Fantasy Baseball w/Tristan H. Cockcroft
Send your questions now and join Cockcroft in The Show on Wednesday at 11 a.m. ET!
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:00 AM)
Good morning everyone! Let's get right to your questions...
Predictions for Byrnes or Wells for rest of season? Who is better choice?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:02 AM)
Well, in our recent rankings I did have Eric Byrnes a little higher, but much of that was my thinking he'd be back from the DL sooner. I bet they're pretty comparable players from today forward, but I'm taking the guy in the deeper offense, even if I think his injury has a little more long-term risk.
Please tell me Headley will be up soon. What will his stat line look like?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:04 AM)
Wish I could, Chris, but I'm not a member of that Padres front office, so it's not my call, nor could I tell you why they haven't done it yet. (By the way, for those of you who think it's arbitration-related, it's silly to think that now, he's past the cut-off point for this year for sure.) I really think he SHOULD be up no later than June 15. But maybe the Padres simply think he's not ready to handle everyday outfield chores? I just don't get it. Next prospect to debut, I'd think. And when he does, let's say high-.280s batting average, cracks double digits in power, useful but not quite a Jay Bruce.
Fernando (Pembroke Pines)
GOOD MORNING ..... . Jurjjens or Danks the rest of the season?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:05 AM)
Jair Jurrjens. Better ballpark, safer in the command departments, more consistent, I'd think. John Danks is more risk/reward, but I'll take the safer guy with the lower ceiling.
Is Smoltz done for good, or will he be back next year?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:07 AM)
Big news coming, John Smoltz appears out for the year with shoulder surgery. That's good news for Rafael Soriano owners, as he's the closer, if healthy. Of course, Manny Acosta's value gets a bump, as it's asking a lot for Soriano to stay healthy for four straight months. Keep that in mind. As for Smoltz? I bet he attempts a comeback, but I think the Smoltz we've come to know and love the past few years, yes, he's done. It'll be a noticeable step down if he comes back in 2009, and a quick fade into the sunset.
Start me against the Phils tonight? I've been hot, so have they...something has to give, right?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:08 AM)
I'm not sitting Edinson Volquez, red-hot Phillies or not. This could be one of his lesser outings, I admit, because it's in Philly, but there's too much talent there. He'll teeter the line of a quality start, I bet.
Nick (Greenwich, CT)
Hey Tristan! Would u start Lee @ Texas today!?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:09 AM)
Again, I'm not sitting a pitcher of that talent/performance level. By the way, as Sean Allen did note in his Daily Notes today -- always check those! -- the Rangers are weaker against lefties than righties. So that helps.
Mike Gonzalez is expected back soon, so I bet we see a Toronto type bullpen situation with Soriano as the main guy, but Acosta and Gonzalez easing the workload a bit.
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:10 AM)
I could see that, especially with Gonzalez's and Soriano's injury histories. But to me, Soriano is the lead guy. It's asking a lot for Gonzalez to step right in there as anything significant, even to the level of, say, a Scott Downs. (Barring a Soriano injury, of course!)
Jerry Jones, Phoenix AZ
Okay, so bottom line,who do you like better for 08, Rafael Soriano or Joe Borowski???
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:11 AM)
Rafael Soriano. I don't believe in Joe Borowski at all.
With Smotlz done should Braves move someone to the pen and bring up Charlie Morton to start? Last night in AAA: 8 IP, 1 h, 1 bb, 0 er, 13 k's.
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:12 AM)
Well, I might have kept Jorge Campillo in the bullpen, but he has pitched pretty well as a starter, so why fix what ain't broke? I think your question has more merit in that the second a rotation opening is cleared, Morton should get a look. Nice NL-only sleeper, and no one's talking about him.
Mark Reynolds or Edwin Encarcion?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:12 AM)
Encarnacion. No Chad Tracy to threaten his playing time, for one.
