Please see our player page for Julio Urias 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.

A sheet attached to a building is covering something in front of the Sears sign on a storefront. The closer we look we see I’m standing on the letter S of Sears. I wave like Forrest Gump. Screaming now, “Okay, when I jump, make sure you film this reveal, because it’s going to be spectacular! …and 1…2…3!” Holding onto the end of the sheet, I jump off the S and Tarzan down the side of the building. Then, the sheet gets to its natural conclusion and, rather than revealing under the sheet the big surprise, it leaves me dangling ten feet off the ground. “Um, a little help.” Cougs puts down the camera and yanks on my feet, and I scream, “Yanks! Perfect!” I fall to the ground, and the sheet covers me, but now it’s revealed that the sheet was covering a spraypainted JP in front of Sears. So, JP Sears (5 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 5 Ks) had his major league debut. It was vs. the Orioles, so the salt is out to count grains, but he looked fantastic. He has a 93-95 MPH fastball, decent slider and change, and elite command. That’s the JP Sears catalog of pitches. Yanks also have five starters in the rotation, so, with those going out of business sales on Sears, don’t expect refunds. Whether he stays in the rotation or not, he’s someone to keep an eye on, because elite command plays everywhere. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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After completing a dramatic extra innings comeback win Friday night, capped off by a Rougned Odor walk-off home run in the 13th inning, the Orioles were not done making headlines just yet. Hours later, the O’s had purchased the contract of top prospect slash phenom slash heart throb slash savior Adley Rutschman from Triple-A. Great […]

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Welcome to week 4 — the week where all the data finally makes sense and the futures of every player become written in stone! Not really — that’s kind of the wonky thing about baseball — it might take years to make effective predictions about player performance (see Greinke comma Zack). For me, May is where I start to vaguely pay attention to baseball again because the stats are meaningful again. DFS becomes a bit more predictable, and the rest of us fantasy ballers (Grey’s mom’s word) are ready to spew out meaningful and actionable takes. Like, “Sit that clown Lucas Giolito! I kid, I would never bad-mouth a White Sox player [stares at Dylan Cease]. 

Let’s learn about some interesting players! 

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The Sum of All Fears with rookie pitchers is they will do things to you that you never want done. Things Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, Ben Affleck and Jim from The Office would try to stop by running and screaming through a Washington landmark, while diving for a helicopter that is lifting off. In the Ryanverse, Joe Jack Ryan and Joe Exotic should never interact, but here they are. Spies are taking shortcuts trying to get Tigers into the country from Bengal to sell them to finance a far-off arms deal with a rebel army in Latin America that is illegally trying to take down a corrupt government. Joe Jack Ryan is exactly who you want because of his command of the strike zone, and what it means to be an American. “Sell those tigers if the price is right. We’re running tigers for arms,” a corrupt CIA agent says to an actor that looks like a Latin Phil Hartman. But what they don’t know is Joe Jack Ryan is actually hiding inside of one of the Tigers, having taken them down himself in Minnesota. Any hoo! Joe Ryan went 7 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit, 1 walk, 9 Ks, ERA at 1.17, as he does exactly what I was hoping when I told you in the preseason, “In the big picture/pitcher, he’s about the command, and it’s as beautiful as advertised. The zone% on his pitches would’ve been 45.9%, or 5th in the league if he qualified (in 2021). Obviously, he didn’t qualify because he only was in the league for 26 2/3 IP. By the way, in those MLB innings, he had 10.1 K/9, 1.7 BB/9, 0.79 WHIP (!!!), and a 3.43 FIP. Bit too in the Zone% because he gave up a few homers, but those numbers are ace-like. I wouldn’t expect better peripherals from Shane Bieber as far as K/9 and BB/9. 10+ and 1+ absolutely works. And by “works,” I mean it f*cks. Rookie pitchers are the devil incarnate with their blowups, but Joe Ryan has the makings of a ‘safe’ rookie starter, due to his command.” And that’s me quoting me! Hopefully, Joe Jack Ryan is wearing a giant bird suit next week when he takes down the Orioles. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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OK, Good Friday was last week and my headline is invalid. Not so fast, I’m obviously referring to Orthodox Good Friday. Yes, some of us are just a little more Christian than others. The good Fantasy Lord has blessed us with some real mediocre to bottom-barrel saviors this past Good-er (Better?) Friday, and if you’re […]

