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Chat: Mike Gianella

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Welcome to Baseball Prospectus' Thursday July 23, 2015 5:00 PM ET chat session with Mike Gianella.


Mike Gianella: I asked for this. 128 questions so far, and I'm hoping to answer 250 tonight. Fantasy, trade deadline, anything else on your mind folks, fire away. I'm here for the long haul.

DanDaMan (Sea Cliff): Mike, loved the piece last week on trade targets. You were limited to selecting only 1 player though. I'm sure there were more you liked. Can you give us a few? Thanks

Mike Gianella: I shied away from him on the podcast, but I like what I have seen recently from Ian Desmond. The swing looks better and while I'm skeptical on the speed I can see a power bounce back. While Melky Cabrera looks D.O.A., there's some BABIP craziness going on there and he should at a minimum hit for batting average. I also agree with my colleague Keith Cromer than Alexei Ramirez should show some improvement. In general, I agree with PECOTA that the White Sox offense can't possibly be THIS bad and should show some signs of life post all star.

Cal Guy (Cal): Mike, Who would you rather have in a dynasty league, Mazara or Nick Williams?

Mike Gianella: Williams has made some strides this year - as BP writer Kate Morrison wrote about recently in a non-BP piece, but I still like Mazara's ceiling a lot better, and think that he has a much better chance at being a star. Mazara, although the gap is closer now.

Pete (NY): How likely that Tillman and Danny Duffy turn it around (pitch like, league average)? Debating whether to drop them in a deep dynasty league ...

Mike Gianella: Tillman has already shown some signs of turning it around and could definitely pitch to a league averae level. He is throwing with a little more bite and better location in his last few outings. Duffy could be good, but given the time he has missed so far and some of the other issues he has I'm not as confident. In a deep dynasty, you probably want to keep both, but if you're also competing this year, your focus should be on Tillman for 2015.

ColeWhittier (Pasadena): Could you rank these 5 in future value: Heston, Joe Ross, Wisler, Velasquez, Archie Bradley? How much does Bradley's shoulder woes affect his future career?

Mike Gianella: For future value, I guess I'd go Velasquez, Wisler, Heston, Bradley and Ross. Heston is the guy I could really be wrong on; he has already looked much better than the scouting reports were in the minors and his ceiling could be higher than I think. Bradley is also tough. He could be at the top of this list, but you hit the nail on the head. The injury history worries me - and unlike elbow injuries, shoulder injuries sometimes just kill a career. I could see Bradley being 2nd on this list, but I'm dropping him for now. I'm not a doctor nor do I play one on TV.

DatDudePG (TX): Mike, do you feel that Braves SP Prospect Tyrell Jenkins has regained his status as a top prospect this year after staying healthy and being an all star at AA Mississippi and throwing well for Gwinnett after being called up? Despite his control problems, he seems to have his velocity back and no one seems to square him up even when he is missing in the zone.

Mike Gianella: I'd like to see another 1/2 season from him at this level before buying in and I'd like to see that control come back, but he definitely is going to move up with a bullet when Chris Crawford puts his rankings together this off-season. The control is what I want to see more of. Jenkins certainly has the stuff where he could survive with a 4.0 BB/9, but he wouldn't be an elite option if that was the walk rate.

Dan (6th Place): Love these chats Mike. Slipping in the standings due to some pretty bad pitching lately (Hamels, Teheran, Fister, Shields to name a few). Have some speed to offer in a trade (Hamilton, Gordon). Who are some pitchers you might target to lower my WHIP & ERA while maybe grabbing some wins?

Mike Gianella: With B-Ham struggling everywhere but speed and Gordon hurt, it's going to be tough to set a market price on either one. It seems like you can try to push for a guy in the second tier like Jason Hammel or AJ Burnett (I'm assuming NL only based on your question?)

Norm (GA): Lucas Sims seems to have had another up and down year ... still worth a spot in a dynasty league with 250 minor leaguers?

Mike Gianella: Yes, although he is down toward the bottom in that kind of format.

Jonathan (Pittsburgh): I realize yordano Ventura just came off the dl but he has not looked good since his return are you worried about him? What is your future outlook for him?

Mike Gianella: I'm more worried about him in the short term (for 2015) than the long term. The talent is there, and I think he'll be a strong option but the endurance and repeatability (spell check tells me this isn't a word, but I'm sallying forward!) are what mostly concern me. I wonder if we're looking more at a future 3/4 than an ace. I still have a lot of faith, but I want to see him doing it again before making a big fantasy investment.

Ron (Texarkana): Does Matt Duffy have the same fantasy value next year as he has this year?

Mike Gianella: Yes. He should be a solid deep mixed guy with some low-end standard mixed value. He is legit, though.

Cal Guy (Cal): Hi Mike, If Alford had concentrated only on baseball from the beginning where do you think he would rank among prospects today? And how would he match up to Buxton as a big leaguer?

Mike Gianella: It's so hard to say because some players thrive despite not being dedicated to baseball and some struggle. If I had to guess, I'd say he would move up a tier but still wouldn't quite be on the same level as Buxton as a prospect.

JT Smooth (Loveboat Cap'n): Hey what's good Mike. I'm in a 6x6 dynasty (OPS and QS). I was offered Kris Bryant and Byron Buxton for my Bryce Harper and one of Jesse Winker/Sean Manaea. How close is this deal to being favorable for me, and which one of the two guys should I include? Thanks in advance man!

Mike Gianella: Love your handle.

Wow, that's a pretty solid offer. I'd include Manaea if you're going to make the deal. I think if you included him that's fair, and it really depends on how much faith you have in the two guys you're getting. You take a short-term hit the next couple of years with Harper, but I think Buxton has a $30-35 value ceiling and you eventually win this trade.

Lmaples1 (Nashville): Does Dansby Swanson or Jurickson Profar have a better career?

Mike Gianella: A guy who hasn't played as a professional versus someone who has been hurt the last two years. I'm clearly guessing, but I have to go with Swanson just based on the injury profile for Profar. But who really knows?

ayzzya (Norf Norf): I'm in a deep league (16-team, 200ish prospects owned) and I really want to drop Chance Sisco for rising guys like Gilbert Lara or Victor Robles. If Sisco moves off of catcher, as people seem to think he will, how valuable is he?

Mike Gianella: He drops somewhat, but as Craig Goldstein pointed out in late April, Sicso has enough athleticism that first base isn't the automatic desination. He still would be a Top 50 prospect in dynasty formats in a non-catching position.

harrypav (not where I should be): How many questions have you answered so far?

Mike Gianella: 13, 14 if you include this one.

Jtro (Texas): Dynasty league 12 team 5X5 Mccutchen & Dee Gordon or Marte & Betts??

Mike Gianella: Close but I want Cutch and Gordon.

Danny, GiantsPod (Albany, CA): What is your favorite format for a league, from number of teams to categories to anything else?

Mike Gianella: I prefer 5x5 Roto though I'll take Roto over any points formats. I love only leagues over mixed but prefer deep mixed if I'm going to play mixed. Weekly moves, and if you're going to do daily moves don't make it first come first serve; install FAAB or a waiver system. I love OBP over BA and QS over wins; otherwise I'm a category traditionalist.

Lance (Princeton, NJ): What do you think of the strategy of batting pitchers 8th? Thanks.

Mike Gianella: Hi Lance.

On the whole, I don't like it. It isn't a big difference, but you are getting slightly more PAs over the course of 162 games from the 8 hole than the 9 hole. It is a minor thing, but it seems like unless you have a Billy Hamilton type (low BA/high SB) guy who you're keeping in the lineup for defense, you really don't want to bat the pitcher 8.

J Han (Detroit): Can backwards hats during the homerun derby ever happen again?

Mike Gianella: Yes, if we all send positive, happy thoughts to Commissioner Manfred's office in New York City.

Ryan (OKC): With the trade deadline approaching what players should we be watching that could be moved that would improve their fantasy value by going to a different park

Mike Gianella: Zobrist would be helped moving almost anywhere out of Oakland. Yovani Gallardo would get a boost moving out of Texas, as would any other pitcher getting traded from Texas. Ben Revere could be helped if he moves somewhere with a larger outfield where he can spray more hits, though this is a marginal jump. It seems like most of the market is a pitching market, and many of the pitchers in hitters' parks (Arizona, Colorado, Texas) aren't on the verge of being moved, with the possible exception of Gallardo.

George M. (Bloomington, IL): Wacha and Martinez are both in uncharted waters innings-wise. Last year Wacha's shoulder broke at 100IP and he's past that now. Is it crazy for the Cards to expect (or make) these two to go 100IP more plus Oct?

Mike Gianella: That seems like a lot for both, and particularly for Martinez. I do wonder if this means we'll see a little bit more of Tim Cooney and perhaps Tyler Lyons down the stretch. A trade is possible I suppose, but the Cardinals haven't been linked to anyone so I'd expect a low end deal if they do make one and not a trade for one of the big arms potentially on the market.

Number27 (Milwaukee ): Asking for Bleacher Nation! Mike, tell me. If you were a hot dog, and you were starvin', would ya eat yourself??

Mike Gianella: I would start eating myself but then I would eventually start losing blood from the endeavor and pass out before I completed the task. I would keep trying but the cycle would repeat until I perished due to a lack of blood and oxygen to the head. Man, this got really dark really fast.

Ryan Rust (Edmond, Oklahoma ): If you were the Cubs who would you target in free agency? Also at the end of the season --barring injury-- who do you see playing 2nd and SS for the Cubs? Thanks.

Mike Gianella: If Kyle Schwarber moves to left field as many expect, it doesn't seem like they have a lot of holes. Dexter Fowler is a free agent so they'll need a center fielder. My guess is that the Cubs bring in someone on a one or two-year deal to fill that as opposed to a big time acquisition like Jason Heyward and then bring in an arm to try to help on the back end of the rotation.

If I had to guess, it's going to be Javier Baez and Addison Russell up the middle. Starlin Castro gets traded this winter.

It's fun guessing when I have zero inside information as to what really will happen.

Matthias (Huntsville, TX): Would putting Bryant or Schwarber in left actually do anything to improve the production out of that position? Coghlan's been known throughout his career as a defensive liability and has improved a good deal this year (unless my eyes are deceiving me. I don't really understand defensive metrics) and his production on offense has been pretty good so far.

Mike Gianella: A lot depends on the defensive value you believe the position has. Many believe that UZR overrates the value of left field so that you can put someone below average out there and live with it. If Bryant and Schwarber hit at an elite or near-elite level, it does seem that you're getting an upgrade there, particularly since while Coghlan has been solid, he isn't anything close to being elite with the bat.

Not Taylor Teagarden's Mom (USA): Why can Taylor Teagarden hit so well in the minors, and look so awful in the big leagues against everyone except Aroldis Chapman?

Mike Gianella: I think you're lying, Ms. Teagarden.

