Good morning fellow Razzball readers. I’ve decided to throw a curveball and start the intro with an offensive player today. Just in case I have any friends or family members reading this post I have not left her at the Altherr, I just haven’t found the perfect ring yet. Aaron Altherr may slip through the radar since he is matched up against Gio Gonzalez. Gio has been off to a hot start however he is prone to the long ball, especially against righty bats. Altherr’s price tag comes in at a cool $7,200 which allows for some salary relief on a Colorado day. Let’s breakdown his stats, Alther currently has a .514 wOBA against LHP which is 6th in the league and he also has 3 home runs in 24 AB’s. I’m aware the sample size is small, however, this is DFS and we are searching for an edge anywhere we can find one. The wind in DC will not help the RHB as it will be a cross-wind of about 16 MPH.

Note: The 2nd game of both double headers are not included in the FantasyDraft main slate therefore I will be leaving those pitchers out of my write up today.

New to FantasyDraft? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond?  Well, try out this 20 teamer of Razzball writers and friends to wet your FantasyDraft whistle.  It’s set to run Tuesday, May 9th @ 7:05 ET.  $5 gets you in the door and the contest will run regardless of number of entrants, so make sure you hop in.  Just remember to sign up through us before you do.  It’s how we know you care!  If you still feel helpless and lonely, be sure to read our content and subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays.  

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It’s gotta be tough having the same name as a famous person. You’re some how indirectly responsible for whatever they’re doing, or have ever done. I can relate, for mine is the same as world renowned fashion designer Ralph Lauren. Well, at least his government name. So perhaps that’s my bias when rooting for Astros outfield prospect Derek Fisher. I feel his pain… While sharing a name with the former Lakers point guard turned homewrecker isn’t what it used to be. He’s got to be sick to death of silly puns like my title, Amirite?  Celebrity names aside, Fisher has been one of the best performers in the minors this season. He’s in the midst of a 16 game hitting streak, that’s seen him slash .394/.429/.712 with 5 homers, and 2 steals. An Astros outfield that once seemed so hard to crack doesn’t seem so insurmountable. Make no mistake that last statement has as much to do with Fisher, as it does anyone else’s lack of production. Since first being promoted to AAA on August 7th of last season, Fisher’s numbers are eye-popping. Over his first 52 AAA games the outfielder is slashing .309/.373/.547 with 13 homers, 9 steals, and a 8.3% walk rate. That’s not to say there aren’t some flaws, he’s always struck out around 25% of the time, and he’s not the most efficient basestealer either. So it wouldn’t surprise me if he struckout over 25% of the time in the majors, and saw his steal totals capped around 10-12 per season. But that’s not why I’m excited, it’s the fact that Fisher seems to be getting better. Following a roughish start to 2016 in AA, Fisher was promoted to Fresno as a challenge last season, and he rose to the occasion. I think he can be a very ownable outfielder in 12 team mixed leagues, if he finds himself seeing a majority of the starts in Houston this summer. Expect a .270ish average 20+ home run pop, and some steals mixed in. He’s an exciting player, and one that should be owned in all leagues with prospects or minor leagues of any kind. Here’s who else is making noise in the MiLB.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

What if I told you John Lackey’s been the best Cubs pitcher so far this year? And nope, there’s no wink coming on the other side of that. Now, of course the word ‘best’ lends to high subjectivity, but arguably the fourth-most owned Cubs SP just may be posting the best season…even if his surface stats don’t tell that story. So, let’s start the story off right.

With a haiku:

Under the surface
Lies a fantasy monster
Named Long-face Lackey

To my surprise, I recently found Lackey available in an RCL. While starting pitchers are less valuable in those leagues (little tip for the newbies), Lackey more than deserves to be on a roster. When examining 4.29 ERA I know you think, ‘Oh, sugar plum fairies I must have this guy on my team!’ But since none of you have actually said, ‘Oh sugar plum fairies’ about anything, I know that’s just not true. Looking deeper, though, you see a K/9 that’s up a full point from last year. That’s matched by an ERA rise of a full point, too, but the xFIP (which takes HR away) says he’s on the exact same pace as last season: 3.35. There’s a 19% HR/FB rate sitting in his stat line, which is roughly 60% higher than what you should expect from John Lackey. Another part of the culprit? A .310 BABIP. It’s not crazy high, but when you consider that almost half of balls hit against him are ground balls it adds up.

