Please see our player page for Christian Vazquez 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.

Takes off Hello Kitty headphones, places head on the train tracks. Faintly off in the distance, I can hear the very subtle call of exuberance. A very, small yay. That’s the sound of the one fantasy baseball owner who has Isaac Paredes in their lineup for his three-homer night (3-for-3, 4 RBIs, 6th, 7th, and 8th homer). I’ll be real with you, I was sweating this one for Mark Whiten. Back in 1993, Whiten glued four baseballs to his hand back, and he ain’t trying to get a new member of the club. For those of you singing, “I love a Paredes,” I know. This would’ve been Ethel Merman’s best day in fantasy baseball. RIP, you bussin’ Queen. Any hoo! Hard to hit three homers and not be a schmotato, so I could see grabbing Paredes, but Cash is there. Cash’s favorite movie? Platoon. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Do you know anybody who tries too hard to be clever? A person who finds exceedingly difficult ways to do things when more easy, direct paths to success are staring them right in the face? That’s what this pitcher pick feels like today. Instead of saying “He’s one of the elite SPs going against perhaps […]

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“Only thing better than three homers in a game is three World Championships in three years for three different teams.” — Joc Pederson probably. Joc Pederson is 80-grade fun. Maybe it’s the goofy paunchy body, maybe it’s the frosted hair that seems done by himself on a whim. I don’t know; he’s just so much fun. Yesterday, him and his fantasy owners had a whole lotta fun — 4-for-6, 8 RBIs and his 8th, 9th and 10th homers and his first career three-homer game. I know it’s inaccurate, but it feels like Joc Pederson hits 30 homers every year, and they’re all hit in the matter of 10 games. Think the only thing you need to know about Joc Pederson is this picture:

Joc Pederson has ice in his veins and NFTs in his crypto wallet. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Freddie Freeman (1-for-3, 2 runs and 1st homer) wasted no time making the Braves regret the way they treated him this offseason. First at-bat, Freddie Freeman stepped towards the box, but first he asked to see the mic the umps use to announce the bad calls they make to the crowds. Freeman leaned into the mic and said, “Tell Acuña it’s mutual, I don’t like him either,” then took the 2nd pitch of the at-bat to deep left, the oppo taco as they call it in Mexico, and his first home run of the year was tagged. As he sashayed across the plate, he snapped and said, “Braves ain’t gettin’ none of this.” Snap! Speaking of which, what do you call every image of Freddie Freeman? Tooth pics. Take it, Highlights! It’s yours! Freeman sure has some teeth, right? The molar the merrier with that guy. Stop stop, he’s got fillings too! Okay, I will stop reading bad joke posters at a kiddie dentist now. So many games were postponed, but some still to go over, tooth be told. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

After we went over the top 10 for 2022 fantasy baseball and the top 20 for 2022 fantasy baseball in our (my) 2022 fantasy baseball rankings, it’s time for the meat and potatoes rankings. Something to stew about! Hop in the pressure cooker, crank it up to “Intense” and let’s rock with the top 20 catchers for 2022 fantasy baseball. Am I at all selling you on the top 20 catchers being good? No? Good, don’t want to give you the wrong impression. Here’s Steamer’s 2022 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2022 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers. The projections noted in this post are my own, and I mention where tiers start and stop. Subscriptions are up and running, and you can already get Rudy’s Draft War Room. Anyway, here’s the top 20 catchers for 2022 fantasy baseball:

NOTE: All 2022 fantasy baseball projections are based on a 162-game season, and will be until we hear definitively there will be less games, due to the CBA. Also, I’m going on the assumption the NL is getting the DH.

NOTE II: All my rankings are currently available on Patreon for the price of a Starbucks coffee, if you get one of those extra grande frappuccino jobbers. Don’t wait for the rankings to come out over the next month, and get them all now.

NOTE III: Free agents are listed as just that and not yet projected. Once a guy signs, I will write out their blurb and add in projections, or remove them, if they sign in an unfavorable place. They are ranked currently where I think they might be if they sign on for a full-time job.

