Fantasy Baseball w/Jason Grey
Welcome to SportsNation! On Monday afternoon, Jason Grey will stop by to take your baseball questions and analyze all the latest news from the diamond from a fantasy perspective.
Grey can answer your questions on major league players and the minor league top prospects. He is a graduate of the MLB scouting program, as well as both a Tout Wars and LABR champion.
Send your questions now and join Grey to chat Thursday at 3 p.m. ET!
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Fantasy Archive: Fantasy Home Page
Jason Grey (3:00 PM)
TMR is on vacation....so you're stuck with me, sorry about that.
Jake, Seoul, South Korea
Shin-Soo Choo is having a pretty great season and it's going largely unnoticed. What do you think his chances are to finish with a 20-20 season? Where do you think he will end up in the outfield ranks by the end of the season?
Jason Grey (3:02 PM)
Pretty strong as long as his elbow stays sound and there are no other health issues. He's controlling the strike zone pretty well this year. If he goes 20-20 he's safely in the top-20 at year end. I think he's a very quiet 14th in the player rater at the position right now, and should probably be getting more notice for the season he's having thus far.
Dan: Delano, MN
Russell Martin has had no power this year. Do you think he will end up hitting 10 homeruns
Jason Grey (3:04 PM)
I don't see it - his raw power was in decline even last year; it's quite possible some of the heavy workload behind the plate has caught up with him, because there's just not the same authority there as there was two seasons ago.
Time to sell on Adrian Gonzalez? If so, what talent level should I target?
Jason Grey (3:05 PM)
I don't see why unless you have a logjam at first base. Even at a slowed homer pace he's still pretty darn good in a year where the corner infield pool is a bit shallower than usual. Unless you really need an ace Halladay-caliber starter I don't see a need to make a move.
Lets talk closers: Any thoughts on the favorite for the Rays closer? Are the Marlins going to give nunez a chance?
Jason Grey (3:09 PM)
Fredi Gonzalez is pointing to the fact Lindstrom has saved 11 of 13 and 8 in a row as justification for keeping him there, but you can;t keep allowing those base runners. I thnk Nunez is going to get a shot sooner rather than later. At least he can throw strikes. As far as the Rays...nobody is pitching well enough to emerge except Choate as a situational lefty closer. I think that situation remains fluid based on who's available that day, and don't see any favorite.
Mike (San Francisco, CA)
So are you on the Nolasco train like everyone else on the ESPN fantasy staff. I watched the game and dude got shellacked - 10 hits and 3 walks to a painfully inept offense. Giants did him multiple favors, getting thrown out at the place twice in the same inning, stranding a runner at 3rd with no outs, Bochy seemed almost embarrassed to win. Any other team and that would have been ugly.
Jason Grey (3:12 PM)
Well, he has been a little unlucky, but that's only part of it. I said in our preseason questionnaires we all did that I was worried about Nolasco's workload last year after elbow problems that didn't require surgery, and wondered if there were residual effects. The velocity is still there across the board so that's a good sign, so it may just be some mechanical issues. I'm cautiously optimistic, but puzzled why he's not doing better.
matthew (fairview, kansas)
should russell martin be owned in a 10 team H2H league?
Jason Grey (3:13 PM)
Not the slam dunk it used to be, but yeah, he's still in my top 10 at the position for the balance of the season.
Are you expecting a turn around from JRoll? I drafted him expecting him to return to MVP form but so far he has been disappointing
Jason Grey (3:15 PM)
I am expecting a turnaround, and still think he's a good buy-low candidate. Here's an interesting piece, that echoes the sentiment of a scout I talked to that follows the Phillies regularly. http://www.philly.com/inquirer/sports/20090608_Phillies_Notes__Jimmy_Rollins_believes_he_s_found_hitting_glitch.html
Would you trade either Hoffman or Fuentes(have street too) for Ellsbury or Figgins if you needed runs and sb?
Jason Grey (3:17 PM)
A general rule of thumb for any fantasy league. If you have excess saves and get an opportunity to trade a closer for a premium hitter (and the steals make either of those two players that in a fantasy sense), you do so.
Pick one: Floyd, Baker, Porcello.
