Please see our player page for Ian Happ 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.

So, Rudy says to me, “You should get into a Best-Ball league?”  And I replied, “Is that a fantasy league where everyone drafts in blue Polos like you work at Best Buy?”  Then I saw those three little dots like he was typing something, then they disappeared.  Then I saw the three dots again, and, alas, they disappeared again. Finally, he responded, “You don’t think that do you?”  After googling what Best-Ball was, I replied, “No, jokes, man, jokes!”  So, I got myself in my first Best-Ball league.  Everyone likely knows what it is, but, if you don’t, it’s when you draft a team and the computer manages it for you by choosing who are the best players, and you get those stats.  It’s basically one fantasy league removed from the robots taking over and killing us all. Drafting with me in my league was Elon Musk, Issac Asimov–Okay, I keed.  Anyway, here’s my NFBC Best-Ball, Points League, 10 team draft recap:

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Jose Ramirez fouled a ball off his knee and was carted off the field.  *long, painful swallow*  Say what now?  Thankfully, it turned out Jose Ramirez simply has a knee contusion and was carted off the field because he had reached his steps for the day.  *claps hands*  “Okay, guys, call me a cab, my FitBit says I’m done-zo.”  That’s Jose Ramirez once he reaches 10,000 steps.  I hear ya, Jo-Ram!  I once sat down on an escalator because I had reached my “floors” for the day.  I’m not over-exercising and dying young.  Nuh-uh!  You don’t mess with age expectancy.  I’m already down on Ramirez in a non-sexual way, so this doesn’t change my stance on him, and, if you like him, it doesn’t sound like it should change your feelings either, since he appears healthy.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw in spring training for fantasy baseball:

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Drafting outfielders for the 2019 fantasy baseball season is a hot topic. There’s tons of outfielders, but the top couple tiers dry up quickly. On this show, B_Don and Donkey Teeth discuss several outfielders you might consider targeting once all the top OFs are off the board.

The first of those potential targets is Byron Buxton. The juicy fantasy sausage upside that oozes from every single one of Byron Buxton’s pores is both sweet and savory. Studies have also shown this ooze can cure cancer and other terminal diseases. Buxton is off to phenomenal start this spring, boasting added muscle and claims of, “The best shape of his life”. Which is always true.

The guys also discuss expectations for rising star Michael Conforto and relative unknown rookie, Christin Stewart. Then some late round outfield targets are thrown around to finish up the show. Opening day is coming, make sure you get your fill of sausage, sausage juices, and the Ditka, Sausage, and Fantasy Sports shirt before time runs out!

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Baseball, like a flower, blooms in the spring.  They also share equally effusive PR people.  Just the other day I read about how a petunia’s branches gained 15 pounds and was in the best shape of its life.  Sure, it’s always good to look at spring training numbers to give you an idea what you can expect from guys during the season — can I draft Adalberto Mondesi yet?!  Players in spring training are facing the top pitchers who are all displaying their best stuff.  No one needs time to get warmed up.  No one’s trying new pitches or getting a feel for the ball.  They are at the height of their game in the beginning of March.  Our former commissioner, Bud, once doffed his toupee and tried to have the World Series played in March.  Since these spring training numbers mean so much, I decided to look at some players stats so far:

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Excuse the exposition and this clunky intro into aforementioned exposition, but here’s the catchers to target1st basemen to target2nd basemen to targetshortstops to target and something to stick to your dartboards to target.  These 3rd basemen to target are being drafted after 200 overall.  Keep in mind, nephew (and five niece readers), your Uncle Grey likes to have a corner man drafted by the time these guys appear, so you’re looking at potential utility men more than anything.  Now, this is a (legal-in-all-countries-except-Indonesia) supplement to the top 20 3rd basemen for 2019 fantasy baseball.  Click on the player’s name where applicable to read more and see their 2019 projections.  Speaking of baseball (best segue ever!), the Stream-o-Nator, Hitter-Tron and DFSBot are now available, i.e., the Razzsubscriptions.  Anyway, here’s some 3rd basemen to target for 2019 fantasy baseball:

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Welcome back to baseball Cubs fan, or just fantasy readers who want to know about the Cubs. 2018 was a disappointment for many Cubs fans and fantasy owners of Cubs players alike, unless you happened to own Javier Baez. At least there is always the bleachers with a sausage and an Old Style.

While my outlook for 2019 may still be rosy (I expect the Cubbies to win the NL Central), there is an impending contract cliff that the North siders are going to have to maneuver, and the roster could look completely different in 2021 and 2022. Some of these guys the Cubs will try to re-sign, and other deals will be nice to get off the books, but the Cubs must make that decision on Jon Lester, Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant, Javier Baez, Kyle Schwarber, Addison Russell, Kyle Hendricks, Jose Quintana, and several other less impactful guys.

I’m a bit hesitant on the Cubs for the future, but you’re here to figure out what to do this season. While 2018 may be viewed as a down season, the Cubs still finished 9th in runs scored and the pitching finished with the 3rd best ERA in the league. PECOTA is projecting doom and gloom with a last place finish in the division, but that seems like an overreaction to a team that is getting a healthy Kris Bryant and hopefully, a healthy Yu Darvish back this season. I may even take the over on the THOME projection of 88.5 wins with a 2nd place finish in the division, but maybe I’m just optimistic, after all, it is spring training time

(To hear more about the THOME projection system, check out my podcast, Ditka, Sausage, and Fantasy Sports on Razzball when we interview the creator, Steve Paulo).

