Earlier this week, I played guarantee fairy by marking guys likely to rebound or drop-off based on their BABIP differentials (actual vs. expected). Justin Morneau was a red flag because his expected BABIP is 34+ points lower than his actual BABIP, however this is the case for other Rockies, Brandon Barnes and Troy Tulowitzki even more-so. Charlie Blackmon and Nolan Arenado are just behind Morneau as well. What I’m saying is that it’s a generalizable (Colorado) effect, and isn’t too much of a concern in Morneau’s case. The lineup stack probably exacerbates the effect as well.

On the other hand, while Prince Fielder is likely to rebound based on expected BABIP, the ground ball increase and hitting into the defensive shift is really hurting him, meaning I think his issues will somewhat sustain all year.

For this post (using this same matrix), let’s look at some MLB catchers and corner infielders to replace Matt Wieters and Brandon Belt long-term, and who should rebound at least from an expected BABIP perspective (<10% ownership on ESPN as of 5/12). Here is how I have them ranked:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

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As I write this, it’s hump-day. Funny story… It was sophomore year of college when I learned what the term “hump-day” meant. My new girlfriend lived on the floor above me. It was a normal Wednesday until she put up an away message (yeah AIM!) that simply said “hump-day.” I thought that was an invite. I went upstairs ready to go – you know in sweatpants and socks and sandals. She was baffled.

What did the next 20 minutes (okay okay…4-6 minutes) have in common with this post? Deep Impact. And I don’t mean the long-term impact she had on me. But thanks for the Jim Thome jersey ex-girlfriend!

Here are the starters I would dwell on beyond page 4 (<.1%) on ESPN. To preface the list, all these guys were 0% owned when starting this post. You already know guys like Trevor Bauer and Archie Bradley or Noah Syndergaard and Marcus Stroman. Let’s delve deeper: not hot dog in a hallway deep… think sausage in a gym. I’m talking a 0.0% ownership, which starts with the 2nd best curveball in all of the majors last year (100 pitch minimum).

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Let me preface this post with the following: the next one will be much deeper. [Ed. Note — That’s what she said!] I’m talking 0% ownership. I’m talking Morgan Freeman’s deep voice in the movie Deep Impact. I’m talking real throaty [Ed. Note– Darn, shoulda saved it for that one…], but for now… Here are starters approaching 50% ownership (as of 4/28) that I’d jump on if they’re still available:

Danny Salazar
– with a dominating start this past weekend, he’s back above the 50% owned mark, so I won’t expand too much here. The swinging strike rate is down to a sustainable level and the youth/homerun propensity reminds us (me) why we (I) shouldn’t get too excited. Prior to the season I pointed to Salazar’s dominating repertoire here and here. As long as he stays healthy, I think he’ll continue to be Matt Harvey Jr. According to Baseball Prospectus’ Pitchf/x Leaderboard, he’s still got a top-15 Fastball velocity, but a -2 MPH difference and 12% less swinging strikes on the fastball relative to last year will now keep me rational. He’s got the unlucky smokescreen going i.e. an elevated HR/FB ratio, LOB% and hideous BABIP. Again, as long as he stays healthy, there is still a ton to like here with the high velocity + devastating repertoire. Pluck him off waivers or buy low sooner than later.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I’m going to take a different approach to this week’s Deep Impact post and talk about my up-to-this-point woulda-coulda-shoulda team, and point out the surprises with whom I think will have a sustainable, deep into-the-season impact. I’m omitting the non-surprises i.e. Adam Wainwright, Felix Hernandez, and Jose Fernandez who are naturally in the top-20 so long as they stay healthy.

Here are thine options (within the top-100) to date with their ESPN Player Rater rankings in parenthesis as of Friday, 4/25:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I’m all about the win-now. This means I will rarely own a top prospect, because I’ll trade them for short term MLB value and/or I just won’t spend the dough on those guys, because I can look a bit deeper for translatable prospects that don’t have as much associated hype. Therefore, I’m not going to whine about not owning and emphasizing the obvious: Oscar Tavares, George Springer, Gregory Polanco or even Jackie Bradley Jr. Instead I’ll draft sure-thing offense so long as they’re healthy (Michael Morse and Yasmani Grandal), and then go with upside starters/or solid veterans like Marco Estrada, Alex Wood, Corey Kluber, Tyson Ross, Kyle Lohse and Tim Hudson (all were available around the same time as these prospects in deep leagues). I literally own all of these guys, and the following ESPN’ers <10% owned as of 4/14:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

As of 4/10, these middle infielders are all owned in less than 10% of ESPN leagues, and contingent on the context, I would conditionally own them all. And that’s how you alliterate league format dependency.

