Fantasy MLB w/Jason Grey
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday 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 Wednesday at 3 p.m.Need an in-depth answer to your question? Want your roster or trade offers reviewed? Get a personalized response from an ESPN expert with The Answer Guys. All questions answered within 24 hours, guaranteed. Ask your question
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Jason Grey (3:02 PM)
Hey everyone, filling in for Eric today, will get to as many as I can, thanks.
Hey Jason, how good do you think Scott Kazmir will be when he returns?
Jason Grey (3:04 PM)
I think it depends on if his velocity has returned. I know they have made some mechanical changes in his delivery, and perhaps that would account for the lack of zip on his fastball and bite on his slider, and he supposedly looked sharp in his rehab start on Monday. I haven't got any gun readings from that outing, but the no walks is a positive sign. I'm cautiously optimistic but need to see him throw before I can really recommend him again. So far, so good, though.
Norman (Brooklyn, New York)
What's the deal with Markakis? Just your average slump?
Jason Grey (3:05 PM)
Yep....and even in the midst of a power drought he's still hit .274 this month. He's been a streaky hitter in the past, so I'm not concerned.
Jason, what is up with Evan Longoria? He's not hitting homeruns, barely getting runs or rbi's... what's going on with him? Will he turn things around?
Jason Grey (3:08 PM)
Same thing here, there's nothing wrong with him, just some natural regression after hot starts they couldn't possibly keep up. He's only hit .240 this month with three homers, so some people get panicked. He does have eight hits and two homers in his last seven games. Not to worry, there's nothing wrong with either Markakis or Longoria, so absent some injury information we don't know about yet, they should both be just fine.
Joe Blustein (Shoreview, MN)
Hey Jason,Whats up with Edinson Volquez? How much longer do you think he will be out, and how many wins he will get this year?
Jason Grey (3:11 PM)
Well, he hasn't even thrown off of a mound yet (just flat ground) so we still have a while to wait. We're not going to have some semblance of a timeframe until he throws off a mound with no issues, but you're probably looking at a few weeks at least.
As Dexter Fowler is cutting down on his whiffs, Carlos Gonzalez is flailing at everything. Will he stay in the majors, and should he be cut in a 12-team mixed roto keeper?
Jason Grey (3:13 PM)
I mentioned when he came up that although his tools were reminiscent of Alex Rios, he might have some trouble with the strikeouts at this time, as he's a little bit too much of a free-swinger. Still, we're talking just 14 games this year thus far, and in a keeper league he's not a player I would cut at the moment.
Sometimes I think I should work for ESPN, especially when I find possible diamonds in the rough like one Everth Cabrera (rookie SS for Padres). The dude stole 71 bases in 120 minor league games one year. He just came back from the DL and stole 2 bases last night. Any thoughts on him? Did I find a diamond in the rough for steals at a valuable position? Or am I full of crap?
Jason Grey (3:15 PM)
Well, I ranked the Rule 5 pick at No. 60 on my top prospects for 2009 for that reason, because he does have speed and a good glove, even if major league pitchers will be able to knock the bat out of his hands a bit. Still, the Pads have gotten nothing out of the SS position, so he'll get a look, and he does have the wheels. Can he get on base enough to use them is the question?
Jason, how much would you factor Petco Park and Citi Field when you've been offered Adrian Gonzalez and David Wright for Evan Longoria and Nick Markakis? I know I know. It depends on what I have/need, I'm wondering how these ballparks would affect your decision making if you were offered this trade.
Jason Grey (3:16 PM)
No, I really don't consider ballparks when making a deal, judge the players on their merits. Although Adrian does have a huge road slugging percentage he's more than holding his own at home.
Hi Jason, I have a rules question. I'm playing against Broxton this week and I saw he got the save last night pitching 1/3 of an inning. The problem was, he had a 3 run lead with two outs and only one man on base. I thought you only got a save if the tying run had the potential of coming to the plate??? The tying run was on deck with two outs, shouldn't be a save right? What gives?
Jason Grey (3:18 PM)
If the tying run is on deck, it's a save situation.
Casey Blake or Mike Lowell going forward?
Jason Grey (3:19 PM)
I'm going Lowell as the steadier producer, because Blake has some regression coming in his numbers.
