One quick note, our War Room guy from last year has dropped out, so if you guys (maybe four girls) want a War Room this year, someone needs to step up to make it happen.  I will take ready, willing and abled-bodied people in the comments.  Oh, who are we kidding, no one here is able-bodied!  I’ll take anyone, just comment and I’ll contact you.  This is for the downloadable Excel War Room.  Any hoo!  With the top 80 starters for 2017 fantasy baseball, we are so close to the end of the rankings I can almost taste it!  Wait, that’s not rankings I taste, I bit my lip and it’s blood.  I wonder if when Dracula bites his lip it’s like when Cougs goes out with her friends and I’m left at home while Emmanuelle is on Cinemax.  You might say to yourself, “Self, everyone is totally fooled by my toupee and do I really need to draft starters this deep in my friendly 12-team mixed league?”  You don’t, except you will own guys from this post this year either from the draft or from waivers or your leaguemates will own them and beat you.  Last year, in the tier of pitchers I liked in the top 80 starters was Aaron Sanchez (pitcher, not chef), Rich Hill (pitcher, not sniglets) and Tanner Roark (pitcher, not Tattoo’s boss).  If you owned just them, you had a 2.74 ERA in 512 1/3 IP.  You really still think you need starters drafted early?  You throw in two earlier starters, say, Kluber and Gausman, and you have way too much pitching now.  I’ll go over exactly how to draft starters in a few days, but there are so many ways to skin a cat we should have PETA breathing down our necks.  All the 2017 fantasy baseball rankings are there.  My tiers and projections are noted.  Anyway, here’s the top 80 starters for 2017 fantasy baseball:

61. Gio Gonzalez – This tier started in the top 60 starters for 2017 fantasy baseball.  This tier ends at Garcia.  I called this tier, “The Board.”  In years past, most of the guys in this tier would’ve found themselves in a ‘boring, but reliable’ tier.  A tier that I would’ve recommended you draft if your rotation was high on upside and risk.  But, let’s face it, these guys aren’t safe and/or reliable.  Gio’s had moments in the past, but he had a 4.57 ERA last year, and he lost two miles on his fastball.  Maybe Gio can put it back together, but he looks broken down and I’m gonna start calling him Yugo Gonzalez, because a Gio is too reliable for him.  2017 Projections:  10-10/3.87/1.35/166 in 175 IP

62. Marco Estrada – Honestly, I don’t know what’s coming or going with Estrada.  Last year, Estrada’s Ks — Ponch-outs? — went up but his command — C.H.I.P.S.? — went down with his fastball velocity.  If you can tell me what Estrada’s going to do this year, I believe you know, but I don’t trust you.  Sorry, we can still be Facebook friends, since I don’t like most of my FB friends anyway.  2017 Projections:  10-12/3.91/1.21/150 in 175 IP

63. Jaime Garcia – Here’s what I said this offseason, “Braves traded for him.  Braves have been active this offseason, huh?  Already signed Colon and Dickey, which I said sounded like an after-shower spray Lorenzo Lamas would endorse.  Well, now they’ve added a guy that sounds like what Lamas says into the mirror, “Jaime.”  And that’s me quoting me!  2017 Projections:  8-11/3.88/1.28/125 in 150 IP

64. Jeremy Hellickson – This is a new tier.  This tier goes from here until Moore.  I call this tier, “Dollar Store condoms.”  By this tier name I mean, these guys are a mix of sorta safe, sorta cheap and worth a flyer.  “Wow, I’ve seen lambskin condoms before, but I never knew they made hedgehog skin condoms.”  That’s you going through the Dollar Store condom assortment.  As for Hellickson, I picture him being one of those guys that you draft in the last rounds, don’t really want, drop to waivers, then re-pick up and end up holding him for most of the year because he keeps putting up respectable starts.  Or he’s flat-out terrible.  Hey, we’re late in rankings here.  To give you an idea, we’re likely around 225 overall.  2017 Projections:  10-12/3.83/1.18/150 in 185 IP

65. Jerad Eickhoff – “All these hedgehog condom wrappers are broken.  That’s not a good sign, is it?”  I might be underrating Eickhoff with this ranking.  Last year, he had a 7.6 K/9 and 1.9 BB/9, which is more of a three than a five, which this tier is, but Finkle…Eickhoff!  Eickhoff…Finkle!  Finkle…Eickhoff!  Just okay stuff…This ranking!  2017 Projections:  11-11/3.77/1.19/158 in 190 IP

66. Lance Lynn –  “Honey, to give me an idea of what it will be like owning Lynn, I wanna try one of these hedgehog skin condoms.  Hey, this one is prickly.  That might be fun, right?”  Lynn is returning from Tommy John surgery and says he will be ready to go for the start of the season.  There’s at least a 25% chance that in April he says he’ll be ready to start by May.  Worst case scenario, you DL him until he returns.  2017 Projections:  9-5/3.65/1.31/109 in 120 IP

67. Chris Tillman – “You were right about the hedgehog condoms, they were a bad idea.  But they don’t have lambskin, so I got these new condoms…Snakeskin!”  Tillman sorta epitomizes this tier.  He has a tad bit of upside but will likely be a ~3.75 ERA guy, unless he’s not.  2017 Projections:  12-11/3.81/1.32/151 in 192 IP

