Ober is back, Bailey, I mean, baby. After spending most of April bouncing back and forth from AAA St. Paul, Bailey Ober gets his chance for an extended look with the club and responded with seven scoreless innings, allowing just four base runners and striking out six for his second win of the year. He’s now sporting a pristine 0.98 ERA and 0.87 WHIP through three starts. Um, yes, please more, me likey that a lot! Obviously, these ratios aren’t sustainable when you check out his .217 BABIP and 87.5% LOB%, and the 16/6 K/BB is also more of an Ambien than an Adderall. OK, it sounds like I’m pretty meh on Ober, but wait–no! I’m not done yet. It’s his breaking pitches that make me all googly eyed like Everything is Everywhere All At Once and Everywhere is Cleveland, OH. Seriously, look at the break on this slider, does that not make you giddy and love-struck like Sydney Sweeney and Glen Powell? I added those names for the SEO! There was a time, as recently as last year even, when Bailey was a Razzball sleeper but injuries to his groin (TMI!) sidelined him for much of the year and he only managed 56 innings. Still, he was solid when he did play, 51/11 K/BB, 1.05 WHIP (96/19 K/BB in 2021). So yeah, he’s that efficient, boring reliable guy that divorced women go gaga for. The prototypical Twins starter. Did I mention the slider? I did? Cause he’s got a 60% whiff percentage on that bad boy, and for a guy that’s biggest knock has been giving up homers, maybe he should just throw the slide cause hitters can’t seem touch it? What do I know, I’m not Mr. Manager, but I know the Twinkies are in first place and Ober’s going to be put in a great position for success IRL and in fantasy. He’s had some real cake match ups to slice up so far (Nats, Royals, Guards), so next week versus San Diego will be a good test, but with Minneapolis dealing with so many injuries to their starters he seems like a safe bet for a chance to make a run. Fantasy starting pitching woes? Time to get Ober it. Cause it ain’t over till it’s Ober, folks!
Here’s what else I saw in fantasy baseball Friday night:
Justin Steele – 5.0 IP, 6 hits, ER, 4 K, W 5-0, 1.45 ERA. I always want to type Justice Steele. James Gunn is taking any and all auditions for his new Superman so why not Cubbie’s Man o’ Steele Justin? “The next Superman has to be someone who has all the humanity but he’s also an alien… somebody who you want to give a hug.” said Gunn. Well, if a 5-0 start doesn’t want to make you hug the guy I don’t know what will. Cashmere sweater?
Matt Mervis – 1-for-4, RBI, 2 K. BUY. Matt, or Mash, as he likes to be called is about to make opposing pitchers real Mervis. Check out that first career hit and RBI and even better all that proud dad energy. You love to see it!
Edward Cabrera – 5.0 IP, 5 hits, 3 ER, BB, 8 K. Ed-Cab is basically every pitcher I own or want to own before they break out. Grey said he’s Hunter Greene with a (slightly) better team and much better park. The division is worse, but all I really care about is that 20/6 K/BB over his past two starts. The 12 BB% is scary sure but I told you, all I see are Ks.
Mark Leiter Jr. – 1.0 IP, 1 hit, 0 ER, K, SV (1). On the one hand he gave up a leadoff single, and looked a little shaky hitting a batter, while on the other Michael Fulmer and Brad Boxberger have done nothing but crumble under the unbearable weight of closing duties. MLJ got the save, which is more than the other two have really been able to do. Also, 23/6 K/BB in 14 IP is not too shabby, Mr. Crabs. If you’re as desperate for saves as I am for positive feedback Leiter is worth a look.
Luis Arraez – 3-for-4 batting .437. He makes it look so ArraEZ.
Chris Bassitt – 7.0 IP, 4 hits, 4 BB, 5 K. The Blue Jays shut out the Pirates! Rich Hill was just mediocre (5.1 IP, 10 base runners, 4 ER, 5 K). Bassitt looked like the slightly above average starter we drafted, the Jays snapped a five game losing streak and the Bucs are no longer first the the NL. Ahhh. The Universe is normalizing, the world is healing again.
Whit Merrifield – 2-for-4, run, 3 SB (7), hitting .301. To Whit! I remember when he used to do this all the time! He’s got a .354 BABIP, but I feel like Whit does his best work with an inflated BABIP! Keep doing work and maybe I can recommend picking you up. Probably not though!
Ji Hwan Bae – 0-for-3, SB (14) as he led off. BUY. The Bucs are slowing drifting back down to Earth but Bae is refusing to go back. And who says he has to! He’s got four stolen bases in the past week, only Esteury Ruiz has more.
