Player Page Matches

According to Whitney Houston the “Greatest Love of All” had something to do with children’s laughter or something like that. I however, Ralph Z. Lifshitz, Prospector for Hire, Prospect Jesus, Bringer of Light, Master of his Domain; believe the ‘Greatest Love of All” is the satisfaction I gain from combing through scouting reports, end of season statistics, used garbage cans at minor league complexes, and sleeping with the wives of scouts for information. Some of those women aren’t handsome, or maybe they are. I usually get rather “engulfed” in the Olde E before I make it through the door. I’m jumping around aren’t I? Sorry, I started drinking early today. I actually was trying to explain how much I like sleepers but really got caught up in the Whitney analogy, and the Mother of Dragons name thing. So, to my original point, every off-season I build a list, usually starting around mid-August, of under the radar names to target in the later rounds of my 30 team dynasty draft. Last year my list included Sixto Sanchez, Jose Albertos, Jesus Luzardo, Seuly Matias, and Ty Blach, nailed my pitching, but hitters either didn’t pan out (Ramon Laureano), or are still too young to be blowing up (Eguy Rosario). This year however, I feel my list is full of strong hitters that just might be difference-makers. I’m a giver, so I decided to share a few of the names I’m going to be targeting this offseason. You won’t see the 50 plus names down there, but you will see 8 players I’ve highlighted from my list that I hold in the highest regard.

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I’m the one man army Ason, I’ve never been tooken out, I keep Prospectors looking out, I drop knowledge like Lancy dropping babies, enough to make an Albright go craaaaaazy! Sorry, always wanted to start a post like that, and I decided it shall be done over my morning coffee. In case you missed it I released the top 50 Prospects for 2018 on Sunday. Funny enough this is the perfect segue to today’s post, the second part of my top 100, this time with even more words! We’re going through 51-100, and I have to say this is by far the most difficult section of all my prospect rankings. It’s in intersection where up and comers full of helium, mix with droppers, solid-close-to-the-majors types, and super-young pure upside plays. I try to balance them all, and at times tiers dovetail, and weave together more than they stay in any sort of specific order. It’s an inexact science this prospecting. There’s so many unknown variables within each player and each player’s opportunities in a given organization at a given time. Constantly changing and evolving. All this to say that there’s a lot of educated guessing, and there’s bound to be some serious misses. Hello Tyler Glasnow!

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I know, you thought it was going to be 100 prospects right? Well, it’s a good news/bad news thing. The good news is I will be ranking the Top 100 Prospects and beyond, however I will be doing them in increments of 50. So the bad news is you only get 4,000+ words and 50 prospects to read. Lets be honest, we are amongst friends here right? Even 4,000 words is at least two, if not three bathroom sessions. I know that’s when you read these, and I’m cool with it. Now that we’ve made assumptions about your bathroom reading habits, lets move along. As always, I’ve tried to balance the right now value of “close to the majors” prospects vs the high end talent. While also trying to be somewhat objective, and conscientious of the general consensus, which is important to trade value. That’s not to say I don’t go rouge and aggressively rank some players I like. Ahhh, who am I kidding it’s all personal bias. So here you go, dig in. The next 50 will drop on Wednesday at the stroke of midnight.

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We already went over the top 20 catchers and the top 20 1st basemen for 2017 fantasy baseball.  Today, we dip our big toe into the top 20 2nd basemen pool.  Weird year for the 2nd basemen.  They had a huge bounce back last year, but this year a bunch of guys got old or just disappointed:  Kinsler, Carpenter, Kipnis and Zobrist.  And that’s only naming the Jews and Gentiles.  (I’m putting Carpenter in both camps.)  To recap this crap (rhyme points!), this final ranking for last year is from our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater with my comments.  The Player Rater allows me to be impartial while looking at how I ranked them in the preseason.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 2nd basemen for 2017 fantasy baseball and how they compared to where I originally ranked them:

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What a year! What a league! What can I say about the Razz30 that hasn’t already been said about the worst parts of Detroit? We’re a tire on fire rolling down that steep hill road in San Francisco that I’m too lazy to google the name of. The year with this bunch was so many things, electric, distracting, all consuming, infuriating, and eye-opening. Did you know that Tentacle Porn is a thing? Like pornography with women and (I’m hoping) phony octopus (octopi) and the like. My skin is crawling even thinking of this, but that’s what this band of ragtag misfits provides. Constant amazement. Stomach turning sharing aside, this group known as the Crabs are a family like no other. Mostly because it’s a bunch of 25-45 year old men on the internet talking about tentacle porn. Normal families don’t do that. But still we’re way more than a fantasy league. We’re a source of constant entertainment for one another. Each serves their place in the well balanced environment. But at the end of the day we’re one damn good fantasy league. That is, if you like super deep rosters, constant chatting, Game of Thrones, and highly technical gooch maintenance. In today’s post we’ll cover our usual shenanigans, and the exciting last two months of league play. We had an exciting stretch run (not really), and MLB style head to head playoffs, where the Cleveland Indians emerged victorious. Before we get started, CLAWS UP!!!

