Andrew McCutchen is out for the year with a torn ACL. To borrow a phrase often quoted in the White Sox bullpen box score, that’s A. Bummer. On the bright side, Cesar Hernandez (1-for-5) isn’t some obscure Roman emperor, you’re thinking of Nero Antivirus and Flavor Flavius! Last year when Cesar Hernandez had 563 at-bats in leadoff, he was a sneaky top 50 bat. Before last night, he had only 5 at-bats at leadoff. Well, all that’s about to change for the better. Then you have the new Phils’ outfielder, Jay Effin-Up-My-Paddack Bruce (3-for-4, 3 runs, 6 RBIs and his 15th and 16th homers). Also, Adam Haseley (0-for-4) suddenly has value as the Phils’ center fielder, when two days ago you thought Haseley was the singer of Ghost. You say you’re no good for me, I like it ANYWAY! What, I have to work the five-lady crowd too. As I said yesterday, “(Haseley is the) Phils’ 2017 1st round pick. Prospectonator doesn’t love Haseley, giving him 15/7 with little average over the course of a season (by the way, if you click on Haseley’s name, his projections are there for free — like every player). I will say this for Haseley, he looks ready to contribute in the landmark case of sooner vs. later since he played college ball. In NL-Only leagues, I’m interested since McCutchen looks out for a while, but wait and see in mixed.” And that’s me quoting me! The Phils also said (This Phil character has a lot to say!) Scott Kingery (2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 4th homer) will be getting regular starts at 3rd. When asked about Maikel, they said, “…” Oh, now you have nothing to say! But Maikel hit a pinch-hit homer, his 9th. Still nothing? “…” Damn. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Please see our player page for Keon Broxton 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.
It’s a pretty fruitful week for plucking some speedsters from the wire. Injuries continue to open avenues for blocked players and languishing prospects. An analyst could get excited just thinking about it.
- If you want a speed specialist Myles Straw is your man. He did one thing well in the minors: swipe bags. If he hangs around in Houston and manages to get on base he’s an instant category boost. He isn’t likely to play every day. Though that could change if he performs or injuries linger.
- Keon Broxton is getting yet another fresh start. I actually loved him as a late stash in a Mets outfield that had very low hurdles to playing time. The Mets gonna Mets and they chose Carlos Gomez over Broxton. It will be interesting to see if a move to Baltimore can untap some speed like it has for Jonathan Villar.
- Mallex Smith gave us a Billy-Hamilton-Homer last week. He walked and proceed to steal second, third, and home. Smith added a fourth steal in that game as well to give you six in one week from him. There are certainly regrets over dropping him previously.
- With Seattle hosting the Astros for four games buckle up. Bob Cheerios is bottom ten in catchers to run on. Almost every Mariner runs at least a bit.
- The Cubs are hosting the Rockies and Yu Darvish projects to start Wednesday. Could the stars align and give us the recently recalled Garrett Hampson in the starting lineup to face him? A Hampson truther can only hope. Plenty of other Rockies can give you a stolen base that day.
- With Jose Alvarado on family leave, there could be a chance for Emilio Pagan to snag a save or two. Tampa has been a difficult bullpen to pin down, though.
Let’s pivot to pitcher’s being run on this week. Of course a couple Mets are near the top. Darvish has shown he gives zero Fukudome’s about holding runners. It’s also surprising to see a couple of relievers on the list.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Minnesota’s resident bad boy Miguel Sano continues his triumphal return to crushing baseballs and dinging dongs Friday night with his fifth home run (a solo shot) off Reynaldo Lopez in the third inning. Let it Sano. Let it Sano. Well, you get it. It seems like everyone on the Twins is having a career year so far, and Miguel has returned from the IL just in time to get on this sweet 2019 Twinkie action. He’s now slashing .250/.333/.857 with five home runs and nine RBI through seven games. Yes, you read that correct, five home runs in seven games. Extrapolate that. Calculating….calculating…calculating. Let’s see he’s on pace to hit 76 home runs from now until August. Hmm, wait that seems wrong. Irregardless! He’s 7-for-28 in the past week and five of those seven hits have gone yard-o, folks. If that doesn’t make your happy memorial day I don’t know what can. Sure, he’s got 11 strikeouts already, but he’s also slugging .857. This is Miguel Sano. This is what you’re signing up for. He swings and misses with the best in and biz but when he connects *kisses fingertips* mmm, grazie. He’s available in over 60% of leagues, but that number should shrink quite a bit once the Minneapolis die-hards wake up. He was a BUY and he’s definitely worth a flier if you need power, especially while he’s sending every baseball he touches to the moon. Pick him up, Sano you want to!
