Please see our player page for Alex Avila 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.

I’m here in sunny downtown San Diego at the Winter Meetings and just ran into Matt Kemp. How ya doing, Matt? “I’m great, Grey, excited about continuing my career.” Which career is that, Matt? “Baseball.” Okay, great! *holds finger to ear* Sorry, hearing now there’s big breaking news! Wow! It was just reported the Red Sox have a lot of suitors for Jackie Bradley Jr. and David Price. An absolute ton of offers. Currently, 32 teams are offering packages and there’s only 30 teams, including them. That is crazy! Just going to pass through this downtown San Diego lobby and, damn it, it’s Matt Kemp again. *ducks behind a bank vault with money that is being wheeled by Brain Cashman, follows him into a room with Gerrit Cole lighting cigars rolled in million dollar bills* Gerrit Cole, “Can you change your Diamond Club to the Cole Club?” Cashman, “We can change Giancarlo to Giancole-lo if you want.” “We have a deal.” Oh my God, I snuck into the biggest signing in the history of signings! Excuse me for a second while I try to piece together some of this million-dollar-ash back into a million dollar bill. So, Gerrit Cole signs with the Yankees. He seems like he might be, I don’t know, good. There’s only one person Cole disappointed last year. “His contact rate was 66.3%? That’s next-to-last in the league! So dumb! Is he as thick as this Fribble?” That’s Ray Searage explaining pitching to a Friendly’s waitress. Luis Castillo was the only pitcher with a lower Contact Rate, but Cole’s O-Swing% was 1.4% higher. Cole was also number one in the majors for Swinging Strike percentage (16.8%). In other words, Cole induced the 2nd lowest contact while making hitters chase more than the number one guy, and made hitters swing and miss more than everyone. I’d like to thank the Academy for telling me who died last year and thank Cole for being wonderful. Cole had the best fastball (36.2 Fastball wins above average). That was the 5th best fastball since 2000. No one in the top 10 had another pitch register higher than 11.4, except Cole, whose slider was a 13. Like Leggs, Cole is sheer excellence. He had arguably one of the best pitcher seasons in the last 20 years. The Pirates got Joe Musgrove, Michael Felix and Colin Moran for him, then the Pirates turned around and traded Tyler Glasnow for Chris Archer. Pirates should sell their team bus and buy a Dodge Dart to drive around the team, because they are a bunch of clowns. For 2020, I’ll give Gerrit Cole projections of 17-6/2.61/0.93/294 in 207 IP. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this offseason for 2020 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Throwing a 9 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners, 12 Ks game against the 1927 Twins by Lucas Giolito can mean only one thing, today, we celebrate Lucas Giolito’s Star Mitzvah! Mazel tov! Here’s a check for $18.  Many blessings from your bubbeleh. But, oy, it’s hot in here, can we turn on the fan? Forget the electric bill for one day, it’s a Star Mitzvah! Your uncle, Shlomo, didn’t retire to Boca Raton and leave me with the money he won from scratch-off tickets so I can’t turn on the fan once in a while. Guys and five girl readers, Giolito is a legend. Who isn’t a Giolito fan? (Besides the Streamonator; why the long face, tin can head?) I’ve already given you my Lucas Giolito 2020 fantasy too, that’s what a legend he is. This is his 2nd insane game this month, and, brucely, it’s more fun to revel in great pitching performances this year than the 400th three-homer game. Last time, I said Giolito would be a top 15 starter. Now I’m starting to think I was being too low. Dude’s so lit he’s got that shizz in his last name! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Another week, more exciting prospect call-ups, as Keston Hiura is now a full-fledged Milwaukee Brewer, and Brendan Rodgers is rumored to be on his way to join the Rockies as I write this.  If you play in a shallow league, perhaps you had the opportunity to grab Hiura off the waiver wire and are now a little more invested in his major league baseball career than you were a week ago.  If you play in a very deep league, chances are both Hiura and Rodgers were drafted back in March even in re-draft formats, and perhaps have been owned for years in an NL-only, dynasty type league.  No, we deep-leaguers aren’t going to be finding guys with Hiura’s or Rodgers’ upside floating in the free agent pool too often, so we have to get much more creative.… and on that note, here are this week’s players that may be more realistic targets in AL-only, NL-only, and other deep leagues.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

At one point in Sunday’s draft, Andy Behrens said to me, “I can’t believe you went to $3 on Peter O’Brien.  That’s not on brand for you.”  You know what; he’s right.  Shame on me for briefly going off brand. Even if it was for a millisecond between bids $2 and $3 on the 35-year-old rookie, Peter O’Brien, who has more holes in his swing than Swiss cheese at a shooting range.  Maybe the, um, spirit of drafting on St. Patty’s Day overcame me.  Maybe I was hoping O’Brien could make me some hurricanes while I waded in my kiddie pool this summer.  It’s Andy Behrens’s brand to draft terrible players.  That’s not my brand.  I realized that soon enough, Dear Reader.  Andy went to $4 and I let him have O’Brien.  I suppose if things break right, O’Brien will retire at some point this summer and look kindly on Behrens for drafting him, then offer his services as a babysitter.  I don’t need a babysitter; my wife is like a decade older than me!  Okay, I’m about to drop on you one of the sexiest NL-Only teams. You might want to place an extra-wide condom over your head, before I impregnate your eyes.  Anyway, here’s my Tout Wars 12-team, NL-Only draft recap:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Rick Porcello said of his catcher, Sandy Leon, “He’s the best catcher I’ve ever thrown to.  Period.”  It’s a shame people don’t end include other forms of punctuation when speaking.  “I am the Red Sox ace.  Question mark.  No, I forgot about Chris Sale.  Period.  Actually, exclamation mark.  The best Red Sox pitchers.  Colon.  Not Bartolo.  Period.  I’m going to list them.  Period.  Okay.  Comma.  Damn.  Comma.  I apostrophe V-E confused myself.”  Yesterday, Porcello threw a sparkler — 7 IP, 2 hits, 0 walks, 1 ER, 10 Ks, ERA at 4.04, and roped a double to right, which is fun in a dog on rollerblades-type way, but is kinda irrelevant.  What’s less irrelevant, Rick Porcello is pitching better this year than his Cy Young year, though with less ERA to show for it, obviously.  That could change in the final six weeks if he finds his groove.  Period.  Ya know what, exclamation mark.  Strike that, interrobang.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

