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Please see our player page for Alek Manoah to see projections for today, the next 7 days and rest of season as well as stats and gamelogs designed with the fantasy baseball player in mind.

“Worse thing that God ever spit up.”
“Hitler?”
“What? No, I’m looking at what Jake McCarthy did so far this year in the majors.”
“So, you think Hitler was better than Jake McCarthy–”
“Shut up about Hitler!”

Jake McCarthy recalled in that above exchange and to the majors. I’d say he was hideous to start the year, but I’m afraid of a defamation suit being filed by the word “hideous.” “Ya know, I’ve had about enough of your disparaging.” That’s the word hideous. There was a reason why Jake McCarthy was on a bunch of my teams to start the year. It is illuminated by his four homers and four steals in only 22 games since he was sent down. He has great speed and power. I know you drank away most of what he did from your memory. This post: A splash of knowledge refreshing your Mind Eraser. Jake McCarthy can absolutely be worth rostering in every league. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

With Dustin May injured and Julio Urias hitting the Ineffective List — Urias should be healthy when he stops giving up four homers per game — the Dodgers needed another arm besides Gavin Stone. I opened with that because when I saw the Dodgers were calling up Bobby Miller they be Gavin me a heart attack that they weren’t calling up Stone. I need Stone. Yes, this is about me. Stone has been confirmed for Monday, but Miller’s up for Tuesday. Here’s what Itch’s said, “Where I prefer Gavin Stone, most who care enough to rank ‘em seem to prefer Miller, a 6’5” 220 lb prototype power pitcher. While the 6’1” 175 lb Stone doesn’t win any off-the-bus intimidation contests, he repeats his delivery with ease, which is necessary to maintaining plus command. Miller has mostly looked like a reliever to the eye test, but he looks different now than he did on draft night. He bounced back and forth a bit between relieving and starting at Louisville and retained remnants of a max-effort, off-balance delivery throughout much of his minor league career. It’s pretty smooth and steady now, so I can’t really quibble with anyone who’d prefer the fastball-slider dynamite Miller brings to the mound, and I’d like to stick a piece of dynamite up Grey’s butt.” What on earth? As Itch says, Stone and Miller is likely a toss-up, but this isn’t like mortar and pestle, and why not both? Choose one and go with him. Will Bobby Miller be better than Bryce or Mason Miller? He could. Oh, and so many West Coast Millers. Angels and San Diego, you’re on the clock. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

“Count’s 2-1, and Jack Flaherty is leaning in…and, would you look at that, that is interesting…Willson Contreras is calling for an 88 MPH fastball down the middle.” I kid! Jack Flaherty (7 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 5.24) looked great! After the first inning. Was a bit wonky at the start. At one point, he went from a 75 MPH curve to a 95 MPH elevated fastball to a 84.5 MPH slider to a 79.5 MPH knuckle curve on four straight batters, all resulting in strikeouts. All he needed for motivation was to prove his own catcher sucked. “But how,” Jack Flaherty wondered in his most sincere of voices, “Could a pitcher look good while making his catcher look bad?” Flaherty still desperately needs command from pitch 1 to 100 while going 95 on the fastball, but last night was a step in the right direction. Speaking of directions, the Cards all sucked together, and now they’re all fantastic together. The Cards’ way, I suppose. Nolan Arenado (2-for-3, 4 RBIs and his 7th homer, and 4th homer in four games) is going off, and I had a reason to Sell Low written down that was so eloquent. It’s right over by this open window–NOOOO!!! Torenado! Also, in this game, Andrew Knizner (1-for-1, 2 runs, 4 RBIs) hit his 3rd homer, and 2nd in as many games. This homer was vs. a position player, but there ain’t no asterisks in my fantasy league. Next, Tommy Edman (4-for-5, 4 runs, 2 RBIs) hit his 6th homer, as he heard the footsteps of people going to waivers to drop him. Finally, Nolan Gorman (3-for-5, 2 runs, 5 RBIs) hit his 10th homer, as the house of Cards begins to rise again. Hopefully, Oli Marmol isn’t inspired to give one of his motivational speeches again like, “Tyler O’Neill and Willson Contreras, you guys suck and can’t field your positions or run and I hate all of you.” Anyway, here’s what else I saw in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Now we’ve entered the meaningful stats era and the Twins are still in first place. Who wants to go to the World Series with me? I kid, I kid. Like I could afford the parking for the World Series. Also, the entire AL East has a better record than the Twins. [sigh]

Twins superstar Joe Ryan sits at SP2 on the Razzball Player Rater, propelled largely by his 6 Wins in 8 Games started, which feels a lot like 2022 Tony Gonsolin. Clayton Kershaw and Joe Ryan are neck and neck in terms of fantasy value — same Win contribution, same K contribution, and nearly the same ERA. These are all good things.

And [ahem] Eduardo Rodriguez is SP5 on the year. Nathan Eovaldi is SP10. Justin Steele is SP8. Whoever Tyler Wells is, is SP12. Wells was a reliever in 2021 who became a starter in 2022 and nearly halved his K rate.

This reminds me of when Alec Mills spent significant time in the Top 10 Starters on the Player Rater in 2020. The guy had a curveball that you or I could throw faster than, and I haven’t thrown a pitch in 23 years. The guy even notched a no-no. But by the end of the year, batters caught up to his Eephus pitches and he finished well outside of usable starters. A couple years have passed and the guy’s not even in Major League Baseball anymore.

