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FantasyPros Fantasy Baseball Live Chat MARATHON: Thursday, March 25 (2021)

Mar 23, 2021

This is it. The last big draft weekend ahead of the start of the new season. Don’t worry, we’re here for you.

This Thursday, March 25, instead of our normal live chat, we’re hosting a live chat MARATHON for eight hours. That’s right. Eight. Hours.

The fun starts at noon EST. Here’s the lineup:

Dan Harris 12:00 PM
Joe Pisapia 1:00 PM
Brendan Tuma 2:00 PM
Mario Mergola 3:00 PM
Dan Harris 4:00 PM
Mike Maher 5:00 PM
Brendan Tuma 6:00 PM
Andrew Gould 7:00 PM

Feel free to submit questions ahead of the chat via the window below. And even if you can’t make the live marathon you can check back here for the chat transcript to review all the answered questions.

Prep for your draft with our award-winning fantasy baseball tools >>

Fantasy Baseball Live Chat Marathon (3/25)

Dan Harris: Aaaaaaaand, we’re off. 8 straight hours of fantasy baseball goodness. I’m here till 1:00. Ask your questions and I’ll get to as many as I can. And if you ask one, it will remain in the queue so others will see it. Just keep them coming!

Bob Babooey: In a 12-team h2h points league, with a few top pitchers being kept, and others expected to fly off the board, I’m not crazy to take Brandon Woodruff at 20th overall? Right? Right?? (I slot him behind Giolito and Buehler, but ahead of Nola, Flaherty etc). Thanks
Dan Harris: I have Nola and Flaherty ahead, but Woodruff isn’t a HUGE jump behind. Still prefer the other two but you do you!

Guest: 7th pick in roto. 12 team league. Who should I target in first two picks. Thx. Craig
Dan Harris: Annoying answer is always “whoever is there!” But my top 7 go the big five hitters, then deGrom and Cole, so one of those seven with the first pick. I often find myself with Harper in the second, but if you draft an offensive player in the first and Darvish falls, I’d go there.

DanP: My question: My draft is tonight, NL OnLy, with the amount of dollars i have left to acquire players, for hitters, i have about $70-$80 to pick 5 of the following, N,Castellanos,A,Bohm,G.Lux,S,Hilliard,CJ CRON,T.O’NEILL,J.PEDERSON,A.RILEY,J.Rojas and for Pitchers I have estimated around $35-$45 for 5 of the following ,B.Snell, C.Burnes, J.Urias,K.Gausman,T.Rogers,L.Webb,A.Wainwright,F.Peralta,M.Bumgarner,M. Moore , and I need 1 closer, J.McGee,E.Pagan,A.Garrett,J.Hicks Thanks for any feedback
Dan Harris: I mean, you’re at the mercy of where things go with other spending. But I prefer Castellanos, Bohm, Cron, Riley, and Lux as your hitters, Snell, Burnes, Urias, Gausman, and Peralta as pitchers, and Garrett as the reliever. So they would be my targets!

Christian Yelich: Will I bounce back fully this year?
Dan Harris: You better believe it. Still ninth on my board but that’s higher than most.

Guest: 12th pick in a 12 team h2h cat league. Should I reach on SP?
Dan Harris: It just depends on who is there, but I usually try to get two SPs in the first four rounds if I can. Let the draft come to you!

Guest: In a keeper league. Kept Bellinger, Starling Marte, Cruz, and McNeil. Not crazy about these keepers. Any advise on what to target and to recover? Thanks. Go Mets!
Dan Harris: Again, I know fantasy managers like to ask “who should I take here” and “who should I target,” etc. But it all depends on who is available. Also, that’s a great start. Here are all my rankings articles and targets, so check it out there: https://www.fantasypros.com/news/correspondents/dan-harris.php

Guest: Which 1st rounders would you consider a bust?
Dan Harris: None. Seriously, it’s hard to see any of them busting. But, if I had to pick one, it’s Bieber, just because he never showed this sort of strikeout upside/level of dominance in the minors. I can also make a case for Story if he gets traded from the Rockies (he’s 12th in ADP). But hard to make much of a case absent injury otherwise.

Guest: start up 12 man dynasty 6×6 roto with OBP, is it bold of me to go bichette into vlad at 12-13 (I’m picking 12th) or should I just keep it normal enough though it’s a dynasty and maybe go giolito lindor ?
Dan Harris: It’s bold, and I do generally like to play dynasty a little closer to redraft because who knows how long dynasty leagues will last? So, I’d play it safer. But I’m not OUTRAGED by your proposed strategy if you feel strongly.

Guest: any divisions/teams you are actively looking to stack extra players from?
Dan Harris: No, I mean, I don’t really think you can do that other than maybe last year with the schedule being what it was. I will say that I’m a bit higher than I otherwise would be on AL and NL Central pitchers because of their weak divisions, but other than that, it’s pretty much best player available other than from a DFS standpoint.

Matthew: I’m in an 8 keeper roto league, should I draft Randy Arozarena, Yordan Alvarez, or Brandon Woodruff this year with the possibility of keeping them?
Dan Harris: Yikes. Not sure how long you can keep, but if it’s forever, I’d probably roll the dice with Alvarez despite his questionable status. If it’s shorter term, then Woodruff.

Brad: How concerned should I be about George Springer’s oblique injury and how far are you dropping him in your rankings? If it’s anything like Aaron Judge’s oblique injury in 2016, that injury could linger throughout the year. Seems like the blue jays are downplaying it a little. If healthy, he can be a solid source of homers/runs.
Dan Harris: Yeah, it is somewhat worrisome, if for no other reason than it’s a Grade 2, rather than a Grade 1. Average time for an oblique injury, in a vacuum, is 30 days, but guys obviously beat that. I did move Springer down a few spots – he’s now 51st overall and behind Judge, Marte, and Ozuna. But not a full on panic.

Drew: Is it okay to stack relievers on the same team or players in general in category leagues?
Dan Harris: Sure. You can have as many as you want from the same team in a season-long fantasy baseball league. Not sure why you want SO many relievers from one team unless it’s saves plus holds, but nothing against it in a vacuum.

Chris Clegg: Hey, Dan. Just wanted to stop in and say you’re awesome! Keep up the good work.
Dan Harris: Chris Clegg is an incredible analyst and everyone should follow his work and content. Awesome, stuff. And thanks!

nyroto: Hi guys, i am in a 13 team 5×5 roto keeper league… my keepers are trout, belly, buehler, flaherty and seager. For round 6-12 im planning to get a pitcher like corbin burnes then moncada and k. Hayes and 3 pitchers more… do you see something wrong in my approach? Another recommendation?
Dan Harris: I think your approach is fine, but why limit yourself like this? Guys, drafts are just going to be about playing jazz. I think if things work out that way, your approach is fine. But other than that, you can really go any which way at that spot.

Ben: Is it ever a good strategy to sacrifice categories?
Dan Harris: In a roto league, I don’t like to punt altogether, though I’m fine not drafting saves and getting them off the wire. In a categories league, no issues with it. I just don’t like limiting my total points right out of the gate, you know?

Guest: Is it generally a bad idea to go pitcher-pitcher for the first 2 rounds in a roto?
Dan Harris: Nope, totally fine to do. Hammer SP early if you can, because you’re going to need to this year. Just don’t sacrifice hitter values JUST to make sure you get two pitchers in the first two rounds. But no issues with it generally.

Larry: Is this the year Stanton lives up to his paycheck?
Dan Harris: Well, shoot. Not sure he could live up to that paycheck, but I do find myself wanting some shares this year, yeah. Full-time DH should hopefully keep him healthy, but, I mean, you have to go in expecting 120 games maximum. Anything else is gravy!

dave in slc: Who do you think closes in philly? deciding nl only keepers and have neris at 11 and not sure whether to keep or throw back
Dan Harris: I have no idea, truly, and I don’t want to pretend that I do. I really wouldn’t be surprised to see both Neris and Bradley split. For now, it’s REALLY low on my list of teams to target for saves. I’d probably throw Neris back at that price. There will be a lot of saves available even in NL-only leagues.

Keith: Any early thoughts on Austin Riley? Can he keep his average up high enough to stay the everyday 3B? I’ve drafted him in 3 of my leagues so far.
Dan Harris: Oh Keith, you need to listen to the FantasyPros MLB Podcast, man. Riley is my late-round dude everywhere. Traded the power for contact last year which is totally fine when you have UNLIMITED power. Love him as a late-round CI.

Tim: I am playing in a 7 x 7 head to head weekly league (one win, so just need to have more categories than the other team). Categories are all the normal ones, plus IP, Holds and QS instead of Wins for pitching. Hitting has SO against, and OPS.

I am curious what my strategy should be, draft tons of pitching early since it will make winning 5 of the 7 categories easier? Do I punt saves? If 4 of my first 8 picks are SP is my hitting too weak?
Dan Harris: Don’t overthink it too much. I would be fine punting saves, but I would focus on pitching early. I think you can stream hitters a bit easier this year than pitchers, so I would feel ok about needing to find the right options on a weekly basis there.

jgeeeeee: Other than catcher, what positions are best to draft late in a snake draft?
Dan Harris: There are a lot of outfielders I like REALLY late, but only when I have a decent baseline early. That’s the only other position I feel comfortable knowing there will be quality options really late in the draft. Well, and upside SP, too. If you want to practice your late-round strategy, do some mocks at fantasypros.com/draftwizard and make the settings SUPER deep. You’ll get a good sense of who is available once you get past pick 300.

Todd B: Have you ever played in a league with Ottoneu-like scoring? Did you like it?
Dan Harris: You know, I actually haven’t Todd. Wanna start one up? Who is with us?????

Matthew: Should I buy into Ke’Bryan Hayes as my starting 3B?
Dan Harris: Yeah, took me awhile but I’m in now. It is hard to buy into players who outperform their minor-league statistics so easily, but that’s kind of the norm now. Nothing in Hayes’s underlying profile suggests too much regression, and I like his batting average floor in a world where batting average is just an absolute killer category. I’m a believer.

dave in slc: who are the guys you find yourself drafting the most of? guys you love at the price you are getting them and think will outperform it?
Dan Harris: I am completely in on Marcus Stroman and have been all year, for sure. I love me some Austin Riley and Frankie Montas, think Benintendi is good for a bounceback, like both Mancini and Mountcastle for the Orioles. And I think the hate is coming too hard for Cavan Biggio.

Guest: In a 10-team auction with $260 budget, what would you bid for Jared Walsh, Andrew Vaughn and Jaimer Candelario?
Dan Harris: $1, $1, $1! No reason to go higher in a 10-team league.

Tim: It’s a daily lineup league too, so lots of work keeping up on it which I think gives me an edge. Where do you draft Ohtani in that format?
Thanks, Dan! Listening to the podcast all the time. Enjoyed the mock draft shows
Dan Harris: Oh, man. So, I still have my doubts about Ohtani because of the health, but in a daily format where you can switch him between hitter and pitcher every day, I’m bumping him to within my top 90, pretty easily (he’s in the 180s otherwise). There’s a ton of risk with the guy, so I’m not going NUTS. But yeah, probably somewhere in the 75-90 range

Guest: Josh Bell seems to be a guy experts are a little divided on. Do you like his current ADP?
Dan Harris: I am totally back in on Josh Bell (though it would be nice if Ryan Zimmerman also stopped hitting!). I wasn’t in the offseason, but now I am. If you watched him last year, you saw the CONSTANT change of the stance and swing as he looked to correct some poor habits caused by the long layoff. But his swing and stance look pretty tight right now, he’s in a great spot in that batting order. I’m absolutely buying at the ADP.

Gabe: I’m in a 10 team, H2H categories league with one single keeper. My keeper is Bauer at a 9th round cost. I have the 9th pick in the first round and 12th in the 2nd. Should I go with Bieber and get beat available with the 12th? Or should I go with Yelich and reach on a pitcher like Darvish with the 12tb pick? Thanks Dan. Love the pod.
Dan Harris: Thanks! I have Yelich a spot higher than the Biebs in my rankings, so I would go Yelich and Darvish there, especially with Bauer. But really no issue if you go Bieber if you prefer. Think I’m on an island with Yelich over Bieber.

Edd: Need help deciding order of these pitchers Civale , Means, Heaney, B. Keller , Pineda, Antone , Urquidy 8×8 keeper (HR,QS,K/9) and thanks for all the rock solid advice
Dan Harris: You got it! There are a lot of name there in the same general tier, so I think I have them Civale, Heaney, Means, Pineda, Urquidy, Keller, Antone. So that’s how I’d go!

John: When do you think Wander Franco will make an impact? Is this a simple case of him getting called up post-Super2 deadline?
Dan Harris: The day I pretend to understand how the Rays think is the day I can probably work in baseball professionally! But yeah, my guess is June-ish. He is just a baby still.

Michael C: Hey Dan! I am pick 12- in a H2H Roto league. Is it crazy to reach for a Bauer or Giolito type to ensure I get pitching? Or should I take the 2 hitters and hope for the best! Thanks in advance and love your stuff!
Dan Harris: I might go one hitter, one pitcher there, but you CAN make it work if you go hitter-hitter. It’s going to be uncomfortable, I’m warning you. That wait till your 3rd and 4th is tough. But a Freddie/Ramirez start or something would probably be too enticing.

Guest: Is it worth holding on to Chris Sale and Noah Syn….(sp)…lol on IL? We have 4 IL slots.
Dan Harris: I am fine to draft those guys and stash them on my IL. But, especially with Sale, I’m cutting them when I need to keep other guys on my IL. They’re just low priority, so only stashing when I feel comfortable I am not costing myself anything.

Guest: Keeper league for 3 years. Who would you take with the 1st overall pick this year.
Dan Harris: Acuna. Same as redraft.

Zack: After keepers our H2H draft starts in round 5. Already have Trout, Harper, Trea and Cole. Was going to try targeting 2nd base. Lots of people seem to be on the Ketel train. Would you rather Merrifield or Marte?
Dan Harris: Oh Merrifield. and not close for me. Ketel is a player who I really try to fight against my personal bias (and not against the dude personally, of course! I mean just that in my head, I don’t believe, so find it hard to ignore any evidence that supports my opinion!), but he’s really got one year of being a superstar player, and I’m not sure why analysts still want to credit it so much. Merrifield offers a floor of 20-25 steals with the same position flexibility, so I am taking it!

Angelusnovus: Are you buying the Robbie Ray renaissance?
Dan Harris: Nope. Did it last year against my better judgment. Not doing it this year. Nope nope nope. Increased velocity or not. NO AND YOU CANNOT MAKE ME!

Kevin: Late draft love for any of these guys in particular: T Edman, N Solak, D Fletcher? (poiints league, no negative points, so getting lots of AB’s is huge)
Dan Harris: Yeah, all of them are fine picks. I’m more in on Edman than the rest because you can pretty much play him anywhere, but I have found myself drafting Solak more and more lately. You have them ranked in the correct order.

Working Hard In Chitown: Are categories like ERA, WHIP and OBS an average of of the individual averages or does it compile it for my team?
Dan Harris: I mean, your ERA is going to be your team’s total ERA? Unless you’re in a funky league with Joey P. or something. Then, all bets are off!

Guest: Your thoughts on my RP closer staff: J. Soria, A. Bradley, G. Soto, T. Scott. Who’s gonna have a job, lose their job, take the job?
Dan Harris: Any or all of them! Ok, so, I think Soria will probably wind up the guy in AZ. I don’t think they signed him to keep Crichton as the closer. I think Bradley and Neris will split, I thin Soto might steal some saves but ultimately more when lefties are up, and I’m just not trusting anyone in Baltimore. But I’d probably rank them in that order.

Slice: What do you think of Ty France as a later round guy?
Dan Harris: Love him. I mean, I don’t think we can count on him being a superstar, but man, when you want some late-round potential, especially with what we’ve seen in the spring, you gotta grab him. And he still isn’t getting enough love.

Angelusnovus: The first week i have room to start three of these five: Lux, Senzel, Robles, Carlson & Gimenez. Who do you have? Standard 5×5
Dan Harris: Good options. Robles for sure. Carlson, and Gimenez for me. But all five have potential.

