Nicholas Minnix Baseball Chat – 9/5/14

12:12
Nicholas Minnix: Hello, folks, sorry for the delay, but ready to roll!

12:14
Comment From Guest
Brandon Finnegan upside ROS?

12:15
Nicholas Minnix: I like the player, in fantasy leagues, unless it’s a holds league, there doesn’t seem to be much value beyond a little chipping away at ERA and WHIP, some extra K’s (which he can produce, surely). He won’t get a start, surely.

12:15
Comment From Kevin Towers
$@#$!! $@#$!! wusses @#$@#$! %$@#%ing #$@#!!!!!!

12:15
Nicholas Minnix: Haha, you seem to have captured that well.

12:15
Comment From Bluesox
What do you think is the source of the current slump in Oakland?

12:17
Nicholas Minnix: Mostly just a bit of unrealistic expectation that they’d continue to produce as well as they had, I think. Even before the Cespedes trade, projections had them coming back down to earth in terms of O. Beane said he addressed (basically) corrections his FO was expecting from the rotation, seems perhaps ignored the same for the O?

12:17
Comment From Chris
Will Phil Hughes’ walk rate return to career avg?

12:18
Nicholas Minnix: Next season, pretty likely. Have yet to see a pitcher come close to repeating such a historic walk rate, even if control is his strong suit, best case I can think of top of head is Cliff Lee.

12:18
Comment From Cyb
Tight race in ERA, WHIP and Saves. I would only gain points in Saves. Would you pick up Mujica daringly?

12:23
Nicholas Minnix: I … would be more inclined to take my chances with … well I had to look that up. My perceptions may have hurt there. Mujica has turned it around. I suppose he and Tazawa have similar chances, checking usage … ugh, they’re neck and neck. I’d feel safer with Tazawa, I think, but somehow I think BOS would “trust” Mujica more. I am afraid to trust either with my ERA or WHIP, TBH.

12:23
Comment From Cronut Burger
Did the Angels sour on C.J. Cron at some point? I know he didn’t light the world on fire when called up, but he still gave the team more output from the DH slot than anyone else this season.

12:23
Nicholas Minnix: I don’t think so. I think they just have a lot of options, and they’re still healthy.

12:23
Comment From Guest
Since all that foolish talk about demoting him, Bryce Harper is batting .313/.361/.566 with 8 homers

12:23
Nicholas Minnix: (This is a PSA. Thank you.)

12:24
Comment From Kris
24th round C-Dickz or 24th round Javier Baez

12:25
Nicholas Minnix: Ahhh, man, the age-old question. … Haha, well, I’d have to see projections for next year. Right now, Dickerson seems much safer. I loved Baez, perhaps too much. He does scare me, in terms of bust likelihood. Wait as long as possible for that choice.

12:25
Comment From John Farrell
Will Mookie still be in the lineup every day once Rusney gets called up?

12:26
Nicholas Minnix: Doubtful, but very close to it, I’d think. They’d get hammered for sitting him after he’s performed so well this time. Castillo seems likelier to be slowly integrated.

12:26
Comment From Krusty
Who would you trust down the stretch for spot starts, Danny Salazar or Derek Holland?

12:26
Nicholas Minnix: Salazar

12:26
Comment From Cyb
Thoughts on Spangenberg? Looks like a good start for his series in COL.

12:27
Nicholas Minnix: Maybe only an replacement-level player, at best, but those types can always be good starts in COL. Daily league or trannies, sure, if the options are few.

12:27
Comment From Allen Craig
Should I be rostered in any capacity ROS?

12:28
Nicholas Minnix: Maybe in deep NL-only, OF-only leagues?

12:28
Comment From Guest
Hey Nick, would you pick start Fires over Lackey in their duel today and is Cobb a good start against Bal?

12:30
Nicholas Minnix: I’d go Lackey. I think the Fiers wheels … may not fall off, hard to predict that, but the direction of the teams right now and the type of prep STL puts in, I suspect that they can get to Fiers, who’s shown some of that HR problem. This is if you have to pick. And Cobb, he’s so good, I’d trust him, and live with a bad start if it happens.

12:30
Comment From Rob
By BaseRuns, the Cubs expected record would put them .5 games back of a WC berth. The Cubs will definitely be more interesting in 2015, but do they make the playoffs?

12:31
Nicholas Minnix: Until the pitching is stronger and deeper, it’s hard to imagine so in that division where at least STL and PIT are set up to compete consistently.

