Have you not heard yet? The hottest goss (I promise no Avengers spoilers) is that the Los Angeles Angels will call up top prospect slash future OC-heartthrob Griffin Canning to start against the Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday. What a Friday for the rooks! We got Vlad, Kieboom, and Rengifo all in one night, and now Griffin Canning. It’s almost like a symbolic passing of the torch with all these young guys arriving this week. New replacing old, etc. And no, that was not an Endgame spoiler. Leave me alone, nerds! I haven’t even seen it yet you bought all the tickets! Normally, I’d save the prospect posts for Mike or Grey, but I don’t want you dear readers and even dearer web crawling robots missing out on another sexy call up this weekend. So let’s talk about Griffin Canning. Sounds like a very dangerous game or the new coolest extreme sport they might play at Hogwarts. Griffin’s got a 0.56 ERA, 0.94 WHIP and 17/2 K/BB ratio through his first three starts at AAA Salt Lake Bees (bzzz), which to be fair, looks a whole lot better than anything the Angels starters have been doing over the past four weeks. Canning features four solid pitches including his mid-90s fastball and a real nasty curve. His past struggles have all been related to his command but he’s thrown 66% of his pitches for strikes so far this year and the 3.3 BB% indicates he may have figured things out. Griffin doesn’t necessarily profile as an top end ace, but he could be a solid back of the rotation starter and help your fantasy team immediately. Rookie pitchers may be my kryptonite (not a spoiler), but what are you waiting for? The prospect sweepstakes has begun and Griffin Canning is worth a flier in all leagues. The Angels think he’s got the stuff to help them win right now and methinks he could do the same for you.

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

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Jordan Lyles was exceptional Friday night capturing his second win of the year going six strong innings allowing just four hits, a walk and striking out six. He now leads the league with a 0.53 ERA. Mazel tov, Jordan, and happy Pesach! Well, someone clearly did not observe the High Sabbath last night. He had better things to do, busy mowing down the San Francisco hitters. So is the Bucs pitching coach Ray Searage is a miracle worker or a Three Eyed Raven or some kind of warg magic man?? The Pirates pitching staff now boasts a league best 2.54 ERA. But back to Jordan. Lyles has now struck out 16 over his past two starts and holds some real pretty ratios like that league leading 0.53 ERA and a 0.88 WHIP with an 19/5 K/BB. Yes, more please. Put that on your seder plate. After the all star break last year, Lyles started relying more on a combination of his curve ball and 4-seam fastball and benefited from this greatly posting a 3.00 ERA with hitters batting just .213 against him. His curve ball, in particular, can be pretty nasty when its on and when he’s mixing in the 4-seamer effectively Jordan has looked like a dominant pitcher. Seems like he’s brought this strategy with him to Pittsburgh and things with Searage have clicked. He had his outing shortened Friday after taking a line drive off the hand but the injury does not appear to be serious and he is expected to make his next start Wednesday versus Arizona. Lyles is available in over 75% of fantasy leagues and worth your streaming consideration at the very least. He’s starting to look like a steal for Pittsburgh, and he seems like a real mensch you may not want to Pass over!

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

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After volunteering to have his first start of the season skipped last week (what a stand up guy!), Joe Musgrove opened his season with a seven inning gem, cruising through the Cinncinati Red Legs line up allowing just three hits and a walk and striking out eight for his first win of the year. Joe has always been a master with his control (just a 5% walk-rate in 2018 and he threw 18 first pitch strikes Friday night) but it’s them tasty strikeouts that make me go crazier than a shadow person in a Jordan Peele movie. The replicants have risen, and they’re here to steal all our best waiver wire acquisitions right before we’re about to click add. That’s why you have to grab Joe Musgrove while he’s still available in about 40% of fantasy leagues. Shadow Lupita Nyong’o would tell you Musgrove put up some of his best numbers down the stretch last year (August and September), when he started mixing in his off speed pitches more his strikeout rate increased as a result. She’s saying if he carries that mindset into this season he’s got all the tools to break out in a big way in 2019 and if Friday’s night performance was any indication (induced 17 swinging strikes) we’re about to see Pittsburgh’s prize from the Gerrit Cole trade finally pay off. Buy Joe Everything Musgrove!

