When perusing for 2020 fantasy baseball sleepers — I peruse, ya’ll! — this jumped out at me like weird nipples on men at a public pool, Scott Kingery had a top eight line drive rate, tied with Cody Bellinger. The top eight is not as elite as you might imagine, assuming you’re not still imagining weird nipples on strange men. There’s some elite guys in there — the aforementioned Bellinger, Freeman, Trout, Merrifield — but it also has guys like David Fletcher and Domingo Santana, which is why I’ve liked them in the past. So, is Kingery part of that elite line drive rate group or the other bleh group? First off, Fletcher is his own beast, or rather non-beast. A Blech Ness Monster, so to speak. He slaps the ball like he’s playing Whack-A-Mole with a broken mallet handle, and is a batting average play, if anything. He’s more akin with the guy who’s ninth on the line drive rate — Adam Frazier. So are Kingery and Domingo Santana akin — Dokingo Scantana? I’d actually suggest Domingo is Fletcher with bad contact rates. Domingo had a similar fly ball and ground ball rate to Fletcher, but Fletcher had a 10% strikeout rate (elite) and Sunday Santana’s 32% strikeout rate is diseased. Good illustration of this is Domingo’s launch angle is 200th overall, and Kingery’s is 50th. (Fletcher’s is even more slappy at 254th.) So, Scott Kingery has nothing in common with Fletcher or Domingo, but does that mean he has a lot more in common with Bellinger, Trout, et al (not the Israeli airline), or rather…So what can we expect from Scott Kingery for 2020 fantasy baseball and what makes him a sleeper?

There was one guy I failed to mention in the top eight line drive rate that is actually similar to Kingery — burying the lede! Jorge Polanco had a near-identical line drive rate, similar fly ball rate and hard contact rate. Last year, Polanco hit 22 homers. Obviously Polanco’s got a lot less speed (4 bags). So, think about how valuable Polanco was, but give him steals. As Our Commissioner Manfred says as he stares at a baseball, “Your juices flowing yet? Good!” Now, Polanco hit .295, which is a bit better than Kingery’s .258, said Mr. Obvious. Does Kingery have any chance of hitting for a better average? You’d think with those line drives, right? I am simpatico with your rhetorical questions! The percentage of pitches Kingery swung at outside of the strike zone went from 39.4% to 33.7% while his percentage for balls swung at inside the strike zone went from 64.6% to 73.4%. That is tremendous. He’s still having contact problems (70%) and swinging strike (15.3%) issues, but he’s at least figuring out the right time to swing. At 25 years of age and only going into his third full year, his 29.4% strikeout rate last year can drop dramatically. Will it get to 16.5% and produce a .295 average like Jorge Polanco? That seems ambitious, ya bishes (that rhymes). He could hit .270+ pretty easily though, and, throw some luck into that, maybe he hits .280+. So, 22 homers, .270 and speed? Yummers! How much speed is the only thing left to figure out. He looks like he’s fired out of a cannon on the basepaths. His sprint speed is elite-ish. None of that’s transferred to his steals. He had 15 steals last year in 19 attempts, which is just okay. *sad trombone* He has 30+ steal speed, but I don’t know if we see it. More times on base (from a better average), a different manager and more confidence from being in the league another year should all help. There’s a cheap Fernando Tatis Jr. lurking here. Call him Raccoon-fur-nando. Or not. Your call. For 2020, I’ll give Scott Kingery projections of 80/22/69/.271/24 in 582 ABs with a chance for more.

 
  1. The Great Knoche says:
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    You couldn’t have waited until after he got drafted to publish this one?

    Liked my picks last night. Willie C and Franmil in rounds 8/9. That’s .270 and 75 HR in round 8/9

    • Dave D says:
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      Yeah, I like Willie C too. Good pick. Your team looks really good so far. This is going to be one though league!

