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Chat: Bret Sayre

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Welcome to Baseball Prospectus' Thursday May 15, 2014 8:00 PM ET chat session with Bret Sayre.


Ask the BP Fantasy Manager.

Bret Sayre: In honor of Jacob deGrom, I'm going to attempt to make it through this whole chat without using one capital d. Wish me luck, and bring on the questions..

Karl (San Angelo): Two 3B prospects that seem to be hitting well: Hunter Dozier and Mitch Nay. What's your thoughts on them? High ceilings?

Bret Sayre: I'm a bigger fan of Dozier as he's the better hitter. Nay has a little more power, but his minor league numbers overstate his fantasy potential and I'm not sure how much of that power is usable. Dozier's ceiling is a high-average, decent power third baseman. Those are in pretty high demand these days.

Rich (MD): Why is D'Arnaud even considered a decent prospect? He is always injured and even when he plays, he can't hit the broad side of the barn.

Bret Sayre: He's a prospect because despite the seemingly constant injuries, he is a better hitter than he's shown and he carries 20 home run power. The question is whether he'll stay healthy consistently enough for him to tap into it--and the jury is still obviously out on that. I wouldn't be giving up on the guy yet.

utdavidson (Austin): I am in a league that uses k/9 instead of k. Should I value pitchers much differently because of this? Relievers with more value?

Bret Sayre: Yes, but in different scenarios. If you have an innings limit or start limit, a strikeout category plays much more like a K/9 category anyway, so if you've already adjusted for that, no need to do a whole lot more. You obviously want some high strikeout relievers to go with your starters. If there's no limit, it makes a little more of a difference as it really puts a damper on the values of lower-strikeout starters. You really don't want starters with strikeout rates below 7 per 9 in that format.

John (Chicago): What do you think nick franklin can become if he were given a full time job?

Bret Sayre: He can be a .260 hitter with 20 homers and a smattering of steals (maybe 10 or so). He's a legitimate fantasy option--he just needs a place that will commit to him and play him regularly.

Shawnykid23 (CT): 10 tm 5x5 redraft- Pujols/Hamels or Crush Davis/J. Zimmerman?

Bret Sayre: I'd take the Pujols/Hamels side here. I'm still not a huge believer in Davis, and I love me some Hole Camels.

Alex (Anaheim): Am I going to end up keeping Solarte the entire season?

Bret Sayre: Unless you're in an AL-only or very deep mixed league, no you are not. But he'll remember all the good times you had while partying with Brian Roberts on the waiver wire.

kiper90 (Rochester, NY): Hey Bret, what would your order be of these prospects you would want in a Dynasty League? Alexander Reyes, Hunter Harvey,Francisco Mejia, Franchy Cordero, Ryan McMahon?

Bret Sayre: I'd go Harvey, McMahon, Reyes, Cordero, Mejia.

Matt (Nj): What would be a reasonable trade offer in a 2 for 1 deal for iwakuma or verlander out of samardzija cashner cain peralta hudson smyly lee kluber sanchez or cobb?

Bret Sayre: Is that Cliff Lee in that group? I'd deal Iwakuma for almost any combination of those guys. Preference would be Lee and Cashner though, unless you're the risk taking type, in which case I'd go Cobb--who I still very much like.

Shawn (Couch): Time to throw fire! #Yordano

Bret Sayre: Oh yes. It is time.

Cody (St Louis ): Springer or Kris Bryant?

Bret Sayre: I had Springer barely ahead in the pre-season and see no reason to flip flop now. Give me the guy who's already there.

louman777 (STM CT): Cueto has been unreal. Do I ship him and Wacha for the great Kershaw? The offer is on the table...

Bret Sayre: No I would not. If these pitching injuries have taught us anything it is that you can never have too much of it.

Silverback38 (VA): Obligatory Gallo question….Yes, he is hitting HRs and has more BBs this year. Obviously because this level of pitching has no command they can't hit the strike zone with secondary pitches and must throw strikes. Soooo, has he actually learned something and improved his prospects or is he still HUGE Power, nothing else?

