June 2006

unread for june 29th

Brad in Chi-City

Hey Guys,

I’ve been offered a trade.  I would get Pedro Martinez, and send off Francisco Liriano.  Would I be crazy to turn this down?  I’m number one in the league right now, it’s a 5×5, Roto, 2 player keeper league.  I won’t keep Liriano (barring a sensational finish).  My other starters are:


A.J. Burnett




am I being ridiculous, when my first instinct is to hold on to Liriano?

Would like your advice.


I’d be inclined to do that, but today is a good day to ask for more since Liriano is coming off a great start and Pedro got hammered his last time out. But the bottom line is, Liriano’s upside over a full season is not so far removed from Pedro’s downside, so you’re justified not only in doing the deal but taking advantage of the opportunity to try to get even more.

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For more info go to www.mlbradio.net.

For even more fantasy info check out our good friend Jeffrey Ma and company over at www.protrade.com.

How Lucky are You and unread for June 28th.

We spoke today about the article in the Wall Street Journal about luck in baseball. Be sure to check out Protrade.com for more and thanks as always to Jeffrey Ma, VP of Research for Protrade.

Here is today’s unread from Nate in Toledo

I’ve been listening on the podcast since the Preview show in March so thanks.

You guys have recently talked about the gains to be made in one category mitigating the loses in another.  My category that I am trailing in, like most people, is stolen bases.

12 team 5×5 standard

I just traded Ordonez for Patterson and picked up Mike Cameron off the free agent list they will both be on my roster for tomorrow.

I am trying to fill 4 spots with:

Carlos Lee
Gary Matthews Jr
Nick Swisher
Cory Patterson
Mike Cameron
Scott Podsednik

Here is my position in offensive categories:

3rd in Runs 7 ahead the guy behind me
3rd in HR  leader has 121, then 116, me at 109 then 108, 106, 100 2nd in RBI 28 ahead of guy behind me 10th in SB i have 40 guys ahead of me 42, 46, 55, 58, 60, 65, 71 4th in AVG i have .284 guys ahead .287 .292 then .295

My question is how much ground can I realistically makeup in stolen bases, should I go Lee, Patterson, Cameron, and Podsednik in an all out attempt at making this ground up at the expense of other categories?

These guys should help me or hold at Runs obviously I might start dropping in HR and stand to lose 2 points here, I have a rather big margin at RBI but I guess I could drop?

What are my best options here?


The rest of my offensive roster is currently:
Martin C
Howard 1B
Kent 2B
Beltre 3B
Young SS
and I am still holding onto Chavez to see if he ever comes around


Nathan, you have positioned your roster to really attack the SB category, but you can’t ignore the power categories, too. It’s a long season so you have time to move up but you also have to be mindful that a 28-RBI lead can evaporate quickly if you overcompensate. That said, I’d probably go with the best four hitters who give you the best combination of speed with power:

Carlos Lee
Cory Patterson
Nick Swisher
Scott Podsednik
Mike Cameron
Gary Matthews Jr

Matthews’ great average isn’t likely to last so I’d be shopping him. Use Cameron as an extra OF and slide him in when he’s hot, or when a Patterson or Podsednik is slumping. There’s still plenty of time left to get value out of all these guys and move up in the standings.

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For

more info go to www.mlbradio.net.

For even more fantasy info check out our good friend Jeffrey Ma and company over at


unread for june 19th 2006

JP in East Hartford, CT

Mike and Cory,

Where’s the love this year with the way Jermaine Dye is playing?

I’m considering trading for him because I think it’s a great sell high, but the guy I’m targeting is Vlad.

This is the potential deal.

Dye and either (Isringhausen, Turnbow, Saito, Houston Street, Otsuka, Weathers, or Ken Ray) for Vlad.

The team I’m trading to is in 3rd place (I’m in 1st) but only has C. Ray (Baltimore), Tyler Walker and Todd Coffey as closers.

Who should I package with Dye?


