“The 1994 classic, Blank Check, is possibly the best film ever, better than those Godfather films. Did you know they aren’t even about the perils of being a Godfather? Like what gift do I give my godson for his fifth birthday? Or what happens when my god daughter’s mother is hitting on me? Anyway, Blank Check is a ten out of ten, better than Dunston Checks In. The only drawback I can see is I thought Blank Check was initially about what the Braves will be offering Freddie Freeman this offseason.” Sorry! I was just typing up my IMDB Blank Check review. Yesterday, Freddie Freeman acquired his 2nd career cycle, going 4-for-5, 4 runs, 2 RBIs and his 27th homer, as he hits .301. His Ks, walks, BABIP, HardHit%, HR/FB% and spread of balls to his pull side vs. opposite way are all in line with previous–Okay, is he a robot? Thought we were starting to see the beginning of the end when he was struggling with his average in the early months, but that was fraught for naught. I’m sure we’ll see more cycles in the future for Freeman if he ever gets that Braves’ blank check. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Jesus Luzardo – 3 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 7.76. Still like Jesus long-term. Not like next week long-term or 200 years from now long-term. Somewhere in-between.

Jesus Sanchez – 1-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 4th homer, hitting .245. Miami heard they’re gonna be underwater in 15 years so they got a bunch of guys that are supposed to walk on water.

Josiah Gray – 6 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 3.90. Looked up his numbers to see how he was doing early on his career and couldn’t figure out a damn thing. Too small a sample. He’s got a .206 BABIP and a 6.71 FIP, just silly numbers that mean nothing. The eye test? Oh, that’s he’s passing with flying colors. Streamonator loves his next start, and I’m all-in until further notice.

Juan Soto – 1-for-2, 2 runs, 3 RBIs, and his 20th homer, hitting .304. Sexy Dr. Pepper can have an off season, and still have an outside shot at 30 homers and .300.

Josh Bell – 1-for-5, 3 RBIs and his 20th homer, hitting .241. Wonder if I contact a voodoo priestess and ask her to body switch Josh Bell and David Bell if David Bell would notice.

Carter Kieboom – 1-for-3, 2 runs and his 3rd homer. Get Carter. Dot dot dot. Was a terrible movie. Both iterations of it. Sorry, cokeheads — that’s what they call fans of Michael Caine. Kieboom, however, has three homers and is hitting .300 in August.

Marcus Semien – 2-for-5, and his 28th and 29th homer. Also, in this game, Dickerson went deep for his 4th. “…where Dickerson goes deep, Semien is sure to follow,” and I close a textbook much to the confusion of my sex ed students.

Teoscar Hernandez – 2-for-4 and his 22nd homer, and 4th straight game with a homer. A lot of people coming for Dale Long this year, and the Ghost of Dale Long, sitting in a red armchair, with a badass fire tattoo and a pitchfork–Wait a second! Devil Long? Is that you? “Who’s asking? Are you a telemarketer? Like a cop, you have to say when asked if you are a telemarketer.” “I don’t think that’s true.” “It is. I know. I am the devil and I invented telemarketers.”

Chris Bassitt – Sustained fractures to his cheekbone, and upper jawbone, and now they’ll wait three-to-five days for him to undergo surgery. Absolutely brutal news, and my guess is he’s done for the year. Hopefully, he’s fine for next year. My guess on that is he will be, because I’m an optimistic little bugger (after being pessimistic about him for this year).

Seth Brown – 1-for-2 and his 16th homer, and 2nd homer in five games. There’s some schmotatoness here, but also some ding-donginess from Billy Beane. He’s horsestringing Bob Melvin to a post, forcing him to platoon out Brown vs. any lefties, so they can get the you-thought-he-retired Piscotty in to face lefties. Why? Piscotty doesn’t know! Piscotty doesn’t know!

Lance Lynn – 4 IP, 1 ER, ERA at 2.26, and ejected from the game as he threw his belt at the umpire. I can’t believe he vacated his heavyweight belt that easily. So, Lynn went back to the dugout, placed his glove and hat on the dugout fence and went in. Then, he was presumably told his belt needs inspection too, and he tossed it out of the dugout onto the dirt. And, with that, the ump tossed him. Lance Lynn essentially said, “You wanna check my belt so bad? Here!” and chucked it at the ump. It’s possibly not the smartest move, but I respect it. Every night of watching MLB I’m wearing a monocle, replaying clips like it’s a Zapruder film, seeing things I’ve never seen before. Tonight it was “pitcher too far from umpire for a belt inspection.” Incredible. Feeling pain at the thought of him being suspended and missing a start, though.

