As spring training takes off, we, the wonderful people of Razzball, thought it would be a good idea to look into some intra-team rivalries. What positions are a lock? What positions are being fought over? What positions will they hire me to fill-in for (second base Blue Jays, I’m looking at you)? Find out as the second part of this series will focus on AL Central… (You can check out the NL East Spring Training Preview here.)Please, blog, may I have some more?
We got starters for days, literally and Urbandictionaryly. The other day I went over our top 20 starters for 2014 fantasy baseball, then I went over my top 40 starters for 2014 fantasy baseball. Today, the title of the post might’ve gave it away, but for those that skipped it, this is the top 60 starters for 2014 fantasy baseball. You could probably get away with waiting until this post to draft your first starter. To put that in perspective, Medlen is ranked 134 in the top 400 (that I’ll post in a few days). So, in a 12 team league, you could have 11 picks prior to your first starter. That’s, oh, I don’t know, five outfielders, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, corner infidel and middle infidel. I’m not saying to do that, but it’s possible. Basically, you can have your whole offense and still put together a pitching staff. If you don’t believe me, you insult Al Gore who invented the internet as a portal for fantasy baseball advice. All the 2014 fantasy baseball rankings are there. As always, I point out where tiers start and stop and my projections. Anyway, here’s the top 60 starters for 2014 fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
To be fair, I’m here to cover deep leagues with these posts and I don’t know if this pitcher applies given how his 2013 season went and how JB Gilpin gushed all over him in his Pitcher Profile of him last year. But then I remembered some of y’all forget that guys who didn’t reach the IP minimum to qualify on certain lists count too and said to myself ‘Oh Em Gee, these kids gotta start doing better research. They need my help!’ Thus was the beginning of this beautiful Corey Kluber sleeper story born, and after wiping all the afterbirth and poo off of it, I bring it to you. Though… I’m not quite ready to cut the umbilical cord on it. You may have to wait a few more wasted opening sentences for that. Sorry, can’t be helped. Grey tells me repeatedly that I must maintain a 200 minimum word count in these openers and that if I dip below that, the bus we’re driving will explode. Which is a weird thing to say considering we’re not on a bus. I’d call it more a minivan. Rudy is mumbling about SIERRA and WAR in his sleep in the back, Tehol is working on his flow by watching Gary The Snail rap (NSFW), JFOH is putting his gum in Mike’s hair, Jaywrong is making Jennifer Lawrence gifs on his laptop, and Tom Jacks is busy reading the politics section of the newspaper. Ha, Tom…what a nerd! But all this to say, Grey is driving this band of misfits while wearing mom jeans so we must abide. But enough about the Razzball Family life, let’s trudge on. So let’s look at why Kluber should be on your radar in deep leagues for the 2014 Fantasy Baseball season…Please, blog, may I have some more?
Two weeks ago we looked at the speedsters from 2013 and there were more than a few names on the list that were available on the waiver wire at some point. For deeper leagues and daily fantasy players that need to maximize each and every matchup, even the smallest advantages can mean the difference between a win and a loss. That’s why we focused a lot on matchups this past year, and we’ll do it again in 2014. Even the best base stealers get caught once in a while, so it’s good to know as much as we can about who might be doing the catching before deploying our fantasy lineups. There’s a lot that goes into a stolen base, of course, and the battery of pitcher and catcher is a large piece of the puzzle. Pitchers who are good at holding baserunners can be avoided while pitchers who have a tendency to cough up a lot of steals can be exploited. Here’s how some starters fared in 2013 and over the last three years against the stolen base.Please, blog, may I have some more?
So, how’s everyone holding up without fantasy baseball every day? I don’t know what to do with myself! This weekend I wandered into a Starbucks and told the coffeerista about Giancarlo Stanton for 2014. Then I laughed hysterically for a good twenty minutes until someone asked me to leave. We’ve gone over the final 2013 fantasy baseball rankings for hitters and the top 20 starters. There’s no more of these godforsaken recap posts left before we’re into 2014 fantasy baseball. You’re welcome. Well, there are Rudy’s recaps of every fantasy sites projections that are coming eventually; I’m guessing they’ll be posted while I’m on my honeymoon. But I’m not sure, because I’ll be sipping motherf**king daiquiris while contemplating adultery for the first time. I got lust in my heart like Jimmy Carter! (That would be the worst rap lyric of all time.) Anyway, here’s the top 40 starters for 2013 fantasy baseball and how they compare to where I originally ranked them:Please, blog, may I have some more?
