I’m still not entirely sure what the Braves were doing at the trade deadline, but Alex Wood found himself in a much more favorable position. For his first start in Dodger Blue, he’ll be on the road facing a familiar foe in the Philadelphia Phillies. The Phillies are, of course, always a team we like to target. Being in the bottom 5 of just about every offensive category will earn you that dubious honor. Alex Wood hasn’t exactly been peaches and cream this season, his Ks have disappeared and he’s been a bit WHIP-y. These are things I’m willing to deal with when the price is right and $7,400 is right. The best part of the match-up is Jerome Williams is on the other side of the mound so a win is all but guaranteed. The Dodgers should tee off on Williams, pushing him ever closer to the retirement he deserves and Wood should be able to cruise to the easy win. With any luck he gets to relax early and can let it fly vs. the woeful Phils. Wood is one of the biggest favorites on the night and makes a nice second tier pitcher to throw alongside the ace of your choosing.

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 15 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?

I have returned from my much needed and financially reasonable vacation. I went to San Diego for five days and four nights with the family, and enjoyed almost every damn second of it. I learned one thing while I was away, and that’s the closer I got to Mexico, the browner I got. Seriously, I need to go by Juan Lleno de Odio until I kick this tan. I’m going to cut to the chase today, as I have lots to go over and little time for small talk… unless you want to chat it up in the comments about whatever is on your mind, I don’t mind that. Oh wait, before I move on to the good stuff, I would like to self-celebrate today. Today is my 100th post for Razzball baseball. As some of you may know, I started on the football side when Sky took a chance on me. After I went to Oregon and passed the Sky test/initiation, Grey hit me up and invited me to come over to the baseball side. Then came my first Razzball baseball post and the rest is history. Thanks you two for allowing me to be a part of this.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

After blowing his fifth save Thursday night, giving up three walks and two runs in the ninth, John Axford has now blown four save chances in his past five appearances. Colorado Rockies Manager Walt Weiss said Friday that John Axford would be removed from the closer role. But from the looks of the quote, it sounds like Axford could potentially gain the job back, especially if the replacement candidates don’t prove to be worthy. Rafael Betancourt, Tommy Kahnle and Justin Miller are the three possibly unworthy candidates, and names you should consider adding if you are searching for saves. Rafael Betancourt would seem like the obvious choice if not for his 4.88 ERA. He does have that much sought after closer-experience, though. Kahnle, on the other hand, is rocking a much nicer 2.96 ERA, and a 1.80 ERA for the month of July and seems like a more suitable candidate. Justin Miller has the best numbers of the bunch (0.90 ERA, 0.60 WHIP in just 10 IP), but also holds the least experience. The situation will certainly be worth monitoring over the next few days, but one thing is for sure, you probably won’t really be happy owning any one of these guys. However, if you need saves I’d add Betancourt, Kahle and Miller in that order until we see how this shakes out.

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

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I went out on my annual mid-season man-date with Grey this past Friday. What a day! Sandwiches at the wine shop, facial hair products at the beauty supply store, and coffee at some weird fancy hipsteresque spot. I think the guy at the coffee spot wanted to kill the two of us because we were harassing him for not having any alternative sweeteners for my diabetic arse. No matter what we said to him, he just kept responding with, we only have our raw organic fair trade artisanal sugar syrup. He was Mets-front-office annoying. You might be asking yourself why am I telling you all this. Well, at Grey’s suggestion, I have added in the DL players to gain some perspective into what they are worth compared to the healthy players for the rest of the season. Earlier in the year I left them out to get more players on the list, as I was figuring out how I wanted to take on the rankings. Like many of you know, this list got dropped on my lap right before the season started and I have been learning on the fly how to approach this. This is FOH’s list!

Note: I mentioned in the RCL Update this week that I would be out on vacation. The Big Magoo handled the Creeper of the Week, and I will be in and out of the comments today. I’ll also be getting some help from my co-workers so we don’t leave you guys… and girls hanging. VinWins! will be covering the RCL Update for me on Tuesday. Thanks guys for helping me while I’m out. *hugs screen*

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Who was actually good…

Last time, I used ADP data and player values to determine Kyle Lohse was the most under-drafted player of the last five years. Turns out, there are some assumptions in the calculation that could be tweaked, and the result could be a totally different most under-drafted player. Go figure! The methodology was to take the difference between a player’s preseason ADP and his end-of-season rank to determine  “undervalued-ness”. This time we’re still going to take the difference, but it’ll be between the square root of his ADP and the square root of his EOS rank.

Why the square rooting? The reason is to give more weight to better players, which square rooting accomplishes.

For reference, here’s the list from last time (that won one lucky man a Razzball T-Shirt):

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The Cardinals called up their top hitting prospect, Stephen Piscotty, who has a great eye, and could hit .320 with 20+ homers and 15+ steals in his prime. What will he do this year though? Piscotty Doesn’t Know! Piscotty Doesn’t Know! Piscotty Doesn’t Know! He could play 1st base for the suddenly old-looking and decrepit Mini Donkey. Piscotty Doesn’t Know! Piscotty Doesn’t Know! Piscotty Doesn’t Know! Piscotty could play some outfield, but where? Piscotty Doesn’t Know! Piscotty Doesn’t Know! Piscotty Doesn’t Know! I’m wondering something else. The Cardinals make a mountain out of molehill prospects, always. A prospect no one cares about comes up and the Cardinals make them look terrific. So, will Piscotty come up and be the opposite? Like the Law of Inverse Properties, which is in no way related to the douchey guy on HGTV that hosts Income Property. Piscotty Doesn’t Know! Piscotty Doesn’t Know! Piscotty Doesn’t Know! I’d grab Piscotty in all leagues since he’s essentially Matt Holliday right before he entered his prime, but I’m guessing Piscotty won’t play enough to be a factor this year in shallower than 15-team mixed leagues. He could though. Grey doesn’t know! Grey doesn’t know! Grey doesn’t know! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

