So it’s not really the 2nd half mark in the fantasy baseball season, but it’s the All-Star Break so what else are we going to talk about? Hell’s Kitchen? Is it even believable that these people would one day be in charge of a kitchen? There’s Real World castmates who seem like they have their shizz together better than these schmohawks. I like the one guy who burps a lot. He seems ready to run a kitchen! MasterChef, though, that show is the Sistine Chapel of reality shows. Okay, as with all of the other 2014 fantasy baseball rankings, take this list with a grain of salt. If you need a 2nd baseman, but an outfielder is above him that doesn’t mean you can’t trade the outfielder for the 2nd baseman. Also, things change in fantasy baseball. Daily. I could put Miggy number three on the top 100 list for the second half of 2014 and he could get in a fight with a bartender (not Tom Wilhelmsen) tomorrow, then he wouldn’t be number one. See how that works. This list is a road map for where I think guys are valued. It’s not the Holy Grail in the Church of Grey, that would be my mustache. This list is NOT (caps for emphasis, not aesthetics) where I see guys ending up if you were to take their first half and combine it with the 2nd half of their season. This is simply a list of the top hundred fantasy baseball players if you were to pick them up today. So while Carlos Santana did not have the greatest first half, he will appear on this list because I still believe. The projections are not their combined 1st half and 2nd half numbers; these are their projections for the 2nd half of 2014. I also liberally used our rest of the season Fantasy Baseball Player Rater. That’s right, we have a Player Rater that tells you what guys will do. Welcome to the future! Anyway, here’s the top 100 for fantasy baseball for the 2nd half of 2014:

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The only real stat that matters in daily fantasy is points. Millions of ways to try and predict it. We’ve tried a slew of things and nothing is foolproof. But some seem to be hitmakers more than others. At least, certain statistical metrics are currently sexy and people care about them. About a decade ago Percy Miller aka Master P choreographed an ensemble of durty down south rappers into a group called the 504 Boyz who pioneered New Orleans bounce music, too many loudasses with a microphone at once on stage and a song called Wobble Wobble. It was really popular. Now it’s really popular to listen to wOBA wOBA when it comes to DFS. Sheeeeit! I’ll agree it’s a good prediction tool, fool!

I’m liking another Master P today in Masahiro Tanaka as the most extravagantly priced option as a pitcher at $11,300. The Indians do hit RHP in the top 15 percentile, but so do the Blue Jays and Athletics who he has shut down already this year. I’ve got Q’s about Bumgarner and Teheran today too so I’m not mindin those P’s. They’re still good options, but if I’m spendin, I want the Masa. With that, let’s see what other DraftKings picks we have up our sleeve…

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Hello DK’ers, I’m glad to be back after my Brazilian excursion to get as hairless as possible. I’m trying to break into dancing like our boss Grey, or was that break dancing? Either way, the man has moves like Sam Rockwell. If there was a competition between us, it would look something like this. To this day, that still cracks me up. Sorry reader, I really need to get back to this drivel thing and in case you were wondering I am Barney in the video. I can’t help myself today, with Matt Shoemaker taking the hill, I get transported back to my favorite movie ever, Goodfellas! That’s right, I said that; Goodfellas is my all time favorite movie. You got a problem with that? In case you didn’t know, The Departed was the “I’m sorry we screwed up so we’ll give you one for an inferior movie Oscar” for Martin Scorcese. Why do I keep getting sidetracked? Dah!!! This scene (NSFW) is one of my favorites among many brilliant moments in that 1990 classic. I remember being in high school and sneaking into see this R rated flick because our local theater was unwavering on the 17 and over policy. I could go on and on about Goodfellas but I need to write about Matt Shoemaker and his low low price tag of $6,800 today. He’s been solid as a starter since moving out of the bullpen and has even posted a 10K game. Getting to face the team with the worst K-rate in the game, 23.3%, isn’t too shabby either. But here is the takeaway for him – he has a 2.54 ERA at home compared to a 6.66 on the road, devil arm! That’s good enough for me. You can choose to pay the high price tags of Yu Darvish, Masahiro Tanaka, or Max Scherzer and then compliment one of them with Shoemaker to leave you some extra dollars for bats.

