Fantasy Baseball Thoughts: Bubba Starling, Johan Santana, Chris Carpenter, and Others

March 21, 2012; Jupiter, FL, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Johan Santana (57) throws in the sixth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals during a spring training game at Roger Dean Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

I was following the news on Twitter last night and after about 10 minutes I had already tired of the Tim Tebow tweets. It was crazy. I am not sure what the Jets are up to, but the two Jets fans I know weren't too happy with the trade. Then again, they weren't too happy with the Mark Sanchez extension either.

Well, is it possible I could be way off on my estimate that Mets starter Johan Santana doesn't make 20 starts this season? He held the Cardinals to one run on 6 hits, no walk, and 6 strikeouts in 6 innings of work, and he induced 8 ground ball outs as well. Wow. I didn't see that coming.

Rob Neyer, from Baseball Nation, wrote a piece on the third base battle between Lonnie Chisenhall and Jack Hannahan in Cleveland and surmised that the job is Chisenhall's to lose. Some Indians fans commented saying otherwise, but them Baseball Nation contributor Wendy Thurm posted this comment:

According to Manny Acta

I had the pleasure of interviewing Manny Acta last week in Arizona. He told me that the job is Chisenhall’s to lose. He also said that if Hannahan wins out, Chisenhall will start at AAA because making him a back up utility infielder makes no sense for his development.

I am still not sure who will win the job, as both aren't hitting the ball too well this spring. Hannahan has the better glove, and with all the ground ball pitchers on the Indians, they may want to keep his glove at third base for awhile.

So who wins the left field job in Toronto - Eric Thames or Travis Snider? Let's take a look at their spring stats, courtesy of MLB.com:

Thames - .353-.410-.529, 1 HR, 6 RBI, 6 Ks, 4 BBs, 34 ABs

Snider - .333.395-.769, 4 HRs, 15 RBI, 13 Ks, 4 BBs, 39 ABs

Snider is obviously having the better spring but the strikeouts are still too high. It will be interesting to see who wins the job in the next week or so.

More fantasy baseball thoughts after the jump:

Here is a tweet from Jason Churchill from ESPN and ProspectInsider last evening on how meaningless spring training stats are:

More evidence ST stats mean zero: M. Saunders hit .286/.375/.446 last March. M. Bradley .318/.392/.500. Combined -1.1 WAR in reg. season

I think they do mean something for some players, and mean nothing for many others.

Cardinals starter Chris Carpenter will probably start the 2012 season on the DL as he has been shut down indefinitely with more discomfort in his neck and arm. It appears Lance Lynn will replace him in the rotation, and he is a decent late round choice in NL-only leagues.

According to Rob Neyer, the Nationals had 4 scouts watching Gerardo Parra play yesterday, after having two scouts watch him on Tuesday. The Nationals really need a center fielder as they really can't go with Rick Ankiel and Roger Bernadina in center, can they? Are you getting the feeling that the Nationals announcement that Bryce Harper will play center field is a negotiating ploy to get the Diamondbacks to accept their current offer for Parra? I am starting to think so.

You can take this however you want, but here is BP's Jason Parks, one of my favorite prospect experts, on Royals outfield prospect Bubba Starling:

It was a shotgun blast, and those standing at the adjacent field saw their eyes widen and their heart rates increase. I

wanted to take to the bullhorn to announce it, but the event took place in seconds rather than minutes, and before I

could prepare the world the ball disappeared foul beyond the left-field fence. It was the best foul of the spring from a

player with the highest ceiling in the minor leagues, and yes, I realize Bryce Harper is still in the minors. You might

ask, Patricia, is Starling really that talented, and aren’t you basing this report on a foul ball that you are clearly

struggling to stay sane over? For me, it’s about the physical promise, which dwarfs the majority of his fellow minor

league soldiers. Having seen the former first-round pick in drills and now in game action (more than just the foul), I

feel comfortable with the thought that Starling has near-elite athleticism and star potential, a future 7+ player if the

tools mature.

Higher ceiling than Harper? Starling is in good company. That changes my strategy for the 2nd overall pick in the minor league portion of my AL-only draft in two weeks.

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