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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(NOTE: THIS POST WAS RELEASED EARLY THIS WEEK ON OUR PATREON. IT’S $10/MONTH OR $13/MONTH WITH AN EXTRA WEEKLY PODCAST.)

I enter a cave in the coastal region of the Sierra Leone, wearing a pith helmet and other garb you’d see on someone butterfly hunting. Only I’m not searching for a Pussycat Swallowtail. I press my hands to my mouth and call out, “Hey, Buy/Sell column, hey, are you in here!” My echoes reverb back to me with not a sound more. No indication it’s here. Then, suddenly, the Fantasy Baseball Buy/Sell column rises like the WWE wrestler, The Undertaker, and holds a flashlight to its face for great effect, “What do you want?” We need you for another year of fantasy baseball Buy/Sell columns. “Okay, I was bored just laying here under an inch of dirt.” To get in the Buy section of this post, a player needs to be rostered in less than 50% of leagues, and more than 50% for the Sell side, i.e., Welcome back to another year of, “This guy is only owned in 7% of ESPN leagues?! WUT DA WUT!?” Or simply WDW. Okay, enough dinging-a-linging on the side note tip, let’s get down to bidness. Our first buy of the year is Andrew Vaughn. There’s Hobbs’s Andrew Vaughn fantasy, which I won’t be able to supplement in any meaningful way. He covers the stats. The White Sox are on the cusp. They had nothing to wait for in promoting Vaughn, and they didn’t wait. It’s White Boy Summer and Vaughn Chets all the boxes. T. Hanks. The projections don’t love Vaughn — 20/6, .215 average. Yes, that’s 20 homers and six steals in 500 ABs. But there’s not one league where I wouldn’t take a Vaughn flyer. With Eloy going down, the White Sox need all help they can get and they’re not turning to utility man Mendick to starch their socks, so to speak. Anyway, here’s some more players to buy or sell this week in fantasy baseball:

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Hey friends, can you believe it?  It’s our last deep-league dive before the season starts.  I don’t know about you, but I still have a couple drafts left – and after another long off-season, the last thing I want to do is miss any late injuries or spring training position battle surprise outcomes as I’m trying to get all of my rosters together this week.  So, let’s press on and take one more look at a handful of players whose stock has risen at least a little bit of late, to the point where they may now be more prominently on the radar for those of us in NL-only, AL-only, and other deep leagues.

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I’m a big fan of the everyman. I consider myself the everyman. I’m every man’s everyman. A pioneer of normcore. Track pants and a blinking light on my car’s dashboard that either means my seatbelt isn’t on or I need oil. That is me. What better way to elevate the Everyman Culture, than to take part in a tourney where no one is smarter than anyone else. Enter the RazzSlam, a Best Ball tourney.  Every everyman likely knows what a Best Ball league is, but, if you don’t, it’s when you draft a team and the computer manages it for you by choosing who are your best players, and you get those stats. It’s basically one fantasy league removed from the robots taking over and killing us all. Well, the last laugh is on you robots, there’s a virus beating you to the punch! Kinda love that Razzball is putting on a tourney (hosted by NFBC — thank you!) that no one really has any clue how to strategize against. A true everyman experience. Oh, I’m sure there’s a few people who think they know the best strategy for, uh, Best Ball, and a few of them might be right, but there’s an under 1% chance they know why they’re right, and it isn’t just luck. In some ways, Best Ball leagues are a lot like Best Ball strategies. Throw a ton of them out there and a few good ones will rise to the top through sheer force of players’ performances and nothing you’re actually doing. That’s the fun. Anyway, here’s my RazzSlam, a 42-round, Best Ball 12 team draft recap:

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The top 80 outfielders for 2021 fantasy baseball will fall in the overall range of near 225 overall and later. This is your late 4th outfielder and 5th outfielder range, or 6th outfielder for utility spot, or 7th outfielder if you’re trying to draft so many outfielders that everyone in your league is like, “Who invited the giant dope with seven outfielders and zero corner men?” Here’s Steamer’s 2021 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2021 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers. All projections included here are mine, and where I see tiers starting and stopping are included. Anyway, here’s the top 80 outfielders for 2021 fantasy baseball:

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Not usually my style, but we’re taking a break from the 2021 fantasy baseball rankings for a day because of the big trade between the Rockies and Cardinals (and a shizzton of other moves). All the 2021 fantasy baseball rankings, including pitchers, are already up on our Patreon.

