Yesterday, the Pirates exploded for five homers, touching up Brad Peacock (3 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 4.13). Maybe the Pirates would’ve let up more if his name was Brad Parrot. Kevin Newman led the way once again, going 3-for-5, 2 RBIs with his 4th homer, and 2nd homer in as many games. Of course, he will be in this afternoon’s Buy column. Didn’t need Newman to star in the show off the Peacock, but fantasy owners should still be saying, “Hello, Newman.” Then, Starling Marte (2-for-5, 3 runs) got a slam (12) and legs (12), as he plays his OCD for laughs, as one can do in the decade of the 90s. Then, Jacob Stallings, subject of Permanent Midnight and staff writer on ALF, got into the action, going 3-for-3, 2 runs, 2 RBIs with his 1st homer. Then, Corey Dickerson (1-for-4, 2 RBIs) hit his 2nd homer, and had his 2nd big game in a row. Previously, Co-Dick was famous for what Siamese Twins filled out on a medical report, but maybe we should be “Stuck on You!” Finally, Josh Bell (2-for-5, 2 RBIs) hit his 22nd homer, 2nd homer in the row and Bell said, “If we’re doing this like the 90s, I saved you,” but the Pirates couldn’t be reached for comment, in hiding, wearing a puffy shirt. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
Joe Musgrove – 6 IP, 0 ER, 9 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 4.27. His 3.50 ERA in June is decent, but was a 4.58 ERA before yesterday’s game, so. Dot dot dot. Do you believe his 1.64 ERA in April or his 8.10 ERA in May?
Yordan Alvarez – Left yesterday’s game with a bruised knee. Fantasy Baseball Overlord, don’t you dare mess with Yordong. Don’t. You. Dare.
Keston Hiura – Called up as Travis Shaw, excuse me, MVPShaw was sent down, which is surprising, but I guess if you don’t have to DFA a guy, why bother? How about that team where you drafted Travis Shaw and Giancarlo? Man, you were set coming out of the draft! I will now ingest diet pills and feed myself to colonialists. So, Hiura is an own in every league. Put down everything you have and grab him. Yes, he’ll be in this afternoon’s Buy column, but so what? He’s here now. Be gone! You’re still here? How about now? Okay, how about this: In 74 combined games this year: Hiura has 24/8/.315, roughly a pace of 48/15/.300. Hahahahahaha–Breathe, Grey! Breathe! Seriously, grab him.
Giancarlo Stanton – Cashman doesn’t expect Giancarwreck back in July. More homers in 2019: Jarrod Dyson or Giancarwreck? Actually, we might want to be careful about calling him a Giancarwreck because then he’ll hit the IL from rubbernecking. May I suggest the Yankees escort Giancarlo to the stadium in a Popemobile bubble car. “Hey, look Jimmy, it’s The Gian-bubblecar-lo. He used to be a baseball player.” That’s a wistful moment between father and son.
Yonder Alonso – Designated for assignment. Recently overheard phone conversation Manny Machado’s wife, who is also Yonder’s sister, “Don’t worry, Yonder…” Manny motions for her not to say it, but she goes ahead anyway: “…Yes, of course, Manny can put in a good word for you with the Padres.” Manny groans, leaving the room.
Joey Gallo – 2-for-3 and his 18th and 19th homer. You’ve heard me Mitch & bone so much about the Home Run Derby that you’re going to start to think I care, but Gallo said he wasn’t invited to the Derby. C’mon, sirs and/or five madams, this is ridunk. Also, about to give a hot take, but it needs to be said. What is the number one All-Star Game pre-event for any sport? Dunk contest. Not close. In that event, they don’t get up there and just dunk like they do in the game, do they? No, they do all kinds of nonsense to make the dunks hard. So, why is the Home Run Derby exactly like every game with hitters just banging dongs, except off even worse pitchers? They’re making it easier to hit home runs? That’s gotta be the stupidest idea. I propose they make the Home Run Derby like a game of Horse, and invite the most powerful hitters, whether they’re All-Stars or not. Let’s see Vlad Jr., but hitting a home run off a tee. Then the next guy has to the same, or he gets a point. Let’s see Gallo, but he gets five pitches and calls his shot as being at least 500 feet. Then the next guy has to do it or he gets a point. Once someone has five points, they’re eliminated. Let’s make this happen! (I still wouldn’t watch, but you have to admit it’s better.)
Ariel Jurado – 7 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 3.90. If my name were Ariel, think I’d ask people call me, Merman. Streamonator hates his next start, and I think you might have more screws than Ace Hardware if you own him, but he has been okay.
Spencer Turnbull – Left yesterday’s start with shoulder fatigue. I don’t know what him wearing a sporty cammo shoulder pashmina has to do with anything…*finger to ear bud*….okay, being told I was thinking of fatigues.
Craig Kimbrel – 1 IP, 0 ER and his 1st save, as he sits on my bench. *turns corner of cards up to see I’m holding a pair of kings, sees opponent is showing a three* Yup, I’m gonna fold.
Kyle Schwarber – 1-for-4 and his 17th homer, hitting .230. Even if you didn’t know anything about baseball, but you were to read the headline, “Schwarber Connects With Yet Another Leadoff Home Run,” wouldn’t you think, if you were, say, the manager, maybe, I don’t know, Schwarber shouldn’t be hitting leadoff? He has a .318 OBP, by the way, so there’s no excuse going down that path.
Bryse Wilson – 4 1/3 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 8.31. Still better than Faultyswitchwitz! This was a terrible matchup, but I’m still wait-and-see with Wilson in all but the deepest of leagues. Cyclops’ing him hard, though.
