How many of you remember the watershed 1993 film Dazed and Confused? In this coming of age saga, a young righty, with the flowing locks of Sampson himself, embarks on a journey that will change his life forever. It is in that film where we first meet Mike Clevinger. I could go on a lengthy diatribe about the film with the Indians righty supplanted as the protagonist, but I already did that a year and a half ago when I first introduced you to Mr. Clevinger. It’s like I’m watching my kids grow up right before my eyes. Either way Clevinger is long haired and goofy just like Mitch from Dazed and Confused. Not to toot my own horn, but to totally toot my own horn, I called this developing breakout a year ago. The Indians acquired the former 2011 4th rounder from the Angels back in 2014 for pen arm Vinny Pestano. Since then it’s been a classic Cleveland starter story, as the organization focused on bringing Clevinger along first as a pen arm, and now as a starter. With a 14.1% SwStr, and a 28.5% K%, there’s some signs that Clevinger, in a season of disappointing starters, could be a diamond in the rough. Let’s look under the hood, and then go pitch by pitch through his Sunday start vs. the division rival Detroit Tigers.


Scouting Report: For the most part Clevinger works off of his low-mid 90’s fastball, that he can ramp up to 96 when needed. The heater accounts for a tick over half his pitch usage (53%), generating about an 8% SwStr, and a 40%ish groundball rate. He mixes in three breaking/off-speed pitches in his slider, change, and curveball. He throws his slider, the best of his offspeed pitches, around 18% of the time. The pitch sits in the low-80’s in terms of velocity, and generates lots of swings and misses. His mid-80’s changeup is an underrated pitch, rating the highest of his arsenal on Fangraphs pitch values. He throws the change around 16% of the time, and gets the most swings and misses of any of his offerings, with a 27% whiff rate. His mid-70’s curveball gives him a fourth offering, and a varation of nearly 20 MPH between his four pitches. His ability to mix speeds, and throw all four of his pitches for strikes, keeps hitters off balance, and hints at some unreached ceiling for the 26 year old.


Mike Clevinger @ Detriot Tigers, July 1st, 2017, Comerica Park Detroit, MI


First Inning

Jose Iglesias – 92 MPH fastball down the middle, strike 1, fastball at 94 low and away, ball 1,  80 MPH to the outside corner, swinging strike 2, 74 MPH curveball low in the zone golfed to Zimmer in center. One out.

Alex Avila – 89 MPH fastball low and inside, ball 1, 93 MPH inside belt high, swung on and missed, strike 1, 75 MPH curveball low and inside, ball 2, 87 MPH changeup to the outside, foul ball, 82 MPH slider low and inside, ball 3, full count, 94 MPH belt high and away, and he misses the zone, walk.

J.D. Martinez – 81 MPH slider to the outside, ball 1, fastball at 93 on the outside, ball 2, 94 MPH fastball on the outside ball 3, 93 MPH fastball on the outside and another ball. Four pitch walk, worked away from JD.

Miguel Cabrera – slider at 81 low and outside, ball 1, 93 MPH fastball low and outside, ball 2, 93 MPH fastball inside, strike 1, 92 MPH on the inside, foulball, changeup on the outside, foulball, 75 MPH curve in the dirt, and Miggy bites on it with a check swing and can’t hold up. Two outs.

Nick Castellanos – 82 MPH slider on the outside, ball 1, 92 MPH fastball on the inside, ball 2, 93 MPH fastball outside, ball 3, 92 MPH fastball high and inside, strike 1, 92 MPH fastball on the outside again, ball 4. He can’t hit his spot to the gloveside part of the plate.

Victor Martinez – 92 MPH fastball inside, strike 1, 88 MPH changeup down and away with some bite, swinging strike 2, another changeup at 85 MPH is fouled off, 92 MPH high and inside, ball 1, 75 MPH curveball skied to left, and Inning over.

How Clevinger managed to escape that inning with no runs allowed is impressive. His control was iffy, but he got squeezed a few times when pitching away to righthanders to his gloveside. Needs to throw more first pitch strikes, because he’s a different, much tougher at bat, when he’s up in the count.

