Hang on everyone. We're looking for AJ.
Sorry for the delay folks... we are here!
We will stay late to make up for it.
Should I be concerned at all that everytime I look at a spring training box score for the Mariners, Figgins is getting thrown out attempting to steal. I think his total caught stealing is up to 5 already......
I wouldn't read anything into it. Spring training is always a time for trying things out, and there are so many new batteries that a player is facing... but the fact he is being sent by the manager may signify a possible surge in attempts during the season.
Viva la Aj Mass?
Viva la ME!
how long until Gordon Beckham is eligible at 2B?
Depends on your league - but if it's a five game rule - he needs to play five games there first.
Where's my shirt? Also, who do you like as Berkman insurance: Konerko, LaRoche, Garrett, or Gaby?
I like LaRoche to have a nice year. Both he and Konerko are vastly underrated in my opinion, especially since you kind of know what you're getting into with them.
David Wright is looking pretty good this spring...
With Wright it will be all about "style of hitting" - if you see him spending most of his time at home hitting the ball the other way, then his power numbers will fall by the wayside again - but he could hit .330 if he does that. It's a trade-off.
What's your honest opinion about somebody who streams pitchers? Does it annoy you? Do you think it's lame? Do you do it? Do you think it's awesome?
I hate streaming when it's done in a way that expands a player's roster more than what it should be - the guy who cuts all nine pitchers weekly and replaces them, for example. It is part of the game, and certainly if its within your league rules, I can't hate you for doing it... but the one thing I absolutely cannot stand is a team that has "locked up" categories and doesn't field a full roster of pitchers to avoid negative stats - that's lame.
Thoughts on aging veterans like Manny, Soriano and Ortiz?
I wrote about Ortiz and Manny in 30 Q's. Check out the Draft Kit! I think Papi comes back huge... Manny, it all depends on where his head is at, but the skills are still there. Soriano I think will be better in the 6-hole, but I'm not overpaying for him.
If you have a player in the minors, ie Strasberg, doesn't it make fantasy sense to have a designated spot on your team for them like you would someone on the DL? You shouldn't have to waste a bench position, should you?
Well, that's a Commish-y question. Some leagues absolutely have a reserve draft or a minor league player draft for guys like that - but you know what you're drafting when you're drafting - so if you know there's a roster spot to be "wasted" draft with that in mind.
Doumit, Pierzynksi, or Bengie Molina at C?
AJ always likes AJ. Seriously, though I think Doumit's on the downside. Molina is intriguing, especially since I think he moves near the trading deadline. He might be a guy who has a huge uptick in value late.
Aj - finish the sentence please...if I had to pick one typically undrafted SP to have a good season, it would be _____.
John Lannan. I think the Nats offense is very underrated.
I'm thinking about putting a fantasy league together for my kid's little league this year. Is that wrong? What if I don't want to draft my own kid...I've got him ranked low. He chases pitches.
It's not the craziest idea I've heard. I had a friend once who wanted to play "Friends Rotisserie" with categories for babies and marriage, etc.
Totally disagree with what you "absolutely cannot stand." Who are you to tell people in the league to when to start guys and when not to? So if there is a bad matchup, do I have to start a guy so you won't think it is "lame." If you don't like it, don't have a league with negative stats.
Rick, start WHO you want, when you want. But if a legal lineup is nine pitchers, then don't bench seven of them to avoid a loss. That's against the spirit of the game.
Are you sitting AJ Burnett against Boston next week?
I think it's way too early to play the match-up game personally. You draft players b/c you think they are the best you can get. Let's see them play for at least a few weeks before we start fearing certain lineups or staffs.
Who do you think finishes the seaon with better numbers, Longoria or Arod?
A-Rod has better overall numbers, but Longoria wins MVP.
AJ, How confident are you in Rich Harden pitching in Arlington?
With Harden it isn't about the location - it's about the fact I am not confident in him pitching period.
What is your take on the MIGHTY Heyward? Will he be able to jump to the next level seamlessly?
There's bound to be an adjustment period. Few players make the Hall of Fame in their first month. That said, I don't think Bobby Cox would have brought him along for the start of his swan song season if he didn't believe he was legit. He's one of the few rookies I wouldn't avoid.
Which third baseman finally breaks through? Alex Gordon or Brandoon Wood, or is there a lesser known that you prefer over both?
I'm done with Alex Gordon- he's dead to me (see: Royals 30Q's). There's no young 3B guy I'm in love with. I'd rather roll the dice with Beltre.
Your thoughts on Ricky Nolasco?I've been lucky enough to get him as my third starter in both my leagues.Hes been filthy this spring.Do you see him putting up ace numbers this season?
Nolasco was really good last season - once he came back from the minors - but people don't realize it because they just look at the overall numbers. I think he and Johnson will be hard to beat on back-to-back nights.
Joel Pineiro - how bad is the decline this year?
No decline - a surge. I wrote an article on Pineiro earlier this spring and I think all this talk of him suddenly falling apart without Dave Duncan is preposterous.
No young 3B guy? How about Beckham?
Yes, of course... but in my mind, he's already transitioned to 2B. Certainly I like him. Thanks,Tom.
For a speed pickup: Austin Jackson, Scott Sizemore, Dexter Fowler, Scott Posednick, Ian Desmond? Thanks!
I think Jackson will have the most opportunity, and with Damon hitting behind him, he'll be given the green light frequently. True, Fowler may well end up with more SB, but Austin's other stats will be worth more.
