I was between Stephen Piscotty and Randal Grichuk for a sleeper post.  Why did Stephen lose out?  Piscotty doesn’t know!  Grey does, though.  They’re roughly the same age; Piscotty will be 25 to start 2016, but Grichuk won’t turn 25 until August.  They were both first round draft picks.  That’s neither here nor there; no more rhyming and I mean it, anyone want a peanut?  I don’t dislike Piscotty, but last year in a full season, he was on pace for around 16 HRs, 5 SBs and a .270 average.  Grichuk was on pace for 23 HRs, 8 SBs and a .250 average.  Those lines aren’t that different for fantasy value.  Twenty points in average makes up for the power and speed lost, but average is fickle and how many times can one write Piscotty doesn’t know?  Piscotty doesn’t know!  Grey does, three times.  That’s it, then a small migraine starts to pulse in your frontal lobe.  Real baseball people who spit and scratch themselves would like Piscotty better (he takes more walks, strikes out less, better OBP).  I like Piscotty too, especially soaked in espresso, but The Amazing Randal feels slightly more upsidey and I just had my computer dictionary learn the word upsidey, so here we are.  Anyway, what can we expect from Randal Grichuk for 2016 fantasy baseball and what makes him a sleeper?

How much Grichuk can Grichuk chuck if Grichuk strikes out 30% of the time?  In that question you will find the sun, the moon and the monkey astrology cards that signify a future windfall of money, so it’s our job to read those cards.  Now, I’m no gypsy; I’m just a boy, standing in front of a girl that was born in a manger in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.  Let’s look at some comp hitters, shall we?  Not to answer, but to keep reading.  Last year, Grichuk struck out 31% of the time after striking out 23% of the time in Triple-A.  His minor league strike out rate makes me think he’ll be closer to a 27-28% strikeout guy.  He swung at 35% of pitches outside of the strike zone and 74% of pitches inside the zone.  Brandon Moss swung at 73% of pitches inside the zone, and 33% outside.  Both had nearly identical line drive rates, their hard contact rates were close.  Moss’s fly ball rate was top ten for all of the major leagues, while Grichuk was in the top 35.  Brandon Moss had 22 HRs and 12 SBs in Triple-A, Grichuk had 25 HRs and 8 SBs.  Moss is around a 27-28% strikeout guy, which Grichuk should be.  Grichuk won’t walk as much as Moss, but, okay, they’re close enough for me.  Grichuk is a young Moss.  I shall call him Pete Moss.  I feel the air coming out of the room comparing someone to Moss, but Moss never really got it together when he as young as 25, i.e., Brandon Moss never had a chance to be Pete Moss.  Grichuk being a step in front of Moss has more room for growth and being upsidey (gotta make it worthwhile to learn a word).  For 2016, I’ll give him the projections of 69/25/82/.253/8 and a rock solid number three outfielder with a chance to be a number two.  The good kind of number two.

 
  1. Simply Fred

    Fred Barker says:
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    1 HR per 13.2 AB and a .295 ISO the 2nd half. Plenty of upside!

      • Simply Fred

        Fred Barker says:
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        @Grey: A good Christmas…saving my mom’s money gift for SON buy-in!

        You enjoying the surfing on the East Coast?

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Crazy weather here, right? I went out yesterday in a t-shirt and wasn’t cold at all

  2. Kiss a bum says:
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    This year my 5×5 league is changing Wins to Wins/quality starts. W and QS are combined and of course only count as one category. Does this affect SP value at all? Would you bump up SP at the draft or draft as usual? Thanks!

    • SwaggerJackers says:
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      @Kiss a bum:

      How are they combined? Does that mean the pitcher has to get either a win or a quality start? What if he gets both in a start?

      In any case, I play in a QS league. It doesn’t change much other than you can draft based more on on skill and worry less about avoiding good pitchers on bad offenses. If anything, don’t reach for average pitchers with good offenses.

      It might sound cliche but draft talent and the stats will follow.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Kiss a bum: Wins/Quality Starts? Is that Wins divided by Quality Starts?

      • goodfold2 says:
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        @Grey: he means wins + QS likely.

  3. Luvdarooks says:
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    Wow I have both

    • Luvdarooks says:
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      NL only. VERY DEEP because after 23 starters we have 15 reserves. 11 teams & 10 KEEPERs/year.( $260). SO OBVIOUS HIGH INFLATION. All get a $5 yearly raise until the owner feels they are no longer worth keeping.
      Grishuk is $6 piscotty is &15
      3 questions?
      .1- you never mentioned grishuks arm. He good to go?
      2-is piscotty worth keeping at $15?
      3–what r piscotty projections for ’16 please ?