Yesterday, the Guru talked strategy and I agree with him that you got to look at all the nerdy numbers but sometimes I think you need to go with your gut. Whether it’s the hot hand like Steve Pearce or someone due like Jay Bruce you need to take chances when you have limited dollars on the table. Like Guru, I have been on both ends of the batter vs. pitcher stats and all I can say is it’s just the numbers, the numbers ala Jimmy Two Times. Don’t lose your mind! But before I continue on I want to give a little B vs P advice that has worked well for me. Look at the K’s vs. the pitcher, when I have a guy that K’s a lot or doesn’t walk vs. a pitcher I generally stay away. That’s just me and my way to go about it. Sometimes you will see a batter who is 0 for 4 against someone but has 4 walks. I get interested when I see that and like the chance that a hit is coming soon. And now on to my DraftKings picks for today.

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What’s the mood, doode? How ya’ feelin’? Why is it all real G’s drop their G’s on their gerunds? G-dropping as non-G’s call it. That keeps me up at night. Failing to rank at first Tyson Ross in my top 100 starters doesn’t. It was a mistake on my part, and I corrected it before we got out of February. I ranked him. Snafu less afu’d than it could’ve been. I still probably didn’t rank him high enough. They have no award for that. Trophies, trophies. This is like Gangsta Deep Thoughts on Def Poetry Jam. Stop me from going up like a crescendo. This is not a love song. This is “What Tyson Ross has done so far this year” song. That is not as catchy. They don’t play that on KDay. His ERA is at 2.93 after a complete game shutout where he struck out 9 and only allowed 3 baserunners. His K-rate is 8.6, walk rate is 3.2 and xFIP is 3.16. Clap, pause for a sip of Olde E, clap. I paused for a sip of the brew on his walk rate, if you’re uptake is slow. His away ERA is 4.18. Well, you had me convinced you were more than a Hodgepadre there for a moment. Nice trick, Copperfield. Ross is owned in 51% of ESPN leagues, which is stoopid, but since I only own 12,000 ESPN teams to collect some software. Virtual trophies, virtual trophies. I can only do so much. Yes, he should be owned, but he’s a lot safer in Petco. No dur. And I bow. And I just hit my head on my desk. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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As many of you know, I went in a new direction to get inspiration for what player I will cover.  I took a page out of Who Wants to be a Millionaire’s playbook and I asked the audience.  That audience only has four choices though…you guys had over four hundred.  Here are you results:

Votes 6-30-14

There isn’t much need for a drum roll though, unless none of you read the titles of these things.  Ah yes, Michael Brantley, how your owners love you so.  If you were lucky enough to draft him, probably after 200th overall, you’re getting a great bang for your buck.  Brantley is a top ten outfielder right now, and arguably a top five one.  On draft day, the tenth outfielder was going around twenty-fifth to thirtieth overall.  And the player drafted probably had a name like Giancarlo Stanton, Yasiel Puig, or Jose Bautista.  Just for kicks and giggles, let’s compare Brantley’s season to everyone’s favorite outfielder, Mike Trout:

Player R HR RBI SB AVG OBP
Trout 49 16 54 9 .303 .394
Brantley 49 11 46 9 .320 .386

Looks comparable, if you ask me…

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If you take enough shrooms, you start to dream about how Rick Porcello is from the magical land of Zeranok, where Buehrles and Moyers can cruise 15 MPH below the speed limit. Off shrooms, you just see Zeranok as zero ERA, no K. Yesterday’s 9 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 0 Ks was solid, great, adjective. Hard to not get excited about a complete game shutout, but I’m gonna try. Heard a lot made of the fact that Porcello only needed 95 pitches to finish off the A’s. That’s wonderful. Somewhere, Greg Maddux smiled, then he tried to go behind the counter at his local post office to show them how they can be more efficient and nearly got arrested. “Can we all just form a two-person line as we wait for Wet Willie’s Wild Slide?” That’s Maddux at a water park with his kids. I hear ya, Greg, when people are grouped together in a party of six in an amusement park line it drives me crazy too. The worst is when they get up to the front and suddenly they have 25 other friends that were with them. Any the hoo! A 95 pitch CG SHO is great IRL (you like how I was illustrating efficiency with acronyms; though this parenthetical defeats that purpose), but Porcello’s efficiency doesn’t do a whole lot for me in fantasy if it comes with no Ks. His K-rate is 5.2 and his walk rate is 2. That’s pretty blehtastic. I’d own him, since he gets the Rays next. He’s not suddenly shooting up to ace status for fantasy. I know, I know, that Porcello is one funghi, but he’s actually pretty close to borderline for 12-team mixed leagues. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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As many of you know, Bruce Bochy has the biggest head in the major leagues. As a player, when he was traded, he would have to take his helmet with him to his new club because the new team wouldn’t have a helmet big enough for him. It made traveling easier, since everything he needed would fit inside the helmet. We all know the story about how when Giants rookie, Joe Panik, was called up, he forgot to make arrangements to stay somewhere in the San Fran area, so he draped a sheet over Bochy’s cap and slept in there. Lots of good has come of Bochy’s giant melon. Of course, the 27-pound bowling ball has its drawbacks. Like when he went to see Toy Story and blocked half the audience. Lots of angry parents that day. Or the time he was in South Dakota and people starting climbing up his side thinking he was Mount Rushmore. Sometimes what would take a person with a normal-sized head a week or two to figure out, thoughts bounce around in Bochy’s Metrodome much longer. So when Sergio Romo wasn’t good for the month of May, then again in June, it took longer for Bochy to realize a change was needed, but he finally figured it out. Bochy said Santiago Casilla would replace Romo, then he banged the side of his head for 15 minutes waiting for another thought, and finally it came out that Jeremy Affeldt would see some situational saves, as long as Gilbert Gottfried isn’t introducing Affeldt at games. Yesterday, Affeldt got hit, and Casilla looked solid as he has all year. I’d grab Casilla in all leagues if you’re SAGNOF’ing around for saves. Hopefully, even if Bochy thinks about putting Romo back in the role, it takes a few weeks for that thought to land in the right spot in his cavernous whale head. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

