I usually look forward to Monday’s during the Fantasy Baseball season, but today’s starting pitching has me a little down. Certainly, if you take a quick glance, things don’t seem so bad as Johnny Cueto, Gerrit Cole, Jason Hammel, Adam Wainwright and Gio Gonzalez are on the bump tonight. Now I know you’re thinking that some of those names are quite attractive, but unfortunately we’ve got some Buttafaces on the slate for today. Gio looks like he got his groove back until you look closer and see he’s faced Atlanta, Minnesota and Philly twice. Cueto has looked lost all season and even though he had 11 K’s and 0 ER last time out, he was facing the Padres. Waino has Philadelphia tonight and maybe he gets back on track, but with his current numbers, he needs a lot more than a solid matchup for me to throw any money his way. Cole and Hammel are facing each other, but both offenses are in the top three in runs and average vs RHP, so probably not the best matchups to jump on. Now that we’ve maneuvered through the mediocre minefield who’s left? Who can turn our Monday frown upside down? That man is Dallas Keuchel and at a reasonable $9,900, he’s our star tonight. He was great in DK last year and even though he’s been struggling this year I think tonight he gets back to his Cy Young form. All but 4 of his 5 starts have come on the road this season and if we take a deeper look into last year he rocked a 1.46/3.77 ERA split. He’s got a great match-up against the Twinkies tonight and my awesome In-Laws Tom & Cindy assured me that the Houston home cooking tonight will be on point for our boy to return to the Dallas Kyer’s Club.

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Adam Conley threw 7 2/3 innings, of “exciting” no-hit baseball Friday night, striking out seven Brewers en route to his first win of the season. Manager Don Mattingly pulled Conley after 116 pitches and left it up to Miami’s bullpen to blow Conley’s no-hitter. Sigh, the Miami fan(s) need someone to cheer for now that their star player Dee “I Didn’t Know We Couldn’t Do That” Gordon betrayed them. And I won’t even mention that other power-hitter outfielder (a complicated restraining order actually prevents me from mentioning his full name, let’s just call him G. Stanton–or better, Giancarlo S.) Adam ain’t worried about it. YOLO. Speaking of YOLOing, how about that new Drake album? Uh, singasongmuch? Please stop. I get the whole calypso/R&B/I’mdoingthistobangRihanna vibe the album has and I’m not feeling it. Meanwhile, Mr. Drake, you are depriving fans of some of the best Canadian rap the world has to offer. Oh, hey tangent, we were talking about Adam Conley! The lefty now possesses a 3.67 ERA and 1.22 WHIP through four starts with a 28/12 K/BB rate (9.33 K/9). Mmm, strikeouts. Adam’s 72.2% swinging strike percentage (including 14 in last night’s game) suggest that the strikeouts are for real. That could help your fantasy team. Like Drizzy’s new album, he’s been a bit inconsistent, but Conley gets Arizona next week, he’s available in over 80% of fantasy leagues and he could be worth a pick up in deeper mixed and NL-Only leagues. Why not take a flier–you only YOLO once!

Here’s what else I saw Friday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

