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August 5, 3:00 PM ET
Chat with Eric Karabell

Eric Karabell
  (3:00 PM)

Hello all! Welcome to another fantasy sports chat session. We've got an hour, and I'm assuming we'll start getting fantasy football questions as well as baseball ones... so let's get going!

Ho Hum (Keeperville)

Here comes the mandatory David Price question. Start him at home (where he has been good) for the Red Sox (who are also really good)?

Eric Karabell
  (3:02 PM)

Ha! We start off with a winner... no, I am not using Price against the Red Sox, and probably not the Angels and Yankees. Too many walks. But he's certainly not someone to give up on ...

Jon (UTAH)

you look dumb

Eric Karabell
  (3:02 PM)

Please phrase in the form of a question... thank you!

Eli (Moline)

Hey Eric. I have the first pick in my fantasy draft. I know it sounds crazy but I'm leaning towards Matt Forte. With Jay Cutler as the QB I dont see defenses going with alot of eight man fronts. They have to respect the pass. I think this will open things up for Forte and I think he'll have a better season than last year. Your thoughts?

Eric Karabell
  (3:04 PM)

I don't think it's crazy at all. I almost convinced myself Michael Turner was worthy of the first pick. The thing with Adrian Peterson is he's probably the safest call for No. 1, but he hasn't been a fantasy monster. Forte is in the discussion, and he's my No. 3. But I certainly would not laugh if you took him No. 1. Personally, I think adding Cutler helps him, but doesn't mean has a better statistical season...

Gavin (Pittsfield, MA)

Do you expect uber prospects like Smoak, Heyward, and Alvarez to get September call-ups, playing time, and provide value for deep leagues for this year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:05 PM)

No, I do not expect any of those guys to be in the majors this season, though it is certainly possible. Thing is, even if they come up, most fantasy owners who expect big things are going to get burned.

Stewart (Chicago)

EK, question: Start or sit HAPP tonight?Sub-question: Cut him afterwards since he appears headed to the bullpen?

Eric Karabell
  (3:05 PM)

I would start him, but I do agree he's likely on his way to the bullpen to make room for that Pedro guy. No, I don't agree with it, but that's life.

Mango (Chicago)

Whats up EK? In a .25 points per reception league, who has more value: MJD or All Day?

Eric Karabell
  (3:06 PM)

I appreciate the adjustment in scoring, but it's not enough to vault Jones-Drew to the top spot. I think I'd like to see him handle a full load of touches before I make him a top-5 player.

Ben (SF)

Why do you have Cordero over Aardsma? The teams seem roughly similar, and they both have been good recently. Just wondering what the tie-breaker was.

Eric Karabell
  (3:08 PM)

And with that I announce you can all check out the latest Relief Efforts column, which is upon our fantasy baseball page. I think Aardsma is great, but I still have to side with experience and someone who has done it multiple seasons before. Aardsma is having a great year, but still hasn't done it for a full year...

john (mass)

EK! You buying those 2nd half naysayers of Haren?

Eric Karabell
  (3:08 PM)

Well, the numbers don't lie. His ERA goes up over 4 in the second half. I don't sell him cheap, but certainly there has to be some concern with him, especially since there's enough evidence the trend is legit.

AC (Minneapolis)

Let's stick with football - draft coming soon. Would you keep S Jackson as a 1st rounder or P Thomas as a 10th rounder? 1/2 PPR League.

Eric Karabell
  (3:09 PM)

That is quite a difference in value, and while I almost always side with the better player, you can probably draft a pretty good running back in round 1. Losing a 10th rounder is meaningless...

Matt (Ct)

Lincecum wil finsh with __w's, ___k's, and __ CY Youngs

Eric Karabell
  (3:11 PM)

I assume you mean finish this season, not his career. I see 19 wins, 288 strikeouts (just short of 300!) and he wins the Cy again... and a playoff game against Philly...

Rob (NJ)

EK, who better to ask than a huge Philly fan? Start De La Rosa tonight in Philly? I know they are lefty heavy, but that line-up is awesome. Please help.