Second Inning

Mikie Mahtook – 91 MPH fastball inside, strike 1, 75 MPH curveball, foul, 90 MPH changeup high and outside, foul, 81 MPH slider belt high and outside, hit right at Kipnis, who toss to first for the out.

Andrew Romine  – 88 MPH changeup on the outside, foul, 74 MPH curveball on the inside, swinging strike 2, 92 MPH fastball high and outside, ball 1, Fastball at 92 belt high and middle, swinging strike 3.

Dixon Machado – 93 MPH fastball on the outside, ball 1, 93 MPH fastball down Main St. is hit to right field for the final out.

Came out throwing strikes this inning, and the results followed. Doesn’t hurt when you face a trio of Mikie Mahtook, Andrew Romine, Dixon Machado.

Third Inning

Jose Iglesias – 93 MPH fastball inside, ball 1, 80 MPH slider to the outside, strike 1, 80 MPH slider outside and in the dirt, ball 2, 92 MPH fastball, low, ball 3, 93 MPH fastball to the outside, ball 4. That same pitch on the outside is killing him.

Alex Avila – 91 MPH fastball on the outside, just a little low. 85 MPH changeup high and inside, strike 1, 91 MPH fastball low, ball 2, changeup to the outside corner, strike 2, 87 MPH over the middle of the plate hit for a lazy fly to Zimmer. 1 out.

J.D. Martinez – 92 MPH fastball way outside, strike 1, 87 MPH changeup low, ball 2, 92 MPH fastball ripped to left field for an RBI double, as Iglesias scores.

Miguel Cabrera – 74 MPH curveball, low, ball 1, 92 MPH fastball catches the outside corner, strike 1, 81 MPH slider, ball 2, 88 MPH changeup to the outside corner again, strike 2, 93 MPH outside and off the plate, ball 3, full count, 80 MPH slider in the outside, ball 4. 5 walks!!!

Nick Castellanos – 93 MPH fastball high and inside, swinging strike 1, 88 MPH changeup down the middle, strike 2, 90 MPH changeup high in the zone, swinging strike 3. Nice at bat for Clevinger.

Victor Martinez – 87 MPH change on the inside, strike 1, 90 MPH changeup in the hands, and V-Mart hits a lazy grounder into the shift.

The control is frustrating, because Clevinger is just inches from throwing all of his low fastballs, and sliders on the outside for strikes. However he’s consistently missing the spot. I will say the strike zone seems a little high today.

Fourth Inning

Mikie Mahtook – 90 MPH fastball inside, strike 1, changeup to the outside, strike 2, fastball in the outside, ball 1, 75 MPH fastball is tapped to the front of the plate and Gomes throws to first for the out.

Andrew Romine – 91 MPH fastball, foul, 92 MPH fastball inside, foul, 91 MPH fastball in the dirt, ball 1, curveball at 75 MPH to the bottom of the zone gets a swing and a miss, strikeout.

Dixon Machado – Fastball to the outside, ball 1, 90 MPH fastball gets a groundballs to short for the third out.

What an efficient inning, that weak bottom of the Tigers order is saving Clevinger’s bacon today.

Fifth Inning

Jose Iglesias – 91 MPH fastball high and inside, ball 1, 91 MPH fastball to the outside, strike 1, 92 MPH to the outside, strike 2, 75 MPH curveball to the bottom of the zone, foul, 90 MPH high changeup, hitsbofd the bat, foul, drops in a 86 MPH changeup for strike 3.

Alex Avila – 72 MPH curveball drops in for strike 1, changeup for ball 1, slider at 81 for strike 2, high changeup at 85, ball 2, 93 MPH fastball gets a check swing and Avila can’t hold up, strike 3.

JD Martinez – 81 MPH slider to the outside, ball 1, 87 MPH changeup in the outside corner, strike 1, fastball to the outside, swinging strike 2, 85 MPH changeup hit to third and the ball is booted by Jose Ramirez.