Lee (New Orleans)
Aaron Cook: sell high or the real deal? Colorado pitchers always make me nervous, but this guy seems to have held his own? so far. Your thoughts?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:14 AM)
Sell high, but don't take that as my trashing the guy. He's got value, it's just that he doesn't whiff anyone, so he'll be susceptible to the matchups and ballparks, and I don't trust those guys over the course of a six-month season. I can't stress this statement enough: Aaron Cook, matchups guy. It's what he is, and when the temperatures get higher at Coors, so will his ERA.
I've asked this question since Monday, with no response from the other anaylsts. Who would you start in a keeper 20 team league? Jim Edmonds from the Cubs or Adam Jones from the Orioles?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:14 AM)
No offense, Travis, but that might be because it's Jones, without a doubt.
Ethics question. Another manager send me a trade proposal where I would give up David Ortiz last week. While pondering the move, Ortiz went down with a wrist injury that will keep him out for a month. Is the burden on the manager who proposed the trade or do I have to decline it no matter what?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:17 AM)
Ah, ethics. Such a fine line we dance, sometimes. You know, I think it's an owner's responsibility to yank trade offers when values change, to keep tabs on those types of things. But as a guy whose time isn't completely free myself, I know that it's impossible to track your trade offers every second. If I'm you, I'm giving your counterpart the benefit of the doubt and leaving it up there. I say that ONLY with regard to injuries, though, that's all bad luck. If it's something stupid like a guy just is in a cold spell and the deal gets left and you wait a few days for it to get yanked, you know, by all means, take advantage of that deadbeat!
David (LA, CA)
Tristan, how long until Harden is back on the DL? Time to sell high, and for what caliber batter?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:19 AM)
I think he's on the DL since I started writing this sentence, no? Seriously though, predicting injuries is virtually impossible. Hardest thing to do. It could happen tomorrow, next week, next month or never, there's just no way to know that. What I DO know, though, is I haven't seen Rich Harden be able to stay healthy for two straight months in a very, very long time. So take that for what it's worth. Oh, and also take it as me saying, "Yes, please, PLEASE sell high!" I'd probably accept most anyone in our top 100, maybe top 125, among hitters, for him.
Rank'em this season only...Bruce, Bradley and Ludwick...also, what are your thoughts on Liriano?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:20 AM)
Milton Bradley, Jay Bruce and Ryan Ludwick, and it's closer than you think. And it's not meant as a total knock on Mr. Ludwick, who deserves more attention than he has gotten. As for Liriano, not a fan. Not, not, not. I say the best-case scenario has him being a decent pitcher the final two months of the season. If he's better than that, call it gravy. Not that I think he's a toss-away for future years, it's just a long, tough surgery recovery for him in 2008.
Isn't harden more valuable than most pitchers even with the injury history? When he plays he is usually very good to great, i would rather have a guy who might get hurt than a guy who might have an ollie perez type start.
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:21 AM)
I'd agree if he weren't the type of guy lucky to stay healthy for even half a season. You're on the right track with your thinking, but Harden really misses a LOT of time in general.
C. Young(ari) for Wang, who do you like more.
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:22 AM)
I like Chris Young more. Both good players, but I'd need more K's from Chien-Ming Wang to call that a balanced deal.
I am afraid I am being taken advantage of, in a 6x6 roto with BB's should I accept the offer of Holliday & Suzuki for Dunn, SIZEmore & Fukudome?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:23 AM)
I'd say only if you're really hurting for batting average, and even then, that Matt Holliday is on the DL troubles me. I'm not the kind of guy who deals three useful players for one active player and a DL bet.
Is Adrian Gonzalez a sell high candidate?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:24 AM)
Nope, true believer, right here.
No Homer Bailey questions yet? Plucked him off the waiver wire...do i start him against the Phils?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:25 AM)
Not a chance! He's a stash-and-watch pitcher, that's all. Just to point out, Bailey wasn't exactly tearing up Triple-A. I have some real questions about him, though I do continue to stress he's bench-worthy in NL-only and deep mixed.
