Fantasy Sports with AJ Mass
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AJ Mass (10:59 AM)
Good morning, gang! We're back yet again for another 60 minutes of fantasy chattage! Second cup of coffee in hand... who is going to lead off today?
What should my strategy be for a points league? I drafted a lot of power hitters last year and it seemed to work.
AJ Mass (11:01 AM)
Plenty of strategies to be had... for me, I like to load up on closers and use just one anchor SP. A volume of appearances trumps all.
Dave (Wolcott, CT)
AJ, Keep Adrian Beltre or Tulo? 5x5 H2H league?
AJ Mass (11:03 AM)
I'd keep Beltre. Not a slam dunk call, but I'd be happier with a lesser SS than with a lesser 3B here.
Patrick (Millville, NJ)
Re: your points league strategy, would you do that in a year long points (most overall points wins) or just H2H?
AJ Mass (11:04 AM)
Year-long points is different. In that case, IP are more important than weekly chances at wins/saves. SP tend to get more points than other positions and having aces are more essential.
Dynasty league keeper - David Murphy or Dexter Fowler? 5x5 H2H
AJ Mass (11:06 AM)
Dexter for me.
Rick (Dicktowel, NJ)
Votto seems undervalued this year to me. He was maybe the best hitter in baseball before getting hurt and everyone loves to bring up that he has only hit over 30 HR's once, but he hit 25 in 2009 and 29 in 2011. Is he a worthy top 5 pick in a keeper draft?
AJ Mass (11:08 AM)
There's a fear that there's going to be less power due to a residual effect from last year's injury. We are looking at someone who *could* be No. 2 1B this season, so no reason to not take him if you believe he is fine. I'm going to need to watch some more ABs this spring before signing on.
Keeper Q: Miggy for one year plus Cano for 4 more, or Miggy for 4 more, no Cano
AJ Mass (11:10 AM)
I'll win today and take them both.
Bruce or Kinsler in a keeper?
AJ Mass (11:11 AM)
Personally, I prefer Bruce. I think it's more important to have a well-stocked OF than anywhere else given the current talent distribution.
Which Halos closer would you take this year? Frieri? Madson?
AJ Mass (11:13 AM)
I'd take Frieri. Even if Madson returns and gets job back, which is not a given, Frieri gets me stats out of the gate.
Ed (Bonezone, MA)
To followup that Votto question, considering he was the best first baseman in fantasy before getting hurt last season, *couldn't* he be the No. 1 player at his position if fully healthy this year?
AJ Mass (11:15 AM)
Sure he could. It's a tossup between him, Albert and Prince really. But the fact he didn't have any power for an entire month after he got back... that's hard to completely remove from the equation.
Bo (Madison WI)
Better kpr going fwd: Machado or Taveras?
AJ Mass (11:17 AM)
As of today, I'd lean Machado. Whenever we're dealing with unknowns, though, it's hard to truly know for sure.
Joe (Newark, NJ)
I have the 11th pick. Who would you choose from the following if available: Fielder, Tulo, Stanton
AJ Mass (11:18 AM)
Doubtful you'll find them all there, but given the hypothetical, I'm finding it real hard to pass on Stanton.
AJ, in a first year keeper league auction, $300 budget, how high do you go on the likes of Trout and Harper?
AJ Mass (11:20 AM)
I always resist the urge to put hard $$$ values on an auction draft, because every league is a bit different. That said, I would certainly place a higher value on Trout than any other player by a large margin.
KEEPER question... in our fake game of baseball who cares about defense right? so is it fair to say BOEGARTS > PROFAR as a SS keeper?
AJ Mass (11:22 AM)
I think you need to care about defense in the sense that if a player commits 25 errors and gets removed from a starting job as a result, then it absolutely matters. Right now, though, I still rank Profar higher than Xander.
What do you mean by the current talent distribution where you want a well-stocked outfield?
AJ Mass (11:24 AM)
I see more of the best producers coming from outfield, even if you take into account the fact there are three times as many full-time starters. In a ten team league, if you wait on OF, you may fall too far behind several owners, as opposed to only one or two if you delay at 2B, SS or C, for example.
Moustakas or Middlebrooks in '13 and beyond?
AJ Mass (11:26 AM)
I go with Moustakas, and that was before Middlebrooks's injury. Yes, there doesn't appear to be anything too serious there, but it certainly doesn't make me want to elevate him any higher.
Hey AJ, What are your thoughts/outlook on Aroldis Chapman's potential move to the rotation from the bullpen? What can we expect from him for the 2013 season? Thanks!
AJ Mass (11:28 AM)
I think we don't and won't know, because the Reds are just as likely to stick to their guns with him in the rotation as they are to decide to throw him back to closer role. My guess is that he ends up with more saves than starts by season's end, but it's just a guess.
Last keeper, Andre Ethier or Nelson Cruz?
AJ Mass (11:29 AM)
Ethier over Cruz, though it's not by a huge margin.
Have Zobrist, 2B/SS eligible. Would you rather start Zob at 2nd? SS? and draft the open position?
AJ Mass (11:33 AM)
The flexibility is what makes Zobrist all the more valuable. I would absolutely NOT lock him in to either spot, and draft the best MI available when it makes sense to do so... no need to limit yourself to one or the other before you have to.
