A Spanish woman, dressed in black, just pedaled past my house, chanting, “Luis Castillo no es Manny Trillo…Luis Castillo no es Manny Trillo…Luis Castillo… Oh shoot, I ripped my stockings!”  It was totally sad.  Kinda like when your best buddy, let’s call him Chase Utley, gets old man knee and the Phillies replace him with Luis CastilloLuis Castillo would be good for my pre-All-Star Game contest where him and Juan Pierre have a home run contest and the gopher ball-happy Rodrigo Lopez is pitching.  Just think of how few back’s we’d have to hear from Berman.  There’s nothing as far as fantasy goes with Castillo.  Even if objects appear closer in the side view, you still can’t see Castillo’s best days.  To give you an idea of how terrible he is, the Mets released him.  Long story short, he’s useless in any league where there are other starting 2Bs available.  This Castillo signing does spell further doom for Utley.  You really can’t draft him at this point.  Also, my giant ostrich head has been in the sand too long with Howard.  No Utley hurts him.  I’m dropping him eight spots in the 2011 fantasy baseball rankings to right behind A-Rod.  I would still draft him, but you can’t expect 115 RBIs or 95 runs at this point.  Well, you can, but people might start to worry about you.  Anyway, here’s some more news in fantasy baseball:

Johnny Cueto – Will miss 10 days or more with shoulder inflammation.  Looks like Jason LaRue’s voodoo doll is finally working.  This sounds like Cueto is going to miss at least a few weeks of the season.  Obviously, not a great sign, but before we take Cueto to the mattresses for getting injured we should tempurpedic our concern.  It’s a long season and he had a 5+ ERA last April and you still drafted him this year.  He gets better in the heat, just DL him once the Reds do.

Brian Wilson – Mild oblique strain.  Well, that’s vague.  Wilson says he’ll be ready for Opening Day.  If he can’t go, it’ll be Romo and his masked luchador, El Machine.

J.J. Putz – His back hurtz.  I’d grab David Hernandez for vulture saves.  He may not get them, but you don’t want any part of anyone else in the bullpen.  Namely, Juan Gutierrez.  By the buh-bye, there’s a closer report coming this afternoon.  You can hardly wait!  No, you!

Kendry Morales – As I told you last week after deciphering clues from the interwebs, he’s starting the year on the DL.  What’s that lovely horn I hear?  Oh, it’s a Trumbo.

Grady Sizemore – Set to test his knee on Tuesday.  Him and Utley should totally cruise for chicks together in Wal-Mart scooters.

Ryan Zimmerman – Someone who won’t be cruising for chicks is Zimmerman with a sore groin.  What a bummer, man.  He says he’ll be fine without many spring ABs.  I’m not too concerned, for now.  Zimmerman does seem like he’s going to have a steep decline in his early 30’s a’la Rolen.  Hopefully, he doesn’t adopt that Rolen-esque fast home run trot that is supposed to be uber-professionalism at its finest but actually comes off even more douchey to me.

Oliver PerezMets released him.  Here’s the world’s smallest violin.  Here’s the world’s smallest violin walking seven straight hitters.

Brad Emaus – The Mets 2B audition – aka the beautiless pageant – is nearing its end.  With Castillo gone and Daniel Murphy being pegged as a “utility” guy, it looks like Rule V pickup Brad Emaus will win the job.  He’s got great plate discipline, which is great in OBP leagues, but he doesn’t have great power or speed.  Think 10/10 if he plays the full year.  There’s still a chance though that they give a lot of playing time to Luis Hernandez (no hit, all glove), Justin Turner (who was great in Northern Exposure), Murphy, or some other blech option.  For full disclosure, we picked him up as a bench guy in our NL-only; his upside is that he beats our incumbent MI, Skip Schumaker.

Starlin Castro – Rudy is high on Castro, saying crazy things like he could take a huge step forward.  Castro’s big spring has done nothing to dampen Rudy’s enthusiasm.

Jeff Baker – Another player Rudy’s going a bit caca-cuckoo over is Baker.  Right now, he’s still nothing but an NL-Only flyer, but Joyce DeWitt’s son is in danger of not even making the team.

Devin Mesoraco – Okay, so some of these updates are because we own these players in LABR, but you need to put shizz out in the universe.  That’s The Secret!  Mesoraco is hitting over .400 this spring, was drafted 15th overall in 2007 and he’s the catcher of the future in Cincy.  He’s worth looking at in dynasty leagues.  Dusty Baker added, “I like it when my catchers’ names sound like wrestlers.  Ramon Hernandez sounds impressive but no one wants to get in a steel cage with someone named Devin Mesoraco.”

