Since Corey Kluber returned from the DL, he’s been lights out.  Then lights on.  Then off.  On.  Off!  Nothing but glow sticks.  The sweet smell of body odor, ganja and herbal ecstasy rises.  An Asian man with pigtails walks by with a Red Bull and you see he’s wearing a diaper that reads “Change me.”  And…the…music…DROPS!  What?  He is a Kluber.  Yesterday, he went 9 IP, 0 ER, 3 hits, zero walks, 11 Ks, lowering his ERA to 3.58.  Shin-Soo Choo-Choo, next stop 3.25!  Kluber has had some great years, says Private Obvious.  “You’ll never replace me!” says Captain Obvious.  Kluber’s great years are looking up at this season’s peripherals thus far.  He has his highest K/9 (11) and his best xFIP (2.98) since his Cy Young year, which happens to be the fifth best xFIP in the majors before Clayton Kershaw.  I’d guess Kluber comes up short of his Cy Young season’s 2.44 ERA, but there’s little reason why he can’t be a top five starter for the rest of the season.   Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Another week, another Clayton Kershaw start pushed to Monday. At least this week they moved the start before I wrote and submitted this article. If they move it again Saturday morning, then I will be convinced that Dave Roberts is just doing this to troll me every week. As of now, he is your top two-start starter for Week 12. He might even deserve his own tier.

For Week 12, there aren’t a ton of attractive options after our first two tiers. In previous weeks, we have had middle-of-the-road arms with some good peripherals or some recent success that were available in the majority of leagues. This week, though, I’m not crazy about any of the starters on this list that are going to be available in most leagues. Just look at the numbers in the chart below.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

You know what Tuesday’s are good for… SAGNOF.  And remembering to put your recycling out.  Funny enough, I am correlating the two this week.  Co-mingling, if you may.  This week, I wanna bring something old, something not so new, and he wears blue… pajamas.  (Because p-jays make the man.)  Let’s look at some old SAGNOF gold and the familiar name that is Eric Young Jr..  Hell, this is SAGNOF, it ain’t a beauty contest… it’s not even that B.S. 15-buck prize from Monopoly when you land on the community chest.  Why I like E.Y. Jr. is multi-faceted; First, he is on a team where he doesn’t have to throw base-running as a caution to the wind.  The Angels are second behind only the Reds’ legs in steals, and with an 80% success rate, they prolly won’t be choosing another tact to manufacture runs while Trout is mending his fin.  He isn’t sexy, and he has a track record of being a good for a few games then falling off a plateau, but since receiving regular at-bats, it is in the same breath as Trout going down.  He has an OBP of over .410, and if you think it’s kind of a fluke, check his minor league stats prior to call-up.  His OPS was at .950 in 44 games at Triple A with 15 steals.  The days of stealing 50-plus bases ala 2013 are long gone, but if you need to find a place for a steal here or there, check the Angels ownership and steals totals.  Maybin, Simmons et al.  So with that, let’ see what else is shaking in the 90-feet of thievery department.  Chart added for flavor.  Cheers!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I was originally excited to focus on Baby Thor Mike Clevinger in my first post taking over the Two-Start Starters for M@, but the rainout on Thursday threw everything out of whack. So, I had to pivot and focus on what’s going on in Seattle. Enter Ariel Miranda and Sam Gaviglio.

Of the two starters for the Mariners right now, Miranda is the one to target. To be honest, neither one is likely to be a long-term fix for your rotation. Gaviglio is a 27-year old who has an ERA of 4.01 over seven seasons in the minor leagues, while Miranda is a 28-year old Cuban who had moderate success in the Cuban National Series and the minors. Both are scheduled to start two games next week for the Mariners.

