FanGraphs After Dark Chat – 5/13/14

5:43
Paul Swydan: Hi everybody!

Something something Tuesday the 13th something something Yamahama, it’s Fright Night!!!

https://www.youtube.com/wat…

Jeff is off tonight — AGAIN — so it’s just you and me. Well, and you too. OK, and you too.

Fire off questions, and I’ll try to cram as many into your baseball holes as possible starting at 9 pm ET.

See you soon!

9:03
Paul Swydan: Hi guys, sorry for the brief delay. Let’s do this!
9:04
Comment From Carlos Quentin
Now that I’m healthy, what do you expect from me?
9:04
Paul Swydan: I’m not sure that I’m expecting top 25 wRC+ action from you like you have shown at times in the past, but I don’t think top 50 is out of the question. Keep in mind though that that might not translate to great 5×5 numbers.
9:04
Comment From Vliet
Is Seth Smith for real?
9:05
Paul Swydan: Seth Smith has ALWAYS been a great hitter against right-handed pitching. He has NOT always been given enough plate appearances for that to shine through. Right now, he is. Ride him while he’s hot.

9:05
Comment From Dave
Help needed! My Bumgarner for his Posey. Castro is current catcher. Yu, JZimm, Kluber, Masty, Lohse, and Cobb (soon to return) are my other pitchers. Should I pull the trigger?!
9:06
Paul Swydan: Bumgarner is clearly your ace, but your rotation is still pretty solid, especially if Kluber keeps this up. And it’s always better to get the hitter in the deal. I like it.
9:06
Comment From Biggs Darklighter
Dood which side would you rather have in the following deal: Kazmir/R.Zimmerman or Wright/Archer?
9:06
Paul Swydan: Wow, that’s a tough one. Let’s make this one a poll.
9:07
Paul Swydan: For the record, I am not a big fan of Zimm or Archer. So for me it’s kind of a toss up.
9:07
Comment From Johnny yellow shoes
Colby Rasmus + David Price for Giancarlo Stanton (non keeper). Which side do you prefer?
9:07
Paul Swydan: This one is less tough. Easily the Stanton side.
9:07
Comment From Big Joe Mufferaw
Do you think there will be more emphasis on movement, command and location now that we KNOW that max effort pitchers get hurt all the time?
9:08
Paul Swydan: No, I don’t. I think we’ve probably known that max effort is bad for quite some time, but it’s in our nature to exude maximum effort, is it not?
9:08
Comment From Big Joe Mufferaw
Now that Jose Fernandez is out for the year. Who is your favorite pitcher to watch ROS?
9:08
Paul Swydan: Was Kershaw before, and it remains Kershaw.
9:08
Comment From Stompin Tom Connors
Odds that Tulo finishes the year with a 10+ WAR are ___%. (he is on pace for 18 bref, 16 FG)
9:09
Paul Swydan: 20%. He’s got a great shot at the moment, but he’s always one hang nail away from a DL stint.
9:09
Comment From Stompin Tom Connors
Tanaka is on pace for 282 Ks and 34 Walks… Thats pretty good right?
9:09
Paul Swydan: Hmmmmm…..maybe if he can keep it under 30 walks. I mean, come on.
9:09
Comment From Big Joe Mufferaw
Should I drop Billy Butler? I need HR and RBI. Will he give me 20, 80-90 RBI by seasons end? (like he has avged over last 5 years)
9:11
Paul Swydan: For these kinds of questions, I like to utilize the R (rest of season) and U (updated full season) projections on our player pages. Neither ZiPS nor Steamer have him getting past 16 HR or 79 RBI. I think it’s OK to drop him at this juncture.
9:12
Comment From Pauls last resort
What is the best trade you ever made in fantasy baseball?
9:12
Paul Swydan: In early 2003, Brandon Villafuerte briefly took the closers job in San Diego:

http://www.fangraphs.com/st…

9:13
Paul Swydan: I parlayed that waiver wire pickup into a straight up deal for Vernon Wells. Peep his 2003 line:

http://www.fangraphs.com/st…

9:13
Paul Swydan: In a related story, it was YEARS before that guy traded with me again. :-)
9:14
Comment From Worlds deadliest shoe horn
Which super hero would be best at baseball (I’m stuck choosing between Superman and Hulk)
9:15
Paul Swydan: I love the Hulk and Superman, but I gotta go Ironman here. I mean, he could have Jarvis calculate the trajectories of the pitch as the come in and stuff. Supes and Hulk are just gonna hit the ball hard, and sometimes that means ground balls. Hard ground balls, but still ground balls.
9:15
Comment From Bogey
I lost Jose Fernandez.. outlook for Gausman? will Jonathan Grey be called up in late June? This is a 18 team mixer. Also.. outlook for Venable? he’s rottin on my bench.. I’m looking for sb’s (again, 18 team mixer). My team is off to killer start.. but losing Jose is irreplaceable. Last question.. which one of these back end arms would you keepm and which dump for Gausman/Grey.. hope down the road? McAllister- Cle.. Travis Wood? Matt Harrison, Gavin Floyd? I’m leaning toward dumping McAllister.. schedule looks like killer in next 2 months (bad matchups)
9:16
Paul Swydan: Wow, longest question ever?

1 – I like Gausman, but he’s not going to replace Fernandez. Look to make a trade, and sorry about that.
2 – I expect Gray to be up after Butler, and have August as ETA for Gray.
3 – Venable is exactly where you have him – a bench guy.
4 – I would dump Floyd. His rotation spot is least certain.

9:17
Comment From Shamless tie clip
What would you give Jeter as his farewell gift if you were in charge of it for an organization?
9:17
Paul Swydan: I would go with something unique from the ballpark, like the way the Red Sox gave Rivera the “42” plaque from the Green Monster. That would be harder with Jeter, but I would figure something out.

Oh, and a gift basket. Obviously.

9:18
Comment From RIPLASTFM
The Jays are reportedly interested in Dan Uggla. Does that make any sense at all?
9:18
Paul Swydan: It makes sense in the sense that he needs a change of scenery and the Blue Jays have a huge hole at second base. Last week at ESPN Insider, I suggested they try Rickie Weeks, which is a similar suggestion.
9:18
Comment From Lars
Since marijuana is now legal in Colorado and Washington for recreational use, shouldn’t thos players who reside in those states be exempt from the MLB ban on marijuana use? Now it’s the same as alcohol in those states.
9:20
Paul Swydan: Not until it is collectively bargained between the union and the league. With the next negotiation not needed until 2016, it will be interesting to see if this actually does come up. I expect a couple more states will make the push for free and legal marijuana. If one of those states is California, Florida or any other state with multiple teams, that’d probably bolster the union’s case a bunch.
9:20
Comment From Vic
Hi, I was set to have Jose Fernandez for 5 years in an NL only league $1 last year, $4 this year, $7 next year etc etc. Should I keep him for 2016 and 2017 at $10 and $13? We only are allowed 6 bench spots in the league. I am depressed. Seriously.
9:21
Paul Swydan: Yes, keep him. This happened early enough in the year that he could be ready in the second half next season, and he should be good to go in 2016. $10 for him then will still be a bargain.
9:21
Comment From Bert
Do see Chris Young (OF) pulling off a vintage Arizona Chris Young season this season if given mostly everyday playing time? Ie., 20 HR/20 SB ?
9:21
Paul Swydan: No, but it wouldn’t surprise me. I think he has been unfairly railroaded into a bench spot.
9:21
Comment From Bert
Do you have any knowledge as to why the Indians changed Salazar’s delivery this season? It seems to be negatively affecting his slider thus fas, based off Pitch/fx movement and SwSt%.
9:21
Paul Swydan: I don’t, but if someone else does, please link away.
9:22
Comment From Grand Admiral Braun
The Cubs couldn’t acquire Betts in a Samardzija trade to Boston, could they?
9:22
Paul Swydan: I suppose they could, but they have Alcantara not far away, so not sure upgrading from one highly regarded prospect to another is a huge priority.
9:23
Comment From pjwright
why do teams even give farewell gifts? i dont get it.
9:23
Paul Swydan: It’s a sign of respect for all-time greats. It only happens in rare occasions. It just so happens that we’ve had it happen three times recently with Chipper, Rivera and Jeter.
9:24
Paul Swydan: More often than not, players don’t go out on their own terms. See this series I did last year:

http://www.fangraphs.com/bl…

9:24
Paul Swydan: There are some pretty bad final seasons in there.
9:24
Comment From pjwright
mike leake looking great today. i just have some resentment against him even tho hes on my fantasy team.
9:25
Paul Swydan: You know what would be great? If Gameday wasnt so slow tonight.
9:25
Paul Swydan: Yeah, that’s a nice start from Leake tonight. The kind that makes you scratch your head when he puts up a stinker in his next turn.
9:26
Comment From Aaron
By the time Pineda and Sabathia are back, the Yankees will ___ games out of first?
9:26
Paul Swydan: 4-6?
9:26
Comment From Guest
Would you Trade Prince for Craig/Cobb? Some of his indicators like GB% make me think some of his struggles are real
9:26
Paul Swydan: I probably would, ya. Assuming Cobb comes back on schedule.
9:27
Comment From Guest
Jose Abreu has an opt-out clause after 3 years to go through arbitration. Will he do that and what kind of salaries would he see?
9:27
Paul Swydan: Here’s his contract.

http://www.fangraphs.com/st…

9:29
Paul Swydan: My guess is that if he keeps this pace up, he would stand to make more than $34 million in three years of arbitration. My guess is that the White Sox will just sign him to an extension at that point. Or possibly before, to avoid even having to think about it.
9:29
Comment From John
What are your expectations for Jaime Garcia?
9:29
Paul Swydan: None. He’s dead to me. Anything you get, consider it a bonus.
9:29
Comment From park chan hos beard
Last week you suggested COL trade Stubbs to clear up their OF logjam, but I actually like the idea of trading Cuddyer better. What sort of return would you expect from either?
9:30
Paul Swydan: Yeah, I changed my tune on that over the weekend, and also prefer Cuddyer. Though I guess ultimately I would trade whichever of them will fetch the better return. I would not expect a great return for either, is why. Prospect restocking or bullpen piece.
9:30
Comment From Guest
Will you be watching the May 23-24 meteor shower?
9:31
Paul Swydan: Maybe? Will I need a telescope? Because I don’t own a telescope, and probably won’t be buying one before then. BUT, I have been meaning to let my son camp out in the yard with his new tent, and that could be a good night to do it!
9:31
Comment From Tito
When the Indians start to hit again, does Brantley stay in meat of lineup and continue to produce?
9:32
Paul Swydan: I think the strong preference would be to have Santana in the middle of the lineup and move Brantley up or down, but for the time being there’s no need to rock the boat.
9:32
Comment From Guest
Who would you rather have at third base? EE, or, David Wright?
9:32
Paul Swydan: Like in a real game, or in fantasy? In fantasy, EE. In real life, Wright.
9:32
Comment From Lasorda
What are your thoughts on Josh Beckett, any reason to trust after years of underperformance? Beckett or Eovaldi for ROS?
9:32
Paul Swydan: No reason to trust Beckett yet. Eovaldi for now.
9:32
Comment From Erin
Should the Reds be looking at outfielders/starting pitchers, or try to tread water until Bruce, Latos and Cingrani are healthy?
9:33
Paul Swydan: I think the Reds need to be a little aggressive, but I may be biased because their general complacency annoys the piss out of me.

At the very least, I would push Simon back to the bullpen and call up Jeff Francis. Simon is rapidly turning back into a pumpkin.

9:33
Comment From Ryan
Who’s in a better position to compete in 2015: Cubs, D-Backs, or Padres?
9:34
Paul Swydan: In a vacuum, D-backs. In a world where Towers/Gibson retain their jobs this winter, the Padres.
9:34
Comment From park chan hos beard
really sad news about JoFer. Is it possible the new MLBAM FieldFX or whatever system can track pitching mechanics/release points/velocities in real time, and maybe prevent these kinds of injuries before they happen? or is there more needed?
9:34
Paul Swydan: I think that it’s possible that teams already have that kind of info at their disposal privately, and that the new system is simply going to standardize it across all 30 teams. But yes, there is a chance that what you say takes place as well.
9:35
Comment From Cade
If Puig can continue to become more disciplined, how many seasons does he have left until he becomes an All-Star?
9:35
Paul Swydan: Discipline or not, he has exactly zero years to go before he becomes an All-Star. Mike Matheny is dumb, but he’s not THAT dumb.
9:35
Comment From Erin
Tanaka-Montero tomorrow night: most interesting pitching match-up of the season thus far?
9:35
Paul Swydan: It’s probably in the top 10.
9:36
Comment From Big Joe Mufferaw
Do you buy the Puig, Vladdy Guererro comp?
9:36
Paul Swydan: No, I think Puig has a better eye. Or at least, more restraint. Vladdy swung at everything. I don’t see that Puig enough to make that comp.
9:36
Comment From max fisher players
PAUL! I asked how to improve offense in another fangraphs chat and the write said improved lineup composition and bunting against the shift, isnt lineup composition not that important over a season and bunting super hard for most players
9:38
Paul Swydan: Lineup composition is generally worth 1-2 wins over a season. That’s not a lot in the grand scheme of things, but on the other hand, most contending teams need an extra 1-2 wins per season. So I’d say it’s still important.

