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December 26, 3:00 PM ET
Fantasy Sports with Eric Karabell

Eric Karabell
  (3:01 PM)

Hello all and welcome to the latest fantasy sports chat session. I am Eric. Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukah and overall nice month. If you want to talk Week 17 in football or 2013, we can do that, and also if you have baseball on your mind, go for it. Thanks for showing up... here we go!

Sheila (Denver)

I want to play Eli this week in his juicy matchup +desperation time...sitting Ryan but have Wilson...Wilson getting lots of support from the experts..your thoughts?

Eric Karabell
  (3:03 PM)

I would try to avoid using Eli Manning. Has done nothing the past two weeks, and I rank them Ryan-Wilson and then Manning. Wilson has to win, and he's played well.

Jake (Toronto)

heading into 2013 drafts, has Dez Bryant done enough to silence his critics and be drafted as a top 5 wr?

Eric Karabell
  (3:04 PM)

For now I have him at No. 6 for wide receivers, after Calvin, B.Marshall, A.Green, D.Thomas and Julio Jones. But he's in that class, which would have been shocking a month ago.

James (Madison, WI)

Over/Under 120 big league innings for Dylan Bundy in 2013?

Eric Karabell
  (3:05 PM)

Way under. He's 20. Say he shows up in September again.

Josh the tall drink of beer. (Tacoma WA)

Thinking RG3 will be a better play then Super Cam. but you think he'll be slower because his injury.

Eric Karabell
  (3:06 PM)

I just don't think Griffin can run, which is a difference maker against Newton, who can. And Newton has played very well.

TM (St. Thomas )

QB dilemma: In championship game despite rolling with Eli each week. It amazing I made it this far. what QB will bring home the gold? Continue to roll with Eli or play Russell Wilson or Michael Vick? Thanks and happy new year!

Eric Karabell
  (3:07 PM)

I rank Wilson and Vick better than Eli, frankly. Has 300 yards passing in the past two weeks combined. One touchdown. Yuck. Even with the nice matchup... don't tempt fate.

Ralph (NJ)

Peterson or Foster for Number 1 pick next year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:07 PM)

Could make the case for either one I suppose... well, actually what would the case against Peterson be? It will be good to have one of the first two picks. No. 3 is up in the air.

Don Diego (South America)

Baseball!!!!!!! Can only keep 1 for 2013 only: Posey or Bryce?

Eric Karabell
  (3:08 PM)

Tough call. Both will be so good. But I think Bryce has the brighter future, a first-rounder soon. Catchers scare me as keepers.

Kmac (Boston)

Your thoughts on Indy playing full tilt the whole game? I am liking TY's matchup.

Eric Karabell
  (3:09 PM)

Indy claims it's there to win and will play everyone and ... I'm a tad skeptical. But yeah, Hilton's matchup isn't great unless Houston sits some stars.

Brett (Canada)

BASEBALL! Think Hosmer bounces back this year? Doesn't look like Tristan does, as he ranked him his 20th 1B...

Eric Karabell
  (3:09 PM)

Perhaps a bit harsh, but there are many first basemen worthy of our attention. I don't see Hosmer hitting 25 home runs or running as much, though he should be better and get back on track. He's around 15th for me.

Randy (Boston)

Baseball: Roto league, you prefer Chris Davis or Carlos Gomez?

Eric Karabell
  (3:10 PM)

Gomez for the steals. Neither is gonna win a batting title, but a guy with power and speed... always fall for them.

Doug (Detroit, Michigan)

Do you think Brett Lawrie is a safer pick now that some of the hype has worn off?

Eric Karabell
  (3:11 PM)

He and Hosmer were disappointing, and if I had to trust only one, it would be Lawrie. Plays third base, which is weaker, can run, has pop. But neither in top 50 anymore.

Matt (Chicago)

Eric, would you keep Aroldis if he is a SP as opposed to closer?

Eric Karabell
  (3:12 PM)

I'm more likely to keep Aroldis if/when he starts. He's far more valuable to the Reds and fantasy owners with 200 good innings. If he closes...eh, lots of guys will get saves. Nobody quite like him with the Ks, but the Reds should start him.

George (Snowstorm in Indy)

Who cares about baseball during football season? Do Ravens starters play more than a quarter or 2?

