The phrase is no longer “Chicks dig the longball,” it’s “Chicks dig the flyball.”

From the forgotten (Yonder Alonso) to our freshest superstars (Francisco Lindor), the want for more lift in hopes of combating infield shifts hasn’t played favorites in the style of hitter it acquires. While Alonso and Lindor lead list of qualified hitters with the largest increase in flyball percentage compared to last year, another name sits atop the list of hitters with the highest overall flyball rates in 2017.

Ryan Schimpf (63.8%).

I’m barely five months into my Razzball tenure and this is my second column about a San Diego Padres’ player (Austin Hedges was my first). Maybe my next one will be about that first basemen who has been better than Anthony Rizzo! Wil Myers who?

Please, blog, may I have some more?

One story finally gaining a bit of traction this season is the installation of a humidor in the Diamondbacks’ home park, Chase Field.

Digging right into the meat of this point, the reason it’s even being considered is because of the relative offensive production we’ve seen in Phoenix over the first month of the season. Chase Field has actually has a higher park factor metric than the messiah itself, our DFS darling, the Parthenon of fantasy, Coors Field.

Barely edging Colorado, by fractions of a run, rumors are the Diamondbacks organization tried to implement the humidor this during Dave Stewart’s tenure, but he exclaimed, “No! Nothing logically sound can happen in Arizona until I leave!” (cannot confirm through my sources).

While some may not think it’s a big deal, the bible of the humidor’s impact can be found on The Hardball Times, and its author Alan Nathan believes the difference will be notable. Here’s his concluding paragraph from the great column he wrote…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Grey had Taijuan Walker as a top 30 starting pitcher in his preseason rankings.

I thought that was clinically insane when combing through his pitcher rankings upon their release in early February.

The argument was there, I just couldn’t support it. Walker had a favorable division change to the NL West which made sense, but not 20 spots worth of an impact. I was stumped as to how you categorize him an SP3 (top 36 SP). Using youth to project future success is one I often turn to, but rarely in regards to seasonal relevance.

Joey Gallo is a good example of a player who over the last two years I have suggested taking a step back to see the big picture with. Even with the genuinely terrifying strikeout rate, to say you have never been unbelievably impressed with a good handful of Gallo’s at bats is a flat out lie. Anybody who can hit baseballs as hard and far as him, at the age of 23, has to be given some leeway for developmental matters. (Side note, I talked with Murray Chass on a podcast I host and he suggested that distance on home runs didn’t matter. Take that for data!). The fault in my “step back and calm down” philosophy with young players is that I sometimes miss the breakout year. I wasn’t high on Gallo for this season, and that was a mistake, but I’m fine with being cautious season-to-season on breakouts without something underneath the surface that I can believe in. I didn’t envision an early Adrian Beltre injury, nor did I think his swinging strike rate could come down 5% so quickly.

Pitching is different animal, but the general theory still persists. I just couldn’t wrap my head around Walker…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Humor me here…

Austin Hedges’ first 31 plate appearances of 2017 – .037/.133/.037 with a 9/2 strikeout to walk ratio.

Alex Bregman’s first 32 plate appearances of 2016 – .031/.088/.031 with a 10/2 strikeout to walk ratio.

Since then, Hedges has a slash line of .278/.289/.833 as he entered Monday night’s bout with the Diamondbacks. The most important driver in his .833 slugging percentage is the five home runs he has smacked since a rough start to the season. Well, make that six, as Hedges took everybody’s favorite former Colorado Rockies ace Jorge De La Rosa deep in Chase last night (bring on the humidor!). In case you forgot about Bregman’s stretch after his rough start last year, the immensely touted prospect slashed .297/.372/.432 in his 42 plate appearances after the drought and finished with a 1.0 WAR after only 49 games. After this run by Hedges, I’m seriously considering a reworking of this column’s title.

Cheap home runs from the catcher wasteland? Sign me up.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Fantasy baseball writers and analysts play in a lot of leagues. Take it from any mind on this site, it’s very hard to say no to leagues with great competition. After multiple years of keeping my ‘portfolio’ compact, this was the year my theoretical box started it’s adventure down a slippery slope.

In deciding after draft season to seriously focus on about five of my 11 leagues of which I found most near and dear to my heart… and wallet… I noticed one player I had stumbled onto more shares of than I ever envisioned (minus James Paxton).

