Let me tell you all how the rest of this season will go. I will not tweet this out, because that’s giving free content to my nineties of followers. Instead, I will give this information out for free on this website, although if you’re smart you are paying to kill the myriad advertisements that help fund Grey’s continued head-specific cryogenesis. You didn’t know that we refresh his profile picture every day with a new photo of his head frozen in a solid block of ice, hoping one day to release it after Manfred has finally destroyed the baseball? You didn’t know that? Or that like that prisoner Languille after his guillotining, according to Dr. Beaurieux, Grey responded to his name, turned to look at us before the freezing agent kicked in, and said, “Fantasy baseball blog?” He has not stopped posting since, using pupil movements to write his posts, much like the protagonist of Feel Good Movie of the Century The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. There I go again, showing you how the sausage is made, how gauche. How will the season of fantasy baseball content wind itself down?
The rest of August will be reminders that league-specific trade deadlines are coming up and that you should be thinking about team needs rather than equity. What they will not mention is that often times your team-need-oriented trades will be up for veto, because savvy opposing managers will see the value imbalance on the surface, recognize that the trade might cause them to lose a spot or two in the standings, and then try to tank said trade. These people are the Private Equity bros in your league, and they must be liquidated at all costs. This is not ‘eat the rich territory,’ this is Indiana Jones facemelt the rich territory. Join me. It is ugly work, but those destroyers of man must feel the wrath of their bombast (a wink to those who know).
September is a month that will be dedicated to looking at the teams still in contention and marveling at their Frankenstein-ian conglomeration. Like so many Dr. Moreau’s before us, our islands should be fantasy teams full of bizarre veteran outliers, Quad-A SB prodigies, and even rookie starters mowing dudes down before the league gets the book on ’em (so to speak). Boullebaise should have nothing on your roster at this point. You should have a kitchen sink full of kitchen sinks if that’s what it takes to rake in the crowns.
October will again be Frankenstein-ian, only in the sense that we’ll be in a morgue, sneaking a peak at post-mortems and stealing bits of information to seed our sleepers and busts.
A Blurbstomp Reminder
We will analyze player blurbs from a given evening, knowing that 1-2 writers are usually responsible for all the player write-ups posted within an hour of the game results. We will look at:
- Flowery Diction – how sites juice up descriptions of player performance
- Friendly Reminder – when a blurb insists upon itself
- Q and Q – when a site contradicts a player valuation on back-to-back blurbs
- The Blame Game – a player takes on the fault of the team as a whole
- Stephen A. Smith IMG_4346.jpeg Award – Given to the player blurb that promises the most and delivers the least.
- Bob Nightengale Syndrome – instances of updates that don’t update anything
The hope is that by season’s end, we’ll all feel more confident about our player evaluations when it comes to the waiver wire. We will read blurbs and not be swayed by excessive superlatives, faulty injury reporting, and micro-hype. I will know that I have done my job when Grey posts, and there isn’t a single question about catchers that he did not address in his post. Onward to Roto Wokeness!
Oh so close for Kennedy and the D-Backs. Coming on for the ninth inning with his crew clinging to a 1-0 advantage, the veteran reliever recorded two uneventful outs before surrendering a triple to Thairo Estrada. Brandon Crawford followed with a two-run homer, and just like that, the near-win was undone. Kennedy had recorded saves in two of his last three appearances prior to giving up the ghost on Tuesday. He has successfully converted a sketchy 8-of-12 save opportunities while pitching to a 3.38 ERA, 1.28 WHIP and 36/16 K/BB ratio in 44 appearances this summer.
Using idioms with reckless abandon happens to be a pastime that I enjoy. “Giving up the ghost” is an incredible one. Here it’s used to describe Ian Kennedy blowing a save. Now, for it’s meaning:
- To expire or die
- A mechanical object is rendered useless
- To stop doing something because they no longer believe they can do it
In the context of Ian Kennedy’s blown save, I find the usage of “giving up the ghost” hilariously hyperbolic and a bit clunky. In short, I love it!
Rengifo powered the Angels to an early 2-0 lead against Robbie Ray via a solo homer in the first inning and an RBI single in the third inning. The Halos would not score again in the 8-2 defeat. On the whole this season, Rengifo is working to a .273/.309/.438 batting line with nine homers, 32 RBI and five steals in 304 at-bats. He has now homered in back-to-back contests.
