Much like the famous Doors song that shares it’s name, bullpens are drawing near.  (Minus the Oedipus complex that the song explores.)  I mean, it may… but that is gross and I don’t wanna associate my bullpen goodies to that.  Moving on, shall we?  This year has been the SAGNOF-fest that we always come to expect.  Closers up, closers down.  Trades and attrition.  It happens every single year and it is the reason why the waiver wire is what it is: So we can get the new third closer for the Twins.  The chase for saves never ends, well, I mean it ends for season-long leagues, but for dynasty and keeper leagues, the times never change.  Saves are a category.  A deeply hated and often cursed at category that will always be debated about.  Whether or not to invest earlier picks then normal to get a stud, or just fill in with hope-so’s and also rans.  There unfortunately is no right or wrong answer because both strategies work as long as you are a waiver goblin.  So with the final post of the year, much like the other years that I have done this, we look to next year…  This year’s counting stats and information don’t matter, we want to know what lies on the horizon. So let’s find out!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Ariel Miranda pitched a no-hitter yesterday through six innings and 112 pitches that had to be the worst six-inning no-hitter in baseball history.  Shame the M’s removed him before he gave up a hit, because this could’ve been an epic debacle — depicacle?  Remember those Hall of Shame books from the 1980’s that always featured at least one anecdote about Steve Lyons?  Usually that anecdote was of him undressing at first base.  Somehow that largely visual gag was depicted in literary prose in these books.  If they still had those books, Ariel Miranda’s six-inning no-hitter would’ve had a chapter.  He went 6 IP, 1 ER, zero hits, six walks, 5 Ks, ERA at 4.72.  Only thing that was missing was him taking his pants off on the mound or clowning around with Max Patkin.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Went over this a little this morning with my general September call-ups for fantasy baseball (clickbait!) writings/stylings/gibberish.  I’m not enthused by the guys headed to the majors this September.  Look at what happened this year with Yoan Moncada.  He had to be held down an extra month due to a September call-up.  Of course, if, say, Harrison Bader walks on water straight down Broad Street, grabs a Philly cheesesteak, burps in Rhysus’ face, hits a 885-mile turn to the Gateway Arch and wrecks havoc in St. Louis, then by all means I’m grabbing him.  With that said (finally!), Tyler Glasnow should be up any day now.  In Triple-A, he’s been pitching strictly from the stretch, and it’s made all the difference in his mechanics.  He’s compiled a 13.5 K/9 (!), 2.21 xFIP and he throws 95 MPH.  131 Ks to only 31 walks in 87 1/3 IP!  Sign me up pronto, Tonto.  Of course, in mixed leagues, I’m still viewing him mostly as a matchups guy for the final month, but I’d stash everywhere for (Glas)now.  Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

So, I thought the ridiculously garish nickname jerseys over “players’ weekend” were going to be the lamest thing ever (side note:  Huh? Don’t the players get 100% of the attention every weekend? Isn’t that kind of like when you asked your parents why there was Mothers’ Day and Fathers’ Day, but no Children’s Day, and they told you EVERY day was Children’s Day?) Maybe the uniforms were kind of silly, but I’m going to have to admit that I actually enjoyed them.  Of course, we have to remember that the comedy bar in professional sports is, well, comically low… but still, the jerseys were pretty entertaining. My three personal favorites:

Take on Razzball writers and readers in the Fantasy Football Commenter Leagues for a chance at prizes! Free to join, leagues still open!

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When does the trend end for the path of articles that trend in the direction for Bux-ton?  Weirdly enough, he shares the same name as the guy who stole Pee-Wee Herman’s bike, pretended to hide it in the Alamo, and then in the end got what he deserved.  I wish I had some genius follow-up to that haymaker of a comparison, but there is more in the world of steals than some Minnesota Twin who is actually not a twin but quite possibly an only child. So ignoring the greater northern Midwest, as there are other things going on in steals-ville.  Ahhh, who am I kidding, the world needs another Byron Buxton article.  I have only seen 42 in the past three days across the fake baseball world, so one more should summarize it nicely.  The dude is straight up sizzlin’ right now.  If it’s not Hoskins, it has to be Byron.  If you don’t know his stats over the past fortnight… well here they are anyways: batting .345 with 9 runs and 5 steals.  This is the speed portion of the Buxton love affair, so the taters and other starchy stats aren’t included, sorry.  It’s the end of year SAGNOF grab who you can and will drool all over… the fancy guys that you don’t own in the concessionary drooling steals/saves session.  Let’s see what else is going down in the lower ownership SAGNOF ship of love!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It is that time of the year when usual bullpen scenarios start to rear their ugly heads.  The terms “falling back to earth” and “gassed” take hold of even the veteran of bullpens.  That seems to be the case in the rock pile in Colorado with Greg Holland.  Cruising along and then bam, that reliever wall hits.  Especially for someone of his ilk that is coming off a few lost seasons with arm woes.  I usually say 50 innings is about when we start seeing it, but that number varies by innings in previous years, pressure situations, and the leverage that those situations come with.  The unfortunate thing is that with Greg the last two are very prominent.  He is fourth in the league amongst relievers in pressure situations, fifth in pitching with the lead, and the last four games are an indicator that he may be spinning his wheels a bit.  Three blown saves in his last five appearances and only 2 saves since August started.  Not encouraging news for a team that is honing in or trying to hone in on a playoff spot.  The good thing for Holland owners is that he looks to be given some leash here, but with proven relievers with semi-reliable numbers behind him, like Jake McGee and Pat Neshek, the need for a cuff here is paramount as the fantasy playoffs and season winds down.  Every save counts when you start losing them from a reliable source.  That is the worst predicament when projecting out the rest of the year to see if you have enough horses to get you to the finish line.  McGee and then Neshek are the adds for a just in case situation as Holland could be given a breather for a day or three.  Let’s see what else is going down in the land after starters…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The trade deadline usually makes a real hash out of bullpens, and this year was no different.  Closers become just ordinary relievers.  Ordinary relievers become closers on teams punting.  Even further down, the holds through the obtuse guys now become a usable commodity.  Fantasy baseball with hold leagues, catch the spirit!  So like I was just saying, we have seen 5-6 teams rip apart their pecking order for hold-dom, and in some cases muddle up the closer order by trade, attrition, or subtraction.  This is a good thing, makes decisions easier.  Aim for guys on teams that are still getting you save opportunities. If you can’t find the stat, always fall back on the standings to guide your waiver wire hand.  Or even more finite, look at that teams W/L record over the last 10 games.  It is no coincidence that the top three teams in save opportunities since the All-Star break have winning records (Dodgers, Mariners, and Blue Jays).  Also, if you haven’t been streaming Holds yet this year, there is no better time than the present.  The list of holds leaders over the last 15 games is littered with names that weren’t even in print by me for the whole year.  So don’t be afraid to roster the unknown rather than a commodity because with the season basically over in six weeks (three if you have playoffs), every one counts and every H2H win counts.  Cheers!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