Luis Robert – 3-for-4, HR (7), 2 RBI. Elvis Andrus also hit his first homer. LouBob had been dropped in the line up to I don’t know motivate him maybe? This White Sox Manager will lose every game of the season he literally doesn’t even care if he gets through to Luis. Well, he’s hitting .500 with the two bombs since being dropped in the order so maybe tough love is the answer.
Lance Lynn – 6.2 IP, 8 hits, 4 ER, 8 K, 1st win. A bit of a shaky win but the White Sox are gonna take what they can get right now, and this win felt like a game seven. Elvis Andrus hit his first home run, a clutch game tying bomb in the fifth and that’s four in a row for the Southside! Cue the Acid Rap, Chance!
Jonathan India – 1-for-4, HR (2). Another Bombay from India. I was all in on India last year and own him nowhere this year so not gonna lie his success makes me bitter. That’s just the type of person I am now.
Hunter Greene – 5.2 IP, 7 hits, 5 ER, BB, 7 K. Got in trouble in the 5th. If Hunter would pitch four innings every start he might win the Cy Young.
Jason Adam – 1.0 IP, 1 hit, K, SV (3). He’s the number one closing option on the best team in beisbol. Dude was a BUY and he needs to be owned everywhere. If you give me your username and password I’ll add him for you. Perfect and can I get the 2FA code just texted to your phone? Great thanks, and can you tell how many of these photos feature crosswalks?
Yandy Diaz – 1-for-4, 2 runs, HR (9). Who would you rather have, Yandy slashing .324/.426/.620 with nine bombs and 18 RBI or Randy Arozarena 1-for-2, HR (9), slashing .328/.401/.613 also with nine tanks, 30 RBI, and three stolen bases. Randy homered Friday night as the Rays introduced their new Randy Land section. Wow, look at all those crazed fans! So OK yeah, now I guess this seems like an easy one, but the answer is actually ALL the Rays. They lead the majors with 69 (nice) home runs, 14 more than the next closest team (Atlanta), and 23 more than the closest AL team (Boston). Thatsa lotta mollywhops, and the Rays are now 18-2 at the Trop. Whops at the Trops!
Harrison Bader – 1-for-4, 3-run HR (1). With Judge out you are the new master, Bader! Good luck getting off!
Michael King – 1.2 IP, 0 ER, K. And you are my King, Michael! He was a BUY and Clay Holmes hasn’t looked right since he was the best pitcher in baseball last spring. MK seems to be more of a fireman than a strict ninth inning guy, but he’s Boone’s most trusted arm right now and that’s probably worth owning when Judge returns.
Chris Sale – 6.0 IP, 7 hits, 3 ER, BB, 10 K, 3rd win. As a masochist, I watch a lot of Chris Sale starts and this was the best I’ve seen him since I don’t know how long. The control looked unreal. Watched Harper give everyone in the park the feels with his return, get a standing ovation and Chris Sale just blow through him with 99 mph cheese. Spoil the moment much? His slide was really working too, and with Harper back it felt like 2018 again. Only one hard hit ball off Sale all night. All of this gushing is a roundabout way of me saying you should sell high and quickly.
Enmanuel Valdez – 2-for-3, RBI, SB (3). When I first saw En-Man on TV I almost called NESN to report their typo but after checking his player page at least four times can confirms it’s ENmanuel, and Enny was a BUY hitting .333 with a homer and three steals in the past week! But honestly you should probably own any of the Red Sox right now while they’re scoring all the runs they can to keep up with all the runs their starters are allowing.
Zack Wheeler – 5.1 IP, 7 hits, 4 ER, 5 K. I actually benched him for this start and wish I hadn’t, so if you did start him methinks this was best case scenario. Well done!
Kodai Senga – 6.0 IP, 2 0 ER, 4 BB, 4 K, 4th win, ERA at 3.38. Got in trouble early but settled down considerably. His wildness still makes him a real volatile aka frightening pitcher to own. The six innings was his longest outing to date, but he needed 101 pitches to get there. The 15.6 BB% is gonna have to get under control if he’s gonna last till September. I want to love him but I see this ending poorly for me. Regression fairies hovering!
Brandon Nimmo – 2-for-3, HR (3). Nimmo’s shot was the only offense in the game! What happened to the Mess offense? Are they bummed they haven’t got their social security checks yet? Just ask Verlander and Scherzer they’re in the mail.
Randal Grichuk – 2-for-4, SB (1). Knowing Bud Black, Grichuk will probably get 400 ABs going forward.
Peyton Battenfield – 7.0 IP, 2 hits, 0 BB, 7 K, 3rd L. The Guardians of the Cleveland Galaxy are back, with even more talking animals and plants than ever before. Peyton was called upon to be the newest hero to the Battenfield. He pitched strong! No one can tell him he’s wrong. Was perfect through five innings, but no win. No promises. No demands. Heartache to heartache. Love is a Battenfield.
