One scene sticks with me that truly captures America’s independence. It’s Big Willy Pullman standing on the back of a flatbed truck, twirling a bra in the air and yelling, “Today is your last chance for independence.” It was a bachelorette party at a wine tasting class in Irvine, California, and Big Willy Pullman was a male stripper wearing a Bill Pullman mask. Then, due to copyright infringements, Big Willy and the vineyard were both sued with the women being called as witnesses. That courtroom saga really captures our great land. God Bless America! Seriously, though, think about this? The Brits thought they could control America? For our Independence Day, we celebrate someone shoving 75 hot dogs into his mouth. You can control this? Get the eff out of here! So, this weekend 225 years after George Washington gave birth to this great nation after 14 hours of labor, Kenta Maeda went 6 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 5.03. His spin rate was down in prior starts, but looked better, and his velocity was up on his 4-seamer. Previously, he was dusty at 89 MPH with a 2220 RPMs, and, yesterday, lively at 91 MPH and 2279. Lots of noise when looking at just one start, but clearly this was Maeda’s best start of the year, and there’s a chance for better days like the Goo Goo Dolls. Now, put away that M80, you’re gonna need your fingers to make fantasy moves. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Jorge Polanco – 2-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 10th homer, hitting .253. Also, in this game, both Alex Kkirrilloff (1-for-5) and Max Kepler (1-for-4) hit their 7th homer. Jo-Po got lumped in with these other two, not because Jo-Po sounds like a state prison, but because none of these guys had done much recently, so not sure there’s anything here as far as schmotatoes.

Andrew Benintendi – 0-for-3 as he was activated from the IL. Whew, wouldn’t want Edward Olivares getting any playing time!

Danny Duffy – 4 IP, 2 ER, ERA at 2.60. What, and I’m going to pause here for emphasis, the hell are the Royals doing with Duffy? He’s injured! Shut him down!

Shohei Ohtani – 1-for-4 and his 31st homer, as he was named to the All-Star Game as a hitter and pitcher. By game time next week, he will have won the Home Run Derby, been named to the All-Century Team, inducted to the Hall of Fame, saved a kitten from a burning building, and announced the starter of the All-Star Game, where Kevin Cash allows him to pitch the whole game, because Shohei is Japanese for “There is no ceiling.”

Griffin Canning – Sent to Triple-A. This comes after moving Bundy to the bullpen as the Angels decide to pitch and hit Ohtani every game. I say, bring it on!

Anthony Rendon – 1-for-2 and his 6th homer, as he gave his first ounce of fantasy value in about three months, then was promptly injured, leaving the game. Weird to sell your soul for one random good game vs. the Orioles, but who am I to judge?

Kelvin GutierrezOrioles acquired him for cash. I believe the Orioles were the ones who paid the cash, but it’s not clear. The O’s might’ve been paid to take Guttierrez off of the Royals’ hands.

Eric Lauer – 6 1/3 IP, 1 ER, 8 baserunners (4 BBs), 4 Ks, ERA at 4.11. Lauer, without the fear of a button under his desk, has been quite good for very deep leagues. Focus on that ‘very deep’ part. Though, Streamonator is at least sorta positive for his next start.

Tyler Anderson – 7 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 4.39 vs. Freddy Peralta – 6 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 2.23. I love, love, lurve FreddyKBB, but I said Tyler Anderson was a solid Streamonator call in my Friday column, because, well, only lineup worse than the Pirates is the Brewers. That’s not a joke. Also, the Brewers left their best hitter, Jace Peterson, on the bench. This is also not a joke. Jace Peterson is the hottest schmotato in the league.

Kyle Schwarber – Hit the IL with a significant strain of his hamstring. Damn it, Icaruschwarber flew too close to the sun. So, did you sell him as I suggested in my Friday Buy/Sell? You didn’t have a chance? Damn, you could’ve had two extra days if you were a Patreon subscriber.

Alcides Escobar – Acquired by the Nats. Should replace Schwarber nicely.

Juan Soto – 1-for-3, hitting .278. Too bad he’s not in the Home Run Derby next week, he’d be the first player to hit into a double play.

Joe Ross – 6 2/3 IP, 3 ER, 7 baserunners, 11 Ks, ERA at 4.02. After the game, Joe Ross said, “Today, I celebrate my independence from my brother Tyson. Screw that guy!”