We started this thing like boys and four girls (but, let’s be honest, one or two of the girls are kinda manly), and we leave this season as men and four women. In March, we dazzled each other with our drafted lineups in the comments. Today, most of those people are playing fantasy football, fantasy basketball or fantasy hockey and forgetting all about their one-two punch of Ryan Braun and Josh Hamilton, that, in their words, they were just shocked to be able to draft both. Fantasy baseball isn’t made for the water cooler like the Breaking Bad finale — holy crap! — it’s made for the vending machine, because you don’t walk away from your team to talk. You rush away to get snacks and run those snacks back to your team, so you can watch as your team accrues stats or just ‘a-screws’ you. Some of you will sit with your fantasy team’s lineup open on your desktop through November like it has been for the last six months, hoping for one more day to save your season. Some of you will just close that team lineup browser window, ripping off the Band-Aid. But even if the lineup isn’t open, the player’s names will be burned into your screen because you shut off your screensaver six months ago. You should go ahead and turn that back on, or buy a new monitor. If you won your league, the salary hours you put into your teams could’ve saved the economy. Well, eff the economy, you won bragging rights! If you won your league with Henderson Alvarez and his no-hitter, then God bless your foresight, but I wouldn’t be shocked if you were really a witch. Conspiracy Theory Alert! The Tigers are securely in the playoffs and Henderson Alvarez is in the on-deck circle. Bases are juiced with two outs. The Tigers don’t want extra innings right before the playoffs and the Marlins can’t score with a prostitute and a roofie. Leyland sends the pitching coach out and tells Putkonen throw a breaking ball to the backstop and give the kid the no hitter. Either way, what a great way to end the baseball season. A sport that you just can’t ever predict gives a guy no one would’ve predicted a no hitter. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Michael Wacha was within an out of a no-hitter yesterday when Zimmerman hit a bouncer to shortstop, which he barely beat out. Ryan Zimmerman doesn’t want the world to see joy. He’s a joy killer. Every time some 14-year-old writes jk jk jk. They’re not abbreviating ‘just kidding,’ they’re really talking about Ryan Zimmerman joy killing. For a moment, I was on board with The Joy Killer because I don’t need Wacha getting hyped up anymore than necessary for next year. You hear Wacha I’m talking about? You like Wacha I’m working with? Wacha you say to that? Okay, I want to stop replacing what with Wacha, but I can’t. Wacha can I do?! There is gonna be an insane amount of young pitchers next year that I’ll be eyeing, and Wacha is yet another one. In 64 2/3 IP this year, he had a 9+ K/9, 2.61 xFIP and a 2.64 BB/9. Yes, please, come again. I could see this 22-year-old giving you a Shelby Miller-type season next year, maybe even, dare I say it, Matt Harvey. That’s Wacha I’m talking about! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Gerrit Cole has filthy stuff. He can hit 100 MPH with his fastball and make all four of our girl readers go, “Ooh…” Which reminds me of my Walk on the Wild Side remixed chorus, “And the four girl readers go doo do doo do doo do do doo.” There was a whole lot of nonsense, or whole lotta if we stick with the rock theme, when he was first called up that Cole didn’t want to strike people out. Does Alf not want to get back to Melmac?! Does macaroni not mean awesome when Yankee Doodle stuck a feather in his cap and called it macaroni!? Does everyone with glasses not look goofy on a 1980′s baseball card?! Ron Kittle? I rest my case! Of course, Cole wants to strike out guys. You can’t stop that! Yesterday, he struck out 12 of them. In 111 1/3 IP this year, he has a 7.60 K-rate and if you throw out June, when he was saying that nonsense about throwing to contact, his K-rate would be near 9. Oh, bee tee dubya, everything else is purdy, too. His FIP is 2.98, his walk rate is barely over 2, he gets ground balls. For 2014 fantasy baseball, Cole could easily be a top 20 starter for all of baseball and will be someone I’ll get plenty googly about this offseason. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Felix Hernandez was scratched from his Wednesday start with an oblique strain. Guys and four girl readers, you can’t be too precious with your guys. That whole credo “dance with the one who brought you” is real cavalier. You’re a real gentleman as you lounge about in sweat pants while your woman cooks you dinner. It’s honorable. Remind me to submit you to the Reader’s Digest Five Humans That Make A Difference contest. It’s also silly for fantasy baseball. Save your loyalty for your kids when they ask you, “Daddy, do you like me more than your automobile?” Or, “Daddy, how come you were hugging the mail lady for ten minutes with your hands on her butt?” Forget your loyalty for your starting pitchers (or hitters). Felix could throw this weekend to see if he can start again this year. If you’re strapped for space, I’d absolutely look elsewhere. What’s the worst thing that happens? You miss two starts from him? His last starts weren’t even great. You could find better starts off of waivers. Look at me having faith in you! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
We’re almost into mid-September, which means the fantasy season is growing a little long in the tooth. It’s a stressful time for those of us still alive in H2H land — the fantasy baseball playoffs can be a depleting time for both your liquor cabinet and your liver functionality. It doesn’t help, then, that this is the time of the year when managers — especially those of teams out of contention — like to mess around with their starting rotations. I don’t blame them; it makes perfect developmental sense for the White Sox, or any other team, to move to a six-man rotation in order to see what they have in arms like Andre Rienzo or Erik Johnson. But as a weekly leaguer, this sort of rotation shuffling can be maddening if you’re trying to gauge the two-start landscape. This is all to say that now, more than ever, it’s imperative that you check and re-check the probable pitchers prior to locking your weekly lineup. Good luck in the playoffs, my friends.
As always, probable pitchers are subject to change. For a look at all fantasy baseball streamers, click that link.Please, blog, may I have some more?