Miguel Cabrera – 74 MPH curveball gets Migfy to chase, strike 1, 93 MPH down Main St. is fouled back, high heat, and Miggy swings through the pitch.

Outstanding inning for Clevinger, he got ahead in the count and nibbled less low in the zone and outside to the gloveside to three righties he faced that inning.

Sixth Inning

Nick Castellanos – High inside slider at 79 MPH fouled off, 91 MPH fastball on the inside, fouled off, strike 2, 91 MPH fastball on the outside, ball 1, 73 MPH fastball is hit for a lazy line drive to Jose Ramirez at third.

Victor Martinez – 90 MPH fastball down the middle of the plate is hit to Jose Ramirez who makes a great jumping catch.

Mikie Mahtook – 86 MPH changeup on the outside, ball 1, 92 MPH fastball, hit to right field.

Summary: Boy that was frustrating to watch. As much as I like Clevinger, his location is infuriating. I hope Mickey Callaway has a medical marijuana card, cause I would need to relieve stress before, during, and after every Clevinger start. Not because Clevinger is awful, not even close, but because he’s mere inches away from domination. He consistently misses first pitch strikes on the borderline parts of the plate, whether it be away from righthanders with his slider, or on the bottom of the zone with his fastball to both lefties and righties. His three off-speed pitches are legit, and I could see at least above average grades on all three. Coming into the start I viewed his slider as his best off-speed pitch, but it might be his changeup. Based on what I saw today, it’s an absolute weapon. Getting nice armside break, and the ability to locate it all over the zone. His curveball is a nasty swing and miss pitch, he could bury in two strike counts to rack up the K’s. It gives him excellent separation in terms of speed from his low 80’s slider, and mid-high 80’s changeup. Later in the start he began to challenge righties more on the inside, and work more in the zone. While the K per numbers certainly boost his fantasy profile to number scouters, he’d be better served to pitch to contact a little more. He allowed only two hard hit balls all day, both to JD Martinez. All in all, there’s upside here, if he can just stick in the rotation, and improve his strike throwing early in counts.

Final Line: Win, 6 IP, 2 Hits, 5 Walks, 1 ER, 7 K’s, 99 Pitches, 60 Strikes, Game Score 66

Razzball Baseball

Updated Top 100 SP

(rankings for ROS based on 12-team Roto)

