A.J. Smith-Shawver was called up yesterday. A.J. Smith-Shawver began pitching in 2020. You watched Tiger King; A.J. Smith-Shawver developed a 96 MPH fastball. You stuck a cotton swab up your nose; A.J. Smith-Shawver perfected an 88 MPH slider. You wiped down groceries from Door Dash; A.J. Smith-Shawver learned how to throw a 85 MPH change. You are not the same. He’s 20 years old! Wanna feel old? He graduated high school in 2021. Wanna feel dumb? You went to college; he went to the majors! This is why I love the Braves. They’re not afraid of promoting prospects. Take note, Reds! A.J. Smith-Shawver looks like he could surprise in the majors, like Spencer Strider did last year. Too much pressure for a prospect? Please. A.J. Smith-Shawver went up four levels this year. What do I have to show for the last two months? A bunion? A.J. Smith-Shawver is the Doogie Howser of MLB. Stop overachieving, you’re making me feel bad! By the way, if the Braves get Max Fried back, their rotation will include Jew, Jew, Smith-Shuster. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
Bryce Elder – 7 1/3 IP, 1 ER, 8 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 1.92. The 2014 Teheran is so strong with this Elder.
JP Sears – 6 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 2 Ks, ERA at 4.37. Solid start for a deep league, but he has no chance for wins ever, and his Ks are kinda middling. Not really a guy you can carry in 12 teamers or shallower.
Cedric Mullins – Hit the IL with a right groin strain. I bet some fantasy baseballers would trade groins with Cedric. Wait, what? To replace Cedric Mullins, the Orioles went out and signed Aaron Hicks. Here’s hoping you have better options.
Joe Ryan – 4 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 2.77. “Everyone meet up at exactly 4.00 ERA!” That’s all MLB pitchers.
Brandon Bielak – 5 2/3 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 3.19. Wanna hear some luck of the FAAB draw? I had $1 bids in for Faedo and Bielak, and guess who I got. *Tommen falling out the window*
Ben Lively – 5 2/3 IP, 0 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 1.99. Welp, I wrote off Lively as being a 31-year-old innings eater that I can ignore, but now I have to look into him more. Dot dot dot. And he still seems like a 31-year-old innings eater that I can ignore. His peripherals do look excellent, but his stuff was so uninteresting. I watched the first four innings of this game, and the Red Sox loaded the bases at one point and I was like, “Here comes the thunder,” and the clouds just passed. I can’t get into Lively outside of NL Only leagues, and Streamonator agrees.
Eduardo Rodriguez – Hit the IL with an index finger pulley rupture. This happens when someone doesn’t have to fart and has their finger pulled. For what it’s Cronenworth, Wainwright had a similar injury and missed ten weeks. Not saying all players are the same, or this is the same degree of injury, but there’s that.
Riley Greene – Left yesterday’s game wincing. Ugh, the worst one of the Seven Dwarves!
Alex Faedo – 4 1/3 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 5.54. Every pitcher I touch turns to crap. My hands have wrought garbage!
Josh Jung – 3-for-5, 3 runs, 2 RBIs and his 12th homer. Geez, now he’s hitting homers before people even get a chance to get tired of him and want to drop him.
Martin Perez – 4 2/3 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 4.43. As someone who doesn’t have Perez anywhere, thank you, Regression Fairies! I’m sorry so many terrible MLB pitchers are intolerant of you.
Aaron Judge – 1-for-3, 2 runs and his 18th homer. It’s almost like, bear with me here, I’m still forming my thoughts, Judge is, I don’t know, good?
Anthony Volpe – 1-for-5, 3 RBIs and his 8th homer. Everyone is going to go 20/20 this year. So, grain of salt. Volpe absolutely is, but might hit .210.
Isiah Kiner-Falefa – 4-for-5, 4 RBIs, hitting .243, but near-.400 in the last week, and he’s been one of the top shortstops on the 7-day Player Rater. Israeli Diner Falafel pairing with teams that need average better than couscous.
Nestor Cortes – 5 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners (3 BBs), 6 Ks, ERA at 5.16. If you want to take a positive away from that start, you can, but three walks in five innings is far from how he can be effective.
Logan Gilbert – 4 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 4.08. Just got done praising Gilbert after his last start, and now his ERA is over 4, like everyone else, so there’s that.
J.D. Martinez – 1-for-3, 3 RBIs and his 12th homer, third homer in three games. Put your dong on a furnace and that’s how hot Just Dong is right now.