J.P. Arencibia – The Jays manager, who 85% of you can’t name, said the Jose member of The Flying Molina Bros. will catch Morrow and Drabek.  When I said in the rankings, Arencibia reminds me of Napoli, I was hoping it wouldn’t be his lack of playing time too.  Looks like Scioscia-ism has crossed the Canadian border!

Pedro Alvarez – 19/1 K/BB rate so far this spring.  People seem pretty sure about drafting Alvarez above Reynolds.  I think Mini Donkey might still have some kick in him.  Cust kayin’.

Charlie Morton – Awarded the fifth starter spot in Pittsburgh.  There are two types of crappy pitchers:  1) The type that get hit because they have bad stuff and 2) The type that get hit because they don’t know how to use their good stuff.  At least with the second type, they might figure it out.  Charlie Morton is the 2nd type.

Nelson Figueroa – Currently the 5th SP on the Astros but he has the talent to be a 6th SP, 7th SP, 8th SP or even higher.  If auction dollars had a face, the $1 would look like Nelson Figueroa and the $2 would be of some other pitcher laughing at the $1.

Jake Peavy – Will miss Opening Day.  Do they make emoticons with tears?  Oh, well, looks like Peavy’s back to usual shizz.  Phil Humber is slated to take his rotation slot.  Humber is from Nacogdoches (KNACK-uh-DOUGH-ches), Texas.  Appropriately, he is not from mackadocious.

Justin Upton – Should be fine, but his knee is a bit sore from tripping on grass.  Who is he, Tommy Chong?

  1. NewBVick says:

    I should know the Jays manager since he was the Sox pitching coach. Without looking I wanna say it’s Jim Farrel.

  2. chata says:

    after 5 years of hanging around like a bad smell , NOW ollie leaves me ?
    and just when i had him pegged for my new league .
    he could have been a star .

    screw that scioscia-ism … it never really did nuthin to advance the
    prole -theriots cause .

  3. Emporers Monkey says:

    Just wondering what you guys think of this strategy I am going to employ this year with my 2nd Util spot. I got both Lind and Kubel fairly late in my cash league draft the other day with Kubel as my lone bench offensive player. What I am planning on doing is playing Kubel if Lind faces a lefty since he hits them so terribly. I guess if they both face lefties I will play whoever is going against the lesser pitcher. Seems like I can get fairly decent production running this platoon.

  4. knighttown says:

    Hey Grey:

    Long winter focused in hockey up here but time to get back at it. Love for some advice on strengths and weaknesses of my team and draft. It’s a 12×10 league, NOT head to head.

    12. Longoria
    13. Vote
    36. Kemp
    37. J. Upton
    60. Hamels

  5. knighttown says:


    61. Pence
    84. Andrus
    85. Greinke
    108. Stanton
    109. Reynolds
    132. Billingsly
    133. Lind
    156. C. Perez
    157. Pagan
    190. J. Chacin

  6. knighttown says:

    191. Raburn
    212. A. Escobar
    213. Lyon
    236. Rodney
    237. I. Kennedy
    260. Cueto
    261. DeLaRosa
    284. Kuo
    285. Ianetta
    308. Minor
    309. McDonald

  7. knighttown says:

    Sorry about the triple post. I think the only polite thing to do is add a 4th explaining that I can’t figure out my iPad.

  8. rvde says:

    In light of the Arencibia news, keep him or pick up Doumit, R. Martin or Iannetta before I Ron Popeil my C?

  9. Ozzie says:

    Had a draft last night, couldn’t sleep the whole night. Not going to post it, to embarrassed.

  10. barker says:

    what’s up grey this is my team in a 20 h2h keeper with lots of extra stats CS hlds BS TB ( on both sides ) among many others its 15×15
    C 1b 2b 3b ss LF CF RF util bn bn bn sp sp rp rp rp rp rp p p bn bn bn bn bn
    18th pick what do you think
    1. (18) Prince Fielder 1B
    2. (23) Matt Kemp CF
    3. (58) Justin Verlander SP
    4. (63) Yovani Gallardo SP
    5. (98) Aaron Hill 2B
    6. (103) Adam Lind 1B,LF
    7. (138) Jonathan Broxton RP
    8. (143) Ángel Pagán LF,CF,RF
    9. (178) Michael Cuddyer 1B,3B,RF
    10. (183) Tim Hudson SP
    11. (218) Manny Ramírez LF
    12. (223) Kevin Gregg RP
    13. (258) Reid Brignac 2B,SS
    14. (263) John Buck C
    15. (298) Carl Pavano SP
    16. (303) Mike Minor SP
    17. (338) Dan Johnson 1B,3B
    18. (343) Michael Pineda SP
    19. (378) Danny Espinosa 2B
    20. (383) Kevin Jepsen RP
    21. (418) Peter Moylan RP
    22. (423) Sergio Santos RP
    23. (458) Ryan Perry RP
    24. (463) Brad Penny SP
    25. (498) Matt Domínguez 3B
    26. (503) Andrew Cashner RP