So, the Rockies are trying to lose, and they’re a stupid franchise. That is a bad combination. Like burning down your house for insurance money after letting your insurance lapse. The Rockies gave away their marquee player and $50 million. If this is a rebuild, and Austin Gomber is the start of–I’m sorry. I can’t even say Austin Gomber with a straight face. The Cards got Arenado for a Gomber pile of garbage. Bud Black is actually the perfect imbecile to run that team. So, on Arenado’s fantasy value, well…*swallows*…okay, so…*collects thoughts* Yeah, I moved him down in my rankings.

Arenado was traded to the Cards, and I can’t possibly tell you he’s as safe to draft in St. Louis. I don’t think the park change is as dramatic as some are making it out to be. I don’t think he’s suddenly done. I know his road/away splits, but as said many times before, guys are better at home. Even guys who aren’t in Coors. You’re staying at home, you’re surrounded by family and friends, you’re seeing your wife–Wait, are these reasons to enjoy being at home? Right, yes, I kid! Home numbers are always better. Familiarity with the park, just being more comfortable. It’s always like this; there’s stats to back it up, don’t make me pull them out. So, Arenado might not have been great on the road when he played in Coors, but you can’t just say his new home numbers will be his old road numbers. Doesn’t work like that. Trying to see the difference between him and, say, Jose Abreu, though, has become nearly impossible and Abreu isn’t a top 20 overall pick, and neither is Arenado now. I moved Rafael Devers up to the top 20 for 2021 fantasy baseball; Arenado dropped about ten overall spots (but only one spot in the top 20 3rd basemen), and I lowered his projections a bit. His new projections: 88/32/106/.279/1 in 592 ABs.

For what it’s Wuertz, here’s out Steamer projections pre-trade: 103/35/103/.286, 4th best 3B, ~20th overall. Here’s him post-trade: 86/29/85/.256; 8th-10th 3B, ~110TH overall. Um, that’s kinda gross. And, to add fire to the inferno whooshing around the Torenado, look at projections of Austin Riley vs. Nolan Arenado:

Anyway, here’s what else I saw this offseason for fantasy baseball:

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The top of the 2nd base pool is funky as all get-out, and I wish a lot of these guys would get out I’m trying to watch Get Out. Are the top 20 2nd basemen for 2021 fantasy baseball shallower than the top 20 catchers for 2021 fantasy baseball? No, but it’s pretty close, and that’s the last time you’re gonna hear the word pretty and 2nd basemen in the same sentence. Here’s Steamer’s 2021 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2021 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers. All projections included here are mine, and where I see tiers starting and stopping are included. Anyway, here’s the top 20 2nd basemen for 2021 fantasy baseball:

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On Dancer! On Prancer! On–Oh, I didn’t hear you come in. Welcome, reader! Grab some egg nog and brandy it up to the fire. You look festive. I love that Rudolph tongue ring. That’s the great thing about Christmas, no matter what your interpretation is, it’s all about commercialism. That’s unless you light the Munenori Kawasaki. The 2021 fantasy baseball rankings are not far away. Right now, January Grey is throwing darts at a board to figure out where to rank Randy Arozarena:  rookie, customer of Big Bossman’s Bail Bonds, and first ballot Hall of Famer — a triple threat! In the meantime, let’s look at the players who have multiple position eligibility for this upcoming 2021 fantasy baseball season. I did this list of multi-position eligible players because I figured it would help for your 2021 fantasy baseball drafts. I’m a giver, snitches! Happy Holidays! Seriously, in a year as crazy as 2020, take a moment and thank those you truly love:  Me.

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Alright, I admit, my title doesn’t quite have the same pomp as some of the other pitcher-named days, but that is not to discount Framber Valdez ($9,100) and what he could potentially do tonight.  The biggest reason for this is his opponent.  I mean, the title could have been “Happy Pitcher Who Is Facing The Rangers Day”, but that’s a mouthful.  Just look at what Jose Urquidy (7 IP, 7Ks, 1 ER, 3 Hits) did to them the other day.  Sure, Bieber will likely dominate, but I’d prefer to take a discount and roll with Framber.  His near 9 K/9 and 2.4 BB/9 are more than enough to pay the bills.  Framber has also been a tad unlucky as suggested by his 3.34 FIP vs. 4.08 ERA.  Add in the Rangers second to last team OPS and we have a recipe for success, be it in GPPs or a pivot in cash games.  Save some money with Framber and load up on juicy offense to win the day.

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