Before anyone else beats me to it, just call me number four, or #4 for short. The host of the Razzball Podcast has finally reached it’s lowest point… Yours truly. Who decided I should host two podcasts let alone one?!?  That man’s name is Albright, Grey Albright, and he is the Fantasy Master Lothario, Protector of the Realm, Giancarlo Stanton Stalker of more than 500 Feet Henceforth. Don’t try and tell me you’re not interested in listening to Grey’s giddy cackling about Giancarlo between breathy moans. I know you do, so we do that. We also discuss Shohei Ohatni, Zack Cozart and Ian Kinsler to the Angels, The Marlins fire-sale, Ronald Acuna’s callup date, and much, much more. Finally, please make sure to support our sponsor by heading over to RotoWear.com and entering promo code “SAGNOF” for 20% off the highest quality t-shirts in the fantasy sports game. It’s the latest edition of the Razzball Fantasy Baseball Podcast:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Marcell Ozuna was traded to the Cards, because the Marlins only had him under control until the end of 2019, and the Marlins are playing for 2022.  Then, in 2023, the Marlins will be playing for 2042.  Seriously, what the eff are the Marlins doing?  I understand trying to get younger, but they’re trading guys who are young.  It’s not like they’re moving Martin Prado.  Maybe having a guy who discarded women when they reached the age of 22 isn’t the best idea to run a club.  Jeter continues to view 27-year-olds as ancient.  Hey, Jeter, you’re not unloading Minka Kelly here, you’re unloading Jessica Biel.  With the extra Wild Card, I’ll never understand slashing an entire team.  Before the selling spree, the Marlins were literally two players away from a Wild Card berth.  Now, they’re five years away.  Madness, man, madness.  Any hoo!  Marcell Ozuna averaged 413 feet on his home runs last year, because OZUNA strong.  If you overlay his home runs last year with his new park, he keeps his 37 homers and gains an extra one.  It’s more or less a push in the Busch.  OZUNA love Busch, it is OZUNA favorite type of hedge, much better hedge than saying someone will be president next year without saying a name.  For 2018, I’ll give Ozuna the projections of 101/35/106/.278/1 in 607 ABs.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this offseason in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The concept is simple: phrase hypothetical scenarios where events that didn’t happen actually did, or events that did happen actually didn’t (I’m already confused). Detailing how these changes – or lack thereof – would have impacted the coming 2018 fantasy baseball season creates some interesting “what ifs”.

What if Giancarlo Stanton didn’t adjust his mechanics?

For anybody with an idea of what Giancarlo Stanton looked like in the box from years prior, his shift from June to July of 2017 was noticeable – very noticeable. While I often find more satisfaction in subtle changes – 2017 Chris Taylor comes to mind – if a change pushes said player into the MVP discussion, I put my particulars aside.

I’ve always found Stanton’s motions in the box exceptionally rhythmic. Flat bat, considerable bat speed, two-handed follow through with a uniquely refined path to contact that creates head-scratching home runs like this one.

Stanton closed off his stance considerably, becoming an aesthetic comp to Adrian Beltre, plus 20 pounds and six inches (of height – get your mind out of the gutter!).  “TewksbaryHitting.com” has a nice breakdown of this evolution, despite having nothing to do with Barry Manilow or whatever a “tewk” is. Their freeze frame gif captures the gradual rotation of Stanton’s upper body prior to the pitch, making his numbers more visible to the pitcher.

