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June 1, 3:08 PM ET
Fantasy Baseball with Eric Karabell

Eric Karabell
  (11:00 AM)

Hello and welcome to another fantasy baseball chat session. Let's get right to it! Any questions?

Mark ( mississippi)

What are you thoughts on Salty?

Eric Karabell
  (11:02 AM)

I think there's a chance the Braves' Jarrod Saltalamacchia actually takes over as the everyday first baseman at some point. Scott Thorman is hitting .216, and is anemic versus lefties. Salty is a switch-hitter, and about to see more time.

Joe (NYC)

top of the morning, Eric. a crop of 1B starting to heat up. who sustains for the rest of the year: Konerko, Garko, or Swisher?

Eric Karabell
  (11:03 AM)

I think all will sustain their recent performance. Swisher and Garko have been fine all season, and Konerko is starting to get hot. You can depend on these guys. Don't worry about Garko sitting for Travis Hafner in NL parks, the guy is hitting .340.

malcolm - sunny hilo

aloha EK! is slowey a good start today vs the angels?

Eric Karabell
  (11:05 AM)

I kind of trust Kevin Slowey of the Twins, even against John Lackey. Slowey doesn't walk people, which is important, and the Angels' lineup isn't exactly Murderer's Row.

John (MA)

M. Young is finally turning his season around! Top 5 SS by the end of the season?

Eric Karabell
  (11:06 AM)

No, I don't think he was a top-5 shortstop even before the season, as he's not a big power guy and he doesn't run, but he could be a top-10 SS if he would hit for average consistently. I could see that happening.

Matt(TN)

Eaton tonight vs. Mets? yay or nay?

Eric Karabell
  (11:07 AM)

It would be tough for me to recommend Adam Eaton in any matchup, even against a Mets lineup missing key pieces.

Matt (Philly)

Eric, Am I nuts for thinking about dropping Mussina for Homer Bailey?

Eric Karabell
  (11:09 AM)

Yeah, it's certainly a move I would not make. Do you really think a rookie with no experience, in that ballpark, with that bullpen, is going to out-do someone like Moose? I know Mussina is not pitching well, but take a look at most of the rookie pitchers this season and you'll understand Homer isn't a lock for success.

Steve (Chicago)

Eric, i recently got KazMat in my league and curently he's replacing an injured Weeks for me, adn doing a very good job I might add. What do you see from KazMat the rest of the year? Can he keep it up?

Eric Karabell
  (11:10 AM)

The way Kaz Matsui is running the case can be made that he's better than Weeks. What have we come to see from Weeks? A bad batting average, annual injuries, a bit of power but not a ton. Matsui has been very good, and underrated since joining the Rockies, and he definitely steals bases. Yeah, he can keep this up.

Rob (VA)

Has Corey Hart finally secured an everyday spot? What kind of numbers do you see him ending up with?

Eric Karabell
  (11:12 AM)

Yes, it sure looks like Hart is the new leadoff hitter, and he's making the most of it, hitting for power and stealing bases. I'm not sure where Hart was the first two months, but he's had this ability in the minors for years.

Matt,mpls

Figgins seems to have turned a corner and is playing very well the last week. He is a FA in my league, should he be picked up? Thanks E

Eric Karabell
  (11:12 AM)

Absolutely pick him up if you want stolen bases. Figgins is capable of a 50-steal season, even now.

David (D.C.)

Thoughts on when Pedro returns and what kind of numbers he will post?

Eric Karabell
  (11:14 AM)

Pedro Martinez is finally throwing, but he won't be back until August, at the earliest, and I think his name value is worth more than his actual value. Maybe he's a 5-inning pitcher at this point, who knows? I doubt we see him fully healthy until next spring.

Jason (Rochester, NY)

Hi Eric! Just sold "high" on Gaudin for Thome. IF he stays healthy, was this a good trade for me? Thanks!

Eric Karabell
  (11:15 AM)

That's a ridiculous trade, and proof that selling high is a beautiful thing. Congrats.

Max (New York)

Is this the end of Roy Halladay?

Eric Karabell
  (11:17 AM)

I don't think this is the end, but I do have concerns that Halladay's problem is more than mechanics, maybe a tired arm. I had this concern before the appendectomy. Can't sell high on Halladay after last night, though.

