OpinionJuly 13, 2009


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Monday Mail Call: All-Star Break Blues

By R.J. White

Welcome back to the Mail Call, Cafe brethren. With the All-Star Break upon us, we have three whole days of no competition, no lineups, no agonizing over spot-starters, no baseball. Well, none that matters anyway. If you want to be in the Mail Call next week, please send your queries to fbcmailbag@gmail.com. Let’s dip into the mailbag and see what we can do to help.

I have Albert Pujols on my team and the guy who is in first place wants him bad. I need a second baseman and a pitcher for my team. Who can I get him to give up for Albert? On his team are: Aaron Hill, Dan Uggla, Zach Greinke, Dan Haren, Josh Johnson, Tommy Hanson, Andrew Bailey, John Lackey, RPs Francisco Cordero, Ryan Franklin, Kevin Gregg and David Aardsma. Thanks for the help. — Tony

I wouldn’t trade Albert for anyone — not a package of those guys. If you want to get crazy, you can try and get Hill, Haren/Grienke, Johnson, and Franklin/Aardsma. But still, Albert is the best player in the game and you should keep him.

So, I have Dan Wheeler, Edinson Volquez and Orlando Hudson. I am considering dropping any of them for more help (I generally lose in BA, ERA and WHIP in my 5×5 H2H league), but I don’t know who would help my team more. Batters I am interested in: Vernon Wells, Rafael Furcal, Todd Helton, J.J. Hardy, Yunel Escobar, Hank Blalock, Garrett Atkins, Jhonny Peralta, Jason Kubel, Yadier Molina, Chris Iannetta, Mike Lowell or Casey McGehee. Or should I add a pitcher? Pitchers available: Joe Saunders, Zach Duke, Ubaldo Jimenez, Tim Wakefield, Matt Lindstrom, Jason Marquis, and Brad Bergesen. — Bryant

I’d come out of that group with Volquez, Helton (for your BA), and Bergesen (for ERA and WHIP). If Berg can’t keep it going, be prepared to drop him for a hotter pitcher. Also monitor Lindstrom’s progress, though with Florida looking to bring in a closer through trade, I can’t imagine he’ll be back and in the ninth inning soon.

Since you named me as a fantasy sleeper, I’ve tore up the majors in my second opportunity. Without divulging your entire stable of second-half sleepers, who are some pitchers I can target for my fantasy league? — Ricky N.

Tim Hudson is on his way back and would make a fine addition for your playoff run, Ricky. Joe Blanton is owned in far too few leagues. Chad Gaudin pitches in a great home park (Petco) and has racked up a ton of strikeouts this season (over one per inning).

OK, that’ll do it. Have a great All-Star week, and cross your fingers that your superstar sees a couple of injury-free innings in the big game Tuesday. We’ll be taking questions as always at fbcmailbag@gmail.com. Later!

 
R.J. White is a fantasy blogger at the sports site FanHouse. Check out his work both here and there, and feel free to talk to him in the forums, where he posts under the name daullaz.
 
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