*swirls a glass, takes a gulp. spits it back in a bucket*  “That’s vintage Justin Verlander,” said Kate Upton.  “Okay, this might sound gross, but can you spit into my mouth?”  That’s you getting up the nerve to say something to Kate Upton.  I just thought of a moneymaking idea for Shark Tank!  You stand outside of Comerica Park with a cardboard cutout of a naked Verlander and have people pay $10 to take a picture with him, pretending to be Kate Upton.  Oh, and no, this post isn’t an attempt to Bleacher Report up Google’s rankings by mentioning Verlander and Upton repeatedly, though it does seem that way…Verlander/Upton, Verlander/Upton and Verlander/Upten for the illiterates.  So, Verlander did look magnificent yesterday until the 8th inning when he began to tire, ending up with a one hitter –> 9 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners (1 Hit), 9 Ks with an ERA at 3.45.  Big Magoo captured Verlander’s upside about two weeks ago with this post.  Worth reading, but the key part (cause I know, y’all can only read so much), “Since the All-Star break, Verlander’s 7.25 K/BB ratio is the 5th highest among qualified starting pitchers, and his 1.1 BB/9 is the 6th lowest.  He shares the same swinging strike rate (12.1%) as Jake Arrieta and Gerrit Cole over that span as well.  Now, excuse me as I go drain the weasel on a picture of Grey.”  Hey, wait a minute!  I didn’t remember that last part.  So, if Verlander is out there in your league, the one-hitter yesterday doesn’t seem to be a hirame.  Sorry, I just had sushi.  It’s not a fluke.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The Red Sox season is like the guy that knocks over the Jenga structure with the first block pulled, then manages to somehow knock every single block off the table, even the ones on the very bottom. Koji Uehara hit the DL with a fractured wrist, and is done for the season, as originally speculated here after reading between the lines at other sites. I also read between the lines that aliens constructed Tikal in Guatemala. And I thought Tikal was constructed by Method Man. Also, I have a bone to pick with read, why is the past tense still spelled read? Siri can’t even figure that shizz out to speak. You messed up, English language! Any the hoo! With Uehara out, this opens a hole for Jean Machi or Junichi Tazawa to walk through. Tazawa is Asian, though I’m not sure that’s a requirement, Machi is ugly. Again, may not matter. Either way, I’d go Machi first since Sawx manager, John Farrell, indicated that Machi would fill-in as the closer, adding, “And Sandoval is still fat.” Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Happy day after Dre Day Kids! Do kids even know who Dr. Dre is? “Ahhhhh do you mean the headphone guy makes music too?” (Shakes head and walks away) I’m listening to “Compton” as we speak and it’s had it’s highs and lows so far, but it’s a first listen so we’ll see. Still Dr. Dre was the soundtrack of my middle school and high school years. No matter where you went in the 18 months following “Chronic 2001″‘s release you were hearing something from that record. I mean unless you were going to a country club or a klan rally. Then again Tiger Woods was probably sneaking porn stars into his Buick while listening to Xxplosive. So maybe it was just klan rallies. Then again again I’ve never been to a klan rally, so I’m uncertain of what goes on. If I’m to guess, I’d assume they listen to nazi punk, but then again again again I’ve never heard nazi punk. But I do know Jello Biafra really wanted them to F off. BOOM! Off track like Carl Lewis, where were we? Oh yeah this week’s theme is Dr. Dre!!! I just want to be clear I’m picking Dre produced projects that fit the quality of the starter not the five best Dre laced joints. That would be Straight Outta Compton, Chronic 2001, Chronic, 100 Miles and Running, No One Can Do it Better, and The Slim Shady LP. Okay so that’s 6 but I couldn’t leave off my favorite Eminem record. So let’s get into the Two Start Pitchers for Week 19.

