One of my longtime rules of fantasy baseball (and this one is shared by many) is to avoid older hitters.  David Ortiz?  Never drafted him (often and including this season to my detriment), Albert Pujols?  Nope.  Robinson Cano?  Again, my bad this season, but still I’m not drafting him.  Ben Zobrist?  Just can’t do it.  I know three out of the four guys I just mentioned are having great seasons thus far, but let’s see how they look in August, shall we?  We shall, since August is coming whether we want it to or not; how’s that for ominous?

Thing is I just don’t want to take the chance of injury or decline.  As I get older, and though I’m no athlete, it just takes longer to recover.  Recover from injuries, running or long walks even, the few weights I do lift, and mainly, hangovers.  I keep telling myself I’m one more bad hangover (which at this point is five or six beers and home by 11:00 PM and still takes two days to feel right again) from giving it up.

But good beer is so, so good.  Just not at the ballpark for $10 a 12 ounce.  As such when I go see my Cubs play the Cardinals in a couple weeks I’m bringing in a bottle of water, refilling it as often as I like in the many fountains, and eating hot dogs and nachos until my heart’s content.  You know who also makes my heart’s content?  Brandon Phillips.  (Well, no, he doesn’t but I didn’t have a good transition there and that one did the trick.  Or it didn’t.  You decide!) But he’s an old guy and you don’t own them; you just said this.  I know, but to be clear, I won’t draft these guys; nor will I trade for them.  What I will do is pick them up off of waivers/free agent wire and plug them into my lineup.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

If there is one thing that rarely scares me in DFS, it is ace pitchers facing off against a high-powered offense. Clayton Kershaw against Toronto; so what? Noah Syndergaard against the Cubs–big deal. Outside of a road start at Coors Field, I don’t ever overthink using an ace. The question that needs to be answered is whether or not Danny Salazar is an ace. In some folks’ eyes, he certainly is. From other viewpoints, he’s a solid number two with upside. There is probably a third group that says he’s totally overachieving, but they’re wrong and their opinion doesn’t count. This brings us to Wednesday’s split slate. The Houston Astros have a very good offense with a ton of power. On the flip side, they lead the league with 318 strikeouts. It’s either boom or bust for the Astros and with a strikeout specialist like Salazar on the mound, I’m willing to bet on bust. Salazar is holding opponents to a .142 average and has struck out 43 batters in 37.2 innings pitched. Walks are still a problem for Salazar (3.8 BB/9), but he has negated that by allowing a league low 4.3 H/9. He is the best pitching option on the board with the most upside and it isn’t even close. Use him in both GPPs and cash games.

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 10 teamer of Razzball writers and friends to wet your DK whistle. 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 subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays.

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Jose Fernandez exploded onto the Miami scene harder than Vanilla Ice in 1990, dude was mowing people down like he was the Cuban sales manager for John Deere. JFer looked like he was going to be the foundation for the Miami rebuild collecting All Star honors & ROY in 2013. He was young, exciting, electric, fiery and then he had a visit with Dr. Freeze. Dr. Freeze immediately put him on ice and for the next 14 months the only time we got to see JFer pitch was for a 5 hour energy commercial on the MLB channel (seriously, that commercial ran non stop last year). Thankfully he came back late last year and looked sharp racking up 79 K’s in 65 Ing’s with a solid 2.91 ERA. He was in Grey’s top ten SP’s at the beginning of the year and personally I was excited to see him come back and pick up where he left off. Then the season started, Chen was tapped as the opening day starter and after that it seemed like the JFer banner season went sideways. I’m not sure what happened in the clubhouse or front office, but who the eff decided that JFer wouldn’t be the opening day starter? I get that they’re trying to keep his innings down, but this is your 23 year old franchise starting pitcher you’re messing with. I get that they’re supposed to be professionals and it’s business, but this kid just got bumped for Wei-Yin Chen on Opening Day. Yeah I’d be super pissed too. I’m not saying his rough start is due to not getting the nod on Opening Day, but maybe, just maybe he’s like that crazy ex GF that messes with you just to prove a point. I could be way off base here, but maybe, just maybe JFer is making a point to Loria and the rest of the Miami Minions, he’s Numero Uno snitches! I’m banking on the fact he sowed his April oats, he’s done pouting and that he’s proved his point to the peeps in charge. This wild horse’s reigns have been weighing him down to start the season and now it’s time for the guys in charge to let this stud run free like Nyquist, cause he’s a got a lot more in the tank Vanilla’s five point oh. At $11,300 he’s on the bottom end of the aces, but I think he be under owned due to the juicy match-ups for Corey Kluber and Jon Lester.

