The ol’ “Hey, look at this new shiny toy” trick.  Guess it’s better than the ol’ “Shine a flashlight on a wall” trick.

Ian Desmond – 4-for-7 and batting .417 in his last ten games.  Yesterday, he hit in the five hole, which is also porn-speak for the left nostril.

Jordan Zimmermann – 4 IP, 5 ER, 8 baserunners, 4 Ks.  I can’t say I’m fully surprised by this outing.  I’d still hold him in NL-Only and keeper leagues.  Mixed leagues, you’re gonna have to hold him on your bench, unless you need to take chances.

Drew Storen – 1 IP, 4 ER.  Ouch… Wait, what?  Oh.  Ow.

Wandy Rodriguez – 7 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks.  Right now, if you Google “Phillies offense,” it says “Did you mean Philly defeats?”

Scott Podsednik – 3-for-5, 2 Runs.  He’s in this afternoon’s Buy/Sell.  I’ll give you a hint, it sounds like Bye.  You know, the whole Manny’s leaving and Pods will get playing time thing.

Hong-Chih Kuo – Torre (maybe it was Paul Sorvino) announced that Kuo would be his closer for now, but he wants Broxton back as closer in the landmark case of sooner vs. later.

Ricky Nolasco – Torn meniscus excuses are not in Nolasco’s vocabulary.  He will make his next start.  I’d continue to roll him out there, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him get shutdown at some point if the knee flares up.

Hanley Ramirez – 3-for-5 with his 17th homer and he’s now 10 for his last 15.  Thank Maybin for pushing Hanley to the three hole.

Yovani Gallardo – 6 1/3 IP, 6 ER, 10 baserunners, 10 Ks.  The Ks have been there, but, since he’s returned from the DL, his pitches have looked pretty flatulent.   After the All-Star Break, his ERA is near-6.00.  Gotta keep running him out there (unless it’s an 8 team league and you manage the other 7 teams under aliases.)

Max Scherzer – 8 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 8 Ks.  Since his return from the minors at the end of May, his ERA is… Wait for it… Here it comes…  Shoot, I think I left it in my car… Okay, got it… His ERA is 2.29 in 102 innings.  Holy heffin’ hey, that’s good.

Jhonny Peralta – If you lost Reyes to the under-researched oblique injury, Peralta is hitting over .400 with 2 homers in the last 7 days.  (It might be 8 days if you count Muesday.)

Justin Masterson – 6 IP, 2 ER, 7 baserunners, 3 Ks.  Here’s me yesterday spot starting Masterson.  Nope, not going to look at that team for two hours.  Nope, not going to watch him pitch at all.  I am just going to pray.  Thank you, deity!

Stephen Drew – 2-for-5, 4 RBIs and his 3rd homer in two games (all in Petco).  Finally, someone is stepping up and helping Momma Drew choose a favorite.

Ian Kennedy – 7 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners (1 Hit), 12 Ks.  A’la Guy Fieri, “That was a crackerjack performance.  And crackerjack is good!”  I loved Kennedy back in May, then the wheels fell off for a few months and he looked like the 90’s MTV VJ Kennedy.  He gets the Padres again in Arizona for his next start.  I’d give him a whirlybird in some leagues.

Mark Reynolds – 1-for-5 with his 28th homer.  It’s been an ugly month, 4 homers, hitting .179 with 1 steal.  I think he probably should’ve went to the DL a few months back rather than fighting through injuries.  Donkeys are stubborn though, mini and otherwise.

Alex Rios – 3-for-4 with his 18th homer and 26th steal.  Member after his career month I said to Sell him and people wrote something along the lines that I should shut my stupid face?  In 285 ABs since that post, he has 6 homers while hitting .277 with 9 steals.

Edwin Jackson – 8 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 10 Ks.  He’s seen the O’s and the Tigers twice each since he landed back in the AL.  He also has a 0.96 ERA.  He gets the Indians next.  At any point, he’s going to turn into a pumpkin again, but that’s not a bad spot start.