68. Ivan Nova – “Fine!  Fine!  The snakeskin condoms were a bad idea too.  I’ll grant you that.  They shedded at the worst times.  But I think these new ones might be up your alley, skunk skin!  What?  It’s multifunctional with its female hygiene spray included.”  Based on very little actual math and mostly gut, Nova feels like he could be one of those guys that breaks out and ends up a top 20 starter out of nowhere.  When you have a 1.6 BB/9, it could go a long way towards a lucky BABIP turning into a 2.75 ERA.   2017 Projections:  9-10/3.67/1.23/134 in 175 IP

69. Robert Gsellman – There’s a Puerto Rican Sphinx in Queens, NY and its question:  Judo how the Mets can have a good starter for fantasy?  The answer is obvious, but so many people are blinded by the resemblance of the Queens Sphinx to Rosie Perez that they never answer, they just respond, “Judo?”  Never realizing it’s how the Puerto Rican Sphinx says ‘You know.’  The answer, of course, is the Mets can have a good starter in fantasy if they haven’t had a chance to wear the starter down the season before.  I imagine we’ll see Gsellman by May for Wheeler, if not sooner, but then he’ll likely get bumped for Wheeler in June, then he’ll bump Wheeler in July, and lose the spot again on August 2nd.  What, my Magic Eight Ball is very precise.  UPDATE:  The Mets said Gsellman will start the year in the rotation now that Wheeler has a sore elbow.  Great news for Gsellman in the short term, but, of course, this means the Mets are going to overuse him and he’ll be garbage next year, and not the good garbage that you can turn into post-modern art.  2017 Projections:  9-4/3.71/1.34/121 in 131 IP

70. Alex Cobb – “Yes, chameleon skin condoms were a mistake, but these jellyfish skin condoms were 50% off!  Baby?  Where are you going?”  So, if I could muster enthusiasm for Lynn, it’s only right we give Cobb one more chance too.  He did, after all, return last year and throw major league innings.  Okay, they weren’t great innings, but he’s pretty far removed from surgery and he once was a top 20 starter.  Definitely worth a flyer.  2017 Projections:  10-10/3.91/1.27/111 in 132 IP

71. Matt Moore – “You were right, jellyfish skin condoms were a bad call.  Man, were you right.  But you know what they say is the best way to get rid of the stinging, right?  Okay, so drink more water.”  Moore had a 3.16 ERA in AT&T, and, well, that’s all I got, but that’s a lot compared to some guys in this tier.  2017 Projections:  10-7/3.77/1.29/137 in 146 IP

72. Mike Montgomery – This is a new tier.  This tier goes from here until the top 100 starters for 2017 fantasy baseball.  I call this tier, “Grey’s upside your head.”  This is the last guy on your team in most mixed leagues.  That high-upside flyer that you may or may not still have on your team by mid-April.  I love all of these guys, but they are obviously risky and they may not even make it out of spring training with a rotation job.  As for Montgomery, best case scenario for him is a Joe Ross-type year.  Okay, who’s playing that damn music?  Worst case scenario, Montgomery runs over your dog, sleeps with your girlfriend and finishes your 18-year-old Fudgie the Whale Carvel ice cream cake you were saving in your freezer for your 30th birthday.  “I was saving the spout!”  That’s you screaming at the heavens.  Most realistic scenario, Montgomery is a decent third fantasy starter for fifteen starts, bouncing to the bullpen to let Brett Anderson start when he’s healthy.  2017 Projections:  7-4/3.42/1.21/111 in 124 IP

73. Julio Urias – I have artificial intelligence, and my silicone brain really likes these guys.  Sadly, my soft-to-the-touch brain, also knows they all have problems.  On a different team, Urias is a top 40 starter getting thirty starts.  On the Dodgers, he has a better chance of winning a staring contest.  You just know he’s going to juggle starts with Brandon McCarthy, Ryu, Brock Stewart, Stripling, Alex Wood and Jerry Reuss.  2017 Projections:  9-3/3.41/1.34/110 in 103 IP

74. Blake Snell – Already gave you my Blake Snell sleeper.  I typed it up with my elbows.  2017 Projections:  9-12/3.63/1.37/181 in 160 IP

75. Alex Reyes – Already gave you my Alex Reyes fantasy.  It put the whoa in “Whoa, awesome.”  UPDATE:  Reyes sounds headed for Tommy John surgery, so I wouldn’t draft him anywhere.  2017 Projections:  9-7/3.89/1.37/132 in 120 IP

76. Mike Foltynewicz – Occasionally, I’ll cheat with these rankings.  Guys I want to rank much higher, like Faultynewwirewitz, I concede to rank much lower knowing they are still way above where anyone else is going to rank them.  I love Faultytowerswitz and know that I can get him this late, even though he could easily be ranked about thirty spots higher.  Last year, he took the next step and no one even realizes it.  He has 8+ K/9 stuff, easily.  His 95 MPH fastball might even get him to 9+ K/9.  The one thing that always held him back was his command, and last year his command was 2.6 BB/9, which isn’t a problem at all.  As a 25-year-old, Foltynedalywitz should get a sleeper post, but may have to settle for just being well liked in the last tier of starters of the top 80.  2017 Projections: 9-9/3.81/1.27/160 in 174 IP