At least, that’s what wise men say. Thankfully for both you and I, I’m not one of those…wait, I mean…dammit, nevermind, you know what I mean. I think? Not good to start a recommendation blog off with trepidation but what can I say as I’m going for the unreliable narrator thing. I mean, it worked for Chuck Palahniuk and who doesn’t love the anti-hero Tyler Durden? So while I splice some rated X films into your kids’ movie, lemme tell you a little bit about Chris Rusin. Or better, yet let me tell you about his opponent, the Texas Rangers. Or better than better yet, let me start by saying this: it’s a tourney only call. I know, I know, anything goes in tourneys but hear me out. The Rangers are an impressive offense overall so far this year, especially with how many projected them but there’s one thing they haven’t done well: hit left-handed pitching. For the year, the Rangers have K’d 22.9% of the time vs southpaws and just got sat down by Keuchel on Sunday as he went 7 and struck out 13 while only giving up 2 hits. Would I expect that from Rusin on Monday? Hells to the no, children, but I expect the opportunity for at least 5 to 6 innings and perhaps 7 punch outs. Given the low ownership he’ll garner and the minimal price tag of $4,800, Chris opens the doors to flood your lineup with all of the best bats in the prime spots…ya know, like Colorado, where he’s pitching. It’s a gamble but it’s not one without its merit and I’ll be sure to be the fool that’ll Rusin today. But enough about Elvis love songs, let’s get a little more country. Here’s my ring of fire hot takes for the Monday DK slate…

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.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I sat down Friday night and started watching Shark Tank for the first time. Wow, have I been missing out on a beautiful reality show. No B.S., I have been binge watching it all weekend. I know, I know, Grey has been pimping this reality masterpiece for years. Grey, you were right and I won’t doubt your reality lotharioness ever again. This show got me thinking about how I choose my creeper and how in some ways that I am the shark. I’m looking at numbers and schedules every week to buy the creeper. Based on the arguments in my head, I choose my player to invest in. Pretty easy. Now, what would you guys… and girls think of this new concept I thought of yesterday while chatting with Grey? Each week next season, instead of one contributor picking a creeper, we have several contributors each make one sell for a creeper? Take all those sells and combine them into one post and you peeps can decide what creeper you believe in. Just a thought.

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The Cubs have recalled super catching prospect Kyle Schwarber to split catching duties while Miguel Montero is out for the next six weeks. Kyle was 3-for-4 with a run scored Friday night. We know the Cubs have a crazy amount of young talent on their roster, but Schwarber could be the final piece. I’ve seen enough baseball movies to know the hot-shot catching phenom usually comes in half way through the season to unite a bunch of ragtag misfits and lead them to victory, even though the owner wants to move them to Albuquerque. Schwarber is likely no exception. In a brief call up in June to serve as DH, Kyle slashed .364/.391/.591 with a homer and 6 RBI in 22 at bats (6 games). Extrapolate that! Let’s see…6 over 22 is equal to, carry the 1, cross-multiply, take the cosine and divide by zero…87 home runs! Whoa! Even I underestimated Schwarber’s ceiling, I guess! Or perhaps my math is off? Regardless, Schwarber is an immediate add in all leagues. In the minors, between AA and AAA he combined to hit .323/.430/.591 with 16 homers and 49 RBI. Prospector Mike ranked Kyle 7th on his Midseason Top 50 Prospects list, and Grey told you to BUY. Seventh is in the top 10 you guys. That’s right, more math. I’m just saying there is some serious upside here and Kyle Schwarber could be the biggest and smartest pick up you make all season. Now bring on the catcher questions!

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

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Since there were no games this week and players haven’t been able to get hot or cold or humid, this Buy/Sell is going to be slightly different. This Buy/Sell includes some players that are owned in more than 50% of leagues. Okay, that’s not different for the Sells, but it does change the Buys. The other day on our podcast I was asked by JB, “What is the USA Today?” Because JB was born in the 2000s. But I was also asked by him who is my biggest buy of the 2nd half. For that I said, “Um, well, I have to say, actually, actually, actually, my biggest buy is, uh, um, hmm.” Spit it out, Grey! You know how your own voice sounds weird? I wonder if that holds up for the Movie Trailer Guy. Any the hoo! My biggest buy was Adrian Beltre. For s’s and g’s, I looked at Beltre’s 2nd half from last year, it wasn’t great — six homers, zero steals, .308. Last year, he had 19 homers for the full season and he has 7 homers right now. So, I don’t think the power is going to come roaring back like he’s Mickey Maris in 1927 with Barry Bonds’s personal trainer. In my top 100 for the 2nd half of 2015 fantasy baseball (say that fast 117 times!), I gave Beltre 11 homers. That feels optimistic, but doable. His fly balls are more or less fine from last year, but he’s getting unlucky with his HRs per fly balls even though his home run distance isn’t terrible. He’s also been crazy unlucky with his BABIP. It’s sitting at .263, which would be his lowest since 2003. Basically, he’s hitting a line drive to the gap and a squirrel is grabbing it, flipping it to an outfielder and Beltre’s being called out because the ball never touched the ground. If I were struggling at corner and need to take a gamble, I’d trade for Beltre and watch the good times Esther Rolle! Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?