Figured if I heard the first part of the sentence, “Finally, the Tigers went out and got their man,” it would be followed by a story about how a few tigers dressed up as humans, went to visiting hours at Joe Exotic’s jail and ate him. It didn’t mean that, but if the Tigers sign Carole Baskin, the Pirates will trade Bryan Reynolds to the Tigers for her. So, the Tigers signed Javier Baez, and I love it. Tigers are sneakily becoming my “Pick it to stick it!” Which translates to a team I put hundred schmools on to win the World Series, and they just miss the playoffs. Javier Baez is defined, for better or worse, for his lack of walks — wacks? Hey, that’s actually pretty good. “Baez is too reliant on wacks to be a reliable batting average guy.” Wacks seems to give off a negative connotation in the mind of fantasy baseballers (<–my mom’s term!). If you’re in an OBP league, then I get it, but I’m not talking about OBP when I say Baez is continually underrated, which, brucely, is one of the weirder peccadillos in fantasy. By the way, never say “peccadillo” aloud because that would give someone the right to punch you in the nose. I say it’s weird because Baez is exactly the type that most love more than is deserved in real baseball. It’s truly bizarre. Real baseball people love Baez, even though he is a liability with his wacks, but, for fantasy, he’s underrated. I see Baez and want to “wacks” poetic. Comerica isn’t particularly fun-loving, so Baez has gone from Friendly Confines for power to neutral in Metco to a team whose player most synonymous with home runs was Matthew Boyd. Still, a guy who averages 27/15/.265 has my attention, and I’m ready to get my Baezian wacks. For 2022, I’ll give Javier Baez projections of 84/25/91/.257/14 in 541 ABs. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this offseason for fantasy baseball:

Psyche! Promise you sleepers are starting tomorrow, unless there’s some other big signing during the lockout, which is illegal, but what are legalities except illegalities that wear frilly shirts. Also, I’ve begun to roll out my 2022 fantasy baseball rankings on our Patreon. Anyway II, the roundup:

Marcus Stroman – Signed with the Cubs. Not sure who Stroman pissed off, besides Italians, but going to the Cubs right now seems like purgatory on earth. Not sure what I’m talking about? It was revealed he “liked” a tweet about an Italian-American reporter that called the reporter a WOP. As a pizza bagel, I am half Italian, and we take our insults very serious. (I’m saying this in my head with a heavy Jersey accent to help you hear it.) Maybe Stroman wanted to go to Chicago for some other reason. Maybe Stroman heard how disrespectful Chicago pizza was to Italians and couldn’t wait to get there. Hey, I’m just askin’ questions here. Any hoo! The great thing about Stroman, besides him always leaving a reservation open at an Italian restaurant, is he’s great just about anywhere, and Wrigley will put that to the test. Ground balls will ground balls wherever. Honestly, I think he could overcome Coors. An 8 K/9, low-2 BB/9, 50+% ground ball rate is what I’d take from every number three. Just don’t expect too much, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised. For 2022, I’ll give Marcus Stroman projections of 9-11/3.54/1.13/162 in 191 IP.

Clint Frazier – Signed with the Cubs. You know your sportsball league has issues when an iconic Chicago team is claiming to be a small market team. You really know you have issues when you’re paying your players less than the cost of their game-worn jerseys. “Hey, Clint, if you want to subsidize your salary, you can spraypaint your number on your back and sell your jersey.” So, I’m still one of the last believers in Clint Frazier, but he’s not being drafted until pick 500th overall, and that makes sense. He has some serious goodwill to earn. For 2022, I’ll give Clint Frazier projections of 28/9/32/.261/4 in 278 ABs with a chance for more, obviously (or less).

Yan Gomes – Signed with the Cubs. The Cubs signing Yan Gomes before trading away Willson Contreras reminds me of when Alex P. Keaton had two dates to the prom.

“Hey, so you wanna catch for us?”
Runs across the room, quickly changes tie, “I’d love for you to be our catcher.”

Yan Gomes’s 2022 Projections: 46/14/49/.256/1 in 382 ABs, assuming Willson Contreras finds a new prom date by the season.