Eric Karabell
  (3:13 PM)

Apparently quite a few of the people in this chat! I can only answer what is asked! I think the Ravens want to win and want Flacco and Rice to keep playing well. But there are no guarantees. It's why so many leagues are already over.

Doug (Detroit, Michigan)

What do you make of the Tigers closer situation? ESPN has Bruce Rondon in the spot, but I'm leery about playing such a youngin in the high pressure spot.

Eric Karabell
  (3:14 PM)

I think it's quite ridiculous, and they'll sign someone experienced, but if he's got the skills and has a good March, stranger things have happened. But it doesn't mean they can't win; they nearly won it all with Valverde!

championship (florida)

I agree with George, for gods sake its week 17 there is no tomorrow! Do you sit julio jones, dennis pita and randall cobb this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:15 PM)

There is tomorrow. It's called Thursday. I sit them if I have better options. I don't sit them for the likes of Rod Streater and Lance Kendricks. Always depends on what you've got instead. Jones can catch 5 passes and a score in the first half alone.

Luke (NJ)

Trout or Braun number one pick in fantasy baseball next year? Or anyone else?

Eric Karabell
  (3:16 PM)

Well, that Cabrera guy is kinda good, I hear. I could pick any of the three. I want to take Trout first, but there has to be some regression coming. All three are safe and two of them run. My pal Tristan has convinced me taking Trout first is too risky. I'd probably go Braun...love the 30-30 guys.

Randy (Boston)

Michael Young have a decent year in Philly? If 2B elig, would he be right around top 10?

Eric Karabell
  (3:17 PM)

Oh boy. I think he can hit better than he did in 2012. I really do. Wouldn't surprise me if he hit .280 with 15 home runs. Defensively, let's just say John Lannan can't be excited about the trade. But with 2B elig, borderline top 10 yeah.

Todd (Cleveland)

Does the signing of Josh Hamilton help Big Albert get back into the top 10 this year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:18 PM)

I don't buy into the lineup protection stuff at all. Pujols should be better, but not because of Hamilton.

Greg (Boston)

Tony Gonzalez going to play at all Sunday? Is he worth starting over waiver wire fodder?

Eric Karabell
  (3:18 PM)

I think so. I ranked him a top-5 TE.

Brad (NJ)

Why is Trout risky?

Eric Karabell
  (3:19 PM)

We have only one season of evidence, and nobody had ever had a season like that in history. Cabrera and Braun have had monster seasons in the past.

Keith (Washington)

Thank you for answering all the many questions coming your way, I have a quick dilemma between Marques Colston and Danario Alexander, Danario has a seemingly nice matchup against Oakland and Colston is playing a tougher panthers d but has Brees behind him, what should I do?

Eric Karabell
  (3:20 PM)

Each made my top 20, so I trust them both. The Chargers matchup does seem better, though the Raiders really haven't been thrashed of late. I ranked Colston better.

TK (Philly)

SURVIVOR LEAGUE- Safe to go with the Seahawks even though they may rest everyone if GB wins at 1PM?

Eric Karabell
  (3:20 PM)

There's some risk, but I don't see Pete Carroll as the type to sit players, either.

Ted (Ohio Blizzard)

Which side of this trade would you prefer? Pujols/Hanley or Tulo/Longoria

Eric Karabell
  (3:21 PM)

Pujols/Hanley side. Lot of injury risk on other side.

Todd (Cleveland)

Will Adrian Gonzalez disappoint again with a full season in LA? I think he hit 3 home runs total after he got traded.

Eric Karabell
  (3:22 PM)

I'll take the under on 30 home runs, though certainly it's not like he can't hit in Dodger Stadium. He hit in San Diego before. I see more like 25-110.

Drew (byville)

% chance Richardson plays?

Eric Karabell
  (3:22 PM)

I didn't rank Trent Richardson, but I'd say 25 percent chance. I can't believe I ranked Montario Hardesty so well, but he should have opportunity.

Doug (Detroit, Michigan)

How high would you draft Victor Martinez?

Eric Karabell
  (3:24 PM)

Definite top 10 catcher, but I'm not one that usually drafts a catcher in the top 100. If he goes that high, it won't be me.

Fred (OKC)

Can Darvish jump into the top 15 SPs this season?

