I’ve already given up on all of my resolutions. Cancel my Curves membership immediately! Where are my Camels? I need a pint of Canadian Club…ASAP! We’re still hacking through the minor league previews though. Emphasis on the hack when I’m doing them. The Rays have made some interesting moves this offseason. In chess we’d put a question mark next to them. But I’ll leave opinions to the opinion-makers. I’m just here to make sure you know who the top ten prospects are in this Rays organization. In my opinion, of course.Please, blog, may I have some more?
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During the slow Monday, when there was five games on the docket, and half of them were Yankees, I started thinking about some either/or’s. Though maybe because I was listening to Elliott Smith — that guy was uplifting! Luis Severino was out doing his norm — 8 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 2.20 and 0.93 WHIP with peripherals that are just as gorge — 10.7 K/9, 2.2 BB/9, 2.83 xFIP. First either/or for you, wait for it, here it comes, follow the arrow –> Next year, Luis Severino or Kershaw? Is it even close? Don’t think it is. Okay, next either/or, Luis Severino or every pitcher not named Max Scherzer? Maybe, maybe not. There’s pitchers with better peripherals than Severino right now — Scherzer, deGrom, Cole, Corbin, Kluber and Syndergaard. Throwing the two Mets out because they’re injury risks; Corbin and Cole don’t have the track record; semicolons are fun. That leaves us with Scherzer, Kluber and Severino. So, three’s company, and Severino is Joyce DeWitt. Come and knock on my door! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
I went into the Mike Foltynewicz vs. Red Sox in Fenway matchup a spry, jovial young rascal. The mischievous imp of Chinese food, the rapscallion. Then Mike Faultywirewitz went 7 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners (3 BBs), 7 Ks, ERA at 2.55, and I aged forty years. “I was told just the painting of me is supposed to age.” That’s me trying to get a refund for my Dorian Grey Albright portrait. The time Finkynewhitch was on the mound was like the three-year span when I lost my fortune investing in Beanie Babies compressed into two hours. He just loses all semblance of the strike zone out of completely nowhere. It’s like, “We’re cruising….so cruising…And now I’m throwing five feet outside the strike zone.” With that said, it’s hard not to be encouraged — his velocity is up to 96 MPH; his K/9 is up to 10.4; he’s got the best xFIP of his career, and his team should provide run support. He’s also in his third full year when I like to look for starter breakouts. The only drawback is his command is a mess. As long as you watch him pitch with cucumbers on your eyes to combat the wrinkles, you’ll be fine. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
This week’s edition of the FAAB Five begins with a pitcher most of us have been waiting for all season, Jack Flaherty. Consensus would lead one to believe that the St. Louis Cardinals pitching prospect will not go cheaply. He has been hyped all season as his domination of the minor leagues have been witnesses by anyone doing a bit of research to win their league. Flaherty has been a top arm in that system for quite some time, and this is a system that is known for the development of top-quality arms. Flaherty joins Adam Wainwright, Carlos Martinez, Michael Wacha, Alex Reyes, and more that have grown and continue to flourish from within the St. Louis ranks. The talent is becoming undeniable after a couple more juicy starts in the majors this past week. Look for him to go for at least 10% of your budget, if still available. Jack Flaherty can be a successful pitcher in the majors right now posting nearly a strikeout per inning, limiting walks, and stepping up for impressive outings like his last performance on May 20th, 7.2 IP with 13 K and only 3 baserunners allowed.Please, blog, may I have some more?