Bret Sayre: He's developing and there are still a ton of questions about everything in his game that isn't power. That said, this season has been a positive step forward and ignoring it based on level of competition is the wrong approach. Gallo works his tail off and it doesn't surprise me to see him improve--though he may look equally terrible once he gets to Double-A. It's a long process.

DanDaMan (Sea Cliff): Bret- rounding the quarter pole here who are some of your buy low targets or guys who have started pretty slow that you fully expect to rebound? Thanks

Bret Sayre: I have a trio of first basemen that I'm targeting, who have had various levels of struggles this year. Eric Hosmer has been hitting for average, but I still believe the power is coming--maybe his owner is losing faith. Prince Fielder has been in a funk, but I don't think he's done. And Allen Craig is too good of a hitter to continue like this, as long as he's healthy.

Connor (Alaska ): Preseason I traded the number 1 draft pick which ended up being Tanaka for Edwin Encarnacion in a 16 team 35 man roster. Pretty standard scoring. Thoughts on the deal now after the first month of the season?

Bret Sayre: Would have told you I liked it a lot at the time. Still like it a lot now.

Pella Affenlight (Westish): Most saves ROS...Familia or Mejia?

Bret Sayre: Give me the man with the million dollar hair. (Mejia)

Hoff (Ontario): Watching Salazar pitch is frustrating. Tell hes gunna be worth the wait.

Bret Sayre: If you're looking for reassurance, you've come to the wrong place. I thought Salazar was overrated all preseason and while I think he'll bounce back to a more usable state, he's not a high-end fantasy starter.

Raftman (Pennsylvania): I've got Belt as my 1B in a 12 tm. Pointso league...after his injury how comfortable should I feel? I picked up Ike Davis in the interim. Should I be looking to add someone like Singleton or another 1B?

Bret Sayre: Davis is actually an underrated guy in points leagues as he's really done a better job of getting on base the last 12 months or so. I like Singleton a lot as a prospect, but despite murdering Triple-A pitching, he's not likely to hit immediately upon promotion. In a redraft, I'd stick with Ike until Belt is back.

Karl (San Angelo): To me, Erasmo Ramirez and Taylor Jordan are in the same Schooner. They both have been given opportunities (Ramirez more than Jordan), but they both couldn't take advantage. Is there any hope left for these two gentlemen?

Bret Sayre: In deep leagues, sure. I don't think we've seen the last of Jordan this season in Washington, but the Eraser may need a change of scenery at this point.

Dave (Canada): How much more of a leash does Aaron Harang have? What would you do with Harang in a 10-team dynasty League?

Bret Sayre: Don't keep Aaron Harang on a leash. People will stare.

Neil (Seattle): Any prospect names you can throw out there who might be top 100 prospect by the end of the season who began this season unowned in the deepest of leagues?

Bret Sayre: I'll throw out a couple of speedy outfielders in Low-A, Manuel Margot of the Red Sox and Josh Hart of the Orioles. Margot is further along and likely has a higher fantasy upside.

Joe (Chucktown): When do you think it's too early to start moving SP if you are already projected to be 16 over your start limits and could use some help in other root cats. Need help in ERA and WHIP.

Bret Sayre: It's never too early in a league with start limits. Once you get to July/August, you'll need an ark to navigate the flood of starting pitchers available.

louman777 (STM CT): Is this just a long hangover from Chris Archer's terrible September or has he been figured out by big league hitting?

Bret Sayre: I'm starting to wonder just how cut out Archer is for a starting role long-term. He's got the slider, but he would make for a nasty end-game reliever.

David (Toronto): What are your thoughts on Nate Eovaldi? Do you think he could become an ace one day? Also, what's your take on Addison Reed's closing gig? Do you think he'll lose his job anytime soon?

