I’ll be up front and honest from the jump. This is a post designed to do one thing, and one thing only. That’s share the pain of not getting what I wanted at the toy store between the ages of 0-8. My ultimate goal today is to make my parents feel so awful about what I was deprived of as a child. That they feel motivated to hit E-Bay and bid on some sweet, sweet nostalgia toys. You know, stuff I can play with after I put my kids to bed, around the time I usually begin binge drinking, or ignoring my wife on the couch. What I like to affectionately call “Grown man shizz”. But seriously didn’t we all have that awesome toy we desired that we never got, because our parents just wouldn’t buy them for us? My Mom was a teacher and always had this big thing about not buying toys that would kill my sister and me’s “creativity”. Whatever that means…. Let’s just say my parents set the trend for the pretentious I’m better than you parent shaming that’s so popular amongst the social media mommy bunch. You know the types, they’re the people on your news feed always sharing toy and stroller recalls, and anti-GMO posts about Kraft Mac & Cheese. Hey I get it, you want what’s best for your kids, but you’re nuts if you think at 18 they won’t be crushing EasyMac at 3am on a dorm room couch after a night of drinking like the rest of us. It’s just the natural way of things toots! Any the who, here we are week 22 or da deuce deuce as I likes to calls it. 22 weeks of two start pitching and we’re still here looking to get you into the playoffs or the next round if you so choose. So without further ado let’s whine about toys I didn’t get and discuss two start pitchers for week 22.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

*swirls a glass, takes a gulp. spits it back in a bucket*  “That’s vintage Justin Verlander,” said Kate Upton.  “Okay, this might sound gross, but can you spit into my mouth?”  That’s you getting up the nerve to say something to Kate Upton.  I just thought of a moneymaking idea for Shark Tank!  You stand outside of Comerica Park with a cardboard cutout of a naked Verlander and have people pay $10 to take a picture with him, pretending to be Kate Upton.  Oh, and no, this post isn’t an attempt to Bleacher Report up Google’s rankings by mentioning Verlander and Upton repeatedly, though it does seem that way…Verlander/Upton, Verlander/Upton and Verlander/Upten for the illiterates.  So, Verlander did look magnificent yesterday until the 8th inning when he began to tire, ending up with a one hitter –> 9 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners (1 Hit), 9 Ks with an ERA at 3.45.  Big Magoo captured Verlander’s upside about two weeks ago with this post.  Worth reading, but the key part (cause I know, y’all can only read so much), “Since the All-Star break, Verlander’s 7.25 K/BB ratio is the 5th highest among qualified starting pitchers, and his 1.1 BB/9 is the 6th lowest.  He shares the same swinging strike rate (12.1%) as Jake Arrieta and Gerrit Cole over that span as well.  Now, excuse me as I go drain the weasel on a picture of Grey.”  Hey, wait a minute!  I didn’t remember that last part.  So, if Verlander is out there in your league, the one-hitter yesterday doesn’t seem to be a hirame.  Sorry, I just had sushi.  It’s not a fluke.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Mike Fiers threw the first Astros no-hitter by a single pitcher in over 20 years last night and the very first no-no in Minute Maid Park to make his way into the Houston record books, alongside Houston greats such as Beyonce, Dennis Quaid….uh, Rory Gilmore…did I say, Beyonce already? Anyway, even more impressive, the 30-year old Fiers did it against one of the leagues top offenses in the LA Dodgers. You probably wouldn’t have started Michael Fiers unless you owned @#$%ing Michael Fiers! Fiers walked just three batters and struck out 10 in what was also his first career complete game. It took Mike 134 pitches to get through this one, but his stuff seemed to get better as he got deeper into the game. It was his first win with his new team. After struggling in relief in his first appearance with Houston, Fiers settled nicely into a starting role that he will be unlikely to relinquish after last night’s dominating performance. He’s allowed just one earned run in three starts with Houston, with a 19/6 K/BB rate. Fiers struggles with control at times but when he’s on the strikeouts numbers are nice and he can be a very useful fantasy starter. He’s available in over half of leagues and gets the Yankees next week, I’d grab him if he’s out there, he could be a helpful guy to own as the Astros make their run for a pennant.

