On Saturday, Jon Lester threw a gem: 8 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners, 15 Ks. Such a gem that if that were a blood diamond, diplomats from Monrovia would be lined up in the streets of Liberia for a taste of that. If that were an emerald, friends of Dorothy would stand outside of Ricky Martin’s hotel for weeks just for the chance he forgoes the hotel buffet and wants to eat out. If that were a ruby, it would stand outside a Dallas police station to cover any possible conspiracies and add fuel to other conspiracies. Lester has pitched spectacularly so far, and it’s not a product of luck. His 10.7 K/9 and 1.8 BB/9 are elite. Those are fantasy ace numbers. His fastball doesn’t have renewed life, if anything he’s lost something on it. What appears to be the biggest difference is he’s almost completely abandoned his changeup and throwing his cutter a bit more. Since he’s always been good for 200 innings and has had huge success before, I’m willing to say he will hold the improvements to his rates and be an extremely reliable starter. Likely in the top 15 for the year. Yeah, he looks damn good. I want some, purdy puhlease. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:
Psyche! Prior to getting into the world’s longest roundup, I just wanted to say there’s a big announcement coming at 9 AM PST. It is not Razzball Radio related, but that does start tonight. Anyway II, the roundup:
Aaron Loup – The Blue Jays decided to remove Sergio Santos from the closer role and go with the committee of Loup, Brett Cecil and Steve Delabar. It’s a fluid shituation like twenty minutes after you drink tap water in Mexico. Speaking of which, did I ever tell you about the time I did a 50-mile bicycle race from Rosarito to Ensenada in Mexico? Five miles in, dying from heat and exhaustion, going straight up for miles — who knew Mexico had mountains? — and then I get to a small village where there’s Mexicans on the side of the road holding out Dixie Cups of water. Only issue is, you can’t drink water in Mexico. Tough to do a bike race when the only thing you can drink is tequila. I made it about seven miles until I fell over drunk and took a cab the rest of the way. Good times! I’d pick up Delabar, Cecil, Loup, in that order, but it could go any number of ways. This does make holding Casey Janssen on your DL much more appealing since he should be back in about two weeks.
Brandon Morrow – For those that had 27 1/3 IP in their pool for how long Morrow would last this year, you’re wasting your psychic abilities on random baseball predictions. How about you pick lottery numbers or something? Speaking of which, don’t you ever wonder why psychics are sitting in their storefronts with no customers? If they were psychics wouldn’t they only open up when they had a customer? With Morrow likely done for the year, drum roll please… Marcus Stroman was called up! I have no idea where I heard his name before. Oh, I know! I just told you to pick him up on Friday. That’s right! Prescient isn’t just a word you need Dictionary.com to spell! Everything holds in my post, except the Jays called him up to be in the bullpen, but that will only last for about a week or two. I’d grab him in all leagues now.
Dustin McGowan – 7 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 5 Ks Way to play along with the whole ‘you needing to be bumped to the bullpen so Stroman can get into the rotation’ thing! Thanks, McGowan! Don’t worry, McGowan isn’t good and his true colors will shine through so don’t be afraid to let them show.
Melky Cabrera – 3-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 6th homer. A website popped up this weekend designed by Celky Mabrera talking about Melky for the All-Star Game. I think Celky might be onto something.
Edinson Volquez – 5 IP, 6 ER vs. the Blue Jays. You remember those TV specials about magicians giving away their secrets and the magician was always in shadows with his voice modulated? Well, Dwayne Murphy had his voice disguised and gave away the secrets to Ray Searage.
Cole Hamels – Missed yesterday’s start with the flu. Givenchy!
Roberto Hernandez – 7 1/3 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners, 3 Ks as he outpitched Gio Gonzalez (7 1/3 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 7 Ks) for real baseball but not so much for fantasy, which is all we care about. Eat a Josh Reddick, Murray Chass!
A.J. Pierzynski – 2-for-4 and his 3rd homer. Sonava-not-picked-up! I had to drop Yan Gomes because he went to go watch something come out of his wife’s vagina with a group of strangers — think it’s called childbirth — and I almost picked up Pierzynski, but went Derek Norris instead. This is interesting to no one but me, and only marginal for me. Let’s move on!
John Lackey – 6 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners, 4 Ks. Now that’s more like a yawnstipating start that I expect from Lackey, as he went against Sonny Gray and his line of 6 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners, 3 Ks. Shizz on a Chick-O-Stick, that’s yawnstipating too. But Gray still has a 1.91 ERA to Lackey’s 3.72 ERA, so there. Well, Lackey’s peripherals actually look better than Gray. Shut up, Random Italicized Voice, I’m blissfully unaware! I’d say.
