Paul Sporer Baseball Chat – November 18th, 2020

Transcript is live!

1:28

Paul Sporer: Hello everyone! It’s offseason time, let’s talk some baseball!

1:29

Curtis: What “breakout” in 2020 do you think is legit?  Conversely, which players stellar 2020 is least likely to repeat in 2021 and beyond?

1:31

Paul Sporer: Here’s 4 breakouts I checked out recently: https://fantasy.fangraphs.com/assessing-4-unexpected-hitting-breakouts… — I’m a little dubious on Teoscar Hernandez, which pains me as I like him. But I’m not sure there were any major changes sustaining the breakout and with four more months, he’d have meandered back toward his level or maybe finished a bit higher, but not at the clip we saw

1:32

Michael: I have a trade offer of Austin Meadows for Gerritt Cole even up.  You can keep Meadows two fantasy seasons; Cole one.  Cole is marginally more expensive (bidding league).  Thoughts on Meadows?

1:33

Paul Sporer: I’m OK giving Meadows a bit of a pass for ’19 as he wound with just a month after dealing with COVID, but I don’t think I want to do this deal. I’ll take my 1 ace season of Cole

1:33

Chuck: Hi, Paul. Do you call your car the Paul Bearer? Because you could.

1:33

Paul Sporer: I could… and frankly, I absolutely should

1:37

Slapshot: Would you expect JD Martinez to rebound in 2021 from his dreadful 2020?  That OPS drop off from .939 to .680 and the power evaporation is pretty brutal, but I would hope he still has a lot left in the tank, right?

1:37

Paul Sporer: Yeah I think many will see it as the beginning of the end but I’m more inclined to find it as a buying opportunity. He almost certainly won’t go back to peak, but he’ll be better in 2021

1:37

Guest: I had been fading Nola thinking that Campusano might be the next Alejandro Kirk, but now he seems more like he might be the next Matt Bush — do you have a take on the Padres catcher situation and do you think Nola will play in the infield for them in 2021 after he didn’t do so in 2020?

1:38

Paul Sporer: I’m a big Austin Nola fan so I think even if someone did snag some of the catcher timeshare, then he’d bounce around the field and still play regularly. Plus, I’m fully confident the NL will have the DH again

1:39

Riley: What’s your thoughts on Leody Taveras for 2021?

1:41

Paul Sporer: Ooh, I’m glad you asked. I’m buying! First off, he’s priced to buy in the mid-200s and I think he’s a strong speed option (20+ SB) while not being a 0 in the power category (7-10 in a full season). The AVG will depend on how much he can shave that 32% K rate down, but I’ll take the speed and figure out the AVG piece w/the rest of my lineup

1:41

trades!: Paul – I traded my Albies and Matt Olson for Luis Robert and Freddie Freeman in a dynasty league. Am I insane? 1-10 how much do you like the trade (10 is best)?

1:43

Paul Sporer: Assuming it’s all the same contract-wise, I’d say it definitely works. I’d say somewhere in the 6-7 range, not bc it’s bad at all, but more so bc the pairs aren’t TOO different. I like the guys you gave, but you certainly got studs, too

1:43

Michael: Cleveland can’t seem to get a break on OFers.  Any hope for Luplow, Mercado, Daniel Johnson as fantasy relevant?

1:44

Paul Sporer: I was in on Mercado this year and that obviously flopped big time, but I’m not giving up hope. I still see a solid power/speed bat who should play bc he has solid defense and they don’t have any options

1:44

David: What player/team combinations would be a negative for their production if they sign there this offseason?

1:47

Paul Sporer: It really only matters on the extreme outliers – pitchers going to Coors; hitters going to SF or OAK or a speedster going to a team that just doesn’t let their guys run.

1:47

Vottoman Empire: How do you feel about Marcell Ozuna as a 3/4 turn guy in 15 team leagues, with his uncertain destination and unclear SB contributions?