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Not a bad year for me with the 2021 catcher rankings in the broadest of terms. This year I only left one guy unranked who ended up in the top 20, and if anyone ranked Eric Haase in the top 20, then kudos to them for figuring out a reliable, gas-efficient time machine. That doesn’t mean my rankings are a chef’s kiss from Padma as I win the Quickfire. Oh, some of these are a hot mess from where I ranked them, compared to where they ended up. Please don’t ask if this is a ranking for next year. It’s not a ranking for next year. It’s me recapping last season. Please, for the love that all is holy, understand this. It’s all I ask of you. Well, that and shower me with praise. The latter isn’t hard, the former is. Also, remembering which is the ‘latter’ and which is the ‘former’ is hard too. Quibbles and semantics, my good man and five lady-mans. It wouldn’t be fair for me to preseason rank the players, then rank them again in the postseason based on my opinion, so these postseason top 20 lists are ranked according to our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater. It’s cold hard math, y’all! Anyway, here’s the top 20 catchers for 2021 fantasy baseball and how they compared to where I originally ranked them:

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I had the worst intro to a post in my head and because of OCD and other complicated factors I kinda have to do it now. The worst intro ever to any post ever written: It’s time we talked about (insert subject). Hey, Awkward Intro Sentence, how about you just talk about the subject and stop talking about how it’s time we talk about it! This…this whole talking about a terrible intro for an extended period of time? It’s much worse! I’ve worsened the worst! Luckily, we’re going from worsening of the worst to one of the best of the last three months. So, it’s time we talk about (side-eye) Logan Webb. On one breaking pitch to Jonathan Villar, it was like, “Bye-bye for now, you’re no longer needed.” Speaking of breaking:

Yesterday, Logan Webb went 7 1/3 IP, 2 ER, 8 baserunners, 8 Ks, ERA at 2.92, and he has the 2nd best ERA in the major leagues in the last three months (1.64). Only pitcher’s ERA that is better since May is Jacob deGrom. He’s only allowed 17 earned runs since May 1st! That’s 64 IP, and 11 starts. The thing about his ERA too, it’s not all smoke and mirrors. He’s a 9.5 K/9, 2.7 BB/9 guy, which isn’t quite an ace, but it’s not far off from a fantasy three with two leanings, i.e., May not be Breaking Bad-level good, but he’s definitely a bad man who is breaking good. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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*zooms microscope in on Gerrit Cole‘s spin rates on Statcast, accidentally zooms too close and cracks computer screen* Oopsie. Yesterday, Gerrit Cole (5 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 2.66) had his ass handed to him, and not in a good way, like, “Hey, he’s got extra ass now like Vladimir Guerrero Jr.” The funniest or saddest, depending on whether you’re Gerrit Cole, is him giving up all kind of homers, then having his hat and glove checked by the umps. Wish someone would’ve warned me about Gerrit Cole and spin rates being checked in, say, March. WAIT A MINUTE! Someone did! It was March Grey. Damn, March Grey, you smart son of a bee! My Gerrit Cole schmohawk post from March is basically all about the spin rates, and how they’re in danger of coming back to earth. Dot dot dot. Coming back to earth unlike all the home runs the Red Sox hit off Cole yesterday. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