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

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Marcell Ozuna went 0-for-4 yesterday after being recalled on Saturday.  OZUNA glad to be back in Miami.  OZUNA miss friends, weather and vomiting unicorn statue in center field.  OZUNA promise to hit more powerful home runs.  OZUNA fix holes in swing.  If need be, OZUNA use cricket bat with flat barrel.  OZUNA not sure it called barrel.   OZUNA would call paddle.  OZUNA hit well in minors, .317 with five home runs in 33 games.  OZUNA thought gone longer than 33 games.  OZUNA mind like Plato’s cave.  OZUNA get confused about linear time.  OZUNA think Matrix is documentary.  OZUNA take red pill.  OZUNA was offered two red pills as his “eye-opener to alternate reality” was “out of blue pills.”  OZUNA see pitch in slow motion in 360 degrees.  OZUNA say whoa.  OZUNA thank you for your time.  So, Ozuna’s back and worth a pick up.  No, I have no idea what he’s capable of in the final six weeks, other than maybe some power.  It’s an upside flyer that’s worth taking in every league.  Like blue pill?  Yes, OZUNA.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

As a Justin Verlander owner in 2013 and part of 2014, I know what some of you must be thinking. “What exactly is the conundrum here? That he’s garbage or hot garbage?” Hmmm… I feel like you’ve painted me into a corner there. Garbage, I guess? It’s true that Verlander has been a shell of the player that he was during his peak seasons in recent years, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that his days as a useful fantasy contributor are over. The goal of this post is to determine whether or not he has anything left in the tank as objectively as possible. That means forgetting about the irreparable ratio damage that he inflicted upon our teams over the past few seasons. And ignoring the Scrooge McDuck-like money rooms that undoubtedly exist at each of his houses. Not to mention his ability to motorboat Kate Upton whenever he feels like it. I’ve got my bear pic all queued up and ready to go! Oh, right. Gotta stay unbiased. With that in mind, let’s take a look at Verlander’s numbers throughout his MLB career:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Of course, the title is referring to Nelson Muntz, but Jimmy Nelson sounds like a sitcom character too. Like the kid who is sweet to the parents, but is really the devil incarnate when no one is looking. Eddie Haskell, if your references go back that far. Fun fact! Chad Billingsley’s grandma starred in that show. So, Jimmy Nelson had a solid game last night (6 2/3 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 4 Ks, and his ERA is down to 3.57), but that’s not THAT good (caps for emphasis, not aesthetics). No, but his month of July ERA was 1.64. THAT is THAT good (not for emphasis, but now my autocorrect ‘learned’ THAT and wants THAT capped and I can’t shut THAT off). Where is all of this coming from? Great question, clunky expositional transition! I’d say it’s not where it’s coming from, but where has it been? Ooh, you like that switcheroo. Nelson had a 1.46 ERA in the PCL with a 9.2 K/9 last year, throws 93 MPH and has worked hard to add a curve that he never had before this year. He feels like a guy that will click at some point, and be a top 20 starter. This year could be rocky still, but I think he’s worth trying for a few starts to see if he’s already turned that corner. I’ve been rocking three starters in my RCL league since April, but after streaming Nelson yesterday, I kinda want to hold him. While an Air Supply song plays softly in the background. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

When Chuck conceived his son Daniel Norris, he was working on set in Asia with Mrs. Norris still living in the US!  Wait, did that make any sense…  I’ll leave the Chuck Norris jokes to the frat boy posters…

Traded to the Tigers along with another nice upside pitcher Matt Boyd, Detroit got some pretty good arms for a rental and they wasted no time throwing Norris right into the rotation.  And that’s with 12 walks over his last 21 AAA innings!  But throw caution to the wind, don’t look both ways before crossing, run with the scissors and see what ya got, amiright?!

