Unreads for 7/23

I’m in a 14 team league and am unhappy with Casey Kotchman’s production at 1B.

Chris Davis is still available and I’m worried about someone picking him up if he has another good game.  Is it a good move to drop Kotchman for Davis?  I see he had 36 home runs between A/AA last year, and 31 homeruns this year between AA/AAA/MLB, but that he strikes out a ton without walking.  I haven’t heard much discussion on Davis on the 411, though I’ve missed a show here and there.


Hey Drew,

Which category is more valuable to you: home runs or batting average? If it’s the former, then you indeed should go with Davis. He’s gone deep eight times in 75 at-bats (not including the Texas game in progress this afternoon), but he’s struck out 17 times. He’s not as an extreme Three True Outcomes player as, say, Jack Cust, but he’s not far off either. Kotchman is embedded as the Angels first baseman, and he should be able to raise his .279 batting average to the .296 average he hit last year. Again, if you need power, then pick up Davis. Otherwise, stick with Kotchman.

Who do you think will have more fantasy value the remainder of the year, Jon Rauch or Joel Hanrahan?  I’m in a points league where saves are worth 7 pts and holds are worth 3 pts.  And I’m running out of roster room.

Curtis in Texas

Hey Curtis,

No doubt it’s Hanrahan. He’s struck out 65 batters in 59 2/3 innings, so it appears he has the strikeout credentials and pitch velocity to be at least a decent closer. He might not get a lot of save opportunities with the Nationals, but saves are saves. All indications right now are that Brandon Lyon will remain the D-backs’ closer. And rightly so. He’s looked shaky in his past two appearances (seven earned runs in 1 2/3 innings) and he’s blown two of his last three save opps, but Lyon has been good enough for most of the season that he deserves some leeway. Rauch probably won’t get a chance to close out games unless Lyon either completely blows up or gets hurt. Right now, you have to go with the guy who has the inside track on saves, and that’s Hanrahan.

Kyle Stack


I’m an avid podcast listener, the 411 gets me home from work each and every day. In my 10-team vanilla league, another owner (and fellow 411 listener) has proposed a deal along the lines of:

He sends me A-Rod and change (two throw-ins to balance the deal)

I send him Utley, Duchscherer and Gregg.

He’s trying to make a run and wants pitching.  I’m probably out of it (over 30 points out of the money), so looking toward next year, hoping to improve my keeper list (now probably Utley, Tex, C.Lee, V-Mart and Hart).

Fair deal?  Too much for A-Rod, or not enough?  What do you think?

Peter Howard

Hey Peter,

If you were in contention, I’d say hold off as the difference between Utley and A-Rod is not enough to warrant the loss of Duchscherer and Gregg.  But being that you’re playing for next year, I like the deal.  Missing close to a month due to injury will not change A-Rod’s status as the top overall fantasy player heading into 2009, as he’s still on pace for 37 homers and 103 RBI.  After an insane start to the season, Utley has cooled off dramatically, batting just .276 with 6 homers and 21 RBI since June 1st…still respectable numbers but nowhere near elite material.  Although Utley, playing at a thin position, is a fantastic keeper option, A-Rod is simply better.  With a keeper core of A-Rod, Tex, and Lee, you’ll be in great shape for years to come!  

After Miggy Cabrera’s 5 hit night, I got a flurry of trade offers. But only one caught my attention:
Kinsler for Miggy
Do I do this? I am very tempted, because I had Kinsler 3 years ago, but didn’t keep him for Howie Kendrick (Because of you, CORY!!! Haha… Not blaming you, but I did listen to you.)
Also, I got Tex at 1B and Howie Kendrick at 2B. I am gonna need to work another deal or pick up a free agent to fill 3B, but I still like the deal.
There are Kevin Kouz, Scott Rolen, Bill Hall, Hank Blalock available on waiver wire.
 I am in 12 team, 6×6 (BB and holds) head-to-head keeper league.
I am in a very tight race where top 5 team is within 4.5 games.
Thank you. Love the show.
Richard from Vancouver

Hey Richard,

I own Kinsler in all four of my leagues, and am loving it!  That said, as long as you’re not in dire need for speed, I’d turn down this offer.  I know it’s very tempting, but I think the best part of Cabrera’s season is yet to come while the best part of Kinsler’s year has likely already passed.  Cabrera’s batting .324  with 6 home runs and  20 RBI in July.  He’s a career .310 hitter, so you’ve got to figure that .289 average will go up.  The other factor here is that Kendrick, though a huge disappointment overall, is really picking it up of late, holding a July average of .387.  Wouldn’t you hate to give up on Kendrick, a guy you had such high hopes for coming into the season, right at the time when he finally started to live up to all that potential.  I don’t have a major problem if you land up accepting this trade, being that there are decent third base options on the waiver wire.  But I’d certainly think twice before making that decision.

Zach Steinhorn


Kyle’s answer to Curtis’s question regarding who is more valuable between Hanrahan or Rauch the rest of the year: Hanrahan.

Previous blog post, Siano’s answer to the same question: Rauch.

Zach? Cory? Care to tie-break?

-Dan in LA

Dan: Hanrahan… he’s a closer, Rauch is not. The road to fifth place is lined with closers of the future.

BTW, to Drew’s first question, you should keep complaining about Kotchman and maybe he’ll get five hits every night!🙂


Hey Guys,

14 tm 5×5 mixed: Would you pickup either J. Campillo or P. Maholm and drop Volstad and/or Kershaw or just sit tight and hold onto Volstad & Kershaw?

Neighbor Steve

NS, I’d probably go for Campillo over Volstad, but I’m not a big believer in Maholm. Hard to argue with the recent results, but I still like Kershaw’s great K potential, yesterday’s lousy Coors outing notwithstanding.


Thanks CS,

In a 12 tmr, both Duaner Sanchez & Zumaya are both on waivers, I have the #1 claim that I don’t plan on using just yet, but if they clear waivers, who do you prefer and would you drop any of the following for them: W. Rodriguez, G. Floyd, the slumping J. Guillen or J. Crede with the bad back? I will also have to make room for the Padres C. Young coming off the DL next week. Thks NS.

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