1 Max Scherzer, WAS 
2 Chris Sale, BOS
3 Clayton Kershaw, LAD
4 Alex Wood, LAD 
5 Corey Kluber, CLE 
6 Yu Darvish, TEX
7 Stephen Strasburg, WAS  
8 Jacob deGrom, NYM
9 Carlos Martinez, STL
10 Zack Greinke, ARI   
11 Lance McCullers, HOU 
12  Chris Archer, TB
13  Carlos Carrasco, CLE   
14 Robbie Ray, ARI
15 Luis Severino, NYY 
16 Jon Lester, CHC  
17 Jason Vargas, KC  
18 Michael Fulmer, DET    
19 Johnny Cueto, SF
20 Jose Berrios, MIN   
21 Jake Arrieta, CHC  
22  James Paxton, SEA 
23 Jon Gray, COL
24 J.A. Happ, TOR    
25 Jimmy Nelson, MIL  
26  Sean Manaea, OAK
27 Marcus Stroman, TOR  
28 Rich Hill, LAD 
29 Gio Gonzalez, WAS
30 Jameson Taillon, PIT 
31 Dan Straily, MIA 
32 Jeff Samardzija, SF
33 Jacob Faria, TB
34 Ivan Nova, PIT 
35 Gerrit Cole, PIT 
36 Jose Quintana, CHW
37 David Price, BOS     
38 Zack Godley, ARI    
39  Sonny Gray, OAK 
40 Jordan Montgomery, NYY  
41 Drew Pomeranz, BOS    
42 Steven Matz, NYM
43 Taijuan Walker, ARI   
44 Michael Pineda, NYY    
45  Lance Lynn, STL  
46 Jake Odorizzi, TB   
47 Cole Hamels, TEX  
48 Dylan Bundy, BAL
49 Kenta Maeda, LAD
50 Ervin Santana, MIN 
51 Carlos Rodon, CHW    
52 Mike Montgomery, CHC     
53 Mike Clevinger, CLE        
54 Mike Foltynewicz, ATL  
55 Aaron Nola, PHI   
56 Brad Peacock, HOU
57 C.C. Sabathia, NYY    
58 Justin Verlander, DET    
59 Rick Porcello, BOS   
60 Sean Newcomb, ATL   
61 Mike Leake, STL  
62  Alex Cobb, TB   
63  Felix Hernandez, SEA    
64 Jeff Hoffman, COL  
65 Scott Feldman, CIN   
66 Tyler Chatwood, COL      
67 German Marquez, COL   
68 Seth Lugo, NYM    
69 Jose Urena, MIA    
70 Masahiro Tanaka, NYY 
71 Dinelson Lamet, SD   
72 Ariel Miranda, SEA  
73 Marco Estrada, TOR     
74 Michael Wacha, STL      
75 Edinson Volquez, MIA   
76 Nick Pivetta, PHI    
77 John Lackey, CHC   
78 Trevor Cahill, SD     
79 Hyun-Jin Ryu, LAD     
80 Mike Fiers, HOU 
81 Tanner Roark, WAS     
82 Joe Ross, WAS 
83 Trevor Bauer, CLE   
84 Ty Blach, SF 
85                        Kyle Freeland, COL                      
86 J.C. Ramirez, LAA 
87 Tyson Ross, TEX
88 Jesse Hahn, OAK  
89 Francisco Liriano, TOR    
90 Luis Perdomo, SD 
91 Jaime Garcia, ATL   
92 Kevin Gausman, BAL
93  Zach Davies, MIL      
94 Jason Hammel, KC 
95  Adam Wainwright, STL  
96 Andrew Moore, SEA
97 Jordan Zimmermann, DET
98 R.A. Dickey, ATL
99 Trevor Williams, PIT 
100 Luis Castillo, CIN


Disabled List (Ranking When Active): Madison Bumgarner, SF (3) , Noah Syndergaard, NYM (8), Dallas Keuchel, HOU (13), Danny Duffy (19), KC, Chase Anderson, MIL (29) Kyle Hendricks, CHC (33), Eduardo Rodriguez, BOS (31), Aaron Sanchez, TOR (34), Brandon McCarthy, LAD (43), Charlie Morton, HOU (46), Matt Shoemaker, LAA  (54)Andrew Triggs, OAK (61), Matt Andriese, TB (68),Vincent Velasquez, PHI (73), Zack Wheeler, NYM  (75)Kendall Graveman, OAK (76), Jerad Eickhoff, PHI (91), Matt Harvey, NYM (99) Brandon Finnegan, CIN (100)

Coming Up: Brandon Woodruff, MIL (DL), Chance Adams, NYY, Jose De Leon, TB, Brent Honeywell, TB, Jack Flaherty, STL, Luke Weaver, STL

Dropped off: Junior Guerra, MIL, Randall Delgado, ARI , Antonio Senzatela, COL, Joe Musgrove, HOUErasmo Ramirez, TB, Danny Salazar, CLE, Patrick Corbin, ARI, Chad Kuhl, PIT, Amir Garrett, CIN, Matt Garza, MIL, Tyler Anderson, COL, Jesse Chavez, LAA, Jeremy Hellickson, PHI, Ricky Nolasco, LAAJosh Tomlin, CLEAlex Meyer, LAA, , Robert Gsellman, NYM, Joe Biagini, TOR, Wade Miley, BAL, Jake Junis, KC, Derek Holland, CWS, Daniel Norris, DET   

