Back in my physical prime — not like that means much — I ran cross country, among other sports. As is the case with almost any distance running, you would pace yourself somewhat until the last 200-300ish meters or so, then you’d sprint for the “kick” this meaning pretty much a dead sprint to the finish line. Similarly, the saying “the baseball season isn’t a sprint; it’s a marathon” may be well and true in the April and May, but with five weeks remaining, it’s time for the kick, sometimes meaning you need to kick injured players to the curb.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It feels like only yesterday when everything was right in the world.  An animated blue bird landed on my window ledge and sung to me about boobies and other things the republicans want to make illegal, then another animated bird joined him and sung to me about foie gras and other things the democrats want to make illegal, then a centrist animated bird landed and said a lot of nothing that could neither be refuted nor approved.  Why do I have all of these damn cartoon birds but no Carlos Carrasco?!  Yesterday, Carrasco hit the DL with a sore shoulder.  This sounds to me like an early shutdown is not too far off.  “Hello, shopping mall ear piercer, can you put a diamond stud in the hole in my heart that Carrasco left?”  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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You’d think with a lineup featuring Prince Fielder, the Alfredo would go down fast and leave a mess for someone to clean up. I mean, I know Fielder is a vegetarian so maybe there were too many meatballs? How else can you explain it? It wasn’t Sunday so ‘Any Given Sunday’ need not apply and Any Given Thursday just opens the door for all the days of the week to claim coincidence as its catch phrase. We can’t have these things, there must be a reason! Yeah, there are no reasons. To the antithesis of all baseball nerd reasoning, Alfredo Simon pitched a complete game yesterday against a reasonably good Texas Rangers offense, only giving up one hit and two walks in the process while K’ing five in the shut out. Alfredo was giving up 1.45 HR/9 to go with a .383 wOBA to lefties on the year going into last night and faced a team that had five reasonably good lefty bats in their lineup. Let’s just stuff this one away in Gray’s Sports Almanac and move on with our lives without giving it a second thought, shall we? Yes, let’s. So without further ado, the guy who isn’t Grey will lead you through the rest of what he saw from yesterday for 2015 Fantasy Baseball…

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Marcell Ozuna went 0-for-4 yesterday after being recalled on Saturday.  OZUNA glad to be back in Miami.  OZUNA miss friends, weather and vomiting unicorn statue in center field.  OZUNA promise to hit more powerful home runs.  OZUNA fix holes in swing.  If need be, OZUNA use cricket bat with flat barrel.  OZUNA not sure it called barrel.   OZUNA would call paddle.  OZUNA hit well in minors, .317 with five home runs in 33 games.  OZUNA thought gone longer than 33 games.  OZUNA mind like Plato’s cave.  OZUNA get confused about linear time.  OZUNA think Matrix is documentary.  OZUNA take red pill.  OZUNA was offered two red pills as his “eye-opener to alternate reality” was “out of blue pills.”  OZUNA see pitch in slow motion in 360 degrees.  OZUNA say whoa.  OZUNA thank you for your time.  So, Ozuna’s back and worth a pick up.  No, I have no idea what he’s capable of in the final six weeks, other than maybe some power.  It’s an upside flyer that’s worth taking in every league.  Like blue pill?  Yes, OZUNA.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Sup Sunday goers. Our resident Ralph had himself a thing on Saturday. A thing I don’t really wanna repeat in public so lets just say there were multiple piercings and paddleboards involved and mayhap a few types of ‘beads’. Needless to say, he asked to switch days and after explaining to him that next time he could just tell me he’s really busy and I don’t need the whole story, I humbly and nervously obliged. So here I be and here be Jeff Locke. Jeff isn’t that good of a pitcher; maybe league average. He’s just not one of those guys who’s going to have an All-Star season out of the blue and for streamers and DFS’ers, that’s just fine…wait, he was an All-Star in 2013? Man, I hate that game. Anyways, he only gotta be good once for us to be happy and he’s being spotted a prime matchup to make just that happen. Yes, we all know the Mets have performed well since gaining Yoenis but even he can’t help them with one major thing: their atrocious numbers vs lefties. On the year, the Mets rank 2nd to last at 24.2% for their K% against left-handed pitching. Only the Padres are worse at 24.3% so we are really comparing rotten apples to rotten apples here. Add in a miniscule 84 wRC+ and you’re looking at Locke’s chance to at a cheap $6,400 on DK. On a day with so many good options, there’s no need to risk him in cash but Jeff has 25 point upside with the matchup he’s been handed and if I’m multi-lineup building today, I’m gonna have some exposure to him. But enough about what’s under this overly large, brown dust-coat, let’s get on with the show. Here’s my publicly indecent hot takes for this Sunday 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.