I’d be happy to deal Dye and either Weathers or Ray for Vladdy. Dye is having a fantastic year, the best year of his career, and is obviously taking advantage of hitting in the middle of a productive order that plays in a very favorable home ballpark. Vladdy, on the other hand, is having a mediocre year by his standards, plays in an offensively starved lineup and plays half his games in a tough hitter’s park.

That said, check out these stats and tell me who’s who:

.303 35 16 54 5
.302 40 20 53 3

Obviously they’re still close enough that, if given the chance, you’ll take your chances on Vladdy. Dye is having a great year, but Vladdy’s done it year in and year out.


I like Cory would take my chances with Vladdy any day of the week. The one thing about trading for a star is just because they are stars doesn’t mean the day you get them you jump in the standings. You have to allow them to settle in and make an impact. Another thing to realize when trading for a star is you have to give something up to get them. With that said I make the deal, but I don’t think Weathers or Ray get in done along with Dye. I would take these four closers JP and rank them from least favorite to favorite. Take your least favorite and see if that gets it done and slowly work your way up to Street if you have to. Oakland is hot right now but can’t get any hotter and can’t keep this up so don’t be too sad if you have to give up Street. Hopefully it doesn’t come to that and if the other owner says no to Weathers or Ken Ray he says yes to Saito or Otsuka or Turnbow.

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For more info go to www.mlbradio.net.

We didn’t have a chance on today’s show for Pitch or Ditch so here it is in all it’s glory!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Happy Fathers Day to all Dads but especially mine.

Red Sox (Beckett) at Braves (Ramirez)
Cory: Maybe facing an NL team will help Beckett get going again? Ramirez is hurt and might not start, but I’d use Smoltz or Hudson if one of them gets moved up to take the turn.
Siano: If Beckett is going to get back to early season form he needs to beat weaker opponents and I’ll take the 8th hitter and pitcher any day of the week. Yes on Josh no on Ramirez

Yankees (Chacon) at Nationals (Ortiz)
Cory: Pass on Chacon. Yes on Ortiz, who is pitching very well of late and has handled the Yankees well in his career.
Siano: Pass on both. RFK can’t hold A-Rod and Giambi.

Tigers (Verlander) at Cubs (Marmol)
Cory: Yes on both, two impressive young arms.
Siano: Yes on Verlander, no on Marmol I think his magic ride gets bumpy Saturday.

Giants (Schmidt) at Mariners (Meche)
Cory: Yes on both; Meche is a good gamble at home against the inconsistent Giants.
Siano: I don’t have a problem taking a shot on Meche at home against the Giants I’ll jump on Cory’s bandwagon here.

Padres (Peavy) at Angels (Santana)
Cory: Yes on both, we’ll ride Peavy as long as he’s able to pitch.
Siano: Yes on both , Peavy goes out there 100% and Santana you have to go with at home.

Blue Jays (Janssen) at Marlins (Moehler)
Cory: Janssen’s low strikeout rate is a worry but he keeps getting it done, so go with him and pass on Moehler.
Siano: I’m looking for Janssen to bounce back here so I’ll yes him against the marlins no way on Moehler, he is bringing down a good story with this rotation of youngsters.

White Sox (Contreras) at Reds (Milton)
Cory: Yes on Contreras and no on Milton, even though he won’t have to face either Thome. I just don’t trust him.
Siano: Agreed

Indians (Westbrook) at Brewers (Bush)
Cory: Pass on both, who’ve both been too inconsistent.
Siano: I’ll pass as well this could be a shootout which means 2-1.

Royals (Keppel) at Astros (Buchholz)
Cory: Pass on both; Clemens will probably take Buchholz’s rotation spot next time.
Siano: I like Buchholz here he may need to show Garner that he belongs and who better then the Royals to get fat on? No on Keppel

Twins (Bonser) at Pirates (Maholm)
Cory: Pass and pass again, although Maholm is probably worth a gamble in deeper leagues if you have some ERA and WHIP cushion to work with.
Siano: I need to see more form Bonser before trotting him out there, haven’t been that impressed. No on both.

