A funny thing happened on my way to work today, I sat there in my favorite sitting place and did some research. I looked at the availability of information provided by the other experts in the world of fantasy baseball, and then correlated that to what I do best. That, my friends, is bullpens. We as a collective fantasy universe play in leagues with the illusive yet sultry stat category known as the Hold. In fact, in some further research that I have done, an estimated 30% of all fantasy players play in a league with some sort of Hold associated with the final outcome in the standings. I mean, 30% is basically like winning the popular vote. [Jay’s Note: I love you Smokey.] But I am standing here aghast at the amount of research poured into this fantasy industry by experts all around the world, yet here I sit. Giving you the most diverse, in-depth, informative (yet funny), and groundbreaking stat analysis that not even world-wide leaders give… for free might I add. I love me some bullpens, and if you don’t play in a league that adds diversity to the game to include them, then maybe you should down shift a bit and give it some thought and do a league that includes it. Don’t do it for me, do it for yourself. Because this way I gain, at least one reader from each person that does it. Go search the inter-webs for holds type information, you get a column sorted catastrophe written by some intern who doesn’t know the difference between good and well. So stay here my friends, I am the goods through and through. I dropped the Holds chart weeks ago and now you get just straight cheddar and some rankings.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Some day somebody’s gonna make you want to turn around and say goodbye. Until then baby, are you going to let them hold you down and make you cry? Don’t you know? Don’t you know things can change, things’ll go your way, if you hold on for one more day.
That music of genius was brought on by a smooth impromptu karaoke session in a West Boston saloon. It was me and Ralph and a girl who was paid by the dollar to talk to us about her kid. It’s all a true story. Fun times were had, and at the time I didn’t realize how correlative the song was back then to this particular stat category and one that is by far my favorite to talk about. Funny, it only took a Wilson Phillips song on the drive home from work to reminisce about Boston, Ralph, and relief pitching. I love the stat, not everyone uses it, but I still love it nonetheless. If your leagues uses it, cool, well I will be your every other week destination for giving you the low-down on the hold situations going across the MLB. So get comfy, with a week to go until Spring Training starts, and the full extent of the 2017 season yet to play. You will get sick of me, in say… 30 weeks. So get comfy on your favorite porcelain fantasy reading chair and welcome to a brand new year!Please, blog, may I have some more?
On Saturday, we closed down the Holds store, although will still field some inventory questions that some may have. Today is the last day only for my weekly advisory role in the cheap saves/steals-AGNOF type stuff. This year was fun doing this post, it incorporated something I already covered here at Razznation and mixed it with some track and field with bats. This year, I covered everything from the decline of stolen bases as a whole stat, the decline of the elusive fantasy 20/20 players, pitching metrics of stolen bases allowed, and even some catching metrics. Wrap all that up and after I am done patting myself on my own back with my baby T-rex arms, I think I did an okay job for someone thrown to the fantasy wolves of conveying good info. Some will disagree, others will hide in the shadows with their slings and arrows, but I am satisfied. I stole Grey’s journal and he said it on three separate occasions that he thinks my penmanship in regards to SAGNOF is worthy of a cookie or something like that. I was too teary eyed to actually read it. So with just over one week to play, it is an “all hands on deck” affair for saves, stolen bases, or hell, even at-bats from non contending teams. So when searching for moves to make and not make use the first instinct and ignore the other rules like don’t get high on you’re own supply stuff. You know the Biggie song, so just ignore those and go with common sense. As always, it has been my pleasure and good luck the last week of the year. Cheers!Please, blog, may I have some more?
