The 2016 fantasy baseball rankings are under that link.  Why are you lifting your computer?  Not literally under that link!  Okay, you’re thick like a CVS receipt folded in half twelve times.  In years past, the top 40 starters is a mix of guys I like and don’t like.  Like a high cholesterol cow, it’s about half and half.  This year, I really had to struggle to find guys that I didn’t want to draft in the top 40 starters.  There are four starters I wouldn’t draft in this top 40.  Four!  In the top 20 outfielders, I kept going back to how there was about eighty outfielders I would draft.  Here, it’s kinda different.  I don’t want to draft so many starters, but there’s a crapton of decent ones.  As with past rankings, my tiers and projections are included for the low, low price of $19.99!  Kidding, they’re free.  The oxygen you need to live while reading them is gonna cost you though.  Anyway, here’s the top 40 starters for 2016 fantasy baseball:

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What a wild year for the Astros. They made the playoffs, called up their star shortstop Carlos Correa, and made some big trades that have changed the look of this farm heading into 2016. It’s still very strong and full of great fantasy options, but just look at the list of players who left this system – Brett Phillips, Mark Appel, Vincent Velasquez, Domingo Santana, Rio Ruiz, Mike Foltynewicz, Nick Tropeano. Not to mention losing Delino DeShields in the rule five draft and the quality graduations. That kind of hit would cripple most systems, and yet here we are with still one of the best farms in the game right now. Last year’s draft netted the Astros two top bats in Alex Bregman and Kyle Tucker, and they saw a big breakout in A.J. Reed, who could be in line to play first base for Houston early in the 2016 season. It’s a good time to be an Astros fan.

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What’s Ice T’s favorite pastry?  Cruellers, cruellers, cruellers, cr-cruellers.  Who’s Ice T’s favorite pitcher?  Lance McCullers, McCullers, McCullers, Mc-Cullers.  Sorry, if I didn’t get that out of the way up front it would’ve gnawed at me this entire post and I never would’ve been able to write it.  Now, into the actual post, you know how they say you can’t fold a piece of paper more than seven times?  (Yes, I know MythBusters folded a football field-sized piece of paper eleven times, but the myth is seven-plus times.)  That myth is how I feel about starting pitchers.  There’s so many guys that I like late that I feel like I can’t fold them all into a singular fantasy team.  Maybe this is subconsciously the reason why I manage upwards to ten fantasy teams.  This way I can have a little taste of all of the late-round starters that I like.  One such pitcher is Lance McCullers.  Last season, he had a 3.22 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, 9.2 K/9 and a 3.50 xFIP.  If you know a thing or two about a thing or two, you’re saying to yourself, “How is this guy a sleeper?  He was great last year.”  Good question, Voice In Your Head.  He shouldn’t be a sleeper, which is why he is a sleeper.  Wrap your noodle around that, stick it in some boiling water and stir it so it doesn’t stick.  You feel me?  Okay, seriously, stop touching me, it’s weird.  Anyway, what can we expect from Lance McCullers for 2016 fantasy baseball and what makes him a sleeper?

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As the 2015 MLB regular season concludes, there are still playoff positions to be won and teams to get in. Today will be a day where you really want to stay glued to starting lineups and starting pitchers. It can also be a very interesting day to take full advantage of your opponents if you stay glued, as many DK players might not fully pay attention to who is in and who is out of the lineup. Like usual, you’ll be able to switch out your players at their scheduled start times. The first 14 games all start at the same time, 3pm EST, and the last game starts just an hour and a half later. So you will know everyone who is in the starting lineup at the same time, which is a rarity for a full slate. As of Saturday evening, which I wrote this, that Dodgers’ LHP was scheduled to be the starting pitcher. However, depending on how Saturday night ends between the Division winners, he may not be Sunday’s starting pitcher. Of course the obvious is, if he’s starting, you’re starting him. Check out some of my other DraftKings’ picks below.

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.

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“Hello, and welcome to the Izod Center in downtown East Rutherford, New Jersey!  We’re only 35 minutes from New York!  On tonight’s fight card, we have everyone vs. George Zimmerman and, our main event, Bryce Harper vs. Jonathan Papelbon!  Harper has him on height by a good six inches, if you count his mohawk.  They’re both tipping the scales like heavyweights, if you count their egos, but Papelbon has the reach by three and a quarter inches since Harper will be fighting off his heels, as he’s been known to do his whole career.  The Loafer vs. The Soft Shoe!  The Cock vs. The Guy With A Haircut That Makes Him Look Like A Cock!  The Veteran Who Plays The Game The Right Way vs. The Upstart Who Just Plays The Game Better Than Anyone Else.  Hosting this event is Donald Trump.  Making this country great again like he did in Atlantic City!”  Yesterday, I said, these two mix like vinegar and douche, and then the Nationals made sure they wouldn’t have to mix at all.  Papelbon was suspended for the rest of the regular season, which opens the door for Blake Treinen, Matt Thornton and/or Casey Janssen.  That’s the order I’d grab them for saves, but like a carrot in minestrone, it’s real dicey.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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And now the end is near, so I face the final curtain, my friends I’ll say it clear, I’ll state my case of which I certain. I’ve written a season’s full, I’ve looked at each and every wOBA. But much more than this I did my Job-a. Regrets I’ve had a few, but then again too few to mention (cough, cough Carlos Frias). I did what I had to do and saw it through without exemption. I built each chart of course, each careful stat along the byway. And much more than WHIP, I diiiiiiidddd ittttTTT MYYYYY WAAAAY!