12:31
Comment From Tom Jones
Thoughts on Derek Holland’s first start? Can we roll him out on Sunday versus Seattle?

12:32
Nicholas Minnix: Impressive, man, really encouraging. I think given SEA’s lineup, he’s not a bad choice there, not at all.

12:33
Comment From Hunter
Trying to take work off for the wild card games but can’t find any dates. When should I take off? Sept 30? Oct 1?

12:34
Nicholas Minnix: There would surely be one or two, at least, on Tuesday, the 30th. Not entirely surprising that there’s no schedule, MLB is totally attuned to TV logistics in terms of ratings, markets, it seems.

12:34
Comment From Bluesox
In a 7×7 roto with OBP & SLG, which call-up holds the most promise?

12:35
Nicholas Minnix: Soler, and ordinarily I’d have to hem and haw.

12:35
Comment From Larry Bernandez
How do you like Jose Ramirez of the Indians?

12:36
Nicholas Minnix: Not a bad looking player, I’d expect him to end up like a super utility type or a trade piece in the next year or two. Just my initial reaction to the ?.

12:36
Comment From Mkb
Deep league, limited roster spot, best available player on the wire. Would you pick up Carlos Gomez?

12:38
Nicholas Minnix: Phew. Limited roster space … I would. If it was a shallow league, no, hope your def of league (15-team mixed or deeper, I’d say) is like mine. 12-team mixed I would as well tho, assuming 14-man O.

12:38
Comment From Guest
Jonathan Schoop = Brian Dozier minus the walks?

12:39
Nicholas Minnix: And stolen bases (if this is a fantasy question). Schoop has more of a swing and miss problem, too.

12:39
Comment From Guest
Yes, arbitrary as hell. But. 2nd Half Stats: Bryce Harper: .294 AVG, 9 HR, wRC+ 139 1.2 WAR MIke Trout: .239 AVG, 9 HR, 116 wRC+ 0.9 WAR

12:40
Nicholas Minnix: Thank goodness for arbitration! I like Harper, at one or two points, I still expected him to be better LT than Trout. This stretch alone can’t justify that, sadly … yet!

12:40
Comment From Jeb
Abreu this good? Should we expect the same numbers for the next couple of years from him?

12:41
Nicholas Minnix: I am tired of saying no about Abreu. How’s that? Haha. He’s a more well-rounded hitter than I imagined, definitely. THIS good? Quite good, maybe not THIS! good.

12:43
Comment From MIB
Trying to manage a games started cap. Do you know of any sites/resources that track remaining games started projected for pitchers and who the opponents are?

12:44
Nicholas Minnix: Man I really cannot think of one like that. Check team schedules at ESPN for projected starters far out as I’ve seen. Here for stats: http://www.fangraphs.com/pr…

12:44
Nicholas Minnix: Not a perfect resource for that, off the top of my head.

12:44
Comment From Need Help
I have one final move I can make in my AL-only league, and I need power. The best available FA bats are Viciedo, Nava, Choice and Guyer. If you would be so kind, please rank ROS. Thanks so much!!!

12:45
Nicholas Minnix: Viciedo is best source of power I really see there.

12:45
Comment From J Felt
How does Finnegan profile as a starter? Most likely outcome for 2015 campaign?

12:47
Nicholas Minnix: He has the smell of a Chris Sale type thing. Not saying he’ll be quite that good (although perhaps he could be, I’m not to say). But that he’s not a big part of things, at least in 2015 rotation, but could be a nice RP who swings and slowly transitions into SP spot 2nd half, maybe.

12:47
Nicholas Minnix: Likelier into the winter, 2016. Just my guess.

12:47
Comment From Mkb
Don’t normally stream hitters but what about Gyorko in COL?

12:47
Nicholas Minnix: Sounds good to me.

12:47
Comment From Matt
Random thought when reading Jeff’s worst swings column – could Hamilton start “swinging” as soon as the pitcher begins his wind-up, obviously have no chance of making contact, and be 1/3 of the way down to first before the ball’s even left the pitcher’s hand?

12:48
Nicholas Minnix: Undoubtedly. Perhaps even 1/2.

12:48
Comment From Mkb
Who are your top 3 in each award (Cy Young, ROY, MVP) in each league?

12:48
Nicholas Minnix: You may as well basically read the WAR lists for my picks there, top threes, haha.

