Print and Go Back ESPN: SportsNation

January 10, 11:00 AM ET
Fantasy Sports with AJ Mass

AJ Mass
  (11:01 AM)

Good morning gang! What's on the clock? Why it's 60 minutes of fantasy chattage! Second cup of coffee in hand. Who is up first?

MeisterNJ (Mendham)

It's an odd year, so that means Shields is a top 10 SP? Or does the move to KC temper that pattern a bit?

AJ Mass
  (11:03 AM)

Last year I was very high on Shields, more so than I was with Price. I still think there's top-10 upside here, but probably would be a little gun shy with taking him in top 25.

mark (va)

when does the 2013 fantasy baseball draft kit come out??

AJ Mass
  (11:04 AM)

I don't have any official date for that yet, but the grand summit where we all get together to do our rankings will be at the end of the month.

Nafis (SF)

AJ, Bumgarner faded badly last year. Do you think he bounces back or was that a sign of things to come?

AJ Mass
  (11:06 AM)

Was it an injury? Was it fatigue? I'm hopeful it was one of the two. If I were starting a team from scratch in a dynasty league, he'd be one of the first few names I'd consider to anchor my staff.

Shawn (CT)

Strasburg or Hosmer as a keeper (both cost the same)? Melky or Ethier, same question.

AJ Mass
  (11:08 AM)

I'm a hitter over pitcher kind of guy, so if the rules are you can keep a player for his career, I'm leaning Hosmer. And I'm going to go Melky as well, though obviously there's a different kind of risk involved there.

Keanu (Honolulu)

Hi AJ, what do you expect out of Ian Kinsler this year after a down year last year?

AJ Mass
  (11:10 AM)

Been working on a dynasty draft here with my ESPN colleagues, where we are each putting together a 40-man roster from scratch. My rankings have Ian at No. 3 at 2B, so obviously I'm not fearful.

Chad (DC)

In a 12 team PPR keeper league, would you make this trade? I give up Charles and Fitz for Foster and Nicks? My other rbs are gore, bradshaw and wrs are white, wayne, and welker. Thanks

AJ Mass
  (11:11 AM)

I'd make that trade, since I think Nicks has more in the tank than does Fitz.

Paul (Denver)

Is there anyway I should keep Castro over Tulo? I'm tired of his injuries.

AJ Mass
  (11:12 AM)

Castro may well be the No. 1 SS this year and for the next decade as well. For 2013 alone, I can see taking Tulo, but I would roll the dice with Starlin.

Paul (Denver)

When should I target my first starter in H2H league?

AJ Mass
  (11:14 AM)

There's no hard and fast rule, but I'd probably not even think about a starter until the 3rd round and if the top 2-3 guys are gone, I'd definitely wait another two at least.

MeisterNJ (Mendham)

If Machado gains SS elig., do you still take Castro over him long term?

AJ Mass
  (11:15 AM)

At the moment, yes.

Brian (NY)

What are your thoughts on Everth Cabrera this year? Seems like that kind of speed is rare at SS. 44 SBs in less than 400 ABs last year.

AJ Mass
  (11:16 AM)

Is he a top-20 SS? Yes. Is he top-10? Probably not.

Brian (Cape Coral, FL)

Please pick 4 from the following list, h2h weekly points league 12 team: Longo, Sale, Castro, Pedroia, or Prado (he has 2B, SS, 3B, and OF eligibility in our league. Thanks

AJ Mass
  (11:18 AM)

So, I'm sitting one of those guys? On the surface, it's Prado, but with the multi-eligibility factored in I might actually let Longo go.

Jean (El Paso)

Do you think Stanton is worth a second round pick? His lineup in terrible and health is a skill he has not yet mastered.

AJ Mass
  (11:21 AM)

I would take Stanton in the first round. The power is more than legit and I'm still not convinced he doesn't get traded away at some point.

Nick (Omaha)

AJ...need help on my last keeper. Prado (MI eiligible) $7, V. Mart $12, or Ortiz $13. Keeping McCutchen, Scherzer, Wright, & Freeman.

AJ Mass
  (11:23 AM)

For the price and the position, it's Prado - unless catcher is really thin.

Francis (Eagleton)

Based on your previous statement I'm guessing you not buying Longo this year? Could you elaborate on that?

AJ Mass
  (11:27 AM)

It's not about not buying Evan. He's a top-10 third baseman and could even be top-5. But Prado also plays there and gives you both stats as well as flexibility. I think keeping Martin puts you in a better starting point to fill out the rest of the roster.

Paul (Denver)

Follow up question on Castro and Tulo- there's a possibility I can keep Tulo then draft Castro in following round. Would you recommend that?