      • Dave D says:
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        Tough league

    • Malicious Phenoms says:
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      Willie C gets 600 plus at bats he cud easily hit 40 himself.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Yeah, I like both of them a lot… The people in our draft are really on top of who to draft, been impressed so far… I’ve been taking super lame safe guys like Benintendi, but at the value I got him? Couldn’t pass him up

      • Dave D says:
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        Yeah, good pick, I like Benintendi there too. If I didn’t use my first two picks on OF I might’ve grabbed him as well. Could potentially rebound to 20/20 .280 I believe

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yeah, worst case scenario seems okay even there… Or close, since he finished around 200 on player rater last year

  2. TC says:
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    Is Bauer as a 4th and Conforto as a 14th worth trading to get Buehler as a 19th. I’m already pretty stacked on my keeper group, but don’t want to throw away too much trade value if it’s not worth it.

    • Malicious Phenoms says:
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      I’d make that trade for Buehler.

    • Cram It says:
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      Buehler

    • Donkey Teeth

      Donkey Teeth says:
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      Buehler

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Agree with others

  3. The Great Knoche says:
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    I’d want Buehler

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Buehler…Buehler…Buehler? Are you guys doing a bit?

      • Smitty says:
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        Yes!!

  4. Donkey Teeth

    Donkey Teeth says:
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    Just finishing up the 13th round over here in the Beat Donkey Teeth NFBC League. Hows the slowest draft ever (Beat Grey League) going, guys?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Our group of guys, one of the best group of guys assembled, decided to finish our draft closer to the actual baseball season

      • Donkey Teeth

        Donkey Teeth says:
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        Hopefully Grey only times out a few more times!

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          I timed out once bc I was saving a kitten in a tree, but I set my queue!

        • Dave D says:
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          Ha! Man, its a bit tedious, but I really want to take some of Greys $ again this year. I paid this years entry with some of that coin afterall. Maybe he wins it back, but I’ll make him earn it if he does.

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            When Cougs heard I lost last year, I had to sleep in the dog house for three months… Luckily, the dog’s house is better furnished than ours

            • Dave D says:
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              Ha! Three months is a bit severe. I can understand if it was a week, but why displace the poor dog so long? That seems severe. What’d she do when you announced your prize in the Postseason tournament?

              • Grey

                Grey says:
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                Haha, I was able to move back in! BTW, the winnings for that should’ve been like 5 to 10 times that… It was so hard!

                • Donkey Teeth

                  Donkey Teeth says:
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                  We got hosed!

                  • Grey

                    Grey says:
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                    Haha, how come everyone likes your team better? I don’t get it, seriously flummoxed

                    • Donkey Teeth

                      Donkey Teeth says:
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                      I have sexier names!

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Yeah, must be… People love Vladdy and Ohtani and Buehler and yeah, your team is sexier… I need sex appeal!

                    • Dave D says:
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                      Just remember, numbers win over names. Ive seem some pretty boring rosters prevail. There’s no way Ohtani will return value on his NFBC ADP of 74. Just a sexy name.

                  • Donkey Teeth

                    Donkey Teeth says:
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                    Yea Dave, but I got Ohtani at 98!

                    Gimme those 120 ace innings plus some sweetener offensive stats when he gets a week off from pitching.

                    • DonnieD says:
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                      I am feeling better with Ohtani at 125. Thanks

                • Dave D says:
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                  Hopefully she lets you reinvest your earnings into 2020 contests. I can already tell you’re more dialed in than last year.

                  • Grey

                    Grey says:
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                    I like my team a lot, but questioning everything now that people like Donkey’s team

                    • Malicious Phenoms says:
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                      Donkeys 1st 4 picks are better than yours.your 2nd thru 4 will not be as good as they were in 2019 IMHO.

                    • Donkey Teeth

                      Donkey Teeth says:
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                      A Donkey of the People

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Donkey’s won over the hearts and minds, it’s true

                    • Donkey Teeth

                      Donkey Teeth says:
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                      Hearts, minds and asses

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Haha

                    • Dave D says:
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                      No BS, Grey, Id totally take yours. Turner and Mondesi are similar as ate Buehler and Gioloto, but I would way rather have Darvish than Synd, and Alonso over Vlad. I don’t like the Jansen pick but no worse than Ohtani.

