April 2008

Unread for 4/30

Hi guys.  I’m in a 13 team,  5 x 5, mixed deep league with over 30 players.  I’ve been offered Zimmerman for Towles and Nick Johnson.  This is a keeper league but salaries aren’t an issue until the offseason.  I would have to go get another catcher.  Only options are Bako or Zaun.  IS this a good offer and if so, who would you drop to pick up the additional catcher…Scott Baker, Sonnastine, Corpas, Wellemeyer or Barmes?  Thanks!!

Ken in the Nati

Hey Ken,

Since you’re in a keeper league, you should want the best player in the deal. Zimmerman is that guy, so go for it. You wouldn’t want J.R. Towles standing in the way of acquiring a possible top-five third baseman, would you? Towles is promising, but Zim’s upside is much higher. I think Nick Johnson is just a throw-in, nothing special. First base is loaded with good hitters, so he is replaceable.

The player whom you should drop is a tougher decision. Keep Corpas, since he still has a shot at closing for Colorado this season. Brian Fuentes has been a trendy pickup, but he struggled at times last year as the closer, including a stretch from June 22-July 1 where he gave up 10 earned runs on 13 hits in 3 1/3 innings before landing on the disabled list. He may not keep the closer role for long if he runs into trouble again this season.

You can’t give up Wellemeyer (4.14 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 36 Ks in 37 innings) and Scott Baker (2-0, 1.17 WHIP, 27 Ks in 30 innings) based on their effectiveness to this point.

That leaves Sonnanstine and Clint Barmes. I would keep the pitcher, Sonnanstine, in this case. He has shown enough promise in the Minors (2.66 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, 7.4 K/9 rate in Double-A in 2006; 2.66 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 8.4 K/9 rate in Triple-A in 2007) that it would be wise to hold onto him to see if he can translate his success to the Majors.

Kyle Stack, MLB.com

Top 5 Musical Artists

1.Depeche Mode
3.Alice in Chains
5.Pearl Jam
Honorable mentions:  Stray Cats, Killers, Pink Floyd, Beatles, Megadeth
1. Ramones
2. Supersuckers
3. Metallica
4. Lunachicks
5. Kiss
Honorable mentions:

6. Nirvana  7. Slayer  8. Black Sabbath  9. Misfits  10. Rocket From the Crypt
1. Bruce Springsteen & the E Street band
2. James Taylor
3. Billy Joel
4. Grateful Dead
5. Van Halen
Honorable mentions:  Jackson Browne, Guns & Roses, Pearl Jam, The Who, Eric Clapton


Unreads for 4/29

Hi Guys,

Hopefully Casey has completed his civic duty greasing the gears of the wheels of justice.

An impatient owner in my 12-team 6×6 non-keeper league (OPS and holds extra categories) cut Carlos Pena.

I’m falling behind in my power numbers:  should I cut Konerko and grab Pena?  Which has better power prospects from here to the end of the season?  (This is for my DH slot…I’ve got Teixeira slotted in at 1B, and this league doesn’t play a CI).

Brad from Cupertino

Hey Brad,

I’d stick with Konerko.  Although it’s tempting to snatch a guy from the wire who’s coming off a 46 home run season, let’s remember that before 2007 Pena was barely worth a roster spot on a major league team, let alone your fantasy team.  Now give the guy credit.  He obviously figured something out.  You don’t hit that many homers and drive in that many runs by accident.  But when deciding whether to make these kinds of moves, I’ll always lean on the safe side.  Konerko’s hit at least 31 homers in each of the last four seasons, including two 40 HR years.  He’s on pace (5 HR  19 RBI so far) for yet another 30-100 campaign.  With the White Sox first baseman, you know what you’re gonna get.  While Pena’s early power numbers (6 HR  13 RBI) are also solid, he’s hitting .200 and has struck out an awfully high 31 times in 80 AB’s, compared to Konerko’s 16 K’s in 83 AB’s.  It’s entirely possible that Pena posts the higher home run total, but the odds of him duplicating last year’s numbers are incredibly slim given the track record.  Pena offers slightly more upside, but this upside isn’t enough to overcome the risk.  I might consider picking up Pena for someone else besides Konerko and shopping one of the two for an upgrade at another position.  But if you’re asking me who I’d rather have from this point on, it would be the consistent, underappreciated Konerko.

