They say baseball is a game of inches. When ‘they’ say that, ‘they’ are wearing a plaid jacket and flood pants. They also have adult acne. But if baseball really is a game of inches, the Tigers are packing heat in their lineup like John Holmes. So, for all other teams’ fans, I ask you gently, Tigers, please don’t have good pitching too. I mean, besides Verlander and Scherzer and Fister and Anibal, because that would just be unfair. Yesterday, it appeared they had that with Rick Porcello. He went eight innings with zero earned runs, four baserunners and 11 Ks. After his eleventh K, the sound system played, “Rick’s a Jolly Porcello.” That is the best game I can remember from Porcello, by far, and I use all of his game logs as toilet paper, so I’d remember. I mean, what else am I doing in the john? Answering comments? Well, maybe. Just keep that in mind when you’re asking me who I’d drop. Porcello’s xFIP looks solid and his walks have always been stellar. The one flaw in his game I didn’t like was his ability to K people. So far this year, his K-rate is up and way up after yesterday. If you’re struggling to find a starter, I could see adding Porcello, but there’s risk because he does tend to have huge blow ups. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
Brandon Morrow – 2 IP, 2 ER and 2 unearned runs. If you’re just joining us…where you been? Sailing around the world in Bermuda shorts? Those must be some big shorts to act like a sail. Well, I won’t hold it against you if you missed the 12 other times I’ve said to drop Morrow in most mixed leagues. He’s now experiencing forearm discomfort and he looks like he’s drinking from the Ricky Romero suck straw.
Casey Janssen – Was unavailable yesterday due to general shoulder soreness. General shoulder soreness usually presides over the air command. I’d grab Delabar if you have room, just in case general shoulder soreness is promoted to Major Shoulder Soreness.
Brett Lawrie – Likely headed back to the DL. He should just add a D to the front of his name so it’s DLawrie and be done with it.
Jose Bautista – 2-for-4, 3 runs and a solo homer, his 12th. He’s now batting .299 on the year. The race for most fantasy value between him and Edwin is heating up on our Player Rater with Edwin edging him, but on our rest of the season projections, Bautista has him beat comfortably. It’s a race for the ages or at least the ages 25 thru 54, according to our analytics.
Paul Maholm – 6 IP, 5 ER, 11 baserunners, 3 Ks. Half of me wants to say you guys had a good run, move on. The Lily Tomlin half of me wants to say he was facing the Blue Jays and no one wants to face them right now.
Andrelton Simmons – 3-for-5, 1 run, and eight for his last fifteen. So far he’s only attempted two steals all year (one success), which comes from a guy who once stole 26 bases in a minor league season. Hey, Andrelton, save the light speed for your spaceship and bring out the full speed.
Corey Hart – He’s not ready for rehab. He said no, no, no.
Jean Segura – 6-for-7, 2 runs. Muah!
Michael Cuddyer – 3-for-4, 1 RBI and his 4th steal, to go along with his 8 homers as he bats .333. I won’t even bother to go over all the guys he’s doing better than, even with the time missed due to an injury, but I’d be happy that he’s Cuddyours.
Matt Dominguez – 0-for-3, but whatever. Just wanted to point out that because of the Hitter-Tron, I grabbed him for his upcoming trip to Coors. I also put lipstick on a leaf blower so the Hitter-Tron could get some action.
Jordan Lyles – 7 IP, 1 ER, 9 baserunners, 3 Ks vs. Jorge de la Rosa with 7 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 4 Ks in an interleague game that reminded us that no matter what league the Astros are in no one cares.
Chris Perez – Was shut down for 5-7 days. Pestano was named the interim closer, but he’s looked bad, so I’d hold Joe Smith. My apologies to the American-Italian Defamation League, please don’t make me grease your hairy palms.
Arodys Vizcaino – Out for the season after having surgery to remove calcium buildup from his right elbow. This is probably caused by drinking milk then laying on your side.
Nate Eovaldi – Hey, it’s Tommy Lasorda’s favorite olive oil. Eovaldi’s set to return to the Marlins’ rotation after missing two months with shoulder inflammation. Keep the gas away from there! As I said in the preseason rankings, “Eovaldi averages a 94 MPH fastball; can touch 98 MPH. An average 94 MPH fastball would’ve been a top five average fastball velocity last year if he had enough innings to qualify. You can teach control, you can teach conditioning and build up stamina, you can’t teach stuff. Eovaldi’s stuff is solid. Though his name backwards is naive.” And that’s me quoting me! I like Eovaldi, though obviously his value takes a bit of a hit on the Marlins for wins, but Crayola Canyon isn’t a bad place to pitch. In deeper mixed leagues, I’d look at him.
