Tomorrow is September 1st which means:  Hooray for September roster expansions and the many interesting players likely to be called up.  My recent focus for Steals Ain’t Got No Face advice has been a weekly reminder to use our SAGNOF stolen base success rates versus starting pitchers tool.  This goes hand in hand with the September call ups because most of these players won’t play anywhere near everyday, but some of them might make great ‘streaming for steals’ options.And guess which type of players are among those getting called up?  Some of the trendy SAGNOF sleeper types from earlier in the year, including one of my favorites, Dalton Pompey (bats Both, plays OF) of the Toronto Blue Jays.  Eric Young Jr. (B, OF, New York Mets) is on the way up as well and I think we all know what he can do.  James Jones (L, OF, Seattle), he of the 27 stolen bases in only 108 big league games last year, could be called upon as well.

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Maybe it’s because Whip/Nae Nae is permanently stuck in my head — One word of advice.   If you take no other advice from me, please, I implore you, accept this advice.  If you don’t know what Whip/Nae Nae is, don’t, under any circumstances, Google it.  It make Gangnam Style seem like a walk in the park when it comes to catchy songs. If you don’t know what Gangnam Style is, I love how you’ve decorated under that rock of yours.  — but I can’t help looking at Jake Arrieta‘s no hitter less about the 12 Ks and only allowing one walk — Sure, those are sweet — but more about how his season WHIP is 0.94.  There’s Greinke (.85 WHIP), Kershaw (.90), Scherzer (.93) and deGrom (.94).  An under one WHIP and a 9+ K/9 is a little piece of heaven like sitting in an exit row of an airplane.  On the podcast that’s coming later today, I debate Greinke and Arrieta, Scherzer and Arrieta and deGrom and Arrieta as we try to figure out where they’ll be ranked in 2016.  I say something like Arrieta will be ranked around the 4th to about the 7th SP off the board.  I agree with Early Sunday Afternoon Grey, but I will say that Arrieta has made it difficult for me to think of four SPs that should be drafted before him.  Let alone six.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

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Give me a buy, a bouncy buy!  Wait, might have my Martin Short characters mixed up.  *Googling*  Damn, that was from his Irving Berlin.  Jackie Rogers Jr. didn’t have much of a catchphrase.  Last Saturday, JBJ was sworn in as the hottest schmotato in the land as Jackie O., his mother and who he was named after, held the Bible.  After the ceremony, JBJ stated, “Compared to taking a free pass, hitting is a cakewalk.”  Then he high-fived himself.  Jackie Bradley Jr.  is more or less a hot platoon player, but Cousin Sizzlechest is about as hot as they come right now.  JBJ will cool off at some point, he strikes out a bit too much, but he’s worth owning in all leagues where you’re hurting for that little extra spark.  Plus, to get JBJ on your team, you don’t need the assistance of the Cubans, the FBI, Frank Sinatra, Joe Pesci in a bad wig, a vast right wing conspiracy, Joe DiMaggio and some dude named Zapruder.  Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

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Guess who’s back?  Back again!  No, that’s not The Greek God of Walks, Kevin Youkilis, sufferer of chronic back pain, singing.  Besides, it’s “who’s back,” not “whose back.”  We’re not trying to identify a back!  Byron Buxton‘s back, baby, yeah.  With every positive reaction, there’s an equal opposite negative reaction, or so said Einstein when he was fiddling with refrigerator magnets.   And the negative reaction to Buxton coming back is Aaron Hicks hit the DL.  Too bad, so sad.  Buxton didn’t do much in his first stint in the majors, but he could be easily as good as Schwarber, Sano or any other rookie nookie that’s got your cookie all melty.  I would grab Buxton in every league.  I’m excited.  Uppercase yay!  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Here’s what I don’t like about SAGNOF.  Writing about crappy relief pitchers is a large part of what the SAGNOF Special is about, because Saves Ain’t Got No Face sometimes means there are a lot of terrible relievers in a position to get saves.  The past week or so has been rough as we’ve seen Tommy Kahnle and Edward Mujica get pounded.  For that matter, the performance of the entire Rockies bullpen is making us long for the good ol’ days of LaTroy Hawkins.  The situation in Boston (Junichi Tazawa vs Jean Machi) has little clarity and there was not a single save for Boston, Oakland or Colorado in the past week.  It’s been brutal out there for those scrambling for saves and it’s made me yearn for that time when I could recommend A.J. Ramos and Shawn Tolleson and legitimately feel good about it.  Because of the nature of SAGNOF in 12 team or deeper leagues, this late in the season, I’ve no choice but to recommend these at best mediocre relievers because there is literally no where else to turn for saves right now. (Fortunately in 10 team leagues it’s more obvious that these types don’t need to be rostered).  There just isn’t enough time in the season right now for the Joe Smith’s of the reliever world to have any real chance to see saves this year due to injury or failure of the current closer.

