If only baseball were as easy as the surface stats tell us. Player A has great peripherals and a pretty ERA. Player B has numbers more hideous than the elephant man, lock him away in the dungeon and let us never speak of him again. It’s all too easy to look at the season long numbers on a player and simply throw him out the proverbial window…or literal window if they really screwed you in your league. But of course, you’re here because baseball isn’t that easy and you’re a straight masochist. With that, enter Anibal Sanchez. Come in close and get a whiff of that stat line…whew! You don’t put up a 6.60 ERA over nearly 90 innings without doing a lot wrong. But even the worst pitchers can put things together for a good stretch and Anibal is far and away not the worst pitcher in baseball so he has that going for him. Know what else he has going for him? He just came off of a 10 K, 2 BB performance against the Twins. I know, I know, they’re the Twins, but its more common for a nice little groove of good pitching than it is to have an ace-like outing and then completely fade the next go. I’m not stumping for Sanchez for anything outside of tourneys but at $4,800, he’ll sure make your dollar stretch for a Coors day. But enough about bad pitchers have good days, let’s talk about good players and good plays. Here’s my Sunday fun day hot taeks for this Sunday DK slate…

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run Monday July 25th to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. Wanna know what the best part is about signing up with us? The free subscription for the rest of the season to our DFSBot, that’s what! For details on the how to, please visit our Razzball Subscriptions page.

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Zach Eflin tossed a complete game 3-hit shutout Friday night versus the Pirates, requiring just 100 pitches to go all the way and pick up the win. It was the rookie’s first career shut out. That’s what I’m Eflin talking about! I know what you’re thinking, I loved him in those High School Musicals, I wish he was my Neighbors. Wrong Zach. Both are real good though. After a rocky debut to his rookie season in Toronto (2.2 IP, 9 hits, 8 ER, 3 BB), Zach Eflin has been on the attack ever since, allowing just 11 runs in the seven starts since his debut (2.07 ERA in 47.2 IP). More impressive is that he has pitched at least six innings in six of those seven starts, including two complete games. Dude is a horse. And at just 22 years young I guess that would make him a dot dot dot Filly. Zing! Wait, or is it a mare? Foal? Joke still works or nah? On second thought I’m thinking it might be a colt. Hmm. Regardless, Zach is clearly a stallion. So how is it he’s available in over 80% of fantasy leagues? Are you Eflin kidding me? Sure, the 26/8 K/BB ratio is nothing to call the presses about, but his 1.05 WHIP is mighty impressive. Some of the advanced stats may suggest he’s due for a bit of a correction, but why not ride the Zach train while its Eflin hot. He’s coming off his best career start and gets the Marlins next week, so pick him up, what are you Eflin waiting for?

Here’s what else happened in fantasy baseball Friday night:

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Welcome back Y’all, I hope everyone enjoyed the All-Star break. I don’t know about you, but I dread the break, then it comes and I’m actually thankful for it. I feel revived and ready for the second half push, but part of me is still on break until today. So now it’s time to shake off that DK rust, take a deep whiff of some Nitro and get this biatch started. If you’re a little confused about the lead, let me help clear it up. The two L’s I’m referring to are Jon Lester, $9,400 vs the Mets and Mike Leake, $8,200 vs the Padres. Lester had a rough end to the first half pitching 6 of his last 7 games on the road and he got absolutely hammered for 8 ER at NYM two weeks ago, so why would I roll with him today? He’s a veteran who got some much needed rest over the break. Granted, he threw one inning at Petco last Tuesday but I think he’ll be extremely under owned across the board with J-Fer, Sale and Kluber all going tonight. Lester has been great at home this year with a 2.32 ERA while striking out 62 batters over 54 innings and the Mets are second to last in runs scored vs LHP. Wrigley Field is just what the doctor ordered for Lester’s recent road ails as he’s due to get back on track vs a depleted Mets lineup. Mike Leake turns into Mike Stopper when July 1st rolls around. There’s just something that happens to him when the calendar turns on June 30th as he goes lights out on the mound. It’s time to own him in daily and RCL, at least for the next 3 weeks. He went into the break on a high note striking out 10 in Milwaukee over 7 innings. He’s got a solid matchup at home tonight against the Padres who probably didn’t got into St. Louis at a cushy 4 AM Central this morning. I’m counting on Sneaky Leaky to put up a solid line of at least 8 K’s while he puts it to a weary San Diego team that’s still in vacation mode.