12:48
Comment From Guest
Is rusney Castillo worth $5 in 4×4 ottoneu?

12:49
Nicholas Minnix: I think that’s a safe bid for one I’d be comfortable with carrying him as a possibility for next season when it’s rolled over. I’d not want to go into next year with him as a double-digit salary, that’s my personal opinion.

12:49
Comment From George Isnt Curious
Did the A’s and Tigers underestimate the impact trading Cespedes and Jackson would have on their offense?

12:51
Nicholas Minnix: I don’t think it’s that as much as some other factors. DET that may be more applicable than OAK, but. … Cespedes did lengthen what is an average, platoon-dependent lineup, otherwise, so I think they just overestimated how good it was independent of him.

12:52
Comment From Rated Rookie
Is Gerrit Cole’s mediocrity mostly a product of pitch mix (too many fastballs, not enough of his good curveball)? Fatigue? Or is the hype that clouded my eyes for so long finally clearing?

12:52
Nicholas Minnix: Perhaps the latter, haha. And a little of the former. But he’s good. He’s been very good since activation. STL is mounting a serious run it seems, many P’s may have been in trouble in that last start.

12:53
Comment From Guest
Please share some sleeper wire picks for offense. Thanks!!

12:54
Nicholas Minnix: Juan Lagares is one of my favs, for speed. Quackenbush and Sanchez for SV. These are more like go and get them types, not sleepers.

12:54
Comment From Cody
Thoughts on how Seattle’s season will end? out of the playoffs? lose in the wild card game? win the world series?

12:56
Nicholas Minnix: I wish I could say confidently. … They are highly unlikely to advance past DS, but they aren’t a bad choice to win the WC game if they make it. I like their chances to make it.

12:56
Comment From boring roster question
Howdy NM. Would you recommend dropping someone like Stroman/Santana/Keuchel for C Carrasco? I want to get in on some of that action.

12:57
Nicholas Minnix: Santana has been disappointing, I could see that, would have to look at schedules beyond that. Keuchel remains steady, losing K’s though, could see that as well. Depends on needs there.

12:57
Comment From boring roster question
10 team h2h: gearing up for the playoffs, 3 (really good) closers seems sufficient but I like to carry 4 to ensure those fickle saves. Good strategy or wasted roster spot?

12:58
Nicholas Minnix: I’d like to have as many closers as possible as long as they’re helpful in ERA, WHIP, and cycle my SPs through those slots. Heavy dose of RPs period helps reduce ERA, WHIP.

12:58
Comment From Matt
Are head-to-head playoffs just crap? For example yesterday, I had 2 hitters play yesterday, half my team that got me to 1st place are injuried now(Tulo,Votto,Rizzo), and 1 crazy week from Brian McCann could cost me the season.

12:59
Nicholas Minnix: Yes, that is an obvious pitfall of them. Unless league rules hinder or prohibit, stacking lineups on days off, this is the time of year to do it, not be beholden to your lower-end players.

12:59
Comment From First time caller
Can you recommend a fantasy baseball site/league for a first-timer? Something free/low-cost with relatively simple rules?

1:00
Nicholas Minnix: I’d ask in comments as well, others’ input. I’d assume ESPN, Yahoo!, CBS … I think Fantrax has great low-cost leagues, as little $10 entry, good payouts. I am biased, I like their site.

1:01
Comment From Kris
Carlos Zambrano just retired. He made $113MM in his career. Unreal

1:01
Nicholas Minnix: !

1:01
Comment From Jeb
V Martinez MVP?

1:01
Nicholas Minnix: If only he donned a mitt (well) more often

1:01
Comment From Shawn
Alex Wood or James Shields ROS?

1:01
Nicholas Minnix: Wood top of my head

1:01
Comment From Bomok
If a player walked in half his PA and stuck out in all the others, how good would he be? Even if he’d be a good leadoff man, how good would a team of 9 hitters like that be? that low SLG would drag them down, wouldn’t it?

1:01
Nicholas Minnix: Yes, that’d be a bad team.

1:01
Comment From ballon mallon
If Smyly gets shut down, will he still pitch in relief or is he “done done”?

1:02
Nicholas Minnix: If they’re to pitch him in relief, they should do it soon. I think it’ll be closer to done done.

1:02
Comment From Guest
Gausman, Buccholz or Kazmir if I need a starter tomorrow?