Zach Steinhorn, MLB.com


I currently have the number one waiver spot in my league and wanted to hear your thoughts on using my spot on Scherzer. Originally I planned on using it on Kershaw but now that Scherzer has been called up I am having second thoughts. Considering ability, date of call up, and playing time, who should I use my waiver priority on? Thanks for your help it is appreciated.

Josh, NYC

Hey Josh,

You might as well use it on the guy who is already in the Majors. Scherzer’s 38/3 K/BB ratio in 23 innings this season for Triple-A Tucson is making strikeout-needy fantasy owners salivate. His role on the D-backs is a bit more speculative than Kershaw’s role on the Dodgers. Kershaw is thought of as a starter, plain and simple.

Scherzer could become the fourth or fifth starter, could stick as a middle reliever for awhile or he could become the closer if Brandon Lyon, and then Chad Qualls, struggle.

These guys both have great long-term potential. Right now, I like Scherzer. Kershaw might have a more pitcher-friendly home park in Dodger Stadium, but Scherzer – if he jumps into the rotation – has a better offense with better pitching in front of him. He’ll have less of a spotlight on him in Arizona than Kershaw will in Los Angeles.

The fact of the matter is that Kershaw may not be called up to the Dodgers until June, possibly July. Scherzer is in Arizona now. Hopefully for your sake, you can pick up Scherzer, then watch a flurry of waiver wire activity in your league push you back up to the top waiver priority before Kershaw gets the call to the bigs.  

Kyle Stack, MLB.com

Hi there, first time emailer, long time listener. 14 team Yahoo league 6×6 with holds and walks as extra categories. I’ve been offered Carlos Lee for Edinson Volquez. My starting pitching is quite deep but I have Burrell, Markakis and Dunn already in the outfield and Jeter at utility. No, it is not an 8 team league I just had a good draft! Seems like a great deal if Lee is going to hit – is there anything that should concern me or would you make this trade ten times out of ten.

Great show and great channel – sorry for the loss of Marzano. You all brighten my commute to work every day on your podcasts, so keep doing what you all do so well.

Thanks – David in England

Hey David,

Not sure I totally agree with your logic in terms of this trade being a total no-brainer. Granted, Lee is a fantasy stud, as his 32 jacks and 119 RBIs last season ranked among the top power numbers in the game. He’s struggling average-wise a bit this season (just .260 in 100 at-bats), but he’s right where he should be in terms of power production. That said, your outfield seems very solid with Burrell, Markakis and Dunn, and Jeter gives you a consistent bat at your utility slot. Sure, Lee would be an upgrade over a couple of those guys, but you’ve got plenty of pop without him as it stands now. Quality young starters are as rare in fantasy as they are in the bigs, so it just doesn’t seem worth it to me to give up Volquez here. Statistically, he’s a Top 5 pitcher in the Majors right now, and he doesn’t seem to be letting up much. It’s possible that he’ll fade and you’ll be kicking yourself for not having sold him at peak value, but my gut tells me he’s here to stay. Stifle the urge to snatch a big-name slugger and pat yourself on the back for having the foresight to grab Volquez early.

Corey Gottlieb, MLB.com



Fade To Crackberry and More Tout Nuggets

Here is another Tout article by Cory’s boy Lenny Melnick. If you scroll to bottom you get all the Tout links you need so check it out especially if you are in FAAB leagues.


now on to


Siano: Carlos lee hits ball hard

Cory Schwartz: And when it be gone, it stay gone

Cory Schwartz: So to speak

Siano: Patterson pops out on bunt

Cory Schwartz: Him, notsogood

Cory Schwartz: You wanna deal for?