At first glance, it would appear that Gaviglio is the tasty treat that a starter-needy fantasy owner should target. After all, he has the shiny 1.29 ERA and 1.08 WHIP. Unfortunately, not only is that a very small sample size, but there are some pretty serious red flags. For starters, while he only gave up one run against the Nationals, he only struck out one batter in six innings. That shiny ERA is also aided by the fact that he actually gave up five runs, but just the one was earned. Against the White Sox in his previous start, he went five innings and only struck out two batters. In his two starts this season, he has thrown 11 innings and struck out just three batters.

But that’s not it, here is the bigger issue with Gaviglio. His ERA might be 1.29, but his FIP currently sits at 4.22. At 2.93, his FIP-to-ERA ratio is the highest of any of the 40+ two-start starters in week 9. Between his lack of strikeouts, his lackluster career in the minors, and his inflated FIP-to-ERA ratio, you better believe he is going to regress to the mean sooner rather than later. Ignore that ERA and stay away from Sammy G.

As for Miranda, I like him more and hate him less. While he doesn’t have the same sub-2.00 ERA as Gaviglio, he does have an 8.75 K/9, a less hideous .40 FIP-to-ERA, and a 5.77 K/9-to-BB/9 ratio. While he has had a couple of disastrous starts this season, he also has six starts in which he has given up two runs or fewer. You could do worse than Miranda as a two-starter starter. In fact, you could have Gaviglio. Both should be available in more than 75% of leagues. Despite the fact that the Mariners visit the Rockies next week, there are worse options for two-start starters…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

While it isn’t an exact science, picking on a pitcher for stolen base success is not always an awful strategy.  So after the jump, there is a year-to-date chart that shows the propensity for pitcher’s to give up the free base.  Like I said, it is never an exact anything, because there are some elite names on this list, and because they are usually good pitchers, their respective OBP against isn’t the shining star of stats to chase.  But in theory, chasing dudes for thievery in a non-thievery world is bad folly.  Because getting on base is the most important thing next to waking up and reading what Ge has to say.  Us bottom feeders who swim the waters in the afternoon gotta be creative and basically be the monkey on the grind box to get your attention.  So for those of you with ADHD, welcome back.  And here is some weekly insight into the world of steals and saves.  Cause you may be a dime piece but saves and steals don’t need a face…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The fantasy gods have smiled upon Cody, my friends. Once feared that he would be sent back down with Joc Pederson’s return, Bellinger has been gifted another opportunity to prove he belongs in the MLB with Adrian Gonzalez miraculously hitting the DL (well, not so miraculous for A-Gone owners, I guess). And prove it he shall! Cody Bellinger continued to rake going  3-for-5 with two home runs (4) and 4 RBI last night. He’s hitting .400 with eight runs, four home runs, and nine RBI in the past week. Can Joc Pederson do dat? Nuh uh. Nah didn’t think so. Need more? He’s slashing .342/.390/.737 and the Dodgers are 6-2 with him in the line up. More? The Cranberries think that you have to, you have to, you have to add Bellinger. After batting .343 with five homers, 15 RBI and 7 steals in AAA this season it is clear Cody is more than ready to make some noise in the bigs. Whoa did you say seven steals! That’s right! We haven’t even seen him flash that speed yet, and when he does, fantasy glory can be ours. Grey has been telling you to BUY Bellinger for a few weeks now, and he’s still available in about 60% of ESPN leagues. He could be the Yasiel Puig-like player that’s not Yasiel Puig-like that the Dodgers and your fantasy team so desperately needs right now.

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

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Man, after thinking about where I need to go with this intro, I got a mad hankering for Italian food.  Just ordered some to get here during afternoon baseball.  Is it profiling that now I’m non-stop craving Italian when I hear a name like Sal Romano?  But Italian food is so positive!  Is there such a thing as positive profiling?!