And yes, bunting directionally is very difficult. But, just about everything about playing baseball is difficult, and teams should probably practice it more.

9:38
Comment From Jake
Say Beltran needs surgery. Is this enough to make NYY a sub-.500 baseball team?
9:38
Paul Swydan: You’re moving the needle closer, but on its own, no.
9:38
Comment From Kat
Pick 3: Montero, Peralta, Pomeranz, Gausman, & Stroman
9:39
Paul Swydan: For just this season? Peralta for sure, since he is the one of the five with a locked up rotation spot (assuming you mean Wily).

After that, wow that is tough. On upside, probably Gausman and Stroman.

9:40
Paul Swydan: But Stroman doesn’t have a spot yet, and Pomeranz may be on to something, and Montero does have a spot. That’s a tough one.
9:40
Comment From Grand Admiral Braun
Will we see more organizations teach the knuckleball? Whether it’s failed prospects or washouts…a new market inefficiency?
9:40
Paul Swydan: I doubt it. The problem is that there aren’t a lot of people who can TEACH a knuckleball.
9:40
Comment From Grand Admiral Braun
Hoping Samardzija makes it to the AS break with zero wins despite being really good and is selected the ASG
9:40
Paul Swydan: If I didn’t have him in the one fantasy league I play that counts wins, I would absolutely agree with you. But I do, so I don’t. :-)
9:41
Comment From Francisco Lindor Truffles
Jason Castro is bumming me out, any of these guys better options: Mesoraco, Zunino, D’Arnaud, Ruiz, Pinto?
9:41
Paul Swydan: Ruiz or Mesoraco can probably salve those wounds. I have been keeping an eye on TDA as well, but not enough there yet.
9:41
Comment From waterford
is moving the needle closer a drug reference? like the closer the yankees get to .500 the more likelier they are to do drugs.. to, you know, handle the disappointment?
9:41
Paul Swydan: It wasn’t, but I like where your heads at!
9:42
Comment From Hopeful
I just traded David Price (and threw in Jason Castro) for Buster Posey. Did I win?
9:42
Paul Swydan: I think so, yes.
9:42
Comment From Harold
Is it worth trading Xander in a keeper league if I have Tulo (who is significantly more expensive) and Baez? I can keep Bogaerts for $1.
9:42
Paul Swydan: It’s certainly worth exploring, that’s for sure. But I wouldn’t trade him just to trade him.
9:42
Comment From Matt
Higher keeper value: Sonny Gray or Wil Myers?
9:42
Paul Swydan: Myers. Position player is always higher.
9:43
Comment From Daniel B
Also, Wheeler going 118 pitches tonight, w/ a lead, day after J-Fer. Mets are smart dudes.
9:43
Paul Swydan: I haven’t been watching, so I don’t want to talk in absolutes, but 118 doesn’t strike me as excessive.
9:43
Comment From D. Trump
Are Y. Ventura and Kazmir sell high candidates, or can I bank on them ROS?
9:44
Paul Swydan: Both, I think. I think you can bank on them, but they are almost definitely not going to be THIS good all season, so if you can get the moon for one/both of them, then you take it.
9:44
Comment From AJ
If players are relatively similar is youth a good deciding factor for pulling the trigger on a trade in keeper leagues? Speaking only to hitters, as pitchers can break down at any moment apparently.
9:44
