Please see our player page for Brad Hand 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.

The end of the 2019 fantasy baseball will be no easier than the rest of it. Pitching is imploding all around us. Do what you can to stem the tide of disaster and consider an effective middle reliever over a volatile starter.

  • The Brad Hand saga continues. More positivity from the team (shocker!) as they say Hand “looked like himself” in a bullpen session. I guess that’s better than looking like Willie McGee? We’re still locked in the downward spiral of news, shaky outing, rest, repeat. The bullpen usage in Cleveland hasn’t sent any clear message about saves in Hand’s stead. Oliver Perez earned a save of the one out variety while Nick Wittgren is getting used in leverage spots but not getting the final out. Call ups James Karinchak and James Hoyt are also in the mix with Nick Goody and Adam Cimber as other possibilities. Fun times.
  • Turns out Felipe Vasquez is an asshole and a pedophile. Can’t say it was nice knowing you. Enjoy federal pound me in the ass prison. As for the shipwreck that is the Pirates Keona Kela is the lead candidate to close given his stuff and closing experience. Richard Rodriguez could see the ninth if Kela is shaky or gets hurt, as he tends to do.
  • Kenley Jansen blew his eighth save, just after a stretch of solid outings. The Dodgers seem to be committed to him as their closer and want him to get right for the postseason. When you thrive with only an elite cutter the end comes fast when the pitch loses some bite. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Jansen retire this offseason when you consider his 2018 heart issue.
  • Matt McGill returned to the head of the closer committee in Seattle notching his fifth save Wednesday. He’s the favorite to finish as their primary closer if he remains healthy.
  • We all roasted the Brewers for acquiring Drew Pomeranz. Who’s laughing now? He’s been an excellent reliever and just picked up his second save. Only having to face batters once clearly suits him with 36 Ks in 21.1 IP.
  • Hunter Harvey is being shut down for the rest of the season with bicep soreness. File his name away as a late dart in the 2020 saves chase.
  • Please, blog, may I have some more?

Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The ones that don’t draft pitching early. The Muslim Mrs. Garretts. The Yu’s that we saw in the 2nd half. The ones that see things differently and not simply the ones who are holding drinking glasses up to their face to make googly eyes. They’re not fond of the rules like:  Don’t wear sweatpants every day. And they have no respect for the status quo, because they’ve checked out every time someone defined “status quo” for them. They held onto Yu Darvish (6 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 14 Ks, ERA at 3.97) all 1st half and were rewarded nicely. Unless he’s just on a team that started checking out fantasy football in June. Back in July, Coolwhip wrote, “I’m not prepared just yet to say he’s back back, but it’s looking like he’s finding his way back. I’ll call him a tentative buy for now, while advising to keep an eye on his walks and I’ll be watching his velocity and arm slot. In fact, I just picked him up where I could to see what happens.” Hashtag nailed it. Prior to that, Darvish had a 5.01 ERA.  Since then, 2.44 ERA in 66 1/3 IP. The fix, as we all know by now, he’s stopped walking everyone. His season-long peripherals 11.2 K/9, 3 BB/9, 4.39 FIP are sweet, but his 2nd half peripherals are legendary, and some of the best in baseball — 12.6 K/9, 0.8 BB/9, 3.20 FIP. For 2020, the thought of getting anywhere close to Darvish’s 2nd half has me, not only interested in him, but thinking he could be a steal as a number two fantasy starter. Yu might think I’m crazy, but the crazy ones change the world, or at least do well sometimes in their leagues. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Yesterday, Jose Berrios continued his 2nd half slide, going 5 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 3.78. His ERA in the 2nd half is 5.37. That’s…uh, what do I call this, thesaurus? Synonymous Rex? No, I’m asking for another word for bad, not for another word for thesaurus. Ooh..What’s this, an ad for a thesaurus film festival? Pulp Fabrication followed by Schindler’s Menu? Very provocative! Saw recently at another site an article dated late-June for how Berrios could be the AL Cy Young.  *makes Michael Scott grimace face* His BABIP in the 2nd half is .354 (up from .276) and his LOB% plummeted to 66% (from 78.3%), while his Ks skyrocketed to 10.2 K/9 (from 8), and his walks went the wrong way too, which is up from 1.8 to 3.3 BB/9. It’s simplistic to say he’s missing out of the zone. Which is why I’m going to say he’s also missing in the zone. He’s throwing everything either off the plate or dead center. This all feels fixable for 2020, but there’s no time left and you need to move on in shallower leagues. Now, excuse me, I’m going to take in The Shawshank Refunding and Batfellow in a twin picture show. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

What a disaster major league pitching has been this year. With the juiced ball on top of mounting injuries, we’re all plugging holes faster than Captain Ahab. If you’re in good shape in your pitching categories I recommend a conservative approach using a stopgap reliever until you can sort out something more permanent. Protect those ratios, maybe grab a few strikeouts, and figure out your fringe solution on your bench.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