The preview season is upon us, and we’re kicking it off with the Diamondbacks and Orioles. Lower case yay… On their own these are two relativity boring systems, but combined they create a super system, still less exciting than next week’s topic the Braves. Another lower case yay. Lance and I kick off the show with some discussion of the Dee Gordon trade, the prospects headed the Marlins way. We touch on Kevin Maitan signing with the Angels, and some other “hot stove” news, before delving into discussions of Jon Duplantier’s mechanics, Ryan Mountcatle’s leg kick, and how good Austin Hays really is. 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:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Welcome my loyal Prospect disciples, sit back, relax, drink your coffee, crack a Beck’s if you wish, and get your popcorn ready. For Minor League Preview season has returned! Today we start with the improving Arizona Diamondbacks system, though improving might be disingenuous as this might have been the worst system I covered last season. Then again, there wasn’t even any mention of Jon Duplantier in last year’s write up, so maybe it was on me. Then again, again, when in doubt blame Dave Stewart, so I will. Dave Stewart, it’s your fault!! Your low brimed ice grille no longer has the same affect it had in your Oakland A’s salad days!!! Enough about Dave Stweart. For we are just a little over 12 months into the Mike Hazen era, and so far it is glorious. Big shouts to Abington, Massachusetts. Hazen has not only righted the ship on the major league level, he’s also coming off a strong draft, that was a thirst quenching boost to a thirsty system. In fact four of the players discussed in today’s breakdown were selected in last June’s draft. This shouldn’t come as a shock as the Princeton grad started his front office career in player development, and scouting, helping to build the Red Sox current young core. Needless to say Arizona is a system on the rise, let’s see what they have blooming on the farm.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Allow me to paint a visual metaphor. A vetaphor. The entire league’s pitching is cornered on the grounds of a wildlife preserve. A tiger, we’ll call him Blister, stalks towards the league’s pitching. There’s no way out, but the league attempts to urinate on Blister to keep him away. Then, out of nowhere, Nat Gio, dressed as Lord Beasley, a world famous butterfly collector from Gilligan’s Island, rides his Eddie Bauer jeep into Blister’s den, and befriends the beast, saying, “I slay pussy,” then off everyone’s look, “…cats.” Yesterday, Gio Gonzalez had yet another great start — 6 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 2.49. I’d love to be a fly on the wall when Gio hears people talking about the new baseball and how offense is up. Maybe he’s the one pitcher who likes a tightly-sewn baseball. Up until this year, he must’ve been like, “Geez, is this ball going to unravel when I throw it?” Of course, his outlook for 2018 fantasy doesn’t look anywhere near as optimistic. Besides his ERA, there’s nothing promising in his peripherals. He has left 85.7% of men on base. That’s more than a wife with a headache. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
As the season rolls along, my choices for starters to profile should be wearing thin. Luckily for all of you, myself, and my relationship with anyone not in the Crab Army, spot starts and rookie callups give me the perfect intersect of my two worlds. Now as any good Seinfield fan knows, worlds colliding can be catastrophic. Just ask George Costanza. That however is not the case for your loyal and eccentric Prospector/Pitchspector. It’s all good on this end. Why? Because I’m more than happy to dig into the ratio roulette that is rookie starting pitchers. In the grand tradition of my messiah like activity on the prospect side, I’m here to observe these wild cards, provide my take, and lead you on the path to true fantasy salvation. This is a really long winded, and pompous, way to say I’m profiling Reynaldo Lopez’s White Sox debut today. I’ve been lower on Lopez than many other prospectors in the industry. For what feels like two years now, I’ve been constantly banging my shoe on the table of the United Prospect Nations, sternly proclaiming that “Lopez is a pen arm!” I’d make a joke of my followers storming the town square with Pier 1 style tiki torches, but the rest of the Lifshitz clan prolly wouldn’t appreciate that. Anywho, here’s what I saw.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Last week’s slate of two-start starters was pretty light, so it is nice to see our list back to being robust for Week 20. A week after not having any two-start starters with a positive dollar value who were owned in less than 75% of RCLS according to Streamonator, we now have three. Streamonator likes two of the starters and like likes another one. Enough stalling and fluff, here are your three beloveds for this week:Please, blog, may I have some more?
It’s just like old times, as we here at Razzball are profiling a Brewers starter this week. I can’t put my finger on what that means, but I digress. The familiarity doesn’t just end there my friends, oh no, we just happen to be covering the MLB debut for one of the top pitching prospects in the minors, Brandon Woodruff. On the heels of a somewhat out of nowhere breakout in 2016, Woodruff exploded onto the dynasty league radar, and squarely into the ranks on several top prospect lists. After leading the minors in strikeouts last year, the righty credited an increased pace, thanks to the direction of AA pitching coach Chris Hook. After a solid showing in the challenging confines of Colorado Springs earlier this season, Woodruff was called up in mid-June to make a spot start. Unfortunately he was injured warming up, was scratched from his debut, and did a month on the disabled list with a hamstring injury. Recalled Friday to face the contending Rays in Tampa, Woodruff might be an interesting stream down the stretch in re-drafts of all sizes. Let’s see how the highly touted rookie looks vs a seasoned AL East lineup. Not a bad litmus test.Please, blog, may I have some more?