It's the biggest leap, and while some guys can do it, others can't. I loved Teagarden when he was a top prospect, but catchers in particular have a wall they hit. John Sickels of Minor League Ball called it "Young Catcher Stagnation Syndrome" and that seems to be what happened with Tegarden. He was a low BA/power guy and the pitch recognition at the major league level just isn't quite good enough. Unless it's against Aroldis Chapman (disclaimer: future results may vary).

Corey (St. Louis, Mo): Will the Cubs be targeting relief pitching at the trade deadline? Or what is their primary need at this point?

Mike Gianella: Depends on which rumors you're listening to, but everything I have seen seems to be pushing toward a starting pitcher - whether it is a big fish like David Price or Cole Hamels or one of the mid-tier arms. The Cubs will probably listen on relief pitching, but the market doesn't seem particularly deep and the external options aren't necessarily huge upgrades unless they push for someone like Jon Papelbon, which I'm not convinced they'll do.

Blars82 (WI): Which Cub at AAA do you think is most likely to make an impact down the stretch?

Mike Gianella: Javier Baez is the guy who if he's healthy will manage to come up and make the biggest impact. The question is whether or not he can manage to adapt to playing all over the diamond the way that Arismendy Alcantara did not. It sounds great on paper but is a rough role for a young kid to fill.

djfoster (College Station, Texas): What are the odds of the league expanding the Wildcard series to 3 games at some point to avoid the luck of the baseball Gods? Maybe shortening the season to 158 or 160 instead?

Mike Gianella: Poor, but then I never expected there to be a 2nd wild card in the first place. I like the idea of a 154 game season and a best of 5 for that first round.

teagardener (Bat rack): What are Starlin Castro's odds of ever kissing a girl again seeing that he never gets to first base?

Mike Gianella: The lawyers at Baseball Prospectus are advising me not to answer this question.

rpo (LA): Keeper league looking for trade targets that can help next year. How would you rank this group for '16- Bryant, J. Abreu, Betts, Pence, Joc?

Mike Gianella: Bryant, Betts, Abreu, Pence, and Pederson.

Harry (Chicago): What's your favorite planet?

Mike Gianella: Rigel 6.

Andy (DE): Who's the best pitcher in baseball right now?

Mike Gianella: Now that he is back on track, Clayton Kershaw. When he's tossing that curve close to the zone (and not spiking it, missing a great deal like he did earlier in the year), he's #1 for me.

Berto (Missouri ): Can Alex Reyes be an effective mlb reliever right now? Would love to see him rack up some k's setting up rosenthal

Mike Gianella: I think Reyes could be a solid middle reliever/set up right now, similar to David Price when he was first called up

Cal Guy (Cal): Hi Mike, Please rank these outfielders for a dynasty league: Brinson, Mazara, N. Williams, Alford, Tapia, Dahl. Thanks!

Mike Gianella: Mazara, Dahl, Williams, Tapia, Brinson, Alford.

Glenn (Quahog): Obviously it's a weird thing to put a percentage on but what percent chance do you give Corey seager of having a better career than his bro kyle? I say about 40 percent. What say you Mikey?

Mike Gianella: 30%. Your idea is correct. Corey certainly has the higher ceiling but Kyle is already here so you can't simply discount everything he is done thus far.

Nate (Grand Rapids): Are you trying to sell Robbie Ray if anyone is buying in a deep dynasty league? Or would you prefer to hold on and see how real this breakout is?

Mike Gianella: I'd sell, although I believe in him enough that I'm not simply just giving him away in the belief that he's going to turn back into a pumpkin.

Nathan (Indiana): I'm in a 20 team dynasty league and I'd really like to add a starter (pretty thin behind Sale and Gray). This is my offense: C Grandal, 1B Duda, 2B Dozier, 3B Arenado, SS Miller, LF Byrd, CF Cain, RF Granderson, bench Baez, Alcantara, Cesar Hernandez, Burns, Carter, Eugenio Suarez. Minors roster: Mazara, Nick Williams, Olivera, Barreto, Berrios. Based on those names, who would you try to trade for a starter, and what kind of guy would you target? I'm in 2nd this year but would really like to keep those prospects if possible. I'm not sure who to shop and just wondering if you had any thoughts. Thanks Mike!

Mike Gianella: I would try to trade Byrd or Grandy for a starter and I'd target a third tier guy. Try to push for someone like Shelby Miller, who has slumped somewhat but should still have some value down the stretch. And, yes, avoid moving those prospects unless someone is dumping and trading you two upgrades to your active lineup!

Michael (NY): What do I do with Duda? Even though it took awhile for the power to show up, at least he was hitting for average early. Then the power came and he was good for awhile. Now he's in a massive slump. Do you think he'll come around or should I sell in fantasy?

Mike Gianella: What do you do with a Lucas Duda
What do you do with a Lucas Duda
What do you do with a Lucas Duda
When it's clear he's slumping?

Try to be patient and hope that he'll bounce back
Try to be patient and hope that he'll bounce back
Try to be patient and hope that he'll bounce back
Later in the season.

Yeah, I was all over Duda in most of my leagues (and got lucky in one and traded him straight up for Dallas Keuchel right at the beginning of this slump. I think the talent is there, but Duda is clearly pressing because of the Mets awful lineup and has fallen into some of the bad habits he had last year (a lot of movement pre-swing; not keeping his lower body still/disciplined). He is working on improvements with Mets hitting coach Kevin Long, but that could take time. I think you have to hang on though; if you sell now, you're getting next to nothing in all likelihood.

Nate (Grand Rapids): Cesar Hernandez...any staying power as a solid MI in dynasty leagues? Do you prefer him or Eugenio Suarez?

Mike Gianella: Probably not. A nice start, but I don't see him as more than a fringy starting option. Suarez is similar, but because of Suarez's defense he's more likely to hang onto a starting job long term. Suarez, but "eh" to both of them.

Thomas (Wrigleyville): I have a bunch of fringy MI in a 20 team dynasty league. But because it's a 20 teamer, they all have some value. If you have to cut one of Brad Miller, Eugenio Suarez, Arismendy Alcantara, Jed Lowrie, or Cesar Hernandez, which 1 of them would you get rid of? How would you rank those guys in a dynasty league going forward?

Mike Gianella: I'd cut Hernandez, although if you're counting on stats for this year, that's kind of tough. The long term ranking for me is Alcantara, Miller, Lowrie, Suarez, and Hernandez.

Craij (sandwich shop): Dozier: buy, sell, or hold in a dynasty?Even if he's a little over his head at the moment do you think he can be a 25-15 guy for the next few years?

Mike Gianella: I would buy if others in your league believe that he isn't a potential 20/20 guy and think he's a flash in the pan. He struggled last year in the second half with what turned out to be some minor injury issues and works super hard at what he does. I like him for the next 3-5 years to be an elite at his position (not necessarily overall) for fantasy.

xavier (texas): What's your take on Gose's season? Has he done enough to establish himself as the long-term answer in CF for the Tigers?

Mike Gianella: It's a razor-thin line for guys like Gose who have a high BABIP but are using their speed to drive that BABIP to some degree. The weird thing with Gose is that he's hitting the ball on the ground a little less this year and the BABIP is up, which makes me believe there's more regression coming then you might expect. I think he can survive as a major league starter in center, but it's one of those things where you're fine if he's the fifth or sixth best hitter in your lineup and you're in trouble if he's your second best hitter. I think the defense plays though.

Behemoth (Far Away): In a dynasty league, is trading Syndergaard for Addison Russell and a few minor pieces a good idea?

Mike Gianella: If you have the pitching depth, it's OK. I see a lot of growth in Russell, and some of those doubles are going to start clearing the fence at Wrigley (and on the road too, duh Mike) as he gets gets older/stronger. I am guilty of being a bit of a Russell fanboy, though, so it is possible that I have the blinders on. It's tough to trade the guy who is doing it (mostly) already for the guy with potential so it depends on what the minor pieces are.

ganz1080 (CT): Hey Mike, what are your thoughts on Freddie Freeman. I just traded arrieta and got back liriano and freeman. 8 team 5x5 NL only, I'm in 7th place and needed some power, so I thought it was worth it, even though I hated to lose Arrieta. Think that was a good move?

Mike Gianella: I like Freeman, though the injury concerns me, as sometimes it saps power for the rest of the season. You win if he's healthy, but I wonder if he will be and even if he can hit I wonder if that power you're looking for is going to come back. You win the trade even if Freeman is "only" 75%, but you have to hope the Braves don't fall out of the race and shut him down.

Guancous (Silver Spring, MD): Keeper league team decimated by injuries. I traded an expensive Lucroy for a cheaper package of Jurickson Profar, Leonys Martin and Andrelton Simmons. Lunacy or luminosity? Any hope for any of those guys in 2016? Does this count as three questions towards Brett's charity drive?

Mike Gianella: I like that a lot if you weren't keeping Lucroy anyway. Profar is the biggest ceiling guy, but we won't know more until we see him on the field. I still like Martin a lot, and if the BABIP bounces back a little bit he should be OK. Simmons is probably the one who has way more real life value than fantasy; I'm not convinced that power comes back and if it doesn't he's fringy unless you're talking a 20-team dynasty.

Nathan (Indiana): Any non-top100 prospects that you have your eye on in fantasy? Maybe some guys that, even if owned, could be acquired cheaply in dynasty leagues and you think could be impact guys in deep leagues in the future. Any names?

Mike Gianella: Gilbert Lara and Victor Robles are the two names that the BP fantasy guys (who are almost all better at the deeper farm stuff than I am) are constantly gushing over and who I would tend to agree are potential risers. The guy who was traded to the Athletics today - Jacob Nottingham - is a really good guy to grab if he's available in your league.

Dchs2123 (Tha Lake): I've been sitting on Olivera in a 14 team dynasty format, but Turner's strong play has me worried about Olivera getting valuable at bats this year. My team is doing well, and only first place brings home the bacon, so should I be worried and look for an Olivera buyer or hold onto him?

Mike Gianella: Sell if you can, but don't just give him away without getting something that puts you over the top for this year.

cowboy2024 (Chicago): With reports floating around that the Cubs have inquired on David Price, is there any way a deal could get done without including anyone from the big league roster? Torres / McKinney enough to headline a deal?

Mike Gianella: I think it's possible, although I think it would take more than those two to be the headliners. A lot depends on what the Tigers scouts think of those guys as well as Albert Almora (whose stock has dropped but I still like) and C.J. Edwards. If you're counting Javier Baez or Arismendy Alcantara as minor leaguers despite their lack of rookie eligibility, my magic 8-ball says yes.

Undecided (Windy City): I've got Jose Fernandez in my 5x5 dynasty. Currently have an offer of Price, Puig & Gleyber Torres for him. Am I crazy to take this? Crazy not to?

Mike Gianella: Neither. It seems like a reasonable offer with a good amount of risk/reward on both sides. If you believe in a bounce back from Puig, you have a slight advantage on that end even if Torres never works out.

Shawn (Cubicle): ROS who do you prefer- Brandon Moss, Chris Carter, Lucas Duda, or Ryan Zimmerman? I have Moss now and Zimmerman on DL (Moss would prob be the drop when Zimmerman is back). Worth making a move or just hold onto Moss?

