On our Steamer Fantasy Baseball Rankings, which have been updated to a 60-game season, we have 1,310 players ranked. 645 of them gained value. Some, for unstints, gained $0.1 of value like Juan Soto. Another hundred had zero value change like Christian Yelich. Another 600+ lost value. I’ll go over those guys in another post. This post will feature the top 20 players who gained the most value from doing nothing but bingeing Netflix for the last three months. Who knew watching Joe Exotic would add more value than any Driveline drills? Apparently, all baseball players need to know is, “Who is dumpster diving at your nearest Costco?” Anyway, here’s the top 20 biggest positive value changes for fantasy baseball pre vs. post-shutdown:

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True story: DonkeyTeeth calls me up on the ol’ Twitter machine this morning.  Me, I’m just awake from dreaming of 5-year-old Blair riding out in my dad’s Buick Skylark into the Minneapolis night to celebrate the Twin’s 1987 World Series win.  Suddenly Donkey’s typing: “Top 100 Switchers.” And I’m like, “Donkey, it’s 7AM, I’m not ready for that!” He types into the Twitter machine, “TOP 100 PITCHERS!” So I say, that’s fine, here: 1) Beer, 2) Sangria, 3) Margarita… . Donk does it. You know. He starts typing, but doesn’t finish. The little dots on the bottom of my Twitter machine beep out in morse code–or whatever code Jack wants to call it–that causes mental insanity among so many people. I’m transfixed. The next use of a nuclear code, you know it’s going to be preceded by those little waiting dots. President Swift will have to verify the code with Vice President Lovitz but only after they clear their notifications. Finally, Donkey’s message comes across. “2-for-1 pitchers at BWW if you get there before 9AM. See ya.” That’s the level of training they give here at Razzball. I tell ya, I get no respect at all. 

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Anyone who plans on engaging in a little fantasy baseball fun over the (hopefully) upcoming 60-game season has certainly been thinking about the overwhelming number of meaningful changes that have occurred over the last several months.  There are so many alterations and unusual circumstances, and so much incomplete information, that it’s been hard for me to begin even preparing for how to attack things in 2020.  How this all translates specifically to AL-only, NL-only, and other deep leagues is yet another wrinkle that it may be tricky to successfully iron out before it’s too late.

I have a few teams that have sat “frozen” since as early as November that will re-open for FAAB and waiver wire moves soon, plus at least three more deep-league drafts to do over the next few weeks.  As I begin formulating some strategies for addressing these teams, I’m going to start by checking in on some deeper-league injury situations.  Since I’m writing this several days before players are expected to show up at their new camps, there will likely be a flurry of news and updates soon, but for now let’s take a look at some of the health news that’s come in over the last week or so.  We’ll keep it deep league by checking in on some players outside the top 300 in NFBC ADP this year, listed in order of earliest drafted to latest drafted. These are guys that we might have forgotten about and who might get ignored in standard leagues regardless of whether or not they’re ready to take the field, but who, if healthy, might help those of us who are going to need to get a little more creative with our roster construction.

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If you’ve been away during the MLB delay, then boy do we have a treat for you! During his quarantine days Grey has been sewing SAGNOF masks and spreading anti-hummingbird propaganda. But that’s not all, Grey and I also created the exclusive Razzball Patreon Club. For the incredibly low price of $0.16 per day (or $5 per month) you too can join the Razz Patreon Nation, laugh along with our weekly podcasts, receive Grey’s in season buy/sell columns early, win great prizes, and much more!

For the third week running we’re joined by comedian Billy Hurley to breakdown this week’s wacky news stories, including the Ukrainian man who was beaten with a sausage. Here’s a teaser clip from the first Billy Hurley episode to reel you in:

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Nick Pollack (@pitcherlist) joins the show to discuss how Pitcher List got created. We also discuss the process on what made Pitch Con such a successful event. Nick gives us some of his favorite pitchers as well as a Jose Berrios breakdown. We all give our earliest fantasy baseball memories and why Brent and Jordan started the podcast. Nick gives us his thoughts on why the Twins can’t beat the Yankees in the playoffs.

