A fulfilling fantasy evening with Paul Singman.
Paul Singman: Welcome! I'm here to talk anything fantasy baseball--keepers, rankings, prospects, settings, strategy--whatever you want. Onto the first question...
julitschan (Kansas City): I have been reading the new prospectus and I am confused about the SB2 and SB3 stat found under the Manager sections. The book states that this stat breaks down successful steals of second and successful steals of third but the numbers given in each manager section are to low to be the number of successful steals. Can you explain this stat better?
Paul Singman: I believe your understanding of the stat is correct, julitschan. I haven't been able to get my hands on a copy yet, but what are some of the values that seem too low to you?
Kyle (Illinois): My fantasy baseball buddies and I are always looking for ways to make our league more sabermetric but don't always have luck. Any recommendations on points vs. head-to-head, categories to use or even websites that might have more options (i.e. OPS+) that Yahoo, et al might not?
Paul Singman: Hi Kyle. I'm personally a fan of sticking with the traditional categories and using sabermetrics to better predict them. If you want to mix up your league, there are hosts like OnRoto and Ottoneu that offer more flexibility and the major providers are always adding more features every year. One option is to use a points league with the weightings the same as the wOBA linear weights found in the Book. And then for pitching you can use FIP weightings.
Alex (Anaheim): Are there any rookies you expect to be especially productive in 2013?
Paul Singman: A lot of these guys came up at the end of last year, not sure if they are still considered rookies. But Adam Eaton and Jean Segura are likely two of the top producers.
Jim (Chicago): I whiffed on catcher in my 10-team AL-only head-to-head league. Now I have to make a heroic decision between the likes of Chris Iannetta, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Jason Castro, and John Jaso. Your thoughts?
Paul Singman: I'd go with Jaso then Salty. Not too shabby.
Chopper (Indy): Thanks for the chat, Paul!
Who do you think will be the Cubs' closer at the outset of 2013 and later in the season? How do you think Jason Grilli will do as closer in Pittsburgh?
Paul Singman: I doubt someone takes Marmol off the Cubs hands, so he's still the closer. Kyuji Fujikawa is expected to have a great K rate and should be second-in-line in Chicago. Grilli is probably about the 20th ranked closer, but he has as good a chance as anyone in that group to hang onto the job.
mblthd (SC): 5x5 10-team NL-only rotisserie - pick 2 of: $5 Rutledge, $3 Lynn, $5 Dom Brown, $1 R.Tejada, $1 M.Carpenter, $1 Schierholz
Paul Singman: Go with the talent: Rutledge and Lynn.
Paul (DC): With Christian Yelich getting more spring training playing time so far than any other outfielder on the Marlins (and doing quite well too), is there any chance at all that he makes the team either out of Spring Training or soon after the Super 2 arbitration cut point in May?
Paul Singman: Hi Paul! Yelich has been impressive, but he'll be lucky to be anything more than a September callup. Marlins ain't gonna rush him.
Donald Loria (Milwaukee ): In my dynasty draft I must choose my 1st prospect from: Fernandez, Gausman, Giolito, Correa, Baez, Almora or Zunio.
They can sit in limited "minor league" slots indefinitely until I call them up. Therefore, picking for "ceiling". How would u rank order them?
Paul Singman: Donald, you're going to love the prospect rankings Bret and Josh are going to roll out tomorrow or Friday. Based on a sneak peak of those: Fernandez, Baez, Correa, Gaus, Zunino, Almora.
Yatchisin (Santa Barbara): So, do we buy into the 2012 Edwin Encarnacion ans the real E5, especially since he doesn't have to play third anymore?
Paul Singman: Yatchisin, unfortunately if you want E5 (might be time to change the nickname) you'll have to buy into him. I'm partially buying, thinking 32-33 homers, but not shoving all-in.
Alan (Jacksonville): Keep six in a head to head points league with three OFs that are LF, CF, RF. Keeper round stays the same throughout a player's career: Beltre (1), Felix H (7th rd), J Upton (10), Harper (15), Price (16), Matt Moore (20), Austin Jackson (20), Jurickson Profar (20).
Paul Singman: Tough, I'm thinking pass on Beltre, Felix.
Raul (Turning Stone Casino): Sean Rodriguez playing 1b and some OF this spring. Is he a lost cause?
