Wow. Dot, dot, dot. I mean, WOW. Dot, dot, dot. Pause for reaction. WOW. Wow. WOW. Stunned silence. I mean, we all knew the suspension was coming, but everyone also figured he’d appeal it like Papa Smurf, you know, until he was blue in the face. The only explanation is the MLB had him dead to rights, which isn’t the same as an epitaph for a pigeon you feed instant rice; that’s dead to rice. Ryan Braun probably realized that 1) The Brewers aren’t going anywhere this year. 2) He’s injured. 3) There’s no three. With the suspension of the Jewish Braun by the Jewish Selig, Selig becomes the 1st Jew ever sanctioned by the Jewish Anti-Defamation League, but Selig received high marks from the Jewish Self-Deprecation League. “As Selig was suspending Braun, Bud also pointed out how he had to bring out his media-friendly toupee,” said Jewish Self-Deprecation League president, Yitz Steinberg. Mr. Steinberg added, “That kind of self-deprecation is hard to pull off.” Obviously, Braun is droppable in all redraft leagues, and, if you’re holding onto an expensive Braun in keepers, I’d look to drop him there too, if I needed the room. The good news is you can find off of waivers what Braun has been giving you thus far this year. The bad news, now they have to add an asterisk to the Famous Jewish Athlete pamphlet. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
Matt Garza – Traded to the Rangers for Justin Grimm, Mike Olt and others. The Rangers have nixed the idea of calling him Garzilla to avoid frightening Yu Darvish. This obviously isn’t the best landing place for a starter, but when was the last time the Padres traded for someone midseason, so this is what we have to work with. Garza’s lifetime ERA at Arlington is 6.04 in 28 1/3 IP. That doesn’t mean anything, really. It’s too small of a sample to work with, as the ladies tell me. In two months, he could as easily have a 2.75 ERA as a 4.75 ERA. Look, in Wrigley this year he had a 4.73 ERA, but he had a career 2.70 ERA in Wrigley in 190 1/3 IP. Yes, the odds are against him in Texas. No, it doesn’t mean he’s done. He will at least have a better chance of winning and he has been solid as a starter in the AL East before, so these two months in Arlington could go either way.
Mike Olt – The Rangers hate them some upside cornermen. First, they trade away Chris Davis, now they’re losing Olt without giving him any sort of chance, so they can rent a starter. Obviously, Texas men value more land and more arms. That’s Mitch Moreland. The Cubs really need to move on from the Valbuena/Ransom blahtoon. Or as it’s called in-house — ‘som-Buena, as in maybe some good will come of it. They needed to move on from it five months ago, but Ian Stewart is a worse Twitterer than Logan Morrison and Alec Baldwin’s wife combined. I don’t think Olt’s ready yet to join the Cubs (has 10 homers and a .207 average in Triple-A while striking out more than a third of the time), but we’ll probably see him in September when rosters expand.
Justin Grimm – Headed to the Cubs. He has a 6.37 ERA in 89 IP. Grimm, indeed. He could have some match-ups appeal in NL-Only leagues, but he’s not an every time out starter. He does have some life on his fastball and terrific command (up until this year), so there’s some promise, but, as always, put promise in one hand and doodie in the other hand and you’re going to get committed to a sanitarium because you have doodie in your hand.