Fielder has 4 hrs this week? Have I missed my buy-low window?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:26 AM)
Yes. Generally speaking, the best buy-low time for guys like that is early-to-mid May.
Ben (King of Prussia, PA)
Pedro looked pretty good last night...touching 92 mph on the gun. Is this a sign of things to come, or will he be on the DL again?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:27 AM)
I'm going to compare the Pedro Martinez expectations from today forward to Roger Clemens' 2007. That's a good pitcher, not a great pitcher, and one with a little health risk (what did Clemens miss, 5-7 starts?). Pedro has the talent to be useful, but he doesn't go deep into games and he's always a risk to get hurt again. Up to you how much a "Clemens 2007" pitcher helps in your format.
Jon (Eden Prairie, MN)
Is Doumit worth an add with his upcoming return from the DL possibly this weekend? I made the mistake of drafting Martinez in the 4th round and have got nothing and see he's still injured so Doumit seems like a good add.
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:28 AM)
Don't drop Victor Martinez, but yes, I think that's smart insurance. As things stand the Pirates are seriously considering shedding Ronny Paulino to make room for him. That says Doumit's clearly the guy when healthy to me.
Ed (Boston MA)
Carlos Gonzalez...ANY thoughts?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:29 AM)
Another guy to stash but not use initially. Here's the problem with Gonzalez: For all the touting of him by the scouts, his power and his plate discipline numbers in the minors have yet to wow me. Think a good, maybe league-average, outfielder for now. Probably up for good, at least. I can say that for him. I just don't think Gonzalez warrants near the buzz Jay Bruce does.
what's going on with napoli. he was raking for a bit and now he isn't doing anything. am i missing something?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:31 AM)
The "all-or-nothing" style hitter is going to be awfully cold at certain points. That's Mike Napoli for you. Bandwagon-hopping is an easy thing to do in sports, but there's no smarter instance in which to do it than when picking players like this for fantasy. Dodge the cold spells, slot him in the second he heats up, which he will eventually. Keeping him in all year will kill your batting average.
Ryan , Philly
can perdo feliz keep this up the rest of the year??
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:32 AM)
Well, all his ratios are almost identical to any of his in his past three seasons, and he calls such a hitter-friendly ballpark his home, so yes, I can see that happening. This seems about right for him.
Ben (King of Prussia, PA)
Hey Tristan, Myers looked great last time out, but that Reds line up makes me nervous. Is it best to take a wait and see approach with Myers?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:33 AM)
Well, if memory serves, that outing came against the K-prone Marlins? He hasn't had that tough a recent matchups string, but this one is one of the more challenging. I'd say avoid him, outside, of course, of NL-only leagues.
ben (philly burbs)
Napoli's hot streak seems to be over (even tho he did have 2 random SB last week)...snyder, pierz, barajas, coste and olivo available, whats the right move??
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:34 AM)
A.J. Pierzynski seems to be hitting nicely lately. I scooped him up in one league as a short-term fill-in for Ryan Doumit, in fact. By the way, Chris Snyder, Chris Coste, two underrated bats, I'd say. I go those three in that order.
Big Unit (Arizona)
Can I keep this up? My K's and WHIP are awesome.
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:35 AM)
Sure, why not? It's all health questions with Randy Johnson. I don't doubt the talent, I doubt his stamina. Let's set the over/under at 10 more starts, and right now, I'm feeling he barely cracks the over.
G. Miller (Montreal, Canada)
Cody Ross will finish with ___HRs?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:36 AM)
Jeff (Norwalk, CT)
Who has better stats from here on out Doumit or Navarro and is Harang scaring you yet?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:37 AM)
I think it's Ryan Doumit, and as for Aaron Harang, the Reds' lack of run support for him is what's scaring me, not his raw talent. Could be a nice buy-low time, because those things tend to even out over the course of a season.
