So let me be the first person on the internet to reference Chris Farley’s Matt Foley character when talking Daniel Norris. You hear me. THEE. FIRST. Don’t google it, just trust me. And what could you really want from this blog? Want me to reference Into The Wild? So what you’re saying is you want to be depressed by Eddie Vedder acoustic material. You can go get mopey on your own time; around here, we aim for the yucks not socio-political stances. BTW, meat is murder, can you sign my petition?!? Now for this young season, our young arm hasn’t really done much in his matchups to garner trust so this is strictly a GPP call but the numbers are there to exploit. Though the season isn’t too far along, the Braves offense wasn’t looking too sparkling on paper against LHPs coming into the year and they’ve proven that on the field so far. In an albeit small sample size of 74 PA, the Braves have a .247 wOBA against southpaws while mustering a woeful 56 wRC+. But that’s what happens when you initially sign Jonny Gomes to be your full time left fielder. Yes, Atlanta, I’m throwing you some shade. There’s a difference between rebuilding and derailing and you definitely crossed that line but it’s all good with me because for $5,800, I just freed up some salary for some bigger bats today. So without further ado, let’s get to it. Here are my scorching 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 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?

Does your lady like the finer things in life? When she says ‘lets go out to dinner’ does she mean ‘lets pull out a second mortgage on the house for a really tiny steak and snooty service?’. Well, first things first, dump her. I’m no Love Guru, but I do know when one of my good people is getting played. We’re all about bros before L.J. Hoes around here so don’t say we didn’t warn you! But since you’re not gonna listen (and I mean, I get it, you’re a fantasy baseball nerd and you probably scored a 10 with that kind of taste) at the very least I need to teach you how to bargain hunt for those goods. Did you know cashmere wool is actually hair and that it comes from goats? Well speaking of GOAT, let’s roll with this awkward segue and talk Scott Kazmir. In his first start of the year against Texas, the Kazmanian Devil scattered two walks and a hit over seven innings while striking out 10. Now we all knew the Rangers were gonna be a weaker team coming into the season but that’s just someone pitching like a top shelf starter and Scott should have another shot at such glory facing the Astros. Though the season is still early, Houston seems to have picked up right where they left off in 2014 in terms of striking out since as a team, their K% is second-worst in the MLB at 26.8%. Last year they finished second to last in K% at 23.8 so we’re not seeing a statistical outlier here as a majority of their roster from last year is back in 2015 with their major additions (Valbuena, Rasmus, and Gattis) being known to swing and miss a bit. Given that, who knows. Maybe Kazmir can help you afford the real cashmere and you can get in on those caviar dreams. Better sign a pre-nup, though! Here’s some other hot takes for the April 13th DK slate…

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?

This draft was by Yours Trudy. Never understood that, Yours Trudy. Who is this Trudy that everyone is talking about? No, no, I’m not changing the subject before even embarking on the subject simply because I’m not happy with my team. How dare you j’accuse Yours Trudy of that! So, yesterday, on the Not-the-Ides of February, Grey Albright, the Fantasy Master Lothario (don’t abbreviate it!) took part in a 12-team NL-Only draft that was commissioned by Scott White of CBS Fantasy. You know, CBS, they brought you such head-scratchers as Viva Laughlin and Travis d’Arnaud as a top 60 overall pick. In fact, I razzed one of the CBS ‘perts about his d’Arnaud love in the beginning of the draft, then the room nominated d’Arnaud and the CBS ‘pert didn’t draft him. I think I might’ve shamed too hard. *shrugs* C’est la. This league is deep so hold onto ye old hat. (If you want a shallower league, play against me and 1,000 of your closest buddies in the Razzball Commenter Leagues.) Anyway, here’s my 12-team NL-Only team and some thoughts:

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The CIA’s plan to work out of a Petco concession stand because the stadium is so quiet is looking far less like a good plan to stay covert. “Did you just ask for two mustard packets with your hot pretzel because you have some information for us or because you simply want an extra mustard packet? If it’s the latter, one per customer.” Probably the worst call for a covert operation’s headquarters since the CIA opened an office in Vegas in the 1940’s. “It’s just a desert, no one’s coming here.” So, the Padres traded for Justin Upton because they are obviously intent on deflating outfielder stats everywhere. At least this outfielder has two hips that don’t resemble Abe Vigoda’s. (Still alive as of this writing, but may not be by the time you read this.) Maybe the Padres can trade Kemp for Pujols to create the Up-My-Pujols lineup. I came down hard on Matt Kemp in the non-sexual way when he went to San Diego, but that had as much to do with him being the first new bat they acquired (no one around him in the lineup yet), his health and his flakiness. As with the Myers trade, I’m less inclined to write off Upton simply due to Petco. Upton’s a guy in his prime that has hit everywhere when healthy. I don’t like to put too much weight on a player’s stats in their new stadium when they were still playing as a visiting player, but Upton has 10 HRs and a .291 average in 172 ABs in Petco in his career. That’s a HR every 17.2 ABs, which is better than his career rate (1 HR every 23 at-bats). Petco played like its usual “Are you sure the fences are out there? I can’t see them” self last year, but in 2013 it wasn’t as bad after they moved in the fences prior to that season, so I think last year’s putrid offense was more the Padres hitters streaming into a confluence of crap. (By the by, Confluence of Crap was my worst selling album, despite Rick Reuben producing it. I should’ve paid the extra money for the non-imposter, Rick Rubin.) Even in Petco, Upton feels like a 25-27 homer guy, which is what he was before. His steals are leaving his game quicker than a rhinoceros with plantar fasciitis, and he’s not a huge average guy, but writing him off due to Petco feels a bit too easy. He’ll be hitting in the middle of a lineup that is at least as good as the Braves last year and in a nearly neutral ballpark. For 2015, I’ll give him 81/27/95/.266/8. Anyway, here’s some more offseason moves for 2015 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Not a bad week for your humble-but-nonetheless-handsome Guru as we cashed in on 15 of 20 contests we entered increasing our bankroll and getting us one step closer to a winter of umbrella drinks in Cancun (or at least a couple weeks in Tijuana). Want to join me poolside? Join the DraftKings Sweet Spot challenge and you could go on a permanent vacation. Their pool is filled with $400,000. If you’re new to the game, keep in mind DraftKings virgins get a free $2 ticket. If I win that thing I’m buying a small island off the coast of Ecuador and a new liver.

If you’re veteran to DFS leagues go ahead and skip to my lineup now as I give our new friends the Guru’s top 5 tips for winning cash with DraftKings.

When it comes to winning real money there are a few things to keep in mind: 1) Pitching leads the way and strikeouts are king. The Stream-o-Nator nails this on an almost daily basis. 2) Build stacks against the worst pitchers. 3) Check the Vegas odds on what games are predicted to have high scores. Vegas knows what they are doing, why not use them. 4) Know the overlay. DraftKings has guaranteed payouts (another reason they are the king) and when a tournament doesn’t fill, the money is still guaranteed. 5) Know the weather situation, know who’s in and who’s out of the starting lineups. Don’t be left with a giant zero because Joey Votto got a day off or it rained frogs in Cleveland. (Shameless plug: Follow me on Twitter @TheGuruGS as I tweet that kind of stuff daily plus yoga pants pics.)

Alrighty my Razzballers, here’s your dirty turbaned Guru’s lineup for Wednesday’s 4/16 contests on DraftKings for 2014 Fantasy Baseball.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Maybe it’s the rush of the holiday season with two kids or the fact that some major cash is flowing in free agency, but I feel like this year’s offseason is just whizzing by. This will be the last sort of “stat review” for SAGNOF before I head into the territory of value plays for steals in 2014. This post will lay out some of the best and worst catchers in terms of their caught stealing percentages (CS%). Keep in mind that pitchers have a lot to do with holding baserunners as well, and you can find my previous post on the best and worst pitchers against the stolen base here at Razzball. A quick note on the catcher tables – I sorted them by qualified and non-qualified catchers. “Qualified” catchers played more than 1/2 of their team’s games, while “non-qualified” catchers played less than that. Catchers who split times between two teams, like Kurt Suzuki, also end up on the “non-qualified” list. The league average caught stealing percentage in 2013 was 28%, and that hasn’t really changed much over the last 3 years (27% in 2012, 28% in 2011). Last but not least, consider that playing time situations can fluctuate with free agent signings and trades, creating new opportunities for previously non-qualified catchers as the offseason transactions continue. Green columns indicate guys that are easy to run against, and red columns designate the toughest to run against:

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Yasiel Puig‘s been lighting up the mainframe on the giant computer out of a bad 1950’s sci-fi movie, but he’s not the only Cuban. Leonys Martin also hails from our neighbor to the south that took up residence in Miami. Last night, he hit two homers, is hitting .417 in the last week and has a hit in each of his last ten games with 4 steals during that time. It’s the year of the Cubans, y’all! In all of their pressed hammy, mustardy, cheesy, pickley goodness. Side note: Do pickles seem like something Cubans would put in their food? Maybe Hyman Roth, but he’s not really Cuban or real, for that matter. Somewhere, ex-Cuban pitcher, El Duque, has a little extra hop in his exaggerated leg-kick that he still does, only now he does it before he cleans up tables at Chipotle. “You’re not going to finish your guac?” *leg kick* Leonys Martin should be owned in all leagues while he’s going well, and is the type of player that could have value all year if you’re patient since he could hit 12-15 homers and get 25-ish steals. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Anibal Sanchez was amazing last night, pitching 8 innings and giving up just 5 five hits with a whopping 17 strikeouts against one of the league’s best offenses. Sanchez has never looked dirtier. Filthy even. I was hoping Manager Jim Leyland would send Sanchez out for the ninth to try for 20 Ks, but Anibal was pulled after 121 pitches. Leyland said he needed Sanchez in the dugout to bum a cigarette. No, Sanchez doesn’t usually smoke but he was on fire last night and always has a spare menthol for Skip. That kind of know-how and pedigree was why I owned Anibal everywhere last year, so of course I don’t own him anywhere this year. I must give it up to our fearless leader, Grey, for coming up with that headline. I almost went with “Bell of the Anibal” or “A Boy Named Anibal.” And those are just terrible. But things are really clicking for the Boy Named Anibal. I once knew a boy named Sue. He got in bar fight with Commodus and Reese Witherspoon, and Reese played the “Don’t-you-know-who-I-am!?” card and everyone got arrested. Well, if you didn’t know Anibal Sanchez before last night you better know him now. 17 STRIKEOUTS! Great Anibals of fire! Sanchez’s previous high was 14 Ks, but he now holds the Tigers record, which has got to peeve Justin Verlander a bit. Relax JV, you had Kate Upton, let Sanchez have this. His new home in Detroit has been good to him. No one wants to win more than 14 games for Jeffrey Loria anyway, right?

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Spaceman here, and I’ll be keeping tabs on spring training battles to watch by position, in each division. I’ll hopefully convey a common sense approach that assists with your draft prep and roster depth. If not, I’ll head back to my farm in Vermont to sprinkle grass on my pancakes.

Blue Jays

2B Starter: Toronto brought Emilio Bonifacio over in Jeffrey “Expo Killer” Loria’s Miami fire sale, right after signing Maicer Izturis to a 3-year deal. So who’s playing 2B up in Canada? They haven’t committed to either, but G.M. Alex Anthopoulos appears to see Boni in a Utility role. Possibly taking over for Colby Rasmus in CF, should he struggle early on. Probable outcome: With the inside track to 2B, Izturis takes it, giving the Jays options in the OF should Melky Cabrera not perform off the juice. Izturis won’t provide much fantasy value outside of the deepest of leagues or as a late round MI flyer due to the improved offense around him. Whereas Boni should have an impact in leagues of any type, with his perennial base stealing and a nice position eligibility.

Please, blog, may I have some more?