Paul Singman: Nope, worth a $1 bid in AL-only auctions.
mike (Rhode Island): Halladay, ($14), Scherzer ($16) or Sale ($17) in a keeper league?
Paul Singman: Mike, I have no problem going with Halladay or Scherzer. Halladay a little better this year, Scherzer obviously more long-term potential. Sale's mechanics and body type still scare me.
Dan ( My Couch): Thanks for the evening chat Paul. I play in a 5x5 roto league where we can keep any 4 players. I'm currently thinking I'll keep Braun, JUpton, Beltre and CarGo, but have an offer to trade CarGo for a 1st round pick (2nd overall). Would you do that? And if so, who should replace him as my 4th keeper out of Bruce, Desmond, Wainwright and Scherzer? The way I look at it is I could essentially trade CarGo for 2 of these guys (or a little better depending on who is available via the draft) as I'd keep 1 and be able to draft the 2nd one with my extra 1st round pick. Thoughts?
Paul Singman: Dan on his couch, I'd personally keep CarGo. If you really want the trade, keep Bruce and Desmond.
Outuv (left field): What is your perspective of Cameron Maybin and Dexter Fowler? Are they similar? what do you see from them in the next three years fantasy wise?
Paul Singman: Both are talented players who have a hard time putting it all together. For the next three years I'd rather Maybin than Fowler.
Raul (Turning Stone Casino): who do you like better Eaton or Cowgill?
Paul Singman: Love my former A Cowgill, but Eaton is the clear choice rationally speaking.
The Old Professor (Jupiter FL): So I am down here watching the ridiculous depth that the Cardinals possess especially in their pitching throughout the entire system. It seems inevitable that some potential major leaguers will get buried and never see the opportunity. If Jeff Luhnow is listening, he needs to start dealing for some of his former draft picks.
Paul Singman: Injuries happen, and most teams end up using 8-9 starters in a season. Those that are performing and ready will get their chance.
Donald Loria (Milwaukee): Long term for fantasy production only. Who wins in the next 5 years, Tavaras, Xander, Profar, or Meyers?
Also, do you think the expectations of minor leaguers/rookies is skewed after the year of Trout/Harper/Cespedes/Darvish/Moore??
Paul Singman: I'd go Taveras, if only because he'll likely get a head start on the others. Well, Moore certainly didn't live up to the hype. For Trout/harper, just understand they are once-in-a-generational talents and don't necessarily put whomever is atop prospect lists 5 years from now in that category.
Matt M (Malone, NY): Do you have a couple starting pitchers in mind that might break out this season?
Paul Singman: I do Matt from Malone. Alex Cobb, Lance Lynn, Iwakuma, Teheran, Wade Davis are some good late round names depending on your league size.
Leonard (Toronto): Which of the speedy players coming to the AL (Bourn, Reyes, Victorino) is the best bet to continue their success this year?
Paul Singman: None have serious red flags, I'd be very comfortable with Bourn speed wise.
Wes (Texas): Do you think Tommy Hanson can be fantasy viable again with the Angels?
Paul Singman: Wes, If Kazmir can potentially be relevant again, Hanson certainly can. With that said, I'm not targeting him late in drafts, wouldn't spend more than a buck in a mixed auction or $3-4 in AL-only.
Cal Guy (Cal): Any sleeper 2B for an auction draft this year?
Paul Singman: I still like Emilio Bonifacio, Gordan Beckham, and depending on how deep, Jemile Weeks.
Wes (Texas): Do you think Josh Rutledge can be a solid fantasy 2B?
Paul Singman: I like Rutledge, but I've seen him go crazy high in a few drafts/auctions. Where we ranked him in our 2b rankings (i think 12?) is about right.
Cal Guy (Cal): Hosmer will be a top ___ 1B in 2013.
Paul Singman: Like the format of the question. Hosmer will be Top 12 in 2013.
The Old Professor (Jupiter FL): I hear how teams are afraid to " rush " their prospects to the bigs... It seems to me that reps are reps and innings are innings and at bats are at bats.what is the harm in getting your prospects to the bigs to learn from the best. Is it really about losing confidence?