Here’s what else happened in fantasy baseball Friday night:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Here we are in late May, and the injury parade just keeps on marching along. I’m not sure which is more frustrating – checking baseball news to see that what you thought was your perfectly healthy closer has suddenly been placed on the IL, a la Wade Davis, or having your stud players just sitting in your lineup without playing. Those of you who own George Springer, Christian Yelich,or Khris Davis (who STILL is on the A’s active roster as I write this, even though it was quite clear that he was in intense pain every time he took a swing in his last game) know of what I speak. There are no obvious replacements when you lose one of the guys you’ve been counting on in a very deep league, but we’ll keep doing what we do here: trying to find a few players who might be worth looking at in NL-only, AL-only, and other deep leagues.Please, blog, may I have some more?
The Orioles are on pace to give up 1,776 home runs, because they’re close to our nation’s capital, and that is a great figure, a historic number. A cannot be imitated — help me out here, Captain Lou Albano — never duplicated number. Scratch that, they’re now on pace to give up 1777 home runs because of the Battle of the Assunpink Creek. That was also the title of the Pink concert when her stretch pants were a little too skimpy in the back. “I see your Assupink Creek 2017.” Great show, the aerobatics alone. So, I try to avoid making every lede about hitters in Coors or facing the Orioles, but here goes, because Gleyber Torres has 14 homers against the O’s in five games and 12 homers on the year. There’s math involved in that number. He went 2-for-5 with his 11th and 12th homers. Next up, literally, Brett Gardner (3-for-4, 1 run) hit more doubles than the sketchy guy at the craps table who kept betting the horn and looking over his shoulder. DJ LeMahieu (2-for-4, 2 RBIs, HR) was on the ones and twos, but mostly on the ones, since he hit leadoff and his 4th homer. Gary Sanchez (2-for-4) hit his 15th long ball and don’t mention hitting balls around Gary, he crosses his legs. Then there’s Thairo (2-for-4, 2 RBIs, HR), who should be on the Iron Throne, but that’s a hot internet take, and I’m here for cold ones, but he even has three homers because Our Commissioner Manfred sticks Capri Sun straws into balls and juices them up. If you learn nothing else from this post, and you might not, stream all hitters vs. the Orioles. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
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.Please, blog, may I have some more?
I was waiting for Manny Machado or Bryce Harper to sign before dropping the last bit of offseason signings before the rankings that start on Monday, but apparently the Phillies only have $300 million for each, and they want $325-plus respectively, so we need to go forward with the news without Machado and Bryce. The last bit of big news was Yusei Kikuchi signing with the Mariners. He reminds me of every other Japanese pitcher, but not in a raycess way. He reminds me of Miles Mikolas too, who was only Asian after being reborn. It’s something about Asian pitchers, and non-Asian pitchers who go to Asia and return; they exercise some serious control. Maybe it’s the culture. I had a robot watch Gung Ho 15,000 times to tell me what it thinks and now the robot is speaking super-racist. Yo, robot, why are you so culturally inappropriate? “I have no culture of my own, so I adopt yours. And I kill puppies.” AHHH!!! ROBOT MURDERER!!! RUN!!! Or roll your swivel chair towards a door if running is too much for you. Kikuchi, which is going to be fun for me to say this year, comes with a lot less fanfare than Ohtani, but I do think he can be better than him, pitching-wise, in his first full season. Ohtani is a unicorn in Babe Ruth’s body, we all know this. Kikuchi reminds me of Mikolas and Ryu and others in that mold. He’s a decent strikeout guy, but won’t blow people away, while also having impeccable command. I’m definitely looking to draft him this year, then passing him up every other year when he fails to throw 130 IP in consecutive seasons because the Japanese also completely overwork their starters. In fact (Grey’s got more!), the Mariners have already said Kikuchi will only throw an inning or so every fifth or sixth start to try to preemptively avoid the inevitable arm injury that befalls every Japanese starter. For 2019, I’ll give Kikuchi projections of 9-7/3.67/1.18/136 in 151 IP. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this offseason for 2019 fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Real baseball is weird. Real sportswriters are even weirder. From Sportsnet.ca, “Donaldson trade marks abrupt split from Blue Jays after promising start.” Abrupt? Maybe I’m just heartless, but why would the Blue Jays be salty about getting rid of Josh Donaldson? If he would’ve stayed with the club, he could’ve opted into a $18 million contract and been back next year in Toronto insanely overpaid and blocking Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Then, from Sportsnet.ca, “But trading the star third baseman and cash to the Cleveland Indians, who visit Toronto next week, of all places? Even the New York Yankees would have been a more palatable destination.” I’m sorry, what? Why are the Indians worse than the Yankees? Because Edwin is there? Because the Jays’ GM used to be in Cleveland? Is this just bad writing? Or is real baseball just odd. I seriously have no idea. Elsewhere, other sportswriters were talking about what a great move this was. No wonder people come here and get floored when I say something about a guy like Josh Donaldson being overrated. They’re being lied to everywhere else. This was not a great move by the Indians. Donaldson can’t stay healthy and has no place to play. Maybe he can give them a solid at-bat off the bench, but Curtis Granderson might’ve been able to do that too. Don’t worry, will get to him and all the other September roster news. As they say at gang initiation, after the jump. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
The only way to compare things is to look in the past and see how we match up to the year previous. For pace reasons, for setting your mind at ease, and to basically not bore you to death, I am only going back one year because I have gone over the decline of the ever loved “stolen base” as a cumulative stat. So in 2017 through the first 81 games of the season, (roughly… because every team plays different amounts of games) there were a combine 1,405 steals by all MLB teams. In 2018, we currently sit at 1,310. Now remember games for AL teams are off a bit, but still, we are sitting at 95 stolen bases fewer than the year previous. That is an eye catching number, even when you break it into a smaller number like percentages it still sucks for the SAGNOF love. Just to delve into it further, there were three players with 30-plus steals and three above 20 steals at the All Star break last year. (With the leader, Billy Hamilton garnering 38.) This year, there are only six players above 20, and none above current theft leader Michael Taylor with 23. The downward trend, the going away from using the steal as an asset in fantasy is a dying trend that we are lucky to be apart of from a draft usability standpoint. I am more of a “see what I know baseball guy” rather than a number cruncher, but nobody uses the steal effectively to set the pace of a game anymore. Now for fantasy it sucks that we are mimicking real life, as a grab the best players to accumulate stats to fill our rosters mentality is the M.O., but I would be interested to see how your league standings are reflecting this downward trend in steals and how much the league leader in the category has, and if you think it is worth chasing as a catch up stat for the second half of the year. So give me some feedback, and here’s some charts of catchers to steal on and pitchers to exploit. Cheers!Please, blog, may I have some more?
I’ve been thinking about how great things would be right now if I’d just been restricted from drafting a handful of certain players this year. When I like a guy going into the season, it’s always tough to decide just how many shares I should stock up on, and it’s particularly painful when I overbuy in situations where the answer should have been zero. If I had been unable to place Jose Quintana, Yu Darvish, Luis Castillo, Zack Godley, Robbie Ray, Marcus Stroman, or Sonny Gray on a fantasy team in 2018, it seems like all would be right with the fantasy baseball world. Instead, I have leagues where a combination of these guys has pretty much sunk my team, and other leagues where I am doing well only in spite of having to overcome horrible (or non-existent) pitching from them.
It’s unrealistic, though, to think any fantasy team will be mistake-free, and as destructive as a few bad picks can be in a deep league, it does make acquiring a waiver-wire gem all the more sweet. I don’t know about any of these guys turning your season around, but it really is difficult to predict when the diamond in the deep-league rough will pop up — so we’ll keep plugging away with a handful of players who may be available in your NL-only, AL-only, or other deep league.Please, blog, may I have some more?