Mike Gianella: I prefer Carter. The BA is low, but it will be low for all of those other guys, and I just don't trust Zimmerman ROS. If you kept Moss no one would blame you. In theory, Duda should have the most value but it's so hard to recommend pushing for him. He looks so bad right now.

Jquinton82 (NY): Thoughts on Dylan Bundy, do the o's make him a reliever and do those of us that own him run away and sell like the house is on fire?

Mike Gianella: They're going to try to keep pushing him out there as a starter until it's beyond obvious that he can't be. The health is the big question (duh) and I'm sure they'd even live with an 170-180 inning guy since the stuff can play. You can sell him if someone is still convinced he's a viable #2, but as is often the case, selling at this point (injured, everyone else thinking what you're thinking) is a sell low proposition.

Miles (Milwaukee): Deep dynasty league trade offer. Which side do you prefer: Lance McCullers or Vince Velasquez/Jose Berrios?

Mike Gianella: The duo. I really like Berrios. I just hope the Colorado rumors for Troy Tulowitzki are nothing more than cloud talk.

BD (Chicago): Based on the package Detroit sent to Tampa for David Price, what would you estimate as a package the Cubs would have to offer to get Price from Detroit this year, with one less year of control?

Mike Gianella: That Rays/Tigers trade is weird in that it isn't indicative (to me, at least) of what the market would be like. The Rays took two theoretically MLB guys and a minor leaguer for Price. I would guess it will take three minor leaguers, with one of either Baez or Alcantara at the center, then a second tier guy, and then someone projectable.

Nick (Chicago): Hey Mike, what would a reasonable trade look like for the Cubs and Price? Detroit can't expect a huge return for a two month rental right?

Mike Gianella: I just answered this, but since it's for charity I'll reiterate. I don't think the Tigers can expect any MLB guys but one of Baez or Alcantara as the centerpiece doesn't seem unrealistic. You want to get at least one guy with elite potential. Price is getting a QO, so the Tigers will get a 1st round pick. You want that kind of talent coming back.

Kevin (Batavia, IL): Do anticipate the front office trying to re-sign Dexter Fowler after the season or are there other plans (like Almora) for CF for next year?

Mike Gianella: Depends on the market. I could see them trying to sign him to a one or two-year deal as a stopgap. If he can get a three to four year deal elsewhere, it seems more likely the Cubs would walk away from that.

Jonathan (Pennsylvania): Who is the cubs first rookie to break out of his "slump"? Russel, Soler, or Bryant? (I guess Russel is already breaking out, but small sample size).

Mike Gianella: Bryant. Too talented not to be so. Russell has "broken out" but it's not just the small sample size but he isn't going to contribute on the same offensive level as those other guys this year. His youth makes me think 2017 or 2018 is when the big breakout comes.

Dchs2123 (Tha Lake): The Clippers sold for $2 billion, how much would a baseball team go for now? Any guess which team would be the next to sell?

Mike Gianella: Depends on the market, but at least a $1B would be my guess. As a Mets fan, I hope and pray MLB makes the Wilpons sell. It's just a guess, but maybe the Tigers given the age of ownership? This is a complete guessing game.

ganz1080 (CT): Whats up with Wilson Ramos? He's batting .203 over the last 30 days, he has 9 homers but 2 of them came off position players in the same game. He has a really high ground ball rate too. I picked up Realmuto this week and started him over Ramos. Should I ride the hot hand with Realmuto, or stick with Ramos? 5x5 NL only, 8 teams, I'm in 7th place, so I need some upside.

Mike Gianella: I haven't really seen a lot of Nationals games, and the ones I have seen (against the Mets) he hasn't looked discernibly worse than he usually does. I wonder if fatigue is playing a factor since he almost always has some injury where he misses a few games and that hasn't happened this year. For the upside, I think you have to stick with Ramos and hope that the bat comes around.

Lars (Pluto): If you were a GM, who would you target if you were trying to fleece a desperate, job-on-the-line Jack Z?

Mike Gianella: Taijuan Walker, but that assumes that I'm smarter than Jack Z, which I most definitely am not. If anything, it seems that GMs with their backs to the wall play their cards closer to the vest (like Ruben Amaro in Philly) and are less likely to sell the farm, perhaps because ownership won't let them. So if Jack Z's job is on the line (I have no idea if it is), ownership could go the other way and simply push back on any big trades.

mbeemsterboer (Chicago): Of all the baseball twitter personalities you've met, who has surprised you the most when you met them in real life for the first time?

Mike Gianella: Craig Goldstein is way more reasonable in real life than you'd expect. Sahadev Sharma is an absolute peach in person (despite the angry Sahadev face that Cubs Twitter always posts) and I had a guy crush on him five minutes after meeting him.

ganz1080 (CT): last one - do you think Alex Guerrero would be a good keeper for next year in an NL only league? He had to have been drafted after the 12th rd and I have to keep him on my team all year and hes just dead weight right now. The only other guy I could potentially keep is Lind, and if he gets traded to an AL team I'm outta luck on that one too. So should I hang on to Guerrero or drop him? thanks again

Mike Gianella: He's a good keeper if he gets to play, but his limitations on the defensive spectrum make it hard to see where the Dodgers are going to fit him in. A trade to an AL team where he can DH doesn't help you. I'd stick with Lind. Even though he could go to the AL, you never know and it's not like Guerrero has an obvious role with LA.

Aaron (Houston): Iwakuma could be a great pickup for the Astros... or Blue Jays, or everyone that needs pitching. What do you think the Mariners might target in return, and what clubs have it?

Mike Gianella: I'm not convinced the Mariners are going to sell. Their management seems pretty committed to 2015, and barring a big slump in the next week, I think they're going for it. If they do trade him, he'd be a target for the usual suspects (Dodgers, Cubs) who are looking for starters and have the guys to trade.

Jonny Roquet (Seattle): Big Mariners fan here. Not a big fan of Lloyd hitting and running with Zunino, or sac bunting to get to Zunino. What does Lloyd know that I don't?

Mike Gianella: He doesn't. You shouldn't hit and run with a guy who hits for such a low BA and has such power contact issues and the same applies with sac bunts (and I hate sac bunts anyway). I'm not much of a McClendon fan, going back to his time with the Pirates.

Max (MKE): What is your favorite cereal?

Mike Gianella: Anything with chocolate in it, although I don't eat a lot of cereal. Soy sausage, melted cheddar, mini-bagel with Eno Sarris' secret sauce of hot sauce/mustard/honey has been my go to of late.

Jimbo Slice (Ballard): What's the Mariners' plan? What record does Jack Z need to keep his job?

Mike Gianella: I think they're to go for it this year and reassess at some point this winter. I can't read the minds of Mariners management, but I'd assume some kind of progress will have to be seen Post All-Star or early in 2016 for Z to hang on.

Forstcaa (Iowa): When proposing a trade, how far back will teams look into the farm system? Low A, new draft picks, etc.?

Mike Gianella: They look all the way down. Between the network of a team's scouts and industry-wide reports, they're prepared. Doesn't mean they have a report on every single player, but it runs very deep.

Eric (Chi Town): Thoughts on how good Eddy Julio Martinez is and where do you think he'll sign?

Mike Gianella: I have no idea where he'll sign. The Dodgers seem like the safe guess in that they swoop up everyone on the international level, but the Giants, Cubs, and maybe even the Phillies could play here. I think he's a potential Top 20-30 prospect if everything is as good as advertised, but as we've seen with other international signings, there is a lot of variability.

Tommy (Philly): What kind of Fantasy player will JP Crawford be?

Mike Gianella: I see him as a rich man's Erick Aybar. 10-15 HR, 25-30 steals, solid batting average. Not a fantasy superstar but he could be a pretty decent facsimile of the guy who was an institution in Philly - Jimmy Rollins - for many years if everything breaks right.

Brian (Ottawa): Out of the big 4 NA sports, baseball still "allows" players coming off the bench to fight. Do you see any appetite from MLB to issue automatic suspensions for entering the field of play?

Mike Gianella: They should, but I don't see the appetite for it, to use your language. I suspect there would have to be stricter laws against headhunting before this happened.

Hishawi Iwakuma (Comerica): How have my starts since coming off the DL impacted my tradeability in a positive or negative way? Or not at all?

Mike Gianella: I don't see much of an impact. People know who you are and how good you are, but you probably need a few more starts before everyone is convinced the injury woes are behind you.

Carlos (QA): Would JA Happ actually get any sort of return? By my research, he's been a replacement-level player.

Mike Gianella: A projectable low level minor league arm. He wouldn't get a QO, so if the Mariners are going to sell, they'd take what they can get.

Nathan (Indiana): After the obvious top guys like Trout, Harper, Goldschmidt, Kershaw, and McCutchen, who are the next 10 or so YOUNG guys that you would be looking to build a team around in a dynasty league? (hitters or pitchers) Thanks for the awesome chat!

Mike Gianella: Stanton, Bryant, Machado, Puig, Correa, Rendon (assuming health), Bogaerts, Altuve, Springer, and Cole

DJ (Dallas): Mike, Thanks for the chat. You guys at BP are the best!! Rougned Odor has been on a real tear since the end of his visit to Round Rock. While I recognize this is a small (but growing) sample size, do you think he has jumped meaningfully in AL 2B rankings?? Thanks for sharing your thoughts??

Mike Gianella: Yes, he moves up quite a bit for me, even though as you point out I wouldn't overemphasize the SSS. He' definitely closing in on the top 10 2B and is in the top half if this isn't a blip.

Festivus313 (Phoenix): Please rank these prospects by their offensive potential...Anthony Alford, Victor Robles, Javier Guerra, Jomar Reyes, Jacob Nottingham

Mike Gianella: Robles, Alford, Guerra, Nottingham, Reyes. Really tough for me though in that dynasty isn't my strength and I'm mostly goingg off of other's rankings.

Ralph (FL): Who do you expect to have the most power and OBP between Alex Gordon, Ryan Zimmerman, and Jayson Werth? (I've been stockpiling DL hitters for H2H playoffs)

Mike Gianella: Gordon, Werth, and Zimmerman in that order.

JJ (NY): Hey Mike. I know Dynasty leagues is not necessarily your cup of tea but if you feel your squad has a chance to win it this year, would you deal Marcus Stroman, Blake Snell & Nomar Mazara for Cole Hamels?

Mike Gianella: I think that's too much for Hamels.

Cody Wainscott (Breese, IL): How much do you value prospects for teams that are re-building compared to re-loading?

Mike Gianella: I value high end prospects equally in these formats, but in terms of across the board I prefer the next tier down only in a full rebuild and in a reload would rather focus only on the top guys.

Domer (South Bend): A. Rizzo's power seems to be way down of late. Any concerns there, or just normal fluctuation?

Mike Gianella: It seems like just a blip on the radar. I haven't seen anything in his approach or batted ball data that sets off alarm bells, so I have to think it's just a matter of time before those loud outs become big hits.