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It’s the last day of fantasy baseball. Bummer… I know, I don’t want to talk about it either, but I’ve run out of ways to open posts at this point in the season. So, I’m going to just state the obvious, and awkwardly fumble into the purpose of this pointless, yet verbose opening. I have a surprise for you, a sneak peak if you will of my forthcoming memoir “Fights & Prospects: Life as a Crab & The Top 100 Prospect List”. I’ve decided in an effort to market myself as a Rick Flair-esque persona, I’m going to write a tell all autobiography. Only I’m not going to talk about myself at all, but simply give you an updated Top 100 next Sunday. Today is the first ten from that list. So the Top 10 Prospects for 2018 Fantasy Baseball if you will. Titles are fun! It’s drawing heavily from my Positional ranks that we just finished, and bridges the gap to the Top 100 and beyond. In closing, thanks for reading this season, and remember to check here for prospects rundowns for all 30 MLB systems throughout the off-season.

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It’s the second-last day of the regular season, and I feel like I’m back at Opening Day, there’s such a smorgasbord of pitchers to roll around in (so to speak): Kluber (vs. the White Sox, $12,000), Scherzer (vs. the Pirates, $10,800), Kershaw at—important couple of letters, those—the Rockies, $9,600), Archer (vs. the Orioles, $9,300). They’re all so famous we need use only their last names. Of the 4 listed here, Kluber will bankrupt you, and I’m leery of Kershaw in Colorado, and also of Archer, given his last outing versus the Orioles, so how about for our very last Saturday <sob> [Sidebar: Thanks for reading, all these weeks! It’s been a slice. Feel free to come hang with me on Twitter and we’ll get through the cold, dark hell of the off-season together], we go old-school with ol’ Blue-Green Eyes and run out Max Scherzer at home versus the Pirates? Let’s look at some more options for our final Fan(Duel)-tasy together.

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Much like the famous Doors song that shares it’s name, bullpens are drawing near.  (Minus the Oedipus complex that the song explores.)  I mean, it may… but that is gross and I don’t wanna associate my bullpen goodies to that.  Moving on, shall we?  This year has been the SAGNOF-fest that we always come to expect.  Closers up, closers down.  Trades and attrition.  It happens every single year and it is the reason why the waiver wire is what it is: So we can get the new third closer for the Twins.  The chase for saves never ends, well, I mean it ends for season-long leagues, but for dynasty and keeper leagues, the times never change.  Saves are a category.  A deeply hated and often cursed at category that will always be debated about.  Whether or not to invest earlier picks then normal to get a stud, or just fill in with hope-so’s and also rans.  There unfortunately is no right or wrong answer because both strategies work as long as you are a waiver goblin.  So with the final post of the year, much like the other years that I have done this, we look to next year…  This year’s counting stats and information don’t matter, we want to know what lies on the horizon. So let’s find out!

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Ladies (4-5 of you) & Gentlemen, we are officially in the off-season!!! Please contain your excitement, and use the bags in the front seat pocket should you feel the need to blow chunks. PROSPECTING SEASON HAS RETURNED! Over the coming weeks, and months, you’ll be inundated with content to help you prepare for your dynasty prospect drafts, first year player drafts, and keeper/dynasty decisions. We’ll start with an update of my Top 100 Prospects, followed by a the 2018 first year player draft ranking, followed by keeper ranks for pitchers and hitters, followed by a very special mock prospects drafts with some of the top prospectors in the industry, and of course my team previews, and corresponding podcasts for all 30 MLB franchises. For all those wondering “followed by” is my “and then“. Long story short, there’s lots to come. Fear not kind citizen, for this post, the 2018 Minor League Preview Index is your one stop hub for all of our off-season dynasty content. So, bookmark this page, set a google alert, or just keep this page open until April. One way or the other you’re going to get all of my offseason brain droppings.

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*fumbles with an envelope, Hillary Swank stands next to me, watching on, embarrassed for me*  And the Teoscar goes to…Teoscar Hernandez!  Hillary Swank leans into the microphone, “Well, he was the only one nominated.”  Ugh, totally unnecessary Swank!  I should’ve pointed out how she was checking out Hugh Jackman’s wife the entire time on stage.  I picked up Teoscar before yesterday’s game for the runs because he was leading off, I never expected such a windfall of gorge.  He went 2-for-5, 4 RBIs with his 6th and 7th homer in only his 73rd at-bat.  That’s 20 hits total for him, with seven going gonzo.  This is better than Million Dollar Baby!  Yeah, I hope Hillary Swank’s Google alerts are going bizzonkers today.  Not ready to announce my love for Teoscar for next year, I am more of an IFP Spirit Awards guy, but you have to grab Teoscar for these final days.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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