    also someone is trying to get rid of wright b/c he auto drafted first few rds and got wright and beltre — i offered hill cuddyer and pavano for wright raburn and morrow — i know it seems like a lowball offer but its a crazy league and weird trades go through — anyway do u think i have enough pitching depth to switch hudson with pavano if he rejects it which as of now (2 days later) he hasn’t — also should i throw in a MRP to sweeten the pot — i should go all out to get wright, right??

  11. barker says:

    john farrell is the manager of the jays w/o looking

  12. RonWashington'sStache says:

    I have the first overall pick in a draft scheduled for tonight. Part of me wants to throw caution (and reason) to the wind and take Hanley over Pujols. My indecision stems from the good depth at 1B, and the completely lack thereof at SS.
    Am I overthinking this? Do I go with Pujols and then aim for a guy like Andrus in the middle rounds? I’m typically very much opposed to all speed/no power guys, like Andrus, cause SAGNOF.

  13. Cain Fan says:

    Grey does the Utley news help Victorino? He will move up in the lineup hitting 1 or 2 (instead of 6) and will probably get the green light to run more as well. Do you OF rankings change at all?

  14. elwood blues says:

    NL 12 Team Keeper League.
    As mentioned last night, my save situation is not ideal.

    I have Lyon and Venters protected heading into the auction.. for my third option I am going to have to throw big money to get Lidge, Putz, or K-Rod.. the only 3 closers likely available.. as you can imagine, that’s not ideal.

    Do I take my chances with Lyon and Venters.. and pick up a Motte or Henderson for cheap and spend my money on hitters? or spend thru the teeth to get one of the 3??

  15. Walmart scooters??? Based soley on photos of Utley and Sizemore with their shirts off and their millions of dollars, Those guys are at least pulling underage tail at Target well into their 40s. Maybe even an upscale regional grocery story.

  16. kangaroo hops says:

    With news (not new, but new to me) that Kinsler will be lead-off in Texas, how does that affect both Kinsler’s and Andrus’ values? I have both, and am a bit worried. Is the optimism still there for Andrus?

  17. Wilsonian says:

    Really exciting question here…

    Jose Lopez or Brandon Allen for a bench bat?

  18. HldOnMgnolia says:

    In light of Zimm’s issues, would you rather have

    Votto/Mcab + Zimm/Youk


    Longo/Wright + Fielder/Teix

    coming out of round 2?

  19. Frank Rizzo says:

    Good grief! Nothing but gloom/doom in this post. Before last year I do believe Zimm dealt with a lot of injuries. I’m thinking I really want Longoria, Wright, or A Rod pretty bad in the 1st two rounds this year. A Rod will have his issues too, but I’m hoping for a bounceback.

    I’m on board with Rudy as far as Castro goes. I’m liking him more and more, especially based on where I can draft him.

  20. Ghostface Przybilla says:

    Jeff Baker or JJ Hardy?

  21. Rick says:

    Grey, I’m doing my first no inning limit (900 inn minimum) league this year. I was wondering if your strategy would change in this kind of setup, and if so how? Thsnks

  22. KeeblerMN says:

    They do make emoticons with tears. Apparently the proper way to say crying for geeks is “QQ” it’s supposed to be eyes with tears.
    Nerdery 101 class is now complete.

  23. carlos marmLOL says:

    Hey Mr. Big Shot Screenwriter,

    Everyone down at the office is wise to you. Stop writing this fantasy crap and get back to work on Big Momma’s House Ain’t Trippin’ 2: Return of the Bloomps.

    – Irv @ CAA

  24. sean says:

    @Grey re: Oli P: here’s the world’s smallest violin eating froot loops on the couch while getting paid 12M.

  25. Karl says:

    You forgot to list Shaun Marcum, whose shoulder is experiencing tightness. It’s a red flag for anyone, but for someone coming off Tommy John it can be a bigger red flag.

    Marcum’s been flagged before for having a delivery that could hurt his arm, and with a new ligament in his elbow, it’s natural that the pain and issues would move to his shoulder.

    It could be nothing … or it could be a huge red flag. Surprised it wasn’t mentioned.

  26. A Hill O' Beans says:

    @Grey: A few questions for you.