  • Madison Bumgarner made a rehab start with AAA Sacramento on Friday night, velocity maxed out at 92 MPH, as he gave up 4 earned on 62 pitches. This was the second in a string of 4-5 rehab starts for Bum, I’d expect his return after the break.
  • In the month of June Marco Estrada was the pitching equivalent of the stick figure throwing away trash emoji. In his 6 June starts Estrada had a 9.11 ERA, 5.86 Bb/9, 1.95 HR/9, and a 5.96 FIP. I’d bury Estrada on the bench until he snaps out of this, of course a Wednesday date in the Bronx should make the decision easier.
  • After an extended DL stay Jon Gray returned on Friday in Arizona, and passed the first test. A road start in the desert comes with a certain degree of difficulty that can’t be ignored. In the current environment do Rockies starters even scare you that much? The whole league is Coors! This is a long winded way of saying I view Gray as a borderline must start in all formats.
  • Coming off his best start of the season I’ve added Kevin Gausman back in the ranks. His splitter usage was up yesterday, and perhaps this is the road map to at least the respectable numbers we expected from him. Then again I’m prolly just dumb, and being Gaus-winked again.
  • Junior Guerra has dropped off the list. I own him in a few places, as he was a cheap arm that paid dividends last season, particularly in dynasty. Problem is he’s not startable at the moment.

Follow me on Twitter @Ralphlifshitzbb, and check out my weekly Live Baseball Show on Fantrax YouTube channel Tuesday’s at 9 PM EST

  1. Mr Baseball says:

    Prospect wise what is the difference number wise you see between these three next year
    if they get playing time

    I. Happ ChC

    B. Zimmer Cle – CF

    Clint Frazier NYY – CF

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Mr Baseball: Clint, Zimmer, Happ

  2. Steve says:

    In Verlander’s defense, he’s not walking guys anymore. Now he’s just letting them hit homers.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Steve: lol

    • Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey says:

      @Steve: he’s like 5 BB’s short of his entire amount of last year’s BB’s, this is the opposite of a correct assessment.

  3. Slimcompoop says:

    10-team/H2H/6×6 (K/9) and here’s my staff:

    McCullers (thanks Grey)
    Streamer Slot

    Got the closer group of Diaz, Allen, Robertson, and Giles. I’m currently in 3rd place but have the best pitching staff (statistically) by a good margin. Just dropped McCarthy to address hitting injuries (i.e., Turner and Conforto).

    Anything I need to do that you can see? Perhaps Duffy should’ve gone instead of McCarthy, but I could still pick him back up. Any sell high candidates? You’re the shizz Ralph.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Slimcompoop: See if you can move Cole or a closer for him.

  4. Murph says:

    Ralph – help me out. My starters are: Cueto, darvish, wood, McCullers, ray, manaea, jimmy Nelson, peacock and rich hill.
    #1 drop any of them to pick up EdRod?
    #2 if I’m trying to grab happ off wires, who is the drop?
    #3 is this staff too much for my WHIP? Would u suggest dropping any for someone like vizcaino or barraclough to help with ratios?
    #4 if I’m looking for a bat, which of my staff is a good sell high guy?

    • Fabsy says:

      @Murph: I’d say Peacock

    • Steve says:

      #1 I think dropping Peacock for E-Rod would make sense.
      #2 Peacock whether it’s Ian or J.A. Happ.
      #3 I like Vizcaino, but I’m not sure I would drop any of those starters unless WHIP is really killing your team based on league settings.
      #4 I would say McCullers, only because he may hit an innings limit come August. Depends on what you can get. Jake Lamb maybe? No humidor this year.

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:

        @Steve: Agree on the first three, all make sense. I’d try and deal Ray, will help that whip too.

  5. Fabsy says:

    Do you feel like Rodon should be a must-have in any leagues? My team is struggling currently in QS and W cats, far ahead in strikeouts. Should I look into picking up Rodon?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Fabsy: I’d give him a ride, it depends what Rodon we get. If it’s the typical 2nd half Rodon then he’s a beast.

  6. joeg414 says:

    Weaver getting the call, a must add ? Could use a Starter, but really don’t have anyone to cut.

    • joeg414 says:

      @joeg414: Luke Weaver says he’s been told that he’ll be pitching out of the bullpen, at least initially. #STLCards

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @joeg414: I’d give him a ride either way. Particularly in RCL’s where his low walks and high K’s will boost your ratios without snipping a GS.