Paul Singman: I've often thought the same thing Prof, especially watching all of these Spring Training games. A big factor, as with everything, is money and delaying time clocks.
pconnor117 (Wall, NJ): I have the 12 pick in a 12 team H2H standard league. i expect Tulo, Bautista, Stanton,and sometimes(Cargo/fielder/votto). i've done too many drafts to admit to but it comes out. 1 - Bautista, 2-Harper,3-Lee, 4-Yoenis 5-Zoebrist 6-Aram or Lawrie. Should i choose different guys in the first 2 rounds? the rest seem to be easy
Paul Singman: I actually like those first two picks the most. Lee at 3 isn't a must take... you can vary when you take your first pitcher. And spread your injury risk around a bit, Yoenis is good but I wouldn't want to own him every league given his injuries last year. Heyward, Bruce, Holliday are other similar ranked options. NP
MerleDixon (PA): I inherited a team in a Dynasty: I need a 2B and a SS. Asdrubal Cabrera and Danny Espinosa are available(Espinosa has 2B and SS eligibility. However, I'm in the middle of a rebuilding and Oscar Taveras is available along with Gerrit Cole. I have 1st pick. Who would you go with? I am leaning Taveras.
Paul Singman: Me too.
Wes (Texas): Do you think Nick Castellanos is up and starting at some point this year for the TIgers?
Paul Singman: Forget about him until next year, or at the earliest, September.
Matt (LA): Should Mauer be considered $15/20 player in OBP leagues considering his OBP and eligibility?
Paul Singman: Hey Matt. In an OBP league I think Mauer is crazy valuable, pushing $30 in value.
Ernie (Philly): What are your thoughts on Dominic Brown ? Could this be his break out year ?
Paul Singman: Thanks for the question Ernie. I like Brown, think 20 homers is a real possibility this year if he plays everyday.
Wes (Texas): What closer do you think loses his job first?
Paul Singman: Bruce Rondon, does he count? Was he ever the closer in Detroit? For an actual closer, I'd be shaking in my boots if I were Brandon League with Kenley Jansen behind me.
Scott (LA): Looking at Rox for some high upside guys. With Nolan Arenado's hot start, do you think Chris Nelson will get enough playing time to warrant a protection at $5 (eligible at 2B)? Also, any chance Eric Young Jr sneaks into the lineup enough to steal 30+?
Paul Singman: If this is an NL-only leagues, I'd protect Nelson for $5. Young will likely get 25ish steals, but erratically and without much production elsewhere.
Mikey (Salt Lake City): What do you think the long term fantasy expectations should be for Francisco Lindor compared to the likes of Baez, Correa, and Russell?
Paul Singman: Mikey, all are extremely talented players, but Lindor is a tier below without the same power potential.
MerleDixon (PA): Mike Moustakas will finish the year__ ranked 3B?
Paul Singman: I'm pretty "meh" on Moustakas for this year in mixed leagues. You'll get your .260 average with 20-25 home runs. I see him as the 14-15th third baseman.
Craig (Des Moines): How would you rank Dempster, L. Harrell & J. Hammel
Paul Singman: Craig, I'd go Dempster, Hammel, harrell.
Frankie (Philadelphia): Paul - Help me sort out this group of aging or injury prone SPs: Josh Johnson, Lester, Haren, Peavy, CJ Wilson?
Paul Singman: I'd go Johnson, Haren, Peavy, Lester... but they are close.
Todd (Seattle): What do you think of Mike Morse this year ? Possible .280 - 25 HR ?
Paul Singman: Todd, I'll go further and say probable .280 - 25 HR. His glove may be suspect but I have little doubt in the dude's bat.
bosox9 (Illinois): Higher ceiling: Baez or Addison Russell?
Paul Singman: I'll answer Baez, but either way your staring at a pretty high ceiling.
Cal Guy (Cal): Which closers in waiting might be worth drafting and stashing this year?
Paul Singman: I'd go with Kenley Jansen, Pestano, and Sergio Santos.
Wes (Texas): If you could pick one player to explode in value the most this season, who would it be?
Paul Singman: To answer a lot of the similar questions to this: Carlos Gomez is someone we could be drafting a lot higher next year.
Donald Loria (Milwaukee): The SP I will roster most this year is ________ because I see him as a breakout candidate relative to his ADP.
The Hitter most rostered for same reasons is: _______?