Brandon Phillips – Had x-rays on his swollen wrist and they came back negative.  He says he hopes to play this weekend.  His owners say they hope the wrist pain doesn’t affect his swing.

Francisco Liriano – 7 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks.  Sonavabench!  He was in Arlington, he was coming off a tired arm, he was going against Cliff Lee… He wasn’t supposed to pitch well.

Dustin Pedroia – Sounds like he’s going to be shutdown for the year.  I’d drop him.  Even if he comes back, what’s he going to give you?  A week of hustle?  Spunk’s a category in your league?  Some would find that hard to swallow.

Bud Selig – Nothing to do with fantasy, but ESPN ran an interesting story yesterday.  To appeal to a younger demographic, MLB is taking a page from Scott Pilgrim and pitting Bud Selig vs. his younger self.  (Side note: I have no idea who the guy on the right is.  It’s called “online journalism.”)

  1. big o says:

    so , mlbtv showed the clip of harper hitting the 3rd deck
    during batting practice .

  2. Kyuss says:

    In a 16-team dynasty league with 20 keepers, do I drop Alcides for Jhonny Peralta? I’m fighting for that last playoff spot…Alcides is my only ss, but I should add that I don’t need steals (it’s not like he provides them anyway).

  3. Tony says:

    whats worse than owning storen? How about owning chris carpenter, watching him blow up, then watching storen come in and steal the loss from him and add to the damage…. i coulda got a save, MAYBE A WIN AND A NO DECISION…. Nope, just more runs a higher ERA and a loss from my RP instead of my SP.


  4. JT says:

    The Pedroia comment was pure gold, Grey.

  5. Awesomus Maximus

    Awesomus Maximus says:

    Hate to say ‘I told you so’, but I do believe The Hives and I were the only ones harping on Reyes’ thyroid and the fact that it could lead to constant injuries while everyone else was excited about his upside. I can’t say this is a result of the thyroid condition, as I’m not a doctor, but neither are the Mets’ doctors… so I guess we’ll never know.

    Neverthehoo, did I miss one of those minute and a half segments between commercial breaks the other night or did the promo promise of “serious consequences” for the person stealing basketball chick’s painkillers never come to fruition? In fact, I don’t think we even found out who stole them. Privately taking your own drug test to prove you didn’t take a Percocet weeks after you may have taken it ain’t exactly proof of the ‘ironclad’ variety. And flipping your shizz when Don’t Forget The Lyrics jokes about you taking drugs, but not saying “boo” when The Nutty Hairdresser tells people you are actually taking drugs seems slightly odd.

    Finally, most people may have forgotten Jay the playwright from London, but not us die hard ‘fans of making fun of the show’. “I get to live in a city that’s rich in something I’m supposedly passionate about, but I’m too scared to do anything about it.” Get your own storyline, Sahar! Or at least put on a show in the RW house and let the fat girl run the lighting.

  6. Sos says:

    Norris or Blanton this weekend?

  7. zk says:

    @JT: Could not agree more. That’s top-5 all time. And this from a guy who needs Pedroia’s spunk more than anyone. If I want to finish first, I need that spunk.

  8. HotCorner says:

    It’s really amazing at how similar Jose Bautista’s stats are to Brady Anderson. In the four years leading up to Anderson’s 50 homer season, he averaged 144 hits, 30 doubles, 15 homers, 64 RBI’s and .264 BA. Bautista in the four years prior to this averaged 99 hits, 21 doubles, 14 homers, 52 RBI’s and .240 BA. Brady definitely benefited from playing in the A.L. while Bautista was with the Pirates. Other than the hits and doubles, they are fairly similar.

  9. Big Mike says:

    Streaming and need Wins & K’s. Blanton in Petco or Livan at home vs. Pirates on Saturday?

  10. Big Mike says:

    @ Sos: I wish I had Norris to pick from. I’d go Norris at Metco in a heartbeat!