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run today 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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I was watching the PCLInternational League All-Star game (Psyche! You thought it was going to be about the MLB All Stars; well it is, we’ll get there and Psych was an underrated great show) and took note of a few older All Stars.

1). Casey McGehee still plays!  And still spells his last name weird.  He was fantasy relevant for a short time in Milwaukee and this season in the PCL he’s got five homers and an OPS of .837  at AAA(and little chance of getting a call-up, but shout out to him anyway).

2). Jesus Montero was also around (hitting 11 homers with an .810 OPS in AAA).  Fun fact.  He’s got a brother named Jesus Montero.  Another fun fact, too many 1B in Toronto in front of him for now, but it is Edwin splitting time at DH and Justin Smoak.  So keep an ear to the ground (don’t do that, the ground is dirty) and maybe Jesus rises again (yep, should’ve seen that one coming).

3). The immortal Tuffy Gosewisch, familiar to Diamondback fans only (or at least he should be), who has a .952 OPS in the PCL and a career MLB OPS at .531.  It’s certainly true, the PCL is where you want to hit.

4). I’m not a fan of Billy Ripken.  Love the F Face baseball card.  Not a fan of his announcing nor his appearances on MLB Network.  More a fan of Al Leiter who’s pretty decent on MLB Network and the Marlins and Yankees games I’ve watched.  While we’re at it can we send Harold Reynolds back to ESPN?  Keep Byrnes, who I’m glad they toned down and Smoltz and Pedro (sometimes) with Amsinger and MLB network is good to go.  There were a lot of good prospects at the PCL-International All-Star game, but that isn’t my bag, so I’ll refer you here.

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As much as I hate projections, I’m going to give them to you anyway. Who cares what you actually want, right? Just let me throw some darts at some numbers and I’ll be right with you. Seriously, I’d love to try that one of these years. Next year I will be debuting my new dartboard projection system which is practically guaranteed to be no worse than any other expert. I think that’s actually how CBS and ESPN calculate their yearly projections. How bad could they be? Don’t answer that. Instead of stooping to such a level (at least yet) I have married weighted versions of my preseason projections with weighted year-to-date performances to determine rest-of-season projections. Usually I cater to the points league enthusiasts, but today I am flipping the script and going full roto. I realize that Kirk Lazarus warned us to never go full rotard, but I’m just feeling it today. If I go home empty handed, then I go home empty handed.

Here are my rest of season projections for four of the five major roto categories…

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Welcome, prematurely balding men and five women who are married to prematurely balding men and decided if you can’t beat them, join them!  Make yourself comfortable, this is gonna be a long post.  Here, enjoy some coffee.  Oops, you just drank rat poison.  Don’t worry, it can’t be worse than owning Chris Archer in the 1st half.  Oh, you owned him and that’s why you drank the poison!  Now, I’m following!   Hey, I’m supposed to be leading!  Before we get into the top 100 for the 2nd half of 2016 fantasy baseball, let’s just be glad our 18-year-old selves can’t see us now, we’d get beat up!  But our twelve-year-old selves would think we’re the coolest!  So, as with all of the other 2016 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 that outfielder for that 2nd baseman.  Also, things change in fantasy baseball.  Daily.  I could put Bryce Harper number two on the top 100 list for the second half of 2016 and he could pull a–Well, we won’t even mention an injury with Bryce.  Why soil a good thing, ya know?  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. This is simply a list of the top hundred fantasy baseball players if you were to pick them up today.  So while David Price 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 2016.  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 players will do.  It’s like that camera from The Twilight Zone.  Welcome to the future!  Anyway, here’s the top 100 for fantasy baseball for the 2nd half of 2016:

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Hey everyone and welcome to Sunday!

