Yesterday, on Fifth Avenue, Bud Selig was seen going into a photo shoot. That photoshoot was for him to be dressed as Uncle Sam for posters that will go up around the country. Under Uncle Bud, it will read, “I Want You!” You see, MLB lost a lot of players yesterday to suspensions and now they need people to play baseball. Tryouts will begin early next week and no one will be turned away due to their sex or age. If back in the day your grandma used to don the rawhide in that baseball league of their own, pull up her knee-highs and get her out there! Everyone must do their part to keep baseball together and moving forward. We need some Rosie the Pivoters at middle infield in San Diego and Detroit with the loss of Everth Cabrera and Jhonny Peralta. We need some bombers with the loss of Nelson Cruz in Texas. We’re gonna have some fatherless children on our hands with the troops heading off to battle on the diamond, but ironically Antonio Bastardo‘s kids will have their dad because he’s being sent home. When we’re in the bunkers amongst enemy pitchers, we’ll need someone to believe in with the loss of Jesus Montero. We’ll be without any guys that sound like names from a Harry Potter Name Generator with the loss of Jordany Valdespin, and we won’t have anyone that looks like The Great Gazoo with the loss of Francisco Cervelli. It’ll be a trying time for all of us, but we need to come together as a nation of Razzballers and fight through. Plus, really, for fantasy, we only lost Everth and Cruz, so don’t get so bent out of shape. Logan Forsythe or Alexi Amarista will take over for Everth, probably a bit of both until one emerges. Neither have the value of Everth, but Amarista could have some speed and he knows how to make a great frappuccino. Forsythe has little speed and power, but is dealing with a knee problem, so he may not be at 100%. In Texas, Engel Beltre or Jurickson Profar could see more time, but so far in 49 games Profar has a .244 average and four homers and no steals, so I wouldn’t go dropping anyone great in redraft leagues for him. Rangers also have Berkman coming back at some point in the next few weeks, so they could get crowded again. In Detroit, Jose Iglesias is the Indians’ backup plan, but if I saw him on waivers, I’d back up. In all, a bad day to be a cheater, but a good day to be an American. Now everyone will have a shot to make it to the major leagues. Just don’t be shocked if your grammie tests positive for HGH. She does, after all, take a lot of meds. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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The Buysellatops left this message on my answering machine (what, I’m old school), “The earth is fourteen degrees hotter per year than when I freely roamed the countryside. Back then there were T-Rex’s and velociraptors and iguanas the size of houses that we simply called Biguanas. Now, I’m the only dinosaur left and I can get a nice tan while waiting in line for a smoothie. Global warming is awesome! And so is Anthony Rizzo.” So, there you have our buy/sell-out dinosaur’s take. My take is I agree. Who doesn’t love a smoothie and a tan? Rizzo isn’t a Ike Davis head case that gets into the passenger seat to drive. He’s in no danger of falling completely off the map like he’s taking orders from Queen Isabella. He’s A) Getting unlucky B) Keeping his strikeouts and walks in check C) There’s no C, why are you so greedy? With the gusts of wind and heat in Wrigley this summer, he could hit 10 homers in the matter of two weeks. If he hits less than 30 homers this year, I’ll eat my hat (though I’m wearing a fruit basket on my head, so it’s not so bad). To give you a few other names, he’s already better than Pujols and A-Gon on our Player Rater, and I see no reason why that should stop. If you have a Rizzo owner who is worried, take your alligator blood and check raise to the bettor. Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

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The Mariners don’t play no mess. That’s their motto, and not the oft-cited mottoes, “F-Her and pray for rain,” or “Put the fences on wheels, so we can move them in when we’re at-bat and out when the other team is,” or “If we trade Chris Tillman and Adam Jones for Erik Bedard, we’ll have more seats empty to fill the stadium with recliners.” With the “don’t play no mess” motto in full-mode, they brought up Mike Zunino. A catcher bat like Zunino only comes once in a lifetime (the lifetime is that of a guinea pig that is being cared for by a 12-year-old, so the lifespan is about 18 months. Remember, because age is rounded down to the last birthday, on average guinea pigs live a half year beyond their final birthday. They live as zombies. Zombie guinea pigs are all around us. Now, I’m scared.) Sure, the last once in a lifetime catcher bat after Buster Posey and Matt Wieters also played for the Mariners. You remember, it was the Jesus who couldn’t catch or hit but could walk on water with the best of them. So, after turning to Jesus twice (Montero, Sucre), the Mariners are now turning to Rookie Zuninookie. BTW, Sucre is sugar, and Zunino sounds like Mexican artificial sweetener. You might remember Mike Zunino from such Scott, our prospect writer, sentences as, “.360/.447/.689 between Low-A and Double-A,” “The third overall pick this past June has been simply incredible since signing,” and my favorite, “His tools profile suggests he’ll eventually develop into a very nice big league catcher, and one you’ll want in fantasy leagues, but most people around baseball don’t see the Travis D’Arnaud/Jesus Montero/Devin Mesoraco-type ceiling with Zunino,” which came when he ranked him 44th in the top 50 fantasy baseball prospects. Not to get all Chinese Calendary on you, but 2013 isn’t going to the Year of the Incoming Catcher. Zunino’s chances of making a huge impact seem slim to anorexic. The path to fantasy value for a catcher isn’t a Sunday drive down the Henry Hudson for Will Smith in the movie, Hancock. If Zunino blows away my projections, he gets 15 homers and a .260 average. More likely, he gets 7-10 homers and a .240 average. You can probably do better. Look at me having faith in you! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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I’ve read a few pieces recently about how stolen bases are down across MLB. As long as steals are a category they will have value, and if steals are indeed down compared to previous years, then they just become that much more valuable. The guy who is currently second in all of baseball in steals, Juan Pierre, is still owned in less than half of the leagues out there. This is kind of confusing to me. If we hit the wire to grab a guy who is in line for saves, or we’ll stream a pitcher hoping for a win, shouldn’t we grab Juan Pierre?