Christian Yelich – Called up by the Marlins. Whoa, a lot happened yesterday, huh? So the 2010 first round pick by the Marlins got the call and it seems highly unlikely he would do anything but play. It was slightly curious that the Marlins sent down Ozuna in a corresponding move. That might just be until they can trade Ruggiano for three cents on the dollar. “Ruggiano for a Tim Teufel autograph? Okay, let’s do it!” That’s Loria deep in negotiations. Prospect Scott had this to say about him, “Yelich is among the purest hitters in the minors — in the same class as guys like Oscar Taveras and Wil Myers. In 447 PA at High-A in 2012, the 20-year-old hit .330/.404/.519 with 12 homers and 20 stolen bases. Then in Double-A this year he had 7 homers, 5 steals and a .277 average. He’s so good it almost makes me forget my hatred of Grey.” Hey, c’mon! Yelich is a guy you grab in every league to see if he can produce immediately in the majors. My guess is the other guy called up with him will outproduce him in the short-term. Speaking of which…
Jake Marisnick – Also called up by the Marlins. First, let’s see what Prospect Scott said, “Marisnick could use some more seasoning in the high minors, but Miami fans will be clamoring for something to root for outside of Giancarlo Stanton, and Marisnick could serve as a useful pacifier. He’ll offer value in AVG, HR, and SB once up. He makes it easy to get excited, unless looking at Grey’s stupid face.” Wow, I don’t remember reading any of this stuff the first time around. Marisnick is the guy I grabbed in all leagues. More because Yelich was already taken, but Marisnick has a chance to be more productive this year in redraft leagues. In keepers, obviously Yelich is the guy you want. Marisnick, no relation to our podcast host, hit 12 homers, stole 11 bases and hit .295 this year. There’s a very good chance that Yelich and Marisnick both hit around .220 and are not helpful this year, but I’d absolutely grab both.
Yu Darvish – 6 1/3 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 4 Ks. Picked up right where he left off. Did Cy Young have a great-grandson born in Asia that no one knows about? Probably. I will call him Cy Yu.
Nelson Cruz – 2-for-4 and his 23rd homer. Cruz is like a little kid who is told they can’t have dessert until they finish their vegetables, then stuffs his vegetables into his pockets. “Okay, Selig, I’ll do my suspension right after I hit my 30 homers on the year.”
Elvis Andrus – 1-for-3 with two steals (20, 21). Could the Rangers trade this guy so Profar can play? Not a rhetorical, more of a wish fulfillment exercise.
Alex Rodriguez – Refused to answer questions when interviewed by MLB about Biogenesis. Sitting by A-Rod’s side was his attorney, Mark McGwire.
Curtis Granderson – Played in a simulated game and said, “This is like the first couple of days before the first Spring Training game.” Make sure no one mentions to him that it’s July. That could leave him totally disorientated. In fact, everyone around him wear winter clothes and ear muffs.
Logan Schafer – 0-for-2, 1 run and his 4th steal as he filled in for a day-to-day Carlos Gomez, but Logan should take over most of the at-bats for Braun. (BTW, I Googled if Schafer was Jewish, and I only found Razzball results. We are dominating SEO for Jews and fantasy baseball!) Schafer reminds me of a poor man’s Will Venable, I will call him Maybe Able. He has some slight power/speed and is not quite 12-team mixed league capable yet.
Andrew Cashner – 6 IP, 3 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks vs. the Brewers. In related news, the Brewers are a mess offensively.
Scott Feldman – 8 IP, 2 ER, 7 baserunners, 3 Ks. Someone sees an opening and is making a play on moving up in the Famous Jewish Athlete pamphlet.
J.J. Hardy – 3-for-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 17th homer. If you picked up Hardy off waivers in March, you’re laughing all the way to the bank — Hardy HaR HaR.
Nate McLouth – 2-for-3, 1 run. His out-of-nowhere speed has evaporated recently, but he’s hitting near .500 in the last week, so stop your moaning.
Henry Urrutia – 3-for-5, 1 RBI. Lot of people had lardons for Puig, but I hear nary a pweep for Urrutia. Verrrrrry int-westing.
Brad Ziegler – Diamondbacks named him the closer. Kevin Towers is obviously looking to raise his trade value so he can trade him like he did Bauer and Scherzer. Towers said, “My bumper sticker doesn’t read ‘I’m sour on Krauts’ for nothing.” I’d absolutely own Ziegler in all leagues, as I said yesterday, last Friday, last Monday…Well, every time I’ve mentioned him in the last two weeks. Thanks for reading!
Josh Rutledge – Sent to Triple-A. James Ingram’s song Just Once comes to mind. “Can we figure out what Rutledge’s been doing wrong? Why the good times never last for long? Where is Rutledge going wrong? Make the magic last for more than just one night. Just once… I want to understand why does Rutledge always come back to goodbye? Why can’t Tulo hurt his hand and Rutledge takes the best and makes it better? Just once…”
Troy Tulowitzki – 2-for-4 and his 17th homer. Just once! Sorry, now it’s stuck in my head.