Bubba: What is your thought on Wil Myers? What is the earliest he should be drafted, and do you expect a breakout year from him?
Dan Harris: I could never ever take Myers higher than pick 128! Sorry, that’s where he falls in my rankings, so, yeah, that’s where I’m going for it. I think Myers kind of broke back out last year. He changed his swing before last offseason and it paid dividends, so I expect his success to carry over. I like him as a solid OF, but I don’t think he’s going to be a superstar, given that his batting average ceiling is still pretty in check.

Michael C: Ok, I am going to pencil in a SP at my pick 12-Roto-H2H swing. Who do you take, Bauer, Yu, or Giolito? (I am a bit concerned about the league cracking down on Foreign substances – See Bauer Spin rate…)
Dan Harris: Ha, I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t had the same thoughts. I still have Bauer highest for now, but it’s six of one, half a dozen of the others. I’d still go Bauer though.

dave in slc: you mentioned a bunch of late round outfielders and upside pitchers you like. can you name some, or did you have an article on it I missed?
Dan Harris: I have sleepers outside the top 300 and general rankings articles where you can see how I am in relation to ADP (https://www.fantasypros.com/news/correspondents/dan-harris.php), but depends how late we are talking. Late-round, I am usually drafting Elieser Hernandez, Eduardo Rodriguez, Michael Pineda, James Paxton, and Domingo German. Outfielders are Benintendi, Senzel, Haniger, Calhoun, Kirilloff (still), Straw, and Hilliard.

Joey P: Are you a Brandon Lowe guy? A Max Muncy guy? Both? Neither? (h2h points)
Dan Harris: I’m neither and both at the same time. I like position flexibility, so I find myself with Muncy a lot, but it’s not like I am targeting him or Lowe much higher than ADP or ECR. I think they’ll both be productive, but I’m not reaching.

Slice: Are you a Belieber? Bad joke, but I’ve seen him put over deGrom and Cole because of his high innings count and consistency. Thoughts?
Dan Harris: I’ll allow it. I’m basically a normal Belieber. I do not have him higher than deGrom or Cole but am still drafting him in the first. So, whatever the term is for a shoulder shrug on Bieber, that’s what I am.

Ben: I have 1st pick in a 10 team 6×6 league (QS and Total bases added). I’m definitely loading up hitters early right? It feels like pitchers can wait if QS is in play.
Dan Harris: QS just doesn’t add much for me, but I don’t know if it would change much on my approach. Total bases as a category doesn’t make hitters suddenly more valuable – it just changes a bit how I would value those hitters. I’d draft mostly the same way.

Super Mario: Do you prefer studs and duds for your auction league rosters, or a more balanced approach?
Dan Harris: I usually like balanced. You can get away with studs and duds in a mixed league, but I STILL don’t love to do it. There is nothing more painful for me than seeing discounts in the mid-tier players and being unable to get in on the bidding because I have no money left. So, I’ll get my good players, of course, but I like a balanced roster.

Guest: i’ve got the 4th pick on Saturday in our online draft. i’m looking at Acuna if he’s available or Betts if not. Tatis if not taken is possible as well.
Dan Harris: Acuna-Betts-Tatis-Soto are my top 4.

Linden: Do you believe Jesse Winker as a late draft sleeper?
Dan Harris: Meh, he’s fine. Should be a decent source of runs and homers but little speed or much upside. So, more of a filler for me.

Mark Canha: Nobody talks much about me. I’m leading off and my numbers are good. Do you like me? How do you consider me relative to Ian Happ?
Dan Harris: You need a more exciting name – if it was Markavious Canalicious, everyone would draft you. I think people are discounting him because of the lack of power last year, but I am more excited about the fact that he kept (i.e. BUILT) on his walk rate gains. I prefer Happ for more all-around production, but I like drafting Canha where I can.

Dr Frankenstein: Need to create a better backstop tandem then Realmuto/Knapp point total. Can Garver/Jeffers, Jansen/Kirk, give me any…..body
Dan Harris: I mean, I don’t know why you want off Realmuto/Knapp. But I do like Garver/Jeffers, for sure. I think Garver is going to rake this year.

fidel_castro: Will Victor Robles be a serviceable OF this year?
Dan Harris: Indeed. Drafting him everywhere. Plenty of speed, leading off for the Nats. Let’s go.

Angelus Novus: Are the marlins lowkey building a pitching factory of their own? Who are your favorite Marlins starters at their price range, assuming Alcantara, Lopez, Sanchez, Hernandez & Rogers
Dan Harris: Love me some Marlins pitchers. Hernandez is my favorite based on draft cost because he is totally free, but I will GLADLY take Alcantara and Lopez at their ADP. I’m fading Sixto a little because of the innings cap, though I love his talent. And Rogers is a little too low-end for me.

Joe Gould: What is it about Zach Plesac that has him ranked so high? I think he’ll be the biggest bust of 2021.
Dan Harris: You. Me. Same. I think I’m like 50 spots behind ADP and maybe ECR in the overall rankings. I do not get why everyone wants to credit a brief stretch last year.
Dan Harris: OK, my hour is up. I will be back at 4:00 p.m., but the man, the myth, the legend, Joey P. is here to take over. The next virtual voice you hear will be his! Thanks for the great questions. Keep them coming!
Joe Pisapia: Thanks Dan!

Micah: What are your thoughts on the closer situations in TEX and TOR?
Joe Pisapia: TOR I think Jordan Romano and his 13K/2 BB in 5.2 IP has the clear path he’s been dominant. Texas on the other hand is completely muddy. I would run away from that cluster. But pay for Romano.

Brad Wallace: Rank these guys in redraft leagues to own and stash now…M Gore, J Kelenic, A Vaughn, B Witt Jr.,
Joe Pisapia: Vaughn appears to be breaking camp so he’s def 1 for me. Kelenic second, then Witt and Gore. Witt I think will get at least 100 AB in the minors before being reevaluated for a call up.

Lucas: H2H points league. #9 pick, Yelich or Turner? #16 pick, Baur or Freeman? Also would you take Kershaw over Baur? Thanks!
Joe Pisapia: Depends on your scoring system and roster setup. If you are a deep league with 5 OF then I lean Yelich. H2H PTS I would take Darvish over both Freeman or Bauer if he was there. But also prefer the SP in that format so Bauer. I would take Darvish and Giolito over Bauer, Bauer over Kershaw. But it’s close. (and if you just hate Bauer, it’s ok to take Kershaw)

Ryan: If you take DeGrom with the #2 pick in H2H points league, would you select Buehler as your second round choice or best 2 hitters at 2 and 3?
Joe Pisapia: Depends on the board. Walker B is having a tough spring so far. You could take him, Lynn or Woodruff (1A types) or roll the dice and wait to see if Strasburg makes it back in 4th. If you have just 3 OF and no CI slots in a smaller league I’m more apt to grab another SP in RD 2 or 3.

Nick: We have IR slots. Are Syndergaard, Severino, Bumgarner or Sale worth drafting?
Joe Pisapia: Bumgarner is worth a late draft pick to speculate. Syndergaard is back first so he would be the one TJ/IL dart throw guy for me, but there are plenty of late arms that are healthy also worth considering you don’t have to wait for. E Hernandez, C. Rodon, F. Peralta etc.

Guest: 5 SP league, have Giolito and Glasnow…past that, pretty thin. Nola will be available with the 1st pick in my keeper draft. I’d have to pass on Freddie Freeman to take him. Feel like first base has enough depth where I might be able to get away with that…Bell, Sano, Rizzo might be available later. Go SP or position player?
Joe Pisapia: h2h pts I would take Nola. Season Long roto I lean Freeman. Position players are typically better keeper league investments.

Sean: Yelich adp 10, Bellinger 15, Machado 20, Darvish 18. Is it safe to draft them at their adp?
Joe Pisapia: Yelich Yes, Machado Yes, Darvish Yes. Bellinger I am slightly shaky on. Healthy being the question. Why risk it? Take a healthy Freeman Harper or Lindor instead.

Skye: Is Corbin burnes worth $10 in a 10-team head to head categories league? Thanks
Joe Pisapia: Absolutely. That’s a great potential ROI in 2021.

Tim Wyatt: With the George Springer injury news this week, how far does he fall in the rankings for outfielders?
Joe Pisapia: In season long not much. In H2H a bit. I would look at Michael Conforto as a pivot. Similar stat line, 20 picks later (1-2 rounds).

Brad Wallace: If you had to rank these guys in order of priority of the biggest impact they would have for if / when called up and who are must stash guys now….J Kelenic, S Torkelson, A Rutschman, B Witt Jr, A Vaughn and M Gore.
Joe Pisapia: Vaughn, J Kelenic, B Witt Jr, and M Gore. I don’t think you will see Torkelson this year. A Rutschman 50/50 at best. There’s no incentive to start clocks for DET/BAL guys on 100 loss teams.

Micah: Who are your favorite buy-low targets for leagues that have already drafted?
Joe Pisapia: Zac Gallen. Carlos Carrasco. Eloy Jimenez.

JRock76: Who will close in San Diego? The talk is currently Pagan, but doesn’t it seem like they signed Melancon to fill that role? What has changed?
Joe Pisapia: Seems like Pagan is getting the buzz. This is a handcuff though with Melancon. I think Pagan wins out, but MGRs typically like to start with veteran closers.

JRock76: Is Bruce Zimmermann a potential mixed league DEEP sleeper?
Joe Pisapia: It’s possible. He has 130 and 140 IP seasons in the minors, has had a good spring and the O’s need pitching. Def in AL only leagues too.

JRock76: Any chance that Jose De Leon CIN finally lives up to his former top prospect potential? His last start was poor, but he seems to be dripping with high K potential? Can he pitch through the order 3 times and start? Will Cincy let him?
Joe Pisapia: Anything is possible. If you have the room to stash him in April I would. Injury or poor starts by the backend of the rotation could open up a spot. Also not terrible if he gets RP eligibility in some leagues too early on. That could also be valuable.

JRock76: With Yates out, will Toronto go to closer by committee? or will Romano or Dolis get the job?
Joe Pisapia: My money is on Romano. He’s been dominant.

spicy ronald: which of the top four picks has the highest bust potential? I say betts
Joe Pisapia: Betts’ style of play puts him in that realm. Acuna could struggle for BA and Tatis is still young. Plus Trout has had some injuries last few years. It’s why I still think Soto is the safest top investment. I can’t find a hole in the game.

Jake Peralta: 9-9! Which prospects are you targeting that might not start the year in the majors, but should come up by mid-season?
Joe Pisapia: Kelenic, Franco and Witt but also Jonathan India of the Reds. Keep tabs on him.

Monty: Who are the players you will be avoiding at all costs this year?
Joe Pisapia: No Randy Arozarena for me. Not at that cost. I remember having fights over Oscar Mercado telling people to run away and we all know how that turned out. if I am wrong, I am at peace with that. But I think the league is going to adjust (already started to in the WS) and we have yet to see him adjust back. Just not a good top 65 investment for my taste.

Monty: We’re going to see a TON of injuries this year, aren’t we? How should that alter my draft strategy?
Joe Pisapia: Yes. As we do every year. I think you lean on durable, less sexy guys like Morton and Greinke types at SP, and consider younger, healthier players later rather than older ones in their mid 30’s later on in the draft.

Fshhhhhh: why did the twins send down kiriloff?
Joe Pisapia: .182 BA and .440 OPS this spring is my guess. He just didn’t flash enough to break camp, but he will be back. 250-300 AB’s would be my prediction in 2021.

Fshhhhhh: what’s a good dfs strategy for mlb?
Joe Pisapia: Get the SP right! That is huge! We’ll help you with that M-F here at Pros with our daily show and my DFS vids. But don’t shy away from the “good chalk” too often, folks try to be different instead of good, especially in GPP. Find value bats on bad teams (BAL, PIT, DET etc) to allow you to pay up for the “good chalk” that night. Also, FanDuel is typically looser pricing for MLB. DK is tighter and the second SP can be tricky.

HammeR: In a one-catcher league, would you ever consider just not rostering one, and using that spot for an extra pitcher or bench bat? In leagues with shallow benches, I think this tactic might actually work out well.
Joe Pisapia: Even I, Joey P. think that’s too far. I see your point, but I don’t think you can win that way long term.

gulp: Who are your sneaky stolen base picks for 2020?
Joe Pisapia: Buxton, Robles, A. Gimenez, Madrigal, Laureano, Benintendi.

Windwalker2: Settle a debate: My friend believes that drafting a pitcher in Round 1 is bad news for your offense. I say there’s tons of time to make up the early deficit, and starting pitching takes such a sudden dive this year after the top options.
Joe Pisapia: Not if you use a pick on Nelson Cruz or a top UT to make up that ground. I’ve done it all the time with success over many years. In fact, 2021, it’s more viable than ever with so few reliable arms on the board.
Joe Pisapia: ****BREAKING ELOY JIMENEZ INJURY “serious” could & miss “significant time”***
Joe Pisapia: This helps Andrew Vaughn. However, long term Eloy is headed for DH which makes Vaugh’s long term value tricky with Abreu on his extension.

HammeR: How much are you weighing 2020 when setting up your draft strategy? I feel like most people are struggling with this part.
Joe Pisapia: GREAT question! 2020 was one GIANT small sample. Nothing great or terrible should be overrated. I would listen carefully to players who expressed difficulty with the stop/start (especially arms) and cut them slack. Rely on players with proven track records. It becomes a scenario where I’d rather have Charlie Morton than Zac Plesac.

Windwalker2: Yates done. LeClerc out for a while. Tell me why ppl even draft closers?
Joe Pisapia: It’s why I just let the market come to me. Take shots of Amir Garret up and coming types. Closers are just not good investments. It’s another reason I am not a fan of 5×5 roto. In PTS leagues you can devalue saves (you know because they’re just 3 measly outs) and put them in their correct place. In roto a save is equally important as a win and that’s dumb. (sorry)

Han Darris: What is your best bold fantasy prediction for 2020?
Joe Pisapia: Vlad Jr and Yordan Alvarez are 1st round talents by season’s end.

Han Darris: Keeper league, last pick (rounds don’t matter): Lance Lynn or Zack Greinke?
Joe Pisapia: Lynn for me

Gm: What side do you like better 6×6 add ops and cg…. Stanton and keuchel or Civale and Moncada
Joe Pisapia: Civale/Moncada. I like the Civale upside. he could be the 2nd best arm int hat rotation by season’s end. I am tired of the Stanton injuries.

Han Darris: Fill in the blank: If Mondesi somehow finishes with a .320 OBP, he’ll steal ____ bases.
Joe Pisapia: 57

RJ: Who should I draft Walker Buehler or Max Scherzer?
Joe Pisapia: Scherzer for me. One last ride.

Ben: I am targeting a SP2 at the 6th/7th turn. I have Cole. Available arms are Strasburg, Maeda, Burnes, Lynn, Ryu. 10 team league. Thoughts?
Joe Pisapia: Burnes, Lynn, Strasburg, Maeda, Ryu would be my ranking.

Dem Billzzzzzz: 5×5 AL-only salary cap keeper league trade: Eloy Jimenez (10) and Clint Frazier (2) for DJ LeMahieu (3) … which side wins?
Joe Pisapia: The DJ side wins this year with Eloy hurt. Long term Eloy side.

John: 14 team league. Who is my Utl Mitch Haniger or Eduardo Escobar? Thanks, Great job guys.
Joe Pisapia: Haniger for me. I just can’t quit him. And Escobar has too much swing and miss for my taste.

JRock76: What do you make of Scott Kingery? There was talk of him being healthy and finally breaking out, but now it looks like Odubel is going to start in CF and Segura at 2B? Where does this leave Kingery? Time to cut bair (in Dynasty) if roster spot is needed? Or do I keep holding out hope for Scottie Jetpack to surface?
Joe Pisapia: Cut bait. I think they have bounced him around so much he’s lost all confidence. Maybe a change of scenery would do him some good, but for now, he’s not viable and I don’t see clear PT for him.

