Pitch or Ditch for Saturday-Monday, July 23-25



Harden @ Burnett – Harden an intriguing play in deeper leagues but I won’t chance it.

Penny @ Baker – Penny just too inconsistent. I’ll hold off on Baker in first start back.

Pineiro @ Bergesen – Pineiro pounded last time out…and it was the A’s!

Jackson @ Huff – Favorable matchup for Edwin.

Beavan @ Beckett

Niemann @ Francis – Niemann 1 ER or less in four of his last five outings.

Villanueva @ Harrison – Scary matchups for both.

Wandy @ Wells – Can’t trust Wells at all right now.

Lowe @ Bailey – Braves’ lineup not scary.

Latos @ Kendrick – Latos solid over his last four starts. Beware of the Padres’ lineup!

J. Garcia @ Correia

Capuano @ Hensley

Hammel @ Collmenter – Gotta stick with Collmenter while he’s hot!

Wolf @ Vogelsong

Gorzelanny @ Lilly – Gorzelanny’s a decent gamble in deeper leagues. I don’t trust Lilly.


Humber @ Masterson

Gonzalez @ Colon – Bartolo’s back on track.

Chatwood @ Guthrie – Guthrie coming off QS but hasn’t posted back-to-back quality starts since late-April.

Pineda @ Wakefield

Cobb @ Paulino – I’d gamble on Paulino here vs. mid-tier Rays lineup.

Porcello @ Liriano

Cecil @ Ogando – Scary matchup for Ogando but the results have been there all season.

Gee @ An. Sanchez

Stauffer @ Halladay

Lohse @ Morton – Lohse has been very shaky of late and Pirates are no longer a joke.

Lyles @ Garza – Not a good matchup for HR-prone Lyles.

Gallardo @ Bumgarner

Jimenez @ TBD (ARI)

Marquis @ Billingsley – Marquis 3 ER or less in four of his last five starts. Pitch if you’re willing to take some risk.

Beachy @ Willis


Haren @ Tomlin – Haren’s traditional second half fade already in the works…try trading him if you can get full value back.

Vargas @ F. Garcia

Davies @ Lester

Blackburn @ Holland – Holland torched last time out but deserves another start.

Below @ Buehrle

Hellickson @ Moscoso – I was feeling good about Moscoso…before last start.

Harang @ Lee – Harang has earned this one.

Dickey @ Leake – Dickey a bit risky so wouldn’t blame you for sitting him here.

McDonald @ T. Hudson – McDonald just too inconsistent.

Happ @ McClellan

Nicasio @ De La Rosa


Should we start to worry about Jhoulys?

Also, who do you like the least out of Nathan, Walden, Santos, Salas, and Axford?

Make that League instead of Salas. Sorry. Thanks


Tough call but I’d have to say Axford simply because of the job security factor. I understand that the Brewers are insisting he’ll be their closer for the rest of the season, but don’t think for a second that if he reverts back to the early-season inconsistent John Axford that the club won’t turn to K-Rod.



Yeah, the inconsistent command is a bit concerning but he’s still striking guys out at a fairly high rate. I might want to bench him for now but he’s far from waiver wire material. The track record is just too impressive.


Hey Zach,
I’m currently holding out in 3rd, but I’ve been sitting on Buchholz and Josh Johnson (drafted to be the “meat” of my rotation this year–aaarrggghhhh) since both were put on the DL (we have 1 DL slot in a 14 team 6×6 (obp and qs) roto). So I really have any hope that either of these guys are going to come back effectively? With the deadline coming up, I’m on the fence as to trade for more pitching. I’ve got Liriano, Dempster, Kennedy, Carpenter, Garcia, and Billingsley and while doing OK, I’m near the cellar in strikeouts. I love the PoD method, but we also pay $.50 per “transaction” so that can get spendy.


Depends on your hitting situation but I actually would lean towards trading for another starter. Liriano, Dempster and even Billingsley have been so inconsistent this year that you’re really left with 3 reliable starters when you’re going to need more like 4-5 to feel comfortable.


So, you’d give up on either (both?) JJ and CB?

JJ carries too much upside to simply drop but I might consider cutting ties with Buchholz. His rehab is going very slowly and I’d be very surprised if he’s back before late-August.


Ok so I left a comment a week ago and another yesterday and they were both unanswered. Am I doing something wrong or do you just not want to answer it? Can anyone see this?

The question was: “Should I trade BJ upton for Michael Morse? I have enough steals without BJ and I like that Morse can play OF and 1st. Could I get more for Upton?”


I think that’s a pretty fair value trade and one that makes sense for you. I might first see if I could get a bit more but if Morse is the best you can do that’s fine.