1:49

Paul Sporer: While I’ve always liked Ozuna, I’m not buying him in ’21 at a peak price. I think we shouldn’t expect anything SB-wise as the 12 was a clear anomaly and the nagging shoulder does linger as a concern should it flare up again. I just don’t think it’s best to buy high, particularly on guys going into their age-30 seasons

1:49

DJ: Best bet to repeat or improve on their 2020 performance: Carrasco or Lynn?

1:49

Paul Sporer: I’m really in on the Lynnaissance

1:50

Jay D: Who do you like better over the next 3 years: Mitch Keller or Jose Urquidy?

1:50

Paul Sporer: I’m a lowkey Urquidy guy. Stupid COVID wrecked his season, but I think he’s going to be a really solid option for the next few years

1:54

Vottoman Empire: Given Kyle Lewis‘ wide range of AVG outcomes, is there an ADP range where you’re shaky on him and range where you’d consider him must-grab?

1:56

Paul Sporer: If he pushed north of 75 regularly, I’d probably back away, but the 90-110 range where’s spent most of the offseason so far works for me

1:56

Curtis: Which current NL hitter benefits most from the continuation of the NL DH?

1:56

Paul Sporer: Seth Beer, otherwise he might have to retire lol

1:56

Bob Villar: Is Machado ($27) too much, enough, too little for Yordan Alvarez ($7) in an OBP-base dynasty?

1:57

Paul Sporer: It’s probably enough. I’m reluctant to buy a DH-only with two busted knees, though

1:57

Curtis: What is the most consecutive years you’ve ended up drafting the same player – any or all leagues you’ve been in?  Who was it?

1:57

Paul Sporer: This is a fantastic question, but I really haven’t kept that detailed of records to know. Joe Musgrove is gunning for the title, though

1:57

PhillyBlunt: What’s your take on Spencer Howard? I’m worried about the shoulder, the mysterious loss of velocity, and the inconsistent command. But how worried should I be?

1:59

Paul Sporer: A little concerned for sure, but I’d just monitor him in Spring Training and go from there. The issues are built into his pricing so if you like him, you can still buy in

1:59

Curtis: Did you ever go into a draft telling yourself to not acquire a certain player only to end up with him as a super late bargain or something like that?  If so, who was the player?

1:59

Paul Sporer: Definitely have, but can’t remember. You’re exposing how shitty my memory is, Curtis!

1:59

Rich: In an 10-team OBP league, which six would you keep: Trea Turner, Juan Soto, Bryce Harper, Anthony Rendon, Jose Ramirez, Jose Abreu, Gerrit Cole and Shane Bieber.

1:59

Paul Sporer: Turner, Soto, Ramirez, Harper, Cole, Bieber for me — great group!

1:59

Michael: How are you projecting Frankie Montas for 2021?  I am having trouble deciding if he is a near ace vs the mediocre SP of 2020?  Thanks.

2:04

Paul Sporer: I’m still quite in on him. I have him 31st to start – https://fantasy.fangraphs.com/2021-first-run-starting-pitcher-rankings… – I could see him trickling up another few spots based on offseason studying, but even staying here means I’m in. The back played a role in those dud starts and he ended strong telling me the back got right. I still see a strong #2

2:04

Jake: For those of us itching to sell high on Arozarena in our dynasty leagues: Good idea or will we come to regret it?

2:05

Paul Sporer: If you cash in big, you won’t regret it even if he balls out, but there is no better time to field offers, that’s for sure!

2:08

Dees Nuts: What do you make of Yelich’s increasing strike out rate?  Small sample size?  In other words, do you still view him as a top 10 guy going forward next year?

2:12

Paul Sporer: I’m not too worried about it. I absolutely view him as a first rounder. The Swinging Strike and Chase rates actually went DOWN!

2:12

LP: How do you feel about Brian Anderson as a 3B fallback option this year?

2:17

Paul Sporer: Damn y’all are catering these questions to me today, I *love* BA!