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        @Luvdarooks: 1. Haven’t heard anything that makes me think otherwise 2. Sure 3. Around 17/7/.270

  4. Friedman for Freeman says:
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    Abreu had 960 ops 2 years ago and an 850 ops last year. What say you for next year?

    • SwaggerJackers says:
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      @Friedman for Freeman: The 960 was propped up by an insane/unsustainable first half of 2014. He’s more of a 30 homer guy like showed in 2015.

  5. Zeus says:
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    Good write up of Grichuk. Seems like he’s flying a bit under the radar so far but the Cards just seem to get value out of mediocre prospects. What’s the Cards OF look like next year with Holliday moving to first and Heyward gone? Grichuk, Piscotty and Pham?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Holliday’s isn’t playing 1st full time, and if he moves there then Matt Adams or Brandon Moss need to play somewhere…Pham’s not playing

  6. Cruz says:
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    I think that Grichuk will be underrated to a degree, but I think the most underrated guy on that team is Tommy Pham. If they don’t add an OF in trade, FA, or both he will get a ton of AB’s and actually projects better than Grichuck. Neither player is a picture of health though and should be factored into their price.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Pham’s not gonna play more than a usual 4th OF

  7. Friedman for Freeman says:
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    Is Pollock a top 10 keeper? top 15?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Top 15/20 sounds about right

  8. Marvin the Martian says:
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    Schwarbs slash line was 246/355/487 … Do you expect improvement, regression, or about the same?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Slight bit of regression

    • Simply Fred

      Fred Barker says:
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      @Marvin the Martian: 2015:
      vs. right: 23.6% K-rate, .278 ISO, .278 AVG
      vs. left: 44.3% K-rate, .125 ISO, .143 AVG

      He had 56 AB in 38 games vs. lefties.
      176 AB in 64 games vs. righties.

      How long until they sit him altogether vs lefties?
      How much production will one get if he only plays vs. righties (presumably some of those will be when he gets subbed in after a lefty starter leaves, and he will be on your bench anyway).

      VERY marginal chance that he all of a sudden hits lefties and gives full-time production, IMO.

      • Marvin the Martian says:
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        @Fred Barker: Well, technically it’s true. But it’s the same argument against Rizzo 2 years ago. Most young lefties struggle against lefties. The question is how soon he pulls it together to a level that they don’t platoon him.

  9. royce! says:
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    Howdy, Grey! Hope you had some happy holidays.

    Speaking of Christmas, Steamer projects Grichuk to accomplish nearly exactly what he was on pace for last year- 23 HRs, 8 SBs and a .249 average. I would think that it had some “young guy getting his man muscles” built into the projections, but I guess Lloyd Mcclendon didn’t build the system. And that’s why Christmas was a natural transition to discussing Grichuk.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Grichuk is actually Chipmunk in Polish and the Poles visualization of Santa is a giant chipmunk… Happy holidays!

    • J-FOH says:
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      @royce!: what up Royce! steamer is usually conservative, that .249 feels a bit high for me

    • Simply Fred

      Fred Barker says:
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      @royce!: Grichuk’s home-run average distance before 7/24 was 400 ft per HR.

      After 7/23, 411 ft per HR.

      ‘…getting man muschles’!

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        Get them man muscles!

        • Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey says:
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          @Grey: he injured himself from too much weight lifting last season, so this makes sense.

  10. home_bru says:
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    Preston Tucker seems like a guy in the Grichuk/Piscotty mold (no speed, more power). What are the chances he gets the start in LF for the ‘stros? For 2016 would you rank Grichuk>Piscotty>Tucker?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Preston Tucker seems a long shot to play every day…

      • J-FOH says:
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        @Grey: Im thinking Tucker gets traded out of Houston unless he gets some DH time while they wait for Reed….I’m not buying Singleton, who is way more Higher Learning than Boyz n the Hood.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Singleton’s Shafted

          • J-FOH says:
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            @Grey: there will be no poetic justice for Singleton this year

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Reed is coming up 2 fast and 2 furious

              • J-FOH says:
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                @Grey: ….2 with a vengance

                • Grey

                  Grey says:
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                  Reed is my Baby Boy

  11. IV says:
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    Hey Grey, itching for baseball to start again and was wondering what your thoughts are on the following keeper situation. 12 teams 6×6 Roto (OPSxQS) it is a Yahoo League.

    I can keep 2-4 of the following (looking to keep 4).
    Goldy (1st) and Donaldson (2nd) are locks for me. Need to pick 2 of the following:

    Braun (2nd)
    Springer (3rd)
    Marte (4th)
    Arrieta (5th)
    Carrasco (8th)
    Lindor (22nd)
    Familia (22nd)
    Stroman (22nd)
    Kluber (whatever round yahoo projects him for)

    Thanks in advance!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Goldy, Donaldson, Marte, Springer

  12. nick the dick says:
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    Chapman to Yanks, nice

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Wow, big move

      • SwaggerJackers says:
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        @Grey: Oh boy! Can’t wait to see how bad his impending suspension is. If any bullpen can roll with it, it’s the Yankees though.

