Good afternoon party people and welcome to a Monday edition of Sundays with Uncle Ralph. I’m glad you all could make it. Have any trouble getting here? I’ve heard the internet pirates are especially bad on Mondays. Is this true? I don’t have any first hand experience because I write all of my material on cocktail napkins then email it to Sky from a computer at the local library. They let me pay by the hour with the loose change I store in my cupholders! It’s a lushlife. BTW seen the pitching ledger for the day? Yeah it’s pretty….ummmm…..ahhhh…hmmmm…how do I say this? Awful! Seriously the two highest priced pitchers are C.J. Wilson and Clay Buchholz and they face the Yankees and Blue Jays. The Streamonator rates them both as positive starters, C.J. is rated as the best start of the day while Clay barely makes the cut at a price of $1. I’m not sure I understand the Wilson love. He’s been in a two bad starts two good starts pattern for the past few months and his 7 run torture fest at the hands of the Houston Astros on Tuesday was the first bad start after a run of two good starts…..You know what that means. His opponent isn’t a cakewalk either, the Yankees rank 4th in wOBA vs LHP and they’re middle of the pack when it comes to road wOBA ranking 15th. I’d stay away from Wilson and dig in the dumpster pile, lots of extra bucks to throw at some hitters. Which brings me to my top choice of the day Mike Leake ($6,900). Seriously no one’s been this excited about Mike Leake since he left Arizona State. As long as we can keep him from the Macy’s T-shirt line, we should be good to go. Okay that’s not saying much but the SoN agrees pricing him at $6.5, the second highest value of the day. In the month of June he’s rocking a 2.54 ERA, a 7.09 k/9 and 1.64 Bb/9. So he’s on a bit of a hot streak. It’s not a ton to go on but on a day like today you have to take some chances. So unzip, breath deep, and take a Leake.

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 25 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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So he’s not technically a prospect, but Jon Singleton returned to the majors on Friday after spending the first three months in Triple-A. Still just 23 years old, the slugging first baseman/designated hitter was on point in the minors to start the year – leading the Pacific Coast League in homers (17) and RBI (66!) while slashing .280/.387/.553 in 70 games with Fresno. Singleton got a taste of the bigs last year and hit 13 homers in 362 plate appearances. He also hit .168 and struck out at a 37% clip though, so the Astros put him back in the easy bake oven to start 2015. Hopefully the extra time in the minors has him better prepared for major league pitching this time around. The Astros seem to think so, as GM Jeff Luhnow mentioned that Singleton would likely eat into both Chris Carter and Evan Gattis’ playing time. He’s worth a look in pretty much any format thanks to his power, but don’t expect much more than .240 from him in the batting average department. It’s also worth mentioning that after hitting ten homers in May, Singleton only hit three in June and saw his slugging percentage dip to .457. Wet blanket…engaged! Here’s what else is happening around the minor leagues…

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The Kraken of 06010 fame, Jason Heyward, has erupted. Heyward has gone 12-for-24 this past week with an eye popping 1.478 OPS. He has homered in three consecutive games, going 1-for-3 with a dinger and 3 RBI last night. Heyward has had some unfair comparisons thrown his way early in his career, even picking up the outrageously unfair “J-Hey Kid” nickname in his rookie season. He is a man child, looking well past his age, kind of like Greg Oden or LeBron James, so let’s not forget that he is still just 25 years old. Heyward hit 27 homers in 2012 with a .814 OPS but has since posted disappointingly low totals. With 9 homers on the year, he is now on pace for about 21. I could see him doing a bit better than that. I’m going to predict that his year-end OPS sits right around .800. I’m buying.

