Imagine the Cubs decided to use Lester, Hendricks, Hammel and Lackey in the playoffs, and not Jake Arrieta.  Not sure it would be the wrong move either.  Arrieta isn’t just out of gas, he’s on a late-70s gas station line, cursing Jimmy Carter.  He’s eaten six Chalupas and a Pintos ‘n Cheese from Taco Bell, washed it down with a 16-ounce Coke, and can’t produce any gas.  He’s staying at a Marriott in Saudi Arabia where OPEC is meeting and all hotel guests get a complimentary barrel of petroleum and Arrieta can’t produce any gas.  Yesterday, Arrieta went 5 IP, 7 ER and his ERA went up to 3.10.  About five months ago, I said Arrieta doesn’t look right.  I said it around the time of his no-hitter.  That took some pants grapes.  What’s funny (not funny) when you’re super early at calling something out, people write you off as cuckoo in the coconut.  On April 29th, I said, “It’s hard to find a positive when you take this year’s numbers vs. last year’s (of Arrieta).  Velocity is down, K-rate is down, walk rate is up, xFIP is up, luck is up, homers are up, ground balls are down and fly balls are up.  It’s like looking under a Maserati’s hood and seeing a Mercedes engine.  It’s not bad, but it’s not a Maserati.”  And that’s me quoting me!  On May 9th, I said, “Not to sound like a broken record, but his peripherals just haven’t been as good as last year thus far.”  And that’s me quoting me sounding like a broken record!  I continued to say more or less the same for a few months, then SUDDENLY everyone else started saying it.  For 2017, I picture Arrieta being drafted a lot like Felix Hernandez in the preseason this year.  People are concerned, but he’s so good, they’re still drafting Arrieta around 60th overall.  Yeah, and it won’t work out either.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

There’s a trio of aces going tonight and it’s really picking your own poison as to which of them you choose (Kershaw, Strasburg, Sale). I always like to defer to a pitcher at home when it’s a close call. That, and the opponent give Stephen Strasburg the edge when it comes to the aces. However, Chris Sale’s price point is very intriguing. Even facing a good offense that doesn’t strike out a ton, I’d be very tempted to take the discount on Sale’s upside. Beyond those three is a whole bunch of sevens. You know the type; they aren’t tens, they’re not a four, they’re just right there in the middle. I’ll leave the aces up to you and help you through picking the couple of sevens to complete our full house. My seven of choice tonight is Jason Hammel at $11,100. Surprise, surprise, I’m picking on the Braves yet again. These things tend to happen when you’re dead last in team OPS. The Braves are barely ahead of Mark Trumbo for home runs on the season (23 vs. 20) and only 10 of those 23 homers have come at home. It’s a whole lot of ugly for the Braves this year and to put a cherry on top, Bud Norris gets the start tonight. Bud Norris against the hottest team in baseball should go swimmingly, meaning Hammel should cruise to the easy win. Hammel’s FIP suggests he’s actually been a bit lucky so far this year, likely due to his 0.6 HR/9. That’s about 0.5 HR/9 less than his career norm. A correction is coming for Hammel, but I’d bet that comes at Wrigley field against a legitimate offense, not tonight in Turner field against Freddie Freeman and a Quad-A lineup. Here’s some more sevens and some offensive plays for tonight’s 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 June 13th to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. 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?

Junior Guerra has a backstory that puts the odd in odyssey.  The Braves signed him as a 16-year-old catcher out of Venezuela.  In 2006, he had position reassignment surgery and became a pitcher.  As a herbathrowdite in Georgia, bathrooms and strike zones were hard to find, so he was released.  He found courage from the support group, “PAC IO,” which is Pitchers And Catchers Input/Output, and tried his hand at Independent leagues.  Eventually, he played in Mexico, Spain, and Italy.  In Italy, it was especially difficult to be a pitcher because every time a hitter came up to the plate a large, mustachioed woman umpire would say, “Guerra, you hafta throw the meatballs.  C’mon, the hitter’s starvin’ over here.”  And Guerra’s cheeks would constantly be pinched.  But, miraculously, Robin Ventura found him in Italy, while mistakenly thinking that’s where Jim Rome taped his show, and signed him.  Of course, the White Sox had no place for Guerra, and his journey took him to Milwaukee, allowing him to be the first person with an Italian stamp on his passport in Milwaukee since Arthur Fonzarelli.  Yesterday, he went 7 IP, 3 ER, 8 baserunners, 11 Ks to move his record to 3-0.  He’s touched 99 MPH with his fastball, averaging around 92-95 and has a split-finger change that falls off the map like an explorer in the 1400’s.  Is he more than a streamer?  Hard to say at this point.  He will get strikeouts and faces the Braves next so I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and grab him for that start.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