Joey Wendle – Traded to the Marlins. Mr. Wendle is definitely a bum, and his game is classic sign of arrested development. So, I don’t get this move at all for the Marlins. Roster Resource has Jazz Chisholm in a platoon, which is laughable. My guess is Wendle platoons with Brian Anderson, Rojas and maybe even some outfield. It’ll figure itself out, but Wendle went 11/8 in 501 plate appearances last year, so I don’t expect better when his PAs are cut down to 300. For what it’s Cronenworth, I reached out to my Marlins’ contact about playing time, and he said the Marlins might make more moves still. Perhaps the best news from this Wendle trade might be Vidal Brujan could start the year in the majors for the Rays.

Jorge Alfaro – Traded to the Padres. If he’s going alphabetically to where he’d have value and get at-bats, he’s closer if going by team name, but overshot his destination if it’s by city names. Okay, will stop talking in riddles. Alfaro won’t have any value for the Padres, but would’ve been the starter on the Pirates.

Cesar Hernandez – Signed with the Nats. Remembered him having a surprisingly good previous season and went to look at his stats and am now wondering why my memory is so bad. Guess I remembered his good 1st half (15 HRs) and forgot his 2nd half (6 HRs, .239). As Cesar would say at a Target, caveat emptor. Though, the non-Ron Washington Nats is possibly the best landing spot for him for fantasy value. For 2022, I’ll give Cesar Hernandez projections of 77/16/57/.241/2 in 541 ABs.

Mark Melancon – Signed with the Diamondbacks. 40 saves incoming from a 275th overall pick that no one wants until they get to July and realize they’re wearing a SAGNOF shirt and are winning their league’s saves category. For 2022, I’ll give Mark Melancon projections of 1-3/3.81/1.26/57, 32 saves in 63 IP.

Rougned Odor – Signed by the Orioles. They only signed Odor because they’re cheap, but this time their cheapness might pay dividends in fantasy. Imagine a factory that cuts corners and finds itself putting knifes in glove compartments for people to just cut seatbelts off their bodies, rather than a buckle that works. This is one of those times, when the knife cutting you out of your carseat is better than unbuckling. And that knife could lead to a guy hitting 30 homers and .220. For 2022, I’ll give Rougned Odor projections of 61/27/72/.209/4 in 463 ABs.

Dylan Bundy – Signed with the Twins. Just realized something. The Twins run their team like their fantasy managers. Buxton? Burn us again, baby! Pineda? Make it hurt, lover! Bundy? The upside is incredible! Yeah, better the Twins than me. For 2022, I’ll give Dylan Bundy projections of 6-8/4.51/1.33/136 in 134 IP.

Hunter Renfroe – Traded to the Brewers. A last-minute, pre-lockout trade? As Scooby would say, “Hunter Renfroe?!” The move to Milwaukee is gonna cut down on Renfroe’s average a little, but could aid in power. The Green Monster giveth doubles for average (he had a career high in doubles last year, because of course), but it taketh away some low-flying missiles that could get to the seats. Really liked Renfroe last year in Boston, and this doesn’t hurt that enthusiasm. There’s a scenario here where I could see a 37/.250 year. Me likey a lot. For 2022, I’ll give Hunter Renfroe projections of 79/33/92/.249/2 in 519 ABs.

Jackie Bradley Jr. – Went the over way in the Renfroe trade. It does feel a bit like the Red Sox try to be worse every offseason, get surprisingly better, then repeat cycle. It’s not like they don’t know what they’re getting with Jackie Bradley Jr. Did they look at Hunter Renfroe, who was solid for them last year, and think, “This is too easy. Let’s make it harder on ourselves?” Last year, Jackie Bradley Jr. went 6/7/.163. Dot dot dot. In 428 plate appearances! I get the defense is solid, but he shouldn’t be a starter for any team, let alone one sent for Hunter Renfroe. For 2022, I’ll give Jackie Bradley Jr. projections of 34/14/43/.217/5 in 337 ABs, and I think I’m being too generous.

James Paxton – Signed with the Red Sox. He had his 2nd career Tommy John surgery last April, so I wonder how this works for the Red Sox. Do they get credit for the Tommy John surgery stamp card towards the 5th free or no?

