I should probably start off by apologizing to some of you as the title of this post might be somewhat misleading. This is not a Fifty Shades of Grey movie review. For those of you who arrived here with those expectations, I’m sorry. I’m not sure how it could have happened. Nothing in this post references BDSM, dominant/submissive tendencies, or bondage at any time. It’s all very confusing.

What this post does intend to cover is the MLB hitters who displayed above average power and plate discipline during the 2013 and 2014 seasons. The main idea behind this exercise is to identify players who are power assets without being liabilities in the batting average category.

Let’s take a look at the search criteria that were used to identify these players:

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Looking over Shortstop in OBP leagues is not pretty. Even the top-5 gets ugly quick; Troy Tulowitzki (.432), Hanley Ramirez (.369), Ben Zobrist (.354), Danny Santana (.353), and Starlin Castro (.339) round out the top-5. The top guys tend to have good OBP numbers and will be a plus at the position while there are a few guys throughout the rankings that will kill your OBP…

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Everyone knows that the most hitter friendly ballpark in the Major Leagues is Coors Field, home to the Colorado Rockies. We all love us some Rockies on our fantasy rosters, but we also enjoy when our non-Rockies players visit the Mile-High City. Mile-High, Colorado… Not even gonna go there. So many possibilities. I’m sure most have been done already.

So… how do the fantasy points stack up? Does Coors Field live up to its reputation when it comes to the points? It sure does! Last year there were 4,269 fantasy points scored there by batters. That is more than double the 2,063 points scored at Petco Park in San Diego, which came in dead last. Exactly as many would have predicted, Coors with the most, Petco with the least. But what about in between. What other ballparks were fantasy points friendly in 2014?

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The late rounds of fantasy baseball drafts are filled with players who have questions surrounding them. It’s usually not too difficult to categorize these players, particularly in terms of starting pitching. There’s the post-hype group (Trevor Bauer, Kevin Gausman, Tony Cingrani), the declining veteran tier (CC Sabathia, Dan Haren, Bartolo Colon), and the unproven prospect tier (Noah Syndergaard, Andrew Heaney, Archie Bradley). Several high floor, low ceiling options (Ervin Santana, Kyle Lohse, Wei-Yin Chen) and volatile injury-prone pitchers (Clay Buchholz, Matt Garza) tend to remain on the board for quite a while as well. In recent years, Brandon McCarthy has generally been perceived by the fantasy community as someone who falls into one of the latter two categories. Is this perception accurate? What can be expected from McCarthy in 2015?

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Keeper league rankings are here (the 2014 Rankings can be found here), and I am going to absolutely shock the world with my number one. This is all about zagging when others zig. You gotta get out in front of the pack with advanced statistics and clever strategory. Sometimes you have to be bold and go against the grain to get that competitive edg…what’s that? Everybody else has Mike Trout number one too? It’s common sense? Well…crap. These are my personal rankings and take into account the 2015-2019 seasons. Don’t start flipping through your calendar – that’s 5 years. It means the senior citizen players are really going have to provide some nice statistics in the first year or two to rank highly. It also means players who are in or, better yet, just entering their prime get a bump. It’s not a hybrid list, so no prospects or Cuban rookies…sorry. It’s also not set for any specific pricing or league settings so assume a standard 5×5 roto format with no penalties to keep a player. Basically it’s a ranking of what I think these players will be worth over the next 5 years as a whole. It’s that simple. Here are my top 100 keepers for 2015 and beyond…

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With the 2015 fantasy baseball rankings for every position done, we turn our lazy eye towards the top 100 for 2015 fantasy baseball. These 2015 fantasy baseball rankings are one part fresh and two parts to def. They own a cat, a dog and a lizard in a two bedroom apartment where pets aren’t allowed. Know why? Cause they don’t care! None of this top 100 for 2015 fantasy baseball is meant to surprise. *jumping out of a closet* Boo! Now, that was meant to surprise. This top 100 is just taking my positional rankings and putting guys in The Big Picture. You really should read each ranking post because the blurbs in this top 100 are on the skimpy side because there’s so many of them, and I went over each one of these guys already. Obviously at a hundred players, some guys just didn’t make it. About 300, to be inexact. It’s okay; there will be a top 400 tomorrow. Shortly, Sloth, you’ll have your Baby Ruth. Not to get all biblical on you, but this is the gospel. Print it out and take it to Mt. Sinai and it will say, “Win your 2015 fantasy baseball league, young prematurely balding man.” Projections were done by me and a crack team of 100 monkeys fighting amongst themselves because there were only 99 typewriters. Somebody please buy Ling-Ling his own typewriter! Anyway, here’s the top 100 for 2015 fantasy baseball:

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I’ve already gone over the top 20 catchers for 2015 fantasy baseball, the top 20 1st basemen for 2015 fantasy baseball and the top 20 2nd basemen for 2015 fantasy baseball. Last year, I thought the top 20 shortstops for 2015 fantasy baseball looked a whole lot better than the 2nd basemen. I said that’s not usually the norm, but you gotta be malleable in this fantasy baseball game. Then going on to say I’d give a free car to a brother and sister who were named Norm and Malleable. No one won the car and I was pretty off with where I thought shortstops had depth. They showed up last preseason in a librarian’s outfit with red-rimmed glasses and seemed interesting. Then they turned around and it was Sally Jessy Raphael and we should’ve ran the other way. As with the other top 20 rankings, I point out where tiers start and stop and my projections. All the 2015 fantasy baseball rankings can be found under that thing that says 2015 fantasy baseball rankings. Unsuccinct! Anyway, here’s the top 20 shortstops for 2015 fantasy baseball:

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This is one of the most difficult posts to write all year. Maybe I shouldn’t try to write this post with my feet. Eff it, you know what? No guts, no glory. No toes, no post either, naw mean? There’s just so many different ways the top 20 for 2015 fantasy baseball could go. Maybe next year I’ll write a top 10 for 2015 fantasy baseball with a ten way tie for the tenth ranked guy. Last year, I had Jose Bautista higher than anyone and Jay Bruce. You win some, you lose some. I also had Pujols, Votto and Puig in the top twenty. Again, win, lose and…DRAW! It’s one word…A can of spinach with an X through it…A hamburger…Wimpy! Looking into my crystal ball tells me this year is gonna be even harder. Pitchers are dominating the sport. Doesn’t mean I can go completely crackers and just put ten starters in the top twenty. That shizz would be crumby! I wouldn’t draft a starter in the top twenty so I won’t tell you to do it. Finding twenty hitters isn’t going to be easy, but, while thinking of me as your weird uncle that you can only talk about baseball with, let’s find them together. Remember, one pick does not a team make. Here’s just twenty picks you should make. All the positional rankings will live under the 2015 fantasy baseball rankings. Anyway, here’s the top 20 for 2015 fantasy baseball:

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Earlier this offseason, it was reported that the Red Sox coaches didn’t like Yoenis Cespedes. Wait until they get a load of Hanley Ramirez! If you were to put “Happiness That You Have Hanley” on the Y-axis and “Time Spent With Hanley” on the X-axis, you would find a line that starts at the top left and slopes right down to the bottom right. For what it’s Wuertz, the enjoyment of Hanley matches directly with the chart of Pancake Eating. After one bite, “Mmm, that is delicious.” After two bites, “Not bad at all.” After three bites, “I’m gonna try and douse these with some maple syrup.” After ten bites, “You gonna share your bacon or should I order my own?” That’s Hanley. Try to douse him with maple syrup, but when it’s July and your team is in the pennant chase and he has a sore hamstring, enjoy! From a real baseball standpoint, I hate the move for the Red Sox. You had Xander Bogaerts for short, you nabbed Panda for 3rd (which I’ll get to shortly) and now you have Hanley playing left and Home Run Derby Champion Yoenis that you have to trade for the most you can get. (By the by, I love that everyone refers to Yoenis as Home Run Derby Champion Yoenis, so I will now do the same.) That’s not even mentioning Allen Craig, Will Middlebrooks, Mookie Betts, Jackie Bradley, Daniel Nava and Juan Francisco. It’s kinda sad that all of those guys would be starting for the Padres (and Astros and Marlins and about ten other teams) and for the Red Sox they’re trade bait. Maybe the Red Sox will also sign Han’s brother, Head. From a fantasy perspective, this is about as good as it gets for Hanley. Will this mean he’ll play 150 games? No, I didn’t say that. It’s hard to account for insouciance (Word of the Day!). If he shows up at Fenway in April and wants to play, great. If he shows up at Fenway in April and doesn’t want to play until August, it wouldn’t surprise me. If we get 150 games from him (it will be nothing short of a miracle), I’d give him the projections of 86/24/91/.266/17. I’d only count on a 130 games though, which would knock him to 72/20/84/.268/12. Anyway, here’s some more offseason moves for 2015 fantasy baseball:

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If you were offered a 23-year-old ballplayer with both shortstop and outfield eligibility, who hit .319/.353/.472 with seven homers and 20 steals in 430 plate appearances…would you keep him? If you were a hot dog…would you eat yourself? These are important questions. The player is Danny Santana, whose rookie season with the Twins was useful to fantasy owners despite his May arrival and lost time with a leg injury. Santana is going to be an on-the-fence decision in a lot of shallow keeper leagues, which makes him worth discussing for the purposes of this keeper post.

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