2:18

Paul Sporer: I still don’t even think we’ve seen the best of him. I think he can spike a .300+ AVG with 25-30 HR

2:18

JR Bob Dobbs: Howdy Paul,

2:18

Paul Sporer: What up!

2:18

Chris: Are you expecting Cody Bellinger’s 2021 performance to be impacted by his reported shoulder surgery yesterday?

2:19

Paul Sporer: Maybe a smidge early on as he needs 10 weeks of rest and that eats up a good bit of offseason, but if it drops his price too much I’ll buy in

2:20

King Donko of Punchstania: What do you expect from Syndergaard this season?

2:20

Paul Sporer: Not a whole lot, I don’t really buy into TJ returners in their first year back

2:24

Matt W.: Cleavinger $26 on a $400 budget on my Ottonue keeper league worth holding?

2:24

Paul Sporer: Nah, I’m passing there

2:25

Guest: Got some issues with my choice of keepers. All things equal, Lourdes, Teoscar, D’arnaud, Brandon Lowe, Semien. Pick 2.

2:25

Paul Sporer: Gurriel/Lowe

2:26

DRB: What are your thoughts on The Shows gameplay this year?

2:27

Paul Sporer: It’s not perfect by any stretch, but it’s eminently playable at least on AS/HOF. I’m an 800s level player, so I don’t really touch Legend and can’t speak to that. I still have drive to play daily and while some of that is no doubt my obsession with baseball, a lot of it is the content and game itself keeping me interested. Sure, I have moments where I yell at the game -who doesn’t- but I don’t find it to be the trainwreck some suggest.

2:27

Ed: Thanks for the chat! Just made a deal for a $3 K Marte and $2 Walsh for a $15 Yu and $2 K Lewis. I have plenty of payroll space, a great offense but a weak staff. 15 keepers, 12 team mixed with odd pitching categories like K/9; SLG% against and GSS where Yu did great. I thought I did well to very well but reaction seems pessimistic about my side. Did I make a mistake?

2:28

Paul Sporer: Wait, so you got Yu/Lewis?

2:28

Ed: Thoughts on Luke Voit who can be kept for 1 to 3 years for Kyle Lewis and Mitch Keller who can be kept indefinitely?

2:29

Paul Sporer: I looove Voit, but that’s a bit high, espec. w/Lewis being kept long term. I’d pass here.

2:29

Bob Villar: who are the top 3 or 4 guys you’re trying to sell high on this off-season?

2:30

Paul Sporer: Arozarena, Ozuna, Lamet (I took a fat L on him, I’m not as down as I was coming into ’20 – still selling high), and pretty much any closer

2:30

Chuck: I’m sort of leaning away from Matty Chapman in ’21 given his hip surgery. Is that overreacting?

2:32

Paul Sporer: No, I don’t think it’s out of bounds to push away from him. It’s a 4-month recovery, we could definitely get an early spring report that he’s behind schedule in returning. I think it’s totally fair to avoid him in offseason drafts and reassess in March

2:33

Ed: Thoughts on Gausman now that he’s resigned with SF? Fantasy 2 or 3 for next year or is that too optimistic?

2:34

Paul Sporer: Not at all. Regarding that question earlier about who I’ve drafted the most consecutively, Gausman might be the answer. Seem to snag him in at least one league yearly. Love him in SF, love the improvements we saw in ’20, and definitely think the interest will be dialed up substantially in ’21

2:42

Paul Sporer: Sorry about that delay – Had to take the dogs out, the puppy was looking like he might just go right on the floor

2:42

The Snarf: How bought in are you on Brandon Lowe?

2:44

Paul Sporer: I’m pretty bought in, I think he’s a big power option with a little speed chip in and two positions (2B/OF). AVG likely won’t go beyond the .270 we’ve been seeing and could push down to the.250s, but that’s OK, it won’t kill ya

2:44

Melting Mort: How do we feel about Ke’Bryan Hayes and Alec Bohm for 2021 and beyond? I see both going off the board within a round or two of each other in early NFBC data, similar case with the 2 Early mocks. Who would you rather have?