77. Daniel Norris – All the guys in this tier should get a sleeper post, and maybe I can corral some of our other writers to write them, since my time is monopolized with tending to my Chia Pet garden.  I should’ve never took on the J. Lo Chia, there’s just too much feathering of the leafs.  Speaking of J. Lo (Terrible Segue Alert!), I had a wart on my hand that I wanted to burn off, so I went to the dermatologist, and in the waiting room, there were dozens of articles about J. Lo going to see my same doctor.  *blows knuckle where wart used to be*  Yeah, I share a dermatologist with J. Lo, so whatever, don’t sweat me and my well-hydrated pores.  Any hoo!  The only thing stopping Norris from being a huge breakout is his lack of track record.  Next year, he could be a top 30 starter.  2017 Projections:  7-9/3.75/1.35/110 in 115 IP

78. Michael Wacha – You know what’s crazy?  Jackie Evancho is not a Native American remake of Jackie Brown.  You know what’s crazy and on-topic?  Wacha, due to unfortunate luck, may no longer be a starter.  Sure, he has trouble staying healthy, but I bet if he had neutral luck last year and a 3.95 ERA, he wouldn’t be in danger of losing his rotation spot.  Well, he is now facing that, and, if he’s not good in the spring, I could see him opening the season as a long reliever, and staying there, and this is the longest sentence in the history of sentences; God bless Siri, if you’re having her read this aloud.  Even if Wacha gets the rotation role, between him, Luke Weaver, Reyes and Lynn, they may all share three rotation spots.  Likely will be a very fluid situation like the reason you own rubber bedsheets.  2017 Projections:  8-8/3.79/1.18/129 in 155 IP

79. Adam Conley – I felt Conley and Tom Koehler were forever linked like hot dogs and mustard, Bangles and walking Egyptians, and Gavin Floyd and John Danks, but Conley’s pulled slightly away.  Conley took a step forward last year, upping his K/9 to 8.4.  Of course, his walk rate was a mess, but he did have a 2.8 BB/9 the previous year, so if he can somehow put his 2016 K-rate with his 2015 walk rate, there could be a breakout here.  It’s not going to be quite that easy, since he made slight adjustments to his windup last year, which helped his Ks and hurt his command.  Still, one year more with this tweaked windup and he could break out.  Definitely worth a flyer.  2017 Projections:  9-10/3.74/1.35/154 in 165 IP

80. Tyler Skaggs –  This year people will be drafting Zack Wheeler as he returns from Tommy John surgery, and I might myself, but watch Wheeler be a mess still, while a guy like Skaggs, who is two years removed from TJ, is much further along and becomes the example we use for where Wheeler will be next year.  It’s time he rocked with people yelling, ‘You’re such a boss, Skaggs!’  2017 Projections:  9-11/3.81/1.36/141 in 138 IP

210 Comments
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Girthquake
Girthquake
5 years ago

Hey Grey,

I have Collin McHugh and Ian Kennedy, someone in my league just dropped Robbie Ray. Which 2 you taking?

Milarky
Milarky
5 years ago

Hey Grey, about your ‘wait on pitching’ philosophy. What if you’re in a league that doesn’t really allow for streaming? Our league is quite deep (10 teams, 40 players each team), and allows each owner only one waiver claim per week, and each claim costs $5. So basically we need to make each claim try and count for longer than a week.

So my question is how would that change your draft strategy with pitchers, if at all? It makes it riskier to trust later round fliers when you can’t just discard them for the hot hand on the wire at any time.

Beware the Shit Rope
Beware the Shit Rope
Reply to  Milarky
5 years ago

@Milarky: you’d most certainly need an actual ace, and in general roll back all pitcher drafting to earlier spots. really 40 players each team by itself would necessitate this.

Milarky
Milarky
Reply to  Beware the Shit Rope
5 years ago

@Beware the Shit Rope: Thanks for the feedback! To give some perspective, each team keeps 4 hitters and 2 pitchers. My keepers are Scherzer/Salazar, and Martinez (JD)/Stanton/Rizzo/Segura (or Frazier). Trying to decide how early to go for my next pitcher – there are some really good ones available early, but normally i don’t take the plunge for the first 2-3 rounds. There are obviously some really good hitters available early as well.

Beware the Shit Rope
Beware the Shit Rope
Reply to  Milarky
5 years ago

@Milarky: take another in the 3rd maybe, depending on how many go before. if few go before make it 4th round

Beware the Shit Rope
Beware the Shit Rope
Reply to  Beware the Shit Rope
5 years ago

@Beware the Shit Rope: important question though, what is average amount of SP owned by each team after draft?

Milarky
Milarky
Reply to  Beware the Shit Rope
5 years ago

@Beware the Shit Rope: Well each team starts 5 SPs + 1 Util (which is usually an SP), but we also carry a total of 9 reserves (any position). I tend to draft approx 3 SPs in my reserves, so if we average that out then anywhere from 85-90 SPs will be gone by the end of the draft.

BRIAN ENGLAND
BRIAN ENGLAND
5 years ago

Hi Grey,

Enjoying your rankings!

Got a keeper question. Need to keep 4 in 5 X 5 Roto from this list

Jose Altuve
Xander Bogaerts
Wil Myers
Todd Frazier
Kyle Schwarber
Rick Porcello
Jose Quintana
Edwin Diaz
Julio Teheran
Wade Davis

Thanks

Mr Baseball
Mr Baseball
5 years ago

This is now the situation for picks inkeep 10 pl;ayers keeper league 16 teams – this is the best in round 11 which is round 1 – who would you want here

Lewis Brinson Mil – CF

Danny Duffy KC – SP,RP

Tanner Roark Was – SP

Vince Velásquez Phi – SP

Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Reply to  Mr Baseball
5 years ago

@Mr Baseball: possibly team based here, can’t be roark though, throw him outta that. also term of keeper could be important, or escalating costs or not.

