Please see our player page for Andrew McCutchen 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.

Rocco Baldelli asked to see James Karinchak’s hair this past weekend to see if he had any foreign substance in there, to see if he was cheating, and I said, in my head, “Karinchak is getting a call from the manager, so that makes Baldelli a Karencheck,” and now Karencheck pulled Joe Ryan (7 IP, 0 ER, 2 walks, 9 Ks, ERA at 3.83) from a no-hitter in the 7th with 106 pitches thrown. Karencheck! You wanna make new rules, MLB? (By the way, in the video at top of this post, it’s this week’s podcast, where BDon and I discuss the new rules — it’s about 10 minutes in.) How about this new rule, no matter what, if the player is healthy, they have to pitch if there’s a no hitter? Make that a rule, you sissies! *puts chew in bottom lip, accidentally swallows chew, vomits up chew and vomit spells out “THAT’S WHAT REAL MEN DO”* My vomit is calling you out, Karencheck! Joe Ryan’s peripherals are 9.3 K/9, 2.9 BB/9, 4.40 xFIP and a hilariously terrible ground ball rate (26.6%), so he’s very susceptible to homers, and that burned him at times this year. How’sever, Joe Ryan for 2023 fantasy, I’m still a believer, as long as he doesn’t show up at camp with a dead arm (lots of IP this year). He’s a rookie, who had excellent command in the minors, and hasn’t scratched that surface yet. Joe Ryan for 2023 fantasy will be an ace or need to be shutdown in the spring with arm issues. Roll that dice, you momma’s boys, and don’t make me spell out things in my vomit anymore! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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We have gotten here, everyone!  That is, assuming you are in the playoffs of your H2H league.  If you are reading this and didn’t make the Playoffs, you are my hero for still checking out this article.  For 20+ weeks, we have talked about strategy weekly, and nothing has changed since the playoffs are here.  If you have a stud, you should start them.  While there could be a case for a marginals stud in Atlanta who only has 5 games, don’t overthink it!  You are not sitting Acuna or Reilly, no matter what.  What we should be doing is looking at the week-by-week rotations and trying to get the most ABs possible.  This may be common knowledge, but there are a few additional “tricks of the trade” that could help you…

If you have a BYE, start looking ahead to next week’s matchups while your opponents are hyper-focused on this week.  For instance, the Reds have 9 games.  CLE, MIA, PITT, and TB all have 8 games.  
Check the IL reports and see if anyone is coming off early.  
Look at your potential opponents’ strengths or weaknesses (categorical H2H), and make sure to take advantage
See if you can forecast the upcoming 2-start pitchers.  The early bird gets the worm. 

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Triston “Dr. Sticks” McKenzie is so skinny, he hula hoops with a Cheerio. McKenzie is so skinny he uses floss as toilet paper. I have a dad bod but want to identify as skinny–am I trans-slender? Triston McKenzie may get his nickname from his lack of girth, but last night McKenzie left no meat on the bone for the White Sox, as he fired 7 innings of two-ER ball while striking out a career-high 14 batters, lowering his ERA to 3.11 in the process. This wasn’t just a good game for McKenzie; it’s the continuation of at least the last month, as he’s got a 2.95 ERA over his last 33 IP, with a 28/8 K/BB. Pay no attention to the xERA of 4.04 and xFIP of 4.08, or the K% that’s has dropped 2 Ks per 9 IP from 2021, and enjoy the fantasy goodness Dr. Sticks is currently giving fantasy owners as the Guardians chase the AL Central division title. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Bro…bro…bro…I’m not saying bro…Bro…bro…bro…I’m trying to say broke! I’m emotional devastated that Lucas Giolito (3 IP, 7 ER, ERA at 5.34) is so broke. Does Lucas Giolito look at a pile of garbage and think he’s looking in a mirror? I’ll be honest with you, I’ve seen piles of trash that have more redeeming qualities. Get a good pile of recyclables and maybe they can turn into something worthwhile. A Coke can might have another life as a bulk 10,000 count thing of paper clips. Lucas Giolito has no future as a paper clip. Was looking at Lucas Giolito’s stats for 2023 fantasy, and he seems like he should be much better, but also there’s a point where, “Is the juice worth the squeeze?” Speaking of juice, the God of Minute Maid, Alex Bregman went 4-for-6, 4 runs, 6 RBIs and a double slam (17, 18) and legs (1). Something that was mentioned on the Mets game the other night, that I haven’t mentioned nearly enough. Big power hitters who can hit 40 homers weren’t that affected this year (they were talking about Pete Alonso). Players who hit wall-scrappers? They were absolutely affected, and, unless the ball is altered, we’re never seeing a 30+ homer year from Bregman again. Looking at his 41-homer year now in 2019 stands out like Waldo in a Where’s Waldo cartoon, when being looked at by Waldo’s mom. A mother knows. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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The All-Star break was fantastic, even though Kyle Schwarber cost me some cash in the home run derby. How the hell did he lose to Albert Pujols? In any case, these teams should be ready to roll for the second half, and it’s going to be fun watching them battle for the final three months. […]

