Please see our player page for Gerrit Cole 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.

With beloved Razzball writer Ralph Lifschitz finally revealing his true identity on Twitter, I realized it came down to me — the pitcher ranker and weekend editor — to unmask the final mystery man of Razzball: Grey Albright himself. So I invited the Fantasy Master Lothario to a fancy brunch that I never showed up to. Instead, I snuck into Razzball HQ…which wasn’t hard to do because Donkey Teeth is there literally every minute of every day searching for shirtless pics of Yusei Kikuchi. Grey never locks his office because he feels that he gives away all of his data for free on the internet; there’s no reason for anybody to break in. Except, for the holy grail: the real identity of the Master Lothario.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It’s week three of Fantasy Baseball and that can only mean one thing: it’s time for overreactions! Jacob deGrom did what he does (20+ strikeouts between his 2 starts) with the Mets still managing to lose both games. One of those was on Saturday, where Trevor Rodgers went tit-for-tat with deGrom. We also, were treated to both versions of Frankie Montas, a stinker against the Dodgers where he lasted 2.2 innings and got shelled for 7 runs, and then on Saturday against another powerful lineup, the Astros, Montas went 6 innings of 1 run ball and 5 strikeouts, leaving us exactly where we were, not knowing which guy will show up. With many of the pitchers second starts coming Sunday, we should have a clearer picture on who is worth what by the end of said day, and this upcoming week has a lot of intriguing matchups so let’s get going.

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It seemed like a nothing move at the time. Just a transactional move that people would forget about within hours, if not minutes. Just ten days ago, the Nats announced they would be demoting Carter Kieboom. Then, before leaving town, Carter Kieboom watered down all the hand sanitizer. Now Patrick Corbin, Yan Gomes, Josh Bell, Brad Hand (ah HA!), Will Harris, Josh Harrison, Alex Avila, Jon Lester, Jordy Mercer and Kyle Schwarber are all on the IL, as the Nats recalled Luis Garcia and Kieboom. “Kieboom goes my flight to the minors!” That’s Carter Kieboom as he mixed a cocktail of Palmolive and Capri Sun into the hand sanitizer bottles. “These stupid straws!” That’s Kieboom struggling to get the juice out of the plastic-metal pouches. Wow, Kieboom is not being very stealth. So, it sucks if you had Hand, Schwarber, Corbin, Bell…Well, the guys there you might’ve had. Hopefully, they all return shortly. For all these moves, the only guy I grabbed in leagues was Tanner Rainey, who might now get saves, but Daniel Hudson is also there, so that’s a crapshoot too. “All these crapshoots and I should clean my hands…Hey, why does this soap smell like tropical punch?” Off to the side, snickering, “More like Crappy Sun!” Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Welcome to my new column in Razzball: The Magazine! Every week I’ll be responding to letters from fans who are in a fantasy crisis. Let’s jump right in and see our first question:

Dear EverywhereBlair, 

I drafted Sixto Sanchez in the first round. I know! I’m a sucker for alliteration. I even named my team, “Sexy Sixto Stacks Stampede.” You told me ADP was a trap and I could draft whomever I want whenever I want! 

Signed, 

Suxto See Sixto Sick

Well, we’ve got ourselves a humdinger for the first mailbag question! Did you hear that Sixto has a sore arm? You really don’t need to be taking pitchers in the first round. But it’s your team, you do you. You can fix your team by drafting Jacob Stallings, and renaming it the Sticky Stallings Smashers. Onwards, to the main event!

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*rubs ancient lamp, a blue genie appears* I have three wishes for this baseball season. My first wish is “No one I own get hurt.” I didn’t draft Dinelson Lamet, Josh Donaldson or Trevor Rosenthal, so I made your job easy for you, great, powerful Genie. My 2nd wish is “Everyone I drafted do well.”  I drafted Juan Soto, Trevor Story and Alec Bohm, so, really, I’m doing much of the heavy lifting for this wish too. My 3rd and final wish is “All defensive shifts are eight catchers stacked on top of each other like a totem pole.” Thanking you in advance, Genie. Wait a second, you’re not a genie, you’re Bartolo Colon in Blue Man Group paint. Damn you!