Mr Baseball
Mr Baseball
Reply to  Mr Baseball
5 years ago

i TOOK Danny Duffy KC – SP,RP

Mr Baseball
Mr Baseball
Reply to  Mr Baseball
5 years ago

i TOOK Danny Duffy KC – SP,RP

Mr Baseball
Mr Baseball
Reply to  Mr Baseball
5 years ago

i TOOK Danny Duffy KC – SP,RP

Mr Baseball
Mr Baseball
Reply to  Mr Baseball
5 years ago

Crazy it did not take on my end sorry man

Mr Baseball
Mr Baseball
Reply to  Mr Baseball
5 years ago

Just Picked took Duffy

Mr Baseball
Mr Baseball
Reply to  Mr Baseball
5 years ago

Just Picked took Duffy

Beware the Shit Rope
Beware the Shit Rope
Reply to  Mr Baseball
5 years ago

@Mr Baseball: for this year that’s def best.

DonnieB
DonnieB
5 years ago

In a 15 team NFBC League, would feel OK with your first 4 SP of deGrom,Maeda,Salazar and McCullers? Would you go safe from here or keep pedal down? I recognize injury risk in 3 of the 4.

Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
5 years ago

that same dynasty as above:
20 team h2h dynasty. 25 max keepers. OPS/BB and defensive stuff (putouts, double plays, assists, outfield assists, field %) for hitters and holds, relief wins and losses, pickoffs, double plays, complete games, shutouts, K/9, relief appearances, OBPA, QS. need at least 9 TEX players at all times. 5 NA slots.
clear keepers:
C sal perez
1B
2B forsythe
SS andrus
3B beltre
LF dahl
CF blackmon
RF stanton
util o.herrera
BN gallo/profar/choo/mazara

SP (max 6, min 5) darvish/archer/urias/hammel/cobb/wheeler
RP (roster spots of 7, legally those need to be filled) giles/jeffress/kela/romo
other possible keepers vogelbach/brinson/a.bailey

issue being that vogelbach is only listed as righty side platooner and i’m sure his job isn’t that safe. also legally come season time to have 6 SP (which is optimal) i could only have 3 of those BN hitters. moving odubel for a decent RP seems needed.

all that being the case would you
1.would you trade hammel or cobb for belt?
2. try to get something done for napoli, now at good lineup spot at 1B in TEX.

Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: wow, belt’s fallen that low eh, i thought it was one of those “yeah take it you twit” type questions. it’d be nice if i could move my excess piece for napoli, but he likely costs similar to belt. maybe i could move choo somewhere, and get napoli, hold odubel, that seems most optimal while keeping my minimum 9 TEX players.

Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Reply to  Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
5 years ago

@Aubrey Plaza’s Pillow: just noticing the CLE owner (napoli owner, and also has c-sant) is somewhat SP weak, would you do the hammel or cobb for him? he isn’t CF weak to need odubel.

Chicken Shack
Chicken Shack
5 years ago

Coach, In a slow draft 15 teamer. SPs are Price, Tanaka, & Lackey. Is Robbie Ray and good dude to pair with this staff? RPs are Kelvin H & not too many K Rod…

Chicken Shack
Chicken Shack
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey:
Yeah, he’s from TN/ Vandy and I like him… Already have those 2 RPs and thought Ray would work/ balance with Tanaka and KRod.

Joe Shmoe
Joe Shmoe
5 years ago

Hi Mr. Grey,
Now that Carter is a Yankee, could you guess how many AB’s he would get? Do you think they drop him by mid-season?

Thank you for your time.

M
M
5 years ago

Did I miss Julio Teheran’s ranking?

Dubjay
Dubjay
5 years ago

Hey guys
Have to pick my 10 keepers tonight.
Set with
ARENADO
C.SEAGER
DOZIER
POLLOCK
BUMGARNER
T.FRAZIER
A.CHAPMAN
still struggling with the last 3. Have to choose between J.Bautista, B.Buxton, M.Sano, G.Cole, D.Duffy, N.Mazara. Not an easy choice.
What do you think?

nightpandas
nightpandas
5 years ago

Grey,

keep forever keeper trade (keep 11):

Donaldson & Andrus vs. Correa

Bill Lumbergh
Bill Lumbergh
5 years ago

@Grey: Do you like either Shelby Miller or Patrick Corbin as last round flyer in a 30 team roto? Thx!

Bill Lumbergh
Bill Lumbergh
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Gracias!

Dan
Dan
5 years ago

10 team H2H Dynasty, 15 keepers

Schwarber
Myers
Dee Gordon
M. Franco
Bogaerts
Betts
Springer
Dahl
Buxton
Judge
Sano

Duffy
Walker
Stroman
Taillon
Paxton
Bundy
Rodon

Which 3 would you drop back?
Was offered DeGrom for Sano, would you take it?

Thanks Grey!

JoeG414
JoeG414
5 years ago

Springer , Votto, Lindor or Bogaerts ? As my 2nd round , with keepers … about 19th overall pick.
Keeping Harper as a first round 12th overall.
6×6 roto

JoeG414
JoeG414
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Yes , Thanks . The only issue is that I would have to over reach for some like Russell as a SS . around 93rd overall.