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      I know, right? I don’t think it’s close tbh, but I’m in the minority apparently

                    • Hernan says:
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                      There’s a ton of risk in DT’s roster, “120 IP of “Ace” numbers “, PFFT, like the first 100 and so innings after TJ are guaranteed command, guaranteed ace numbers, “Turner and Mondesi are “similar “, lol, didn’t know Turner is a free swinger coming off shoulder surgery…

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Haha, yeah, I don’t get it… I don’t hate his team, I like some of those guys, but I don’t think it’s that close — Giolito = Buehler, maybe better with IP and Ks and Yu > Noah

                    • Donkey Teeth

                      Donkey Teeth says:
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                      Which great pitchers struggled after TJ? Jose Fernandez? Darvish? Even Dinelson Lamet looked sharp.

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Ohtani hasn’t thrown 120 IP since 2016, not sure where 120 IP even came from

                    • Hernan says:
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                      Jose Fernandez , 64 innings year after TJ, Yu, 100, Lamet 73 of 4+ ERA, hardly “120 innings of Ace numbers”…, that simple…

                    • Donkey Teeth

                      Donkey Teeth says:
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                      How much recovery time did those guys have after TJ compared to Ohtani? You guys go ahead and keep doubting, check back in September.

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      I’d bet you $ that you can’t get more than 100 IP of Ohtani on your team, since a weekly league, but I worry you’d go for that $ in lieu of winning your league

                    • Donkey Teeth

                      Donkey Teeth says:
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                      Fernandez and Lamet didn’t pitch until July in their TJ returns. Darvish didn’t pitch until June. You also didn’t include any of their minors rehab innings which Ohtani won’t require since he’ll have a full winter and spring of throwing. Terrible cherry picking of stats. There’s no fair comp for Ohtani, stop trying to fit him in your box (pun intended).

    • Hernan says:
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      Lol, maybe next year Grey can let Donkey recruit BDon and The Itch, to help draft the “expert” team…, seems “Beat Donkey Teeth” sounds like an easy task….

      • Dave D says:
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        Where is Rudy or did he go to FantasyPros.com to fix their broken Draft Evaluator?

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Rudy plays football, he’s doing that still

          • Dave D says:
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            Tell him hockey blows away football. Weekly games are for the weak!

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              I don’t play either, so who am I to talk

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        Maybe the league is everyone that has already beat Donkey Teeth and that’s how you get in… I should be in that league too then!

        • Donkey Teeth

          Donkey Teeth says:
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          You guys are so mean to me!

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            Haha

    • The Great Knoche says:
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      We enjoy taking our time to pick. Without having Razz Rankings and projections yet we have to actually look at stats and Hard hit rates, and Z-swing Rates and all that jazz. It takes a long time to decide.

      Everyone in your league must just be using Karabell’s way to early top 300 list of NFBC ADP. IT goes quicker for those people.

      • Grey

        Grey says:
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        Haha, SNAP

        • hot corner says:
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          Sounds like we have a league vs league bet brewing.

          Doesn’t take long to pick, if you have done all of the work before you are the clock.

          • Grey

            Grey says:
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            We should have something, whichever team finishes higher overall? But what if there’s one good team and rest stink? Hmm…

            • hot corner says:
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              Best cumulative overall ranking for the whole league or best average overall ranking?

              Winner get the “Why the @#?! are we drafting during Thanksgiving dinner” trophy.

              • Grey

                Grey says:
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                HAHA, I like it!

                Best average overall ranking is good

                • hot corner says:
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                  That works. A bunch of bad teams bring down the 1-2 good teams.

                  • Grey

                    Grey says:
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                    And the winning prize is…bragging rights!

