Please see our player page for Martin Maldonado 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.

Yesterday, Jeff McNeil went 3-for-4, 3 runs, 3 RBIs with a double slam (19, 20) and legs (5), hitting .326. It’s legitimately surprising when I see any player who has more than 400 ABs with less than 20 homers, so I’m glad McNeil stopped confounding me. Usually don’t do this before the end of the season recaps, but sneaked a peek at my preseason blurb for McNeil, and I will share it right after this awkward sentence, “Truth bomb alert!  I almost wrote a McNeil sleeper post, but A) Mets B) Mets C) There’s no C. D) The Mets are saying he might not have a set position and be more of a floater, and, ever since Meatballs, there’s never been a good use of a floater. E) Mets F) Mets G) I wasn’t as blown away by his projections that I came up with as I thought I would be.  H) That’s about it.  I) Whoa, there’s a HI in the middle of the alphabet?  Who’s trying to say hello?!” And that’s me quoting me! I projected him for 17 HRs and 8 SBs. Those numbers aren’t far off, but you know where I was way off? Yup and yup, his average. I projected him to hit .269, so what changed? He hits everything well. He is in the bottom seven in the league for soft contact — Just Dong, Bryce, Mookie, Bryce — are a few of the names there. He also leads the league in Swing% (59.5), but he doesn’t strikeout a lot. Translation:  He swings a lot and makes good contact. It’s a recipe that’s worked for Castellanos, Javy Baez and Devers, to name a few. The fear for 2020 is McNeil becomes Castellanos on the Tigers, and not the She-cah-go Greek God of Hard Contact. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

MLB teams were whistling 50 Ways To Leave Your Lover yesterday:

Just slip out the back, Zac, make a new plan, Tanner,
Don’t need to be coy, Greek God of Hard Contact, just listen to me,
Hop on the bus, Jesus, don’t need to discuss much,
Just drop off the key, Greinke, and get yourself free.

The deadline seemed to be lulling people to sleep, then the Diamondbacks stepped up and decided they were contenders, be-bopping Jazz Chisholm to the Marlins for Zac Gallen. But it turned out they were Indiana Jones, when he would replace an ancient artifact with a sand bag by switching one Zack with another Zac, so the booby trap wouldn’t expose them to trouble. See, and I always thought the idea of the outfield hot tub was to expose booby traps.  Incredibly, the Cardinals announced the Zack Greinke to Astros deal hours before the Diamondbacks. The Astros rotation is now, as they would’ve said in the 20’s, bona fide. In good spirits, Justin Verlander tweeted out, “As long as we don’t get Bauer, we good.” I hear that, JV.  I don’t trust home/away splits much at all, unless it’s Coors vs. non-Coors, but, if you must know 2.96 home ERA vs. 2.80 away. Usually it’s the inverse, but Greinke is a 15-year vet; you really think he’s going to pitch that differently in Houston? The answer you’re looking for is no.  He’s a control artist whiz like you’d want from your child when they’re doing the pee-pee dance. Speaking of which, did every team relieve themselves of their relievers? Let’s find out!  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

When I was writing up the 2019 fantasy baseball rankings in December/January — or simply Janember — I couldn’t imagine what February and March had in store — ya know, Farch. Players come out of nowhere in Spring Training to cause us to stop and take notice.  Of course, I just told you to ignore Spring Training stats.  This is true; Spring Training stats are a lot like my pants; they are propped up by a small sample size.  However, or howmever if you’re trying to sound smart, it is important to stay on top of guys who are fighting, and winning, everyday jobs.  Of course, with my Oracle third eye, I saw all of this back in Janember, but my third eye got into a spat with my first and second eye at the optometrist’s office.  My first and second eye were taking the eye test and my third eye was like, “ECFYE–Yo, this shizz is way too easy,” and then my 2nd and 3rd eyes were like, “You’re like the Felicity Huffman of eyes and your cheating is going to have us incorrectly placed with better lenses than we should have.”  It got ugly, and they refused to work together to type up this post for a few weeks.  Finally, they all came to their senses — the sense of sight, specifically — hashed it out at a Friendly’s over a Fribble and we’re all good.  Never the hoo!  With Farch turning into a full-fledged March, it’s time for me to let you in on some thoughts and changes to the 2019 fantasy baseball rankings and what they could mean for your drafts:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Hello, darkness, my old friend.  But replace ‘darkness’ with ‘catchers’ and ‘my old friend’ with ‘we have to get through this to get further into our 2019 fantasy baseball rankings.’  Hmm…Then replace ‘our 2019 fantasy baseball rankings’ with ‘my 2019 fantasy baseball rankings,’ then replace ‘with’ with ‘wit’ to millennialify it, then replace every third ‘replace’ with ‘in place of’ to diversify word choice because my 3rd grade teacher, Ms. Pinatauro, said we shouldn’t repeat words–Actually, she can eat it!  After going over the top 10 for 2019 fantasy baseball and the top 20 for 2019 fantasy baseball (clickbait!), we are now in the positional rankings, and all 2019 fantasy baseball rankings can be found there.  Here’s Steamer’s 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers.  The projections noted in the post are my own, and I mention where tiers start and stop.  I also mention a bunch of hullabaloo, so let’s get to it.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 catchers for 2019 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

