Moment of silence for the White Sox. Their gambit failed and now they’re stuck with every top free agent’s in-laws. Their clubhouse chemistry is gonna be like Meet the Fockers but more Dominican. Meet the Focktinez! “That’s my cat, Señor Mal Suerte. He uses el bano all by lonesome.” That’s Yonder Alonso. Bryce Harper’s dad eyes Señor Mal Suerte, then replies to Yonder, “You can milk anything with nipples. Even Yolmer Sanchez.” Any hoo! Bryce Harper finally signed with the Phillies. Halleberrylujah! It’s not even Easter and baseball season has already risen! Bryce Harper returns to the City of Brotherly Love, where he first visited with the Phillies’ front office six months ago. “We want you to be a Philadelphia Phillie.” “I want $330 million.” “Okay.” Then six months later, “You’ve got a deal!” Harper and Boras drive one hard bargain. They accept the first deal they’re given, but nearly a half year after they’re given it. Bryce Harper’s gonna love playing in Philly. They have the best fans in the world. They’ve already announced May 1st is Rain Batteries On Bryce’s Head Day. A crowd favorite, for sure. I don’t think this changes anything about my preseason projections for him, tee bee aitch. I always assumed he’d end up in Philly, New York or with the White Sox, because, brucely, those were the only three teams ever serious about him. Maybe the Giants, but let’s just be glad that didn’t happen. In my top 20 for 2019 fantasy baseball, I kept his projections. Only difference now will be if Gabe Kapler and Bryce’s dad get into an arm wrestling fight, and Daddy Harper wins and Bryce is randomly benched for Scott Kingery. Also, I updated the top 80 outfielders and top 100 outfielders for Roman Quinn and Nick Williams, respectively, and my War Room has been updated. Anyway, here’s what else I saw in spring training for fantasy baseball:
Josh Harrison – Signed with the Tigers. Or as they say in Michigan when someone lands there, “Let’s give him a hand!” Then they point at their location on their hand. Hand turkeys really confuse people in Michigan. It becomes like FMK but, “Map, Hand or Turkey?” About as solid a landing place Harrison was going to find for at-bats, but he’s still not a good hitter. I upped his ranking and his projections at the top 20 2nd basemen for 2019 fantasy baseball. Still is not desirable.
Jed Lowrie – Don’t usually mention injuries in spring notes unless they are bad and, well, Lowrie’s got one of those bad ones. He had a knee MRI and doesn’t sound optimistic for Opening Day, i.e., Jed hurt his knee and yelled, “Crude,” but wasn’t talking about oil. I knocked him down a bit in the top 20 2nd basemen and top 20 3rd basemen. Also, I moved Jeff McNeil up in the top 20 2nd basemen (and Garrett Hampson, because I promised to if he saw enough daylight in spring training.)
Todd Frazier – Out with an oblique. Could be worse, could’ve went down with an ‘oblique, ob-la-da.’ I haven’t moved Frazier in my top 20 3rd basemen yet, since I was already very down on him, in a non-sexual way. I’m also itching to move up Pete Alonso.
Marwin Gonzalez – Signed with the Twins. Here’s the Twins offseason, “Yup, we’ll take him, okay, him, okay, how about him, he’s cheap? What the hell? Okay, we’ll take him too. Really, no one wants to sign that guy either? Fine! A pitcher? No thanks!” I knew I should’ve put down a bet on the Twins to win the World Series when I was in Vegas. They have more depth than Neil deGrasse Tyson in an aquarium. They have so much depth I’m not even sure Marwin has a starting job. Likely this takes ABs from Kepler and Cron, and an insurance policy for Sano in case he didn’t lose that weight and has been carrying a fun house mirror in front of him. I have updated my top 20 1st basemen (and 2nd basemen and 3rd basemen, and you get the picture).
Ervin Santana – Signed with the White Sox. Dylan Covey is like, “Damn, I ate all of that dolphin meat this offseason preparing to be the 5th starter and now this.” Ervin is in my top 100 starters (barely, but not really).
Shin-Soo Choo – Traveled back to Texas to get an injection in his shoulder. He traveled back because he’s only three punchouts away from a free surgery on his stamp card.
Clay Buchholz – Signed a deal with the Jays. The Jays also signed Bud Norris. To go with Clay and Bud, they should sign, Rolland Gregarious, the reefer dealer outside of the French Open. Incredibly, I have Buchholz already ranked in my top 100 starters.
Hanley Ramirez – Signed a deal with the Indians. Conspiracy Theory Alert! Hanley was run out of Boston last year after Boston reporters incorrectly linked Hanley with a drug dealing scandal, right? Okay, what if the reporter was on the Red Sox payroll or if the story was leaked to the reporter by the team to get Hanley DFA’d and out of Boston? That would make a good investigative story if Spotlight was run by Bill Simmons. Any hoo! Nothing good will come of Hanley in Cleveland; he only stands to steal playing time from Jake Bauers, which would be bad for fantasy. I have not added Hanley into my 1st base rankings, because I have no faith in him.
Josh James – Strained his right quad and will not be in the starting rotation, to at least start the year. If only I made a prop bet that Josh James would not be in the rotation, I’d be a millionaire. I’d also be a millionaire if I didn’t sell $10,000 in Apple stock a week before the iPod dropped. #neverforget I’ve lowered him into the top 100 starters. I’ve also updated my pitchers’ pairings tool. Hehe, I said tool.
Carlos Martinez – Now he’s sporting an arm sling. Great, if he’s impersonating Chevy Chase taking a test in Spies Like Us; not good, if it’s due to an arm injury. Sadly, it’s the latter, and I’m officially out on C-Mart. Sorry if you drafted early, and took him. He sounds headed for a lost season, specifically one of the later Lost seasons when they were just throwing stuff against the wall. He was moved into the top 100 starters.
Matt Wieters – Signed a deal to backup Yadier in St. Louis. Just think, only five years ago Keith Law said Wieters would be a Hall of Famer. Lose some, find the wrong guys winsome…
Mike Foltynewicz – Soreness in his elbow, which is a precursor for Foltynewicz in 2020, reminiscing, “I remember when I used to pitch in the major leagues. It was back in 2018. It was before the final season of Game of Thrones when everyone died, except the Dragon Lady–” Wow, Faultysandwichz, enough spoilers! So, I haven’t yet moved Faultyelbowwitz down in my rankings, because the Braves said, “He could pitch immediately if this were the regular season, and you people need to chill,” but I’m not drafting him until I see him throw.
Kevin Gausman – Dealing with shoulder soreness. I’m sensing a theme:
Braves’ pitching staff in the last two weeks:
Mike Soroka – shoulder injury
Kevin Gausman – shoulder injury
Luiz Gohara – shoulder injury
Mike Foltynewicz – elbow injury
Sean Newcomb – shortness of breath from living in a bubble
— Razzball (@Razzball) February 28, 2019
Clayton Kershaw – Has had setback after setback from trying to throw. Bummed that more people didn’t draft this schmohawk before he came down with the “every pitcher who has thrown too many innings”-itis. Shame I didn’t even get to write a schmohawk post about him before it happened, so at least I can point to how correct I was, though I did tell everyone in my top 20 starters for 2019 fantasy baseball, that you have to have a screw loose to draft him. Now I’ve dropped him even further in my rankings into the top 40 starters, and I still would not touch him with a ten-foot pole. Or really even an eleven-foot pole. Actually, how big do poles come? Hey, Ivan Putski, any guesses?