Tyler Mahle – 5 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 3.78. This start was vs. the Cubs, who are voluntarily (as far as I know) starting Ian Happ as their three hole hitter and Matt Duffy as cleanup. Two guys who wouldn’t be in most other MLB lineups. Mahle got freakin’ beat by Hermosillo (1-for-3, 2 RBIs and his 1st homer)! Hermsillo sounds like a beachside California town! Hey, I went to Hermosillo and it’s effin’ thick with seagulls! It sucks! The seagulls suck! Ugh, Mahle! I’m very mad right now.

Tyler Naquin – 2-for-4 and his 15th homer. Yay, but I’m not in much mood to be happy about a Tyler right now.

Ian Happ – 1-for-5 and his 14th homer and 2nd homer in the last two days. Hot schmotato, through no small part of Tyler Mahle and the Reds’ pitching and park!

Sergio Alcantara – 1-for-4 and his 3rd homer. The lovable loser Cubs at least had Ryne Sandberg. Who are these guys?

Keegan Thompson – Will be called up by the Cubs to start on Saturday. Aw, here it goes! I hear he’s All That! Wonder if he’s got a Cannon. Wait, wrong Nick star who went on to do terrible sketch comedy. Keegan, not Kenan, Thompson has poor command in his Triple-A and major league career (4.9 BB/9 in majors; 3.1 BB/9 in Triple-A) and not enough else for me to get excited yet. Thompson looks like a surefire way to get roofied, but in NL-Only leagues, you do you, I’ll do me, and let’s hope we don’t go blind.

Ryan Yarbrough – 5 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit, zero walks, 3 Ks, ERA at 4.57, as he was activated from the Covid IL. Ya think Kevin Cash is ever like, “YarBrosseau,” to save time? Any hoo! Yarbrough looked the best he had all season. Maybe you could get a decent five weeks from him.

Cedric Mullins – 1-for-4 and his 21st homer. Mullins’s Star Mitzvah this year — doing it for five months — vs. anyone’s Star Mitzvah from last year — *cough* Kyle Lewis *cough* — makes it clear how terribly I overestimated last year with Lewis.

Ryan Mountcastle – 1-for-4 and his 20th homer. You know how “the kids” say “to cape for someone” means to defend? I will cape for Mountcastle while he gets himself in capers.

Aroldis Chapman – 2/3 IP, 1 ER, ERA at 3.79, as he was activated from the IL. Aaron Boone’s Strawberry Hill he will die on is Aroldis is the closer. Very well then. For anyone who can remember all the way back to July would say Green and Lasagna are worth holding, and last night’s inability by Aroldis to close backs that up.

Anthony Rizzo – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs as he was activated from the Covid IL. C to the Ovid is over for R to the Izzo, in case Jay-Z is a Razzball reader.

Andrew Heaney – 7 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 5.51. Pitching like that and he’s never going to be invited to pitch to Joey Gallo next year at the Home Run Derby.

Xander Bogaerts – 1-for-3 and his 19th homer. X-Bogs was playing like a Gameboy for July, hitting .234 with only three dingers, which was a huge dip after a big May/June. There’s still time for him to salvage his season, and I’d bet the over, whatever the over is.

Nick Pivetta – 1 2/3 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 4.43. Shocked that a pitching staff led by Pivetta isn’t marching towards the playoffs. Shocked, I tell ya.

Patrick Sandoval – Hit the IL with a lumbar spine stress reaction. Sounds season-ending for Sandoval, but not sure. A stress reaction of your back happens when your back hears it can’t make its rent. Your back then drinks hard for a week, and signs alimony checks with the wrong name so its ex can’t cash them.

Justin Upton – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 17th homer, and his 2nd homer in as many games. Upton gets so hot, that he never homers for the first time in one game. It always starts at the 2nd straight game with a homer.

Shohei Ohtani – 1-for-4 and his 40th homer. As a pimp might say to his lady, ho-hum. Oh….tani, have I mentioned he also threw 8 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 8 Ks, ERA at 2.79. An airplane banner flies past house reading, “Shohei Ohtani is good.” Me, a simpleton, “I wonder if they mean the Shohei Ohtani in the major leagues.”

Tarik Skubal – 6 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 4.02. Thousand percent Streamonator pick, but also: I’m kinda intrigued for him in 2022.

Caleb Smith – Was ejected after an inspection by the umps, but he didn’t start disrobing and chucking his clothing at the umps. The umps *dramatic sting* found something. According to them. Imagine having your rep tarnished because a bunch of dopes thought you were varnishing the cue, which was a Christian Slater movie, I think.

