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If you have any fantasy baseball questions for us, here is the place to ask them! Just post a comment below, and Dave or Dusty will get back to you ASAP. Thanks!


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Ask RotoSaurus — 33 Comments

  1. sorry guys… we do live fantasy baseball drafts in Vegas every year for National Fantasy Baseball Championship and don’t get back until the day the season starts so we start a little behind. All closer info is up to date but Dusty doesn’t start doing 2-starts until week 2 usually

    • Definitely hold onto him… he’s just nursing a minor ankle injury – should be back shortly… I expect a very good season from him. Obviously bench him until he comes back though.

  2. I don’t quite understand the blue/red rating system for pitchers.I assume it’s some combo of pitcher/park/opponent and some other stuff I’m unaware of.Any explanation is appreciated.

    • Below the pitchers there’s a key – Blue means the park is favorable for the pitcher while Red means the park is unfavorable for the pitcher. For example, a home game in COL is obviously unfavorable for the pitchers so they’re in Red. A pitcher pitching in SF on the other hand is in a favorable park so their name would be in Blue.

        • You might want to check into the new Atlanta park,the couple games I’ve watched there it looked pretty hot for the bats.

          • Yeah so it’s definitely MORE hitter friendly than it was (definitely was a pitcher’s park)…there just isn’t enough info to say definitively that it’s a hitter’s park yet. I just updated the Park Factors a few days ago and just changed the colors now to reflect the new park factors

    • So… here are my thoughts – Avisail’s AVG is going to come WAY down. He has a .462 BABIP and his swinging strike rate is the same as last year so he hasn’t really made any improvements in his plate approach…in fact he isn’t even hitting the ball as hard as he did last year. So while I’d ride out his hot streak, it WILL end soon and he’s a .270 AVG/15 HR kind of guy. Bautista, however, has some serious (probably age-related) concerns. His swinging strike rate is up 4%, his contact% is down 10%, he’s hitting more fly balls but he isn’t hitting anything hard so his power numbers are way down… honestly, I’d target someone else for Avisail… maybe someone will bite and think he’s for real. Maybe try to get a Jay Bruce or Aaron Judge first, and if you can’t, go for a guy like Jason Heyward who all of a sudden is looking really good… or Domingo Santana who is getting really unlucky on BABIP but whose underlying skills look good… or even Steven Souza who is striking out much less this year and looks healthy compared to last year. Heck, you might even be able to get more than just 1 of those guys if the person you’re trading with is only focused on results so far…

    • My overall rankings for them based on skills would be:
      1. Conforto
      2. Schwarber
      3. Mazara
      4. Zobrist

      However, Zobrist can be used at 2B or MI where he has a lot more value than in the OF so if you need a 2B/MI don’t drop him. Schwarber has a lot of power and walks more than the others which is really useful in points leagues so I’d hold him. The problem with Conforto is that once Cespedes and Duda both come back around June Conforto may not play every single game, but I’m betting he plays enough to be worthwhile. Personally I’d drop Zobrist for Conforto if you don’t need a 2B/MI.

  3. Which pitcher for this coming week and long term and why? Please rank top three for each. Wheeler, Senzatela, Berrios, A Wood, J Nelson, JC Ramirez, , Karns, Cobb, Eflin, Urena, J Montgomery, M Boyd, Godley.

    Thanks!

    • Phew that’s a lot! Ok… so let’s start by clearing the deck a bit – Eflin, Urena, Senzatela, and Cobb (his previously great change-up has no fade) are all low strikeout low upside guys who are due for big regression and I don’t want to be starting them when they inevitably get pounded. I suppose you can start them in favorable parks against weak opponents if you need to, but I wouldn’t bother as you have better options available.