    Who starts in place of Utley? Castillo, Wilson Valdez, or someone else.

    Which 2 of these guys are going to be starters for Arizona? Brandon Allen, Branyon, Nady, Miranda. Will the losers even make the team?

    I know, these are exciting options and I’m sure everyone has been wanting to ask these questions, but, 20 team leagues will do that to you. I’m just happy Brent Morel was named the starter since I already named him a starter on my fantasy team…

  27. Mark says:

    I like Castro too. If I miss on the big three he’s the SS I’m finding myself winding up with. I like him better than Ian Desmond anyway (and think Desmond is a respectable bargain where he’s getting drafted), and I don’t see such a huge difference between those two and a lot of the SS going higher. In Yahoo! Castro’s going around pick #150 as the last palatable SS, so I find myself reaching for in the 11th or 12th him when I have to. But I like his upside the best. Is his .290-8-20 really that different from Desmond’s .270-15-15 or even Alexei Ramirez’s .280-18-15? To me that line is pretty equal to Desmond and even features more upside since its doubtful Desmond takes a huge step forward in any category while Castro could more easily hit a couple more homers or steal a few more bases, and he has the advantage of having a bit of high level predictability in a category where its hard to come by (AVG). Alexei’s line is clearly better, but not 80-90 picks better. Ditto Alexei with Elvis Andrus, and Stephen Drew somewhere in between the point about Alexei and Desmond (Drew’s my OBP league target after the big three). Overall I find Castro to be the best combo of bargain floor and a touch of upside to jump the rankings a bit.

  28. poop says:

    12 team H2H league 5×5 any suggestions on where i am thin?

    1-A gonz
    3-a rod
    ss- alexi ramirez
    OF- stubbs
    OF- granderson
    P-brett anderson
    P-daniel Hudson
    bench-edwin jackson
    bench-mike minor
    bench-logan morrison
    bench chris johnson
    bench james macdonald

  29. Mark says:

    Addendum: If I wind up with Castro, I’ll also reach for Nishioka (especially since if I wind up with Castro both my MI are usually going to come no earlier than the 11th round and Nishi has dual eligibility, if I do land a big three SS Raburn’s the guy I reach for later). It gives me a solid chance of winding up above average to excellent in 2-3 cats (AVG, SB, R) around average for the position in one (HR) and potentially below average in just one (RBI), which is a pretty great value for a position that I spent zero picks on before #125 or so.

  30. Jake in Columbus says:

    “Slide, Trumbo!” The name’s good fodder for bad puns. *Sad Trumbo*

  31. Jim says:

    I’m intrigued by S. Castro, Grey what you think his upside stats are?

    85 15 65 20 .300?

    Also for those who miss on Castro. Take A. Cabrera 10 rds later, should put up similar stats.

  32. Big Nate says:

    The fantasy prognosticator formerly known as Grey,

    Drafted this team last night in a 10 team 6×6 H2H league with the added categories of OPS and Complete Games (which is a worthless category IMO):

    I feel like my pitching is a little bit upside-y and could have WHIP and ERA issues. Where do you see holes in the squad?

    C – Wieters
    1B – Votto
    2B – Phillips
    SS – Desmond
    3B – Wright
    OF – Cruz
    OF – Heyward
    OF – Pence
    OF – Gardner
    OF – Tabata
    UTIL – Manny
    BE – Aaron Hill
    BE – Raburn
    P – Liriano
    P – Gallardo
    P – Scherzer
    P – Brett Anderson
    P – Morrow
    P – Gio Gonzalez
    P – J Zimmerman
    P – Valverde
    P – Kimbrel
    BE – Mike Minor

    And – I just dropped some daquiri love in the mail for you. Thanks for all you do…

  33. Calogero says:

    Utley’s fine. It’s all just…people making a big deal out of nothing. He’s FINE! UTLEY IS FINE!

    /Pulls out chunk of hair, looks at it, laughs


  34. Exactly says:

    Hey Grizzey (and others):

    12-team, 4 OF league, would you trade j. upton/volquez for lester? I already have Holliday and Kemp, and I can pick up Torres off waivers to replace J-Up.

    Thanks for the advice.

  35. royce! says:

    Rhymes is starting at 2B for opening day at least, for all you deep league SAGNOFers.

  36. Tony says:

    @GREY: here’s my RCL squad. What’s your thoughts? It’s my 3rd year in the RCLs/Roto, so I’m learning, but I feel better about this year than the past 2!