J.A. Happ might’ve realized he wasn’t staying with the Jays much longer when guys in the front office kept asking him if he liked the team’s new jersey and it was the same jersey he had been wearing but a small man with a goatee, who said he worked as Peter Dinklage’s stunt double for parts of season 2 and 3 of GOT, was standing with his hand over the ‘Ja’ of Jays.  Happ tried to understand, “Do I like the Blue Ys?”  The front office exec tried to lead him to the answer, “If there was no,” motioning to Dinklage’s stunt double’s hand covering the ‘Ja,’ “In the Jays, would that be okay with you?”  Rather than the low-rent game of charades, they just traded him to the Yankees.  Happ should be happy to be out of Canada, we have a burgeoning coal economy.  No idea what Happ will do on the Yankees, but what he SHOULD (caps for emphasis, not due to a sticky keyboard) is be great.  His 10.3 K/9, 2.8 BB/9 and 3.63 xFIP makes him easily the 2nd best pitcher on the Yankees and around that of a top 30 starter.  Also, the AL East is like this:  J.A. Happ mimes wiping dandruff off his shoulder.  Nothing to it, kid!  Of course, it’s been like this all year and he still has a 4.18 ERA, so ‘should’ and ‘would’ can have a baby and it will still be, ‘who knows?’  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

*walking through a packed hallway, head nodding at the ladies* “What’s up, chiquitas?  Que paso, senoritas?  Assume there was an upside down question mark in front of that question.  I’m feeling pretty good, and it’s not just because I’m wearing my extra tight bicycle shorts that make me aroused when I cough.  Nope!  RONALD ACUNA IS UP!  Hey, so are my letters.  Preston Tucker?  How about you Tuck off?!  I’m so pumped!!!  Seriously.  I wanna make love to my fantasy team where I have Acuna.” *realizing I don’t know what hallway this is and need to leave before I’m arrested*  Here’s my Ronald Acuna fantasy.  Go look at the GIF I have there and tell me you’re not aroused.  Don’t send pics!  I said he’d be up mid-April.  Oops, one week off!  And his projections were 74/17/77/.304/21 in 514 ABs!  I need to sit down.  Wait, I am sitting!!!  AHHHH!!!  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I have to keep this short, because after the jump is going to be the longest post you’ve ever seen in your life.  How do I know all the posts you’ve seen to compare this one to?  Because I’m sitting behind you.  *waves*  Hey!  I’ve given you the top 10 for 2018 fantasy baseball, top 20 for 2018 fantasy baseball and top 20 catchers for 2018 fantasy baseball.  All projections included are mine, and where I see tiers starting and stopping are included.  Let’s do this!  Anyway, here’s the top 20 1st basemen for 2018 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

After going over the top 10 for 2018 fantasy baseball and the top 20 for 2018 fantasy baseball (clickbait!), it’s now time to turn our lonely eyes to you, Mr. Robinson Chirinos.  To paraphrase The Refreshments from their should-be smash hit, Fonder and Blonder, “Who said absence makes the heart grow fonder.  Pitches are thrown to catchers, but that doesn’t make my heart grow fonder.”  Later in that song, they sing, “I’ll be scratchin’ it down,” which sounds like it applies to all baseball players.  Or as the rhyming dictionary has never said, applies to oranges.  Any hoo!  The projections noted in the post are my own, and I mention where tiers start and stop.  I also mention a bunch of hullabaloo, so let’s get to it.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 catchers for 2018 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It feels like just the other day the baseball regular season started.  You wrote “I heart baseball” in permanent marker on your arm, then you met a girl who wrote “I heart guys who heart baseball” on her arm, then, during sex in July, you screamed out, “Give it to me, Giancarlo!” and now you don’t have baseball or a girlfriend.  C’mon, calendar, make like a soldier and turn to March.  The only cure for the post-baseball season blues — recapping the preseason top twenty lists and being hand-fed Doritos.  First up, Cool Ranch and our preseason Top 20 Catchers for 2017.  It’s important to look back before we look ahead to 2018.  To paraphrase the one and only B-Real, “How do you know where you’re at, if you don’t know where you’ve been? Understand where I’m coming from?”  (If you missed it, I interviewed B-Real last year on our podcast, though that might not have been as good as our Jose Canseco interview.)  It wouldn’t be fair for me to preseason rank the players, then rank them again in the postseason based on my opinion, so these postseason top 20 lists are ranked according to our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater.  It’s cold hard math, y’all!  Please, for the love that all is holy, don’t ask me if this is for next year.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 catchers for 2017 fantasy baseball and how they compared to where I originally ranked them:

Please, blog, may I have some more?