Michael: I’m in a H2H auction draft league (normal 5×5 categories). Do you have any suggestions on which categories are the most advantageous to punt?
Joe Pisapia: I would save your $ for offense and SP’s. get cheap SB late with Robles, Gimenez, Madrigal etc then fish for saves.

not today: No one talks about N.Lowe and Ranger’s 1B/DH looks pretty weak,do u think he’ll get a everyday job and become useful in fantasy baseball?thx
Joe Pisapia: I was hoping a strong spring would get him off on the right foot, but I would say this spring has not helped. Monitor him, but I wouldn’t draft (deepest of leagues only)

not today: In 15-team QS & K/BB ROTO league(MAX 1500 IP),I have Glasnow,Carrasco,Plesac,I.Anderson,Morton,Marquez and J.Montgomery.
Since Carrasco is down for several weeks,do u think this rotation is strong enough to start this season,or should I start looking for some trades?thx!
(FA option: Lindbolm, D.Garcia, M.Kelly, Archer, Mills, Richards, Turnbull)
Joe Pisapia: I would add Freddy Peralta or Carlos Rodon who just got the 5th spot with the CWS. Those other names, maybe Mills.

not today: It seems like A.Rosario can’t get an everyday job,it’s time to drop and add a boring player(Andurs,Adames),upside player(Josh Rojas),or just bench him,wait and see?
Joe Pisapia: Yes. Yes, it is. Boring everyday players > bad bench players who can’t play defense.
Joe Pisapia: Alright ya’ll thanks for the questions! It’s TUMA TIME!
Brendan Tuma: Hello! I’m excited to be here
Brendan Tuma: Gonna start tackling these questions now. Just a reminder before we get started that you can always feel free to reach out with questions anytime on Twitter @toomuchtuma
Brendan Tuma: https://twitter.com/toomuchtuma
Brendan Tuma: Okay here we go

Randy: Jose Abreu or springer or marte?
Brendan Tuma: Abreu for me. I’m scared off by Springer’s oblique right now

Houzer: Paxton vs Robbie Ray for the final round pick. H2H Cats Re-draft league
Brendan Tuma: Both are decent dart throws. I’ll say Paxton as Ray’s WHIP will always be a killer

Angelus Novus: How many total pitchers would you advise rostering in a 12 team 5×5 (23 players) Yahoo standard
Brendan Tuma: Depends if it’s a daily or weekly league. In a daily league I’d roster extra pitchers so I can cycle in relievers, especially undervalued non-closers like Freddy Peralta and Alex Reyes

Zach92: Gallen or Santandor as my last round keeper? H2H points league
Brendan Tuma: As in Zac Gallen? Definitely him

Linden: I’m on the clock. Who you like better this season. Positions don’t matter. Rizzo, Goldschmidt, Brantley, S.Marte, Altuvie
Brendan Tuma: Altuve

Ben: 10 Team Keeper League. Keeping Cole, Bellinger, Machado, Robert, and Springer. Picking at 9 and will have my pick of the following SPs. Any preference? Strasburg, Maeda, Burnes, Lynn.
Brendan Tuma: Maeda – he joined Bieber and deGrom as the only 3 SPs to finish top-5 in both xFIP and xERA last season

Dylan C: Thoughts on Alec Bohm this year?
Brendan Tuma: Such a strong hit tool but surprisingly not many homers in his rookie season. I like him. But I like Ke’Bryan Hayes more..

John: Thoughts on Kikuchi is his spring for real?
Brendan Tuma: It’s not just his spring! The underlying stats were encouraging last year and there was an uptick in velocity. He’s free in drafts. I’d roll the dice

dave in slc: in a keeper league are there any injured guys you would target to put on il this yr and have value for next yr?
Brendan Tuma: The big 3 TJ guys – Sale, Syndergaard, Severino

dave in slc: are there any stars that you are pretty sure will be traded that if you played in an “only” league you would avoid?
Brendan Tuma: I guess Trevor Story is the only one I’d be overly concerned about

Dustino: I need a deep deep AL Only sleeper hitter and pitcher to stash on the bench in a 10 team league that drafts 35 spots? 25 starters and 10 bench
Brendan Tuma: Taylor Trammell for speed upside. Is that not deep enough though?

Doug: What’s the first round you take an RP in Standard 5×5 roto with 9 total P spots?
Brendan Tuma: I’m pretty comfortable waiting for the Will Smith / Amir Garrett / Jordan Romano range. Be ready to strike around then

Linden: who you like better in a Re-draft league Stroman or Berrios?
Brendan Tuma: Stroman’s spring has been strong. I think he has more upside

Randy: castillI or woodruff?
Brendan Tuma: I’ve really come on board with Woodruff lately. He rated out very strongly according to both FIP and Baseball Savant metrics. The only question with him is workload, as his career-high in the bigs is 121 2/3 IP. But there isn’t really reason to think he can’t reach 170

Slice: Yay or nay on Matt Olson’s ADP of 85ish? I’m seeing experts torn on him.
Brendan Tuma: I’m saying yay. He had a dreadful BABIP season in 2020. It was .227 after being .292 and .300 the past two years. I wouldn’t call him “must-have” but I like him there
Brendan Tuma: UGH Eloy out 5-6 months

John: How much does Ryan Jeffers cut into Mitch Garvers playing time? Is it worth owing both?
Brendan Tuma: Never worth rostering two catchers from the same team unless it’s the deepest league. I like Garver for his upside (best fantasy catcher on a per-game basis in 2019)

Nick: Is Tim Anderson have enough potential to draft before Bogaerts or Seager?
Brendan Tuma: Not for me. Seager is a borderline first-round hitter who often is available in the third. Seager was GREAT last year and he even under performed his Statcast numbers. And X is just as safe as they come. Still like TA, but he’s a tick below those guys, especially Seager

HowAJerryEat: How much does Andrew Vaughn go up with the Eloy injury?
Brendan Tuma: I don’t know how much the Eloy injury really changes anything. I was already IN IN on Vaughn. He’s a priority late round target in drafts right now. Maybe reach a round earlier than you otherwise would’ve

Michael C: Hey Brendan! I am pick 12- in a H2H Roto league. Is it crazy to reach for a Bauer or Giolito type to ensure I get pitching? Or should I take the 2 hitters and hope for the best! Thanks in advance!
Brendan Tuma: Hello! I’d get at least on SP – Bauer is my preference after the big 3. But make sure you get at least one SP. I’d probably go one SP, one hitter. And I’d probably go at least one SP at the 3/4 turn as well

John: Does Amir Garrett have the CIN closers job, and do you see him keeping it all year? Thanks, Brendan great job.
Brendan Tuma: Hey John, and thanks! The Reds haven’t officially named him closer but it certainly looks like the job is his. He had a minor forearm issue but has struck out all six batters he has faced this spring (LOL). Meanwhile, Lucas Sims is pitching again but hasn’t looked as sharp. Garrett might be my favorite reliever target in saves-only leagues right now

Guest: What are your thoughts on Josh Bell having a bounce back season?
Brendan Tuma: His spring has been encouraging, and he was an in-game video guy from last season. I’m not banking on it. I’d rather just draft Andrew Vaughn later to fill first base. But if I drafted Bell, which is reasonable at his ADP, I’d also want to get a backup plan like Vaughn

Joe S: h2h Keeper league. i have Acuna, Tatis, Devers, Tucker and Alvarez. Also have 1st overall in the draft. Should i take Gleyber Torres for the future, or draft someone like Abreu, Lemahieu or Giolito instead?
Brendan Tuma: Definitely Giolito for me, especially since you don’t have any SPs yet

Michael C: Ok, I am going to pencil in a SP at my pick 12-Roto-H2H swing. Who do you take, Bauer, Yu, or Giolito, or a Nola? (I am a bit concerned about the league cracking down on Foreign substances – See Bauer Spin rate…)
Brendan Tuma: Bauer is my SP4. They aren’t going to be handing out punishments for the spin rate stuff right away. Don’t worry about that. The Dodgers are letting Bauer do his thing. He’ll win a lot of games and pitch deep into them too. My next 3 would be Giolito, Nola, Yu in that order. But these guys are all in a similar-ish tier

Zach92: Have a H2H points keeper league tonight. Debating between Gallen and Santandor for my last round keeper. Would be a no brainer if Gallen was healthy. Who would you chose? Keeping Judge and Vlad Jr. As late keepers as well.
Brendan Tuma: It’s still Gallen, especially if that keeps him in play for 2022. Congrats on Vlad. I’m pretty damn excited to see what he does…

Angelus Novus: Who are the best non-closing relievers who might be available pick 250 or later? Need some solid ratio guys to fill out my staff
Brendan Tuma: So I’m going to use FantasyPros latest ADP for this. One sec
Brendan Tuma: Freddy Peralta and Alex Reyes both come to mind. They could reach 100 IP with tons of strikeouts. I’m also all over Garrett Crochet of the White Sox. First-round pick last year is going to be used a setup man and throws 100 from the left side. Tejay Antone is a name to monitor as well

Andre: I have a 10tm keep forever league that uses OBP and QS draft coming up early next week…keepers have been submitted (I have Acuna, Yelich, Trout, T. Turner, W.Franco). I also have 2 picks in each of the first 3 rounds…..all picks are between 3rd and 6th in the rounds. All of the top pitchers, outside Castillo have been kept…would a good strategy be to pound hitting hard with these early picks (looking at Devers/Alonso/Voit/Albies in round 1) and take pitchers like Lance Lynn and build that way. Or try and chase the Maeda/Castillo/Sonny Gray level pitchers and backfill offense later?
Brendan Tuma: I’d try and get some high end pitching. To be clear, Sonny Gray is NOT in the same tier as Maeda/Castillo. I’d be thrilled to get those two with your first-rounders. I’d take both over those bats (okay maybe Devers due to the age)

Joe S: So, to continue the question, you suggested i take Giolito. With you saying i should take a SP, i also have the choices of Nola, Darvish, Castillo, Snell, Flaherty and Buehler. Still Giolito or someone else? thanks for the help!
Brendan Tuma: I have Giolito as SP5 – I’d rank them Giolito, Nola, Buehler, Darvish, Castillo, Flaherty, Snell

John: Does Nate Pearson have an impact this year? What type of #’s do you project?
Brendan Tuma: UGH his latest injury is killer. I don’t expect him to make a big impact in fantasy. Honestly his best shot is as a Freddy Peralta/Alex Reyes 100-IP reliever role. He still has value in dynasty leagues but questions remain about his ability to hold up as a starter
Brendan Tuma: Basically, Pearson doesn’t need to be rostered in any 12-team redraft right now, especially because he’s hurt

Guest: Freeman or Seager in the late first early second?
Brendan Tuma: Freddie Freeman for sure. Seager might join him in this draft range next year, but he’s going in the third right now. Much cheaper despite similar expected stats

Guest: Hi Team FantasyPros! My draft is tomorrow night and I need some help with holds. Who are your top pitchers for this annoying category excluding Devin Williams?
Brendan Tuma: Hello guest! Holds aren’t annoying, they’re awesome!

I actually wrote a saves plus holds league primer the other day and you can read it here: https://www.fantasypros.com/2021/03/saves-plus-holds-leagues-primer-20…
Brendan Tuma: But for a short answer I’m targeting DW, Tanner Rainey, Chad Green, Mike Mayers, Freddy Peralta, Alex Reyes, Garrett Crochet

Chad: Would you accept this trade? I would receive Robbie Ray and Villar and give up Chris Taylor and Nick Madgrial.
Brendan Tuma: Definitely not

Ryan C.: H2H keeper OBP. cant decide on the best value, here are my top options pick two. abreu – 6th, machado 4th, tucker 8th, meadows 8th, morton 12th, carrasco 13th, strasburg 8th
Brendan Tuma: Haha these are all decently fair values. I’d go Tucker 8th definitely. And then one of Machado/Abreu

trevor: already had my auction draft, ended up with only $1 for 2B and SS, how quickly should i be trying to replace dylan moore and carlos correa, any cheap MI suggestions, standard 5 hitting, except OBP instead of average
Brendan Tuma: I assume Andres Gimenez is already rostered? What about Ty France? Also I don’t think you need to replace Correa at all

Ryan C.: thank you! you know its good when you have to make a tough decision
Brendan Tuma: Anytime!!

Dan: 2nd overall supplemental pick in a long running (34 years) deep dynasty league (+4 teams) 5×5 roto (Sv+H). Can pick FA’s that do not have rookie status. Arozarena is going 1, looking at Javier, Valdez, Means, Eliser Hernandez, Kim, Cronenworth, Santander and Devin Williams (Sv+H League). We have good young pitchers (Castillo, Dunning, Meyer, Hamcock, Lodolo, Keller Wright, Mize, Howard) and a couple vets (Sale, Odorizzi, Mikolas). Good OF (Betts, Springer, Schwarber) Leaning towards DWill because pen is thin (Bummer, Lugo, Barnes Stanek). Can DWill be a top level setup/closer for 5+ years?
Brendan Tuma: I’m very okay with going Devin Williams there, though you can never predict reliever dominance 5 years out haha

JRock76: What do you think of Cody Heuer? Could he have mixed league dynasty value even without closing? (12-team H2H categories)
Brendan Tuma: He could be a ratios guy for sure! The White Sox pen is actually pretty loaded. They’re using Kopech and Crochet in relief too. Plus Hendriks/Bummer. There are a decent number of middle-relief RPs I’d take over Heuer, but he’s not bad at all

Han Darris: Any concerns over innings limits for Blake Snell? Feels like forever since he’s been healthy for a full season.
Brendan Tuma: So much focus on Snell has been about his innings. But what he really needs is to just command his secondary pitches better. I’m out on him at his ADP. I don’t see the big workload and it’s not as if the ratios are otherworldly

Andy: Which starting pitchers are undervalued/bounce back candidates?
Brendan Tuma: I’m buying into Chris Paddack since he’s so cheap. He’s reportedly “embraced analytics” over the offseason. Focusing on fastball spin and efficiency

trevor: would you favor andres gimenez over tommy edman?
Brendan Tuma: I’d go Edman over Gimenez straight up. But I like the value on Gimenez more
Brendan Tuma: Just a reminder everyone as I approach my final 20 minutes. Reach out anytime on Twitter! @toomuchtuma
Brendan Tuma: https://twitter.com/toomuchtuma

Steven: Two shortstop questions: 1. What are your expectations for Carlos Correa this year? and 2. When do you think Bobby Witt Jr. will get called up. To give you context, I traded Trea Turner for Walker Buehler and Bobby Witt Jr (I’m in a keeper league) and I have the #1 overall pick and Correa is available.
Brendan Tuma: I think Correa will be good this year. Not amazing. But not bad. I can’t see him disappointing on his ADP. He’s probably the last of the “usable” starting SSs, so for that reason I’m in on him.

And I love Witt. Kinda impossible to say when he’s up but I’m banking on seeing him in 2021. June?

Dustino: Gimenez or Ty France all things being equal?
Brendan Tuma: Gimenez

Slice: Zach Plesac: ye or ne at pick 76?
Brendan Tuma: Oy. I’ve been a believer all offseason but am starting to get worried. I say ne

Guest: Glasnow is electric…ever take a step forward in innings per game?
Brendan Tuma: For Glasnow to take a step forward in his innings he’ll have to be more efficient. There’s also the Rays element. There’s been a lot of talk about his new slider (a third pitch, which he needs) this spring. But I want to see him have results before investing so early. I’m out on him at his ADP

trevor: thoughts on when kelenic will be called up, before or after memorial day?
Brendan Tuma: With the caveat being that it’s impossible to know, I’ll say before. I’m betting he’s up by the end of April and would be okay stashing in 12-team redraft

Gt: do you still value pitchers or go hitters early
Brendan Tuma: When I look at the 2021 fantasy baseball landscape with a wide lens, the number one thing I notice is that there aren’t many high-end SPs who will give a big workload with great ratios

I wrote about this in my roto draft strategy piece here https://www.fantasypros.com/2021/03/brendan-tumas-2021-fantasy-basebal…

Guest: Thoughts on Gleybar Torres??
Brendan Tuma: Reports were that he showed up to summer camp out of shape. I like him, but I’ll admit his ADP is a bit pricey
Brendan Tuma: Put it this way – I’d rather trade for him in a keeper league than draft him at ADP in redraft

Dylan C: Fellas! Big fan of you all…what do you think of my team? I had 4th pick in an 8×8 cat h2h league

runs hits hr rbi sb BB avg SLG
W L K’s ERA WHIP K/9 QS and SV+H

in order of my draft:
Gerit cole
Jack Flaherty
Cody Bellenger
Bo Bichette (steal in 4th)
Kenta Maeda
Yordan Alvarez
Giancarlo!
Ketel Marte
Alec Bohm (I like him a lot this year)
Zach Wheeler
Nick Anderson
Yasmani Grandal
Kenley Jensen
Ian Happ
Max Kepler (keeper from last year)
Yates (already picked up romano)
Alex Kiriloff (thanks to all of you!)
Jorge Polanco
Austin Riley
Dallas Keuchel
Archie Bradley
Tony Gonsolin (Love this guy, shocked you all dont hype him up more! hes going to get innings on this team)
Hunter Dozier
Brendan Tuma: Haha on the surface this looks pretty strong! Love going pitching early as I discussed above

Alex: do you see trey mancini as a top 10 1b end of year?
Brendan Tuma: Definitely has the potential to do that. He’s a great value pick at his ADP

TimmyMac: What are you thoughts on Tarik Skubal?
Brendan Tuma: Good late-round target. He’s young so expect some inconsistencies, but he has a new split-change and is making it a priority to throw more secondary offering this year. I like that he’s making adjustments

trevor: for a saves/holds league do you favor tyler duffey, d. castillo, or trevor may
Brendan Tuma: Definitely Tyler Duffey. Great ratiots
Brendan Tuma: ATTENTION: Andrew Vaughn is playing left field tomorrow!
Brendan Tuma: Okay back to the questions

Jeff T: Kelenic or Luis Robert for 2022
Brendan Tuma: Feels crazy to say but…Kelenic

Drew R: Which starting pitcher ranked outside the top 40 SP do you think has a chance to finish the season ranked top 10 ?
Brendan Tuma: Maybe it won’t be top-10, but Aaron Civale is my favorite SP outside the top-40. New, shortened arm path (Which is the route Giolito took to his breakout). Also, who are we to bet against Cleveland pitchers at this point?

