The prospects are coming, the prospects are coming!  At least that’s what every Sawx fan was screaming this Sunday.  What fun the end of week 16 brought with Rafael Devers getting the call for the Sawx.  I’ll be curious to see how he fares right off the bat and where they decide to hit him.  I was lucky enough to catch Devers in Portland earlier this year and he mollywhopped one almost out of the building.  So yes, the power is legit.  To begin the week, we lost a Razzball Commenter Leagues first rounder in Carlos Correa.  What a tough go the first round middle infielders have had with Trea going down and now Correa.  Raise your hand if own both of them in an RCL.  I feel your pain.  Colin Moran was quickly stashed and almost as quickly dropped when face met ball.  I’m on the fence about what to do with Correa myself.  Obviously, if you have a DL spot, you stash him, but if you’re all full up, it’s a bit of a pickle.  Lucky me, I own Correa in 3 of my 4 most competitive RCLs.  Lower case yay.  Let’s see how these injuries and call-ups affected the Master Standings and what else transpired in the week that was, week 16:

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More like the weekend that was, amiright?  Despite the three day work week for us fantasy baseballers, there are still numbers to be crunched, standings to be compiled and trades to be analyzed.  No rest for the weary here at Razzball HQ.  The Razzball Commenter Leagues march on.  It’s interesting that it seems like everyone really stepped away from it all during the time off.  Only two trades were completed during the four day hiatus.  Friday and Saturday things picked right back up though.  Maybe, like VictoriaB, everyone was sitting in the corner rocking and crying while they waited for baseball to return.  Let’s take a look at those trades and what else happened in RCLs in the shortened week that was, week 15.

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Happy All Star Break my fellow RCLers.  The Razzball Commenter Leagues can take a toll on your time, you social life and your personal hygiene.  I hope you’ve used the break to take a shower, get out of your sweat pants and get reacquainted with your roommates, also known as, your family.  They’ve missed you.  Spend a moment and remind them that you are in fact, alive and well and that you haven’t been held against your will for the past 14 weeks in an old abandoned mine in the local woods.  In fact, you’ve just been winning fantasy baseball leagues.  You know, just like you idol, Grey Albright.  Speaking of Grey, he made a big splash in the top 10 overall this week and there is a new overall leader in the Master Standings.  Is it Grey?  Is it a robot?  The suspense is killing you, I know.  Check out this and other RCL drama in the week that was, week 14:

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Happy post-4th of July Razzball Commenter Leaguers!  Is it odd that this is the only holiday we refer to by the date?  Sure, it’s really “Independence Day”, but no one calls it that.  I suppose there is Cinco de Mayo, but that feels different.  Just a random thought.  This week not only marks the birthday of our fine U.S. of A., but more importantly, marks the halfway point of the fantasy baseball season!  We just finished week 13 and there are exactly 13 weeks remaining.  While we typically use the All Star Break to mark the unofficial halfway point, this week is the real deal.  If you were exactly on pace with your games started, you would have 90 on the button.  You can use that as a nice gauge to see if you need to be streaming your buns off the next 13 weeks or if you can chill out a bit and wait for the choice match-ups.  This week, in addition to the weekly leaders we will take a look at our halfway point leaders.  It will be a quick shoutout to those teams that have started hot in each of the roto categories.  Obviously, our team of the halfway point is the leader of our Master Standings.  Is it a human or is it a bot?  Let’s take a look at that and the rest of the week that was week 13 in the Razzball Commenter Leagues:

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I spent the past week vacationing in the armpit of the United States, New Jersey!  I kid, there are actually a few nice spots in New Jersey.  You’ll just have to trust me.  It’s Grey’s old stomping ground, so you could say, I spent the week in the birthplace of Razzball.  As I’m sure everyone who is hyper-competitive in the Razzball Commenter Leagues knows, vacation can really put a damper on your ability to grab players right before and after lineup lock.  It’s the cross we bear.  If there’s anything we’ve talked about ad nauseum, it’s the amount of time required in these daily move leagues.  This is magnified for those of us in multiple RCLs.  So, before setting out on vacation, make sure the wifi is suitable and maybe keep your options open around 7:05 PM EST.  Can we all vent for a moment on the travesty that is the ESPN mobile app as well?  3 or 4G is great and all, but when you can’t even sort pitchers between SP or RP on the app, that’s a problem.  Everything, it seems, takes at least 4 times as long on the app as well.  Oh well, we can hope they get the hint someday and improve that shizzshow.  Until then, keep that laptop handy and those vacations flexible.

