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Closer news, closer news… We need a musical about fantasy baseball, sorta like Newsies, but with a little Book of Mormon thrown in.  Perhaps a musical adventure of sonnets and mignonettes by Stephen Sondheim.  Come on, everybody loves a musical… he, no.  Okay, it’s just me then.  So drafting season is here, it’s the first and last time you will see over 20% of the guys drafting in your league until… well, never.  Ahh, the internet and its anonymity. So with the games in the land of koala bears and oil cans happening this weekend, baseball is here.  Officially.  I have confirmed with multiple sources and gave them credit for groundbreaking stuff via twitter.  So the week before the fake regular season I have 4 questions that we still need answers to, or was just wondering in my own stoned malaise.

  • The closing situation in Texas– is Neftali Feliz really who is going to be closing out games in Arlington?  I mean Ronnie Wash is sketchy at trusting people, we don’t need to re-hash old situations, but just trust me.  Feliz hasn’t looked fantastic at all in ST.  ST means diddly, I get it, but a pitcher coming back from injury and not being good is bad? Correct or did I just go cross-eyed?  Joakim Soria has to be a factor in Texas just like General Santa Anna.  Handcuff a must here, if you’re drafting one you have to draft both.
  • I am from the NY area, and is it making any other Yankee fan nervous that David Robertson has basically been given the keys to a Ferrari that was basically driven by Richard Petty previously?  There is no oohh, I don’t think he can do it, or at least I am not hearing it.  What’s the fallback option if he can’t get it done.  Matt Thornton? Shawn Kelley? I mean, that doesn’t get me too comfy.  Draft cautiously with D-Rob, because the numbers are saying he could but I would want him as a 2nd option not a first just yet.
  • Read a report that the Reds want to get more  multiple innings appearances this year out of Aroldis Chapman.  If this happens, and say he gets an additional 20 innings over what he has averaged the past 2 years is just a shade over 60.  His K total could and will approach 130.  That’s more than a lot of lower level SP that we stream and roster. Aroldis looking up Kimbrel’s dress right now but I think it may be changing soon. Unless Dusty comes back and ruins everything.
  • It’s not an if,but when Rex Brothers goes all Louisiana Purchase on LaTroy Hawkins and rides of into the fantasy sunset with Sacajawea.  I think that’s how history went.  Any the Pooh, Rex is the one we want and is being drafted as such, a whole 3 rds earlier than the crypt keeper know as LaHawk.  Unfortunately, Walt Weiss likes old dudes and remembers when Hawkins was nice to him in the 18th century.  It’s going to happen, so if you wanna pounce early in the year on an owner hating life that he has Rex.  You have the go ahead from me.

So there you have it four things to make you go hmmm this week.  Have any others you would like to share by all means be my guest and put it the comments.

 

$12 Salads

You know that restaurant your girlfriend/wife/what-have-you likes to go to that charges, like, $12 for a salad? Every time you go there, you have a thoroughly solid meal. No complaints, except you just paid $12 for a salad when you could’ve went to McDonald’s and stuffed you and your woman for ten schmools and had $2 in quarters left over to make the hotel bed vibrate. These closers are $12 salads.

1. Craig Kimbrel  - (Jordan Walden, David Carpenter, Luis Avilan)

2. Aroldis Chapman - (J.J. Hoover, Sean Marshall, Sam LeCure)

3. Kenley Jansen - (Brian Wilson, Chris Perez, Paco Rodriguez)

4. Greg Holland – (Luke Hochevar, Aaron Crow, Tim Collins)

5. Trevor Rosenthal – (Seth Maness, Kevin Seigrist, Jason Motte)

6. Koji Uehara – (Edward Mujica, Junichi Tazawa)

7. Joe Nathan – (Bruce Rondon, Joba Chamberlain, Ian Krol)

8. Glen Perkins – (Jared Burton, Caleb Theibar, Michael Tonkin)

 

DonkeyCorns

Imagine you’re following a donkey, who’s wearing a wool cap, through a desert for 1700 miles. Why are you following a donkey? Because he promises you something wonderful and you just need to trust him. Does the donkey talk? Yes. Yes, he does talk. So when you and the donkey in the wool cap arrive at his destination, he removes the wool cap to reveal a horn. The donkey is a unicorn and his gift to you for your trust is saves. These closers are Donkeycorns.