Jason Grey (3:17 PM)
Baker (then Porcello, and Floyd in that order)
Mike MacDougal (closer du jour)
Hey, any chance I'm no longer the ratio killer of my Royals days?
Jason Grey (3:18 PM)
The return of Mac the Ninth! Sadly, no.
Gifford Ocean NJ
Aaron Hill of Zobrist rest of year? Iannetta is a top what catcher for the rest of the year?
Jason Grey (3:20 PM)
I still take Hill, but I do like Zobrist. Both hitters will slow their pace a bit. Off the top of my head my top 10 catchers for the balance of the year (no particular order):
Jason Grey (3:22 PM)
Martinez, Mauer, Inge and his eligibility, McCann, Napoli, Wieters, Martin, Iannetta, Molina, Posada.
Knowing that Valverde is probably coming off the DL Friday would it be wise to drop Hawkins and add CJ Wilson (before someone else does) since it sounds like Francisco is going back to the DL? Also. Pick up Pena with Qualls possibly headed to the DL?
Jason Grey (3:24 PM)
I'd add Wilson for Hawkins, although we won't know Francisco's status until today. He says he think he just needs a bit more rest. Doesn't sound like Qualls is a DL candidate yet, and is gong to try and pitch through some stiffness. We'll see how that plays out in the next couple of days.
NICK (BRONX, NY)
In a team team keeper league who has more fantasy potential Clayton Richard or Vin Mazzarro?
Jason Grey (3:25 PM)
Mazzaro. I've never been a big fan of Richard as a consistent starting pitcher in the big leagues.
Whats up with Placido Polanco? Has he been burned by bad luck or is he just not driving the ball anymore? He's a career .300+ hitter and 2 seasons removed from a .341, 200 hit season...Can we expect good things moving forward?
Jason Grey (3:27 PM)
His BABIP is almost 50 points lower than his career mark, so luck is definitely playing a part, so a batting average rebound can be somewhat expected, but that's about it.
In a minor league draft with only one pick, i need a bat and beckham, stanton, posey are already gone...who should I target? Smoak?
Jason Grey (3:28 PM)
That works for me. Could be the starting first baseman as soon as next season, and perhaps later this year if Davis continues to struggle.
Coco Crisp (K.C.)
Do you think this Andrew McCutchen guy will end up having a better rest of the year than me?
Jason Grey (3:30 PM)
It's very easy to get taken in by potential, and upside, and talking about Crisp , a .240 BABIP for a player with his speed (and less than 100 point of his career mark) indicates .224 is not where he's going to end up, but yeah, I'm intrigued enough with McCutchen's potential that he's the guy I'd prefer. Crisp remains a good buy low candidate, though.
Colby Rasmus' rookie campaign has gone largely unnoticed but you can see a definite progression at the plate recently. 1) Seeing as how he's typically a slow starter and posts strong second half numbers (in the minors anyhow), what do you see going forward for the rest of this season? 2) Does he remind you of any current players (say Grady Sizemore) as far as career potential?
Jason Grey (3:34 PM)
I've said since last season that Rasmus does a lot of things that remind me of Nick Markakis (though not quite as advanced at this stage of his career), and I expect better things out of him in the second half this season, and a breakout as soon as next year. I remember Markakis struggling mightily in his first couple of months in the majors before starting to figure things out.
So you're dropping Soto if any of the previously mentioned list is available? What happened to him? As a scout, what do you see as the problem and is it correctable this year or is it a fatal flaw?
Jason Grey (3:35 PM)
I thought about Soto but left him out of the top 10 because I'm concerned that the injuries he's had are more serious than let on and are still bothering him and affecting his swing. He's had shoulder issues and persistent hand problems,so for that reason I left him just outside the top 10.
Brian (St Pete, FL)
BJ Upton or Nate McClouth for the rest of the year?
Jason Grey (3:37 PM)
I'll take Upton, thanks. I think part of his problems are finding his swing again after the shoulder surgery, but I expect him to finish strong.
please discuss denard span ... he's unowned in over 40 per cent of leagues and looks to me like a close facsimile of matt kemp. thoughts?
Jason Grey (3:39 PM)
Well, let's not go crazy with the Kemp comparisons, but the numbers say Span has been a top-20 outfielder thus far, so that lack of ownership is crazy, and something a lot of the staff have been writing about for a while. He's not necessarily that far over his head. The avg. and speed are real.
