James Jones has appeared in this column before, but his three steals against the Padres last week opened the eyes of fantasy players in all formats. It shouldn’t have been too much of a surprise given who those steals came against though. The Padres are one of the worst teams in the majors at holding baserunners and on that particular night it was Tyson Ross on the mound. Ross is currently leading the major leagues in stolen bases allowed (21). He’s got a big red target on his back for those of us in daily leagues looking to deploy SAGNOF types. If you look at it as a rate, the Padres hurler is giving up about a steal for every five innings pitched. Ross is scheduled to face the Diamondbacks this week, so even fringy players like Tony Campana might be worth a shot for a stolen base. Week to week we give you the best and worst teams to run against, but looking even closer at the individual pitchers can be helpful for daily lineup changes. Hey Mike, I wish we had a tool for that! I hear you, friend. Check out the SB Rates vs. SP tool. It will give you the stolen base against data for each pitcher in 2013. Here’s a quick rundown of the best arms to run against in 2014 fantasy baseball…Please, blog, may I have some more?
As always, probable pitchers are subject to change. For a look at all fantasy baseball streamers, click that link.
Everyone got all excited last Wednesday because Bartolo Colon hit a double in a game that he also won. Obviously, this was worthy of some attention given the fact that Colon is 41, bears a close resemblance to “Big P*ssy” Bonpensiero, and the fact that he twirled eight innings of one-run ball en route to the victory in St. Louis, which is not an easy place to pitch. Lost in all of that was the fact that Terry Collins took Colon out heading into the 9th at only 86 pitches. Unless Colon asked to come out because his mummy arm was falling off, I just don’t get it. It’s another one of those robot moves that make baseball managers so infuriating. Oh, it’s the 9th inning and we have a lead of three runs or less, time to bring in the closer. Nevermind that we don’t really have a closer, and that the closer of the night is Jenrry Mejia, whose birth certificate was typed up by someone who liked to eat peanut butter at their desk. Nevermind that the backup plan for that is a guy (Dana Eveland) who has a different hat on in his fantasy baseball profile photo. Well, Mejia almost blew it, which would have not only cost the 700-year-old Colon a well-deserved victory but would have also pissed off fantasy managers everywhere, including right here. Except for a few turdlet pies, Colon has been surprisingly sturdy in 2014. Maybe it’s not so surprising given his strong performance in the telling strikeout per walk category, where he’s at 5.3, good for sixth right behind Stephen Strasburg. It would have looked really silly, but I almost put Bartolo in the first tier, with starts in his cavernous home against Oakland and continues in Pittsburgh, where teams just don’t score a lot for some reason. He’s only 36 percent owned in Yahoo, 37 percent owned in ESPN. He’s definitely worth a spin while he’s going good, especially at Citi Field.
Here’s some more two-start pitchers for the week:Please, blog, may I have some more?
I see you back there. Yes I’m talking to you. You love risk and I know you do. How can I tell? Well for starters you’re reading my column here at the ‘ole Razzball rag. You don’t know what a ‘rag’ is do you? It’s ok, you’re the internet generation, we’ll let it slide. I can’t wait for the days when my walk up to the check out at the grocery store has touch computer screens of ‘The Sun’ and ‘People’ rather than actual magazines. I’ll swipe my iPhone past Vibe E-zine to get the latest copy and read about 2Pac’s hologram tour across Europe with the Notorious B.I.G. after their rights have been bought out by Apple. It’s gonna be crazy in 2015 y’all! But of course, you didn’t come here for a glimpse of the future…well you did, just not that far so let’s talk Tom Koehler or better yet, let’s talk Chicago Cubs. We know the drill: Cubs offense = teh suck. Team SLG%? Bottom ten. Team wOBA? Bottom five. Team K%? Bottom three. Admittedly, Koehler has been middling at best on the year but given the spacious confines of his home ballpark and the team he gets to take the mound against, I’d say he’s a solid SP2 for your GPP games over on DraftKings today. Don’t like my take? Well how about the DFSBot saying he’s worth about $8K on the day which is what Weaver goes for. As long as he isn’t needled with singles and walks all game, this should be a 20 point start in my book and it’ll free up some dough to buy a high end pitcher and not kill your batting budget. BTW, if you’re used to our resident stock symbol BTXJ on your Mondays, I have a special surprise for you…he’s dead and buried under my gardenias in the back yard. Woah, wrong surprise and dead body! No, my Thursday nights have become too hectic to handle the rigors of DFS writing so we’ve done a perma-swap. Just keep that in mind if you’re looking for me later in the week before you have a Freaky Friday. And with that, it’s time to move on. Here are some other Razzball picks for June 16th contests on DraftKings for 2014 Fantasy Baseball…Please, blog, may I have some more?
