Tom Murphy might be the first guy who can get a rookie outlook post, a sleeper post and an overrated post. Allow me to explain. Got it? Sorry, after I said “Allow me to explain,” I muttered the reasons to myself and forgot to write them down. As they say in Latin America, mea culpa. Allow me to explain while writing. He has under 130 ABs in the majors, so he qualifies for a rookie post. Easy peasy on that. A lot of people who play in leagues where their leaguemates only read Yahoo or ESPN are going to see huge sleeper value on Tom Murphy. I bet he’s not drafted at all in some friends & family leagues or just drafted super late. ESPN and Yahoo will drop the ball on Tom Murphy. It’s guaranteed. He’s not the kind of guy they highlight. Could me saying this move the needle? Maybe in Yahoo, but no way in ESPN. Yahoo is a bit more seat-of-the-pantsy; I’m currently recalling Dee Gordon’s rookie year when he was ranked in the top 50 overall at Yahoo even though he didn’t have a starting job. ESPN, on the other hand, they’re conservative to the point of boring. Carlos Beltran will be ranked ahead of Murphy. I will bet you major fake dollars on that. Now, why is Tom Murphy also going to be overrated in some leagues? Because Murphy’s the type of player that fantasy baseballers (<– my mom’s term!) love to hype up so much they become overrated by the time some drafts come around. I.e., he’ll start around 220 overall in drafts, inch up to 175, then to 150, then to 125, finally, in some leagues people will be drafting him around 75-100 by the end of March. This is obviously goofy, but there might be some value in him still at 150 overall, depending on how this next paragraph goes. (What a segue!) Anyway, what can we expect from Tom Murphy for 2017 fantasy baseball?Please, blog, may I have some more?
A week after writing up one of the worst farm system in baseball in the Diamondbacks, I’ve been blessed with the task of covering arguably the best farm system in the Atlanta Braves. Over the last few seasons the Braves have done an excellent job of acquiring top prospects in trades, and via the draft. This approach that has left them with an embarrassment of riches. It’s not often you can trade an obvious over-performing pitcher for the top pick in a deep draft, and a handful of other good, young, and controllable assets. Fortunately for Braves fans, GM John Coppolella has very incriminating photos of Dave Stewart. Otherwise such outlandish trades like the Swanson and Toussiant deals wouldn’t have been possible. Since then, the Braves have added one of the top International signings in recent memory in Kevin Maitan, and took in quite a haul in last June’s draft. In other words, there is much to discuss in the Braves system. Instead of rambling for another 100 words about Disney magic, and how dumb Dave Stewart is, let’s just dig into one of the more exciting farms.Please, blog, may I have some more?
I have a predilection for highlighting fantasy baseball rookies that are of the hitter variety, and less so of the pitching type. I will also say I don’t 100% trust anyone that uses the word predilection in everyday conversation. They sound like they have a pedo-lection. Stretch a Home Depot slide ruler out 500 feet and talk to me from there. “What’s that? Having a hard time hearing you. No, don’t come within 500 feet of me. Thanks. Why? Because you used the word predilection.” Pitchers are just so flaky. Last year, Michael Fulmer, with little-to-no fanfare, was a top 30 starter for all of fantasy as a rookie. If you predicted that, you’re a liar or a time traveller. Mean’s while, Giolito had a 6.75 ERA in 21 1/3 IP. How was Corey Kluber in the minors? How was Arrieta? The list goes on with pitchers that weren’t great in the minors that broke out in the majors. Then on the opposite side of things, great pitching prospects who reached the career levels of Nadir Bupkis. In regards to this, there’s actually a well-worn acronym by Baseball Prospectus that is TINSTAAPP, which is There Is No Such Thing As A Pitching Prospect. So, this is the 2nd year in a row I’ve gone to the Lucas Giolito well, well (stutterer!), he deserves it. Here’s what I said last year, “Before watching the video on Lucas Giolito, I looked at his