Unread for 5/23

10 team AL-only 5×5 2-man keeper
I have been offered Kazmir for Ellsbury. I have a speed surplus and am weak in pitching, however, I think I would get more as Ellsbury can be kept for $10.

Thoughts?
Gerald from Waterloo

Hey Gerald,

Boy, that’s a good trade for both teams. Kazmir is 3-1 with a 1.57 ERA, 1.13 WHIP and 22 strikeouts in 23 innings, so he has been as ace-like as the Rays could have hoped for since coming off the disabled list after nursing an elbow strain. Obviously, the concern with him, as always, is whether he can stay healthy. Still, he’s just 24 years old and he’s coming off of a 239-strikeout season.

Ellsbury, who I wasn’t very optimistic about at the beginning of the season, is making himself a potential keeper candidate. You have to ask yourself if, with only two keepers, you would value a top-of-the-order, powerless hitter who will contribute in steals, runs and batting average. Sort of like Ichiro, I suppose, but with a lower batting average. Now, that might be a tad optimistic, but that’s who he could have the potential to emulate. Ellsbury already has 19 steals in 20 attempts and is batting .291 with 39 runs scored in 44 games. He has already drawn 23 walks in 164 plate appearances to boost his on-base percentage to .396.
 
He is a good value at $10 and I recommend choosing hitters over pitchers as your keeper choices. Who are your other offensive options? You might want to look at power hitters who can contribute homers and RBIs, but Ellsbury doesn’t seem to be a bad choice. However, if you deem neither Kazmir nor Ellsbury as keeper-worthy, I would switch Jacoby for Kazmir to boost your pitching. That is, if you are already secure enough with runs scored and steals.

Kyle Stack, MLB.com

1 Comment

Happy Memorial Day Weekend everyone! Can I have the 411 blessing to drop Nick Swisher? I have him in 3 of my 4 leagues this year because I thought he was underrated coming in, but he’s just been awful. A .189 average at home? 14 RBI on the year? Seriously? There have got to be better options out there. I don’t think I’ve moved him off my bench, except on Mondays/Thursdays, for about 3 weeks.
-Dan in Los Angeles

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