1:02
Nicholas Minnix: Listing of opponents always helps. One minute.

1:04
Nicholas Minnix: Man, I’d say Buchholz.

1:04
Comment From ballon mallon
Will Keuchel get shut down and id so when?

1:04
Nicholas Minnix: See no reason that he should be.

1:04
Comment From Brock Sampson
Good Schoop comps in real life, not fantasy? He’s definitely got some selection/patience issues, but he’s also young. It’s hard to look at his minor league track record because he’s always been very young for his level. JJ Hardy-lite (less valuable position) a reasonable if slightly optimistic projection? Jeff Kent as the top 5% projection?

1:06
Nicholas Minnix: I wouldn’t say Kent. But the Hardy at 2B comp strikes me as a good one. It’s true, he’s been a little young, definite room for maturation in the plate discipline dept. that’s more than reasonable to project and hope for. I like the Hardy one.

1:07
Nicholas Minnix: Man. … Kent I suppose is a ceiling. Yes, I could give that, …

1:07
Nicholas Minnix: Maybe top 0.5% :D

1:07
Comment From Gila Monster
What will happen with Grady Sizemore? I picked him up for cheap in a deep dynasty and he has gone to post a 142 wRC+ in the second half. SSS, but it could be that he actually need to get back into playing baseball. Any hope that some power or speed returns?

1:08
Nicholas Minnix: Yes, sure, possible. Full-retention keeper or similar, may have some value, if he’s a min salary type.

1:08
Nicholas Minnix: No speed returns, really, too old (in fantasy baseball optimism terms).

1:08
Nicholas Minnix: A touch of power, sure, sacrificing AVG tho.

1:08
Comment From J Felt
Personal question– where did you write originally?

1:09
Nicholas Minnix: KFFL, which as of last month is defunct, coincidentally. And it wasn’t very baseball-centric, or even -friendly.

1:09
Nicholas Minnix: Sadly for me.

1:09
Comment From Guest #2
About how much should I trust Jarred Cosart? He has seemed solid with the Marlins.

1:10
Nicholas Minnix: I like him. There is something hard to pinpoint with him. This is how I felt on him:

1:10
1:10
Comment From Bomok
Zack Wheeler for Addison Russell. fair or not fair?

1:11
Nicholas Minnix: Without any sort of parameters, it’s impossible to say unfair. If you filled a need and didn’t hurt yourself as much or more, then it’s fair to you, all that matters.

1:11
Comment From Bomok
Who would you rather trade Harvey, Wheeler, Syndergaard, or deGrom?

1:12
Nicholas Minnix: Right now, Syndergaard, because I have seen the others have success at the MLB level, and it’s believable. All I can say on that, haha. Wheeler if Syndergaard wows as well. I’d want a chance to evaluate his pitch mix. … (Syndergaard)

1:12
Comment From Bomok
Which team do you get the most Q’s about on live chats?

1:12
Nicholas Minnix: Hmmm … the Cubs, I’d say.

1:13
Comment From Mike
How quickly do you think Sean Manaea will rise in 2015? I don’t expect him to reach the big leagues, but it’s tough not to get excited about him. Thanks for chatting?

1:14
Nicholas Minnix: I think MLB is possible, why not. He should hit AAA … if he doesn’t struggle for a long period. Has to open at AA, so why not AAA by EOS, at least.

1:14
Comment From Ryan
Buccholz a decent option against TOR? Or Gausman against TB a better matchup?

1:15
Nicholas Minnix: Buch I like there

1:15
Comment From Andy5
Are the strikeouts something Trout can get under control and limit to a sub-20% K rate? Or is he always going to be a high whiff guy (currently at 25%)?

1:16
Nicholas Minnix: I think he’s going to be that type, just is. May reduce some in peak years (scarily not there yet), but after that. …

1:17
Comment From ST3
Would you rather stream Jarred Cosart against the free swinging, slumping Braves or Wada against a Pirates team that has looked pretty inept against lefties this year?

1:18
Nicholas Minnix: Rather? I’d rather trust Cosart! ATL is pretty RH I believe, too. But Wada isn’t a bad option there.

1:18
Comment From Rob
How fast of a fastball do you think an 80 bat speed guy like Gary Sheffield could hit with some consistency in his prime?

1:19
Nicholas Minnix: Geez. Um, 105? No, 300 mph, definitely. Really, it’s more of a question of is the fastball moving, at that speed. If it’s straight, then I might confidently say 105.

