Pitch or Ditch for Thursday, May 13

or Ditch is a strategy for (ideally) daily mixed leagues in which you pick up
starters on a day-to-day basis based on how well they are pitching and their
upcoming matchups, then cut them in favor of new guys the next guy. The concept
is that the shallower the league, the more quality starting pitching is
available on the free agent wire, so rather than drafting expensive starters,
it’s better to build a strong offense and bullpen and let the free agent wire
populate your starting staff during the season. As a bonus, a handful of “PoD”
guys emerge each year as worth keeping all year long, like Jair Jurrjens last
year or Cliff Lee in ’08.


**411 Valuable Resources**


@ Millwood  *Felix struggles here what do we

Sabathia @

Sheets @
Wilson  *CJ like

Huff @

Norris @

Latos @ J.
*Latos pitching well, could end here but
worth a roll.

Johan @

Lannan @ J.
*Anyone notice this guy has pitched 15.1
scoreless with 16 Ks

***Cory says pitch Millwood. Agrees on rest.


12 team roto keeper league. If you keep a guy it’s round replacement.

I have Cliff Lee who costs me a 15th round pick. A guy approached me about him. I also have Sabathia, Sanchez, Kennedy, Vargas, Chacin, and Blanton.

He offered me Lee for my choice of Hamels (4th) Peavy (13th) or Wandy / Aroldis Chapman (15th) / Rauch or Wagner…My closers are Lidge, Jenks, and Hoffman.

I went back to him and said I’d prefer Alberto Callaspo to Chapman in the deal.

So right now we’re looking at:

Hamels, Wandy, or Peavy / Rauch / Callaspo


Lee and either Beltre or Jose Lopez

Does that sound reasonable? And while Peavy has the better round number, Hamels has the better upside to me. I worry about Peavy

Gentlemen I’m in predicament — Help!

Looking at my pitching staff should I make a move or stay patient. I’m in dead last place in my 10 team deep mixed league. I’m not one to press the panic button. Any sharp pitching prospects coming up soon?

Tim Hudson
Johan Santana
Barry Zito
Brett Anderson
Chad Billingsley
Brian Matusz
Joakim Soria
Fransisco Cordero
Alfredo Simon
Mike Gonzalez
Fernando Rodney
Pitcher or ditch pitcher 1
Pitcher or ditch pitcher 2

Charles, GMU

One more for ya,

Chipper Jones is finding his way on the waiver wire in several of my leagues. Is he worth a pick up or is he DTM?

When do you think Mike Stanton, Pedro Alvarez, and Carlos Santana will be up?

Charles, GMU

I?m in a 10 team 6 (OBP) x 7 (batting average against, holds) head to head 9 keeper league. I?ve got just about every (exaggeration) current underperforming hitter on my team (Zobrist, Pence, Quentin, Beckham, and Aramis Ramirez). None of these guys were keepers; they were all draft or trade acquisitions. Who should I be nervous about and looking to replace? Current waiver wire players include Kyle Blanks, Drew Stubbs, Travis Snider, Corey Hart, and Jason Kubel (to name a few). Right now I?m holding tight on all my players, but eventually I may need to do something. Thanks, Damon in Seattle

We play 4 outfielders in my 12 team mixed points league.
I have Crawford, Gardner, Podsednik, Ibanez, JD Drew, McClouth, and Ludwick.
I can’t afford to carry 3 outfielders on my bench for much longer. McClouth has been the worst performer. Can he be dropped yet in a 12 team mixed or should I say goodbye to someone else?

My question is more of a weekly Pitch or Ditch question because my league only allows weekly roster changes. Normally, I could just base my decision on who was going twice in a week and then stick to the reliable ones because Scherzer and Pineiro used to sit on the bench. Now, I have all quality starters and the only problem I have is deciding who to start (which isn’t that bad of a problem in my mind). Based upon the following matchups (and the possibilities of pitchers going twice in a week), which pitcher would you Ditch this week? I have 5 slots to give out among my 6 SPs. I know that a lot can change in a week, but give me a general assessment and the trends developing among the upcoming opponents. Thanks.