Ryan D no R Davis (Purgatory, Illinois): Mike- What are your favorite types of cultural references on Twitter? Any specific genre to use if I want to attract your attention, or are you of eclectic tastes?

Mike Gianella: You can always get me with anything old school TV, and by old school I'm talking Cheers and other 80s stuff. The classics always work though, so if you throw Seinfeld out there that's cool too.

Andrew Buchholz (Chicago): Will David Price ever wear Cubbie blue?

Mike Gianella: 10% chance he does, 25% chance he gets traded somewhere else, 65% chance the Tigers stand pat with him and make a run.

Rob (Chicago): Most likely team to make the mistake of not selling off assets at the Trade Deadline? Most likely team to mistakenly buy?

Mike Gianella: Good question. I think the Tigers should sell but am not convinced they will. The Mets are going to probably tentatively buy but if they don't go all in anything they give up for a marginal upgrade will be a mistake.

DrReiCow (Greenbelt, MD): What do you estimate Starlin Castro's trade value to be? Moo!

Mike Gianella: He'd probably bring back a solid pair of prospects but not an A-level prospect if the Cubs decided to move him.

Jay (The Chi): One guy for the rest of the year: Bryant, Schwarber or Pederson?

Mike Gianella: Bryant

Chris Lundin (Iowa): Should Gleyber Torres be virtually untouchable for the Cubs in any trade? Is he going to be that good?

Mike Gianella: I don't like saying anyone is untouchable, but they don't want to deal him unless it's a big upgrade. The ceilingg is a .300 hitter with 15/30 numbers, so I'd say that's good.

TJ Moore (Chicago, IL): Of the fringe Cubs OF prospects, which ones do you have a very high or low opinion of? (Almora, McKinney, Zagunis, Rademacher, Happ, Dewees, Jimenez, Hanheman)

Mike Gianella: I like Almora and the limited amount I know about Happ. I wouldn't say that I have a low opinion of any of these guys, but I do think that ceiling on McKinney isn't crazy high.

bauermj (Chicago): Better long term 5x5 fantasy value starting in 2016: Gallo or Franco? OBP instead of AVG change anything? Thanks

Mike Gianella: Gallo. OBP doesn't change much. Gallo only drops in a points league where you get dinged for strikeouts.

Enrique (Nashville): What do you think of Kyle Schwarber as a catcher long-term?

Mike Gianella: Earlier this year I was asked that and was less than impressed, but everything I have heard indicates how hard Schwarber is working at this, and the fact that the Cubs would let him catch in the majors right now tells me he could survive at the position even if he isn't great behind the dish.

Will (Chicago): Would it provide the Cubs with more value to trade something like Torres, Edwards and more for Hamels now assuming the phillies eat 20% of his contract or to sign someone like Price for 8/200 in the offseason? This includes the value Hamels provides this year in the last 2 months.

Mike Gianella: I'd prefer the package for Hamels but teams do value those prospects over money, particularly if it's a team with deep pockets that can afford a big FA

Pork (Chicago): Would you trade Bryant/Russel to anyone? And if so what would the trade be?

Mike Gianella: No, I'd hang on. Both are potential stars - even if Russell isn't a fantasy baseball superstar.

Eddie (Cleveland): who has more upside. Kilome or kopech? Do either/both have true ace potential

Mike Gianella: Flip a coin for me. I'd lean Kopech, but it's close. They both could get there but if I had to guess I'd guess against ace because not many of those guys are in the minors.

Festivus313 (Phoenix): Please rank the following pitching prospects...Francis Martes, Joe Musgrove, Anderson Espinoza, Franklyn Kilome, Colin Rea, Chih-Wei Hu, Wei-Chieh Huang

Mike Gianella: Kilome is ahead of the rest of those guys and then Musgrove but after that this is where my lack of deeper minor league knowledge hurts me. I'd guess Marte, Rea, Huang, and Hu but to be honest I don't have a good feel for where these guys should truly sit.

Ken (Akron): What kind of projections would you put on Derek Fisher?

Mike Gianella: He's probably going to be an OF2 type if things break right, with a decent low level base of power but a good amount of speed.

Ike (Omaha): Anything new on Max Pentecost? or is this a complete lost season for him

Mike Gianella: I haven't heard anything. Check back again in 2016.

Aaron (Waco, TX): Rank the following players in terms of their 2018 fantasy value: C Kyle Schwarber 2B/SS Addison Russell OF Jorge Soler 2B/SS Javier Baez 3B/OF Kris Bryant

Mike Gianella: Bryant, Schwarber, Russell, Soler, Baez.

T.J. (Chicago, IL): What are the % chances that Zack Greinke leaves LA this offseason? What does his payday look like?

Mike Gianella: 80%. There's a good chance he tests the market unless the Dodgers pay him in the Kershaw/Verlander ballpark. I think Greinke is going to get something in the $30MM/AAV neighborhood if he opts out.

Sam (OL): Who is your favorite team to watch this season?

Mike Gianella: I'm a Mets fan and it has been great to see the young pitching coalesce. In terms of a team I like watching on the whole, I have really enjoyed the Pirates. Gerrit Cole is turning into a superstar and there are so many young studs on that team. Their approach on the mound is terrific thanks to Ray Searage and the fans there are really energized now that they're winning on a regular basis.

roy (chicago): Will the cubs go to the world series in 2016?

Mike Gianella: No.

kyle (norway): do you smoke?

Mike Gianella: I smoked for years but quit in 2004 when I decided to run a marathon.

steven (antarctica): do you like cats?

Mike Gianella: I have three. I like them but I liked them a lot more before I had kids and had more time for them (the cats, not the kids)

norman (normandy): is conforto coming up soon?

Mike Gianella: I think he might be up this weekend. So yes.

Rob (Chicago): Which player stands to lose the most this offseason if they are not traded and receive a Qualifying Offer?

Mike Gianella: Ben Zobrist given his age and skills, although it's hard to see the Athletics risking the QO 1 year price on Zobrist unless they're sure he'll refuse it.

Zito (C-Falls): is Harold Ramirez a name that jump up prospects lists quickly? or is there not enough project-able power?

Mike Gianella: The answer is somewhere in the middle. He should move up, but I don't see the power projecting as quite enough for a big jump. (now watch him go prove me wrong).

TJ (Chicago, IL): What do you think happens with Eddy Julio Martinez? And what's causing the delay?

Mike Gianella: He'll sign with one of the teams that typically goes after guys like this. Dodgers? Giants? Phillies? I don't have my finger on the pulse of this, so I don't know. I'd guess he signs this winter.

Bob (Chicago): What are some of the reasons behind Bryant's recent slump? Seems he's making poor contact on very hittable pitches, or just flat out missing them. Anything mechanically off in the swing?

Mike Gianella: I haven't seen a lot of his recent reps, but from what I have seen it doesn't really look like there's a hole in his swing. I think pitchers are adjusting as they often due to rookies and Bryant is going to make his own adjustments at some pint in the next month or so and start raking again.

Flanders (Springfield): Strictly in your opinion, can you rate these SS on their potential upside, and are there sizable gaps anywhere in the rankings? Jorge Mateo, Javier Guerra, Gleybar Torres, Adrian Rondon, Gilbert Lara (3B bound) and Franklin Barreto. Thanks

Mike Gianella: Torres, Barreto, Mateo, Lara, Guerra, and Rondon. I think there's a gap between Torres/Barreto and the rest of those guys.

Shane (Rochester): Who do you think will be the first player from the 2015 draft to reach the big leagues and stick?

Mike Gianella: I don't know. Really, I don't. But Carson Fullmer is the kind of the guy the White Sox take and push pretty quickly. So I'll guess him.

Ken (Cleveland): Anthony Alford is getting a lot of hype recently. If he taps into his natural raw power, what kind of prospect are we seeing? top 25 potential?

Mike Gianella: To me, it all depends on how much of the power he taps into. I can see him hitting 15-20 home runs as a realistic ceiling, but let's see what kind of contact he makes as he makes his way up the ranks before we get too excited. Top 25 is the ceiling, but I think Top 50-60 is more realistic at the moment for the ceiling.

Rob (Chicago): Where is the most likely landing spot for Justin Upton at the deadline and come free agency?

Mike Gianella: If the oblique isn't barking and he does get traded, it's hard to see an ideal fit. He keeps getting linked to the Mets but they don't have the money. The Angels would also be logical but they also don't seem to want to make a big move. I'll go crazy and say the Royals if they're looking to upgrade on Rios. In the offseason, I assume that Upton gets a five or six year deal for big money so you need a team with big pockets looking to make a splash. I'll guess the Orioles.

Ken (Cleveland): Gleybar has stolen his thunder, but is it time to get excited over the potential of Eloy Jimenez?

Mike Gianella: Don't overdo it by selling your house and following Jimenez all around the minors and in the offseason, but do get excited from afar.

Alejandro (Austin): I'm not sure if this is the right chat to ask this question, but I've been wondering about WPA. I know the stat says, for example, that a team leading 1-0 after the first has around a 60% chance to win the game, based on historical data. But that historical data incorporates both: 1) the fact that a team leading 1-0 has a one-run lead, which obviously correlates to winning games; and 2) the fact that, in the aggregate, teams that go up 1-0 are likely to be better than teams that fall behind 1-0. Is BP, or anyone else you're aware of, trying at all to create a version of WPA that controls for team quality (i.e., the second factor)? Sorry if this question makes no sense.

Mike Gianella: I know what you're saying but I'm not familiar enough with WPA to know if there is anything that can be done to fix the model. I don't know of anyone at BP working on this.

TJ (Chicago, IL): Could/Should the Cubs extend a qualifying offer to Dexter Fowler this offseason? What type of impact can his second half have?

Mike Gianella: I would extend a QO. One year of Fowler at that price would be a nice stopgap for Almora if he indeed makes it. Fowler's a solid player who should continue to do so, particularly if the recent OBP jump isn't just a SSS blip and is legit.

Ike (Omaha): long term, Alex Verdugo or Derek Fisher?

Mike Gianella: Fisher for me.

dave (san jose): Do you see any signs that Billy Hamilton can become a legit leadoff man for 2016, or is he headed down the defensive replacement/pinch runner path?

Mike Gianella: I see him somewhere in the middle...as a bottom of the order guy who can offer enough with his speed/defense to survive. That being said, he HAS to improve on what he has done this year.

ahoak (Warsaw,IN): When history shows that a particular team (e.g. Cubs) has "won" trades with another team (e.g. Rangers), is that other team less likely to do business with them in the future? I think Cubs got Hendricks, Villanueva, Edwards, Grimm, Ramirez, Olt for Dempster and Garza rentals. Not that Rangers are sellers this year, but are they less likely to deal with Cubs because of their history?

Mike Gianella: I doubt it. I think teams tend to make trades in their own best interests, and while there might be some reluctance due to human nature, if a deal makes sense they'll do it. Also, they're flipping roles this year (as sellers/buyers) so the previous track record seems unlikely to play a factor.