There aren’t many things you need to know about me. However, when something in my personal life conflicts with my ability to provide you with unrivaled fantasy advice, then what’s my business becomes our business. Our business is that I’m in that glorious for some, and miserable for others abeyance between graduating college and commencing my tenure as an employed person. Instead of lamenting during this transitional phase, I’ll be spending the next few weeks on a Euro-trip beginning in Copenhagen and continuing through Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Munich, and Amsterdam [Jay's Note: Niiiiiiiiiiice.] before finally flying out of Paris July 9th. Needless to say, I likely won’t find the time to sit down and write one of these articles during this prolonged muck-fest. Hopefully you’ve gained the tools to maximize you’re lineups yourselves, because you are own your own the next month or so. If anyone has any advice for such a journey or any hotspots I should check out, feel free to share in the comments. [Jay's Note: Red Light District.]Please, blog, may I have some more?
As always, probable pitchers are subject to change. For a look at all fantasy baseball streamers, click that link.
I did some soul-searching math the other day, and I determined that 54 percent of the time, I’m right every time. But that benchmark of psychic-level foresight seems to no longer be reachable in these turbulent times. Although a few recent stumbles have me questioning myself a bit lately, there are some things I do know for sure. Taking a page out of Jimmy Fallon’s playbook, I give you my “True Facts of Truth” for the 2014 Fantasy Baseball Season:
1) Something (Bigger crackdown on P.E.D.’s? Climate change? More tightly wound balls?) has sapped the power out of guys who used to have power. Robinson Cano, Billy Butler, Jedd Gyorko and Evan Longoria are among those who have experienced major power outages.
2) Roughly 32 percent of all adult males get excited when they see Matt Adams rub a bat between his moobs, but only 30 percent will admit to it (Cards’ fans).
3) Something (Bigger crackdown on P.E.D.’s? Climate change? Less tightly wound balls?) and not something else (kids throwing curveballs too early) has made Dr. James Andrews and very busy man and caused carpel tunnel issues for whoever types up the disabled list section of the transactions that run in newspaper sports sections.
4) The “R.A.” in R.A. Dickey stands for “Really Acting”.
5) Guys who were aces heading into the season (Justin Verlander, Matt Cain, Gerrit Cole, Gio Gonzalez, Homer Bailey) are not aces in 2014, and therefore not automatic green lights as two-start pitchers.
6) Guys who were not aces heading into the season (Johnny Cueto, Dallas Keuchel, Phil Hughes, Tim Hudson, Mark Buehrle, Josh Beckett) are pitching like aces and becoming dang near must-starts as two-start pitchers.
7) In cricket, the game of pepper is called “circle jerk.”
8) When in doubt, go with the Stream-O-Nator.
9) If you’re still not sold, look at a dude’s K/BB per game ratio.
10) Ronald Belisario is actually 61 years old.
Maybe you saw something in the list you can use and apply to the rankings below. Or maybe you saw some things that have you questioning the future of the human race. Regardless, let the Two-Startapalooza begin!Please, blog, may I have some more?
I get so funny with the money that you flaunt
I said where’d you get your information from huh?
You think that you can front when revelation comes
Yeah, you can’t front on that
Yo Yo Yo’s we iz takin’ it back to ’92 with the baddest trio of white boys since Richie,Potsie and Ralph. The Beastie Boys are probably the best ever to drop lyrics for all the suburban kids to feel fresh too. Seriously, after this song came out every kid went out and bought a beanie and made it a staple that to this day has gotten a little ridiculous. By the way, why the hell do people wear beanies when it’s 100 degrees outside? I don’t get it. You can look like this guy and that’s not a good thing. Sorry back to the Beasties and this game changing jam. Oh damn, what am I doing? This is suppose to be about DraftKings. Let’s get funny with our money and drop the $10,700 today on Michael Wacha. He’s worth it. You might ask where I get my information from?…Huh? The Royals have been pretty blaherrible for fantasy purposes. Collectively they can do some damage but I’m willing to bet they won’t. Wacha’s K-rate sits at a very pretty 9.20 with a walk rate at 2.33. He faces Yoradno Ventura who is coming off an elbow issue and has given up 9 earned runs over his last 8.2 innings and as much as I like K’s I also like to get the W when I invest this much. The other options for the afternoon set is not as sexy and if I’m gonna be spending, I want to spend on sexy. Before I move on I was flipping through Beastie Boy videos on You Tube and was reminded of how good videos used to be. Here is my top 5 all time 5) No Sleep Til Brooklyn 4) Intergalactic 3) Fight for Your Right (To Party) 2) Hey Ladies 1) Sabotage Please post your own favorites below and let’s talk about it.
Oh you thought I was jumping to player profiles? Ha! Actually the Guru did a great job yesterday of providing tips and jokes for the newbies. It’s a great game and I alway tell you all to come join us. If you are feeling a little apprehensive we can keep it our little secret. If you decide to play I suggest using the DFS-Bot as a baseline first. Then go look for what you think is a good value. We are essentially making a lineup of batty calls and streamers. Honestly you can spend 20 minutes and get a good grasp on what your lineup should be. Please don’t hesitate to ask as many questions as you want in the comments. That is what we are here for. You can look me up on DraftKings too, my handle is J-FOH.Please, blog, may I have some more?
The 2014 season is two months old, so it’s data day here at the Razzball Steals Emporium. This is kind of like the chapter review our teachers gave us in school, except there is no test, so everybody wins. We have to mention Dee Gordon to start. His ADP was 222. This is ironic because that’s about how many steals he’ll likely end up with this year. With 34 stolen bases on June 1, the 26-year-old middle infielder is on a crazy pace for about 90 swipes this season. Billy Hamil-who?