Bob (Chino Hills, CA)
Jason, thank for taking the time to chat with us. Do you think Furcal's back is the issue with no power or steals yet?
Jason Grey (3:21 PM)
I certainly do. Back issues are notoriously tricky. Even if a player is healthy enough to play, has it affected his swing, his pop, or ability to be willing to dive into a base? He's also had a strained buttocks muscle recently which may or may not be related. I suspect his back issues do have something to do with the lack of output in those categories.
With Smoltz coming back this weekend, would it be wise to pick him up now and drop Cahill or wait til after his 1st start?
Jason Grey (3:22 PM)
Is that the only option? I'm pretty sure I want Cahill to stick around. I'm in "wait and see" mode on Smoltz in mixed leagues for the moment, but do have him ready to go in AL formats for his first start.
Joe (San Diego)
Chad Gaudin has very impressive last night, and he occasionally shows flashes of brilliance. How useful can he be? 12-team mixed?
Jason Grey (3:24 PM)
I've watched a lot of Gaudin over the last couple of seasons, and though the K's are nice, there's just way too much inconsistency with his control and command for me to feel comfortable with him in anything but NL-only play. Even with that outing last night his ERA is barely under six and his WHIP is over 1.5. Now he's not that bad and his home park should help him, but it's been feast or famine.
Jason, I'm wondering what your opinion (and perhaps the opinions of your peers) is regarding Josh Johnson. He's put up fantastic numbers thus far this season, but this is his full year back from major surgery. Does he keep this up the whole year? Or do you see him fading anytime soon and/or the Marlins perhaps shutting him down with an eye to next season (and if so, would you sell high or ride the wave)? Thanks for the help.
Jason Grey (3:26 PM)
I had JJ in my top-20 starting pitchers at the beginning of the season, and expect him to stay there. I mentioned last year that he picked up velocity after the TJ surgery, and one thing the surgery did was also allow him to get the rest of his body in shape, as he's much trimmer with a stronger lower half, and that's only been to his benefit. Enjoy the ride.
Bubba (The Bayou)
Read in the earlier chat that Homer Bailey has a splitter now, and is dominating the minors to the tune of 4-0 w/a 0.47 ERA his last 5 games, with a 38/7 K/BB. We've seen flashes before, but nothing like this. Can he be fantasy relevant this year/next?
Jason Grey (3:30 PM)
That's been the rumor, though I haven't been able to confirm that yet. He certainly didn't throw one in his start in the big leagues a month ago, so that would be a sharp learning curve. The bigger issue is what his fastball velocity is and if he can throw strikes at the big level. Any new pitches aren't a big deal for me if he still can't command a fastball. I'm still skeptical until I see him again.
Despite some of the peripheral #s saying otherwise, do you think Pods and/or McCutchen can sustain their current production?
Jason Grey (3:31 PM)
McCutchen yes as detailed here: http://insider.espn.go.com/fantasy/baseball/flb/story?page=clipboard090621 - I think Podsednik is going to have problems sustaining his current level.
Frank (Fantasy Flame)
wasnt this question about homer asked and answered earlier? everyday the same questions. when are we going to get our wieters, hanson, price question? What is Pedroia's value? What type of pitcher should I target with him as bait?
Jason Grey (3:34 PM)
To be honest, there's no good way to answer your question either. The simple answer is "What the market will bear" and it's different in every league. You simply let everyone in your league know Pedroia is available and that you need a pitcher, and then see what the best pitcher is that comes back in an offer. Choosing some arbitrary target may exclude a better pitcher that might be available in your league if you had just asked or, by contrast, may be too high to ask for in another league. It all depends on your league's trade dynamics.
Rick (Downey, California)
JG, with Giles on the DL now, is Blanks worth owning in an NL only league?
Jason Grey (3:36 PM)
With Scott Hairston coming back, it may not really change Blanks' situation at all. After interleague play I think they'll only keep him around if he's going to see some regular time in left and bump Headley or Kouzmanoff out of the lineup occasionally. I do think Blanks has NL value if they keep him, but the jury is still out on that.