My top three starters are CC, Lester and Cain. Gotta be at least one CYA in that trio, no?
I've gone on record with Cain as my NL winner, so- yes.
Do you see Granderson being more valuable than most of the ESPN staff? I feel they dont realize just how good he can be in that park!
I don't think the staff as a whole is that down on him... and I have drafted Curtis in many mocks already. The thing about the Yankees is always the concern that there's a logjam in that lineup that may result in a bunch of 25-80 guys and few 40-120 guys.
Evil Russell or Boston Rob in their showdown...
As much as I love Mariano --- Russell has grown on me.
AJ, do you ignore peripheral statistics? That is the only way you can defend Matt Cain and the gap between his FIP and ERA in 2009.
Stats can be manipulated to prove just about anything... you say FIP, I say run support. One extra run per game and he wins 20.
Is this the year Adam Jones makes the jump? I nabbed him as my 3rd OF behind Cruz and Sizemore.
I like Adam Jones, but I still don't see this year being the big breakout. 2011, I'm all over it... but his stats last season have me less excited about Dig-Dug than some.
Who is your "Mark Reynolds" this year?
For one - Mark Reynolds. I haven't gone all-in on anyone yet - but Kendry Morales is starting to enter the mix.
Tyson was an idiot to change his vote. Was his demise. Does Ben Sheets prove his worth or does his spring struggles translate over into the regular season?
Yes, Tyson was. What a maroon! Sheets scares the bejeezus out of me. But he's still someone I want to take late, just to have on my bench. I think if he comes out of the gate strong, that carries him the whole season --- but it is a huge if.
What makes you confident in Cain and Piniero when so many others in your industry feel the opposite?
Michael - it's an excellent question. I watch tons of baseball. I go with my gut. Sometimes I am wrong, and sometimes I am right. When it comes to pre-season predictions, the fact is we are all guessing. However, I am not afraid to voice my opinion, be it the same as so many others or not.
Thoughts on Brett Anderson? Can he be a top 15 SP?
Love Brett Anderson this year. I think Top 15 is a little high, but definitely due for a huge jump.
Buster Posey is worth stashing true or false?
Only in a keeper.
Better Rangers outfielder in a points only league? Josh Hamilton or Nelson Cruz?
Probably Cruz. Obviously not all points leagues are created equal, but I still have my doubts to Hamilton's durability.
Fair enough to have a gut feel, but numbers never lie. Matt Cain will not repeat his 81.6% LOB and .268 BABIP. I would say the Giants also will not add a full run of support for Matt Cain.
And that's why you won't draft him, and I will. Neither of us is right, neither is wrong. Only time will tell.
I drafted J. Rauch, but now wondering about Guerrier or Mijares. Thoughts?
I think if you have the roster room, it doesn't hurt to have Gurrier in there just in case... but I have as much confidence in Rauch as any other non-elite closer at this stage of things.
AJ, Due to getting great value on all three players in an auction draft I ended up with an OF featuring Nick Markakis, Adam Jones and Nolan Reimold, I'm not a Baltimore homer by any means, I just couldnt pass them up for the price I could get them at. I like all of them going forward for this year, but am I going to be too exposed to any cold streaks and bad pitching matchups by keeping an entire teams OF starting in my lineup? I'm trying to trade Reimold, but not getting in return what I paid for him. Suggestions?
Field offers for all three, and take the deal you like best. It is all about value in the draft, so I have no problem with you taking all three - but yes, during the season a cold streak will destroy you.
One more starter for a deep league: Morrow, Rzepinski, Jason Hammel, or Clayton Richard?
I really am curious about what Morrow will do now that he KNOWS he is a starter full-time.
Speed round to end it all...
What are your thoughts on Alex Rios this year? I'm betting on a big bounce back season. Thanks
In a word... YUCK
Why is Johan not a top 5 pitcher? Injury concerns, or Met's offense? Seems like that park is becoming a nice pitchers park
It's all about the lineup around him. I like him - but not top 5.
Is J. Dye worth holding onto right now? He has to get a job soon, right?
Live and let Dye die.
Any chance Gordon Beckham is the top drafted 2B next season?
Doubt it. Chase isn't retiring anytime soon.
Carlos Quentin-bounce back year or more injury ridden madness?
Bounce back from last year, yes - but those bounces are never as high as the original one.
Not that either are such great options, but who do you like to close games in Houston: Lyon or Lindstrom?
Lindstrom more than Lyon.
Ibanez over/under 25 HR?
Ethier or Manny?
Manny will have better stats - but I personally will never draft him again after last season.
who do you see as a better late round closer, Rafael Soriano or Ryan Franklyn?
Reasonable for S Drew? 285, 23, 85, 10?
Knock a few homers off that number.
last bench spot ...... Lind or Adam Laroche
Lind. Last year was not a fluke.
Pronk 2010...done or revival?
Still life in the old boy.
Dynasty Question: Which Corner Infielder, Smoak or Alvarez?
Order these players: Jay Bruce, Colby Rasmus, Kyle Blanks.
Bruce, Blanks, Colby.
Lost, or the New Melrose Place?
And on that preposterous Q.... we'll call it a day. Sorry again about the start of the chat. We'll be back next week - ON TIME! Until then, Happy Passover to those who are sedering... and good luck to all for Opening Day which doth approach at a lightning fast pace.