BomboRiviera (ChiTown): Could you rank Avisail, Melky, Ethier and Fowler in an OBP league? I might need to drop a couple of them due to a roster crunch.

Mike Gianella: In OBP, Fowler, Avisail, Melky, and Ethier. I don't have faith in Ethier's PT

Rob (Chicago): Which team has the most to gain by becoming sellers at the deadline?

Mike Gianella: If the Red Sox can sell without giving up some of the big ticket FAs they have, the Red Sox. Particularly if they can grab young pitching.

ike (o): I know no likes to give out comps, but is there one that sticks out for Alex Verdugo? He appears to be figuring things out, and I was curious to what potential his tools may have. Thanks

Mike Gianella: The Joc Pederson comp is the one that has been rolled out there, and if the development continues apace, that makes sense.

CubSmurf (Houston): With Kazmir being traded for decent, not great prospects. Does this give the appearance Cubs are going after 'bigger fish'? Seems they could have beaten that deal without hurting the farm too much. Or reading too much into it?

Mike Gianella: It's hard to judge off of one trade. The Astros/A's have a long relationship and have made a lot of trades, so it's possible they were working on this before the Cubs even jumped in. I'd guess the Cubs are exploring all avenues for both "big fish" and "little fish" in an effort to get the best return.

Anish (West Virginia): If Schwarber can be league average defensively, what is his ceiling?

Mike Gianella: He could be a slightly poor man's version of Piazza. The bat is going to play at any position.

T.J. (Chicago, IL): What do you think of the CF options this offseason either by FA or trade?

Mike Gianella: For the Cubs or in general? Trades are hard to guess since I didn't expect Dexter Fowler - for example - to get moved this winter but he did. Austin Jackson and Denard Span are the other decent CF options out there this winter; if I had to rank them it's close. I lean a healthy Span over Fowler and then Jackson. But none of these guys is elite.

fred (C-Falls): looking into your crystal ball, could you rank the following outfielders for me. Braxton Davidson, Derek Fisher, Harold Ramirez, Alex Verdugo and Michael Reed (though he's fallen off quite a bit recently).

Mike Gianella: Fisher, Verdugo, Ramirez, Davidson, and Reed.

George (Jerrys): the term Ace gets thrown out there a lot, outside of Urias and Giolito, are there any other minor league pitchers that truly have ACE potential. (if things all clicked..reyes & hoffman?)

Mike Gianella: Reyes is the other one for me. Hoffman isn't quite there yet imo.

Rob (Chicago): What's more likely: Giancarlo Stanton is traded, opts out, or finishes his contract with the Marlins?

Mike Gianella: Both; he gets traded and opts out.

Eddie (C-Falls): Mid way through the season, are there any pop up prospects that nobody has really been talking about that come to mind as potential fast risers?

Mike Gianella: No, because I read most of the BP stuff and the guys who would have been surprises for me have mostly been covered.

rob (Chicago): Which prospect (promoted during 2015 season) has surprised you the most? Which has been the most disappointing?

Mike Gianella: I knew he was good, but I'm amazed that Carlos Correa at such a young age pretty much hasn't missed a beat. I'm not disappointed by him given his age, but from a fantasy perspective I was hoping for a little more from Addison Russell with the bat.

Mike (Chicago): just asking to get to 250--- What kind of value do prospects facing 40 man roster/rule V crunch have? Does it hurt their value for a team acquiring them knowing they likely will need to be added to 40 man by end of year?

Mike Gianella: The prospects of this nature are generally borderline, although a lot of this depends on the organization. Some guys get squeezed just because there are too many guys floating around. I think there is a little bit of "pain" on these guys value wise, but there is enough change during the year (60-day DL, guys getting cut) that it isn't that pronounced.

Bubba (Chicagooo): What do you think Gleyber Torres' ceiling is?

Mike Gianella: .300 BA, 15 HR, 35 SB

sgcashmere (LA): 16 team dynasty points w/ no negatives for batter strikeouts.... Have chance to contend and was offered Adam Jones for Grandal, Baez, Devers, Rusney, Tapia.... It's a lot of value, but think Jones could potentially put us over the top. Thoughts?

Mike Gianella: I think that's too much to give up, although flags fly forever as we like to say.

Gabe Athouse (CA): What prospects in the Cubs' cabinet fall outside the untouchable category like Bryant/Soler/Schwarber/Baez and could actually bring us David Price?

Mike Gianella: Everyone else should. Maybe Edwards is there, but I think if you want Price you're going to have to give up one guy who is a potential A-list player.

LoyalRoyal (Kansas): Have 4 nice OF prospects to possibly trade at the deadline. How would you rank these guys value in a 5x5 OBP league, with the caveat that their contracts will only run through 2017 (3 yr contract max league). Nomar Mazara, Nick Williams, Rymer Liriano, and Manuel Margot?

Mike Gianella: Mazara, Margot, Williams, Liriano.

rap (TZ): Any long term concern about Harvey this year or just expected rough patch after injury bounce back?

Mike Gianella: A lot of pitchers go through their struggles year one after Tommy John. Harvey has even bounced back in-season, with his ERA closing in on 3 and he should be fine next year and close in on elite status again.

Taylor Jungmann (The nearest bar): Mike, can I keep this up? Very few people have been able to hit me lately! Are you a believer in me?

Mike Gianella: You can't be this good but if you keep the ball down and keep it close to the zone you should be solid. A 3.50-3.70 ERA with a solid WHIP is more realistic.

Kim (206): If you were the M's GM, and you were more concerned with the long-term success of the organization (instead of your tenuous job standing), what moves would you make before the deadline?

Mike Gianella: I'd try to trade Trumbo, Austin Jackson, and maybe Iwakuma. I'd sell but in a moderate way as opposed to aggressively.

rookie319s (Saint Louis): Your thoughts on Greg Bird? Will he be a Yankee 2 years from now? Good luck on your goal!

Mike Gianella: I'd guess he gets traded at some point for a current need for the Yankees unless Teixeira or ARod begin to fade quickly. Thanks!

Dchs2123 (Tha Lake): True out false: Donating money to Make-A-Wish for the Bleacher Nation Blogathon is worthwhile and rewarding. http://site.wish.org/site/TR?px=2952008&fr_id=1581&pg=personal

Mike Gianella: I don't think the link you're providing is going to work but, yes. If you can afford to do so donate if you can.

Snowborne (Pittsburgh): In my dynasty we only keep 25 players I'm a rebuilding team so I have to choose my keepers wisely how do you rank these guys Raul mondesi Orlando Arcia Alan Hanson for inf. and Austin meadows clint Frazier alex Jackson nick Williams Jessie winker for OF thank you

Mike Gianella: Williams, Winker, Meadows, Frazier, Jackson, Arcia, Mondesi, Hanson

K C (Chillin at home): What is going on with Leonys Martin? In a season where SBs seem harder to find than ever, what advice do you have for his owners???

Mike Gianella: Some BABIP fluctuation, although he's down on his hard hit balls. He should pop up, but with Delino Deshields in the fold he might not get the PT. I'd try to sell or drop in shallower redraft leagues. In keeper stash him if you can.

ayzzya (Norf Norf): Do you have a take on Marcell Ozuna?

Mike Gianella: He's a solid player who was having a down year and got demoted. He'll be back up at some point, should be productive, but might not reach the power heights he did in 2014.

Jeff (Jackson): What do you make of Lewis Brinson's hot start to the year? Is it just me or is he coming into his own and has a relatively high ceiling?

Mike Gianella: I think he's legit and while I'm not as excited about him as some I think he should move up in the ranks this winter.

shawlawoff (Indiana): Do you think MLB needs to address low scoring trend of prior 10-15 years? 1. Lower mound? 2. Decrease strike zone? 3. Other big rule change?

Mike Gianella: You're asking the wrong person. I love pitching and pitchers' duels. But I would like to see the strike zone called properly. Enough of the wide strikes and the low strikes. This would address some of it.

Simon (Montreal): In a dynasty league, which would you deal for Schwarber in a 1 for 1? Corey Seager, Xander Bogaerts, or Byron Buxton? Stacked beyond belief everywhere else besides C, but a little concerned Schwarber doesn't stick there for very long.

Mike Gianella: I'd deal him for Buxton.

Mark (Columbia, MO): What were/are your thoughts on Kyle Schwarber being a catcher long-term 1. Before his current stint as MLB catcher 2. Now that you've seen him behind the plate in the bigs. ?

Mike Gianella: My initial thought was he had a slim chance to stick but even beyond anything I've seen I don't think the Cubs would be rolling him out there if they didn't think he was at least passable. He is better than advertised behind the dish. Will he stick? I don't know, but I like his chances much better now than I did once upon a time.

YancyEaton (Fort Myers, Homies): Thoughts on John Jaso's dreadlocks?

Mike Gianella: Get off of my lawn, John Jaso's dreadlocks.

Colin318 (Chicago): Biggest name moved at the deadline is:_?

Mike Gianella: Cole Hamels.

Alex (B-More): Who plays more in the majors for next 5 years, Justin Verlander or Jose de Leon?

Mike Gianella: Verlander.

Jim (Scanton): Is Cole tucker an impact player an impact fantasy SS prospect? Or are his offensive tools too limited

Mike Gianella: He has enough on offense that he could be an impact fantasy SS prospect. Could is the operative word given his age.

Rob (Chicago): Who do you sell high on (FBB): Robinson Cano's recent hot streak or Joe Panik's season?

Mike Gianella: Panik. Cano's bounce back and decreased GB rate looks legit.

Brian (NYC): Hey Mike, would I be nuts to have Mazara as a top 3 prospect presently in the minors? I absolutely love this kid. Love the power potential and also the fact that the hit tool will be plenty good as well. So advanced for his age. Any chance we see him this year like maybe a cup of coffee in September?

Mike Gianella: Top 3 is kinda nuts. I see him a little bit lower than that. Yes, he could make it up in late August or September for a cuppa joe, though the Rangers falling out of the race makes September more likely.

Harry (Newark): What's your opinion on Javier Baez? Does he make the necessary adjustments for the MLB? I still see a massive fantasy ceiling from either 2B or SS or maybe even 3B. Is a 30 HR and 15 SB ceiling still there for Baez? I'm seeing a lot of people distance themselves from Baez due to the poor showing last season, but I'm on the opposite end of the spectrum. What do you think?

Mike Gianella: He's a really talented player but I'd like to see what he does in the majors in his next go round. That high strikeout rate worries me, and to your question on the adjustments ti's hard to know until we actually get to see him play. The ceiling is high, but if he can't make contact the power tool won't matter. I haven't completely given up on him for 2016 and beyond, but there is some reason for cynicism.

Sean (NY): Does Michael Fulmer have the stuff to project as a 1/2 starter in the majors?

Mike Gianella: No. He's more of a #3 on the high end.

Farmer John (West Coast): One of the great things about MLB.TV is checking out all the local broadcast teams. I have really enjoyed the Mets group, they seem to mix baseball knowledge and game updates with "just having a conversation." Do you have any favorite radio/tv guys?