  7. PM_me_alexwood_woodies says:

    You know what needs to happen.

    What’s with Gio @ 29 though? I am surprised he’s in your top 40.

    Dickey at 98? Is that just to see who reads the list?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @PM_me_alexwood_woodies: Haha! Gio has been legit the last month plus after getting lucky the first two. In his last 8 starts he has 10+ K/9, 3.3 Bb/9, 2.66 ERA and a 2.87 FIP.

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:

        @Ralph Lifshitz: Dickey was a Top 30 starter in June…Shocking I know

  8. Chud says:

    Kudos on the Top 100 yesterday- what a great list!

    Full salary keeper trade offer:

    I give Arrieta ($14) & A.Meadows ($0)

    I get A. Chapman ($19) & L. Brinson ($2).

    Do the deal?

    Thanks n have a great 4th!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Chud: I’d hold

      • Chud says:

        @Ralph Lifshitz: thanks! Still Hold if I can take the prospects out of the mix?

        • Ralph Lifshitz

          Ralph Lifshitz says:

          @Chud: Is there a start limit? How important is an elite pen guy?

          • Chud says:

            @Ralph Lifshitz: Standard 5 x 5 league scoring (with no start limit) but I’m concerned Arrieta’s career will continue to trend in the wrong direction so trying to cash in for something before his name alone doesn’t increase his value…..but I see u have him at 21 so that gives me a little confidence.

            • Ralph Lifshitz

              Ralph Lifshitz says:

              @Chud: I’d try and move him if you can. He’s up and down, but the velocity is down and things are trending the wrong way.

  9. Ralph Lifshitz

    Ralph Lifshitz says:

    I’ll be back on comments in an hour. Coming back from the Yard Goats game.

  10. Briguy says:

    How does a villar for price straight up trade sound? I cant make up my mind. Id get price and am in 1st place by 12 games.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Briguy: I think it’s an even swap and you hope Price picks it up.

        • Briguy says:

          @Briguy: what about prices bs with the media and can he stay healthy and pick it up?

          • Ralph Lifshitz

            Ralph Lifshitz says:

            @Briguy: I think he’s trying to shoot his way out of town. He got in a fight with Eck the other night. Then made the asinine comment that “some people don’t know what it’s like to pitch etc”. Does he realize that Eck is in the hall? He’s such a wallflower.

  11. Wacha Wacha says:

    Give Conforto get j Vargas in 10 team h2h redraft… Which side do you prefer?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Wacha Wacha: If your outfield is set and you need a starter it’s fine. Conforto is hurt and Vargas is not slowing down.

  12. Jason Murray says:

    How high is the ceiling for Severino and Berrios? I have a trade offer where I could receive both plus Wil Myers, but it would cost me Rizzo, Carrasco, and Javy Baez. The league is a 10 team H2H keeper with no limits. I hate to think of losing Rizzo, but starters are valued at a premium in this league. Is it worth it? Thanks!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Jason Murray: No that’s way too much even for a pitching heavy format. I don’t think Severino could be much better than this. Berrios could be a top 10 starter.

  13. Brian says:

    Was offered Lewis Brinson for Bradley Zimmer in a 15 team H2H dynasty league where both BA and OBP are categories. I’m in first place right now, so am playing for this year. They seem relatively equal to me, but I’m also stacked in OF and rarely start Zimmer (I have Betts, Thames, Mallex Smith, Kepler, Kole Calhoun, Pham, Schebler, Grichuck… and Pollack returning this week; we only start three).

    I’d make the trade if you think Brinson is the better long-term prospect. Is he? Or are Zimmer and Brinson essentially six of one, a half dozen of another?

    Thanks in advance for any help.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Brian: Brinson is the better long term guy, make the move.

      • Brian says:

        Done and done! Trade accepted. Thanks!

  14. Dan says:

    I have an exciting yet anxiety inducing choice between Acuna, Robles, and Tucker for my dynasty team. Saw that you ranked Robles first but said Acuna was your favorite. Which guy would you want to own forever?