vitals. This is something I don’t usually do. Doesn’t really matter to me if a guy is six-foot-one or five-ten. But, dizzamn, Giolito is a strapping young man, huh? He’s listed at six-six and 230. He’s only 21 years old, but I think he’s done growing. Hopefully, cause his mom tells CBS Sports that his “feet already hang off the bed.” With a six-six frame, as you can imagine, he throws fast. (Christall Young is the exception that proves the rule, which never made any sense to me. If it’s an exception, how does it prove anything? It proves that there’s exceptions, but that’s about it, right? I’m gonna move on before my brain hurts in my thought-nodes.) Giolito hits 97 MPH on his fastball, which is actually up a tick from the previous year. If he keeps steadily increasing his fastball every year, by the time he’s 40 years old, he’s going to be throwing 117 MPH. He throws from nearly right over the top, so the ball fires downhill and hitters have no chance of hitting it. A 9+ K/9 seems to be a given once he gets settled in the majors. In 20 years, Al Pacino could be playing the role of a Hall of Fame pitcher in the film, Giolito’s Way. Assuming Pacino has eighteen-inch stilettos.” And that’s me quoting me! Anyway, what can we expect from Lucas Giolito for 2017 fantasy baseball?Please, blog, may I have some more?
It’s super fun to put all our prospect eggs in C*nt Hurdle’s basket, isn’t it? A basket of desirables, if you will. “I’m sorry I said that deplorables comment in my one unguarded moment all campaign. It won’t happen again,” and with that — beep-beep-booooop — Hillary-bot powered down. Up front, I’m going to get out of the way the biggest drawback for Austin Meadows. I don’t think he has an everyday job unless Andrew McCutchen gets hurt or traded. “Why you gots to prospblock me, yo?” That’s Austin Meadows. Or maybe Meadows sneaks in if the same injury fate befalls Gregory Polanco or Starling Marte, but I don’t be-fault you for thinking McCutchen gets moved or nothing happens with Meadows in 2017. Shoot (not you, Raylan Givens!), Meadows may not see a full-time job until 2019 when he’ll still only be 24. That obviously would be a waste of his talent, but I’m talking real world circumstances and you have Hurdle and the hurdle of McCutchen’s contract going through to 2018. Sure, maybe McCutchen gets moved to a corner outfield slot, but then what? Marte moves to center and Meadows is still without a job. Does this all sound like it’s leading up to a fun 2017 projection for Meadows? Or put more segue-y… Anyway, what can we expect from Austin Meadows for 2017 fantasy baseball?Please, blog, may I have some more?
Here’s what I said when Dansby was first called up, “True or false: A) Dansby Swanson is famous for being Ted Knight’s caddy in Caddyshack. B) Starting a meme at his frat house in Arizona where he’d put his checkered pants on a cactus with the caption, “I’m thirsty, yo.” C) There’s no C. D) All the above. E) Was drafted a second ago by the Diamondbacks 1st overall, then traded to the Braves for the fellow WASP, Shelby Miller, and all-around terrible pitcher. If you answered D) All the above, how did you know what all the above was before reading E? Also, it was a true or false quiz, what the hell is all of the above?! So, Dansby Swanson is being called up by the Braves just in time, no lie, for their series against the Diamondbacks. Dayum. Hello, wounds, here’s your salt. In Prospector Ralph’s midseason top 100 prospects, Dansby was 22nd overall, right by Willie Calhoun, who totally tanked Mike Dukakis’ campaign. Swanson is a 22-year-old that was a’ight in Double-A (8 HRs, 6 SBs, .261 in 84 games).” And that’s me quoting me! None of that no longer applies. Kidding! Imagine I did that shizz. Here’s what I said previously, read it, then forget it. Nah, it still applies which is why I quoted it. I mean the WASP part, Caddyshack part, there’s no C and Dukakis name-drop likely won’t come into play, but the other elements are applicable. Okay, the other parts are about 5% of the quote I said that was applicable. Sue me! Which is also what a male transitioning to a female says, “Sue me!” Anyway, what can we expect of Dansby Swanson for 2017 fantasy baseball?Please, blog, may I have some more?