2:47

Paul Sporer: I’m actually open to taking both and putting them at 3B and CI. Hit tool-based prospects are great to invest in and I think both will see their power develop at the big league level. With these two specifically, they both have enough speed to make a fantasy impact, too!

2:47

RMR: Will the Rays let any of the starters regularly go 6 innings going fwd?  Was that just a shortened pandemic year thing?

2:48

Paul Sporer: Some of it was, but for the most part they expect 5 and go from there. I think the frontliners will be given the opp to go 6+ at times, espec. in a regular full season, but if you want IP volume, this is the wrong team to draft from

2:48

Guest: Willy Adames, top 10 SS?

2:49

Paul Sporer: No, not close yet, but I really think he’s an up and comer. Recently wrote him up here: https://fantasy.fangraphs.com/the-next-top-75-hitters/

2:49

JD Martin: OBP league, who’s a better bet next year between Candelario and Dom Smith?

2:49

Paul Sporer: I like Dom between those two and getting popped for PEDs clears any playing time concerns

2:50

JC: The Mets’ logjam is suddenly not an issue

2:51

Dave: Should I go ahead and trade Cano?

2:51

Paul Sporer: To who? Who was even buying him before this given how reluctant the fantasy community is to invest in age?

2:51

LP: Is Rafael Montero a sneaky RP1/RP2 or is it fool’s gold?

2:55

Paul Sporer: I think it’s real! He got started last year with the Rangers. He has a 3.09 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, 29% K, 6% BB, and 11% SwStr the last two years. It’s only 46.7 IP, but given that I’m reluctant to buy big on closers this year, I’m definitely scouting for the next big things and Montero is one of them

2:55

The Final Boss: Cano suspended a full season. Scratch him off my 2b targets I guess…

2:55

Cano: The Mets have $24 million off the books for one season. Seems perfect for a big one year offer to Bauer

2:55

alec bohm: The hayes vs bohm seems fairly obvious but I’m a phillies fan. Bohm’s profile looks like lemahieu’s with low Ks and all-field approach but bohm has the raw power for way more HR

2:56

Paul Sporer: Don’t sleep on Hayes’ raw and potential to develop further. Plus, Hayes has the SB edge to make them pretty close. Like I said, I want both. If I can only get one, yes I will take Bohm

2:59

Cano: Can JD Davis play third full time?

2:59

Jonathan: Have people been too hard on JD Davis’ defense at third? He seems below average but more than passable

3:01

Paul Sporer: Miguel Cabrera played full time 3rd at ages 29 and 30 so I think JD can hang

3:02

The Final Boss: Have you dabbled in NFBC? Thoughts?

3:03

Paul Sporer: Yes I’ve been playing the last four years and really love it. And it’s not Main Event or nothing, there are many ways to get into it and I’ve enjoyed my time at all the levels. I’m a huge fan.

3:03

Guest: Harper over Rendon?

3:03

Paul Sporer: Yes I’m leaning that way

3:03

viceroy: Does Garrett Crochet stick in the majors next year or do they try to stretch him out? He seems closer ready already

3:04

Paul Sporer: He’s definitely a cusp case. Eno always pointed out how the bullpen can be sticky meaning when someone dabbles there, they can tend to stay put. Trevor Rosenthal, Roberto Osuna, Josh Hader all had grumblings of the relief being temporary. With Colome gone, it creates an obvious hole and Crochet could absolutely fill it or a fireman role

3:06

brad: Two SP I am buying or high on relative to price are Deivi Garcia and Brady Singer, thoughts and who are your value SP to buy going into 2021?

3:06

Paul Sporer: Haven’t done my studies on Garcia, but I do like Singer. Here is a group of arms I’m keeping tabs on him, too https://fantasy.fangraphs.com/five-starters-to-monitor-for-2021/

3:06

Paul Sporer: (Singer included in that, btw)

3:06

Guest: Can JD Davis even hit all that well?