Alex (Dominican Republic)

Erik, Good Morning. When can we expect Yovani Gallardo in the mayors?

Eric Karabell
  (11:20 AM)

The Brewers are getting pressure to promote Gallardo to the majors, but what's the rush? They're in first place already, and nobody in the rotation deserves to be cut out. Gallardo is obviously someone fantasy owners want to see, but be careful who you drop for him. I don't think Gallardo, or Homer Bailey, will be bad at all, but what are your expectations? How many rookies are dominant right away? Minor league stats do not norrmally translate initially.

Sam, SF

Good morning Eric. I've just been offered Verlander for Big Z. Pull the trigger or wait for Zambrano to right the ship?

Eric Karabell
  (11:22 AM)

Well, I think Verlander would have been a pretty good trade option for Zambrano anyway, so yes I would do that. But I also think Zambrano will pitch well tonight against the Brewers, since Big Z has much better stats on the road.

Barry (boston)

Angel Guzman is headed to the DL. Any chance he takes over the closer role when he gets healthy? Should I drop him for Guardado or Soria?

Eric Karabell
  (11:25 AM)

I don't think there was much legit chance Guzman was taking the closer role anyway, but there must be something better on free agency than those guys. Watch Ryan Dempster keep the closer job all season long. Soria would be the backup for Dotel.

Ben (Columbus)

Hunter Pence has torn it up for the 'Stros'. Keep him or sell high?

Eric Karabell
  (11:27 AM)

Pence is legit. I compared him to a healthy Rocco Baldelli last week, as someone who could be a 20/20 option and hit for average. Pence is good.

BRAD (NEW YORK, NY)

do you think willits will bat lead off all season and what do think his numbers will be the rest of the way

Eric Karabell
  (11:29 AM)

I think it's tough to predict Willits will hit .330 this season, but a solid .300 hitter with 30 steals, I think that's going to happen.

Kevin (Miami)

Hart or J.D. Drew today forward?

Eric Karabell
  (11:31 AM)

It's Hart while he's hot. Drew has not played well, clearly, and he's not going to play much against lefties for the time being. I wouldn't totally give up on Drew yet; he has a track record of hitting, and in his first half season with the Dodgers, he did sputter but got hot after the break. I still expect Drew to have value.

Eno (Jersey City)

What about Sonnanstine? Start him v FLA later this week?

Eric Karabell
  (11:33 AM)

The Tampa Bay rookie did give up quite a few runs last night, but he stayed composed and went 7 innings, not walking anyone.

Bailey (Chicago)

EK, is it time to give up on Joe Crede? When do you think Josh Fields will replace Crede?

Eric Karabell
  (11:34 AM)

Fields has been hitting better in the minors, which is nice, but the White Sox are not going to give up on Crede. There's talk Fields will be brought up and play another position, but I don't see how. Crede in fantasy is not going well.

jason (virginia)

Eric, Is the Garza watch on? With each Scott Baker implosion, my Garza radar is going nuts!!

Eric Karabell
  (11:37 AM)

I think the Garza watch is clearly on, now that he has agreed to conform the pitches he throws to what the team wants. That was a factor in Slowey getting the call over Garza last week. Garza could get the call at any time, really. Baker is not someone the Twins would be adverse to demoting.

Sully( Worcester)

Mike Lowell has been wicked hot. Does he keep this up? Final stats?

Eric Karabell
  (11:38 AM)

I have no reason to believe Lowell will slow down, expect maybe with his batting average. Look for a 30-110 season, maybe a .280 average.

Ryan (NYC)

Eric, whats the deal with Mark Reynolds? Is he legit? Do you see him making a fantasy impact this season?

Eric Karabell
  (11:39 AM)

He's already making a fantasy impact. The question is, does Reynolds remain the third baseman when Chad Tracy comes off the DL. Right now I'd expect some sort of platoon, which would favor the lefty hitting Tracy.

Matt (DC)

Which set-up man is most likely to see the most second half saves due to a trade or injury to the current closer?

Eric Karabell
  (11:41 AM)

I could see Brad Lidge retaining his role soon. I'd certainly keep Akinori Otsuka and Fernando Rodney around for potential saves. Brett Myers will close soon, and Huston Street could return this month.