Eric Karabell
  (3:25 PM)

Obviously has potential for more strikeouts, lower ERA. I'd say yeah, decent shot for top 15.

Danny (Ocean City, CA)

Flex decision to make: Chris Johnson, Donario Alexander, or Michael Crabtree?

Eric Karabell
  (3:26 PM)

Well, flex ranks come out Thursday, but Chris Johnson will rank the best. He certainly teases everyone statistically, but he seems like the kinda guy that could run wild for 150 yards in a meaningless game.

Scott (Atlanta)

Do you feel Emilio Bonifacio is a guy you should not look past in 2013?

Eric Karabell
  (3:26 PM)

I don't think he gets more than 400 at-bats, but he could still swipe 40 bases as a part timer.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Decision from this year you're most and least proud of?

Eric Karabell
  (3:29 PM)

Assume you mean for fantasy sports! Well, I had Ryan Braun No. 1 when most people moved him to the third round. I didn't buy the off-field stuff affecting his performance. Of course, I also thought Eric Hosmer would blossom. He did not. Was high on bounceback for Adam Dunn. That went well. For football didn't think Alfred Morris would do this for 4 months, that's for sure. But wasn't taking QBs in round 1, and that went well. There's good and bad...

John (Los Angeles)

Keeper -- Is it safe to expect that L.McCoy will return to his RB1 perch next year, or did B.Brown show enough in his first two games to make a new coach turn Philly into a Buf/KC-like committee?

Eric Karabell
  (3:29 PM)

No, I think Brown showed more in the games following his explosion to ensure McCoy is a safe top-10 guy.

Doug (Detroit, Michigan)

Is Giancarlo Stanton destined for a worse season considering who is around him?

Eric Karabell
  (3:30 PM)

Nope. Doesn't mean anything. Unless he tries too hard...but he could also try to hit 50 home runs. And the Miami lineup... not gonna score 1,000 runs, but people will step up. Lineup protection is a fallacy.

Nathan (Blizzard)

Do you think Roddy gets enough snaps this weekend to be playable over Blackmon and James Jones in a ppr?

Eric Karabell
  (3:31 PM)

I do, but I also think it's risky. It's tough ranking players like Roddy... could get 5 catches and a score on two series, or nothing. Or could play three quarters. Falcons are off the week after, so for them sitting players not the same as for Bengals, for example.

Ken (Boston)

Better keeper VMart 1 buck or Andrus 17?

Eric Karabell
  (3:31 PM)

Hmmm... have to say the dollar guy is pretty nice.

Doug (Detroit, Michigan)

What happens with the Closer situation in Boston? Does Hanrahan get the job or do they still go with Bailey?

Eric Karabell
  (3:32 PM)

I think it's clearly Hanrahan. Can't even be sure Bailey will be healthy enough to help consistently. But Hanrahan is just better.

Nick (Atlanta)

Baseball: Are you keeping Manny Machado or Brett Lawrie in a long-term keeper league?

Eric Karabell
  (3:33 PM)

I'm sure most people would say Machado... I have to as well, though I really think Lawrie will hit for power and run. Machado should as well, but I don't expect big numbers in 2013.

Kwanzaa-bot (Work)

In the championship game! Wondering who is the better flex start between Kenny Britt and Jackie Battle

Eric Karabell
  (3:34 PM)

That is a tough one. I'd lean to the running back there. Should get more touches.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Assuming FJax does NOT leave, as Gailey obviously thinks highly of Fred..where would you take CJ in ppr leagues? 3rd round?

Eric Karabell
  (3:35 PM)

I'd say for now Spiller is a borderline first rounder in standard formats, so in PPR he'd definitely be first round. I don't know what Jackson will do, but I think the Bills realize Spiller needs more touches.

Jason (Hawaii)

What are the chances Fitzpatrick surprises us and goes off against a Jets team in turmoil.

Eric Karabell
  (3:35 PM)

Nothing surprises me anymore, but I don't think it's a high probability.

Nikey (Germany)

Who das better 3B keeper, Zimmerman or Headley? Danka

Eric Karabell
  (3:36 PM)

Headley has had one great season... still have to pick Zimmerman there.