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 10 teamer of Razzball writers and friends to wet your DK whistle. 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 subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I’d like to dedicate this post to all the mothers out there, and to the most important mother in most of our lives, Manny Machado.  The Oxford Dictionary defines mother, “something that is an extreme or ultimate example of its kind especially in terms of scale.”  So, one can say that Manny Machado is the mother of all shortstops and 3rd basemen.  Yesterday, on Machado’s Day, a true mother in the most arcane sense, he went 2-for-4, 6 RBIs with two homers (8, 9).  He’s gaining shortstop eligibility for next year because Hardy hurt himself and the Orioles realized that necessity is the Machado of invention.  So, next year, is there any way he’s not in the top three overall for all of fantasy?  I guess if he gets hurt.  Did I just jinx him?  What a Machado f**ker!  Whatever the case, there’s no way I can pay you back, but the plan is to show you that I understand; you are appreciated.  Sweet Manny, don’tcha know, I love ya (Dear Machado).  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Jose Altuve is on pace for 60 homers.  He can’t even reach the cereal in the morning!  If an opposing manager were to ask to see Altuve’s bat, they would crack it open to reveal gumballs because he’s the leader of the lollipop guild.  If the major leagues were to institute a Daffy Duck ‘You Have To Be This Tall’ sign before getting to the batter’s box, Altuve would need his mother to escort him into the batter’s box every time.  That’s assuming she’s tall enough!  If she’s not, who does he get?  His uncle?  Erik Kratz?  If might were height, Jose Altuve would be a giant.  That much is true.  I love that lil’ bugger!  I want a Teddy Ruxpin in the shape of Altuve to cuddle at night.  Last night, he went 4-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs with his 9th homer, hitting .330.  So, the question is, can he keep it up?  Up is not a word I associate with Altuve, and, no, he can’t keep it up.  No one could keep up this pace.  Of course, he’s still a .315 hitter with an easy 110 runs, 35 steals and 70 RBIs, i.e., a top ten bat.  So, keep it up?  No, not without four phonebooks under him.  Do enough to make you glad you didn’t sell high?  As a French dwarf would say, “Wee!”  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Daniel Murphy is the hottest homophobe since Kirk Cameron got three offers in one week for three different Christian movies, “A Behind…Left Behind,” “Groundhog’s Day Is For Satanists, God Makes The Seasons,” and “Make Me Dinner Woman, And No Leftovers.”  Daniel Murphy’s hotter than Kim Davis looks to lesbians looking for a challenge.  Daniel Murphy is hotter than Ted Nugent’s nougat, which he has to heat to 214 degrees to get the sugar to melt.  Yesterday, Murphy went 4-for-5, 4 runs, 3 RBIs and his 4th homer while hitting .398 on the year.  I’m not saying we need to throw Ted Williams’s head in the microwave to defrost, but we may want to leave it on the counter to slowly bring it to room temperature.  Okay, Murphy’s BABIP is absurdly high (.427), which means he’s hitting about a hundred points too high, so his average will come down.  He’s also not hitting for a ton of power, so it’s a good story right now for the MLB that their hottest hitter is a bigot — The Ghost of Ty Cobb, “That sounds rad.” — but it’ll end eventually.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

If you happen to be a non-millennial reading this then you remember a time when # meant “Pound” and didn’t mean “Hashtag”.  If you are a millennial you’ve likely already skipped this intro and skimmed the rest of the picks.  After all, you’re entitled to win at DFS with minimal research and time invested.  The DFS sites owe it to you, just like your boss owes it to you to give you that raise despite the fact you don’t actually do any work all day.  We’ll be using the pound sign today to discuss how the O’s are going to # on Mat Latos this evening.  I’ve had issues with Latos for some time, I mean, what self-respecting Matt goes by Mat anyway?  This year though, the issues with Latos are greater than ever.  This guy has the nerve to masquerade as an ace with his sub 1 ERA and WHIP.  We here at Razzball aren’t fooled however.  We see the real numbers under those fraudulent ones and we are ready to pounce.  The 4.8 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9 tell the real story, as does his 3.56 FIP.  The regression fairies are just dying to pay Latos a visit, right after they finish cutting off all their jeans into shorts for the summer.  I, for one, want to be there when this correction happens, and not just for the cut off jean shorts.  Chris Davis will be heavily owned but if Pedro Alvarez finds his way into the lineup tonight, he might be an under the radar play that could pay handsome dividends.  The Orioles don’t have much else in the way of lefty batters however Mat Latos hasn’t really shown a dramatic platoon split in his career, so just load up on every O you can get your salary cap around and enjoy the #ing.

