Yesterday, J.D. Martinez was traded to the Diamondbacks for Dawel Lugo, Sergio Alcantara and Jose King, a package that has been described by me as a .280, 40-homer hitter for Okay, Who Cares and So What. My visions of Yasmany Tomas returning and helping my NL-Only team went from “Hello, what’s your name, Pamela Sue?” to “No, my name is Pamela and I’m suing you for sexual harassment.” The ol’ 180 in the pants. Well, I’ll save the rest of my moans and/or groans for my shrink, since this is great news for Just Dong. That should be a 90 degree turn in the pants for Just Dong owners. Has he ever hit in Chase Field? Doesn’t matter, he’s about to love it. Outside of Coors and Miller, there’s no place I’d rather my player move for hitting and between-inning dips in a hot tub. (The Coors and Miller hot tubs are gnarly, by the way. “Did you say swell?” “No, I said swill.”) For FAAB, I’d go aggressively after Just Dong like he was the last guy to move to the NL, even if he might not be. He’s a 35-homer guy in Comerica. In Chase, he could be the equivalent to a 45-homer guy over the final ten weeks. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
We break from the usual 12 dollar salads, donkeys, and hypothermia to breakdown, in basic fashion, the relief rankings for the final 70-plus games. Why is this helpful you may ask? Because for trade target reasons or chasing saves for points, you may want guy A over guy B. With the relief ranks it is as fluid as a clogged sewer drain, because on any given week, the middling type closer can hit bumps in the road and be removed from contention. So if you are using this as a trade commodity in your quest to add saves, my advice is this add the elite only. Nothing lower than the top-12. These guys are all nailed on and in an impressive state, barring an injury obviously. Now with that, we also have to realize that trades will happen… and take one reliever from a good situation to a better one, then on the reflexive of that, it can turn one with a job into a set-up situation. Regardless, here is my stab at the top relief pitchers for the second half of the Fantasy Baseball season. Cheers!
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It’s the last post before the all-star break and nothing seems more fitting than a Neal Diamond reference. If you don’t like or appreciate Neal, then we have problems and I challenge you to a duel or whatever the young kids are doing now a days to show dominance. (Because I know it’s not anything like what transpired in West Side Story.) Moving on swiftly to the pressing closer news as I get lost in my ole timey spirit… So the Cardinals have moved away from the Oh and more to the Rosenthal. Trevor Rosenthal has sorta looked like he did three years ago, which seems like forever ago but really isn’t. The bad thing is that he and the rest of the save chasers that are in the Cardinals bullpen are pitching blah-squared. The best pitcher over the last 20 games is Matt Bowman… again. I said that same statement about a month into the season when Oh originally looked about as shaky as an 11-year-old with his first attempt at using a blow torch. Over the past 30 games the saves have gone Oh for 3, Rosenthal 1, Bowman 1 and Tyler Lyons with 1 (was a multiple innings save). Over the past 30 games for a usual dominant bullpen fixture, in terms of fantasy, to post 5 saves (I am not counting Lyons effort) is more condemning than the way they are pitching. If you are a Seung-Hwan Oh owner, you kinda have to hold the ship until it becomes more of an official thing. If Rosey is on your wire (55% owned in ESPN leagues) then nab him up. If you want to roster a RP with appeal, then Bowman is your guy (1.8% owned). As I can see it, Oh is still the guy but with some daylight for others. Just be leery that the past 30 days of track record for savedom have not been all that rosey for the Cards. Don’t frown, we got more goodies and sunshine after the bump. Cheers!Please, blog, may I have some more?
Legit, this is longest July 4th weekend of all time. In 1776 on July 4th, Ben Franklin grabbed six ladies, and was like, “This will be better than Flag Day. We will call this Flagellation Day. Now twerk with a firework!” That lasted for three days until Ben yelled out an Astros’ hitter last name and called for a volunteer fire department to put out his redness. Any hoo! Ian Desmond hit the DL with “I wanna rest for a few extra days before the break.” It’s an epidemic that is going around the majors right now. This especially sucks for those that had him in their weekly lineups because you’re getting ziplock. But, for the rest of us, we got Raimel Tapia (3-for-4, 2 runs and his 2nd homer). Fun fact! He has a brother who drinks too much and can’t control his lasciviousness. His name is Felasleepon Tapia. Raimel gets a huge boost in value with Desmond’s DL stint. He’s a grab for every league, especially if you need SAGNOF. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
In a full-on Willy Loman-type starring role, Andrew Miller now takes over the most responsible role in the Tribe’s bullpen. I beg to differ that he is taking over the most important role, and can argue that he has seen more high-leverage situations and save situations than his sort of disposed closer, Cody Allen… The only thing leading him to not be the most important factor in that pen was the stat of the save. Listen, Tito beats to the sound of his own drum and Arnold, nor Willis are going to tell him how to handle his bullpen. It is a luxury to have two top-10 overall relievers at his disposal and to use them how he sees fit. Miller, is by definition, the closer to save his arm for the future. But what we don’t realize is that if a save happens sooner than the 9th inning, Miller is going to be called on just like his original role. Confused? Yeah, it is kinda like saying: “Go look for the save in the corner of a circular room.” For ownership, this changes zero. Miller is and was owned as he should be in every league imaginable. Cody Allen is also owned and shouldn’t be dropped as he becomes the closer cuff in waiting, and is far superior to any RP on the waiver wire. So hold on tight! A month from now, when Miller has 5 saves and Allen has 3, not much stat wise will be lost, but by the end of the year when Allen has 32 and Miller 12, that is when we can look back on this and laugh and say “I shaved my eyebrows for this?” Stay tuned kids, more closer and bullpen-y type goodness are on the way…Please, blog, may I have some more?