Devil Rays (Kazmir) at Phillies (Mathieson)
Cory: Yes on Kazmir and no on Mathieson, who is being rushed and probably isn’t ready.
Siano: Yes on kaz no on Mathieson.

Orioles (Benson) at Mets (Martinez)
Cory: No Anna jokes here, just pass on Benson and yes on Pedro.
Siano: Anna is weird sometimes very hot sometimes not so much, ummm no on Kris yes on Petey.

Rockies (Francis) at Cardinals (Suppan)
Cory: Francis has been very consistent this year, he’s worth using in most matchups right now. Pass on Jeff Suppan, the awful chuck’n’ducker.
Siano: I say start Francis, Suppan may surprise us on this one, but the Rockies are too hot to take a chance

D-Backs (Jarvis) at Rangers (Koronka)
Cory: Pass on both.
Siano: ***** Tonk Koronka Donk. Pass on both

Dodgers (Lowe) at Athletics (Saarloos)
Cory: Yes on Lowe and pass on Saarloos against the NL’s best offense (yep, it’s true!).
Siano: Yes on Lowe, Saarloos can’t shut down two offenses can he? My guess is no, pass.

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For more info go to www.mlbradio.net.

unread for june 15th 2006

Rich (from Mass)

Hi guys,
Just read that Cleveland plans to use Hafner at first base for the 
first game  of interleague play. But after that, who knows? Can you 
run down the list of DH’s who are likely to miss most games during 
interleague play? I believe that Oakland is considering putting 
Frank Howard on the DL during interleague play since he has a sore 
quad. I also believe that David Ortiz will get some starts at 1b. But 
how about guys like Johnny Gomes, Giambi, and other DH’s?



Rich, of the primary DH’s who have any meaningful fantasy value, I would rank them in this order in terms of who stands to lose the most playing time in interleague play:

Frank Thomas (he might even go on the DL since they won’t use him at all at 1B)
Carl Everett (can he even play the OF any more?)
Jonny Gomes (a sore shoulder will probably prevent him from playing the field)
Travis Hafner (better than Broussard offensively, but not a real option in the field)
Shea Hillenbrand (he might give Overbay or Glaus a day off but otherwise he’ll pinch-hit)
Javy Lopez (he’ll give Ramon Hernandez a rest or two but isn’t really an option at 1B)
Jim Thome (probably still trustworthy at 1B, but Konerko is entrenched)
David Ortiz (they’ll probably rotate him, Youkilis and Lowell as they did last time)
Jason Giambi (Andy Phillips will get a game or two but Giambi should play most of the time)

I’ll be hoping Thome gets to play out there a little.🙂

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For more info go to www.mlbradio.net.

Josh in Illinoiying writes….

What’s your take on Jojima?  Am I better off leaving him in, dropping Jose Castilla and picking up Martin or Ross, or drop Jojima and pick up one of the waiver catchers?



Johjima is faring about as well as should’ve been expected, which is to say he’s having a good but not great season and struggling at times to deal with the adjustments pitchers are making to him. I think he’ll continue along his current pace and finish around .280 with 12-15 homers and 65-70 RBI’s. Martin has a greater upside, though, because he should hit for a higher average and chip in with a few steals, which he did consistently throughout the minors… think of him as a Jason Kendall type with more power. Castillo has been awesome in PNC Park this year but weak on the road, and the Pirates are in the middle of a long home stand so I’d keep him in the lineup for now.

In summary: try to find a spot for Martin but not by cutting Castillo, at least not right now. Then deal Johjima to someone who REALLY needs a catcher, and put Martin in there. Then, when the Pirates go on the road, cut Castillo and pick up a player with someone to replace the guy you cut to make room for Martin. Got it?🙂



Even thought the catchers position is looking up with the guys you have named etc… it is still not deep enough other GM’s aren’t looking for help. If you can create depth at a position that has very little then you can hopefully cash in on that depth. Get the best deal possible with Johjima and hope for the best with martin and Castillo. If a deal doesn’t come along that you like then hang on to Johjima and play the splits/hot hand with the other slot.

