True Story Alert! Justin Bieber used to live about two blocks away from Cougs and I. Honestly, he might still live there, but I doubt it because I no longer go to the supermarket (block between us) and hear this, “BIEBER, I LOVE YOU. HERE IS MY VIRGINITY. LITERALLY TAKE IT FROM ME. PLEASE!!!” Also, I no longer have to jostle between TMZ cameramen for my kombucha. Here’s a story about how he wanted to put a skatepark into his condo. Dude, LA’s special. Any hoo! Yesterday, I was screaming like a 15-year-old girl for Shane Bieber to remove my sexual flower for the first few innings, then he ran into some trouble in the 5th, when it became apparent major league hitters (even the bottom of the Twins’ order; Ryan LaMarre, really?) are not quite who he was blowing away in the minors this year (1.05 ERA, 8.1 K/9, 0.5 BB/9). He worked consistently down in the strike zone with a 93 MPH fastball, and broke off, uh, breaking stuff off down and outside. There wasn’t a ton of hard contact until the 6th inning, which was a quick turnaround on a 5th inning, which saw him clearly winded — final line, 5 2/3 IP, 4 ER, 9 baserunners (1 BB), 6 Ks. I’m interested in him in deeper mixed leagues, but he looks like he will have the usual rookie pitcher lumps. For what it’s Werth, he’s the 9th best starter on the Prospect-o-Nator, which lists all rookie pitcher projections. Plus, no reports of this Bieber wanting a skatepark. That’s good. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
Francisco Lindor – 4-for-5, 3 runs, 4 RBIs and his 13th and 14th homer, hitting .311. Also, in this game, Jose Ramirez (2-for-5) hit his 18th homer. Member when the Indians weren’t scoring any runs the first month of the season? Ain’t the problem anymore.
Jake Odorizzi – 3 2/3 IP, 7 ER, ERA at 4.29. Hey, Odorizzi, go back to Tampa and get your shine box.
Eduardo Escobar – 2-for-3, 2 runs and his 8th homer. So ridiculous that Molitor put Miguel Sano (2-for-5, 3 RBIs and his 7th homer) in the three-hole and moved Escobar down the order. Stop regaling people about your 39-game hitting streak and read a Tom Emanski book co-authored by Fred McGriff! And I know Sano hit a home run, I just wrote that! He’s still not a three-hole hitter. He’s a .215 hitter!
Logan Morrison – 1-for-5 and his 6th homer, hitting .198. Has done nothing the whole season, but I will bet someone five fake dollars that he homers again this weekend.
Dylan Cozens – With Rhys Hoskins hitting the DL with a fractured jaw, the Phils called up Cozens. Surprised. They could’ve replaced Hoskins with Pesci. No one would’ve known the difference. Dylan Cozens, who I like to spoon with Cylan Dozens, has big-time power and some speed — GIDDY UP SNITCHES!!! — but strikes out about 35% of the time and is likely, at best, platooning with Altherr and Williams — AM I GIDDYING UP OR NOT? There’s a chance here for some upside, but he needs ABs and to get into a groove, boy, you got to prove your fantasy value to me, I sang that while wearing a wedding dress. Madonna, BC. That’s Before Cut muscles.
Seranthony Dominguez – 2 IP, 0 ER, and his 2nd save, in his first game. *intern whispers in my ear* He has a 0.00 ERA and this isn’t his first game? *looks at his player page* OH MY GOD HE’S BEAUTIFUL!!! Guys and five girl readers, he has a 0.15 WHIP! He’s given up two hits in 13 2/3 IP. I need a skull emoji. I am dead. Put soil on my head I can’t even handle what this guy is doing. Let’s hope Kapler does the right thing and lets him close the rest of the year, because we got ourselves a new Josh Hader.
Aaron Nola – 7 IP, 1 ER, 3 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 2.18. I don’t sense the same excitement about Nola as guys like Kluber or Sale, but, really, that different? Nola also prints money with his pitches.
Clayton Kershaw – 5 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 2.76, as he was activated from the DL. Swear to you, prior to me reading the news that he’s headed for another back MRI, I wrote, “Sell! Not kidding. Assuming you can get full price, of course, but I just don’t trust him to stay healthy anymore. By the by, he has one win all year. Give me your lolz!” Sorry, you’ve got yourself a dud, since he sounds injured again.
Brandon Nimmo – 2-for-4 and his 6th homer, and I’ve mentioned him about 20 times in the last four days. Wonder if he’ll be in this afternoon’s Buy column. By the by, wanna know everything you need to know why ESPN’s terrible? For each game, they highlight some takeaways. Their takeaway yesterday was Nimmo? You, my over-the-internet friend, are overestimating them. They highlighted a home run by Ben Zobrist. Thrilling stuff.
Marcell Ozuna – Out again with his jammed finger. Yet, he preserves.
Alex Reyes – Has a significant lat strain. I have a significant strain of my skepticism. How did homeboy go from fine to significant lat strain? “Fine” wasn’t very fine, now was it? Was it “not fine?” Because it now seems like it was “not fine!” “FINE?!” What kind of fine was that fine?! This was not a fine time to be having my blood pressure monitored! Guess Jack Flaherty’s rotation spot IS FINE!