  11. Love your articles but do we really need to know “the five hole … is also porn-speak for the left nostril” even if it is a joke?

  12. @Kyuss: I’d rather have Peralta if I don’t need the steals. But not by much.

  13. Matty D says:

    Strasburg -> Tommy John

  14. peter says:

    According to Mark Zuckerman, Strasburg has a UCL tear and requires Tommy John surgery.

    I look forward to asking February 2012 Grey his thoughts on Strasburg.

  15. Commish Cauda says:

    16-team, H2H-POINTS salary cap league

    I need an arm for my title run. Which trade?

    (1) Give up Rollins $9 & Gardner $1 FOR CC $10
    (2) Give up Beltran $1 & Snyder $1 FOR Cahill $2

    With a $70 cap, CC and Rollins would be too expensive to keep next year. So, (1) is strictly a win-now move. (2) is still win-now but with the plumb of owning Cahill for the future. I’m also worried about Beltran next year, so (2) is a way to still get some name value for him.

    What do you think?



  16. Eddie says:

    That’s it for Stras.

  17. royce! says:

    @Matty D: Holy crap I thought you were joking. Did they build Nationals Park on an Native American burial ground or something?

  18. Grey

    Grey says:

    @big o: Yup

    @Kyuss: Go for it.

    @Tony: Yup

    @JT: Thanks!

    @Awesomus Maximus: That’s a great rant. I’m still trying to digest (not pills) how exactly he’s not gay. There’s nothing wrong with being gay, but he’s the biggest homophobe then yells at someone he wants to see their balls. Screams like a girl when he sees a vagina. Then he dances around like a schoolgirl when he’s eating fish.

    @Sos: Blanton

    @zk: Thanks!

    @HotCorner: That’s really fascinating.

    @Big Mike:

    @Frank Kim: Sorry

    @Matty D: Wow!

    @peter: Wow!

    @Eddie: Wow!

    @Commish Cauda: 1

    @sean: Wow!

    @BookieBob: Ha!

  19. FD says:

    Grey or Anyone-

    H2H league, have Anderson & Hanson pitching against each other. Standings are tight, need to win this week.

    Start one, the other, both, or neither?


  20. Wilsonian says:

    Who do you like better for the rest of the year for 2 UTIL positions (no particular need):

    Fowler, Burrell, Nyjer, Asdrubal, Venable, KellyJo, LoMo, Kila, Colvin

    I guess I would be asking for a ranking, sir. Many thanks in advance.

  21. Jim says:

    Whats the story on eric Young? Is he a lock to play everyday in September? Is he a better option for steals then R. Davis, B Garner.

  22. dingers says:

    best reyes replacement option for week 1 of playoffs:
    Uribe,Peralta, Drew,TheRiot? thx! ! ! !

  23. @Grey: No problem. Like I said, your blog is my favorite fantasy baseball blog. :-)

  24. royce! says:

    Rays are gonna sign Hawpe. Seems like a depth move to me, unless he gets insanely hot. Or I suppose he could DH, b/c his defense is supposed to be pretty bad. Hopefully it won’t delay Jennings.

  25. peter says:

    I think the Mayans predicted Strasburg wouldn’t pitch again until 2012.

  26. Sitting in 2nd place, 2.5 points behind the leader, who just used his final transaction of the year to pick up….


    I have to say, I think this bodes well for me. Now I’m just going to think happy thoughts about his team getting hit with a rash of terrible injuries.

  27. I couldn’t help myself, just posted this in the league:

    “You should have taken Harden with transaction #99. Then save #100 for when he gets injured.”

  28. Martin says:

    @grey- bud norris or mine minor?

  29. Bum Juice says:

    Grey, sorry in advance if my questions are not clear. I’ll try my best, though.

    I’m currently in first but I have Pedroia and Reyes. It’s a weekly line-up roto thing.

    Available MIs include Raburn, Betancourt, Peralta, Drew, and Desmond.