        I wonder how Andrew Miller feels about this.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Prolly costs Miller at least $25 million in his next salary

          • nick the dick says:
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            @Grey:Presuming your title to be something along the lines of ‘Pinstripes are the New Red for Chapman’

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Haha… Nah, that is solid though…

        • nick the dick says:
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          @SwaggerJackers: Presuming your title to be something along the lines of ‘Pinstripes is the New Red for Chapman’

  13. Bubba with 3 B's says:
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    8 Keepers per team, OBP/SLG instead of AVG/HR. Which side do you like better (before the keeper deadline)?

    Pollock, Schwarber, Abreu
    for
    Stanton, Votto, Strasburg

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Stanton

      • Bubba with 3 B's says:
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        @Grey: Close? Or no?

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Meh, close-ish, but I want Giancarlo

  14. Tom says:
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    Hey Grey,

    Which 10 would you keep out of this list for a forever keeper with no pricing or round restrictions?

    Batters Stat Categories: Runs (R), Singles (1B), Doubles (2B), Triples (3B), Home Runs (HR), Runs Batted In (RBI), Stolen Bases (SB), Walks (BB), Fielding Percentage (FPCT), Batting Average (AVG)
    Pitchers Stat Categories: Innings Pitched (IP), Wins (W), Losses (L), Complete Games (CG), Saves (SV), Strikeouts (K), Earned Run Average (ERA), (Walks + Hits)/ Innings Pitched (WHIP)

    C-Schwarber
    1B-Rizzo
    2B–Rendon
    3B–Bryant
    SS–Correa
    OF–McCutchen
    OF–Joc
    OF–Betts
    Util–Bogaerts
    Bench or Util or OF–Buxton
    SP–Syndergaard
    SP–Danny Salazar

    Thanks!

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Not Salazar or Buxton

      • Tom says:
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        Thank you very much! Do you think Buxton struggles again this year?

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Hopefully not/he shouldn’t

  15. Ryan says:
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    Hey Grey, great piece on Grichuk. It is very good timing for me. Im in a 16 6×6 dynasty and have to keep 6. Thoughts? Thanks a lot in advance.

    Bogarts
    Aberu
    Frazier
    Soler
    Grichuk
    Moose
    Trea Turner
    Souza
    D Travis
    Bird

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Bogaerts, Abreu, Frazier, Soler, Grichuk, Moose

      • RY says:
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        @Grey: Thank you. With that being said, I was just offered Arrieta, Baez and Conforto for Bogaerts. Knowing the 6 you just suggested and me not having a SP, you I do this deal?

        Thanks!

  16. joe says:
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    Love me some Grey knowledge!

    1st look at my keepers for NL5×5 2 Catcher league

    Keep 8:

    Familia 8
    Fernandez 7
    Wong 11 raises ba to 270
    Rendon 10 he was the top dog last yr n only 25
    Rizzo 21
    Polanco 1 bags bags and hoping some power added to 30 bags

    Wellington 2 underated power surge 2 bargain in 2
    Catcher league

    That’s seven but still not loving them yet.

    Rest of them:

    Maybin 2 inj risk but cant ignore 15 Homer 25 bags
    Grichuk 3 yes 25 dingers 265 10 bags

    Peralta (az) 1 look n at what he did n 2nd half. 20 Homer 300 avg 20 bags

    Matt Carpenter 18 too much $
    Igelsias 3 again look at last 2 months he figured something out k machine
    Leake 1 n st louis will help him
    K kendricks 2

    Lost Chapman today but have more than enough decent choices of 8. As with most leagues even and 8 team with 5 person bench, hitters r hard to find(Grichuk and Maybin FOUND last year in free agency) while starters can be found not a lot of depth there either.

    Put down who I like but would love a look see from u grey to get your perspective at this point

    Thanks

  17. Would you say that Mozeilck jumped the gun in trading for Heyward with as much depth the cards have in OF. Grant it he didn’t know how the youngsters would compete. But the Cardinals needed a bat then and still do now and Heyward as good as he is as a whole, was never the middle of the lineup answer the cards needed

  18. Papa Jean Seugra says:
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    I forgot my last commenter name so went with the classic, I am so hyped for baseball season. I miss the Grey write ups!!! My preseason rap:

    Randal Grichuk, Grey told me to make the pick up , I been stuck- on this fantasy football stickup, My team didn’t suck-, but one bad week-, and you’re up shits creek. Fantasy Basketball is for the meek, I don’t care about Jodie Meeks, returning in 10 weeks from a tweaked ankle, I thought I had it locked like Kurt Angle.
    –Ode to Baseballas

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