So I was watching the Oakland A’s play the other day and took note of Mark Cahna’s walk up music, “Like a Rolling Stone” by Bob Dylan. You don’t see many major leaguers going with a classic like that, but if I was picking a Dylan song as my walk up song, it’d be this one. That’s my favorite song by him, a nine-minute story that feels straight out of a Mark Twain novel along with being damn catchy. Anyway, that got me thinking about another Dylan song from that same era, “Joey,” which is a song about Crazy Joe Gallo, a mafia hit man back in the 70s, because Joey Gallo (a perennial OPS Leaguers Unite! guy combo-ing power and a lack of average to make him more valuable in OPS leagues than any other) doesn’t have a nickname, and well, Crazy Joe only works if you’re really crazy, and Joey Gallo doesn’t seem so.
Joe Gallo (the mobster) had a brother named Albert, who went by the nickname Kid Blast. Now that’s a nickname! But you take a look at Joey and his age (not a kid anymore at 24) and he’s not deserving of that nickname. But you know who is? Vladimir Guerrero Jr. The hype for him can’t be contained, but I haven’t seen a solid nickname yet. So I’m anointing him Kid Blast, and let’s see if we can get that to catch on, eh? There’s one guy on the site, rhymes with Say Hey, you may have heard of him, who can get it going much faster than I, so what do you say, Grey, does Kid Blast work?
Thanks for going on that mind tangent with me, if we can get Kid Blast going it was all worth it (or if you never heard “Lily, Rosemary, and the Jack of Hearts” and now it’s your favorite Dylan song, you’re welcome).
Now for something completely (somewhat) different: Reds third baseman Eugenio Suarez. Have to admit his ownership numbers shocked me, Yahoo! at 67%, ESPN At 69%(hehe) 92% in RCL (which doesn’t surprise me, RCL players are the best). His 2017 line of 87/26/82/4/.828 was quite serviceable at the hot corner last season, did everyone just forget about him because he plays for the Reds? Could be…or it could be his cold start which was buoyed by a fractured thumb on April 9th that he recovered quite quickly from.
Normally a 6-8 week injury, Suarez returned April 26th! That’s weird and it makes me think back to years ago and Miguel Tejeda, who had a pretty serious injury and recovered in about half the normal time. Later we learned Tejada was taking something extra to recover quicker, and I have zero knowledge of Suarez doing the same, just saying that is what it reminded me of.
Suarez already has a 14/5/26/0/.939 line thus far this season, and we have him going 56/18/60/4/.789 the rest of the season, and I’m even more bullish on him predicting more RBIs and a better OPS. He’s been hitting in the 4 or 5 hole in the Reds lineup and hitting anywhere near Joey Votto will continue to be beneficial.
In the minors he didn’t show much homer power, never clearing ten in any minor league season; once the Reds acquired him from the Tigers for Alfredo Simon the homer totals started heading upward, from 13 in 97 big league games in 2015, 21 in 2016 and 26 last season. Furthermore last year he ended with stats that should’ve been owned all year and this season is more of the same. Overall he hits lefties better than righties but he’s not a platoon player; that being said he faces three lefthanders in his next two series against the Giants away and the Cubs at home.
Historically he gets hotter as the summer progresses, peaking in August as his best month. So now is the time; if he was dropped and is sitting out there go add him up now. If Jake Lamb was your 3B it looks like he’ll be on the shelf for a while, or you own Josh Donaldson and are waiting for his next injury, make Suarez your add. Also if you’re in those types of situations, consider acquiring him via trade because I doubt he costs you a whole lot, and the benefit will be worthwhile. Let’s all work together to get those ownership number up!
Lastly: While looking at the hottest OPS hitters over the last couple weeks I noticed that Ryon Healy is still criminally under-owned. What do you want from him? A homer every game? He’s given you three in the last ten games, and a season line of 13/6/16/0/.837 in only 73 ABs. He’s playing every day, is locked in to the seven hole in Seattle’s lineup (which isn’t awful, Mitch Haniger is hitting in front of him but Zunino behind so I guess a wash) and I’m getting tired of seeing him at 40% owned in Yahoo!, 36% in ESPN, and 84% in RCL leagues (should be 100%). Everyone needs some power in their lives, right? and Mr Healy has it in bunches. When he goes cold you can send him back to the waiver wire, but at least enjoy him in your lineup while he’s hot. And with that, I head off into the 100 degree dry heat of Palm Springs for a brief respite, yay summer!