Traded Mark Teixeira and Joe Mauer for Adrian Gonzalez and Matt Wieters. Wieters would be sitten on my bench as a backup. Who wins?

tex and mauer.

gonzo and wieters


Well, if Wieters would just be your backup, that means you already have a catcher besides Mauer who is better than Wieters, which leads me to think that the loss of Mauer, who has been a disappointment since coming off the DL wouldn’t hurt you that much. I’d make this trade. Gonzalez is a definite upgrade over Tex, so I think the downgrade from Mauer to your “better than Wieters” catcher is worth it.


who should i drop with baker coming back? Fister, Leake, or Lackey, or maybe encarnacion and go with 3 pitchers on the bench?


I’d drop Leake. He’s been so-so with a so-so K rate. Lackey has pitched a lot better of late.


How bout this – Who would you rather have for the rest of the season Adrian Gonzalez or Albert Pujols ? I currently have Agon and i think i can get Pujols straight up 1 for 1


It’s really six of one and half a dozen of the other but, despite Pujols’ track record, I’d have to say Gonzalez. He’s simply been the more consistent player this year.


Good day and Love the website,
i’m in a typical 5×5 10 team league.
i need 3B help. i currently have Polanco, Moustakas, Daniel Murphy and ryan Roberts. I’ve been offered ABeltre and JNiemann. I’d give up DPrice and Ryan Roberts. REACT!
thank you,
Russell W


Now that Beltre is on the DL, I’d pass and revisit this when he comes back.


Is Antonio Bastardo going to keep his closer role?


Long-term it’s anybody’s guess but it’s looking more and more likely by the day. I wouldn’t be all that surprised.


Berkman and altuve for cozart and cuddyer. Good trade? It’s a keeper league.

i need lower ERA from my starters. would latos and bastardo for cj wilson be a good trade?


A trade has been proposed to me and I wanted to get your take on it.
12 team keeper league we keep 7 each year.

I get C,Santana, A.Ramirez, Prado and Nathan
i give Martin, Panda, McCutchen and Guerra

I do need saves BUT im not sure giving up 2 of my possible keepers is a good idea to upgrade at catcher and saves. Im not sold on Ramirez keeping up what hes done this month and Prado is a great player but lets face it hes not McCutchen. what would you do?


i wouldnt do it bc ur getting an upgrade at catcher and saves but u dont need saves. panda has more of a future bc obviously hes youngers then aramis and mccutchen is a five tool player. more speed then aramis and prob. more power. sp hes better then prado. no deal


Yeah, I don’t like it. One can definitely make the argument that McCutchen and Panda are the two best players in the deal, especially in a keeper league, and it’s not like Nathan is a sure thing. Who knows, maybe Guerra turns out to be the more productive closer! If you were getting a truly elite closer I might think differently, but no way would I make this trade.


Cameron Maybin or Desmond Jennings

I was offered Tulo and Zimmerman for Granderson and Asdrubal Cabrera. Deal or no deal?


It’s a fair offer but I’d pass. Even if we call Granderson to Tulo a wash considering position scarcity (which is quite a stretch), I’d MUCH rather have Asdrubal than Zimmerman, who is having a rather mediocre season.


Man some CANINGS today. Gio, Pineda and Stauffer all got rocked in difficult matchups…I really think we need to start playing it safe vs the big offenses, especially when on the road. Gio’s showed when he faces some tough offenses (Rangers) he can get tatooed at times, and Pineda was on a cold streak going into today…not what you want when facing Boston.


Another trade offer…I get Beltran and give BJ Upton and Anibal. anibal is my 7th pitcher which i dont really need and although id lose speed this league counts walks k’s and xbh all of which beltran is better. would you do this deal?



Considering your league’s scoring system, I’m fine with that if you can afford the speed loss.


I noticed Carrasco’s demotion down to POD. Would it be a good idea to replace him with a more stable grad? Here is what the FA market looks like. Who do you like best? Harang, Luebke, Fister, Vargas, Buehrle.

Add Randy Wolf to that list. He just hit the waiver wire.

luebke especially with his home ballpark and id say harang not far behind


I agree with David on this one. Luebke would be my choice.


whats ur thoughts on cahill should i try n get em cheap or is he not gonna b worth it thanks


Depends on what “cheap” is but I’m not a huge Cahill fan. His K rate has declined since April and he’s issuing a few too many walks. He’s not exactly someone I’d target in a trade unless the price was extremely low.


Just traded arod and j.zimm for david price…Is this a good deal for me.? i already have peralta at 3B and freeman at CI and jennings at Util.


I don’t think I would’ve made that trade. In my mind, A-Rod is too high a price to pay for the Zimmermann to Price upgrade. He’s set to return by late-August at the latest and could very well put together a monster final month. And I’d think that Peralta still has SS eligibility so you could probably just slide him to MI once A-Rod returns.


i actually already have kinsler at MI and tulo at SS.I just need pitching right now.there isnt much on the wire at this point.i felt i was deep enough to trade arod away plus zimm has an innings limit to 160.that’s only about 5 or so starts left.he’ll be shut down by mid august.

Todd Helton or David Ortiz in UTIL* Spot? Helton has higher OPS + average. Your thoughts ?