Gallardo: 5/18 @ Cincinnati, 5/23 @ Minnesota

Kershaw: 5/20 vs San Diego

Nolasco: 5/21 @ White Sox

Buehrle: 5/19 vs Angels

Wade Davis: 5/19 @ Yankees

Niemann: 5/17 vs Cleveland, 5/22 @ Houston


Hey guys,

Both A. Hill and C. Pena have been dropped in my 12 team 6×6 (OBP & QS) mixed league. I’m all set at both positions with R. Howard and I. Kinsler but I’m wondering if I should grab either one and stash them on bench then use them for trade bait when they turn things around considering both have been awful. I’m wondering which you think would get me most in return? Pena is in an awful 1/37 slump and Hill has another issue with hammy…what do you think?
As always I appreciate you’re help!

13 team dynasty league. I have an outfield of Kemp, Crawford, Abreu, Chris Young, Travis Snyder and Granderson. Pitching includes Greinke, Cain, and Haren. I’ve been offered Nolasco for Granderson. Do I do the deal?

Missed out on a strong 1st base. Took Tulo with Miggy still on the board in the 2nd. Went brain dead I guess. Anyway Rank these guys please. Glaus, Prado, Huff, Pena, Smoak, Branyan. Also any 1st baseman coming up that have promise. I know it is a lot of names. It is basically all that are doing anything but they all seem to be the same guy. Please help! This is a head to head points league.

Please rank these OF. Bryd, Gardner, B.J. Upton, Bruce. B.J. has the name and preseason hype. Byrd, is ranking, but for some reason I like the other guys better. Currently have B.J. and Byrd. Would have to drop them for those guys.

I traded Manny for B.J. Upton in my 9×9 12 team mixed league (H, R, HR, RBI, SB, AVG, SLG, BB, K). The guy I traded in was first in speed and last in power. Was this a good buy low? I just didn’t trust Manny to stay in the lineup. Thanks.


Who Would you rather have going Forward. Zack Grienke or Ubaldo Jimenez? Standard 10 Team Mix League.

Last question of the day for me. Was offered Kemp and Wainwright for Braun? Do the deal?


I wouldn’t do that deals at all. Lee for a 15 is outstanding value so why exactly are you exchanging him for Hamels for a 4? I prefer Lee to Hamels anyway. I just don’t think you’re receiving enough value in return. There’s no guarantee that Rauch will hold onto the closer job for the remainder of the season and Wagner carries absolutely zero keeper appeal as he’s stated he’ll likely retire at the end of the season. And on top of all this you’re giving up one of those 3Bs. Pass!

I wouldn’t be too worried about that pitching. Hudson’s been solid and Johan’s stats are skewed by that one awful game in Philly. Billingsley’s starting to pitch better and has some favorable matchups coming up. Continue to work the wire but I think the core of that rotation is fine.

As for Chipper, I’m a little concerned that age might be rapidly catching up to him but if you have a roster spot to spare, sure, why not pick him up. Considering the lack of depth at the 3B position this year, he’s certainly worth a flier.

On to the prospects, my prediction is that Stanton is the first to get called up (think June 1) followed by Santana and then Alvarez last. Alvarez hasn’t been great in the Minors so far this year and I can’t see the Pirates promoting him as long as Andy LaRoche is hitting well…and he’s been hot for awhile now.

Continue to sit tight for now. None of those waiver wire guys are all that appealing at this point with the possible exception of Snider, but I’d still rather have Quentin or Pence.

Yeah, I’m pretty fed up with McLouth as well and would definitely rank him last among that OF group. If you have to drop one, I’m fine with it being McLouth.


Good morrow fine, fantasy gurus! 2 questions: 1) What kind of value does Torii Hunter have? I’ve been trying to package him with a mid-level sell-high pitcher type (e.g. Brad Penny, Wade LeBlanc) for a pitching upgrade, what kind of guy should I be targeting? 2) What’s your take on Brennan Boesch? I’ve been keeping an eye on him lately, and he looks really good. The Tigers have sent down Ryan Rayburn, so it looks like he’s going to be playing everyday. I just watched him absolutely SMASH one to the gap off Sabathia who, incidentally, just made Miguel Cabrera look silly. I hadn’t heard much about him before this season, what’s your take on the guy?


Sure, stashing both of those guys is a fine idea. If I had to pick one it would be Hill due to position scarcity. Also, Pena?s AVG struggles have been well documented over the past few seasons so owners might be scared off.

Yeah, I like that deal for you. Even though Upton?s mired in a bad slump (.114 May AVG), one thing he is doing is stealing bases, having already swiped three bags this month despite an awful .184 OBP. Not only does this deal address your needs but you?re getting the younger guy who has the greater upside. I do worry about Manny?s recent health woes and simply no longer view him as a dominant offensive force.

