Print and Go Back ESPN: SportsNation

July 13, 11:00 AM ET
Chat with AJ Mass

AJ Mass
  (10:59 AM)

Good morning, gang. How goes it this fine All-Star Break? We've got one hour ahead for fantasy chattage, so let's get to it. Forgive me if I seem grumpy... no cups of coffee this morning! Who is up first?

Tom Tuttle (Tacoma)

K-Rod! K-Rod! K-Rod! I've got to think Izzy's ticketed for a trade too, so Parnell is the smart play as the new Mets closer, right? The kid touches 100 occasionally, so why not see what he can do?

AJ Mass
  (11:00 AM)

I'd say Parnell definitely gets first crack at the job... not sure Izzy can handle everyday duties, but he may well see a few opps along the way.

Ryan (Houston)

You starting Liriano or Vargas tomorrow?

AJ Mass
  (11:02 AM)

Vargas is one of those "only if you have a good feeling" calls. I put him at 50-50. Avoiding Liriano.

Joe (Cincinnati, Ohio)

Thoughts on Justin Upton the rest of the way? Top 10 bat?

AJ Mass
  (11:03 AM)

I ranked him 20th overall in our latest ROS ranks, so obviously I think highly of him... wouldn't surprise me.

Mike (Sunny Hicksville)

I traded K-rod and it was accepted on Monday. The trade is still pending right now, do you think it should be cancelled? It was for Yunel Escobar

AJ Mass
  (11:04 AM)

It was accepted, along with all the risk should he be traded (as happened) or if he had gotten hurt while changing channels on the TV while sitting at home...

Drew (NY)

Would you have a problem with taking Mendenhall before MJD, being how MJD is injury prone?

AJ Mass
  (11:05 AM)

The way I look at it, ALL RBs are injury prone. Unless we're talking the season after an ACL or something that isn't proven to be healed, I don't really worry about that.

Rich (Detroit)

CC has been pitching great....so my question is CC or Hamels ROS?

AJ Mass
  (11:05 AM)

Flip a coin... I had them back-to-back in my ranks.

Jay (Philly)

Noticed you have a few of the top tier pitchers ranked higher than their averages. Any method to the madness?

AJ Mass
  (11:07 AM)

Surprised myself, since I usually am the first to declare pitching has less value as the season goes along, but across the board, pitching stats are far more impressive this season, so that skews the curve a bit in their favor over where I would have ranked them in past seasons.

Eric (DC)

12 team H2H. Should Stauffer and Lewis be owned, or merely streamed?

AJ Mass
  (11:08 AM)

Stauffer owned, Lewis streamed.

Jim (Albany, ny)

AJ Please talk me down, Jose reyes has a good second half? or is it time to trade him? Thanks..

AJ Mass
  (11:09 AM)

Not necessarily mutually exclusive, Jim. If someone wants to give you three guys who improve your roster for Reyes, for example, then you make the deal.

david (nyc)

the fact that picthing is better overall should devalue top tier starters, not inflate values.

AJ Mass
  (11:10 AM)

It does devalue the top starters in relation somewhat to the lower starters, but when comparing apples to oranges, it does make them a bit more valuable - especially the guys who pitch deep into games, hence their IP affect ratios far more than their peers.

John (NY)

Are you assuming axford is still the closer? Or could Krod get a shot to close?

AJ Mass
  (11:12 AM)

Given the contract clause that gives K-Rod a bonus for finishing games, I'd say Axford keeps the job for now.

Rich (Detroit)

Kemp or McCutchen ROS? Andrew has been on fire...

AJ Mass
  (11:13 AM)

Kemp. It's a two month view versus perhaps a two game view.

Steve (MI)

ROY - Billingsley or Bumgarner?

AJ Mass
  (11:13 AM)

Madison. All he needs is a little run support.

Mike (Richmond)

I see that you had Colon unranked. Can you expand on that a little? Do you see regression or injury?

AJ Mass
  (11:15 AM)

A little regression coupled with the omnipresent fear of injury and the fact that I only ranked around 90 pitchers overall...

Steve (NJ)

Historically we can project that Tulo is expected for a big second half while Haren is probably looking at a decline. What other players do you predict having strong second halves or declines?

AJ Mass
  (11:16 AM)

And historically, those predictions have just as much chance of coming true as not. My rankings answer your question, but I don't think you can rely too much on the calendar determining if a player will be good or bad.