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 10 teamer of Razzball writers and friends to wet your DK whistle. 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 subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Yesterday, Buster Olney tweeted, “Kevin Gausman is pitching tonight probably exactly the way the Orioles hoped on the day they drafted him.  Dominant stuff.”  Putting aside the unnecessary “probably” — you’ll never win a Twitter Pulitzer with needless hooha! —  is this what the Orioles hoped for?  Because it’s felt at times like the Orioles were waiting for Gausman to say some sort of secret oath to let him into the rotation and, without Podrick to prompt him, he didn’t know said oath.  By the by, I can’t look at Brienne of Tarth and not see Conan O’Brien.  Perhaps, it’s me (it’s not).  If the Orioles wanted Gausman to pitch probably exactly like this, wouldn’t they have put him in the rotation and left him alone for the last *covers mouth* years?  Not to answer, but to knowingly nod while you undress your computer with your eyes.  Since I have shares in that facacta noodle-hanger Archer, I watched the better part of Gausman’s start, and he looked better than what the boxscore says, and the boxscore says, “Yum, choco-latte.”  It also says 5 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 7 Ks in his first start back.  Gausman has the stuff to be a number one, but at worse a number two.  Not saying he will be this year; that’s just his stuff.  He probably exactly should be already, but probably exactly hasn’t been.  Still, I would grab him in any leagues where I needed upside.  A 8+ K/9, 2.7+ BB/9, 3.75 ERA starter is probably exactly what you’ll get.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

You ready to have your mind blown? Well, maybe it won’t blow your mind but I was searching and searching on a way to tell you in the title that Nick Tropeano was a play today and then I remembered Tropeano was an Italian name. Then I was like, ‘Mariners sounds like Marinara, let’s do some wiki’ing’ and guess what I found? Marinara is literally Italian for Mariner so Spaghetti Alla Marinara literally translates to ‘Spaghetti Mariner’s style’. Literally! I can totally see your face right now. You’re welcome for reading Wikipedia to you and for explaining a title that doesn’t sound like much of a joke on the surface but once I break it down for you, it’s, like, some high brow shizz! But now I’m officially done blowing things and ready to tell you why this play won’t suck…I’m not proud of that sentence, so I’ll just move along. The Mariners have scored a lot of runs on the road so far, having the 5th highest away wRC+ in the league in an albeit small sample size. However, all of those games have come in neutral to friendly parks, especially for lefties. Well, Angels stadium actually plays tougher than Safeco for offense and is particularly unkind to lefties so far. Tropeano isn’t a guy I’d throw out there in cash tonight but if you’re getting a lot of big bats in on what looks to be a run-heavy night, his $6,100 price tag will give you plenty of budget to do so. Now let’s get on with this slate. Here’s my mama mia hot taeks for this Friday DK slate…

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 10 teamer of Razzball writers and friends to wet your DK whistle. 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 subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Bryan Price, always one for colorful language, should go full Tony Montana about his relievers, “Look at that, I got a junkie bullpen, mang.  My bullpen is so polluted!  I can’t even have a save with that bullpen.  It’s so polluted!”  After his Montana rant, Price could clarify who will save games in his bullpen through a string of curse words and em-effers.  Yesterday, Price said they’d go to a committee.  Great, maybe they can make a camel.  Hoover’s out, Jumbo’s gone because his physique reminded them too much of their ERA.  Caleb Cotham could see some saves, and he’s been good vs. minor leaguers, but he’s been honing his craft in the minor leagues for a while.  This isn’t like a potter who needs time to hone his ashtray-making skills before hitting the big-time flea markets.  Being in the minors long just means you might never achieve success in the majors.  Going for Cotham is that he throws righty and he hasn’t failed yet.  Then there’s Tony Cingrani, who I grabbed on Tuesday.  He has been decent enough in the bullpen this year, but he’s a lefty and he blew the save yesterday in the 8th inning.  Oh, and there’s Blake Wood, who is reminiscent of Jeanmar Gomez, and we know how well that turned out.  *intern whispers in my ear*  Seems that so far Jeanmar has worked out okay.  For now, I’d own Cingrani then Cotham, but this is nigh-thurr pretty nor set in stone.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?