Eric Karabell
  (3:12 PM)

Big strikeout guy, I think he's graduated to the point we use him at all times, even in small ballparks.


EK, really enjoyed your relief efforts column. In a related question, trade Hunter Pence and either Heath Bell or Trevor Hoffmann for Nick Markakis for the remainder of this year and next? Picked up Jim Johnson to hedge my loss in saves, but as you mentioned, he has to yet to solidify anything yet.

Eric Karabell
  (3:13 PM)

Yeah, if you can stand the difference in saves, which might be nothing, then make the deal. Markakis is the best player in the trade. As for Baltimore's Johnson, there are no guarantees.

Brian (IN)

Frank Francisco will get __ saves from here on out.

Eric Karabell
  (3:14 PM)

I'll say 9 saves for him, 4 for C.J. Wilson...

RPF (Md)

Eric, What's the deal with J. Ham? Is he injured? He was my first pick in a 12 team, std roto league and he's making it very difficult for me to move into 1st place.

Eric Karabell
  (3:15 PM)

Josh Hamilton was the impetus and focus of my Monday Leading Off column, where I discussed him as a one-year wonder. I think he's very talented, but health is a skill. I don't think there's any question he is hurt right now.

James (Dallas)

Cockroft said his optimal draft spot (Where the first pick is already taken) in a 10 team standard format league is the 4th spot, to let MJD, Forte, or Turner fall to him as they may. What say you Mr. Karabell?

Eric Karabell
  (3:17 PM)

I could see that. I don't think Peterson is that much better than the others, so picking first is no big deal. Picking last is normally my thing, because I can get two running backs, but this year I'd consider a wide receiver for one of those picks. Picking fourth seems fine to me. I'd say sixth is good, because nobody wants LT there, except me.

Jack (Novato, CA)

Hi EK. I think you're dead wrong on calling Quentin a One-Year Wonder. I believe he will return to elite status after this rare, flukish injury is behind him. Yes, he does get lots of HBP, as you point out, but how many of his injuries have resulted from that? His wrist injury last year was more self-inflicted if I recall. Thanks.

Eric Karabell
  (3:18 PM)

I hope you are right, but that season really came from nowhere. I think what I'm saying on Quentin and Hamilton is that they should be productive players, but asking for a full season is optimistic. Quentin's self inflicted injury is hardly the only one he's had.

Ryan (NJ)

Matt Shaub or McNabb?

Eric Karabell
  (3:19 PM)

Depends on the league, really. I think Schaub has more upside and could challenge for 30 touchdowns if healthy. And really, is he any more of an injury risk than McNabb? It's close, but I have Schaub one spot better. Depends if I thought I could get a safe, healthy backup...

Jason (Tucson, AZ)

Eric, Do you envision Neftali Feliz having a bigger impact than Joba's rookie season?

Eric Karabell
  (3:20 PM)

I don't think we can say bigger impact, but certainly it could be similar. But one outing isn't really enough to say it. Feliz could be a Rookie of the Year contender in the Texas rotation in 2010.

Pete (NC)

I stole DeAngelo in the 10th last year. Where do you see him going this year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:20 PM)

Probably late in the first round, which is a steal. Jonathan Stewart is already hurting.

John (MA)

Hey EK, love the relief efforts. You mentioned Jenks kidney stones - who gets the saves in the interim - Thornton? Linebrink? Is either worth and add or maybe go for Chris Ray?

Eric Karabell
  (3:21 PM)

Jenks could be back any day now. I think Thornton is next in line. Ozzie loves him, and deservedly so. I don't think Ray picks up saves this week.

Chuck Lavelle (Otisville,NJ)

Is M. Reynolds a must keep for $1 out of $260 for 2010?

Eric Karabell
  (3:21 PM)

What do you think? C'mon, he's going to be baseball's only 30/30 player!

Mango (Chicago)

how big of a drop off do you see in the QB field after Brees, Manning, and Brady? Is it worth taking one of them in the first two rounds?

Eric Karabell
  (3:22 PM)

I do not think the dropoff is all that great, and I can say I will be drafting the likes of Rodgers, Romo, McNabb and others in round 6 a lot, and later on Orton, Palmer and Edwards...

