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April 12, 11:00 AM ET
Fantasy MLB with AJ Mass

AJ Mass
  (10:59 AM)

Good morning gang! We're back for another 60 minutes of fantasy chattage, so why don't we get right to it? Second cup of coffee firmly in hand, so let's play ball! Who is up first?

brian (ny)

worried about king felix? should i keep him or trade him for greinke and borsch or hamels and butler

AJ Mass
  (11:01 AM)

Let's see Felix pitch on a regular schedule and to someone other than the Oakland A's before we start assessing him, shall we? Hang on to him... he'll be fine.

Nate (Boston)

Chipper looks good, drop moustakas for him?

AJ Mass
  (11:03 AM)

Another case of small sample size - in Chipper's case, it's smaller than most with the DL stint to start the season. And that's the fear: the DL. I'm not jumping on his bandwagon before seeing a few weeks worth of healthy play.

Pat (NJ)

Who's a better deep league roster option? Johnny Damon or Bryan LaHair?

AJ Mass
  (11:04 AM)

Looks like LaHair is *already* in a platoon with Baker. Damon will probably sign in a few weeks if not sooner and have far more impact.

Rich (Weymouth,MA)

i'm a streaming, pick one for FRIDAY, Samardzija, Harrison, Hochevar, or Nicasio. Also pitching D.Hudson, so picking Nicasio would be trying to hedge for a W?

AJ Mass
  (11:06 AM)

Full Daily Notes will post later... I like Harrison best of the names you mention. There's no such thing as hedging for a win, they could well both allow 4-6 runs and get an ND and a loss and then where would you be?

Greendale (BENSALEM,PA)

Just started your book....loving it so far!Traded Lincecum for Zack Greinke two days ago. Should I be feeling VERY good about this trade?

AJ Mass
  (11:07 AM)

Thanks re: my book. Everyone should check it out! I think Lincecum will be fine, but certainly to have avoided last night's clunker is something to smile about. If he wins 15 of his next 18, then perhaps you may not be so thrilled with the move...

Bobby (OH)

Karstens worthy of a spot-start today?

AJ Mass
  (11:09 AM)

Certainly anything can happen when you try and project one game... but I've got him way down on my list for Thursday. Don't like the matchup with LA.

Matt (Iowa)

Do you like the strategy of loading up on closers in H2H points leagues? Do you have to have the top closers or are Valverde, Axford, League, Santos, and Farnsworth good enough?

AJ Mass
  (11:11 AM)

Love the strategy. It's all about opportunity and if you have 5-7 closers who each pitch 3 times a week, that's the chance at 15-21 saves. Sure they're not all going to get those regularly, but it's far better odds than for SPs in getting wins.

Derek (Charlotte, NC)

Will we see Mike Trout soon? Is is worth snatching him up off waivers now?

AJ Mass
  (11:13 AM)

We'll see him in June, I believe. Wells and Bourjos certainly could speed along the move by slumping, but I don't expect a panic call up here.

Eric (Boise, ID)

Daily Notes gives Derek Holland a 5 against Seattle but a guy with 2 relief appearances that is making a start (Bass) gets an 8 against Arizona? What gives?

AJ Mass
  (11:14 AM)

Those numbers are pure math and in the case of RP or even younger pitchers with small track records, the rating is skewed. You will however note, I did not RANK Bass as an "8".

Brad (AR)

What do you expect from Smyly today?

AJ Mass
  (11:16 AM)

Never seen him pitch, so it's hard to expect anything. He was sent down to Triple-A to get some work in and struggled mightily, but that could have simply been a mental thing due to his "unexpected demotion", albeit temporary. I'd simply avoid for fantasy.

Daniel (NY)

If Samardzija pwns the Cardinals tomorrow (with good to great command again), will you "buy in"

AJ Mass
  (11:17 AM)

Certainly will start to, and I say as much in Daily Notes, where I do have him ranked quite low -- for now.

Steve (NJ)

In a roto weekly league to fill 9 pitching positions is it wise to start 9 starters or split with 4 or 5 closers and 4 or 5 starters each week? Which way do you prefer?

