Paul Sporer’s Baseball Chat – January 26th, 2022

Transcript is live!!

1:03

Paul Sporer: Hello everyone!! Welcome to my chat!

1:03

Adam: What are your thoughts on Cedric Mullins this year?  Do you think last year was fluky or can he put up similar numbers again?  Is his adp to high or about right?

1:07

Paul Sporer: I really like him! There is a lot of believability in what he did, though it is definitely a buy-high off a career year which is always worrisome. About the only thing you can truly say about him is that there’s little track record, but I don’t think that alone is enough to move away from him

1:09

Rachel: Hi Paul, I’m trying to decide which 2 of the 3 to keep this year. deGrom, G Cole or C Burnes. Thanks!

1:10

Paul Sporer: I think you gotta go Cole and Burnes w/deGrom’s health being the tiebreaker

1:11

Vince: Hi! I’m  in 12-team Roto H2H with 1 UT spot, I have both Olson and Goldschmidt from last year at good value. Although keeping both limit my roster flexibility, I only see Riley and O’Neil likely comparable bats available to draft. Would you keep both? Thanks!

1:14

Paul Sporer: That’s tough, but I think I would. Either of em are just too good to throw back

1:14

Sad, Confused Marlins Fan: Hey Paul. Loved the 1,000th episode! 10 team H2H categories. I gotta keep 4 out of this group, who are you picking? J. Ram, Trea Turner, Wander, Mullins, Gerrit Cole, and Woodruff. Thank you!

1:16

Paul Sporer: J.Ram, T.Turner, Wander, and a pitcher (dealer’s choice, though I have Cole ranked higher). Mullins’ speed has less value in H2H

1:17

ScottTINSTAAPP: In my new dynasty draft of worst commissioners in sports I took Manfred 1.1, how’d I do?

1:17

Paul Sporer: Dominated! He has surpassed Bettman and Goddell

1:18

Matt: Didn’t own Teoscar last year so my head spun when I saw his numbers, saw he went in the 2nd rd in a mock, why him over the OF like Eloy, Castellanos, etc?

1:20

Paul Sporer: He made some big gains last year and has a bit of speed over the 2 of them specifically. I’ve got the 3 of ’em super tight in my rankings (EJ 15, TH 16, NC 19) so I can go either way w/em

1:20

Robby L: Wander Franco or Trea Turner in long term H2H keeper league?

1:20

Paul Sporer: Still Trea Turner for me

1:20

Bill: You ever wonder if these chats are like 10 different people using different names?

1:20

Paul Sporer: I do NOWWWW

1:21

Matt: My favorite number is 9 cus Matt Williams and my name is the same. You have a favorite number?

1:21

Paul Sporer: I’m basic as hell, it’s 24 and it’s for my birthday but I’ve always loved it

1:21

Greg: Can you ask Justin why he never engages in the comments on his articles?

1:21

Paul Sporer: I will ask, yes

1:22

Allen: Saw you at AFL a few years ago but was too chicken to say hi, post COVID, can I say what’s up

1:23

Paul Sporer: Def come up this year if you make it out!!! I’m just regular ol’ dude

1:23

Kate: Brian Anderson a solid bounceback candidate after an injury ravaged 2021?  Solid seasons in both 2019 and 2020 and the struggles last year would appear to be pretty clearly connected to injuries to some important body parts (oblique, shoulder).  20 HR, 5 SBs and a .330 – .340 OBP seem reasonable?

1:27

Paul Sporer: Yesss I totally buy that. I love BA (a lot of it is his being really good in MLB The Show for some reason lol) and the washed out year was rough but now the market has just given up on him so it’s an easy buy back for me

1:27

Barry Bonds: I am a HOF and eff writers

1:27

Paul Sporer: 10000000%

1:27

ScottTINSTAAPP: I was out on Alec Bohm at his price last year and that worked out, but now that he’s going 150 picks later, do you see upside there still to warrant taking a shot? Still hits the ball hard but has ground ball rates that would make pre-break out Yelich blush. PT/opportunity still seems like it’s there, just not sure the upside is

1:29

Paul Sporer: Yes I do see value in buying back here. Classic post-hype/buy-low guy of a premium prospect. ADP of 290 since January 1st, great price for the talent!