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Pitching my life with his words. One time, one time. What, you don’t get down with The Fugees remix? By the by, Wyclef, musical talent, instrumental to success, pun noted. Lauryn Hill bonkers talented, pun noted. Pras? Um… Well… An actual refugee? True story, Wyclef once walked into my mom’s chiropractor office and asked her to massage his butt. My mom declined…Or so she tells me! Marcus Stroman did a little dazzle number last night — 8 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 7 Ks — that hinted at his true talent level. Why has he looked like Pras’s career post-Fugees? Because he’s a rookie and prone to roofies. The pretty remarkbuehrle thing about his numbers thus far is he averages a 94 MPH fastball (that’s terrific) and an under 2 BB/9 (also terrific). A guy that can throw bullets and aim them will translate into an ace very quickly. To see what kind of thing the Royal We is talking about — his Triple-A numbers were 11+ K/9 and a 2.3 K/9. If that happens in the majors, he’ll be a top 10 starter. For serious. Unfortch, for now he’s a streamer in most mixed leagues with a chance for upside. Yesterday, the Stream-o-Nator liked him and next time out it loves him, so I’d give him a little how’s your father, good, thanks for asking, but he’s still risky. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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When Jaime Garcia was a kicker in high school for his Flick Football team, he lined up the paper football, just left of the finger uprights across from him, adjusting for the southwesterly wind coming from a student’s handheld fan. Like it was happening in slow motion, he flicked hard, the paper sailed through, poking the kid’s eye that was holding the finger uprights. Unfortunately, Garcia also pulled a finger tendon and had to watch from the sidelines the rest of the year as his team marched to the playoffs. Ever since then, he’s never been able to shake the injury bug, and yesterday he hit the DL with a shoulder injury. Unfortunately for the rest of us, the Fantasy Baseball Overlord’s hunger for ruining pitchers’ arms didn’t stop at Garcia, and Michael Wacha is out with a shoulder injury too. Wacha, Wacha, f**ka! Wacha has a stress reaction on his shoulder, and the Cards are saying no surgery is required, but his fantasy owners may still want to make a Kenesaw Mountain Landis out of Doritos and pray to it. The good news, Carlos Martinez will now be in the rotation for at least another month. He went 5 IP, 3 ER, 4 baserunners, 5 Ks yesterday, and I’d grab him in most leagues now that he’s staying in the rotation. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

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…And by “IBS”, I don’t mean irritable bowel syndrome. In this context, I mean BABIP verified by ISO and Spd scores. Two things induce my real life IBS: nutrition, and my high impact dynasty leagues. Consider this series your dynasty IBS treatment.

BABIP has little face, so I use ISO (isolated slugging) and Spd (FG’s speed score) to verify the BABIP.

Check out Part 1 of this series where I delved into Trois-A assets. While Joc Pederson and Gregory Polanco naturally lead the rankings in conjunction with Quad-A guys like Andrew Brown and Chris Dickerson, I pointed to some translatable future impact in Chris Taylor and Domingo Santana, among others.

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