In solidarity with MLB players, I drove to a cliff on the PCH, overlooking the Pacific Ocean, stepped out of my Sebring while it was still in neutral, locked the doors, and watched as it rolled off the cliff, crashing into the roof of a billionaire’s beachfront home. To illustrate the MLB owners’ position, I went to a Chipotle, and on a sign clearly labeled “pull,” I pushed for hours, screaming, “What happened? Am I locked out? This is totally unfair!” For the fans, I took out a full newspaper ad, pleading for both sides to go back to the negotiating table, and that was seen by the 12 people who still read a hard-copy of the paper. We. Are. United! Which is what I was shouting as I was escorted away from the Delta terminal.

So, no great news has come out about the MLB lockout. I’m not a labor reporter, and won’t bore you while pretending to be. This is an evolving shituation that could change tomorrow or six weeks from now. My guess is there will be movement in the landmark case of sooner vs. later. Hopefully, it won’t last much longer. *wavy lines* The year is 2081. After a 60-year lockout, a deal is finally struck between the 80-year-old player rep, Wander Franco, and Rob Manfred Jr. Jr., the 15-year-old MLB commissioner-slash-influencer who opens graves and harvests human bones for petroleum on TikTok. *wavy lines* Yikes, what kind of dream was that?

If you want this broken down to you in the simplest of terms, I have good news and bad news. The bad news is we already lost one week of games. The good news is you’re not Rob Manfred.

“It’s all about the fans.” — Rob Manfred, walking past a store that sells ceiling fans. What if Rob Manfred’s real job was to make Bud Selig look good in retrospect? Makes ya think, huh? Ain’t sayin’ anything groundbreaking here, but when MLB owners aren’t losing money by losing games, the system is broken.

Okay, back to fantasy, as I said last week, I was updating my 2022 fantasy baseball rankings, but later on I discussed it with Rudy and we’re holding tight for now, because, honestly, one week missed of games isn’t going to change anything. Two weeks isn’t really anything, either. Later this week, maybe I’ll change my mind and remove a couple weeks from the projections. Maybe I’ll leave the positional rankings’s projections on a 162-game scale and only change my top 500. A few players might actually be benefited by the lockout, and there was some news. So, let’s get on the other side of this “Anyway,” and get to it. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this offseason for 2022 fantasy baseball:

Ronald Acuña Jr. – This lockout stinks. Dot dot dot. But wait one minute! Ronald Acuña Jr. aka Tildaddy was supposed to miss a month of the season. Now, if everyone misses a month of the season, *looks both ways, lowers head, quickly shoots head up and makes a cha-ching sound* Haven’t moved Tildaddy yet in my top 10 for 2022 fantasy baseball, but I could see moving him to top five territory in the coming days. If they’re starting on the same day, are you going Vlad Jr. or Ronnie Jr.? That’s what I’m currently debating. Here’s me vocally debating it. Smash that subscribe!

Clayton Kershaw – Not sure if it’s against HIPAA or something, but my in-law’s friends are staying at a hotel in Arizona where a bunch of Dodgers are also working out, and Kershaw is there. So, my guess is he’s re-signing with the Dodgers, does that mean he’s healthy? No, not really. Does extra time before the season mean he will be healthy? No. Same goes for Carlos Rodon. In my top 60 starters for 2022 fantasy baseball, I say I’m avoiding both, and there’s so many healthy pitchers that I like, I’m not changing for Rodon or Kershaw. Or Zach Eflin. Or any injured pitcher. You want a headache? Draft an injured pitcher.

Max Muncy – In my top 20 1st basemen for 2022 fantasy baseball, I say I’m avoiding Muncy due to injury concern, and unlike Acuña, I’m not back in on Muncy. At least not yet. He had a serious injury and is built like a troll, and I like to pass over bridges without answering a riddle! Okay, it’s mostly the UCL injury.

Nate Pearson – Was told to be ready for the rotation. Ranked Pearson in the top 80 starters for 2022 fantasy baseball, and am way higher on him than most. Happily drafting him in all leagues, and, honestly, am a little confused why he’s not being drafted higher, but I’m also confused by lots of things, so chalking it up to general sense of dur.

