I hate early drafts. There’s absolutely no skill involved in drafting on March 3rd and avoiding Ian Desmond due to a broken hand that hasn’t happened yet. It’s like not getting on a subway car and you end up marrying a Cougar vs. Coldplay’s Chris Martin and you keep forgetting your Apple ID so you can’t download a song you really want to hear vs. getting free iPhones hand-delivered by Bono. Admittedly, I never saw the movie, Sliding Doors, but I picture the plot being something like that. I want to marry Chris Martin and get iBonos! Man, this effin’ sucks. Looks like I’m going to have to battle just a wee bit harder in Yahoo’s Friends & Family draft where I took Desmond. *cries uncontrollably* But I don’t want to battle harder! The tears running down my face have fallen onto my desk and are spelling out, “Why can’t you have anything mice?” Mice? What the hell are you talking about tears? I’ve updated my top 20 overall, top 100 and my top 60 outfielders. The Fantasy Baseball War Room is updated, and, since Mark Reynolds will be the Rockies’ 1st baseman, I’ve updated the top 20 1st basemen. Anyway, here’s what else I saw in spring training for fantasy baseball:
Psyche! Before getting into the post, just wanted to announce JB’s doing a March Madness tourney. Click it and join and win and have fun and–I’m out of breath, so I’m gonna stop there. Anyway II, the roundup:
Jason Kipnis – Will miss Opening Day with a rotator cuff injury. Terry Francona said, “Kipnis is getting better and nothing went haywire.” Is it me or do managers talk like they’re in the 1940’s? “All these newfangled buttons on the iPhone! Just give me a clubhouse phone and Andrew Miller and I’ll be a-okay. Unless I’m facing dem newfangled Dominican players. Consarnit! That Nelson Cruz jumping-jack-frass’d that ball to kingdom come! Now, someone get me my Pall Malls!” That’s Jim Leyland after the U.S.-Dominican game this past weekend. Now Nelson Cruz could live in the Sandals’ Punta Cana resort for the rest of his life without paying any resort fee. I’m talking free bags of plantain chips! Any hoo! I lowered Kipnis in my top 20 2nd basemen for 2017 fantasy baseball and my top 100 for 2017 fantasy baseball, my top 500 (clickbait, snitches!) and I’d be wary about drafting him.
Devon Travis – Dealing with issues from his arthroscopic surgery on his knee. A’la Henny Youngman, Travis said, “I want to take a knee…just not the one I have.” I haven’t moved Travis in my rankings, but this news obviously doesn’t instill me with a ton of confidence.
Anthony DeSclafani – Feeling renewed soreness in his elbow which is the precursor for, “Would you like me to bring the catsup? What? Yes, I used to play major league baseball. Oh, crap, is that you Zack Cozart?” I’ve updated my top 100 starters and pitchers’ pairing draft tool.
Michael Conforto – Bonus content! I wrote a Conforto sleeper post back in December, but then Conforto seemed headed to the minors to start this year, so I never posted it. Now it appears like he will break camp with the club, so here’s what I had written, “Stop being so hard on your players, Mets fans. So, Michael Conforto hit .100 for, like, three months. You can’t blame him for that. It’s the Curse of the Mets Can’t Have Anything Nice. Until there’s a 30-for-30 about the Curse of the Mets Can’t Have Anything Nice, you won’t believe me, I know. It’s real though. In 1987, Lenny Dykstra was on a three-day bender, he DUI’d into three trees in three days. On the third bender, as he stumbled away from his one-day-old Mercedes, he unknowingly walked under a ladder where two construction walkers were discussing the supernatural occult movie, Angel Heart. Seismically nothing more needed to happen, they were cursed. Or maybe you can blame Conforto since he’s total garbage vs. lefties. How’s ever, Grandy, Asdrubal, Jose Reyes, David Wright, Jay Bruce, d’Arnaud and Neil Walker. How’s that sound? Like a solid 2010 team? Does Conforto have a chance to crack that top seven? If he can’t, he doesn’t deserve to be in the major leagues, which, if recent memory serves, he didn’t last year. Okay, onto positives. If he qualified last year, he would’ve had the 14th best Hard Contact rate about the same as Kris Bryant. For those not in the know, it’s hard to find a weak sista in the Hard Contact Rate top 15. Some hit everything hard or hit nothing, such as Chris Carter. If Conforto gets back to his solid plate discipline he displayed prior to last year, all or nothing shouldn’t be an issue for Conforto. He’s more of a .270 hitter than the .220 he hit last year. The splits do have me a bit worried, but if he sits vs. 100% of tough lefties and faces another 50% of weak lefties, I’d take the 75 AB deduction assuming it leaves him with a bump in average. To double back to Hard Contact, he’d have the lowest BABIP aside from Bautista and Carter in the top 15, and only fourth lowest in the top 40. Pure logic tells us if you hit the ball hard, you should not have a low BABIP. A higher BABIP and he doesn’t hit .220 again. Conforto also had the lowest line drive rate in that top 15, tied with Bautista. Somewhere along the line, Conforto’s main objective, to pound line drives back up the middle, got away from him. He’s young, shizz J.A. Happens. Can’t write off Conforto because of one lousy slump. Or Can’tforto, if you like. By May, Conforto could be the Mets’ three-hole hitter.” And that’s me quoting me that you never read before! I still don’t see the everyday at-bats, but he should be ranked and projected in my top 500. For 2017, I’ll gave him the projections of 51/18/58/.261/3 in 412 ABs and added him in my top 100 outfielders.
Pedro Alvarez – Signed a deal with the Orioles. Just about the worst place for Alvarez. One thing the Orioles don’t need is another station-to-station, three-run homer guy. Somewhere, The Ghost of Earl Weaver is smiling, though that might be because an umpire ghost just stepped in front of a ghost bus. I haven’t moved Alvarez in my top 5 DHs but that’s because they’re all kinda garbage from Alvarez down.
David Price – Threw in a cage and has full range of motion in his elbow, i.e., he’s still not someone I’d draft but he can now start the wave.
Scott Kazmir – Won’t pitch in a game for a week. His mechanics are a mess, he’s injured and he’s behind schedule. In other words, everything’s per usual for Kazmir.
Corey Seager – Suddenly no one knows when Seager’s going to return, and it’s not a back injury but an oblique injury. Damn, I really wish I wrote a schmohawk post on Seager, he really feels headed that way, and I am not drafting him unless he falls.
Salvador Perez – Inflammation on his knee after Drew Butera steamrolled him at the plate. It was like the immovable object meeting the barely running object that is fat AF. Perez should return in a week, and I haven’t moved him, but wouldn’t draft him anyway.
Max Scherzer – Might miss Opening Day as he works his way back from a stress fracture of his ring finger. Funny, I get stressed by just looking at my ring finger. Scherzer and I are so simpatico. In order to return, Scherzer needed to modify his fastball using now a three-fingered grip. “I never had problems throwing a fastball, though Paper, Rock, Scissors was a challenge.” That’s Three-Finger Brown. I haven’t adjusted Scherzer’s rankings, but I was already much lower on him and never planned on drafting him.
Zack Greinke – Showing diminished velocity, topping out at 89 MPH on his fastball. He said, “It is what it is. It’s still early and it’s not like some crazy, crazy thing. But it’s not ideal, either.” Oddly enough, he threw a fastball before he started talking and finished his thought before the ball reached home plate. I’m not moving Greinke down in my rankings, but he’s headed for a worse year than last year and last year he had a 4.37 ERA.
Socrates Brito – Underwent surgery on his dislocated finger. Socrates can’t locate his finger because all he wears are togas and they have no pockets. “Where’d I put that thing down?!”