Freddie Freeman – 1-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 22nd homer, hitting .312. As of this writing (about 3:15 PM on Thursday), Freeman had the 2nd most RBIs in the league with 63. #1 with 70? Any guesses? You’re wrong, it’s Josh Bell. Maybe I’m remembering this wrong, but it does seem like there’s a lot less RBIs for the top guys around the midway point in the season. Feels like usually there’s at least one 80-RBI guy. Plus, with all the homers, you’d think there would be more RBIs. I would, at least.
Ozzie Albies – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 13th homer, hitting .284. Pro Sportz Contractz dot com said Albies earned $48.98 since his last homer.
Martin Perez – 7 IP, 2 ER, 4 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 4.15, as he took on the Rays. Good time as any to point out how important it is to pay attention to how teams are doing more recently vs. more, uh, laterly. The Rays were great in April and May. In June, they have not been good, and in the last week, they’ve been terrible. Almost like whatever way Austin Meadows (1-for-5) goes, so go the Rays. In June, he’s hitting around .220. Far cry from the top five OF he looked like early on. Or maybe that’s “ugly cry,” if you own him.
Andrelton Simmons – 1-for-4, 1 run as he was activated from the IL. Kevin from ESPN’s “Get Him In Your Lineup” Department said, “I didn’t challenge Bill, in Accounting, to a duel. I whispered my duel challenge into a bottle and rolled the bottle to him. Does that really still count?”
Kole Calhoun – 1-for-3, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 17th homer. It’s beyond time we make a variation of the game where you just draft a name, and get all guys with the same name. No more Willie and Kole Calhoun in two spots on your roster. Oh no! Now you want Calhoun, you draft both of them with one name. Serious stakes, do you draft two Calhouns before one Springer?
Shohei Ohtani – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 10th homer. You know one area that Ohtani really kills the competition? Value per game. To give you an idea, his value per game is better than all but seven 1st basemen. Of course, his overall is barely a positive. Here’s also Coolwhip’s Shohei Ohtani fantasy.
Griffin Canning – 6 IP, 2 ER, 4 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 3.79. His K/9 and BB/9 respectively are 9.2 and 2.0 with a 4.62 xFIP and an insanely low .226 BABIP. Essentially, that means he’s ownable in most 12 team or deeper mixed leagues, but is a streamer in shallower ones, and is on the verge of being ownable everywhere and nowhere. Griffin’s on the cliff in leagues.
Ramon Laureano – 1-for-4 and his 14th homer. He’ll be in this afternoon’s Buy column, because he has been in the last five weeks of Buy columns, so why not. Can’t fully understand why people are so slow to pick him up. He’s a top 30 outfielder for all leagues.
Carson Kelly – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 9th homer, hitting .270. You have to admit my call of Kelly above Danny Jansen in the preseason doesn’t look half bad–Okay, that’s not saving your season, but still.
Juan Soto – 1-for-4 and his 13th homer. Stay thirsty, Sexy Dr. Pepper!
Trea Turner – 2-for-5, 2 runs, and his two steals (15, 16), hitting .291. Treat Urner now has six steals in the last ten games. Please let me be saying something like this on July 8th, “Damn, I don’t want the All-Star Break to cool off how incredibly hot Treat’s been.” Please, universe, make that happen for me.
Victor Robles – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 12th homer, and his third homer in eight games. I know it hasn’t felt like this, but because steals are so crucial, Robles has been a near-top 40 OF on the Player Rater, and the same as Dannys Antana and, gulp, Benintendi.
Max Muncy – 3-for-4, 3 runs, 3 RBIs and his 19th homer, hitting .281. I’d like to go back to my Max Muncy sleeper post from December and make like I stumbled onto some Zoltar fortune telling machine by saying Muncy is going to hit 35 homers again, but if anyone does not hit 35 homers this year, there’s something wrong them.
Cody Bellinger – 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 27th homer, hitting .356. Bellinger might have 35 homers by the All-Star Break!
Walker Buehler – 5 2/3 IP, 7 ER, ERA at 3.43. I need massive vape pulls to destress myself after Dave Roberts decided to put Buehler in Coors and leave him out there to get run over.
Jean Segura – 1-for-5, 3 RBIs and his 10th homer, and 3rd homer in four games. I wish I could’ve recorded your thoughts four days ago when I said Segura could still get to 20 homers. I mean, I’m capable of it, I just forgot to press record.
Bryce Harper – 1-for-4 and his 14th homer, hitting .246. Another game the Phils would’ve lost if not for Harper! Ya know, because then they’d have eight fielders and anything hit to right field would totally go for extra bases.
Maikel Franco – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 12th homer, and 3rd homer in four games, hitting .221, but over-.350 in the last week. Not sure if Franco’s crazy, hot-schmotato hot right now, loves to face the Mets or some weird combination of both. He won’t be in this afternoon’s Buy column, but he has been scorching recently.
Zack Wheeler – 6 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 4.51. Since I said Wheeler was a Buy Low, he’s thrown 13 IP, 2 ER, 12 Ks in Wrigley then Citizens Flank, two extremely tough parks.
Hector Neris – 1/3 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 3.18, with his 2nd blown save, as he was pitching three days in a row. Not much difference today between Neris seen on the mound and kerosene on the mound, and then Edwin brought the Diaznamite…
Edwin Diaz – 1/3 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 4.94. 73 appearances last year: 16 ER. 33 appearances this year: 17 ER. He’s ahead of his pace! No, no, seriously, folks, at least the Mets got Robinson Cano, a premium vet bat. This year’s Mets are so full-blown Mets last year’s Mets wouldn’t even recognize these Mets. 2018 Mets, “Who are you?” 2019 Mets, “We’re you, a year later.” 2018 Mets, “C’mon, stop it.”