Pretty simple really, players with pedigree that have successful springs are worth keeping an eye on. I remember last season Jake Fox did great but so did Alex Gordon. I consider these guys to be on pretty opposite sides of the spectrum. There are the rare cases of in between players like Michael Morse, but he had MLB success the previous season so he was less risky than one would imagine.
I don’t play in an AL only league, but middling guys are never going to get you anywhere. You take a chance on Matusz over those other boneheads everytime. If he falters, then you move to a mediocre low upside guy if you want. It seems like a no-brainer to me. Matusz is picked up in my mixed league; those other guys won’t sniff a roster.
When Madson went down, I picked up Liriano to fill the empty spot on my roster. Starting pitchers are always the easiest picks off the wire, especially before the season starts. Liriano beat himself last year. The fact that he’s not doing that this spring is more important than sample size or who he’s pitching against. I have a feeling he’ll be better than at least one or two of the guys at the end of my rotation (Gio, Scherzer and Masterson).
AL only leagues are completely different, it’s much harder to stream guys or find replacement pitchers in free agency. I would probably lean towards Matusz in an AL-only but I don’t think it’s a no-brainer at all, especially because Tommy Milone looks like he’ll be useful in deeper leagues.
Comment by DominicanRepublican — March 26, 2012 @ 1:16 pm
Excellent Chris! This is good stuff. Next time just get it BEFORE my drafts! Yesterday!
But seriously, I like it, thanks.
Ps. I got Liriano in both of them.
Comment by Chicago Mark — March 26, 2012 @ 1:57 pm
Unrelated to the players listed in the article, but what are your thoughts on Adam Dunn’s spring so far? K:BB ratio of 3:11 so far with reports that he is ‘seeing the ball better’.
I’m in an A.L. only league, had Matusz on my roster for 3 years (picked him up after he was drafted by the Orioles), has Noesi and Paulino on my roster at the end of last season and have Miolne on my list of low-priced options at the auction.
All that said, I would rank Matusz first among the group because of both his pedigree and the fact that when healthy and throwing at his full velocity, he was exceptionally successful the last two months of 2010 against tough A.L. east competition. Pauline has an upside but has never shown it for more than a game or two at a time and Noesi has an upside too but has yet to establish himself.
For 2012 I’d rank Milone second pitching half his games in Oakland. I think Noesi will eventually find success but has enough command issues that we probably won’t see it in 2012. Worth a flyer if you can stick him on a reserve.
definitely not. even assuming Matusz pitches better, he still doesn’t have the upside of Paulino this season and Milone in Oakland and Noesi in SafeCo are far less risky as well. Matusz has to face the AL East – Boston and New York – which is plenty of cause for concern given how inconsistent he will be. Iwakuma is not in the rotation though, so avoid him for now. I don’t think Matusz is a top 100 starter in 2012 – http://www.therotosaurus.com/2012-player-rankings/starting-pitcher-rankings/
I do play in an AL only league and just took Matusz as a $1 player at the end of my draft. He was touted, then he was terrible and now he’s showing some velocity and a decent strike out rate while not walking many. Those are all good signs. That being said, if I could have gotten Milone for a $1, I’d have probably taken him over Matusz. Milone is in a pitcher’s park.