MLB should put pinball flippers by each dugout, then every time you think someone is about to have a 1-2-3 inning, the ball is flipped out of the stadium for a home run.  “Looks like the ump is tossing that ball in the dirt to the ball boy–BANG! WHIZZ! BOOM! Wow, another home run, Roger!  This is crazy!”  “Just when you think you’ve seen everything to further enhance the game by adding offense, MLB has put in pinball flippers.”  “It’s pretty cool, Roger.”  “My name’s Bill.”  “Sure.”  So, yesterday the Dodgers and Phils traded blows and blown saves — Kenley Jansen (1/3 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 3.72) and Hector Neris (1/3 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 4.08). Both closers are safe as far as any pitcher is safe.  THEY’RE USING PINBALLS!  However, Jansen was limping, due to taking a comebacker off his ankle, so Pedro Baez might see some looks. The hero, or gyro depending on ethnicity, was Bryce Harper (2-for-3, 5 RBIs and his 17th homer, hitting .257).  On our Player Rater, he’s been about as valuable as Shin-Soo Choo and Max Kepler. Yup.  Then, yinging his yang, Max Muncy went 1-for-3, 2 runs with his 25th homer. Most home runs since April 17th of last year when Muncy debuted:  Yelich 67 HRs; Trout 63 HRs; Muncy 60 HRs. And people didn’t want to draft Muncy this preseason.  Yup…YUP!  Of course, no highlight reel in prose would be complete without Cody Bellinger (1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 34th homer).  Forget Bellinger, he’s the Bellingest. Yup…YUP…yup.  Also, getting in on the action, Scott Kingery went 2-for-4, 3 runs, 2 RBIs with his 13th homer, and his 2nd homer in two games. His average did drop about 100 points in the last three weeks, but he’s starting to pick it up again, and is still hitting towards the top of the lineup (2nd yesterday). Yup…YUP…yup…YuP.  Then yanging that yin, A.J. Pollock went 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 5th homer, and 12th homer in the last three games. If it wasn’t for Oscar Mercado, I’d say Pollock was the hottest bat in the majors.  I might say it anyway, but while crossing my fingers.  Right Brain, “LIAR!”  Yup…YUP…yup…YuP…yeppers.  Finally, Matt Beatty hit his 3rd homer.  Snap into a Batt Meatty!  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

“Alexa, for Amazon Prime Day can you order me Clorox?  Thank you, Alexa.  Now can you order me clips to hold my mouth and eyes open? Thanks, Alexa! Now can you order me a large man to pour the bleach into my mouth and eyes while shoving me into my oven? Oh, and Alexa, if you can get German Marquez to do it, that would be so appropriate!” German yesterday?  Guten tagged!  Here’s a visual metaphor for you:  A German U-boat filled with men, one toilet and only Taco Bell to eat for a blitzkrieg of runs.  Marquez is driving me insane but he is not an Uber ally, because he is dead to me.  Goodbye, Nazi In Exile, enjoy your long walks along the Chilean coast and your alpaca farm where you shave little German helmets on your animals. After 2 2/3 IP, 11 ER, ERA up to 5.12, I will never draft you again or any Rockies pitcher. I should’ve learned my lesson from Jon Gray last year! (Though, he’s been okay this year — shut up, Contrary Grey!)  In my deeper leagues, where I have no choice, I’ll still be sadly starting Marquez in away games.  *sees his next start is in Yankee Stadium* Lowercase yay!  He might be Deutschland but I’m Dunceland for owning him. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The last month the Gurriel father & son team, Yu-Lou-Gu, have been having is absolutely crazy. It’s the best father & son month since August 1984 with Yogi and Dale Berra. Only Yogi  and Dale’s great month wasn’t due to on-field play, but Yogi making a drug-sniffing dog’s handler laugh while Dale snuck an eight ball of coke through security at a Def Leppard concert. “If this leopard is deaf, what kind of singer is he gonna be?”  Oh, Yogi, you card!  Yesterday, Yuli Gurriel went 3-for-5, 3 RBIs and his 16th homer, hitting .281, as he continues his torrid pre-All-Star break pace.  He’s hitting close to .380 in July with eight homers.  That’s in 38 at-bats.  He has 11 homers in his last fifteen games.  Only one near as hot is his son, Lourdes. Hopefully, both Gurriels keep it going, knowing it ain’t over ’til the encore of Pour Some Sugar on Me. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Since there was only one game this week and players haven’t been able to get hot or cold or humid, this Buy/Sell is going to be slightly different. This Buy/Sell includes some players that are owned in more than 50% of leagues. Okay, that’s not different for the Sells, but it does change the Buys.   “Hello? No, I’m changing buys — B-U-Y-S.  Thanks, you too!”  That was GLAAD calling me about potential insensitivity. I have not triggered anyone in almost three days, unless you count that I told someone in Oregon that their state flag should be a cornucopia of Birkenstock and patchouli.  