Mike Gianella: I don't listen much to the radio anymore unless I'm driving, and of the Yankees/Mets/Phillies the Mets radio crew is probably the best. I also like the Mets TV crew, and Vin Scully is Vin Scully. On TV, the Giants crew is really good what I've heard of the Tigers I like as well.

Jimmy (Florida): Keeper league - Bryant or Frazier + Gallo?

Mike Gianella: The duo.

Dan ((5th Place-up a spot thanks to the Yankee game)): Thanks for the response Mike. No, not NL Only, Mixed league. So same question-Who are some pitchers league-wide you might target to lower my WHIP & ERA while maybe grabbing some wins down the stretch (even if it means trading guys other than the 2 mentioned)?

Mike Gianella: In the AL I'd add Gallardo, Salazar, and U-Ball to the mix.

justarobert (Santa Clara): About how many outfield prospects do you have ahead of Lewis Brinson on ceiling?

Mike Gianella: Four or five on pure ceiling? That assumes a lot, though.

Rob (Chicago): What's your opinion on "personal catchers" like Lester-Ross?

Mike Gianella: I'm fine with it if it's just for one pitcher, given that most catchers need rest/shouldn't catch 140-150 games a year.

Mookie (Boston): Betts has not looked good recently. How high are you on him this year/next? Would you rank him top 40 in a keeper draft next Spring?

Mike Gianella: SSS, I wouldn't worry. I like him a lot and think that he reminds on the cusp of being an elite player. I'd probably put him in the Top 50.

HalfStreet (Fairfax VA): Thank goodness for the Aramis Ramirez trade. I was afraid that the Nationals were going to have to face Yhonathan Barrios (and $3M) tonight against the Pirates!

Mike Gianella: Seems like they didn't do much better with Liriano.

justarobert (Santa Clara): What, if any, measures do you take in long-lived leagues to promote competitive balance (and to ward off owner attrition that goes with perennial losing)? Draft leagues can obviously use draft order, and auction leagues occasionally alter auction budgets, but those aren't always particularly effective.

Mike Gianella: Things that have worked in my home leagues are a salary cap, fewer keepers, higher salaries for players picked up during the season, and limits on long term contracts.

JP (Tx): AL only league where you can keep a minor leaguer for 4 years after they have been called up do you like Appel or Hoffman better?

Mike Gianella: Appel is probably "safer" but Hoffman has the higher ceiling. I'm leaning Hoffman.

jonraypyle (TX): When someone on here asks you to simply rank 5 random top 50 prospects do you want to just yell GO LOOK AT THE DANG TOP 50 PROSPECT LIST WE JUST PUT OUT LAST WEEK YOU JABRONI!!!

Mike Gianella: ha ha, sometimes i think this. But I can see why people ask. The dynasty lists (which I'm not a part of) are often a collaborative effort and different people have different opinions. So, yeah, I get how funny it is that people are asking for re-rankings but I can see it.

Moises Alou (The Hood): Is a sandwich a hot dog?

Mike Gianella: No, because even if you believe a hot dog is a sandwich by definition a sandwich is not always a hot dog. Nice try, Moises.

Jeb (Iowa): What is Gerrit Cole's peak upside? And how good could Tyler Glasnow be?

Mike Gianella: Cole is a legit ace who could be that ace for years. He's there this year. Glasnow could be a James Shields type...not quite an ace but that 1B type guy who is a 4 win pitcher for years.

Rob (Chicago): What are your thoughts on Albert Almora? People seem to be down on him but he has elite OF defense and is still only 21 and playing in AA.

Mike Gianella: I still like him and think that people are giving up on the bat too soon. That being said, he might need to repeat at AA given the age and some of the adjustments I'm hearing he needs to make.

Bill (New Mexico): Any ideas who the Cardinals might target as a LHH 1B, seeing that Mark Reynolds kinda stinks against RHP? What can/should they offer that would get him? Best "What will we do with a drunken sailor" knockoff I've ever seen, by they way.

Mike Gianella: Seems like a limited market for bats in general, let alone a specific LH bat. So, no I don't really have any great ideas. I think they're just going to roll with Stephen Piscotty if he can handle the position.


DooWop (The Valley): Mike. Carlos Gomez or Adam Jones in dynasty. Do you see any significant difference in them in a points league?

Mike Gianella: Gomez for his all around game. In points, Gomez gets a little bit more of an edge since AVG doesn't quite play a factor on the same level.

Sean (LA): Let's talk Baez for a second. Seemed like he cut down on a K's when he went back to AAA. What's a reasonable ROS projection on him? Top 10 SS?

Mike Gianella: In the majors? If he makes it up and starts I could him being Top 15. But where is he going to play?

Barry (SF): Mike, Do you think the Nats Roark & Taylor would be enough for Zobrist ?

Mike Gianella: I do not. I think the Nationals are going to have to slide a prospect over who has more projectability. The A's are definitely gearing toward more athletic minor leaguers in the mid to low minors.

Spg (lala): Why is the last Weezer album not more revered? It's legitimately their best since the green album. Track #1 rocks as hard as any song-1 side-1 I've heard this year!

Mike Gianella: I think a lot of people hear them and think more of the same. It's not fair, but that's the way it goes sometimes.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): Does Byron Buxton return to the minors when healthy or do the Twins bump Aaron Hicks over for him?

Mike Gianella: It'll be Buxton. I don't think you promote him the first time unless you're serious about playing him.

Tony (ND): Thoughts on a few question mark pitching prospects, Jameson Taillon,Braden Shipley, and Mark Appel? What do you see out of them over the next couple seasons?

Mike Gianella: Really have to see Taillon healthy before we make a judgment. I think Appel could be an OK mid-tier starter, but the ideas of him being an ace or even a #2 should be removed out of our heads. Shipley is the guy of the three who excites me the most. You have to be careful with comps, but I like the Jacob deGrom parallels here, with the converted shortstop who throws 95 MPH. He needs more refinement, but I could see him surprising in his debut.

Darth Stout (Chicago): Not to go all Cubs Twitter meatball, but what's wrong with Starlin Castro and what can be done to fix it? He's been a black hole of suck at the plate all season.

Mike Gianella: I don't know if anything's wrong with him more than what you see is what you get. He's above replacement level by a few ticks but it doesn't seem likely that he's going to become that quasi-elite player some were hoping for. Even as a non-Cubs fan, his slumps and persistent inconsistency are maddening.

Jose (San Diego): Hello Mr. Gianella. Please let me know if Max Kepler is the real. Is he worth a pick up in a 12 team dynasty? 20 team dynasty? Word up.

Mike Gianella: 16=team or deeper. Can still be a valid MLBer, but I think many were hoping the power would be here by now. Still not showing up.

Bookie Metts (Boston ): What's your projections on Mookie Betts going forward? Any reasonable comps? Any chance he ever goes back to 2b?

Mike Gianella: I see him as a solid 15 HR, 35 SB guy with a .270 BA. I doubt he goes back to 2B; he probably sticks in the OF. No immediate comps jump to mind; a lot of the speed guys in the majors right now don't have this kind of power.

Tony (ND): What's up with Oswaldo Arcia and the Twins? Think he gets moved in the next week?

Mike Gianella: There's no room at the inn. I think there's a 50/50 chance he gets moved for relief help.

Deal or No Deal (Potnetial Ticket Day Parade): Hey Mike. 16 team 5X5 Dynasty league. Currently in 3rd and trying to get back to the championship. Would you deal Stroman, Snell, & Mazara for Hamels to improve your chances of possibly getting that allusive flag this year?

Mike Gianella: I think that's too much, but if I say yes to that I know Nick Shlain will come to my house and beat me with his Marcus Stroman fathead.

Norm (Boston): Hey Sammy.

Mike Gianella: Norm!

Tony (ND): Do you think Mazara is a top 10 prospect going forward, assuming he doesn't regress?

Mike Gianella: Yes, though at the bottom end of that Top 10.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): Is Carl Edwards Jr. a starter or reliever at the big league level?

Mike Gianella: I still see him as a starter.

ayzzya (Crown Heights): When does Marcus Stroman become a better pitcher than Johnny Cueto? Next two years? Or will Cueto have to retire first?

Mike Gianella: 4-5 years.

DrReiCow (Greenbelt, MD): What is a fair price for Cole Hamels (particularly from the Cubs)?

Mike Gianella: Three prospects, with one of them being on the periphery of the A-list.

Billy (Houston ): How soon will Carlos Correa be the best fantasy shortstop in MLB??

Mike Gianella: 2017

The Dude (Couch): The BP Franchise Four is...?

Mike Gianella: Craig Goldstein, Ben Carsley, Bret Sayre, and Matthew Trueblood. George Bissell would easily make it if he could get his damn cultural reference game up to the A-level.

Justin (Pittsburgh): What do you think of a few of these Pirate prospects: Bell? McGuire? Glasnow? Meadows?

Mike Gianella: I like Bell, though I'm not as high on him as others. Meadows should be a solid starter but not a superstar. Glasnow could make for a great #2 behind Gerrit Cole. McGuire: so far so good, but young catching prospects often don't pan out.

Jv (Illinois): Is Brandon Crawford for real or is he a sell high in fantasy?

Mike Gianella: I think he's legit. The power should tail off somewhat, but he's hit lefties for two years running and is hitting with more authority overall. Don't sell.

Jv (Illinois): Will Clint Frazier and Lewis Brinson be solid regulars in 3 years? Predict their triple slash lines

Mike Gianella: Yes. Oh god, I'm sorry to cop out but I have no idea.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): Is Mike Olt worth following any more?

Mike Gianella: No

Jeffery (NJ): So I have tickets this Sunday to see Conforto and the Binghamton Mets play. Really worried Conforto won't be with the team. What are the chances I get to see him? Are the odds in my favor? Please Sandy, just keep him down until Monday!

Mike Gianella: 40% chance you see him. Depends on if Michael Cuddyer goes on the DL or if they insist on dragging his carcass around.

The Dude (Couch): Anibal Sanchez anything more than a streamer in 10 tm? I keep waiting for him to start pitching well and he keeps wanting to give up the long ball

Mike Gianella: In that format he's definitely a streamer. He's kind of fringy in 12-team mixed right now tbqh.

Ed (Ohio): Will Polanco ever become a star or what do you think he will become? Another Marte?

Mike Gianella: The latter. I see him going down the Marte path. Better in fantasy than real life on offense, great defense and athleticism, power isn't going to come around to put him far enough into the star category.

Mikeyruler (SF, CA): Duda? What are your thoughts on his abysmal stretch here. Have him in a 12 team mixed as my 1B.

Mike Gianella: In that format try to find a replacement. He is lapsing back to poor mechanics from last year and when he is making contact he isn't doing it with any authority. I think he's going to bounce back but he's really pressing due to the bad lineup.

Brandon (Chicago): Delino Deshields and Mike BOlsinger for Luis Valbuena? Who wins the trade?

Mike Gianella: I'd take the duo. Valbuena already has fallen off of the map with the power.

lasbk3 (S. Korea): Have you ever been to a baseball game outside the US or Canada? (Central Am. or Asia)

Mike Gianella: Outside of watching a pickup game in England, no.