Matt: Are you confident in a Garver bounce back? A year off helping Posey get healthy and rebounding?
Brendan Tuma: Idk if I can definitively say I’m confident, but the price is cheap enough that I’m willing to roll with him as my only catcher in a one-catcher league

Guest: Draft advice – 12 team 5×5 – 11th overall pick – if Bieber is there I think for sure he is the move – if not, Story OR JRam? – and then on the swing – Bauer OR Darvish? Thanks!
Brendan Tuma: Gotta get at least one SP with one of your first two picks. Yes Bieber if he’s available. My next 3 SPs go Bauer, Giolito, Nola. I’d go Trea Turner if available. If not it’s a toss up between Story/JRam

Drew R: Which Tier 3 closer will end the season Tier 1 ?
Brendan Tuma: Amir Garrett, Jordan Romano

jmturner7282@yahoo.com: Is there something wrong with soto..i pick 5th..out of 8 teams..he has no home runs and no rbi this spring..i heard he was sick..but not with covid..i was going to pick him first but im not sure now..please help..im glad baseball is back..
Brendan Tuma: Nothing is wrong with Soto. Spring stats are fun but in a case like this they’re meaningless

Luke: How does the injury to Zac Gallen affect his rank in a dynasty format? Lance Lynn, Max Fried and Jesus Luzardo are all options to me as well.
Brendan Tuma: If I’m rebuilding in dynasty I’d try pretty hard to trade for Gallen right now. Shouldn’t affect him long term at all. If I’m contending, then it’s a test of patience

Guest: Who do you think the first rookie to be called up this season that doesn’t make the opening day roster?
Brendan Tuma: I’m expecting Vaughn to make the Opening Day roster. So I’ll say a tie between Kirilloff/Kelenic. I expect both to be up right when service time considerations pass. I actually wrote about rookies here, which published today: https://www.fantasypros.com/2021/03/top-20-rookies-2021-fantasy-baseba…

Guest: Do you Still Kelenic or Vaughn (WhiteSox) make the opening day roster?
Brendan Tuma: I think Vaughn makes the Opening Day roster yeah. He’s playing LF tomorrow (Friday). Kelenic I think we’ll have to wait a few weeks

guest: Who are some of the top early-season pickups you expect to be in line to earn saves sooner than later?
Brendan Tuma: Assuming we aren’t talking “obvious” guys like Amir Garrett, Will Smith, Jordan Romano – I’ll say I’m stashing Nick Wittgren where I can (Cleveland). Lots of smoke around him getting save chances.

DanP: All of you guys are awesome!!! Thanks for doing this live chat,,
Brendan Tuma: Thank YOU for participating

John: Which N.L. closers are most likely to lose their jobs by June?
Brendan Tuma: Richard Rodriguez feels like a decent bet to be traded from the Pirates this year. Not confident in Anthony Bass of Marlins. Who knows when it comes to Daniel Bard / Joakim Soria

Guest: In a keeper league. Keepers are Bellinger, Starling Marte, Cruz, and McNeil. I don’t feel great about these keepers. Any advise on how to start my draft and recover? Thanks.
Brendan Tuma: Spend the entire year “rebuilding” in order to set yourself up for a 2-4 year run starting in 2022. Keep Bellinger. Every other move you make this year should be at the expense of 2021. Aggressive rebuilds woo!

Guest: Who do you think will contend with Mondesi in steals this year?
Brendan Tuma: Aside from the obvious Trea Turner, I’d expect Luis Robert. Then some deep sleeper targets are Andres Gimenez and Taylor Trammell

Slice: Eloy Jimenez’s injury sucks. All injuries suck. Which guys have more subtle, lingering injuries causing you to fade them? Nothing worse than an injured roster.
Brendan Tuma: Yeah in my drafts leading up to Opening Day I’m just not touching any injured guys – Eloy, Springer, Gallen, Cookie. Nick Anderson might have something going on. Pomeranz too. Just don’t want to deal with it
Brendan Tuma: Okay everyone that concludes my hour! I’ll be back at 6 PM EST – can’t wait!!!
Mario Mergola: Hey everyone, Mario here. Brendan’s a tough act to follow, but let’s start knocking out these questions…

Chris: Does Altuve bounce back?
Mario Mergola: Yes, but it’s relative. His numbers were impossibly bad in 2020 (a .219 average for a career .311 hitter!). It’s hard to expect he gets all the way back to his form, but “bounce back”? Yea.

Guest: Very pitcher heavy auction league. Have Darvish and Nola very cheap as keepers. Would you pay a lot of DeGrom to round out a strong rotation?
Mario Mergola: Definitely. Few SP can match what deGrom has done in a given season. He’s been dominating for long enough now that he’s worth the risk before the eventual demise. Especially if you have built-in savings, spend here.

Chris: Pete Alonso 40hrs, yes or no?
Mario Mergola: Going to say no. He’s got the power (obviously), but 40 HRs is a beast of a milestone Mike Trout and Bryce Harper have a combined three 40-HR seasons. It’s not easy.

Michael C: Hey Mario! I am pick 12- in a H2H Roto league. Is it crazy to reach for a Bauer or Giolito type to ensure I get pitching? Or should I take the 2 hitters and hope for the best! Thanks in advance!
Mario Mergola: I love draft strategy questions, so keep these coming. Quite frankly, if you don’t get a pitcher at the very end of round 1/start of round 2, you’re in a tough spot. That drives any idea of “value” for me. So I’d take the SP even if you call it a reach today. You’ll probably regret passing on one if you see 5-6 start going off the draft board before your next pick.

Steven: Hi Mario. Is this the year Joey Gallo finally puts it all together? What are your thoughts/expectations for him?
Mario Mergola: You’re talking to one of the biggest Gallo believers from years ago, so I share your pain in waiting for him. Honest answer? I don’t think so. We all love the power, but there’s a limit to what BA we can stomach. 4-year span of: .209, .206, .253., and .181. One of those is not like the other… he’s probably going to sink BA too much.

Chris: Who are some guys that you love in obp formats?
Mario Mergola: OBP leagues make someone like Freddie Freeman a must own. Bryce Harper jumps up the list. Another guy? Alex Bregman, which is big considering how much he is discounted in standard formats. A nice inexpensive option might be Brandon Nimmo.

Dustino: Who ends up with the most saves in Cleveland this year?
Mario Mergola: Don’t we have to say James Karinchak? I know his job isn’t secure, per se, but he’s clearly talented enough and, unless we hear otherwise, he’s the guy.

Cooper: I’m at the turn of a 12 man league with picks 12/13 I’m going to go best pitcher and best hitter available. Is it worth taking a second SP at the 36/37 turn or should I go with a second and third hitter?
Mario Mergola: I do a million mock drafts (this isn’t just a cheap plug, I really do like FantasyPros’ Draft Simulator because it’s quick), and this year, I am finding that I can survive without going SP in that 3/4 round. It’s risky, of course, and feel out how the rest of your league is reacting to it, but I don’t think it’s necessary like I would have said in most years.

Steven: What are you expectations for Ian Anderson and Sixto Sanchez?
Mario Mergola: This feels so much more dangerous in a 162-game season than last year’s 60-game sprint. I love both of them, but we have to cap their innings. Period. If you can accept 100 innings as I nice, round number, then plan your team accordingly.

Daniel: Where do you come out on the great 2021 debate of loading up on pitchers early or letting others do that and instead loading up on hitters?
Mario Mergola: As I wrote above, I’m usually all-in on stacking pitchers. I’m breaking away from that in 2021. Yes, get the guys you like and the ones you expect to really soar, but do not draft SP because you feel like you have to fill those spots right now. There are plenty of late options.

Ryan C.: H2H keeper, need my keeper pitcher. Options are Strarburg 8th, Carrasco 13th, Morton 12th, Hand 10th, Berrios 7th
Mario Mergola: Strasburg is simply a risk-reward play. If you can handle the fact that he will almost certainly hit the IL at one point, he’s my answer. I personally love Berrios, but I couldn’t keep him over Strasburg for their prices.

Mike: Hey Mario – need someone to replace Eloy. I play in a shallow league – who to add? Haniger, Solak, Segura, Winker, Aaron Hicks
Mario Mergola: Sorry Mike, today’s news was not kind to you 🙁

Brendan mentioned this during his hour, and I actually added Andrew Vaughn in one of my leagues. If he’s there, grab him. Otherwise, I like Solak and Hicks. Hicks has the deep lineup. Solak has the “I should have been a breakout” from 2020.

Tyler: In, a H2H Category league, I already have Snell and Bauer as keepers. Do I take another ace in the first 2-3 rounds?
Mario Mergola: At that point, only if one falls to you and you can’t help yourself. Otherwise, you can build off that base. I would definitely target some younger arms later though. You’ll need to replace those keepers eventually and, if you aren’t adding some early, then do it later.

Guest: How about Ohtani? Worth keeping or should I offload?
Mario Mergola: It always sounds silly to type this, but if Ohtani is “one person” (meaning, the league treats him as one player), his value skyrockets to the point where he is usually worth keeper consideration. If he’s two people (Ohtani – H and Ohtani – P), I don’t like him as much.

Daniel: I don’t believe in Kevin Gausman, even in that park. Am I wrong?
Mario Mergola: You’re not the only one. I’ve passed on him in every single draft when he was showing good value. So really, are we wrong?

I don’t think so….

John: Who’s the 1 SP you think will jump from outside the top 75 preseason, to top 25 by end of season?
Mario Mergola: Using FantasyPros’ ADP as a loose gauge…I really liked Kwang Hyun Kim before he started battling some injuries. Yusei Kikuchi is getting a lot of buzz and, while I don’t think he gets into top-25, he’s a viable candidate for a massive boost from his ADP

Jim: Upcoming keeper league draft. Please rank the following who are available….. Burnes, I Anderson, Kelenic, Syndergaard
Mario Mergola: If you’re a trade-heavy fantasy manager, then Kelenic might be the guy to grab just so you can sell into this incredible hype. Otherwise, I think I have it in the exact order you listed. Burnes, Ian, Kelenic, Syndergaard

Daniel: Are you buying Hoskins as a potential sleeper this year?
Mario Mergola: He’s so cheap (139 ADP) that I don’t mind taking a chance on him at all. I wouldn’t reach, though.

Joe: we use k/9 instead of Ks, thoughts on rostering only high K closers and setup guys and putting wins?
Mario Mergola: I’ve tried this and the results were…. not great haha!

The problem is that you really can’t miss on those K/9 guys. They will get you a few cheap wins, too, and that almost makes you want to attack wins instead of punting it. Really, I’d just prioritize high-K SP and then stack RP (not necessarily closers) who will contribute there, as well.

Doug: What”s your outlook and where are you ranking Yordon Alvarez this year?
Mario Mergola: Oh man, what a loaded (great) question. Can’t we picture a scenario in which he hits for both power and average?! It’s tantalizing. But of course, he’s an injury risk.

Long story short, I’m buying because of the upside. It’s tremendous. I’m also trying to have backup plans in place.
Mario Mergola: I didn’t answer the ranking part of the question. He’s 79 ADP right now (so 6th-ish round). I’d draft him before that, because someone in most leagues probably will in the coming days.
Mario Mergola: I’m also going to take this time to let everyone know that I’m really active on Twitter, so feel free to ask anything there and I’ll get to it ASAP: https://twitter.com/MarioMergola
Mario Mergola: We’re halfway through! So back to some questions…

Daniel: In my mock drafts, I have generally been finding a catcher very late (this is a 16-team, 1 catcher league). Who would you target at C in rounds 20-25?
Mario Mergola: I’m not sure he gets that late, but I like Keibert Ruiz. The fantasy darling right now is Will Smith, but Ruiz has a great prospect pedigree and, if you’re digging deep, he’s someone who could surprise.

Guest: I lost out on Mondesi, Robert, and Gimenez for SBs. Does Myles Straw have enough offense to warrant picking him up for SBs? Or even Hampson? Thanks!
Mario Mergola: You almost have to roll the dice with Straw. If he bats leadoff and if he gets on base and if they let him run, etc.

The reality? Even with all those ifs, it’s hard to find too many others who can steal as many bases. So yes, I add Straw.

I also do like Hampson, but I think Straw is the right answer for speed.

Joe: Thanks on the earlier question. We are NL only. We do OBP instead of BA, who are some names that get a big bump in your mind, with that change?
Mario Mergola: Going with NL only, you also throw Votto into the mix (pending health). Tommy Pham is a good one. And Rhys Hoskins. All players who get a boost in OBP.

Charles: Looking for a dynasty player to be targeting at the end of my draft to build around for the next few years. who would you be targeting
Mario Mergola: I’d probably need more information (namely, are most of the top keeper-type players already gone)? But the rough answer is to go after a high-upside SP, even if only for trade bait. If the world is open to you, then I love MacKenzie Gore as a future staple.

John: #9 pick points league. Yelich, Turner or Bieber? Second round Bellinger, Bauer or Machado? Thanks!
Mario Mergola: Points leagues almost always skew toward SP because IP carry such a high weight. If that’s true for you, then it’s honestly Bieber and Bauer. If not, I probably go Bieber and Bellinger.

Stephen: In a head to head categories league (HR/RBI/R/SB/OBP/SLG) is it okay to punt on steals?
Mario Mergola: Steals have become so scarce, where you know the source, that it’s actually a little more difficult to punt than it sounds. If Adalberto Mondesi is sitting there and you like no other options, why not add him and suddenly be ahead of the curve? That can be said about a few players (Myles Straw, as I wrote earlier)

Daniel: Is this the year Nellie Cruz declines due to Father Time? Or are you still drafting with confidence? (Side question: How much do you care about drafting DHs who have to sit in the UTIL spot?)
Mario Mergola: Second question first. I used to care a lot. Not anymore. There are many multi-eligible position players who can offset the UTIL clog of Cruz.

As for Father Time, I’m not sure how we can expect Cruz to lose that battle. He keeps winning. The better news is that people keep wanting him to suddenly fall flat, so you probably aren’t paying a premium for him. I’d be totally fine drafting Cruz and, if I’m wrong, accept that the risk was always there.

Guest: Realistic top end for Nola? 250 K, 15 W?
Mario Mergola: Nola had his best season in 2018, where he finished third in the Cy Young voting. That year? 224 Ks. The next season? 229.

250 is a 10% jump from there, and I don’t see it happening after throwing 71.1 innings in a short season.

Slice: I’m new to roto leagues and am in a 12-team roto 5×5. With 9 pitchers, how do you distribute those spots between SPs and RPs to balance out saves and wins?
Mario Mergola: Same approach with the high-end SP as usual (you want some baseline to be able to compete). I’ve noticed myself placing a higher emphasis on RP in those P-only slots, though, mainly because I can potentially get stats every day.