As for a Buy on Madison Bumgarner, you know that expression, “If you’re alive long enough, you will see a time when Samoans are skinny, petite men who request silver dollar-sized coconuts to cover their nipples.”  You don’t know it?  That’s because I just made it up!  Sucker! The expression I just made up is accurate, however (as far as I’m concerned, and, sadly, this isn’t a democracy, and I’m the one that matters).  The expression’s root is from the actual expression, “If you live long enough, you’ll experience everything.” I say this because who would’ve never thunk I’d be buying Bumgarner, ever. His 9.3 K/9 is the highest it’s been in three years; his walk rate of 1.9 is about as elite as it gets and he’s going to be pitching with a new team shortly, and you have to think that team will provide more win opportunities than the Aints. Also, Bumgarner strikes me as the type to get hyped up about competition, and a playoff race could bring out his best.  Unless he’s traded to the Dodgers, then the world might blow up. Was that why there were those earthquakes? Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Welcome, prematurely balding men and five women who are married to PBMs and decided if you can’t beat them, join them!  Make yourself comfortable, this is gonna be a long post.  Here, enjoy some coffee.  Oops, you just drank rat poison.  I should’ve used different mugs.  Don’t worry, it can’t be worse than owning Giancarlo Stanton in the 1st half.  Oh, you owned him, and that’s why you drank the poison!  Now, I’m following!   Hey, I’m supposed to be leading!  Before we get into the top 100 for the 2nd half of 2019 fantasy baseball, let’s just be glad our 18-year-old selves can’t see us now, we’d get beat up!  But our twelve-year-old selves would think we’re the coolest!  So, as with all of the other 2019 fantasy baseball rankings, take this list with a grain of salt.  If you need a 2nd baseman, but an outfielder is above him that doesn’t mean you can’t trade that outfielder for that 2nd baseman.  Also, things change in fantasy baseball.  Daily.  I could put Cody Bellinger number three on the top 100 list for the second half of 2019 and he could pull a–Well, we won’t even mention an injury with Bellinger.  Why soil a good thing, ya know?  This list is a road map for where I think guys are valued.  It’s not the Holy Grail in the Church of Grey, that would be my mustache.  This list is NOT (caps for emphasis, not aesthetics) where I see guys ending up if you were to take their first half and combine it with the 2nd half. This is simply a list of the top hundred fantasy baseball players if you were to pick them up today.  So while Aaron Judge did not have the greatest first half, he will appear on this list because, well, we have to believe in miracles — my 12-year-old self would want that, and to sleep with Cher.  The projections are not their combined 1st half and 2nd half numbers; these are their projections for the 2nd half of 2019.  I also liberally used our rest of the season Fantasy Baseball Player Rater.  That’s right, we have a Player Rater that tells you what players will do.  It’s like that camera from The Twilight Zone.  Welcome to the future!  Anyway, here’s the top 100 for fantasy baseball for the 2nd half of 2019:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

*nervous finger tap*  How many days without baseball?  So, I can close my fantasy baseball team browser window without missing anything?  Okay.  *throws computer out window*  What?  Was there another way to close my fantasy team page?  I hadn’t in so long I forgot.  What do you mean I can go outside without worrying about missing anything in baseball?  But there’s real people out there!  I’m staying right here, thank you very much!  So, we’re headed to the break, and it couldn’t have come at a worst time for Jack Flaherty (7 IP, 1 ER, 3 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 4.64).  Let him pitch again tomorrow, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or until his ERA is under 4!  Also, can he pitch against the Giants for all of those?  Even if Alex Dickerson is as strong a cleanup man as you can find (in any Division II school’s lineup). Flaherty’s peripherals (9.9 K/9, 3 BB/9, 4.07 xFIP) aren’t exactly whistling Dixie; they’re closer to ‘fixing dinner from stuff found on the floor of a Winn-Dixie.’  “Toomgis hate Winn-Dixie. Their bath salts are lame.”  I know, Toomgis, I know. Flaherty won’t appear in the top 100 for the 2nd half that’s coming tomorrow, but at least he’s headed to the break looking better than he has all year, even if it was vs. the Aints. By the way, I hear the Orioles are going to pitch on Monday to stay in game shape. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The Jurickson store called and they’re out of you so please report back to your nearest Jurickson store, because the A’s called up Franklin Barreto, who was named PCL Player of the Month. I just want to see Barreto on top of a Caprese salad, and then I’m going to dream I’m in Tuscany with Diane Lane and will hang a Do Not Disturb sign from my door for three whole minutes.  “Diane, did you enjoy that as much as I did?”  “I’ve never been satisfied.  Can I call you Hugh Jack-in-the-Box?”  “I’d be honored.”  Then we return from Tuscany and get bogged down in bills…stress…PTA meetings, but we’d always have three minutes in Tuscany to remember fondly.  In June, Franklin Burrata collected nine homers, three lasagnas and 13 doubles, and he hit .387 with 32 RBIs. His overall minors numbers were 65/12/48/.296/13 in 277 ABs.  He’s now on his 3rd call-up to the majors, and each time his Ks have skyrocketed like the fireworks that Diane saw in her eyes after our three minutes.  Franklin Barreto will be the A’s regular second baseman moving forward, and Bob Melvin is excited to see what he can do. I’m with Bob!  Which is what I say in every south Florida massage parlor, after explaining I want Lui-Sue to pretend she’s Diane Lane.  Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

At least one of you is reading this with a bandaged thumb from a fireworks mishap. I had a Cousin Pete (Italian side of the family) who lost the tip of his thumb on the 4th, but rather than stop the festivities, he taped the tip of a hot dog on his thumb to act as a tourniquet for the rest of the 4th, so we could all go about our fun-having business. I suggested my Cugino make a PSA about hot dog tourniquets, but I was turned away by NBC Cares. Let us bow our heads and pray that if anyone loses a finger, may there be a proper-sized hot dog nearby.  Okay…*claps hands* Play ball!  Yesterday, Matthew Boyd went 5 1/3 IP, 4 ER, 9 baserunners (zero walks), 13 Ks, ERA at 3.87.  Flavor Flav secures his giant clock to his chest with one hand and pumps his fist with his other hand, “Yeah Boyd!”  Boyd was the 1st pitcher with less than 6 IP, zero walks and 13 or more Ks.  You kinda have to get hit around a bit to have that record, but, damn, that’s impressive.  Let’s hear it for the Boyd, let’s hear it for the…MATT!  See what I did there? No one saw that coming!  Not a soul!  Boyd is one of the few guys in the entire major leagues who is pitching better than his ERA would indicate.  I’m kidding, everyone’s ERA is crap!  But Boyd’s been very special — 11.9 K/9, 1.7 BB/9, 3.33 xFIP — and is looking like a solid number two with upside. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Yesterday, Sonny Gray went 8 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 12 Ks, ERA at 3.59 vs. the Brewers.  *unloads pockets, eggplant emjois fall to the ground* I’m gonna need all of those.  “Sonny came home” hasn’t had such a pleasant ring since Shawn Colvin opened an Art of Shaving booth at a Lilith Fair that only did armpit hair massages, and each payment was followed by a very pleasant, cash register ring.  A Sonny hasn’t shone this bright since the last climate change summit that was held in Hellsunki on Urth, which is a planet that looks just like this one, but is 13,000 miles away and is exactly Earth but 25 years in the future, and they have some weird spelling.  “I just got back from Hellsunki, and boy are my arms tired, because we don’t have planes on Urth, we fly with our arms.”  Sonny Gray’s peripherals are surprising in a good way — 10.3 K/9, 3.3 BB/9, 3.46 xFIP.  For those not up on the hoo-de-ha, that xFIP would be about 12th in the league and the K/9 and walk rates would firmly put him in the top 20 starters overall.  In other words, everyone who owned him last year died for the sins of his current year’s owners.  In other other words, he’s throwing fire like pitchers in Hellsunki.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Filling out an Evite, “You are invited to join us as our son Rafael Devers is called to the Torah for his Star Mitzvah.  At 10 o’clock in the morning at Temple Kev-in Youkilis across from Merloni’s Bar & Grill. A lunch of kugel and hot dogs will follow the ceremony. In lieu of gifts, please send prayers that Nathan Eovaldi can actually close games. Good Chavis to all.”  Been meaning to send these Evites out for a while, but I was waiting for Devers to finish his Hebrew classes and Alex Cora to name a closer. Yesterday, Devers went 4-for-5, 6 RBIs with his 13th and 14th homer, hitting .329. Think it might be surprising how well Devers is actually doing.  On the Player Rater, he’s breathing down the top 10 for all of fantasy. You hit for a high average, steal some bases, hit some home runs, and hit in the middle of a great lineup? Yeah, that was the recipe for fantasy latkes Andrew Benintendi had been using to make himself a top 20 player previously. Now he’s making the wackness.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?