DJ LeMahieu – 3-for-4 and six for his last 13. Hasn’t stolen any bags in July, but did swipe eight in June, so DJ’s not only quick on the turntables.
Jonathan Villar – 1-for-4, 1 run and his 1st steal as he hit leadoff. For the first time all year, I think the Astros have the right man hitting first. Our steals guru, Mike, just went over his Jonathan Villar fantasy. If I needed SAGNOF, I’d grab him immediately. Villar, not Mike.
Junior Lake – 4-for-5, 3 RBIs and his first homer. See that Villar link in the above blurb? Click on it and you will be transported to Jr. Lake dot info.
Josh Reddick – 1-for-3, 2 RBIs and his 5th homer. He should have a lot more stats in his bat, so if he’s on waivers, he’s worth monitoring like a cyclops with a monocle.
Dan Haren – 5 IP, 5 ER. Someone offered us Haren in a trade on Sunday. I shouldn’t have even bothered responding, but I’m a good person. Unlike Haren.
Jayson Werth – 2-for-4, 4 RBIs and his 13 and 14th homer. That’s four homers in the last two days. Maybe his beard finally reached full-productivity length to generate power.
Adam LaRoche – 1-for-2, 3 runs and his 14th homer. He’s historically a 2nd half hitter, or as they say in history class, he’s a classically trained 2nd half hitter.
Charlie Morton – 6 2/3 IP, 3 ER, 7 baserunners, 5 Ks, 3.35 ERA on the year. As they say in the euphemism class at the Fantasy Baseball College of Charleston, Morton’s a better real life pitcher. That clarifies he’s not good for fantasy and isn’t a cartoon.
Andrew McCutchen – 2-for-5, 4 RBIs and his 13th and 14th homer. Now has five homers in the last six games. The Dread Pirate bringing booty to all his fantasy baseballer boys and four girls.
Jason Grilli – Threw a pitch and walked off the mound with a forearm injury. I.e., Grilli’s cooked. Enter stage right, Mark Melancon, your new Pirates closer. I love it when a plan comes together! Or me plan comes together, if you’re an evil leprechaun. If your league’s competitive, Melancon is already owned. If your league’s not competitive, then grab Melancon and send an email to your leaguemates and tell them they suck.
Josh Johnson – 2 IP, 5 ER, 5.66 ERA. I bet Johnson wishes the Mayans were right.
Steve Delabar – 1 IP, 4 ER. You’re killing me, Smalls! I dropped Cecil the other day because he started forking over runs like a forkin’ run-forker and now I’m done with Delabar. Kiss my grits, Blue Jay relievers!
Melky Cabrera – 2-for-4, 1 run, 1 RBI and 1 wasted website designed for Braun.
Matt Kemp – Will sit out the entire Blue Jays series with his homeless ankle. Oops, I overused my thesaurus there.
Mark Ellis – 2-for-4, 1 run, 1 RBI. Elias Sports Bureau said this was the most hits for two Ellises since Doc Ellis dropped four hits and saw two of himself.
Yasiel Puig – 1-for-5, 1 RBI. Since youse can’t let my Chris Davis sell go (kidding, you can let it go), Puig was also a sell and his average has dropped 80 points in July. Also, the Dodgers said Puig would fill-in for the injured Kemp for the next few days. Okay, so where does Puig go when Kemp returns? Platooning with Ethier and Crawford? Things that make you go hmm…
Chris Carpenter – Said he’s not close to returning, which comes after he said he was close to returning, which comes after he said he was retiring, which comes after he said he’s not retiring. Carpenter, how do you build a house on a foundation of that willy-nilly?
Paul Maholm – Headed to the DL due to a a wrist contusion. His wrist woke up in a train in Maryland with a tattoo that read, “Black Mamba Loves Chicken Heads” with no recollection of how it happened. Oh, wait, that’s wrist confusion.
