If you’re reading this, it’s Thursday — Opening Day 2020. Drafts are pretty much done with and, if you still have one yet to go, holy shit, you’re giving me anxiety just thinking about it. I wrapped up my final NFBC draft this past Monday and, as I’ve become accustomed to since the onset of my 2020 draft season back in early March, I got yet another share of Adrian Houser. Now, if you read our 2020 Razzball Fantasy Baseball Staff Picks, you know I already made some bold predictions about Houser this season. Not only did I pick Houser to become the Most Valuable Fantasy Pitcher (MVFP), but I also tabbed him to win the NL Cy Young. Truthfully, I probably should have stopped at MVFP, because that alone would have demonstrated the statement I’m trying to make about Houser while increasing my chances of being correct. But I’m not here to toot my own horn and act like I know everything about fantasy baseball — I’m here to inform our readers and, if just one lucky soul added Houser as a result of my boldness, I believe I’ve succeeded in my mission.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

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When I first started this gig back in September of 2019, I thought I was low on Jo Adell, ranking him sixth on my initial Top 25 Prospects for 2020 Fantasy Baseball. Given how frequently I see people cite his AAA line and bash his hit tool, I’m pretty sure I’m high on him. 

One weird aspect of this whole thing is while Mike Trout’s ADP is sliding (6.2 in July NFBC drafts) due to his wife’s pregnancy and the quarantine that may take place on either side of the birth, Adell’s ADP is tanking (269.64 in July v. 230.04 pre-July) even as Brandon Marsh is out (for *wink* undisclosed reasons) in his attempt to return from the elbow injury that ended his Spring. Have to wonder if Adele’s sad songs are impacting our general optimism for Adell.

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

Major League Baseball is pushing through time lapses in testing procedures in its quest to fake having a plan until it makes one, but two things have become crystal clear: 1) players will be opting out, and 2) players will be catching the virus. 

Players can opt back in at any time if the situation changes, so that could make for some interesting faab runs.

Other side of that coin: players can opt out at any time. 

Along with the danger and chaos comes opportunity, so let’s scan the NL Central for players poised to climb that ladder.

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

On our Steamer Fantasy Baseball Rankings, which have been updated to a 60-game season, we have 1,310 players ranked. 645 of them gained value. Some, for unstints, gained $0.1 of value like Juan Soto. Another hundred had zero value change like Christian Yelich. Another 600+ lost value. I’ll go over those guys in another post. This post will feature the top 20 players who gained the most value from doing nothing but bingeing Netflix for the last three months. Who knew watching Joe Exotic would add more value than any Driveline drills? Apparently, all baseball players need to know is, “Who is dumpster diving at your nearest Costco?” Anyway, here’s the top 20 biggest positive value changes for fantasy baseball pre vs. post-shutdown:

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

I just read, “On March 6th, manager Mike Matheny said Ryan O’Hearn could begin the season in a platoon at first base with Ryan McBroom,” and I cackled multiple times. There’s something legitimately funny at just about every third word in that news blurb. March 6th? Was that this year? March 6th was pre-Covid and I don’t remember anything about that — cackle #1.  Mike Matheny is just a cackle waiting to happen every time I hear his name because he’s such a terrible manager. Imagine even calling him manager. Matheny makes bad managers scratch their heads. Woofity woof woof and cackle #2. There was no cackle #3, then, onto cackle #4: “Could begin the season.” Dude, what season? You’re making me cackle like a gee-dee fool! Okay, moving on! Cackle #5 was at the thought of a platoon with Ryan McBroom. If McBroom doesn’t make you laugh every time you hear his name, you’re dead inside. Check your pulse. The only reason O’Hearn and McBroom should platoon is because Matheny is so dumb and can only remember the name Ryan. “Um, yeah, starting at 1st today is…um, that Irish kid…What’s his name again? Ryan something.” 1st base coach, “McBroom?” Matheny thinks, then, “You wanna clean the bathroom at a McDonald’s?” So, what can we expect from Ryan O’Hearn from 2020 fantasy baseball and what makes him a great dart throw?

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

SAGNOF is gonna be something in the blink they’re going to call this MLB season. I was tempted to write up a Billy Hamilton dart throw, and, if this delay lasts until August, I may just do that. I’m not one hundred percent sure what to do with fantasy baseball strategy for a 50-game season, but that could be the fun. What do we punt? What do we focus on? Still hoping for a 70-game season, but that might be deliriously optimistic at this point. Do we throw steals and saves out the window completely and focus on homers? Okay, but someone is going to Tuffy Rhodes up in here, have a 14-homer August, and we’re gonna see something like, “Jesus Aguilar leads the majors in homers.” Steals might actually be the most predictable stat this year, which brings me to Jarrod Dyson. If a guy can steal 20 bags in 60 games, that doesn’t just go away. Whereas someone who can hit 20 homers in 60 games could get ice cold and end up with a five-homer season. Shizz is gonna be weird this year. I’ve come to peace with what will be an absurd season. We play fantasy baseball for fun and as a distraction, after all, and what’s more fun and distracting than seeing Kurt Suzuki in the hunt for a batting title or something similarly goofy? “Bring on the madness,” is what I mumble through my pandemic mask. So, what can we expect from Jarrod Dyson for 2020 fantasy baseball and what makes him a great dart throw?

