Even being 1/10th of the way through the season, it is never too early to see some trends forming. The trends I am learning you about are the bullpen usage rates. Not every team follows an A to B to C type formulas, and it would be nice, but usage rates in certain situations, even 15 games into the season, peak their heads out for fantasy usefulness. The ancillary stats that no one really notices, and that I use all year, are runners inherited and appearances with the lead. All key factors for what a reliever is and what they are at sustaining. The inherited runners stat is a ruiner, not only for themselves but for the pitchers they are replacing. Basically a sad trombone in the case of reliever sad trombones. The appearances with the lead factor is what we all eat our Holds and gravy with. It basically says that they are pitching with a lead, granted, holds are scored the same as a save. So all that less than four runs runner on deck shenanigans that people made up for it to qualify. So welcome to the first Holds/bullpens post of the year as we embark on a road far less traveled then it should. Holds matter, regardless of color.Please, blog, may I have some more?
I went over some September call-ups primer yesterday. It was written pretty smoothly. Meaning: I took a laxative and crapped out a post. I’m a modest man of modest means. What can I say? Everyone wants Yoan Moncada all over their fantasy shizz. Some of y’all got Tom Murphy on the brain. Others of you are wondering about Jose De Leon and how his great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-uncle’s quest for the Fountain of Youth was shorter than the time it took the Dodgers to call Jose up. None of you are interested in Byron Buxton. Been there, eff that. I hear you, prematurely balding internet friend. He’s all served us a steak that later turned out to be tofu that left us scrubbing our tongues with our fingernails. All the way back in March, Buxton was still considered a sure-fire, can’t miss prospect. I think he still is. Not everyone takes the path of least resistance. For unstints, I saw a video of a McNugget on Twitter that showed much resistance. Yesterday, Buxton went 1-for-3, 3 RBIs and his 2nd homer, and I would grab him in all leagues looking for A) Spark. B) Speed. C) No C. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
I wish that he wasn’t… and I wish I could parse my words a little better for a good pun’s sake, but the fact is in the stats. Sam Dyson is allowing more baserunners, more baserunners to get on via the walk, and a higher slugging percentage in the second half of the year. Add in the fact that batting average against and K-rate are down since 30 days ago, its never a good sign for someone to be all cozy and buy long-term property in the town of closerville. Listen, he already wasn’t elite in the K-rate department, but to be hovering in the mid 5’s for the past 20 appearances is just bad. From what I am noticing, his velocity has leveled out, but he isn’t using his arsenal as much or as frequent, relying mostly on his sinker and moving away from his ancillary fastball and slider. Not all awful things in the immediate world in the result-driven world of fantasy, but troubling nonetheless. When a reliever doesn’t trust or use his stuff in a way that was once successful, it shows a lack of confidence in it. The guests knocking at the door have been a phenomenal swoon for almost all fantasy leagues with the likes of Diekman, Barnette (who has been sneaky great), Bush and Kela. The saves that have been divided up show that Bush and Diekman look like the guys to watch most for in a change. So with about a month of useful fantasy to go, now is not the time for a 20-save guy to spin his wheels… grab the cuff in advance and cover yourself like it was your Linus blanket or a just in case of emergency fantasy glass thingy.
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In 1972, a young Polish man by the name of Stanley “Stash” Petrosky burst on the scene with the Pirates organization and stole 87 bases while pinch-running for the Single-A Long John Silvers. No matter how many times corrected, he continually held the bat backwards and never got past Single-A, but his speed was a delight to watch. Since then, Poles have been considered some of the sneakiest fast players in the game. Some social scientists have contended that this is due to the Polish ancestors standing in line for bread. Never wanting to be standing in line ever again, they instead run and steal. Some historians say the Poles have skis on their end of their names because thousands of years ago they would tie flat boards to their ankles rather than walking and they built up a taste for speed. Others say this is ethnic profiling and it should be stopped. Either way, one guy who can’t be stopped is Travis Jankowski. Janky, as he’s not known anywhere, has 25 steals in 184 ABs. Since 2000, Jankowski has the most steals in the fewest plate appearances besides Tony Campana (there’s a throwback name). The King of SAGNOF, Rajai Davis, Jarrod Dyson, Emilio Bonifacio, Dee Gordon and Jordan Schafer are a few of the guys that have been close in the last 16 years, but what Jankowski is doing is historic SAGNOF. Or as it’s known in some cultures SAGNOFski. Oh, and Jankowski is also hitting north of .450 in the last week. Grab him! Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
I hate this. Stupid SAGNOF! Pisses me off to no end. The worst part of the strategy is at times, you have to own guys you may dislike, or in my case, hate. It goes with the territory and when they succeed, it takes away some of the burn of the past. But when they fail, they become deader than Randy Quaid’s career. Like this GIF, sometimes it results in a wedgie and everyone laughing at you. Thanks SAGNOF wedgie. This is what I struggle with, the unsavory characters you have to hang around and the resulting public humiliation when you fail. But when you nail it… BOOM!Please, blog, may I have some more?
As much as I love publishing and giving you the “haps” on the closer ranks, I love the depth that a bullpen can give you and how it can affect your roster. It is way to early to look into my Grafix crystal ball and say this guy and that one will be the crowned prince of the hold this year… to some degree. Early usage and situations prove a lot. Yes, injuries happen, and ineffective spells happen, and sometimes trades happen, but if you were good enough to make the team out of Spring, then usually you are good enough to make yourself an established piece of the bullpen. The top names are still the top names. The cream either rises to the top or it rules everything around me, both perspectives are interesting because how can you not believe the Wu or old school rhetoric. So with the first bullpen piece of the year, we will cover all the same things you are accustomed to from last year as I get more in-depth than anyone else when it comes to holds. Some don’t care or are on the fence, as if it’s a completely comical or made up stat. It is no more made up then saves, because that is exactly what it is, just before the save… so it is basically a pre-save. Either way, I care and will give you some early trends to look at and some names to go with it. Trends rule everything around bullpens or TREAB, dolla dolla bill y’all.Please, blog, may I have some more?
With the trade deadline in the bag and closers moving, we have a lot to talk about. Some of it refreshing like a glass of ice cold lemonade on a summer’s day. Some of it less so like being asked to write something for Lainie Kazan, wondering who Lainie Kazan is and Googling her to find Playboy pics from the 1970’s juxtaposed with her present-day pics. Please, blog, may I have some more?Please, blog, may I have some more?
Here’s one way baseball could take cues from fantasy baseball. Yesterday, the Marlins announced that they’d be going to a closer-by-committee, which puts Steve Cishek in line for saves. If they had a fantasy baseballer (<–my mom’s term!) running their club, things would’ve been different down in South Florida. Please, blog, may I have some more?Please, blog, may I have some more?
Well, not much has changed for closers since last month when we did a run down of all of them. Kimbrel got a save, Axford got a save, and everyone else sucks. Holly Robinson Peete closers are a mess! I don’t think there’s ever been so many Brain Freezes before. Please, blog, may I have some more?Please, blog, may I have some more?
Joakim Soria went from being a $12 Salad to a Donkeycorn to a Brain Freeze back to a Donkeycorn to off the list completely in 12 short months. And if this is the first post you’ve ever read at Razzball, I probably lost you by the eighth word. Please, blog, may I have some more?Please, blog, may I have some more?