Remember me? It’s Zach! Your good ol’… Zach. Anyways, I have been gone since the 20th, and I got back last Sunday, on a really awesome trip to Alaska. But alas(ka), I have not written in quite a while and it is good to be back! Huge, huge thanks to the main men Teddy Heater and Gern for not missing a beat and providing some great coverage of the Sunday’s that I missed. Tip of the cap to you fellas. So where are we for today?

We have 3 pitchers taking the mound for us today that are $10k+ on DraftKings: Carlos Carrasco, John Lackey, and David Price, with Carrasco being the most expensive at $11.6k. And he’s who we’ll start of this lovely Sunday with.

New to DraftKings? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run Monday July 11th to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. It’s how we know you care! Wanna know what the best part is about signing up with us? The free subscription for the rest of the season to our DFSBot, that’s what! For details on the how to, please visit our Razzball Subscriptions page.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

With Tyler Glasnow being called up, let’s go over what we know so far about him.  1) In Triple-A, he had 113 Ks in only 96 IP.  2) He had a 1.78 ERA.  3) There’s no C, since we’re not even lettering these facts.  D) And now we are lettering them, great!  E) Glasnow enters to bagpipes and wears a kilt on the mound.  F) This.  I didn’t get him in one single league!  G) Money.  H) His command in Triple-A was wonky as all get-out — 4.9 BB/9. I) could see some major blowups if he loses command of the strike zone.  J) abba the Hut failed with the Cookie Diet.  K) Glasnow likely won’t pitch an entire season.  L) M, N, O P Q) How many innings? Arrgh) Likely close to 50 IP S)o that’s still into September.  T) for two!  U) The letter U looks like Jon Niese looking down.  V) What a great show!  Remake it, again!  W) Should officially change its name to Dubya. X) Marks that one spot where the two lines intersect or the entire area of the X?  Y) Cause.  Z) Yes, I’d grab Glasnow in all leagues.  Prospector Ralph even ranked Glasnow number two for all the 2nd half fantasy baseball prospects, so you know shizz is real.  AA) My name is Grey Albright– Oh, we’re done with the lettering.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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The day before our Independence Day, the Nationals exploded for six home runs, a fireworks display that would make the Grucci family jealous.   The Grucci fireworks family has a fascinating history.  Giuseppe Grucci in 1923 said to his momma, “I don’t want to be a two-bit gangster, cutting peoples’ fingers off for debt payment, I want to blow up thousands of fingers all across this great nation.”  Then his mother smacked him and told him to finish his lasagna.  Yesterday, Bryce Harper (2-for-4) hit his 17th homer, Wilson Ramos (3-for-4, 3 runs, 2 RBIs) hit his 13th, Anthony Rendon (2-for-3, 2 runs) hit his 8th, but at the heart of the fireworks celebration was Danny Espinosa (4-for-5, 6 RBIs) with his 17th and 18th home run, and his 4th and 5th homers in the last four games.  For those of you who think he’s a weekend hot bat, he hit .309 with nine homers in June.  He’s only 29 years old and he is a guy that has seasons of 20+ homers and 20 steals.  So, yes, you should own him.  Fun fact!  Did you know what they call a fireworks display on July 3rd?  A premature ejacu-elation.   Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

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Yesterday, Noah Syndergaard admitted to having an elbow bone spur after denying it multiple times.  Terry Collins said, “No one would know our business if it wasn’t for giving the PR job to a puppy dog!  Ruff ruff!  Come here, Fido, I wanna spank you with a rolled up newspaper!”  This is the 2nd Mets’ starter in two days with elbow spurs.  I look forward to the opening round of the playoffs when all of the Mets’ starters are wearing Iron Mike Sharpe elbow pads to hold their arms together.  Or they hire John Cusack to marionette their starters.  So, this is obviously not good news from Syndergaard, but it’s also not the end of his season.  He could opt for surgery if he’s in pain, but he says he’s not in pain (though, he also said he didn’t have elbow spurs up until yesterday).  Jon Lester has pitched through elbow spurs for the last five years.  It’s not uncommon for starters to power through.  Would I look to sell Syndergaard low?  No.  If you can get a healthy, similar starter, then sure, why not?  No reason to panic.  Unless Syndergaard starts wearing cowboy boots on his elbow.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?