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We have six no-hitters by May 19th. Seven no-hitters is a modern-day season record. At this point, it will be more novel when someone throws a ten-hitter. Soon we’ll be celebrating:  Kyle Gibson just threw a 7-hitter! He allowed hits! Never is now, Mr. Gibson! This is like 2001 and Barry Bonds is throwing a no hitter every game. Conspiracy Theory Alert! Rob Manfred is going to use this year to explain why the mound has to move back a foot next year, and then we’re going to have our first 100-homer season. I will bet someone this happens. We’re thinking small, Rob Manfred’s evil mind is thinking big picture. Or pitcher, in this case, because only jacked guys will be able to reach the plate. So, Corey Kluber (9 IP, 0 ER, 0 hits, 1 walk, 9 Ks, ERA at 2.86) threw a no-hitter against his old club, the Rangers. Not the other team that the Rangers killed. The question for us is Corey Kluber fixed. Or at least usable, which I honestly had questions about coming into the year. His numbers look number two to three-ish. He’s not an ace — 9 K/9, 3.6 BB/9, 4.17 xFIP, using xFIP there because I do believe he’s been a tad ‘lucky’ on homers. It’s solid, usable, and rosterable, which is what I say before he throws a consecutive no-hitter next time because:  2021. By the way, Johnny Vander Meer’s family moving his crypt from stadium to stadium this year must be exhausting, and there’s no way Johnny Vander Meer’s record makes it out of 2021. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Ramon Laureano is running angry about his 2020 season. After an .853 OPS over his first two seasons with the Athletics with 20 total SBs, Laureano saw his OPS plummet to .704 and accumulated only 2 SBs in 2020. He’s already more than halfway to his season-high 13 SBs. 

Is this for real? Yes, to an extent. He’s projected for 131 SBs if he plays 150 games this season. Thems Rickey numbers! The (current) Athletics organization is notorious for not stealing bases, but Laureano has the speed and while he doesn’t have an elite walk-rate — his 81% contract rate paired with his legs can help him get on base at a decent rate. The only thing that could stop Laureano is an injury. In his young career, he does seem to be slightly injury prone — already dealing with a jammed wrist early this season. 

Below you will find the stolen base leaders so far this season. For each of the players included, I’ve highlighted their sprint speeds and their xwOBA. xwOBA is an indicator of a batter’s skill based on the quality of contact (incorporating exit velocity and launch angle,) the number of times they made contact while excluding the fielding result. There are 22 players who have stolen 2 bases, but I’ve chosen to highlight 7 of the interesting players that popped out to me. 

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I’m still not convinced Yermin Mercedes isn’t a LARP. Or a Transformer. His name really is Yermin Mercedes? Just out here with a name that sounds like a German saying German Mercedes? And he doesn’t wear a Mercedes emblem around his neck like Flavor Flav? Is this real life or a simulation? The White Sox lost Eloy and just randomly found a guy who can do exactly the same? Right, right, okay, so the story I heard about one fantasy baseballer hearing the news of Eloy’s injury while on the Mercedes-Benz factory tour and crying onto a C-Class, and that transforming into Yermin, was a lie? I don’t hear lies, I hear truths! So, Yermin Mercedes went 2-for-4 and hit another home run (2nd) yesterday, and has basically done what we would’ve hoped for from Andrew Vaughn in our wildest dreams. But can it continue? Ah, excellent leading question! Yes, Yermin can hit .550. No! Of course not! He does have a solid hit tool (can hit .280) and good power (20-ish homers). The moment he slumps and Vaughn hits (it’ll happen — hopefully for my teams) Yermin will be on the outside, while Vaughn moves in. There is a chance Mercedes could hit 25 homers/.280, which is essentially Trey Mancini-type projections, so he’s worth rostering for now. tl;dr: Mercedes goes vroom, vroom, make room. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Yesterday, Stephen Strasburg went 6 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit, 2 walks, 8 Ks. And, um. That’s roughly one-thousand percent surprising. Take every cat that’s every jumped out of a closet in a movie and put ’em together and you have a catomic bomb of shock and it’s less shocking than how well Strasburg pitched. Take the “I see dead people” twist and put it in The Crying Game “ding dong” twist and that’s nowhere nearly as surprising. Take a surprise party where the guest of honor has a heart attack and you have something, okay, about that surprising. Yet. Dot dot dot. Still don’t trust Strasburg. If you have him, then I wish you well, but it would not be me. Now I’m simply second-guessing whether or not my fears were for naught. By the way, try to say “naught” without sounding like you’re in a movie in South Boston with Ben Affleck. You simply cannot. “Where’s my munchkins?” “I went to Dunkies and they were out.” “Naught?” “Naught.” See what I mean? Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?