Whatever
Whatever
5 years ago

Benintendi for Springer? I feel like an idiot for even asking. Haha.

PPMC
PPMC
5 years ago

Grey…do you personally do DFS? if no why not? also need a good TV series to start, saw all the bigs ones got any recommendations?

birrrdy!
birrrdy!
5 years ago

Grey, I won my league last year because of you. Thanks for all that you do, and enjoy the margaritas!

Looking to repeat on these schmohawks. 10-team NL-only 5×5 auction keeper. 13 hitters (1C, 5 OFs, 3 U), 10 pitchers. Prices are set by a magazine each year. We get $300 to spend on up to 8 keepers and our auction draft. Which 8 should I keep?

Hitters:
1B Freeman-$28; OF Braun-$26; SS/3B Villar-$22; OF CarGo-$22; OF Kemp-$22; 1B Carter-$16; OF Pence-$14; 2B/OF Kendrick-$12; OF D. Santana-$12; 3B/OF Hernan Perez-$9; 2B/SS/3B Gyorko-$8

Pitchers:
Lester-$23; Strasburg-$19; deGrom-$13; Gray-$11; McCarthy-$1

I’m strongly leaning toward the 5 most expensive hitters on this list and the 3 most expensive pitchers. That would be $175 and would give me $125 for the draft with 15 positions to fill. Thoughts?

birrrdy!
birrrdy!
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Thanks! If I could trouble you for one more follow-up, what’s your rank order for who’s next up if one or more of those keepers gets injured? (out of Pence-$14, Gyorko-$8, Gray-$11, McCarthy-$1)?

Also, did I mess up by trading Syndergaard-$29 and Bumgarner-$26 for Freeman-$28? Felt I had a glut of keepers, and 1B looks really thin this year… especially NL only.

Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
5 years ago

in a dynasty (20 team h2h max 6 SP) i have archer/darvish/hammel/cobb/urias/wheeler/bradley. who’d you try to trade or drop first out of wheeler/bradley? QS/k per 9/OBPA added.

Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
Reply to  Aubrey Plaza's Pillow
5 years ago

@Aubrey Plaza’s Pillow: just saw that bradley is in minors to start year likely, at least till shelby gets minored again. do have 5 NA slots.

Jim
Jim
5 years ago

HeyHey,

I am in a 4×4 (yes I am that old)league any of your starters move up significantly with the basic format….any one pitcher you would target? Thanks for the help.

Slimcompoop
Slimcompoop
5 years ago

What’s going on BIFF? It’s been too long, but with my fantasy basketball team in second to last place, I figured it was time to delete my bookmark on JB’s basketball page and come back to baseball. So much to talk about, I don’t know where to begin…Run the Jewels (yea or nay)?

Slimcompoop
Slimcompoop
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Oh it goes good…teaching, coaching hoops, continuing to make the best old skool hip-hop station on Pandora, reloading my fantasy baseball team, etc. Can’t complain besides the obvious, but this isn’t a political blog. More importantly, how are you doing?

Been getting some time to read your rankings/posts over the last couple of days, as I’m working on day three of snow day cancellations. I feel more prepared than ever and you’re writing is like a fine wine. “The older the berry, the sweeter the juice.” Thank you.

Montezuma's Revenge...right now
Montezuma's Revenge...right now
5 years ago

i hate lynn (he’s simply awful as an athlete, pretty much a pitcher version of bitch tits fatt adams), the last time he played late in 2015 he hurt himself twice in the same game 1. coming up the stairs of the dugout to start the game, and later 2. twisted his ankle executing a pitch, but he actually was pitching multi innings in september last year and if STL was slightly more stupid (say dusty baker or the Mess) could’ve been used in a playoff bullpen, so he’s not “just back” from TJ. my guess is he’s way more likely to be ineffective than miss any time till maybe may-june. this isn’t me arguing for him to be ranked higher though.

Griff
Griff
5 years ago

Notice that several rankings are not giving much love to Daniel Norris. Had a strong finish and was once highly touted, so what gives? Have him in dynastt…Is it time to turn the page on him?

peacecoast
peacecoast
5 years ago

g,

so tomorrow we finish pitchers right? then when can we expect that awesome pitching draft strategy article? and then when overall rankings? and finally when war room?

thx

p.s. r u doing any pro leagues this year?

CMUTimmah
CMUTimmah
5 years ago

Alex Reyes, Alex Cobb, Blake Snell… I like them all more than you.

Especially Reyes. Day one starter, loads of upside, and I’ll be owning him everywhere if 79th pitcher is anything close to his draft day price.

Urias is a 2018 target for me. Much like Ariana Grande, I think he needs another year or two of seasoning before I’m interested.

CMUTimmah
CMUTimmah
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Wacha, IMO. I know that’s not a consensus opinion, but I don’t see how a potential star can take a back seat to a guy that has continuously gotten worse over the last 3 seasons. I could see Wacha getting moved during spring training also.

Sweatpants Nation
Sweatpants Nation
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Both Reyes and Weaver will be on innings limits so unless there is a spring injury I don’t see either in the rotation all year. Probably start i n bullpen or eve extended spring training.

Matt
Matt
5 years ago

Hey grey 12 teams 20 keepers dynasty league. I need your opinion. We do a 7×7 head to head format. Runs homeruns rbis average obp xbh steals for hitting and wins losses saves era whip quality starts and strikeouts.

