The hot stove has been bubbling this winter, mostly thanks to Jerry Dipoto. Bullpen arms tend not to rank all that high in offseason coverage, so I cobbled together the notable moves for your reading pleasure. I know, I know, you’re thinking seriously ‘Wan, I’m not anywhere near the state of mind you need to think about the saves chase. There’s no rest for the closing wicked when it comes to the bullpen landscape, I’m afraid.Please, blog, may I have some more?
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In the biz, we call this post, In Appreciation. It’s like In Memoriam, but Jennifer Hudson isn’t singing a song and no one died. What did you just ask? Is your childhodd guinea pig alive again because I just said, ‘No one died?’ Doode, I’m saying no one died in general. No, that doesn’t mean General Tsao is alive again! Shut up! Yesterday, Javier Baez went 3-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs with his 31st homer, hitting .295. That day? For this year? As the pimp told his lady of the night, ho-hum. But, five ladies and gentlemen, Javier Baez is your NL MVP if only Cubs fans vote! By the by, Baez has more 100 RBI seasons in his career than Bryce Harper. I will now drop a 140 WUT. How about we make every post the rest of the year about how much Bryce sucks? Worst 35-homer hitter in the history of baseball ever? Okay, that’s prolly Adam Dunn, but Bryce is real close for useless. When the Nats need a big hit, he Ks or walks. When the game is out of reach and no one is on? Harper’s you’re man. Okay, this is becoming about Harper instead of Baez. On the year, Baez has 31 HRs, 21 SBs, .295 and 90/100 on the runs/RBIs. On our Player Rater, he is teetering between 5th and 6th overall. For 2019, I’m having a hard time envisioning me ranking him any lower than 10th overall, and likely much closer to top five. Now, about that sucker Harper… Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Felix Hernandez went 6 IP, 7 ER, ERA at 5.73 vs. Bartolo Colon – 7 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 5.18. Or is that Bartolo Colon, weighing in at 518 pounds from parts unknown and ratios you don’t want to know? This matchup was billed as, “F-Her/Colon, rated NC-17. Or maybe simply NR, as in Not Recommended.” All kidding aside, F-Her’s fallen so far, Colon is outpitching him, and Colon is not outpitching anyone else. That’s a Trump tweeted, “Sad!” On the bright side, Rougned Odor (2-for-5, 2 runs, 4 RBIs and his 14th homer) has rediscovered our love. Two years ago, Odor beat up Jose Bautista. Last year, he beat up his fantasy owners. This year, he’s beating back the beat like Vinny from The Jersey Shore. I’m glad I went back in on him because making up is sweeter than caramel honey on your bed sheets. (Is that an R. Kelly song? It should be.) I’d contend (for the featherweight title) that Odor really hasn’t done anything different this year. Yes, his walk rate is nearly double, but his BABIP has turned around. Here’s what that leads me to believe: You get a little bit luckier, so you don’t feel compelled to swing at everything, so you get more selective. It’s a self-fullfilling prophecy in direct opposition to what happened to him last year. Does this mean I’m going back in him for a third year in a row next year? Damn skippy! He can’t fail me again! (He totally can!) Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Lance Lynn had to shave his beard to play for the Yankees, because the Yankees are fascists. I wish Giancarlo would grow a mustache as giant FU. What, are they going to bench him until he shaves? Actually, Giancarlo should carve an F and a U in both of his sideburns. That would be such a 1970’s move. You could see Willie Stargell, high as a kite, being like, “Carve, ‘Down with Whitey’ in my sideburns.” Little did we know a clean-shaven Lynn would be an all-new pitcher, throwing 7 1/3 IP, 0 ER, 2 hits, 1 walk, ERA at 4.58. Prior to the trade, here’s the Twins pitching coach talking to the bullpen catcher, “Do you think Lynn might be dragging his right side a little bit because of all that facial hair?” “I don’t know, but Sasquatches have been deemed the new sexy ‘It Thing,’ so who’s to argue?” Yesterday, we saw more of Lynn (literally and figuratively) of what made him a solid starter in St. Louis for many years. His season numbers are still garbage but, if nothing else, the Stream-o-Nator loves his next start. If he can command his pitches, he could have a solid final seven weeks. It’s all about The Art of Shaving two walks off his rate. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Know why Steve Pearce went off yesterday for three homers (3-for-5, 6 RBIs and his 6th, 7th and 8th homer)? Because he’s only owned in 3% of fantasy leagues. That’s spiteful, Steve Pearce. Spite is one of the seven deadliest sins. Right after that soup the fat guy ate in Se7en. Not to be confused with Goop, which is Paltrow’s career after she stopped being harassed by Harvey Weinstein. Allow a gross, sweaty producer to rub his genitals against you in unwanted advances, win an Oscar. Sleep with that guy from Coldplay, do movies with Huey Lewis. Speaking of Coldplay, Pearce has been terrible for the last few weeks, but the Sawx have committed to Pearce in a favorable lineup spot, at least against lefties, which he’s rewarded them with solid production (hitting near-.360 vs. lefties). He’s not quite at a Goop-level bounce back, but he is above starring with Huey Lewis and/or Chris Martin. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
The trading deadline is days away and the roles they are a changing. In comes one out goes the other. Closers losing value left and right while the waiver wire warriors of the world are circling like buzzards for the SAGNOF scrap heaps. The latest in the foray of closers to go is Joakim Soria, now a Brewer. The White Sox closer role is likely to go to Jace Fry or Juan Minaya. Not an awesome situation or a good predicament to be in, but a closer is a closer. The SAGNOF model should be: “Leave no good save behind”. Similarly, the Orioles traded Zach Britton to the Evil Empire, Brad Brach assumes the role there for the time being or until he gets traded for assets that the Orioles can ruin. The trade winds and finalized deals don’t help the set-up man either, as key components to the back-end game have been replaced by acquired talent. This is life for the ever building bullpen foundation of playoff contending teams. Build from the back, because the girth of talent that exists in the starters just isn’t there. So if you are currently zonked from losing a closer that no longer has a professional job of closing, it is time to speculate where speculating looks speculative. Look at guys on the secondary for teams that are rumored to be wheelin’ and dealin’. The Rangers, Nationals, Twins, Rays, Tigers, and to a lesser degree maybe the Cardinals… Be ahead of the curve instead of being caught looking at Uncle Charlie. Closer news is fluid this time of year, and by the time this gets posted there could be 2-3 more trades that make me look even dumber than I already do. More after the jump, with success stories and diminishing returns. Cheers!Please, blog, may I have some more?
DJ LeMahieu hit the DL with an oblique injury, and is out for months. It happened when DJ was carrying a crate of records. “Aunt Audrey is requesting the Electric–Side! My side!” As DJ collapsed into a heap of bar mitzvah party favors he’d collected. Garrett Hampson (0-for-3) was called up to fill in for him, and I tried to add him everywhere. Prospector Ralph had him in his top 100 fantasy baseball prospects, and said, “Hampson brings a nice mix of plus contact and plus-plus base running ability. With his combination of contact, speed, and plate approach he has a shot to carve out a niche as a top of the order run producer, which is different than Grey who is a ‘runs producer,’ as in he produces crap.” Hey! Hampson could have a 6 HR, 15 steal 2nd half, or, knowing the Rockies, Hampson will sit on the bench four out of five games while Pat Valaika plays. I wish these were laughter tears. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
For those of you looking for the “Aretha Friends and Family” talk channel, I am not going to say you are in the wrong place, but before you go, what the heck does TCB mean in the damn song? Because there is no way it means “takin care of business”. But anyways, thanks for coming and you can now leave as this geek-dom is full on extra for the ROS closer rankings. The ROS rankings are important… Just like every other ROS stuff, because anything said purely as an acronym is full on important. Just ask the government. So the rest of season closer rankings are more dictated on who is losing their jobs rather than who will continue TCB. This rankings will not include corns, overpriced salads or freezes, just straight cold hard facts about who I think will be traded, demoted or basically just suck the rest of the year. Short, sweet, and to the point. So if you were looking for some long didactic look at how closers will be the plight of your fantasy season because of X, Y and Z, you aren’t getting it. Rankings 1-30ish. Period, send it to the print shop. Cheers!Please, blog, may I have some more?
