Howdy Razzballero, and welcome to the second half of the MLB (and fantasy) season. Hopefully, you were all able to recharge the batteries a bit over the All Star break and prepare yourselves for the fantasy baseball stretch run. I enjoyed a random viewing of the movie Minority Report last week during the down time and, when looking at the reboot-happy nature of Hollywood these days with projects like the new Ghostbusters movie, it got me thinking about a fantasy themed reboot of the 2002 Stephen Spielberg film. It can be called Majority Report starring Grey in the Tom Cruise protagonist role where he can be credited as Ice Tumors or Crime Oust (because a Tom Cruise anagram as an alias to protect his alias somehow makes sense to me) and I could have a cameo role as one of the lesser precogs who is occasionally (but not usually) able to predict the future of the fantasy landscape. I haven’t figured out the plot yet, though it would probably involve Grey stalking Giancarlo for one reason or another. Ok, so it’s more of just an extremely lazy re-imagining than anything else, but last week would’ve been one of those rare scenes that my character was able to predict the transaction future of the fantasy baseball landscape. As of yesterday, the five most added players in ESPN leagues over the past seven days (Koji Uehara, Randal Grichuk, Brandon McCarthy, Hector Santiago, and Yangervis Solarte) as well as two out of the next four most added players (Anthony DeSclafani and Max Kepler) are ones that I discussed in my second half difference maker articles last week (the hitters can be found here while the pitchers can be found here). In short, if these players are still available in your league, add them!

Anyway, let’s move on to a few players who are more likely to still be sitting on the waiver wire, shall we? Here are a few other interesting adds/drops in fantasy baseball over the past week:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Greetings! Ughh, ’tis been a rough couple days for your Lord… getting my butthole re-bleached is one thing, but my current day job forced me to fire someone for the first time in my life. Yes, I was forced to get my Donald Trump on and layoff this bih, who was once my boss. Aaaaaaaaaawkwaaaaaard to say the least. Of course, I made love to her first after doing our usual morning lines in the bathroom, as I wanted to give her one last perfect morning. Telling her to pack her shizz up and letting her know that I would be taking her job five minutes after blowing her back out was an absolute out-of-body experience. I felt the Elders gazing down upon me, guiding my firm hand as I demanded her keys, banned her from the premises, and broke her the worst news she has probably ever received in her life. Lord Beddict will no longer be giving you the pipe and you’re now going to have to buy your own cocaine. Nice gal, she’ll get over it… no she won’t. So yeah, about James Paxton If someone could tell me how a man who throws 100 MPH can somehow only total 3 Ks over his past 13 innings, I’ll service you while you suck you on a blowpop. How many licks does it take to get to the center of Paxton’s psyche? 5 innings, 6 earned, 1 k, 9 hits, but hey, at least he limited the Astros to one walk…