Paul Swydan: Yes, absolutely.
9:45
Comment From vermont
is getting overly annoyed at this specific red sox team acting a little too self entitled after last season?
9:46
Paul Swydan: YES. You’ve got at least three years before you can get super annoyed at the Red Sox. Sorry.
9:46
Comment From Mizzou
Cardinals having bad luck, or are they really this much worse than last year?
9:46
Paul Swydan: We still have them at 47% odds to reach the division series. I’d say bad luck more than anything.
9:47
Comment From Fidel
Is there fire to Badler’s report on Despaigne, or only smoke?
9:47
Paul Swydan: Haven’t seen it yet, sorry.
9:47
Comment From Jed Hoyer
At what point do I start to get concerned about Javier Baez?
9:48
Paul Swydan: Baez is one of five age-21 players in Triple-A right now. This is not the time to get worried about him.
9:49
Comment From Fidel
Here you go: http://www.baseballamerica….
9:49
Paul Swydan: Gotcha. I’m reading it quick, and this isn’t my forte. So I will defer for now.
9:50
Comment From Joe DiMaggio
I was watching Mad Men today and Marilyn Monroe died in the episode. i cried a little.
9:50
Paul Swydan: At least you’re watching them. I have a stack of Mad Men episodes on the DVR. Haven’t even started this season yet.
9:50
Comment From vermont
i thing being a young boston fan has turned me into the type of fan that yankees fans are. I feel so ashamed.
9:51
Paul Swydan: Don’t be ashamed. Just befriend a Royals fan and remember that life isn’t that rosy for everyone else. At least in terms of sports fandom.
9:51
Comment From madison
Which surprise teams stay competitive through the season out of WSox, Orioles, Marlins, Rockies, and Brewers?
9:51
Paul Swydan: I’d peg the Rockies and Brewers as more likely to keep it up than I would the other three. Don’t forget – the Rockies still have Butler and Gray coming in the second half.
9:51
Comment From Guest
I’ve got a final tomorrow morning — unless I go for yet another degree, my last final ever. Enjoying a beer and this chat! But don’t worry, I spent the past few days preparing.
9:52
Paul Swydan: OK, good. Also, another degree? How many will you have after this?
9:52
Comment From Joe DiMaggio
the guy who posted two questions below the mad men question used the user name ‘madison’. you did that on purpose. i know you did. (also clever)
9:52
Paul Swydan: I didn’t, honest. I wasn’t looking. Sometimes I look if the questions look similar, but usually I don’t check.
9:53
Comment From Stew
Whys the hate gone so far on Heyward? I know hes off to a terrible start but he’s 25 and has 2 great years on his resume and during last year injury plagued season he hit .289/.374/.493 over the last 4 months.
9:53
Paul Swydan: At this point, he just seems to be a guy that is polarizing for a lot of people. As far as I’m concerned, Braves fans can go right on shunning him. Will make it easier for the Sox to swoop in when he’s a free agent in a couple of years.
9:53
Comment From Guest
What is the baseball site that you visit most often (other than FG)?
9:54
Paul Swydan: You mean besides FG and The Hardball Times? (I know you guys all are reading THT every day, right?)

Probably B-Ref and ESPN. And MLBTR.

