Perhaps it’s my inner Gob Bluth, but with just a week’s worth of games to be played, this truly is the final days of the season. Already the Royals, Blue Jays, Cubs, Pirates and Cardinals have wrapped up a piece of the postseason, yet four of those five teams are still jostling for position with only the Royals able to rest some of their players without fear of slipping to the Wild Card games. Today’s Ambulance Report will first focus on the teams in the postseason.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Yesterday, Chris Coghlan went full Ivan Drago on Jung-ho Kang‘s knee, taking him out in a hard slide. Kang is now done for the year, and could miss a month of next season, with a torn MCL. That’s not the year 1150, if any Romans are reading this. He also has a fractured fibia. Coghlan should not be allowed to wear that Iron Mike Sharpe knee pad. Things couldn’t be much worse for the Pirates, who will now rely on Jordache Mercer (full name). Kang’s agent said, “It is unfortunate that what would be considered heads up baseball would cause such a serious injury. That said, Coghlan was playing the game the way it should be played.” Doesn’t that sound backhanded? Like, “It’s a shame we allow 85-year-old people to drive, but that’s the law and thanks for crashing into my car.” Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Cubs traded a player to be named later for Austin Jackson. Assuming the player to be named later isn’t anyone on their current roster, this was a solid trade for them from a real baseball perspective. Real baseball has more spitting than fantasy baseball, but about the same amount of scratching. The areas that are scratched are similar too. Like just below the FUPA. Austin Jackson clouds up the Cubs’ current roster in all the worst ways. Can one team have too much of a good thing? The short answer is yes. The long answer is yeeeeeeeees. Now, Coghlan (1-for-4), Fowler (2-for-5 and his 15th homer), Schwarber (1-for-4, 1 run, 1 RBI) and maybe Baez, when he’s called up, are squeezed for playing time. If anyone can make this work, it’s Maddon. Sadly, only Maddon will understand how, why, what and every journalistic question as to when Jackson or anyone will play. Oh, and Soler will return shortly too. And by “shortly,” I don’t mean the manner in which Altuve does something. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Maybe it’s because Whip/Nae Nae is permanently stuck in my head — One word of advice. If you take no other advice from me, please, I implore you, accept this advice. If you don’t know what Whip/Nae Nae is, don’t, under any circumstances, Google it. It make Gangnam Style seem like a walk in the park when it comes to catchy songs. If you don’t know what Gangnam Style is, I love how you’ve decorated under that rock of yours. — but I can’t help looking at Jake Arrieta‘s no hitter less about the 12 Ks and only allowing one walk — Sure, those are sweet — but more about how his season WHIP is 0.94. There’s Greinke (.85 WHIP), Kershaw (.90), Scherzer (.93) and deGrom (.94). An under one WHIP and a 9+ K/9 is a little piece of heaven like sitting in an exit row of an airplane. On the podcast that’s coming later today, I debate Greinke and Arrieta, Scherzer and Arrieta and deGrom and Arrieta as we try to figure out where they’ll be ranked in 2016. I say something like Arrieta will be ranked around the 4th to about the 7th SP off the board. I agree with Early Sunday Afternoon Grey, but I will say that Arrieta has made it difficult for me to think of four SPs that should be drafted before him. Let alone six. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
I must say, I don’t believe in curses, hexes, jinxes or whatever you may call it, but this season is rapidly descending into a Euripides level of despair for me. As I look at my various rosters being struck with injuries and my place in the standings perpetually falling, I’m already looking ahead to next season. With another round of injuries comes another round of drinks. Misery loves company, right?