Siano: Prob not.

Cory Schwartz: Wise choice

Siano: Another reason why holds is a stupid category.

Siano: Ryan franklin leads the majors.

Cory Schwartz: Haha

Siano: See that yankee “rally”

Cory Schwartz: Whatever works

Cory Schwartz: Mussina not bad

Siano: Nope

Siano: But tightrope city and won’t go long in games.

Siano: Ok in pod but no graduate.

Cory Schwartz: Right

Siano: Eddy 2 doubles huh. So happy. He’s safe.

Siano: Like I said.

Siano: Cream rises to top.

Cory Schwartz: Yeah, leading the Reds in just about everything, he can hit

Siano: Sleeps with a rake.

Cory Schwartz: Haha

Siano: Check out my reply on post for fave 5 tv show. See the backing I got on buffy?

Cory Schwartz: Yep

Cory Schwartz: I never spoke out against that

Cory Schwartz: Although SMG is no Kristi Swanson

Siano: No she’s hotter and trust me I love kristy.

Siano: Pboy and of course the chase.

Cory Schwartz: Swanson in the Buffy movie, hot lava

Siano: Enh. Hotter in the chase. You ever see that?

Cory Schwartz: I did not, I sense that I should

Siano: Barton 3 run dingy, morales can’t get out giants.

Siano: Guilty pleasure movie. Charlie sheen. Flea and kiedis , henry rollins, good fun.

Cory Schwartz: Barton?

Siano: Yep

Siano: Off sinkers

Cory Schwartz: Oh, Daric

Siano: No barton fink

Cory Schwartz: Was thinking Brian, hahhha

Siano: Easy

Cory Schwartz: Ryan Ludwick golden sombrero

Siano: He’s no shumaker

Cory Schwartz: As Cory said, just a good hitter on a hot streak but that over now

Siano: U know I think my papi trade got nixed becuase I cut skip before trade was consumated. What a joke.

Siano: In 411. Gotta resubmit that beeyotch.

Siano: Pujols 3 hits.

Siano: He sleeps with a back hoe

Siano: Eddy with the play for coco!!!

Cory Schwartz: Cordero w the save that’s good enough for me

Siano: Eddy eddy eddy!


Updated Feud Standings

        FANTASY FEUD BREAKDOWN THROUGH WEEK 4                                                                                                                                                                               

Mike’s Team

Hitters: Alex Rodriguez, Matt Holliday, Chone Figgins, Jose Reyes
AVG: 32/104 = .307
HR: 3
RBI: 16
SB: 3
R: 18

Pitchers: Justin Verlander, Matt Cain, Zack Greinke, Jake Peavy
W/L: 1-3
ERA: 4.17 (23ER in 49 2/3 IP)
K: 41
SV: 0
WHIP: 67/49.66 = 1.35

Casey’s Team

Hitters: Miguel Cabrera, Jimmy Rollins, David Wright, Manny Ramirez
AVG: 27/79 = .342
HR: 3
RBI: 12
SB: 2
R: 12

Pitchers: Johan Santana, Fausto Carmona, Micah Owings, Felix Hernandez
W/L: 3-3
ERA: 2.72 (15ER in 49 2/3 IP)
K: 42
SV: 0
WHIP: 64/49.66 = 1.29

Cory’s Team

Hitters: Ryan Howard, Brandon Phillips, Lance Berkman, Derrek Lee
AVG: 25/96 = .260
HR: 2
RBI: 11
SB: 4
R: 17

Pitchers: Adam Wainwright, Danny Haren, Aaron Harang, Brandon Webb
W/L: 5-1
ERA: 3.06 (16ER in 47 IP)
K: 42
SV: 0
WHIP: 56/47 = 1.19


Casey:  2    2.5    2    1.5   1.5    2    2.5    3    2    2                Total = 21

Cory:    1    1    1     2    3    3    2.5    2    3    2                       Total = 20.5

Mike:    2    2.5    3    3    2    1    1    1    1    2                        Total = 18.5

Early Overachievers

Check out the latest Roundtable where our fantasy experts give their picks for top sell high candidate.