It’s like ESPN has taken over Razzball the last few days because it’s all Red Sox and Yankees all the time. A Yoan Moncada fantasy on Monday, Aaron Judge fantasy on Tuesday and Andrew Benintendi today. Who’s next? Tyler Austin? “Ha, Grey you crack me up with your witticisms and third person ramblings.” Thanks, Self, but you’re standing on my foot. “You’re such a klutz!” Don’t you mean, I’m such a klutz? “You tell me.” I legit got a headache during that third person conversation. No wonder homeless people are always banging their head with their hand. That shizz is exhausting. On Monday, Prospector Ralph aka Rappin’ Ralph aka The Ralper aka Red Sox Homer aka Ralph Lifshitz said he’d want Benintendi over Moncada, and I thought that was interesting but didn’t agree. Benintendi does have a more solid floor — solider? Benintendi looks less likely to be awful, whereas Moncada does have that possibility. To use a clumsy comparison of another Cuban player, Yasiel Puig looked can’t miss until he didn’t even start playoff games for Andrew Toles, who was working in a supermarket last year at this time, and Toles over Puig made sense because of how little Puig has done — or is it has-been? That’s likely people’s fears with Moncada. Those fears don’t carry as much weight with Benintendi. Not sure his ceiling is that high either, and, with rookies, I want ceiling over floor. Anyway, what can we expect of Andrew Benintendi for 2017 fantasy baseball?Please, blog, may I have some more?
Alright 12 readers still with us in late October, get your firecrackers, noisemakers, and elated cheers ready. For the return of Minor League Preview season is upon us. I know, I know, exciting times across Razz Nation. With that said let’s curb your enthusiasm a little, we’re starting with the Arizona Diamondbacks. Lower case yay…. What can be said about the Diamondbacks system that hasn’t already been said about Detroit? It’s been decimated, depleted, and burned to the ground. Mostly by Dave Stewart, but I’m sure Tony LaRussa had a hand in that too. Top prospects like Dansby Swanson, Isan Diaz, and Aaron Blair were shipped off, and to make matters worse they lost their first round draft pick after signing Zack Greinke. So we’re looking at a handful of second division regular types, some back of the rotation arms, and some long term toolsy players. Not exactly the bang you were looking for, but at least we have the Braves to look forward to. Heck they have at least 70 former Diamondback prospects. Holla Touki!!!Please, blog, may I have some more?
Have you seen Aaron Judge hit? This is the first thing I say to people. Shoot, I should qualify that. This is not the first thing I say to everyone. “Would you like to hear the specials?” “Have you seen Aaron Judge hit?” No. Not quite like that. It’s the first thing I say to people who ask me about Aaron Judge. In fact (Grey’s adding on already? Well, let’s get it!), I like to watch everyone hit (and pitch, but we’ll get back to that). I try to watch video of every single player. It’s not some weird voyeur thing. Okay, it’s that, but not only that! If someone’s minor league stats look like, say, .290, 35 HRs and 25 steals, and you watch them and they have a huge hitch in their swing, they don’t look fast and/or they’re a buck-fifty soaking wet, then you have a guy that could very well be hitting and running better against weaker competition than they will find in the majors. It’s important to watch the players. I bring this up now because I watch Aaron Judge and I see Giancarlo Stanton. I do not invoke my novio’s name willy nor nilly. I don’t say Giancarlo comparisons early nor often. If you saw Aaron Judge’s first major league home run, it was a simple, back-up-the-middle stroke. Only the ball went about 420 feet out in center. Aaron Judge hit only 4 homers last year in 84 ABs in the majors, but three went 419 feet or more and one homer went 457 feet, which was top twenty in the majors last year. Cause long balls get you excited like an older woman, here is Judge mollywhopping. If that doesn’t excite you, you have no soul. I don’t mean you have no soul as in you find it hard to get the rhythm of a song, I mean you are kin to the devil. Anyway, what can we expect of Aaron Judge for 2017 fantasy baseball?Please, blog, may I have some more?