1:30

Josh: Tyler Stephenson and Keibert Ruiz — both have similar ADP and projections. I am impressed by the contact skills of each, but wish they hit the ball harder. Which do you prefer for next season and why? Thanks!

1:35

Paul Sporer: Big fan of both!!! Got Stephenson 6th and Ruiz 8th. I really see power development coming from Stephenson despite it not being evident in his line (.146 ISO). Ruiz’s power isn’t at the same level, IMO, either in a game or raw sense, but his contact rate is soooo great

1:36

Kate: How do you feel about Kluber heading into this year?  I feel pretty confident the Rays will figure out how to get him pitching well, but I’m less convinced they’re going to let him go deep enough to matter a ton.  Does the fact that he’s only on a one-year deal mean they’ll loosen the reins a bit?  Someone needs to pitch some bulk innings for them, right?

1:42

Paul Sporer: Skills were still there and I hear you re: feeling good about TB doing something with him, but I see a lot of <5 IP starts and some fantasy frustration

1:43

Henry: Will Semien’s expected stats ever show up in his real numbers or will it be an improvement in his expected stats to match his real numbers?

1:46

Paul Sporer: I’m desperately afraid of the move to Texas. That stadium is hell on hitters and I’m fading Semien & Seager because of it

1:46

Paul Sporer: Jon Gray howeverrrrrr

1:46

Jeff: Who will have a better year, Miles Mikolas or Dakota Hudson?

1:52

Paul Sporer: Pardon me, got a phone call

1:53

Paul Sporer: I’ll lean Mikolas, but I’m open to rostering either given that insane defense

1:53

Guest: Just moved $15 Montas for $13 B. Lowe. I developed a new ranking methodolgy, and it has them within 5 of each other. Think that’s a pretty fair swap (assuming the needs line up)?

1:53

Paul Sporer: Very fair swap!!!

1:53

Sad, Confused Marlins Fan: we going to have a spring training?>

1:53

Paul Sporer: Yes, I’m still confident right now

1:53

Vince: FYI … I enjoy your podcasts w Justin — you’re different analysis make for good dialogue!

1:54

Paul Sporer: Tyvm! It wouldn’t be fun if we just fully agreed on everything. I think we have a great rapport and we’re not afraid to fully disagree on things!

1:54

Jack B: How do you think the young core of the Tigers rotation (Mize, Skubal, Manning, etc.) will perform this year?

1:55

Paul Sporer: I’m biggest on Skubal from a fantasy standpoint given his K potential. I still see Mize’s peak as peak Jordan Zimmermann statistically though he might not start hitting that until next year. Manning is a post-hype prospect that is an easy dollar lottery ticket at this point if you have any belief in the pedigree

1:55

Daro: Would you trade Robbie Ray for Torkelson in a 10keepers 12 teams league?

1:56

Paul Sporer: On its face, I have no problem with it

1:56

ScottTINSTAAPP: If you had to guess at the % breakdown of PT for Phillies SS between Didi, Stott, or other, what would it be?

1:59

Paul Sporer: I think it really depends on if Didi bounces back. If he keeps playing like 2021, Stott could be up in a month, but if Didi finds his footing again, they can give Stott some real time in AAA. Stott could force his way into the mix if he dominates AAA, but I’d project around 300 PA for him at this juncture

1:59

Rachel: Piggybacking off the Mullins question, sounds like we should still take the chance on him, but I’m wondering would you rather have Tucker and Teoscar Hernandez over him? Thanks again!

1:59

Paul Sporer: Tucker, Mullins, Teoscar is my order

2:00

JO D: I have to cut 2 guys in an AL ONLY Scoresheet Simulation Dynasty (I have Jose Ramirez at 3B & Vlad at 1B so Moncada would be a DH) Montas, Darvish, Bassitt, McCullers, F Valdez, Moncada. Which 2 do you let go?