Alex Wood – Will be recalled to take Maholm’s spot on Thursday. Here’s what Prospect Scott said earlier this year, “A second round pick out of the University of Georgia last June, Wood was handed a Double-A assignment to begin 2013 (then moved up to Triple-A and the majors) and he’s been terrific (each step of the way). Deceptive arm angle and plus command to go with above average stuff has Wood thoroughly fooling hitters. There have always been concerns about his unusual mechanics, but early dominance at an upper level is hugely encouraging. He makes me happy, like an inverse-Grey.” Hmm, that’s not nice. Every time I want to avoid young starters another one comes along and strikes my fancy. My fancy has been stricken! I have a serious rookie nookie problem. I might need help. So, in one league I did grab Wood — hehe, not like that, silly! If you need some sweet, upsidey goodness with a chance of a roofie and ending up in an ice bathtub missing a kidney, I’d take a flyer too.
Dillon Gee – 7 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners (3 BBs), 3 Ks. Wasn’t a terrible start, obviously, but I watched the whole thing since I had Julio Teheran going (6 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks), and Gee looked all over the place. For a while it looked like he might get one of those ugly no-hitters where he doesn’t allow any hits and walks the stadium– “There’s no such thing as an ugly no-hitter!” Whoa, Nolan Ryan, no reason for a headlock.
Eric Young – 0-for-3, 2 steals. Potatoes to chips, 4-for-5 with two steals is sexy as f*ck as Stevie Janowski would say, but something about a guy getting two steals and no hits that gets my juices flowing.
Miguel Cabrera – Day-to-day with a sore hip flexor. Sounds like karaoke where Prince sings Chubby Checker classics isn’t going to be half as fun.
Victor Martinez – 4-for-5, 3 RBIs, average up to .270. Somewhere, Ron Popeil is smiling, and eating a piece of chicken.
Hernan Perez – 0-for-3, 2 runs and a steal. Only on the Tigers the ninth place hitter would go oh-for-three with two runs. Perez is filling in for Infante and has solid speed (25+ over the course of the season), but he’s just a short-term SAGNOF while Infante nurses back to health. Hehe, a nursing Infante.
Max Scherzer – 8 IP, 2 ER, 4 baserunners, 5 Ks, moving his record to 14-1 with a 3.14 ERA. Kevin Towers pffts in his general direction.
Chris Sale – 8 IP, 2 ER, 10 baserunners, 11 Ks, 2.81 ERA and a 6-9 record. As Murray Chass would say, Sale just doesn’t know how to win. As most sane people would say, the White Sox don’t know how to hit.
Dayan Viciedo – 1-for-3 and his 8th homer. He was on fire before the break and it looks like he has some hot schmotato left over in his aluminum foil wrapper.
Brandon Workman – 6 IP, 2 ER, 9 baserunners, 4 Ks. Trabajarsenor es grande muchacho naranjas en el cabeza, as the Bumblebee Man would say. Workman has decent stuff, and can locate (think 7+ K-rate and under 3 BB/9). Probably a number four eventually, but gets the O’s next, which isn’t good, but then could see the Diamondbacks and Astros, if Buchholz stays sidelined.
Matt Moore – 9 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners, 4 Ks vs. the Red Sox, moving his record to 14-3 with a 3.17 ERA. This start with only four Ks and one walk was pretty un-Moore-like, which is a nicer way of saying he was just a little Moore-on.
Ben Zobrist – 3-for-5, 1 run with his 7th steal, hitting near .400 in the last week and is about three months overdue like a very pregnant lady who doesn’t know she’s pregnant.
Mike Zunino – 2-for-3 and his 2nd homer as he caught The Harangtuan, which means the Mariners were going from chimpanzee A to chimpanZ.
Bronson Arroyo – 9 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners, 6 Ks. He looked solid, but he looked tremendous if you compare it to his guitar playing.
Shin-Soo Choo – 2-for-4 and his 14th homer. Imagine two magnets labeled with the number twenty. Then imagine Choo’s homers and steals are a refrigerator. Now put the magnets up on the right side of the refrigerator.
Devin Mesoraco – 3-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 5th homer. One of these years he’s going to be 10-team mixed league viable. One of these years, Alice!
Tim Lincecum – 3 2/3 IP, 8 ER. Lincecum’s marijuana use is a gateway drug to harder drugs for his fantasy owners.
Brian Wilson – Reportedly is game ready. So he hasn’t showered in weeks?