J.A. Happ might’ve realized he wasn’t staying with the Jays much longer when guys in the front office kept asking him if he liked the team’s new jersey and it was the same jersey he had been wearing but a small man with a goatee, who said he worked as Peter Dinklage’s stunt double for parts of season 2 and 3 of GOT, was standing with his hand over the ‘Ja’ of Jays.  Happ tried to understand, “Do I like the Blue Ys?”  The front office exec tried to lead him to the answer, “If there was no,” motioning to Dinklage’s stunt double’s hand covering the ‘Ja,’ “In the Jays, would that be okay with you?”  Rather than the low-rent game of charades, they just traded him to the Yankees.  Happ should be happy to be out of Canada, we have a burgeoning coal economy.  No idea what Happ will do on the Yankees, but what he SHOULD (caps for emphasis, not due to a sticky keyboard) is be great.  His 10.3 K/9, 2.8 BB/9 and 3.63 xFIP makes him easily the 2nd best pitcher on the Yankees and around that of a top 30 starter.  Also, the AL East is like this:  J.A. Happ mimes wiping dandruff off his shoulder.  Nothing to it, kid!  Of course, it’s been like this all year and he still has a 4.18 ERA, so ‘should’ and ‘would’ can have a baby and it will still be, ‘who knows?’  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Another day, another small 4 game slate, albeit with a few solid pitchers instead of choosing between garbage and hot garbage fire. We also have a few nice spots to attack hitting, so it should be a fairly straight forward slate. I don’t have much more to say in terms of a general overview of the slate, but before I get to breaking down the picks, I want to point out that the Orioles are starting someone named Jimmy Yacabonis today (in an early game). I refuse to believe someone’s last name is Yacabonis because that is absolutely the last name that a soccer video game uses for a created player from Lithuania, and not an actual person who will be making his first start in the Majors today.

On to the picks…

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To paraphrase DJ Khaled, “We got a Minor key alert!  Another one.”  To paraphrase the cops that arrested Principal Rooney, “This is because of the Minors.”  *Donald Trump looking at the Rangers’ rotation*  “Glad to see Cole/Minor’s jobs are secure.”  Over Mike Minor‘s last four starts, he has a 2.06 ERA, 18 Ks, 5 BBs and 15 hits in 26 innings, after his sparkling one last night when he threw 7 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit, zero walks, 5 Ks, lowering his ERA to 4.64.  I know what you’re thinking, it was vs. the Padres.  Right, one of those starts was, the other ones were the Astros, Twins and Rockies.  So, it’s not all smoke and Minors.  Minor’s peripherals are nothing to write home about (unless his family lives in the Appalachian Trail, then they might like to hear from a Minor) — 7.4 K/9, 2 BB/9, 4.50 xFIP.  So, it’s been a good run (not Niko), but I can’t say I trust him in the big picture, unless it’s about Cole/Minor’s daughter, Loretta Lynn, played with spunk by Sissy Spacek (Spunky Spacek?  Sissy Spunkit?  Spunky Spunkit?).  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The American League West. Home to the defending World Series Champion Houston Astros. Home to the best player in baseball. Is that Mike Trout or Shohei Ohtani? Home to the team that has a need for speed, as the Seattle Mariners acquired Dee Gordon. Can some of that speed and “other stuff” be transferred to the arm of Felix Hernandez? Home to the only team that has had a Bush own the team, pitch for the team, and had, not one, but two POTUS’s. Or is it POTI? Home to the team with the second-lowest payroll in all of baseball. The Oakland Athletics are at $50.7 million for the 2018 season, while the Boston Red Sox have a $229.7 million payroll for the upcoming season. Ladies and gentlemen, the American League West.

The 2018 Razzball Commenter Leagues are now open! Free to join with prizes! All the exclamation points!

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After going over the top 10 for 2018 fantasy baseball and the top 20 for 2018 fantasy baseball (clickbait!), it’s now time to turn our lonely eyes to you, Mr. Robinson Chirinos.  To paraphrase The Refreshments from their should-be smash hit, Fonder and Blonder, “Who said absence makes the heart grow fonder.  Pitches are thrown to catchers, but that doesn’t make my heart grow fonder.”  Later in that song, they sing, “I’ll be scratchin’ it down,” which sounds like it applies to all baseball players.  Or as the rhyming dictionary has never said, applies to oranges.  Any hoo!  The projections noted in the post are my own, and I mention where tiers start and stop.  I also mention a bunch of hullabaloo, so let’s get to it.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 catchers for 2018 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I shall open this column by quoting September 1st Grey: “I’m not enthused by the guys headed to the majors this September.” I agree completely – I thought there would be a lot more intriguing under-the-radar call-ups to discuss, both for NL or AL-only help over the next few weeks, or to grab with an eye on next year in keeper leagues. Instead, I’m reminded that keeping one’s head in the fantasy baseball game can be less fun and more chore-like with each passing day as we inch towards October.

In September, there’s a lot more inventory, but less of value. Veteran players on non-contenders are getting rested more often, as are young studs on playoff contenders. Starting pitchers are hitting innings limits. And since expanded rosters mean that there’s often no need to officially DL players, it can be hard to tell who is going to get at bats at all, and who is pretty much done for the year. If you’re still actively managing a fantasy team in a deep league at this time of year, there may be more names than ever to choose from on waivers… the tricky part is finding anyone who might actually help your team over the next three and a half weeks.

Now, just since I started writing this, news has arrived that J.P. Crawford and Luiz Gohara have reached the show, so things are getting at least a little more interesting. Meanwhile, here’s this weeks handful of guys who may still be floating around in the deepest of leagues:

Please, blog, may I have some more?