Ryon Healy couldn’t have come at a better time for the A’s. Their corner infidels were about as weaksauce as they come. Mark Canha? More like Can’t-hit. Andrew Lambo? More like ‘that Lambo is bahhhd.’ Yonder Alonso? More like ‘over Yonder’ as in everyone’s over him in value. Though, looking at Healy’s minor league numbers, he doesn’t look much better. However, Josh Donaldson wasn’t much to look at in the A’s minor league system either. It wasn’t until he came up and the A’s adjusted his swing to get more lift than a Beverly Hills surgeon. Not saying in 2017, Healy will be Donaldson, but we shouldn’t write him off as a 15-homer hitter either, as his minor league numbers may indicate. Why didn’t the A’s give Canha, Lambo, Alonso and others the patented lift? An anecdote to illustrate: for a few months, I wore shoe heels like Tom Cruise to give myself an extra two inches. It was impossible to tell I had them in, they elongated me! I looked like Fred Astaire (as old people told me)! But after a few months, I got bunions the size of pearl onions and couldn’t walk. I had to stop with the lift because it wasn’t natural and making things worse. Maybe those other players couldn’t do the lift because it didn’t feel natural to them. Of course, none of this matters for this year. I’d grab Healy for the last ten days. Doode’s fahrenhot! Doode is straight butter that a professional hibachi chef puts on a sizzling lobster tail! Doode’s Kurt Russell in Backdraft! Healy is a social worker at a female prison that married a Russian mail-order bride! Wait, that last one is a plot point for a Netflix show. Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
In order to be competitive, the Marlins would need All-Stars at every position all farmed from their minor league system. Sorta like what the Cubs have managed to do. Not impossible, but that’s what it would take for the Marlins because they are cheap AF. By the way, AF is my favorite acronym. Props to whoever first started using it. Feels like it started on Twitter because of the character limit. Keeps shizz short and simple AF, kinda like me (short and simple). Any the hoo! I was saying the Marlins need to be precise AF (I’m overusing it now) with their minor league system like they were with Jose Fernandez. He’s AF as AF comes. His nickname should no longer be Jo-Fer but AF. Or maybe AF-Fer. Nah, that looks like a trade union. A-Fer? That looks like algebra. Fernandez should own Abercrombie & Fitch he’s so AF. Yesterday, Jose Fernandez went 8 IP, 0 ER, 3 hits, zero walks and 12 Ks. He has 253 Ks in 182 1/3 innings. Seriously, digest that for a second. WTF AF?! Of course, I wish the Marlins would shut him down until 2017, but I have no chance of owning him next year. Not that I don’t love him. He’s the best pitcher in the game if I’m building a dynasty league. Yeah, I said it. I want him over Kershaw. Kershaw has been durable up until this year, but all pitchers are durable up until the point when they’re not. At one point, Jake Peavy was durable AF, too. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
You flip through your cassette singles. You pop in James Ingram’s Just Once cassette single, but decide that’s better to play right after taking the love of your life for an abortion. You then pop in the In Your Eyes cassette single, but it feels too Say Anything. You then pop in the Always & Forever single you played on the way to prom, and it…feels right. You take your boombox and place it on your shoulder, Luther Vandross plays obnoxiously loud if Vandross could ever be obnoxious, but you decide he can’t be. The song gets to the end and you flip it over to play the Always & Forever house remix. Yet, this whole time, Matt Harvey‘s Buy Low Window stays shut. You wonder why it won’t open again, and sigh. It’s now shut because yesterday Matt Harvey went 7 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA down to 5.37. Looks like the slider returned with his velocity. Last week I said I didn’t think his problems were unfixable, yesterday he showed they weren’t. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
As much as I love publishing and giving you the “haps” on the closer ranks, I love the depth that a bullpen can give you and how it can affect your roster. It is way to early to look into my Grafix crystal ball and say this guy and that one will be the crowned prince of the hold this year… to some degree. Early usage and situations prove a lot. Yes, injuries happen, and ineffective spells happen, and sometimes trades happen, but if you were good enough to make the team out of Spring, then usually you are good enough to make yourself an established piece of the bullpen. The top names are still the top names. The cream either rises to the top or it rules everything around me, both perspectives are interesting because how can you not believe the Wu or old school rhetoric. So with the first bullpen piece of the year, we will cover all the same things you are accustomed to from last year as I get more in-depth than anyone else when it comes to holds. Some don’t care or are on the fence, as if it’s a completely comical or made up stat. It is no more made up then saves, because that is exactly what it is, just before the save… so it is basically a pre-save. Either way, I care and will give you some early trends to look at and some names to go with it. Trends rule everything around bullpens or TREAB, dolla dolla bill y’all.Please, blog, may I have some more?
