Now that the season is upon us we can start to make more informed decisions. We have a general idea of what rotations may look like and which teams are considering leaning on their bullpens more heavily. It still involves a good pinch of guesswork but with waivers opening, we’ll need to jump to some conclusions. Good luck in your sprint seasons.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Please see our player page for Blake Treinen 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.
We know spring training is fully underway when a bunch of arms break. We’re sure to see more as soreness becomes less general and more devastating to our early drafts. The four-tier format is back for our closer report. This week, pandemic foodstuff themed tiers. I’d laugh but for fear that might cause me to cough resulting in those nearby turning mob justice on me. Let’s get to some news and notes on the reliever front first.
- Emmanuel Clase – He of the hardest cutter in baseball is starting his Cleveland career off on a sour note. A back strain will likely sideline him for 8-12 weeks. This opens the door for fellow reliever wunderkind James Karinchak to solidify a leverage role. If you want a job relieving for Cleveland just have a hard to spell name, throw gas, and be in your early 20’s.
- Jose Alvarado – Don’t look now but Alvarado looks sharp as ever. But Roto-Wan, Nick Anderson is *the* it closer of draft season?!? I have no issue with Anderson’s stuff, just his role. He factors into their ninth inning, no doubt. Let me ask you this, though. He saved some games for them last year since they’re a team that’s the most progressive in leverage roles, right? No? Ok, well he came over from Miami, who’s bullpen was a collection of molding leftovers. He racked up a bunch of saves there, surely? How about one save. Well, at least he’s a young prospect? Turns 30 in June. I don’t mean to rain on your Nick Anderson parade, and by “don’t” I mean I do, but he’s far from a lock. I’m betting on Alvarado seeing some of their saves as the lefty side of a committee in every league I draft that uses RPs.
- Brandon Kintzler – Things are not off to a great start this spring for the presumptive Marlins closer. Like, walking four straight batters bad. I’d consider a spec play on Ryne Stanek early on.
- Ryan Helsley – I’m not the Helsley guy but some people I respect (see: Matt Thompson, Nick Pollack) have made it a point to draft the young Cardinal in the late rounds. Their ninth inning is a mess to predict, as usual. Helsley also has an outside shot at the rotation it seems, depending on the health of their assumed starters.
- Trevor Rosenthal – Rosie is the latest zombie reliever. He’s always been able to light up radar guns. He just has zero command at times, as in most of the time. The command seems to be there this spring, however. KC would love to add any talent it can to baseball’s most mediocre bullpen. Please, blog, may I have some more?
Much like the classic Minnesota Educational Computing Consortium (MECC) PC game, The Oregon Trail, we finish our bullpen parade out west. Apologies if the research in this post is light, I stayed up all night playing TOT on the Wayback Machine. Suck it deer, I shot so many of you I can’t even carry all the meat. Much like the game, your journey to saves accumulation is a series of decisions fraught with peril. Do your best not to die of dysentery. In this example, Wade Davis is dysentery.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Not too far off from here, there’s a city named Anaheim. It’s named after Ana Heimlich, the German inventor of the Heimlich maneuver, which was 1st used on a short-haired Daschund who tried, unsuccessfully, to swallow a grape. “Nein grape, Himmler!” Ana screamed as she stepped hard on the small dog’s belly. Out shot the grape, and the entire Bavarian village rejoiced. They all loved that dog. Hundreds of years later, to honor Ana, the city of Anaheim was born, and then, to much disrespect of Ana and Himmler, the dog, they started calling themselves Los Angeles, because they were all star-f***ers. Well, you got your star now, f***kers! Anthony Rendon signed on with the Los Angeles Ana Heimlichs for seven years. Wait until he’s 36 years old, playing across from a 74-year-old Pujols. So far, Boras ‘earned’ Cole $324 million; Rendon $245 million; Strasburg $245 million, and Moistasskiss $64 million. That’s $878 million, or roughly $87.8 million in commissions. You chose the wrong line of work! Any hoo! Anthony Rendon for fantasy…Please, blog, may I have some more?