Jake Arrieta – 3 1/3 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 7.13. A.J. Preller is so good at this, just unfair.

Wil Myers – 2-for-4, 3 RBIs and his 14th and 15th homer. Just thought of something that would work: Wil Myers traded to the Rockies. The Rockies are awful and love to play awful players, but him in Coors got me like Kombucha Girl.

Trevor Story – 1-for-3, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 16th homer, hitting .256. Man, as terrible as Wil Myers has been, Trevor Story is only one homer in front of him and plays half his games in Coors. Please never tell me anything about ‘contract years being a boost for a player’s value’ ever again.

Anthony DeSclafani – 1 2/3 IP, 0 ER, ERA at 3.26, but left after injuring his ankle covering 1st base. Ugh, was a cushy matchup that he was flying through, and I just lost Bassitt and…*sings a heart-wrenching Celine Dion ballad in the mirror while crying, then* I’m good! Don’t worry about me!

Jacob deGromMets are leaning towards shutting him down for the year. Sounds like A) The Mets have finally done something smart. B) Were advised by another team’s training staff. C) There’s no C.

Tylor Megill – 6 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 3.21. The Yankees have a Gil, and the Mets have a guy who says he’s Megill. So, who are we? Usgill? Ugill? Ustedgill? Ya know, if he’s Spanish. The Streamonator likes Megill’s next start, and I could see it.

Hunter Dozier – 1-for-3, 2 RBIs and his 10th homer, and 2nd homer in last three games. Grabbed him in one league three games ago, got a home run, and held onto him for a few more games and that is literally the only time that’s ever worked for me.

Nicky Lopez – 3-for-4, 1 run, and 2 more steals (14, 15), and five steals in three games. We love guys who have parasocially embodied Adalberto Mondesi.

Marco Gonzales – 5 1/3 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 4.10. Could be silly that I’m constantly reminded how good Marco was in the August-September season last year, but I’m absolutely grabbing Marco if he’s available. His next matchup will be a test, but I welcome it, uh, for him.

Freddy Peralta – 2 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 2.45, and left with shoulder discomfort. Ugh, the hits keep coming wrap me in a blanket mommy the pain is too unbearable for commas. Oh, and Freddy injured himself swinging the bat! *me standing outside of MLB headquarters* DH to the NL yesterday! DH to the NL yesterday! Backdate the DH and make the pain go away! I lost DeSclafani, FreddyKBB and Bassitt in a 24-hour period. Is that why that guy became The Joker?

Willy Adames – 1-for-3 and his 22nd homer. The worst part about Willy Adames is I have to wait months to draft him for 2022.

Avisail Garcia – 2-for-4 and his 22nd and 23rd homer. Not sure if it’s impressive that Avisail has only one more homer than Adames or if it’s impressive Adames has only one less homer than Avisail.

Jack Flaherty – 6 IP, 2 ER, 5 baserunners, 8 Ks, ERA at 2.68. He’s gonna end this year with around 100 IP. Last year was around 50. 2020 is going to be felt even in 2022, because guys like this are so long removed from full seasons.

Max Muncy – 2-for-3, 3 runs, 5 RBIs and two more homers (27, 28). Max the Munificent.

Mitch White – 7 1/3 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 3.06. Wow, the creator of The White Lotus is having a great month, huh? This start (Bulk Guy following the Opener, same diff) from White is way more because how bad the Pirates are vs. how great White is, right? Sounds about White.

George Springer – Diagnosed with a Grade 1 knee sprain. That means he’ll be out for a few weeks and his knee will need a midday nap.

Rafael Dolis – Designated for assignment. That assignment is to develop into a better pitcher.

Franmil Reyes – 1-for-5 and his 21st homer. While the chase for fifty-four $54 steaks came to an end with his injury earlier this year, he still is going to get to 30 homers. Mark my words (with erasable ink).

Jose Ramirez – 2-for-6, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 27th homer. Bummer about Francisco Lindor. He was the true superstar, and Jo-Ram just Barbara Hershey’d in his shadow.

Zach Plesac – 4 2/3 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 4.87. Wonder how long after the season ends that the Guardians are like, “Oh, Plesac? Yeah, he was pitching with an injury for the last three months.”

Miguel Sano – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 20th homer. His antibody is rich with getting-meatballs-at-a-platelet.

Byron Buxton – Taking live batting practice in St. Paul. Buxton’s health and training coach said, “He’s right where we want him.” His health and training coach is Adalberto Mondesi.