                    • hot corner says:
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                      If your league beats our league, then I will donate $50 to the charity of your choice.

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      *starting paperwork to establish a charity*

                    • hot corner says:
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                      Tell you what. I will donate money in either case. If your league wins, then you choose the charity. If our league wins, then Donkey chooses.

                    • Donkey Teeth

                      Donkey Teeth says:
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                      “The Donkey Fund”

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Donkey the Fund, the acronym is better

  5. Dubs23 says:
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    Random trade question: 12 team keeper league with 9 keepers plus 3 minor leaguers. Contracts go up each year and attached to a corresponding letter. A – E. E is the last year a player can be kept and must be sent back to the pool after. My Bregman $42E and Fried $5B for his Olson $21C, Laureano $4B, and a free Royce Lewis. My middle infield would still have Baez, Polanco, and Rosario. Let me know what you think.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Damn, tough call, but I kinda like that for you

  6. LOLmets says:
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    Phillies in 2020 Harper will be top 5

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Haha, just as they trade him and his contract to the Yanks

      • Hernan says:
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        For Giancarlo and the rights to pay Ellsbury….

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Doesn’t sound like a bad deal if Giancarlo’s throwing in free back rubs

  7. Dave D says:
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    Your turn to pick if you don’t already know

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Ah, sweet, looking now

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Well, that was an easy pick

      • Dave D says:
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        Yeah, good call on Ryu. Great price tag.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          I like a bunch of SPs who are being drafted before him, but still can’t reconcile taking some of them before Ryu

          • Dave D says:
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            Pretty much.

            Well, you tried to screw me out of a sleeper yesterday with your Ahmed post but, alas, I still prevailed and got him. Today, however, you succeeded with Kingery. He went 147 before I could nab him with 150. I got him my first DC with pick 164. So I figured you’d screw me tomorrow by posting Kevin Newman, so I jumped the ADP by 57. Thanks a lot, ‘pert!!!! ;-)

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Haha, I do like Newman, but, alas, no post — I kinda love McMahon this year too

              • Dave D says:
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                Yeah, I’m owning those two everywhere. Dozier seems like a good value there with some upside.

                • Grey

                  Grey says:
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                  Yeah, I like Dozier, especially this early with it in mind the Royals prolly won’t make any moves

                  • Dave D says:
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                    Are you worried about Matheny? He seems like a terrible hire and likes to platoon.

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Yeah, it’s an awful hire, but who do they really have to platoon with him?

                  • Dave D says:
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                    O’’Hearn?

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Meh, I guess… I think Dozier’s one of their pieces that they’re building around so to platoon him seems antithetical but who knows

                    • Dave D says:
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                      Yeah Dozier will probably be fine. Matheny at the helm is scary though.

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Agreed

                    • Dave D says:
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                      On the other hand, check out Eric Lauer’s Home/Road splits. I’m dropping him off my queue

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      Yeah, was just looking at him… He’s okay like around 500th overall, but he definitely lost his shine

                    • Dave D says:
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                      He was great in 2019 at PetCo, terrible away. That is how I deployed him effectively last year. He’s losing Petco where his ERA was HALF of what it was on road. Ouch!

                    • Grey

                      Grey says:
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                      No doubt, it definitely makes him hard to recommend… I liked him up until about five hours ago

  8. The Great Knoche says:
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    Hope you are right about Kingery. Wanted Escobar, but he was next on my list.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      You drafted him? Damn! I should’ve held this post until next week… You guys are killing me!

      • The Great Knoche says:
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        Ha, That was my first comment today. Stop releasing these for guys we haven’t picked yet. I had him targeted a little later but moved him up for fear of him going quicker. I didn’t think he would last 25 picks today.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          I had to take Ryu, or I would’ve taken him myself with my last pick… Nice grab!

  9. Ronald says:
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    Would you take Luis Robert ($7) straight up for Ronald Acuna ($67) in a ottoneu fantasy baseball dynasty league. I also have Mookie Betts.