Welcome to the home stretch, boys, gals, and in-betweens. Like we discussed last week, the two-start starters list has been dwindling due to expanded rosters, young arms having their innings limited, and many teams opting for six-man rotations as a result. This week, with many teams also having an off day, there are fewer than 30 options for two-start starters. (By the way, fogimon, will you be watching Corey Kluber’s second start tomorrow? #KissyEmoji)

There are still some options for two-start streamers, however. Checking in with Streamonator, here are the two-start starters for this week with a positive dollar value who are owned in less than 75% of RCLs:

  • German Marquez COL, $16.80, 20%
  • Jharel Cotton OAK, $5.60, 18%
  • Blake Snell TB, $4.70, 31%
  • Tyler Mahle CIN, $1.70, 1%
  • Dan Straily MIA, $0.70, 53%

Despite the light list, we still have five starters with positive dollar values. Of the names on this list, I like Marquez and Straily the most. Snell I would gamble on if I needed to, but I would stay away from Cotton and my cousin Tyler Mahle (not really my cousin).

Marquez shines through this week because of his matchups: at San Francisco and at San Diego. Two teams who have struggled mightily at the plate, and he gets them in their pitcher-friendly ballparks. He is not without risk, but you could not ask for two better matchups.

I’m not sure how Straily is still only owned in 53% of RCLs, but sign me up for that, too. His matchups aren’t as good (vs. Mets and at Diamondbacks) because of that trip to Arizona, but I am still willing to roll with him over the others on the list.

Snell is meh, but he doesn’t scare me as much as Cotton or Mahle. Despite their positive value, if I am in need of starts in H2h playoffs, I am not going near either of those two. Their potential for disaster outweighs any value they provide, at least in my eyes. Stay away and save yourself.

And now, to the charts!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

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The suspense must be killing you. Yolmer Sanchez is the first MLB player to what? There are times when a wham, bam, thank you ma’am or sir are in order. You’re on the run and you hear sirens? Perfectly acceptable. You’re at home chillin’ like a…..You hear someone pull into the driveway? Gotta knock it out real quick. Now, I try not to be a selfish person. I like to please. Sometimes it turns into a wham, bam, what the hell was that? But, at least I tried.

Anyways, Sanchez’s full name is Yolmer Carlos Javier Sanchez Yanez. I’m guessing he went with Carlos, as that would make it easier to transition in the USA. I’m kind of curious as to the Sanchez Yanez part? Is his last name Sanchez or Yanez? Now, I’m thinking five pieces of paper were thrown into a hat and then….the magic happened.

So, when the White Sox drafted him in 2009, his name was Carlos Sanchez. At 5′ 10″ 175 pounds, he projected as a utility infielder that would make a living playing solid defense and making contact. Which basically translates to “meh.” Over an eight-year career, he played in 788 games. He never hit more than 10 home runs in any season and often had an average  in the .250-.260-ish range. 201 of those games have been at the major league level.

Then, a funny thing happened in 2017. He changed his name to Yolmer. He’s now 195 pounds. And he’s hit 11 home runs in 465 plate appearances. Ok, he’s probably weighed 195 pounds for a while now, but 11 home runs? If that’s not evidence for funny balls, then I don’t know what is. There’s a non-zero chance that it could be the magic of the name hat, though.

So, what to make of Yolmer going forward?

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   

As the story goes, Daniel Mengden entered the Lion’s Den Friday night with a 6.59 ERA through 17 career major league starts, and somehow left the game with his first career complete game shut out allowing just two hits and striking out seven retiring the last 11 batters in the row for his first win of the year. He looked dominant at times allowing only two base runners in the outing with Philadelphia not being able to manage any hard contact off the young right hander, who’s got a funky handle-bar mustache and an even funkier looking windup/delivery. This was by far the best start of the 24-year old’s young career, and just his second scoreless start in the majors. He added his first career hit as well and scored a run to help his cause. Whata night for the youngster! After struggling with a 6.50 ERA, and 1.61 WHIP through 14 starts last year, and two subpar outings in May/June of this year, Mengden has returned to the rotation in September and now put up back-to-back quality starts including a six inning two earned run performance against the fearsome Astros line up last week. Mengden may not be the safest fantasy option out there on waivers, but the A’s seem to be playing the role of spoiler late in the year and he remains a pitcher available in most leagues. I’d take a flier on Mengden, bible readers know how Daniel fared against the lions, let’s hope he can keep it going as he heads to the Tigers den next week in Detroit.