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O Lourdes’, Yuli, give us the strength to win our final head-to-head match ups. Give us enough power to steal back those roto cats. Oh great and wise fantasy Lourdes…and Yuli, I know you can help us! Friday night baseball’s Gurriel brothers, Lourdes of the Blue Jays and Yuli of the Astros, each hit two home runs. You go, Gurriels! It was the first time in MLB history brothers had multi home run games on the same night or something, don’t quote me on that google it. Joe and Dom? Sandy and Roberto? So jelly right now! Sounds like a great STUMP trivia question in five years we’ll never remember the answer to. Honestly though, these are the kind of family-centric stories baseball needs right now! With these look-at-me showboating young guns and their home run trots, and their fortnite dances and their neon cleats and their racist tweets. They’re disrespecting the game! Anyway, Yuli Gurriel (3-for-4, 2 HR (12), 7 RBI) is likely already owned in most leagues you have any chance of winning at this point but little brother Lourdes Gurriel (3-for-4, 2 HR (11)) is still available in over 90% of leagues and he’s hitting .400 with three homers and seven RBI in the past week. Lourdes have mercy! more like it. What is your MI doing? If the Lourdes is doing better grab him while he’s hot! Dude’s got a brother in the big leagues–that’s called pedigree, my fake internet friends. Justin and Melvin Upton the ball is in your court. Wait is Melvin still in the league? Doesn’t matter. It’s not stopping Stephen and J.D., who I hear are already planning a comeback for the record! Only the good Lourdes can save us then.

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

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Mets outfielder/grandfather Jay Bruce hit his second home run in the past three days last night, a 3-run shot that put the game out of reach and he finished the night 2-for-5, with his eighth home run and four runs batted in. When Jay has-a-day at Fenway that calls for the throwback “Bruuuuuuuuce!” Despite battling injuries all year long, the veteran is now batting .270 with four home runs and 12 RBI in September and he’s getting hot at just the right time for his team and fantasy owners. The Mets have won seven games in a row, you guys! That’s right, that same Mets team that won just five games in June are 7-3 over their last 10 games! Why do you care? Well, Bruce’s mighty power bat could be a big reason why! There was also a rat in the dugout and on the field at ‘Family Friendly’ Fenway Friday night, and I’m inclined to say the New York Mess probably brought the plague with them, but at least no one has hand foot and mouth disease…yet. Barring him catching the black plague, Bruce might catch fire in the next couple days because that’s what Jay Bruce does, so I’m telling you now that all the signs are there for the beginning of an absolute tear and maybe you should grab him before that happens. It’s easy to forget he hit 37 home runs between New York and Cleveland last year. I’m not saying he gets to 30 home runs, or even 20, but the Mets are hot, Jay sits in the heart of this line up and one of a few players capable of a 5+ homer week. He was a BUY and he’s available in over 75% of leagues and the team is Queens in a fantasy gold mine right now. I can’t believe I’m saying that, what a wild season!

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

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Oakland A’s rookie outfielder slash speed demon slash rocket arm slash hot shot Ramon Laureano hit two home runs Friday night including his first career lead off bomb to which even Ricky Henderson nodded in approval. He became the first A’s player with two multi-home run games in his first 30 games and the rook upped his slash to .309/.387/568 with five bombs, 13 RBI, and let us not forget, a perfect 4-for-4 in steals chances. Yes, hashtag SAGNOF. That’s why we’re talking about him for 2018. Ramon lead off for just the second time in his young MLB career (he doubled twice leading off Wednesday) but considering such positive results, it’s likely he’ll see a lot more time there throughout the remainder of the season. Laureano held an .895 OPS with 13 homers and 11 steals in 63 games at AAA before his call up and has done nothing but excel since he got here. Everybody loves this guy! Is it because he delivered a game winner in his MLB debut? Is it because he has the potential to be a real life 5-tool player? Or is it because he plays defense like a gold glover and has an absolute cannon of an arm that would make Tom Brady blush. Sweet sassy molassy! I’m sorry I have to watch that again. And you’re sure I don’t get fantasy points for that? If, like most people, you’ve already moved on to fantasy football and are sad about your Leveons or your McKinnons, try to remember Ramon Laureano for your 2019 sleeper radar. But if you are still with us, and you need some speed and runs and average in the stretch run, go grab yourself a bowl of Ramon while he’s hot!

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

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Kendrys hit it? Yes he can. Blue Jays first baseman/DH Kendrys Morales homered in his fifth straight game Friday night and now has a total of six jacks in five nights! KEN-DRYS do it again!? I don’t know! The B-Jays have won four in a row and Morales extended his hitting streak to eight games and is hitting .571 in the past week with five multi hit games, seven runs scored and nine RBI. Kendrys is available in over half of fantasy leagues and he’s hotter than Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson’s sex life. Which I hear is very steamy. That was a fairly on trend reference though, right?  Speaking of trendy, it’s Players Weekend, HE’LL YALL! That means dope cleats, mostly ugly/funny uniforms (I can’t tell if I like the Rays hats or hate them so much), and of course: terrible nicknames. This is a good opportunity to tell if your favorite player has a good personality or not. Some of the nicknames are clever or fun (SABANERO SOY? yes please, and Brad Boxberger gets millennials), but if a guy just adds a -y or an -ie he’s probably a pretty lame dude so I guess it’s a good thing he’s so good at baseball. Kendrys chose to wear “MONINA,” which I tried Googling but couldn’t get a proper translation so I’ll just assume it means “Only Hits In August.” Well, it’s still August for another week and despite how long he chose to wait to get en fuego, Kendrys Morales was a BUY and is one of the hottest hitters in the league right and I’d ride him while he’s hitting all the baseballs.