1:20
Comment From Rich
Mat Latos vs. Mets or G. Cole vs. Cubs?

1:22
Nicholas Minnix: Both. Geez. Good choice to have if you have to make it. Latos probably.

1:22
Comment From Roy
Rest of career who would you prefer, Stanton or Harper?

1:22
Nicholas Minnix: Oy. I hate to pick against Harper. I still won’t. May not be smarter choice, but my preference, for longevity, aging skills.

1:22
Nicholas Minnix: Just a feel pick

1:23
Comment From Luke
Would you keep Dickerson over a top tier OF with injury risk? Thinking CarGo or even Ellsbury

1:23
Nicholas Minnix: No. Sounds like a limited keeper league. Give me the star/stud.

1:23
Nicholas Minnix: Trade Dickerson, if possible, then.

1:24
Comment From Rated Rookie
Is there going to be room for Steven Matz in the 2015 Mets rotation?

1:24
Nicholas Minnix: I cannot see that. He’s like a might debut guy, to me.

1:25
Comment From Guest
How could you see a draft’s first round shake out next year? If Trout’s steals don’t come back, is he clear #1? Does Miggy fall out of the first round? Carlos Gomez is first rounder? Just generally compared to this season, who are the biggest risers and fallers in the first round?

1:25
Nicholas Minnix: IMO Trout isn’t clear No. 1 next year. Miggy, no. Gomez, yes. Risers: Abreu. Fallers: CarGo.

1:25
Comment From Big Joe Mufferaw
Nick! I am currently in second place in my league, and I am last in Avg. should I just Tank avg and concentrate on counting stats that are easier to track?

1:26
Nicholas Minnix: How close are you to 2nd to last? If it’s a point or two (.258 to .259, .260), then don’t tank definitely. It’s a context question. And what you can pick up in your league (so how deep it is) also matters a ton.

1:26
Comment From Pirates Hurdles
Fantrax rocks, but for simplicity just play a yahoo standard league

1:26
Nicholas Minnix: Thanks!

1:26
Comment From First time caller
Thanks!

1:27
Comment From Josef
Shields’ next 2 scheduled starts (after NYY tonight) both come against Detroit. Does dropping him for Quackenbush make sense?

1:27
Nicholas Minnix: Totally depends … if you need SV, Quack Attack is the guy to get, assuming best available on wire, and if Shields is your worst starter/worst matchups, then yes, I’m thinking.

1:28
Nicholas Minnix: And depends on how deep league is, related issues.

1:28
Comment From Big Joe Mufferaw
How many leagues are you in? and in how many of them are you in the top 3?

1:29
Nicholas Minnix: Haha, well, only 2, but there’s a semi-long story as to why, or it’d have been a few more. I’m in the top 3 in one of the 2. I do know that one of the teams I drafted, LABR, was top 3 all season, until recently, I haven’t been told how it’s doing.

1:29
Comment From Los
In a 12 team redraft league. I drafted Cargo in the 1st, Longo in the 2nd, Kipnis in the 3rd, Nathan was my first closer, My top two starters were Danny Salazar and Shelby Miller. I am currently in 1st place. Am I good at fantasy for adjusting or terrible for the way I draft?

1:30
Nicholas Minnix: Hell. Yes. Hell yes.

1:30
Comment From Bomok
Wheeler for Russell- unfair for the Mets or Cubs

1:31
Nicholas Minnix: Um. … a little for the Cubs. Establishment in MLB carries some perceived weight, probably some real weight. Wheeler’s ceiling is debatable, perhaps, though. Cubs throw in a small piece, maybe that’d do it. But I don’t think they’d do that deal straight up, right now anyway.

1:32
Comment From autumnal
any sites like fangraphs for NFL analysis?

1:35
Nicholas Minnix: There are 2 well-known that I’m aware – Football Outsiders and Pro Football Focus. I think this lesser known one has the bloggier etc. style in terms of content, but IDK in terms of quality, haven’t read them much. Interests me tho: http://www.advancedfootball…

1:37

Comment From Tammy
Roster crunch,. Drop 2 of the following for next 2 weeks of playoff action:




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Nicholas Minnix oversaw baseball content for six years at KFFL, where he held the loose title of Managing Editor for seven and a half before he joined FanGraphs. He played in both Tout Wars and LABR from 2010 through 2014. Follow him on Twitter @NicholasMinnix.


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