What do we say to the devil? Not today, devil. But they say, “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t know.” And devil’s in the details. So, for the last five months, Giancarlo Stanton (1-for-3) was the devil I didn’t know any details about, but yesterday we said, “Today, devil,” so where does that leave us? In hell still, as the Yankees said they will baby Stanton, sending him out for only a few at-bats. Yo, are you Arthriticarlo Stanton? Should’ve never held him all year, but his thighs are so beautiful and well-lotioned in bed! Sorry, was reading a well-tailored-to-me fortune cookie. I suppose if Stanton’s out there, you can add him, and play him, but a few at-bats here and there doesn’t exactly instill confidence. Hopefully, by the time 2020 rolls around, Giancarlo will be less Arthriticarlo and more the Giancarlo I’ve pasted to my pillow. And that’s not Elmer’s Glue. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Yesterday, Sonny Gray went 8 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 12 Ks, ERA at 3.59 vs. the Brewers. *unloads pockets, eggplant emjois fall to the ground* I’m gonna need all of those. “Sonny came home” hasn’t had such a pleasant ring since Shawn Colvin opened an Art of Shaving booth at a Lilith Fair that only did armpit hair massages, and each payment was followed by a very pleasant, cash register ring. A Sonny hasn’t shone this bright since the last climate change summit that was held in Hellsunki on Urth, which is a planet that looks just like this one, but is 13,000 miles away and is exactly Earth but 25 years in the future, and they have some weird spelling. “I just got back from Hellsunki, and boy are my arms tired, because we don’t have planes on Urth, we fly with our arms.” Sonny Gray’s peripherals are surprising in a good way — 10.3 K/9, 3.3 BB/9, 3.46 xFIP. For those not up on the hoo-de-ha, that xFIP would be about 12th in the league and the K/9 and walk rates would firmly put him in the top 20 starters overall. In other words, everyone who owned him last year died for the sins of his current year’s owners. In other other words, he’s throwing fire like pitchers in Hellsunki. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Trevor Story hit the IL with a thumb sprain, which is bad news (no dur), but the Rockies are saying there’s no ligament damage, so it could’ve been worse. The good news is Brendan Rodgers was promoted. Is this good news? For Rodgers, I’d imagine it is. For the Uber driver taking Rodgers to the airport? Prolly good news for them. The guy sitting next to Rodgers on the plane having to hear about how Rodgers is not going to sit on the bench for Pat Valaika, this time, things are gonna be different? Doesn’t sound like good news for that guy sitting next to him. What a bore! Okay, so I know, I know, I KNOW the Rockies have burned us all to the point where we shudder at commercials for Burn Notice reruns on USA, but there is a reason why the Rockies have burned us. Because we all want to own all of them due to the stadium. I grabbed Rodgers for that very reason. We shall see, but I put it at 70/30 the Rockies play Pat Valaika, and 30 is for: Rodgers doesn’t play, is sent down and Hampson is recalled to also not play. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
On April 7th, Derek Dietrich admired his 3rd home run of the season for an ungodly amount of time. The last straw for the opposing team was when he paused before running to first, placed a Craigslist ad, waited five days for a sketch artist to respond, then had the sketch artist draw him rounding the bases. Then when he got to third and saw the first draft of the drawing, yelled, “No freakin’ charcoal,” and paused for another few days to find someone who worked in pen. After that display, everyone was calling Dereck Dietrich a hot dog, even the world’s leading critic of hot dogs, the guy driving the Weinermobile. Of course, none of this was blown out of proportion like Tim Anderson. Cut to weeks later and we’ve realized why Dietrich wanted to study his home run trot. He was perfecting it. On Friday, he hit his 6th and 7th homers, then his 8th homer on Saturday and his 9th homer on Sunday (1-for-3, hitting .257). I doubt it continues, but I also can’t imagine a reason to not ride the hot schmotato while it’s going on. As 50 Cent’s fantasy baseball team is named: Get Dietrich or Dietrich Tryin’. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Between preparing for drafts and actually doing the drafts I’d be lying if I said I feel refreshed now that it’s over. In fact I’m quite exhausted and have found myself walking around in a zombie-like fashion the past two weeks. And it doesn’t help that I don’t drink coffee. Never have. Most people find it fascinating when I tell them that at 42 years of age I have never had a single drop. It’s just not my cup of tea. I mean coffee. Whatever. Truth be told, drafting season is my favorite part of the whole experience. Watching the season play out is often stressful, disappointing and underwhelming. This is generally true even during successful championship seasons. Anticipation is often greater than realization. I’m looking forward to watching Carlos Correa, Trevor Story and Javier Baez fall far short of their ADPs.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Redraft leagues are the standard of the fantasy sports industry. Each year you get a fresh start at remembering you shouldn’t draft A.J. Pollock. Ever. You can draft whoever you want at your draft position or spend as much as your budget on whoever you want. But for me there is nothing more fun than a good long-term keeper league. Smart owners get to flex on their leaguemates by keeping players they selected deep in their drafts or picked up on a hunch. Keeper leagues are a great intermediate option between full-on redraft leagues and the craziness of a dynasty league.
Below you’ll find my keeper rankings for 2019. I’ve included each player’s age, position eligibility for the start of the 2019 season and any concerns I have about each player. Here’s what you’ll also see: I’m not high on starting pitchers. Too likely to suffer an injury and miss a large chunk of time. I’m not high on guys with less than two seasons of experience. I’ve seen sophomore slumps and prospect busts far too often. There are exceptions like Ronald Acuna who seem like a sure thing — but when it comes to Vlad Guerrero Jr. I prefer the wait and see approach. Plus, we really don’t know when he’ll even debut. Players over the age of 31 worry me — especially players whose value is speed dependent. I don’t want to keep a player whose decline is starting to begin. Injury prone players: duh. I’m not going to keep someone who can’t take the field.Please, blog, may I have some more?