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Yesterday, the Cubs scored seventeen runs, so enough jibber-jabbering, let’s get to it! Starting this whole she bangs, she bangs, Oliver’s got bangs in the 2nd inning, Addison Russell (2-for-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs) hit his 5th homer as he continues to hit ninth. Joe Maddoning says he’s hitting Addison ninth to take pressure off him. McNulty would call that bunk. (By the by, tell me this doesn’t look like McNulty.) Isn’t there pressure just being in the major leagues? Did Addison not see how the Cubs pushed aside Javier Baez and Arismendy from year to year? Bunk! Chris Coghlan (2-for-3, 3 runs, hitting .251) needs to hit fifth? David Ross (1-for-5, 1 run) in any lineup should be hitting ninth. There’s absolutely no reason Russell should be that low. Move him up! Then Kyle Schwarber went 4-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs in his first major leagues start, and became only the third Cub in their history to have four hits in his first major league start. The other two were two guys you never heard of, which makes this record depressing. Thanks, Elias Sports Bureau! Oh, and there’s no pressure on Schwarber as he hits sixth? Okay, I’ll let it go. I pray to the deity of your choice that Schwarber gets four hits in every game until Sunday, Miguel Montero stays injured and Epstein says, “Okay, Schwarber schways. He schways! Stays, sorry, it’s hard to say anything normal after Schwarber.” Then (Yes, it keeps going!) Chris Denorfia went 2-for-5, 2 runs, 4 RBIs and his 1st homer, hitting .396. Put the microwave on defrost and stick in Ted Williams’s head! Never to be outdone (or overdue, as the case might be), Anthony Rizzo went 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 12th homer. Finally (I’m exhausted!), Kris Bryant (2-for-6, 4 RBIs and his 8th homer) as he grand salami’d in the ninth. You at a 2016 fantasy draft, “I need a Bryant.” *Smash* As a pie gets thrown in your face. Five over-the-internet dollars to be paid out in fake installments, if you get that reference. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Quick, who leads the Colorado Rockies in hits? How about batting average? And most importantly for this column, who leads the Rockies in OBP?

If you said Troy Tulowitzki or Nolan Arenado, you’d be wrong. If you said Carlos Gonzalez, you’d be really wrong. The correct answer is D.J. LeMahieu. LeMahieu has been one of the Rockies best batters to start the season and, after a bit of a production dip, has started to hit well again. Walt Weiss has begun experimenting with LeMahieu in the 2-hole, which in a decent Rockies lineup, could lead to some runs. I wouldn’t go out of my way to acquire him, but if he is available on the wire or if someone is wanting to deal him, he is worth the look. His .394 OBP is not sustainable (career .322), but even a marginal slide backwards would be serviceable in most leagues at second base.

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To paraphrase Collective Soul, “Diamondbacks, your cup runneth over with outfielders. Don’t scream about! Don’t think aloud! Trade an outfielder now, baby! Just spit him out! Don’t worry about! Don’t speak of doubt! Turn your organization’s head and spit Trumbo out!” From Collective Soul’s website (that was surprisingly not a Geocities site or Myspace), they’re still touring. Coming to a church bingo hall near you! So, the Mariners acquired Mark Trumbo and Vidal Nuno for Welington Castillo, Dominic Leone, Jack Reinheimer and Gabby Guerrero. During one of the games I took in at spring training this year, I screamed at Guerrero, “Hey, number ninety-two,” because I had no idea who he was and the media guide only went up to ninety-one. Then I jawed at Guerrero for about ten minutes, giving him a little taste of some major league heckling. Now that I realize who he was, it turns out we were both Gabby. This doesn’t do anything major to anyone’s value. Diamondbacks were one of the best team offenses in this little thing we call reality, so if anything, Trumbo takes the smallest of hits. Park-wise, Mark can be Trumbomb or Trumboner anywhere, so I’m not concerned. The ones that get the biggest value boost here are David Peralta (2-for-5, 1 run, 2 RBIs) and Castillo. Welington relocates his boeuf to the desert and becomes an everyday catcher with 15-homer power and a .270 average. Definitely grab him in NL-Only and two-catcher leagues. Peralta will have a chance to prove himself, but he’s more of a 14-homer, 8-steal guy, so nothing huge. This does stop the Diamondbacks from benching A.J. Pollock (2-for-4, 2 runs, 7th homer, and 2nd in as many games; grab him!), Ender Inciarte (0-for-5) and Yasmany Tomas (3-for-5, 2 runs, 1 RBI) when Jake Lamb returns. Or as Lamb would say, “Not baaaaah for either team.” Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Eduardo Rodriguez (+38.9%) was the most added player in fantasy baseball this past week, and it’s not hard to see why. For those of you who Googled the words fantasy, hard, and rod and ended up here, perhaps you’d like to stick around and check out this fantasy baseball thing. Or you could just scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on the Rated R GIFs of Sexy Celebs ad. Your choice! As far as Mr. Rodriguez goes, his big league debut against the Rangers last week couldn’t have gone much better for the 22-year-old. The young lefty threw 7 2/3 shutout innings while registering 7 strikeouts during the outing. Perhaps most impressively, his average fastball velocity of 95.0 mph (according to the Brooks Baseball PITCHf/x game report) would place him 10th among all qualified MLB starting pitchers and 1st among lefties. Of course, it’s just one start, and his minor league numbers show that he can be prone to occasional bouts of wildness, but E-Rod looked pretty impressive on this day. If he’s available in your league, grab him while you still can. No guarantees here, but loads of fantasy upside. And I’m not talking to you, Googlers. Gross! Here were a couple of other big adds and drops in fantasy baseball from this past week:

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harperimage

In 1977, not only was yours truly introduced to this cruel, crazy beautiful world, but so was a place that would sell the coolest of cool gadgets. Who reading this can say that, as a kid, or even an adult, they didn’t go into a Sharper Image to sit in one of their outrageously overpriced, super comfortable leather massage chairs. The display chairs in those showrooms saw more action than Jenna Jameson did in the late 90s. The Sharper Image was a great place to kill a good 20 minutes while you wife, girlfriend or other female shopping companion went into the stores you had no desire to see the inside of. It was either Sharper Image or Cinnabon, or both. I used to get yelled at all the time by the store clerks for eating that cinnamon deliciousness while getting a free mechanical rub down.

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Victor Martinez hit the DL. I told you he was overrated in the preseason, but rather than just say I told you so, let’s tell you exactly what I told you, “Wah-wah. Sad trombone. ‘Those aren’t pillows!’ Or whatever signal you want for a reversal from good to bad. That was what I heard when it was announced that Victor Martinez had a torn meniscus, which reminds me of a conversation I had when calculators were first introduced in 1961 and I had to abandon my loyalty to my other counting device, screaming, “I’m torn, abacus!” I got sad when Martinez was hurt, not because I wanted to draft him and now he had an injury. I was saddened because now I figured my ranking of him in the 110’s wouldn’t be as low as other ‘perts. You know, they’d hear this news and lower him. Much to my surprise, I overestimated the rest of the ‘pert world. They still have him ranked 75 overall on average. *scratches head* You know, head scratching really doesn’t help one understand anything, which sounds like a line from C.J. Wilson’s latest dandruff commercial. CBS has V-Mart ranked 15th overall. I’m not even joking. I wish I were. “Your final wish is granted.” No, Genie in a Bottle, it’s a figure of speech! Okay, it looks like CBS has changed his ranking slightly, that ranking was before the knee surgery. Stupid, wish-taking Genie! Martinez is still ranked way too high, and it has nothing to do with the surgery.” And that’s me quoting me! See, I told you I told you so. This will likely be a nice boost in playing time for Anthony Gose and Rajai Davis, the King of SAGNOF and his Golden Gose. Also, hitting the DL is Corey Dickerson with his plantar fasciitis, a garden variety injury. This helps Drew Stubbs see playing time, but takes him away from his BBQ sauce manufacturing. While the Rockies are home, I’d give Stubbs a shot. Martinez and Dickerson share something in injury; these aren’t ailments that DL stints are going to fix. These will linger all year and I would sell low on both guys. Sorry to bum you out, unless Evan Gattis is reading. He can bum out all on his own. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Greetings, my fine DK’ers and so that we have it out of the way, May the 4th be with you. See that? Now it’s covered so don’t bother me about it. I’m not even a Star Wars fan. There, I said it and I can’t take it back. I don’t care you’re still hot and bothered about Princess Leia in that bikini but I am sorry George Lucas bent over and took a steaming pile on what you divine to be a national treasure and then wiped his pimply butt with the money he made off you. I had a similar thing happen to me with the Alien franchise so I can relate. Alien: Resurrection? *Man dumping trash into trash can emoji* Nonetheless, it’s done, enjoy your new Disney money-making machine while I trudge on in the DFS world. So Travis Wood. He’s been pretty good. Obviously, that’s the only reason I’m suggesting him, right? Welllll, not exactly. I mean, do I love his 9.89 K/9 and his 2.28 BB/9? Of course, but there’s more to love, namely his opponent. On the surface, you wouldn’t think that the Cardinals are a team to attack for Ks, AKA the money-making tool on DraftKings when it comes to taking a pitcher. Their overall team K% of 18.2% puts them 25th worst (well, for them 6th best) in the league. But then you go and look at the splits and realize a hidden gem of a secret. Over 190 PA this year, they strike out 23.7% of the time versus southpaws. But that’s what happens when half your lineup are left handed bats and you force Mark Reynolds into your lineup because he is one of your better hitters against LHP. BTW, thanks STL for those two free Ks! Anywho, let’s move on. Here’s my scalding hot take on the May the 4th be with you DK slate. See, I did it again just for you…

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 25 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?