    C-Russel Martin
    1B- Dunn
    2B-Omar Infante
    2b/ss- Aybar
    OF-Bruce,Rasmus, Tabata, Marakakis, Pagan
    Bench-Borbon, McClouth

    SP- Lester, Hamels, Jhoulys chacin, colby lewis, Mike Minor, Slowey
    RP- Soria, Mo-Riv, F-cordero, Ogando

    Pitching went real late, i think Hanson was around in the 9th? Makes me wish I woulda waited. I have a good upsidey OF, I hate my middle infielders aybar, infante, etc? phewww, just kept getting sniped….

    Anyones opinion is welcomed. THANKS.

  37. Jim says:

    @ Calogero

    While I think 15 Homers this year is unlikely, I do think It’s possible. Have heard he has bulked up a bit this year and all ready has 4 homers in ST.

  38. Mark says:

    @Jim, Grey, Calogero

    I think that type of value is about his upside, but I tend to think he’s more likely to steal 30 bases than hit 15 HR. He stole 28 across two levels in 127 games in 2009 (96 games at HiA the rest in Double-A), so I think his SB potential is being a bit underestimated. I also do think he has a bit more HR potential than people give him credit for, but the problem is it would probably be mitigated because it would come as a result of a higher FB% and likely include a higher K%, so his BABIP and AVG would dip if he’s got a shot at double-digit HR. But in Wrigley, if he can get the ball in the air a bit more (19.5/51.3/29.2 LD/GB/FB% last year) he could certainly luck into a few more bombs than he’s being given credit for. Ideally he’ll get the ball in the air just a teensy bit more (~35%) and strike out a bit less and still be able to hit .290+ and inch towards 10 HR. I’d put his ceiling more at .310-10-35, but I’d be more willing to bet on a line like that for 2012, and 35 SBs may not be realistic for him in the majors, though I also think its too soon to completely rule it out in a 99th percentile type projection given what he did in the minors in 2009 and his age.

  39. amscalone says:

    @Grey: Had a very strange draft last night. 12 pitchers off the board in the first 4 rounds, with at least 2 more in each round for the next several. 10 teams, 10×10 Weekly H2H, with some roster requirements (eg. we start 1 catcher, but have to carry a backup and we start 2 RP, but have to carry a third). I punt saves and draft starters with RP eligibility to get the extra starts during the week. Here’s what I wound up with, what do you think?

    C: Posada
    1b: Votto
    2b: Phillips
    3b: A-Rod
    SS: Andrus
    OF: Kemp
    OF: McCutchen
    OF: Pence
    UT: Krispie
    UT: Rasmus
    BENCH: Sandoval, Hill, Abreu, Bignac, J. Montero (back up catcher might as well be high upside, right?)

    SP: Liriano
    SP: Anderson
    SP: Billingsley
    SP: Gio
    SP: Kuroda
    RP: Chacin
    RP: Hellickson
    BENCH: Zimmermann, IPK, Narveson(RP eligible).


  40. Garvey's Illegitimate child says:

    @ Grey. final pitcher spots in a league that does QS. I have Minor, Niese and Lowe, available is Wood, McDonald and Hodgepadre Harrang. Any suggestions?

    I love when none of my guys make the “negative” list

  41. Rick says:

    @Grey: there is no maximum innings so you can use as many as you want, but there is a 900 inning minimum

  42. elwood blues says:

    Follow Up on Saves..

    In our league , bidding for closers tends to be high already.
    Wilson last year went for $28, Broxton for $34.. so I would imagine Lidge would go for something like that. Putz, maybe in the low 20’s.

  43. ProjectBadass says:

    12-team roto 5×5 (QS instead of Wins) 4-player keeper league (you lose the round you drafted them in the redraft), 200 GS limit

    I am working on a trade to strengthen my OF…I was offered Cruz (3), Shields (19), and Jurrjens (21) for Oswalt (9), Huff (10), and Gio (19)

    I def do not like Jurrjens, so I was thinking of proposing Cruz (3), Jordan Zimmermann (18), and Volquez, (17) for Oswalt (9), Huff (10), and Gio (19)…What do you think?

    C- Posada
    1B- Miggy
    2B- Walker
    3B- A-rod
    SS- Andrus
    MI- Brignac
    CI- Pena
    OFx5- Heyward, Rios, Granderson, Huff, Manny
    UTIL- Smoak
    BEN- David Murphy

    SP- Sabathia, YoGo, Oswalt, Anderson, Hellickson, Gio, James McDonald
    RP- Kimbrle, Frank Francisco, Franklin, Rodney, Fuentes

  44. Charles says:

    @Grey: In response to @Ron Washington’s Stache you say that you’d consider Votto over Hanley before Hanley over Pujols. Is this just your way of saying Pujols is the obvious #1, or would you actually consider taking Votto at #2 in a 12-man standard league?