Ayo whaddup, it’s ya boy Grey Albright aka the Fantasy Master Lothario aka White Chocolate aka The Ladder You Use To Reach New Heights aka The God Particle aka Trump’s Supreme Court Nominee Judge Reinhold aka Paid Overtime aka Close Parking Spot When You’re In A Rush aka Al Swearengen’s Swearing Dictionary aka Teacher, We Don’t Need No Education aka The Weird Guy That Latches Onto The Main Character In Oscar Films I Think His Name Is Paul Dano aka The Butcher, The Baker and The Candlestick Maker aka The Stinging On Your Pinkie Toe When You Clip Too Close aka Paul Anka aka Forget How To Spell My Name And Just Get Me My Coffee! I just spent thirty minutes looking up Mindy Cohn and whether or not she’s a lesbian. Ah, the offseason. You are a soothing mistress that touches my naughty bits with idle hands. She’s apparently not a lesbian, but a confirmed friend of the gays, and she wanted to lose weight in the 80’s, but the producers asked her to avoid it for the character of Natalie. They finally agreed to let her wear baggy clothes. No comment, except the “no comment” comment has the weight of a thousand eye rolls. A quick preamble about the 2017 fantasy baseball rookie series that is coming from me over the next few weeks. Rookies could get a post if they meet MLB eligibility requirements, less than 130 ABs or 50 IP. That means no Greg Bird, no Orlando Arcia, no Alex Bregman, and finally no Joey Gallo. In 2012, the first player I highlighted was Mike Trout. That wasn’t an accident. I said in the Mike Trout post, “He’s ranked number one for me. Numero uno. The Big Mahoff. He’s the big Statue of Liberty in New York, not that girly one in Paris!” Since then, I’ve attempted to make the first rookie post about a prospect that will be the top rookie for fantasy the following year. Last year, that honor went to Corey Seager. Yes, it’s an honor, don’t be so condescending. This year the top fantasy prospect isn’t no ordinary man, this is the prospect I be seeing in my sleep. Yoan Moncada will be your number one 2017 fantasy baseball rookie. Will Moncada be named to the All-Century Team in 85 years or edged out by a robot with grabby hands named the Hitter-Tron that my great-great-nephew will sue due to trademark infringement only to find out it’s the same Hitter-Tron that once graced this little fantasy baseball blog called Razzball? Can Moncada be a top five 3rd basemen in 2017? So many questions and so little time to look up Mindy Cohn info! Anyway, what can we expect of Yoan Moncada for 2017 fantasy baseball?Please, blog, may I have some more?
With Fall in full swing many cling to the flavors of the season, dousing their taste buds in pumpkin spice and squash medleys. Yuck! We Prospectors are a different breed, a simple folk, roaming from place to place in search of top up and coming MLB talent. In our search, we take you this week to Arizona, to look in on the talent rich Arizona Fall League. My podcasting companion Michael Halpern of Imaginarybrickwall.com and I, take the trip figuratively and discuss the top names and news makers through the first few weeks. Next year I hear Grey’s going to spring for two all expense paid trips to the Arizona Fall League so we can broadcast live on location. Then again I hear voices. Joking (not joking)… As for the show we drool over Tyler O’Neill, Yoan Moncada, Gleyber Torres, and Eloy Jimenez, then discuss the character that is Michael Kopech. You’ll learn who Ramon Laurenao is, but not the correct pronunciation of his name. We go through all six teams and give you the 411 on all you need to know. It’s Episode 11 of the Fantasy Prospect Podcast.Please, blog, may I have some more?