Yesterday, Ivan Nova threw a complete game with one earned run — 9 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 6 Ks — ERA at 3.20 on the Pirates, after having a 4.90 ERA on the Yankees.  This Ray Searage guy can do miracles.  People should travel far and wide to go see him with their ailments, anguish and general malaise.  “So, I was standing in line for a frappuccino and I was thinking, ‘What’s the point?’  So, what is the point, Searage?”  “Sounds like you should use the change more.”  By the way, malaise is not the actress that plays Arya Stark.  Ray Searage is a modern-day miracle worker.  Move over, Anne Sullivan!  This is also exactly what they said about Searage in regards to Juan Nicasio before he flamed out about three weeks into the season, and Gerrit Cole has been pretty gross.  Searage seems totally competent, but to think he can fix all Pirates pitchers seems foolhardy.  No relation to Tom Hardy.  I could see grabbing Nova if the matchups are right, but I’m not running out to grab him in 12 team mixed leagues.  Not simply because my computer’s at home and it makes no sense to run out anywhere.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

On Sunday, Nolan Arenado broke out of a mini-slump and hit his first home run since August 8. He couldn’t have asked for a better matchup this week than the one that he gets on Tuesday night against Chase Anderson and the Brewers. This game is on the road, so it doesn’t have quite the positive effect on hitters, but Miller Park is one of the more hitter friendly parks in the league–it just isn’t Coors on a hot summer night. Arenado has owned Anderson throughout his career, hitting three home runs in 20 career at-bats against the righty. Priced at just $4,500, Arenado is actually reasonable. If he goes on an extended hot streak, his price will surely jump, so use him at a mild bargain. You’ll see below who I recommend building your lineup around. Arenado comes in right behind the burly right-hander from the North Side of Chicago.

New to DraftKings? 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 August 29th to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. Wanna know what the best part is about signing up with us? The free subscription for the rest of the season to our DFSBot, that’s what! For details on the how to, please visit our Razzball Subscriptions page.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I had an idea to make the Olympics more watchable.  You know how you watch it now and you’re like, “Damn, he just ran the length of two football fields in 20 seconds?  I mean, it looked like he was going fast, but the guy next to him ran it in 21 seconds, so it’s hard to tell exactly how fast he was running.”  Enter my idea:  in every event, there should one normal person competing so we get a better idea of how great the Olympians are next to average schmos.  Tell me you wouldn’t watch the platform diving if between the North Korean and Chinese diver, I was there trying to get the nerve up to jump from three floors up, then plunging awkwardly into the water on my back.  Or running next to Usain Bolt, doing an 85-second 200 meter dash.  So, this brings me to Kris Bryant, who right now is making other major leaguers look like ‘normal people.’  Yesterday, he went 5-for-5, 4 runs, 5 RBIs with his 29th and 30th homers.  On our Player Rater, he’s in the top five for the season.  Member in the preseason when people were saying Bryant was going to strike out too much to draft in the 1st round?  Those people are enjoying themselves some Jose Abreu!  For 2017, it’s gonna be hard to rank Bryant much later than the top five, as he enters only his age-25 season.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Milwaukee Brewers non-roster invitee Josh Hader, points to help his catcher field a wild pitch, Wednesday, February 24, 2016, in Phoenix. Arizona.(Photo/Roy Dabner) ORG XMIT: RD037