Here’s what else I saw in fantasy baseball Friday night featuring more dumb nicknames than you’ve ever wanted:

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Despite what their owner, fan base, and majority of their players believe, the Washington Nationals remain in the playoff chase, just a half game out of the wild card. Bryce Harper’s dad has never doubted them for a second! So what’s changed? Has Juan Soto taken his game to Coke Zero levels? Is Bryce Harper single-handedly carrying the team on his mega swole back? It’s actually been Ryan Zimmerman who has really caught fire of late and has given them that extra spark that not even a players over involved father can provide. “Mr. Harper I’m going to ask you again to stay out of the showers. You can’t be in here. This is the last time I’m going to tell you this.”  Zimm went 1-for-4 with his 10th home run on Friday night as the Nats cruised past Miami. Since returning from a lengthy stay on the disabled list, Zimmerman is slashing .341/.417/.732 with four homers and 15 RBI. Those are Soto/Harper-esque numbers, folks! Despite his early season struggles, Zimm is a bat that demands to be owned across all fantasy formats due to the line up he hits in and his history of mashing dingers. Lucky for you, much of the fantasy baseball world has dog days disorder where they’ve moved on from baseball to trendy end-of-summer activities like “going outside” and preparing for fantasy football (check out this shameless plug and click the link for gridiron gold). This is our time to strike, my over-the-internet friends. When everyone else has given up. Ryan Zimmerman was a BUY and is under 50% owned, but not for much longer. Ignore what Bryce’s dad says about his team mates, I’d grab Zimm everywhere he’s still available.

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Rick Porcello was masterful Friday night, turning in one of the best, most efficient, pitching performances we’ll see all season, holding the New York Yankees to just one hit (a home run) and striking out nine for a complete game win. His only hiccups were a HBP to begin the game and a solo home run to rookie 3rd baseman Miguel Andujar, after which Porcello proceeded to retire the next 21 straight batters with ease. More like Siiiiick Rick, brah *shock emoji* Or Quick Rick? IMHO (the “H” stands for handsome) this was the best start we’ve seen from a Boston pitcher all season, and that’s saying something for a team with Chris Sale on it. The former Cy Young threw first-pitch strikes to 23 batters and threw 68 strikes of the the just 86 pitches to get through this one. Veintidos, which might be the worst nickname ever, moves to 14-4 with a 3.84 ERA and 1.16 WHIP.  Most amazing for me, however, was that a Yankees/Red Sox game took just 2 hours and 15 minutes! It was the fastest Boston/NY game since May 6, 1994! So keeping in that spirit I will wrap this up quick. The last two Sox pitchers to 1-hit the mighty Yankees line up facing the minimum batters were Pedro Martinez in 1999 and Roger Clemens in 1991, and those are some pretty great names to have in your company.

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Say cheese! Mike Moustakas was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers for outfielder and top prospect Brett Phillips along with right handed pitcher Jorge Lopez in a move that tells the baseball world that the Brewers really think they’re in this thing. Isn’t that adorable? Mil-ee-wauk-kay is Algonquin for “the good land,” and this is very good news for Moustakas and his owners if they’re not already in last place as Mike goes to one of the most hitter friendly ballparks for lefties in the entire league. Mike was slashing .249/.309/.468 with 46 runs, 20 home runs, 3 stolen bases and 62 RBIs through the first 98 games and I think it’s more than reasonable to expect he can improve upon these stats in Wisconsin. He’s received a huge upgrade not just to his home park but also a much better supporting line up (reuniting with former teammate Lorenzo Cain) and hitting around the likes of Ryan Braun, Christian Yelich and Travis Shaw (who will mostly likely move over to play second base). His counting stats should improve along with the power numbers and it’s all around just a grand ol’ time to own the Moose. Going the other way, highly touted prospect Brett Phillips was slashing .240/.331/.411 with 6 dingers, 25 RBI and 11 stolen bases at AAA and should be a regular in the Kansas City outfield going forward. He’s worth a speculative add in deep leagues based on his upside and should play every day. Jorge Lopez was serviceable out of the Brewers pen in 19.2 IP this season posting a 2.75 ERA, 1.48 WHIP and 15/13 K/BB. Meh is right but he’s a bullpen arm whose name we could hear a lot more of soon if/when Wily Peralta eventually pitches his way out of the closing gig. Overall, seems like a solid trade for both teams and unlike most of these dreaded deadline deals, this trade has more helpful implications for fantasy owners than usual. No one’s losing a closer or a starter or moving to an impossible division or ball park. This trade is basically a win for all of us involved, so let’s hear it for the new Milwaukee Moose!

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

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