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Whatever happened to Flavor of Love? That show was my jizzoint! And Rock of Love, its companion piece, was the Better Call Saul to its Breaking Bad. You can’t tell me those two shows went off the air because Flavor or Brett found love. They were both likely married when the shows aired. It wasn’t about love, it was about meeting incredible people and finding out about other cultures..and watching girls fight! So, Matt Boyd rang ’em up and rang ’em down (Is that the saying? Let’s say it is!) with a line of 7 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 2 Ks. Boyd came over to the Tigers in the David Price trade, which is different than the Star of David trade, which sent a necklace to Bernie Hermowitz for a mah jong set. Sadly, Boyd is a streamer for most mixed leagues with his 91 MPH fastball and likely 6 to 7 K/9. In his next start, he gets the Royals again, and no matter what the Stream-o-Nator says, I wouldn’t touch him, not unless Mo’Nique’s taking him under her wing at Charm School (another great show!). Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It’s hard to pick which Ross is hated more: the one in Friends whose character is so annoying David Schwimmer could never get work again, or the dynamite starter for the Nationals, who even after pitching mad impressive through his first few starts, wasn’t even the first SP to get the call when Stephen Strasburg went back to the DL yet again.  Why wasn’t he the first call?!

After Joe Ross‘s first run in June, I kept him in the ranks a few more weeks even without a for-sure rotation spot, and when Strasburg tweaked the oblique, I was ready to vault him into the top-50.  But nooooooo, instead they use, I dunno, Taylor Jordan or someone who doesn’t matter?  C’mon Nats, what did Ross ever do to you?!  Finally the Nationals got Ross back up to face the Mets last week in a decent – albeit underwhelming – start given the matchup, so I decided to break down his 5th MLB start at the Pirates, in a pitcher’s duel Sunday afternoon against Gerrit Cole.  Here’s how Ross looked:

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Yesterday, Michael Brantley went 4-for-5, 2 runs, 4 RBIs with his 7th homer. One big day for a 2nd rounder is more than Ian Desmond owners can say. Yes, everything’s better when compared to Ian Desmond. “Maw, this spinach is still half-frozen and spinach juice is dripping into my Salisbury steak.” “In some countries, all children have is a 2nd round draft pick of Ian Desmond.” “You’re right, maw, you’re right. I’m an ingrate!” That’s a 34-year-old you after coming up from your mom’s basement for dinner. One of my biggest regrets of this season was not labeling Brantley a Noid and telling you to avoid. I didn’t rank him in the preseason crazy high so you would draft him, but I didn’t outright say, “Look elsewhere, prematurely balding man.” Meh, I guess my regrets could be worse. I mean, look at Lindsay Lohan’s last ten years. If you own Brantley, I think at this point you have to hold tight and either go down with the ship or hope some of his cream rises — mixed metaphor points! If you don’t own Brantley like me, well, whew. I’m empathetic though. Kinda. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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“I don’t know what my face is doing right now.” “It looks like you ate a full Tony Luke’s cheesesteak and forgot to swallow.” “No. I mean, I did, but I took the sub out of mouth and put it in my glove compartment for later. But this is something else. Feel my cheeks, they’re, like, pushed up.” “You get that f**kin’ Botox?” “No! I’m a 45-year-old construction worker with bad knees. Why would I get Botox?” “Then what’s wrong with your cheeks? You’re freaking me out!” “Wait, I know what it is. I’m…I’m smiling and I’m a Phillies fan. This is better than the day Charlie Manuel stopped at our job site to use our Porta-Potty!” Yesterday, Aaron Nola looked great — 6 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks, and Phillies fans, or Phans, have something to smile about. I watched a portion of the game and he looked like he could be an ace. Love, love, lurve the control and mid-90’s fastball. At worst, he’s a number three. I was pretty jazzed at what I saw. Whenever you have a guy that has great command and can strike out people, there’s a chance for wonderful. With that said (hold on to the starboard, Grey’s turning around!), he’s a rookie and there will be some Growing Pains, and not the good kind of boners. I would absolutely own him, but in shallower leagues I’d be careful of roofies. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Growing up everyone had their favorite school lunch. Didn’t matter if your Mom packed you one or if you paid Bertha $1.25 for the crap they served on the foam divided plate. Everybody had a favorite. Maybe you were a lima beans and ravioli guy, a P,B, and J-er, did you crush fluffernutters like a boss? Or did you wait all week for pizza on Friday? I had several favorites and they evolved as I got older, I’m sure that’s the same for you too. So this week we compare pitchers to some of my favorite brown bag meals. Excuse me while I go heat up some Dino-shaped chix nuggets. Yummmm weird chicken type meat smoothered in sweet baby rays….Yummmmmm. So anyway we’re all starving for some fantasy baseball coming out of the break, and what better way to ring in the second half than a little elementary school nostalgia? Two Start Pitchers week 16 gentlemen and four LADIES.