At some point, the bullpen levee is going to break for the Nationals.  Never in my fantasy existence have I seen such blahness, injury, and utter roster futility like I have seen with the first place Nats. I don’t know if they are lucky or good…  they have had six guys garner saves this year.  Already had three closers changes by injury or attrition, and are still collectively better than the sum of their parts.   They have the second worst bullpen ERA sitting in the low 5’s, allow the second highest BAA at .273, and have the worst OPS against.  Oh, and just for giggles, they have 11 blown saves.  So how are they doing it you may ask?  I haven’t the foggiest idea. But in a weird case of scenarios, the Twins are equally as bad in almost all the same categories.  Re-inventing the winning relief ways, I guess. What I do know is Enny Romero over the past 15 games has been the bull’s balls, or lack there of if you are into those kind of delicacies. After the rise and fall of Koda, the fluctuation of weight by Albers and the over-hyped value of Kelley being the wily veteran, Romero has stood out.  His K-rate is pushing 11 on the season and it’s even better over the past 15 games as it pushes 14.  This is the bullpen post, so relievers are what make my pants miraculously disappear and I love me the hold stat.  Enny Romero looks like the match-up proof guy that even Dusty can rely on until the relief relievers are acquired via trade.  So if you wanna capitalize on a winning team, which is a positive in hold searching, and need to zero in on a guy to maybe get a ton of high leverage situations, please go take a gander at Enny Romero.  So while you go search the waiver wire to see if he is available, stay here as we get some intimate details about late inning goodies…

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The season to date leader in holds heads to the DL and one of the better bullpens in baseball is in a tailspin… not so fast!  The Rockies have reliable arms that can cement games just as well as Adam Ottavino has done for the year.  With the likes of wily veterans in Mike Dunn, Chris Rusin, and even a little smattering of Jake McGee, the sedimentary bunch is going to attempt to hold down the fort. The comforting thing is that the Rockies lead MLB in holds as a pen, least amount of blown saves and have the most games pitching with a lead with 99 total.  The scary thing with the shoulder injury is that Ottavino is a stash, or a dash, and replace with new military holds parts made from recycled relievers.  Wait a week, see if the 10-day DL stint is a pain in the tuther end, and I can see if you need the space in Holds leagues, the move make sense.  I would most likely grab Dunn, Rusin, and McGee in that order, as the setup game in front of the Dutch Master is going to be pieced together differently than what we saw so far.  No need to panic though, there are tons of saves in the 6-8 innings to go around.  Speaking of which, let’s see what is going down in the neighborhood of hold-dom…

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I’ve been waiting here at my computer crunching advanced sabremetrics in hyper-suspended cryogenic animation since we last spoke a la Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence in Passengers, and yes, that was 100% an effort to shoe horn two of Hollywood’s most famous people into my lede for clicks. I may have had six months off, but I still know how to get those sweet, zesty page views. San Diego Padres outfielder slash hot shot prospect slash fastest man alive, Manuel Margot showed many why he’s so highly touted last night with a 2-for-4 night, including two home runs out of the lead off spot. So what happened while I was gone? The Cubs won what, you say? No way! And who is president? You are messing with me. Another Drake album!? How does he have the time? Well, Manny Margs is now slashing .263/.333/.632 with two homers, three RBI and a stolen base on the young season. Wait, did someone say–stolen base? Yeah, you did, ya joker. Ess Bees are basically the reason you drafted Margot. This doode can fly. The big return for San Diego in the Craig Kimbrel trade, he stole 30 bases in 517 ABs at AAA (.304/.351/.426). His speed and defense should ensure he gets plenty of playing time this year, and leading off for the ‘Dres makes him a player to own. A razzball preseason sleeper, he’s under 50% owned in ESPN leagues right now, but I see that number climbing real quickly after last night’s performance. Like, do your best Manuel Margot impression and go grab him quickly. Grey told you to BUY and if you got a need for speed pick him up before I do!

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

Please, blog, may I have some more?