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The best 2019 fantasy baseball team is a misnomer.  Thankfully, none of us know what misnomer means.  Sounds to me like someone tentatively wants to date the Travelocity Gnome’s daughter, “Miss Gnome, er, you wanna grab some boba and chill?”  Miss Gnome brushes back her hair and bats her eyelashes that are almost as long as her two-and-half foot body, “I’d love to,” but her voice is high-pitched, which is a turn-off, so you cancel plans with her repeatedly until she gets the hint.  Sorry, Miss Gnome, I like my women’s voices low like their stature.  Any hoo!   So the title is a bit of a superlative.  What was I gonna say, “The Mostly Kinda Good Fantasy Baseball Team?”  You’ll get over your scoffing; I have faith in you.  This is the best 2019 fantasy baseball team that I can put together when drafting from my top 100 for 2019 fantasy baseball and top 500 for 2019 fantasy baseball.  Honestly, I could draft another 25 teams from those lists, and they’d all be different, but equally terrific… Well, one of the twenty-five would only be sorta terrific, but it would be really hard to tell which one that is.  If I took Adalberto Mondesi in the 2nd round, everything after would change.  If I took Javier Baez in the 1st round, everything after would change.  I’ve previously gone over my 2019 fantasy baseball draft prep for the first few rounds and pitchers pairings.  For this exercise, I’m taking Trea Turner first, because, well, people complain I always did this post by taking Mike Trout first, so I’m switching it up, like when you combover right instead of left.  Until pick 100, I’m taking one guy somewhere in every fifteen picks.  It would be nice if I was in a league where someone drafted Scherzer and deGrom in the first two rounds and I was able to take Bryce Harper in the 2nd round (which is very likely), but since Treat Urner and him are in my first 14 picks, according to the rules I’ve set up for myself, I can’t take them both.  Then, as we all know, once you get into the 100s, there’s wide gaps between ADP and where players are actually taken.  People tend to look at team need over value.  So for this exercise, once I get to pick #101, I’m going to pick two players every twenty picks.  Finally, because there is so much latitude in the last 300, I gave myself free reign to fill up my team.  Throughout the draft, I also gave myself the ability to reach to a lower draft pick, but not reach forward.  Or reach around, if you’re feeling frisky.  It should still be my ideal team… Or not.  Let’s see, shall we?  Bee tee dubya, this team is a 12-team, 5×5, one catcher, 5 OFs, MI, CI, 1 UT, 9 P, 3 bench, just like the Razzball Commenter Leagues (go sign up).  Anyway, here’s the best 2019 fantasy baseball team:

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NL WestNL Central | NL East | AL West | AL Central | AL East

I don’t pay much attention to Spring Training Statistics.  You never know who the statistics are coming against.  Baseball-Reference did, however, have an amazing tool last year that attempted to quantify the quality of opposing pitchers or batters faced during spring training games on a scale from 1-10 with 10 being MLB talent and 1-3 being high A to low A level.  This tool is great, but it averages all the Plate Appearances or batters faced.  You would still need a deeper dive to see if your stud prospect smacked a donger off of Chris Sale or off of your kid’s future pony league baseball coach.  So what should we watch for in March when we’re starved for the crack of the bat?  Ignore “best shape of their life” stories and Spring Training statistical leaderboards.  Pay attention to injuries and lineup construction and position battles!  Also pay attention to where Bryce Harper and Manny Machado sign… Note that those two signings can instantly eliminate some of the position battles detailed herein.

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As we continue our 2019 fantasy baseball rankings, we head into the homestretch of ranking hitters.  For those confused, homestretch isn’t when you shoot up in bed late at night, remembering there’s a bag of Doritos under your nightstand and go reaching for them.  That is the opening to my short film, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dorito.  The main character has just been “Frito-laid off” and is described as Pringley and Ruffled.  Last year, this post had David Peralta, Aaron Hicks, and Randal Grichuk.  Well, they’re not all gems.  My point (PLEASE!) there is some value to still be found in the outfielders, it’s just a matter of finding it, like in the landmark film, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dorito.  As with the other rankings, my projections are included and where I see tiers starting and stopping.  Anyway, here’s the top 80 outfielders for 2019 fantasy baseball:

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After going over the top 20 shortstops for 2019 fantasy baseball, I needed a cigarette.  A good after-sex cigarette, not a waiting-to-go-into-court-to-hear-if-you-have-to-spend-18-months-in-jail cigarette.  Subtle, but important differences.  We also hit up the top 20 catchers for 2019 fantasy baseball, the top 20 1st basemen for 2019 fantasy baseball and the top 20 2nd basemen for 2019 fantasy baseball.  In no way was that clickbait.  Okay, onto the hot corner.  Here’s Steamer’s 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers.  All projections listed are mine and I mention where I see tiers starting and stopping.  Good times, dyn-o-mite!  Anyway, here’s the top 20 3rd basemen for 2019 fantasy baseball:

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