    Thanks man, keep up the great work

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Dan: Robles would be the one.

  15. Mr. Rickey says:

    I look at this list and don’t have any significant disagreement with the rankings but this has to be the craziest year for pitching I can remember. It simply reinforces my long standing refusal to waste high draft picks on “ace” pitchers. I have 4 top 20 pitchers on one team in a 12-team H2H league and didn’t draft a single one.

    What are your thoughts on Newcomb ROS ?

    • Mark Chumley says:

      @Mr. Rickey: I ask because I don’t have the stones to stream him tomorrow but I feel like I might regret it.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Mr. Rickey: You’re totally right! Haha great year to start ranking them! I think it goes both ways, a guy like Sale, Scherzer, or Kershaw pays dividends. But you could have draft Bum and gotten F’d. The other side is you could have added Wood, Severino, Vargas from waivers!

      I like the two pitches he throws, but that’s the issue it’s two pitches. That will catch up to him. He’s also never had this type of command.

  16. Malicious Phenoms says:

    Nice to see a few of my SP’s make your list. I always thought Jimmy Nelson’s stuff would get him to a year like this, now just do it for another half and all will be good…

    Enjoy the 4th me amigo!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Malicious Phenoms: Curve and Sinker etc, it’s all working for Jimmy.

      Same to you MP. ‘Mercia!!

  17. your mom says:

    Hi. Springer and abreu for his rizzo and merrifield? 20tm h2h keeper

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @your mom: Springer and Abreu side

  18. happyharry1958 says:

    12 team, H2H, 6×6. Which one of theses pitchers would you drop to activate Aaron Sanchez…Pineda, Taillon, Pomeranz or edwin Diaz?? thanks man!

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @happyharry1958: I guess Pineda or Pomeranz, but is Sanchez better than those guys?

  19. Robert says:

    Straily definitely better than Lynn ROS?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Robert: I believe so

  20. Brian says:

    Having done the Zimmer for Brinson swap you recommended, I have another dynasty trade question for you.

    I offered Mike Foltynewicz for Rafael Devers and the counter was Sean Mananea for Devers. Even though I have Jake Lamb, it is a H2H league and I lack infield depth (my other 3B is the currently injured Howie Kendrick).

    He’s a Braves fan, so I know he wants Folty, but he knows I’m a Sox fan and that I want Devers. Should I:

    a.) Press him to accept Folty (he hasn’t turned down the original trade yet; he just offered Mananea)
    b.) Hold — I have Jake Lamb!
    c.) It’s Devers and I’m a Sox fan and he’s a top 5 dynasty keeper and the Sox 3B situation sucks — I should have accepted already instead of typing this question

    Thanks, again!

    • Brian says:

      I should add context to this. First, I actually have another 3B besides Howie Kendrick… it’s just that he’s typically my starting SS (Eduardo Nunez — I’m rolling with Dansby right now)

      This trade would leave my SPs a little short — I’d have Kluber, Darvish, Samardzija, Folty and an injured Brandon McCarthy. I also have Walker Buehler in the minors and I can make five moves a week, so streaming is always an option. I have a claim in for Luke Weaver, but who knows how that turns out. We can carry a max of seven SPs on the roster and I usually keep Bud Norris plugged into one of the SP spots, so I’d still be short a couple SPs in a league in a weekly H2H league in which one of the pitching stats is INN.

      I’m overthinking this right? I should just trade Mananea for Devers, right?

      • Ralph Lifshitz

        Ralph Lifshitz says:

        @Brian: On it’s face I’d make the trade, but if you’re trying to win now it doesn’t help.

        • Brian says:

          Thanks for the advice. I think I’ll reluctantly pass.

  21. dfrench23 says:

    Streamonator likes EIckhoff just a bit better than Pivetta for this period (we start on Tuesday) but the rehab start for Eickhoff scares me. Who is the better pitcher if I end up sticking with one instead of Streaming that spot?