AJ Mass
  (11:18 AM)

Depends on what I have to work with. I always like to go with 2-start SP and my "studs" but I also like to have a handful of RP in there as well... no hard and fast rules, though.

Alex (IL)

Rank these SP in order, por favor: Hellickson, Scherzer, Chacin.

AJ Mass
  (11:19 AM)

That's the order I'd go with...

Neil Walker (Pittsburgh)

I have started slow. Your expectations of me hitting .285 with 10+ HRs and 80 RBIs hasn't changed has it?

AJ Mass
  (11:20 AM)

Not when it seems to be a "whole team" issue at the moment. If Walker was struggling, but the rest of the lineup was hitting .300, I'd be concerned a bit. With the whole team at sub-.200, I'm willing to chalk it up to "April" for now.

Bruce (San Fran)

Should I drop Belt on my fantasy team too?

AJ Mass
  (11:22 AM)

I'd be a bit concerned here, not because of his performance, but because the "benchings" seem to have started... not quite cutting yet, but a few more Huff/Pill appearances in the boxscore this week at Brandon's expense and you have to believe he won't be getting ABs this year.

Mike (Jersey)

Any word on why Braun sat yesterday?

AJ Mass
  (11:24 AM)

It was called "rib tightness" and I believe there was some sort of bug going around the clubhouse as well... could be related, or not, but either way shouldn't be a long-term thing.

Dave (Chicago)

Roto Keeper league: Which side wins? Kershaw and Austin Jackson or Madison B, Garza, Maybin?

AJ Mass
  (11:24 AM)

I'd rather have the Kershaw side.

Hot Streak Crazies (Mars)

Considering Adam LaRoche's insane start, what are realistic expectations of what his numbers will look like at the end of this season?

AJ Mass
  (11:26 AM)

Obviously, the torrid pace is not sustainable, but I'm willing to consider him as a low-end top-10 1B in terms of fantasy value going forward.

Rick (Toronto)

Stephen Drew? Is he worth a roster spot over A. Hill/Pagan or is there too much concern with him coming back from injury?

AJ Mass
  (11:28 AM)

Looking at a few more weeks at least, so I'd rather be using that roster spot, especially since "Kalle" Bloomquist is doing quite well holding down the fort... no need to rush his progress back.

Robert (Texas)

Better streaming option for the weekend: Clayton Richard tomorrow or Carlos Zambrano on Saturday?

AJ Mass
  (11:29 AM)

Higher on Richard, who has solid track record vs. LA.

Mike (NJ)

JOHAN officially back???

AJ Mass
  (11:31 AM)

Still in "hold your breath" mode a bit. Both starts so far he's struggled just before leaving and needed rescue from the pen to preserve the statline yesterday.

Bill (Parts Unknown)

LaHair's "platoon" is actually advantageous in Daily Leagues: you'll know that he's not playing against Lefties and can plan accordingly. He won't kill your Avg/OPS numbers if he's not wifty against lefties, correct?

AJ Mass
  (11:32 AM)

Agreed, but then you're using a roster spot to fill in for him on those days... one that could be better used for other purposes.

Chad (IL)

I know its early, but do you have any concern at all with Bourn & his inability to get on base?

AJ Mass
  (11:34 AM)

Not quite yet going to ring the alarm bells.

Joe (LA)

Zack Cozart or Eric Aybar?

AJ Mass
  (11:35 AM)

Leaning more towards Cozart right now.

matt (nyc)

where does dee gordon rank at SS in a H2H league

AJ Mass
  (11:37 AM)

Because of SB, he's a top 10 SS. However, that's all he's going to contribute, so at some point diminishing returns will set in... though, clearly not two weeks in.

Scott (Concord, NH)

Would you have targeted any of these pitchers in a deep AL Only league: H.Alverez, P.Humber, J.Vargas, H.Noesi, W-Y.Chen. Please expound on any or all of the above. Thanks for chatting!

AJ Mass
  (11:39 AM)

I really like Chen. I think he knows how to "pitch" and while he doesn't have the stuff that other major leaguers have, I think he may well do enough to stick in the rotation in Baltimore.

jim (connecticut)

AJ, lets talk catchers...Soto, Ramos, LuCroy or Ianetta?