I had Norris all the way to 61 right before the season, getting a little too rookie nookie and slack-jawed at his Minor League stats.  He wasn’t awful through 5 appearances with the Blue Jays pitching his way to a 3.86 ERA, but he was a little too wild and his pitch counts got out of hand.  So with the move to a better ballpark and to a team ready to unleash him right away, I decided to break down his debut with the Tigers to see how he looked:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Yesterday, Latos was traded to the Dodgers, then not traded. Then CarGo was traded to the Mets, then not traded. Then Cole Hamels was traded to the Rangers, and really traded, I think. I don’t know, I’m dizzy. Ruin Tomorrow Jr. was sad to see Hamels go, but this is the business he chose, after getting fired from Duane Reade for mixing up the garbage with “the important stuff.” And after getting fired for explaining to kids there is no Santa, after being dressed as the mall Santa. After being fired as Ruin Tomorrow Sr.’s personal assistant, but he maintains that was a misunderstanding. He thought, “Don’t tell your mother,” meant, “Don’t tell your mother until you see her.” After his no-hitter the other day, I said, “(Hamels’s) peripherals look fine and he’s just getting a tad unlucky. I could see someone thinking they’re selling high after this no-hitter, but Hamels is a low-3 ERA pitcher with a 9.6 K/9, i.e., a low-end fantasy ace.” And that’s me quoting me! I would’ve preferred to see him go to the NL, but Arlington is about a push with Citizens Bank and could see him stringing together a sub-3 ERA for two months. Jorge Alfaro, Jerad Eickhoff and Nick Williams were acquired by the Phils, and I’m sure Prospect Mike will go over them, after he gets their posters up in his living room. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Greetings! It’s crunch time, boys and girls! Are you one of the good people frantically following the trade talks, hoping to find that closer or rookie call up to complete your championship squad? Or are you one of those mud pirates, who has stopped paying attention all together, ruining things for everyone else? I suppose you’re more than likely not reading this if that’s the case, but just in case you are, let me be speak for your leaguemates, and say ef you! In head-to-head leagues, it’s even more despicable, giving undeserving teams huge victories and besmirching the playoff standings. Stick to DFS, for this is a game of Kings, and why I usually insist on playing in high money leagues, where frauds are beheaded like a deserter of the Nights Watch. Kudos to you if you’re still around, fighting for your lives in the greatest game ever invented. You, my goodmen, are warriors and the Elder Gods will write poetry in you honor.

I am Tehol Beddict, and this is, Disgrace/Delight! Take heed!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Cardinals outfielder Randal Grichuk continued to hit all the baseballs last night chipping in two hits and a two-run home run to help beat the Braves. Randy! Randy! Randy! Randy has been quite randy indeed lately, he’s now homered in back to back games and he’s hitting .346 with six runs, four home runs, ten RBI and a stolen base in the past week. Yes! More please! He’s slashing .283/.333/.566 with 11 home runs and 36 RBI on the year, and the .900 OPS ain’t too shabby either. But it’s the 11 homers in 219 at-bats that raises my eyebrow, Dwayne Johnson. That’s a 25-30 homer hitter over a full season, folks! If we take a peep at the next level stats we can see Randy and his .375 BABIP may be getting a bit lucky. Let’s not even talk about 30.8 K% and 5.8 BB% because they are downright awful. And sure Stephen Piscotty could threaten to steal some of Grichuk’s ABs down the line. However, the fact is Grichuk is hitting hot fire right now and is still under 50% owned in most leagues, a number that will undoubtedly grow over the next few hours as the legend of his four homer week spreads throughout the land. Time to Buy-chuk, Grichuk! I’d add him in all leagues while he’s still hitting everything he sees into the bleachers. Randy! Randy! Randy!

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

Please, blog, may I have some more?