Speaking of Profiling, we’re back with enough edition of the Pitcher Profile!  I know I’m picking someone that’s pretty far off the beaten path, but any time Sunday baseball features an-even-somewhat-interesting guy making their debut, I’m intrigued!  Romano was vaguely on the radar for the NL-only and NFBC-type leagues given the Reds complete lack of a starting rotation, and surprisingly it was Rookie Davis getting the first DL stint (not their old farts, although Brandon Finnegan got hurt as well Saturday night) that opened an early spot for Romano to make his debut.  Buried on prospect lists in the 10-20 range for Cincy (they do have a good farm system though), with Ralph ranking him as merely a “floorboard”, Romano apparently has pretty interesting stuff from what I read, mainly a mid-to-high 90s fastball.  As tradition, I write the intro to the Profiles before I watch a pitcher’s start, and I’ll withhold any judgment until I see him throw.  So as I eagerly await my baked ziti, the Brewers game is about to start and I’m pumped to see how Romano looks and Profile his debut.  Here’s how he fared yesterday afternoon in his debut:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Halleberryloujah!  *does sign of the Marlins, kneels*  Blessed be thy lord of a Technicolor unicorn statue who graced his tight baseball pants around Giancarlo’s lower half.  I won’t take too much of your time, I know you are prolly busy.  Should I say probably when I’m addressing you?  You know, I’m gonna move on rather than wait for an answer.  I want to thank you for bringing Giancarlo Stanton into the 2017 season.  I saw him in a game last week back off a changeup like he was still scared after taking the beanball off the melon.  Was he scared?  If he was, I wouldn’t have blamed him.  I get scared too.  Like when my wife says, “Hey, Grey I made plans for us to go out with my friend and her husband.”  That scares me too.  But now that he hit two homers, going 2-for-3 with 4 RBIs, I’m relieved.  It was early, he was just getting into the swing things.  Pun!  What?  You don’t like puns?  Again, I’m fine not waiting for an answer.  Okay, now I’m going to cut this short because a sprinkler is going off into my face and I’m kneeling on my neighbor’s lawn.  Thank you.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Yaisel Puig‘s home runs are so effortless they’re like Billie Jean King and Billy Dee Williams only needing to say, “40-love?” to hook up with a girl in the 70s.

Somewhere, Ashton Kutcher is struggling to come off as smart.  He is exerting more energy than Yasiel Puig on his home runs.  When Yasiel Puig is in El Zono Loco, pitchers should be chicken.  When Puig is locked in, he looks as good as all the Cuban graphic novels that were written about him in Fidelphia.  Of course, just as quickly as Puig gets everyone’s hopes up, he collapses under his own hype.  He’s a (ba)con artist?  I’d absolutely own Puig right now that he has three homers in two games (2-for-3, 3 runs, 4 RBIs and a double slam (3) and legs (1) yesterday), but I wouldn’t be surprised if by May he’s back to disappointing.  (By the way, the pitch speed on that homer is 78 MPH.  HAHAHAHAHAHA– Oh my God, I can’t breathe!  Member that old timey film of Bob Feller throwing faster than a speeding motorcycle?  They should have Weaver go against a speed-walking senior citizen.)  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

To paraphrase Tupac from Brenda’s Got a Baby, “I hear Grey’s got 2017 fantasy baseball rankings, but Grey’s barely got a brain.  A damn shame.  That guy can hardly spell his name.  GREY’S….GOT EM….RANKINGS!  Don’t you know he’s got ’em.  He wrote them solo, and he wrote them on his bathroom floor and didn’t know what to throw away and what to keep.  He crumbled these rankings up and threw them in a trash heap.   GREY’S….GOT EM….RANKINGS!  Don’t you know he’s got ’em.”  Don’t say I don’t keep my shizz socially conscious.  Or is it socially conscience?  Meh, doesn’t matter, I do it either way.  So, this top 60 starters has seven pitchers I’m not crazy about.  That’s more than the last post, but still not that many.  I.e., there’s a ton of starters to draft.  As with previous rankings posts, my projections are included and where I see tiers starting and stopping.  Anyway, here’s the top 60 starters for 2017 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?