“Hey, I’ll take two home runs from Khris Davis and be more than happy.  Oh, who am I kidding?  I’ll take one homer.  Gently farting in your direction, Prince Fielder.  Three homers?  Well that is too much for my little old heart.”  So began the monologue I told myself in my mirror last night.  I was wearing a fedora with a feather in it and no pants.  That’s added color for you to understand the scene.  Then, it was the ninth, the A’s in the lead and Davis’s night looked over with two homers until.  Dot dot dot.  Ian Desmond homered off Ryan Madson and sent the game into the bottom of the ninth inning.  Khris Davis came up to the plate, bases loaded, already with two homers on his scoresheet, could he hit one more?  Could my monologue presented to my reflection come to fruition?  Could my neighbors stop screaming for me to put on pants?  Yes on all three!  Finished the night with 3-for-5, 6 RBIs and three homers (9, 10, 11).  I had Davis ranked around eight rounds higher than anyone else because I thought he could easily hit 30 homers in an age when 30 homers doesn’t come that easily.  Has anything changed since the preseason?  Yeah, the date.  Dur.  I love Khris Davis and right now looks even better than his namelganger, Chris Davis.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

We’re now through six weeks of the baseball season which is the point where I consider making big changes to my team. No, I don’t mean cutting Razzball’s own Delino DeShields now that he’s down at AAA Round Rock. I’m talking about trying to make a big trade if your team is at the bottom of the standings. Don’t be afraid to be bold, it definitely could be better than standing pat. And if you aren’t sure about things, there’s plenty of people on the website to ask their opinions. Here’s a summary of what’s been posted in the last week on Razzball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Road trip! Everyone pile in to the Razz van as we head to the dirty south. Hrm, that makes it sound like I’m suggesting you go below the equator on someone who needs a bath or a ‘shot’, so let’s correct this: The Dirty South. There, that’s better. We all know the Atlanta Braves are bad but really, they can be worse than even their season stats suggest. Wanna know how? Throw a lefty arm out at them. I hear what you’re saying, ‘how bad can they get?’ I got really good hearing, what can I say? Well I’ll tell you: they can get 46 wRC+ bad. Sure, you could say they’re due for some positive regression and I wouldn’t argue it but this same team was third worst in wRC+ last year against southpaws at 77 so this isn’t a new trend. The new trend we all savor here on DK is the Ks. Last year, it was a menial 20.5% K rate against lefties but this year, the bottom has dropped out and the #Barves are only second to the Padres in whiffing futility with a huge 26% clip. But hey, that’s what happens when your second best hitter against southpaws is Jeff Francoeur. So with that, I introduce Adam Morgan. He’s a lefty…the end! Fo’really, this is just to see if a perfect situation pans out at a low end $5,500 price. He K’d 7 over 5 IP against the Indians who struggle just a little less against southpaws but still struggle mightily. Because of the matchup, Adam has 10 K upside which brings 10K upside to your bank account. So feel free to join in with my enjoyment of some Captain Morgan while we ease into covering the rest of the slate. With that, let’s do this. Here’s my Flaming Dr. Pepper hot taeks for this Tuesday DK slate…

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 10 teamer of Razzball writers and friends to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. 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?

