2020 Draft Kit

In Double-A in eighteen after twenty, Nick Solak put up a 19/21/.282 season in 126 games like en bee dee, and would’ve likely been called up to start the year in Tampa last year, or at worst a May/June call-up, but the Rays eat prospects for breakfast and poop out (around lunchtime) guys like Joey Wendle and Daniel Robertson and Yandy Diaz and Willy Adames and Brandon Lowe and their entire lineup, so Solak (almost stutterer!) was shipped off to the Rangers, who have literally no one, for a middle reliever. This is Solak’s third team in three years, so the shine — thine? — might’ve worn off if he wasn’t a bat-first prospect to begin with — an at-first, bat-first prospect? Sure, defense is nice if, ya know, you’re trying to put together a real baseball team, but, luckily for us, we’re not billionaires (yeah, baby!) and we don’t have to put together a team that can field as well as hit, unless you’re in a Benjamin Netanyahu league, in which case be wary of Solak.  So, what can we expect from Nick Solak in 2020 fantasy baseball?

Please, blog, may I have some more?

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I must admit my brain is slightly damaged because I see that Dylan Carlson plays for the Cardinals and I think of Harrison Bader and thank u, next. So, let’s get the elephant out of the room first and talk to our contractors about why they made the doorway big enough for the elephant to begin with, but no nightlight by our bed so we can read. Dylan Carlson isn’t Harrison Bader. No one is Bader, according to his 23 and Me profile; he’s a special snowflake. In 2017, Bader went 20/15/.283 in Triple-A and last year Carlson went 21/18/.281 in Double-A. I told you, huge difference! *long gulp, pulls on collar, sweat trickles* Okay, so maybe there’s so similarities? Bader actually has quote-unquote more speed than Carlson, less power and struggled more with plate discipline than Carlson (at different levels, but you’re the one who wanted this comparison. Okay, okay, OKAY, maybe I wanted the comparison, but here we are now). Results vary obviously, but if you told me Carlson and Bader would result in 100% of the same stats, I wouldn’t be wholly surprised. Carlson does look better, however, so…Anyway, what can we expect from Dylan Carlson for 2020 fantasy baseball?

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

My wife thinks I worry too much. It’s a fair criticism manifesting itself more plainly each day with our daughter. She’s a bit older than one, and I can’t help but freak out about every little way she’s about to hurt herself. I was raised by an insurance adjuster who taught me life was a booby-trap parade. I used to tell him he saw the world only in landmines. It’s inevitable you’ll walk the wrong way and blow some up, but by God you’d better try your best to avoid em. He never disagreed with this assessment. 

I mention this because every one of Atlanta’s prospects worries me. I see the reason for optimism in a lot of them, but if I took over a dynasty loaded up with Braves, I’d be shopping a lot of them before they fall on their ass and look at me crying like it’s my fault. 

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

Something I didn’t mention the other day in my Luis Robert fantasy when I was going on about how Luis Robert was my number one fantasy baseball prospect for 2020 is how close Jo Adell was to him. I don’t remember two prospects being as close any other year. Sure, last year Vlad Jr. and Eloy were 1A and 1B, but I felt like 1A was way over 1B even though 1B ended up above 1A at the end of the year. I’m talking perspective more than reality, and hindsight is 20/20, but that doesn’t apply simply because we’re talking about 2020. I’ve just confused myself, tee bee aitch. Maybe Adell can squeeze out Lou Bob this year like Eloy squeezed out Vlad Jr. last year, but my money’s on Robert, though my money is currently tied up in Beanie Babies. Anyway, what can we expect from Jo Adell for 2020 fantasy baseball?

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

In the hot, steamy sweat of August, while the summer was bumping its uglies against us without our permission, Gavin Lux looked like the best player since Sliced Bread. You might remember, Sliced Bread was a Triple-A standout, hitting .350 with 34 homers in 78 games, but never caught on in the majors, and is now a third base coach for the Winnipeg Sweater Puppies. Sliced Bread is a cautionary stale, er, tale, and Lux doesn’t need to go that route. Looking at Lux in the cold dankness of the offseason, he doesn’t look as hump-worthy and more like a pump and dump scheme. What were we thinking then and can we start thinking it again? I.e., make me delusional again about Gavin Lux I want to put my heels under my head and go whee. Anyway, what can we expect from Gavin Lux in 2020 fantasy baseball?

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

Thanks to years of top-left acculturation, I planned to write about the NL East first, so it’s pure chance that we’re looking at the Washington Nationals the week they’re playing the World Series.

In other news, we’ll be covering the Houston Astros next.

Or the Yankees. 

Then back to the NL East, where I’m getting the Nats’ potential sadness out of the way before the Series just in case the balls bounce against them.

And it’s not so sad: one off-season with a weak minor league system–a totally acceptable outcome the year your team makes the final game, especially if you’re already seeing Juan Soto and Victor Robles under the big lights. Still, this system is not fun. This will not be the kind of article one reads to console oneself after a bad beat in game seven. 

Someone will be ranked fifth, and sixth, and whatnot, but that’s about the best we can say, so let’s go ahead and do the rankings even if it is something of a soul-siphoning endeavor. 

