(NOTE: THIS POST WAS RELEASED EARLY THIS WEEK ON OUR PATREON. IT’S $10/MONTH)
The Tigers’ lineup reminds me of a streaming show that’s supposed to be better, and you see flashes of why it’s supposed to be better. “Idris Elba is so good in The Wire, he’s gotta be better than this show on the airplane. Hijack? More like Goodbye, Jack. Then again, Idris Elba hasn’t been good since The Wire. Maybe it was The Wire that made him good, and Stringer Bell was such an iconic charac–Hold up, this airplane show is good when it’s not on the airplane.” That’s the Tigers’ lineup. Akil Baddoo? I was told he’s good. Spencer Torkelson? I was told he’s a big-time prospect. Riley Greene? Well, I’m still waiting to see his Stringer Bell role. Matt Vierling? He’s a 4th outfielder hitting third? Zack Short? Well, I was never told he was good. Hijack is better than saying “Hi, Zack” for your fantasy team. Javier Baez? Well, Zack Short at least has going for him that he’s named after the position. Javier Baez should be named Javier Swinging-At-A-Slider-In-The-Dirt. Wait, there’s that one part that is very interesting — Kerry Carpenter! He looks good, and not “Tigers good.” His strikeout rate and BABIP reenforce his batting average, which is solid. His power? Absolutely real. He had 22 HRs in 63 games in Double-A, eight homers in 35 games in Triple-A. That’s real power. When he hits the ball, it’s going for a homer, and the announcer can say, “Hi, jack.” (Was that whole thing just for that ending? Who’s to say?) Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:
Mitch Garver – Just went to look at Garver’s stats, which I didn’t think would send me on a trip down memory lane, sending me back to elementary school math, but it did. I saw he had 1285 career ABs, and 71 homers, and roughly 1 homer per 18 ABs, so, if he were getting 500 ABs per year, he’d have 28 homers. I know what you’re thinking, “Yeah, but with a terrible batting average.” You’re wrong. He’s a career .253 hitter, and hitting even better this year. If he had 28/.250 each year of his career, well, this is how I figured out Mitch Garver is a future Hall of Famer. I will not be taking questions at this time.
Patrick Bailey – Saw he was doing well on the 7-day Player Rater for catchers, and looked at his stats, and I don’t know how he’s doing well. Maybe with RBIs? I honestly don’t know. Really selling this Buy, huh? In most of your leagues, guys like Yainer Diaz is the grab, if he’s out there. Or someone else.
Joey Gallo – I just looked at his Statcast page, because I was going to go on a long rant about how Gallo was supposed to be good without the shift, so what happened? But I saw his expected batting average is .158 and I started cackling so hard I got distracted.
Spencer Torkelson – Since I was at Statcast for Gallo, I clicked over for Torkelson, and he has huge holes in his swing for all nonlinear pitches.
Nolan Schnauel – Being called up by the Angels. He was just drafted six weeks ago and was in Double-A. Here’s how that went:
Arte Moreno, “We have to show Ohtani that we mean business!”
Angels’ GM, Perry, “We don’t have anymore moves that we can–”
Arte, “Do something!
In case you were wondering why anyone is being called up right now, it’s 44 days until October 1st, thus no rookie will accrue 45 days of service time and lose rookie eligibility for 2024. As for Nolan Schnauel, in college this year, he went 19/14/.447 in 289 ABs. He’s a big 1st baseman for that kind of speed. Angels saw Freeman in Los Angeles and thought, “Hey, we need one of those!” Schnauel looks like a bating average first guy with a little speed and power. Prolly more James Loney than Freeman, but he’s young, so we’ll see.
Jon Singleton – He has power and struggles with contact. On a side note, MLB really made him say, “I am a drug addict and need help,” because he was caught three times testing positive for weed.
Nicky Lopez – “You thought it was impossible to make Orlando Arcia worthwhile for fantasy? Well, they did it! Now, for their next trick the Braves will make Nicky Lopez decent!” The crowd oohs and ahs.
Vaughn Grissom – Just went over him the other day, “Just thought back to how I liked Vaughn Grissom in the preseason, and disliked all other Braves’ hitters and I cackled for 45 minutes on my front lawn until my neighbors called a hospital and I was carted away in a straitjacket. Just incredible galaxy braining by yours truly. Send my brain to BU to get checked for CTE. So, Grissom was performing well in Triple-A Gwinnett Stefani, .327/.412/.494 with six homers and 11 stolen bases across 406 plate appearances. When Albies returns, Grissom might be gone-zo, and, even without Albies, Nicky Lopez is seeing playing time, so, yeah, Grissom might not be worth a grab in mixed leagues.” And that’s me quoting me!
Gabriel Arias – There’s a ton of pickups this week, but keep in mind: In redraft mixed leagues, go for a hot bat (Arias) over the dream a guy could be good without playing time (Grissom).
Liover Peguero – For full disclosure, I also had Pablo Reyes listed here, but he’s a backup infielder with 3-homer power and 4-steal speed, so I had to remove him. Why mention him here? Because Liover might not be much better. Kinda AL and NL-Only plays, respectively.