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @dfrench23: I’m obviously still rolling with Pivetta. I don’t trust Eickhoff

  22. Leykis says:

    So is Teheran off the list or did you forget to add him?

    He had a rough outing vs. MIL but aside from that bad outing he’s been pitching well as of late.

    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @Leykis: Bumped him for Castillo, he’s been awful even of late.

      Last 6 starts (6 starts a month is average), 5.71 ERA, 5.86 FIP, 5.07 xFIP, 5.97 K/9, 3.12 Bb/9, 2.08 HR/9, and he’s not even unlucky .276 BABIP and 69% LOB. I just took him off and I wouldn’t start him in any format

  23. mihai says:

    Dynasty league question: Pivetta or Steven Brault?


    • Ralph Lifshitz

      Ralph Lifshitz says:

      @mihai: Pivetta!

  24. luvdarooks says:

    Need K’s and wins then WHIP and ERA in that order can trade Matz ( who’s ks are way down)
    who would be the better guy to get rest of year

    top 3 please???

    straily happy price hill arrieta taillon cole samardzia gio Gonz. ????

    • luvdarooks says:

      HAPP not happy( although I am)

  25. luvdarooks says:

    Need K’s and wins then WHIP and ERA in that order can trade Matz ( who’s ks are way down)
    who would be the better guy to get rest of year

    top 3 please???

    straily happy price hill arrieta taillon cole samardzia gio Gonz. ????

  26. Another Dan says:

    Hey Ralph,

    Trying to get my head back in to baseball, real-life took over for a while I’m afraid.

    Been catching up on some of your stuff, you are prolific. Am liking your pitcher profiles and the top 100 prospects has given me much to cheer!!

    I am in a dynasty league where I have a number of your top 50 prospects. Am talking to guys about dealing some prospects for a top 30 hitter and a different guy a top 30 pitcher (both are quite young). Am being deliberately vague because I think one of the guys reads the site.

    How do you value prospects against proven or emerging talent ?

    I like the idea of fielding my prospects in my MLB team in the future. Gotta love Benintendi and Bellinger on the same team. Or should I just be viewing my prospects as trade chips ?

    Best wishes,


  27. Brett says:


    Happy 4th. I know you really liked tapia a lot in the preseason? Do you think he takes the job in Colorado or is he going to go back to the bench when Desmond and parra returns?

  28. Ryan Wheeler says:

    I’m giving E. Santana one last start today against LAA…. Clevinger and Gray are available in my league and I like their upside better.

  29. Milarky says:

    Awesome stuff Ralph! Your prospect list update is just in time for my mid-season prospect draft! Question for you – are there any international players that you would insert anywhere in the top 50, using similar criteria that you used in your list? My league isn’t a dynasty, but we get 3 prospect picks that we can carry for an extra few years. Otani was taken last year so he’s out, but I’m wondering about any other potential difference makers in the upcoming year or two.

  30. Brian says:

    Got offered an interesting Dynasty league (16 teams, H2H; both OBP and BA are hitting categories) trade and would like your take on it.

    I give: Daniel Murphy
    I get: Carlos Carrasco, Victor Robles, and Dustin Pedroia

    For context, I’m in first place right now, so am definitely competing for this year, but that seems like a lot for Daniel Murphy, even speaking as someone who believes in him.

    In terms of my roster, I have Howie Kendrick on the DL and Willie Calhoun in the minors to back up Pedroia.

    We can carry 7 SPs and I currently have Kluber, Darvish, Mananea, Samardzija, Foltynewicz, Brandon McCarthy, Bud Norris (who would move to RP… OR I could trade Mananea for Rafael Devers), and a droppable Luke Weaver.

    In OF, where we only start three, I’m stocked (Betts, Pollack, Thames, Mallex Smith, Tommy Pham, Schebler, Kepler, Kole Calhoun, Grichuk… AND Lewis Brinson in the minors!) as all get out, but I find Victor Robles hard to resist, either as a dynasty hold or trade bait down the line…

    Thoughts? Thanks in advance for any help.

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