Carlos Martinez – Expected back on Tuesday from his lat strain. You must’ve sneezed on Reyes, you bastard!
Yadier Molina – Will begin a rehab assignment on Saturday. He will also be signing the National Anthem, in the highest soprano octave.
Yairo Munoz – 2-for-5, 5 RBIs and his 2nd homer, hitting .314, and hitting near-.400 in the last week and you best believe he’s going to be in this afternoon’s Buy column, but please don’t wait for that.
Yarrison Bader – 3-for-5, 2 runs and his 6th steal, hitting .290. Pham is about one week from becoming the 4th outfielder. (Yes, I know I spelled Harrison Bader wrong, but I couldn’t help myself with the rule of three.)
Jung-ho Kang – Will start minor league games today. At first he was concerned, saying, “Minors? So they can’t be designated drivers?”
Felipe Vazquez – 0 IP, 4 ER. *gets close to Felipe’s elbow, mimes an explosion* I immediately grabbed Kyle Crick (1 IP, 0 ER, set up Vazquez, ERA at 1.93). I don’t fully expect Crick to become the closer, but I have to imagine Vazquez is not going to be closing games by this time next week. The usual suspects who could take over: Edgar Santana, Michael Feliz, Verbal Kint.
Francisco Cervelli – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 8th homer. There is no more clearcut sign that some ‘pert has no idea what they’re doing than telling you to draft a catcher early.
Sean Newcomb – 7 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 2 Ks, ERA at 2.73. Don’t mind people asking me questions, but people were asking about starting Newcomb? He was at home, and an automatic start against everyone.
Carlos Correa – 1-for-3, 2 RBIs and his 9th homer, hitting .262. This preseason schmohawk isn’t disappointing me either, as in, he’s disappointing to own. He was being drafted in the top 12 for some ‘perts! He’s been about as valuable as a top 50 guy.
Andrew Heaney – 5 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 3.66. Well, that sucked Rally Monkey balls. Heaney’s peripherals are still better than your average streamer, but his luck’s pretty neutral, so he’s essentially a 3.70 ERA pitcher. It’s aight, and far from aight aight, but not ‘just aight.’
Adrian Beltre – 2-for-4 as he was activated from the DL. Kevin from ESPN’s Get Him In Your Lineup Department said, “The adhesive on these company-issued Post-Its lack a certain stick-to-itiveness.”
Dee Gordon – 1-for-5, 1 run as he was activated from the DL. Kevin from ESPN’s Get Him In Your Lineup Department said, “I’m gonna need more tape.”
Nelson Cruz – 2-for-3, 3 RBIs and his 10th homer. So overdue for one of those eight homers in six game stretches.
Hunter Renfroe – 2-for-3, 1 run, 1 RBI. He returned to the Padres lineup the other day, but I didn’t mention it because my B, and he won’t play every day. If you need power, I could see the grab. Though, if you were looking for power and had to pick up a Padres hitter, I’d prolly go Franmil.
Christian Villanueva – 2-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 15th homer. *raspberries lips* Should’ve held firm and not dropped him in my 12-teamer. Oh well, take the good, take the bad, yadda yadda Tootie.
Kyle Barraclough – Don Mattingly said Barraclough will take over as Miami closer. Mattingly added, “Also, I think Donald Trump could beat Hillary, Subway sandwich shops smell like feet, and the sun is yellow.” Mattingly’s going out on some limbs!
Matt Olson – 1-for-4 and his 9th homer. Also, in this game, Matt Chapman went 1-for-4 with his 9th homer. A good old fashioned Matt off! This is like a real-life Daddy’s Home only instead Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell it’s two guys named Matt! Let’s see you compete in Matt-ematics! Mattainneering! A rap Matt-le!
Daniel Mengden – 8 IP, 3 ER, 8 baserunners (2 BBs), 5 Ks, ERA at 2.91. Threw a quarter of his walks on the year in one game, and feels on the verge of coming back to earth…*sees his mustache and becomes mesmerized, reaches hand out to touch image of his mustache on computer screen, mumbles* Mustache, ‘puter, junior, is that you? Any hoo! The Stream-o-Nator also is moving away from him in his next start.
Khris Davis – 1-for-3, 1 run as he was activated from the DL. Kevin from ESPN’s Get Him In Your Lineup Department said, “With The Americans ending, I wanna go back and watch Felicity. I hear Keri Russell has great hair.” I imagine people reading this bit have no idea of the origins from years ago. I don’t like explaining bits, but just this once. I was annoyed with ESPN fantasy advice, because it always goes something like this, “[Player name] was activated, get him in your lineup.” Like holy effin’ eff, no shizz. Why don’t you tell a plant to use sunlight to synthesize foods? It would be as practical. So then I got to thinking, who is writing these “get him in your lineup” updates, which led me to create Kevin who does nothing all day in ESPN’s Get Him In Your Lineup Department, except call out of work sick, talk nonsense at a water cooler and try not to be found out by his boss. Anyway, the more you know!