Print and Go Back ESPN: SportsNation

April 4, 11:00 AM ET
Fantasy Sports with AJ Mass

AJ Mass
  (11:00 AM)

Good morning gang! Second cup of coffee? In hand. So let's get to our 60 minutes of fantasy chattage, shall we? Who's up first?

Fish (Pittsburgh)

Do you think Axford can turn things around or should I try to trade him ASAP for a more stable "lesser" closer? I'm thinking League or Parnell.

AJ Mass
  (11:02 AM)

I don't think you should ever panic over 2 bad games in April, especially when there really isn't a "go-to" second option in Milwaukee. Besides, you might not get Parnell back for him right now...

Bob (ATL)

AJ - With injuries to Eaton/Ludwick, do you favor Parra or Heisey? Thanks.

AJ Mass
  (11:04 AM)

I ended up drafting Parra late in a lot of leagues, and that was with Eaton supposedly in the mix at the time.

Brian (Langhorne, PA)

AJ, maybe I don't understand the Daily Notes rankings - hopefully you could elaborate on why Brett Myers is ranked so high? How in the world is he 7th - against Toronto and Dempster 15th against the lowly NYY?

AJ Mass
  (11:07 AM)

It's so hard to thin-slice based on one day. A lot goes into it - we crunch the numbers on lineup vs. pitcher and vice versa, home vs away, etc. to get a starting point. Then we adjust based on recent performances.

Bill (NYC)

Who will end up with the most saves in Detroit?

AJ Mass
  (11:08 AM)

Still think it's Rondon when the season is over.

Alex (Mass)

Hey AJ, rank these catchers please Ramos, Flowers, Ianetta, Jaso

AJ Mass
  (11:09 AM)

Jaso, Iannetta, Ramos, Flowers

Billy (NY)

Kubel or Lowrie for last spot on roster?My thinking is Lowrie has same 25 hr upside but plays SS?

AJ Mass
  (11:11 AM)

But are you going to use him at MI or not? You need five OF, so if you don't have any on your bench, odds are, you're going to need Kubel at some point.

Chris (NJ)

What do you see out of Gee today? Solid stream?

AJ Mass
  (11:12 AM)

Its not for nothing I ranked him #5 in today's Daily Notes. Anybody in the top-half of the grid is typically worth a stream if they're not one of "the usual suspects"

Rick (Everywhere)

Thoughts on Porcello?

AJ Mass
  (11:13 AM)

As I wrote in DN, he ditched the slider this spring and had success... assuming he doesn't go back to old habits, I'm optimistic he has a really good year.

Dan (Detroit)

In a deep league where pitching is hard to come by. Is Cashner worth holding onto hoping he gets into the rotation?

AJ Mass
  (11:14 AM)

I think he's definitely going to be in the rotation eventually. That's the plan - to ease him in slowly...

Dolph Lundgren (Pain, USA)

whats a safer start to bring in Ks and not kill my good era:Porcello or Myers?

AJ Mass
  (11:15 AM)

Never one to assume Myers will rack up the Ks.

Troy (NH)

Matt Harvey picking up where he left off last year! Thoughts on a full season workload and what we can expect from him?

AJ Mass
  (11:17 AM)

It's very important to try not to be influenced by one really solid start - at home, in the cold, against the Padres. Harvey has a ton of upside, but I think our projections haven't changed from where they were before yesterday's game.

MeisterNJ (Mendham)

Thanks for the advice AJ. Please rank these relievers in order of stashitude: Ryan Cook, Clippard, McGee, Pestano, Dan Hernandez.

AJ Mass
  (11:19 AM)

Pestano tops for me. Cook and McGee next.

Mac (South Bend, IN)

Best pick-up - Boggs or Fujikawa?

AJ Mass
  (11:19 AM)

Fujikawa. I don't think he loses job once Marmol is officially toast.

Al (NY)

Who do you prefer: N. Cruz or M. Morse?

AJ Mass
  (11:20 AM)

Cruz for me.

Miguel Gonzalez (Ball timore)

BEsides today where you have me mid-pack in the DN, are you keeping me on your roster ROS?

AJ Mass
  (11:22 AM)

Guys like Gonzalez, Wily Peralta, Erasmo... they're streamers to me. I don't mind having them around to make a start or two when the matchups dictate, like today, but if I have to cut them, I cut them.

Matt (NY)

Would you drop Jose Fernandez to stream Gee today, or do you have to hold onto him to see what he has?

AJ Mass
  (11:23 AM)

I don't get why you'd grab Jose and then not see what he has.

