So I’m taking us down yet another rabbit hole, into yet another JB’s-vanity-project-abyss. Although, since the last time this happened only two weeks ago, Alex Reyes made it into the rotation! He was only “OK”, and we’re not sure if he’ll be starting again for the next turn, but at least we were put on readiness!

Of course since I added this guy in the REL, I’ve been following Brock Stewart pretty intently this season. Maybe it’s because Brock is a common name we share! But really, it has to do with his under-the-radar ascension through the Minors this season. He’s dominated in the minor leagues with a 9+ K-rate, a BB-rate well under 2, including a 2.49 ERA and 0.93 WHIP in 50.2 PCL innings, with a 9.59:1.07 K:BB in OKC. Overall, his MiLB numbers are a 1.68 ERA 0.86 WHIP in 20 starts, with 126:18 K:BB in 118 innings. And yet, no one seems to care about this guy since they want Jose De Leon! While many may be surprised Brock got the call yet again to spot start over De Leon with an opening in the rotation, logistically he’s on the 40-man while De Leon isn’t and there’s a roster crunch. But it’s not like Brock isn’t deserving! And he’s got pretty good stuff – 93-95 MPH fastball, hard slider, and a change-up that is oddly WAY slower than the heater at 81ish MPH.

Obviously, at the Major League level, things couldn’t be more of a polar opposite. Going into yesterday afternoon, his ERA was over 11 in two spot starts and one relief appearance. In that 3 innings of relief his last MLB appearance, he walked 4, or what would’ve been 22.2% of all the walks he’s thrown in the minors all year. Someone isn’t suited for the bullpen! And the two awful starts? One was a little unlucky with some BABIP hits @MIL, then a murdering @COL. Way to make a guy who progressed all the way from A-ball pitch in the two worst parks in the NL! So the start this afternoon, hosting the Cubs, is BY FAR his best matchup. Man, trial by fire! With Stewart so far off the radar, I am hoping that being pot committed and writing this open before the first pitch will cause some cosmic karma and help Brock throw a breakthrough game. Here’s how he looked:

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REL baseball logo newFinal update through August!  It’s hard to believe we have less than a month left in the REL regular season before our inaugural REL World Series.  Even though I couldn’t be further on the sidelines, I think it’s going to be a ton of fun to track and follow who can take home the first ever trophy (and $1,000!).

The NL side of things are getting moderately interesting with the Cubs on a little bit of a run and the Nats sinking a few, but it may be a case of too little, too late.  But things are stewing up right nice in the pressure cooker that is the AL!  The Tribe have stormed into the leading position over the Blue Jays, with both teams neck and neck in several categories which should make it a photo finish.  Should be a wild ride!  Here’s how week 21 went down in the 2016 REL League:

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We’re back atcha with a hot new Razzball show, where we first learn about Grey’s family lineage and why he has severe anger and ADHD issues.  Then we chat Yuliesky Gurriel‘s major league debut, Gary Sanchez on absolute fire, and how valuable my boy Keon Broxton can be ROS.  We then cast our MLB homeless folk band by looking at some interesting MLB player backstories, and Grey learns some vital information (apparently) about a Gin And Juice song. Then we wrap by talking some hot streaming hitters like Alex Gordon and Leonys Martin and some streaming starters that could help you down the stretch.  Here’s the latest edition of the Razzball Pod:

Note: And be sure to check out the latest Fantasy Football Podcast episode with special host Pod Vader (former ESPN producer) which covered BlogTalkRadio’s Expert League that Razzball is a part of!

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This weekend, I went to an Ikea for the first time. First of all – you are herded through the store on a specific path like you’re being herded alongside other furniture-buying sheep.

Bahhhhhh! That bottom left frame of Buster is about how I handle crowds like that…

Anywho, at the end when you pick your furniture to buy, it’s in this giant warehouse that makes the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark look like it’s in a studio apartment’s tiny closet. Ish is huge! And that giant warehouse is exactly how I used to look at starting pitching in my 10 and 12-team waiver wires through any given MLB season. Limitless streaming opportunities – sure some with more risk than others – but pretty much a starter widely available every night that I could feel decent enough with rolling out. Alas, it’s no more, with hitting making a comeback this season. Balls are juiced! And in that vein, I’ve been overlooking a lot of the “been there, done that” pitchers that have broken through, none worse than being slow to warm up to Danny Duffy. We’ve seen him have power stuff, but not hold up as a starter, getting meh K numbers in the process. This will anger people – but I saw him as a lefty Nathan Eovaldi coming into this year. Ouch! In more ways than one! But Duffy has been absolutely crazypants this season, vaulting all the way into my top-15 last week. And through this amazing run, he hasn’t even been blessed with a Pitcher Profile! This changes now! Here’s how Duffy looked yesterday afternoon against the Twinkies:

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REL baseball logo new20 weeks into the season! Damn it’s flown by. As has our Trade Deadline which didn’t quite have the fireworks of the MLB Trade Deadline, but I think that’s because we all manage our teams smarter than MLB GMs. Why wait until staring down the barrel of a gun at 2:45 at a 3:00 PM deadline to make a deal; you know you need something, make it happen to help your team earlier! My Brewers did that for CC Sabathia, and we needed every ounce outta the big guy! Just like he needed every ounce out of the kegerator…

Not much going on in the standings with the Nats and Blue Jays still leading, but The Tribe continue to be knocking on the door in the AL after making several trades the past month. Let’s see if they can build on the Cavs success! Here’s how week 20 went down in the 2016 REL League:

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Join us once more for our smooth dulcet tones on the Razzball Baseball Pod, where we catch up on the sexy, pinstriped Yankees callups where everyone digs the long ball, double-digit K performances, and where to value Alex Reyes in 2017 if he opens the season in the rotation.  Then we wrap up the show by looking at league leaders, and find some surprising little nuggets with BABIP and K/9 leaders.  Here’s the latest edition of the Razzball Pod, now with more baking!

(And be sure to check out the newest episode of our Fantasy Football Podcast here!)

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So, I’m going to do something a little different today. I’m just gonna throw out the reason why right off the bat: I’m selfish and lazy. That’s what mid-August baseball talk is all about!

As part of my rebuilding efforts in the REL – well, I should say, my main anchor in my rebuilding efforts – I got Alex Reyes to hopefully be my staff stopper. I mean, have you SEEN the Brewers rotation?! Yikes. With some control issues and a pretty bad ERA in AAA, I wasn’t too surprised to see a fantastic arm like Reyes get the call-up anyway as a bullpener. This had been speculated upon all season – the Cards did this with their major prospects in Adam Wainwright and Carlos Martinez – so we’re not getting a big shock. And with Reyes called up at the same time as Luke Weaver, it appears they might piggyback each other for the foreseeable future. But Reyes clearly, CLEARLY looks like a dominant starter that’s about ready. After seeing his debut inning last Thursday night where he hit 101 twice, I’ve been eagerly awaiting an encore. Here’s how Reyes looked in his 2nd-4th career MLB innings Saturday afternoon at Wrigley:

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REL baseball logo newWell, on the heels of the real-life Trade Deadline, we are now faced with the REL Trade Deadline looming this Sunday.  We’ve started seeing a huge influx of trades as team build for the final stretch or rebuild for the future.  You know the saying “the future is now”?  Things couldn’t be further from the truth for my REL Brewers!

To the teams that are actually good, and we’re starting to see runaways in both leagues.  In the AL, the Blue Jays are migrating to the top of every category, and in the NL, the Nats have already lived there.  Looks like the initial REL World Series will be the 1 Canadian team vs. the 1 former Canadian team.  At least things are going better for the ol’ US of A in the Olympics!  Here’s how week 19 went down in the 2016 REL League:

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The Razzball Baseball Pod is back, and on today’s show we learn about what Grey is going to do in retirement – antiquing – and talk big performances from the past week. We debate the relative safety of Joe Musgrove ROS, where Danny Duffy will rank amongst SP next year, and if Manny Machado is still a first rounder with no steals. Speaking of SAGNOF, we discuss some waiver adds like Travis Jankowski, Keon Broxton and Cesar Hernandez. Grey is also sure to share with us his Wikipedia editing prowess. Here’s the latest edition of the Razzball Pod, now with more citations!

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As we’ve seen countless times, a logjam in a starting rotation never ends up being a hurtle. At first, the Astros were seemingly cutting out Lance McCullers with boring vets like Doug Fister and Scott Feldman, the latter who has really not worked out as a starter… Feldman was throwing some good RP innings though, before they dumped him north of the border… Anyway, with McCullers’ elbow barking, it opened a spot for Joe Musgrove to step right into the rotation.

I’ve been thinking back; has there been a more exciting SP debut for a guy coming out of the bullpen at first? 4.1 innings coming in for the injured McCullers with 1 hit, 1 walk, and 8 Ks and a Jose Fernandez-esque fiery presence from Musgrove. Brian McCann will be a big baby whenever the Yankees face him… 8 strikeouts has to be close to a record for an MLB debut out of the bullpen (broadcast tells me it tied the record, nice work Astros broadcast!)… I guess without the clear opening through the season, it dulled the fantasy love for Musgrove, who had a crazy 10.25:1.03 K:BB in AA and 8.69:1.07 in AAA. Makes Phil Hughes look wild! Although, throwing Phil Hughes’ name in here isn’t exciting anyone… Hopefully a good outing and sexy GIFs will do that! Here’s how Musgrove looked yesterday afternoon in his first career MLB start:

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