      Notes
      Nelson – He’s ok – definitely improved from last season. If you start him at home against teams that don’t have a lot of good lefty hitters (like Boston yesterday) you should be good.
      Wheeler – I like him – he induces weak contact with solid Ks (8 K/9) and a high GB rate (55%) but his control isn’t very good (3.9 BB/9). He’s a good streamer (in Away games especially) against teams that are impatient (low BB%).
      Berrios – Wait and see with him – His K rate is down a bit this year, but his control is better – we’ll see if it holds up in the majors (unlike last year) but he’s definitely worth a pick-up as he has great stuff and can definitely help your rotation if he puts it together.
      Wood – He’s a potentially elite starter on a good team and if he gets a full-time spot in the rotation and builds up his pitch count he could be huge. Hill is possibly coming back shortly, but now Maeda is hurt. Pick up Wood for the long haul – elite GB% with Ks = success
      Ramirez – I like him a fair amount…he’s a high velocity guy with a K rate over 8 K/9 and walk rate at 2.6 BB/9 – that’s solid. I expect around a 3.8 ERA with a 1.25 WHIP – you could do much worse for a back-end of your fantasy rotation starter.
      Karns – He’s really interesting. Outside of 2 really bad starts, he’s been very good. He’s inducing a lot of grounders (57%) and soft contact and he’s a legit high strikeout guy in a HR depressed park. Right now I’m starting him for every home start and benching him in tough away starts.
      Montgomery – He suppresses HR and hard hits very well and his 14% swinging strike rate is VERY interesting so he’s a legit strikeout guy, but a 4.5 BB/9 rate is holding him back. I’m starting him against most teams unless they’re very patient because the wheels could fall off in that situation.
      Boyd – What a mess he’s been so far this year – walks way up and strikeouts down…if he gets his control back he could be a guy to look at in spot starts but he’s unplayable right now.
      Godley – This guy is worth a speculative pick-up. His velocity is up 2.5 MPH from 2016 and in 2 starts he’s been getting a ton of swing and misses and grounders. The HR will certainly come in that park, but this is a different pitcher than the one we saw last season. I’m buying.

      Worth owning long-term in most leagues:
      1. Wood
      2. Berrios* (if his control holds up)
      3. Godley* (still an unknown right now)
      4. Karns
      5. Ramirez
      6. Montgomery
      7. Wheeler

      I’m taking the upside of unknowns Berrios and Godley over the more known-quantities behind them because if they don’t work out you can probably pick up the others later.

      For this week:
      1. Godley vs NYM @SD
      2. Ramirez vs CWS
      3. Montgomery @KC
      4. Wheeler @ARZ vs LAA
      5. Nelson @SD @CHC
      6. Wood vs MIA
      7. Karns @MIN
      8. Berrios vs COL

      Godley is a bit of a risk as a mostly-unknown guy right now, but those are 2 great match-ups for him. Ramirez and Montgomery have ideal match-ups in 1-starts this week. Wheeler and Nelson both have pretty good 2-starts. Wood has a tough 1-start as the Marlins crush lefties, but he’s very good so I’m not TOO concerned. Karns has a tough 1-start in an away game against the Twins who actually have been hitting well. Berrios’ start isn’t bad but I’m simply not starting him until I see him pitch a few times first.

    • It depends on who you would end up starting at 1B or CI (whatever the situation), but I would lean towards yes. Pomeranz isn’t right anyway (velo drop due to shoulder issues) and Santana is replaceable even in reasonably deep leagues. What’s the size of your league? Verlander’s ratios aren’t as good as last year (his walk rate is way up), but it’s only a few starts. His velo is up at least a full mph from last year on all four of his pitches (2 mph on slider and change) and he still is striking out a batter per inning. I would bet on him figuring things out.

    • I understand what Dusty is saying here, but Verlander has to prove he’s right before that deal makes any sense to me, and he clearly isn’t. His swinging strike rate is down 3% and his walk rate is alarmingly high after 8 starts. Now, he could easily turn that around as his velocity is still good, but I don’t see a reason to give that much up right now for him. Pomeranz’s velocity was only down in his last start and he will be back shortly – let’s see how he looks. If Pomeranz doesn’t look right and Verlander returns to dominance in his next start and you don’t need Santana, then go ahead and make the deal… but as of now it just doesn’t make sense to me to do it.