I still have to go with Greinke as I?ve already seen him put together a Cy Young season while Ubaldo?s ridiculous 0.93 ERA comes through only seven starts. To borrow a popular phrase, ?To be the best you?ve got to the beat the best.? The sample size isn?t large enough yet to convince me that Ubaldo will have the better season.


Mike E. is working on answering some of the other questions here. I’ll have those up shortly.



With the depth in outfield that you have, I wouldn’t hesitate to make that deal. Ordinarily, I’d launch into a few different stats to prove my point, but this is a fairly straight-forward situation. Nolasco’s peripherals are all outstanding while Granderson has his fair share of red flags. Pull the trigger before the other owner realizes what he’s doing.

I feel your pain about missing out on Cabrera, though I skipped him for Prince Fielder in my H2H points league. Anyway, one thing to put into context about these names are strikeouts. If your league penalizes for them, as mine does, it changes things dramatically. I’m going to list these names under the assumption that your league DOES penalize: Justin Smoak (Teixeira, Pt. 2), Martin Prado (decent hitter, incredible flexibility), Carlos Pena (top-shelf power, big whiffer), Troy Glaus (1B/3B eligible, good lineup, in a power surge), Aubrey Huff (also having a May revival) and finally Russell Branyan (lots of power, lots of strikeouts, very streaky).

As far as up-and-coming first basemen go, this year is on the shallow side. Smoak was the highest-ranked 1B prospect, but he’s up now so cross his name off. The Marlins’ Logan Morrison was doing very well in Triple-A New Orleans (.300/.383/.600, 6 XBH, 10 RBI in 12 games), but is on the disabled list with a shoulder injury and isn’t expected to return until the end of the month at the earliest. Yonder Alonso of the Reds faces not only mediocre numbers in Double-A Carolina, but is blocked at the big league level by Joey Votto. Oakland’s Chris Carter has been compared to Frank Thomas in terms of sheer power, but when your slash stats at Triple-A Sacramento read .246/.338/.484, you shouldn’t expect a call-up for a bit, while the Braves’ Freddie Freeman has been similarly scuffling in Triple-A Gwinnett County. Pittsburgh’s Steven Pearce looks intriguing with a .349/.452/.605 line and a 15/17 K/BB ratio with Triple-A Indianapolis. Then there’s Brett Wallace for Toronto. He’s been hitting the cover off the ball over the last two weeks, and with Lyle Overbay barely keeping first base warm, the possibility of call-up in the next month or so is strong.

Finally, your outfielders. It’s a tie between Gardner (most potential) and Byrd (best overall production, won’t kill you on strikeouts) for first. Bruce follows those two because he still has a lot of room for growth, especially in a hitter’s park like Cincinnati’s. As far as B.J. Upton goes, to quote Sean Connery: “I’m still waiting to be impressed.” Ever since 2007, the word “regression” has defined Upton’s big league career, and he has yet to give any indication that’s going to change, so he would be the first guy I’d put on the chopping block. But before you cut him, see if there’s anyone out there that would trade you a warm body for him. Better to get at least something useful out of him.

The guys you should start without question are Gallardo, Nolasco and Niemann, with Niemann facing and Indians team that is third in the league in strikeouts. Even though Nolasco is pitching at U.S. Cellular, he’s got good enough stuff that I trust him against the likes of Konerko and Rios in that band box. The last two I’d take are, in no particular order, Davis and Kershaw, even though I had to hold my nose with those picks. Davis has legitimate talent, but all bets are off with him facing the Yankees at the Stadium with a white-hot Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez waiting for him. With Kershaw, yes, I know he has ridiculous strikeout numbers and faces a Padres lineup that his basically Adrian Gonzalez, sometimes Chase Headley and the supporting cast from “Major League.” But, and this has always been my bugaboo with Kershaw, is that he is frustratingly wild and inefficient. I have trouble with pitchers who have a BB/9 ratio over 4 but when your BB/9 figure would make an acceptable K/9 ratio, then I have no use for you on my fantasy roster because too many bad things could, and usually do, follow. What’s Kershaw’s BB/9 mark, you ask? 6.3, if you must know. Ouch.

Mike E.


Kemp is a great player, and Wainwright is a great pitcher, but as long as you have enough legit starters, I’d rather have Braun. If there are more question marks than solid yes’s in your rotation, I’ll take Kemp/Wainwright.

Mike E.

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