Scott (Concord, NH)

Deep AL Only League. I'm intrigued by W.Davis going to KC. Do they put him in the rotation? Assuming they do the right thing and do that, what's an off-the-top-of-your-head stat line for him in KC? Your thoughts? Thanks for chattin'!!!

Eric Karabell
  (3:37 PM)

I would assume he starts, so let's say 30 starts, 3.75 ERA, 150 whiffs. Not the worst No. 6 starter in a standard format, I suppose. I don't see a ton of upside, though. Was good in relief...

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Is Randall Cobb a top 10 WR in ppr leagues next year? Would you keep him for a 14th or Ray Rice for a 1st? I'm already keeping Doug for a 4th, and the only RBs that will be available will be of the DMC/Mathews tier...

Eric Karabell
  (3:38 PM)

I'd keep Rice then. Some concern about the many, many touches, but if there won't be good running backs available... just keep him. The first-round pick isn't worth much if a prime injury risk is the best out there.

Danny Amendola (bench)

Should i be dropped for Hardesty

Eric Karabell
  (3:38 PM)

Ugh. If you really need a running back and we get official word soon that Trent Richardson is out, then.... I can't even say it, but yeah.

bill (new york)

AL only league. How much does the move to Angels stadium hurt Hamilton?

Eric Karabell
  (3:39 PM)

Shouldn't affect health. If anything, never playing center field anymore will balance it some. But it's not a good hitters park for lefties. Still should hit 30 homers.

Jerry (Philly)

Hi Eric, do your rankings take into account how long a player is likely to play this week? I have Julio and Roddy on different teams this week. Thanks!

Eric Karabell
  (3:42 PM)

Yes, they do. Hard to know how much the Falcons WRs will play, though.

Matt Forte (Training Room)

Chances I play full game this week? 25% or 75%

Eric Karabell
  (3:42 PM)

Better chance because Bears need to win the game. I'd say at least 75 percent. I just don't expect many yards.

Mike (Arizona)

Keep Rodgers and Lynch with my 1st and 2nd pick, or Lynch and Murray with 2nd and 3rd?

Eric Karabell
  (3:43 PM)

Well, if you're just gonna take a QB in round 1 anyway, might as well be Rodgers. Not a big Murray fan because he can't stay healthy.

Doug (Detroit, Michigan)

Does Tebow go to Jacksonville? If so, how do you think he will fare?

Eric Karabell
  (3:44 PM)

I know few think he can be a viable QB, but from a fantasy sense, he sure was when he was a Bronco. Just a lost season and in a way, feel bad for him. Not his fault. But even if we knew he was starting in Jacksonville next Sept, would he make my top 15 QBs? Be a borderline call there.

Drew (Baltimore)

HAIL TO THE REDSKINS! I would gladly see the redskins make the post season if it meant taking second in both my championship games

Eric Karabell
  (3:45 PM)

Few think that way, but you and I sure do. Always root for REAL championships first, fantasy ones later. Of course, my fave football team has 4 wins. Would trade all the fantasy titles for one Super Bowl!

David (Plattsbugh, ny)

ugly QB question. Do trust Vick at all? I was riding with garbage time Palmer. Now Vick or Rivers? Yes, I am in the toilet bowl portion of playoffs.

Eric Karabell
  (3:47 PM)

I ranked Vick 11th for this week, and blogged about him. I think he has something to prove. I mean, he was healthy and the team wasn't using him. Playing for a contract. Giants are awful. Flacco tore them up.

Randall Cobb (Training Room)

Chance of me being on field this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:47 PM)

Originally I wasn't going to rank Cobb, but figure I can always remove him. Packers still playing for the bye. Nelson probably can't play many snaps. I'd say 60 percent chance Cobb plays.

Nate (Canton)

Do you think 3 quarters of Manning against KC is better than 4 quarters of Stafford versus Chicago?

Eric Karabell
  (3:48 PM)

Apparently I do, yes.

Ahmed Bradshaw (Caughlin's doghouse)

Any Chance I go over 40yds and score a TD

Eric Karabell
  (3:48 PM)

Against Philly? I'd say pretty decent chance, yeah.

John (Los Angeles)

Yu Darvish last year: 3.90 ERA, 1.280 WHIP, 10.4 K/9. Over/Under Aroldis Chapman as a SP to compare to those stats next year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:49 PM)

We don't know about Chapman's durability, but if you told me 200 innings, I'd say better in ERA, WHIP and K9.