Josh (Las Vegas, NV
In a Vacuum, did I get hosed? Team A gets - Crawford & Longoria and Team B gets - Carlos Lee & Maine
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:38 AM)
Not far off in value, but I'd say I'm a little higher on the "Team A" side.
Marcum's BABIP of around .200 suggests he's in for a correction? What are your thoughts on him for the rest of the season?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:39 AM)
Well, he's not as good as his current year-to-date pace, but I don't see him going into the tank, not at all. He'll finish in the low-threes in ERA, and be fairly solid the rest of the season, I'd think. Very underrated pitcher, and I would not sell high unless you're getting top-25-starter type value for him.
Give me a final line for Miguel Cabrera please
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:41 AM)
.301-33-114. I see better things ahead as he continues to get more comfortable in the American League.
I-Rod is killing me. Drop him for Doumit?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:42 AM)
I would. I don't like Ivan Rodriguez at all. Haven't for a few years, in fact. He's all defense at this stage of his career.
Suzanne (Oak Park, IL)
Ibanez for Helton. Who wins? Guerrero for Church/Wandy. Vetoable?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:43 AM)
I think the team that gets Todd Helton, but nothing to get upset about there. I would object to the latter deal, though. Vladimir Guerrero has too much talent to let go for an overachieving outfielder and a pitcher who is a matchups play.
In a league without holds who has more value going forward-- Dan Wheeler or Manny Acosta?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:44 AM)
Well, I really like Dan Wheeler, and he's closing today, so that's my leaning. He's just a better pitcher than Acosta, even if there's a greater chance Acosta will have the closer role wide open for him for more remaining days of the season.
What are your thoughts on Posada? Give his questionable health, bad move to trade a Micah Owings for him to fill a need at C?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:45 AM)
Well, I don't think his shoulder is going to allow him to be much of a thrower from behind the plate, but fortunately, defense is irrelevant to most fantasy leaguers. I hear all the time on the Yankee pregames that Jorge Posada's shoulder isn't an issue when he's hitting, so that's encouraging. Seems fair enough a deal to me.
Furcal, what can we expect the rest of this year? I noticed that the top ranking and bottom ranking were like 125 apart on the 340.
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:46 AM)
That's par for the course on an injured player. For me, today he's a risk/reward player. Great guy if he can get back out there, but it's troublesome he has been out for this long. I bet he's back in, say, two weeks, bats high-.280s, steals 20.
Howcome Justin Duscherer didn't make the list of top 340? He has been pretty damn good so far this year!
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:47 AM)
Hey, he made mine. My only doubt with him is his ability to hold up to a huge innings boost from last year to this. To me, he's definitely top-340 worthy. Not way higher than the cut-off, but you know, I'd be riding him now and enjoying the stats for as long as he holds up.
Please I need to know, should I trade Braun and Wellemyer for Harrang and Chipper?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:48 AM)
If it's not a keeper league and I'm OK enough in home runs, sure, I'd consider that.
I noticed you had Verlander (68) ranked the highest out of the rest of your team...may I ask why? Are you in the same belief as he hasn't been bad the past month posting a 3.66 era with a 1-3 W/L but while the Tigers only scored runs in the one he won(12) and the 4 other starts they score 2 runs total...do you buy now before this smoke becomes clearer?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:49 AM)
You're pretty much onto my thinking, Chris, but I also admit that I continue to hold onto preseason expectations with guys of a certain talent level, which he does possess. I really thought Verlander had Cy Young potential for 2008, so clearly, I believe he's capable of better than this. Definite, definite buy-low arm, I'd say.
Scott (Montpelier, Vermont)
Deep AL Only League. Am giving serious consideration to replacing E.Renteria with M.Izturis. Numbers over the last 4 weeks favor Izturis. Be that as it may--do you think Izturis gets enough ABs for the rest of this year to make him a serious contributor? Thanks! By the way, tell Tom from NY that 'The Duke' is #253! Love the Duke!