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The term “tool” has multiple meanings around here.  A major league baseball player can have up to five tools.  A fantasy sports writer can be a tool — like when he recommends the wrong next in line to closer for the Rockies (that’s me).  Rudy Gamble makes tools — like the SAGNOF tool I talked up last week that gives you some insight on the best base stealing match-ups and like our DFS (daily fantasy) tools available here.  A commenter pointed out last week that “Using the (SAGNOF) tool, Venable (FA) faces Nelson who ranks #25…pretty stealable. Problem is, Nelson has been in top form lately so tough to get on base. I’m gonna give Venable a shot nevertheless.”  At this point I felt compelled to remind him and the rest of you that by using the tool “You can put the odds in your favor, but a one game result is ultimately a total crapshoot.”  Well, everything with such a small sample size is a crapshoot, so what I meant was that putting the odds in your favor is a good thing and something that you need to try to do consistently when it comes to managing your last few roster spots.  What happened that game?  Venable stole a base against Nelson.

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When Chuck conceived his son Daniel Norris, he was working on set in Asia with Mrs. Norris still living in the US!  Wait, did that make any sense…  I’ll leave the Chuck Norris jokes to the frat boy posters…

Traded to the Tigers along with another nice upside pitcher Matt Boyd, Detroit got some pretty good arms for a rental and they wasted no time throwing Norris right into the rotation.  And that’s with 12 walks over his last 21 AAA innings!  But throw caution to the wind, don’t look both ways before crossing, run with the scissors and see what ya got, amiright?!

I had Norris all the way to 61 right before the season, getting a little too rookie nookie and slack-jawed at his Minor League stats.  He wasn’t awful through 5 appearances with the Blue Jays pitching his way to a 3.86 ERA, but he was a little too wild and his pitch counts got out of hand.  So with the move to a better ballpark and to a team ready to unleash him right away, I decided to break down his debut with the Tigers to see how he looked:

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Yesterday, Latos was traded to the Dodgers, then not traded. Then CarGo was traded to the Mets, then not traded. Then Cole Hamels was traded to the Rangers, and really traded, I think. I don’t know, I’m dizzy. Ruin Tomorrow Jr. was sad to see Hamels go, but this is the business he chose, after getting fired from Duane Reade for mixing up the garbage with “the important stuff.” And after getting fired for explaining to kids there is no Santa, after being dressed as the mall Santa. After being fired as Ruin Tomorrow Sr.’s personal assistant, but he maintains that was a misunderstanding. He thought, “Don’t tell your mother,” meant, “Don’t tell your mother until you see her.” After his no-hitter the other day, I said, “(Hamels’s) peripherals look fine and he’s just getting a tad unlucky. I could see someone thinking they’re selling high after this no-hitter, but Hamels is a low-3 ERA pitcher with a 9.6 K/9, i.e., a low-end fantasy ace.” And that’s me quoting me! I would’ve preferred to see him go to the NL, but Arlington is about a push with Citizens Bank and could see him stringing together a sub-3 ERA for two months. Jorge Alfaro, Jerad Eickhoff and Nick Williams were acquired by the Phils, and I’m sure Prospect Mike will go over them, after he gets their posters up in his living room. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Some of the trade rumors I’ve seen are just plain funny.  Craig Kimbrel to the Yankees?  Wait, what!?  Really?  I’m not denying it as a possibility but I am thinking it might be a little overboard to acquire a premier closer when you probably only need a solid bullpen guy because you already have TWO premier closers.  The list of closers and strong middle relievers available is so long this year.  One thing’s for sure, there are going to be some strong bullpens vying for postseason play.  Here’s the lowdown on closers and some other relievers who could be dealt in the upcoming weeks, starting with some of the players most likely to be traded and ending in with those much less likely to be.

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A NASA engineer who plays fantasy, “Houston, we’ve Scott a pitcher!” Then he tries to high-five another NASA engineer, but their 180 IQs can’t figure out a hand slap. A gay man in the Bay Area who plays fantasy, “I see a run on Minute Maid mimosas thanks to the Kaztro!” Then he tries to high-five his friend and it becomes patty cake. A Real Housewife of Houston sees that Scott Kazmir was traded to the Astros and gets on the phone with her husband, “You want me to hide our oil futures in which bank account again?” Okay, that had nothing to do with Kazmir. For the past three months, I’ve been saying to trade Kazmir in July and guess who reads Razzball. Yo, Beane, I’m on a treadmill as I write this — simpatico, my brother! Crap, I just hit ‘Begin Workout.’ How do I shut this off? I just wanted to stand on the treadmill! So, Kazmir takes his 2.38 ERA to Houston and I can kinda understand it from the Astros’ perspective. If they get ten starts from him instead of Feldman, then it’s a score since they traded low-level prospects. Kazmir is from Houston so he’ll be able to play in front of family and friends, which is great if this were Little League and needed a ride home. He has only 15 1/3 IP in The Juice Box, so his numbers there are irrelevant. O.co is a -co park like Petco or Metco and stands for Overstock(ed on foul territory), but Minute Maid isn’t exactly Coors. Keuchel, McHugh, McCullers and Velasquez have done fine there, and I think this is a fairly lateral move out of the wishbone offense. What?! Grey must be reading JayWrong’s fantasy football rankings. The only thing that really stops Kazmir from performing is his health, which is almost definitely going to fail him. Damn, I should’ve been a doctor. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?