In what seemed like a meaningless spring training game, Dee Gordon bunted and it landed 12 feet from home plate.  The announcer said, “Wow, didn’t think that was going to make it out of the batter’s box”  And an investigation began.   Dee Gordon, unaware, of the investigation continued to use exogenous Testosterone and Clostebol, two performance-enhancing substances.  Later in spring, he knocked a single that fell just out of the 2nd baseman’s reach.  That ball, it was said, looked like a 47-footer.  It went 57 feet.  Another shot, sailed just over the pitcher’s mitt, and just before the 2nd base bag.  Gordon raced to 1st, and everyone looked around, “That was a half-a-pede.”  That’s baseball jargon for a 50-footer.  So, Dee Gordon will be out for the next 80 games, call him The Suspended Splinter.  Sure glad I bought him in my Tout Wars draft.  Super!  What the hell was this schmohawk doing?  Who thinks they can possibly get away with using in today’s game?  It’s just stupid.  This is a break for Derek Dietrich; he should be the 2nd baseman on most days.  He has 15-homer pop, and is worth a grab in NL-Only leagues.  Look forward to seeing Gordon return in August when his 28-footers go 28 feet again, and he’s back to a .215 hitter.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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“‘I need a bouncy C.  Not a bouncy castle!’  Billy Beane screams into his headset, when an intern interrupts him and his daughter, practicing her guitar, while they are both on a treadmill.  The intern tells Beane that Jesse Hahn has a blister.  The intern turns and it’s Jonah Hill.  Fat Jonah, not “He doesn’t look right skinny” Jonah.   Beane then looks at the camera to establish empathy and says, “Get me Sean Manaea.”  Only he adds three extra syllables to Manaea’s naeame.   And…scene!”  The producer smiles, “That’s a great pitch.  If only Manaea looks that good.  High-five!”  So, Manaea has been called up to start on Friday.  He’s looked downright fantastic thus far.  Upleft fantastic too.  He’s a six-five Samoan, but he doesn’t weight 475 pounds.  He could be the Rookie of the Year; his stuff is that TNT with SVU reruns.  I also think there’s more downside here than, say, Berrios.  He’s had moments where his command leaves him, and he becomes a 5+ IP, 4 ER guy.  His delivery looks to me like he could get wild very easily.  Wide range of possibility here, could be a #1 or could be a #4-5 that you only own in AL-Only leagues.  Of course, I’m taking the flyer in all leagues for the chance he comes up and wows upsides our fantasy heads.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Yesterday, Buster Olney tweeted, “Kevin Gausman is pitching tonight probably exactly the way the Orioles hoped on the day they drafted him.  Dominant stuff.”  Putting aside the unnecessary “probably” — you’ll never win a Twitter Pulitzer with needless hooha! —  is this what the Orioles hoped for?  Because it’s felt at times like the Orioles were waiting for Gausman to say some sort of secret oath to let him into the rotation and, without Podrick to prompt him, he didn’t know said oath.  By the by, I can’t look at Brienne of Tarth and not see Conan O’Brien.  Perhaps, it’s me (it’s not).  If the Orioles wanted Gausman to pitch probably exactly like this, wouldn’t they have put him in the rotation and left him alone for the last *covers mouth* years?  Not to answer, but to knowingly nod while you undress your computer with your eyes.  Since I have shares in that facacta noodle-hanger Archer, I watched the better part of Gausman’s start, and he looked better than what the boxscore says, and the boxscore says, “Yum, choco-latte.”  It also says 5 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 7 Ks in his first start back.  Gausman has the stuff to be a number one, but at worse a number two.  Not saying he will be this year; that’s just his stuff.  He probably exactly should be already, but probably exactly hasn’t been.  Still, I would grab him in any leagues where I needed upside.  A 8+ K/9, 2.7+ BB/9, 3.75 ERA starter is probably exactly what you’ll get.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

theprince
You know who I’d really love to punch in the face? Justin Upton. When did he become B.J. Upton. I’m sorry, I mean the artist formerly known as B.J. Upton. Justin has more strikeouts than Chris Davis, George Springer and Miguel Sano. Heck, the only hitter with more strikeouts is Trevor Story. At least Story has 8 home runs. Upton has only one! Even Melvin has more homers. Seriously, WTF! Eight points? J-Up. More like J-Down.

And how about Prince. Mr. Fielder has just 23 points! I know it’s early, but that puts him safely outside the top 100 hitters. Can you believe that those 23 points are four more than Joey Votto’s total. Seriously, I’d like to take Upton, Votto and Fielder, put them in a little red Corvette and drive it off a cliff. As bad as these three have been it’s Khris Davis that takes the cake. Through 13 games and 49 plate appearances this pile of dung has amassed negative four points. That’s correct, you read that right. He has less than zero points on the season. Pathetic does not even come close to describing this sh*t show.