Jeff McNeil – For a long time, I would mention how Ruben Tejada hit leadoff for the Mets, batted .289 and still only had 53 runs. (Only 38 runs at leadoff in 338 ABs, by the way. Just incredible.) Well, McNeil won’t reach that level of useless average. A) Nimmo’s hit leadoff a bunch. B) McNeil has already (barely) passed Tejada for runs, but McNeil’s been pretty useless, aside from his recent hot streak. C) There’s no C.
Ezequiel Tovar – He’s been hot, so what he’s done all season is irrelevant. With that said (Grey turns the ship around), on the Player Rater, Tovar’s been about as good as Bogaerts, and better than Edman, Thairo, and Jeremy Pena, to name a few that might be surprising. I mean, Tovar’s been better than Tim Anderson, but that should not be a gut punch surprise. Tim Anderson just flinched too.
Ildemaro Vargas – There should be some sort of law that you can’t put a lowercase L next to a capital I. It’s so freakin’ confusing to read. Any hoo! Vargas has been hot, and doesn’t strike out at all.
Andruw Monasterio – Certain guys get really screwed by being behind better players, and trapped in the minors, and I guess Monasterio had that issue, but he’s been in the minors since 2014! It’s ridiculous he hasn’t had an opportunity sooner.
Jonathan Arauz – Put some Arauz con pollo on that plate with my hot schmotato!
Isiah Kiner-Falefa – Usually I do a goof calling him Israel Diner-Falafel, but I found out the other day he was related to Ralph Kiner and now that’s all I can think about. He said in a recent article, “It’s from my mom’s side,” Kiner-Falefa said. “Fourth cousin. I have all the paperwork. I tell people, but I’m brown (skinned) and they look at me like, ‘You’re lying!’ I’m Polynesian, too, so they’re like, ‘No chance’. I’ve stopped trying to convince people, but my grandpa is from Kansas. He’s full white. Ralph Kiner is from New Mexico. Full white. They were cousins.” Really, Ralph and IKF are very similar player profiles too. They have the same amount of power. I mean now with Ralph being dead and IKF not.
Kyle Isbel – Went looking for a Jeffers on fantasy team with an Isbel’s and Ford joke and all I got was Lionel’s career after he left the series. If any of that tracks for you, you’re old too. By the way, Lionel Jefferson was played by Mike Evans, then they tried to replace him with another Black actor with the same last name. Just incredible stuff.
Michael Conforto – When Conforto goes schmotato, he goes to eleven.
Stone Garrett – So weird he’s gotten this hot recently, but not when you consider I benched him this week in one league. Stonnavabench!
Nelson Velasquez – I said this morning he wouldn’t be in this Buy column, but I went to look at the 7-day Player Rater at the last minute before putting this in to my editor (me, but not wearing glasses, so squinting), and I had to include Velasquez. Isn’t it funny when a team tries to get better but sends away one of their hottest bats? Well, not funny-funny.
Adam Duvall – He really missed out on having a huge year in a great park. He is on a 30-homer pace, if he could’ve got to 150 games, but he might not even get to 75 games.
Lawrence Butler – The other day I said, “JJ Bleday hit the IL with an ACL sprain. Too bad for Jimmy-uh Jimmy Bleday. That should open up some playing time for Lawrence Butler, who just needs the middle name Creighton, to have the hashtag blessed three college name. Giving Butler some rope is dangerous since he’s a bulldog. He had 15/21/.280-ish minor league numbers, but might hit .220 in the majors, and it’s the A’s.” And that’s me quoting me!
Jason Foley – Fun fact! Brieske is a sport in French Alps where they ski with wheels of brie attached to their feet. Less fun fact! Jason Foley should get all the Tigers saves, but Brieske might steal some.
Ryan Walker – He sounds like a kid who would have a true crime documentary about his abduction, doesn’t he? Too dark? Well, don’t blame me, I’m just a web sleuth! Get out of this subreddit if you don’t like it! Any hoo! Ryan Walker has been doing great work in relief for the Giants (and as an Opener the other day), and was last seen in Milwaukee, send tips to the comments for sightings. We will be having a séance this Sunday with a psychic I always use for abductions.
Eloy Jimenez – Looked up “Eloy” on the 30-day Player Rater, and I got to elo and the Rater had sorted to Eloy and Gelof, and I stopped. Forgot to go to the bathroom, and I died of reverse diarrhea. RIP to me. On my tombstone, please have them write, “I told you I was ill.” The reason why this stopped me is because Gelof and Eloy’s stats. One guy has eight HRs and one has two homers in the last month. Oh, you know which is which! Gelof is beating Eloy at the only thing Eloy is supposed to do! It’s time to move on in most shallower leagues. If you’re in a dynasty league, then I wouldn’t trade Eloy for a front row seat to a donkey show in Tijuana, but you could go to the Fantasy Baseball Trade Analyzer and explore options.