So really, I’ve gone with 4-5 SPs who are solid or better, 3ish closers, 1-2 RP who can contribute somewhere, and then my bench is SP with upside.

Daniel: Off the radar prospect who you are drafting late and will provide sneaky value a bit later into the season?
Mario Mergola: Alek Kirilloff, Heliot Ramos, and Jared Kelenic

Kearns: h2h – Roto – Rank in order. Bauer, Yu, Giolito? Thks!
Mario Mergola: You happened to pick three SP I don’t particularly love, but that’s the right order: Bauer, Yu, Giolito.

Charles: Back to my Dynasty question 10 team H2H(Only get one dynasty player). I was thinking of targeting a Bobby Witt, Rutchman or Franco
Mario Mergola: Oh, if Wander Franco is there, he’s the one.

Guest: Where do you feel comfortable taking zac Gallen in a ten team draft?
Mario Mergola: You weren’t going to find a bigger Zac Gallen fan than me a few weeks ago. Now, I’m weeping along with the rest of you. Still, I’m drafting him only if he falls 1-2 rounds. The way I’m playing it is… if he sits at or near the top of the draft board for at least a round, I’m taking him if I reach a point where I like no one else at that spot.

dave in slc: who are some high batting avg guys you like to offset all the bad ones?
Mario Mergola: I find myself faced with this exact problem in countless drafts, so I’m taking from experience here:

Nick Madrigal becomes a near-must. Jeff McNeil files up the draft board. And Charlie Blackmon is a sneaky option.

Daniel: Is Ty France for real?
Mario Mergola: I’m groaning as I type this… Yes. A little. Really, he’s hit his way into the conversation where he earned a spot in a lineup. That’s enough for me. Think about how many hitters we normally draft on speculation alone…

Daniel: Is there any scenario where you come away with 2 SPs after the first two rounds of a 16 team draft?
Mario Mergola: If it’s a points league, you probably reach to make it happen because IP are so valuable.

Chris: Luis arraez in deep leagues for average?
Mario Mergola: FantasyPros projections has him literally first in the league in batting average. I wouldn’t use pen when writing his name for the batting title, but you will likely get much more than you pay at his ADP.

Guest: Mario, I’m in a H2H league and we are adding 2 keepers with a dynasty player that we can keep as long as we want at the draft position he was taken in. Who should I be targeting for that dynasty player and in what round for a dynasty type player ( I’m a beaver fan and would love Rutschman but I know he will be targeted by others in my league as well ). I’m thinking a power/speed combo wouldn’t be a bad idea so maybe Boby Witt Jr. THoughts?

Thanks
Mario Mergola: These types of dynasty/keeper leagues usually have players go off the board much earlier than you’d think. So number 1 rule: be aggressive. If you want Rutschman, don’t be afraid to lock him in early (not crazy, but you’ll see when Wander Franco gets drafted and need to act quickly after that). But really, all top prospects are in play (like Witt, Gore, etc.) at that point.

Lou: Please these players on IL for keeper purposes. Sale, Clevinger, Noah, Severino
Mario Mergola: Not an easy task because of the obvious unknowns, but I’ll go Sale, Noah, Severino, Clevinger.

Forrest: Do you like Kolten Wong or Ty France? I’m light at infield after going for Soto and Tatis early in the auction. I also have Grisham to help with steals.

Also, should we be worried about Soto’s lackluster spring performance?
Mario Mergola: Personally, Ty France.

I wouldn’t worry about Soto at all and, if anything, I’m glad he isn’t tearing it up in Spring Training. He’s a legitimate top-two pick this year. He’s falling a few spots because of ST.
Mario Mergola: 2-minute warning for me before I turn it over to Dan Harris!

Slice: Another guy I’ve seen experts divided on: Zach Plesac. Do you like him at pick 76?
Mario Mergola: I was buying heavily into him early, but we have to note that his FIP (3.39) was much higher than his ERA (2.28). That’s a huge cause for concern of regression. I still like him, and I do like him there, but I probably will wait for him to fall a bit now that people are souring.
Dan Harris: Buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Time is up, my friend.
Mario Mergola: Alright, my time is up! Thanks so much and, once again, ask me whatever I missed at https://twitter.com/MarioMergola
Mario Mergola: OK OK OK
Mario Mergola: DAN TIME
Dan Harris: DAN TIME!
Dan Harris: Let’s roll!

Guest: My late round target this year is Mark CanHA. Do you see him going for 30/100? Thanks in advance
Dan Harris: I do not see him going 30/100, no. I mean, he never has, there’s nothing to suggest some UBER crazy breakout is coming. But I do like him as a late-round sleeper, for sure. Showed last year the gains in walk rate were legit. Quiet quality player really late.

Steve: Picking 1 in a H2H Cats/10 Team/ Snake Going Betts at 1. I think Corey Seager could make a huge run for MVP. Thinking Seager/Ace at 20-21…You like that or Hitter/Hitter or Ace/Ace??
Dan Harris: Totally fine with that. I do like Seager, too, and think he is high on the “player I could see randomly finishing top-5 overall” train. So, no issues with it.

Lou: I ended up with too many OF-only hitters in a 10 team HTH Category mixed league with 5 OF slots. Which of these would you consider dropping, in order: Corey Dickerson, Senzel, Haniger, Meadows, Pham? I also have Acuña and Castellanos, with Ketel Marte once he qualifies.
Dan Harris: Dickerson is the easy drop for me. After that, in a 10-teamer, I’d probably prefer to hold the upside of Senzel over Haniger. Keep Meadows and Pham.

Chris: Do you think Rowdy Tellez will get a fair share of ABs this year despite all the talented bats in Toronto?
Dan Harris: It is really, really crowded there, but we’re already seeing life finding a way, right? Springer’s oblique, Biggio’s finger. I would not be relying on him, but I’d bet he gets 400-450 plate apperances

Luis Scola aka ryan lowe: Thoughts on danny jansen?
Dan Harris: There’s just so little to be optimistic about at this point. .160 batting average this spring. His defense should keep him in the lineup a lot, but if he can’t hit, Alejandro Kirk is probably eventually going to take the job. I’m passing on him, personally.

Steve: What are your thoughts on Ryan Mountcastle this season. Worth passing on the bigger name 1B for?
Dan Harris: I do love me some Mountcastle. He’ll hit for average (not as much as last year, of course) and the power should come. I don’t go into a draft thinking “I will pass on reliable first basemen because I can draft Mountcastle late” or anything, and he’s not a startable option at first in mixed leagues. But I am getting a lot of shares, that’s for sure

Aubron: Would you rather have Tapia or France in a 10 team H2H points league?
Dan Harris: In a 10-teamer, I’ll go for the upside of France. Tapia is partially valuable because of the steals, and that’s obviously not as important in a points league.

Daniel: Some thought Robles would lead off. Today, he hit ninth. Cause for concern?
Dan Harris: Unless I hear comments about it, no. And if he hits, he’s probably still valuable at his ADP anyway.

Guest: Rank these for multi-position middle infield backup in 10 team HTH Category mixed league: Fletcher, Edman, Polanco
Dan Harris: Edman. Big gap. Polanco. Small gap. Fletcher.

Jordan govoni: I’m in a 10 man h2h points league and drafting 9th considering nola in the second round with 12th pick, is it too far of a reach
Dan Harris: Nope, not at all. Pitching should be pushed up in points leagues anyway, and Nola is a top-8 option. No issues with that there.

Ron: Hello guys, and thank you so much for taking the time, to offer this for people that need assistance , I took a chance in my draft Monday night and drafted Jonathan India, with my last pick do you think he can emerge as a solid player this season?
Dan Harris: I do like India as a player, but I don’t think he’ll do much until perhaps the end of the season. In a redraft league, there are others I’d rather take my shot on. But, if you have a minor-league spot, I’m ok with holding him.

Ryan: Can you rank these players 1-4? Unsure of who to take in the 2nd/3rd round of my 10 team H2H points league. Nola/Buehler/Scherzer/Giolito
Dan Harris: Caveat that they are all really close, but I go Giolito-Nola-Buehler-Scherzer

Pat: Hey what round would you consider adding Ke’Bryan Hayes in 12 team points, hitters only?
Dan Harris: I would think 6th-7th round.

Derek: Hey guys, got a 8 team al only auction keeper league, kept 9 batters and only 1 pitcher (Glasnow) so will need to use much of my remaining budget on pitchers. Any pitchers I should target that will pitch above their perceived value ? Thanks
Dan Harris: His name is Marcus Stroman and the breakout is coming. Frankie Montas, too. Getting them cheap everywhere and expecting them to massively outperform their value.

Chris: Do you think Akil Baddoo keeps playing well enough to earn a full time job at some point this season?
Dan Harris: Nope, I don’t think so. He’s probably ready to play in the majors at this point but don’t think he makes an impact/holds a regular job this year

Brian Zollo: Really want to know your projections for Myles Straw
Dan Harris: This was actually the first year I didn’t do my own baseball projections, but the FantasyPros Zeile projection system has him at .257, four home runs, and 29 steals. Seems right in line for me.

Brian: how much value will eugenio suarez gain if he becomes SS eligible? if you knew this would happen, would he get a boost in the rankings?
Dan Harris: Any player who gains additional eligibility adds to his value, but it’s not huge for Suarez because third is thinner than shortstop anyway. So, having the ability to plug holes is nice, but you’re playing him at third all things being equal.

Mo: Other than Catcher and Closer, is there a position you would consider “punting”?
Dan Harris: Nah, you can’t really “punt” positions. Not drafting closers means you’re punting saves, and not taking a catcher till late is more of a reflection of the dearth of reliable options. Other than that, it’s mostly best player available.

trevor: dylan moore, tommy edman, andres gimenez, who ends the season with the most steals+homers
Dan Harris: Moore has the most combined. Book it.

James muniz: How do you feel about Corbin burnes this year?
Dan Harris: Insert heart emoji. Changed his pitch mix last year to better capitalize on his natural movement. He’s legit. Buying where I can.

Jordan: In a 12 team H2H 5×5 I have the 5th pick. Would it be too much of a reach to take Arenado with my 2nd pick? The guy at 4 loves him and i know for a fact we will not make it to me in round 3
Dan Harris: First rule is always that it’s your team so you can always do whatever makes you happy! But yeah, that’s way too much of a reach IMO. I have a hard time seeing how it would make your team better than just taking best player available.

Timmy: Harper or Seager in a points league?
Dan Harris: Both elite options, of course. But Harper for me.

Guest: Not sure if he’s been touched on yet – when is a good time to jump on Gallen?
Dan Harris: Haven’t touched on it in my time today, so here is my take. The uncertainty is a killer, but a fracture in the forearm is actually not the WORST injury to have as far as I’ve read. Just that with a fracture, it’s going to heal, as opposed to a soft tissue injury that could crop up all year. I have him at 122 right now, so that’s what, 10th/11th round in a 12-teamer? That’s where the reward outweighs the risk for me currently

trevor: my only ss is edman, i am strong in pitching (Cole, bieber, kershaw, hendricks, erod) should i trade ian anderson for correa
Dan Harris: Really depends on how you feel about your offense, but I’d roll with what I have for now. Think Edman will be plenty valuable, and having the deep rotation will be key this year. And there’s a lot of upside with Anderson. I’d probably stay put.

Brendan Ryan: Do you think Jack Flaherty will bounce back this year?
Dan Harris: Didn’t realize he needed to bounce back, but if he does, then yes. The Cardinals’ situation was so weird last year with all the COVID-19 stuff. Dude made just 9 starts and couldn’t get into a rhythm. And even then, he allowed nine innings in a September start. Absent that, he had a 3.13 ERA! Fully buying.

Frank: thoughts on Luzardo?
Dan Harris: Fully on board the train. I expect him to take a leap in performance this year, and with injuries being the overriding concern generally, it’s a lot easier to deal with them in a year when you can’t feel comfortable about anybody’s innings because of the 2020 season. I’m getting him where I can.

Slice: Fantasy drafts are won after the studs are gone. Who are the middle/late round guys you’ve got multiple shares of? And what do you think of my little list: Josh Bell, Will Smith and Ty France?
Dan Harris: Oh man, I am in on Josh Bell at this point, big time. Recording a pod with Joe tomorrow about potential league winners and he is high up on the list. I love Stroman, as anyone who has heard me talk knows, as well as Montas. An I think Andres Gimenez has legit 35-stolen base potential.

Matt: 6 keeper 12 team roto. Should I keep Eloy Jimenez for the future or keep someone else this year and move on?
Dan Harris: How long can you keep? If it’s multiple years and the cost is light, I’d stick with Eloy. If you have other decent options and it’s not more than a year or two, I’d let him go.

Aubron: Please rate my current SP: Kershaw, Greinke, Cookie, Morton, McCullers, Montas, Paxton, and Eduardo Rodriguez. My current RP are Neris and Colome. Do I have enough RP in this league. I was actually thinking about punting S/HDS. 10 team H2H points league?
Dan Harris: Neris and Colome are fine in a saves plus holds league, but I’d be concerned about them in a saves-only league. Your staff is a little weak up top, but I like the depth you’ve assembled.

Steve: Thoughts on Detroit SS Willi Castro this year?…Thinking of targeting him as a MI value.
Dan Harris: Yup, I like the call. Actually an error on me because I largely wrote him off, but he is raking in the spring, and there’s a lot more speed than he’s shown. Scooping him up late in drafts is a great idea.

Daniel: I was high on Willie Calhoun before the injury. Does he offer sneaky value at his current ADP?
Dan Harris: Ditto. I think Khris Davis’s injury is of minor help because at least when Calhoun returns, it eliminates the (small) chance that Davis had parked himself in the DH role. We have seen the upside, so I’m still drafting at his (basically free) ADP)

Matt: Olson or Myers? Musgrove or Luzardo?
Dan Harris: Olson and Luzardo for me. But I like both other options.

Guest: Do you think the Reds’ Suarez will gain SS eligibility in April? Will he bounce back at the plate and bat more towards his career BA of .260ish? Over/Under 35 HRs for Suarez?
Dan Harris: Depends on your eligibility rules, but certainly sounds like the plan is to play him there. Yeah, I think he bounces back to at least .250 – remember, the Reds were oddly snake bitten last year. Historically low BABIP and team batting average. They’ll all bounce back some.

Guest: Need to replace Eloy Jimenez – i play in a shallow league – who to add? Haniger, Segura, Solak, Winker
Dan Harris: Haniger has the best chance of being Eloy-lite IMO.

Omar: Who would you take with the first overall pick in a 12 team 6×6 h2h categories league with OBP and QS? Im stuck between Trout, Soto or Acuna
Dan Harris: Very close when you throw in OBP, but I’ll still go with Acuna. Upped his walk rate to 18.8% last year, so if his batting average bounces back to the .275-.280-sh range, his OBP will be monstrous (like the other two). Steals make the difference.

Kyle M: Do you have any information about David Price? is he worth a roster spot or should I look elsewhere?
Dan Harris: I don’t, but I expect him to mostly be a regular starter, to the extent the those exist for the Dodgers. But after missing a year and some injury-plagued seasons, I wouldn’t bank on more than 20 starts or so. Still worth a roster spot at the end of your draft.

Dustino: Friends or Seinfeld?
Dan Harris: Seinfeld is the greatest sitcom of all time. On this, there can be no debate.

trevor: amir garret or tyler duffey?
Dan Harris: Garrett by seven miles.

Drew R: Who do you see being the best pitcher on the deep Atlanta staff come years end?
Dan Harris: Probably Fried, but I rarely draft him at his price. I like Morton and Anderson better with their ADP. But purely, who will be the best? I will stick with Fried.

RW: Am I nuts for wanting to go deGrom and Darvish from the 5-spot in Rounds 1 + 2?
Dan Harris: I wouldn’t do it personally, but nah, not nuts. Starter-starter in the first two rounds is almost never crazy, but I admit I’d be taking a pitcher over deGrom there.

Arjun: I’m thinking of taking Giancarlo Stanton in round 8 at pick 110 in a 14 team h2h category. Is this a good time in my draft to take the risk or should I take a safer option such as Brantley or Bohm?
Dan Harris: All depends on your personal feelings on it, but I have Stanton the highest and ranked in the 80s, so I have no issues with it!