Matt Harvey – 8 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 1.85. In the preseason, I said draft Harvey on every one of your teams. How do I not have him on any teams? Not rhetorical. Seriously. I’m crying.
Lucas Duda – 2-for-4, 1 RBI. Second time I’m mentioning him in the last three days. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge, kazoo… Hot schmotato!
Nathan Karns – 4 1/3 IP, 3 ER, 7 baserunners, 3 Ks as the Nationals promoted him. Let’s see what Scott, our prospect writer, said, “Karns returned from labrum surgery last season and proceeded to dominate A-ball: 2.17 ERA, 1.01, 11.5 K/9 in 116 IP between Low- and High-A. At age 24, he was one of the older participants in those leagues, but the health and success over a full season is hugely encouraging. If such production continues at Double-A, Karns will push toward the bigs quickly. A great fastball-curveball combo will draw plenty of whiffs, adding fantasy allure, which is similar to using Grey as bait for a great white shark, but not the same.” Harumph! Karns has been fantastic for strikeouts in the minor leagues, but he’s all over the map with his consistency and control. He could start in the rotation for as long as Detwiler is out, but I’d only look at Karns in NL-Only leagues.
Bryce Harper – Out until Friday with complications from running into the wall. Thankfully, Harper doesn’t play in China!
Danny Espinosa – Aiming to return on Wednesday. Well, when he was asked what day he was returning, he crookedly pointed to a calendar with his broken wrist hand and then a reporter moved the calendar until Wednesday was lined up with Espinosa’s finger.
Jayson Werth – Will start a rehab assignment today. That should speed up the timetable for his next injury.
Adam LaRoche – 2-for-3, 3 runs, 4 RBIs and two homers (his 9th and 10th). LaRoche, LaRoche, porque le falta hitting es fumar.
Clay Buchholz – Cleared to start on Friday. He said that should give him time to get his SPF up to snuff. Then pointed out that was his Squirrel Proof Feeder. He’s doing yard work. What?
Jackie Bradley – Recalled to take over left field. Didja hear about the time he walked three times in one game? Incredible!
Ryan Dempster – 7 IP, 2 ER, 9 baserunners, 4 Ks vs. the Phillies, one of the worst road teams in the majors. Last night, they had Rollins batting third. Hey, I like Rollins a’ight, I even own Rollins in a few leagues, a’ight? But not only is he not a three-hole hitter, but the Phillies really don’t have a better guy for the spot with Utley hurt. Michael Young might make the most sense in that spot, and that’s more of an indictment of the Phillies than a compliment for Young.
Cliff Lee – 8 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 8 Ks, ERA is down to 2.34. You know the NBC call letter chime sound? It’s so peaceful and calming. After The Adverb pitches, they should play that sound on my fantasy team.
Domonic Brown – 1-for-4 with his 11th homer. All he does is hit home runs! No, seriously, I love Brown so much I’m thinking about petitioning Roy G. Biv to get brown into the rainbow, but I’d also love a single and a steal occasionally. I’m greedy, y’all!
Ben Revere – 2-for-5 and his 9th steal. He’s taking SAGNOF to a whole new level with giving absolutely nothing except steals. He has 17 runs and only 5 RBIs with zero homers. Compared to him, Juan Pierre is a BSD, as used in Michael Lewis’s Liar’s Poker.
Jeremy Hellickson – 5 1/3 IP, 5 ER, 8 baserunners, 3 Ks vs. the Marlins. Ah, the ol’ Cleveland Streamer. Marlins are terrible on the road…except when they only take the bus, apparently. Just giving Loria another reason to cost-cut. Soon, the Marlins are going to be four days late for games on cross-country trips.
Desmond Jennings – 3-for-4, 2 runs, 1 RBI. This was his 2nd three-hit game of the year. To abbreviate that for our readers in Africa, he’s Desmond Two-Three.
Kevin Slowey – 5 1/3 IP, 4 ER, 8 baserunners, 4 Ks. Nothing interesting to him, except if you own him, Elmer Fudd would say your team is Very Very Slowey.
Mike Dunn – Got the blown save and loss when Chad Qualls gave up a hit with Dunn’s baserunners on. That’s one way to edge your name up on the closer chain in Miami. Oh, who am I kidding, the Marlins don’t get save opportunities.
Marcell Ozuna – 2-for-3, 3 runs, hitting .316. He’s now hit in 13 straight games with no homers and one steal, so it’s good, but slightly yawnstipating.