The Dude (Couch): If (when) Kershaw throws a perfect game against the Mets tonight is that the most predictable perfect game of all-time?

Mike Gianella: It reminded me of putting lineups together in Strat-O-Matic as a kid and trying to generate a no hitter.

Pete (Pittsburgh): Was offered Bryant & Wisler for Cole, Frazier & Giolito. Thoughts ?

Mike Gianella: I think that's a lot to give up, even in a dynasty.

Connor (Jacksonville FL ): Where would you rank Vogt ROS as a catcher? Aside from Posey what catchers would you prefer over Vogt? Thanks!

Mike Gianella: In the July Baseball Prospectus guide update, we had Vogt sixth, behind Posey, McCann, Perez, Martin, and Lucroy. I would move Perez down but otherwise expect some regression from Vogt in the second half.

Jv (Illinois): Does Jesse Winker and Trea Turner start next year? What do you see them doing?

Mike Gianella: I think they're both up at some point. Winker has the higher short term upside; I could see him hitting 15-20 HR with a .260 BA. I see Turner as more of a solid all around guy but with no great carrying tool for fantasy out of the gate.

The Dude (Couch): I'm late and catching up on the chat...but when did you take over as BPs resident Cubs expert? #Cubs twitter is rolling deep in this chat

Mike Gianella: The charity I'm doing this for is Brett Taylor's (Bleacher Nation) Make-A-Wish of Illinois. So he RTed this and that's where at least half of the questions are coming from.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): Eric Byrnes is quite annoying right? What do you think of this roboump thing he's doing?

Mike Gianella: I got a soft spot for Eric Byrnes. The only time I got to Arizona for ST I saw him before anyone knew who he was and got him really cheap in fantasy that year. So I have a blind spot, sorry man, lol.

Oscar (Scanton): So luckily my house hasn't sold yet, what type if player can Eloy Jimenez be? Jorge soler like, top 40-50 prospect

Mike Gianella: Maybe, but he's so far away. That's probably the ceiling, but you can say that for so many guys at this age.

Chad (Illinois): Who is the greatest out-of-nowhere player in fantasy history? Michael Morse...Esteban Loaiza?

Mike Gianella: Raul Ibanez.

Ken (Cleveland): Harold Ramirez just homered..... So I guess you were wrong, and now his game power has skyrocketed!

Mike Gianella: That was the first time I have ever been wrong. Fetal position, meet Mike. Mike, meet fetal position. How you doing? Badly, you? Awful. Want a drink? Don't mind if I do.

Drew (Illinois): In a deep Dynasty league and am stacked at pitcher (Kluber, Scherzer, Archer, De Grom, Harvey, Salazer) but my outfield is weak. Am I giving up too much by trading Stroman, Matz and a pick for Cespedes? I've got Reyes, De Leon, Kopech and some others stashed as well.

Mike Gianella: That's probably too much, though you're giving away a lot of risk for a sure thing, relatively speaking.

Joshua Reid (Nashville): Hey, love the chats, podcasts and website! Could Stephen Piscotty at first ever approach a Freddie Freeman type profile?

Mike Gianella: I don't see the power getting there to be quite that good.

Joshua (Nashville): Any chance Piscotty can do his best Freddie Freeman impression (in time) at 1B?

Mike Gianella: Same answer.

Billieboy (Seattle): Which play in MLB history do you think has had the greatest variance between their real-life baseball value and their fantasy value? I guess I'm hoping for two answers - someone that was drastically better in fantasy than real life and conversely someone who was much better in real life than fantasy.

Mike Gianella: Mark Belanger is the guy who jumps out whose defense was so great but wouldn't have offered anything in fantasy, even for his era. Raul Mondesi strikes me as the guy who offered a lot in fantasy but once his defense went was a cipher on the field.

Kris (Dallas): The Rangers could use an arm, and the Mariners seem to like one-dimensional hitters. Who says no to a Gallo for Walker trade? Reminiscent of the Montero-Pineda deal?

Mike Gianella: The Mariners. Walker already has the serious upside he has shown in the majors and Gallo still has to prove he's not going to be Russell Branyan 2.0 (that's harsh, but my point is we need to see more).

Milfred (Queens): Do you think the Mets are exceptionally good at drafting pitchers, developing pitchers, or sometimes things just work out nicely?

Mike Gianella: It's more of the latter. I give them some credit - particularly for deGrom - but they traded for Syndergaard.

Clever (Huanchaco): What do you think a trade for Arod would have looked like this offseason before his resurgence?

Mike Gianella: It would have involved the Yankees eating all sorts of salary and getting a marginal prospect back just for the sake of getting rid or ARod. And we'd all be LOL Yankees now.

Matt (Cambridge): Stanton for Puig in a H2H league with OBP and SLG. Which side would you want?

Mike Gianella: Stanton, and I'm not sure it's close in an OBP format.

Classberg (Chicago): Fort Myers doesn't have homies...lol Yancy! Now how about those pitchers, pitches, n pitching techniques on that sand lot when you were a kid too? It wasn't all about the batting! I loved me some Rob Dibble n Mitch Williams! Great thing you're doing here too Mike! Make A Wish is lucky to know a guy like u...now How many Founders are you in?

Mike Gianella: My sister-in-law resides in Fort Myers. I asked her if Fort Myers has homies and she said "Who else would I roll with?"

I'm time tripping here, answering a question from the future without answering one from the past.

Fourth Founders over six hours so not much of a buzz going I'm sorry to say. Trying to focus on knocking off the last 41 answers.

Bert (Wrigley): How many questions is this? Have we gotten you for the full $250?

Mike Gianella: This is #210. Forty to go, if my maths haven't failed me.

Josh (Cali): How about that McCutchen dude....

Mike Gianella: He (still) good.

Karl (San Bernadino): Puig doesn't seem to be in high favor with the brass. Rollins has been... bad. Seager doesn't project to a SS in the eyes of many. What would a Puig for Iwakuma + Brad Miller trade look like as a starting point?

Mike Gianella: I keep hearing that about Puig but I have such a hard time seeing the Dodgers trade him unless they get a similarly young, high end talent back. I think Rollins sticks around this year and they at least try Seager in 2016 at SS.

Jordan (Phinney): I'm self-aware enough to realize that in fantasy baseball I overvalue my own players to a significant degree, and have the tendency to either laugh off what are probably fair trades or dread that I'll end up regretting them down the road. I have to imagine that GMs are the same way... but they are dealing with real players and representing a real organization. I guess my question is... how the hell do deals ever get made?

Mike Gianella: It's a matter of putting aside your attachment to players/perceptions and putting your needs first. I suspect it's easier in real life than it is in fantasy baseball, since we don't "have" to have a slick fielding shortstop, or a team that necessarily resembles a real, on the field team.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): Do you think the NL gets the DH in 2017?

Mike Gianella: Too soon. Maybe a few years down the line. It adds 15 DH salaries to the books (assuming no expansion) so the union will probably have to give up something. I think it eventually happens though.

George (Pasadena): I have oswaldo arcia, marcell ozuna and alcantara. Was really trying to be patient with them, but I'm in the mix to win this year. Who you see getting the most opportunity this year? Who should I look to trade? Thanks and LETS GO METS!

Mike Gianella: Ozuna seems likely out of the three to be back. If you're ONLY looking at this year, swap out Alcantara. Even if he's back, I'm not clear on his role ROS.

R Davis no Ryan D (Nowhere): On a scale of 1 to 10, should Cubs fans take the Mets seriously as a wild card contender?

Mike Gianella: 3 if they don't make a big trade, 5 if they do. The Mets need to go 4-3 the rest of this month to stay in the mix. That would put them at 53-50 and needing a 35-24 finish. That sounds like a lot (.593) but they get lots of Phillies/Marlins/Braves down the stretch. They need a bat though, and a big bat. With all due respect to Michael Comforto, he's not going to solve all their ills by himself.

Bob (Usa): Points league 20 keeper forever. Addison Russell or Lucas Giolito?

Mike Gianella: It's close because in real life I like Giolito's ceiling better but I still have to go with the hitter. Lean Russell.

Fred (Sheboygan): Looking to trade jp crawford for a piece I can use this year-how high should I shoot? Can he get me a decent third baseman?

Mike Gianella: Yes, he definitely should. I'd go the next level down from the elites (Todd Frazier, Josh Donaldson etc). That should work given his talent/ceiling.

Rival Exec (By the phone): Are the Cubs showcasing Schwarber right now or is this a legitimate call-up?

Mike Gianella: No he's here to play. I think they'd have to be bowled over to move him.

Grant (Brooklyn): Why no talk about oswaldo arcia to the mets?

Mike Gianella: There's not much talk about him in general. He'd be an interesting move, though with the Twins contending I think they'd want a piece to help them now, which given the Mets thin roster doesn't seem realistic.

Rice (Chicago ): Does this count as a question? If not, then when do you think the trade deadline should be pushed back to?

Mike Gianella: You can't zoom a zoom rice.

Get rid of the waiver deadline. Make it August 31. It would eliminate the hand-wringing-my-stars-what-about-the-children-hand-wringing-oh-crud-i-said-that-twice-im-getting-punchy about the second wild card curtailing the trade market.

Keke (Chi): What do you think a reasonable package is for Hamels from a Cubs' perspective?

Mike Gianella: A guy on the cusp of the top tier, and two solid B prospects. Does Edwards work as a centerpiece? I at least want that if I'm the Phillies.

The Dude (Couch): I walk into a deli and order the "Mike Gianella" - what's on it?

Mike Gianella: Despair.

Keith (CT): You touched on the Mets not having money, despite their insistance that they do have resources. They also declared this was the year they'd compete, yet they've done nothing. SNY money; syphoned, Wright insurance; gone, or at the very least unavailable. How is this different for the commish than the Dodgers with McCourt?

Mike Gianella: I don't know enough about all the inner workings, but it seems that there is a relationship with the Commissioner's office and the Wilpons. I also think because there is a deal in place to pay off the Madoff debt with the trustees that the Commissioner won't intervene even though it's terrible for baseball (even if it's good for paying off the Mets' debt at some point in the distant future)

Jimmy (Chi): Where do you think Price will sign this offseason?

Mike Gianella: Dodgers.

NightmareRec0n (Boston): Can Randal Grichuk be a .260 30 HR hitter? He is hitting the ball very hard according to the batted ball data

Mike Gianella: That's too much on the power. I think 20 is a more realistic ceiling, maybe 25 if everything broke right in a given year.

Bob (Chicago): How would you rank the following AA OFer's in terms of fantasy upside assuming 5x5 league? Conforto, Dahl, B. Zimmer, Brett Phillips...? Thanks!

Mike Gianella: Dahl, Zimmer, Phillips, Conforto. Dahl of course has the show health after this lost year.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): Where does Edwin Jackson land?

Mike Gianella: Bret Sayre's basement.