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Went over the catchers1st basemen2nd basemen and shortstops and top 20 3rd basemen for 2017 fantasy baseball.  Guess what’s next!  No, not pitchers. Read the title, man.  In 2010, there were only 5 outfielders that hit 30 homers, in 2011 there were 9, 14 in 2012, in 2013 there were 3, a small bounce back with 6 in 2014, eight in 2015.  Last year, 11 outfielders hit 30 homers.  This year…DRUM ROLL!….15 outfielders hit 30 homers.  Obvious trend.  As for steals, there were 14 outfielders who stole 30 bases in 2012, 10 in 2013, 11 in 2014, five in 2015 and seven in 2016.  This year:  two (!) outfielders stole 30 (Hamilton and Maybin) and only six players overall.  So, how about that power, huh?  As before, these rankings are from our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater with my comments.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 outfielders for 2017 fantasy baseball and how they compare to where I originally ranked them:

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Yesterday….yesterday….yesterday….
All my fantasy baseball championship titles seemed so far away.
Now it looks as though one is here to stay *sung in a very fast voice* oh, crap, nope, because I didn’t draft Daniel Murphy because he didn’t believe in the lifestyle of a gay,
Oh, why didn’t I believe in Murphy like he didn’t believe in a…gay…gay…gay.
Suddenly!  David Price’s arm is not half of what it used to be.
There’s a shadow hanging over me,
Oh, it’s Giancarlo’s groin that I made of plaster of Paris to admire and it just exploded in paste on me…Suddenly!
Why the season had to go, I don’t know, it wouldn’t say… because it can’t talk, it’s a baseball season that ended yesterday…yesterday…yesterday!
Fantasy Baseball was such an easy game to play,
Now I need a mother’s basement to hide away.
Oh, I believe in yesterday…day…day.

*sniffles*  Here, take a tissue.  You have to excuse me, I don’t have any clean ones.  What will we do for the next few months without an update on a Mets’ pitcher elbow?  Will Rougned Odor reveal he was accidentally batting while crossing his eyes and that’s why he barely hit .200?  What will we do without a James Paxton injury update?  WHAT?  WILL?  WE?  DO?  Prepare for next season, of course.  But, first, let’s bask in the last day of the season.  Today is the day when you realize you’ve spent 27,000 man hours this summer beating eleven other strangers to win a virtual trophy, and it feels great!  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Grey Albright and I started the podcast by reminiscing about porn in the pre-internet days, where going “incognito” meant sneaking into the bathroom for five minutes with a Playboy. That seamlessly transitioned us into fantasy baseball talk, of course, as we got equally as excited about the historic rookie seasons of Aaron Judge and Cody Bellinger. We broke down Miguel Cabrera’s disappointing year, and discussed how far he will drop in 2018 rankings. At the midway point, Ralph Lifshitz joined the show to discuss Jeff Samardzija, Marcus Stroman, Jose Ramirez, Marcell Ozuna, and Amed Rosario. Finally, please make sure to support our sponsor by heading over to RotoWear.com and entering promo code “SAGNOF” for 15% off the highest quality t-shirts in the fantasy sports game. It’s the latest edition of the Razzball Fantasy Baseball Podcast:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Erasmo Ramirez was masterful Friday night in what was one of his best starts of the season going eight strong innings against the we-don’t-lose Windians, allowing just three hits, one earned run and striking out a season high 10 batters. Erasmowing down hitters? ErasMo Innings, Mo Strikeouts? ErasMost definitely more comfortable in Seattle than in Tampa? Ugh, I know. Headlines are hard you guys, I ran out of steam about three weeks ago and I’m sorry but that’s the best I’m going to do. However you headline it, after being wang-jangled around the Rays pitching staff, from starting rotation to bullpen and back again, Ramirez has settled nicely into the starting pitching job he deserves since being acquired by his old team, the Seattle Mariners, in July. He holds a respectable 3.79 ERA in 10 starts with the M’s since, but it’s the 52/13 K/BB ratio that really raises my eyebrow, Dwayne Johnson. If we remove a hiccup he encountered with a rough start in Houston, Erasmo has three quality starts in September with a 22/4 K/BB ratio. Yes, more please! He gets to finish his season strong with a favorable start next week in Oakland, and outside of the obligatory Matt Olson home run, I could see him pitching a successful outing there. At about 10% owned, Ramirez is a streaming option readily available in most fantasy leagues if you’re looking for an easy win to push you over the edge. And if you’ve been out of contention for weeks and are still reading this, first, Ramirez could be a decent late-late round sleeper to consider for 2018, and second, thanks for sticking with us and not jumping ship to fantasy football coverage (which you can check out here). You guys are the true Razzball MVPs. Except of course for the writing staff, obviously, they the real MVPs, especially me.