Jason Heyward – 2-for-2, 2 RBIs and a slam (6) and legs (2). Heyward edging ahead of Cody Bellinger for “Inexplicable fantasy contributor who switched teams between the Cubs and Dodgers.” Of course, there’s not a ton of candidates.
Freddie Freeman – 4-for-5, 2 runs and his 10th homer. Freeman just gets better and better. He’s too old for that, but here we are.
Miles Mikolas – 8 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 3.75. Miles almost went the distance! Bam! High five me! No? Okay. You’re right. Another serviceable starter I have on so many teams that you could’ve had in literally any draft.
Giovanny Gallegos – 1 IP, 1 ER, ERA at 2.38, and his 7th save. Not feeling real good about my Helsley shares. A change feels afoot. “Did you say a foot?” That’s Quentin Tarantino. Hope I’m wrong, and I’m holding Helsley for now, but he needs to come out and be better next time.
Adbert Alzolay – 2 IP, 0 ER, ERA at 2.42, and his 2nd save. He’s like the Michael King of the Cubs. They’re at a disadvantage for saves because they can be used whenever, and are the best relievers on the team.
Kyle Hendricks – 5 IP, 1 ER, 9 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 3.86 vs. Shane McClanahan – 5 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 2.07. This was a matchup billed as, “One of the worst pitchers vs. one of the best, and the worst gave up less runs than the best because baseball is a riddle wrapped in an enigma inside a puzzle surrounded by an emoji saying, ‘Hmm.'”
Shohei Ohtani – 1-for-4 and his 13th homer. But I have him in my pitcher slot so *grins after being punched* Things are great!
Taylor Ward – 2-for-4 and his 5th homer. “Listen, we can’t carry him down this hill, but if we carve out his body we can use it as a sleeping bag–Hold up! Ward moved! He’s alive!” On a side note, he’s hit two leadoff homers in his career, both against Lucas Giolito. So, Ward’s heating up or Giolito is kinda meh? *girl in the commercial for taco shells* Why not both?
Romy Gonzalez – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and a slam (3) and legs (3), and his third straight game with a homer. Watch out, Dale Long! Holy schmotatoes, Batman!
Corbin Carroll – 1-for-2, 2 runs and a slam (9) and double legs (15, 16). The polar opposite of Ketel. He’s so fantastically exciting. I love him so much!
Connor Joe – 1-for-4 and his 6th homer. Where’d he come from, where’d he go? Colorado/Pittsburgh.
Kodai Senga – 7 IP, 1 hit, zero walks, 9 Ks, ERA at 3.44. Don’t look now but–Dude, open your eyes–Senga is nine scoreless innings away from having a sub-3 ERA.
Ranger Suarez – 6 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 7 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 7.13. As someone who watched this start, Suarez looked great. Was out-pitched, certainly — or soitenly if Curly is reading — but he looked better, and he’s usually a serviceable starter.
Jesse Winker – Hit the IL with a neck discomfort. Funny to have this dude go to the IL the same time as Cedric Mullins and EdRod. Two serious-sounding injuries, then you have Winker who’s like, “I don’t like the hotel pillow, my necky is sore.”
William Contreras – 1-for-2, 2 RBIs and his 6th homer, and 2nd homer in two games. Catcher questions in 3, 2, 1…
Yusei Kikuchi – 5 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners (5 BBs), 4 Ks, ERA at 4.47. Like a dog that flinches when its master raises the newspaper, I reach to pick up a starter, and my hand starts to tremble and I start muttering, “Grayson.”
Sandy Alcantara – 6 1/3 IP, 4 ER, 10 baserunners (5 BBs), 3 Ks, ERA at 4.93. Ya know Sandy’s been bad when he’s allowing that many walks and any runs vs. the Padres. If you didn’t know, the Padres are very bad offensively. It’s wild to think of Sandy Alcantara being a Streamonator call, and we’re not there yet, but we’re also not that far away.
Bryan De La Cruz – 3-for-4, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 7th homer, as he hits leadoff, and 2nd homer in the last four games. Give me one BDLC! (Bacon, Domato, Lettuce and Cheese, naturally.) He also seems like a hot schmotato.
Jesus Sanchez – 1-for-1 as he was activated from the IL, but he didn’t start. JFC his playing time. That’s JFC as in, Jesus’s Fingers Crossed.