This is the power of small sample sizes: they make outliers look normal. Justin Steele’s ERA is 2.3 points lower than his xFIP. Tyler Wells is marginally better, with about a 1.8 point difference. Joe Ryan? He’s pretty good. But at his current Win luck, he’ll finish the season with 24 Wins. It just doesn’t work that way anymore.

A couple balls get by a defender here, a couple pitches called balls instead of strikes there, and these guys go from the tops of the charts to unrosterable. Let’s see if we can make any sense of who’s for real, and who’s just noise.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Jordan steps behind the three point line, head fakes Ehlo, who sails past him, tumbling to the half-court line. Jordan looks at the fallen Ehlo, “Was it that good of a head fake?” He sets himself, and goes up, up, up, — that’s three ups — and the ball is soaring, soaring, soaring — that’s three soarings — and SWISH! SWISH SWISH! That’s three swishes! Right into the…bleachers? Jordan Diaz shrugs at Ehlo. It’s a Shruggle! He gave him the Shruggle! The patented “Who knew I was this good?” and rounds the bases. Jordan Diaz has done the impossible! He’s made Grey talk about basketball — kinda! Yesterday, Diaz went (3-for-4, 4 RBIs) with three homers, his 2nd, 3rd and 4th. Jordan’s homer comes a day after MJ’s homer. Pippen ain’t easy, obviously. I’ve said previously Jordan Diaz is like a poor man’s Luis Arraez. Call him Luis I-Need-A-Raise. That might be selling his power short, and his batting average high. At least for this year. He could sneak into a 15-17 homer season, but being in Oakland won’t help. His strikeouts are up, so the potential .280 average feels like a long shot. He could also just be finding himself like Jason Bourne or that guy on The Citadel, a blatant rip-off of Jason Bourne. At worst, a hot schmotato. At best, Jordan gives us more Flu Games. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Don’t just toss around the boomstick tag, okay? Pass out the boomstick tag after thoughtful introspection. Okay? Okay. With that said, Josh Jung (3-for-5,3 RBIs and his 7th and 8th homer), that 3rd baseman in Texas? Yeah, he has a boomstick. Not saying he could play Quidditch, that’s a broomstick. This is a boomstick. To give you a super random comparison, Jung could be Ty France but with the boomstick. Jung, the France man. Call him Josh-Jung Sartre. Though, France has kinda sucked, but I was talking about his average when it’s good, and Jung should have more power France. Hmm, maybe that comparison isn’t great, except how else was I getting to call him, Josh-Jung Sartre? Some have doubted whether or not Josh Jung has the power to be an attractive fantasy corner man contributor. Doubt no more, as Josh-Jung Sartre once said of self-reflection. Can he stay on pace for 40 homers? We’re in unknown territory, but he’s been ready for the last two years. What would Sartre say of that? Let’s see, hmm… “Hell is other people having Josh Jung on their team.” Geez, this guy’s a real bummer. Unlike his sorta namesake! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

You thought every team having a Luis Garcia was confusing? You rued the day you ever learned there was a Trevor Megill and a Tylor Megill? You thought they were joking when they said there was another Max Muncy? You’re in a Holds league and get the shakes every time you see T. Rogers? You still have a headache from the time you drafted Ryan Braun, the reliever? Well, do I have a surprise for you! For a limited time only, we have two Logan Allens! It could be worse, they were both on the Guardians! Now, there’s one on the Rockies and one on the Guardians. That makes things easier because you’d never want a pitcher on the Rockies, so you only have to look at the team name and remember, “No Rockies pitchers ever.” So, why do we care? Well, outside of AL-Only leagues, we may not. Logan Allen (6 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 8 Ks) has a starting job right now, but Triston McKenzie and Aaron Civale could return at some point (in theory), and Hunter Gaddis is stretched out and might get another look. Since the “why do we care” became “why should we not care,” here’s an answer to the caring part: He consistently has a 11+ K/9 in the minors. Itch’s said, “A great athlete with plus balance and command who repeats his delivery with ease, Allen fits the Cleveland mold for pitchers who exceed their on-paper projections. He’s not an ideal candidate to add velocity at 6’0” 190 lbs, but Cleveland tends to find a way, not that Allen has needed more than his low-90’s fastball, plus changeup and average curveball to this point, and I’d like to stick Grey with a sharp point.” C’mon, man! Itch’s “Cleveland tends to find a way” is why I’m interested in deeper mixed leagues. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Friends and family and enemies who read this for the schadenfreude — we’re 10% into the 2023 MLB season! The Twins and the Rays are the best teams in baseball, and Kyle Freeland is your Cy Young frontrunner. Let’s Freeland GO! 

For longtime Razzball readers, you know the motto is still: Don’t Panic. Three games started. 10% of the season. How many of y’all quit one episode into a Netflix series? Maybe that’s why the icon for Squid Game is that robot girl. Or maybe Netflix thinks the prime demographic for the show are fans of cybernetic giantess fantasies. It’s probably both, to be fair. I, for one, would love to see The Terminator throw 120 MPH with his right arm while simultaneously blasting T-1000s with a gun in his left hand. But until we see Ahnold blasting his way to the mound, we’ve got our human pitchers and they’ve got their flaws. 10% of the season is still a drop of non-GMO motor oil in the sea.

Please, blog, may I have some more?