Joe (Austin, TX)

Sergio Mitre has looked unhittable the last month. Is he legit?

Eric Karabell
  (11:42 AM)

He has pitched well, but what's with the extremely low pitch counts? There's no telling what Mitre would do if he had to throw 90 pitches, so I think these numbers are misleading. Mitre would not be throwing CG shutouts.

Raul (Trenton)

Eric, do you view the big unit as a sell high? He has been very good, but he has lingering health concerns and seems to go a maximum of 6 innings.

Eric Karabell
  (11:43 AM)

Nope, I think Randy Johnson is legit and will keep putting up big strikeout totals and eventually be permitted to throw more pitches. The difference in him and Mitre? Track record, strikeouts, and really, health. I'm not too worried about Johnson's health.

Tim (NY)

Do you start Arroyo tonight @ STL? Better yet, do you still own him?

Eric Karabell
  (11:44 AM)

I do own him, and I would start him. Might be a mechanics thing with him, because he was good until 3 starts ago. And I normally start everyone against the Cards lineup.

CJ Boston

I think Hanley Ramirez is and will be a better fantasy option than Jose Reyes. Am i completely nuts or is florida just ignored THAT much. Compare the numbers, last year and this one. THEY ARE SO VERY CLOSE

Eric Karabell
  (11:47 AM)

I think Reyes is better, and arguably the top player in fantasy, but Hanley is a solid value and should be a late first rounder next season.

Mike (NY)

Erik, whats your predictions for ROY of fantasy in both leagues for this season?

Eric Karabell
  (11:49 AM)

Right now it looks like Pence in the NL, and it could be Iwamura in the AL if he hits over .300. But if Willits swipes 40 bases...

Dave (Chicago)

What are realistic expectations for Pie if they actually do play him everyday?

Eric Karabell
  (11:50 AM)

I think he's overmatched at the plate, and likely to have a low batting average and not steal the number of bases his owners would like. He has a nice future, but I think he's been rushed to the majors.

Brian (NYC)

Lincecum or Bailey?

Eric Karabell
  (11:51 AM)

Lincecum for now. To the people writing in that I don't like Bailey, you're totally wrong. But Lincecum has at least proven himself at the big league level so far. Bailey could as well, but he hasn't done it yet.

Kenny

What are your thoughts on sexson? time to drop him?

Eric Karabell
  (11:52 AM)

On the contrary, it is time to add Sexson. He's still on pace for 100 RBIs despite the frightening batting average, and if you look at last season, that average is going to go up.

Jack (New Jersey)

I finally let go of the dream and dropped A Gordon for Iwamura. Will I regret this?

Eric Karabell
  (11:52 AM)

I don't think so. I dropped Gordon a month ago in one league, and a number of owners have picked him up, seen him do nothing, then cut him themselves. Things are not getting better.

Brian (NYC)

Following up on Lincecum or Bailey...if you're looking to move one for the most in return, Lincecum would be the guy then, right?

Eric Karabell
  (11:53 AM)

Absolutely.

Jeremy (Buffalo)

Eric, better util player for the rest of the year: Ryan Braun or Dan Johnson?

Eric Karabell
  (11:54 AM)

Braun has the higher upside, and I actually think he's relatively safe at this point. The Brewers surprised me by hitting this rookie third, but the fact he's there, and ahead of Prince, helps him see better pitches. More managers should do this! Bat Alex Gordon third, ahead of Teahen, maybe he'd start hitting!

chuck, (hartford)

drop nate robertson?

Eric Karabell
  (11:55 AM)

I certainly want no part of him after what he did on Tuesday. Ugh.

Alamo City,TX

Chipper?

Eric Karabell
  (11:55 AM)

Could be back with the Braves next week, and I would assume he hits. He always hits. Does Chipper ever slump?

chris (Syracuse)

What do you think of Jason Schmidt's start last night? and what do you project for the rest of the season?

Eric Karabell
  (11:57 AM)

I was not surprised Schmidt did that, because his velocity was back in his rehab starts last week, for some unknown reason. I don't think Schmidt will win the Cy Young, but I could see an ERA around 3.00 the rest of the way, with strikeouts.

Eric Karabell
  (11:57 AM)

OK, thanks for the fine questions and look for another fantasy baseball chat later today. Adios!