Bret Sayre: Not an ace, but he could become a solid second starter if the progression is real. Check out Craig's post on Eovaldi yesterday for more: http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=23568. There's research and charts and everything.

Eric Nosebar (Albuquerque ): In our h2h points league where we keep 5 players in the round drafted and can keep them as long as forever, I have stashed Bradley in round 16. His injury is making me wonder if it would be advisable to change horses. Other options that could be kept in round 20 would be Noah Syndergaard, Addison Russell, Kris Bryant, Byron Buxton, or Marcus Stroman. Benches are short so keeping any prospect is a luxury especially since my team is always a strong title contender. Is anyone of the above arguably a better stash than Bradley as far as impact both this year and beyond?

Bret Sayre: Give me Syndergaard, Russell, Bryant or Buxton in Round 20 over Bradley in Round 16. Buxton's the biggest upside, but he likely won't contribute right away in 2015.

TeamPineTar (KC): 25 February 2014 Team A trades $9 JJ Hardy and $10 Brian Dozier to Team B for $38 Justin Verlander Contract years are the same for all players. Team A was willing to give up 43 middle infield home runs in order to get Verlander, letting Team B off a pre-auction high salary hook. Dynasty league with salary inflation to kick in next year, normal $260 limit at auction. Unlimited keepers so long as under the salary limit. Now the team that traded for Verlander wants to trade him back to the same owner. It’s clearly a dump trade. One thing that is bothersome besides the fact that we’re about two months before normal dumping time is that the dumping Team A is in THIRD PLACE in a league of 15 teams: #3 Team A trades $38 Justin Verlander and $12 Chase Utley to #1 Team B $1 Jose Fernandez and $1 Jedd Gyorko As a commissioner, would you allow this trade or call for a vote?

Bret Sayre: As commissioner, the first thing I would do is eliminate trade vetoes.

Shauntell (Ohio): Who's the pitcher with the brightest future that will come up this year? I have the no.1 waiver wire pick in my keeper points league (1pt per K, -1 per BB)?

Bret Sayre: That would be Mr. Noah Syndergaard.

utdavidson (Austin): Sano or Bryant for 2015?

Bret Sayre: Just for 2015? Bryant.

surista (London): Txs for teh chat, and love all your work! Two questions: First is a true or false: Real live: Lindor > Mookie Fantasy: Mookie > Lindor Second: This year only, which pitching prospect has more value/upside: Stroman, Bauer, Montero, Syndergaard, Meyer

Bret Sayre: False, Lindor > Mookie in both real life and fantasy. It's a good thing I get a lot of practice typing Syndergaard.

Carl (CT): Do any of these "non-prospects" have potential fantasy relevance in deep mixed leagues: Whitley, deGrom, Shoemaker? and if so what kind of impact? Thanks.

Bret Sayre: You might be able to coax a little value out of deGrom, but his stay is likely to be short lived. It's not impossible that he carves a Dillon Gee type niche out at the back of the rotation.

Kevin (Toronto): If Marcus Stroman gets the call, what kind of season do you see him having?

Bret Sayre: I assume you mean into the rotation, as he's already in the majors. I'd expect lots of ups and downs, with an ERA above 4.00 and strikeout rate around 7 per nine. It's tough being a rookie pitcher, even if you're a very good prospect.

Mike (Chi-town): Where does shark bait end up & what's the return for the Cubs? If teams need pitching, it's now more than ever.

Bret Sayre: They clearly have to get a better package than they got for Garza. It's a shame Jon Daniels likely won't dip his toes back in that water.

mp (to): Who do you like best now and ros? Shaw, lindstrom, Doolittle, familia,O'day?

Bret Sayre: I can't believe I'm typing this, but Matt Lindstrom. And yes, LOL Matt Lindstrom.

phin (MKE): What do I do with Gausman? holding in dynasty (obv), but just traded Cron for him in 3 man max keeper. Could keep as last round pick. Hold right?