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What transpired this preseason: Coolwhip reached out to me to see if I was going to write a Nestor Cortes sleeper, because he liked him and wanted to write one. I said, “Nah, I don’t think I’m going to write one, but I like him too!” What Coolwhip didn’t know, what no one could’ve known, I hadn’t looked at Nestor Cortes at all. I said I liked him because Coolwhip said he liked him. Then I waited for Coolwhip to give us his Nestor Cortes sleeper, and, after he did, I said, “Yeah, exactly, that’s what I would’ve wrote too!” Stats and image provided by Coolwhip:

“(M)ain thing to note is in 2021 Nestor started 14 games. Before that, he had only started a grand total of… (carry the 1… multiply by square root…) 2 games. 2 games, that’s it. So this was a bit of a new foray for him. It’s not often that you go from the pen to starting and your numbers improve drastically. Not just a little mind you; but by every conceivable measure, he got better. His K-rate went up, BB-rate went down, and he cut home runs in half while suppressing hard contact and limiting runners.”

Nestor did this by scrapping the sinker and curve, and replacing them with a cutter. Also, he varies his release point a lot, like nearly every pitch. I half expect him to throw right-handed occasionally. Yesterday, Nestor Cortes (5 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 12 Ks, ERA at 0.00) threw an immaculate 4th inning, and changed his release on nearly every pitch. This is magic:

In 9 1/3 IP this year, Nestor Cortes has 17 Ks. That’s in two starts, or one Nolan Ryan start. Pardon me while I put my eyes back in my head. Nestor Cortes’s 16.4 K/9, 0.96 BB/9 and -0.26 FIP is pretty good, if you’re lacking for adjectives. You really have to be impressed with Nestor so far this year, he’s looking as brilliant as me blindly agreeing with Coolwhip. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Well, well, well… the lockout is finally over and Opening Day is fast approaching. Unfortunately this leaves us with a very short window to evaluate players, especially with free agents signing as we speak and some still looking for a new ball park to call home. Now that we know when games will be starting it’s time to get ready for your draft. Hopefully your league decided to wait to draft so we can see how things shake out in free agency and monitor spring training battles. With that in mind, it’s time to get into my thoughts on pitchers in points leagues and move into more specific players to target as we approach the start of the season.

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Baseball is back!

After months of shaking our heads and gnashing our teeth, the stars and the planets finally aligned, allowing the owners to begrudgingly open their wallets and end the lockout. We have to wait a little longer for the season to start, but Opening Day is less than a month away and we will still get to have a full 162-game season.

All is right with the world now (except for everything else that is going wrong with the world right now. But let’s not worry about that. We’re here to talk baseball!)

So now what?

Perhaps the league(s) you play in were on hold during the strikeout just as the players were. Just as MLB free agents are scrambling to find jobs with a team, you may now be scrambling to get ready for your upcoming draft. But don’t fret, you’ve been (hopefully) getting your draft strategy secured and trying to figure out who should go where in every round.

The thing about rankings…

When it comes to ranking anything, there is always a bias. Grey may not like Jack Flaherty (Fantasy Outlook For 2022) as much as I do, but since these are my rankings, I am right and he is wrong. My friend last year said I reached for Robbie Ray. Guess who had the last laugh. My rankings also reflect my bias in that I like hitters more and young players more than old players as I want to build a team that will win for years. But you may want to load up on the top veteran players on the board and then try to snag up-and-coming youngsters on the backend of the draft.

That is a valid approach to building a dynasty team. But for now, I am assuming you are building your dynasty team from the ground up and want as many of the top, young players as possible.

So, let’s get to the rankings.

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I’m a little uneasy about putting out rankings at this stage of the game given the uncertainty surrounding the start of the MLB season, but I know many of you need to make some decisions about keepers and are probably starting to think about drafts. I strongly recommend that your league considers delaying any keeper deadlines and solidifying a draft date until the start of the season is more of a certainty. A lot can happen between now and Opening Day and that will directly affect player values. Those of you that read my posts over the years know that I am a numbers guy. My rankings are based on my estimations. Estimations are my version of projections. However, I have not yet started to formulate my estimations given the aforementioned MLB climate. Luckily for me, and you, Rudy, perhaps the best in the business, has generated projections. I think I might have broken a record for the number of commas in that last sentence. Almost certain it was bad grammar. Today’s rankings are based on a proprietary blend of those projections and my patent-pending algorithms.