3:07

Paul Sporer: Huh? He has a 129 wRC+ and 28 HR in 682 PA the last two years.

3:07

Guest: How deep does a league have to be before the Reds’ Jose Garcia is fantasy relevant?

3:07

Paul Sporer: Probably just NL only right now

3:07

Guest: Wander Franco going before Ke’bryan Hayes in redraft confuse you, or close enough not to matter?

3:09

Paul Sporer: Completely confused. I get that he’s an elite prospect, but I’m not entirely sure he debuts next year. TB loves to slow roast and he’s still JUST 20 next year

3:09

The Final Boss: Red Sox payroll sitting at $127. That is some chunk of cash to play with. See them in on any of the real big free agents, or sit back and develop internally a year before breaking the bank?

3:09

Paul Sporer: I see the latter. I see some mid-tier moves more than anything else. They need to regroup a bit, but definitely not a teardown rebuild

3:09

Guest: The best fantasy SP in the NL West next year is ____?

3:10

Paul Sporer: I have Kershaw highest rated so I’m sticking with that.

3:11

Ed: Regarding the Marte/Walsh for Yu/Lewis deal – yes, I got Yu/Lewis.

3:11

Paul Sporer: Yeah I have no problem with that given your circumstances. I think the deal really works both ways (like Walsh and his changes) so given that you needed pitching, Darvish is a great pick up

3:11

Talkin Jake: No question, ended up here looking at free agents. Go basepaul.

3:12

Paul Sporer: Woo! Thanks for coming by!

3:12

RMR: I kind of groaned when Stroman accepted the QO because of the Mets’ IF defense and it’s bad rep, but now I’m reading articles saying they actually improved quite a bit last year.  Is this maybe not as bad as I was thinking?

3:13

Paul Sporer: They absolutely improved, but I’m still not PSYCHED to have a groundball guy there. Stroman is a worthy buy in the mid-200s, especially if he keeps those K gains

3:14

vr: What’s David Fletcher’s upside? Is last year it or does he have a >25 HR+SB season in him

3:17

Paul Sporer: I’d be surprised if he reached that high. He just has ZERO power. I’d think more 6-9 HR and 7-10 SB so a high end around 18-20 HR+SB. Love the AVG and positional flexibility.

3:17

Tom: What happened to Zack Wheeler? His K/9 went from 8.98 last year to 6.7 this year?

3:19

Paul Sporer: He was pushing the high end of his swinging strike rate last year while working at the lower end in ’20 and I think it was the slow start that really got him with 4, 2, 2, 4 in his first 4 starts. Over a six-month season, I think he’d have gotten back up to 21-23%

3:19

David: I never do trades in the offseason until player have signed with new teams so I know who they will be in the lineup with or what the defense is like behind them. I want to know the whole picture before investing in them.

3:20

Paul Sporer: That’s completely fair. Some like the gamble of trying to buy in early and predict a move to get a player cheaper than he would be after said move

3:20

The Final Boss: Wheeler’s swstr actually went up. Some Ks turned into grounders looks like.

3:21

Paul Sporer: Ya but 10.4 to 10.8 isn’t a substantive move. It’s more or less the same

3:24

JR Bob Dobbs: Would you rather have Albies or Tucker in a keep-forever h2h roto league that uses HR, RBI, R, SB, OPS and Ks?

3:24

Paul Sporer: I’m still heavyyyy on Albies. This is really a pair of players I quite like so it’s not anti-Tucker, but very pro Albies.

3:25

Paul Sporer: OK y’all, I gotta get going! Thanks so much for coming out! Follow me on Twitter (@sporer), Twitch (sporer), and Instagram (p_sporer). I’ll be streaming on Twitch later today and you can definitely come by and ask questions about fantasy there. Have a good one, y’all!





Paul is the Editor of Rotographs and contributes to ESPN's Daily Notes. Follow Paul on Twitter @sporer and on Twitch at sporer.

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