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In the offseason, I experimented with a new rankings system. After a several iterations of trial and error, I finally arrived at a solution that yielded favorable results. Even though we are only about eight games into the 2016 season, I decided to give the system a test run. The saying “size matters” definitely comes into play in this case. Approximately 28 plate appearances for a hitter is barely enough to scratch the surface. Projecting based on these numbers is more of a fool’s errand than a productive endeavor, but far be it from me to avoid the opportunity to be a fool.

For those wondering how the system ranks players, I’ll give you the 30,000 foot view. Employing multiple points scoring systems I use both year-to-date and projected stats to calculate points. For each scoring system I then rank the players by position. I then take all the rankings for each player and average them to give each player a ranking. Finally I sort the players based on their average rankings.

As we move deeper into the season I will provide a much fuller and detailed list of rankings, but for today I am just going to give you the top five hitters at each position.

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What goes through J-FOH’s head when he does these ranks? I’m glad you asked. Wait… you didn’t ask? Are you sure? No? Not at all? Sheesh, thanks guys… and four girls. I’m going to be my usually contrarian self and tell you anyway. I’m looking at players from their floor to their ceilings over the next 3-5 years (and beyond). I’m looking at games played over the previous few seasons, projecting risk going forward, and predicting how they will age based on their skill set. A player whose value is heavily dependent upon speed will usually lose that speed going into the 30’s and players with power will usually keep that a little bit longer. There are always guys who defy the odds like David “I never juiced” Ortiz or Adrian Beltre. They are a special breed that should never be slept on ’til the day they retire. There is science, stats, and anecdotal B.S., and then there are “those guys”. Joey Bats and those sweet bat throws would fall into that class for me. Excuse me while I preach for a second. I love bat flips. I think they should be mandatory for any home run after the 7th, 6th for the Yankees. This is a kids game that is suppose to be fun and guys like Mad Bum need to either throw the punch or shut the front door. Any a-hole can stand there shouting with a team behind him. At least Robin Ventura had the cojones to try and fight. (I want that shirt!) Now that we have my major side track out of the way, let’s move down to some words about the list before we get to the list. Note to self, take an english class at the local adult education center next year.

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atlanta-braves-logo

Welcome to the 2016 Razzball Team Previews! You’ll find everything you need to know about each team to get yourself ready for the upcoming fantasy baseball season. And I mean everything, folks. We’ve got line-ups, charts, Slurpees, lube, a guide for beginner electricians, and even a cactus! Well, that’s a lie. That’s what Jay had last year sitting in front of him. This year? Um…a little less lube? Take that as you will. But hey, we’ve got teams to preview and questions to ask, so let’s hop to it. We a very special guest for this post…Brad Rowland, to provide his take on what the team has in store this season. Now enough rambling, let’s see what 2016 holds for the Atlanta Braves!

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I hope I didn’t scare all of Razzball away last week when I took shots at Grey’s rankings. A long beautiful relationship could be in the near future for us. I CAN’T screw this up. Today, we’ll take a step back and look at one player I’m not enjoying as much as Grey. In this instance, Grey doesn’t love him too much either, I just have much lower expectations for this mystery man (if the title didn’t spoil it for you). There was a legal case where someone, we’ll call him/her Joshua, sued a dry cleaner for $60+ million because he claimed the pants he received were not his. I’ll repeat this for you: he goes and sues for what he believes was an improper exchange of pants. WHO THE **** DOES THAT? He later decided, oh, $53 million would do if you want to settle. I mean, come on dude, how big of a A-hole do you have to be do this to someone, let alone for a pair of pants? So the judge in this case decided this man is spewing venom, trying to take advantage of the owners and quickly ruled in opposition of Joshua and charged him to pay the legal fees of the defendants. Want to hear something funny? Joshua couldn’t even prove that the pants they gave him were not his. You see Joshua here? Don’t be like Joshua.

Please, blog, may I have some more?