Pitch or Ditch for Thursday, September 10


***Baker @

Washburn @

Rowland-Smith @

Kip Wells @

***Blanton @

West @
Parnell    *West a nice NL-only gamble

***Lowe @


Afternoon folks

14 team 6×6 mixed keeper league (keep any 5, extra cats OPS and Holds). I am in a slightly odd situation. I have a large lead over second place in 5 out of 6 hitting stats, 54 Runs, 39 Home Runs, 66 RBI, 9 stolen bases and .844 to .821 in OPS, but in average I am tenth on .273. I fI could improve my average to say .279, I could move up to 5th in average. As my pitching has been rather poor, and I am just about to hit my innings limit, I could do with the extra five points. The league allows me to leave starting spots blank, so I am looking to only play hitters who will improve my average (ignoring any effect this could have on the counting stats, provided I still pick up a few stolen bases), and bench anyone who isn’t going to help.

Therefore, please, can you give me an idea of which hitters I should keep active, and which I should bench? My hitters are (in batting average order) Albert Pujols, Matt Diaz, Rajai Davis, Nick Johnson, Bobby Abreu, Chase Utley, Andrew McCutchen, Gordon Beckham, Mark Reynolds, Lance Berkman, David Eckstein, Mark DeRosa, Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Doumit.

In addition, would any of the following players that are (currently) available in this league help? Ryan Sweeney, Jeff Baker, Chase Headley, Mark Ellis, Brendan Ryan, Will Venable, AJ Pierzynski and Fernando Tatis (that is all the players with at least 26 hits in the last 30 days).

Thanks for any help


Alan in England


Not sure how many of these guys you’re allowed to start but my definite top six would be Pujols, Utley, Berkman, Abreu, Diaz, Davis (some speed) I like McCutchen too but it’s hard to anticipate when a young player will go into a prolonged slump. Rollins has just been too up and down in the AVG department for me to trust and Reynolds is hitting .192 in September.


Evening Zach

Thanks for the reply. There are 12 spots for hitters, but I could just start those six in the hope that that gives me the best chance of improving my average.

Anyway, in the meantime I have been offered a trade. I would get Ichiro and Yunel Escobar for Rollins and Tommy Hanson. I will run out of innings before Hanson’s next start, so I wouldn’t miss any playing time from him. Also, as we keep the best five, this trade would mean I would be keeping Ichiro instead of Rollins.

My first question is how Rollins and Ichiro compare as keepers, and if Rollins would be the better keeper then am I giving up too much in this trade? Secondly, does Escobar have any value in improving my average. And, thirdly, is there any chance that Hanson could be considered to have keeper value (which I might be able to exploit in a later trade), given that this is fourteen teams each keeping their best five players?

Obviously, I would like to get hold of Ichiro at this point because he can help me in the one category where I can actually do anything, but should I be asking for a bit more in the trade, such as a draft pick, for example.

Many thanks for your help.


Alan in England


Like the Rollins for Ichiro swap as Ichiro is by far the better choice when you’re looking for a consistently high AVG. Rollins will always have keeper value as he offers both power and speed from the shortstop position, but I still prefer Ichiro as a keeper entering 2010 in light of Rollins’ up and down (mostly down) year. As the trade stands now I’d lean towards accepting it but still think you should try to get a bit more if you can. Hanson’s a great trade chip to have in a keeper league. He’s been flat out dominant for the most part ever since being called up so perhaps you can squeeze a bit more out of this deal.

As for Escobar, yes, I do think he’s a guy you can use to help your AVG. He’s slumping a little of late but has never batted less than .274 in a single month and has posted an average over .300 in three of the season’s first five months. That’s pretty consistent.


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