Gordon has always had speed, but he’s doing more to utilize it this year in the majors. He’s been successful on the basepaths 92% of the time. He’s swinging at less pitches outside of the strike zone, making better contact, and striking out less in general. Gordon has also been hitting more ground balls, less fly balls, and significantly less infield fly balls. This has all resulted in a better batting average, better on-base percentage, and in turn crazy stolen base numbers. It’s almost as if someone reminded Dee that he was fast and should just try to put the ball on the ground. Amazing!
Gordon owners can enjoy the ride and shouldn’t stay up at night worrying about him falling off a cliff. If anything, I wouldn’t be shy to acquire Gordon off of an owner who was nervous about that very scenario. He won’t provide much outside of stolen bases, but he’ll help you come close to winning that category from a middle infield position, allowing you to roster more balanced players in your outfield slots.
Here’s where we’re at with steals through the first two months in 2014 fantasy baseball…Please, blog, may I have some more?
Clap along if you feel like that song got overplayed (Cuz it’s crappyyyyyy). Clap along if you feel like Pharrell should’ve never sang (Cuz it’s crappyyyyyy). Clap along if you know he coulda done a better thang (Cuz it’s crappyyy). Clap along if you feel these lyrics are just a drain (Cuz they’re crappyyyyyyy). Now don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge Pharrell Williams fan…back when he was a producer as part of The Neptunes duo. The man knows music inside and out and it’s pretty clear he knows how to stick good tunes in your head. Hell, even N.E.R.D. was boss. Yeah, yeah, he sang…if you think the Beastie Boys sing. Let me put it to you this way. I’ll listen to Britney Spears. It’s one song. It’s ‘I’m A Slave 4 U‘ and not out of any sense of irony or wry humor. It’s all cuz of Pharrell. Granted, I do it with the vocals stripped but whatever, you get the point: the man knows his beats and has a huge musical vocabulary. Jazz, do-wop, 70’s soul, punk, disco…the man is a walking classics playlist with his own flare. What does all this have to do with J.A. Happ you ask? Eh, nothing really. I just wanted to riff on Pharrell for a bit. Before he was gathering Grammys with a weird hat, he was dropping quality track after quality track…and winning Grammys. So basically nothing’s changed and the same can be said of Happ. He’s still not a good pitcher. But that doesn’t mean he can’t drop a quality start in the middle of of his mediocrity, especially when given such a prime matchup. The Royals are either at or near the bottom of the barrel in terms of team wOBA, ISO, and OBP against lefties on the year. Now that doesn’t make J.A. a safe bet, of course, but when you look at his price of $6,300 over on DraftKings, you have to consider how much he’ll aid you in rostering some bigger bats for a full Friday slate. So now that we’ve covered the important things in life – Pharrell’s discography and Happ still being a bad pitcher with a good matchup – let’s give this Friday slate a whirl, shall we?Please, blog, may I have some more?
What’s more American than Memorial Day weekend? How about an ex-country singer-dating, gun-toting, Texan, a guy that looks like he puts a hot dog in the fly of his pants and goes up to female reporters and asks them if they’re hungry, a guy who we call Red State Jeter, a guy that looks like he has the rhythm of Mark Madsen, someone who has Ted Nugent’s special I’m-a-huntin’ phone number, a guy that Roger Clemens probably watches and thinks, “I wonder if he’ll have sex with my wife while I watch,” throwing a no-hitter? With a no-hitter on Memorial Day, Josh Beckett just took your ‘Murica and raised it back to its 1950’s ‘Murica when we were more obvious about our contempt for other nations. Though for our fantasy porpoises — hey, dolphins! — I gotta be honest, I’m a bit worried about him throwing 128 pitches, but his peripherals suggest a guy that if healthy can be a solid fantasy number three. He is not an ace now, so if suddenly people think that, feel free to shop him. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Four teams were showing interest in Stephen Drew. No official word on which four teams, but I’m guessing the Yankees, Tigers, Red Sox and whoever didn’t want the Yankees, Tigers or Red Sox to get him. Probably the Giants. That Sabean is a real party pooper! “Stephen Drew is under 40 years old, but he comes across as a guy that is aging twice the speed of the average human.” That’s Sabean weighing Drew’s pros and cons. Well, tough noogs, Sabean, the Red Sox secured their long-coveted, barely above replacement level shortstop. In a news conference, the Red Sox said they hadn’t had a news conference in a while and felt like now was as good a time as any. “We were gonna hold a presser to say Jerry Remy was down to a pack and a half of smokes a day, but this is so much better!” Drew hasn’t been worth owning in fantasy in about six years, so I wouldn’t expect you picking him up will work as a Viagra substitute. He’s around that of a 12-homer, 5-steal, .250 hitter. Lowercase yay. This will move Xander Bogaerts to third base and Will Middlebrooks to an outside chance of being a deep league sleeper in 2015, if he gets a few good at-bats off the bench when he returns because he’s now out of a job. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?