Don’t be a hader. Don’t hade the player, hade the game. Hader. Hader. Hader alligator. Alright, well maybe that last one was a bit of a stretch, but far be it from me to give it the old college try. What have I got to lose, two of my remaining eight readers? Based on the metrics available to me it seems I lost about thirty percent of my followers after I posted that article comparing Julio Urias’s eye to Sloth’s from The Goonies. If you serve it up on a silver platter you better believe I’m going to gobble it up like a bag of Doritos after a session with Tim Lincecum. Besides, that one was like hitting the ball off of a tee. Since that post I’ve been trying to figure out how I can lose another thirty percent while still providing some valuable fantasy baseball advice. Enter Josh Hader, the minor league pitcher for Milwaukee. There’s no pussy footing around it, this guy is not handsome. Talk about getting beat by the ugly stick. This guy fell out of the ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down. He’s so ugly he makes Willie MgGee look good. He’s so ugly his manager insists that he wear a catchers mask at all times. He looks like Randy Johnson had a baby with Jorge Cantu and that baby had a baby with Pascual Perez. You don’t have to tell me that it’s wrong to poke fun at something another cannot control, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to. Besides, it’s not like I’m making this sh!t up.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Manny Machado put up his right hand yesterday to measure it against a hand drawing every clubhouse has posted on its wall.  The drawing is of Mark Whiten’s hand that once held four baseballs in it.  Four baseballs for the four homers he hit in one game.  In the Padres’ clubhouse, this hand has been removed because it’s just a not-so-subtle reminder of what will never be.  In the Indians’ clubhouse, the hand is made into a turkey to celebrate the first Thanksgiving.  In the Astros’ clubhouse, the hand has been cut out and fashioned into a t-shirt for Altuve.  Imagine if Donald Trump wins the presidency and throws out a first pitch.  He may never make it to the field, too distracted in the clubhouse by measuring his hands against Whiten.  Yesterday, Machado came a fingernail short of the hand, hitting three homers with seven RBIs.  Now has 25 homers on the year with a .307 average.  Terrific, stupendous, adjective!  What’s more remarkable is he does not have one steal all year.  Almost as crazy, he’s only attempted three.  Did he have a knee transplant this offseason with McCutchen as the donor?  Machado stole 20 bases last year.  To go to none?  Wow, his feet definitely don’t measure up to the Rickey Henderson foot drawings in each clubhouse.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Like Swiss cheese, Chris Archer‘s 2016 pitching performance has holes in it. A few things concern me with Archer’s numbers this season. The main concerning being the 91.2 mph average exit velocity hitters are getting off his pitches. That 91.2 mph puts him in the top 10 highest average exit velocity among qualified starting pitchers. This may be the reason for his 17.5% home run to fly ball ratio, which is 6.4% higher than his career average. Hitters have been doing most of their damage off his fastball. Hitters have averaged a .545 slugging off it this season. However, not is all bad for Archer. His ERA may sit at 4.38 (the lowest it’s been since may), but his xFIP sits at 3.47, which is in line with his 3.54 career average ERA. In his last three starts, he has racked up 25 K while only issuing 3 walks. Walks were an issue for Archer earlier in the season, but over his last 5 starts he has only gave up 6. Archer only has 5 wins on the season which is not good for DFS, but today the Rays are facing off against the Twins. Chris Archer should have a much higher chance at a win as the Twins have the second lowest winning percentage in the entire league. And with that I give you the rest of my Saturday DFS picks…

New to DraftKings? 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 August 8th to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. Wanna know what the best part is about signing up with us? The free subscription for the rest of the season to our DFSBot, that’s what! For details on the how to, please visit our Razzball Subscriptions page.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I was all about some of that young prospect snell early in the season, ranking Blake Snell within my top-75 preseason ranks. He destroyed the Minors in 2015, then was a little iffy when he hit the Majors for the first time. HE’S AWFUL FOREVER! As we see 95% of the time, initial failure means a prospect is forgotten, even if they start putting up solid numbers a month or two later.

And such was the case for Snell, who had a 3.86 ERA over his first 5 starts (passable), but a horrific 20:15 K:BB and a WHIP close to 2.00. He’s no Trevor Rosenthal! That aforementioned success in the Minors came with some control issues as well, so it stood to reason he might need a little more refinement. On top of that, I watched a few of his starts and his stuff looked a little too “loopy” for me. I have no idea if that makes sense… But it looked like a lot of huge rolling movement, with nothing crisp, ala a Corey Kluber or Jake Arrieta cutter. Just very bendy.

