Considering there has only been one full night of games since I penned the last Top 100, there was more movement than I had figured there would be. I’m not one to rest on my laurels, you see. What the hell does that phrase mean, anyway? Isn’t a laurel like a Christmas wreath? Maybe I’ve just seen Blazing Saddles too many times. Many phrases don’t make sense though, if you think about them. How did “cut the mustard” become a phrase, for example? Nobody has ever cut mustard in the history of time. Unless they’re snorting lines of mustard off of their coffee table, I guess. Even when I freeze my mustard, I put it in an ice cube tray so it’s already separated and I don’t have to cut it before melting it upon my wiener. Think ahead a little, people. Mmm. Um, anyway, there are some pitchers to discuss. Eduardo Rodriguez, a top 30 starter according to last week’s list, is gone for at least a month due to ligament damage in his ankle. Jeff Samardjiza went back on the DL as quickly as he came off it, and I really wish he would just stay healthy but be bland so I can stop writing his confounding name. Carlos Martinez continues to be a headache and is back on the DL again. I don’t rank injured starters, so even though it sounds like a brief DL stint, I’m leaving him off for this week. His last stint was supposed to be a lot shorter than it ended up being, too. Steven Strasburg finally returned to action, but got pounded for six runs in 4.2 innings. He’s probably just kicking off rust, but I eased him in to the back end of the top 20 just to be safe.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

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Well here we are, it’s the final Top 100 before the All-Star Break. It’s been quite the ordeal trying to keep tabs on every starting pitcher in baseball, but I look forward to writing this every week and I hope you enjoy reading it as well. It’s a bit of a wonky weeky with some players temporarily optioned to Triple-A over the break like Freddy Peralta and Shane Bieber. They’ll be back though, so I left them on the list. Unfortunately, Garrett Richards won’t be back, as he’ll go under the knife for Tommy John surgery. On the bright side we got Thor back, along with a couple of other less impactful arms like Trevor Cahill, Masahiro Tanaka, and Brent Suter. We lost Junior Guerra to the DL with a mysterious forearm injury, which is more worrisome than wearing white pants the day after hot chili night. No word yet on how Senior Guerra is taking the news. Enjoy the All-Star Break, everyone!

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   

For the first time in a long time, we’ve got more impact starters returning than vacating the list. Huzzah! I look for any reason to party, and that’s reason enough for me, baby. Break out the purple drank! Carlos Carrasco spent a little more time on the DL than we expected, but he’s back comfortably inside the top 20. Johnny Cueto and Garrett Richards both return to the top 35. Jeff Samardjiza is even back, unfortunately for his owners. Let’s hope his fingers work on his splitter more than they work on his flowing locks of hair. The list looks a bit weird this week because of the returners. Some of the guys that I tried to jump up the list really didn’t get too far, like if Mario was a real-life plumber trying to leap over a cactus. There aren’t a lot of newcomers of note, so let’s focus this week on risers, fallers, and the real losers who fell off the list.

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   

Surprise!! Kershaw is back! Again. Hopefully for the last time. We all love Kershaw whether we own him or not (come on, the guy builds houses in third world counties in his off time). Therefore for the good of baseball, Kershaw should be allowed to have a personal masseuse on the field at all times to loosen him up between pitches. Anything that back needs, get that masseuse in there and rub it out. No more DL stints! Someone get me Manfred’s number. Of course, for every give there is a take, and we lost Carlos Carrasco to a nasty comebacker off the elbow. It doesn’t sound like he’ll be gone too long, but he’s off the list this week. Outside of that we had a relatively quiet week for starting pitchers. We lost the likes of Aaron Sanchez and Jose Urena to the DL, but those guys aren’t leaving anyone’s season hanging in the balance. Michael Wacha does appear to be gone for a significant amount of time with an oblique strain though, and that is a more significant loss. Despite the fact that he seemed obscenely overrated by the Razzball community, I didn’t want to see him go. Especially considering he’s being replaced by John Gant. Yay. We’re also in that dead zone before the midseason call ups, so we don’t have too many debuts to discuss this week on the list. Most starters pretty much pitched like you’d expect them to this week as well, so there wasn’t a ton of serious moving and shaking. That makes this sound like a bit of a dance, which I guess it kind of is. I prefer the Mashed Potato, myself. Since there isn’t a ton of movement, I want to touch on some of the guys I haven’t talked about this year in addition to a few newcomers to the list.

Please, blog, may I have some more?
   
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