End of the day are we looking at another Cubs Cy Young winner? Nope, but when Jon Lester walking more and sitting with one win, Jake Arrieta has an ERA north of 5.00, and Kyle Hendrick holds only a 2:1 K/BB ratio, a case can be made for Lackey taking the current crown. The others may be better in the long run, but Lackey’s lack of luck is the only thing noted against him right now. Not much else is lacking…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It was actually Billy Hamilton that led all batters in week 5 with 47 points, but since no one picked him, I’m moving down the list. Next up is Cody Bellinger who swatted 40 points. Guess what. No one picked him either. The first batter on the list to be picked was Matt Carpenter, but since he finished fifth I just don’t feel like he deserves to be highlighted. If you couldn’t tell by the title, I’m giving the honor to Bellinger. In 21 at bats he had 9 hits, including three home runs, and 12 RBIs. In addition, Adrian Gonzalez gave him the middle finger 37 times. Once again, only a stat you can get from us fine folk here at Razzball.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Brewers manager Craig Counsell announced Friday that after Thursday’s blown save, Neftali Feliz would be given a break from closer duties. Why are you like this, Craig? Do you not care about my fantasy team even a little? Feliz has blown just one save this season. Sure, he’s sporting an ugly 6.19 ERA, and 1.31 WHIP, and 4 losses but I didn’t draft him for his ratios! I drafted him for his those stinky, stinky saves. Mmmm. His eight of which currently leads my team! Regardless, Jared Hughes  (0.2 IP, SV (1)) notched the save last night for Milwaukee, but it sounds like ex-stuntman Corey Knebel will get the next chance. Corey is rocking a 1.00 ERA, 1.00 WHIP and 29/8 K/BB rate over 18.0 innings this season and seems like the most logical choice to replace Feliz mostly because Counsell mentioned Friday he’s been “outstanding.” That’s high praise from skip, folks! Hughes, Jacob Barnes and Oliver Drake could also see chances. This is not to say Feliz is out of the ninth inning role for good, but I could definitely see Corey running away with the job if he continues to pitch like he has been. If you’re looking for saves I’d add Evil Knebel everywhere, and if you’re looking for someone to jump over 20 mack trucks in a motorcycle, you might consider Bumgarner or maybe the another stunt guy.

Here’s what else I saw in fantasy baseball Friday night:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I’m a tad worried about the comments this headline may generate, so maybe I should explain: this isn’t a Classified ad, but an ode to Chris Sale. Because today The Condor, a.k.a. the Jersey Slasher, takes the mound with his stupid-low 1.92 ERA and 73 Ks in 52 IP. If this were any other pitcher, I might offer a caveat that this start versus the Rays takes place at Fenway, but Sale’s been better at home (1.50 ERA in 4 starts at home versus 2.49 in 3 starts away). And Tampa has not: their road BA is .210, versus .265 at home (apparently they’re the only team that knows how to play at the bloody Trop). This is also tasty because Tampa does not do well against lefties. I expect them to go quietly against Sale. That said, on FanDuel today, we’re pretty much going to have sell ourselves on a street corner to be able to afford Sale (especially if you’re earning Canadian dollars!).

So if you’re not into what Chris is selling, it’s also a Rockies-at-home weekend, Fact Fans! If I were a lazier girl, I’d say “if you don’t want to pay up for Sale, just stack every Colorado bat you can” and cut this post short, but that would just not be cricket (if it were cricket, I’d be watching a five-day-long game involving men wearing white trousers with red smears on their crotches, which… You know, I kind of miss cricket). And there are several tasty Miami-Atlanta match-ups today, too, so I’m gonna try squeezing some Dodgers, Mariners and Marlins into my lineup. Let’s see how I got on…