This is my roster what’s your opinion.

C. Jt Realmuto
1b. Freddie Freeman
2b. Jose Altuve
3b. Nolan Arenado
SS. Carlos Correa
OF. Nomar Mazara
OF. Jackie Bradley Jr
OF. Jay Bruce
utility. Brad Miller
Utility. Manuel Margot

Sp. Aaron Nola
Sp. Collin Mchugh
Sp. Jeff Samardizja
Sp. Trevor Bauer
Sp. Tyson Ross
Rp. Kelvin Herrera

I have 4 extra draft picks in the mid rounds of the draft.
Obviously I need pitching but what do you think I can accomplish this season.

Thanks

Matt
Matt
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

Yeah I don’t like it either but do you think my hitting will mask that?

Matt
Matt
Reply to  Matt
5 years ago

@Matt:

also what if I traded mazara for josh bell and Jose Quintana

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
5 years ago

What’s a condom?

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: That’s better than the ‘lack of sex’ joke I thought I was getting as a reply.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: My buddy James Westfall knows all about the Octagon.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: HA! Yeah, I needed a quick pseudonym. Didn’t know at the time I’d be drawn toward the light of a frequent commenter.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: All my bros call me “Skidz”

nick the dick
nick the dick
Reply to  Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
5 years ago

@Dr. Kenneth Noisewater: Suprised Grey didn’t get your name reference…same thing with me though, hastily just made my name nick the dick years ago for no real reason. Nobody has ever called me that. I don’t like it. Don’t much care for the movie Bachelor Party. Just threw it in there and i’m in way too deep to ever change now.

nick the dick
nick the dick
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: I didn’t even capitalize my name! If I could reverse the hands of time…

nick the dick
nick the dick
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: when you’re right, you’re right. Really tho, what is this Odio shit? You’re fuckin Foh, be that.

nick the dick
nick the dick
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Dr. Kenneth Noisewater: @Grey: Only random hip hop track dropping. Decipher that.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Reply to  nick the dick
5 years ago

@nick the dick: I thought you were just one of those crazy, non-capitalizing mofos!

If it makes you feel any better, just think about my name being Paul Rudd’s right testicle.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Reply to  nick the dick
5 years ago

@nick the dick: And I still like Kennick Dickwater. I just laughed typing it.

nick the dick
nick the dick
Reply to  Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
5 years ago

@Dr. Kenneth Noisewater: I imagine you smelling like real bits of panther…HA Kennick Dickwater is the funniest! We should just both change our names to that so Grey doesn’t know which of us is commenting

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
Reply to  Dr. Kenneth Noisewater
5 years ago

Mr. Kennick Dickwater III

I’ll talk about cooking shows like Rachel Ray and The Chew, and you talk about sneakers like KEDS and Sketchers. He’ll never know.

Disgruntled Dylan Bundy
Disgruntled Dylan Bundy
5 years ago

A few sites have me cracking the top 60, but I can’t make your top 80, Grey?! What gives? Did I come close?

John D
John D
5 years ago

Thanks for the great early season work,.
12-team NL only 5×5 keeper so deep starting rosters and decent player inflation. I know neither is too exciting, but as a last keeper – $10 Zach Davies vs. $1 Felipe Rivero.?

matt
matt
5 years ago

sorry….yeah Pollock

matt
matt
5 years ago

Love all your work…22 team 5&5 league
can keep players
plan on keeping
Manny
Trea
Desmond
and one of
Edwin Diaz at 1$
or
AJ at 10$
Thoughts?

tony
tony
5 years ago

keeper league, 5 dollar benintendi and 14 dollar polanco for 17 dollar rizzo is a no brainer right?
What about 10 dollar mondcada for 14 dollar Kluber?
Thanks!

Tony_Sal
Tony_Sal
5 years ago

Keep 5 :

Kershaw, F.Hernandez, D.Keuchel, J.Taillon, D.Salazar, M.Stroman, R.Osuna, S Wang Oh, C.Allen

Duda Want to Build a Snowman?
Duda Want to Build a Snowman?
5 years ago

Really like some guys from this list as my back end of the rotation in 12 teamers.

Nova seemed primed I have a sneaky 3.3 low whip type season.

Estrada – done trying to figure him out. He’s done this magic trick for two year, so I’m happy to buy at this price.

Chris
Chris
5 years ago

Hey Grey!

I’m having a hard time selecting keepers for this year in a 14 team league H2H.

I have already chosen Trout and Sale and I need 2 more. Who would you chose between Freeman, Starling Marte, Odor, Gregory Polanco and Carpenter.

Thanks for you help.

peacecoast
peacecoast
5 years ago

hey Grey how did you do last year in the leagues you played in?

Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey
Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: that’s pretty damn good if only in 4 leagues.

Rock D
Rock D
5 years ago

Interested in hearing about junior guerra. Dude was lights out before getting hurt. Too small of a sample? Numbers didn’t jive with results?

Cram It
Cram It
5 years ago

You know I’m a proponent of the “Don’t pay for pitching” company line. But Kluber, Gausman and a few guys from the top 80 is not a staff I’d be confident with. I struggle with reconciling how to draft a good rotation. In my experience, the two guys at the top aren’t enough to carry you when the other arms don’t turn out to be a Rich Hill or Aaron Sanchez.

In theory, it’s the way to go but the application of it is very risky.