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First off, Rudy is safe. We have him in a padded room with only marshmallows to eat. He’s a bit overcome by the absence of color, but it will be a good distraction while Bryce Harper is touch and go. Before we put Rudy where he wouldn’t hurt himself, Rudy said to me, “If Bryce Harper is hurt, will they cancel the rest of the season?” That’s a frown question, bro. Lie down, Rudy. It’ll be okay. Actually, could you lie down with your head hanging off the couch? You’re gonna leave a Soul Glo stain. I’m sure Rudy isn’t the only one feeling a bit woozy hearing Harper hurt himself last night. The entire eye black industry hangs in the balance. He left yesterday’s game with an apparent injury and that turned into an apparent diagnosis of an apparent bad bruise in his apparent side. Thanks for the apparency. This sounds like a day-to-day thing rather than a 15-day DL thing. So the worst thing that may come of this is for the next few days you won’t get as drunk if you take a tequila shot every time someone on Baseball Tonight mentions Harper. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Now Aroldis Chapman says he wants to be the closer. Hahahahahahaha… Wait, why are you putting me in this room with padded walls? No, the Reds haven’t driven me crazy. I’m wearing a potato sack because the fabric breathes. Dusty’s the crazy one, not me. What is that powdery substance you’re stirring into my Jamba Juice? I saw you… I feel drowsy… Jack, I just want to see what’s in the hatch… ….Whoa, just had the weirdest dream. I dreamt that not only did Dusty say he wanted Aroldis as the closer, but that Aroldis was saying it too. All of that came after they signed Broxton to close games, with Sean Marshall and Jose Arredondo setting him up. Wait, why am I still wearing a potato sack? It’s true?! AAAHHH! I blame Dusty and the toothpick he hasn’t changed since late-1997. He’s got splinters in the brain. The good news (depending on how optimistic you can be) is Aroldis has about the same value and ranking as a closer as he does as a starter. His auction value wouldn’t really change either. If anything, Aroldis is probably a tad higher in rankings if he’s a closer. It’s a role that he’s not only done before, but it’s a role that had him produce a top ten overall fantasy season. The bad news is, you might own a $12 Salad and if you drafted him as an ace, you no longer have a starter, which could change the entire dynamic of your team. This would kill Broxton’s value too. This still isn’t a done deal, Aroldis and Dusty might get overruled by Reds management, who obviously want him as a starter. I ask the Reds, “Is deciding on a role dis hard?” Anyway, here’s what else I saw in Spring Training for 2013 fantasy baseball:

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Well, if the Dodgers really do have the Magic touch, they better get Zack Greinke some aid. Greinke flew back to LA yesterday and, boy, is his elbow tired. I say, “Blame it on Harang,” but I say like I’m Milli Vanilli. Greinke’s MRI came back clean, and Dr. Neal ElAttrache diagnosed him with inflammation. Is it me or does Dr. Neal ElAttrache’s last name look like those sneaker/slippers Nike used to make in the 90′s? Any the hoo! Dr. Neal Air Huarache gave Greinke some anti-inflammatory medication and the news has been positive (after the negative news). I really to the third power dislike pitchers with elbow issues, but Greinke is supposed to be able to throw again in a few days. I haven’t moved him yet in my 2013 fantasy baseball rankings, but I’m going to be watching this situation like I’m a cyclops with a monocle. Anyway, here’s what else I saw in spring training for fantasy baseball:

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Comatose Pirates Fan, I have a surprise for you.  You may want to sit down.  No, no.  It’s a good surprise.  The salad days of Willie Stargell are back!  (Though even Pops would’ve agreed salad wasn’t on his menu.)  I’m excited for the Pirates, they’ve been the Andy Dufresne of major league baseball for far too long.  

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