I’d like to dedicate this post to all the mothers out there, and to the most important mother in most of our lives, Manny Machado.  The Oxford Dictionary defines mother, “something that is an extreme or ultimate example of its kind especially in terms of scale.”  So, one can say that Manny Machado is the mother of all shortstops and 3rd basemen.  Yesterday, on Machado’s Day, a true mother in the most arcane sense, he went 2-for-4, 6 RBIs with two homers (8, 9).  He’s gaining shortstop eligibility for next year because Hardy hurt himself and the Orioles realized that necessity is the Machado of invention.  So, next year, is there any way he’s not in the top three overall for all of fantasy?  I guess if he gets hurt.  Did I just jinx him?  What a Machado f**ker!  Whatever the case, there’s no way I can pay you back, but the plan is to show you that I understand; you are appreciated.  Sweet Manny, don’tcha know, I love ya (Dear Machado).  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Could this finally be Brett Lawrie‘s post-post-post-post-post-post-post-post-POST-post hype breakout?  I don’t want to overrate or prorate or ameliorate a past inveterate obturate to eviscerate execrate, try not to hate, love your mate, mediate or flip through cards like Michael Hutchence forth, Sandoval’s girth, Andrelton’s not from this earth, movie remake that never went anywhere was North by North.  Yesterday, Lawrie went 3-for-3 with his third straight game with a homer, and he threw in a steal on Saturday, not a liar like James Frey, in Florida I need my mosquito spray, I have three albums by The Fray, said no one that wasn’t gay, which is totally okay.  I was very high on Lawrie in the preseason, and right now he’s on pace for 20+ HRs, 12-15 SBs and hitting .290.  On its own this would be implausible, laughable, impossible, insoluble in water, but he hit 16 homers last year, is only 26 years old and has easy 15-steal speed, so it’s not INXS of the possible.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

If you happen to be a non-millennial reading this then you remember a time when # meant “Pound” and didn’t mean “Hashtag”.  If you are a millennial you’ve likely already skipped this intro and skimmed the rest of the picks.  After all, you’re entitled to win at DFS with minimal research and time invested.  The DFS sites owe it to you, just like your boss owes it to you to give you that raise despite the fact you don’t actually do any work all day.  We’ll be using the pound sign today to discuss how the O’s are going to # on Mat Latos this evening.  I’ve had issues with Latos for some time, I mean, what self-respecting Matt goes by Mat anyway?  This year though, the issues with Latos are greater than ever.  This guy has the nerve to masquerade as an ace with his sub 1 ERA and WHIP.  We here at Razzball aren’t fooled however.  We see the real numbers under those fraudulent ones and we are ready to pounce.  The 4.8 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9 tell the real story, as does his 3.56 FIP.  The regression fairies are just dying to pay Latos a visit, right after they finish cutting off all their jeans into shorts for the summer.  I, for one, want to be there when this correction happens, and not just for the cut off jean shorts.  Chris Davis will be heavily owned but if Pedro Alvarez finds his way into the lineup tonight, he might be an under the radar play that could pay handsome dividends.  The Orioles don’t have much else in the way of lefty batters however Mat Latos hasn’t really shown a dramatic platoon split in his career, so just load up on every O you can get your salary cap around and enjoy the #ing.

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 10 teamer of Razzball writers and friends to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. 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?

And if Vince V. is so money, it would make the Padres a bunch of Swingers.  Seriously, tell me Vince Velasquez wasn’t money?  He struck out 16, baby.  He only gave up three hits, baby.  He is a beautiful baby, baby.  C’mon, he’s so money.  You gotta grab him, baby, you gotta.  Call him up on waivers, go ahead, c’mon, baby, call him up.  “Hi, uh, this is a random fantasy baseballer, which is, uh, Grey’s mom’s term.  I saw you struck out 16, uh, Padres, in a shutout and I was, uh, wondering–”  Machine beeps.  Call back, baby!  Velasquez wants you to!  “Hi, Mr. Velasquez, it’s me again.  Ha, silly movie answering machines always shutting off prior to a message ending.  I mean, who even has answering machines like this anymore–”  Machine beeps.  C’mon, baby!  You’re almost through that message!  Then you can go on to direct Iron Man and be the namelganger for a Washington speech writer, while I can go do a lot of blow with Jennifer Aniston and singlehandedly ruin True Detective playing essentially myself.  You gotta, baby!  You are so money!  So, Vince Velasquez went 9 IP, 0 ER, 3 hits, zero walks, 16 Ks, and if he’s still on waivers in your league, I want to be in your league.  Yes, you should grab, like yesterday (preferably before his last start).  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?