While they’re ranked by %ownership, I’ll furnish my zeal for each:

#1 – Kolten Wong (6.5%) – He’s only 23, so give him a little time. He’s already got a top-20 contact rate this year and has impressively walked more than he struck out. He’s batting .276 with a .382 OBP and 2 stolen bases. I’m not sure why he’s owned < 10%. Mark Ellis (DL/knee) and Daniel Descalso won’t consume that much time away from him. Very soon, he’ll be owned in over 10% of leagues, so make that happen sooner than later. 70+ runs near the top of that lineup with a 7HR-45RBI-20SB-.270BA is playable at MI.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I don’t practice Santeria. I ain’t got no crystal ball. Well, if I had $6, I’d spend it all…

…I’d spend it on these Corner Infielders (owned <10% on ESPN as of 4/3)! They are placed in the order of my zeal, because my zeal smells nice and fresh. What does that even mean? Post now includes bonus CI Prospect list as well! (And maybe thermal packaging. What can I say? It’s a demand-driven commodity.) Follow me after the jump to find out what this all means… maybe.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

What does Beastie Boys and Peter Cetera have in common?! This post…

Back in the day

There was this post around the way

It pointed to SP sleepers as good late round plays

You asked, “Are they worth an add?” I said, “You May”

THEY’LL MAKE YOUR PANTS TIGHT AND THAT’S OKAY

If you clicked on the link in the first…stanza?… I listed a slew of pitchers as sleepers by their pitch repertoires. Some interesting sleepers starting with the fastball was Burch Smith, Erasmo Ramirez and Hector Santiago.  That post and my prior post on pitch repertoires took into account mainly pitches’ Swinging Strike% and GB/FB ratios. There are many others I’d point out on that list – Devastating Danny Salazar as my favorite, but I’ll attend to ESPN’s % ownership in conjunction with this ‘Stuff’ for waiver wire options. Here are guys with < 10% ownership that make my pants tight:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Richard… Fat guy in a little coat… Fat guy in a little coat…

Fantasy Baseballers… Small guy with a big bat… Small guy with a biiiiig baaaat…

Here’s my first ballsy projection for you guys this year: .283AVG-7HR-10SB-61R-63RBI (361OBP/.404SLG/.765OPS/.340wOBA).

But let me clarify… think of him as your 2014 version of the 2013 version of Anthony Rendon.

Razzball’s Scott Evans tagged La Stella as the #7 prospect in the Braves’ system. While he lacks notable tools (as we can see by his MiLB counting stats), he should have the biggest and best thing going his way… Opportunity, and by opportunity I mean Dan Uggla.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

So, here we are again. You could say it’s been a long time. Or, you could be like me, and say it hasn’t been long enough. This series obviously is not one that touches on hot button issues. There are no Mike Trout or Matt Harvey sightings. Simply put, this series is more a labor of love than anything. I get tired of reading pieces that are supposed to be on deep leagues, and they spend time talking about Lucas Duda. NOT DEEP ENOUGH. And while I moan and groan about discussing the likes of Luke Montz or Chris Rusin, I want to make sure that someone does. Because, first of all, Luke Montz and Chris Rusin deserve to be known by somebody… anybody. Not just their mothers. And second of all, well, simply put, you deep leaguers understand what’s going on here. And if you don’t understand, imagine if your starting lineup consists of names like Nick Punto and Brendan Ryan and Joe Thatcher… then you will know what it is like to be us. And you will wonder why we do what we do. Which, to be perfectly honest, is what we wonder about too. So, with all the time off from this series, I’m sure there is plenty to talk about. [Looks at player list] UGHHHHH.

Please, blog, may I have some more?