Okay, breathe in, breathe out. Take a moment. Really feel the ground below your feet. The air in your lungs. The soon-turds in your lower intestine. You’re alive. That’s the feeling. April baseball, you giant love muffin! I missed you so much. I’d get choked up, but I cried out all my tears at Luis Castillo’s start. Remember, the only thing you really should take away from yesterday’s player performances is:  It’s one game. Anyway, here’s what I saw yesterday for fantasy baseball:

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I walked down a dark hallway of Razzball Headquarters, some corner I had never been before. The walls were the color of aquarium gravel. I squinted in the dim light to verify that I had the correct office. I knocked on the door and peeked my head inside, seeing the Fantasy Master Lothario himself, Grey Albright, sitting in an office chair behind of a well-built desk. The image of Don Draper in a sweater-vest.

“Everywhere!” he said, wringing his hands excitedly. He put his hand out for a shake. I reached for it, but he pulled his arm back as if almost touching a hot stove. “Nah-ah!” he smiled and wagged his finger. “Not in the time of Covid!”

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Nearly five years ago I went live with a post entitled Nostradumba** which was a piece of software I developed to help make fantasy baseball predictions. At first it was a disaster, recommending I draft Reggie Jackson and other inactive players. Realizing that wasn’t going to cut the mustard, I made a few tweaks that seemed to get the system running more smoothly, enabling me to make some less ridiculous dart throws. Earlier this year I cleared out one of my MacBook Pros so that my daughter could use it for remote 2nd grade. The school gave them all sh!tty Chromebooks that might have been less powerful than George Michael’s Sports Machine. While getting the MacBook setup, I found Nostraduma** and decided to bring it back to life. Here’s what it had to say.

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In Japan, you bond with your coworkers by going to an enkai. You say it like “N-kai,” and the Kai is as in Cobra Kai, not “Kay” as in, “I’m so American I can’t envision speaking any language than N-glysh. The enkai is usually where the office (not the TV show) gets together for some BBQ and beers. Everybody goes to the enkai, even if they don’t like beer and BBQ. Sometimes, Japanese managers conduct official office business at the enkai, which makes it somewhat awkward when they pass out documents to read while you’re navigating grilled meat. Then comes the nijikai, or “second meeting,” when the “cool people” leave the “squares” behind, and they go to a place where there’s more beer, some snacks, and some karaoke. But for the bold — and those who are truly initiated into the office — there’s the sanjikai, or the “third meeting.” This is the event where only the hardened drinkers, the Buddhist teetotalers, and those people trying to forget the horrors of 9-5 hyper-capitalism are found. For the sanjikai, you’re out there not because you have to, but because you want to. Because you’re driven, by some supra-rational urge that verges on the paranormal, to see what’s hidden behind the curtain. You want to suck the marrow out of life and maybe get a bone splinter in your gums. You know the world has made its mark on you, and you want to mark the world before you transit off this plane of existence into the cosmos, awaiting to be reborn on your ascent to Nirvana. You might not get home tonight if you go out to the sanjikai, but that’s OK because you’re willing to sit in the park and watch the stars until first train.

That’s what this third pre-season edition of the Top 100 Starting Pitchers is all about: You want to know what the others don’t know. You’ve probably drafted already, but you’re here to get prepped for who to pick up off the waiver wire and what to do for next year. You, my dear reader, are initiated into my office, and I invite you to the sanjikai of my weekly pitchers series.

This article is probably my greatest contribution to fantasy sports so far, and I hope you enjoy it.

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I’m sure many of you have spent countless hours pouring over Grey’s 2021 fantasy baseball rankings to see who he’s got way higher than anyone else. Grey’s rankings are great but they’re focused on categories so they don’t tell the whole picture for points leagues. For example, average isn’t important for points. Yes a higher average means more hits but you also get points for walks as well. What we’re really looking for is total bases. I still highly recommend that you check out Grey’s thoughts because he knows what he’s doing, but mostly he’s pretty entertaining. 

Now onto points leagues. I crunched some numbers behind the scenes to see who should get shifted in the ranks. Basically made my own simplified version of malamoney’s spreadsheet using the Razzball/Steamer projections and what seems to be the standard scoring system. The result is some cold hard data on who’s going to do what this season. 

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Hey malamoney! What? The points league community called. And? They want the damn spreadsheet. Ohhhhh… the spreadsheet. I could do a two hour rant on how much I dislike creating the spreadsheet. I’m not kidding. I absolutely love having it on draft day, and enjoy sharing it with you fine individuals (well most of you at least), but to say that putting it together was a chore would be an understatement. Perhaps it would be easier if I used a single source for projections, but that feels dirty to me. I like to gather multiple (reliable) sources and average them together along with my own homegrown blend. Then I take that result and average them all together again, but this time I include the results of the first averaging. I’m pretty sure it’s some flavor of the kind of math they teach in the elementary schools these days.

Please, blog, may I have some more?