Bret Sayre: Absolutely. Gausman still has tons of upside and he's on the verge of putting it together. It's not like the Tigers really smacked him around yesterday. He didn't even give up an extra-base hit!

maxpowers (chicago): What is a reasonable return for J Upton in a dynasty? Looking for an infielder.

Bret Sayre: If you're really looking to get out from underneath him (which I wouldn't be), there are only a handful of guys you can trade him for and you know their names. However, if you could get Profar and a strong second piece, that's an attractive option.

traindoggah (maine): Pick up Clinton Hollon, Jairo Labourt or Miguel Castro over any of these injured upside pitchers: Tyrell Jenkins, Luis Heredia or Jose Martinez?

Bret Sayre: I'd take a shot on Hollon at this point. Tough to take any of the injury struck pitchers over him.

Heather (CA): Gattis or Wilson Ramos 12 team h2h?

Bret Sayre: I still want Ramos. If he gets hurt, there are always options on the wire in a 12-team league.

Joe Random (San jose): what kind of ceiling do you see with Roughned Odor?

Bret Sayre: I see a .280 hitter with more pop than it seems (think 12-15 homers) and not much else. Plays up in points leagues.

Jack (Tampa): Grade the trade: my gerrit cole for George springer (12 team roto keeper)

Bret Sayre: I still think Cole is the guy you want of the two, but Springer is no slouch either.

Utdavidson (Austin): For keeper rankings, Bradley>Thor>Gausman>Gray?

Bret Sayre: Swap Bradley and Thor and you've got it.

Jack (Hotlanta): I recently acquired Heyward, tell me good times are on the horizon???

Bret Sayre: They are. Stay patient.

Jigga Man (Elevator): Do you see Latos having an impact this season?

Bret Sayre: I do, though I'm skeptical that it comes before the second half of June.

David (Toronto): What do you think is the ceiling of recently-debuted Anthony Desclafani?

Bret Sayre: Just a back-end fantasy starter assuming he even sticks in the rotation. He's still no lock to avoid a bullpen fate.

James (San Fran): deGrom looks great. Worth a dynasty pick up?

Bret Sayre: In 16-team leagues and deeper, sure. Anything less than that and I'd probably use that roster spot on someone else.

Kory (Lansing): Better fantasy future between these CFs: Tyrone Taylor or Dalton Pompey?

Bret Sayre: I prefer Taylor.

JoeTinker (Chicago): Supposing comparable playing time, Kolten Wong or Rougned Odor for rest of the season?

Bret Sayre: Wong. Don't overlook him just because he struggled out of the gate.

Chris Sabo (Hot Corner): So, Jose Fernandez needs TJ surgery. What does this do to his dynasty league ranking? If a contending team were to shop him, what kind of return should he net?

Bret Sayre: Well, it clearly drops it. But he was so good and is so young, that I'd be hesitant to drop him out of the top-50 overall. If I were contending and needed to deal him, I'd be looking for a TON of now value, but in a mixed league, you can cover his absence in the short-term by mixing and matching and making smaller deals. Don't panic and trade him off.

adfeit (BK): Hi Bret - can you talk a bit about Brandon McCarthy? Velocity is up, looks to be for real - what do you think?

Bret Sayre: I think the velocity is very encouraging in the short-term and I like him a lot for the rest of this season. With that said, I'm very nervous about the velo spike and what it could lead to. McCarthy isn't exactly a guy who has been known for staying healthy anyway.

Chris (Nebraska): Bret, You guys are killing it over here at BP. The premium subscription is well worth with the Bat Signal. Great stuff. I'm in a first year dynasty league: 12tms/full dynasty/20 man minor league rosters/player's auction value this year carries over to next year as well...Currently in 4th, not sure i'll hold up to compete. My high dollar players are Braun(35), Tulo(27), Posey(24), Waino(27), Kimbrel(21), Minor(14), Bruce(25). Should i decide to become a seller which of those players should i be looking to deal? Which of those players should i definitely be looking to hold onto heading into next year?