Garrett WhitlockRed Sox clouded their bullpen picture with a giant smudge of confusion. They said Whitlock “…will get a chance to start.” Trust me, I read before the ellipse and after the quote to see if they continued, “…will get a chance to start…the ninth inning.” So, this sucks. Matt Barnes has moved into the temporary lead for the 9th inning job, but the Red Sox could bring in someone and move Barnes to the 8th and Whitlock to a hybrid role. I changed my projections for both and their rankings in my top 500. Hey, what’s Richard Rodriguez up to?

Giovanny GallegosCards’ GM said Gallegos isn’t their closer. That was fun to hear, the day after drafting him in the 12th round of a league. So, Gallegos can be the closer, and until the Cards sign someone else, he’ll be the lead for Cards saves in my top 500, but clearly this is a closerfudge.

Josh Jung – Out for the year, which is basically what I told you back during my last update when I removed him from the top 20 3rd basemen for 2022 fantasy baseball and top 500. Israeli Diner Falafel has 572 at-bats now in the projections, and *mouth falls onto floor, picks mouth back up* five homers.

Lance McCullers – Announced that he was behind in his recovery from a forearm strain that I told you two months ago would require Tommy Joh surgery. Not sure why MLB teams are so slow to react on these things, but obviously McCullers is not returning this year for more than 50 IP. McClearly. My guess is McCullers doesn’t even make it out of Spring Training and isn’t back until 2024. Wasted a good nine months of time he could’ve been recuperating.

Sixto Sanchez – Struggling to regain strength during his rehab and might not be back until July. So, Opening Day. Kidding. I hope. In the top 100 starters for 2022 fantasy baseball, I wrote, “From what I’ve heard and can infer, (Sixto) might be good for only 75+IP. There’s been a lot of question marks about him outside of his shoulder surgery. His dedication level has been getting questioned. Not great for a guy who needs to get his arm strength back.” And that’s me predicting all of this shizz three months ago! Except for the no baseball thing. Long, rueful sigh.

57 Comments
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IntendedSteb
IntendedSteb
4 months ago

Hey Grey,
Trade question: Moncada/Cease for Trevor Rogers/Verlander in a dynasty league with OBP instead of AVG?
Thank you

Shitwolf
Shitwolf
4 months ago

ty for being so beautiful! I missed you

frankgrimes
frankgrimes
5 months ago

I am Uhtred, son of Uhtred

frankgrimes
frankgrimes
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

This week

frankgrimes
frankgrimes
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

Yes and there’s a movie to follow season 5 haha

frankgrimes
frankgrimes
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

Which one is that? I didn’t enjoy Vikings as much. I stopped watching after main dude died.

frankgrimes
frankgrimes
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

How’s super pumped?
I was going to start Severance until I saw TLK was this week.

frankgrimes
frankgrimes
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

Might as well give it a chance after watching TLK

Jolt In Flow
Jolt In Flow
Reply to  frankgrimes
5 months ago

I have no clue about the show, but that comment was hilarious.

Now I’m tempted to name a few of my teams ‘Son Of Uhtred.’ But I’d have to make sure to almost exclusively be loaded with power bats.

Jolt

frankgrimes
frankgrimes
Reply to  Jolt In Flow
4 months ago

Yo jolt are you in the FCL?

Jolt In Flow
Jolt In Flow
Reply to  frankgrimes
4 months ago

Sadly, I can’t even tell you what that stands for.

What’s FCL about?

Sport
Sport
5 months ago

Stupid question I guess. But wouldn’t banning the shift result in more offense? Aaaaand wouldn’t more offense result in longer games?

I’m not opposed to it. Personally, I didn’t mind the shift, but I suppose if banning it helps the game I will live it. But if MLB’s goal is to shorten the game, banning the shift isn’t going to help is it?