New to FanDuel? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well, be sure to read our content and subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays. Just remember to sign up through us before jumping into the fray. It’s how we know you care!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It’s that time of year again when Ralph and Halp enter the Grey area and talk about Major Leaguers on the Prospect Podcast. It somehow felt more subversive when Ralph wasn’t writing the Top 100 Pitcher Ranks and I wasn’t co-hosting the Baseball Podcast, but them’s the breaks of going mainstream I guess. We start by discussing the value of slow starters such as Alex Bregman and Byron Buxton, before moving on to the power hitting breakouts of Aaron Judge, Cody Bellinger, Eric Thames, and Yonder Alonso. On the pitching side, we debate just how good Michael Fulmer is, and if Marcus Stroman can be anything more than a solid fantasy starter. It’s the latest edition of the Razzball Prospect Podcast.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The title reminds me of an old joke — stop me if you’ve heard it — a guy with a wooden eye walks into a bar and pours out his heart to the bartender, “My wife left me, she said I had a bad temper, and, with this disability — this wooden eye, I will never find another girl.”  The bartender puts down the glass he’s shining because that’s what bartenders do to talk and says, “I’m not going to lie to you, your wooden eye could be a problem.  You need to find a girl with problems of her own.  How about you try that girl by herself on the dance floor?  The one with the big ears.”  So the guy with the wooden eye downs his shot of whiskey, wipes his mouth with his sleeve and approaches the girl, “Do you wanna dance?”  She swoons, “Would I?”  “F*ck you, Dumbo!”  So, Alex Wood is in Coors tomorrow.  Um, yeah, no thank you, but this is about the bigger picture.  Well, not too big of a picture, because the Dodgers have about sixteen starters on the DL, so at some point Wood might not be in the rotation.  He is now, though, and he’s lovely.  He has a 11.5 K/9.  That would be the fifth best starter K-rate and better than his rotation mate, Kershaw.  Wood has a 2.49 xFIP, which would be third in the majors for starters, behind only Chris Sale and Pineda.  To touch on stats that actually matter, his ERA is 2.73, and he’s been unlucky!  You’d be hard-pressed to find one area where Wood is not excelling.  Am I grabbing him in all leagues?  Of course!  Wait, are you asking, ‘would I?’  F*ck you, Dumbo!  Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Well, the demise of the active leader in career saves has happened. I can remember the days when he burst on the scene all wide-eyed and rally monkey backed.   That, unfortunately, was a dogs age in closer years.  Hell, most closers now a days are judged by weeks instead of years.  I personally don’t wanna think that he is completely done closing, but I think that he is done closing with the tigers (barring an injury or three).  So now it is the Justin Wilson show.  He is no stranger to high-leverage spots as he has been a critical holds guy for the past three years.  For comparison’s sake, think Tony Watson type of reliever… they even came up together with the Pirates to boot.  So the main question is will Wilson continue as such as the Tigers closer?  I say why not.  Joe Jimenez isn’t ready for prime time yet, or they don’t wanna throw the reigns on him yet.  The team has looked mediocre, and sorta old.  So alleviating Wilson to the closer role does two things: Makes their best reliever in the bullpen the closer, and it gives him even more trade value should the Tigers fall out of the race and eventually sell of some pieces.  Saves are ownable everywhere, and this doesn’t appear to be a committee type thing, so if you own him good on ya.  Let’s see what else is going down on Save Street lately…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Who doesn’t like Milwaukee?  I grew up in Chicago and never made the trek to Milwaukee until I was in my college years…well I have been on my way to Milwaukee a few times, and on that road (the famous Highway 41) there was a place where you could buy both porno and bongs (which, as a high school senior, was pretty excellent); so that’s usually as far as me and my friends would travel.  I don’t know if it’s still there since every other gas station sells bongs now and VHS tapes aren’t a thing anymore I doubt it.

Over the years I’ve appreciated Milwaukee for lots of reasons: Summerfest, Irish Fest, and Miller Park that even has a little league field in the parking lot!  A number of years ago I ate some excellent burritos at a diner (with a metal detector) late night in Milwaukee that had the skinniest security guard with the thinnest mustache. He got into it with the people sitting in the booth next to ours; two sizable, scantily clad women, who proceeded to grab him and hit him while they were sitting in the booth and eventually took it outside with him.  They slapped him around some more although it wasn’t more than a scuffle.  After it was over, a buddy of mine bought the larger of the two women a rose (because at 2 am of course there is a guy selling roses, right?).  She was not pleased.  She took the rose but was not pleased about it, and yelled at him.

Please, blog, may I have some more?
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