SIZEMORE (trade table)

SIZEMORE! I can acquire Grady in a keeper league. Do we imagine he bounces back next season?

Eric Karabell
  (3:23 PM)

I assume when he gets his elbow surgically fixed he will go back to the same fantasy monster next season. He probably won't go in round 1 again, but there's little reason why he shouldn't.

Aaron (Philly faithful that needs HELP!!)

Eric, I need your help, ive emailed you my question but did not recieve a response. I have a question about the trading deadline. I texted my commish about a trade that was agreed apon between me and a manager just minutes before the deadline to let him know. Well the manager didnt have enough time or had trouble and couldnt approve the trade properly. Well the commish did not allow the trade even though he knew about it and there is even documentation from emails and such. What are your thoughts on this?

Eric Karabell
  (3:25 PM)

I'd probably allow the deal if it's a good group of pals in a league. I'm a stickler for rules, but if there's evidence, an honor policy is fine. You want a league title decided the right way.

Bob (Boston)

Eric do you ever sit and of your top players that have a bad matcup and play someone that has a good matchup. I did and got burnt. Start Hanson tonight? Thanks

Eric Karabell
  (3:25 PM)

I'm not a big matchups guy, to be honest. If I have Tommy Hanson, I don't care who he's facing or where. I rarely look at the matchups for my established players.

Joel (Michigan)

Eric, I know that you are high on LT this year. If you had to choose between him and SJax who are you taking in a PPR ?

Eric Karabell
  (3:26 PM)

Probably LT. I seem to like LT more than most for this season. But I could argue either side.

Barney (Sacramento, CA)

Hey, EK! Trying to coax Lincecum from another manager who is also stuck with Liriano. Is Zambrano and Pineiro even close to fair (so he can dump Liriano), or do I need to throw in Danks instead of Pineiro?

Eric Karabell
  (3:27 PM)

Who are we to decide what is fair? All that matters is what that owner thinks is fair. I wouldn't deal Lincecum for that, but maybe someone else would. In every trade there is someone in the league who can cry about fairness.

steve (new york)

who has the better year at rb? ray rice or marshawn lynch?

Eric Karabell
  (3:28 PM)

I think the Ravens have a big timeshare of multiple backs. By Week 4 I think Lynch is the main back in Buffalo. I'd take him.

Todd (Philly)

Eric - when you submit a trade and an owner doesn't respond within a day, how much more time to you give them? Is there a common standard to follow?

Eric Karabell
  (3:29 PM)

There isn't any standard, really. Normally I email with an owner so we get to the point when I submit an official offer I already know it will be accepted. But not everyone checks their email or their teams everyday. If you really want a trade to go through, give it time.


You think Palmer will be drafted around Orton and Edwards? Is that because of the team or health issues? Would you keep Palmer or Addai going into next year or neither and take the first shot at the leftovers?

Eric Karabell
  (3:30 PM)

I didn't say they'll be drafted in the same spot, only that they are some names I would look at as safe backups. Palmer should go the best of that trio. He could easily bounce back to relevance. And I don't think I'd want to keep Palmer or Addai.

Chuck (Hershey)

Are you saying no QB should be a 1st rounder or YOU won't be taking a QB in the 1st round?

Eric Karabell
  (3:31 PM)

Well, both I guess. Too many good RBs and WRs available in the top 15. I don't have any QBs ranked that high. Doesn't mean it's wrong, just the way I like to build teams.

Desperate (for Playoffs)

Grienke and Gallardo got killed for me already this week. Is it wrong to drop a fringe guy and pick up a Probable SP each day to try to whittle down my ERA/WHIP and get K's and W's?

Eric Karabell
  (3:32 PM)

As long as it's legal and you won't go over a starts maximum, I don't see the problem. I've done that in the past. It can work if you have no other options.

tom (new york)

do you know if bud norris is staying in the rotation or if he'll head back to the bullpen?

Eric Karabell
  (3:33 PM)

I would think the Astros will keep him starting, even if Roy Oswalt returns quickly. They've got some not-so-interesting names in the rotation. But be careful, that's as good as Norris is likely to be.