Here's a link an article that talks about Homers new splitter http://www.courier-journal.com/article/20090617/COLUMNISTS01/906170428/1036/SPORTS07/Bailey s split decision has foes dazzled
Jason Grey (3:39 PM)
God info, Bob - although the reports of a 96-mph fastball in that story I don't buy. Supposedly started throwing it June 2. It could change things a bit. Still comes down to throwing strikes and commanding the fastball at the big league level, regardless of repertoire, but this is somewhat encouraging.
John "Not Gonna Win this Year" W (Duxbury, MA)
Will Neftali Feliz have any fantasy impact in 2010? Who has the higher ceiling: Feliz, Bumgarner, Price, or Hanson?
Jason Grey (3:41 PM)
Good chance he's in the rotation then, so yes. Right now, I'll take Hanson for next season out of those four.
Is Luke Hochevar going to figure things out, even on a semi-consistent basis?
Jason Grey (3:42 PM)
I saw Hochevar very early in his pro career and saw why he was drafted so high, but as he's progressed up the ladder his lack of an out pitch has been more and more of an issue, and I think he's been overrated for a few years now.
Hey Jason, should I cut ties with Carlos Quentin? Looks like nobody's real positive on his injury. Also, who is the better OF option out of Rowand, McCutchen, and Scott hairston?
Jason Grey (3:43 PM)
http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/chi-24-white-sox-bits-chicago-jun24,0,6922996.storyThis is not encouraging...and McCutchen.
Buster Posey may jump from A to AAA soon. If the Giants are closing to making the playoffs, will he get the call to help offensively?
Jason Grey (3:46 PM)
I don't see him getting a lot of playing time unless Molina gets hurt...even if he does get a call.
Gallardo trade for Markakis in a keeper - who wins?
Jason Grey (3:47 PM)
In a keeper league, I generally always prefer the hitting side unless it's very lopsided. I like to lock in my hitters with my protection slots. This deal isn't enough to change that philosophy, IMO.
Hey Jason...big fan here. Any thoughts on Andrew Brackman? Is he no longer a prospect?
Jason Grey (3:50 PM)
Far from it, he's actually starting to come around after the TJ surgery. He was back at 97 as early as when I saw him in the Hawaii League so that's a good sign. The command and control can take a while to come back, so even though he's had a ton of walks, he's still striking out a batter per inning and getting a ton of grounders. We just need a lot of patience, especially with a 6'10" pitcher, as taller pitchers have problems repeating their mechanics to begin with.
How about Jeremy Jeffres? He sounds like he's improving
Jason Grey (3:51 PM)
Yep, putting up some good starts at high Class-A and still easy velocity, but a long way to go.
Roddy (Los Angeles)
Jason, How long before Price gets sent down. The Rays have to right?
Jason Grey (3:53 PM)
Not necessarily, there's rumors that Sonnanstine might be the odd man out in the Rays rotation instead, but those are just rumors. Just saying the Rays don't have to.
I lost patience with Ervin and dropped him for Kuroda. Am I going to regret it down the road?
Jason Grey (3:54 PM)
It's hard to argue with Kuroda's body of work in his 37 big league starts.
Peter (West Orange, NJ)
One week away from July and still no sign of life from Rollins. Will he turn it around?
Jason Grey (3:57 PM)
He supposedly made some mechanical adjustments with his swing plane at the beginning of the month, but is still hitting .184 since then, so there are no positive signs at the moment. Still, the best you can do at this point is just hang on and hope for the best. Sometimes that's all we can say.
Just announced, Lindstrom on the DL. Who's closing?
Jason Grey (3:59 PM)
I would guess Leo Nunez, provided his sprained ankle from the other night isn't too serious, especially with Calero also on the DL
What are Soria's prospects for saves playing for the Royals?
Jason Grey (4:00 PM)
Even closers on bad teams can still get 30 saves over the course of the season. I worry about getting good pitchers that have the role and let the team situation work itself out. At the end of the day, you want the best arms ,not necessarily the best teams.
Jason Grey (4:01 PM)
That's it for me today. Just posted a new piece on Gaby Sanchez and Alcides Escobar. If I missed yours, I will be back at my usual time tomorrow and will try to get you then. Thanks for all the interest, I appreciate your time.