  45. Anonymous says:

    Had a wonderful draft last night, except for two blips. 10 team 6×6 (OPS and Holds) Yahoo Ladies League (3 OF, 2 UTIL, No MI/CI) First six rounds were keepers.
    1. (8) Hanley Ramírez
    2. (13) Miguel Cabrera
    3. (28) CC Sabathia
    4. (33) Roy Halladay
    5. (48) Jay Bruce
    6. (53) Mike Stanton
    7. (68) Francisco Liriano
    8. (73) Pedro Alvarez
    9. (88) Chris Young
    10. (93) Matt Cain
    11. (108) Aaron Hill
    12. (113) Mike Napoli
    13. (128) Curtis Granderson
    14. (133) Colby Lewis
    15. (148) Leo Núñez
    16. (153) Drew Storen
    17. (168) Joel Hanrahan
    18. (173) Evan Meek
    19. (188) Hiroki Kuroda
    20. (193) Hong-Chih Kuo
    21. (208) Ryan Raburn
    22. (213) Andrés Torres
    23. (228) Ike Davis
    24. (233) Brett Myers

    Napoli and Granderson were autopicks because my internet connection was being wonky. I don’t mind the Napoli pick, but I hate Granderson. Thoughts, Grey/Anyone?

  46. Up in this Mug says:


    I think I may take your advice and draft Danny Espinosa with the last pick in my draft.

    Do I need to cover my ass with someone like Raburn, or is that a senseless waste of a roster spot? Rosters are tight in this league – 21 players.

  47. Denys says:

    Thought on Bartolo Colon, and his value, if he gains a rotation spot for the Yanks?

  48. joe from point pleasant says:


    12 Team H2H Points Keeper League

    I Give: Pelfrey and Storen
    I Get: Thornton

    My Rotation:
    Felix, Oswalt, Billingsley, Anderson, Chacin, Niese, Pelfrey, Bedard, Holland, Bailey

    My Closers:
    Storen, Fuentes, League

    Do you think this trade benefits my team? Do i pull the trigger?

  49. GTS says:

    This question is for Rudy if he reads this.

    Would you keep Starlin Castro for $1 in 10 team H2H 6×5 (+OBP) mixed auction league over any of these guys?

    Fielder $28
    Holliday $19
    Upton $17
    Werth $15
    Latos $8
    Lincecum $13

    Inflation is +$3 every year but if I could get a stud MI for cheap for years to come I would be really happy. Ideas? Advice?

  50. OaktownSteve

    OaktownSteve says:

    @Mark, post #32: For what it’s worth, I think Alexei Ramirez is a pretty interesting option at ss this year. Rudy’s pointshares have him at 73 overall. My system has him at around 88. White Sox committed to running more, I think Ramirez goes 20/20 .280 and north of 70 runs and rbis. Doesn’t really overwhelm you but the reliability plus the contribution across 5 categories makes him pretty attractive. He’s kind of the SS Choo of ss’s. I can see some scenarios (Reyes gets injured or doesn’t run as much, Rollins and Jeter continue the age slide) where Alexei ends up the #3 shortstop overall.

    I do like Castro a bit this year as well. Particularly attractive on a team where you’ve got some Uptons, Dunns and Reynoldseses and you’re looking for a MI that can stabilize your avg a little. There’s a bunch of low average high steal Pennington/Escobar types in that category, but only a couple late rounders that will hit over .270.

  51. Derek in Utah says:

    Trumbo could be a pleasant surprise if the Angels are wise and keep him on the roster.

    Starlin will move the rankings at a steady rate; MI’s like him do not come around very often.

    Peavy’s last hurrah? Heck, if Penny is still in the league….

  52. Rick says:

    @grey: sorry I should have been more specific. It’s a no innings maximum (900 inn minimum) 12-team Mixed roto, with the typical 14 hitters, and 28 total roster spots.

  53. A Hill O' Beans says:

    If, for some strange reason, you wanted to use an extremely one sided strategy for your draft which do you think would work better (10 team league, GS max instead of IP max).

    1) Drafting your entire offense before taking any pitching. Then most likely being left with high upside but risky SPers.


    2) Drafting hitting in the first, say, 3 rounds, then going SPing for the next 6 rounds (because I think you can get #1 or #2 SPers for around 9 rounds in a 10 team league).

    I’m thinking if you did #2 you could actually put together a pretty good offense to go with it, as long as you aren’t too concerned about getting guys who bring a good AVG to the table.

    So if you had to pick one strategy or the other, which would you go with? I’ve actually tried both recently and was pleasantly surprised with what I ended up with.

