Roster Doctor – 5/5/09

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Today, I’m picking back up my important-looking lab coat, plastic stethoscope, and monocle (not at all doctor-related, but it makes me look both authoritative and awesome) to play Roster Doctor.

Player Pool: Mixed
No. of Teams: 12
Categories: Traditional 5×5
Scoring Type: Roto

C – John Baker
1B – Carlos Pena
2B – Chase Utley
3B – Aubrey Huff
SS – Jhonny Peralta
OF – Matt Kemp
OF – Jason Bay
OF – Shane Victorino
UT – Mark Teixeira
BN – Nelson Cruz
BN – Derrek Lee

SP – Dan Haren
SP – Josh Beckett
SP – Erik Bedard
SP – John Danks
SP – Jair Jurrjens
SP – Scott Richmond
RP – Heath Bell
RP – Scott Downs
RP – Jim Johnson

DL – Kelvim Escobar

The first thing I notice is that you have a couple of excellent bench hitters and a few weak spots in the starting lineup. Cruz should be starting on your team, and right away I’d bench either Pena, slide Teixeira over to first, and put Cruz into the UT spot, or simply bench Victorino. After that, I’d start shopping an outfielder or Pena. If you can get a guy with some speed in return, I probably like Victorino least, but who I trade would depend upon the return. Pena would probably provide the most value in a trade right now.

I think SS is your weakest offensive spot, and I might make a play for Michael Young. I mentioned before the season how he was often my SS target if I missed out on Reyes, Hanley, or Rollins, and he is tearing it up this year. He is hitting the ball a long way, and his power thus far is not looking fluky. If his owner thinks it is, he might be looking to sell high. We’re still looking at a small sample size, and I’ll talk more about him at a later date, but he makes a good target. A Victorino(or Pena)/Peralta for Young/Pitcher deal would probably benefit you.

Baker really doesn’t cut it at catcher, though having an elite catcher in this format isn’t necessary either. If Matt Wieters is on the wire, I would try to make bench room for him until he gets called up. In the mean time, I’d drop Baker for someone like Mike Napoli (probably not available), Kenji Johjima (most likely available), or a guy like Yadier Molina.

Lee’s not having a great year so far, but that’s at least partially bad luck and he doesn’t belong on your bench. Neither does Pena, though he and Lee are your two bench hitters now (unless you trade an OF or bench Victorino). I’d begin seeing what Pena could fetch in a trade, and once Lee puts together a good couple weeks, I’d try to trade him as well. They’d have more value to you upgrading another spot (third base! third base!) than they would on the bench.

As to your pitching, Haren is having a great year—just as CAPS thought he would. This owner expressed concern over Beckett, but I wouldn’t be too concerned. He’s walking too many batters, but we’re looking at a small sample and he’s been excellent over the past few years. His ERA is mostly bad luck (absurd .398 BABIP and 59 percent LOB%), so I’d keep trotting him out there.

Bedard is pitching excellently, rewarding you handsomely for your investment, but he remains an injury concern. Depending on your penchant for risk, I might consider trading him. Ricky Nolasco is probably the best buy-low pitcher in all of baseball right now, so trading Bedard for Nolasco and a sizeable upgrade elsewhere would be a profitable move.

Danks is very solid, and Richmond has been pitching well so far. His MLEs have never been this good, though, so I might see what he would fetch on the trade market. Bell is great—hang onto him—and Downs is terrific if he can hold onto the job once Ryan returns. Johnson was likely a recent pickup, and I think it’s a good one. He’s been Baltimore’s best reliever (ERA wise) of the three in contention for the closer role, and his gmLI is much higher than Ray’s. His skills haven’t been great in the past, but he’s fine to hang onto over the next week to see if he lands the closer’s job. If he does, look to trade for any other established closer.

Overall, a good team, but there is a good deal of waste and also some risk on the pitching side. I’d spread your talent out some more by making some trades, trying to make two-for-one deals where you get to upgrade a spot, particularly shortstop, third base, catcher, or a pitcher spot.

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I am confused, when was this written?. Trade Pena when he starts hitting?  He has 11 HRs to lead the AL and 28 RBIs, good for 3rd in the AL. Not to mention he is hitting at .267, which is 15 points above his career average. Just how much more hitting would you expect him to do before he ‘starts’?

Derek Carty
Derek Carty

You’re absolutely right, joeymitch.  I fixed it.  My computer (and my stats database) been down over the past week or so, and I had to check stats somewhere else.  I’m not sure why I remember seeing that Pena wasn’t doing well.  Maybe I clicked on someone like Brayan Pena’s page and only gave it a quick glance.  I even knew that Carlos Pena was doing well, but it must have slipped my mind putting the article together so late.  Sorry, and thanks for the catch.

Chad Burke
Chad Burke

If he trades Victorino his only real source of steals is Kemp.  He has a ton of power but very little speed.  Cruz will steal a few bags but not close to the number that Victorino will.  I would recommend trying to upgrade SS and 3B, either of which Young qualifies for, but I’d trade Cruz or Pena or Lee before I’d trade Victorino.


NL Only
12 teams
Format: 4×4 roto
Exception: (6 outfielders, 10 pitchers)

So far this season a complete train-wreck.


1b Lance Berkman
3b E. Bonifacio
ci Martin Prado
2b Ron Belliard
ss Jose Reyes
mi Y. Escobar
c Ruiz
c Soto
of Braun
of McLouth
of Franceour
of Kearns
of Willingham
of Nate Schierholtz
ut Hinske
p Roy Oswalt
p Josh Johnson
p Aaron Cook
p M. Boggs
p Matt Capps
p Mike Gonzales
p Aaron Heilman
p Jason Motte
p Chris Perez
p Andrew Miller (DL)
Farm: p- Tommy Hanson


“I’m not sure why I remember seeing that Pena wasn’t doing well.”

note to self: maybe this column isn’t particularly useful after all.


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“I’m not sure why I remember seeing that Pena wasn’t doing well.”