  4. I have Matt Bush right now as my third closer. I’d like to think he gets the closer role back but obviously that’s not a guarantee. I’d also like to pick up whoever closes in Washington…M Grace, Madson, Doolittle. Of course, right now there’s no telling who that is going to be. Do I drop Bush to take a chance on one of the 3 options in Washington and if so, which one do I go with?

    • Check here for who I think you should pick-up – http://www.therotosaurus.com/mlb-speculative-saves/

      So to start with, ignore Grace – he’s irrelevant in the closer picture and not very good. As you can see from my rankings, I see Kela taking the job in Texas. As for the Washington job, I think they still make another trade for another reliever, possibly a closer. Doolittle and Madson are good pick-ups if you have room, but I think there are better options out there. Rosenthal, Kahnle, and Kela are definitely my top 3 (aside from Britton who I’m sure is owned). Rosenthal may already have taken over as closer and Robertson is almost guaranteed to be traded freeing up Kahnle to close in Chicago – both of these guys could be elite closers with their skills. Since Jim Johnson’s velocity has dipped lately, and due to the fact that he’s also a trade candidate, Arodys Vizcaino is also a solid speculative pick-up. Finally, the Marlins are definitely going to have a big fire sale and I’d be shocked if Ramos and Phelps aren’t dealt so Barraclough is another great speculative pick-up.

      • welp, so much for Kahnle… Swarzak and Clippard are the best closer candidates in Chicago now but honestly I probably wouldn’t grab either unless you’re desperate. Clippard has struggled all year and Swarzak is another likely trade candidate.

  5. 12 team keeper league, 5×5 roto
    Keep 7 plus up to 5 on minor league bench
    7.5 pts out of the money

    Want to consider the possibly of selling pieces of to upgrade keepers since I don’t see my team making up 7+ points.

    Please rank top 10 keepers going into next year:
    Freeman
    LeMahieu
    Machado
    Kinsler
    K Seager
    Bautista
    L Cain
    N Cruz
    C Santana
    Bour
    Baez
    Altherr
    Sherzer
    Carrasco
    Severino

    Minor league bench:
    Buxton
    Tapia
    O Arcia
    D Smith
    E Jimenez

    Thanks,
    Kris

    • Wow ok.. so to start with, there’s not always a clear choice of who to keep… often it depends on the make-up of your team and who’s available. For instance, if you have Trea Turner already, Billy Hamilton is a lot less valuable to you. Having said that though I’ll rank these guys in a vacuum – not dependent on outside factors.

      SP Scherzer
      1B/3B Freeman
      3B Machado
      OF N Cruz
      SP Severino
      SP Carrasco

      1B Bour
      OF L Cain
      3B K Seager

      2B LeMahieu
      OF Altherr
      2B/SS Baez

      2B Kinsler
      1B C Santana
      OF Bautista

      Analysis: You have a strong top 6. You have lots of options at 1B and 3B and a couple OF keepers. You have a strong top 3 at SP as well. Kinsler, Santana, and Bautista are not keeper options. Lemahieu, Altherr, and Baez are ok but you can do better for your 10th keeper by upgrading through trade I’m sure.

      Advice: Deal from your strength (1B/3B) to get a top Middle Infielder (or 2)… maybe try to get Correa or Trea Turner (who are both currently injured so maybe their asking price will be lower). I’d be willing to trade Machado or Freeman in order to get one of those top middle infield options because then I could just keep Bour and not lose a ton of production. Other good options include Altuve, Daniel Murphy, and Corey Seager and I’d still deal Machado or Freeman for any of them as well, but try to get them without giving those 2 up if you can. I think Trea Turner would be my first option for you as you could use the steals (Altuve also works for steals though he’ll probably cost more). I’d also ask Salvador Perez’s owner what he wants for him… maybe you can get him for Kyle Seager or Lorenzo Cain, or maybe 1 of those plus one from the tier below them (Lemahieu, Altherr, Baez). Dependable catchers with good counting stats who play close to every day are rare and it wouldn’t take as much to get him as it would to get a guy like Posey or Sanchez.

      Good luck!

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