Our first full slate of games and two closers lost jobs. Mother Nature and/or Al Gore (if they’re different people), how is climate different than weather if both lead to a closepocalypse? An interested party is curious. It was a bit before concussions were in vogue, but did anyone ever check Robin Ventura for a concussion when he got cantalouped by Nolan Ryan? Cause he just lamebrained up my fantasy teams by naming Matt Lindstrom the closer– Um, Grey? What’s up, Random Italicized Voice? When Addison Reed was traded in December, you said, “White Sox GM Rick Hahn named Nate Jones, Matt Lindstrom, Scott Downs and Daniel Webb as possible replacements. Due to Scott Downs’ Syndrome, Downs is out of the mix. Jones will be a favorite by fantasy baseballers (<–my mom’s term!) due to his ability to strike guys out, but I’m guessing Lindstrom will end up with the job due to that hard-to-put-your-finger-on-it closer experience quality.” And that’s me quoting you! DAH!!! I got wrapped in the allure of a young, sexy closer and forgot where my butter pickles were buttered! I imagine this shituation will get worse before it gets better, so if you have room, I’d hold Jones for now, but you should absolutely pick up Lindstrom in all leagues. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

For the most part, there is general theme that I try to cover in this series. Usually, I like to concentrate on the heavily owned guys, say, in the top-100. And within that 100-or-so range, I try to focus on ones that scare the shittake mushroom out of us. Or, players who show us something that is unexpected. A new skill or the deterioration of production are prodded, shaken (not stirred) until we find a suitable conclusion. This is what I do. And while Jhoulys Chacin definitely does not fit the former of what I cover, he does fit the latter quite well. And while he won’t get confused as a player in the top-100, there was a time and a place not too long ago when he was considered a guy with potential, and a pitcher, who, if everything came together, could be a lot more. Plus, you know, this is my series, I do what I want.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Felix Hernandez is the pitcher to pitcher when you’re facing more than one Brewer. *sips from frosty mug* Ah…. Almost as satisfying as a good porgasm, which is the ecstasy reached when you finally find a rest stop after you have to pee for about two hundred miles. Yesterday, F-Her threw eight shutout innings with 9 Ks, lowering his ERA to 2.28. He’s not even close to how good he was his Cy Young year. He’s MUCH better (caps for emphasis, not so the guy who’s reading over your shoulder can see better). He has a career high strikeout rate, which is like, “Hey, this Filet Mignon can’t get any better– Oh, wait, I don’t have to pay for it either?” And it’s not because you cut out a chunk of your hair and put it on the plate. F-Her also has a career low walk rate and a career low xFIP, which tells us his ERA isn’t even fluky. He’ll probably be overshadowed by Yu Darvish or Max Scherzer in the offseason, but F-Her is finally coming into his own at the ripe young age of 27. In 2014, when people are going Kershaw and Darvish and Wainwright, there F-Her will be again coming at a discount because of some perceived weakness due to win potential. Bunch of Murray Chasses (Chassi?), every one of you. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The night was humid in San Diego. Some fans in the front row brought their own Chardonnay, a mix of floral and fruity notes, which could’ve also described the crowd’s apparel. Tommy Bahama as far as the eye could see. One Padre fan stood up, three glasses of wine in, screaming to let Templeton play. Most of the fans that night were there for a picnic that was billed as ‘the best picnic mom’s ever packed.’ One thing these picnickers never expected was to become a part of history. Whispers amongst the Padre fans began in the 1st inning. “It was going to be a long night.” Not because of Tim Lincecum, who began his quest to throw the 700th-something no-hitter in the last ten years. Tonight would drag for these Padre fans because the picnic brie was forgotten at home. Tonight these Padre fans groaned in the first inning because when Lincecum took the mound they thought the game was being preempted for a k.d. lang concert. So, Lincecum wasn’t economical in his 148-pitch no-hitter, walking 4 guys and K’ing 13. He’s the first pitcher to throw more pitches in a no-hitter than he weighs. As I mentioned a few weeks ago, Lincecum doesn’t look bad in his peripherals this year. His K-rate and walk rate are pretty close to the numbers he put up when he had a 2.74 ERA in 2011. He didn’t make the top 100 for the 2nd half that is coming tomorrow, but I considered it for a long time (about 25 seconds). The unknown right now is whether or not the 148 pitches is going to tire his arm. Obviously, he’ll have the All-Star break to rest and I wouldn’t be against giving Lincecum a chance on my fantasy team. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Josh Johnson looked solid yesterday (7 1/3 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners, 10 Ks vs. the Rockies). But Colorado away from home can be an easy match-up. Hey, Rockies, try doin’ it in the land of Labatt! You’ve been Molson Iced! JB called this one in the comments yesterday. I did not believe. Though, I do look much more animated now. Like I just stepped off a yacht in a Miami Vice cartoon. I’m snorting cartoon drugs and listening to cartoon Phil Collins play cartoon bongos. What do you think of the new avatar? I just stepped off a boat yet my hair still looks adorable, right? The new avatar rates well in the 18-25 demographic; it’s the Poochie of avatars. As for Johnson, I wouldn’t mess with him. So far, he’s been solid vs. NL teams, but, the thing is, he kinda, sorta plays in the AL. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