Rich Hill – Signed with the Red Sox. The Red Sox were like, “Hey, we surprised people with Nick Pivetta as our ace, let’s see if we can really, really surprise people!” I’ve mentioned this before, but it always blows my mind that Rich Hill’s been in the league since 2005, and only has 1134 2/3 career IP. Nolan Ryan prolly got that in three consecutive seasons. That is insanely hard to pull off. You have to be good enough to stay in the league, but not good enough to ever pitch a full season. He’s averaging 70 IP per season and he has zero career saves! That’s bonkers. For 2022, I’ll give Rich Hill projections of 6-5/3.71/1.20/127 in 136 IP.

Roberto Perez – Signed with the Pirates. He’s coming off a 7-homer, .149 season, i.e., if you think you can rely on Ro-Pe, you’re gonna be hung out to dry. For 2022, I’ll give Roberto Perez projections of 37/16/41/.173/1 in 381 ABs.

Jordan Lyles – Signed with the O’s. Would be funny if the MLBPA used Lyles as an example of how the Orioles aren’t trying to be competitive. Then the Orioles come back with, “Lyles is great! We love him! We’re unbeatable now!” Then the MLBPA is like, “Fine, show us!” And they come back from the lockout just to see if Jordan Lyles is good or not. The sport is riding on your back, Jordan Lyles. Do us proud.

62 Comments
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Will
Will
6 months ago

THe Cubs better have some additional FA moves planned after signing Stroman, otherwise they’re running a AAA team out there. I have to believe Stroman was given assurances that the Cubs will continue to add talent otherwise why would he go there? He does have an opt out after two seasons on the contract. But I hope he stays and is great. GO CUBS.

Malicious Phenoms
Malicious Phenoms
6 months ago

If you traded one which one would you trade
Bobby Bradley
Andres Jimenez

Dynasty league
Both bench bats

Malicious Phenoms
Malicious Phenoms
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Yes trade away from my team
Thanks

Rabbit
Rabbit
6 months ago

Vidal Brujan is the Rays’ hair stylist, right? I hear Glasnow asked him for a Peaky Blinders haircut.

Sport
Sport
6 months ago

I’m adding Renfroe to my list of power targets. I wouldn’t have thought of him without you! Going to be interesting to see who closes in SD now.

Steamer has LouRob with 14 SB. You think he is still a 30/30 candidate?

I went Ramirez/LouRob one and two in my 12 team dynasty. 5×5 traditional categories. Now I’m hoping for some power in round 3, but I have a feeling Mullins slides. The balance so far allows me to flexible correct?

Thank you!

Sport
Sport
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Man I’m torn at pick 45. Managers are letting age slide so I got Freeman at 32. Ramirez, LouRob, Freeman.

Nola and Wheeler still available.
Also, Bogaerts, Witt Jr., Judge, Alonso, Tim Anderson, and O’Neill.

There are 3 more picks before me. I don’t mind getting a 30 year old in a dynasty as long as I sprinkle some youth (LouRob). I planned on getting my frist SP at 56 but I”m afraid Baz, Rogers, and Webb will all three be gone.

Thoughts?

Sport
Sport
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Thank you!

Yeah they are letting the age guys slide. So Robbie Ray is sliding too.

The Great Knoche
The Great Knoche
6 months ago

Early season DC coming? Or y’all want me to set one up.

The Great Knoche
The Great Knoche
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Shit. Must have.

Hernan
Hernan
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Lol, by the way, it’s your turn…., Bellinger and Yelich there….

hot corner
hot corner
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Yelich is right there for you!?!?!?

Hernan
Hernan
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Lol, your turn again, I’ll make my picks fast…

Al KOHOLIC
Al KOHOLIC
Reply to  The Great Knoche
6 months ago

Yeah if u all get another let me no please

Mrs. Featherbottom
Mrs. Featherbottom
6 months ago

Here for the Hunter Renfroe stonks!

Wake Up
6 months ago

HDMDD!

Height doesn’t measure deep dish! Send him to Chicago it’s good for business. I’ve had it many times and it’s delicious. But it ain’t pizza. Ketchup is fine. Egg noodles too. Put them together and that’s one fine looking Jew. Even Harrison can’t afford to call that spaghetti. Why don’t you go try on one of those coats. Come on. Go ahead. Try it. It gets cold by the lake in Winter. Remember Apocalypse Now remember Hearts of Darkness? FFC says in there…the worst thing you can be is pretentious…

hot corner
hot corner
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Grew up in Jersey and live in Chicago. Appreciate both. It is apples vs oranges. Call them whatever you want but they can’t be compared.