Matt ("Work")

Who is one sleeper you are targeting fairly late in your football drafts this year?

AJ Mass
  (11:17 AM)

Sadly, I haven't been doing too many due to the labor strife... I do like Jordy Nelson, though, to throw out a name.

Craig (NY)

What's the minimum SP you would target for Jordan Zimmerman right now? Just trying to get an idea of who I should aim for before those precious few innings are accumulated.

AJ Mass
  (11:19 AM)

I think he's got 60 IP left at most, so it is a good idea to sell soon. I'd try to get one of the Red Sox.

Brian (Seattle)

Derrek Lee--do you see him picking it up in the 2nd half?

AJ Mass
  (11:20 AM)

Not really... barely ranked him at all.

Stuart (Brooklyn, NY)

Great job AJ! Just heard Miggy Cabrera got hurt last night. Any info on that? Thanks!

AJ Mass
  (11:22 AM)

Tweaked something, and since the game doesn't really matter, he left to play it safe. I fully expect to see him in lineup on Friday.

Matt ("Work")

Who do you like for ROS.... J.Nathan, Venters or Parnell

AJ Mass
  (11:23 AM)

Venters, Parnell, Nathan.

CT (Boston)

Will Papi's impending suspension impact this scoring period? Should I bench him?

AJ Mass
  (11:24 AM)

Even if he gets suspended, he probably chooses to appeal -- and then you'd end up sitting him twice if you sat him this week. I'd let it ride.

Dave (NJ)

Can you expand on why you like Venters more than a guy who (in theory) is a current closer (Parnell)? Assuming this is a 'non holds' league. Thanks

AJ Mass
  (11:26 AM)

Because even without saves, Venters is my Top 15 RP so far this season... Parnell certainly gets a huge bump in value, but I don't know he'll be that good.

Ash (Pallet Town)

Will Adams close in San Diego?

AJ Mass
  (11:27 AM)

Once they trade Heath, yes. And of course, with the Mets stealing one potential suitor, it's possible the Padres look to make a move sooner rather than later.

Justin (Boston)

Not sure it's a lock that Parnell closes...Izzy could still be tabbed.

AJ Mass
  (11:29 AM)

Certainly a possibility, but again, I'm not sure Izzy can handle the rigors of being tasked to pitch as often as K-Rod was.

YK (Portland, OR)

Who would you rather have at the catcher spot? Joe Mauer or JP Arencibia for this week?

AJ Mass
  (11:30 AM)

Mauer. Especially since he's rested.

Stuart (Brooklyn, NY)

How's Humber ROS? Did you think he maintains a low-3 ERA?

AJ Mass
  (11:32 AM)

Possible, but I do think there's some regression here.

CM Punk (Hartford)

I need some RBI & HR help and recently dropped Rasmus. V.Wells or Francouer? They are 2 best available guys in my league.

AJ Mass
  (11:33 AM)

Frenchy for me.

Pat (Bronx)

Should I look to deal Soria now before any potential deal? Where do you put the odds he gets moved?

AJ Mass
  (11:34 AM)

I think he does get moved, and a decent chance it's to a team that uses him in the 8th, so a move may well be in order.

Mitch (NYC)

Isringhausen needs 7 saves for 300. Do you think the mets give him a chance to get there?

AJ Mass
  (11:35 AM)

That will not factor into it.

Matt (Albany)

Beltran goin to the Giants? if so what should we expect? more of the same?

AJ Mass
  (11:36 AM)

The first shoe has dropped, and if they lose the first few out of the gate, then more shoes to fall, Beltran among them. If so, more of the same.

Robert (Dallas)

AJ, I'm kind of shocked to see Brennan Boesch lower in your second half rankings than Chris Coghlan, Justin Morneau, and Shin Soo Chooa?Ždoes this mean you'd suggest adding those guys before grabbing Boesch?

AJ Mass
  (11:38 AM)

I wouldn't grab any of the injured guys right now if I needed a warm body --- with no real idea of when these guys are going to be back, it's hard to know exactly where to slot them in. If all were on their teams today, I'd say yes... but they all have to have an asterisk...

Robert (Dallas)

Hey AJ! Brennan Boesch is sitting on my waiver wire, and I'm wondering if you think his last 7 days before the ASB (.250, 0 R, 0 HR, 4 RBI) are a fluke, or more the cooling trend for his second half?