AJ Mass
  (11:28 AM)

Well sure. You were asking me to choose. But if you are pretty sure you don't have to choose, then don't.

Tim (Dickersville, NJ)

The breakout MLB player for 2013 will be ___?

AJ Mass
  (11:28 AM)

Freddie Freeman.

Earl (Georgetown)

Was offered Pujols for Stanton...would you make the trade?

AJ Mass
  (11:32 AM)

Single season league? Certainly worth considering, but I'd need to get a feel for what other 1B are going to be there for me in Round 1.

Joe (Pitt)

Who are your No. 1 players at each position in a dynasty league draft?

AJ Mass
  (11:33 AM)

Some obvious names... Miggy, Posey, Trout, Kershaw. Some guys I like more than most? Freeman, Altuve, Castro.

Bill Elkins (st.pete fl)


AJ Mass
  (11:35 AM)

I certainly would not rule it out, as the QB class this season is not the greatest. But I don't know if he'd give up a No. 1 for him.

Jack (Philly)

What do you expect from Altuve that makes you like him more than most? Luis Castillo part 2?

AJ Mass
  (11:37 AM)

I like the SB obviously, but also the really good BB/K rate. He's only 22 - plenty of growth left.

Shawn (CT)

Who are you thinking could be very late round sleepers going into this year? I assume the likes of Myers and Machado won't really be "sleepers" given all the attention they're getting, so who else is out there that could make an impact?

AJ Mass
  (11:40 AM)

That's the thing with sleepers - they're only sleepers until they're not. Are guys like Middlebrooks and Rosario sleepers? Hultzen? Hard to know right now.

Benny Hannah (Boston, MA)

I like that you don't follow the groupthink. You are the only person on the planet that would prefer Hosmer to Strasburg in a keeper league!

AJ Mass
  (11:42 AM)

I like Strasburg. Still a top-10 SP in a keeper league, but I do think he continues to get a bit of the "kid glove" treatment this season and in general, SP are far riskier to me than hitters.

Franklin (Santa Cruz)

AJ, what are your thoughts on Mat Latos this season? He had a great second half last season and is on my sleeper list of SP's that could break through. Do you agree with that?

AJ Mass
  (11:44 AM)

Generally speaking, yes. I'd rank him around 15th right now. Love that he wasn't nearly as impacted by move to GAB as I had feared.

Steve (TX)

Can't let FOOTBALL go yet... Who do like for their career in a keeper league. Randall Cobb or Dez Bryant.

AJ Mass
  (11:45 AM)

For NFL analysis, I don't think it's safe to look any further than one year. At the moment, I like Cobb's chances better.

jim (ariz)

thoughts on goldschmidt this year? are his SB repeatable?

AJ Mass
  (11:47 AM)

Don't see why not. It wasn't too out of line with his SB production in his first year, taking the OBP into account.

Brandon (RI)

After Posey, you wait until the teen rounds to take a catcher, correct?

AJ Mass
  (11:48 AM)

It all depends on what's on the board at any given moment. I think you can take Carlos soon after Buster, for example. But if you're starting to debate Monteros... then you can certainly wait.

Brian (NY)

What's your take on Medlen this season?

AJ Mass
  (11:49 AM)

Overall I like him. Could be top 20 SP.

PK (Millville, NJ)

Football question: Will RG3 be worth keeping? I have Russell Wilson as well, was thinking of keeping both.

AJ Mass
  (11:50 AM)

Certainly we won't really know for some time as to how that surgery goes. When the decision needs to be made, I'm going to keep RG III if I can and hope for the best.

LoHo (my birthday today)

Hi AJ, for the last 2 keeper spots, would you keep Justin Upton, Heyward, Lawrie, or Dickey?

AJ Mass
  (11:52 AM)

I think if push came to shove I'd go with Upton and Lawrie.

Chad (OKC)

In a dynasty league, where does Zunino rank at C for you? Is he on the level of D'Arnaud?

AJ Mass
  (11:55 AM)

Yes and no. I think it all comes down to arrival date, and right now that favors D'Arnaud. Certainly Zunino is someone to grab very late if you're deep, but if your bench spots are limited, this is not the year.

Chad (OKC)

Hi AJ, 2 keeper league. Choose between Trout, Braun and King Felix.

AJ Mass
  (11:57 AM)

Take the bats, leave the King-oli.

AJ Mass
  (11:58 AM)

That's all the time we have for today gang! Thanks for the Q's! I'm on twitter (@ajmass) if I didn't get to you today. We'll be back next week, same bat time, same bat channel! Until then, good luck and may the odds be EVER in your favor.