“Okay, guys, to start the song we’re going to count out to four, but we’re going to count 1, 2…Then go back to the beginning and finish with 1, 2, 3, 4…Questions?”
“Hey, Bruce Springsteen, uh, yeah, big fan, and I’m happy to have the opportunity to show you I belong as a background vocalist in the E Street Band — ESB? Do people use that? Anyhoo…Have you considered hiring someone else to count, because ‘1, 2, 1, 2, 3, 4’ isn’t how people count?”
“Who are you?”
“I saw a flyer at The Stone Pony for an opening in your band.”
“That flyer was supposed to be taken down 48 years ago. Get out of here.”
And that’s how we got the title for this post: Al, Tu, Al, Tu, Ve, Four. It’s also how many homers Jose Altuve (2-for-3, 2 runs, 2 RBIs, 16th homer, hitting .298) has in the last three games. He has eight homers in the last 10 games, but Bruce Springsteen never counted to eight. As another singer, Lady Sovereign, would sing, “Altuve is the biggest midget in the game!” That Lady Sovereign song is 15 years old, and now I feel 100 years old. Jose Altuve also has 16 homers in 57 games; his career high is 31. Maybe this time he can steal an MVP award from someone his own size (if he’s standing on top of a car, and you include the car’s weight). Imagine being Aaron Judge and saying Altuve stole an MVP from you. Bro, you stole the sun from anyone within 10 feet of you. It’s a form of cheating by just being big. At least that’s what I tell anyone who challenges me to any sporting event. So, drilling down on Altuve’s peripherals, he’s pulling everything, and his Launch Angle is a little goofy early on (as in high), which could lead to a lot of fly balls, and lower average, or more homers, if he’s connecting, as he has been. Now, if pitchers pound away, he might be in trouble. There’s a possibility here for him to come back to earth (small fall), but anyone would come back to earth after an eight-homer, ten-game stretch, but, in general, he seems back. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
Alex Bregman – Hit the IL with a quad strain. That’s usually a three-to-four week injury, but there’s a chance it’s a four-to-five week injury, and maybe a two-to-three week injury. Unlikely a five-to-seven week injury. You just received more info than most teams’ training staffs can give you.
Abraham Toro – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 4 RBIs and a slam (1) and legs (1). Fun fact! Abraham Toro was the eponymous character in the tale of the rabbi who became a sushi master. That climatic scene when he used the Torah to roll together rice, avocado and imitation crab, ugh, the drama.
Dylan Cease – 3 1/3 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 3.99. When the Regression Fairies come for you, they don’t even care if your hair’s a mess.
Byron Buxton – Hasn’t resumed his rehab assignment. If he doesn’t start it up, it’s gonna be hard for him to have another setback. So…good?
Charlie Morton – 7 2/3 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 4.03. Been a long time since I’ve looked at him, so: 10 K/9, 3.2 BB/9, pretty neutral on homers, BABIP and maybe a tad low on LOB%. For a 37-year-old, he is still pounding 95 MPH, and doing everything that made you draft him. Maybe he’s more a 3.80 ERA pitcher, and a #4 vs. #2 or #3, but the Ks are there, and could see positive regression.
Guillermo Heredia – 2-for-3, 2 runs, and his 3rd homer, hitting .275, while going 7 for his last 13 across four games. He won’t be in the Buy column later today, but he does seem schmotato-ish.
Eric Hosmer – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 6th homer. “Hey, we’re just going to leave him in the curb on trash day–Wait! He moved! Hosmer’s alive!”
Fernando Tatis Jr. – 1-for-3 and his 22nd homer. FTJ! Fun the Jewels! I will never doubt him again. Who needs two shoulders anyway?
Victor Caratini – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 5th homer, as he homered off Mrs. Muslim Garrett, who is so terrible this year, like what even? Amir Garrett (0 IP, 2 ER, ERA at 9.31) is pitching himself out of the majors, and then who will be around to start benches clearing brawls?
Mark Melancon – 2/3 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 1.86, as Melancon went kablowie. Can we get the All-Star break right now? Let Melancon rest for a week. I don’t need him regressing back to a 5+ ERA pitcher right now.
Jonathan India – 2-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 6th homer. It was a two-out shot in the 9th off Melancon and not quite a death throw, as it’s defined in Razzball glossary, but it felt like Mola Ram ripping my heart out. India, I made you a lead buy last week, and put my love in you, how could you do this to me?
Wade Miley – 7 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 2.88. Nice little season Miley’s having. Do I trust him? Haha, get out of here! But a nice few months anyway.
Jacob deGrom – Saw two doctors who saw no problems with his shoulder. To examine deGrom’s shoulder, the doctors removed their Opti-Grab glasses. The Mets are saying the “three to four recent injuries are unrelated.” The Mets don’t even know how many recent injuries he’s had. You just gotta laugh or you’re gonna cry.
Kyle Hendricks – 6 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners (2 BBs), 7 Ks, ERA at 4.13, and, most importantly, no homers allowed. We’ve been here before, but Hendfixed? Hend looks fixed.
Javier Baez – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 16th homer. Javy Baez is the one true outcome player: 1-for-4 with a home run.
Brandon Woodruff – 5 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 1.94. Sure, Woodwoof, but when the Regression Fairies come at you in Coors, and your ERA is still 1.94, you cannot complain.
German Marquez – 6 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit, 3 walks, 2 Ks, ERA at 4.26. I’m sure glad I started him but did not watch one single moment of this start. Three walks vs. two strikeouts is called with German a Danke no-shamë.