Gerrit Cole.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Dylan Bundy was a particularly hard asset to value on draft day.

We had just over 100 innings with a 4.70 FIP and a swinging strike rate of 10.5% that didn’t really turn any heads. Tales of the prospect he once was lingered in broadcasts as announcers imagined a day when the highly talented righty would emerge from the darkness of his injury-plagued past and blossom into the Orioles’ ace.

That day was Wednesday…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It’s really hard not to overreact, I understand.

With that said, I think that it’s best Madison Bumgarner was the human highlight reel of opening day as opposed to somebody like Mallex Smith or Tuffy Gosewich(!!!).

The early season star of 2016 was the pun machine himself, Trevor Story. I’d consider him a best case scenario for any early season performer. Six homers in his first four games, on his way to a 27 home run season over less than 400 ABs. Story was a top 30 pick this year, all after that early season explosion, and I’ll admit, there was a league where I paid that price for him.

With Bumgarner holding the headlines for the next few days, there is no need for overreaction and desperate projection for his rest-of-season value. We know what he’ll give back. Very, very good value.

Is there a chance somebody else stands out? Of course, and you’ll likely have to make a tough decision to give up that ’25th’ man on your roster as sacrifice if you want to believe in the hype…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Back in late February I took down the ADP for the top 300 players with the intention of later reflecting on that data. I knew it would come in handy when thinking up an idea for a future column, and my clairvoyance has been fulfilled.

I’ve always been a proponent of NFBC’s ADP because of the amount of money their leagues generally require in order to play ($125+, upwards of $5,000+ in main events). It eliminates crazy outlier picks better than your casual ESPN mock drafts, and paints a great picture for value in rotisserie leagues.

As ‘weekly lock’ are their standard format, it deviates a little bit from our typical RCL that we have on this fantastic caldron of fantasy knowledge know as Razzball, but heading into the last week of drafts, I hope this will give you a great idea of the fluctuation of players in across the league.

The time frame of the change, as you will see, is between February 28th and March 26th. I’ll break up some of our specimens based on overall ADP, as players who are going later in drafts (150+ overall) have much more room to rise and fall than a player in the top 50.

To address players who have fallen due to a temporary injury, I’ve eliminated guys like Ian Desmond, Alex Reyes, and David Dahl, in favor of taking a look at performance and playing time based fluctuations. If you desire the +/- of any other player you don’t see here, feel free to mention in the comments below and I will dig in and find it for you (as long as their in the top 500).

Keep in mind, in order for a player to fall by a given amount, that player has been drafted further above or further below what their ADP on March 26th states. This is because NFBC ADP is a rolling average. For Yoenis Cespedes to increase from 59.08 to 56.66, he would have been drafted, on average, higher than the 56.66 overall from March 26th says. Not simply the +2.42 spots my interval of change shows you!

Razzball Commenter Leagues are closing down, but there’s still a few spots left! Play against our contributors and your fellow readers for prizes. Join here!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

What’s the most common phrase you’ve heard this offseason among the fantasy community?

Steals are scarce is one. James Paxton is my sleeper might be another contender – I’m guilty of this one. How about player x is injury prone? This is one that I’ve heard numerous times, and for good reason.

There are a lot of players whom are properly tagged as a risk to not stay on the field. However, I always find myself stepping back from discussion whenever I hear the claim as I determine what the actual standard is for a player being prone to injury.

Razzball Commenter Leagues are open! Play against our contributors and your fellow readers for prizes. Join here!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

HDMH is a motivational phrase created by Blue Jays starter Marcus Stroman. It stands for ‘Height Doesn’t Measure Heart’.

On Saturday night, Marcus Stroman twirled a 4.2 inning gem against the Dominican Republic, striking out four batters, walking none, and allowing only three ground ball singles. When Stroman was removed before his 65th pitch – the limit for starters in the pool round of the WBC – Tanner Roark, David Robertson, and Andrew Miller proceeded to give up seven earned runs on seven hits. Combined, that trio recorded only nine outs and threw 19 more pitches than Stroman, producing substantially less impressive results. Needless to say, I was thoroughly impressed with how the Blue Jays starter carved through the Dominican Republic’s lineup.

Razzball Commenter Leagues are open! Play against our contributors and your fellow readers for prizes. Join here!

Please, blog, may I have some more?