AJ Mass
  (11:39 AM)

To follow up, I do think Boesch regresses in the second half - maybe not an Austin Jackson style regression, but...

David Wright (New York)

No way I'm getting traded now right? Am I a top tier 3B upon ROS?

AJ Mass
  (11:41 AM)

I'd say you and Ike are the only two *safe* guys in that regard. You'll be fine, once you come back.

Dan (Chi)

Latos..Thoughts?

AJ Mass
  (11:41 AM)

Same peripherals, slightly better win percentage.

Jon (CT)

Trying to land a 3rd baseman in a tough and thin market. What is fair value for Panda? I tried offering Stanton and was rejected.

AJ Mass
  (11:43 AM)

Joyce or Morse... but if he said no to Stanton...

AD (DA)

Which catcher do you like ROS, need some help here. Napoli, Lucroy, or R. Hernandez?

AJ Mass
  (11:44 AM)

Napoli for me.

KC (NY)

Better keeper: Freddie Freeman or Domonic Brown?

AJ Mass
  (11:45 AM)

Freeman... I still think Brown swings at way too many pitches.

Jonah Hill (Moneyball)

I noticed you have 'So and So' ranked 43rd and 'Os and Os' ranked 98th. Is 43 better than 98? Should I trade 98 for a 67 or a 132? If I ask the same question 5 different ways will you change you mind?

AJ Mass
  (11:46 AM)

I never McLoved you.

John (Atlanta)

Speaking of 3Bs...... I lost A-Rod and someone dropped David Freese... do I pounce?

AJ Mass
  (11:47 AM)

I like Freese. I don't know if *pounce* is the verb I would choose... but if the waiver wire is thin...

dave (boston)

Rank ROS: Gio, Jhouyls, Romero

AJ Mass
  (11:47 AM)

In that order...

Joe Nathan (Twin Cities)

Will I be closing by the end of this month?

AJ Mass
  (11:48 AM)

Think so. Gardy is being stubborn.

ziti (h-burg, pa)

will zimmermann have an inning cap in 2012? He can't have one EVERY year, can he???

AJ Mass
  (11:49 AM)

Ha! I wouldn't think so, but then again if Strasburg sneezes wrong once, they'll probably cap the whole staff.

Steve (Bristol, CT)

Espinosa 208 and Hardy 235??? Are you kidding me???? These guys have been unbelievable MIs??? You have .260 3 hr Derek Jeter 100 spots ahead of Hardy...that is just stupid!!!!!

AJ Mass
  (11:49 AM)

So, you disagree, then?

Timk (Ky)

who would you preffer ROY eric thames or josh willingham?

AJ Mass
  (11:50 AM)

Willingham for me.

Howie (DC)

Does Bastardo retain any value after he loses his closing spot?

AJ Mass
  (11:51 AM)

He's solid, as is Stutes, but unless you're in a deep league, the lack of saves should keep him off rosters.

USA!! USA!! (USA!! USA!! USA!!)

USA!! USA!! USA!!USA!! USA!! USA!!USA!! USA!! USA!!USA!! USA!! USA!!USA!! USA!! USA!!USA!! USA!! USA!!USA!! USA!! USA!!USA!! USA!! USA!!USA!! USA!! USA!!USA!! USA!! USA!!

AJ Mass
  (11:52 AM)

I didn't expect to see "France! France! Oui, oui!"

Lou (NYC)

Is Peavy too much to give up for Travis Snider?

AJ Mass
  (11:53 AM)

For 2011 only, yes.

Matt (Oakland)

who wins? Cain/Howard for Shields/Huff/Madson

AJ Mass
  (11:54 AM)

Shields side.

Sean (Hoboken)

Gavin Floyd or Derek Lowe ROS ?

AJ Mass
  (11:54 AM)

I'll take my chances with Gavin.

Sam (Epsom, NH)

Do you see Jason Heyward and Mike Stanton improving in the second half or expect more of the same?

AJ Mass
  (11:56 AM)

I see more of the same for both, at best.

AJ Mass
  (11:59 AM)

Guys, I have to cut a few minutes early. My apologies... I'll make it up to you all on Friday, and of course, the Twitter is there... As always, good luck and may the odds be EVER in your favor.