Also, on banning the shift. Do you see adjustments in batting average to players like Hosmer or Schwarber? I don’t mean them in particular, but guys that have been affected most by the ban. Wasn’t Voit that said he can’t hit doubles and triples with the shift in place? So I guess he is a 300 hitter nor right?! (sarcasm)

RoarOf84
RoarOf84
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

That was my first thought too. Banning the shift will actually result in longer game times due to more offense.

That’s also the case with having bigger bases too. More SBs = less DPs = longer games. It’s also going to increase the amount of bang bang plays resulting in (1) more wrong calls (upset fans) and/or (2) more reviews/challenges (longer games).

Ace of Spades
Ace of Spades
5 months ago

Grey

Our league is moving on with blind optimism . Our draft is still March 27th and our keepers ( up to 11 ) lock on March 19th.

I was desperately hoping for spring training games to decide on my 11th keeper , but I now will not have that luxury.
Your recent news on Gallego’s not being the closer now has now screwed up my 10th keeper spot.

Anyways, before your article today my keepers and dollar values were this:
( 14 team mixed auction $260,standard 5×5 cats )

Sexy Dr. Pepper – 14
Kirilloff – 3
Boba Chette – 5
Ozzie Albies – 28
Matt Olson – 5
Gausman – 18
Musgrove – 12
Cease – 5
McClanahan – 10
Giovanny Gallegos – 9

these guys were competing for the 11th spot:

Toro – 10
Lane Thomas – 10
Rafeal Ortega – 10
Skubal – 10
Carlos Carrasco – 5
Luzardo – 5

There should be some nice talent in the draft this year. Trea, Jose R, Betts, Machado, Trout, Judge, to name a few and I have made some a concentrated effort to reduce my $$$$ value because of this ( For example I traded a $14 Vladdy for a $5 Bo. an $18 Seager for a $5 Olson and a $12 Pressley for a $5 Cease ) I made all of these deals consulting my WWGD wristband.

My questions are this

  1. who would be your 11th ( if any ) keeper?

would you now throw back Gallego’s for someone else on this list?
I mean, I also have Chapman , but I was throwing him back because his $$$ increased to 30 this year. 3. With Gallego’s possibly not closing this is still the move to make with Chapman correct?

As always, thanks in advance for the humor and insight

Sport
Sport
5 months ago

Great stuff Grey! I had not hear that about Gallegos so I’m glad I checked in this morning. I did read the same thing on Whitlock and wondered if Barnes is the guy right now.

We’re still in a lock out and not even into spring training and the closer carousel from hell already begun!

toolshed
toolshed
5 months ago

You mention the lockout helping acuna. It will also help his brothers too. They may be up the time the lockout is over with…

Seriously, they have too many items on the table. They need to break this down into manageable parts. Focus on the critically important and discard the pipe dream / irrelevant. Having a season and playing the game of baseball in 2022 is what should be most important now. Prioritization of the items they are fighting about and being efficient with the use of their “negotiation” time is a must or this thing will take FOREVER. Some issues like the shift and larger bases are time wasters and are better handled and discussed over years, not days.

The speed of the game debate is another one that should be tabled for later. NEWSFLASH – the game of baseball takes time to complete. Sure they can shave a few minutes off of the game, but does it really matter if they save 15 minutes? You can’t make the game much faster if you play 9 innings and need 27 outs.

They need to focus on the money and its core issues like min salary, arbitration, cbt, etc. If they do this, maybe they can get something done in a reasonable time.

Last edited 5 months ago by toolshed
toolshed
toolshed
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

The more they add on the agenda the longer it will take. That is my biggest complaint. They can’t fix everything wrong with baseball now. The universal dh is fine; it makes sense and is a win for both sides. I think the other stuff up for debate should be handled later or over series of meetings once a financial deal is completed.

