April 2007


8 team NL-Only, 5×5 the one w/ 6 OF. Do I stay patient w/ Corey Hart and hope that he actually gets his “starting job” soon or do I cut bait and go w/ Jose Bautista, Jack Wilson, Alex Gonzalez, Hunter Pence or Cody Ross – and do I drop Rauch for Moyer, Beslisle or Bergman? – need Ks and Rauch is not doing it this year as of yet.
-Nate in springfield, IL


Corey Hart(breaker) simply isn’t getting the playing time he deserves. It’s truly an unfortunate set of circumstances, too, as the Brewers’ winning ways make it even less likely that manager Ned Yost will suddenly settle his current outfield shuffle. While Hart certainly has the chops to earn his way into a full-time role, it’s anyone’s guess when, especially with Geoff Jenkins defying father time.

Since your league is NL-only, a much smaller player pool, I’d do my best to drop someone other than Hart. That said, I’d drop Hart for Hunter Pence at the end of the day. Rarely do five-category players like Pence come along during the year and, while Hart remains the victim of Northern Exposure, Pence waltzes into Houston with a welcome mat and a glowing sign that says “Be our center fielder.”

— Alex Cushing, MLB.com

Working the Phones

2 Trade offers to get my team set, I need more HR, RBI power in my lineup. I think I am getting my power that I want.

12 team mixed 7×7 keeper league,  it position based, so all my OF’s have to LF, RF or CF.  My current lineup is Barrett-C, Chris Duncan-1st (RF, LF), Kinsler-2nd, Reyes-SS, Gordon-3B (Teahan to back him up a 3B), Burrell-LF, A. Jones-CF, Teahan-RF (3B) and Thome at UTIL and I have Derosa (2nd, RF), Sexson and


on the bench.  SP-Zambrano, Smoltz, Zito, Lilly and Loshe with


on the DL and my relievers are Paplebon, Fuentes Dempster, Otsuka and MacDougal, we have Holds as a category.




Barry Zito

Ian Snell
Rafeal Furcal

Then I will Trade
Rafeal Furcal
Andruw Jones

Bill Hall 

n      Michael


I think you’re working the phones a little too much here.

You’re essentially you’re trading


, Andruw, Otsuka and Zito for Bill Hall, Manny and Snell — not something to get excited over. Selling low on Andruw Jones in his contract year isn’t a great idea — especially in a league that rewards talented center fielders. Hall won’t replace him. And you don’t exactly receive an inordinate amount of pop.



’s wrists don’t snap like they used to. He’s a not a sub-.200 hitter, though. As far as hitters go, it’s Sheff and Jones for Manny and Hall.

Eh. You can do better.

— Alex Cushing, MLB.com

Keep Your Cool

Hey guys – Keep, Trade or Drop these guys? 5×5, 12 Team, Mixed
Akinori Iwamura
Chris B. Young
Mark Teahen

Also – These guys are on the WW. I could use some steals, but really just want the best player. What do you think?

Mike Cameron
Dave Roberts
Gary Matthews Jr
Aaron Rowand
Kenny Lofton
Shane Victorino


JR from Drexel


Iwamura was placed on the disabled list Tuesday, so you can easily slide him into your DL slot, freeing your from the decision of who to drop. Once he returns and produces his first big game, by all means, shop his inflated batting average.

It’s way too early to trade high-upside power/speed guys like Chris Young and Mark Teahen. Dishing, or even worse, dropping these types are the sorts of short-term, emotional choices managers regret down the line. Young’s struggles are largely due to his early-season groin injury, while Teahen’s sluggish offense has more to do with the demands of changing positions. It’s a long season, so don’t overreact to slow starts, especially when it comes to athletic, patient hitters who have shown the ability to mash and slash in the Minors. Stop staring at their current stats, have a drink and stay cool.

With respect to your pickup choices, I’d go with Shane Victorino. Batting second in the Phils’ lineup, ahead of Chase Utley, he sees lots of juicy pitches, along with plenty of running opportunities. Also, his six doubles says the homers will come, especially in Philly’s bandbox.