2:01

Paul Sporer: Probably McCullers (health) and Bassitt (regression candidate). I think Bassitt will still be a useful arm, but closer to that 3.86 SIERA than his 3.15 ERA

2:01

A: Hey Paul, do you have a guess on ABs for Brujan?

2:04

Paul Sporer: In my heart? 600!!! In actuality, probably more like 350-400. Depends if they move Kiermaier, too. Bottom line, I’m taking the gamble on Brujan bc I still see substantial upside

2:04

Kate: Dug into AJ Pollock recently and was kind of surprised at how great he’s been on a per game basis the last two years.  Is he a random healthy season (no small task for him) away from being like a top 25 OF?

2:06

Paul Sporer: I wrote about him in the LA roster review and marveled at his excellence – https://fantasy.fangraphs.com/2021-roster-review-los-angeles-dodgers/ — I think the obvious injury issues are covered in his 225 ADP so I moved him up the rankings and now have a lot more interest in him than I did before diving in

2:06

B’Ryce Hammer: Paul, this is gonna sound so sad. But I’m thinking about quitting fantasy baseball for a bit. I love it too much, and it’s taking important brain space away from more important things in life.

2:07

Paul Sporer: That’s a bummer, but I greatly respect the ability to prioritize and understand when you need to step back. A year off might be the perfect fix and then you dive back in. You’ll be welcomed back whenever you’re ready! We’re always open!

2:07

Marnell: What’s your take on Isiah Kiner-Falefa’s value this year? Will the stolen bases bump him up in your rankings?

2:07

Paul Sporer: 😡😡😡

2:11

Paul Sporer: lol, I don’t know if this just referencing last year’s memes w/IKF, but if it’s not, he worthless without C eligibility

2:13

Jack B: I don’t like the argument that “Bonds & Clemens were hall of famers before they took steroids”, I think it’s kind of a lazy argument. I do think they should be in the HOF because the league did not test, suspend, or reprimand any player for using PEDs, rather they tried to cover it up and continue to profit off of it. However, I wouldn’t vote for A-Rod because when he was caught (both times), the league was policing it. Agree, disagree, or 1/2 agree?

2:15

Paul Sporer: I also don’t love that talking point. I just don’t care about PEDs, tbh, so they’re both easily in for me and I’d take A-Rod, too. I am OK drawing the line at the testing the way you’re saying, but I choose to just not concern myself w/being the PED police. The biggest thing for me is I can’t see Bud Selig in the HOF – the commish of this alleged awful era – and then decide to leave out a handful of guys and make them wear then entire era. Just can’t do it.

2:15

weekendatbidens: Kirk is going really high as people are big believers in his underlying metrics. However, he had a big blind spot in his splits, are projections missing this even when there is a struggle for playing time?

2:17

Paul Sporer: He was dreadful vR, but with a .211 BABIP. Splits don’t become statistically sound for a loooong time so I imagine projections essentially ignore them, but it is completely fair to question the playing time right now. They have 3 legit Cs (Kirk’s defense isn’t near Jansen/McGuire, but he can hang enough) and a fourth who is rising SO fast (Gabriel Moreno, who really impressed me in AFL). I feel like we’d have some more clarity if it wasn’t a lockout bc they’d like have made a move of someone by now.

2:17

Nick: What you doing with Muncy? Is this like Carl Crawford years ago or will he be a draft steal

2:18

Paul Sporer: I’ve been punting, tbh. I’m nervous about the health to the point where he didn’t even make my first run of rankings. He’ll be in the next set, but I don’t think I’m drafting him until we get some more clarity

2:18

Kate: What do you make of a finesse guy like Kyle Hendricks who suddenly loses the feel for his breaking / offspeed pitches like he did last year?  I expected velo to be his downfall eventually, so this path to struggles kind of surprised me.