9. Sergio Romo – (Santiago Casilla, Jeremy Affeldt, George Kontos)

10. Grant Balfour – (Heath Bell, Joel Peralta, Jake McGee)

11. Casey Janssen – (Sergio Santos, Steve Delabar, Brett Cecil)

12. David Robertson – (Shawn Kelley, Matt Thornton)

13. Ernesto Frieri – (Joe Smith, Dane de la Rosa)

14. Jim Johnson – (Ryan Cook, Sean Doolittle, Luke Gregerson)

15. Rafael Soriano – (Tyler Clippard, Drew Storen)ax

16. Fernando Rodney – (Danny Farquhar, Tom Wilhelmsen)

17. Jonathon Papelbon – (Antonio Bastardo, Brad Lincoln)

18. Jason Grilli – (Mark Melancon, Tony Watson, Vin Mazzaro)

19. Steve Cishek – (A.J. Ramos, Mike Dunn, Carter Capps)

20. Addison Reed – (J.J. Putz, Brad Zielger, David Hernandez)

21. Jim Henderson – (Brandon Kintzler, Rob Wooten)

22. Huston Street – (Joaquin Benoit, Dale Thayer)

 

Brain Freezes

I’m going on a picnic and I’m bringing apples, bananas and Carlos Marmol– Wait, he just gave up 12 earned runs and hit Castro in the head with a pick-off throw. Brain freeze! Make it stop! Use the following closers at your own risk.

23. John Axford - (Cody Allen, Vinnie Pestano)

24. Neftali Feliz - (Tanner Scheppers, Joakim Soria)

25. Tommy Hunter – (Darren O’Day, Ryan Webb, Brad Brach)

26. Bobby Parnell – (Victor Black, Gonzalez Germen, Scott Rice)

27. Nate Jones – (Matt Lindstrom, Daniel Webb, Ronald Belisario)

28. LaTroy Hawkins – (Rex Brothers, Adam Ottavino, Matt Belisle)

29. Jose Veras – (Pedro Strop, James Russell, Blake Parker)

30. Josh Fields – (Chad Qualls, Jesse Crain)

From Around The Web

  1. yoDawg says:
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    Hochevar is out. Collins is not a handcuff…just pretty much a MR. I would say it’s either Crow or Herrerra if Mr. Holland gives up too much OPS.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @yoDawg: good catch. In the event of a holland meltdown Herrera gets first shot. Collins is very underrated though don’t dismiss him as just a mr.

      • Furious says:
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        @Smokey: I would say Wade Davis has an outside shot as well. Ned Yost seems to old school to me to give Collins a chance to close since he doesn’t “look” like a closer.

        • Furious says:
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          @Furious: too old school. Ugh, I should proofread my comments.

  2. Jonathan says:
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    Are you guys going to produce a Mobile app for razzball?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Jonathan: don’t know Jay or grey or somebody up the food chain would know better.

    • Principle Blackman says:
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      @Jonathan: I seem to recall there being a Razzball fantasy football mobile app once upon a time way back when. I don’t think it worked super well, but my memory is hazy.

      • Opal says:
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        @Spyre: You know there’s a link at the bottom of the site for the mobile view, right?

  3. Fungazi says:
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    No worries about dead arm Balfour?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Fungazi: not yet. Better to have it now then mid season.

  4. Glenn says:
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    Josh Fields went undrafted in my league, just curious, are you sure he’s the Astro’s closer?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Glenn: it’s him and Qualls neck and neck and won’t be many opps to fight over. Fields is worth a roster spot if ya have room though.

      • Glenn says:
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        Thanks Smokey.

  5. MB says:
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    What about Perkins and Romo, no worries about their terrible springs?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @MB: both have the job until the games actually mean something.

    • Beardcrabs says:
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      @MB: romo isn’t throwing his slider yet…

      • Smokey

        Smokey says:
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        @Beardcrabs: very true. Great name

  6. Yescheese says:
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    You guys Hedging on Santos with the Casey Janssen news?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Yescheese: santos is def the cuff. Followed by Delabar as of right now

  7. Goose says:
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    Any news from DET camp on who’s gonna be their 8th inning guy?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Goose: Looking like All Al is the guy. Evan Reed is a nice sleeper there to keep an eye on.

