luso26 wrote:Relddem thanks for the response. Really good insight, really appreciate the post.
I've taken a look at potential adds in the wire and all of the pitchers you've suggested are available, with the exception of Zimmerman.
There's also these notable pitchers available -
Should I just look to add Niese or Homer Bailey?
Also who would you recommend dropping out of the bunch of Loney, Buck and Peralta.
Again, thanks for the insight, really appreciate all the help.
The guy I'm going with in these spots is Minor. I think his upside trumps all the other guys, who offer a more similar range of values (medium risk, medium upside). He racked up the Ks last year in the minors and his brief major league stint, but his major league ERA was inflated for mostly flukey reasons. I'd say it was high because of two parts bad luck and one part late-season fatigue. His peripherals were still excellent. He plays for a good team, in the pitcher friendlier league, in a pitcher friendly ballpark, and has top prospect pedigree. He's been one of my favorite late-round picks, and I'd even go so far as to say I think he's due for a better or at the very least comparable fantasy season to Zimmermann. Minor is less likely to be limited by innings and has a better track record in terms of Ks. His only weakness is that he's a fly-ball pitcher, but in Atlanta that's not a huge deal, the NL East (including Turner Field) features four safe pitcher's parks and just one fly ball pitcher's nightmare. Plus, especially in the NL, flyball/high K pitchers with average or better command tend to have the most WHIP upside since they're the most likely to give up fewer hits. The risk with Minor is he has to win a rotation spot first, but considering he's already on the 40-man and his service clock started last September, the Braves have little incentive to hold him back unless they intend to keep him down for at least a month and a half. He's the better pitcher than anyone else competing for the 5th spot and should win the job. And if he doesn't, then you can always move on to the next tier in which I would put Holland, Bailey, and Niese. Holland has the most risk of the three and most upside (he'd be a better buy if he didn't play for Texas, American League hitter's parks are tricky to predict), Niese the least of both, and Bailey somewhere in between.
Webb is also definitely interesting though. He might be my second choice simply because his upside trumps everyone else's. If he's healthy and effective you won't find that kind of upside on the wire later in the year.
I would also drop Frasor and pick up Frank Francisco. All indications are he'll have the first shot to finish games in Toronto.
Of the three hitters you list, the one I would drop first is Buck, and I'd pick up Minor, with the other three pitchers I named above as backup plans. There are comparable catchers who should be on the wire even if Buck gets grabbed and Mauer misses time, most of them I even like better (Iannetta and Arencibia come to mind, the former of which I really like a lot and think has a chance to be a Top 10 catcher) and guys who feature different strengths but should carry similar value (Thole, Y. Molina).
After that, its a bit of a coinflip. I'm not crazy about Loney (one category first baseman don't carry much value) or Peralta (no category juice at all but won't hurt you too bad as a SS), but I think if its a choice with this roster I'd stick with Peralta. Honestly, I'd probably drop all three and look to pick up Minor, Webb, and a different SS. In fact, you could also drop Scutaro and pick up another bench hitter, you don't need two backup SS, better to have someone you can play matchups with at Util who has some serious upside.
Check the wire to see if a higher upside SS is available. I agree with keeping a SS around to back up Aviles, but it should be someone with more boom potential than Peralta or Scutaro. There are a couple of speed specalists who I think could be helpful--Alcides Esocbar and Cliff Pennington, both of whom I consider sleepers. If that's the route you want to go I'd probably start with Escobar since he probably has greater upside and then if he has a rough start to the year swap him for Pennington. If power is more what you feel you need try J.J. Hardy or Yuniesky Betancort, though I'm more bearish on them than the speed guys. All things considered, the guy I would probably recommend is Jed Lowrie. He may not start the season playing every day or have mega upside in any single category, but there's a good chance he'll find his way to every day playing time quickly and should provide positive value in at least three or four categories. Once he's playing every day, he'll have a great shot to be a Top 10 SS from that point in the year on. If Yunel Escobar wasn't drafted, he's also an interesting bounceback sleeper type, and there's a good chance he runs more now that he's out of Atlanta too. I don't think he has quite as much upside as Lowrie, but he has more job certainty. I'd also take Reid Brignac over Peralta. I'm not super crazy about Briggy, but he's got some post-hype sleeper to him. And as a long shot, check if Tsuyoshi Nishioka slipped onto the wire. If he's there, that's the guy you want, at least to start the year. He could be a top 5 SS, or he could be the second coming of Kaz Matsui, its too soon to tell but the upside and fact that he has an everyday job make him appealing at such a thin position (which is also why its likely he was drafted).
If you do want to pick up a second hitter who you can mix into Util, it doesn't have to be first base, but its usually a good place to start as there's always lots of interesting wire fodder at the position. Take a look and see if any of the late rounders somehow fell onto the wire--Ike Davis, Gaby Sanchez, Luke Scott, even Freddie Freeman (though there are probably other guys on the wire I'd take ahead of Freeman, I think Loney is about his upside this year so I wouldn't drop Loney for him). If not, you're basically looking for someone with more upside than Adam LaRoche, and it really doesn't need to be a first baseman since you have Howard and LaRoche. The first thing I'd do is check to see if Dexter Fowler was drafted. He's right on the bubble, and I LOVE him as a sleeper this year. He has much more speed than his SB numbers have shown the last few years, but that's because he wasn't playing every day and hitting low in the Rockies lineup. He has an every day job now and should hit first or second. His average should be, well, average at worst, but his walk rate means he'll have lots of running opportunities. I could pretty realistically see .270-100-10-60-35 out of him. After that, the two straight first baseman I might consider are Justin Smoak and Brandon Belt. Belt will be a beast, he just may not get the chance till around Memorial Day, but he's a great add once he finds his way onto the big league club. I wouldn't be totally shocked if he's up in mid-April, kind of like Ike Davis was with the Mets last year. Smoak is interesting as a post-hype sleeper, but playing in Seattle hurts him. His upside is still huge though. Will Venable should be a nice power/speed outfielder but he could hurt you a bit in average. Dan Johnson is also interesting, he could be basically Carlos Pena with dual 1B,3B eligibility if the Rays let him play every day (I think they will), a guy who will hurt you in average but make up for it by hitting 35-40 HR. Mike Moustakas is basically the Brandon Belt of third base, except I think he has a bit less offensive upside immediately and the chances of him being up before late May are zero, so I would wait on him but keep tabs. Mike Morse is also interesting as a power hitting outfielder who probably won't kill you in any of the other categories either.
The top two thirds of your team are very solid, which is the foundation of building a winner. The back third is all about post-draft adjustments--no one sticks with the team they drafted through the entire year and wins. There are plenty of guys on the wire who could make the back end of your roster look fine going into the season. As long as you can stay active, make some good decisions, and catch a good break here and there, I like your chances.