Jim Johnson – 1 2/3 IP, 0 ER. He’s now thrown almost a month of scoreless innings (12 1/3 IP), and looks like the easy favorite for the next save chance in Oakland.
Josh Reddick – One Johnson that’s not doing as well is this Reddick. He left yesterday’s game with an ankle injury and is day-to-day.
C.J. Cron – Prospect Scott just went over his C.J. Cron fantasy. Here’s the gist, “Cron can mash. He established his power potential in 2012 at High-A, hitting 27 homers in 129 games. Then last season, he followed that effort with a puzzling 14 HR year at Double-A Arkansas, causing many to cool at the idea of Cron as an everyday 1B at the highest level. The pop appears to have returned in 2014, though: Through 28 games at Triple-A Salt Lake, Cron slugged .602 with 6 HR. At least for the short-term, there’s opportunity for the 24-year-old to earn regular plate appearances from the middle of the LA order. The upside in his stick is worth the gamble in deep leagues, especially if you’re hurting at CI.” And that’s me gisting Scott! Scott finished up the post with, “And Grey sucks.” Dah! Cron should see some playing time, and can supplant Ibanez at DH, but it won’t be a given with The Sciosciapath.
David Freese – Hit the DL with a fractured middle finger. This will be the point in the Angels program where they realize what any fantasy owner of Freese over the last few years could’ve told them: they never needed Freese to begin with. Mini Mini Donkey should get an uptick in playing time. I like to pronounce uptick like ‘up-teak.’ For now Stewart, is simply an AL-Only flyer.
Hishashi Iwakuma – 6 2/3 IP, 4 ER, 7 baserunners, 3 Ks with the Conshellation prize. There’s positives to take away from his start. Well, one big positive is he was pitching in a major league game and not rehabbing. Ask Taijuan Walker’s owners how much they’d like that positive. Another positive is one of the runs was charged to him but given up by Dominic Leone, who was supposed to put a hit on people but got it backwards.
Michael Saunders – 2-for-5, 1 run, 1 RBI, hitting .400 in the last week and looks like he’s supplanted Abraham Almonte as the starting center fielder. Hot schmotato alert! (Though his Monday start isn’t great vs. Kazmir.)
Collin McHugh – 4 IP, 5 ER. Ugh, I fell for the banana in the ol’ tailpipe. I forgot Cardinal Rule #1, don’t trust old prospects that come out of nowhere unless they are on the Cardinals. I also forgot Rule #2, if you McHugh’s, you lose.
Alex Presley – 2-for-3, 2 runs and his 3rd homer. Here’s a guy that is only owned in 0.1% of ESPN leagues and I could see him getting hot. I think I’m going to give him a whirl in a few of my leagues as soon as the Astros are done with Scherzer tomorrow. What do you say, Hitter-Tron? “I want to check your car’s oil with my robot dipstick.” Ew!
CC Sabathia – 3 2/3 IP, 5 ER. Razzball Exclusive! CC was heard in the clubhouse calling his dietician and asking, “How many Weight Watchers points is an elbow ligament?”
Erik Bedard – 6 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 3 Ks vs. the Yankees. A father was taking his child to his first baseball game today and talking to him about how he remembers going to games with his father — the boy’s grandfather — and how they’d see players like Derek Jeter, Alfonso Soriano, Beltran, Teixeira, Bedard and Sabathia. You can imagine how confused the child was at yesterday’s game.
Wil Myers – 2-for-5, 4 RBIs and his 4th homer, and 2nd in as many games. What’s he, a seven-game hot streak away from being exactly what we thought he was? All y’all that are talking about how disappointing he’s been need to file a restraining order on yourselves.
Desmond Jennings – 3-for-4, 1 run and three homers in the last four games. Damn, against my better judgment I always draft Jennings, but I didn’t this year against my worst judgment.
Ervin Santana – Will miss his next start with a bruised thumb. He’s avoiding the DL, so it sounds like it’s not a major issue. Meanwhile, Ervin will take in a Clippers game and post pics with some hotties on Instagram.
Alex Wood – 5 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners, 7 Ks. Braves team ERA is around 2.60. Too bad they score on average negative one run per game. The Braves starters hear run support and they think of good arches on a pair of sneakers.
Matt Cain – To the DL after he sliced his finger open making a sandwich. Hey, don’t knock the Bacon, Lettuce, Thumb until you’ve tried it.
Angel Pagan – 2-for-5 and his 5th steal after homering on Friday. Good call on Grey’s part to drop him! It actually hurts less in third person.