  8. Justin says:
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    Any updates from CHW? Where should we be targetting Jonesy?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Justin: draftable anywheres after pick 200 or depending on draft flow. He just pitched a scoreless inning returning from his injured bum

  9. Shake N Bacon says:
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    I just dropped Heath Bell for Daniel Webb. Not sure why, but I have a feeling Webb gets some saves this year and has enough K’s to make him a valuable RP to have on my team in RCL. I know Nate Jones is a stud, but seeing as the White Sox are most likely going to be mediocre this year, I could see them trading Jones for some prospects by the trading deadline.

    Would you rather have Bell or Webb if you had to choose?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Shake N Bacon: I love Webb this year and think he gets his chance if something goes wrong with Nate. I don’t think they trade Nate but Kenny Williams is a whack job.

      • Shake N Bacon says:
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        @Smokey: I’m glad you’re high on Webb…see what I did there?

        I feel better with him on my team instead of Bell. Bell might get some saves but he may also jack up ratios a little too.

        • Smokey

          Smokey says:
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          @Shake N Bacon: Insee what you did there, very impressed. Bell just screams meh.

          • Shake N Bacon says:
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            @Smokey: I think Bell is the next face for Nutri-System.

            • Smokey

              Smokey says:
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              @Shake N Bacon: he already takes all the before pictures for p90x

              • Shake N Bacon says:
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                @Smokey: Pretty soon he won’t need an MLB contract with all the sponsorships he’ll have.

      • white sox guy says:
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        @Smokey: kenny williams doesnt make roster decision any longer so the notion that its kenny making these “whacky” moves isnt true… the real general manager rick hahn wont be trading nate jones and webb is a wasted add. jones or lindstrom all season long.

  10. Kumquat Man says:
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    No worries about Casey Janssen?

    • Kumquat Man says:
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      @Kumquat Man: Oops, didn’t read the above comments

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Kumquat Man: threw bullpen Saturday and was scheduled for one today. I’m not too concerned yet but If shoulder lingers in a week 10 days then all hands on Santos.

  11. William in CA says:
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    Ferrari and Richard Petty?

    Aren’t you mixing Formula 1 and Nascar there?

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @William in CA: totally am. But if I said a Toyota Camry, dodge charger or ford fusion it would have given Mo a great disservice.

  12. costaricanchata says:
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    come on .
    this is your column now .
    bring something different to that picnic .

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @costaricanchata: got something new but saving it for when season starts.

      • costaricanchata says:
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        @Smokey:

        nice ,
        time for a change .

  13. AL KOHOLIC says:
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    great work,thanks,its getting draft time,and i need all the help i can get

  14. Shawn of the livid says:
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    Nice article smokey. BUT! I just have to say you’re wrong on D.Robertson and N.Jones. They both have the kind of talent that is needed in the closer spot. They are both solid strikeout pitchers that should do well in the closer role. But hey, I can agree to disagree, I look forward to the inevitable future donkeycorn or $12 salad ranking of both of them come mid season :) Thanks for the good read!

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Shawn of the livid: i just have NATE JONES so low because of new to the gig and the ehh-ness so far in ST. I am a fan of his work and can see him as a top 15-18 guy quickly. Robertson is more of a what if he can’t kinda deal.

  15. Robby D says:
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    I think the buzz around STL is that Maness is nowhere near next in Line. Siegrist is for sure next in line and until he’s officially made a starter (Kelly is not pitching well in ST) Martinez is the 2nd guy in line until Motte is back. Maness is behind that.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Robby D: I agree Seigrist is second, flipped those somehow. C-Mart is going to be starting. He has allowed 5 hits in 10 innings and Mathemy has said he has looked phenomenal this Spring.

  16. Shawn of the livid says:
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    If Rex does get the call, where would he fall in your rankings?

  17. JFK says:
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    In a saves/holds league, I had to go with value by giving up Latroy Hawkins/Luke Gregorson/Sean Doolittle for Jayson Werth, leaving me with Kenley/Rosenthal/Jim Henderson for saves and Crain/Santos for holds and speculative saves.

    Which two do you like best of this group for holds: Herrera, McGee, Qualls, Collmenter, Bruce Rondon, Machi, Alex Torres?

    Thanks!