Joe (MI)

going back to Al's question (Cruz vs Morse), wouldn't you prefer the clean up hitter (Morse) vs Cruz who is hitting 6th?

AJ Mass
  (11:25 AM)

I want the player I think will contribute the most across the board for the whole season. I mean, would I drop Cruz for Chris Carter because of where he hits in the lineup? No.

jake (il)

What value do you see out of Giancarlo Stanton in Miami. Guy in my league wants to get rid of him since he was autodrafted before he made the draft. Just not sure which value to put him at?

AJ Mass
  (11:25 AM)

I think he's a first round value. But if the guy wants to get rid of him, why pay more than 4th?

Matthew (NY)

Is Brandon Maurer worth starting today? Or is it more likely he'll have a bad outing

AJ Mass
  (11:27 AM)

In the middle of the season, I might get more behind a Double-A call-up. In April, I'll pass.

Sal (New Jersey)

Would you rather have Detwiler or Pettitte?

AJ Mass
  (11:28 AM)

I'd rather have Detwiler.

Kyle (DE)

I was just offered Billy Butler for Chris Davis. Davis has been great so far, but I have to accept that, right?

AJ Mass
  (11:29 AM)

I would much rather have Butler, yes.

Jeff (Chicago)

who do you like the most for the year? Cain, Dom Brown, Marte, Dirks, Carpenter?

AJ Mass
  (11:30 AM)

I've not made a secret of my Dirks man-crush, so I have to go with him. Probably would put Marte second.

Alex (NY)

Utley or LaRoche?

AJ Mass
  (11:30 AM)

For as long as he's upright, I'm going Utley.

frank (ny)

What do you think of Big Puma in Texas again?

AJ Mass
  (11:32 AM)

Outside shot at 20-80. There are worse hitters to have on your roster to be sure.

Noah Reid (NY)

I had so many pitchers that were hit a bit this week like Estrada, Hellickson, Wilson, Gallardo, Kuroda, Sabathia, and Wainwright. Do I sit any of them next week and stream somebody or just hope for the best?

AJ Mass
  (11:33 AM)

One start. In April. Take a deep breath and relax. Unless a pitcher gets hurt - and Kuroda is the closest to that description, but he should make next start - you have to give a mulligan.

Brandon (Huntington ny)

What's up with Wil Myers? Worth taking up a bench spot? What/when do you expect of him?

AJ Mass
  (11:33 AM)

I think he'll compete for RotY once he's up, but I don't expect him until end of May.

TJ (Mass)

Would you stash Teixeira in your DL spot, currently have Rizzo and A. Craig for 1B?

AJ Mass
  (11:34 AM)

Why not? As the time of his return gets close, you can see about trading him for a need, and if you end up needing the DL spot, you can always cut him loose later on.

Chad (OKC)

Who is the first closer demoted besides Marmol? We all know that one is coming!

AJ Mass
  (11:35 AM)

We've known that for a few years... and yet... I'd say Chris Perez, but there's another one that "should have already been"

Syd The Kid (Baconville)

Do I try to trade a guy like Lincecum after a win hoping that someone thinks he returns to form? I mean c'mon he had SEVEN walks!

AJ Mass
  (11:37 AM)

But you can't trade him. It's not like you're the only one who knows how to read a boxscore. Again - one start in April is not something to panic about, even with Lincecum. He did get the win and didn't allow 15 ER here... so if you're really concerned, you trade him after his NEXT start when he walks 3 and fans 6 in 6 innings.

Frank (MO)

Do you think Seager has a big year? I won't have a CI spot open for him once Lawrie comes back from the DL. Should I look to trade him right away for the best return or hold on a while and let his value build and deal him later in the year (provided Lawrie doesn't re-injure himself).

AJ Mass
  (11:39 AM)

Why put yourself in a hole you don't have to be in? Enjoy Seager's stats and once you have the glut and can choose to take the best deal on the table, and you're sure Lawrie is OK - then you deal one of them.

Ned Stark (Winterfell)

Trade ? = In a H2H Mixed Keeper Lg -- I'd GIVE -- Brandon Belt & I'd GET-- Tommy Milone...Thoughts ? Accept OR Reject?

AJ Mass
  (11:40 AM)

Do you need pitching? Are you trading just to trade? That's the difference here. I personally love Milone this year, so I'd make the deal, but if you're only doing it because you're frustrated with Belt so far - and he's had a virus - then that's not a good reason.

Matt (Boise)

You have Buerhle ranked over AJ Griffin for today's notes even though Griffin has had two great outings against the Ms last year. Care to explaint your reasoning?