Fade To Crackberry and Tout Nuggets

The participants of Tout will now be writing a weekly column on Cbssports.com so here was the first one done by Lawr Michaels of Creative Sports


It was good getting back with Cory old skool today but it made me miss the little guy even more because it’s a lot harder then it looks.


on to

fade_to_blackberry_200_200.jpgSiano: Of course kjo homers.

Cory Schwartz: Long season buddy

Siano: Don’t I know it.

Siano: Look at u making trades in tout.

Cory Schwartz: You’ll do fine in this deal, high strikeout SP and solid closer 

Cory Schwartz: I’m gonna win listener lg again this year then retire

Siano: Haha

Siano: U should

Cory Schwartz: Ride off into the sunset

Siano: On a steel horse u ride.

Cory Schwartz: Climb aboard my big *** steed, then we’re gonna $%$# &*^% $%^# and ride, ride ride

Cory Schwartz: Explosivo!!!

Siano: Kickapoo in the hizzle

Cory Schwartz: Wainwright 126 pitch cg today, larussa is nevermind

Siano: Ha

Cory Schwartz: That’s just negligence at its worst

Siano: When your not drinkin or hangin with friends the nfl draft is pretty boring 

Cory Schwartz: Cowboys get the rb they wanted, outside of that I could not care less

Siano: Good player so-so fantasy value since he splits with barber at best.

Cory Schwartz: I don’t do fantast fb, I root for an actual team🙂

Siano: Whatever

Cory Schwartz: God bless

Siano: I’m actually down to just one team.

Siano: I don’t play unless I can win $$$$

Siano: That’s the difference.

Cory Schwartz: I don’t know enough about football to enjoy fantasy

Siano: Its way easier then baseball that’s for sure.

Cory Schwartz: I’ve come to terms with just being a baseball guy

Siano: All that matters is you sleep ok at night.

Cory Schwartz: I sure do pal


Fave five musical artists

Just a reminder that Sterno, Siano and I will be unveiling our fave five musical artists this Wednesday, April 30. Note that’s “musical” artists, not just artists in general, so that rules out Jackson Pollock, Robert Mapplethorpe and Grandma Moses. But it still leaves room for Mantalvani, Barry Manilow and Englebert Humperdinck, so that’s good news for Siano.



Anyway, I’ve got three of my top five already set in stone, but I’m still debating on the least two. One band that won’t be in my top five, but a sure-fire honorable mention is Pearl Jam. Yep, that’s me in the picture above with Eddie Vedder… I’m the one with the Winnipeg Goldeyes shirt, and he’s the dorky looking one. (Yes, that’s what I looked like 10 years ago with my JFK hair helmet and clean-shaven yuppie look. Guh.)

Along with our fave fives, I’ll post a handful of other pictures of me with rock stars that I’ve picked up along the way. ‘Cuz I know everyone really cares about that stuff.

Rock on!!



Pitch or Ditch for Monday 4/28

Siano and I put our heads together and here are our recommendations.

Pitch: Vazquez, Snell, Santana (duh!), Haren and Cain
Ditch: Everyone else

If you are feeling daring, you can take a shot on Cabrera, Wellemeyer, Gaudin or Garland, but we ain’t going there.

As far as Cabrera, Mike did point out late last week that in his five starts this year, Cabrera has given up 5, 4, 3, 2 and 0 walks, which would seemingly indicate a talented young pitcher finally putting it together. But color me unimpressed. Yes, his walk rate is a career low right now but so is his strikeout rate, resulting in a K/BB ratio that is actually the worst of his career despite his improved (for now) control. He’s not getting as many ground balls as in recent seasons, and his home run rate is actually up slightly from last year, which is a worry going into homer-friendly U.S. Cellular Field. I just don’t trust this guy.