Things have gotten a lot better lately though, with a 24:11 K:BB heading into yesterday’s start against the Yanks in 24 innings. As such a highly regarded prospect and with good pure stuff that I think just needed that little extra “umpf” of crispness, I bought in heavily across my leagues and in last week’s ranks. But I figured it would be a good idea to see for myself if his breaking stuff looks a tad better than when I saw it in his 2nd and 3rd starts. Here’s how he looked:

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In 1906, the Cubs won a major league record 116 games.  In 1907 and 1908, the Cubs won back-to-back World Series championships.  Anticipating a third championship in 1909, a young, enterprising Chicago man bought up all the toilet paper in Chicago, planning on selling the toilet paper back to the celebrators for twice the amount of money for their ticker tape parade.  The Cubs never won again, but it turned out people still needed toilet paper in their everyday life.  So, he still sold it back to them at a huge markup.  Now, most people would’ve been annoyed with this man, but he was so charming, which later became Charmin.  A titan of industry.  So, with this in mind, I’ve invested my life savings in toilet paper, and will sell it back to Cubs’ fans this October.  I’m gonna make money, y’all!  By the way, Cubs could be World Series champs within days of Donald Trump becoming president, that fallout shelter doesn’t seem like such a bad idea.  As for Aroldis Chapman, the trade was completed yesterday with him going to the Cubs for a bunch of prospects.  This kills Hector Rondon’s value for redraft leagues, since he’ll be pushed into the setup role with Aroldis closing.  Whereas in New York, Andrew Miller goes from a top setup man to a top five closer.  Now, here’s hoping for an Indians/Cubs World Series so I win either way with all of this TP.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Decisions, decisions…we all love when a bad hitting team gets to go up against a good to great pitcher. But do we love it when it’s in a friendly hitter’s park? This is the question you’re going to have to ask yourself today. With so many good pitching options on this slate priced reasonably, is it the kind of day you should toss Jon Gray out there on your team? Clearly Gray isn’t without risk given Coors is the backdrop but lets consider a few things for a moment. His K/9 on the year is nestled right in between David Price and Jake Arrieta. His GB% sits at a healthy 47.8% and his xFIP (3.53) is nearly a run less than his ERA (4.33). Also, Gray has done a tremendous job this year of taking advantage of cush matchups no matter where he was at. He went seven and K’d seven Padres back on June 10th in Coors and just finished up the Braves in Atlanta with eight Ks for a seven inning shutout. When Jon is given an opportunity to take down a bad team, he does it with authority. The asking price of $8,200 isn’t the cheapest nor is it unmanageable; it’s just there asking you if you like taking a bit of risk with your LU. Well, do ya punk? Alright then, let’s get on with the getting on. Here’s my fuerte taeks for this Friday DK slate…

New to DraftKings? 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 July 25th to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. Wanna know what the best part is about signing up with us? The free subscription for the rest of the season to our DFSBot, that’s what! For details on the how to, please visit our Razzball Subscriptions page.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

On Wednesday I gave you my second half projections for hitters. At the request of a commenter I have decided to see what I can come up with for starting pitchers. While projections are a slippery slope, I going to give it the old college try anyway. I’ve come to realize that you really can’t be wrong when making projections. It’s impossible to be right, so by process of elimination, how can I be wrong. Anyone follow that absolutely twisted logic? Me neither.

As I did with my hitter projections, I have merged my weighted preseason projections with weighted year-to-date stats to generate rest of season projections. Hocus-pocus. Abracadabra. I present my second half visions.

Given standard points systems do you have any guesses who might be projected to score the most points in the second half. Despite currently being on the disabled list, Clayton Kershaw still manages to come out on top. Kershaw is in line for another 334 points. Obviously this is all predicated on him making a quick return to action. The longer he’s out, the less points he will score. But then again, that’s basic math. Or is it just common sense?

Please, blog, may I have some more?