Bret Sayre: Thanks, Chris! I'd be looking to deal Posey and Wainwright of that group. There are always catchers in a 12-team league and as much as I love Adam Wainwright (and it's a lot), I'd rather build around Braun/Tulo and think you could get more for him than Bruce or Kimbrel.

Kerry (Seattle): Okay to drop Alex Wood in a shallow 10-team mixed league?

Bret Sayre: Yep, drop away.

Utdavidson (Austin): So I take it you have Thor as top pitching prospect now in fantasy?

Bret Sayre: Affirmative. Thor over all.

Mike (Fantasyland ): Do you think Bryce returns pre or post All Star break? Also, projections once he does return ROS?

Bret Sayre: Always assume the worst, so I'd say post. That said, when he's back, I expect him to hit and hit well.

phin82 (MKE): best 15 team deep roster league OF add because of Ibanez being old/bad and coco being fragile: bourjus, j jones or (gulp) Dejesus?

Bret Sayre: Don't gulp at DeJesus, he's been great. I'd easily add him of the three.

Rick (Hoffa): Dynasty league you like CJ Cron, Justin Smoak or Junior Lake more? And what about just this season?

Bret Sayre: Ugh, if I have to pick one it's probably Cron, but I"m not happy about it.

Silverback38 (VA): Has Chris Owings finally fallen into D-backs dregs or will he come out of his funk and compete for the RoY honors?

Bret Sayre: Don't give up on Owings. He's going through an adjustment period and I believe he'll come out of it fine.

Victor (Dumfries): Jordan Lyles -- Is any amount of his solid performance reliable? Curious if I should trade him in my Dynasty League while the gettin's good.

Bret Sayre: I own him in a few places and I don't trust him any further than I can throw him. I don't care how many starts in a row he does this for, I'm never starting him in Coors--but for now, I'm starting him on the road every time.

Chris (California): Has the recent wave of severe pitcher injuries altered how you value the position in fantasy? I'm now hesitating to trade for pitchers and keep pitchers in this dynasty league

Bret Sayre: I believe we're going to talk about exactly this topic on TINO (which is going to be recorded right after this chat). But yes, I'm concerned and I'm going to start filling the position even more with quantity as opposed to quality than I have been. I'm also going to be targeting fewer young pitchers.

patrickbulford (Akron): I took your advice this morning on the Fernandez trade. I just wanted to say thanks again. You guys are killing it and I'm loving all your work this season.

Bret Sayre: You're welcome, and thanks!

cracker73 (Florida): Can you tell me anything about Corey Knebel? Any chance that the Tigers convert him to a starter?

Bret Sayre: Just about zero chance. But he could be a dominant reliever. His one-two punch is electric.

JasonPennini (Denver): You're the GM for the Cardinals and super 2 passes. What would you do with Craig/Adams/Taveras (if anything?)?

Bret Sayre: I trade Adams, move Craig to first base and play Taveras in right with Bourjos in center and Jay backing up everywhere.

CD as in congradulatory diarrhea (MD): what do you make of Jake Odorizzi's improved strikeouts?

Bret Sayre: I'm skeptical. He still doesn't really have a true out pitch.

JoJo (SD): Your thoughts on a couple of prospects struggling after promotions - Marcus Stroman and Matt Wisler? Any reasons to be concerned in dynasty or just typical developmental hiccups?

Bret Sayre: No reason to be concerned on either. They're not finished products.

mike (Ottawa): Fastball command was cited by several BP authors as an area for Zack Wheeler to improve this season. Is that your take on his present run of woeful starts? Short sample caveat aside. Thanks.

Bret Sayre: Yes, that's really been the crux of his problems in the past. I think he can get past it, but he's going to struggle more than he should until he gets to that point.

jon (Tx): In an AL only league with very little waver wire pitching how do you feel about Deduno and Odorizzi for potential spot starts?

Bret Sayre: Odorizzi should be owned in all AL only formats, so I'd pounce on him.