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

For players who only played in 38 or fewer games since 2018, Yoenis Cespedes leads that group in home runs, RBIs, runs–I’m kidding. That is what we’re about to walk into though, if/when this season gets going. People are going to be talking about how great a player is in 40-or-less games. What a jizzoke. Also, anyone that says, “This is going to be more of a sprint than a marathon.” Tell them to buy The Giant Book of Metaphors & Similes, which is like…um…what’s a giant book of metaphors and similes like? Damn, should’ve bought that book when I saw it the last time I was in a bookstore in 2002. This baseball season is going to be as long as the line at your nearest Barnes & Noble. Bookstore employee, “Just this one book for today?” Customer, “Yeah, that’s it.”  Bookstore Employee, “Would you mind filling out a survey?” Customer, “Um, yeah, sure.” Employee, “Great, 1st question is:  Why are you in a bookstore? Second question:  Do you not have internet?” Customer, “This survey is tough!” Any hoo! With the delayed season, we have a chance to ACKSUALLY see Yoenis Cespedes. So, what can we expect from Yoenis Cespedes for 2020 fantasy baseball and what makes him a great dart throw?

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

Welcome, friends! Come, sit down, and let me tell you a tale of baseball. Indeed, baseball is truly America’s game, where the owners swim Scrooge McDuck-style in a vat of gold coins while shaking their canes vigorously at those thieves pounding at the door asking for some gruel. But you–yes, you!–fantasy lothario, with your fantasy baseball app at the ready and a sweaty finger hovering over the “draft” button, you can roster these needy players and give them the virtual coins they so deserve. Today, I’m offering a pitcher profile of Jake Odorizzi, and why you should consider him for a place on your team for the next 50, 70, or how ever many games MLB owners decide to let happen before they move their money vaults into the Norwegian tundra.

Because this is my first article with Razzball, I consulted Grey’s Secret Dictionary to see his definition of ‘pitcher,’ and here’s what it said: “1) a tool for mixing margaritas on Wednesday mornings, 2) players you don’t take early in a draft.” And that’s me quoting Grey! Wednesday Grey must have been deep into his routine of margs and Frasier reruns when he wrote the following on Odorizzi: “Odorizzi’s being drafted like a number three or four, but I see a strong number two.” Whoa, Grey, TMI! Let’s get down to business and see why you want this number two to work for you.

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

Everywhere you look, it says Mike Yastrzemski is the best Giants hitter. *you carefully crack into a fortune cookie, you read about how Mike Yastrzemski is the best Giants hitter, slowly you look up* I told you. Everywhere. Don’t doubt me again. More people agree on Mike Yastrzemski being the best Giants hitter than anything else in this country. It’s the last thing that binds us. If Brandon Belt becomes the Giants’ best hitter, we will completely unravel. Sadly, being the best Giants hitter is like being the world’s tallest midget. Similarly, Mike Yastrzemski fits under the idea of most other players’ ceilings. In JKJ’s piece on NL West DH candidates, he mentions Yaz Jr. Jr., while also mentioning Wilmer Flores, and that’s prolly the name there to keep in mind for their DH spot. Or as I said in the Joey Bart dart throw, Posey could DH while Bart catches. Yaz Jr. Jr. doesn’t need the DH. He is the Giants’ best hitter — have you already forgotten? It’s the one thing that unites us! Yaz 2.0 won’t DH most days; he’ll just play the field. Either way, he’ll play every day. He’s the Giants’ best hitter! So, what can we expect from Mike Yastrzemski for 2020 fantasy baseball and what makes him a great dart throw?

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

How did I come to this dart throw? Thanks for asking, Clunky Intro! I looked at NFBC’s ADP and, specifically, for who was being drafted after 300th overall, i.e., late eh-eff. I eye-spied Jonathan Schoop, and was like, “Ooh, is he that bad? I don’t think he is, but maybe I’m remembering things differently during my ninth month of the preseason. Am I seeing something that isn’t there? I can’t be. I’m so unbiased. Really, I am as impartial as human nature will allow. An even-keeled down-to-earth, extremely handsome, well-coiffed Fantasy Master Lothario.” Then I looked at Steamer projections for 2nd basemen (go to that page and type 2B into the column for positions), and saw something that knocked off my socks, and I was wearing stirrups to avoid such needlessly undressing of my feet. Look at these projections:  58/18/50/.240/2 in 316 ABs vs. 41/16/47/.262/1 in 318 ABs. The 2nd one is Jonathan Schoop. Obviously less runs, but way better average, which makes everything kinda equal there. Yes, twenty points in average evens out the runs, and, while you might say average is fickle, so will runs in a shortened season. Those numbers just aren’t that different. The problem is the 1st guy is being drafted 69th overall and, as high as the top 25 (though, that’s silly). One guy goes top 70 and another guy being drafted after 300? That’s crazy. Any ideas who the 1st guy is? Yes, Max Muncy, well done. You win an imaginary pat on the back. So, what can we expect from Jonathan Schoop for 2020 fantasy baseball and what makes him a great dart throw?

Please, blog, may I have some more?