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Happy Saturday, Razzball Folks! The All-Star break is upon us, and we have a record low number of bodies that have hit the floor due to injury. However, we have a record number of folks on the IL because of COVID-19 in the “vaccine avoidance” category. Specifically, the Kansas City Royals have 10 unvaccinated players, […]

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Is it just me (it’s not just me) or do you also think a guy who isn’t great in the majors, then goes to Triple-A and tears it up is a Quad-A player? I can’t help, but think that. It’s almost like I’d prefer a guy struggle a bit in the minors so I can just think of them as bad vs. Quad-A. That label, the Quad-A label, is the kiss of death. Like being on a boat with Robert Wagner or a marriage with OJ. You ain’t getting out of that. That doesn’t mean Akil Baddoo (2-for-4, 1 RBI) is Quad-A. Yabba Dabba Baddoo tore up the minors this year, and was recalled. That can be all that was. He was not as good as he was last year, which is why I told you to avoid him in the preseason, but he’s also not as baddoo as he was this year. How about something in the middle? That would be nice. Can’t be worse than what the Tigers were getting in the outfield. That’s just Grossman. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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All Stars are fun but by this point in the season they aren’t kicking around on the wavier wire for you to scoop up.  Hopefully you managed to draft or snag a few of them earlier in the season. Back to your regularly scheduled programming. Let’s find some hidden gems.

Jon Berti – I’ll be honest, Berti wasn’t a guy I thought I’d be writing about in a points league post. Speed is his calling card, he leads the league in steals with 22, and that’s not really the stat you want to chase in points leagues.. The utility man figures to have an everyday role at second base locked down while Jazz Chisholm Jr is on the IL with a back injury. Berti has been money in June, batting .309 and swiping bases like it’s going out of style. The long and short of it is that he’s racking up points and even though the average will come down, the everyday at bats give him value.

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Atlanta Braves’ rookie flamethrower-slash-hotshot-slash-heartthrob, Spencer Strider turned in his best outing of the year Friday night, pitching five and 2/3 innings, allowing just five baserunners and punching out eight Pirates en route to his second win. Spencer finally hitting his Stride-er! He lowered his ratios to a real nice 2.35 ERA and 1.12 WHIP with the start and his 57/19 K/BB in just 38.1 innings was the exact same number I had on the vision board I made for my positive affirmations class. You just can’t find that kind of strikeout potential on the waiver wire, over-the-internet friends. He’s got a 36.8 K% and a 13.38 K/9. Mhmm. Oh my, is it hot in here? I need to calm myself down, I’m getting excited. *bites knuckles, does ice bucket challenge, thinks about baseball players* Wait! No to that last one! Spence, can I call you, Spence? No? OK, Spencer’s biggest knock is that he’s currently being stretched out after serving in somewhat of a long relief role, so he may not pitch deep enough into games initially to get you those sweet dubs, but Braves manager Snitker seems to be ramping him up quick. He threw 72 pitches in his first start, followed by 87 last week and 92 Friday night. That’s progress, y’all! The five and 2/3 innings was the longest outing of his young career, and even though it was the lowly Bucs, he produced a swinging strike rate of 34%. That’s 18 swings and misses, 11 of those on his stinky, stinky cheese, which topped out at 100+ mph multiple times. Yup, guy’s got gas to spare during a nationwide shortage. Basically, Braves have been ramping him up and he’s taking it in Stride-er. Sure, he’s had some cushy matchups so far with Arizona, Colorado and Pittsburgh, but he gets another juicy one next week versus the Nats. If you are looking to buy unfunny gag gifts, fart pills, embarrassing sex toys or lava lamps, I’d check out Spencer’s Gifts, but if you need starting pitching help with massive strikeout upside on a team that can’t seem to lose right now, I’d buy Spencer Strider. Maybe buy the fart pills, too, those sound fun. Here’s what else I saw Friday night in fantasy baseball:

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