I don’t often do ranking tiers, but when I do, I share them with you.

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Hello, all you brave, courageous, adventure-seekers, you’ve found the wrong website. This is fantasy baseball, not fantasy role playing, unless it’s fantasy roll-playing and this is Stratomatic, but that’s still not right. Still, fantasy baseball. Good, now that we got rid of all those people wearing fedoras and shopping from the Indiana Jones collection at Eddie Bauer, we can get down to the bidness. The Auction value bidness? Not quite, but you can find all auction values in Rudy’s rankings — one example, 12-team mixed league auction values. This is a top 100 for 2022 fantasy baseball. Let’s do this!

One word about this top 100 for 2022 fantasy baseball, before I give you another 5,000 words. I’m going to avoid repeating myself from the position rankings in the 2022 fantasy baseball rankings. If you want to know my in-depth feelings about a player, then you need to go to his positional page, i.e., the top 20 1st basemen for 2022 fantasy baseball, the top 20 outfielders for 2022 fantasy baseball, the top 20 Patterns In Queso That Look Like Messages From Another Planet for 2022– Okay, but I almost got you. This post is meant to give you an idea where guys from different positions are in relation to each other. Since this post is only the top 100, there’s more players where this came from. 448 more, to be very exact. Next up, there will be a top 500 that will go to 551. Then, after that, there will be a top 7,500 that will go to 8,602, then a top 25,000 that will go to 28,765, then a top 600,000 that will go to 892,121, until we end up with a top kajillion in April that will go to a kajillion and one. Or maybe I’ll stop at the top 500. Yeah, that makes sense. Not to get all biblical on you, but this is the gospel. Print it out and take it to Mt. Sinai and it will say, “Win your 2022 fantasy baseball league, young prematurely balding man.” Projections were done by me and a crack team of 100 monkeys fighting amongst themselves because there were only 99 typewriters. Somebody please buy Ling-Ling his own typewriter! Razzball Subscriptions are also now open, which include the Fantasy Baseball War Room. Anyway, here’s the top 100 for 2022 fantasy baseball:

NOTE: All 2022 fantasy baseball projections are based on a 162-game season, and will be until we hear definitively there will be less games, due to the CBA. Also, I’m going on the assumption the NL is getting the DH.

NOTE II: We’re giving away 10 spots to RazzSlam for subscribers to Patreon. Compete against ‘perts from Yahoo, Rotoworld, FanGraphs, and all Razzball writers.

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The royal we already went over all the hitters for 2022 fantasy baseball rankings. That’s not the “royal we” as that term usually implies. It was me writing it alone while wearing a Burger King crown. I refuse to draft a top starter where they are usually drafted. Unlike hitters, you need six starters, depending on your league depth. In most leagues, there’s a ton of pitchers on waivers that can help you — all year. Not just in April. With the help of the Stream-o-Nator, you can get by with, say, three starters while streaming the rest. (By the by, Razzball Subscriptions are now open. Early subscribers get Rudy’s War Room, which I haven’t drafted without in about five years, and it’s worth the price of a subscription alone.) There’s also the fact that three stats by starters are difficult to predict due to luck. Wins, ERA and WHIP are prone to change, depending on which way the ball bounces and whether or not the guys behind the pitchers can score runs. Finally, the best starters can give you four categories. The best hitters can give you five categories. Here’s Steamer’s 2022 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2022 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers. Anyway, here’s the top 20 starters for 2022 fantasy baseball:

NOTE: All 2022 fantasy baseball projections are based on a 162-game season, and will be until we hear definitively there will be less games, due to the CBA. Also, I’m going on the assumption the NL is getting the DH.

NOTE II: All my rankings are currently available on Patreon for the price of a Starbucks coffee, if you get one of those extra grande frappuccino jobbers. Don’t wait for the rankings to come out over the next month, and get them all now.

NOTE III: Free agents are listed as just that and not yet projected. Once a guy signs, I will write out their blurb and add in projections, or remove them, if they sign in an unfavorable place. They are ranked currently where I think they might be if they sign on for a full-time job.

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