In the finest of Chicago ways, the Lou Malnatis by my house recently had a guy crash into the restaurant because the driver was shot while driving past the store.

hot corner
hot corner
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

They can afford it. Lou Malnatis company was just sold for $500 million.

Will
Will
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Wait, what? Lou Malnati’s is now in CA??? Imma have to look up their locations to see how close any are to the Bay Area. Lou Malnati’s is good but when I lived in Chicago there was a local place (Ferentinos) which was better. Now we get good pizza from this hole in the wall place run by a family of Bulgarians, go figure.

bigbear
bigbear
6 months ago

Wendle is 31! I didn’t expect that… But “earned” his first All-Star appearance in 2021! He has to be an improvement, right?

Odor – I don’t mind the Odor signing for the O’s. A hope and a prayer (and hopefully not a lot of money – I haven’t see that number though) for a guy who’s done it before… Seems par for the course for a small market team patching holes until the MiLB is ready for MLB. And about as good a spot for Odor. Like you said for Alfaro. For fantasy, he’s a batty call who could stick around.

But Lyles? Your commentary is spot on! $7 mil for a guy who has thrown 150 IP once? 5+ career ERA? Led the league in HR allowed? Honestly, he’s a starter for the O’s no doubt. So he’s an improvement. But geez, what is the $7 mil really buying? Stability? Or an alibi?
Woof!

Philip
Philip
7 months ago

Grey, would you trade Flaherty straight up for Tyler O’Neil in a 20-team 6×6 dynasty? Thanks!

Wake Up
Reply to  Philip
6 months ago

HDMDD!

Height doesn’t measure deep dish! Send him to Chicago it’s good for business. I’ve had it many times and it’s delicious. But it ain’t pizza. Ketchup is fine. Egg noodles too. Put them together and that’s one fine looking Jew. Even Harrison can’t afford to call that spaghetti. Why don’t you go try on one of those coats. Come on. Go ahead. Try it. It gets cold by the lake in Winter. Remember Apocalypse Now remember Hearts of Darkness? FFC says in there…the worst thing you can be is pretentious…

Wake Up
Reply to  Philip
6 months ago

Oops…I would rather have the Canadian cross fitter…

Philip
Philip
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Would you trade Flaherty for Tyler Oneil if you had to chip in another piece like Mahle or Verdugo? Thanks!

Philip
Philip
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

I figured. Last one, promise!

Would you send Flaherty and Mahle for Mullins?

Appreciate it, Grey!

Philip
Philip
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

If they were easy I wouldn’t consult the master lothario!

I have this unfortunate character defect where I try to make fair trades.

galica123
galica123
7 months ago

Grey!!!

Awesome!!

a. Seriously, great insightful read man.

b. Lyles signing in Camden….that’ll work. We’re doomed! Though maybe they just start him on the road in pitchers’ parks. It could work out. Don’t laugh if you added him in competitive RCLs last year from the start of the season, he was rosterable.

c. MiLB supplementary draft continues. My picks in that 15-round supp. draft of this 4×4 league (OBP, RC, TB, SB x WHIP, K/9, SVH, QS)

Brujan (1, 10)
Seiya Suzuki (2, 14)
JLowe (3, 33)
Lodolo (4, 38)
Jordan Walker (5, 56)
Eury Perez (6, 61)
Roansy Contreras (7, 80)
Colton Cowser (8, 85)
Steven Kwan (9, 99)
Doval (10, 104)
Dustin Harris (11, forget)
Joey Wiemer (12, same)
Josh Winder (13)
Landon Knack (14)

For my last pick, I have these three guys in my queue. Do you like any of them for my last pick?

Ji-Hwan Bae
Hudson Haskin
Sean Hjelle (he’s 6’11” and proves the theory that white men can’t jump, though he’s super athletic for size)

d. Norm MacDonald quote of the day for December 2, 2021

‘Scientists just completed a ten-year study where they have created a genetically superior Christmas tree that will be taller, stronger and tougher than other Christmas trees. One down side, if you don’t like your presents it will kill you.’

e. Marx Brothers quote of the day for December 2, 2021

Groucho: ‘I’m sick and tired of being applauded. Of making people laugh.