Paul Singman: I see myself owner lots of Alex Cobb and Andrew Cashner shares this year. Jacoby Ellsbury will also end up on a lot of my squads it seems.
Scott (LA): In a 4x4 NL only league where K's don't count, is there anyone in the upper middle class ($10-$14) of SP who you especially bump up or down? Names like Tim Hudson, Jeff Samardzija, Josh Beckett, Homer Bailey, Trevor Cahill?
Paul Singman: Samardzija gets a lot of his value from his strikeouts, but Cahill and Bailey are two guys I'd give a small bump up to.
Tony (Minnesota): Hello Paul, I am in a H2H $260 league with 8 keepers. Anyways, I am trying to figure out who to draft first, a big-time position player (Fielder, Tulo, Reyes) or a top-tier pitcher (Hamels, Sabathia). What would you do? Thanks
Paul Singman: Tony, given the choice you should always go safer and take a position player. Your pick depends on who you get, but it's hard to go wrong building a team around a rock like Fielder.
Andy (Chicago): I'm in a 14 team mixed league, standard scoring. Can keep Bauer or Perkins for $3. Am I crazy for leaning Perkins? I feel like there's an insane amount of closer cost inflation at auction, and Bauer is no sure bet. So, crazy or not? Thanks!
Paul Singman: Andy, you're anything but crazy! Bauer has the prospect name-brand hype, but isn't likely to offer the same value as Perkins, especially in the immediate future. There are tons of talented pitching prospects but only 30 closers, and Perkins is a pretty safe one at that.
Mikey (Wisconsin): I have the best team in my 20-team dynasty league, but my team is admittedly getting a bit old. When is it time to blow it up or, more likely, start downgrading for the stars of tomorrow?
Paul Singman: Such a general question begs a general answer. First of all, congrats on winning! You never know when that will happen again. I advise against any sort of complete blow-up, you always want to be within some good luck's reach of winning a championship.
MerleDixon (PA): Anthony Rendon is killing it right now. Davey Johnson has stated "no matter what he's bound for the minors". Thoughts on his chances of making an impact this year.
Paul Singman: It's important not to put much stock into a 20 PA sample, especially in ST. Rendon should be called up sometime in 2013, but not until the second-half. I wouldn't pay much attention in fantasy leagues.
cracker73 (Florida): Who is the most likely closer in Detroit if Rondon fails?
Paul Singman: It's looking like outside help could be brought in. Of in-house candidates, I'd assume it will be a committee of Benoit, Coke, and maybe Albuquerque.
Mike (Chi-town): I have Romo & Holland as keeps. Will both hold on to their closer gigs?
Paul Singman: Mike, we're talkin closers, so nothing is certain. I have both as top 15 closers though and think Holland has a particularly good chance to keep his job.
Howard (Freeport, ME): What are the odds that Aldaberto Mondesi is a top 30 overall prospect next year at this time?
Paul Singman: Howard, you're better off waiting for the next Jason Parks chat, my prospect knowledge isn't refined enough to give an accurate answer to that. Realistically, it's low like 5% probably.
isemani (NY): Paul, thanks for the chat. 1st and 3rd (traded $2 brett anderson to get it)pick in post-auction farm draft. Taveras and_____? Who do you take at 3 between these options; baez, russell, soler, puig, correa, fernandez?
Paul Singman: Creative trade, I'm a fan isemani. I'd go Fernandez, Baez, Russell.
Frankie (Philadelphia): Greinke, Darvish, Bumgarner, Halladay - How would you rank them this year?
Paul Singman: I'm personally a little more cautious than some (like my colleague Paul Sporer) with Darvish. I'd rank them: Bumgarner, Halladay, Darvish, Greinke.
Billy (Mobile): To me Jose Altuve is over rated being the best player on a very poor team.
Doesn't walk, makes tons of errors.
Is it me or is he just an average 2B ?
Paul Singman: From a perspective he can hit for a high average, steal bases, and even offer 10 home runs, so that's all I'm looking at. Cut the man some slack, he did triple his walk rate last year.
Paul Singman: Guys, it's been two hours and a blast. I look forward to doing this again near the start of the season. If you had a question that went unanswered, or were too shy to ask me something tonight, feel free to Tweet it to me @pauliesings. G'night!