So, when does Brendan McKay come up to replace an Ineffective Listed Blake Snell?  Ton of people asking about McKay, so I’ll go over him briefly, because I have nothing else to do but service you.  I am a mere vessel for your wants and dreams. Bit like the Flowbee if you need a haircut.  Prospect Mike just went over McKay in his last post.  McKay is the Rays’ Ohtani.  Though if hitting and pitching made Ohtani a unicorn, I’m not sure what that makes McKay.  A Loch Ness Monster?  Seen more often, but just as imaginary?  McKay’s likely headed for a Middler role in Tampa, and maybe some at-bats.  His arm excites me more than his bat, he could have a 9+ K/9 and always has insane command (2 BB/9), but Jalen White Clarence Beeks or Brendan McKay?  Meh, I don’t think there’s that much of a difference.  Guess McKay has more upside, and love how he sounds like what a dad would call a character on 90210 back in the 90s.  Why do we even care about McKay?  Have you seen Blake Snell (3 1/3 IP, 7 ER, ERA at 5.01)?  If you have, send him back to replace the stunt double who is wearing his jersey.  “I thought when they said ‘changeup,’ they meant a changeup from pitching well, so I started pitching like garbage.”  That’s Blake Snell addressing dozens of crying Rays fans.  I know no one wants to hear this right now, but Snell doesn’t appear to be pitching poorly; he’s having atrocious luck.  Like if a ball is hit right at a fielder, a squirrel grabs the ball and throws it into the outfield for a double.  He could be a buy low, as long as he’s not hiding an injury, real or fake.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Welcome to part two of my four-part #2EarlyMocks draft series. If you’re looking for part one you can find it here: 2EarlyMock Draft Part 1. In part one, we covered the sexy rounds — one through seven. Not too many risks or reaches in those rounds, you grab your studs and stars and reap the rewards. But in rounds eight through 14 is where owners are starting to take risks and grab their sleepers, rookies and potential bounce back players. I’ll be comparing the draft position of these players during this draft to their cumulative ADP on Fantasy Pros. This cumulative ADP includes the 288 players from ESPN’s ADP, the 999 players from Fantrax’s ADP plus data from CBS, Yahoo, RT Sports and NFBC draft results. Let’s get right into it:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The story of German Marquez isn’t one they tell you in your parochial schools.  It’s an ugly story punctuated with cowardice and the worst atrocities in history.  You’d think if a family emigrated from 1940’s Germany they would’ve had the common decency to not name their child German.   Also, his father claiming to be an appliance repairman who specializes in ovens is disgusting.  The last straw was when his family tried to claim sauerkraut was good in tacos.  Shame on you!  What’s less shameful is how he’s pitched in the 2nd half.  He now has a 2.64 ERA in the 2nd half in 68 1/3 IP, and his peripherals on the year are gorgeous — 10.2 K/9, 2.8 BB/9, 3.21 xFIP.  He’s doing it with newfound success in his slider, which he throws 15% of the time. That slider is top 15 in the majors, and is supported with a 95 MPH fastball.  In other words, this breakout appears real.  Last night, he went 7 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 11 Ks, ERA at 3.94, and I see no reason to not start him in any matchup, even in Coors.  Or Löwenbräu as he calls it.  Disgraceful!  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

We’re inside the final month of your fantasy baseball seasons. Hopefully you’re in contention for some titles and payouts. Who to trust for saves matters down the stretch. Don’t let a brain freeze drop you in the standings. Also keep an eye out for shifting roles in places like Minnesota, Cleveland, or San Francisco. The Brad Hand types could make or break your stretch run depending on what inning their manager calls on them.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Join the 2018-19 Razzball Fantasy Premier League for a chance at prizes! Don’t know about Fantasy Soccer? That’s okay, Smokey is here to walk with you throughout this journey of exploration and an absurd amount of accent marks on player names. So probably hide all your snacks. It’ll be a long journey…

Maybe they thought they were safe by bringing Kelvin Herrera as a Linus blanket until Doolittle returned.  Maybe they were comfy with the veterans that they had lined up just in case.  Well that “just in case” just happened.  Herrera is now on the DL and Madson assumes the role of all roles. (Until Sean Doolittle comes back from a stressed out foot.)  The Nats had such promise in preseason and even after the acquisition of Kelvin, to be a good bullpen.  Former closers, like most men, are there to do their job and file their income tax returns on time like big boys.  Well, they disappointed me and definitely the owners of Doolittle.  Since July 3rd, or basically the last time Doolittle pitched, they have four saves.  Four, fore, for!  Only ahead of teams like the Padres, Blue Jays and Angels.  By the way, if you are scoring at home the Angels haven’t had a save in 27 games.  That is actually more mind-blowing than a team with decent starting pitching to only get four whole damn saves.  Makes save-chasing on Madson or the like seem glum.  So save your FAAB bucks for another day because Sean should be back within the fortnight, no idea if he mastered his emote dances yet though.  Not that it really matters, but a save earned is a save kept.  I know that works with pennies, wasn’t sure if that helped with counting stats at all.  The season is coming down the stretch, do you have what it takes oh glutens of the SAGNOF?  If you feel weary or just on cruise control because of Fantasy Football, than relax take a gander on some useful bullpen stuff, followed by the rankings…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Matt Olson, affectionately known as Allahson by people in Middle East Bay, hit his 22nd homer yesterday.  An inconsequential home run to the game, but it’s a part of a larger tapestry.  Khris Davis hit his 31st homer, his 4th homer of the week, but, again, pull back, view the larger picture.  That home run didn’t matter!  Speaking of a matter, Matt Chapman hit his 15th homer, as he hit out of the two-hole, because the A’s can.  Sure, the A’s can and two-hole are synonymous.  But, of course, all of this happened.  Look at the larger picture!  Trevor Cahill went 6 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 3.12, which is exactly what was always meant to happen.  Don’t you see it yet?  On Saturday, Edwin Jackson went 6 1/3 IP, 0 ER, 6 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 2.87.  No one on the A’s will have a bad game this year.  Know why?  Are you pulled back far enough to see the larger picture?  No one will have a bad game because no one sells their soul and doesn’t specify they want to be good until the end of the season.  “Hey, cool horns and pitchfork.  So, yeah, here’s my soul, and can you make me pitch well until the first week of August?”  That would never happen!  The A’s aren’t the best team in baseball without serious voodoo, soul-selling!  I have it on good authority someone was seen in the A’s clubhouse with a 1970’s-style mustache hiding horns on top of their head!  That’s the devil, unless Rollie Fingers remodeled his face.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?