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Will computer programmers for billion-dollar corporations find a way for Shohei Otani to be eligible as both a pitcher and a hitter in fantasy? These are the tough questions Abner Doubleday surely pondered when he invented baseball in 1839 (Doubleday invented baseball like Al Gore invented the internet and global warming). It’s also the question that Ralph Lifshitz and I ponder to start the podcast, along with touching on Willie Calhoun and Tyler Glasnow’s recent call-ups. We then dive deep into our third base rankings, debating if Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is the #1 prospect in baseball, Colton Welker vs. Dermis Garcia, and how to value the proximity and safety of Jeimer Candelario and Brian Anderson. We cover everybody from Nick Senzel, Michael Chavis, and Miguel Andujar, to Nolan Jones, Sheldon Neuse, Yairo Munoz, Ryan Vilade, and many more. Finally, please make sure to support our sponsor by heading over to RotoWear.com and entering promo code “SAGNOF” for 15% off the highest quality t-shirts in the fantasy sports game. It’s the latest edition of the Razzball Fantasy Baseball Prospect Podcast:

   
  1. Malicious Phenoms says:
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    GREAT podcast Ralph & Halp.

    Otani 2018!

    Tyler Glasnow – AAAA?

    • Halp

      Halp says:
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      @Malicious Phenoms: Thanks. MP. I still like Glasnow long term. Worst case is probably a move to the pen. And I haven’t forgot your twitter question, just wanted to give it the time to answer it properly and haven’t had a free moment yet

      • Malicious Phenoms says:
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        @Halp: No worries, get it when you can..

        cheers

  2. SR says:
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    Great podcast as always. Couple thoughts…

    Doubt we see two Otani’s in fantasy leagues next year. My guess is that he has initial SP eligibility, and gains positional eligibility. However leagues will incorporate a toggle for all pitchers to record hitting stats – with them off by default except for Otani.

    The McMahon/Senzel conversation is interesting, and I think Andujar is in that tier for me. I would personally be looking to sell Senzel right now, especially given depth of league. A top 10-15 prospect with current hype will yield a much better return in 12-15 team leagues than he will produce as a top 40-ish bat as he projects.

    Speaking of which, I like Andujar and McMahon at least as much, if not more than Senzel. This comes down to raw power for me – I probably think of the “Juiced Balls” differently for fantasy than you folks.

    My think is that the effect isn’t a flat incremental gain for everyone – it scales production by a percentage IMO. So a 25-30 HR player (i.e. Andujar/McMahon) could bump to as high as 45 HR with similar increases in other counting stats. But a high floor type with 15-20 HR pop projection like a Senzel or Bregman might cap out as a 25-30 HR guy now, with lesser gains in counting stats.

    Basically – I think prospects who have a combination of raw power, plate approach, and projection are goldust in the current game. It’s a bit masked right now because we’ve had a small number of high-grade power prospect come up this year (Judge, Bellinger, Hoskins), but the crazy uptick in production is apparent. And Hoskins brings a plate approach the other two don’t, which has buoyed his line quite a bit.

    Meanwhile these limited power prospects who bring a high floor have exclusively been average to disappointing – Rosario, Dom Smith, Josh Bell. I’m just not as confident the pure hit tool is as valuable as it’s historically been valued, nor is the multi-tool upside, given how raw power can improve other hitting stats, and sheer volume can potentially compensate for losing out on a few steals or ratio points.

    • Halp

      Halp says:
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      @SR: Thanks, SR. Definitely some interesting thoughts here. As for the hit tool being devalued, definitely with you there. Have been preaching that since I started my website and have been banging the bat speed and hitting the ball hard drum. I do think some of the “who does the juiced ball help the most” is anecdotal, as last year many middle infielders saw a power bump, and the narrative was that juiced balls helped guys turn doubles into homers rather than helping the power guys who would hit homers anyway. This year, you are seeing the homer numbers at the top explode as well. For fantasy especially, I’m usually going to lean power hitters, so agreed about the type of prospect to prefer.

  3. Stumanji! says:
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    In a keep forever OPS league, who would you guys prefer between Hoskins and Devers?

    • Halp

      Halp says:
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      @Stumanji!: Can’t imagine I wouldn’t be keeping both, but not sure how it can’t be Hoskins if I had to pick one.

      • Stumanji! says:
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        @Halp: Keep 5. My top 4 are Goldy, Correa, Trea Turner, and Scherzer. I have Hoskins but Devers owner inquired.

        • Halp

          Halp says:
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          @Stumanji!: Gotya. I don’t think you can lose either way, but if I was selling high on Hoskins, it would probably have to be for someone who is already established.

          • Stumanji! says:
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            @Halp: Wise words.

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