— Alex Cushing

Maximizing Value

JK in Santa BarbaraListen to you guys everyday and need your advice.
12 Team, 5X5, Im in last place, Please Help, Thanks

I Trade: Utley, Figgins, Hawpe & Kip Wells I Receive: Aaron Hill, Jason Bay, Ichiro & Kazmir

Also Quentin is available on wire – ?
My Roster:
Mauer – C
Derrek Lee – 1B
Bill Hall – 3B
Tejada – SS
Ordonez – OF
Markakis – OF
Chris Duncan – 1B/OF BN
Mike Jacobs – 1B BN
Podsednik – OF BN
Rich Hill – SP
Zito – SP
Valverde – RP
Gagne – RP
Shields – P
Otsuka – P
Frasor – P
Byrd – P BN
Wang – P DL


Without question, pull the trigger buddy. You’re receiving three excellent, proven talents (Ichiro, Bay, Kazmir) while dishing two guys with potential (K. Wells, Hawpe). Letting go of Utley is tough, but Aaron Hill has a legitimate 90-.285-15-70-10 season in him, and the other guys you’re getting back more than make up for the difference in production. In all, excellent job at maximizing value.

Also, by all means , drop either Paul Byrd or Mike Jacobs for Carlos Quentin.

Alex Cushing

New Feature on Protrade and Zach the Intern

If you missed today’s show Jeffrey Ma of www.protrade.com was on and after lambasting Cory for being wholier then now with his trade vetoes he got time to plug the new feature on protrade where you can now start trading teams.

A-Rod just hit a walk off bomb off Borowski so I’ll take the Yankees even though it’s Rasner , Karstens and Wright instead of Moose , Wang and Pavano.

It was a busy day today with the Myers, Howard, Felix and Kendrick news and not to mention Mark Buerhle’s big night so I haven’t been getting to Zach the interns facts that he looks up for us, Cushing will have them later, just wanted to give Zach a shout out for the hard work and predicting Chacin would handle the Red Sox the other night.



Could this finally be the breakout season for David DeJesus? DeJesus hit his third homer of the year last night, and throughout his career has posted a fairly low strikeout per at bat rate. (70 K’s in 491 Abs last year and 8 K’s in 58 Abs this season).
Al Reyes picked up his fifth save for the Devil Rays, and it appears he can be fairly successful in the closer role. But my major concern with Reyes is his potential to wear down mid-season. He missed all of last year due to injury, and before throwing over 60 innings for the Cardinals in 2005, Reyes pitched a combined 46 innings from 2002 through 2004.


Kip Wells is a real good play at San Francisco. The Giants have no one in their lineup outside of Bonds who is remotely dangerous, and Wells has allowed just five runs in his first three starts. Wells is starting to look like the latest of Dave Duncan’s successful reclamation projects.

Don’t give up on Zach Duke just yet! I know he’s coming off a two inning seven run disaster outing, but he previously posted two straight quality starts. Run him out there tomorrow vs the Brewers. Duke holds a 3-1 career record against Milwaukee, with a 3.63 ERA.

— Zach The Intern

Time to bench Zimmerman?

What do you think of Zimmerman? I haven’t seen much production from him and have Mark DeRosa on the bench. Should I bench Zimmerman for a while? Or platoon DeRosa versus LHP and Zimmerman vs RHP?

Thanks fantasy baseball gurus, 



Benching Ryan Zimmerman in favor of Mark DeRosa is like

The Nationals offense has been weakened drastically by the losses of Alfonso Soriano and Nick Johnson. With less protection, Ryan Zimmerman sees fewer attractive pitches to hit, leading him to swing at balls outside of the strike zone (0.30 BB/K ratio). Despite his April struggles, Zimmerman remains a special talent, one who’s shown the ability to adjust at every level. He’s a good bet to adapt, and bounce back, though probably not at the high level many had hoped for.