Brian
Reply to  Cram It
5 years ago

These guys aren’t that risky because if they’re bad, they’ll be dropped after a few starts. I think the #2 and #3 starters are riskier because if they are bad, you still start them until June. Francisco Liriano killed a couple of my pitching staffs that way last year.

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Brian
5 years ago

@Brian: Good point and that’s true. But then I find I’m stuck streaming at least 3 positions in May until I find keepers to eat innings. I think you need at least 3 reliable guys heading in. One good guy and a Gausman-type who I’m probably streaming to begin with in that division doesn’t make me feel warm and fuzzy.

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Haha. Ok that might have something to do with it. If you said Hamels or Cole, I’d get behind that.

I’m not embracing him. I watch him pitch a lot, living in Baltimore. His fastball is straight as an arrow, and he doesn’t have great command. His Whip is too high for me and he’s in Camden. I want to like him, I just don’t see a major step forward this year.

That said, I don’t disagree with your 13 wings, 3.50/.1.25 projection. But that’s a #2 to you?

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Okay, I feel like if your team totals are 3.50/1.25 you’re in the bottom half. I don’t know how one #1 SP can offset that with 3 other pitchers predicted worse than that.

I don’t want to own Pineda. I try to stay away from erratic unpredictable guys. Give me Aaron Nola’s and Cole Hamels’ all day.

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: And you’re probably benching him for those starts again this year. I want my #2 to be an every outing guy and not have to hope for more than 3.50/1.25. Fine to do with Gausman, but not for my approach with my #2 starter.

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: I do, and that’s why you do the tiers, which is great, in case people want to go a different route and feel supported in that.

I guess my #2’s would end where Gausman starts. You’re getting into the #30 ranks…that’s where I’d start looking at my #3.

But can we go back to the 3.50/1.25 thing? If you were told that your #2’s stats would be exactly what you predict for Gausman, you’d be content with that? And then assume that every guy lower than than is progressively worse, even if it’s just a tad. 3.53/1.26/ 182 K’s, etc. That doesn’t seem to equate to good pitching #’s overall. Is my math that bad? (Could be)

zombie
Reply to  Cram It
5 years ago

@Cram It: & Grey. Good shizz, gentlemen. No real insight to add. Just that for some reason, waiting with confidence on starters seems particularly risky this season. Nice to see that that inkling is shared.

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Cram It
5 years ago

@Cram It: I agree in an RCL. There’s more room to maneuver and take advantage of MR’s. I definitely have a harder time strategizing in that format. When I won the whole thing two years ago my pitching numbers were okayyyy. Last year when I finished 2nd, they were not good at all. And I drafted like 7 or 8 SP’s. So I’m still trying to figure out how to attack the RCL pitching strategy.

I’ll just draft Gausman to annoy you.

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Cram It
5 years ago

@Cram It: Dirty pool. Just give me the first pick and the rest will be gravy.

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Cram It
5 years ago

@Cram It: You have to now. I think that would be hilarious if you did, actually.

Swfcdan
Swfcdan
5 years ago

Just been reading your SP rankings, its greyt that Grey likes Jon Gray! I mean I guess you couldn’t not with that sexy name! But his stuff is pretty much ace level so its about time some no Ubaldo-pitching human beat Coors. Good job throwing your neck on the line with this one, I did the same trading J Bell for Gray in a keeper league.

FrankGrimes
FrankGrimes
5 years ago

So close to my 2 favorite pre season posts!
1) Pitcher pairings (formerly known as APPLES)
2) The most entertaining convoluted greyest one of them all
the famous hitters pairings.

Cheese
Cheese
5 years ago

I’m very capable in excel, I basically live in a spreadsheet. Let me know if you still require assistance with the War Room.

Jason
Jason
5 years ago

Morning!

Off topic with this post but from what I’ve read it sounds like draft strategy for 1st 3 rds would be get a top 3rd basemen 1st rd (kb arenado machado donaldson), 2nd rd SS (Correa story lindor boegarts seager) and 3rd Rd snag 1b Freeman desmond maybe an edwin. But with 1b do shallow Would you rather have:

Arenado Correa Freeman (I’ve been getting these every mock I do at 4th overall in 10 and 12 team)

OR

Goldi Correa K. Seager

Cheers!

Jason
Jason
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey:

Thanks! Much appreciated as always

Cuthbert Allgood
Cuthbert Allgood
5 years ago

Contract/Keeper league and I am entering the next season with the following SPs: Matz, Urias, and Wainwright (hoping for a pulse). Given this uncertainty, I am planning on taking a SP with my first pick. For reference, I am also coming back with Hosmer, Belt, Machado, Stanton, Harper, Russell, and Baez also some schmuck named Heyward.
While Sale, Lester, or Price may be available, which of the following would you draft considering his cost and then put a 3-4 year contract on:
C. Martinez @ $14
J. deGrom @$10,
G. Cole @ $7
D. Duffy @ $11
J. Arrieta @ $9.

Thanks.

Chocolate Chip Pancakes
Chocolate Chip Pancakes
5 years ago

If you have to start the season with three of the twenty pitchers listed above, who do you roll with?

Gigorilla
Gigorilla
Reply to  Chocolate Chip Pancakes
5 years ago

Lynn, Kazmir, Moore

Test Kitchen
Test Kitchen
5 years ago

Grey,

I might be able to help with the War Room

Let me know what needs to happen

peacecoast
peacecoast
Reply to  Test Kitchen
5 years ago

@Test Kitchen: omg pls I need me some War Room! I can’t realistically go into my draft without that thing!