I’d much rather have Ortiz. He’s simply the more explosive hitter who will in all likelihood finish the season with more homers, RBIs and runs than Helton. Plus, Ortiz’s AVG is .296, so it’s not like he’ll hurt you in that department.


hey would you drop Pineda for Worley? So far my team is 15 and 1 but always looking to upgrade where possible…….


Nooo. This is the problem with looking at a small sample size. Three weeks of Wotley pitching better than Pineda shouldn’t outweigh three months of Pineda providing ace-level production.


Lester coming off DL and I need to clear a spot for him, who shouod I drop: Morrow, Stauffer, or Jennings. I just picked up Jennings so I’m leaning towards Stauffer…
What do you think?

Thanks as always,
Josh A


I’d try not to drop either of those pitchers but if I absolutely had to pick one to drop it would be Stauffer due to Morrow’s exceptionally high K rate and solid pitching of late.


Worth picking up jennings for kendrick
or pick up nicasio for leake

no for kendrick and yes for nicasio


Yes on Jennings for Kendrick, not yet on Nicasio for Leake.


Please rank each of these player’s value in a 12-team h2h dynasty league: Pedro Alvarez, Moustakas, Phil Hughes, Brett Lawrie. Thanks


I’d go Moustakas, Lawrie, Alvarez, Hughes. I think we might have already seen Hughes’ upside…a very good pitcher but not an elite-level pitcher. We don’t know yet about the upside of the other three, and at this point I’m willing to gamble that it’s greater than that of Hughes.


Hey Big Z need to improve greatly in RBIs and OBP in my keeper league. Am after an OF and have been offered Bruce ($22) for Weeks ($15) and Jennings ($0). Now im willing to trade Weeks as I can call up Ackley to replace him, but think I need more back (particularly in terms of power). He won’t seem to budge so am I right to think forget it? Plus Jennings could be a great keeper at his price (just called him up) if he continues his early surge. Bruce could prove to be a bargain, but do you think he’ll ever be great?


I’m with you…forget it. Whatever happens with Bruce long-term, I have a hard time believing that he’ll go for significantly more than 22 bucks next year, so it’s really not much of a bargain. And I’d be extremely reluctant to part with Jennings at that price. I’m also not too sure that this trade will help you win now as Jennings is already making an immediate impact.


Hey Zach,

My SP’s include Hamel, Lester, Ogando, Pineda, Vogelsong, Kuroda, Scherzer, and Jurrjens. Baker and Beachy are still available. Are you good with this rotation ROS? Thanks.

Rich D.


Yes, I’m OK with it. I’d keep an eye on Vogelsong as his magical season is bound to hit a few bumps in the road at some point. Still, I don’t think there’s any clear upgrade you can make right now.


Dear 411,

Pedro Alvarez is back! Is it worth a pickup in a 12-team keaper league?
To get him, i will have to drop one.
My roster looks like this:
C McCaan
1B Buttler
2B Pedroia
3B Sandoval
SS Alexi Casilla
OF McCutchen
OF Martin Prado
OF Melky Cabrera
Util Hart
BN Kelly Johnson
BN Jose Altuve
BN Ryan Roberts
DL A-Rod
DL Cozart
My top 3 options to drop are: Johnson, Roberts, Buttler


Yeah, in a keeper league, I’d make that move. I’d lean towards cutting Roberts as he’s in the midst of a miserable slump and is batting just .235 in July.


I traded AGON for Pujols – pujols is better hitter but not having the better season. Your thoughts on this deal ?


I answered this one above. I don’t particularly like it but it’s really a toss-up.


I just made a trade. I got Cueto and A. Soriano. I gave up Ethier and Alex Cobb. I am in 16tm keepers league. Which side would u have rathered because i have to save either cueto or soriano which is gunna be cueto and the other person has to save ethier or cobb. Did i get the better side?


This really boils down to Cueto vs. Ethier, and while it’s close, I always tend to lean towards the hitter, especially in keeper formats as a pitcher’s performance is so unpredictable from season to season.


Hey Zach hope I’ve not missed the bus. Is Kevin Gregg worth a waiver claim in a 10 team mixer? Never been a fan of him but he’s still the closer right, and saves are saves…we’ve all gotta chase em.

And its the 5th waiver priority


Sure, why not. Just be prepared for a roller coaster ride!


Avila , Pujols, Espinosa, Tulo, Pablo Sands, Pence, Cuddyer, Beltran, Ortiz, Helton

You see any weakness in my lineup ? They wont steal me alot of bases but i think my team is pretty solid


Yeah, steals is definitely a problem. Other than that, looks good.


alexei (CWS) has been a frustrating player this season, do I take a chance trading him for andrus?

Great stuff man, thanks for the blogs! Should I go with Kyle McClellan or Randy Wells the rest of the year? I’m in a league that awards a full point for strikeouts in head to head matchups. Also, I’m already a lock for the playoffs so am mostly concerned about the last few weeks of the season.

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