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Earned run averages are taking a beating in the Razzball Commenter Leagues this year.  It seems like every week when I run through the weekly data there is a large number of teams with 6+ ERAs for the week.  It makes sense, with MLBers on pace to set another league wide home run record that (mostly) no pitchers are safe.  Where a 3.50 ERA used to mean you were middle of the league, now you could be leading your league with that mark.  The average ERA for the RCLs is a 3.96 right now.  That seems high, in fact, all of these numbers seem high.  So, I compared them to last season’s end of year stats.  The average ERA for the RCLs last season was 3.71.  We haven’t even hit the hot summer months yet when the bats really come alive and we’re already looking at a 0.25 ERA hike.  I can’t be certain, but I wouldn’t expect the end of season ERA to be lower than it is right now.  There are only 117 of our 876 teams (13.35%) with an ERA of 3.50 or lower.  Last season we had nearly double that number to finish the season, 226 of 1020 (22.15%).  The leader in the ERA clubhouse currently is Team Visbisky of league Viz Versus The Commenters with a 2.642 ERA in only 265 IP.  If we were to use my arbitrary weekly cutoff limit of 40 IP for 11 weeks and find a team with 440+ IP, that number jumps to a 2.761 ERA by Guys and Dahls (great team name by the way) of Super League fame.  Interestingly, the current worst team ERA is also from the Super League.  Long Dongs is sporting a 5.576 ERA in 500 IP, good for DFL in the RCLs.  I should also note that 3 of the 4 robot managed teams are currently in the top 100 for ERA, with one checking in at 17th.  So, should we all run out and trade for Clayton Kershaw to offset this high ERA nonsense?  I don’t think so, personally (although, maybe Long Dongs should).  With guys like Jason Vargas and Ervin Santana out there doing their thing and Lance McCullers and Robbie Ray that could likely be had for cheaper, I don’t think Kershaw is necessary.  It might cause you to think about the value of Alex Wood or Jose Berrios a little differently though.  Something to keep in mind, but for the most part, everyone is in the same ERA boat.  Just remember, that 3.70 ERA might not be so bad after all.  More ERA talk and more stats from the week that was, week 11 below:

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I need to rant for a bit.  Can we, as a group, talk about how ridiculous it is that Anthony Rizzo is about to gain 2B eligibility in both ESPN and Y!?  He’s already gained the eligibility in CBS, but who plays there anyway?  If you’re not privy to this info, go check the “ELIGIBILITY” tab on your RCL team page if you’re a Rizzo owner.  I’ve got Rizzo on a couple RCL teams and I even think this is beyond silly, so don’t confuse this with being #notbitter.  This is more about how Joe Maddon is ruining fantasy baseball.  First it was batting Schwarber leadoff and Ben Zobrist at clean-up, now it’s making Javier Baez cover first while Anthony Rizzo perches on the infield grass awaiting a bunt attempt.  This isn’t playing second base, this is fielding a bunt while the second baseman covers first.  I hate every second of this.  Giving Rizzo second base eligibility is the equivalent of instant replay to me.  The game is simple, it’s not meant to be scrutinized down to the last iota.  This seems like a classic case of, “use some common sense”, but that’s just me.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ll be putting Rizzo in my 2B slot here shortly, moving Odor to MI and throwing Whit Merrifield/Tim Anderson/Tim Beckham back into the FA waters, but I’m not going to be happy about it…OK, maybe a little.  I’m still allowed to think it’s silly though.  It’s going to be very strange looking through the RCL teams and seeing Rizzo sitting at 2B, but what an advantage that is for the lucky ones that drafted him.  Thanks for hearing me out, I look forward to chatting with everyone in the comments about this atrocity.  Now, here’s what happened in the Razzball Commenter Leagues in the week that was, week 10:

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No doubt you’ve heard the old expression, “It’s better to be lucky than good”.  Today we’re going to take a look at one of the biggest areas of luck in the RCLs, “win luck”.  There’s no doubt it takes some luck to win a fantasy baseball league.  Injury luck is probably the biggest factor in winning a league.  Mike Trout owners can relate right now I’m sure.  As good a manager as we think we are, if your number one pick goes down for the year, you’re going to be at a disadvantage.  That’s just common sense. “Win luck” is another area that is seemingly out of our control.  Let’s face it, wins are brutal.  I’m a big proponent of the mantra, “Make your own luck” and I certainly think that can be applied to “win luck”.  “Win luck” is a term often tossed around to describe a team that is raking in the wins and/or a team that can’t seem to buy a win (most of my teams this year it seems).  Can you make your own luck in regards to wins?  Of course you can.  You can stream those valuable middle relievers, especially the ones that frequently work multiple innings in the middle of games (Mychal Givens this year is a prime example).  When a lead change occurs, these relievers are typically the benefactors.  It’s no guarantee of course, but it can’t hurt your luck any.  There are other ways to increase your win luck too.  Let’s take a look at another big one as well as who is getting lucky and who got luck this week in the week that was, week 9:

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The humans are making their move now!  Mad Beach Bums (Rakers Nation) continues to put the heat on Rudy Is Snooty and our human hero, Cram It has vaulted up the standings into third overall.  It might be slightly unfair for the robots as Cram It seems to be half human, half Razzball Commenter League machine.  We’re all pulling for you Cram, make us humans proud!  Only two of the four bots remain in the top 10 overall, however, all four remain in the top 20.  Of course, two of those four bots are in the top four overall.  They are the bread to the human sandwich of MBB and Cram.  It was yet another excellent week for our Fantasy Master Lothario, Mr. Grey Albright.  Despite this, he slipped back a spot from 7th overall to 8th overall.  It was a very busy week of trading in the RCLs with a whopping 19 being completed.  Some of the most competitive leagues were very active with three trades being completed in each of the ‘Perts League, ECFBL and DFSers Anonymous.  All this, plus a familiar name makes an appearance as the team of the week.  Come check out this and more in the week that was, week 8:

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Fear not fellow humans!  From the ashes of battle where man matches wits against machine, flesh and bone heros have arisen!  These brave few march onward and upward, pencils sharpened, calculators at the ready and social lives put on hold.  They fight this battle not just for themselves, but for all human fantasy baseballers everywhere.  

The human race has moved into a dead heat atop the Razzball Commenter Leagues Master Standings with the robot army’s very own, Rudy is Snooty.  Despite the fact that Rudy is Snooty has made a whopping 1040 moves to date (no doubt at least 10 more by the time you read this), frequent commenter and fellow RazzNasty & Rio Ruiz Super League leaguemate, Mad Beach Bums (Rakers Nation) has pulled into a Master Standings tie with a mere 74 total moves.  There is hope that a human brain’s ability to add and hold players such as Corey Dickerson is on par with any robot playing the match-ups everyday.  I have had the distinct displeasure of trying to chase down Mad Beach Bums in the Rio Ruiz Super League.  This league was set-up by a man, no stranger to battle himself, the El Presidente of the Crab Army, Prospector Ralph.  Mad Beach Bums drafted exactly ONE starting pitcher in this league, Dylan Bundy.  With that he has now accumulated 58 Games Started, leads the league in ERA and is second in WHIP.  Maybe the Bums are actually part machine themselves.  Do we have a double agent in our midst?  If the Bums do flip we have a trio of human soldiers waiting to do battle with the machines, lurking in the overall top 20.  More on them and the other goings ons in the RCLs in the week that was, week 7:

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 
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