Slice: Hate to see injuries like Eloy Jimenez, especially so close to the start of the season. What other guys with more subtle injuries have you been fading? Nothing worse than fighting an injured roster in fantasy. One guy specifically, what do you think of Soroka?
Dan Harris: I do generally fade injuries, since it’s hard enough to avoid injuries in-season. Starting off with them is a recipe for disaster. Soroka is a fine pitcher and everything sounds good, but I’m just not going with him with the Achilles in a redraft format until super late. I’d rather be the guy who improperly faded injuries rather than bought in too early.

Daniel: Jared Walsh: Should I believe what my eyes saw in 2020?
Dan Harris: He’s not going to hit .293, no, but he should be a 20-homer bat with decent counting stats given his projected work. If he held the first base job all year, he could easily push 30 homers, but I think it comes with a .235-ish batting average, so bake that in

fidel_castro: What are your thoughts on a Gary Sanchez resurgence?
Dan Harris: I really want to believe in the bounceback, but every time I have been faced with the decision in a draft, I pass. The 15:2 K:BB ratio in the spring is just gross. There is potential, without question, but holy cow, cut down on the whiffs for like five seasons so I can justify drafting you PLEASE

Slice: I’ve seen some experts buying, some avoiding Matt Olson at his ADP of 85ish. Where do you fall?
Dan Harris: I’m a fade and have him at 101. I like Olson, I really do, but I don’t see that much of a difference in his production versus someone I can get 100 picks later (like a riskier version of him in Miguel Sano). I think his average will likely bounce back to “regular poor” rather than “terribly poor” so I’m not all out avoiding him. But not in on the ADP.

Jerry Garcia: I like Hunter Dozier’s mutli-position eligibility. You think he’ll be a productive hitter this year?
Dan Harris: I do, actually. I think last year was more of the outlier, rather than 2019. His batted ball data and approach portend success, so I’m getting him where I can. And he will probably be triple eligible soon enough!

Kyle M: a buddy of mine is a diehard Cardinals fan. Just got him to trade me Jeff McNeil for Dylan Carlson. How bad did I just f*** him? lol
Dan Harris: I certainly prefer McNeil, though Carson has a lot of upside! But yeah, you won the trade, and it’s not all that close.

Owen: With Brewers saying Hader will be more of a traditional closer this season does he move up a round or so? Do you think the 1 inning of work vs the multi inning role he was in gets him back on the elite track?
Dan Harris: Nah, I think he was fine last year other than a random game or two that inflated his numbers. I haven’t moved him based on the reports, since any uptick in saves should come with a downgrade in innings. Still the top RP, of course.

Guest: On the clock in my NFBC DC draft. 56th pick overall and I am stuck. I started with Betts, Bogaerts, and Rendon. I wanted to go pitcher here, but Springer is still on the board. The alternatives I am considering are Hendricks, Strasburg, or Alonso… Springer than hope for the best with my 65th pick?
Dan Harris: Your staff is probably going to be pretty, pretty weak if you don’t move soon. But those options aren’t all that much better than what should remain. Make sure to draft OF depth but I am ok to draft Springer there, even in a DC.

Guest: Final 2021 stats for Hayes from pirates?
Dan Harris: I’m thinking .270-18-10, with like 140 combined runs and RBI. Not a superstar, but more than serviceable.

Bob A: pick 6 in h2h roto. Pitcher or Turner?
Dan Harris: deGrom for me.

KO: Two part question, First Dinelson Lamet or Sandy Alcantara? And Second I know you aren’t for macro beers at the ball park, but what about quality craft beers for a couple bucks more?
Dan Harris: If my staff is strong otherwise, I’d go with the upside of Lamet. But otherwise, Alcantara. And Dan Harris doesn’t drink beer. I know, I know, I know. Just not a beer guy.

Guest: I was the last team to draft a catcher in a 10 team Yahoo league.. I got Kiner-Falefa because of his AB upside. Where would you rank Kiner-Falefa in a Yahoo league?
Dan Harris: If he’s catcher-eligible, probably 9th or 10th. He’ll chip in some speed, and his counting stats for runs scored should be much better than most catchers

Jim: Hey, man! Thanks for doing this! I have a question about the reported “deadened” ball; assuming this actually happens, which hitters/pitchers specifically see the biggest boost or downgrade? My quick thought: Robbie Ray might not give up so many home runs!!!
Dan Harris: I mean, he’s pitching for Toronto now, so I’m not sure there is going to be much of a downtick in home runs. I’m more concerned with wall scrapers, such a guys like Cavan Biggio (though the home park(s) should help). Trying not to let it factor in too much, though
Dan Harris: Ok guys, my time is up. Turning it over to big Mike Maher (pronounced MAYOR!). All yours, Mikey
Mike Maher: Thanks, Dan! And appreciate the tip on the pronunciation, even if my family technically pronounces it wrong.
Mike Maher: Hey, everyone. Excited to be here. You’re rolling with me for the next hour and then back to Brendan Tuma at 6pm.
Mike Maher: If anyone wants to connect on Twitter, you can find me @mikeMaher — https://twitter.com/mikeMaher. Always happy to talk about baseball on the timeline. Now, Let’s get started!

Slice: Seeing some uncertainty on whether we like Will Smith the catcher or if we don’t like Will Smith the catcher. Do we like Will Smith the catcher?
Mike Maher: Personally, I love Will Smith the catcher. And I’m not one to love catchers. I don’t have any shares this season outside of dynasty leagues just because I’m not willing to pay the price. But I like him as a player. But the playing time concerns worry me. And if he ends up being a 15-homer, .240 hitter…that’s replacement level production. No need to pay for it.

Aubron: Would you rather have Ty France or Austin Riley in a 10 team H2H points league?
Mike Maher: In a points league, Riley. More upside in points.

Dan C.: Dynasty question: Ohtani (pitcher), Burnes, Gore, or Paddack?
Mike Maher: I like all of these players in dynasty, though I don’t love Ohtani being pitcher-only. That drops him down to the bottom of the list when you combine it with his injury concerns. I’d probably go Burnes, Gore, Paddack, and then Ohtani.

Len: Strategy on closers this year? Do you take one and then wait? Ignore entirely?
Mike Maher: Depends on your format, obviously. I try not to ignore entirely, but I do usually wait on them unless the format really favors them or it’s a deeper league. But I usually sit out of the first tier or two and, try to grab a couple in those middle tiers, and then take a couple of fliers at the end of the draft

Doug: Why am I scared to draft Darvish at his ADP? I just can’t do it.
Mike Maher: Doug, I want you to know that you are not alone. We are in this together. I don’t hate Darvish, but I don’t love the ADP this year. I don’t have any shares.

Freddy: How do you feel about Dom Smith? I am concerned about both the wrist and the playing time, but the bat plays SO nicely in that lineup.
Mike Maher: You described my feelings about him here with your question. Like the bat, worry about everything else.

Daniel: Do you see Ian Anderson as a guy that could return top 20 SP value this year if things break right?
Mike Maher: I do, but it isn’t a crowded island to be on. I love Ian Anderson and think he has long-term ace upside. But there are concerns for this season, most notably–how many innings is he going to throw?

Guest: Thoughts on Myles Straw and do you think he can hit 50 steals?
Mike Maher: I don’t. I don’t know that he’ll play enough, that he’ll hit enough, or that he would even run enough. But I could easily see him topping 25 steals while batting…240? .250? I think most fantasy managers would take that production from him.

Matt: Does this pitching staff need work? Cole, Buehler, Hendricks, Morton, Pablo Lopez, Alcantara, means. Thx you guys are awesome
Mike Maher: Depends on the format and league size, but I think that’s a pretty solid rotation

Ted: James Paxton is going to be the biggest value in drafts this season. Tell me I am wrong!
Mike Maher: I like James Paxton to bounce back this year. And he’s essentially free at his current ADP. Dan Harris got him for a dollar in an auction we did last week

Mike: Who is a player (or players) who you’re higher on this year than most?
Mike Maher: I’ll give you a few: Ryan Mountcastle, Ian Anderson, Andrew Benintendi

Jackson: Is it Andrew Vaughn szn now with Eloy Jimenez likely out for the year?
Mike Maher: Not sure it affects him much because I think he was going to play anyway. But sure, the opportunities will be there if he proves he can produce right away
Mike Maher: And OF eligibility would be an added bonus if he does actually stick out there. We’ll have to see how that experiment goes, though…

Crash Davis: Who is the last guy in your rankings you feel comfortable with as your starting shortstop this year?
Mike Maher: Hmm, really good question. SS is pretty deep this year. But I have Tommy Edman at 18 and wouldn’t feel terrible about that as long as I filled out the rest of my lineup. Andres Gimenez is another player I like, but I don’t know that I would want him as my starting SS. He is a great MI target, though.

Guest: Do you think Alejandro Kirk makes the Jays’ roster, and if so, could he replace Jansen as the primary catcher?
Mike Maher: The answer to your first question is maybe, and the answer to your second question is yes. It might not be right away, but I think Kirk takes that job eventually.

Slice: I was surprised to see the average expert rank on Stanton to be higher than his ADP, according to this site’s rankings. Seeing as how he’s the embodiment of “bad taste in your mouth”, I have to ask what is there to like this season?
Mike Maher: Well, I think those two things are somewhat related. Stanton’s low ADP is making him a value because of his upside. I don’t particularly love Stanton, but I got him really late in TGFBI just because it felt criminal to let him sit there any longer. The power potential is what makes him intriguing, obviously. But the injury concerns have many staying away. That’s why his ECR is much higher than his ADP

Daniel: In weekly leagues, how much do you sweat about drafting guys that may be platooned, have an uncertain role, etc? If you worry TOO much, it seems like you could miss out on some real upside. If you don’t worry ENOUGH, you can get squeezed in ABs.
Mike Maher: I don’t necessarily target a ton of platoon guys outside of really deep leagues just because…if they were really that good, they probably wouldn’t be platooning, you know? Sure, they could mash against righties and provide solid numbers there. But if they’re sitting 2-3 times a week or being pulled in the 6th inning a couple of times a week, I’m not wasting my time trying to chase those numbers unless it’s a really deep format

Daniel: I think Jose Altuve is being under-drafted now. Didn’t see myself saying that a couple years ago… Agree?
Mike Maher: Yes and no. I think his 2020 is being over-valued, but I do have concerns about his power-speed potential going forward. But at his current ADP at a really weak position in 2021, he’s a worthwhile gamble in most formats. I don’t have any shares, though.

Daniel: WIth news of Stephen Strasburg’s somewhat strange injury, are you optimistic about his chances or have you moved him down?
Mike Maher: Both. I am optimistic and drafted him in a couple of leagues, but I have moved him down my rankings slightly because he now has two injury ticks against him. The hand was already concerning, but now we have a calf injury that apparently “doesn’t matter.” Certainly not things to completely ignore, even if they’re being downplayed.

Daniel: Any value in Taylor Trammell if he wins the M’s LF job?
Mike Maher: He would be worth a stash, sure, especially because of the speed. Most projections don’t have him hitting enough to stick around and play regularly just yet, though.

dave in slc: is hilliard a starting outfielder in colorado? do you draft with any confidence?
Mike Maher: It looks like he will be, and I don’t know about “with confidence,” but I’m fine taking him late in drafts

dave in slc: willy adames worth $5 in an al only? trying to decide keepers. Dalbec at $10? was going to throw back but has showed off that power in spring
Mike Maher: No for me on Adames. I love Dalbec’s power potential, but $10 does seem a little steep. But depending on the format, you could justify it if you wanted to

Aubron: do you think having Acuna, Story, Machado, Carlson, and Mancini in a 10 team H2H points league would get me enough SB or do I need to reach for more in that category?
Mike Maher: That should be enough to keep you competitive in SB as long as you don’t completely punt them the rest of the way

dave in slc: what does chris taylor do in that dodger lineup? does he play every day or enough to be good?
Mike Maher: I gave up trying to predict what the Dodgers were going to do a long time ago. I would only target him as a late-round depth piece in daily lineup leagues, though.

Mike: 1st pick in a 12 team H2H. Acuna, then in mocks I’ve seen usually Scherzer / Kershaw / Flaherty at the 2/3 turn. Would you draft 2 of those and then hammer offense, or go pitcher and like a Corey Seager?
Mike Maher: I think you could justify going either way. Pitching is flying off the board FAST this year, so it would be tempting to double-tap at the 2-3 turn. But no one would fault you for taking Seager there either
Mike Maher: In that scenario, I think I would take two SPs if you are deciding between Seager. SS is deep enough this year that you can fill that position later

Chad: Need advice. Vaughn is available on the wavier wire for my league. Should I drop Hunter Dozier to get Vaughn? Already have Trey Mancini that covers the same positions.
Mike Maher: I think Dozier is safer but Vaughn has more upside. But Vaugh is still just turning 23, has never played above High-A, and only has about 60 minor league games to his name. There are probably going to be some bumps in the road, even for a young player as impressive as he is

Joe U: Hey Mike, I’m in a keeper league and can keep 3 out of 4 between Acuna, Soto, Voit, and Vlad Jr. Acuna and Soto are obvious ones. Who would you keep between Voit and Vlad Jr and why?
Mike Maher: Vlad Jr., and it’s an easy decision. Age, upside, you name it. Voit was incredible in 2020, but he’s also 30 and was a really late bloomer in his career. Vlad just turned 22 and might be GREAT for a decade or longer

Tom: Is 2B the shallowest you’ve seen in a while? Seems like the position depth drops off a cliff pretty quickly this year
Mike Maher: Yeah, it’s pretty shallow. Though there are a few sneaky guys like Marcus Semien who will be gaining 2B eligibility early in the year. But yeah, it’s not a strong year for the keystone. I don’t like to focus too much on positions early in drafts, but you really do have to keep an eye on 2B in your drafts this year to make sure you don’t wait too long if you don’t grab one of the top guys.

Guest: This time next year will we see Kyle tucker as a possible 2nd rounder? Does he have that kind of upside where he can go 30-20?
Mike Maher: Yes and yes.

Guest: How do you feel about Dom Smith this year. They’ve batted him 3rd in spring, but I’m worried about some playing time. Can the mets keep his bat out of the line up?
Mike Maher: Answered this above, but the playing time is a concern. Even when he does play, there’s the chance he gets removed late for a defensive replacement. The Mets and Dom really needed the DH to happen this year.

The Show: Do you see Emilio Pagan being the front runner for closes in San Diego?
Mike Maher: I do. Not sure if it will last all season or if they will move guys around, but it sounds like he is the front-runner for now.

The Show: Jordan Romano?
Mike Maher: Yes, looks like he is the guy too.

Slice: Still new to fantasy baseball. In a single catcher 5×5 with one UTIL spot and 4 bench spots. Does Willson Contreras’ DH eligibility make it worthwhile to “carry two catchers”, having another “pure” catcher I can swap out for him but still get his bat’s benefit on days he doesn’t catch? Seems like a decent way to get more stats from the catcher spot, yeah? Or am I wrong?
Mike Maher: Wilson Contreras is a “nice-to-have” at the catcher position, but J.T. Realmuto is the only catcher who would be worth starting at another position this season. What you are proposing can make sense if you have really deep rosters and can stash guys on your bench, but it doesn’t make sense to waste a bench spot on a second catcher in most formats

Guest: I have 2nd pick (keeper league). Already keeping Correa, Buxton and Yordan Alvarez (OF eligibility), 5×5 roto with OPS over Average. Who would you take between Yelich, Jose Ramirez and Story?
Mike Maher: Yelich

Blessed with talent: Appreciate the advice!
Mike Maher: thanks for stopping by to chat!

Mike in MS: H2H keeper league with OBP and QS replacing AVG and W. I’m keeping Acuna, Buehler and Paddack and have the 3rd pick. If Trout or Betts slide I’m going there but I expect them to be gone. Would you take deGrom or next best hitter (Harper, Bellinger, Freeman or Ramirez)?
Mike Maher: deGrom

Blessed with talent: ESPN default roster, head to head categories, with the standard 5×5 plus Quality Starts and Ks for batters. Definitely keeping Betts, Acuna, and Bellinger or Seager, then 2 of Scherzer, Nola, Flaherty. I find the pitching is meh once I’m picking at the end of round 6 but hitters are a plenty. Do I consider keeping the 3 pitchers after starting Betts & Acuna? Or am I overthinking?
Mike Maher: I don’t think you are overthinking because you’re right about pitching this year. But that being said, I’d still keep Nola, Flaherty, and the four bats and let Scherzer go in this format.