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @JFK: good trade. Herrera , McGee

      • JFK says:
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        @Smokey: Sweet, thanks!

  18. Beastman says:
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    Thanks Smokey, as usual, you’ve “lit up” the closer scene. Always look forward to this and your holds/MR posts.

    Aside from general concerns about every closer, you have any doubts that Kenley can hold on to the job all year? Wilson a dark horse to take over if Kenley falters? I can keep him in a 5 keeper, deep 16 team H2H for only $5, but would have to toss back other solid guys.

    Other potential keepers (aside from Kenley) would be Jones $25, Desmond $7, Donaldson $2, Gyorko $12, Hosmer $25, Bailey $9. Can only keep 5.

    Ugh I hate these questions but here I am asking one.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Beastman: top 3 closer with crazy K potential. With guys you have listed I can’t see him fitting in there. Even at 25 I’d still take Hosmer.

      • Beastman says:
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        @Smokey: Thanks for the input. It’ll prob come down to Hosmer and Kenley. Can’t decide if I want Hosmer or not, stuck in the mindset of a 1B delivering 25+ HRs, 100 RBIs, and no speed. This league counts SV+HLD, so I could go upside middle relievers and low-end closers if I kept Hosmer.

        • Smokey

          Smokey says:
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          @Beastman: with 5keepers per team the amount of quality 1b is limited I’m assuming while the closer crowd is going to be more populated.

          • Beastman says:
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            @Smokey: Yeah limited 1B, although having no CI helps. 3 RP per team, but being able to use MRs for holds is a godsend. $260 league, Votto, Fielder, Miggy, Davis, and Goldy will all go in the $45 to $55 range if not kept, making a $25 Hosmer appealing.

      • Smokey

        Smokey says:
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        @Big Magoo: straight nasty

        • Beastman says:
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          @Smokey: Float like a butterfly, sting like a giant asian wasp. How can I pass that up?!

  19. JimSlim says:
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    12 team weekly league and I have Soria, Veras, Grilli & Meloncon. You think I’m good there? Should I keep the Pitt crew? We score k/9 in the league instead of K. Thanks Smokey

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @JimSlim: is it saves and holds or purely saves. If just saves your decent with a lot of questionable guys that may be replaced. K/9 your middle of the road.

      • JimSlim says:
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        @Smokey It’s saves only. I grabbed meloncon last pick since Grilli was coming back from injury. Should I drop him? maybe for strop? Not another closer out there, might look to see if I could get a not-quite-a-donkeycorn. For Pineda

        • Smokey

          Smokey says:
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          @JimSlim: nah melancon is still a contributor

  20. Sick McNasty says:
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    Who are your top 10 holds guys? or can you point me in the direction of a write-up? You’re my relief pitcher authority Smokey!

  21. Principle Blackman says:
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    Smokey, I have a weird question for ya. I’m in a league where you have to start one closer and one MR. The roster is retroactively set every two weeks, and there is no waiver wire. In order to be eligible for the MR position a reliever can have accrued no more than 2 saves over the course of the 2 week period. So that said, who would be your top middle relief targets who don’t appear likely to be closing games this year. It’s a points league, so blown saves count negatively, and high Ks & low BBs are obviously preferable. I’m thinking someone like Gausman fits the bill pretty well, but if he ends up starting that comes back to bite me. I appreciate any helpful suggestions, good sir.

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @Principle Blackman: think anyone that has a stout closer. Weird format for me to think off the fly.

      • Principle Blackman says:
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        @Smokey: Yeah, it is a strange format, not one I’m really used to. It’s a really typically unconsidered class of pitchers from a fantasy perspective. Thanks for your input though.

  22. Simply Fred

    simply fred says:
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    Bet you personally moved Chapman up two rounds in RCL drafts with the extra 20-inning tickler… :-)

    • Smokey

      Smokey says:
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      @simply fred: not me never.

  23. Titan says:
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    Thanks Smokey

    I’d love to see your ranking of the guys in () in this list.

    Factoring in projected K/9, ERA, and WHIP only (not who has the best chance to vulture wins/saves or who will get the most holds).

    Maybe you could throw your top 5 at me?

  24. Dave F says:
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    I play in a league with holds, how do I best evaluation which of the “#2s” in the bullpen should get the most?

Comments are closed.