Taylor (Fresno)

Is hamilton a lost cause this year or a good buy low candidate before the trade deadline?

Eric Karabell
  (3:34 PM)

I don't think it's either. I can't say for sure he won't find his swing today, but I also wouldn't be trading what it would probably cost to get the guy. And please, everyone, check your leagues to see when your trade deadline is. For some it might be this week!

Jim (Brooklawn)

You still holding out hope for Burrell?

Eric Karabell
  (3:35 PM)

Not really expecting much from him. Didn't see that type of season coming.

Andy (Boston)

Jim Johnson vs Lindstrom from here on out. Who's the better bet through the playoffs?

Eric Karabell
  (3:36 PM)

I'd say Lindstrom, assuming he is healthy. He's the one in a pennant race, and I think he gets more save chances. Johnson might not keep the job very long. He might not keep it at all.

Zach (DC )

What group of receivers would you group Bowe in with?

Eric Karabell
  (3:37 PM)

Probably Owens, Boldin, Colston, that range at the back end of the top-10...

Dom (Los Osos, CA)

Hey EK, do you think Ludwick reaches 30 HRs? Would Aaron Hill be a major upgrade (positions aside) over him?

Eric Karabell
  (3:38 PM)

No, I think Ludwick would be no less a choice the rest of the season. Really, season numbers don't matter. Ludwick is knocking in tons of runs now, and all we care about is moving forward.

Johnny Cueto (Great American)

I'm not this bad, right?

Eric Karabell
  (3:39 PM)

I'm expecting to hear about an arm injury very soon on Cueto. Seems odd he'd be so good for a few months, then get lit up like this. He looked hurt when the Phillies got nine runs off him in the first inning, too. Reds are out of it, so I don't know why they'd push him.


Where is Beckham going to qualify next year?????

Eric Karabell
  (3:41 PM)

He's playing only third base now, so that would be it. Alexei Ramirez seems safe at shortstop, but maybe Beckham moves to second. His bat would play better there.

Rob (NJ)

Who is the one running back going in the first round that you see some definite bust potential for?

Eric Karabell
  (3:42 PM)

Well, most people would choose Turner. I'd say Westbrook, but you can get him in round two. LT certainly is a risk as well.

Fred (Little Rock)

Eric, what do you think of Slowey as a keeper for 2010? Will he come back and be good soon enough to worry about right now? Also do you believe Montero is real enough to pay a transaction

Eric Karabell
  (3:44 PM)

I don't think Slowey is a top-25 starting pitcher for 2010 in the rankings, so it depends on how many players you get to keep. I probably wouldn't, but not because of the injury. As for Montero, he's hitting now. I doubt it continues, but get the hot player and if he keeps it up you look wise...

Jack (CA)

So people think Turner may be a bust? Does that mean it may be smart to draft MJD or Chris Johnson over Turner in PPR leagues?

Eric Karabell
  (3:45 PM)

Check out our Draft Kit and there's an entire article on Turner's risk after getting 370 touches. I didn't say he will be a bust. In fact, I'm one of the few writers on staff recommending him in the top-3 overall. In a PPR league I wouldn't target him because he doesn't catch passes. MJD would be the call there.

Butch (PA)

Who is B. Parnell? And, why is he getting saves for the Mets?

Eric Karabell
  (3:46 PM)

Ha! No, K-Rod can sleep easily, as Parnell got a 3-inning save, that's all. The final score was 9-0. Any closer and he wouldn't have gotten the save.

Jordan (Peoria)

Addai and Westbrook...I have seen both drafted really late 4th and 3rd round respecitvely. Do they have a chance for great value or are the concerns too much?

Eric Karabell
  (3:47 PM)

I'd prefer Westbrook, because he's not sharing touches when healthy, and Addai will be. I haven't seen Westbrook slip that far. Addai is. There's value in Westbrook, but the injury concerns are so legit.

Da Coach (Da City)

Assuming that neither QB is playing Ditka, who will have the better fantasy season....ORTON or CUTLER?