With that said, benching Zimmerman in favor of DeRosa, or platooning the two, for “a while” would be like wearing flamboyant 1980s clothing simply because it came back in style: for a while you may look cool, but sooner or later, you’re bound to feel embarrassed.

Only 22 years old, Zimmerman may be a victim of high expectations, but even in his worst season, he’s more productive than DeRosa.

Ride out Zimmerman’s slump.

— Alex Cushing

No playing time, no glory

Quick question:
18 team 5×5

I’ve got Nelson Cruz, Kenny Lofton, Matt Murton, and Joe Borchard as my bench/utility guys with Hermida on the DL. I’m having a hard time deciding which guys I should start when they are all playing. Can you rank them 1-5?

And I love TSSCBOT commercials. Not that I’m gutsy enough to go to the south side with my Sabathia jersey and my Cubs hat, but the commercials crack me up.
Nate in Logan Square, Chicago


I’m not even sure if the intimidating C.C. Sabathia, himself, would be gutsy enough to venture into southside in uniform …

As for your outfielders, here’s my breakdown:

1) Kenny Lofton – Wheels keep on turning, secure playing time means something.
2) Jeremy Hermida – Whenever he’s healthy, of course.
3) Nelson Cruz – Showed good pop in the Minors, so be patient.
4) Joe Borchard: You’ll need Tums to stomach his AVG, but with Hermida out, at-bats are there.
5) Matt Murton – Outside of Hermida, has the best upside here. Problem is, Cliff Floyd is stealing his shine.

— Alex Cushing

Don’t sell your saves short

The team that has BJ Ryan is looking for another closer. I have either Dan Wheeler or Brian Fuentes that I’m willing to part with.I could use a bit more pop in my OF.
He has Luis Gonzalez, Eric Byrnes, Gary Matthews Jr. and Shawn Green that he’s willing to part with.
Any of the guys fair value?

 Kevin

Are those the best quality outfielders he has to offer?

If it’s power you’re seeking with closers to deal, you can do better than this. Gonzalez, Matthews and Green are no better than fourth or fifth outfielders, while Byrnes is more of a No. 3 guy.

Saves are scarce. Having a surplus of them allows you to command a host of strong offers, which you don’t quite have the makings of here.

I’d try packaging Fuentes and another outfielder for a slow starter along the lines of Andruw Jones, Jermaine Dye or Torii Hunter. If that doesn’t work, do the same with Dan Wheeler, aiming for the ice-cold Gary Sheffield or Nick Swisher. Set the bar high and let the market come to you, especially when the trading partner is coming off the disappointing loss of B.J. Ryan — a situation in which they’re more likely to overpay. After all, there’s only so many closers to go around.

— Alex Cushing

Chucky and I are so over!

Tremendous job by Big Dawgs Hunt in DC stepping in for the AWOL Johnny Archives and coming up with the date of the infamous Ted Lilly-and-I-are-through show. Check out the archive for June, 2005, scroll down and click the link for "The Fantasy 411 for June 15, 2005", then fast-forward (if you like) to about the 10:36 mark where the magic begins…Lilly2

The irony is that I opted for Jason Marquis in that pitch -or- ditch segment, and against Lilly, and guess how it turned out? Yeah, that’s right, Lilly threw a gem while Marquis muddled through five lousy innings as the Blue Jays beat the Cardinals,  5-2.

Of course, I did get the last laugh on my two-timing ex, because even though Marquis was nothing special in ’05, Lilly had probably his worst season. Sure Lilly was far superior with the strikeout rate, but Marquis topped him in every other fantasy category… take that, Chucky!

Anyway, we’ve seen these seductive stretches from Chucky before, so let’s see if that shiny 2.37 ERA holds up along with that 0.48 ground out to fly out ratio… a few more of those are gonna leave the yard as the weather heats up and I won’t feel too bad about it.🙂

Coming up soon, my all "hitters hit, but I’d be worried about these guys" team for April…