Agent Mulder (DC): Is the truth out there or is it hiding beneath Jason Motte's beard? Also, will Soriano be a bust or boom for the Northsiders?

Mike Gianella: It's buried under The Field Museum.

Bust in terms of not being a shutdown closer. Fine in terms of providing OK relief innings.

Fred (Cleveland): Dahl vs Bradley Zimmer? Who was the bigger upside assuming Dahl plays in Coors Field.

Mike Gianella: Dahl has the upside assuming health.

Bubba (WG): Can Soler stop striking out?

Mike Gianella: No. Every player strikes out. A zero percent strikeout rate is not theoretically possible unless a player had the greatest bat control in the history of bat control.

John (Texas): Marte is still a pretty damn good player though....

Mike Gianella: Yes. Just not quite a fantasy top of the line guy

Alex (Austin): Who would you rather have on your dynasty team: Alcantara, Story, Difo, Torres

Mike Gianella: Story in dynasty. I'm assuming that Tulo is going at some point in the next 12-18 months or he'll supplant LeMahieu

Luke (Statesboro, Ga.): Is it good for Mets' minor leaguers that their Single-A team is leaving the hitting graveyard that is Savannah?

Mike Gianella: I have a cat and a nephew named Luke. That's a lotta Lukes.

Yes, that will help. Although I think for the elite prospects it won't matter so much. It's everyone else who it will help/prevent them from getting stunted.

Dp89cubs (Some place above sea level): Who do the cubs get at deadline

Mike Gianella: David Price, Jason Johnson, and - yes - Edwin Jackson comes home in a tearful reunion that evokes the series finale of Little House on the Prairie (suck it, George Bissell)

Baseball fan (Seat 103): I say Hamels doesn't get traded. Am I right?

Mike Gianella: Maybe. It's not a lock. The Phillies might look at the market and wait until this winter yet again.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): When does the next MLB trade go down? Any prediction who and where to?

Mike Gianella: Sounds like the Pirates will pick up a reliever. I'm spinning the wheel of Mike Can Predict The Future and...IT'S TYLER CLIPPARD! C'MON DOWN TYLER CLIPPARD! YOU'VE BEEN TRADED TO THE PIRATES!

Classberg (Chicago): Hey Mike what were your too 5 batting stances to imitate on the sand lot when you were a kid? You do the Julio Franco? The Andre Dawson straight leg? The Youkilis slide? The Craig counsel tower?...what should the kids be imitating from today's game?

Mike Gianella: I was a pitching guy when I was a kid. I loved emulating Fernando's crazy windup, Ron Guidry, and Tom Seaver.

Tony (ND): You still believe in Castellanos? Harper, Machado and Bogaerts are the only guys his age or younger with more MLB PA's...

Mike Gianella: I believe, but I see him as more of a solid, mid-tier regular than a superstar.

John (Texas): My dynasty league appears to hate catchers...Derek Norris, Yan Gomes, and Yadier Molina are all on waivers in a very deep 12-teamer, and there is NO trade market (other than when I overpayed for Sal Perez in my first year in the league and didn't know about the value of catchers until Brian McCann was dropped for David Murphy). Is this the case for all dynasty leagues?

Mike Gianella: I don't play in any dynasty leagues. I would assume that given the keep forever nature of dynasty that the finite shelf life of catchers would make this more likely than in a Roto or redraft. But I'd have to ask our dynasty experts.



Ryan D no R Davis (Anonymous ): Favorite non sports TV show?

Mike Gianella: All time? Blasphemy to the Seinfeld crowd (and I looooooove Seinfeld) but Cheers. In terms of a pure, sitcom, it was the best. Only the last season slipped, and the construct of most of the individual episodes was simply incredible.

Come at me brahs

Win or bust (Jason Motte's beard ): You make it to 250?

Mike Gianella: This is 242. Almost home. But I'll keep going (not with the donations but with the answers) until I drop.

Moises Alou (WHY I NOT HOF): See location.

Mike Gianella: You got hurt too much. Not quite enough of a peak, not quite enough depth of a career.

Matt (Philly): If the season ends today, who are you choosing to keep in a last keeper position, Schwarber or Buxton?

Mike Gianella: Buxton. Schwarber has closed in, but Buxton still has that enticing top of the pops potential regardless of position.

Mike (NY): Was offered Soler for my Pollock in dynasty league, I'm rebuilding. I LOVE Soler, but Pollock's been putting up CarGom numbers...

Mike Gianella: Nope. Gotta keep Pollock. Even with some slippage, the SB/HR make him near elite.

Bnlad89 (Chicago ): What's the cubs roster going to look like come August 1st who stays who comes in who goes?

Mike Gianella: It's going to be minor leaguers who go, so the active roster mostly looks the same. An arm replaces the detritus they've been using on the back end and maybe they add someone for the pen. I think they get a mid-tier guy (like Gallardo) and Beeler et al go.

someone (somewhere): So opinions seem to be split on Nick Williams right now - what do you think?

Mike Gianella: I'm with Baseball Prospectus writer Kate Morrison, who gave some solid first person insights on Williams for WFAA (here: http://www.wfaa.com/story/sports/mlb/rangers/2015/07/20/breakout-nick-williams-frisco-roughriders/30407907/). I believe in the improvement, and while he doesn't quite rank as highly as Nomar Mazara, he's closed the gap, and in dynasty slots in just outside of the top 200 overall.

Melky (Chicago): you think I look "DOA"? I've hit 2 HR's since you said that at the start of this chat. 5 hours and counting!!! Very impressive btw. What do you think of me now?

Mike Gianella: I said you looked DOA but I'm counting on you to bounce back. So thanks for making me look good.

Melky (Chicago): you think I look "DOA"? I've hit 2 HR's since you said that at the start of this chat. 5 hours and counting!!! Very impressive btw. What do you think of me now?

Mike Gianella: I said you looked DOA but I'm counting on you to bounce back. So thanks for making me look good.

mliotta32 (Chicago): What pitcher do you think the Cubs will go after in free agency after the season?

Mike Gianella: Depends on the budget. I suspect they won't be able to afford a top tier guy like Greinke or Price and will have to go lower. I wouldn't be surprised if they made a trade for someone more in their price range and moved someone like Castro to get it done.

Matt (Cambridge): I've gotten substantial interest in Dallas Keuchel from several players in my league. What sort of OF should I look for in return? I've been offered Brett Gardner, but that seems a bit light. Judging hitter-pitcher trades isn't easy.

Mike Gianella: Gardner has done well but that does seem light. Aim not for an elite like Cutch but the next tier down.

rpol (LA): Where does Mesoraco rank for you next year among Cs?

Mike Gianella: Middle of the pack until we know how the hip surgery goes. The bat could push him higher, but who knows?

It's ok stop crying (Moon): What are the big names dealt, where do they go, lastly how much is that doggy in the window

Mike Gianella: Hamels, Shark, Cueto, Zobrist, Cubs, Pirates, Royals, Nationals.

You know, I haven't been forced to listen to that song in years, but if memory serves that question is never answered. The singer just goes on and on and on and we never get an answer to the question. This is going to frustrate me, isn't it? Yeah, it is.

Bob (Usa): Would you give up Conforto and Soria for Soler in a dynasty?

Mike Gianella: I'd love to say I'm not Confortable with that, but since I would make that deal I can't make that joke.

(yes, do that trade)

Eric (LA): Could you see either Cashner or Ross being dealt? Ian Kennedy is likely gone I imagine. Does Casey Kelly finally get a shot?

Mike Gianella: It's possible, though with both under control beyond this year it isn't imperative. Kelly gets a shot assuming health and if one of those guys is dealt.

Kate (#Texas): How good is Nomar Mazara?

Mike Gianella: Is hashtag Texas any different than Texas?

He's really good. I'd say he's a top 10 prospect now with the rush of promotions this year.

Adam (Chicago): What do you think of Hammel ROS?

Mike Gianella: If the hamstring isn't an issue, I think he'll be a solid low 3s ERA guy with not a lot of baserunners. The problems he has post all-star last year were due to the change of scenery.

Mark (Bleacher Nation): Rank these Theo Epstein trade fleecings: 1. Rangers - 2 trades (recevied Hendricks, Villanueva, Edwards, Grimm, Ramirez, and Olt for Dempster and Garza rentals (resulted in 0 WS)). 2. Orioles (received Jake Arrieta, Pedro Strop, and international bonus money for Scott Feldman and Steve Clevenger. 3. A's (received Addison Russell (!), Billy McKinney, and Dan Straily for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel (who promptly returned to Cubs in FA)). Also, are you still a little in shock that Billy Beane traded Addison Russell?

Mike Gianella: That's a fun question.

The Arrieta trade, the Russell trade, and the Rangers trade. I was not in shock about it (nothing Beane does is on the shock level) but I was very surprised.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): What are your impressions of the video boards at Wrigley? Out of place? Tastefully done?

Mike Gianella: They're fine. I don't love them, but I'm old and crotchety and my sciatica is acting up again.

Tony (ND): Will BP do a top 200 (or 300 or 400) overall for Dynasty fantasy leagues? Because that'd be neat. P.S. I agree with you on Cheers, I got your back. Just watched two episodes in fact.

Mike Gianella: I don't know of any plans for this, but I'll keep you posted if we do.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): When can we expect the Tyler Saladino regression?

Mike Gianella: August 12, 2015.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): Who would you rather be trapped in an elevator with, Chistoper Russo or Eric Byrnes?

Mike Gianella: Byrnes and it's not even close. Hell is other people, and 80% of those people are named Mad Dog Russo.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): Who plays CF for the Cubs in 2016?

Mike Gianella: Fowler if he signs to a one or two year deal. A stopgap if he doesn't. Almora isn't ready yet.

BNer Chip (Wrigleyville): Who has a better major league career Albert Almora or Arismendy Alcantara?

Mike Gianella: Almora.

Matt (Philadelphia): If the season ended today and you can keep 5 of these 7, who would it be? Tulo, Jose Fernandez, Sale, Springer, Bryant, Schwarber, and Buxton. Thanks!

Mike Gianella: Oh lord. They're all really good. I guess I'd go with all of them but (gulp) Tulo and Schwarber. I hope you can make a trade.

Tony (ND): What type of MLB future do you see from Tim Anderson?

Mike Gianella: I think he'll be a solid player across the board with pretty solid power/speed combo.

Tony (ND): What do you see for Erasmo Ramirez going forward? Is he going to be the pitcher we all hoped he would be?

Mike Gianella: He won't be that good but he won't be the grand disappointment he was looking like at one point. Solid mid-tier guy, not a superstar. I like the Wandy Rodriguez career trajectory.

Tony (ND): Assuming health (a big assumption) does Matt Moore ever figure it out?

Mike Gianella: Yes, but he won't be the ace many thought he would be.

Alex (SD): How much would I have to donate to charity for you to forever spell Bret Sayre as "Brett Sayer"?

Mike Gianella: $14,238.

Mike Gianella: Thank you all so much for participating in the chat. 267 questions answered in about 6 1/2 hours. See you next time.

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