Jordan Montgomery – 4 1/3 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 4.17. One pitcher who I see on more commenter teams than anyone else who I can’t understand…Frankie Montas. But runner-up is Jo-Mo. At least going into this year I liked Jo-Mo, and only moved off him during the season.

Aroldis Chapman – 0 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 4.71. Donkey Teeth gave me a poison pill! Oh my God, get this schmohawk off my team! Make the pain end! Donkey, take your stupid curse off me! Also, how stupid does Aaron Boone have to be to keep going to him? Yes, I traded for a closer who I no longer want to get opportunities! Shut up, the pain makes me stupid! He’s so clearly broken. I’d guess Chad Green is the replacement, but Lasagna hasagna been just as good.

Gerrit Cole – 3 1/3 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 2.91. At home vs. the Mets? I cannot cackle loud enough. In related news, Gerrit Cole and Aroldis Chapman have been named to the AL All-Star team. To pitch the Home Run Derby.

David Peterson – Will miss around eight weeks with a strained oblique. Worst setback for A Man Da. Peterson since, well, Amanda Peterson died. RIP.

Taijuan Walker – 5 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 4 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 2.44. Heard something on Saturday about how Taijuan was also pitching for a potential spot on the All-Star team. Well, that means nothing to us, so don’t put it into my ear palaces, but he should’ve made the team.

Pete Alonso – 2-for-8, 3 RBIs and his 14th and 15th homer. Albombso!

Dominic Smith – 2-for-7, 2 runs and his 9th homer, hitting .255. Well, yeah, he beat up on some scrub called Gerrit Cole.

Nick Pivetta – 7 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 4.09 vs. James Kaprielian – 7 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 2.84. This matchup was billed as, “I streamed both of these guys before, why didn’t I stream them on Sunday?” As you can imagine, a lot of people called it this.

Ryan Yarbrough – 5 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 4.34. Real question: Why is he no longer following an opener? Could it be: Do the universal sign for money and roll your index finger around by your ear for crazy.

Wander Franco – 2-for-4 and his 2nd homer. Fun fact! Wander’s brother’s name is “Oh, the Places You’ll Go.”

Randal Grichuk – 1-for-3 and his 15th homer, and has done nothing-nada-yuck for a while now, but he’s the type to go from zero to hot schmotato overnight, so I could see grabbing him if someone grew bored.

Shed Long Jr. – 1-for-3 and his 4th homer. You don’t want to know how many homers Shed Long Jr. has in the last month vs. Juan Soto. At this point, I think Shed Long Sr. has as many homers as Juan Soto.

Luis Torrens – 1-for-2, 3 RBIs and his 9th homer, and his 2nd homer in his 2nd straight game. He was in Friday’s Buy column; he was in the Buy column the previous week, and he’s here now, so there ya go.

Chris Flexen – 6 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 3.80. Streamonator loved this start, and, of course, it did. He was home vs. the Rangers. Dur.

Tarik Skubal – 5 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 4.35. Damn, these Zoomers! *sees Dallas Keuchel went 4 IP, 7 ER, ERA at 4.48* What’s Dallas? A Zoomer, Moomer, Boomer? Hmm…well, damn these non-Zoomers too. Damn them all!

Jose Cisnero – 1/3 IP, and his 4th save, ERA at 2.72, as he relieved Gregory Soto (2/3 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 2.94). Guess Cisnero is the guy for Tigers saves now. I dare you to grab him.

Akil Baddoo – 2-for-4, 1 run, 2 RBIs, hitting .281, and his 13th steal, and five steals in the last six games. Akil does rhyme with steal, so he’s a poet or runs like it.

Lucas Giolito – 5 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 4.20. Good news, Giolito has a 4.20 ERA because he’s for the legalization of marijuana. Bad news is I made up the good news.

German Marquez – 6 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 11 Ks, ERA at 3.59. I can’t believe A) I streamed Marquez in Coors. B) It worked out. C) There’s no C. D) I’d do it again E) It’s not butter.

Harrison Bader – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and a slam (6) and legs (4). Don’t usually talk much about Coors homers, because once a hitter leaves there, well, what pops faster? Their value or ears.

Adbert Alzolay – 7 IP, 3 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 4.48. Usually takes a few starts after a guy returns from a blister to look decent again, then a few starts until his blister reemerges. Or maybe Rich Hill has polluted my mind. Any hoo! I still like Alzolay, was just worried there for a few starts.