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

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   

Say it ain’t so, the Indians win streak has ended at 22 games. That was an exciting run and it looks like the final 3 weeks are going to be tight. I want to thank VictoriaB for filling in for me last week while I was prepping for Hurricane Irma. Luckily, Tampa was spared from any major damage. Moving on, Madison Bumgarner gets a delicious matchup against the Diamondbacks at home today.  MadBum sports a 3.00 ERA vs the Diamondbacks this year. Further, he has 25 K’s in 21 innings vs. them. The ownership is going  to be lower on him this week given his struggles in his last 2 starts. I’m assuming Carrasco will be the highest owned player today. With that being said I think the value lies in MadBum today at$9,200.

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?
   

Will computer programmers for billion-dollar corporations find a way for Shohei Otani to be eligible as both a pitcher and a hitter in fantasy? These are the tough questions Abner Doubleday surely pondered when he invented baseball in 1839 (Doubleday invented baseball like Al Gore invented the internet and global warming). It’s also the question that Ralph Lifshitz and I ponder to start the podcast, along with touching on Willie Calhoun and Tyler Glasnow’s recent call-ups. We then dive deep into our third base rankings, debating if Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is the #1 prospect in baseball, Colton Welker vs. Dermis Garcia, and how to value the proximity and safety of Jeimer Candelario and Brian Anderson. We cover everybody from Nick Senzel, Michael Chavis, and Miguel Andujar, to Nolan Jones, Sheldon Neuse, Yairo Munoz, Ryan Vilade, and many more. Finally, please make sure to support our sponsor by heading over to RotoWear.com and entering promo code “SAGNOF” for 15% off the highest quality t-shirts in the fantasy sports game. It’s the latest edition of the Razzball Fantasy Baseball Prospect Podcast:

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   

What’s in a name?  I believe a lot.  I come from the new age school of thought that if you name your kid, Quimby, his first words will be, “Err-ah.”  Name your kid, Grey Albright, he’ll be pessimistic but wildly intelligent, shining light on the darkest corners of the fantasy globe.  Name your kid, Tim Anderson, and *stretches*  Sorry, I fell asleep, who were we talking about?  Oh, Tim Anderson, right.  *bumps head on desk*  Sorry, just dozed off again.  Who were we talking– *sees Tim Anderson’s name, falls off chair, curls into fetal position*  Nighty-night time.  Rename Tim Anderson, to Giancarlo Anderson, and you want his babies, assuming he wants you to have his babies.  It’s important to get consent first, I learned this the hard way with the other Giancarlo.  So, I’m going to go a little crazy about Anderson this offseason, but this post is just about what he can do over the next two weeks.  That would be best informed by what he’s done over the last week:  a home run, four steals and hitting near-.400.  As the poet in me wants to say, time is nil, make Tim nigh.  Okay, I’m going back to calling him Giancarlo Anderson.  Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   

I have said it here previously that grabbing relievers from a hot team or a team on a winning streak is usually a fantastic strategy from a holds perspective.  I really have said it multiple times, so my memory is better than your’s.  The Indians are in unprecedented territory as the team is in the midst of a win streak for the ages.  It seems like two Hatteberg’s and maybe half a David Justice ago that we remember the A’s had a win streak of twenty. But now the Indians are on their own 20-plus win streak.  Winning is a team effort, but Holds are what we care about in the Bullpen report.  The Indians Bullpen over the course of their win streak is just over a buck fitty, and that’s not what matters for this post.  The accumulation of goodies is what makes them all shiny.  The group of Bryan Shaw, Nick Goody, Tyler Olson and Joe Smith have totaled 20 holds over their last 20 games.  That total is just crazy, because since the all star break (which was 40 plus games ago) the have more holds than six teams do in total since said All Star break.  So investing in Cleveland for bullpen stuff is where it’s at currently.  Chase the win streak to aide in your pursuit of a Holds championship.  Let’s see what else is going down in the world of holds and bullpens…