Madison Bumgarner – 6 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 9 Ks. I don’t mind Bumgarner’s WHIP being at 1.56. He’s been very unlucky. Not unlucky yesterday to get to face the Krazy Braves.
Elvis Andrus – 1-for-3, 1 run, 1 RBI and a steal as he was moved to the nine hole, which is utterly stupid. Is Ron Washington sniffing the devil’s dandruff again and can’t just leave shizz alone? Dubya tee eff, doode!
Prince Fielder – 3-for-4, 3 runs, 2 RBIs. Three hits in one game? Whatever did we do to deserve such an outpouring of fantasy value? As Fielder would say, “Don’t poop on my plate and call it tofurkey.” Hit some homers, Fatty Fat Fat!
Michael Choice – 2-for-5, 4 RBIs and his 2nd homer. Made the best of the bump up to the two-hole– Oh no, I’m sorry, Ron Washington moved up Dan Robertson. The Yankee closer’s brother? The Rangers scored 14 runs yesterday, Robertson cost my Andrus like 12 runs scored!
Erick Aybar – 3-for-5 and his 2nd homer, hitting .281 and leadoff. Member when I told you two weeks ago to pick him up when he was hitting .200? Yup.
Tyler Skaggs – 2 2/3 IP, 6 ER. So, that happened. *pours hot coffee on groin, sues McDonald’s, finds out they’ve lowered the temperature of their coffee to avoid lawsuits, has groin burns for no good reason*
Paul Goldschmidt – 2-for-3 and the slam & legs. Au Shucks! I miss him!
Cameron Maybin – 2-for-4, 2 runs, hitting .348. The average won’t stay that high, but no reason you shouldn’t own him for his special brand of power, speed and ability to get hurt watching TV.
Joe Mauer – Left yesterday’s game early with back spasms. Good thing him playing first base is keeping him healthier.
Chris Colabello – 1-for-5, 1 run. Could I give someone my password to drop Colabello from my team? For some reason I still haven’t and have been meaning to for a week.
Kurt Suzuki – 3-for-3, 3 RBIs, hitting .325 and has 22 RBIs. Let’s just randomly grab another player to compare him to… Hmm… Let’s see… Okay, Mauer. He’s hitting .296 with 11 RBIs.
Brian Dozier – 1-for-3, 2 runs and 2 steals. You know what’s nice about Dozier besides everything. He’s playing like he owns himself in fantasy.
Johan Santana – Targeting June 1st as a return date. I have him stashed in an AL-Only league, but don’t expect much of anything. The days of Johan going JoH.A.M. seem long gone.
Nelson Cruz – 1-for-4 and his 9th homer. I’ve got a fun challenge, MLB should give Cruz 27 homers to start the year, then just see how long he stays healthy.
Jay Bruce – Out with surgery to repair a partially torn meniscus. So, I guess July is the month he turns it on. Ugh. This is the worst thing to happen to a Bruce since your high school girlfriend recognized Springsteen by saying, “Hey, it’s the guy from that video with Monica from Friends.” News says he’ll only need 3-4 weeks of recovery time, but that seems aggressive. Maybe we can form a prayer octagon that he’s back early June.
Chris Heisey – 1-for-4, 1 run. Will see an increase of playing time with Bruce out. Brooke Shields’s husband has a speed/power combo not seen since, um, Alex Presley maybe. Or maybe Justin Ruggiano. He’s around that level. There’s better, but in deeper leagues there’s worse too.
Alfredo Simon – 7 IP, 3 ER, 6 baserunners, 0 Ks. As frequent commenter, Carnac, said yesterday, “0 Ks through 7 IP? Alfredo Simon is killing me. Someone get this comment to the authorities so he’s not acquitted again.”
Brandon Phillips – 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 2nd homer. He’s the missing piece in Bran Brancisco, and I’m sure once Phillips reaches 45 years old, he will be playing for Sabean.
Khris Davis – 2-for-4 and his 4th homer. By the time you read this, I will be the proud owner of Khris Davis in my RCL league if I’m not beat to the punch by someone ahead of me in the waiver claim. Sky seemed to return from his Disney vacation, rejuvenated and decided to drop his whole team, including Scooter Gennett, who also homered yesterday. I wonder if there’s some way I can get Adam Jones onto Sky’s team for him to then drop him back to me.
Hector Rondon – 2/3 IP, 2 ER. This was his fourth appearance in five days because the Cubs motto is, “If a pitcher is going well, throw them until their arm falls off.” I believe Dusty Baker first adopted that. This shouldn’t hurt Rondon going forward since he’s been so good, but Rick Renteria is trying to make a name for himself and it’s harder to do that without doing batshizz crazy things, so Pedro Strop could be back into the closer picture with Justin Grimm photobombing said picture.