This is once again a case where Recency Bias should be used to help fantasy managers. Instead of reporting on Rengifo’s no-doubt underwhelming season-long output, we should be focusing on the last month or so as roles have changed. Rengifo is now regularly hitting clean up, and shouldn’t lose too many at bats, even when/if Trout returns.* Now, for the rankings and output:
Last Week – 4/3/8/.308 in 26 ABs
Last 2 Weeks – 8/4/10/0/.267
Last Month – 11/4/17/2/.301
He was ranked 16th overall last week, 45th for the past two weeks, and 43rd overall in Yahoo for the previous month. It seems pretty weighted to batting average, but the guy has been producing and should have been rostered on more teams. He’s not going to win you a league, but he’s eligible at four positions in more lenient leagues (2B, 3B, SS, OF) and is playing, as compared to the Smart Bar you left in your glove compartment for a few months (Luis Robert). Throwing out that season-long slash is as inspiring as something that’s not inspiring. There was that I can’t invent now because I have to take over diaper duty.
Quintana actually carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning but then suddenly got BABIP’d to death with four straight singles, including one which hit off his foot. He was pulled with the bases loaded, no one out and one run in and one more run wound up being charged to his ledger. The ending probably left a sour taste in his mouth, but it was another solid effort from Quintana with his new club. He will face the Diamondbacks this weekend.
Before I was allowed to grace these pages, I offered up a few terms to describe what the Athletics and Royals constantly did to my fantasy pitchers in the comments and/or forums at Razzball. They always seemed to hit seeing-eye single after bloop single, dumb luck leading my ratios lame ducked. No one term stuck when trying to describe the above, but I suppose ‘BABIP’d to death” works well enough.
That being said, while Wynton Bernard and Connor Joe’s singles each had an xBA of .180, Charlie Blackmon’s single had a .310 xBA followed by Brendon Rodgers’s .610 xBA single. Those last two singles are not getting BABIP’ed, those are some clean, hard-nosed singles and my god the Rockies make me so sad. Blackmon, Cron, and Rodgers are pretty good players, but good lord this team deserves to get the Eckersley treatment. You could at least count on offensive output from this gang of hooligans, but it seems they really think they can put anyone in there and they’ll hit like Larry Walker back in the day. I LOVE Larry Walker. I had a Colorado Rockies Starter jacket growing up in Central New York and really thought Dante Bichette would eclipse 200 RBI’s. Back then I had dreams. Now I’m left with Dick Monfort’s portfolio tab. Dick’s Tab, as it were.
Hex Enduction Hour*
When asked by reporters if Trout could return on August 17 (Wednesday), Nevin didn’t rule it out, but the most likely return date appears to be Friday against the Tigers. The outfielder faced live pitching on Monday and reportedly “felt great” after. Even if Trout isn’t back by the end of the weekend — and it does appear likely — it shouldn’t be much longer after.
“And it does appear likely…”
Never have I seen a more ominous interruptive clause, especially after the last hex put upon Trout. I wish all Trout-owners the best, but if you’re worried, I have some dolls for that. I also have an effigy of Arte Moreno if you’re interested.
Bob Nightengale Memorial Plaque
Tyler Freeman doubled to leadoff the bottom of the ninth, but three boisterous outs in a row led to Soto leaving the game with another save under his belt. He hasn’t blown a save opportunity since June 16th.
This is such a great cherry-picked statistic. Yes, as a closer, we track his saves as compared to his blown saves. However, during the above time period, Soto has two losses, one in which he was obliterated in a 5 run outing in the 9th inning, another when a Javy Baez throwing error led to three unearned runs. Of course, those happened in tie games, so they aren’t blown saves, but losses pile up for pitchers and can lead them to lose their jobs over time. I don’t see it happening for Soto unless he’s due to get more guaranteed money based on innings pitched or saves accrued, at which point the Tigers will knee cap his innings. Is it tiring to have been so encumbered by the dehumanizing cynicism of modern baseball?
Friends, we must all blurb forward with hearts pumped full of blurb. I hope we all continue to not take the bait and do as I have, which is kept Sean Murphy all season long in a roto league. I have not asked Grey a single question about a catcher in two years. Just draft a weird one at the end and stick with him. He might even beat out Cal Raleigh, a name that will always look like a mistake in a spelling quiz.