Jake (Florida): Obviously it's in hindsight now, but do you think everyone underrated Abreu and Tanaka? I thought Tanaka was overrated based on his low strikeout rate in Japan but he's completely proven me wrong so far.

Bret Sayre: The general population, sure, but it's also only been six weeks or so. I liked both of them coming into the season, but certainly didn't see this from either.

phin82 (MKE): Just wanted to add that you're killing it on BP and TDG. Very nice work sir.

Bret Sayre: Compliments will get you everywhere.

Jenny (phx): Which is the better Dback to own? McCarthy or arroyo?

Bret Sayre: McCarthy.

mp (to): What has happened to matt Davidson? Does he even see the majors this year?

Bret Sayre: I think he will, but he's likely going to have to wait until the second half. There's actually a glut of players in front of him now, which we didn't expect coming into the season.

Vinlo77 (Wilmington DE): I was offered Puig for Victorino and Rosenthal. Rosenthal is my only true closer but is that too much value to pass up in Puig?

Bret Sayre: Yes, that's too good to pass up. Get Puig.

John (Trenton): AJ Pollock has been putting up decent numbers. How does he rank with Maybin and Upton?

Bret Sayre: Better than both, but that's not really saying much.

Steve (LA): Does Colvin have any value as a fill in OF for injuries? My current OF playing that role is Joyce. Would Colvin be better?

Bret Sayre: Nope, Stick with Joyce and play him solely against right-handed pitching.

Shawnykid23 (CT): Are you still as high on Machado as you always have been? If you could get a stud young OF or top prospect like Buxton or Taveras would you do it?

Bret Sayre: Yes. He's a superstar and I wouldn't deal him for either.

RotoLando (Cloud City): Derek Norris is getting more starts against righties. Good call to hold onto him.

Bret Sayre: This is not a question, but I'll allow it. May the Jesus Aguilar be with you.

mp (to): Starters rod: Elias, j Garcia, Pomeranz, Keuchel, Montero, Koehler, a Simon. Thanks

Bret Sayre: A starters rod sounds uncomfortable and I don't think I want one.

Russ (Okc): Kazmir a top 25 starter or will the clock strike midnight this season?

Bret Sayre: That all depends on health, but he is real and he's spectacular.

Shawn (Couch): Betances is doing awful things to the Mets right now...what are your thoughts about using non closers in RP slots in roto?

Bret Sayre: I enjoy doing it. Has to be the right relievers, obviously, but it's a underrated tactic that can help across the board.

phin82 (MKE): Where in the world is Andrew Heaney? And are the Buccos going to wait until they're 10 games back to call up Polanco?

Bret Sayre: He's in Double-A, awaiting his chance to shine. And yes, the Pirates are likely to be double-digit games out before Polanco gets there. And at this point, they might as well wait.

Steve (SF): Is it smart to trade Iwakuma for Wacha and one more strong guy? Is that enough?

Bret Sayre: I mean, Todd Coffey is a strong guy. Need a little more perspective than that.

My Elbow (Hurts): What do you think of Josh Donaldson in a dynasty league? In a 12 team roto league, I have Lawrie and ARam. I could potentially deal Heyward and Eovaldi or Bailey for him. What do you think?

Bret Sayre: I love Donaldson, but don't do Heyward like that. I'd pass there.

LoyalRoyal (LV, KS): Trying to make a deal for a SS in deep league as I'm currently rolling Cozart out there. Who would be your targets? (have the resources to reach all the way to top if needed, but also looking for the elusive upside value as well.)

Bret Sayre: I'd try to see if the Starlin Castro owner in your league is looking to "sell high".

Chris (Nebraska): How bright is the Cubs future? What year do they win the World Series and who will be the mvp?

Bret Sayre: This seems like a good one to go out on. It's moderately bright and they win the World Series in 2018. MVP: Giancarlo Stanton.

Bret Sayre: Thanks everyone for stopping by. Let's do it again soon.

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