Anthony Santander – 2-for-5, 2 HR (5), 5 RBI. He hit one from each side of the plate. If that’s something your fantasy league tracks–weird! The Orioles scored nine runs on the poor (nope), lowly (nah), defenseless (ok, maybe this one), Braves. The O’s line up reminds me a lot of the Rays with slightly more star power, their pitching though ain’t even close though.
Cedric Mullins – 2-for-5, HR (4), 2 RBI. Ceddy was moved out of the lead off spot for Jorge Mateo and not sure if he’s thriving in the middle of the order or trying to show he belongs back at the top! Either way, you do you, Ced!
Dean Kremer – 6.0 IP, 6 hits, ER, 2 BB, 3 K, 3rd win, ERA at 5.80! I’m out there, Jerry! And I’m loving every minute of it!
Max Fried – 6.0 IP, 8 hits, 5 ER, 2 BB, 7 K. More like Max Fried. Oh wait, that’s his name. O’s were on a mission to match the NL’s best offense, luckily they learned a thing or two from their division-mate Rays. Max sees his ERA more than double dot, dot, dot…to 2.08. He gets the Red Sox next week at home and this is quite the gauntlet for the Ace.
Sean Murphy – 2-for-4, HR (10), 4 RBI. This is what the no.1 catcher in baseball looks like. Murphy leads the league with a 1.092 OPS. He’s hitting .450 with three bombs and 12 RBI in the past week. Sweet sassy molassy! All this for William Contreras and Kyle Muller? Contreras was an all star last year but methinks the Braves can make any catcher an all star.
Nick Pratto – 2-for-4, 3 runs, HR (1). Hey, speaking of Kyle Muller, let’s check in on him shall we? Oof. It’s almost like the Royals should play their exciting young players more often and not Hunter Dozier, Matt Duffy and Jackie Bradley? Just a thought.
Esteury Ruiz – 3-for-6, 3 runs, 2 SB (15). Estirring the pot! The .276/.346/.358 is a nice surprise, but the 15 Ezz Beez is more than I could have ever wished for. My dude is a literal category winner!
Ryan Noda – 3-for-4, 2 runs, 3 RBI. He’s like Brent but with less power! If you don’t know, now you Noda!
Ramon Laureano – 1-for-6, HR (3). He’s hitting .316 since return from the IL. Laureano is known for his arm cannon, but he’s got some pop and if Oakland is gonna score runs with reckless abandon like this he might be worth a look.
Jordan Montgomery – 6.0 IP, 6 hits, 2 ER, BB, 6 K. The Cardinals lose their seventh in a row, no fault of JoMo, and now have the worst record in the National League. Things started so positively with Jordan Walker’s hitting streak and this team has been abysmal since they sent him down. Coincidence?
Alex Lange – 1.0 IP, 1 hit, 3 K, SV (6), ERA at 1.15. Three saves in three days and four saves in the past week. That’s on some Josh Hader type vibes. When I see A. Lange in the box score I always want to say Artie Lange, and I had to google who that was, and let me tell you–the years have not been kind to this man.
Matthew Boyd – 6.0 IP, 5 hits, 3 ER, 6 K, 2nd win. The Cardinals are so bad right now even the Tigers beat up on them. That’s four wins in a row for the ‘Roit and they are clearly ignoring Slim Shady’s instructions to Lose Yourself.
Javier Baez – 3-for-4, HR (3), 2 RBI. Javy Time! That’s three homers in the past four games! Is it time to ignore your Baez and pick up Javy? I almost wrote the lede about him but I can’t in any good conscience advise you to add him. He does this thing where he gets insanely hot and becomes the best player in fantasy after being the worst player and mostly un-startable and if there any chance he’s available in your league as soon as you pick him up it will stop. So maybe just let the Tigers have this.
Merrill Kelly – 7.0 IP, 4 hits, ER, BB, 10 K, 3rd win. The Ace of Team USA was feeling extra American Friday night! No, not because he refuses to drink Bud Light or watch Fox now that Tucker’s gone, because he had a season high 10 Ks and lowered his ERA to 2.75. He gets a nice match up with the Marlins next week and I’d roll with it!
Andrew Chafin – 1.0 IP, 2 K, SV (5). If owning the DBags closer is rubbing you the wrong way I have to let you know Chafin feels great sometimes.
Josiah Gray – 5.0 IP, 7 hits, 3 ER, 6 K, 5th L. Someone let General Zod know that Josiah is my kryptonite. The 37/15 K/BB tho. The 50 Shades of my love for Gray knows no bounds, and I will continue to take L after L while I wait for Josiah to be the Ace I hope he someday will be. He takes his 3.03 ERA to San Francisco next week where they’re surely still drinking Bud Light, and StreamONator doesn’t love it but I remain all in, ratios be damned!
