Please see our player page for Brian McCann 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.

Yesterday, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. went 3-for-5, 4 RBIs with his 11th and 12th homer, hitting .304.  Lourdes Gurriel Jr. is the greatest living hitter, and I’m not living in a hyperbolic chamber, while dining out on superlatives to describe how hot Gurriel’s been since he returned from the minors.  On our 30-day Player Rater, he’s a near-top 10 hitter over the last month. His father, Yuli Gurriel, calls his son every day and asks him how he does it and LouGu Jay R is just like, “Father, I cannot explain my success with the white ball.”  And Yuli’s like, “Careful with the coded language because I learned the hard way people don’t like racism. Who knew?”  LouGu Jay R may simply be a hot bat, but there’s something to be said for a guy who has been hot the entire time he’s returned from the minors.  Maybe this is LouGu’s floor vs. ceiling.  At least one Junior is impressing on the Jays.  “I got a better butt.”  That’s Vlad Jr. modeling in front of a mirror for ESPN’s Nude Magazine. However, the song Vlad Jr. sings to his reflection is apt, “Gurriel, you knows it’s true.”  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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On the first pitch Justin Upton (2-for-4) saw back from the IL, he slammed it into the seats for his 1st home run. Kevin from ESPN’s “Get Him In Your Lineup” Department said, “Anyone who wants to come over on Saturday, I’m doing a screening of the short film I did about O.J. Simpson and a lovable group of his former Bills teammates plotting to break into a Vegas casino to steal back his memorabilia called, O.J.’s Eleven. I play O.J. in blackface.”  People have been asking about adding Justin Upton, and he’s currently owned in 70% of ESPN leagues, though Klara Bell owns 17,000 teams to help fill his virtual trophy case, and doesn’t own Upton, so, technically, Upton’s owned in 101% of leagues, but, if he’s available, I’d add him everywhere.  Prior to his injury, he was a top 30 outfielder, and see no reason why he can’t do something similar from here to there.  There being October.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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As a Cubs fan in Braves country, I see a lot of similarities in the Braves to the 2015 Chicago Cubs team. They offensive pieces are falling in place as they have a couple MVP candidates. One being a veteran 1B in Freddie Freeman and the other is an exciting young player that is the future of the franchise, but the rotation may not be there yet. They have plenty of nice prospect arms coming from the minors, however, I’m not sure they are ready to carry the team yet. Atlanta does have the pieces in the farm system to make some trades if they need to as well.

The NL East is likely the most competitive division in baseball. It is the only division projected with 4 teams over 80 wins per the THOME projection system. Currently, the Braves are the front runner per THOME, the Nationals and Phillies are tied per PECOTA, and Vegas odds favor the Phillies. Regardless, it’s going to be a fun season for Braves fans and they have a lot to look forward to, not only in this season, but for the future.

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As many of you know, I’m in the NL-Only Tout Wars league, so every year I take part in an industry NL-Only league with the CBS peeps to try to find my footing before I go off to New York to take on the heavyweights, and Andy Behrens, who appears to have a healthy BMI.  Some might mock, some might mock draft, but this is my draft prep, and am happy to take part in this league.  Until about 25 minutes into the draft, and players go for way too much, and I start getting hungry and I just want the whole thing to be over and ermahgerd!  But, for those first twenty-five minutes of the five-hour draft, I’m laser focused.  For this league, I once again use Rudy’s NL-Only rankings, and his War Room (it’s free with a subscription).  I won’t try to get you to buy it anymore.  You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make the horse put a cape down so I can walk over the water without getting wet.  (If you want a shallower league, play against me and hundreds others for prizes –> Razzball Commenter Leagues.)  Anyway, here’s my 12-team NL-Only team and some thoughts:

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Hello, darkness, my old friend.  But replace ‘darkness’ with ‘catchers’ and ‘my old friend’ with ‘we have to get through this to get further into our 2019 fantasy baseball rankings.’  Hmm…Then replace ‘our 2019 fantasy baseball rankings’ with ‘my 2019 fantasy baseball rankings,’ then replace ‘with’ with ‘wit’ to millennialify it, then replace every third ‘replace’ with ‘in place of’ to diversify word choice because my 3rd grade teacher, Ms. Pinatauro, said we shouldn’t repeat words–Actually, she can eat it!  After going over the top 10 for 2019 fantasy baseball and the top 20 for 2019 fantasy baseball (clickbait!), we are now in the positional rankings, and all 2019 fantasy baseball rankings can be found there.  Here’s Steamer’s 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers.  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 2019 fantasy baseball:

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Is this the end for our hero? Jesus Aguilar has made Ryan Braun (1B/OF, back strain) obsolete at first. Christian Yelich, Lorenzo Cain and Eric Thames/Domingo Santana/Keon Broxton have made Braun expendable in the outfield. He’s not helping his own case with a .235 average and a multitude of injuries. Stash or Trash: This is a tough trash because Braun has been one of the best fantasy contributors of the last decade, but I think we’re seeing the final step in his decline. He’s hurt, he’s under-performing and the Brewers have too many players at positions Braun can play. Replacement:

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When you’re hot for two straight weeks, you’re talking in sexy whispers on my earlobes.   If Avisail Garcia and Mike Trout are filming a body-switch movie, I never want it to end.  For years I’ve remarked — I’m a remarker, yo! — that Avisail looks like Mini Miggy, now he’s actually hitting like him.  “Miggy, that is the first time in two years we’ve made love without you screaming your back hurts,”  Mrs. Miggy rolls over.  Avisail Garcia smiles wickedly at the camera.  Yesterday, he homered two more times (3-for-6, 3 runs, 6th and 7th homers), and now has six homers in the last week, and he hit .330 last year.  Sure, we can pee in the electrical blanket by talking about his BABIP last year, but there is no excuse for Garcia being on waivers.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Times like this you wish Noah Syndergaard wasn’t complaining of a ligament strain and just had a bad lisp.   “Oh no! My finger is Thor, and it needs a Syndergaard.”  More like Noah Fingergaard!  Noah Syndergaard hit the DL with a finger ligament strain.  I’m fully aware that at least one person in every league ignored my advice to ignore Syndergaard and drafted him very early, so I will do something I’ve never done before, not gloat.  True story, my crazy aunt used to say I gloated all the time behind her back (I did) and I drove her into a mental asylum.  See, when I say my ‘crazy’ aunt, I’m being literal!  So, without gloating, let me just say when a pitcher proves himself to be injury prone, take his word for it.  His Synderwoord?  DeGrom’s already had a dislocated elbow, and my money’s on him getting injured at some point again soon too.  Same goes for Kershaw.  Not trying to be harsh, it’s just truth bombs.  If you own Syndergaard, hope he returns relatively soon, but this is the kind of injury that sidelines a pitcher for an entire season.  Sorry, another truth bomb.  Oh, and the Mets said Syndergaard can return in ten days.  What’s the opposite of a truth bomb?  That’s what that is.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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SAGNOF info is the best way to get a leg up on the SAGNOF trade.  (I challenged myself to use that anagram twice in the same sentence.) Challenge accomplished, and in the first line too! Wish I had longer arms than those baby T-Rex arms because the pats on the back wouldn’t stop.  As I continue the back lauding, the week upcoming is a bear market in steals.  The year is mimicking the previous year’s steals downward trend, as it is down almost 8% of the pace from last years total to date.  So if you have a valuable piece of steals bait that isn’t doing so great, let’s say his name is “Billy Hamilton” and you are having trouble getting ample trade value for him…  read this post so it can be explained that despite his sub-200 average and lower than expected 5 steals to date, he still has stolen base value.  Yes, you are going to have to trade for 75 cents on the dollar, but explain this to someone looking for steals and are down on Billy that he is still top-20 in steals and with that 5 steals total, he would be at 20% of most teams total steals on the year in fantasy.  That number obviously changes by league type and such, and I took an average of all the leagues I myself compete in (median is 31).  So while I sit here and let you either figure out how to sell high or buy low on Billy Hamilton, continue the read and learn about the steals that will come, have happened, and the week’s thievery to be.  Cheers!

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The Spring has sprung and real baseball is here!  That fake stuff and all its glorious research has come to a head and later this week, that team that you built will go to battle.  Don’t go into battle with a little extra ammo in your tool belt though.  We all know who the steals candidates are and where to draft them by now.  The names are familiar, and if you drafted them, you are hoping the results that they have promised with our expectations.  My post this week is instead taking a look at the reflexive of the actual base stealers, and since the end of this week we’ll actually have counting stats, why not look at the pitchers and catchers that have the propensity to give up the most frequent of thievery?  It is often a very overlooked facet of the game.  We always see the counting stats of the perennial stolen base leaders, but never hear a peep about the pitchers who give up the most, or the catchers that are god awful at throwing them out.  I get that other forces of baseball nature encompass both of those factors of caught stealing and pitchers tendencies for base thefts, but if numbers don’t lie, let’s take a look at them and see who has the “better”chance for giving up the stat.  So here is this week’s SAGNOF report, basically picking on guys who do nothing but aid us in the stolen base category.  Cheers!

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