Heath Hembree – 1 IP, 0 ER and his 3rd save on Saturday, ERA at 5.06. Bullpens, man, can’t live with them, can’t pretend they don’t exist because you have a league with a saves category. About that Brad Brach closer flyer, David Bell, in all his infinite wisdom, went with the reliever who has a 5+ ERA. Wait, it gets better! David Ding Dong went with Amir Garrett on Sunday for the save, Amir Garrett with a 7+ ERA. Mean’s while, Brad Brach worked a clean inning and a third with his 2.25 ERA. Don’t use your best reliever to close. USE YOUR WORST!

Zac Gallen – Hit the IL with a strained hamstring. I saw somewhere it said the Dbacks wouldn’t rush their best starter back in a lost season. Then, I laughed for 45 minutes, fell out my window — luckily, first floor — and I laughed on the grass — not the Mary Jane, IOC — for another hour. They’re not going to rush their best starter back from a hamstring injury? They just rushed him back from an elbow injury.

Jake Odorizzi – 6 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 2 Ks, ERA at 3.70. Currently, cracking through the top 100 for the 2nd half, which will be out next week here (in a day or two on the Patreon), and I nearly pushed Odorizzi into it. I didn’t, at least not yet, but he could easily have a top 100 2nd half.

Chas McCormick – 2-for-5, 3 RBIs and his 1oth homer, hitting .239. In 2017, Chas was drafted in the 21st round of the MLB draft. He has more homers than Juan Soto. *lights fireworks, eats lit fireworks*

Cesar Hernandez – 1-for-4 and his 14th homer. You can’t spell Cesar salad without “Cesar Hernandez has six more homers than Juan Soto!” Sorry, I’ll stop now, but holy crap what is going on with Soto? Any hoo! Hernandez has been a mainstay on one of my mixed league teams, and haven’t even considered dropping him.

Eddie Rosario – 1-for-4 and his 7th homer, hitting .255. Rosario’s superhero name is Overdue Man. Rosario is so Overdue Man.

Blake Snell – 4 IP, 0 ER, ERA at 4.99, as he was activated from the IL. You know he’s having a great season when I hear he’s activated so I rush to my team page to make all other moves I need to make so I can leave Snell in my IL slot.

Manny Machado – 2-for-2, 3 runs and his 14th and 15th homer, hitting .264. Machado hit those homers because he heard his brother-in-law Yonder Alonso was in charge of the fireworks. These two!

Ranger Suarez – 1 IP, 0 ER, ERA at 0.85, and his 1st save on Saturday. Could actually become a great closer for the remainder of the season. Dot dot dot. Or fall horribly into the Phillies’ pit of despair with all the other relievers in their pen. Jose Alvarado had his face mushed by the Phanatic as he stepped backwards into the pit of despair. No one is safe in Philly.

J.T. Realmuto – 2-for-4 and his 8th homer. People drafted Realmuto in the top 25 overall. *putting self on ground, having my very large valet rolling me back and forth while I laugh*

Ronald Acuña Jr. – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 23rd homer. Tildaddy says you can blow off your index finger with a bottle rocket!

Zach Thompson – 6 IP, 3 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 2.25. Man, did I screw a giant French Poodle by dropping Thompson and holding the now-on-the-IL Cody Poteet.

Jesus Aguilar – 3-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 13th homer, hitting .266. He was replaced in the lineup by Yimi Garcia (1 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 3.66), and the Marlins would’ve been better off letting Aguilar pitch.

Adam Duvall – 3-for-4, 4 RBIs and his 19th homer. When do the Marlins play again? Today? Where can I bet money that Adam Duvall is going to homer today?

Sandy Alcantara – 6 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit, 4 walks, 4 Ks, ERA at 2.96. Hey, will you look at what a starter can do when he’s not ejected after one pitch. By the way, not sure if you heard, but on Friday night Pablo Lopez was thrown out of the game without a warning, just because he hit Acuña after one pitch. I have some thoughts. There should be repercussions for the UMP SHOW that tossed Pablo Lopez. It cost the Marlins a game, depleted their pen, so it could hurt them in future games, put the league office in a position where they have suspend Lopez for no reason, and zero consequences for the umps. Oh, and Lopez’s entire schedule gets messed, so he could overthrow in his next start. Absolute and utter BS. The ump’s ding-donginess was in FULL DING DONG mode. Bring on robot umps!