Zeke: Are we buying the reports of increased velocity for Manaea?
Mike Maher: Sure, but I’m still only taking him in deeper formats if he falls to me

dave in slc: in an al or nl only auction do you try to get one stud pitcher and one stud hitter and then fill out the rest? Like you could get degrom and soto for example have a star in each pitching and hitting or would you try to line it up more like traditional and go with either or and then what would be a typical 2nd rounder at a little less cost?
Mike Maher: I try to go more balanced, but it can make sense to pay for those top guys as long as you aren’t overpaying
Mike Maher: Dan Harris has a fantastic baseball auction draft guide that I highly recommend — https://www.fantasypros.com/2021/03/ultimate-guide-to-fantasy-baseball…

Davey: I’ve heard Joe talk about Paul Goldschmidt on the podcast some. Are you buying the bounceback? I know Arenado is on board but I am concerned about the lack of power we saw last year.
Mike Maher: I think there are a couple of ways to answer this. I’m not buying a complete bounceback, but I am interested in Goldy at his current price. If he falls to me in drafts, I’m OK with 25 HR, .265 AVG, 160+ RBI and runs, with the potential for much more

Jonathan: I know that all drafts are different, but let’s say you’re drafting in the middle of a 12-team league (so 5th-7th). What is the typical start for you? Usually one pitcher in the first three rounds? Anybody you feel like you end up with a ton?
Mike Maher: All drafts are different, and really all years are different. I tend to focus on hitting early and got H, P, H in that scenario. But this year? Pitching is flying off the board. So if I can get deGrom or Cole in the first, I pull the trigger. If not, I have been picking 8th a lot and grabbing Yelich and then pairing him with a pitcher on the way back and potentially another in the third. Depends on how the board falls and if I can get one of my top SPs in that third round.

Guest: What do you think of the pocket aces strategy for a 16 team roto league?
Mike Maher: I like it for this year if you can pull it off. Like I said above, pitching is disappearing fast. If you can pull off pocket aces in a deeper league like that, more power to you. It’ll be easier to find bats later than it will be to find reliable arms.

Tom: Which Marlins SP has best value this year?
Mike Maher: It could very well be Trevor Rogers when all is said and done, at least in terms of price vs. production

Jim: I’m drafting at spot 10 in 2 hours (roto 5×5, 12 teams). I’ll take turner if he gets there, but prefer Story or Ramirez otherwise? I’ll probably go SP on way back
Mike Maher: I have them back to back, so you could go either way. Only concern is that Story could be traded this season
Mike Maher: All right, friends. That’ll do it for me! Thanks so much for chatting this past hour. This was a lot of fun. Brendan Tuma is coming on next. Make sure to ask him dynasty and prospect questions. Those are his favorites!
Brendan Tuma: Woo! Thanks Mike!
Brendan Tuma: Excited to be back everyone! Before I start just a reminder that you can always feel free to reach out on Twitter anytime @toomuchtuma
Brendan Tuma: https://twitter.com/toomuchtuma
Brendan Tuma: Okay now lets get into it!

The Show: I am in a H2H points league selecting hitters with my first 8 picks. I also grabbed Correa and Robles in that later rounds. I had several late pitchers targeted and got most of them. Do you see these guys as potential breakouts or busts? Lopez(MIA) Montas, Luzardo, Mahle, Taillon, Paxton, C.Martinez, Pineada, Nate Pearson and Elieser Hernandez.
Brendan Tuma: Yeah Luzardo certainly has the prospect pedigree. Lopez was really good aside from one start last year. Mahle has great spin rate. But you might need more high-end SPs to compete on a week-to-week basis

Tom: 1st overall pick, 12 team H2H, would you prefer an Acuna / Scherzer / Kershaw start, or DeGrom / Bogaerts / Rendon?
Brendan Tuma: Acuna/Scherzer/Kershaw – As much as I want high-end aces early this year, I can’t pass up any of the five hitters assuming this is a categories draft

If it’s POINTS then I’d go deGrom

Guest: I’m in a relatively straight forward points league format with 45 keepers taken. I have the 4 pick and want a SP… I have to choose between Giolito, Scherzer and Kershaw. Who do you like best of those 3?
Brendan Tuma: Definitely Giolito. Then Scherzer and Kershaw are neck and neck

Slice: I’m in a single catcher ESPN 5×5 with one UTIL spot and a four-man bench, and I’m still new to fantasy baseball. Does Willson Contreras’ DH eligibility make him a perfect solution to the “don’t carry two catchers” mantra, if you can get him and another catcher at good value? It’s a good way to get more playing time at catcher, right? Or am I completely wrong and need to stick to one catcher?
Brendan Tuma: I’d still stick to one catcher! The UTIL spot is better utilized for mashers like Nelson Cruz, Giancarlo Stanton, Franmil Reyes. There’s actually a lot of UTIL-only bats who are values this year

Guest: Who becomes the Holds guy for the NYY?
Brendan Tuma: Chad Green

Gary: Any late-round sleepers you find yourself targeting often?
Brendan Tuma: Aside from the prospects like Andrew Vaughn, I’ll add Andres Gimenez and Taylor Trammell for speed late in the draft. I also really like Freddy Peralta and Alex Reyes as 100-inning relievers who could post a ton of strikeouts

Nuke LaLoosh: Do you see Austin Meadows or Yordan Alverez being resurgent this year?
Brendan Tuma: Meadows I like a lot. He’s someone you can completely write off 2020 for, since he had COVID early and then had an oblique injury. Yordan I want to believe. He’s playing in spring games, which is a good sign. He’s riskier than Meadows IMO

Erick Kratz: I’m in a 10 man h2h points league and drafting 9th, do you think its too early to draft nola in the second round at 12th
Brendan Tuma: In a points league definitely not. There are so many value bats available late this year, I want to get aces early

BBAll Time: We can draft 3 minor league players to stash and play when they get called up. Who is your favorite SP that will start in the minors but have an impact this year?
Brendan Tuma: I’d prefer to use those spots on Kelenic, Wander Franco. Bobby Witt.

For pitchers I’d go with MacKenzie Gore, Logan Gilbert, Matt Manning

I actually published a piece today on rookies and prospects and you can read it here: https://www.fantasypros.com/2021/03/top-20-rookies-2021-fantasy-baseba…

Slice: Everyone’s favorite position: catcher. Who do you like right now in terms of ADP? And there seems to be a lack of a consensus out there on Will Smith.
Brendan Tuma: Will Smith is scaring people away since the Dodgers recently said he’d only play 90 games. He might be the second best offensive catcher per game, but volume is a concern. In standard 12-team leagues I’m willing to sell out for the upside of Gary Sanchez or Mitch Garver. If it doesn’t work out, I’ll play the waiver wire. It’s catcher after all

Daniel: SP who doesn’t debut until May or beyond who adds the most value (could be injured pitcher or prospect)?
Brendan Tuma: The big 3 TJ guys – Severino, Sale, Syndergaard

Prospects – Logan Gilbert, Matt Manning, MacKenzie Gore

Daniel: Do you see Luis Castillo really serving as a true No. 1 in that park and with that defense?
Brendan Tuma: He’s like “the perfect” high-end SP2 haha. I’m okay with him as “My No. 1” if I invest in more SPs early

Iceotopes: Any prospects/rookies you like outside of the top 100?
Brendan Tuma: A prospect who isn’t on most top 100 lists but I added to mine is Jarren Duran, OF Red Sox. He underwent a swing change before 2020 and is crushing the ball. He also has truly elite speed, which could makes him a difference maker in fantasy. He needs to be rostered in dynasty leagues and is a name to remember come summer

Charles: Looking for a dynasty player (can only keep one) at the end of the draft. Who would you be targeting to build your team around for the next handful of years?
Brendan Tuma: Wander Franco, Jarred Kelenic, Bobby Witt

Fbomb11: hey Brendan, Bohm Hayes or Chapman H2H points league
Brendan Tuma: Ke’Bryan Hayes good sir!

Steven: What are your expectations for Ian Anderson and Sixto Sanchez?
Brendan Tuma: I like Anderson more. He could be a top-15 SP entering 2022. The concern for him this year is a slightly high walk rate and how many innings he throws. For Sixto – he’s going to need to keep relying on damage suppression. He only had 33 K’s in 39 IP last year
Brendan Tuma: I went more in depth on both Anderson and Sixto back in January https://www.fantasypros.com/2021/01/fantasy-baseball-second-year-playe…

Andrew: How big a gap do u see between Verdugo and L. Gurriel in an Ottoneu dynasty auction roto league? I am competing for this year but have been offer $11 Verdugo, $2 Nick Gonzales, $2 Edward Cabrera for $10 Gurriel and I’m not sure what to do!
Brendan Tuma: I actually like Verdugo more. It seems as if he’s going to hit second. Good BA and OBP, and he could score just a boat load of runs

HeyYo: Other than Fantasypros, which is the best, What is the next best site for player projections you use?
Brendan Tuma: I truly think the best way to handle player projections is not to rely on any one source, but just continue gathering information to get more of a sense for range-of-outcomes

Al: I’m in 12 team 5 by 5 need to cut 2 my SP in shambles who would you cut? I gambled with all end gamers…
Al: who Would you cut 12 team 5 by 5 I went all end game sp. I need to cut 2. Madbum, Ray, Minor, Pineda, Wacha, Rodon, folty, smyly
Brendan Tuma: Folty and Bumgarner

Matt M: H2H. Targets at pick 11 and 14 of snake draft
Brendan Tuma: One SP and one bat – one of Bauer/Giolito and one of Story/JoRam/Freeman

Slice: I’m 10th out of 12 in my upcoming draft, and I’m a huge Braves fan. I know not to be a homer, but Freddie will be right there. But I’ve seen some guys like Voit, Olson, Myers and Bell touted as great value 1B guys a couple rounds later, so would you look somewhere else at 10?
Brendan Tuma: Depends on scoring but Freddie is safe in all formats. If it’s a roto league I’d look at Story/JoRam. I’d also want at least one SP with your first two picks – Bauer or Giolito.

Thickey: I have 9th pick in a start-up 6×6 dynasty. Would you be leaning double hitter or double pitcher, or one of both? I don’t believe in Yelich anymore; what do you think?
Brendan Tuma: Dynasty I want to invest in bats early. I recently had a startup dynasty draft and was picking 11th. I started Harper/Vlad then went Bregman/Wander for my next two. THEN went Ian Anderson/Sixto/Luzardo for my next three

Daniel: Are you down with going Soto #1 overall?
Brendan Tuma: For sure. The top 5 hitters are pretty interchangeable in roto – Trout, Mookie, Acuna, Tatis, Soto. Personally I’m a Trout guy but you can’t go wrong

Vic Vinager: what’re you thoughts on the pocket aces strategy? I got 12th pick in a H2H points league and think grabbing 2 aces early on is smart. do you agree?
Brendan Tuma: Very on board with this in a points league. If you can get two of Bauer/Giolito/Nola thats just a tremendous start. There’s a lot of value bats to be had later in drafts

Guest: In a keeper league and we didnt play last season so I have Shane Bieber in the 18th round. Have the 3rd pick. Most likely will have Trea Turner, Yelich or Cole/Degrom. You think I should go with a hitter to get another dominant starter?
Brendan Tuma: My goodness. I think I’d go with one of Cole/deGrom haha

Daniel: Paxton: Thoughts on performance this year and how much his being a part of a 6-man rotation dampens your enthusiasm?
Brendan Tuma: Paxton is worth a late-round dart throw. If it goes south early you drop and move on. The 6-man rotation hurts his value, but he’s going late enough that it isn’t a huge concern. He isn’t must have, but there are worse dart throws

Angelus Novus: Bieber-Bauer-Castillo-Snell-Burnes-McCullers…enough to dominate W/K/ERA/WHIP in my 12 team 5×5?
Brendan Tuma: I think YES

Linden: Does Julio Rodriguez have any value in re-draft leagues this year?
Brendan Tuma: Nope. Not unless something crazy happens

dave in slc: al only closer, do you like montero at $15? i think i need 2 and have diego castillo who should get *some*. Rosenthal and iglesias will both be available but i imagine will both be more expensive. what way do you go?
Brendan Tuma: It’s tough to comment on auction values. Agree Rosenthal and Iglesias will be more expensive. I’d try and snag Jordan Romano. I also don’t hate Matt Barnes if he’s cheap

Houzer: Rank’em in a re-draft .. and what is the realistic output from these guys? Severino / Thor / Sale
Brendan Tuma: I honestly can’t choose between them until we get closer to any of them returning. They’re all in the same tier right now

Guest: What’s your prediction on the Carlos Carrasco injury situation?
Brendan Tuma: I just don’t want to deal with it in redraft leagues. If I miss out on a great second half that’s okay. I don’t want to clog my IL spot right away

jimmy: after taking degrom r1, rank these players in 5×5 h2h (keeper league so these are best available in r2): Bogaerts, Seager, Scherzer, Nola, Mondesi
Brendan Tuma: Since it’s H2H and not roto I’d go Nola, Seager, Scherzer, Bogaerts, Mondesi…..Mondesi loses a lot of value in H2H

Squid: How to do you feel about corbin burnes
Brendan Tuma: I think there are legit reasons to buy into his breakout. He threw fewer fastballs in exchange for a sinker/cutter combo, therefore adjusting his pitch mix to match his natural talents. Love him as an SP3

Guest: 12 team roto with OBP and TB. Do you prefer Arenado, Alonso or Guerrero as power hitter?
Brendan Tuma: I’m all in on Vlad this year. I’d go Arenado second

Lou: I ended up with too many OF-only players in a 10 team H2H Mixed Category league that allows 5 OF slots. I have Acuna and Castellanos locked in. Rest of them are Meadows, Pham, Haniger, Senzel, Corey Dickerson. Which one (or two) would you consider dropping? I also have Ketel Marte (he should get OF eligibilty) and Edman as alternatives.
Brendan Tuma: Dickerson and it’s a pretty easy call

Guest: in H2H categories it seems like its a consensus to take a SP in your first 2 picks?? but if you end up with a multiple Lynn, Maeda, kershaw, types that are more Sp 1.5
Brendan Tuma: H2H categories is the one format where it isn’t as vital to take an SP with your first two picks (whereas it’s a must in roto and H2H points). It also depends what spot in the draft you’re picking from. It’s different getting Bauer/Giolito/Nola early in the second. I’d push for one of those top 7-8 guys

Ian: I am in a 5×5 12-team keeper. I have Trevor Bauer as one of my keepers, and I am looking at drafting Burns, Ryu, or Strausberg. Is it worth waiting for a grieke, berrios, and Gray?
Brendan Tuma: I wouldn’t wait. I’d go after one of the first 3 you mentioned

dave in slc: nl only keeper would you keep chris taylor at 10?
Brendan Tuma: I’d rather have the financial flexibility (UGH I sound like the Red Sox!)
Brendan Tuma: Just a reminder as we’re past the halfway point for me, if you have questions after tonight you can ALWAYS reach out on Twitter @toomuchtuma
Brendan Tuma: https://twitter.com/toomuchtuma

Guest: Looking for a Dynasty player to target at the end of my draft. Rutschman, Franco, Witt Jr who do you think I should be targeting if there are others
Brendan Tuma: Franco, Kelenic, Witt in that order

TimmyMac: Is Tarik Skubal a recommended late round draft pick in a 10 Team roto? I think he can be great in every category, except wins
Brendan Tuma: Yeah he worked on a new pitch this offseason and is trying to emphasize his secondary offering more. Talented enough to make sense as a late-round SP. If it doesn’t happen early we simply cut bait

Guest: Zac Gallen, I have him for$1(add $5 each year) and i can keep him for 3 more years, is it wise to sit tight and just hold onto as I’m not sure of his injury and need to decide today if I should throw him back in the player pool
Brendan Tuma: Yeah I’d still keep him since it’s only $1 – he will likely be worth $6 next year too

Phil: Top 3 overlooked names to consider in an OBP league compared to generic rankings using AVG?
Brendan Tuma: Aaron Judge moves up. Rhys Hoskins. Carlos Santana. Also slight bumps to Harper, Bregman, Biggio
Brendan Tuma: Sorry I needed to take a second after learning Freddy Peralta won a rotation spot

Daniel: How are you regarding Rafael Devers this year?
Brendan Tuma: I love him at his ADP. Third base is so deep between Rendon, Bregman, Devers, Arenado. So he isn’t a “must” but I like him for sure

Daniel: Thoughts on spending a pricey pick on a C in a 16 team, 1 catcher league? Is a Will Smith or Realmuto really worth the ADP cost?
Brendan Tuma: Nope not for me. I’d rather wait for Yadi or Posey types. Mitch Garver or Max Stassi for upside

Daniel: Who do you think is the most likely NOT to return good value among the 5 top hitters — Acuna, Betts, Soto, Tatis, or Trout?
Brendan Tuma: They’re all true studs. I can’t say anything bad about any of them

Guest: in H2H categories is it worth going after “supposed” 5 category guys like Bo bichette and mondesi (to an extent) as early as rd 2??… or is the volatility not worth the draft capital when you can get a victor robles later on??
Brendan Tuma: Bichette and Mondesi are different. I’m okay with Mondesi since the SBs are such an outlier. In roto he’s in play in the third round

Guest: Who are you typically drafting at the 1/2 turn if the Big 3 pitchers are gone? I’m a pocket aces guy typically but not sure how I feel about a Bauer/Darvish combo. Too early for Giolito?
Brendan Tuma: My SPs 4-6 are Bauer, Giolito, Nola. I’d want one of them plus one of Freeman, JoRam, Story

Matt Williams: I’m in a standard 5×5 H2H league. Is Tarik Skubal a good late round pick for 2021 or is 2022 his real breakout?
Brendan Tuma: He’s worth a late round pick for sure. Lots of Skubal questions! But he developed a new pitch and is emphasizing more secondary offerings this year. He’s talented and could get a lot of strikeouts. If it doesn’t work you just drop and move on!