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   

So it’s September 15th. Rosters have expanded. Out of contention teams shift their focus to next year’s team, and some players pack it in for the year, or play only for their own stats. And although it’s not something you’ll often read on a site as objective-analysis heavy as Razz, there definitely is a DFS edge to be gained. It’s hard to tell sometimes and you’re going to need to keep your ears open, but some players (typically on out of contention teams) definitely change their approach. In 2015, after Jose Reyes got traded to the Rockies (and from a team in playoff contention to a team who was not), Reyes clearly did not want to be there and changed his approach to, “swing as hard as I can in case I hit it.” Then, in September he missed a few games because of a bruised achilles and (we think) just completely checked out, “hitting” .231/.259/.250 the rest of the way despite playing plenty of games in Coors. In 2016, Dee Gordon got suspended in May, came back in August and was basically the same player he had been, stolen base wise at least. He had 6 stolen bases in April on a .289 OBP in 21 games and after he returned in August, he had 8 stolen bases on a .296 OBP in 26 games. Then September came around and apparently he just decided he was going to steal every single time he got on first base no matter what, and no one could catch him. He had a .289 OBP, played in 27 games and had 15 stolen bases, including stretches where he’d steal every game. We may be to that point right now with Gordon, as he has 4 steals in his last 5 starts. Am I saying to play Dee Gordon every day? No. For all we know he’s just had a few good opportunities to steal in the last few games. But I am saying to keep an eye on him, and if he’s in “stat padding” mode, to give a small nudge to him if you’re debating between rostering him and someone else.

On to the picks once I pad my stats…

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?
   

After twenty-one weeks and 163 contestants the Hey Batter contest finally has a champion. In case the title didn’t give it away, the winner is LenFuego. It seems that winning the regular season portion of the contest and earning the ability to pick one Unpickable each week of the playoffs was enough of an edge to win it all. With the help of Jose Altuve (17), Mike Trout (25), Charlie Blackmon (34), Paul Goldschmidt (27) and Anthony Rizzo (13), LenFuego ended the playoffs with 303 points. His biggest contributors, however were Giancarlo Stanton (44) and Anthony Rendon (36).

Peter guigli finished in second place with 283 points. The difference was Jonathan Schoop, who scored 20 points for LenFuego back in week one of the playoffs. Or perhaps it was Leury Garcia who only managed five points in week four for Peter guigli. We could play this game all day, but at the end it will still be LenFuego standing tall.

The top hitter over the course of this contest was Giancarlo Stanton who scored 476 points. Joey Votto (512) and Charlie Blackmon (488) were actually one and two, but since they were Unpickables, Stanton is the king. Aside from Stanton, Jose Ramirez and Marcell Ozuna were the only other batters in the top ten that were not Unpickable players.

Congratulations to LenFuego and thanks to everyone that participated in this inaugural event. Here are the final playoff standings…

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   

Can you name the top five in the AL for batting average?  I’m talking those qualified.  The person who said Erik Kratz for being 1-for-1 on the year is unqualified to answer.  By the way, if you’ve taken too many quaaludes to answer, does that mean you’re unquaaludified?   I pose this question to you while sprawled on a tiger-skin carpet like Burt Reynolds in a centerfold for Cosmopolitan.  “Loni, feed me grapes, would you doll face?”  Totally making current references right now.  The top 5:  Altuve, Avisail Garcia, Hosmer, Reddick and Jose Ramirez.  Yo, batting average leaders nowadays are weird.  There’s only ten guys in the league over .300, and two of them are Joe Mauer and Lorenzo Cain.  Yesterday, Avisail went 5-for-5, 2 runs, 7 RBIs and his 17th homer, as he hits .333.  Let me be the first to tell you, he has not really broken out like your teenaged face.  He’s hitting 52% ground balls, a .397 BABIP (!), not even top 70 for Hard Contact percentage, a high HR/FB% for him and still only has 17 homers.  There’s very little to point to that he’s breaking out, and not just getting crazy lucky.  Now watch him win the batting title and go full Terry Pendleton.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   
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