Meanwhile, while we do give the green light to Ian Snell (right), his recent performance is indeed a source for worry. While he’s given up only one homer so far this year, he’s giving up more fly balls than ever before. And while his walk rate is a career best, his strikeout rate is a career worst and he’s allowing a .298 batting average to opposing hitters. This is definitely a worrisome data set and a situation to monitor closely.

Good luck!


Unreads for 4/25

I am in a vanilla 10 team 5×5 Keeper league. I want to trade A-Rod and Troy Tulowitzki for Jimmy Rollins and BJ Upton.  Do you think this is a pretty fair trade? Thanks


Hey Scott,

This is definitely a fair deal, and I do prefer the Rollins-Upton side.  But you should sit tight for the time being until we know the extent of Rollins’ ankle injury.  The Phillies say Jimmy should return to the field once he comes off the DL on May 5, but there have also been rumblings that the ankle could be broken.  Quite honestly, I’m not sure who to believe!  The important thing is that Rollins hasn’t seen any action outside of pinch hitting duty in two and a half weeks, enough of a reason to proceed with caution before making this trade.

As for the other players involved, I’m not convinced that Tulowitzki is going to be a legitimate .290-25-100 guy over the course of his career.  Tulo’s off to a terrible start this year, hitting only .161 and in the midst of a 7 for 54 slump.  Sure Tulowitzki has value, but dealing him while your fellow owners still have last year’s stats engrained in their minds isn’t a bad idea.  Assuming Rollins returns healthy and even comes close to last season’s MVP production, the jump from Tulowitzki to Rollins is significant.

Certainly, this upgrade comes with a price, as A-Rod is clearly the top player in the game.  That said, Upton isn’t exactly a throw-in.  A 2B eligible player who could approach .300-30-30 eases at least some of the pain of losing A-Rod!  Use the next week or so to monitor Rollins’ status.  If all signs are positive, go through with the trade.

Zach Steinhorn, MLB.com

Hey guys love the show!

I’m in a standard mixed roto 5×5 weekly league.  Our league has 4 SP spots and 2 RP spots.  I drafted the following pitchers to start on my roster:


Yovani Gallardo

Dustin McGowan

James Shields

Phil Hughes

Manny Corpas

Brandon Lyon

When Yovani went down I moved him to DL and I picked up Ian Kennedy to take his place.

Needless to say, I’m dead last in 4 of 5 pitching categories (and 2nd to last in Saves).  I recently dropped Kennedy and picked up Randy Wolf.  I substituted Wolf for Hughes until he straightens himself out.  I also picked up Fuentes in case the Rockies remove Corpas as the closer.

I still like my staff, but I am really falling behind in the pitching categories.  Is it time to panic?  Do I make a drastic move to pick up another pitcher?  Who would you target?  Our league has a moves limit, so I can’t really play pitch or ditch.

 Please help!

 Bill in Chicago

Hey Bill,

Definitely not time to hit the panic button just yet. You’ve still got the makings of a very solid staff, and when Gallardo comes back I think you’ll be in very good shape with him, McGowan and Shields as your top three starters. No question, you’ve got to hold on to those three, as they’ve all proven they can win lots of games on a big league level.

I agree with you that Hughes doesn’t merit a guaranteed start every time he takes the hill, at least not until he proves he can locate his pitches consistently by stringing together a few quality outings. Randy Wolf may have been the perfect replacement for him, as he’s an overachieving veteran whose current ace-like numbers will (hopefully) come back down to earth right around the time that Hughes finds his groove (if you hadn’t nabbed Wolf, I would’ve pointed you towards guys like Tim Redding and Carlos Silva, who are doing much of the same).

As far as relievers go, there’s probably no need to hold on to Corpas for very much longer. All signs indicate that Fuentes is now the man in Colorado, and it appears unlikely that he’s at risk to lose the job for a second time. Take your chances with another potential bullpen-in-flux: possibilities include the Cubs (Wood has been shaky), the Padres (Hoffman’s been even shakier) and the Giants (all kinds of issues by the Bay, and the ‘pen is one of them).

Corey Gottlieb, MLB.com