Please see our player page for Jordan Yamamoto 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.

[places soapbox on ground, stands tall]

Starting pitchers are more important this year. But you should still take hitters first. Thank you for coming to my TED Talk.

For most fantasy league formats, you are chasing wins in 2020. Thus, WAGNOF (Wins Ain’t Got No Face). With starting pitchers, you’re looking for #1/#2 starters on good teams, who will pitch a lot of innings and contribute to Wins, ERA, WHIP, and K. Relievers with great K/9–even middle relievers–will help immensely with ERA, WHIP, and K. But wins? Welcome to the Twilight Zone. Whereas wins used to the be the domain of starters (and Twins’ middle relievers), we’re already getting reports of top pitchers having inning limits and pitch counts. So, we’ll be seeing a lot of wins going to middle relievers, which makes it much more difficult to predict that category (unless you’re a lifelong Twins fan, holla!). If you don’t believe me on this, then take the advice from three-time Trout Fishing Champion Grey Albright. If you’re in a league that uses Quality Starts, the top three tiers of pitchers are even more valuable because you’ll be relying on pitchers who stay in games AND who don’t give up earned runs. The coronavirus and the style of play in 2020 placed a high scarcity on pitchers who meet these requirements. That said, crafty managers can combine mid-tier pitchers with relievers who provide elite ratios and make an effective pitching staff that will win leagues. So, let’s teach you to be a crafty manager.

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True story: DonkeyTeeth calls me up on the ol’ Twitter machine this morning.  Me, I’m just awake from dreaming of 5-year-old Blair riding out in my dad’s Buick Skylark into the Minneapolis night to celebrate the Twin’s 1987 World Series win.  Suddenly Donkey’s typing: “Top 100 Switchers.” And I’m like, “Donkey, it’s 7AM, I’m not ready for that!” He types into the Twitter machine, “TOP 100 PITCHERS!” So I say, that’s fine, here: 1) Beer, 2) Sangria, 3) Margarita… . Donk does it. You know. He starts typing, but doesn’t finish. The little dots on the bottom of my Twitter machine beep out in morse code–or whatever code Jack wants to call it–that causes mental insanity among so many people. I’m transfixed. The next use of a nuclear code, you know it’s going to be preceded by those little waiting dots. President Swift will have to verify the code with Vice President Lovitz but only after they clear their notifications. Finally, Donkey’s message comes across. “2-for-1 pitchers at BWW if you get there before 9AM. See ya.” That’s the level of training they give here at Razzball. I tell ya, I get no respect at all. 

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With these top 100 starters for 2020 fantasy baseball, I’ve finished our (my) 2020 fantasy baseball rankings for positions.  Still coming will be a top 100 overall and top 500 to see how all the positions mesh together like your mesh Redskins jersey that meshes with your burgundy sweatpants. Trust me, when you see how long this post is, you’ll be glad I kept this intro short. All the 2020 fantasy baseball rankings are there. Here’s Steamer’s 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers. Here’s all the 2020 fantasy baseball auction rankings. As always, my projections are included, and where I see tiers starting and stopping.  If you want an explanation of tiers, go back to the top 10 overall and start this shizz all over again. Anyway, here’s the top 100 starters for 2020 fantasy baseball:

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Not your Grandfather’s Top 100 Starting Pitchers…

The outpouring of concern over Grandpa-Donk’s well being during Heatwave 2019, has been heart warming. Rest assured, Gramps is still alive and donkey kicking. In fact, last weekend the old jackass worked out in the yard 48 hours straight in the 100-degree heat without stopping for so much as a Señor Crappers change. Once he finished the field labor, G-Donk came inside to make the rest of us pancakes and lemonade–an old Donk family tradition. As Great Gran-Donk always said, “When life gives you apocalyptic weather, make pancakes and lemonade.”

Mmmmm ice cold lemonade: my favorite of the fresh squeezed juices. You know what other juice is worth the squeeze? The Clevinger concentrate. I was skeptical when Mike Clevinger returned from his back injury in mid-June. His first two brutal starts had me strutting around like top donkey, so smart. But since the calendar turned to July, Sunshine has been lights out going 4-0 with a 1.74 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, and 41 strikeouts in 31 innings. Clevinger is extracting juice like a fantasy ace right now and there’s no reason to think the liquid will dry up anytime soon.

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The Astros got two great starts this weekend from two guys who weren’t in the conversation until recently.  On Saturday, Jose Urquidy went 7 IP, 1 ER, 2 hits, zero walks, 9 Ks, ERA at 5.54.  He made my pants up-jump-the-boogie a little from his pitching.  I expect multiple roofies from him still, but Urquidy is […]

