Please see our player page for Daniel Ponce de Leon 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.

Man, I knew this season would be crazy but goodness gracious. Trying to figure out who the streamers are in the past was usually a tough task but this wild 60-game schedule and COVID craziness has made it even tougher. That has me working harder than ever to spot the right guys for you and I feel confident about this group that we have here. With that in mind, let’s get into it.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

“Have I been wrong, hypnotized, paralyzed, by what my eyes have seen,” sang Natalie Merchant the last time I saw her at Lilith Fair. As I lay there, on that hemp blanket, eating a homemade granola bar, I thought, “I’m buying whatever that Merchant is selling.” Sadly, I can’t have my soul enriched during these dastardly times by some female honkeytonks, unless I happen across something between my binge watching of Siesta Key. Then, yesterday, Nate Pearson (5 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 5 Ks) was as good as Natalie Merchant and Siesta Key combined. Yo, my man went from a 99 MPH fastball that had Nats’ hitters bulging their eyes to a backdoor 77 MPH dipsy with poise of a 15-year vet. The 99 MPH fastball is enough, but his secondary command, just dropping pitches in. Go to the top of a mountain and let out a chef’s kiss. This was against the defending champs, and he was like en bee dee. Massively impressed by him during Spring Training in March just off a few clips, but watching him for five innings has me convinced:  He can be this year’s Chris Paddack. He should be owned in 100% of leagues. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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You might remember ten years ago I drafted in the live LABR NL-Only auction. Okay, you don’t remember, but I do, so you’ll have to take my word for it. It was the first major league I was in. I was sailing on the wind of doves. I thought my feces smelled like Reese’s Pieces. I even joined the Local 564, a railway union, thinking LABR had something to do with that. Ah, the memories…they sure were fleeting! I was booted from the league after one year. Why? I’m not sure, but my money’s on I insulted someone. Well, ya boi’s back and he’s learned his lesson! Though, someone drafted Rhys Hoskins for $28 and I was cackling about that for a good 45 minutes. Yo, just send Rhys flowers and a ball in the dirt for him to swing through; he might respond quicker. For those of you not in the know, this is a 5×5 league with average. (If you want a shallower league, play against me and hundreds others for prizes –> Razzball Commenter Leagues.) Anyway, here’s my LABR 12-team, NL-Only draft recap:

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As many of you know, I’m in the NL-Only Tout Wars and LABR, 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 this Friday to Florida to take on the heavyweights, and Mike Gianella, 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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Spring Training camps are starting to break, and so are bones, ligaments, and the hopes and dreams of early fantasy drafters everywhere.  We’ve got lots of updates on big names here as well as some minor nicks to watch as preseason workouts start to ramp up.

Mike Clevinger – News broke recently that Clevinger underwent surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee and is on the shelf for 6-8 weeks.  Meniscus injuries can be tricky and the treatment Clevinger opted for carries a longer up front rehab time, but less risk of injury moving forward. Clevinger’s did suffer another left leg injury last year (ankle sprain), and that didn’t show any effect on his velocity or numbers after his return.  Even with a full recovery, this still knocks Clevinger down from the second round price that early drafters are paying for him. I’d start looking for him towards the later part of the top 100, where guys like Brandon Woodruff, Tyler Glasnow, and Jose Berrios are currently being drafted and hope that you get last year’s stats after a return in late May/early June.

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Andrew Benintendi has been…Actually, we should stop there and dissect those first four words.  He is Andrew Benintendi, as far as I know. ‘Has been’ is interesting, but more of the hyphenated word ‘has-been,’ as in ‘once was’ as in, “I saw Tom Arnold at the Whole Foods near me, what a has-been.”  Funny side note that is actually related, as most of you know, Rudy does the titles, I write the posts. So to get a title, I text him what I want the lede to be. Yesterday, I texted him, “Benintendi is a sh*tbird, but might be coming out of it with a homer, title ideas?”  That really is it, isn’t it?  What more is there to say?  His strikeout rate is egregious (for him), up from 16% to 23.6%.  His home run per fly ball would make Juan Pierre be like, “Nuh-uh, cuz, you don’t play with that turd.”  On top of the vomitorium that is housing his stats, he’s hitting so many fly balls (46%) that are going nowhere (87.5 MPH average exit velocity). This is actually a recipe for disaster I just made-up:  Benintendi has 17th most extreme launch angle and the 7th (!) worst HR/FB.  In layman’s terms, he’s hitting everything up and nothing out.  That’s awful.  So, yesterday was a solid game (3-for-5 with his 8th homer, hitting .266), but I’d be careful thinking he has been good, without the hyphen.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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The Magic Genie of Fantasy Baseball says that if I put a baseball card of a player I own in a Dreamcatcher and put the Dreamcatcher under my pillow while I’m sleeping then *gulps* then the Magic Genie of Fantasy Baseball will come in the middle of the night and give my player a Quality Start.  So…*bashfully looks down*..I put Chris Paddack‘s baseball card under my pillow and I’VE BEEN A GOOD BOY!  Holy Hayzeus Lazarus and Pontius, Inventor of Pilates, I had a good start! Yesterday, Chris Paddack went 7 2/3 IP, 1 hit, 1 walk, 1 ER and 8 Ks, lowering his ERA to 2.70.  Please throw 170 more innings this year!  “Don’t be greedy,” interrupts Magic Genie of Fantasy Baseball.  “Hey, Magic Genie of Fantasy Baseball, you sound like a spot remover.”  “Just for that, I’m pushing Marquez back so he starts at Coors next!  Muahahaha!”  So, Paddack had a great start, which tacks onto his season of more-than-we-could’ve-hoped-for.  He currently ranks 25th for xFIP; 23rd for K/9 and 13th for walk rate.  And he’s in Petco for his home starts!  Happy to be the Mohel at his Star Mitzvah.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

In 1513, Juan Ponce de Leon decided to forgo paella and siestas for………………….? It better be epic because there are not many things I’d leave for paella and siestas. Does the Fountain of Youth count? Because that’s the story. Historians call it a myth, but what else could it have been? Anyways, after setting sail on a more-than-three-hour-tour, Ponce de Leon and his merry band of men ended in Florida, where they encountered the natives, a wrinkly group of leather-faced men and women carrying golf clubs. Repulsed at the sight, the Spaniards scurried back to their boats and made their way west, until they met the Mississippi River and eventually settled up-river in St. Louis, where they obviously found the Fountain of Youth because Daniel Ponce de Leon is a 27-year-old pitcher for the Cardinals and has a 10.8 K/9 in 31.2 major league innings this season. I don’t usually write up pitchers in this column because most of the add/drop activity is due to streaming and two-start weeks, but Ponce de Leon intrigured me, so here we are. Plus, I delved into catchers last week and the Mrs. says I have to change it up from time to time.

Please, blog, may I have some more?