*Channeling my inner Hank Williams Jr.* Are you ready for some baseball? *Fireworks, confetti cannon, ‘splosions, dingo attacks* Perhaps only us baseball junkies and fantasy geeks are excited about opening day Down Under. Is there fantasy cricket? Asking for a friend. Sky needs, like, four more fantasy sports to write about and I’m imagining Nick and his Razzball Radio rolling tanker going all Road Warrior across the outback. I’m more excited than a Lipitor snorting Vin Scully, cuddling with a koala he thinks is actually Yasiel Puig. Slather my hot dog in Vegemite, turn up the Men at Work and blow my didgeridoo, baseball is back. With the RCL’s in full swing and the season firing up in Australia, I’m balls deep in 20 teams – RCL’s, H2H leagues, dynasty leagues, auctions leagues, AL-only, NL-only, a pitcher league and an All-Timey fantasy draft that ought to prove interesting – I drafted Shoeless Joe in the round 13, that’s value! If you have yet to draft or are already making moves let’s dig out the ol’ jammer crammer machine© and get to work on the schmotatoes in the outfield. Since we use ESPN for the Razzballin’ leagues, let’s use their rankings and go digging for some jams and crams outside the top-100 players. No use in bickering whether to jam Mike Trout or cram Billy Hamilton – although I would. We are looking for mid-late round upside filled value here. It’s time to jam it or cram it. Hey Nick, I’ll drive that tanker.

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The hardest division in the league, which includes last year’s world champs, looks to be just as intense again.  For that matter, it probably will be that way for the foreseeable future.  My favorite team is also being covered here.  I’ll do my best not to be biased about the Yankees, and I think I’m pretty good at keeping my emotions away from the reality of the team.  That being said, I think the Yankees are going to win 120 games this season. (You can check out the NL West Spring Training Preview here, the AL West Spring Training Preview here, the AL Central Spring Training Preview here and the NL East Spring Training Preview here.)

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Catcher-rye-full

Get it?

Time to finally hang up the fantasy football helmet, slip into my official Steve Balboni athletic supporter and get ready for some of the base and the balls talk. This nipple hardening February morning finds your humble-but-nonetheless-handsome Guru loading the van up with scouting reports, clean turbans, eye black and my Jenny Dell inflatable doll for that long, lonely road trip to Fort Myers to prepare for spring training. As we cross the days off the calendar until we dive into some actual fake baseball drafting, it’s time to dig out the ol’ jammer crammer machine (available on Adam&Eve.com) and dig through this year’s jams and crams by position for the 2014 fantasy baseball season.

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My fellow Razzballers: there is a massive epidemic that needs to be stopped! It’s what I call “David Ortiz Disease.” I need your help in containing this outbreak that has led fantasy owners everywhere to shun a certain type of old and injury-prone player (more on that later), causing their price to plummet relative to their production and hindering the chances of every would-be owner. The most surprising aspect of this disease is that it applies to players who are coming off productive seasons. Unfortunately, authorities have been unable to contain this disease to a specific league, causing neither keeper nor re-draft fantasy owners to be immune. However, some old and injury-prone players will not be undervalued in drafts this year, such as Carlos Beltran, Alfonso Soriano, and Jacoby Ellsbury. What could they possibly have in common to prevent them from being undervalued and how does this affect fantasy baseball, particularly OPS leagues?

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Today, we go over the top 40 outfielders for 2014 fantasy baseball. Yesterday, we went over the top 20 outfielders for 2014 fantasy baseball. It will be a date which will live in…Well, it won’t live in infamy, so what’s the opposite of that? Famy? It will live in unfamy? That’s just ridiculous. What are you, the 7-Up guy? By the time you get to these outfielders, I’m sure you’ve drafted at least one outfielder. If you haven’t, wake from your slumber, Rip Van Schmucko, your draft is slipping away from you. There’s a lot of interesting names in this top 40. Jason Heyward is one interesting name. It was even more interesting when it was Jason “Future Superstar” Heyward. All of the 2014 fantasy baseball rankings are there. If you right click that and open it in a new tab, your car will get a free oil change (it won’t). Without further delay (there really wasn’t much delay, I mean, that was a short intro compared to most)… Anyway, here’s the top 40 outfielders for 2014 fantasy baseball:

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Went over the catchers, 1st basemen, 2nd basemen and shortstops and top 20 3rd basemen for 2013 fantasy baseball. Guess what’s next! No, not pitchers. Read the title, man. In 2010, there were only 5 outfielders that hit 30 homers, in 2011 there were 9, 14 in 2012 and this year: 3. Someone find a bleached Sammy Sosa so he can stick a needle in some motherf**kers! We are only a few years away from someone leading the league with 25 homers. Steals were still around, though they fell off a bit too. There were 14 outfielders who stole 30 bases in 2012 and this year there were 10. As before, these rankings are from our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater with my comments. Anyway, here’s the top 20 outfielders for 2013 fantasy baseball and how they compare to where I originally ranked them:

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So, some of you may be asking, where’s the Photoshop yo? With or without the ‘yo’ maybe. I don’t judge. But yes, that would be a great a question, seeing as how there is no picture located north of this paragraph. A better question would be, how did you get so spoiled? It’s not my fault Photoshop went buggy on me. So instead of crowing one of my pieces of artwork upon these Daily Fantasy Notes, I will try to create a solid, if not spectacular lede for all your fine lady and gentlemen.

Yes, Grey likes to mention we have at least three or four female readers, but I think my estimate of a non-pluralized ‘lady’, which, according to my math, equals one, or perhaps even less than one is closer to the real number. How can I be so sure? Well, it’s probably because I’m not counting our mothers.

So, can you tell I have no idea what to lede about? Seriously. I have nothing, nadda. Zilch. Could it be because another baseball season is almost in the books? Or is it because I want to nap? Why not both? But yes, as the title establishes, we have very little time left. And that I also like The Doors. There is one more week of baseball left, and on an even sadder note, there is only one more Saturday left for us to gather and speak of Friday night baseball. Always remember that I will look upon these times with awe. Especially this specific instance, where I actually was able to write a lede based on nothing. So yay me! (All complaints are to be forwarded to Photoshop.) Here’s what I noticed yesterday…

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In the summer of 1937, a woman went into labor. This woman’s name was Alfonsa Soriano. She was 78 years old at the time and the doctors worried she wouldn’t be able to deliver a healthy baby and she risked her own safety. The baby and the mother made it through. Unfortunately, due to her age, her skin wasn’t as elastic as a woman half her age and she walked the rest of her life like she was just jumping hurdles. Her son, Alfonso Soriano, adopted her long gait — a way to pay homage? — and it helped him later in life. He said because of his long strides, he made sneakers last twice as long because he used half the number of steps as most people. Heartwarming. Also, heartwarming is his insane season. Yesterday, he hit two more homers to bring his season total up to 32 and he now sits at 98 RBIs and 79 runs. Yeah, you were counting on that when you drafted him in the last round of your drafts, or as a late $1 flyer. Look away for the next moment if you don’t own him: on our Player Rater, he’s the 6th best outfielder! In front of him, Chris Davis, Mike Trout, Adam Jones, Andrew McCutchen and Jacoby Ellsbury. Right after Soriano? Carlos Gonzalez! Absolute-Lee-Eff-In-Cray-Zee. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Colicky Fuddruckers jumped three spots to become the third different overall leader in the last three weeks. They are running away with the title in Razz Canada, a league which includes Razzball writer Mike and yours truly. The Fuddruckers had the 6th pick in the draft and took Andrew McCutchen, followed by Adam Jones, Ryan Zimmerman, and B.J. Upton. 97 RBI from 5th round pick Allen Craig helped make up for those 3rd and 4th picks, as did the acquisition of Edwin Encarnacion for 7th and 8th picks Jonathan Papelbon and Jordan Zimmermann. With three weeks to go, the battle is heating up!

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Clever girl.

The McC went 1-for-2 last night with a run. Not really numbers deserving of the lede, but since I only get to do this once a week, I do what I want. And plus, I had already done my photoshop before the game ended. So there’s that. Truth be told, I really have nothing else to say about Andrew McCutchen. It is a very fine season. You know that. I know that. Sky… may not know that. He’s busy helping out all you folks that don’t have a Fantasy Baseball team in the running over at RazzFoot. That’s what I’m calling our Fantasy Football site. Because 20 years ago, I loved the Ninja Turtles. You know, the Foot Clan? RazzFoot? NINJA VANISH! Eh. Whatever. The McCutch is having a great year. He’s having a great Fantasy Baseball year. To hate him is to hate kittens. To love him is to not spell it McCutcheon. Start spreading the word. Here’s what else I noticed yesterday:

Please, blog, may I have some more?