Here’s what else I saw in fantasy baseball Friday night:

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Yesterday, Dee Gordon went 4-for-6, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and stole his 55th base.  Mean’s while, his teammate and my crush-bae, Giancarlo Stanton went 2-for-5, 3 runs, 4 RBIs and hit his 55th homer.  According to Elias Sports Bureau, the last time two teammates hit their 55th homer and stole their 55th base in the same game was Jimmie Foxx and Sugar Cain in 1932.  Though, historians, led by Ken Burns, have said Sugar Cain played on a doctor’s prescribed cocaine named Hurry Coke, a precursor to Cherry Cola.  Sugar used to bunt with one hand while rubbing his gums with his other hand.  Any hoo!  Dee Gordon is carrying my NFBC team in steals, where I’m in first, and SAGNOF, and all of that, but steals are pathetic this year, as they were last year.  25 players have 20 or more steals, after 28 last year, but with a few players at 19 steals, we should get to 28 players again.  However, 14 guys stole 30 bags last year, and, this year, we’re at six players.  I will now laugh hysterically to avoid crying.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Tim Anderson is a guy that I would glance at earlier in the season and then move on with my life and with our beloved Top 100. He is a nice young player and all, but he wasn’t spongeworthy. Now, though, we’re in the last couple weeks of the season, and homeboy is lighting it up. And more than just hitting, TA is running wild. He has six stolen bases in his last seven games after not running much at all this year, so he is providing SAGNOF value, as well.

Anderson has been so hot that he is your PR15 king this week, with a 17.18 rating. That stretch of games only includes two home runs, which should give you an idea of just how hot he has been at the plate in order to be able to record a 17+ PR15 with only two long dongs. Our boy is hitting everything in sight and swiping bags now.

If you are battling down the stretch in roto leagues, Anderson can help you while providing some SAGNOF. If you are battling it out in weekly H2H league playoffs, though, he doesn’t have the same kind of appeal. IF (read: big IF) he stays hot, he will help across the board except for power and possibly RBI, while helping with AVG, R, and potentially SB. Compared to the standard stiff on the waiver wires, he looks like a stud. But in terms of cross-category production and overall value, he does have a pretty low ceiling. Grab him for the hot streak, but don’t drop anyone of value for him if you can help it.

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After twenty-one weeks and 163 contestants the Hey Batter contest finally has a champion. In case the title didn’t give it away, the winner is LenFuego. It seems that winning the regular season portion of the contest and earning the ability to pick one Unpickable each week of the playoffs was enough of an edge to win it all. With the help of Jose Altuve (17), Mike Trout (25), Charlie Blackmon (34), Paul Goldschmidt (27) and Anthony Rizzo (13), LenFuego ended the playoffs with 303 points. His biggest contributors, however were Giancarlo Stanton (44) and Anthony Rendon (36).

Peter guigli finished in second place with 283 points. The difference was Jonathan Schoop, who scored 20 points for LenFuego back in week one of the playoffs. Or perhaps it was Leury Garcia who only managed five points in week four for Peter guigli. We could play this game all day, but at the end it will still be LenFuego standing tall.

The top hitter over the course of this contest was Giancarlo Stanton who scored 476 points. Joey Votto (512) and Charlie Blackmon (488) were actually one and two, but since they were Unpickables, Stanton is the king. Aside from Stanton, Jose Ramirez and Marcell Ozuna were the only other batters in the top ten that were not Unpickable players.

Congratulations to LenFuego and thanks to everyone that participated in this inaugural event. Here are the final playoff standings…

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