Genevieve: ‘What people?’

Groucho: ‘Well, that’s besides the point. Anyway, I’ve given my farewell performance.’

Cheers,
Ante

Wake Up
Reply to  galica123
6 months ago

Robots can reproduce!

Sport
Sport
Reply to  galica123
6 months ago

Ante! Sorry I missed your questions the other day in the comments. I wasn’t able to read Grey’s stuff til later in the day.

We are into the 2nd round of our draft, 12 teams, 5×5 roto, with the traditional categories. 28 MLB spots, and 12 minors spots and we are drafting all 40 in one big draft.

I have the 8th pick, and my rankings going in were Tatis, Acuna, Turner, Soto, Bichette, Ramirez, Vlad, Othani. It went 1-Soto, 2-Tatis, 3-Acuna, 4-Vlad, 5-Turner, 6-Ohtani, 7-Boba Chet and I got Ramirez at 8.

I’m currently on deck with Harper and LouRob still available so I’m going OF next.

I’m using the always solid Grey approach, hitters early and trying to balanced with some some speed sprinkled in. I’m cautiously watching age. Ramirez is 29 but I like his balance in a league where I need 100 SB to finish in the top 3 in that category (only 10 active hitters rostered). I have a couple SP I will see if they are available at 45, but probably going hitters top 4 picks. SP at 56, hitter 65, SP 80, hitter 89, and my first closer at 104.

Ante GALIC
Ante GALIC
Reply to  Sport
6 months ago

Sport!!

Thanks, man!

Solid pick at 9 for JoRam.

Most important as you go through your marathon draft, stay focused. Slowly nibble on walnuts or almonds as you go through it. Also stay hydrated.

Cheers,
Ante

Sport
Sport
Reply to  Ante GALIC
6 months ago

LOL. Best advice yet. Although it’s nice to really research the numbers before each pick and adjust to unpredictable picks ahead of me, I miss the rush of a fast pace redraft. This slow draft is definitely a marathon. Thanks for the advice!

I have gone back through the comments of past articles here to reread how your draft went. It’s been helpful so far!

Sport
Sport
Reply to  Ante GALIC
6 months ago

And the run on starting pitchers begins in the second round! They have grabbed the predictable SP’s but also Urias and Manoah. Both in the 2nd round! I may end up getting some 31 year old SP’s for cheap and then the young guys later. We’ll see. I’m guessing Baz and Joe Ryan will go earlier than I would like based on how this has started.

Ante GALIC
Ante GALIC
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Grey!!!

Thanks, man.

a. Went with Masyn Winn from STL. It’s the last round, he’s so young (19 or 20 I think.). Give the kid a shot.

b. I copied the entire draft room conversation into a text document. There were two managers who went gaga when I drafted Steven Kwan. I don’t like him too much and don’t know why I drafted him, so I’ll use the intel and offer a trade to both of them see if I can get something better.

Cheers,
Ante

Ante GALIC
Ante GALIC
Reply to  Grey
6 months ago

Grey!

Draft is complete. Any of these players expendable? I’d drop them for minor leaguers to slot into the three minor league slots I have available, assuming JLowe, Brujan and Doval break camp with the big league club.

C-Garver
1-Cron
2-India
3-Chapman
SS-Xander
CI-Schwindel
MI-Wade
OF-Walsh, Arozarena, Betts, Fraley, SMarte
UT-Biggio, Senzel

Bench-Brujan, Kwan, JLowe

IL-JD Davis, Connor Joe, Trevor Larnach

MIL-Dustin Harris, Jordan Walker, Ji-Hwan Bae, Masyn Winn, Colton Cowser, Hudson Haskin, Seiya Suzuki, Joey Wiemer

SP-Houck, Manoah, RSuarez, Kopech, Cease, Gonsolin, Ryan
RP-Hendriks, Iglesias, DCastillo, Whitlock, Doval, Kittredge

IL-BSinger

MIL-Roansy, Eury Perez, Josh Winder, Landon Knack, Lodolo, Mlodzinski

Cheers,
Ante

Ray
Ray
7 months ago

Any projection for Knebel signing in Philly to close?

C
C
Reply to  Ray
7 months ago

Sneaky sexy?

Wake Up
Reply to  Ray
6 months ago

The K won’t be silent…