Beth (SD)

In a league where defense gets an additional 5 points for a win, would you rather have Bills D w Dez at WR or Chargers D w Blackmon? Thanks! Happy Holidays!

Eric Karabell
  (3:50 PM)

Well, love Dez this week but not the Bills or their D. So I'd go with Chargers and Blackmon.

Blake (Atlanta)

BASEBALL: I am thinking about keeping Cueto for next season but his past injuries make me nervous. Is he worth keeping?

Eric Karabell
  (3:50 PM)

A bit risky but always depends on what else you've got. Personally I load up on hitters first...

Drew Brees (Studying Film)

My chance to pass 350 yds 2 TD's and no INT.....

Eric Karabell
  (3:51 PM)

Don't bet against Brees!

Jason (Keep 1)

Harvin or Cobb? No penalty for round taken

Eric Karabell
  (3:51 PM)

Based on their QBs, I'd lean to Cobb. Never thought I'd say that 2 months ago.

Doug (Detroit, Michigan)

What kind of season does Andrew Luck have next season: does he get much better or kind of inch along?

Eric Karabell
  (3:52 PM)

I think he'll get better, cut down on the mistakes/INTs. This is the next Peyton Manning. Colts fans are lucky. I'll be watching Nick Foles for the next 2 years!

Scott (Concord, NH)

How much does the move to Angels stadium *help* Vargas?

Eric Karabell
  (3:53 PM)

Why would it help him leaving a large Seattle ballpark? Guy gives up so many home runs. Certainly has better outfield defense now but ... an average pitcher. Think ERA around 4.

Don Diego (South America)

Sounds like you're pretty high on Chapman. Him or Matt Moore...2013 only.

Eric Karabell
  (3:53 PM)

Have to take Moore. More proven as a starter, feel better about the shot at 200 innings. Plus, knowing the Reds... they could pull the plug on Aroldis starting by mid-March. Or sooner.

Bob (Ohio)

You obviously do not think Headley can do that again, correct? Top 50 player?

Eric Karabell
  (3:54 PM)

Due to the scarce position he plays, perhaps top 50. I always liked his potential to take walks, steal a base, maybe hit for road power. Nobody expected this.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Have you ever done a league just for the NFL playoffs? Does ESPN have a setup for this?

Eric Karabell
  (3:55 PM)

I do one every year! ESPN has Gridiron Playoff Challenge. And I will be doing rankings early next week for playoff pools!

coach harbaugh (SF)

why did the rankers not have any love for randy moss this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:56 PM)

I think he has opportunity, but in my case - can't speak for others - I just like 40-something wide receivers more. I did rank Moss. But c'mon!

Joe (Neidhurst)

In a deep league do you still try to keep hitters? Pitching gets pretty scarce...

Eric Karabell
  (3:56 PM)

I don't agree. There's SO much pitching, even in deep leagues. In a 20-teamer guys like Jon Niese and Capuano are always out there. You never consider them in 10-teamers.

Frank (Minerva)

What are the chances of Moreno only playing a half this weekend if the Broncos get a big early lead? I could start Sproles over him in my ppr championship.

Eric Karabell
  (3:57 PM)

No idea. Always a risk. Just have to take a chance and hope for the best. If it's my call, I'd use Moreno. Can do more on 10 touches by halftime than Sproles in a full game.

Kai (Reno)

Which side of this trade in keeper league do u like better and why? Cano for longoria

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

I like Cano. Second base weaker than third, and Cano is durable, consistent.

Fran (California)

Which kicker should I go with, hauschka, forbath, josh brown or Barth? Hard to predict I'm sure

Eric Karabell
  (3:59 PM)

I probably ranked Barth the best there. Wow.

Todd (Cleveland)

What kind of Auction strategy in baseball drafts do you prefer? Stars and scrubs?

Eric Karabell
  (3:59 PM)

I used to, but I like more balance now. Easier to fix mistakes, too.

Santa (north pole)

Happy New Year

Eric Karabell
  (3:59 PM)

Well said, Santa. And to everyone out there, best of luck in Week 17 if it matters for you, and enjoy the holiday season. It's been a blast! Enjoy! Adios!