AJ, given your answer to the Trout/Harper $$ question, would you recommend throwing another player on the block first to gauge the league's player valuation?
AJ Mass (11:34 AM)
Absolutely. I rarely nominate players I really, really want in the first portions of an auction. I'd rather throw out "guys I wouldn't mind getting stuck with for $1, but hope they end up getting taken for much more by someone else" and always having the most $ at my disposal for as long as possible.
Everyone is returning in my league, my commish wants to make it a keeper league and start it this draft. As much as i would love that (I would b keeping Trout, McCluster, Cano) i told him the right thing to do is to call it out as a keeper league this year but you cant keep anyone til next year. Am I right? (i hope i'm wrong)
AJ Mass (11:36 AM)
When you're changing the rules in such a big way, you need to have everybody going in with them already in place. In that sense, you are 100 percent right. However, if the league is unanimous with wanting to go ahead with the change immediately, there's no reason not to do so.
It's tough to do these mocks bc some people are drafting with Roto in mind and some with H2H.......Anyway the mocks can be differentiated in the future?
AJ Mass (11:38 AM)
We do several mocks over the course of the spring. Some will be points, some will be H2H. We always spell it out up front.
can you give me some of your sleepers for SPs? thanks
AJ Mass (11:39 AM)
Miley, Milone, Harrison, Cahill... just a few that come to mind.
Max Scherzer (DET)
Hard to imagine me as a top 10 pitcher this year? Top 5? That second half was killer...
AJ Mass (11:40 AM)
I'd be willing to go top 15, no higher.
4 time champ (Boston ma)
H2h dynasty keeper PTs lg. Struggling with Halladay or M. Moore. Appreciate your opinion thanks.
AJ Mass (11:40 AM)
I think you go Moore and it's probably not even close.
Expectations for Todd Frazier--improvement, regression or repeat?
AJ Mass (11:43 AM)
Remember, when it comes to fantasy it's not about where a player ends up in relation to his past seasons. It only matters where he ends up for this coming season in relation to the others at his position and overall. I have him just outside my personal top 20 at 3rd in roto, slightly higher in points.
Better chance of winning AL Cy Young this year: Darvish or Scherzer?
AJ Mass (11:45 AM)
I'd say Yu, but mostly because it's an opinion-based vote. If Rangers win sans Hamilton, Darvish's impact probably seen as being more valuable, given similar stats to Max.
12 team roto keeper league with ops instead of avg. We can keep guys forever in the same round. Would you keep Butler in the 9th or Craig in the 16th?
AJ Mass (11:45 AM)
I'm very high on Butler, so I'd be keeping him in most formats, regardless of round.
Brad (Cedar Rapids)
Kipinis (16th) > Pujols (1st) right?
AJ Mass (11:46 AM)
In terms of pure value per draft spot, no doubt.
In a 10 team league, you fine waiting until the bitter end to snag a catcher?
AJ Mass (11:47 AM)
Where I've seen Napoli, Lucroy and McCann going - and by that I mean far later in drafts - absolutely will wait on catcher.
In the mocks you always appear to stick to your own ranks as compared to default ESPN rankings more than any other expert. Is this personal strategy to get the players you want? I do my own ranks but I try to blend in default ranks with mine in case I'm horribly wrong.
AJ Mass (11:50 AM)
Go big or go home. If you believe in your research, it shouldn't matter. Now, if you know everyone else is going to stick to those rankings, then you might be able to wait a bit longer on certain players that you predict won't be taken... but in our mocks, I'd rather let readers know my stand on players.
Keeper ? = H2H Mixed League-- Need 2 of 5 & my options are: Sal Perez (at 24th Rd value), Morrow (13th Rd value), Reyes (2nd), RZimmerman (3rd), OR Nathan (17thRd)?
AJ Mass (11:51 AM)
I'd keep Reyes and Zimm.
Need to decide between Adam Jones (6th round) and Bumgarner (8) for my final keeper. Already keeping Trout and Strasberg. Thanks!
AJ Mass (11:53 AM)
Got to go Jones with that, but it does kill me to pass up on MadBum.
Rob (Lima, OH)
When drafting first or last in a snake draft, do you use the 'best player available' philosophy or do you tend to reach a bit for a position or roto category knowing there are a lot of picks before you get to select again?
AJ Mass (11:56 AM)
I think I'm more willing to reach for a guy I want because odds are after 18 picks, guys who are in my queue now will likely vanish. I'd say if there's a tier that looks like it's drying up at a position, I'm making sure I take my pick from there first.
I will become a top 5 1b this year and go .285 27 105 21. Agree?
AJ Mass (11:57 AM)
Not outside the realm of possibility.
You high on Carlos Gomez this season? Nice second half last year.
AJ Mass (11:58 AM)
Potential to be a decent No. 4 OF if all goes right. No higher.
What do you expect from Hunter Pence this season?
AJ Mass (11:59 AM)
Top 25 OF.
AJ Mass (11:59 AM)
That's the final whistle, gang. If I didn't get to you, there's always twitter (@ajmass). I'm off next week, but will be back in two weeks time to chat again. Until then, as always, good luck and may the odds be EVER in your favor.