But keep in mind: this front office has a strong track record for finding and developing elite talent. Even if you don’t love anyone on this list, someone in the Washington brain trust probably does, and they’ve been doing pretty well for themselves. Might even be the most honorable organization in D.C., what with the promoting of prospects when they’re ready or needed–not when they’re maximally price-suppressed. I think that’s an underrated motivator for everyone involved–from scouts to coaches to players to mascots. 

Well, everyone but the mascots. I weep for the mascots. But not for the Nationals: a fun success story in the first year A.H. (After Harper)

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

Ayo whaddup it’s ya boy Grey Albright aka the Fantasy Master Lothario aka The Guy Who Eats Takis Every Day aka The Guy Who Cool Sculpted The Fat Off His Stomach After Eating Takis Every Day aka The Guy Who Started A ZZ Top Cover Band Named The Gay Beards And Had To Explain To Everyone I Meant Gay As In Happy And Beards As In Beards aka The Guy In Starbucks Asking For The Bathroom Code While Carrying His Entire Wardrobe aka The Guy Who Goes Oop All The Time aka The Guy Still Vaping aka The Guy Standing Behind You aka The Guy Wondering Why Lumberjacks And Lesbians Both Wear Flannel aka The Guy In Charge Of Moseying At Your Local Frontiertown aka The Guy Typing This With His Pinkie Toe. I’m here with 2020 content, snitches! Okay, I need to sit down, I’ve exhausted myself in the excitement of it all. Well, the joke’s on my butt, I have nowhere to sit! A quick preamble about the 2020 fantasy baseball rookie series that is coming from me over the next few weeks. Rookies could get a post if they meet MLB eligibility requirements, less than 130 ABs or 50 IP. That means no Bo Bichette, no Aristides Aquino, no Kyle Tucker (just missed at 131 ABs), and no Trent Grisham. In 2012, the first player I highlighted was Mike Trout. That wasn’t an accident. I said in the Mike Trout post, “He’s ranked number one for me. Numero uno. The Big Mahoff. He’s the big Statue of Liberty in New York, not that girly one in Paris!” Since then, I’ve attempted to make the first rookie post about a prospect that will be the top rookie for fantasy the following year. Last year that honor went to Vlad Jr. Yes, it’s an honor, don’t be so condescending. The year before it was Ronald Acuña Jr. This year the top fantasy prospect isn’t no ordinary man, this is the prospect I be seeing in my sleep. Luis Robert will be your number one 2020 fantasy baseball rookie. Will Lou Bob be named to the All-Century Team in 80 years or edged out by a robot with grabby hands named the Hitter-Tron that my great-great-nephew will sue, due to trademark infringement, only to find out it’s the same Hitter-Tron that once graced this little fantasy baseball blog called Razzball? Can Lou Bob be a top 50 overall player in 2020? Will Luis Robert even get enough at-bats? Let’s stop the questions and start the answers! Okay, one more question… Anyway, what we can expect of Luis Robert for 2020 fantasy baseball?

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

So, how’s everyone holding up without baseball every day?  I don’t know what to do with myself!  Yesterday I wandered into a Starbucks and told the coffeerista about Mike Clevinger for 2020.  Then I sobbed into a cheddar scone until someone asked me to leave.  We’ve gone over the final 2019 fantasy baseball rankings for hitters and the top 20 starters.  This is different than Final Fantasy rankings where you rank Final Fantasy 1 thru Final Fantasy 15.  That’s hardcore nerd shizz!  This is simply fantasy baseball — we’re softcore nerds like Emmanuelle is to porn. So, there’s no more of these godforsaken recap posts left.  You’re welcome.  I, my over-the-internet friend, will be talking next about 2020 rookies — PUT ON YOUR FREAKIN’ SHOES! Not sure why I just yelled that. Anyway, here’s the top 40 starters for 2019 fantasy baseball and how they compare to where I originally ranked them:

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

The Miami Marlins are a baseball team. I mean the sport they play is recognizably baseball. 

Other than that, there isn’t a lot of certainty in Miami. Even 2019 Whit-alike contest winner Jon Berti seems as likely to fall back as spring forward in 2020. 

Is it really darkest before the dawn?

Anyway, hope floats just off the coast. Er, inland, where Marlins affiliates are loaded with the fruits of an organizational tear-down that would’ve been vetoed in my home league. 

“Fruits” feels kind of extreme. Maybe we should call it the “eggplants” of an organizational tear-down. 

The eggplants for all-world Christian Yelich were players who do everything but hit, which seems to be something of a type for the Front Office helmed by Derek Jeter and Gary Denbo. They whiffed on Lewis Brinson who whiffs at everything, and they face a similar fate for everything in those Yelich and Stanton deals from two winters past unless someone (looking at you, Monte Harrison) changes their trajectory. 

Either way, even with those brutal trades, the Marlins are trending up thanks to a deep farm with rich soil for arms. 

Please, blog, may I have some more?
 

All the final 2019 fantasy baseball rankings for hitters are done.  For those that skipped today’s title, this starts the top 20 starters for 2019 fantasy baseball.  This is NOT for 2020 (caps for those who can’t read titles; supposedly it’s easier to read caps, I have my doubts). This is a recap. Will these affect next year’s rankings?  Sure.  But not entirely.  Like when you had a knee replacement, this is a recap! To recapitulate the recap, these rankings are from our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater.  We’re (me’re) using it to fairly gauge our (my) preseason rankings.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 starters for 2019 fantasy baseball and how they compare to where I originally ranked them:

Please, blog, may I have some more?