  54. Eddy says:

    Grandy has a right-oblique strain.

  55. Mark says:

    @Oaktown Steve

    I agree, and based on MDC’s ADPs Alexei is probably the guy I target at SS if I miss a big three. I have him ranked ahead of Rollins and basically neck-and-neck with Jeter. In Yahoo! though I think he’s not really going for any kind of bargain, he’s the sixth SS off the board and you really have to take him in the 4th or 5th round if you want to make certain you get him in the drafts and mocks I’ve done. I agree that he’s a nice, stable option with solid power/speed and he won’t hurt you in avg/r/rbi, but he’s still a huge step down from the upsides (and in the former two cases, expectations) of Hanley, Tulo, and Reyes. I don’t entirely ascribe to Grey’s philosophy of punting MI, but this year I’m taking something like that approach with 2B because there’s so much back end depth and taking a sort of stars-or-scrubs mentality with SS. At least this year, I would rather spend my 5th round pick on a 4-5 category outfielder than an MI and then wait another 80 picks on Castro, who should provide overall value that is closish to Ramirez, especially if (as you point out) I have (or plan to have) an Adam Dunn or Mike Stanton on my roster.

  56. OaktownSteve

    OaktownSteve says:

    @Royce: I disagree with the April assessment. In roto, you’re in for the long haul anyway. In h2h it’s even less true because you want a guy who is going to be hot when the playoffs come around. Not that I put too much stock in the consistency of who is hot when year to year. Even LaRoche had a decent first half last year, after all.

    @A Hill o’ Beans: As somebody who is always looking for arbitrage, loopholes and new strategies, I can say I think it’s slightly pathological on my part. It’s like a control thing. If you have a whacked out strategy, you can predict how your draft will go and get a team that matches your blueprint, which is kind of comforting. The truth is that so many people play fantasy sports now and share information on the internet that it’s become a very efficient marketplace in competetive leagues. Out of the box strategies have all been tried and the reason they aren’t the norm is because they generally don’t improve your chances of winning. That being said, it’s always fun to try and win by coming up with your own secret sauce. Just found that it’s usually not as successful as trying to draft good players at each slot, maintain as much balance across hitting/pitching, positions and categories as possible.

  57. Busta says:

    Grey (insert compliment here):

    12 team H2H points weekly lock league favoring power bats…mixed feelings on team. 1pt for R, RBI,1b; 2pt for 2b; 3pt per 3b; 4pt per HR; 2pt per SB…10pt per W; -5pt per L; 7pt per S, 1pt per K,IP; -1pt per ER.

    C: Montero
    1: Pena (all top tier 1b gone by mid 2nd round)
    2: K. Johnson
    SS: HanRam
    3B: Youk
    IF: P. Alvarez
    OF: J. Upton
    OF: H. Pence
    OF: Swisher
    UT: Lind
    B: Nishioka
    B: Tabata

    SP: Kershaw
    SP: Gallardo
    SP: B. Anderson
    SP: I. Kennedy
    RP: Marmol
    RP: C. Perez
    B: Vazquez
    B: Cueto
    B: A. Bailey (sitting there at end of draft)
    B: M. Minor
    DL: (soon to be Cueto)

  58. Up in this Mug says:

    Question for the commenters:

    If I can get out of the 4th round with the below players, how should I feel about it?

    Jose Reyes
    Matt Kemp
    Ryan Zimmerman

    12 team, mixed 5×5 H2H keeper league

  59. Wilsonian says:

    Madson or Ogando for my last RP? No holds counted.

  60. OaktownSteve

    OaktownSteve says:

    @Mike: agree with you. I won’t take him earlier than 6th round and won’t reach for him. I did one Yahoo draft and he fell well below his Yahoo rank and ADP. Also very Choo-ish in that regard. Just a guy that’s so well balanced folk don’t immediately recognize the worth. There’s no apparent big upside. I think he might tend to fall because people who are pro-position scarcity don’t target him as one of the must haves and folks who are anti-position scarcity are all punting MI. One of those guys where when you get him where you want him or at the price you want you feel pretty good.

  61. Calogero says:

    Where does Thornton slot with regards to other closers right now (he wasn’t on your rankings list)?

    He’s got a good SP corps with the Sox, solid setup men who won’t cough up every lead, and a great K-rate and ratios over the past few years.

    All the underlying factors put him right on par with Brian Wilson, probably actually a little ahead accounting for regression in Wilson’s ERA and injury concerns. But then again, Wilson has better job security.