Eric Karabell
  (3:48 PM)

I think this is actually a reasonable query. I would take Cutler, but I also think, and you can read this on ESPN Fantasy later this week, that Orton is going to be better than people think. I like his receivers and the system he plays in.

James (NY)

PLEASE HELP! I have to make a decision today on Troy Tulowitski in a keeper league. What kind of numbers do you see from him next year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:50 PM)

Based on the way he's played this year, I'd expect he could approach his rookie numbers of 25-90 again. And he runs a bit.

Chris (Sacramento)

What do you see from Lidge the rest of this year? More of the same, or a little better from here on out?

Eric Karabell
  (3:51 PM)

I see 10 saves, but overall there's no reason to think he has solved his problems and will significantly lower his ERA. It's over 7 now. I suspect it gets into the 6 range but he's still going to allow runs and lose some games. I just hope it doesn't happen in the playoffs, if the Phillies make it...

Rob (Worcester)

Jay Bruce is going to be a top 15 OF in 2010? true or false....when do we see Jay Bruce become an elite bat?

Eric Karabell
  (3:51 PM)

No. I don't think with what we've seen since his great first week last year he's at that level. He was hitting .220 before he got hurt, too. More proof no prospects come guaranteed.

Steve (Scranton)

EK-True or False: The oft-discussed "closer mentality" is a myth.

Eric Karabell
  (3:52 PM)

Absolutely true.

Mark (CA)

Johnny Damon has peaked my interest in a keeper league. What kind of season is in store for him? He isn't getting younger.

Eric Karabell
  (3:53 PM)

Damon has "piqued" your interest. And none of us are getting younger. It sure looks like Damon is dealing with some physical problem and that's why he hasn't played so well of late, but he's still capable of 25 homers and a .300 batting average.

Fred (Little Rock)

What if I said we keep about 125 players total (12 teams)? I have Marcum stashed now... any chance you like Slowey a lot more for '10?

Eric Karabell
  (3:54 PM)

If it comes down to Marcum or Slowey, definitely Slowey. That is a deep league!

Brian (Philly)

With Andre Miller's recent trade to Portland, do you think Lou Williams has solid sleeper potential next year? Seems like he would help in most categories besides FG%?

Eric Karabell
  (3:55 PM)

Hoooooops! Check out Brian McKitish's article on this very subject. I ranked Williams because of Miller leaving. I think he can score 16 a night and get 5 assists or so, hit some threes, be valuable.

Zach (MA)

I knew "peaked" was wrong too, but I didn't think you were going to correct him in front of everybody.

Eric Karabell
  (3:55 PM)

We try to be an educational chat here. And I don't think he's embarrassed! Not a big deal!

Michael (Milwaukee)

Do you expect Jason Heyward to be the starting OF for the Braves next year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:56 PM)

No, not in April. Could happen by midseason if they have nothing else in a corner outfield spot.

Adam M (Seattle)

Hope my grammar is correct! Starting a dynasty league this year... I can keep 2. Which 2 would you choose out of Calvin Johnson, Reggie Wayne, Brian Westbrook and Ronnie Brown? THANKS!

Eric Karabell
  (3:57 PM)

Definitely Calvin, and the other one would be ... I guess Brown. Not a big fan of his, but I also doubt Wayne gets any better than he's been.

John (DC)

What round would you draft Reynolds in next year? First? Second?

Eric Karabell
  (3:57 PM)

Haven't done my actual top-50 yet, but I'd think third round is more like it.

Mike (NY)

EK, 2 months enough time to make up .30 in ERA?

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

Absolutely. All it takes is for your opponent to have some really bad outings... Greinke on Monday was bad... Haren ... it can happen.

Jack (Dc)

Wieters? Top 50 next year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

Not giving up on him by any means, but no, not top-50. I'm not sure I had any catcher in my top 50 this season.

Nate (MD)

I just want to mention I got Reynolds in the last round this year in several leagues.

Eric Karabell
  (3:59 PM)

He went undrafted in most leagues. Hey, who knew he'd run like this, or hit .280? One of the great stories of the fantasy season. Good for him...

Eric Karabell
  (4:00 PM)

OK, that's about all for my time today. Thanks for the great questions and have a nice day...