Adam (Philadelphia, PA)
Can you discuss John Smoltz? How high are you on him for the rest of 09? On one hand, he's a future hall-of-famer who's throwing lights out in his rehab starts, who'll be pitching for one of the best teams in baseball. On the other hand, he's 42, coming off major surgery, doesn't have a rotation spot necessarily locked up and he's been a quality reliever in the past. Do owners who stashed him on the DL wait for great things or maybe look to deal him now, before he potentially gets hurt or becomes a middle reliever. Thanks!
Jason Grey (3:42 PM)
I'm really only looking at Smoltz as an AL-only option for the moment, and I would expect that your best value for him may be in the trade market when he gets activated. It's not that I don't expect him to do well, it's a question of how to maximize your return, and I would expect that dealing him may provide the most value. I could be wrong, it depends on your league. I haven't seen him pitch in rehab, but reports are his command is good even if his velocity is down slightly.
Time to drop Tulo? He's killing my team.
Jason Grey (3:43 PM)
For who? In one of our staff leagues, I've been trying to fill a SS slot all year, so it's a question of what the options are. If it's a question of a Burriss or Cabrera, I'll still take Tulo.
Frank (Queens, NY)
Someone just dropped Morrow in my keeper league. I haven't been following him, whats going on with him lately? Any chance to go back to starting or closing again?
Jason Grey (3:44 PM)
I think the reality of dealing with his diabetic condition and his health issues keep him a reliever going forward. That said it sounds like he's third or fourth in line right now based on Wakamatsu's comments, so I don't see the need for a pickup yet. The injury bug has hit him hard this season.
Kevin (New York)
Is Kazmir going to get back to his old form when he comes off the DL?
Jason Grey (3:48 PM)
Depends if any of his velocity issues earlier this season were as a result of the injury and if he can get it back. Indications are that they weren't I wrote a big breakdown of his radar gun trouble and problems with the bite on his slider in a clipboard a couple of weeks before he was DL'd, so absent a bounce back in those things, it's not promising. It sounds like they are rebuilding his mechanics again in his rehab so maybe that will help, because I would expect that was part of the velocity drop.
Jason Grey (3:48 PM)
A lot of Stephen Drew questions... I would most definitely hang in there, especially as he's in the midst of an 11-game hitting streak. It's coming around.
When are people going to start believing in Branyan? He may have a high BABIP right now but he's not showing much for signs of slowing and he's walking a lot. Could it be that since he's been given his first full-time role it's allowed him to hit with more confidence and less pressure? What do you think his final stats are?
Jason Grey (3:52 PM)
He's actually been hitting both lefties and righties and not pigeonholed as a platoon player, so that lends more credence to his start. He's not quite this good, but maybe he could have done this before if given a chance to play every day and staying healthy. Nobody ever gave him that chance before, so no, I'm not seeing a huge regression here.
FIFO (accting dept)
Reading your Hardcore column, and that's me in an NL-only league: Pick up Parnell or MacDougal? Never can have enough saves, but I'm still getting nightmares of the MacDougal Royals edition killing my ratios.
Jason Grey (3:56 PM)
Well, the easy answer is the guy that has the job right now, even if he is hard on the ratios. The Nats are searching for any answer there, so they might give him a long look, whereas Parnell gets no look absent an injury. As Jose Mesa and Todd Jones (among others) can attest, you can be a bad pitcher and still get saves. The question is how set you are in the ratio categories and how badly you need the saves. No, you can never have enough saves, but the question is if they are worth it. I wrote a piece last year about how at midseason, Joe Borowski had a bunch of saves, but his ratios had actually resulted in a net loss of three points in the standings for that particular team, even with the saves factored in. That's the kind of analysis you need to do.
Elvis Andrus: what do you think so far?
Jason Grey (4:01 PM)
This is about what we could have expected. I thought an average of .250-.260 with a poor OBP, very good defense and some steals this season, and that's pretty much what he's been. Long term, think vintage Edgar Renteria offensively, but he's held his own thus far.
Jason Grey (4:02 PM)
That's it for me today, sorry I can't get to more, have to get back to working on the draft. I really appreciate all the questions and I also appreciate you guys taking the time, thanks!