    I think Desmond is my best bet, but I would have to sacrifice my #1 waiver priority. On one hand, there are not likely to be much better waiver grabs (but who knows?). On the other, it’s hard to say if he’s worth it.

    I guess I am asking a two-part question:

    If the Mets don’t give us much better info by tonight, should I grab a replacement for Reyes?

    If so, is Desmond such a good choice over the other available guys that I should use my waiver priority? Or should I just hope he clears and if not settle for one of the others. (And if so, who would you go with if Desmond is not available?)

  30. Bum Juice says:

    I should probably mention that I would prefer HR/RBIs.

    I guess that means I should grab Drew.

  31. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Martin: Norris

    @JDub: Yeah, crazy.

    @Bum Juice: Reyes is going to the DL. Almost guaranteed at this point. Grab Drew while he’s hitting. Desmond’s not that huge of an upgrade.

  32. Art Vandelay says:

    Today I have Price vs. Lester and Kershaw @ Coors vs. Ubaldo. Nightmare match-ups for two of my studs. Would you bench either of them, or am I over-thinking it?

  33. 1st Season Manager says:

    Grey, great stuff as always. I may need some tinkering before the playoffs. 14-team, H2H, non-keep, 8-team playoff.

    C-Ruiz, 1B-Howard, 2B-Phillips, 3B-Betemit, SS-Castro, OF-Crawford, OF-Ethier, OF-Torres, Util-Tabata, BN-Raburn, BN-Heyward

    4SP+2BN–Morrow, D.Hudson, Floyd, A.Sanchez, J.Sanchez, Bumgarner
    2RP+P–Cordero, Bailey, Aarsdma

    Should I replace any 3B, OF, SP for any of these guys?
    3B-Peralta, Hall, Walker, Feliz, Wigginton, Cantu, Valencia, Kouzmanoff, J.Nix, Alvarez
    OF-EYJ, Morrison, Rajai, Fowler, Ross, Venable, Bruce, Murphy, Stanton, Boesch, Denorfia, Gomes
    SP-Chacin, Lohse, Kennedy, Galarraga, Davis

    Thanks in adavance!

  34. Wilsonian says:

    @Grey: nice, so you like Morrison over Burrell, and Fowler over Burrell for that matter, too?

  35. Awesomus Maximus

    Awesomus Maximus says:

    @Grey: Yeah, I don’t need to state the obligatory “I have gay friends, I’m not bashing gays, yadda yadda yadda”… the point is, he’s obviously having a lot of trouble staying closeted. When he was doing his “I thought I knew who I was before I came here, and now I don’t know anymore” I was saying to my wife, “Right, when you met Preston Fudge you remembered how you really want to be out of the closet. Just do it already!”

    Or don’t… people in my TV don’t actually exist, so I have no empathy for them. That or I’m a sociopath. Yeah, that makes more sense; I have no empathy for anyone.

  36. Nuke LaDouche says:

    Am I crazy to start Brett Anderson at Arlington tonight? Of course I am. At least thats what the voices in my head indicate. Any chance you would do the same Grey?

  37. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Awesomus Maximus: How do you steal drugs then blame the recovering drug addict? Is that the most despicable thing ever or is Knight lying? Why doesn’t MTV have footage or was that what they were trying to show by him with the flashlight?

  38. Grey

    Grey says:

    @Nuke LaDouche: I’d sit him. Arlington scares me too much.

  39. birrrdy says:

    (re dropping Pedroia)

    “Spunk’s a category in your league? Some would find that hard to swallow.”

    Pure genius.

  40. HotCorner says:

    Taking a chance on Big Z against the Pirates and Mets next week. Picked up JoZimm but don’t know if I want to plug him in yet. Hope I’m not making a mistake.

  41. Awesomus Maximus

    Awesomus Maximus says:

    @Grey: MTV doesn’t have footage… they never do. Whenever something truly interesting is going on, the footage they have is of the cameraman rushing in to catch the aftermath (which is sometimes interesting). They got lucky when Danny (?) got punched in the face and the camera happened to get a shot of it, but otherwise, they never have the footage of ‘the event’.