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For more info go to www.mlbradio.net.

unread for june 13th is Big Richie!!!!

Long Island, NY

Hi guys,

I am in a 10 team mixed head-to-head 7×7 league.  The extra hitting categories are OPS and Errors.  I am a disgruntled Sexson owner and I am wondering if it is time to pull the plug on him.  Free agents include Helton, Broussard, and Casey. 

Also, I currently have Cantu, Uggla and Chipper and can only play 2.  Who should I deal?


I still wouldn’t cut bait on Sexson, who has produced four homers and 15 RBI’s over the last 11 games, the type of power production you expected from him at the start of the season. The low batting average is still a big concern, which is compounded by his nagging foot troubles and the steep drop off in his walk rate, but his power along makes him more valuable than Broussard or Casey. Helton probably has the greatest upside of the bunch, but he hasn’t done much this year either so I’d rather gamble that Sexson’s power surge will continue.

As far as the three other guys, I’d try to deal Uggla, who just doesn’t have a track record to support this level of production. His inexperience and home ballpark are likely to catch up with him at some point — just as has started to happen to Hanley Ramirez — so try to cash in now.

South Shore in the hizzo!!


I think cutting Sexson is a big mistake. He has 42 RBI and hasn’t really heated up yet. He’ll back into 100 RBI’s at worst. Can Casey or Broussard owners say that? I am a Sexson owner and refuse to give up on him. The fact he had a great year last year leads me to believe this is just a poor first half. To me it is crazy to think he is this year’s bust guy.

I agree with Cory on Uggla. Chipper is Chipper and Cantu has already started to pay off with numbers since returning from DL.

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For more info go to www.mlbradio.net.

unreads that make you go hmmmm (6/9/06)

Jeremy in San Diego…..

Dear Mike and Cory,

Hey guys, I’m a new fan, it’s a good thing school is out for the summer because I’m totally addicted to the show!  Just wanted to add a thought to your discussion about when closers run into trouble in non save situations.  It’s something we’ve run into in San Diego with Trevor Hoffman, one of the most reliable closers in the game.  I wince when I see him come in during tie ballgames, since more often than not he doesn’t seem as sharp and gives up the lead to the other team.

I know you guys were talking about non save situations when a team has a sizeable lead, but similar dynamics may apply here.  I don’t know if you guys mentioned that not just the pitcher, but the hitters may come in with a different mentality as well in that situation!  When a hitter steps up with his team behind, he may swing with less confidence and even out of desperation.  But in a tie ballgame, or in a ballgame that’s not even close, he may be looser and take better hacks.  You guys are always talking about baseball as a zero sum game, and the mentality of both the hitter and pitcher are involved here, but I just wanted to throw out this part of the mix!

Keep up the great fun!


Jeremy, that’s a great point. I had Hoffman back in my NL-only days — he’s my all-time franchise saves leader — and I specifically recall him coming into a game in Coors for an inning of work with the Padres losing by a couple, and he got flat bombed. Dante Bichette hit one off him that burned up on re-entry.

Fortunately we have data to investigate this issue, and it’s worth looking at, but the problem is it’s not something we can control. I couldn’t stop Scioscia from bringing in K-Rod into an 11-0 nothing game, so knowing that K-Rod would struggle didn’t help but made me more miserable. As long as he cashes in the save chances, we’ll have to live with it!


Jeremy, I think it’s a real though provoking question. For the pitching side one thing we are missing (and believe it or not John Sterling of the Yankees radio network brought this up last night when Papelbon came in with a 6 run lead) is that these guys need work. It’s more important to the managers that these guys see live hitting after not being used for three days then them being over rested. We can’t control it and we can’t worry about it but it can make you wince in fantasy baseball. For the hitting I have to disagree with you a tad. These guys make millions and while the Jeter’s and Big Papi’s make a living of coming up in big spots some other guys make their livings padding their numbers in non crucial situations. If I’m a hitter and the game is out of reach on either side I’m taking this opportunity to produce because of the lack of pressure, if I strike out so what but I can aim for the fences or do something different that will make me money.