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MLB should put pinball flippers by each dugout, then every time you think someone is about to have a 1-2-3 inning, the ball is flipped out of the stadium for a home run.  “Looks like the ump is tossing that ball in the dirt to the ball boy–BANG! WHIZZ! BOOM! Wow, another home run, Roger!  This is crazy!”  “Just when you think you’ve seen everything to further enhance the game by adding offense, MLB has put in pinball flippers.”  “It’s pretty cool, Roger.”  “My name’s Bill.”  “Sure.”  So, yesterday the Dodgers and Phils traded blows and blown saves — Kenley Jansen (1/3 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 3.72) and Hector Neris (1/3 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 4.08). Both closers are safe as far as any pitcher is safe.  THEY’RE USING PINBALLS!  However, Jansen was limping, due to taking a comebacker off his ankle, so Pedro Baez might see some looks. The hero, or gyro depending on ethnicity, was Bryce Harper (2-for-3, 5 RBIs and his 17th homer, hitting .257).  On our Player Rater, he’s been about as valuable as Shin-Soo Choo and Max Kepler. Yup.  Then, yinging his yang, Max Muncy went 1-for-3, 2 runs with his 25th homer. Most home runs since April 17th of last year when Muncy debuted:  Yelich 67 HRs; Trout 63 HRs; Muncy 60 HRs. And people didn’t want to draft Muncy this preseason.  Yup…YUP!  Of course, no highlight reel in prose would be complete without Cody Bellinger (1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 34th homer).  Forget Bellinger, he’s the Bellingest. Yup…YUP…yup.  Also, getting in on the action, Scott Kingery went 2-for-4, 3 runs, 2 RBIs with his 13th homer, and his 2nd homer in two games. His average did drop about 100 points in the last three weeks, but he’s starting to pick it up again, and is still hitting towards the top of the lineup (2nd yesterday). Yup…YUP…yup…YuP.  Then yanging that yin, A.J. Pollock went 2-for-4, 2 runs and his 5th homer, and 12th homer in the last three games. If it wasn’t for Oscar Mercado, I’d say Pollock was the hottest bat in the majors.  I might say it anyway, but while crossing my fingers.  Right Brain, “LIAR!”  Yup…YUP…yup…YuP…yeppers.  Finally, Matt Beatty hit his 3rd homer.  Snap into a Batt Meatty!  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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With the All-Star break happening this week, it’s time to reflect on the special times we’ve had together. We’ve been undoubtedly enabling one another’s fantasy baseball addiction and it’s a beautiful thing. We have to fight through this time together though and do our best to shake off these cravings. In order to get through this period, let’s discuss some of the bright spots we’ve had together and some of the things to look forward too.   

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When I wake up in the morning and the alarm gives out a warning and I don’t think I’ll ever make it on time. By the time I grab my books and I give Razzball a look, I’m at the website just in time to see the news fly by. It’s alright ‘coz I’m saved by Josh Bell. Was Samuel “Screetch” Powers spotted in Pittsburgh last night? No he was not. Neither were any of the other cast of Saved By The Bell. However, Josh Bell was in attendance. Trailing by five runs going into the ninth, Bell’s three run homer helped the Pirates tied the game. You’d have to be living under a rock not to notice how well Josh has been this year. If it weren’t for Yelich and Bellinger, Bell would be the top choice for the National League MVP. Bell went two for four on the night, but the Pirates ended up falling short in extras. As for Mr. Belding and crew this year marks the 30th anniversary of the show. In related news A.C. Slater and Zack Morris are both blue belts in jiu-jitsu. Perhaps we can get rematch of their fight that took place at Bayside High.

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Not your Grandfather’s Top 100 Starting Pitchers…

I’m sure this won’t come as a surprise, but Grandpa-Donk is what they call a “Donk of all trades”.  At one point in his legendary life, the venerable jackass even tried his hoof as a weatherman. In fact, he was one of the first weatherdonks on television back in the ’50s.

When I was just a little donkus, no bigger than Trevor Bauer’s poodle, Gramps would gather all us youngins round and tell us about his days of Hollywood stardom. The weather forecasting tools back in his time were just as primitive as the are now, so he was frequently way off on his prognostications. But he always delivered his forecast with the classic family wit, mixing in his token skyarrhea toilet humor and even the occasional dong joke, which was very risque back in his day. Grandonkey would always finish his meteorology tales with one bit of sage advice, “Find an occupation where you can be wrong 90% of the time and people still come back for more”.

Writing the Top 100 Starting Pitchers post in 2019: the year of the juiciest of juiced balls, and baseballs, I imagine is exactly like being a weatherdonkey. Just other day, when The Kooch was getting lit up for the 17th consecutive outing, G-Donk called me up to tell me how proud he was that I had discovered my niche. Actually, he called to ask where he might find a fresh pair of Señor Crappers, but I could sense the pride in his voice.

The only thing we know about 2019 Starting Pitching is there’s going to be lots of rainy days with a few random sunny days mixed in, followed by a tornado which will destroy what’s left of your already fugly ratios. Your 2019 fantasy pitching staff is more or less going to be Seattle with a little bit of Kansas, but we’re all living there in rainy tornado alley with you; so quit your whining and grab an umbrella!

Speaking of umbrellas, Mike Minor has provided a pleasant refugee from the storms this season, and he’s only become sturdier as the summer monsoons set in, sporting a 1.70 ERA and 0.97 WHIP in 37 June innings. Unfortunately, there’s some large red regression fairies lurking here, the first of which is a massive and unsustainable 97.5% strand rate over this past month. Pair that with a lucky .200 June BABIP, and Donkey begins running for new shelter. I’d aggressively shop Minor if someone in your league thinks he’s actually a top 20 pitcher, but I wouldn’t sell him for a cup of Grey’s baby gravy. I’ll take a guy that might continue getting lucky over a cup of Grey goo any day.

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B_Don and Donkey are back at it this week profiling two more young ball tossers. But first DT has a few words for B_Don regarding some of his pickup recommendations on the Razzball Podcast earlier this week.

Donkey then digs in on his profile of exciting Cubs prospect Adbert Alzolay, who features two impressive off speed pitches. The guys speculate that a longer-term opening may arise in the Chicago rotation for Alzolay; since recording Cole Hamels has hit the IL, so be sure Alzolay is owned in all leagues.
For his profile B_Don breaks down Marlins youngster Jordan Yamamoto, who has burst onto the scene with three very solid outings. The show is topped off with some rapid fire pickup suggestions: B_Don loves Ian Kinsler and Mike Fiers. Sausage, sausage, get your sausage here!
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