And if Vince V. is so money, it would make the Padres a bunch of Swingers. Seriously, tell me Vince Velasquez wasn’t money? He struck out 16, baby. He only gave up three hits, baby. He is a beautiful baby, baby. C’mon, he’s so money. You gotta grab him, baby, you gotta. Call him up on waivers, go ahead, c’mon, baby, call him up. “Hi, uh, this is a random fantasy baseballer, which is, uh, Grey’s mom’s term. I saw you struck out 16, uh, Padres, in a shutout and I was, uh, wondering–” Machine beeps. Call back, baby! Velasquez wants you to! “Hi, Mr. Velasquez, it’s me again. Ha, silly movie answering machines always shutting off prior to a message ending. I mean, who even has answering machines like this anymore–” Machine beeps. C’mon, baby! You’re almost through that message! Then you can go on to direct Iron Man and be the namelganger for a Washington speech writer, while I can go do a lot of blow with Jennifer Aniston and singlehandedly ruin True Detective playing essentially myself. You gotta, baby! You are so money! So, Vince Velasquez went 9 IP, 0 ER, 3 hits, zero walks, 16 Ks, and if he’s still on waivers in your league, I want to be in your league. Yes, you should grab, like yesterday (preferably before his last start). Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
No, you haven’t stumbled onto a WebMd bait page. Well… this is an advisory blog, none the same, but we won’t scare you into believing that you have clinical depression with every symptom. I mean, I’ve seen some other fantasy sites that attempt to advise on bullpen strategy. It’s easy to throw stuff up about closers and bullpens and say this guy will fail because of this and that. Heck, I like watching Jeopardy and guessing at the stuff I don’t know about either. Add in the fact that I remember my first beer… So this is one of the last pieces of the fantasy bullpen puzzle before we get down to brass tacks. The NSVH question… I always get it from the fantasy inspectors of the net of how and what to do about it. Do I stick with what I know, or do I go complete rover and draft whatever, whenever? That’s why I am here, hopefully to quell all ills in the race for bullpen dominance. The NSVH leagues are tricky and can be described as: people don’t know until they have to know. I know that really isn’t a draft strategy that I am going to “learn” you with this post, since I am better than that and take pride in leading my disciples into reliever bliss. So go get a comfy seat upon the porcelain throne of fantasy knowledge and let me guide you, for I am the fantasy bullpen shepherd.Please, blog, may I have some more?
What if I told you that the top-four teams last year in Holds didn’t make the playoffs? I know the obvious answer would be: it’s a made-up stat that does nothing but clog a fantasy roster with fodder and otherwise un-rosterable relievers. Well, if you said that out loud, then I am mad at you and you can not come to the Razzball Winter Dance Carnival. No, but seriously, I get offended when people make such determinations. Listen, you are either in a league that uses Holds or you aren’t. Not all of these guys is basically like having a second doorstop (when one doorstop will do). Many of these guys are usable in most formats as ratio gaps in K/9, looking for cheap wins or for a slow day of waiver wire madness. My theory on any league is to roster any two relievers that are non-closers at all times. At worst, they decimate your rates for one day. At best they give you an inning or two and give you great rates and a few K’s. Now, for Holds leagues, I am a hoarder. I live by this simple motto. Two pairs and a wild, just like five-card poker. It stands for two closers, two stud holds guys, and a streamer. In moves leagues, it’s a little more difficult to do, but in non-move limited league, it’s a fun way to just basically win your Holds category by August, save yourself the innings/starts and then stream the holy hell out of the last seven weeks. So since you have searched around the web and found zero other info on the topic (yeah, I looked, so take that), here are the holds tiers and sleepers for the 2016 year.
“A Hold is credited any time a relief pitcher enters a game in a Save Situation, records at least one out, and leaves the game never having relinquished the lead. Note: a pitcher cannot finish the game and receive credit for a Hold, nor can he earn a hold and a save.” ~ The edited out part of the Emancipation Proclamation, Abraham Lincoln.Please, blog, may I have some more?