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!Please, blog, may I have some more?
Yesterday, Carlos Carrasco went 5 1/3 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 3.95. Whew. Luckily, Carrasco was in that tier of preseason pitchers I said not to draft. You still drafted him? But I said he was like a skunked can of La Croix bacon-avocado cheeseburger flavor. *scrunches nose* You didn’t pay attention? Aw geez. Why? Not to answer but to lower your head in shame. Since you didn’t pay attention the first time, let me say it once more so you can again ignore it, “For the first time in his career, Carrasco (Careerasco?) threw 200 IP last year. Not bad for a 25-year-old. Less so for Carrasco who is 31 years old. I know, I was surprised he was that old too. Not as surprised, as say, a cat jumping out of a closet. They should do a Cats revival on Broadway where the whole thing is cats jumping out of closets.” And that’s me quoting me! K/9 and velocity stabilizes fairly quickly and, well, his rates are kinda the dog’s breakfast. His velocity is down over a mile, and his Ks are down from 10.2 to a 8.1 K/9, and he has the highest xFIP in six years. If this doesn’t worry you, you might be slow on the uptake. You repeat 3rd grade? Do you think your password on all logins is *************? Do you eat Thai and say, ‘Now my stomach is in knots?’ We might have to get you a tutor. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Hello and welcome! We’re going to take a look at the AL and NL league leaders in each standard rotisserie category after the first full week of baseball and discuss, analyze, and Razz it up! (90’s phrasing!) My favorite in the group is ONLY available when there is a tie in a category. Waiting in the weeds is a pitcher or hitter that is not currently leading the category, but could find their way into the lead soon…Please, blog, may I have some more?
Here’s what I know about projections, they’re guaranteed to be mostly wrong with a handful of unpredictable close calls. That’s probably the most accurate projection I’m about to make, which is not quite the ringing self-endorsement one my expect to read in the introduction paragraph for a 2017 fantasy baseball projections post. Let’s be honest with ourselves, projections are bullshit. They’re little more than slightly educated guesses. This is not meant to take anything away from the hard work and resulting labors of love bestowed upon us by very smart statisticians and baseball analysts, but at the end of the day, I almost feel like the projections-hungry fantasy baseball population would be better off without them. Having just written that sentence I find it extremely ironic considering I am about to release my projections in just a few moments. I think they call that the pot calling the kettle black. Maybe the pot is just racist. Did anyone ever consider that the kettle might have started the name calling? Was it Tim Lincecum’s pot?Please, blog, may I have some more?
Kevin Kiermaier might be my first sleeper of the 2017 fantasy baseball season. The funny thing (completely and irrefutably not funny) is with fantasy football starting, fantasy basketball getting underway (don’t worry, I won’t clickbait you to death) and fantasy teams just falling out of contention, players that do well in September are often forgotten by next March even though they’re performing in the month closest to the next preseason. (Guys and five girl readers, if anyone says I don’t know the calendar, you tell them that is just inaccurate. Grey knows the calendar very well. Happy July 4th!) Kiermaier has that potent mix that I crave so much. No, not Russian dressing and relish, though that is delicious. Your secret is safe with me, sauce! Instead, I’m talking about a power and speed combo. For 2017, it seems entirely possible that he gets to 25+ HRs and 30+ steals. He’s only played in 91 games this year for 12 HRs, 18 SBs, and has a repeatable HR/FB%. In fact (Grey’s got more!), with his walk rate trending up and speed, his average might be more like .275 in 2017 vs. .250 this year. It’s not all yums ‘n roses with his Slash line. He could be more Dexter Fowler (14-ish HRs, 17-20 SBs) than Correa. That’s fine, because he’ll be drafted way closer, if not after Fowler. As for why to grab him now? He’s got five homers and six steals in the last ten days. DUR! Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
“Is this Men on the Move Moving Company? Great. I have a small problem. Okay, it’s not small. But it is a problem. I have a ‘hype sleeper’ sitting here and I’m trying to move sixteen posts in front of it. You can handle the job? That’s great! Can I get hyphens between each post too? I can? Wow, you guys are lifesavers.” *comes in to see* Hype-hype-hype-hype-hype-hype-hype-post-sleep-hyper. What the hell is this?! I wanted sixteen posts in front of hype sleeper! Not this gobbledygook! So, Taijuan Walker flashed some of that post16-hype sleeper business last night — 9 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners, 11 Ks — to lower his ERA to 4.28. It was an easy matchup (vs. Angels), but it still showed why year after year I keep going back to Walker. He is talented. Can anyone say seventeen posts for 2017? Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Yesterday, Daniel Norris went 6 1/3 IP, 2 ER, 7 baserunners, 11 Ks, ERA at 3.81. Deserved better than a no decision, but he’s 23 years old, making $500,000, so who cares what he deserves? I deserve equal pay for cracking jokes about fantasy baseball for six months! *marching with a picket sign* Sign reads: BLOGGER = Better Living-wage Or Gainful Gifts, Earnings, Reimbursements *pull back to reveal I’m marching in my underwear with my dog humping my leg* Stop, Ted! I’m trying to make a point! So, Norris looked terrific, but he’s had a vexing season. Vexing, I tell ya! He was put in middle relief after a back problem that sidelined in the spring, then he returned and was almost immediately sidelined with an oblique problem. Why do we care? Well, I wrote a sleeper post about him last year, saying, “He’s a sleeper, because he’ll likely be drafted late since he appears to be a year away, and, sadly, he might not just appear to be a year away, but he might actually be a year away, though he might appear to be a year away and not be a year away. I’m the Grand Champion of putting “year away” in one sentence, by the way. Norris is a pure upside play. He could be a 4+ ERA guy that bounces between the rotation, the bullpen and the minors or a 2.75 ERA guy with truckloads of Ks.” And that’s me quoting me! I quote that, because I was exactly right (I couldn’t have been wrong since I hedged more than Sonic) and for 2017 I’m going to like Norris for the exact same reasons while being a year closer. Dot dot dot. To getting a living wage! I’m Norma Rae! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
I don’t usually mention pitchers in Coors. Even rarer still that I mention pitchers filled with Coors. Most pitchers with Coors are piss-poor. That’s for every definition of Coors and pitchers. Now, let’s look at the definition of belch. To eject gas spasmodically, to eruct. If erect is good, Coors definitely makes me eruct. A pitcher that throws gas in Coors usually has spastic eructions. Talk about slightly off sexy talk. A phone sex operator should mess with a customer and say, “I want your spastic eruction all over me.” “Did you just say you want me to belch on you?” Yesterday, Tyler Anderson went 7 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 5 Ks, moving his ERA to 3.04. His peripherals agree, he’s not getting by on smoke and mirrors like some children’s magician. He has a 7.5 K/9, 2.0 BB/9 and a 3.41 xFIP. Not an ace, but a safe number two, similar numbers to, say, Kyle Hendricks. We need to put aside our aversion to Rockies pitchers and throw our hat in the ring for Merry Tyler Coors. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Manny Machado put up his right hand yesterday to measure it against a hand drawing every clubhouse has posted on its wall. The drawing is of Mark Whiten’s hand that once held four baseballs in it. Four baseballs for the four homers he hit in one game. In the Padres’ clubhouse, this hand has been removed because it’s just a not-so-subtle reminder of what will never be. In the Indians’ clubhouse, the hand is made into a turkey to celebrate the first Thanksgiving. In the Astros’ clubhouse, the hand has been cut out and fashioned into a t-shirt for Altuve. Imagine if Donald Trump wins the presidency and throws out a first pitch. He may never make it to the field, too distracted in the clubhouse by measuring his hands against Whiten. Yesterday, Machado came a fingernail short of the hand, hitting three homers with seven RBIs. Now has 25 homers on the year with a .307 average. Terrific, stupendous, adjective! What’s more remarkable is he does not have one steal all year. Almost as crazy, he’s only attempted three. Did he have a knee transplant this offseason with McCutchen as the donor? Machado stole 20 bases last year. To go to none? Wow, his feet definitely don’t measure up to the Rickey Henderson foot drawings in each clubhouse. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
I swear every time I write it seems like Steven Wright is on the mound and every time I’m here touting him. Despite an 8-4 record and an AL best 2.01 ERA, Mr. Wright remains the Rodney Dangerfield of pitchers, getting no respect. Just look at his DraftKings pricing over his past three starts, $12,200 two starts ago, $11,100 last time out and now tonight, he’s at $10,600. This in spite of having thrown 9 innings of 5 hit shutout baseball against the White Sox in Fenway Park last time out. I get the match-up is a little tougher and it’s on the road against the Rangers, but good grief, hasn’t the man earned it to this point? Clearly, someone at DraftKings HQ is a knuckle-ist. They hate all things knuckles, brass knuckles, knuckle heads and moose knuckles. He’s priced at the bottom of the ace pile, right before all the scrubs when he should be priced near the top. No matter, I hope his price keeps dropping and I’ll just keep on rostering him every chance I get. I suggest you do the same, or are you a knuckle-ist too? Let’s take a look at a few more bargains for the Saturday DraftKings slate:
New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run Monday June 27th to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. It’s how we know you care! If you still feel helpless and lonely, be sure to subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays.Please, blog, may I have some more?