Jeremy Hellickson, D-Backs: A strained left hamstring forced the club to shelve Hellickson for a time, as the right-hander was placed on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to August 19. The 28-year-old has had an up an down season, and I’ve been bamboozled by his strong 10.6 percent swinging strike rate not translating to a better strikeout rate. His SwStr% is tied for 25th out of 88 qualified starters, however his 7.47 K/9 ranks 38th and 19.1 percent K% comes in at 50th. I’ve been holding out hope Hellboy could get his K-rate to match his whiffs, but for now we’ll have to wait at least until the first week of September to see him back in action.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Guess who’s back? Back again! No, that’s not The Greek God of Walks, Kevin Youkilis, sufferer of chronic back pain, singing. Besides, it’s “who’s back,” not “whose back.” We’re not trying to identify a back! Byron Buxton‘s back, baby, yeah. With every positive reaction, there’s an equal opposite negative reaction, or so said Einstein when he was fiddling with refrigerator magnets. And the negative reaction to Buxton coming back is Aaron Hicks hit the DL. Too bad, so sad. Buxton didn’t do much in his first stint in the majors, but he could be easily as good as Schwarber, Sano or any other rookie nookie that’s got your cookie all melty. I would grab Buxton in every league. I’m excited. Uppercase yay! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
After the first two homer-game, I was like, “Yo, Grey, stop twirling your mustache and trying to squeeze into your Z. Cavariccis from high school and check out Travis Shaw.” And I did. Only, I wasn’t that impressed. He had five homers in 77 games in Triple-A. Then, a week or so later, he had his 2nd two-homer game and I was like, “Yo, Sir Hairlip-A-Lot, those Zubaz look awful on you, and maybe you look at Shaw’s numbers again.” And I did. His ‘big’ year in Double-A saw him hit 16 homers with a .221 average and again I came away yawnstipated; must be he’s showing some Maas appeal. Then, yesterday, he went 4-for-4 with two runs and is hitting .371 in 22 games, and I was like, “Yo, Fantasy Master Lothario, just let Cougs clean out your closet for you and really delve into Shaw’s numbers!” No, I don’t know what delve means but it sounds smart when I’m talking to myself. I’ve said it before, but Shaw feels exactly like a Maas appeal-type player. I bet after September he never even plays regularly on the Sawx again. But now suddenly you’re worried about the future? You weren’t when you were writing to the National Institute of Health about having nacho cheese classified as a vegetable. Get a 401K and grab Shaw until he stops hitting. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Greg Bird was called up by the Yankees. I wonder if when Greg Bird dies his ghost will be harassed by a 1980’s black gang calling him Larry Bird. But, more importantly, let’s pray Bird doesn’t wear ball-hugger shorts. Whoever thought those 1980s shorts were a good idea? They were so tight, you can tell which players manscaped. When Marv Albert said someone was dribbling a ball down the court, I had to wonder which ball he meant. Yes! Bird, Greg that is, has done nothing but hit at every stop in the minors — 20 HRs in Single-A in 2013; 20 HRs in 2014 across three levels; 12 HRs across two levels this year with six homers in only 34 games in Triple-A. He’s also not the type to strike out a lot and knows how to take a walk, and not like it’s a bad thing as, “Hey, take a walk!” Bird started yesterday (0-for-5), but for now he’s a bench bat, but I get the sense the Yankees are going to start looking towards the future as of next year and Bird should be someone on dynasty and keeper radars. And you know I have me some radar love. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Yesterday, Brandon Crawford went 2-for-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs with two homers (17, 18). Crawford has a big flashing sign over his head that reads, “Career Year.” Under said sign, he has a smaller sign that reads, “Or could this be a legitimate breakout?” Under that sign, there’s yet another sign that reads, “There is no third sign.” Then under that there’s a smaller sign that reads, “Is that meta? Why even go through the trouble of hanging a third sign?” Then there’s yet another smaller sign that reads…Ugh, I can’t even read it, the font is too small. Let’s stick with the signs we can read and that make sense, “Career year” and “Or could this be a legitimate breakout?” His previous career high was 10 homers in 153 games last year, and prior to that he had never homered ten times in any professional league. In four full years with the Giants, he only had 26 homers coming into this season. That was in over 1800 plate appearances. His previous career high in HR/FB% was 7%. This year it’s over 17%. He’s in the top 30 in the league for homers per fly balls. For the most part, a guy who hits a lot of homers per fly balls are, as you can imagine, not guys that had a previous high of ten homers in over 1800 plate appearances. They’re guys like Just Dong, Braun, Te(i)x, Miggy, etc. etc. etc. The homers will disappear, but I wouldn’t mind so much if Crawford was more than a .255 hitter. The most obvious comp is a young J.J. Hardy, if he was an actual comp, but he’s not. Hardy hit 26 homers in his 2nd full season, Crawford never came close to this before, and I don’t think he ever will again. So…*picks up megaphone* All right, guys, let’s lose all the signs, except the first one. And get back to work! Ugh, teamsters. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
You know they say, every Blue Jay fan has his Price, and every dog has his day and what does the cat say? Me-ouch. Is that a well-known idiom? Sounds like something Pol Pot would’ve said. “You look like a clown because you’ve applied too much Khmer rouge. Now what does the cat say? ‘Me-ouch!'” That was Pol Pot at his most disarmingly charming. You ever look at pictures of dictators and think to yourself, “He looks like a total tool. What kind of a-holes followed this guy?” Any hoo! David Price was acquired by the Blue Jays for Daniel Norris (who I’ll get to in a moment). The Blue Jays GM, Alex Anthopoulos doesn’t believe he gutted the farm system to deliver Price and/or Tulo. No more than, say, a Greek farmer needs to gut a lamb to make shawarma. As they say on the lamb farm, sacrifices need to be made. I don’t think this changes a thing about Price’s value. Comerica was actually more offense-friendly this year, and the Blue Jays will provide more run support, but Price is essentially the same pitcher whether he’s in Toronto, New York or Boston, in Philly, Miami or Houston; in Detroit or– Is this a Kid Rock song I’m singing? Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?