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*Grey adjusts his chiseled body, places himself on a seat, props his chin up with his hand, makes sure that he’s not covering his mustache.* “Welcome to today’s symposium on the intersection of art, science and fantasy baseball. Thank you for joining me at the New Brunswick Holiday Inn. For those arriving late, please fill in the front seats. Don’t groan, my handsome will distract you from wherever you’re sitting if you allow it. Carlos Rodon showed yesterday what he’s capable of — 7 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 11 Ks — but his 4.61 ERA shows everything else. Yes, he will be a 2016 sleeper; his stuff is just so nasty. He has a 10 K/9 in 91 2/3 IP this year (good for sixth best in the majors if he qualified). Yo, Prince, what you say to that? He’s a sexy M.F. Unfortunately, his walk rate is 5, which is as awful as his K-rate is good (would be the worst qualified starter’s BB/9). You know who that reminds me of? Just about every hard thrower when they first came up: Scherzer, Randy Johnson, Sale, Carrasco…. Even Kershaw’s first full year’s BB/9 was 4.79. I’m not saying Rodon will be that good next year, but he’s 22 years old and by the age of 24 he could be a top ten starter. Okay, that should be enough for you to digest for now. For the five ladies joining us, I will continue this in the hotel bar, The Cheeky Monkey, for refreshments and chicken fingers.” Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Luis Severino (+29.7%) was the most added player in fantasy baseball this past week. You know that the MLB youth movement is officially underway when even the Yankees refuse to part with their top prospects at the trade deadline in order to acquire a veteran rental for the stretch run. “I just traded Severino and Aaron Judge to the Mariners for Hisashi Iwakuma. Suckers! We just found our Hiroki Kuroda replacement, and it only took a couple of unproven kids to get him. You’re welcome, New York!” That’s pre-2015 Brian Cashman gloating about a potential deadline deal that might’ve been made in seasons past. Fortunately for Yankees fans, Severino was off-limits in trade talks and was promoted to the big league club just under a week ago instead. The 21-year-old phenom flashed his impressive arsenal (mid-90s fastball, slider, changeup) against the Red Sox in his debut and more than held his own, allowing just 2 hits and 2 runs (1 earned) over 5 innings of work while walking none and striking out 7 batters. Severino has excelled at limiting the long ball, allowing only 8 homers in 320+ minor league innings throughout his career. He’s exhibited impressive control in the minors (2.3 BB/9) while striking out just over a batter per inning (9.1 K/9) during that time period as well. However, as is the case with most young pitchers these days, Severino’s workload is likely to be closely monitored in the coming weeks. He’s already thrown over 100 combined innings this season, and he seems to be in store for roughly 35-40 more (or 6 more starts) if the Yankees follow the old +30 rule for young pitchers. He looks like the real deal, but is likely to be skipped/shut down by mid-September, limiting his fantasy value for the rest of this season. Until then – giddy up!

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

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When you think about Rob Schneider’s career, his Richmeister character was bordering on prophetic. I mean, the first time we saw the character, ok, that was fun. Annoying and yet you get the gist of it why it’s funny and it was in a small enough sample size for you to actually enjoy it and not be frustrated. And then they kept doing the skit over and over and making the skits longer and longer. The reason it was funny was that you get it, the dude is annoying. But is it really funny annoying your audience? Not really. I mean, who the eff watched Deuce Bigalow? Wait, don’t answer that, especially with a ‘yes’ cuz I want us to stay friends. Basically, Rob Schneider in small doses can work (YOU CAN DO IT!) but if you have to deal with him for longer than five minutes, you’re basically trying to annoy your audience to death. Speaking of annoying your audience to death, there’s me not talking about Luis Severino. Let’s fix that, shall we? Severino’s first start of the year wasn’t perfect but it was spectacular as he K’d 7 through 5 and only gave up 2 hits, though those two hits were smacked pretty hard and one left the yard. But said hits were in Yankees stadium and by lefties in a lefty friendly park. Progressive Field still plays well to lefties but it pales in comparison to that Bronx short porch. And though I wouldn’t call that offense lost at sea entirely, it is made up of guys still learning the game and castaways at this point as they shed payroll and try to build for 2016. Meanwhile, New York is still playing for something and Severino looked so good his first time out, I’m hard pressed not to go back to him on a day where he may go underowned because of all the other higher priced pitchers. So join me in rostering the Sevman…the Sevmeister…the Severino, won’t you? Meanwhile, Schneider looks forward to reprising his cameo roles in another Adam Sandler movie. My hatred there is for another time cuz it’s time we move on to some other calls. So here’s my red hot chick takes for this Tuesday 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?

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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Of course, the title is referring to Nelson Muntz, but Jimmy Nelson sounds like a sitcom character too. Like the kid who is sweet to the parents, but is really the devil incarnate when no one is looking. Eddie Haskell, if your references go back that far. Fun fact! Chad Billingsley’s grandma starred in that show. So, Jimmy Nelson had a solid game last night (6 2/3 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 4 Ks, and his ERA is down to 3.57), but that’s not THAT good (caps for emphasis, not aesthetics). No, but his month of July ERA was 1.64. THAT is THAT good (not for emphasis, but now my autocorrect ‘learned’ THAT and wants THAT capped and I can’t shut THAT off). Where is all of this coming from? Great question, clunky expositional transition! I’d say it’s not where it’s coming from, but where has it been? Ooh, you like that switcheroo. Nelson had a 1.46 ERA in the PCL with a 9.2 K/9 last year, throws 93 MPH and has worked hard to add a curve that he never had before this year. He feels like a guy that will click at some point, and be a top 20 starter. This year could be rocky still, but I think he’s worth trying for a few starts to see if he’s already turned that corner. I’ve been rocking three starters in my RCL league since April, but after streaming Nelson yesterday, I kinda want to hold him. While an Air Supply song plays softly in the background. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?