The worst news in terms of closers, especially in a situation like Philadelphia, is the word: committee. I mean, it is kind of like getting free tickets to see the Village People, hell yes they are the Village People. But do you wanna be known for knowing more than two of their songs? Nope, not me. So look at this way, Pat Neshek got the save the other day after Gomez and Mortecia Neris had their turns at the gig. Now this isn’t a Pat on the back (pun intended for Neshek), because it is still a full blooded committee for a team that ranks in the bottom six in all of MLB in saves, save opportunities, and relief appearances with them having the lead. Add all that up and it goes back to what I was spitting a few months ago, are saves really worth the rigmarole of dumpster diving for futility? The problem with that whole “rostering multiple guys for a chance at a save” is all well and good if you are able to roster both or even three guys… and that is the dumbest thing I have ever typed out. Who in here has a Philly reliever let alone three? Show of hands? Yeah, you shouldn’t. So Neshek is worth a grab while they showcase him for trade value, and Neris is a hold because who knows when a last place team tries to keep it real? Let’s hop on the good foot and see what’s going down with the late-gamers…Please, blog, may I have some more?
We all exploit it, and with good reason. The elusive RP/SP eligibility is a sassy beast. She entices you with peripherals and gaudy cheeses, and let’s you fill up starter spots with relievers and vice versa. I mean, if cheese and dual-eligibility don’t draw you in, I don’t know what else to say. As we are basically 45 games into the season for most teams, it is time to reassess the eligibility of some players. Lots of eligibility has been added to a lot of pitchers, and that is a benefit to your fantasy roster. Guys like J.C. Ramirez, Matt Andriese, and Jose Urena all have SP next to their names and on the reflexive, the names of Brad Peacock, Archie Bradley, and Jorge de La Rosa have been on some rosters at some points in the year. So do yourself a favor and scour the waivers in your leagues and recheck the eligibility of some of the players that have some use in some leagues. It is a coveted thing in the preseason, so why not now? Get comfy, it is the closer report for this week! Lot’s of tibits or bittids for you folks battling dyslexia.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Well, the demise of the active leader in career saves has happened. I can remember the days when he burst on the scene all wide-eyed and rally monkey backed. That, unfortunately, was a dogs age in closer years. Hell, most closers now a days are judged by weeks instead of years. I personally don’t wanna think that he is completely done closing, but I think that he is done closing with the tigers (barring an injury or three). So now it is the Justin Wilson show. He is no stranger to high-leverage spots as he has been a critical holds guy for the past three years. For comparison’s sake, think Tony Watson type of reliever… they even came up together with the Pirates to boot. So the main question is will Wilson continue as such as the Tigers closer? I say why not. Joe Jimenez isn’t ready for prime time yet, or they don’t wanna throw the reigns on him yet. The team has looked mediocre, and sorta old. So alleviating Wilson to the closer role does two things: Makes their best reliever in the bullpen the closer, and it gives him even more trade value should the Tigers fall out of the race and eventually sell of some pieces. Saves are ownable everywhere, and this doesn’t appear to be a committee type thing, so if you own him good on ya. Let’s see what else is going down on Save Street lately…Please, blog, may I have some more?
When struggles happen, the fantasy geeks come out of the wood work with words like “decreased velocity”, “contact rate” and “swing strike percentage”. Now I am no geek, but Roberto Osuna is failing the eye test for me. Control is all over the place and he has zero confidence in his pitches. Yes, if you look at all his secondary pitching attributes, they are all down or up for the worse. First, his velocity is down almost two MPH from last year. Granted, he did miss some time this spring though, so there is a reason to have a letter from his mom to explain that. His z-contact rate (pitches in the strike zone) is off the charts bonkers. It currently sits at 91%. If he had pitched more than five innings to date and qualified, he would have the highest such contact rate in baseball among relievers. That is not a good trait to have as a closer, let alone a mammal. Finally, his swing strike percentage has bottomed out at a cool 10%, which would put him outside the top-100 relievers. And surrounded by names like Tommy Hunter and Michael Ynoa, all staples to a flourishing fantasy team. So what do we do? You cuff him. Jason Grilli is the best name there and Ryan Tepera just got the save in extra innings the other day. All we can hope for from Bobby Osuna is that with some more innings and builds back up to the 9-plus K/9 reliever we drafted as our 1A closer. It isn’t time to panic, but do yourself a favor and cover your bases. Here’s what else is going down in the end game… Cheers!Please, blog, may I have some more?
It was right in front of our faces and we ignored it. No one said the obvious. The elephant in the room. We all should have known that we were getting fooled by the A’s because we trusted a Melvin. A Melvin! After years of hoodwinking by Upton, we now get the reflexive of this, and are getting bobbed. Predictably, the A’s manager has made a real hash of the bullpen situation already, and we only sit four games into the season. I get his mentality in some states, because you want your best pitcher pitching to the best players in the opposing lineups and yadda, yadda, yadda. But this is fantasy baseball sir. We don’t have the time or social skills warranted to be able to deal with this type stuff. So for those of you living on a house boat with no wifi, the A’s bullpen usage is a flummoxed up mess with no one to trust. It’s like November 23rd, 1963 in Dallas, Texas type of questioning everything. Madson was the presumed closer and he has been treated as the go to guy for getting the tough outs. Twice against the middle of the order which included a Trout named outfielder. Then the first day went to Santiago Casilla, then the next day to Ryan Dull. But the things that boggles the mind is set orders here. I get that it is early and mixing and matching is cool like millennials do with socks now, but we need some kind of pecking order for rostering-type priorities. I can’t deal with this madness, I am going to alphabetize my canned goods. In the mean time, check out the closer menu, now with a deal on salads.Please, blog, may I have some more?