What do fans want most? How about baseball even if it is less than perfect. The players want to get paid. The owners don’t need the money, but probably prefer generating more revenue now via games being played. You’d think there would be a common interest in playing the game now.

toolshed
toolshed
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

True, they don’t need the money. So I will say in financial terms, the present value of their revenue stream is worth more now than later. Maybe they should care more if it goes longer. You’re right about 7 or 8 teams that can hold the league hostage. I would bet the usual suspects are guilty (pirates, marlins, orioles, etc.).

toolshed
toolshed
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

I am sure he wanted to finally spend. They have plenty of pitching prospect depth to use to acquire a player or two. That of course would mean getting rid of a cheap and cost controlled asset and pay another player more money. Can’t have that.

Maybe thy’d get more fans in the seats to justify the added payroll. MIA was dead last in attendance again, under 8k per home game. I’d love to model a scenario if they averaged 20k per game over 81 games to see what their proft would be if lhey added payroll. It seems hard to believe they wouldn’t make more in that scenario. I guess the fear / risk is to keep fans in the seats, they’d have to remain competitive over a number of years. It is much easier to stay crappy, be cheap and milk the system even if the upside profit isn’t as much. There is less variability and downside with what they are doing now.

jbona3
jbona3
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

This Jeter comment is criminally under appreciated

The Harrow
The Harrow
Reply to  Grey
4 months ago

it’s 23/30 owners to vote for whatever change, so 8+ nixes anything they want.

LennyDykstraIsJustMisUnderstood
LennyDykstraIsJustMisUnderstood
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

It is not so much length of game as the dead time watching a batter scratch his nuts or pitcher flipping a rosin bag.

i always like pitchers who work fast but if you shave 5 min w/ clock why not?

maybe they can do something with so many pitching changes …i hated watching Kapler constantly bringing specialty pitchers in….maybe no warmups entering the mound come out ready….cut down on warmup between the half inning? a little here and there you could knock some time off or at least eliminate dead time

LennyDykstraIsJustMisUnderstood
LennyDykstraIsJustMisUnderstood
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

Deez Nutz!

LennyDykstraIsJustMisUnderstood
LennyDykstraIsJustMisUnderstood
5 months ago

Also, still thinking back to a lot of local sports talking heads droning on that sexto was too much to give up for JTR

LennyDykstraIsJustMisUnderstood
LennyDykstraIsJustMisUnderstood
5 months ago

Grey, how much of a factor is lack of spring training.. I would think that pitchers need time to ramp up more than hitters.

The Great Knoche
The Great Knoche
Reply to  Grey
5 months ago

Also BSOHL announcements need to happen.

Danny
Danny
5 months ago

Grey do you think the lockout helps a guy like Adley? I’m thinking (hoping) dood is already 24, the more games we miss, the more O’s just start him with the big boys

Old School Brother
Old School Brother
5 months ago

Grey’s in laws friends *to the tune of Hotel California* : Welcome to the Hotel Arizonaaaa. Such a lovely place (such a lovely place) look I see Kershaw’s face (Kershaw’s face)

Last edited 5 months ago by Old School Brother
Ante GALIC
Ante GALIC
5 months ago

Grey!!!!

Awesome!!!

a. Had our first RCL yesterday stopped by Truss (thankfully and we graciously love our Commish unlike other Commish’s we know) when 1/12 of our league opted out 10 minutes before the draft started!! Re-scheduled for next Sunday! Looking for 1 owner to beat up Ante in RCL#8, shouldn’t be too hard.

b. Great news on Whitlock, great. You told me I had too many relievers in my dynasty and by force majeur I have one less now, well done. J/k, the hybrid role would most likely be best. And I still have too many relievers with or without Whitlock’s potential move to the rotation. So you win (yet again, grrr!).

c. Norm MacDonald quote of the day for March 7, 2022

‘In medical news scientists report that there may soon be a vaccine for drug addicts which completely removes the craving for cocaine. They caution however that the vaccine is extremely dangerous, highly addictive and could cost upwards of 10000$ a gram.’

d. Marx Brothers quote of the day for March 7, 2022

I don’t know whether my life has been a success or a failure. But not having any anxiety about becoming one instead of the other, and just taking things as they come along, I’ve had a lot of extra time to enjoy life.’

Harpo

Cheers,
Ante