Chris Coghlan – 2-for-4 with a homer and is hitting over .300 in the last week. All right, fine, the Marlin bats are hot right now, don’t make me say it… Okay, he’s a hot schmotato!
Michael Morse – Day-to-day with a strained quad. I once strained pasta, but a quad? What are these people doing?
Kevin Gausman – 4 IP, 7 ER. Sometimes you hit gold with rookie pitchers, sometimes the gold hits you, knocks you out and you wake in a dungeon wearing a bikini made of Marshmallow Fluff. Really has no bearing on his future outlook, or no baring if you’re a prude. If you remember, Kershaw was the dog’s breakfast when he was first called up. Obviously, you can lose Gausman until he straightens out his shizz.
Chris Davis – 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 17th homer. But he made two outs, right? See?!
J.J. Hardy – 3-for-4 and his 10th homer, as he hits .250. If he can keep his average up to .250, he would have nice value this year. Cust kayin’.
Aaron Hill – Cleared for baseball activities. Bring on the spitting and ball scratching!
Xavier Paul – 3-for-4, 1 run, 2 RBIs. X-Man cometh! X-Man platoonth! X-Man not have great mixed league valueth!
Zack Cozart – 3-for-5, run, RBI and hitting near .400 in the last week from Cozart. That’s enough to make Salieri jealous.
Oscar Taveras – Hit the Triple-A DL with an ankle injury. Still have never heard of anyone having a cankle injury. You messed up God!
Tyler Lyons – 7 IP, 1 ER, 3 baserunners, 5 Ks. Gausman comes up with all kinds of hype and barfs on your baseball card collection and Lyons comes up with a 4+ ERA in Triple-A and pitches lights out. Go figure with your abacus. Next, Lyons gets the Giants, not the Tigers or Cubbies, which are little bears, oh my! I’d gamble on Lyons in some leagues for that Giants start. The one thing that is really appealing with him is his command, so the worst case scenario shouldn’t be that bad. Then again, Gausman has good control…
Matt Carpenter – 2-for-3, 2 runs and a slam (4) & legs (1). It’s been 340 days since his last steal. There’s 340 days in the Japanese school year. The Japanese word for carpenter is daiku. That’s written with the characters that look like ‘a man in love with outstretched arms’ and the letter I. I’m not Japanese and I don’t love Carpenter. See, how that works?
Carlos Beltran – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 11th homer, and Matt Holliday also homered. His 7th homer. Beltran has 31 RBIs to Holliday’s 29, and Beltran is beating him in average by 36 points. Though, Holliday has a five round preseason reach on Beltran.
Joba Chamberlain – Activated from the DL. The guy who just woke from a four-year coma is really excited.
Mariano Rivera – Blew his first save, and for the first time in his career he blew a save without recording an out. Hey, even (fill-in deity of choice) made the platypus.
David Price – Threw for the 2nd day in a row and told reporters “all went well.” Ain’t you all chipper and shizz? Get back on the mound if it “all went well” and stop making me run guys out there like Jerome Williams. Stream-o-Nator, “I like Jerry Williams for his next start.” You starting Jerry in your league? *Stream-o-Nator slowly backs out of the room*
Jake Odorizzi – Optioned to Triple-A. Him and Gausman should be a painful reminder of why rookie pitchers are very dangerous… Any hoo! Chris Archer could be called up to take Odorizzi’s spot in the rotation. If you remember, Archer was the guy I originally wanted to be called up to replace Price. He has lights out stuff and is worth gambling on in most mixed leagues if he does get the call. Of course, Odorizzi, Part Douche could happen.
Jedd Gyorko – 1-for-3, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 6th homer as he bats .270. I’m getting way too many questions about dropping Gyorko or picking him up. He’s on pace for 20 homers. You have him at MI. What do you want at MI? Only one person can have Kelly Johnson.
Neil Walker – 3-for-5, with his 3rd homer and 1st steal. After doing a whole lot of nothing for the first two months, it looks like Walker is finally starting to pick up the pace. Neil Runner, if you will.
Hyun-Jin Ryu – 9 IP, 0 ER, 2 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA down to 2.89. Another guy I loved in the preseason that I don’t own anywhere. This one is because Rudy kept telling me Ryu may not even make the rotation. *shakes fist at a Soul Glo commercial* Rudy!
Matt Kemp – 1-for-2 as he was moved to the five hole, then left after being hit by a pitch on his elbow. Hey, at least he’s making contact again!