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Move over Billy Hamilton – there’s a new king of SAGNOF in town! Well, maybe not, but Cesar Hernandez (+49%) has been on some kind of roll in recent weeks. Over the last 30 days, the 25-year-old Hernandez has stolen more bases (10) than any MLB player outside of Hamilton, and his .376 batting average ranks 3rd in MLB over that time frame. Sure, his .471 BABIP over the last month is wildly unsustainable for any player, but his MLB-leading 35.5% LD% and 5 bunt hits over that stretch suggest that a BABIP in the .340 range is a reasonable expectation over the remainder of the season, even when factoring in some inevitable regression across the board. His 11.4% BB% and 15.8% K% this season are both well above league average, and his 6.8% Swstr% is sandwiched right in between Dee Gordon and Brett Gardner on the season. Not too shabby.

Worried about playing time moving forward? Chase Utley is still hurt and produced a .179/.257/.275 triple slash line prior to hitting the DL, and Ben Revere is likely to be on the move in the coming weeks. Freddy Galvis? Cody Asche? Darin Ruf? Domonic Brown? Not exactly formidable roadblocks. Philly is likely to be essentially Maikel Franco surrounded by a beer-league softball roster following this season’s trade deadline. Playing time doesn’t appear to be an issue here. Interested in a player who could potentially give you 18-20 steals and a .280 average ROS? Hail Cesar!

Here are a couple of other significant adds and drops in fantasy baseball over the past week:

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DraftKings was actually a little late to the DFS party.  You’d never know it by looking at how prevalent they are everywhere.  They have done a wonderful job marketing, nabbing up partnerships with MLB and several major sports franchises along the way.  They are one of the two big fishes in the sea right now.  Back in the early days of DFS every site had a little chat box that was a place for three things usually.  1) Trash talking, 2) Whining, 3) Immature potty humor that quickly degenerated into things that you’d read on a Yahoo! article comments section.  DraftKings came into being after the chat box phenomenon had started to fade away.  It’s really no surprise these chat boxes have gone the way of the buffalo, but there are a few smaller sites where they still exist.  All of this was a long introduction into me reading one of these chats the other day and seeing someone whining about “stupid Coors stacks”.  I’m a Coors stacker, it’s what I do.  I try every way I can to get as much exposure to that place as I possibly can on a given night.  For me, it’s a worthwhile gamble and one that pays off more often than not.  It’s not everyone’s bag though, but you have to be aware of the situation.  You can always fade Coors in a  tournament, figuring most people will be on that game.  If Coors is a dud and your guys go off, you should have a nice advantage.  You could go with the flow and stack Coors, or you could just sprinkle in Coors action and pick your spots.  The final option of course, if the Coors stacks really bother you is to just sit those nights out.  No one will think any less of you.  If you are playing tonight, one name I highly discourage fading is Wilin Rosario.  Wilin is a beast with the stick and is superhuman when he’s got the platoon advantage (.325/.360/.623 career slash line).  Toss in the Coors factor and for $3,600 with eligibility at first base or catcher and there’s no excuse for fading Wilin tonight.  Here are a few more fellas you shouldn’t be fading this evening.

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 18 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?