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Yesterday most teams announced their 60-man rosters for Summer Camp. You know Summer Camp, it’s when MLB players compete against each other in kayak and potato sack races, learn to respect other kids, even ones with nerdy glasses, and are managed by Bill Murray. Oh, and, yeah, all teams were supposed to release their 60-man rosters, but when you make a rule that in extra innings a runner will start on 2nd base, then rules are officially stupid and should not be followed. Rob Manfred speaking into a phone, “Brewers, we need your 60-man roster.”  Brewers, “It’s in your ass, Rob.” Rob, “I’m looking in a mirror and I do not see it.” One other thing about the 60-man rosters that were released:  they were all a few short of 60. 60-man rosters are a lot like Opening Day, a wait-and-see affair. Guys can be added still in the coming days. So, maybe there’s hope still for Ryan Mountcastle and Adley Rutschman, since they were omitted from the Orioles’ released 44-man roster. It would be surprising if they weren’t included in the coming days, if this weren’t the Orioles. Some teams included their 2020 draft picks. The Orioles have yet to include their 1st pick from 2015 (Mountcastle) and their 1st pick from last year. i.e., Grey’s about to lose his crap and only talk in 3rd person. Anyway, here’s what else I saw 2020 fantasy baseball:

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The further we travel into the Ronaverse, the less we understand. 

“Houston, we have gone beyond the final frontier.”

Teaser: at the end of this article, I want to share a secret about this season.

Anyway, some rules orbiting the baseball conversation seem concrete: 

1) Universal DH for 2020, woohoo!!

2) Runner on 2nd base in extra innings.

3) 30-man active roster dropping to 28 then 26 after a month.

4) MLB owners are crooks. 

5) 60-man player pool . . .

I’ve been reading a lot of confusing things lately, but this one stood out in a crowded field: Sunday is the deadline for teams to submit their 60-man rosters, but it’s not a deadline.

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Visualize a game of Pong on the original Atari. For you millenials, here you go. Now imagine that your head is the ball. Pong. Ouch! Pong. Ouch! Thanks MLB and the MLBPA, because that’s how it has felt following the negotiations to start the season. But, but, but….Can I get an amen? Amen! Thanks to the old lady in the back. Baseball is back! At least on paper. Hopefully the Rona and his/her compatriots let us measly humans have some homeruns and strikeouts back into our lives. With that said, when Scott White at CBS Fantasy sent out the bat signal for a 12-team mock draft, I equipped my scouts with enough provisions so that they may get a detailed lay of the landscape. Before I unveil the map, I want to thank Scott for allowing me to participate. Now, for your viewing pleasure…

Here’s a LINK for the roster grid.

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Actress Ellen Adair (@Ellen_Adair), who was featured in TV series such as Homeland, Billions, and The Sinner, joins the show to breakdown the Philadelphia Phillies roster. She gives us her thoughts on the 60 game season and if it will get played in full. She gives us great breakdowns of Rhys Hoskins and Aaron Nola and why they may have struggled in 2019. We also discuss the depth of the bullpen and if Hector Neris can hold down the closer roll for a whole season. She is the host of “Take me in to the Ballgame” which breakdowns baseball movies on a 20-80 scale and she gives us some of her favorite movies. We discuss her acting career, her favorite ballparks, and much more!

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This year we don’t have SAGNOF we have SSSAGNOF. That’s Shortened Season SAGNOF, baby! I just started breakdancing after screaming baby. What, is this a lost episode of Ally McBeal? ‘Member that show? I don’t, because I didn’t ever watch crap TV shows. Get your taste out yo’ ass! Also, that popsicle stick. That vacuum cord. That microwaved burrito. How many things do you have in your butt? As mentioned the other day in my Jarrod Dyson 60-game sleeper, steals might be the most predictable stat we have this year. Have Sprint Speed, will travel from 1st to 2nd. With runs and RBIs, it’s going to come down to lineup placement. With home runs, it’s going to come down to–Well, just go read the article. With steals, it’s gonna be as easy to measure as clicking that little button on the top of your stopwatch. By the by, what if the person pressing the clock button is slow, doesn’t that change the clocked time by a lot? Has anyone ever said runners’ times pre-digital age are all hogwash because it depended on the old man in black & white with the monocle pressing a stopwatch button? Did I just uncover some truth that everyone already knew but me? Yes? Cool. Our 2020 fantasy baseball rankings have been updated to a 60-game season. So, with a 60-game season, what is a fantasy baseball strategy for steals?

Please, blog, may I have some more?