A big thank you to everybody reading my non-sequiturs and random brain farts about two start pitchers. I surely do appreciate your time. With 25 (actually 24) of these in the can, we got one last post to go. I don’t know what will happen to us over the next 6 months. We may grow apart, you may follow your heart, and your heart might take you to a small village in the Hindu Kush mountains. Where you fall madly in love with the daughter of a Tajik Warlord by the name of Richa. Maybe you abandon fantasy baseball and live a simpler life off the land. No not like the reality show the Simple Life. A simple life like milking goats, and tending fields. Simple like owning 4 bowls amongst five people. No matter what happens to all of you, just know I’ll always be here. Well not technically here but if you click that icon up top that says soccer, I’ll magically appear. Sort of like the genie from Aladdin, just soley focused on the subject of soccer, and completely devoid of wishes. I might have matches though. Goodbye my friends, I promise to be just as crazy in the 1-6. Two start pitchers week 26.

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Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement, began yesterday, and Brad Ausmus, the Tigers manager who doesn’t believe in a manger, started atoning for his mistakes, by sending the Tigers closer, Bruce Rondon, home due to a lack of effort.  This sends an interesting message.  I’d guess, with a motorized scooter and knee-bypass surgery, Victor Martinez still wouldn’t be at 100% effort.  Kyle Lobstein and Randy Wolf wouldn’t be at 100% effort with a pitching machine standing next to them as they mimed throwing.  Shoot, I don’t know if Miggy was at 100% effort even in his Triple Crown season.  Also, what does this say about Ausmus?  That he’s managing a team in last place, but he’s coaching at 100% effort?  Wouldn’t he be better off pretending he was at, say, 60% effort?  How about this, “I sent Rondon home because he was at 40% effort.  I lead by example around here, and I demand everyone give 50 to 55% effort, as I do.  What?  You thought I was at 100% effort and we’re in last place?  Please!”  Alex Wilson is the likely replacement closer, maybe Neftali Feliz also sees some saves, but he blew one last night.  Then, in Kansas City, Greg Holland let the entire organization off easy by saying he had a tight elbow and is done for the year.  This saves everyone from calling for Wade Davis to close while berating and belittling Holland worse than a tourist who doesn’t smoke pot and hates windmills.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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I love when halfway decent starting pitchers are given away for practically free on DraftKings. I especially enjoy it when it happens on a Coors field day. That of course could be read as a “Coors Field” day or as a Coors “field day”, because both are true. When you’re trying to squeeze in as much Coors exposure as you can, a 4K pitcher opens up an awful lot of options. Logan Verrett sits at $4,500 tonight and gets to square off at home against one of, if not the worst hitting team in the majors in the Atlanta Braves. Jon Niese just completely shut them down. That’s the same Niese who had given up 11 runs in his previous 8 IP mind you. The Braves have the lowest team OPS in the majors and their “lead” in the category seems to grow by the day. Verrett has been a more than capable spot starter for the Mets as they try to limit every one of their young pitcher’s innings. Tonight he fills in for deGrom and should be good to go for at least 75-80 pitches, possibly more. He only threw 63 against the Marlins over 5 IP, but the Mets let him air it out for 93 a month ago at Coors field. All he did there was hold the Rockies to 1 run in 8 IP and strikeout 8. The strikeout upside is limited with the Braves as they are pretty stingy when it comes to striking out, but posting zeros works too and a win should be easily obtained. For $4,500 you can’t get too greedy. I do imagine Verrett will be fairly highly owned at this price and Coors field on the docket so despite the low price he may be more of a cash game play than a GPP. Let’s look at some more plays for tonight’s DFS slate:

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 5 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.

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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:

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Pacific Northwest siiiiide! Ouch! My fingers aren’t limber enough for a PNW gang sign. Gonna have to start that Phalanges yoga I’ve been meaning to do…but hey, that’s my problem. Wanna know what else my problem is? Bad beer. I’m a beer snob, proud of it. The history of drinking bad beer started when the US government put the smack down on home brewing. You know, that whole ‘prohibition’ thing that went over so well. Take note, War on Drugs! But my point is, don’t bring your watered down swill up north here, we’re doing just fine with our micro brews, thanks. With all that said, in comes the Colorado Rockies to Safeco Field. Yeah, the Rockies have played like their stadium name this year: bland, tasteless and lacking substance. This not so perfect analogy is a great way to look at the Rockies as a whole, especially when you take them out of their friendly Coors confines and throw in a lefty starter to boot. The numbers ain’t pretty, folks. The Rockies are bottom of the wRC+ barrel against lefties on the year at 66 and the next closest team – the White Sox – ain’t even close at 75. Factor in the 23% K rate and you’ve got one good reason to start Roenis Elias today. The other? Those road stats, bro. Rockies are barely 2nd worst carrying a 79 wRC+ – just ahead of the Twins wRC+ of 78 – while K’ing 23.9% of the time. All this lines up just fine for starting Elias in the friendly confines of Safeco. Starting opposite Yohan Flande, Elias not only has a great chance for high K potential but also the win and maybe a beer shower afterwards…ok, I lied, I don’t mind Coors for once. No IPA baths needed, break out that crappy six-pack! And then finish your night with a tasty cold one when you’re done. But enough about me not so silently judging you, let’s move on. Here’s my Chipotle Ale hot takes for this Saturday DK slate…

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 20 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?