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:50 AM)
Ah, good, see, it worried me to hear Duchscherer didn't make the cut, that maybe there was a typo! As for your call, I don't see Izturis being more than a utility infielder all year, so no, I don't see the at-bats coming. I'd stick with Renteria.
Chris (Shelter Is., NY)
What is up with Bedard? Is he that bad. . . . or was he that good last week. . . . ?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:52 AM)
Tons of Erik Bedard questions coming now, and I can see why ... alternating fantastic and horrendous outings from start to start. Now, to be fair, I look back at his great 2006 and 2007 years, and from June 1 forward he was lights out. Maybe he's simply a slow starter? I'd take that chance. To me, I can't get worried about him, not yet.
Would you trade hart/kemp for justin verlander?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:53 AM)
Maybe Matt Kemp but not Corey Hart.
Your thoughts on Stephen Drew for the rest of the year? I'm hurting at SS and was wondering where you'd rank him at SS for the rest of the year.
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:54 AM)
I had him ninth, though shortstop isn't an extraordinary position this season. No reason he can't be a .275-hitting, 22-homer type by year's end.
In a 10 Team League Max Scehrzer has damaged his owners ERAs lately! With both the Unit and Davis looking good, os he droppoable? Thank You!
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:55 AM)
I keep saying Max Scherzer is smart insurance to have in most leagues, but yours is the one in which I've maintained it's worth thinking about dropping him. In 10-team mixed, it's awfully tough to sit and wait on guys who might eventually start, or close.
Hal (New Orleans)
Is Litsch a good start against the Yanks tonight?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:57 AM)
Well, I wouldn't do it, but that's me, I don't like him on the road or against such a lefty-loaded lineup.
JOEL ZUMAYA on the rebound.... apparently he hit 100 a couple of times on the gun... any value in him????
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:58 AM)
Sure, as a second-half sleeper closer. High health risk, of course, but it's not like Todd Jones will close for this team forever. If the Tigers slip out of the pennant race at some point, Zumaya will probably get a look. Otherwise, until then, think a nice ERA/WHIP/K's helper in middle relief. Like maybe a "lite" Carlos Marmol.
Tony Touch (NYC)
For holds and speculative saves: Brandon Morrow or Acosta?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (11:59 AM)
I really like what Morrow has been doing, so while the "speculative saves" part is less likely of the two, I'll take the holds and the better overall numbers.
Tribe Fan (OH)
Victor Martinez's FB% is a lousy 25% or so. It's hard to hit HR that way. Over/under for 15 homers the rest of the way?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (12:00 PM)
Good over/under choice, really makes you think. I'm going with the under. He's never been a big-time power hitter, so I can't see him getting hot enough in the category to reach it. Not that it means he's a bad hitter, mind you. That's just an over/under call. I do think his VALUE increases from here.
Is Hoffman done? Would you go to the waiver wire or stick with him?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (12:02 PM)
Nick, I thought it in the preseason and I still think it now, yes, he's done, in terms of being close to elite, that is. But here's what's good with Hoffman: He has done this for so long and he's on a team where the closer role is now so irrelevant that the Padres kind of owe it to him to keep him in there, barring some really awful cold spell. (I mean AWFUL.) So at least he should keep getting chances for now, and for that reason, it's tough to let him go.
Harden for Bedard, fair?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (12:02 PM)
I don't think so but then I already made my Rich Harden rant earlier. I'll take Erik Bedard eight days a week.
Jim Beam (Drunk Town)
Lowe has had 2 quality starts in a row. Can we begin to trust him again?
Tristan H. Cockcroft (12:03 PM)
I think so. Not that he's an elite pitcher, but by year's end, I see him being pretty much what he was in 2007. Means better times ahead!
Tristan H. Cockcroft (12:04 PM)
Well, that's all for today. Thanks for all your questions, and sorry if I didn't get to yours ... good news: Jason Grey will be here to chat with you at 3! Take care, everyone!