Matt Williams: How do you feel about Mondesi in the 2nd Round? Roto or H2H?
Brendan Tuma: Mondesi loses value in H2H. Even in roto, Round 2 is too rich for me. I’d rather Trea Turner in Round 1

Aubron: Why is everyone down on Story this season. Even with losing Arenado do you think he will still have a good season for fantasy?
Brendan Tuma: Are people down on him? He’s a consensus late first-rounder I think. People might be worried he’s going to get traded

Guest: H2H points. Machado or Bellinger?
Brendan Tuma: I’m going Belli but I get why some are nervous. He’s a high-variance season-to-season player

Ian: Thanks Brendan
Brendan Tuma: Thank YOU for being here!

BC: NL Only, 5×5, Auction, Keeper: Any SF relief pitcher worth taking a cheap flyer on? (This is likely a rebuild year for me)
Brendan Tuma: Jake McGee for $1? Maybe? I’d rather go for more interesting arms like Freddy Peralta/Alex Reyes if rebuilding though

Lou: Also have several multi-position utility-type bench players that I can pare down. Could you please rank Fletcher, Edman, Jorge Polanco?
Brendan Tuma: Edman, Polanco, Fletcher for me

Todd: Do you think owning 3 hitters from the same team is an unwise draft strategy? I seem to be getting a lot of Padres in mock drafts. H2H categories daily league
Brendan Tuma: No it isn’t overly concerning. Especially if it’s a team like the Padres!

Aubron: I have lost Carrasco and Yates before the season. What 2 players would you recommend picking up to replace them. 10 team H2H points league?
Brendan Tuma: If you need saves to replace Yates the obvious first place to look is Jordan Romano. I’m also buying into Nick Wittgren a bit as Cleveland’s potential closer

Drew R: Was Luke Voit’s 2020 real ? If not how much of a regression do you think we will see?
Brendan Tuma: Nick Castellanos, Austin Meadows, Alex Verdugo

JMO: Should I take a late round flyer on Mike Leake, Rick Porcello, or Jeff Samardzija? Will any of them make it into a regular rotation?
Brendan Tuma: I’m trying to answer this as nicely as possible, but DEFINITELY NOT GOOD SIR

Guest: Miami pitchers seem to lowkey sleepers this year! which do you like best for a breakout?
Brendan Tuma: Yeah they’re all exciting for different reasons. I’m into Sandy Alcantara. He’s emphasizing more four-seamers this spring, which is a swing-and-miss pitch for him. The early results are encouraging

Daniel: We need closer clarity! (Sorry, I know this isn’t your fault.). Do you think Pagan will close in SD? What about TB? Texas?
Brendan Tuma: Oy. I’d go Pagan over Melancon in San Diego right now. This Nick Anderson elbow inflammation is really throwing me off, but I’m going Pete Fairbanks over Diego Castillo. For Texas I’m going Matt Bush right now. Out of everyone I just named, I like Pagan most for saves. Again, oy.

Michael: I’m in a 12 team league and missed out on all the top closers in my auction draft. Any suggestions for some middle relievers who might be on the waiver wire and can help out with ERA/WHIP (and maybe find themselves in the closer role later in the season)?
Brendan Tuma: Nick Wittgren is a bit under the radar and could get saves right away. As for middle relief, Alex Reyes and Garrett Crochet should both provide great ratios but I’m not sure they’ll get saves. Closers will emerge as the year goes on, don’t worry!

Jon from Savanahh: I’m in a 10 team head to head categories league. I have the tenth pick in this weekend’s draft. With back to back picks in the first round, is it worth it to go with these pocket aces that will most likely fall to me: Bieber and Bauer. Or take Bieber and pair him with a position player like Jose Ramirez, Freeman, Yelich etc? Help…
Brendan Tuma: Definitely take Bieber if he falls to you. But I’d prefer one SP and one bat

Guest: What steps should I take after losing Eloy for basically the whole year????. Any players to target on waviers ?
Brendan Tuma: Losing Eloy SUCKS but don’t let it kill your drive. There will be other big injuries and players who break out throughout the season. It can be overcome, don’t worry. It’s tough to name a specific player to target without knowing your league. Pouncing on prospects early could be a good way to net a big profit

Aubron: Do you think I should keep Cookie and add him to my IR or see what I could get for him in a trade 10 team H2H points league?
Brendan Tuma: Depends on the types of offers you get for him. I’m more than alright with floating him in trade talks as I never like to roster injured players

Daniel: How are you viewing David Dahl in Texas?
Brendan Tuma: Nothing more than a DEEP sleeper. I’ll wait for him to get off to a hot start before considering him as a waiver pickup
Brendan Tuma: Alright folks, my hour here is up. I’m turning you over to Andrew Gould for now, who is going to take us to the finish line!!
Brendan Tuma: Andrew – it’s all you my man
Andrew Gould: Hey everyone! Looks like I’m last in the batting order. Like all pitchers, we’d be better off replacing me with a DH. (Not bitter at all about drafting Gallen last weekend.

Slice: Everyone seems to love Ty France as a later round guy. How high would you draft him?
Andrew Gould: Nothing like a strong spring to up the hype. I was in on them early in the offseason, cooled on him a bit, but am slowly climbing back. If you’re getting him as a bench pick in a 12-team mixed league, go for it.

Daniel: Thoughts on Sam Hilliard maybe rebounding from last year’s debacle in the thin air of Coors?
Andrew Gould: There was so much hype on him last year and seemingly none this year. That means he’s going to break out, right? He’s only a bit interesting because of Coors, but I’m intrigued as a late flier.

Chris: Yahoo 12 team traditional 5 x 5 league. Semien becomes 2nd base eligible after five games. Where do you rank him among second second baseman after he becomes eligible?
Andrew Gould: I’d put him just a hair behind the likes of McNeil, Muncy, and Moustakas. I’ve been drafting him a lot liking his potential as a boring compiler at the top of the Blue Jays lineup.

Joey lucheeessyy: I got the 9th pick in a 10 man h2h points league thinking about drafting yelich in the first round and nola in the second do you think I’m reaching at all?
Andrew Gould: Nola may be a bit of a reach. I wouldn’t laugh at you for getting your guy as long as deGrom, Cole, and Bieber are gone, since there’s no clear-cut SP4. While I’d personally target Cole, Story, or J-Ram at pick No. 9, Yelich isn’t all that far behind.

Blessed with talent: Can only keep 5 though, So Acuna, Betts, then Bellinger/Seager/Nola/Flaherty?
Andrew Gould: Realizing now I might be missing an earlier part of this conversation. Just in a vacuum with no further details, Flaherty would be the odd man out.

Slice: I’m picking 10th in a 12 team 5×5. Bat or Bieber in the 1st?
Andrew Gould: This is tricky. I’d rather have Story or J-Ram or Bieber, but that will be your only chance at Bieber, and I’m not sold on Bauer, Darvish or any other SP in the early 2nd. I’d only pass on Bieber if you comfortable going hitter-hitter and getting your first SP in the 3rd or 4th.

Daniel: Who is the guy currently going in first rounds that you are the most down on?
Andrew Gould: This goes hand in hand with the last question, but it’s probably Bieber. Although I don’t think he’s a bust, it also wouldn’t shock me if he gets hit hard a few times and isn’t a front-line fantasy ace.

Daniel: Do you see Rafael Montero holding the closing gig in Seattle all year?
Andrew Gould: How many closers can we truly trust to keep the job all year? Montero is OK. If he’s really good, the Mariners are probably trading him to a contender where he’s a setup man. I’m fine taking him as a second closer who won’t break the bank, but I wouldn’t bet on him being Seattle’s closer from start to finish. The start might be good enough though.

Guest: I am playing in a head to head keeper league. And I have the option to keep zac gallen or Jesus lizardo. Was going to keep gallen until I heard about the injury. What are your thought?
Andrew Gould: This could depend on league settings. Can you keep them forever? Is there any cost in terms of auction dollars/draft pick? I’m leaning Luzardo. I’d rather not deal with the short-term headache of Gallen’s health, and Luzardo may still have a higher long-term ceiling.

Daniel: Over/Under on Mondesi SBs: 40
Andrew Gould: Over, but I’m still too much of a chicken to gamble on his high-risk profile in the 2nd or 3rd round. Even if he doesn’t bottom out entirely, I’m worried about him getting buried down the lineup once KC realizes that a career .284 OBP is bad.

Guest: If I keep gallen he would cost a 13th round draft pick and if I keep luzardo he would cost a 17th round draft pick in snake.
Andrew Gould: OK, so you’re still getting a nice discount on Gallen (would have been an easier choice before the injury). But I’m a big Luzardo fan so might just roll the dice there.

Daniel: Why does Schoop not get more love as a tasty little under-the-radar gem? Little cost and 20 dingers? Sign me up!
Andrew Gould: 100% agree! Boring veterans get no love sometimes. An especially good depth piece in a 15 team or larger league.

Fred: Which Yankees pitcher do you think will have the second most fantasy points this year after Gerrit Cole?
Andrew Gould: Montgomery. They’re all huge injury risks, but J-Mont is at least younger and further removed from his. If you could tell me they will all pitch the same amount of innings, I’d go Kluber.

Guest: What round would you draft Freddy Peralta now that he’ll be in starting rotation?
Andrew Gould: I’m actually kind of concerned about him being in the rotation. He was looking nasty in a long-relief role after getting bombed in the rotation. He doesn’t seem to have a starter’s repertoire, so I’m more concerned about him blowing up your ratios now. As a result, I’m not moving him up significantly. Still a bench dart throw in my mind.

Mike: 12 team, AL only $260 cap. 10 keepers, Huge inflation rate for this league, 20-25%. Most of the big boppers are kept at good value. Franmil Reyes worth $40 here?
Andrew Gould: I don’t have much experience in AL-only salary cap leagues, but you know your league better and seem to be suggesting that he would be. My only caveat is that he — and all other UT-only eligible players — always get undervalued in drafts. Even if you think he’s a $40 player, there’s a chance he may not go for that much.

Daniel: Name one player going round 3 or later that you think will return first round value.
Andrew Gould: Hmm .. Yoan Moncada. Although something is telling me Vlad or Ohtani because those are the guys I have the biggest FOMO about not drafting anywhere.

Patrick: Wish we didn’t have to ask this question, but what is your strategy (this year with a longer season) with players from the same team in case of a Covid shutdown?
Andrew Gould: This is a good point that people are overlooking since society have reached a Covid fatigue. I’d keep that in mind before loading up on too many players from a single team to avoid a Marlins/Cardinals situation. It seems clear they’re going to truck through the season at all costs now, but there’s still a solid chance some team gets hit hard before more people get vaccinated in the summer.

Fred: Which catcher do you think will have a more productive year as a late round catcher? Elias Diaz or Omar Narvaez?
Andrew Gould: Narvaez is a sneaky “just forget 2020” mulligan pick. He batted .277, .275, and .278 in the last three years before hitting .176 in just 126 PA. He could bounce back as a decent C2.

Andy L: Who has more keeper upside Vaughan or Kelenic?
Andrew Gould: Kelenic, especially if we’re talking long-term. Vaughn might make a bigger impact this season, but Kelenic could be a future superstar.

Matt Williams: Tarik Skubal or Freddy Peralta in 12 team Standard 5×5 H2H?
Andrew Gould: Leaning Skubal now that he’s in the OD rotation (and as I mentioned above, Peralta scares me as a starter). Both are similar late upside picks though.

Fred: Which offense scores the most runs this year??
Andrew Gould: The homer in me wants to say Mets because their lineup doesn’t get the love it deserves, but I’ll go Dodgers. Health is the only thing getting in the Yankees’ way, and Blue Jays are a maybe not-so-sneaky candidate.

Jamie: I am boring but I always get the job done. Like Christian Walker who nobody talks about ever! Kind of feel like he’s just such a super safe pick at the end of drafts.
Andrew Gould: Hey, I have oatmeal for breakfast most mornings. Nothing wrong with taking a steady contributor who gets the job done.

Micah: Looking for DEEP sleepers for saves/holds/ratios potential middle relievers (along the lines of Bender, Bednar, etc.)…any recommendations?
Andrew Gould: Miguel Castro has had a great spring for the Mets, who may need him to play a big role with Lugo hurt and Betances/Familia both far past their prime.

Matt Williams: Whats the best case scenario for when Zac Gallen returns to the mound?
Andrew Gould: I’m not a doctor, but I’ve seen 6-8 weeks as a timetable. I’m a cynic, so that makes me think 8+ weeks.

Andy L: I feel like Mancini is being undervalued. Is there any other veteran bats to target late rounds? Josh Donaldson scares me.
Andrew Gould: If you don’t want Donaldson, take Justin Turner as your old 3B. Also like McCutchen, Segura, Carlos Santana, and Lorenzo Cain.

Doug: How much do you like Joc Pederson going to Wrigley? Is he worth drafting in a 5 OF standard roto ?
Andrew Gould: It could mean more playing time vs. LHP (which could mean a lower BA). He’s a solid 5th OF type if you have a steady BA foundation. Or he’s worthy of a higher investment in an OBP/points league.

Tim: H2H categories first 10 picks hitters/pitchers how many?
Andrew Gould: Depends on league settings, draft flow, and all that good stuff, but I tend to have 3 or 4 pitchers through 10 picks.

Guest: I’m in an H2H points league, custom scoring favoring batters. There are always mixed reviews as to who “potential breakout” or “bounceback” candidates, but they will make or break a team in my league. Who do you think would be a player worth reaching for/avoiding at all costs? And what do you believe is the best way to assess regression; year by year avgs., advanced stats/batting metrics, etc.?
Andrew Gould: I’ll be honest, I’m not a “reach at all costs” guy. Frankie Montas, Tyler Mahle, and Aaron Civale are some of my favorite breakout SP targets, but I’ve seen them go high enough that I’ll happily pass. All of those factors you cited should factor into analyzing regression. For 2021, I’m looking more at a player’s full history since 2020 was such a small sample.

Guest: Would you prefer La Stella, France or Fletcher for 2B/MI bench backup? I like that La Stella would qualify at both MI/CI slots, and Fletcher provides OF coverage too, but in H2H category 6×6 (OPS) which would provide most offensive upside across all categories?
Andrew Gould: I like all three, but also wouldn’t think of either of them as an “upside” pick. I suppose France has the higher ceiling since you’re paying for contact from La Stella and Fletcher. La Stella won’t hit many HRs, but he could still offer a nice OPS. So I’d probably lean La Stella.
Andrew Gould: OK, that’s all folks. Thanks for talking with us all throughout the day. Good night, and let’s get ready for some baseball!

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