The closer cavalcade of debauchery is well in season. Rewind four months ago and look at your team… If you drafted Jeurys Familia, Alex Colome and Bobby Osuna, you probably came out of the draft smiling like a freshly picked peach. Now you look at your team today for the first time in a month, because you most likely let the ship sail on the season because of injury, attrition or trades to your bullpen. The last two names have been done ad nauseum by me and other bullpen savants around the web… So now we look at Jeurys Familia. Or a tale of losing a job do to injury, returning, and basically sucking all the trust out of even owning him. From the beginning of the season until June 7th when he went on the DL, he posted good numbers by Donkeycorn standards; 14 saves with K/9 rate above 10 and ERA of 2.48 and a BAA of .245. All within the strain of imagination as a set it and forget it closer. Now we sit here on June 29th, and in six appearances since, he still sits at the same save total of 14, K/9 of 6.35, ERA of 9.53 and BAA of .357. Now, I am no math whiz, hell I am barely even knowledgeable about what actually is cheese whiz, but those numbers are awful and garbage. Add in the fact that the Mets as a team are in the toilet, have fired their GM, and have a worse record than the punting from day one Marlins…. Trade-value wise, he has zero in fantasy and almost in real life, because teams aren’t going to trade for a guy who can’t get outs. As an impending free agent, he should and will be traded, maybe to a team that has an opening in middle relief, but I don’t see him gaining closer status for the near future with the Mets or another team. So if you are a Familia owner and holding out hope for some sort of revert to the former here, I am unfortunately going to tell you that he gets less than 5 saves the rest of the year it looks like. More closer news and views, read on or don’t. I will continue to sit by the pool regardless!Please, blog, may I have some more?
All gravy as us Italians-Americans say. New York Yankees rookie flamethrower slash phenom slash spot starter Jonathan Loaisiga made his major league debut Friday night pitching five strong shutout innings, giving up just three hits, four walks and striking out six for his first MLB vicky in ever. Called up from Double-A Trenton Johnny was 3-1 with a 3.00 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, and 58/4 K/BB ratio through 45 innings. If that K/BB just made your eyes pop like mine did, it’s because the four walks he issued last night in his debut are the same number he’s walked all season in AA. Perhaps some of the struggles he had with his control Friday night were more nerves or jitters and less indicators of what’s to come from Loaisiga. Despite the four free passes, he was excellent out of the gate, Johnny Lasagna layered on the cheese, striking out four in the first two innings with his real pretty mid-90s fastball mixed in with his slider (17 swings and misses induced) and was helped out by a couple double plays. He hit some trouble in the fourth, but managed to pitch his way out of a sticky bases-loaded two-out situation by striking out Christian Arroyo. Yankee fans are calling him “Johnny Lasagna” because he’s a-spicy meatballs-a! Mama mia! Rays manager Kevin Cash called him Little Riviera. That seems a bit over-the-top as well. Either way, I am calling him a player to watch after that performance. Lil’ Jon is telling you to Get Loaisiga, but Jon always jumps the gun on these rookie pitchers. Loaisiga’s first major league stint might be a short one, but I could see him sticking around for another start or two while Masahiro Tanaka is still on the DL and much like this whole Yankees team, his future is very bright. He lines up for another home start next week versus the red-hot Mariners, and I could see streaming him there and for the short term. Add him or no, Johnny Lasagna is not just Garfield’s new favorite player, he’s a name fantasy baseballers are going to hear a lot going forward. He was a BUY and he’s worth a grab for the upside alone, the layers of cheese and pasta are all just bonus.
Here’s what else I saw in fantasy baseball Friday night:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Tis that season! Whether you are a football fan or not, and not that football fan… Though the crew over on that football site do an amazing fantasy job. So for the few of you that aren’t totally dizzy by my words of soccer, then let’s roll baseball into soccer and let the fantasy good times roll. So for the next month the world, not ‘Mericas, will be casting its gaze on the beautiful game. So while half the population is watching futbol, you can expand your bullpen horizons and deepen your reliever core. The trade winds for relievers are already blowing and with just over a month to go before the trade deadline, grabbing the relievers that are secondary or even tertiary now (ones that won’t kill your rates) are all the rage with millennials AND baby boomers. Situations to monitor and use to your advantage? The Padres, Royals, and Tigers. We all own the closer likes of Brad Hand, Kelvin Herrera, and Shane Greene. But what are the ownership rights to Craig Stammen, Kirby Yates, Kevin McCarthy, and Joe Jimenez? Way slimmer. And combined like Voltron, their ownership for all four of those secondary relievers is less than one closer. So basically free. The key to mid-season closer acquisitions is being first. Save that beloved FAAB kitty and be early rather than later. So if you are looking at your roster, it was rhetorical… I know you are, get rid of that sixth SP or that bench bat that does nothing and play the reliever wait game. Save now to help later. Cheers!Please, blog, may I have some more?
Last week I went over some hitters that may be on the waiver wire that can help you out in certain categories that you’re struggling in. At this point in the season, most of the diamonds in the rough have been mined off the waiver wire. You won’t likely find many guys out there right now that can help you in every category, otherwise they wouldn’t be available. However, the waiver wire still remains the go-to place when looking to improve your roster, and there are plenty of guys that can help you out in certain categories. This week I’m exploring the standard pitching categories, and going through some guys that might be able to help you out.Please, blog, may I have some more?