9:54
Paul Swydan: What about you guys?
9:55
Comment From Ryan
Is Freese-Bourjous going to go down as Pineda-Montero 2.0? Do you expect anything from any of those players this year?
9:55
Paul Swydan: I expect Bourjos to be better than he has been. But the Cards also got Grichuk, who has already come up. So that’s nice too.
9:55
Comment From Brock Lesnar
Any thoughts on how the Mets are handling their young pitchers? Montero, Syndergaard and Familia seem to be where they should be. But what about Mejia and deGrom in the pen? Is a trade ideal?
9:56
Paul Swydan: My basic stance on Mejia is that anything the Mets get is a positive, because he just seems so fragile.
9:56
Comment From Jake
Say Billy Hamilton’s on third, Joey Votto up to bat, 2 outs. Votto hits a ground ball, Hamilton touches home before the ball gets to the first baseman. Does the run score?
9:57
Paul Swydan: Nope. Not unless Votto actually reaches base. If Votto singles and then is thrown out trying to stretch to a double, then the run counts. But not if he’s out on the grounder.
9:57
Comment From vrugg
how much longer is Brad Miller’s leash?
9:57
Paul Swydan: That’s a very interesting question. I expect it to be quite long, but I’m a little surprised he hasn’t gone down yet.
9:58
Comment From Guest
Baseball site I visit: FreeKraut!
9:58
Comment From Michael
Well all the THT articles are linked on FG, right? Otherwise, my most visited site is soxprospects.com.
9:58
Comment From Tom
THT is my homepage, of course
9:58
Comment From Lars
I use The Baseball Cube to look up batter vs. pitcher numbers
9:58
Comment From Rated Rookie
Heyward in Boston is a sad story that I hope never happens.
9:58
Paul Swydan: Oh, it’s happening.
9:58
Comment From Discolored Sterling
drop Bauer for Gausman?? roto keeper
9:58
Paul Swydan: Yeah.
9:59
Comment From Joe DiMaggio
also one last mad men thing here. i felt like all the women crying after hearing Marilyn died (they didnt know her) is similar to how all real baseball fans reacted after hearing about Jose… obviously not exactly similar. but somewhat analogous
9:59
Paul Swydan: I can’t wait to watch this episode.
9:59
Comment From Lars
Can the Rockies ever be forced to push back their fences to compensate for the altitude and make hitting less video game-like?
10:00
Paul Swydan: The humidor did more for that then you are giving credit. And the Rockies hitting was pretty bad last year. Didn’t hear anyone complaining then.
10:00
Comment From AJ
Heyward or Stanton in Boston?
10:01
Paul Swydan: I mean, in a vacuum, I’d obviously prefer Stanton, but the cost of acquisition will be much, much higher.
10:01
Comment From Gene
Thinking of a trip to Beantown this summer — I’ve been before so I know the main attractions, but what else should I check out?
10:01
Paul Swydan: I mean, I always tell people to just walk the Freedom Trail. It’s the best way to get to know the city.
10:01
Comment From Oscar
Is Trout, Gomez, Matt Adams, Middlebrooks, Cingrani > Donaldson, Pujols, Butler, Soriano, Strasberg?
10:01
Paul Swydan: I think so, but you have a lot of moving parts there.
10:01
Comment From toot toot
is boston starting to regret lowballing lester?
10:02
Paul Swydan: Regret is a strong word.
10:02
Comment From Joe
If Ethier/Crawford continue to put up mediocre numbers do you think the Dodgers just eat a bajillion dollars to trade one of the old guys? Or is there no hope for having two mohawked 23 year olds in LA?
10:03
Paul Swydan: I think so, yes. Ethier should be fairly easy to move.
10:03
Comment From Matt
U mentioned looking for the moon in a Yordano Ventura trade. Wil Myers in a keeper count as the moon?
10:03
Paul Swydan: Yeah, that’d be a pretty good trade.
10:04
Paul Swydan: And this has been a pretty good chat. Tons of questions I didn’t get to, so apologies for that, but you guys are the best, and I won’t apologize for that! See you next week!



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Paul Swydan is the managing editor of The Hardball Times, a writer and editor for FanGraphs and a writer for the Boston Globe. Follow him on Twitter @Swydan.


6 Responses to “FanGraphs After Dark Chat – 5/13/14”

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  1. jose fernandez jr says:

    seriously how about the concept of a fully flexible pitching staff. For example your team is down 2-0 in the third inning with the bases loaded how about you pinch hit for your guy and bring him back on 3 days rests.

    or you take a team that is horrible against lefties roll out 2 best lefty bullpen arms for that game.

    get rid of the save stat.

    how many runs a year could you add by putting your team in a better situations.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

    • RT says:

      It’s a nice concept in theory, however pitchers are fragile creatures (both physically and especially mentally) and pretty much need clearly defined roles and the routine that comes with them. Or else it would be a circus. Not to mention the headache that would come from having to micromanage everyone.

      Vote -1 Vote +1

  2. M W says:

    Jeff Francis? Bwahahahaha

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  3. Snoth says:

    Best superhero would obviously be Flash…Lays down nothing but bunts, home run every time…

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  4. vslyke says:

    Not all Braves fans have shunned Heyward! I still love the guy.

    Vote -1 Vote +1

  5. M W says:

    This just in – Jeff Francis should never see action in the bigs again!

    Vote -1 Vote +1

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