Anyways, here’s what I witnessed yesterday in fantasy baseball. Take heed!!!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Earlier this week, we looked at some lightly owned hitters in ESPN leagues who could be potential difference makers in fantasy baseball over the second half of the season. Today, it’s time to focus on some pitchers who can give your fake teams a boost down the stretch. Even if your team’s ratios look more unsightly than a Meg Ryan facelift, there’s still plenty of time remaining to fix those issues. So put down those Francisco Liriano and James Shields voodoo dolls people, and let’s go to work.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Yesterday, Matt Harvey met with the Mets’ front office and told them, “You ruined my shoulder!  I was the Dark Knight!  Now I’m 1960s Batman in hard-to-watch Technicolor unable to move my arms to do the Batusi!”  Matt Harvey asked Bartolo if this ever happened to him and he said, “Nah, I am 90% jelly and custard.  My nerves are coated in more sugar than a churro.”  Harvey needs shoulder surgery due to thoracic outlet syndrome.  Sandy Alderson said it’s inevitable.  Pitchers who have had this surgery take at least a year to recover and sometimes never regain past form.  It could not only be a season killer, it could be the end of Harvey as we know him.  He could opt to rehab his shoulder without surgery, but rehabbing it won’t magically make his pitching better than he’s been all year, which is atrocious.  If you don’t have DL room, I could see dropping him.  Fun fact!  You know who suffered from thoracic outlet syndrome?  The Lispasaurus.  Tiny arms, big body.  Other dinosaurs pickin’ on ’em because of their lisp — why’d every dinosaur have to have an S sound in its name?!  Total recipe for messed-up shoulders.  “I hate Thoracic Park!”  Spielberg can make a Thoracic Park movie where an injured pitcher tries to repair his relationship with his pre-teen son while genetically-modified dinosaurs chase after them.  “I know I wasn’t there for you when you were growing up or for your keeper league team in 2014 or for that velociraptor attack 15 minutes ago, but I’m here for you now.”  The boy looks up, “How did that velociraptor throw a Warthen slider?”  The father responds, “He’s learning!”  Seth Smith is working on the script.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I’ve never had the privilege of posting Sunday, so forgive as I couldn’t resist the Mega Monster Truck lead in.  With truck names like Demon Seed, Ball Buster and Dutch Oven how can you not get fired up for Sunday!  Now that we’re fired up, let’s talk about the Monster Arms that are on the schedule for today.  Clayton Kershaw, $14,200 at Pittsburgh, Johnny Cueto, $13,600 vs Philadelphia, Jose Fernandez $13,100 vs Chicago, Chris Sale, $12,400 vs Toronto, and Justin Verlander, $10,700 vs Cleveland.  Aces are wild today, so who do we roll with in order to cash in?  Honestly you can’t go wrong with any of the top 3, but I’m leaning towards Cueto & JFer, as I think most people will roster Kershaw and I love the match-ups at home.  JFer has been straight nasty in his last 8 games, going 6-1 with a 1.16 ERA and 78 K’s in just 54 innings.  Yeah, he’s back folks and he’s facing a slumping Cubbies lineup that’s dropped 5 of their last 6 games. Now that all the Aces have been dealt, who can we roster so we can go all in?

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run Monday June 27th to wet your DK whistle.  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?

Evidently, Corey Kluber made some sort of promise to the city of Cleveland too, and not just to Kl-Uber Drew Carey home any time he sees him drunk-wandering in downtown Cleveland.  Yesterday, Kluber went 9 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 9 Ks, lowering his ERA at 3.59.  So, I’m going to get completely unscientific, then scientific, then mix the two, Grey says sounding like Don Herbert. (If you knew who Don Herbert was, you are old and a nerd.)  Unscientifically, Kluber will have an ERA around 3.60 this year.  He’ll throw a gem, get the ERA down to 3.40, then throw a stinker and the ERA will rise.  It will go on like this all year, because that’s what he’s done so far.  Then he will figure out if he drops his arm angle a little, due to the earth being flat, it will add more spin and he’ll have an ERA under zero in September.  Again, that was unscientific.  Scientifically, his peripherals looks as good as any previous year.  His velocity is a notch off previous seasons, but his 9 K-rate, 1.9 BB/9 and 3.27 xFIP are excellent.  So, he should be better than he has been, and could end up with a 3.20 ERA with 250 Ks.  Now, to mix the two methods, Kluber will match his 3.27 xFIP, and on off days, picket Phil Collins’ house with Carl Everett, with a sign reading, “The Book of Genesis Doesn’t Have Liner Notes.”  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I know, I know.  Most boring Pitcher Profile in the lauded history of the Pitcher Profiles…  But Tim Lincecum has been the talk of the town in some circles, that is, if the circle you’re in is at a retirement home…

I was hotly debating writing this week’s profile on the sexy new call-up Cody Reed, but legit decided to flip a coin to see who’s 2016 debut I would go with.  One side was Jennifer Lawrence and the other side Sir Laurence Olivier.  As in he’s old!  Wait, I don’t think he’s even alive…  Don’t fact check that…