AJ Mass
  (11:40 AM)

Liking Iannetta in LA.

Andrew (Atlanta)

Who gets more at bats this year, Trumbo or Morales, do either eclipse 450?

AJ Mass
  (11:42 AM)

Morales gets more ABs and does eclipse 450.

Bobby (NY)

Fantasy Analysts love to say that "whoever gets the best player in any deal, wins that trade", however, there have to be circumstances (due to injury, bad draft, poor keepers etc.) where trading stars for depth is the smart move right?

AJ Mass
  (11:43 AM)

You trade to make your team better. If that means you lose two steps at one position to gain one step at three others, you do so.

Rob (Philly)

What are your feelings on Giancarlo Stanton's on-going knee issue? Different pains in different places? Doesn't sound good to me.

AJ Mass
  (11:45 AM)

I was not on the Stanton bandwagon, primarily because of the new park and my concerns there. News that he may have pain that lingers all season is a headache I want nothing to do with.

Scott (Concord, NH)

R.Ibanez...is he "Bona fide or Bonifacio"?

AJ Mass
  (11:46 AM)

Bonifacio

Gary (Omaha)

What's your prediction for Liriano today against the Angels?

AJ Mass
  (11:47 AM)

My prediction? PAIN! 7.27 career ERA vs that team isn't exactly cheery.

JH (StL)

In a H2H Keeper league that uses OBP - Ackley or Espinosa?

AJ Mass
  (11:48 AM)

I'd rather stick with Ackley.

Jeff S. (Vermont)

Just joined twitter, you are one of the 1st 20 people i clicked follow for... would you drop John Danks or Jonny Venters (in a 12 team standardish league) for Jhoulys Chacin?... ,

AJ Mass
  (11:49 AM)

Thanks. I do try and get to as many Twitter Q's as I can, provided they're sent to @ajmass. I'd consider ditching Danks.

Brian (NY)

Do you think Bumgarner bounces back today?

AJ Mass
  (11:50 AM)

It's Colorado and their bats are waking up, so I'm cautiously optimistic. But I wouldn't write him off if he loses 8-5 either.

Bonifacio (Bonifide)

When will people stop using my name as a term for a player who is good for a short period but is really a mirage? I mean look at my % ownership.

AJ Mass
  (11:52 AM)

Sorry, Emilio. But even Mario Mendoza hit over .200 four out of eight full years in the bigs, including his last two. Yet the line still bears his name.

Timmy (DC)

Do you think Cuddyer ends up as a top 5 2nd baseman?

AJ Mass
  (11:53 AM)

No, no I don't.

Daniel (NY)

Is Pittsburgh a particularly friendly park for hitters or pitchers? (Where can I find the Park Factors?)

AJ Mass
  (11:55 AM)

Fairly neutral, but you can find ESPN Park Factor here: http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/parkfactor

Markoz (Raleigh)

For the second half: Utley a top-10 2B or Howard a top-10 1B ?

AJ Mass
  (11:56 AM)

If I had to pick one, and I knew both were coming back, I'd go with Howard.

Mark Trumbo (On Deck)

Who would you prefer while Lance is getting his calf checked out, me or LaRoche?

AJ Mass
  (11:56 AM)

I'd go with LaRoche.

Jeff S. (Vermont)

Fowler, De Aza, or David Murphy?

AJ Mass
  (11:57 AM)

David Murphy.

HELP NEEDED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Last Place in my league)

Alexei Ramirez, Johnny Peralta or Rafael Furcal in a points league?

AJ Mass
  (11:58 AM)

Jhonny.

Logan (Fla.)

AJ only have Rolen at 3B. C.McGhee a good add as backup insurance?

AJ Mass
  (11:59 AM)

Might be better options out there, but he's not a "bad" backup option.

Robert (Texas)

BUZZER BEATER!!! Pagan, Tabata or Shafer?

AJ Mass
  (11:59 AM)

I'd go with Jordan for now.

AJ Mass
  (12:00 PM)

That is our buzzer... thanks to all for the Q's. Chats don't go without them! Until Tuesday's video chat, good luck and may the odds be EVER in your favor.