C.J. Cron – 2-for-4, 4 RBIs and his 8th homer. You have him for three more days, then you have to promise to drop him. No matter what he does this weekend.
Matt Manning – 5 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 3.60. Anyone have any eyes on him? I have blackout restrictions to deal with here, because he was vs. the Los Angeles Is Nowhere Near Anaheim Angels.
Jonathan Schoop – 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 12th homer, hitting .275. “Hey, Grey, first of all, do you face model? Secondly, can I drop Schoop? I know he’s the best hitter of June, besides Altuve, but c’mon, say the word. I want to pick up Tyler Naquin, who hasn’t done anything in five weeks.”
Taylor Ward – 1-for-4, 4 RBIs and his 7th homer, hitting .240. Hey, Beaver, check out what Ward’s doing with the boomstick! Ward’s got some power (27 homers in Triple-A), but, uh, when does Trout return?
Shohei Ohtani – 6 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 2.70. Shohei, Shohei, Shohei how you do that trick? Is it weird I have that in my head eight weeks later?
Randy Arozarena – 3-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and a slam (10) and legs (11), hitting .271. The Rice Bowl in the 4th floor food court is open and the gettin’s getting good!
Luis Torrens – 2-for-4 and his 4th homer, and 2nd homer in the last three games. Earlier this year, I used one of those Torrens to illegally download some homers, and all I got was weak grounders to 2nd base.
Ty France – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 5th homer, and 2nd in three games. Whenever France seems to be cooling, someone with a beret and no deodorant comes along to remind you France is still hot.
Justin Dunn – Left the game with shoulder discomfort. Dunn? It appears so.
Franmil Reyes – Could begin a rehab assignment next week. Assuming no setbacks, that puts this $54 Vending Machine Steak back on track for a next weekend activation. Can’t happen soon enough for me, and, really, that’s what this is about.
Zach Plesac – Scheduled to pitch a bullpen session today. Hopefully prior to that no one plays Hulk Hogan’s Real American coming-to-the-ring music.
Eli Morgan – 3 2/3 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 12.79. If you’re like me, you saw Eli Morgan starting and you thought, “Why is Cleveland starting my financial advisor today?” Eli Morgan sounds like a dystopian conglomerate of banks and pharmaceuticals. Unsolicited text comes through, “We see you used a credit card for fast food. May we suggest you ask your doctor about our diabetes drug?”
Jose Ramirez – 1-for-5, 3 RBIs and his 16th homer. Jo-Ram has as many homers as Lindor has RBIs.
Yu Chang – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 4 RBIs and his 2nd homer, hitting .179. Time may Chang, Yu, but Yu can’t Chang time.
Bobby Bradley – 1-for-4 and his 4th homer. Tee bee aitch, didn’t have eyes on Bobby Bradley until yesterday, and he had easy home run power to the opposite field, a 402-foot shot. Immediately tried to grab him in all leagues, but he was already rostered. He’ll be in this afternoon’s Buy column, which is already on our Patreon.
Eddie Rosario – 1-for-5 and his 5th homer. Ya know, if I were in a deep league, Rosario’s the kind of guy I’d try to acquire low. In shallower leagues, you can prolly just pick him up, or get him for a throw-in.
Maikel Franco – 1-for-4 and his 8th homer. Donkey Teeth’s preseason MVP has got some bite!
Gio Urshela – 3-for-5, 3 runs, 2 RBIs and his 8th homer. Gio is ___ times better than Gleyber. A) Five B) Infinite C) There’s no C.
Gleyber Torres – Left the game with lower back tightness. That’s weird, figured he’d be walking on air since everyone’s carrying his weight.
Giancarlo Stanton – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 13th homer, hitting .265. That gives Giancarlo a baker’s dozen, or how many eggs I’ve painted with faces that I say are our children. I wish he’d get back to me, otherwise the irony will be selling omelettes to put them through college.
Bryce Harper – Expects to return today. Good to hear the back issue that’s been bothering him all season just vanished.
Edward Olivares – Optioned to the minors. Olivares has been back and forth from the majors to the minors more times this year than Jacob Nottingham has travelled between Seattle and Milwaukee. Could it be the Royals are paying Olivares in Frequent Flyer miles?
Curt Casali – 3-for-5, 2 runs, 4 RBIs and his 1st homer, as he came within a double of the cycle. Or…is that…Psycho?! Fa, fa, fa, fa, fa, fa, fa, far better run run run run run run away! Psycho killer! Curt Casali!
Steven Duggar – 3-for-3, 2 runs, 1 RBI, hitting .324. Came within a home run of the cycle. Or…is that…Psycho?! No, it’s not. It’s cycle. Stop that. Steven Duggar will be in this afternoon’s Buy column, which is already available on the Patreon.
Kevin Gausman – 8 IP, 2 ER, 5 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 1.51. “What do you mean you didn’t draft a starter in the 2nd round? Wasn’t Giolito there? Snell? Castillo? Bauer? Was Bauer there? They were all there? And you didn’t draft one?” That’s every other fantasy baseball ‘pert. Please, don’t tell them about Razzball. There’s too much to explain.
Zac Gallen – 2 2/3 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 3.99 as he was activated from the IL. Think about this, Vladdy, the Mini Impala has 18 homers since the Diamondbacks last won a road game. They’ve lost 23 straight road games, a major league record. They have no chance this year, and this is a team that is trying to rehab their top pitcher’s torn UCL rather than sending him for Tommy John surgery. You could label one piece of cheese “Tommy John surgery” and another piece of cheese, “No Tommy John surgery,” then let the deciding factor for Gallen by whichever one a rat nibbles on first, and it would be as informed as any club decision.