Corbin Carroll – 1-for-3, HR (5), slashing .314/.381/.559. Do you hear what I hear? My Christmas Carroll returns for an O Holy Night and decked the halls with his fifth bomb. There was some noise about the Dbags being actually decent this year and all that buzz died when Carroll was sidelined so let’s get the hype train back on the track and maybe they can make a big Pfaadt run at this thing.
Will Smith – 1.1 IP, 4 hits, 3 ER, BB, BS (1). BUY. Will Smith gives new meaning to pitch slapped, Chris Rock. Jose Leclerc not looking so terrible right now…? Smith shockingly returned in the 10th after giving up 3 in the ninth because Bochy wanted him to face Ohtani I guess? Weird logic but that’s why Bochy’s Mr. Manager cause it worked, sort of. Tejas lost but the Bochy’s confidence in Smith never faltered, so I’m guessing he gets the next save chance regardless.
Ryan Pressly – 1.0 IP, 2 hits, SV (4). Bryan Abreu – 1.0 IP, 3 hits, ER, 2 K. After a shaky start, Pressly’s now thrown eight straight scoreless appearances. Yes, that means you can drop Bryan Abreu, but you probably shouldn’t.
Luis Castillo – 7.0 IP, 5 hits, 4 ER, BB, 5 K. It’s possible the Astros have successfully transferred their bad juju to C-Attle who made Christian Javier look like a Cy Young candidate. Need Juul-Rod to get going if this team is going to get hot!
Yordan Alvarez – 1-for-4, HR (7), 3 RBI. Yordan for 3! Oh, you’ve been hurt? I didn’t notice, bestie!
Kyle Tucker – 3-for-4, HR (6), 2 RBI. He was 2-for-18 coming into this one so the King of H2H does as he always does, put up consistent stats. Sure he seems boring, until you check his stats at the end of the year and you’re in the playoffs, baby!
Corbin Burnes – 6.0 IP, 4 hits, 5 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 5 K. Burnes has been mostly fine but Sean Manaea (5.0 IP, 6 hits, 4 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, 1st win) who wasn’t drafted in the 1st or 2nd round and probably not at all got the win so what does that tell you about drafting these Aces so high? Yes! Don’t do it!
J.D. Davis – 1-for-3, HR (7), 2 RBI slashing .280/.352/.527. Sure, he’s not the most exciting third baseman you can own (I love you, Raffy!), but he’s on pace to surpass his career high in homers and someone gotta get 500 ABs for these Giants. By the way, a Giants pronouns are fe/fi/fo and fum. That’s my least woke joke! Sorry SF! I love you guys.
Yu Darvish – 6.2 IP, 4 hits, ER, BB, 6 K, 2nd win. Friday I’m in love with Yu. Darvish got The Cure for the reeling Padres who’ve now won seven of their last 10! This “best offense in the league” is starting to look like it. Now if we can only get Juan Soto going. It’s only a matter of time, people, you cannot tell me Soto’s gonna drag his feet like this in a contract year. This is the calm before the storm. Soto is getting that half a billion dollars or gonna die trying. Get rich or die tryin’, shout out 50!
Clayton Kershaw – 4.2 IP, 8 hits, 4 ER, 5 BB, 7 K. Gave up two homers to FTJ. The last hitter to hit two bombs off Kershaw was Austin Slater way back in 2020. Someone you know might have had covid then! How fun! Also, covid jokes weren’t nearly as light or acceptable in those days, so I had to shoot my shot now. Anyway, LA won the World Series that year so maybe Kersh is onto something.
Fernando Tatis Jr. – 2-for-5, 2 HR (4), 3 RBI. His fourth homer since returning from ring worm, I mean PEDs, I mean suspension for ringworm treating PEDs. I keed, I tease, because I love. And yeah, a few more games like this, and we’ll forgive and forget all about the ringworm. Just like we forgot all about the Astros exploits, right? Doesn’t matter! Fun the Jewels is back! No one gets hype like FTJ gets HYPPPPPPPPPPE! It’s contagious. I eat it up. And I am hungry! Honestly, you can’t watch Tatis dancing in that sombrero and stay mad at him. The guy is good for baseball, sorry boomers, better than the pitch clock even! And now he must fulfill his destiny of being the best player in the world. Make it happen, FTJ! For baseball!
Thanks for reading! Questions? Problems? Complaints to management? Advice, small gifts, or large bribes? Please leave it in the comments below. Join us next Saturday for another Friday recap as fantasy baseball continues next week, all week long!