2:21

Paul Sporer: This was always the concern, right? That his margin for error was so small. However that doesn’t mean that those who were against him can beat their chests bc they finally came up right after 7 good seasons, lol. Was it a blip and he can get back to normal or a true downshift toward his SIERA and now he’ll be a low-to-mid 4.00s guy going forward? I wouldn’t be surprised if he bounced back, but I’ll say I’m not buying back in. It’s just SO ratio-dependent that I don’t really see the upside even at a discounted price

2:21

Vic: Vlad Jr or Jose Ramirez? 15 teamer 5 x 5.

2:22

Paul Sporer: I lean Ramirez, but they’re razor close. If you have a gameplan for the SBs in rds 2, 3, 4, then I have no issue taking Vlad. I understand the desire to leave the 1st round w/some SBs, but I think some take it too far w/their refusal to draft someone like Vlad

2:22

Jack: Am I crazy to still love Senzel because of power speed, pedigree and xstats?

2:23

Paul Sporer: You’re not crazy bc he is SOOOO cheap that the love can’t really hurt you so even if you push 80-90 picks over ADP (461 ADP since 1/1), it’s still not at all expensive

2:26

Marcus: I am saying it now, Ripken, Gwynn, Bagwell, Biggio, Chipper, Griffey, all of them did roids, Gwynn’s power peaked late 30s, who can play 3000 straight without roids? It is maddening

2:27

Paul Sporer: And all the guys in the 60s and 70s w/their amphetamines just out in the open but for some reason we just pretend that’s some quaint thing but PEDs are this heinous unspeakable act? I just don’t get it

2:28

Sexton: Kirk or Ruiz at C this year and beyond.

2:28

Paul Sporer: I have Ruiz 8, Kirk 9 so I lean Ruiz and his PT is much more firm

2:29

Vic Romano: How long before Brujan has a mostly-everyday job?

2:29

Paul Sporer: Depends if they can finally move Kiermaier

2:32

Tam and Brian: We were wondering your thoughts on Jose Barrero this season.  Will he move to the outfield and do you see him climbing the ranks headed into drafts?

2:34

Paul Sporer: I loooove Barrero and it seems he is entirely off the radar right now. I don’t buy Kyle Farmer in the slightest and Barrero is a legit prospect with substantial upside. He hasn’t done anything in his two sips of MLB coffee, but that’s not enough to dissuade me at all

2:34

John: Re: C Seager. Great x stats, whats the difference between NL West stadiums and TEX?

2:41

Paul Sporer: xStats aren’t particularly predictive IIRC so that doesn’t sway me too much. NL West v. AL West stadiums as a whole might play close, but he’s going to one of the worst when he was in a relatively neutral one in LA

2:41

David: Yo, ERod in DET, good or bad? Totally underperformed his expected stats, good buy low? Or you expect the usual High K, High walk, 5 inn and done SP?

2:41

Paul Sporer: Yeah I’ve never been a huuuuge fan in Boston, but I think the skills we’ve seen plus the context change is enough to bring me in and it’s not just bc he’s on my favorite team lol

2:42

Mets guy: Tylor Megill, hope or just another Pivetta?

2:42

Paul Sporer: Could be both given that some still believe in Pivetta, but I’m on the Megill hype train!

2:43

Nickolas: You ever met Adrienne yoga lady in Austin?

2:43

Paul Sporer: LOL no, Austin isn’t that small

2:43

dave: any late-round Cs in 2C leagues you particularly like?

2:47

Paul Sporer: Tucker Barnhart should have a full-time role in Detroit, Luis Torrens as a non-catching C, Luis Campansan/Francisco Mejia if you’re a pedigree fan, Jonah Heim as a switch-hitter who showed some glimpses last year

2:47

Tony: Rendon bounce back? Dude was borderline late 1st two years ago

2:47

Paul Sporer: Yeah I can’t quit him

2:47

Bo: Is Jerred Kelenic going to be a fantasy star after all?

2:48

Paul Sporer: I certainly think he can be. I’m certainly not out just based on 2021

2:51

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 this week 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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murraygd13member
3 months ago

I’m in on Pollock, hopefully they find some ABs for him at DH. Reports on Muncys health would make me more confident on the chance Pollock gets some DH time.