Everyone that reads Razzball knows me as the guy that writes about points leagues. Either that, or the dude whose posts you never read. What most don’t know is that I secretly dislike points leagues, at least traditional head-to-head leagues. I might have mentioned that at some point in some post in the past, but that’s a discussion for another day. While I focus on points leagues for Razzball, I studied the art of rotisserie baseball at a young age. I was introduced to fantasy baseball back in 1991 when I was only fourteen years old. It was supposed to be an NL-only league, but shortly before the draft the league fell apart so I took over a team in the AL-only league. My dad paid and I played. The league was all adults and me, and I somehow managed to finish in third place out of ten teams. Nowadays the only place you can find an adult league that allows boys is through NAMBLA. Do yourself a favor and do not google that acronym. Is google and official verb yet?

Razzball Commenter Leagues are open! Play against our contributors and your fellow readers for prizes. Join here!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I don’t have enough spam, give me the Razzball email newsletter!

Weekly Razzball news delivered straight to your inbox.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

In case you live under a rock, which is actually Billy Butler in a boulder costume, and it wasn’t as obvious as the fact that Jose Fernandez and Yordano Ventura are going to combine for zero fantasy points this season, fantasy baseball draft season has begun. And in case I wasn’t aware of it, the unending requests for my rankings has surely served as a reminder. Last year I received quite a few emails in anticipation, some of which were rather entertaining. This year, however, one person has topped them all. The email read something like this. “Can you tell me when your rankings will be released? It’s the only post you write that I really care about. My draft is on the 12th.” To that guy I replied with a link to last year’s rankings. I wonder how his draft went. I hope his league gives points for honesty…

Razzball Commenter Leagues are open! Play against our contributors and your fellow readers for prizes. Join here!

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

The OPS Top-200 is now!  Get excited! Are you pumped?!?  Take a deep breath and let’s get to it.  First though, some strategy.  Take it or leave it, it’s your call.  I recommend taking it with a nice glass of “you want your fantasy teams to be better, don’t you?”

If you’ve been following along (or if you haven’t, click on that link and get yo’self familiarized), I tier hitters by position.  I do the same with pitchers. Then, on draft day, I put all my rankings on one piece of paper, and scratch their names off as the draft goes.  That way, I know what positional tier is losing guys quickly and which others I can wait.  It’s worked for years, and I highly recommend you try it.  I do this in addition to entering in rankings in Yahoo or ESPN or whatever website you use. Always, always, ALWAYS do this.  They hide good players in the 300’s for some reason.  I think once they rank the top-150, they call it a day and let the monkeys with typewriters finish off the rankings.

Now in football, this works better as multiple position eligibility can make things a bit more difficult.  I don’t want to be scratching out Jedd Gyokro’s name at all the positions he’s eligible at (for me, it’s only at second base), so, depending on the league, I’ll use a top-200 to supplement my one page sheet.  Two pages?  Of actual paper?  From actual trees?  Why not just use excel?  Well I do use excel and formulas for my rankings, but draft day I like to keep it simple.  Pen and paper and the draft app.

Last week I did two ESPN drafts at the same time, one on the computer the other on the app, and for ESPN, the app is better (as long as you entered your own rankings).  I’ll try Yahoo and let you all know (or let me know which you prefer in the comments).  Alright Razzballers and Razzballettes, here’s the list:

Razzball Commenter Leagues are open! Play against our contributors and your fellow readers for prizes. Join here!

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

You know what we’re really good at doing around here at Razzball? Giving the ‘Top’ of something. Check it out:

Grey’s Top 100 Overall
Grey’s Top 100 Outfielders (This is the Top 20. It goes to 100.)
Grey’s Top 100 Starting Pitchers (Same as above. Grey’s a rankings fiend.)
M@’s Top 100 Keepers (That’s ME…)
Ralph’s Top 100 Prospects
JB’s Top 100 Starting Pitchers

And that’s just the Top 100’s. Click here for all of our Rankings. But enough about those other guys (besides my Top 100 Keepers. Those are a gem), it’s time for the Top 100 that everyone cares about the most come draft time…HITTERS! This will be a weekly column again this year at Razzball, but before we jump in to the first installment a few things regarding the rankings:

  • I’m basing these off of 12-team roto leagues. That’s the format for our RCL’s. Oh, what’s an RCL you ask? It’s where you can face off against all of your favorite Razzball writers and others in the Razzball community! SIGN UP now to join an RCL, there are plenty of spots left. And if you don’t see a draft that works for you…create a new one!
  • Position eligibility is based on ESPN rules (to the furthest of my knowledge). RCL’s are hosted on ESPN, and it’s by far the best site for fantasy baseball. Don’t you dare try to make a case for freaking Yahoo, either. Josie Grossie.
  • don’t value steals very highly. You’ll be able to see that quickly. And I value those that essentially produce only steals even less. I won’t take many shares of Billy Hamilton or Dee Gordon this year, because I’d rather have players that contribute to 3, 4 or 5 categories as opposed to their dominance of one, maybe two. Five-cat players should saturate your early rounds. Mix in a little risk with a high ceiling, but go after the well-rounded options far before you begin targeting a SAGNOF.
  • As always, rankings are subjective! This is how I’d find myself drafting players, but even for me I’ll stray from these rankings depending upon how a draft plays out. Load up on Outfielders early? Not a bad strategy, but if you’ve filled them up you’d obviously draft Jake Lamb (87) over Stephen Piscotty (65). Craft your team based on your preferences and your needs. And your gut. You gotta vibe these drafts like it’s that girl across the dance floor (hopefully after you’ve imbibed yourself with some adult beverages if you’re a basic white guy).
  • If you don’t like them or disagree with something, THAT’S WHAT THE COMMENTS ARE FOR! Let’s keep the chatter going all March.

And now for the Top 100 Hitters (in case you actually read all that above…)!

Razzball Commenter Leagues are open! Play against our contributors and your fellow readers for prizes. Join here!

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

Right off the top, you know this is Part 1, since I put it in the title and all.  There’s too many outfielders I want to say something about, and this post shouldn’t feel like homework, though if fantasy baseball articles are homework, I would’ve cared a lot more in school.  But I don’t want that much math (like geometry, calculus, trigonometry, hard math).  As an accountant people always say, “I bet you’re good at math.”  No, I can use a calculator.  But you’re going to need a calculator to add up the OPS Outfielder rankings coming up right now! (not worst segue ever, but honorable mention for sure).

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

The article that gets passed around more than a Kardashian with professional athletes. Let’s change that. I believe this thing’s a…wait for it…keeper. Oh, gosh. Got ya there, didn’t I? Well, all hilarity aside, it’s about time we focused not just on the right now with all the Top 100’s, but we delivered one with an eye to the future. Let’s get a little wisdom in our baseball leagues that we can apply to the seasons to come. It’s time for the Top 100 Keepers!

Now, before we dive into the rankings, we need to discuss the subjective dynamic of keeper leagues. In my opinion, these leagues sit squarely in the middle of redraft annual leagues (you can find all of Grey’s rankings for 2017 HERE) and the deeper dynasty options like JB’s REL League or mine and Ralph’s Razz30. The former doesn’t need to look at age much, and the latter focuses primarily the mingling of prospects with big leaguers (Here’s where you can find Ralph’s Top 100 Prospects…such a great read). Yet, here we are with Keeper Leagues.

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

Our 2017 Razzball Commenters Leagues are in full signup mode.  I even heard there were a few people from Anonymous that signed up!  They said, “To the world, I’m Anonymous, just another white man who sits in parking lots with binoculars watching women.”  Man, that Anonymous guy is depressing!  As we always do about this time, I eviscerate the haters and complicators!  I eviscerate the not-knowers and the over-knowers!  I eviscerate the ESPN goers and the garden hoers!  I overuse a word like eviscerate that I just learned!  I am the Fantasy Master Lothario (don’t abbreviate it) and I’ve come for your children!  See, because blog writing doesn’t pay so well, I’ve taken a second job as a bus driver, so I’m literally here for your kids.  Like a baller!  A shot caller!  An “I’m outside of Hot Topic at the maller!”  My eviscerating (I’m conjugating my new word!) today comes at the expense of ESPN and their 2017 fantasy baseball rankings.  To the tune of Kanye’s Runaway:

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

I think this will conclude this year’s rankings for all players, but with the way closer roles can change between now and Spring Training, finishing will be bountiful. There seems to be a big difference among experts in the top-10, and I am no different.  Also, the bottom tiers for the rankings are a “wait and see” proposition, as there are easily 7-8 teams with a closer by committee situation, or at best, a closer who is a retread of a retread.   Everyone knows who you are Fernando, you don’t have to stand up and raise your hand or shoot an arrow fictitiously at me.  So as we approach draft season and beyond, use this list for now, because the situations will be fluid from here on out.  As I promised two weeks ago, you will get a new list every two weeks, with a holds post (no it won’t be in different color for people who just skip the preface of an article) in betwix.  Get excited folks! Spring is sorta here, and with that comes all of Grey’s rankings, my closer and bullpen stuff, and basically every tool under the sun to help you be the best you can be.  Now get out there and win one for Flipper!

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

For these pitcher pairings, I’m going to be using our (my) 2017 fantasy baseball rankings.  Notably, the top 20 starters for 2017 fantasy baseball, top 40 starters for 2017, top 60 starters for 2017 and the top 80 starters for 2017.  You can also just go to our Fantasy Baseball War Room.  Okay, formalities out of the way.  *rolls up sleeves, makes farting noise with hand under armpit, rolls down sleeve*   Let’s get busy!  Now, what is a pitcher pairing?  It’s your plan for putting together a fantasy staff.  A course of action.  If you have A pitcher, which B, C, D, E and F pitcher goes with him?  Which is different than ‘F this pitcher,’ that’s what you say in May.  You should have six starters.  The sixth starter is Blake Snell or take whoever you want.  I suggest an upside pick.  Snell comes to mind.  Or Mike Montgomery.  Daniel Norris also comes to mind.  I’m going to assume you’re in a 12 team, 5×5 and some variation of 9 pitcher leagues like the Razzball Commenter Leagues.  Speaking of which, the RCL league signups will began as soon as ESPN opens for business. (NOTE: What you are about to read is massively confusing.  If it were found scribbled in a notebook, the FBI would be watching me.  If Charles Manson stood up and read this at the next prison Meet N’ Greet, no one would blink an eye.)  Anyway, here’s pitcher pairings for pitching staffs for 2017 fantasy baseball drafts:

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

Today, is the day in history known as, “Aw, sookie sookie, don’t need the nookie, Grey’s giving me a fantasy baseball cookie.”  Or, more succinctly, the top 500 for 2017 fantasy baseball.  A few years ago, the top 500 was only a top 300 for fantasy baseball.  Before that, it was 16 AD and I was rolling with Jesus to this deli that had great matzoh ball soup.  In a few years from now, this is going to be a top 10,000 and I’m going to be ranking Mike Trout Jr. Jr. Jr. the 15th.  Today, in this year, seventeen after twenty, comes the top 500 for 2017 fantasy baseball.  Or as I like to call it, from Mike Trout A to chimpanzee.  Actually, I don’t call it that.  So, this post isn’t meant to send shockwaves through your system.  The pipe cleaner that the doctor uses to get the clogged wax from your ears is meant for that.  This is simply to give you an idea of where guys are ranked in relation to other positions.  I.e., you know I like Francisco Lindor better than Corey Seager, according to the top 20 shortstops, but do I like Lindor better than Joey Votto?  Okay, it’s not that simply.  You’ll notice after the top 200, positions start to get clumped together.  I might be the only fantasy baseball ‘pert to tell you this, but it doesn’t matter where, say, Eric Thames is ranked vs. Daniel Norris.  If you need a pitcher, Thames isn’t going to help you.  He can be ranked 75 spots in front of Norris and it doesn’t matter.  That’s why I have the 2017 fantasy baseball rankings broken down by positions.  If you need a 1st baseman, where Justin Bour vs. Greg Bird matters, but where Bour vs. Brian McCann is really doesn’t matter.  Also, there’s no comments about players, which you really should know prior to drafting.  In other words, Jose Bautista might be in the early 100s overall, but am I drafting him?  Well, you’d know if you read the top 40 outfielders.  There’s also a top 100 for 2017 fantasy baseball to help you.  Along shortly will be a Fantasy Baseball War Room and a pitchers pairing tool.  Anyway, here’s the top 500 for 2017 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 
Page 1 of 3123