You ask and you shall receive! I had numerous requests for a Jeff Samardzija Pitcher Profile, and since I’d only seen the fire-baller throw maybe once or twice against my Brewers, I thought it would be a great idea to break him down for Razzball Nation.

I know the big righty features a huge fastball that flirts with the upper 90′s, but off the top of my head I couldn’t remember any specific secondary pitches so I was excited to really analyze one of his starts. Remember when he was the top WR target for Brady Quinn? Seems like ages ago! Remember when he was an erratic fixture in that Cubs bullpen along with Carlos Marmol? I bet some of those innings made even Steve Bartman cringe. But it’s much further down the road with Samardzija a fixture in that rotation (along with your fantasy squad’s staff) and a piece of the Cubs’ rebuilding future. Let’s go through how he hurled against the Diamondbacks on Saturday:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Yesterday, I was thinking how Miguel Gonzalez, who went 7 IP, 2 ER, 5 baserunners, 5 Ks, is a’ight. Has nominal value in mixed leagues against weaker teams and a solid back-end guy for AL-Only leagues, which could describe the entire O’s staff. With the O’s, you gotta mind your P’s and Q’s. Excuse me, I had Alphabet Soup for lunch and just burped. Those O’s starters are okay, but I crave excitement. I’m an adrenaline junkie. Sometimes I’ll blog with no pants on just for the RUSH I get. While in Starbucks. While holding my dog over my junk so I don’t catch charges. I’m a responsible adrenaline junkie. So, when I heard Kevin Gausman will make his major league debut on Thursday, you can imagine how awkward it was carrying my dog over my junk without any hands, while working my cellular mobile device trying to pick up Gausman. I’ve gone over Gausman as recently as two weeks ago. He was my Wheeler before Wheeler. I lurve Gausman. The O’s staff is iffy at best, so Gausman could definitely stick around. His numbers in the minors this year are insane. In 46 1/3 IP, he has 49 Ks and 5 walks. He could be the best called up pitcher this year. More likely, he’ll have some extreme ups and downs in the AL East. I’d still grab him in all leagues just in case his ups far outnumber his downs. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Yesterday, Yovani Gallardo was arrested for a DUI. So that explains why his pitches are all over the place! He blew a 0.22. That’s six-plus runs better than his ERA. Gallardo’s mugshot looks like a still from a PSA. “More than 79% of Americans feel the most significant social problem facing America is the physical absence of a decent 1st baseman.” “I’m Yovani, and our 1st baseman is Alex Gonzalez some days. Other days, it’s Yuniesky Betancourt. Please stop this needless crime against run support.” I wonder if he was driving home from the Miller Brewery tour, because it’s awesome, but, man, you should not drive after that. “If I draw a mouth on my forehead and stand upside down, then I’d have two mustaches.” That’s me towards the tail end of the Miller tour. Well, Yovani does pitch for the Brewers. What did you expect? Guess we should be happy he doesn’t pitch for the Crack Rockies. For fantasy baseball, this doesn’t mean much. Pray Gallardo returns from a DUI as successfully as Miguel Cabrera. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Mike Trout who?! AL Rookie of the Year last year and runner-up for the MVP. He also had one of the best rookie years ever. I know, Random Italicized voice. I was being facetious to show my excitement for Bryce Harper. Like Bryce Harper is so good I’ve forgotten all about Mike Trout. He’s the Angels center fielder. He’s got a girlfriend, but I bet I could weasel my way in with my slanted words. Forget it, Random Italicized voice. Like you forgot Mike Trout? I hate you! Rudy’s mentioned this before, but there’s very few hitters that have top 20 overall potential. You have to be able to hit 45+ homers (Stanton, Bautista) without killing you in any category or be consistently excellent across four categories (Pujols, Fielder, Votto, Cano) or have the potential for your homers and steals to total 50 (Trout, Braun, McCutchen, CarGo, Jones, Kemp, Upton). It’s slightly early to put Harper in that last group. But the potential is there, as he showed yesterday when Harper touched ‘em all once, he touched ‘em all Bryce. If you own him, I wouldn’t let him go at any price. Anyway, here’s what I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?