    I think I’d put Thornton in his own tier, right behind Wilson and in front of Papelbon. His ADP and default rankings are still lagging behind the news that he’ll close in Chicago, so he can be had after K-Rod and Street in a lot of leagues, but put up numbers like the guys going in rounds 7-9

  62. Wilsonian says:

    Slowey going to the ‘pen.

    Phils might go after Young to replace Utley (who might be out for the season according to Roto Info).

    Peavy out until possibly late April.

    That is all for now.

  63. OaktownSteve

    OaktownSteve says:

    @Up in this Mug: I think there’s higher than average injury/missed time risk with 3 out of those 4 which is more than I’m generally happy with but I’m also thinking it could be pretty rad. Go big or go home, as they say.

  64. OaktownSteve

    OaktownSteve says:

    @Mark…sorry for calling you Mike

  65. Martin says:

    @grey- could you rank Chacin, J-Zimm, and Javi Vaz por favor?

  66. Martin says:

    @grey- also, yahoo has stubbs ranked 59 overall. If I have the 58th pick in the draft and figure stubbs and BJ up will both fall to me who do I pick?

  67. Mark says:

    # OaktownSteve

    No worries! And lucky you got Ramirez to fall. I had a draft where Rollins fell to the 7th and I just couldn’t pass, but part of me wanted to. I’d be all over Ramirez if he fell to the 6th and I didn’t have Hanley/Tulo/Reyes, definitely agree that he’s kind of the Choo of SS. It worked out okay because Castro wound up going way earlier than usual, he might have even gone before Andrus if I remember correctly, so I probably would have been stuck with a SS I was trying to avoid anyway.

  68. Keeper league Looking to win this year, should I trade Latos and Heyward for Carl Crawford? I still have Hamels/Greinke/Lilly/Nolasco, could use Runs/Sb/RBI

  69. brad says:

    14 team h2h points league
    Weeks, A-Rod, J-Up, CarGo and Reynolds were my keepers.

    C- Martin
    1b- Morneau
    2b- Weeks
    3b- Arod
    SS- Hanley
    OF- J-Up
    OF- C. Lee
    OF- CarGo
    Util- K. Johnson
    B- M. Reynolds
    B- C. Beltran
    B- B. Allen

    SP – J. Sanchez
    SP- S. Marcum
    SP- Garza
    SP- Chacin
    SP-Mad Bum
    RP- Perez
    RP- Putz
    RP- Narveson
    BE- De La Rosa
    BE- Minor

    I kinda panicked and reached on SPs when the last of my top targets went off the board (i was drafting at the turn.) I’m obviously weak in the SP department, but I’m thinking I try to move Weeks and or A-Rod/Reynolds to land some pitching early on.

    Any thoughts?

  70. OregonianRedbird says:

    14-team mixed keeper league. Draft is done, and I ended up needing a little speed and saves. Would you drop Justin Smoak or Eric Young for Will Venable? Yeah, EY is fast but I think he was a mistake because I don’t see him getting at-bats.

    I also took fliers on Wainwright and Strasburg since I can keep them ultra cheap in 2012 and sorta cheap in 2013. Would you drop either for Sergio Romo, Mark Lowe, Alexei Ogando, Octavio Dotel or Sean Burnett? (those are the best saves options on the free agent list, but none are sure things).

  71. Derek in Utah says:

    @OregonianRedbird Grab Venable in place of EY. Drop Wainwright for Romo especially if your league counts Holds.

  72. OregonianRedbird says:

    @Derek in Utah Thanks – No holds in our league… I was going to take Romo but then saw this morning’s headline that Wilson said he would be pitching if this were the regular season. But it’s probably silly to hold both Wainer and Strasburg with only 1 DL spot.

  73. Derek in Utah says:

    @Oregonian: ya, hold onto Stras for trading power. He may even pitch late in the season. Might as well trade Wainer for someone who could help you. As the band Duran Duran’s newest CD puts it: “All You Need is Now”.

  74. Joel says:

    Grey, did a couple of mocks on Yahoo last night in my 8 hole, and stunningly Cabrera fell to me both times. Is there something that I’m missing, or are people overeacting to possibilities. He is after all still playing. If he’s there at 8 he MUST be taken, right?

  75. Nate says:

    Love the site, check it daily, and tell everyone not in my league to check it out.

    How would you rank these 4 outfielders in the order of which you would draft first?

    BJ. Upton

  76. fitz says:

    I’d say probably 15+% of your readers are Sox or Jays fan and know John Farrell is the coach.

  77. thewiz says:

    My team lacking power because I have way to many speed guys (reyes, gardener, figgins, and Andrus), should I try trading Reyes for Uggla even though Reyes is rated higher?

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