Kyle Farnsworth – 1/3 IP, 2 ER. He sucked up the suckhole on Saturday. I don’t even think the Mets were surprised. In the press conference, Terry Collins said, “Farnsworth is younger than me by sixteen days, what do you expect?” Farnsworth is still the ‘closer’ and, yes, I put quotes on that because even he prolly can’t believe he’s the closer and it’s only because the Mets have no other options. Carlos Torres is the only other guy I’d speculate on, and let’s just say I haven’t rushed out to do that in any mixed league.
Dillon Gee – 6 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners, 5 Ks in Coors. So, you’re saying I should’ve went with Gee over Skaggs? Sonavabench!
Wilin Rosario – Hit the DL with a viral infection. He should’ve got Norton’s Antivirus.
Jhoulys Chacin – 5 IP, 4 ER, 13 baserunners, 4 Ks as he was activated from the DL. If you own him, I’d have a shot glass of whiskey nearby so you can chase Chacin.
Dee Gordon – 6-for-10 on Saturday and Sunday combined with 3 steals. Two black horses and a carriage pulled into the parking lot after the game. A velvet sheet opened from the carriage and Jarrod Dyson stuck his head out, “Rajai, the King of SAGNOF, requests an audience with Dee Gordon.” The parking lot attendant in Miami thought it was some kind of Fantasy Fest dress-up thing.
Giancarlo Stanton – 2-for-3, 3 RBIs and his 9th and 10th homers. Only 26 more! I might need to add an extra 14 onto that. Fo’really, I think he might hit 50. I just rubbed my Giancarlo tramp stamp for good luck.
Jose Fernandez – 7 IP, 2 ER, 9 baserunners, 10 Ks. He had an uncharacteristic four walks in yesterday’s game and, if you own him and are complaining about that while he has a 1.74 ERA, I will slap the wonderful right out of your mouth.
Christian Yelich – 1-for-3 and his 2nd homer. He seems to always hit better in day games. Might be the fear of his curfew hanging over his head in night games.
Rajai Davis – 3-for-6, 3 runs and two steals. There is still but one King and this isn’t some weird Fantasy Fest dress-up thing!
Justin Verlander – 7 IP, 3 ER, 8 baserunners, 7 Ks. As I said on Friday, I’d still look around for potential trade partners. Plus, your moms will be happy to hear you’re looking for partners. Just leave out the trade part.
Nick Castellanos – 1-for-5 and a home run. I’ve been pretty lukewarm on Castellanos this year so far, but he’s hitting .235 right now, and that’s very low for him and could see this being the start of something.
Michael Bourn – Sat out with a hamstring issue. Doode’s got more hamstring issues than I have Cougar Life issues under my bed.
Justin Masterson -7 1/3 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 6 Ks. Justin Masterson: Passive Aggressive Fantasy Starter doesn’t just go out and pitch well, he goes out and pitches well if more than 50% of his fantasy owners have benched him. So, if you started him, you should Bouqs dot com some farm-fresh roses to the people that benched him.
Corey Kluber – 8 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 13 Ks. Even for those of you that aren’t into sabermetrics are aware of the scientific approach to baseball statistics called Saberhagenmetrics. Professor Yarmulke Stein of Columbia once said it was the most advanced baseball statistical measure of our generation. I’m not sure what Yarmulke would say about what Kluber’s been doing the last few starts, but he appears to be Saberhagen’ing on a micro level. One start: barf; next start: filet mignon. Looking at his next start on the Stream-o-Nator, it looks like he will get run over again, as for me and grandpa, we believe.
George Kottaras – 2-for-3 and two homers. After the game, he adopted a little black boy by the name of Webster.
John Axford – 2/3 IP, 3 ER and his 2nd blown save and this one was a big fail, as the kids adorn with a hashtag nowadays. BTW, if you could’ve invested in a hashtag keyboard key about ten years ago, you’d be a millionaire. Axford should be safe– Well, relatively safe, but not replaced yet, at least.
Dayan Viciedo – 2-for-4, 3 RBIs and his 2nd homer as he hits .330. Even if you don’t think he can keep it up, don’t you own him until he’s not hitting, say, .300?
Jose Abreu – 1-for-4 and his 12th homer. The Grande Dolor! In related news, Frank Thomas made reservations all over the city of Chicago for Abreu using Open Table and since Abreu failed to show up his account went into default, then Thomas went on WGN saying, “When Frank Thomas said he’d plate three, he’d plate three.”