Stock
Stock
Reply to  peacecoast
5 years ago

I AGREE…but I prefer the online version instead of the spreadsheet.. for the online version..and yes I would pay

Jimmy Bond
Jimmy Bond
Reply to  Stock
5 years ago

@Stock: at some point in the future it might make sense to have it be a shared Google Doc or something like that (so online but spreadsheet form), but there is too much conditional formatting in the current excel version I use to just copy-paste over from excel

M
M
5 years ago

Nova is definitely an NL-type pitcher, wonder if Searage can work his magic on him (and maybe even Hutchinson to an extent).

swaggerjackers
swaggerjackers
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Agreed. He was putting together some nice numbers in the second half.

Rudy
Rudy
5 years ago

@ Ante, I agree totally

Tim
Tim
5 years ago

Grey- which combo do you like better in a 12 tm H2H Points Keeper:
Goldschmidt/Sale or Rizzo/Bumgarner?

Curious George Springer
Curious George Springer
Reply to  Tim
5 years ago

@Tim: Rizzo

Goldirocks
Goldirocks
Reply to  Tim
5 years ago

@Tim:
Goldy by alot

fuzzy slippers
fuzzy slippers
5 years ago

Grey, first time commenter over here from jersey. Awesome write ups from you and your crew. Thank you Master Lothario
Question on who to keep
12 team keeper league – have to keep 5
yelich, Polanco, myers , villar, buxton, bumgarner carrasco

Ante GALIC
Ante GALIC
5 years ago

Grey!

Great post, intriguing picks for sure!! But you’d you have to be one dollar-store condom short of a 24-pack of condoms to draft more than 2 of these guys! Risky business!

a. Getting to the bottom of the barrel here! But sometimes what’s left at the bottom of the barrel is the part that makes the taste of whiskey the best, right?

b. From this group I’m going to love Nova, Kazmir, Urias and Folty. If any or all are available near the end of the draft, will go for it.

Cheers,
Ante

henncoop
henncoop
5 years ago

Oh happy day …part quatro? Maybe not so happy …seems like more dark clouds then sunshine here. But if anyone can pick the 2 or 3 gems out of this group or the last 20 plus (we know there will be at least 110 in the top 100) it is you Grey.
Obviously back at work & having another good night …as it should be. Thanks for my nightly read …most entertaining …dollar store condoms …yeah that works for this group.

Mat Gillette
Mat Gillette
5 years ago

I’ll give it a go if you’ve still got an opening

TheMuppetManiac
TheMuppetManiac
5 years ago

I’m in a 12 team H2H keeper league. Standard scoring. We get to keep six. I’m having a hard time picking.

Jose Altuve
Francisco Lindor
Wil Myers
Khris Davis
Matt Kemp
Alex Bregman
Jose Bautista
Maikel Franco
Jake Arrieta
Kyle Hendricks
Gerrit Cole
Danny Duffy
Danny Salazar

I was thinking of keeping Altuve, Lindor, Franco, Myers, Davis and Arrieta (who I would try to trade)

LenFuego
LenFuego
5 years ago

Hi Grey,

Enjoying your rankings!

Last year was my first year in fantasy baseball (after over a quarter century doing football) – I joined a 12 team 5×5 two catcher auction league with up to 7 regular keepers and up to 5 “developmental” players that never appeared in your starting lineup (max keep time for all keepers = 5 years, after 2nd year if you want 2 more yrs salary raises by $5, 3 more yrs by $10).

The team I took over was devoid of any keeper talent, so last season was a rebuilding year. I have the following players, all coming off their 1st year:

Jonny Villar $1
Jose Ramirez $5
Nomar Mazara $1
Jorge Soler $2
Logan Forsythe $1
Marcus Semien $2
Kyle Seager $17

Aaron Sanchez $5
Vince Velaquez $1
James Paxton $5

(I am keeping B. Zimmer, J. Alfaro, M. Margot, R. Devers and Jose De Leon as developmental keepers)

I intend to keep Villar, Ramirez, Mazara, Soler, Sanchez, Velasquez and Paxton. Disagree?

Robert
Robert
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: That sounds like the results of someone who is really excited about a sunrise.

LenFuego
LenFuego
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Thanks, Grey, I appreciate the feedback.

Let me make my case for Soler over Semien and see if you still prefer Semien:

Where you set yourself up for success in this league is getting guys at low salaries that end up far exceeding their 3 year contract extension value so you get a lot of excess value for a long time. As $2 players, my 3 year contract extension value for both Soler and Semien will be $12 next year.

Soler seems to me more likely than Semien to break out beyond that $12 value level.

Soler is 2 years younger (24 vs. 26), is rated by scouts to have superior tools (e.g., 70 power), actually had a higher HR rate than Semien last year (5.3% of at-bats vs. 4.7%), and with the trade to KC, he should get a chance to play every day, at a productive spot in the batting order, and may even get a chance to steal a few bases (he had 17 SBs in 155 minor league games).

I also think it is worth noting that Soler has had only 1239 ABs in his entire five-year professional career, and less than 200 of those were at the AA or AAA level. There is good reason to believe he can develop further.

LenFuego
LenFuego
Reply to  Grey
5 years ago

@Grey: Thanks. Not the first time I have been accused of overthinking things, heh.