    Knight took a Percocet from The Nutty Hairdresser… who probably took all the rest. Someone as comfortable with confrontation as Knight wouldn’t sit idly by as he was being accused of asking for a pill unless it was the truth (notice how he had no trouble flipping on Sahar because he knew she didn’t know he’d done anything). Also, if you want to prove a point, you don’t go into a closed bathroom to take a drug test, wait to see what the results are for yourself, and then after it’s come up negative show it to everyone. You either do the whole deal in front of someone, or you at least piss in private and then bring it out so everyone can see the results the same time you do.

    Almost forgot, we finally got to see black guy do some of his stand up… brilliant. Nothing like telling inside jokes to a room full of strangers. I just wish they’d shown more of it.

  42. HotCorner says:

    @Art Vandelay: I don’t think that Kershaw vs Ubaldo is a nightmare matchup. I’d say C.K. has been the better pitcher since the All Star Break. Also, Kershaw has pitched well against the Rocks so far this season.

  43. herschel says:

    @Grey: weekly roto league where there is a huge pile up in wins (one win can be a 5 pt jump). who do you like next week?

    wandy vs stl
    galaragga @min and @kc
    sanabia vs wash and vs atl


  44. Grey

    Grey says:

    @birrrdy: Thanks!

    @HotCorner: Sounds fine.

    @Awesomus Maximus: Yup and yup. My favorite scenes are the cameraman running after something they just missed. Knight probably did take it, seemed like an odd reaction by him if he hadn’t. That’s right! The comedian who hasn’t said one remotely funny thing all season. This is stacking up to be a top ten season. And there’s only three interesting people out of 8. BTW, didn’t it used to be 7 strangers? Did they just tack another person on b/c they figured one person would get kicked out or leave?

    @herschel: Wandy, Sanabia…


  45. LincolnT says:

    @Grey: For next week, Norris @Arizona, Kennedy at home vs. Padres or Zambrano two starts at home vs. Pirates and Mets. ESPN H2H Pts League. Thanks!

  46. tall chicks says:

    (Bear with me…this is long and borderline pathetic, and I may need a fantasy baseball intervention after this.) Need to pick up a starter for today in a league that counts losses, and I’ve narrowed it down to 1 of 2 guys: either Vargas vs. Min (Baker) or Pelfrey vs. Hou (Figueroa). At first glance it seems like a no-brainer to grab Pelfrey, but I’m not so sure. Pros and Cons for both:

    Pelfrey… PROS: Mets are 37-24 at Home, Pelfrey has a 3.19 ERA at Home and a 2.36 ERA in August.
    CONS: Houston has won 5 in a row, Pence is hot and is 4/10 in his career against Pelfrey, Mets have lost 2 in a row, Pelfrey’s counterpart Figueroa has a 1.64 ERA/1.09 WHIP in his last 2 (and first 2 career) starts (although he might be due for a schilacking)

    Vargas… PROS: Seattle is 50-77 overall but 29-32 at Home, Twins are only .500 on the road, Vargas has a 2.23 ERA at Home, he’s a lefty facing a lot of lefties (Mauer, Kubel, Span, Thome), his one start this year against the Twins he gave up 1 ER in 7 innings, even though Seattle’s lineup is terrible…vs Baker Ichiro is a .308 hitter/ Figgins .364 / Branyan .364 (+4HR in his last 5 games) / Lopez .429
    CONS: Vargas just got murdered by the Yankees @NY, Baker is coming off a good start (although he’s been up and down all year), and even if Seattle’s lineup hits Baker well, in the end they’re still Seattle’s lineup.

    Ok, that was more than borderline pathetic. Anyway, have I justified grabbing Vargas over Pelfrey for tonight, or would you grab Pelfrey?

  47. Grey

    Grey says:

    @tall chicks: Vargas


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