It’s been several years since Old Tiny Tim has been fantasy relevant, and it’s only fitting that the reason why is a hip issue.  He shoulda pressed the Life Alert earlier!  But now he’s had the surgery, showed some flashes in his Minor League rehab games (7 inning 1-hitter with 8 Ks his last AAA start), and debuted for the Angels on Saturday afternoon.  Here’s how his 2016 debut went down going at the A’s:

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Oh my God, Drew Smyly is more like Smyly Corleone.  Every time you think you’re out, he pulls you right back in.  Fredo, you went against the family, and we can’t have that.  “Smyly, is that you?  Why do you keep calling me?”  That’s Alfredo Griffin getting annoyed with Smyly Corleone.  “I made them offer at a pitch they couldn’t refuse.”  Seriously, stop Smyly Corleone!  So, there’s always one pitcher (sometimes more than one) that befuddles and seduces, seduces and befuddles.  Justin Masterson carried the torch for a while when he was Justin Masterson:  Passive Aggressive Starter.  Now, Drew Smyly seems to be carrying that same damned if you do, damned if you don’t torch.  Yesterday, his line was 6 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 4 baserunners with 12 Ks.  On the year, his K-rate and walk rate are 10.3 and 2.2.  Those are ace numbers.  Unlike a lot of other big strikeout guys and actual aces, Smyly doesn’t throw very hard and seems to tire after about two starts in a row.  His ERA on the year is 4.75, but that’s absurd, as in I will absurd you while you’re on waivers.  But, ugh, that K-rate, that walk rate, it’s hard for me to resist and if he was dropped in your league, I could see giving him another chance, but I’d be wary of matchups because I just don’t see him overpowering most teams when he’s not working on ten days rest.  He just doesn’t throw hard enough.  I.e., leave the speed gun, take the cannoli.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Tommy Joseph continued his early success last night going 2-for-4, with two home runs, and four RBI. I felt it was appropriate to go with the biblical headline because for those in desperate need of a corner infielder, Joseph has been heaven sent. The big game Friday brought his season stats to a .323/.333/.677 triple slash with seven home runs and 12 RBI in just 21 games (65 at bats). All this coming on the heels of Manager Pete Mackanin naming Tommy Boy the starter Friday afternoon over Ryan “I’m Not Sure How Old You Are Anymore, But I Would Have Guessed Older” Howard. Joseph has really turned on the jets in the past week hitting .438 with six runs, 4 homers, and 7 RBI. This isn’t coming completely out of nowhere either. After an abysmal 2015, Tommy was slashing .347/.370/.611 in 100 ABs at AAA this year. The advanced stats are a bit wonky for Joseph at the moment (.333 BABIP, 26.1 K%, .354 ISO), but don’t necessarily suggest Joseph is playing over his head. Regardless, TJ has carved out a nice spot for himself batting clean up for the Phils and I could see his success continuing. Grey told you to BUY, Joseph is available everywhere and is definitely worth grabbing in all leagues where you need a corner infielder with some pop.

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

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Danny Valencia had himself a nice little weekend.  On Friday, he hit two homers, then yesterday he became only the third player to ever have a three-homer game (3-for-5, 5 RBIs) against the Rays (last one was Carlos Delgado in 2003), and only the 2nd player that also stood for the pregame National Anthem.   Valencia grew up Jewish, and, according to Wikipedia, “(Valencia’s) two key hitting coaches growing up were Bob Molinaro, a family friend who is a former major leaguer, and his mother Mindy.”  I didn’t have a Jewish mother, but have plenty of experience being half-Jewish, so I can imagine the guilt trips he got, “Why don’t you marry a nice Jewish girl and stop swinging at balls in the dirt?”  “You never call your mother, and you’re opening up too soon.”  “You can go take batting practice after you give your mother a kiss.”  Wikipedia doesn’t mention it, but one less guilt-inducing hitting coach he had was Jose Bautista.  Valencia learned how to hit for more power from Joey Bats.  Since Bautista imparted wisdom on Valencia, he’s hit 30 homers in the last 580 ABs.  So, can Valencia keep it going?  It appears so.  Now finish your latkes and keep your hands back!  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?