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For more info go to www.mlbradio.net.

unread for june 7th

Jonathan Mayo joined the show today to talk about what players drafted yesterday have the best shot to make it to bigs in 2006 or 2007. He came on about 40 minutes into the show so check it out for those in keeper leagues…….Siano

Keegan in St Louis writes….


A couple of weeks ago you mentioned that speedy players pickup a lot of their steals off of teams that allow a lot of them, either because of a catcher with a week arm or pitchers with slow deliveries.  I have been using this to pickup steals for a couple of years now, and it works great for me.  The only reason I waited this long to respond, is because I know a league mate of mine is not listening today.  I usually draft a few guys that will pickup around 20-30 steals for me like Abreu, or David Wright, and not pay too much for the one dimensional guys.  This year I drafted Wright, Abreu, and Jimmy Rollins to start with.  I have been able to pick up Barfield, Vizquel, and Dave Roberts off waivers for their “speed weeks” as I like to call them.  I pick them up right before they steal 5-6 in a week and then let them go before they play teams like Detroit. 
This week for instance, I picked up Lofton who has series against the Mets, Rockies, and Padres.  All of these teams are fairly easy to run on, especially the Padres.

Looks to me like over the next week or two, teams like the Yankees, Phillies, Rockies, Marlins, and Tigers could be good sources for cheap steals.

Yankees-         June 13th-18th     Three games against the Indians, and three against the Nationals.

Phillies-           June 9th-18th         Three games against the Nationals, three against the Mets, and three against the Devil Rays.

Tigers-             June 9th-18th    Three games against the Blue Jays, three against the Devil Rays, and three against the Cubs.

Rockies-          June 9th-18th    Three games against the Dodgers, and four against the Nationals.

Marlins-          June 9th-18th    Three games against the Padres, and three against the Blue Jays.


Keegan, I like this strategy a lot… I’m also not a big fan of speed "specialists", although I did end up with Figgins (drafted) and Roberts (free agent pickup) on my 411 listener league team this year. The only concern I have is that you use your designated speedster as you would a pitch or ditch guy; try to position him in your utility spot so you can take advantage of different opportunities without disrupting your regular lineup, and don’t get too attached to someone whose value is so tightly wrapped up in this category. That is, once you get your 3-4 steals from Lofton this week, feel free to cut him against Oakland and Pittsburgh!

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For more info go to www.mlbradio.net.

unread for June 5th 2006

Rob in the Bay Area

Hey guys, great show.  I have been listening to the podcast since the beginning of the season. 

Here’s my question.  I am the commish in a 11 team 6X6 keeper league (errors and holds) and currently in 1st.  This trade was recently vetoed, can you tell me if it was justified?

I give up: Webb, Gomes & Blake
I get: Peavy & David Wright. 

In speaking with some other GM’s they felt that this was unfair b/c both of the guys that I would be getting are potential keepers.  On the flip side, they felt that none of the guys that I an giving up were.  Thoughts? 


I think it would be a great trade for you — even with his hot start I’d rather have Peavy over Webb, and Wright is the best player in the deal — but I don’t think it should’ve been vetoed, since there is plenty of present value for both sides. All of the players involved are having good-to-great years so, absent any evidence of collusion, I think this deal should’ve been allowed.


While I don’t think this deal should be vetoed I can see why some GM’s have an issue. One saving grace on this should be the pitchers involved. Peavy is dealing with Tendonitis and this could become a bigger problem for him while Webb has been incredible so far this year. Gomes and Blake vs. David Wright is close enough to let this go through. Blake’s trending back towards earth could be harsh, but if he doesn’t go ice cold he will end up having value. I like Gomes a lot more then Cory and think he can be a valuable asset on a fantasy team. If Peavy ends up healthy this is a very good deal for you but should not be vetoed.

Happy Birthday to the biggest baseball fan I ever met, Mike Siano Sr.

For more fantasy insight catch us weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on the MLB.com Fantasy 411. For more info go to www.mlbradio.net.