AJ Mass
  (11:43 AM)

So, if Pitcher X lost twice to Team Y last year, he has to be ranked last? Even if the team's roster has changed? It's not like I ranked Griffin poorly - he's #6. Buehrle, for one day, based on all we know right now, I think has a slightly better chance to win.

Luke (Wis)

Shelby Miller is on the waiver wire...Drop Porcello or Doubront to get him? Or hold tight?

AJ Mass
  (11:45 AM)

Did you draft Porcello and Doubront and leave Miller on the wire yourself? If so, then why make the move now? I'd have no problem with having Miller over Felix on my roster, but the over-arching theme here, gang - if you believed something to be true last week, unless injuries have changed the situation, why are you changing your mind now? It's a bad idea.

Dan (Cambridge, MD)

Does Henderson replace Axford when its time for change?

AJ Mass
  (11:46 AM)

I think that's the probable starting point. He may well get the next opp. regardless, just to give Ax a day to clear his head.

Adrian (Philly, PA)

Halladay, 1 start in April, should I panic?

AJ Mass
  (11:49 AM)

It wasn't pretty, and if he had zero K's, then yeah, a little panic would be called for - but he did get 9 of them... this cloud does have a silver lining.

jay (st louis)

stream straily tomorrow, or pick up henderson or big al in a saves speculation?

AJ Mass
  (11:49 AM)

Not high on Straily myself, even with the pitiful opponent. Too erratic.

Andrew (WI)

I'm in a total season points league (not H2H points). Considering your general points league strategy, what would change in it if it's a total season total instead of H2H? I'm trying to run a modified version of your stud reliever strategy. (200 start limit, by the way)

AJ Mass
  (11:51 AM)

The difference is that for a season, SP will get more points than RP - in most scoring systems. If it's full season, I'm not changing my strategy much from basic roto. Some of the players may move higher or lower, like SB specialists typically fall a bit, but I'm not sure a closer strategy works over that large a time period.

Zack (Austin, TX)

Please pick three of these middling options...Lance Lynn, Jarrod Parker, Dan Haren, Matt Harvey, Mike Minor and Homer Bailey.

AJ Mass
  (11:52 AM)

Lynn, Parker, Bailey

Rob (Lima, OH)

AJ - you still high on Freeman this year? Our draft is coming up and it's down to him or Bumgarner for my last of 3 keeper spots for 2013 in my NL-only league.

AJ Mass
  (11:53 AM)

Love Freeman, but have Mad-Bum finishing second to Kershaw for CY.

Matt (St. Louis)

Wilhelmsen, Cishek or Balfour. Who do you like as a 2nd or 3rd closer?

AJ Mass
  (11:53 AM)

I like Wilhelmsen best overall. With Cishek, I just don't think the opps will be there.

Angus Archer (Toronto)

Assuming Freese is healthy next week, where does that leave Matt Carpenter (barring further injuries)? On paper he doesn't make good sense to platoon with a similar lefty-swinging-defensive-minded Descalso, right?

AJ Mass
  (11:55 AM)

I think had Freese not been hurt, we'd have seen Carp at 2B and Descalso filling in occasionally. But, it's hard to ignore how the two have started... if Carp doesn't pick it up a bit in the next week, I think he may get short end of stick.


Drafted Harrison in an auction draft. Not because I'm a huge fan...the bidding just stopped before I thought it would. Concerned that his shaky peripherals catch up with him this year. Do you think my concern is warranted or should I expect a similar year from him?

AJ Mass
  (11:56 AM)

I think Harrison has top 25 potential, especially given the lineup around him and the run support that should come with it.

Bryce's Rice (Noodle Soup)

Can Bryce Harper be considered a top 20 player now? Over/Under .285 28 hr 22 sb 100 rbi?

AJ Mass
  (11:57 AM)

Let's see him hit someone else's pitching staff before going too nuts here... but I mean he certainly has top 10 potential if all goes well for a full 162-games.

Stephen (Los Angeles)

AJ Griffin is ranked pretty high today ... are you a believer, or just like the matchup?

AJ Mass
  (11:58 AM)

Little bit of both, but given the "10" for the matchup, you can assume I'm not all-in with him, or I would have ranked him in top 3.

Nick (Tn)

Avila or Salty?...Pick your poison

AJ Mass
  (11:59 AM)

Avila for me.

AJ Mass
  (12:00 PM)

That's all the time I've got for today, guys. The hour, it does fly by. Until the next time, there's Twitter (@ajmass) where I try to field all Q's that I can... just at a more leisurely pace. Good luck! And may the odds be EVER in your favor.