Please see our player page for Merrill Kelly 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.

We’ve gone over the final 2022 fantasy baseball rankings for hitters and the top 20 starters. This is different than Final Fantasy rankings where you rank Final Fantasy 1 thru Final Fantasy 15. That’s hardcore nerd shizz! This is simply fantasy baseball — we’re softcore nerds like Emmanuelle is to porn. So, there’s no more of these godforsaken recap posts left. You’re welcome. I, my over-the-internet friend, will be talking next about 2023 rookies. Let’s boogie to the next year, boogiers! Anyway, here’s the top 40 starters for 2022 fantasy baseball and how they compare to where I originally ranked them:

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Not since Rollie Fingers’s mustache left his face in the middle of the night in July, 1979, and impregnated my mother, during one of her weaker moments, after being told her ravioli wasn’t as good as her mother’s, has a mustache had such a remarkable evening. Yes, I’m saying that to you today. The mustache that impregnated my mother that usually laid on the upper lip of Rollie Fingers was not as great as Spencer Strider‘s. Do you know how hard it is for me to admit this? Spencer Strider (8 IP, 0 ER, 2 hits, zero walks, 16 Ks, ERA at 2.67. ) is having such a ridiculous season his ERA is 2.67; his xFIP is 2.33. That’s right, he’s been unlucky! Spencer Strider came into the year with a 45-grade from Fangraphs. Itch ranked Strider behind Langeliers and Cristian Pache in the Braves’ system. This is not to disparage either. This is to say, no one saw this coming. For 2023 fantasy, Spencer Strider can’t get better, can he? I just told you, he’s been unlucky! His command could get better; his strikeouts are prolly maxed out. I don’t see Strider getting better, maybe staying similar for 2023 fantasy. That’s still really good! I wouldn’t be shocked to see Spencer Strider as my 1st pitcher selected in some leagues in 2023 fantasy. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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It’s actually as in Brett “Beatty” — not “Batty,” because I know in your head, you see Brett Baty and think Batty. Oh, yeah, I know what is going on in your head. You’re thinking I also pronounced it Brett “Batty.” Wrong, Slick Rick, the Ruler! I’m in your head, but you’re not in my head! In my head, I like to pronounce Brett Baty’s last name “Bat-Why,” and with a flourish like it’s Pad Thai. I’ll tell you Bat-Why! Bat-Why because just last week he landed on Itch’s top 25 prospects for dynasty leagues, where he said, “Brett Baty has no business in AA. He’s repeating the level after posting a 118 wRC+ in 40 games last year, and he’s slashing .355/.427/.655 with eight home runs in his last 26 games. Who’s in charge of this stuff? What’s happening here? This is dumb, so I think somehow Grey’s behind it.” Okay, not cool. Bat Why’s numbers at Double-A ended up 19 HRs, .312/.406 in 89 games, as he was finally promoted to Triple-A after Itch’s insistence, and he’s continued to hit there too. The Mets need a third baseman with Eduardo Escobar IL’d and Baty is being called up. I Bat-Why’d on all my teams where I too need a third baseman. He could be the last big call-up. By the why, who doesn’t need a 3rd baseman? The one team who drafted Jo-Jo-Ram in your league? Cool, not me, which is why I Bat-Why’d and that’s Bat-Because. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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A crucible is a trial or challenge faced by a protagonist, where they endure a challenge and come out new and improved. Kind of like the time Grey brought us to Chucky Cheese as a “team building” exercise. Naturally, we all started sumo wrestling in the ball crawl pit, only to find that Grey had released several crocodiles among the balls. Where did he get the crocodiles, you ask? I dunno, I didn’t ask — I spent most of the evening consoling Son after he lost his big toe. But after that “Chucky Crocodile” experience, we emerged as a bonded team, readier than ever to do battle on the fantasy baseball front.

A lot of you are in that fantasy crucible right now. About 50 games remain in the season; I round up because I only work in base ten numbers. So, about 10 starts remain for your favorite hurlers, constituting about 25% of the season. Rankings fail more than ever now: playoff teams will rest their aces, non-playoff teams will give cups of coffee to their minor leaguers, and a quick search of the baseball news sites indicates some teams are talking six-man rotations already.

Of course, “rotation” can be loosely construed because minor league relievers are plentiful and can eat up plenty of innings. From August 17, 2021 until the end of the 2021 season, Paul Sewald made 26 appearances and made 26 IP. Comparatively, Logan Gilbert — the top starter for the Mariners last year — made 8 appearances and pitched 42 IP in the same span. Over on the White Sox, Michael Kopech made 16 appearances and notched 23 IP in the same span. Kopech pitched as many innings over the final bit of 2021 as did Carlos Rodon, who ran out of steam and watched his fastball velocity plummet. Sometimes, your fantasy dream is as much about letting go of players who have run out of steam as it is about finding new, shiny players.

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“Hologram Harry Caray leading the nation, nay, the world in Take Me Out To The Ballgame at the Field of Dreams game, wait, what’s this? Hologram Tupac, Hologram Babe Ruth and Hologram Barbara Bush have joined him, embracing. It’s East Coast, West Coast, Midcoast and Southcoast coming together, as only holograms can! If holograms can come together, then why can’t we, as people, come together? Rob Manfred has done it again!” *wavy lines* Oh my God, we’ve been inside a Rob Manfred’s dream sequence! It was a Field of Dreams dream! AHHH!!! I need to shower! So, the Field of Dreams game went off again without a hitch. Oops, I mean without a Hitch, meaning Will Smith and Kevin James both were not in attendance. For some reason, MLB thought the Reds and Cubs should be rewarded that showcase. If you’re going to have two teams who are trying to lose games, and dismantle its stars, then why not do a Major League theme in Cleveland? One thing baseball has is decent movies. Why not do a different one each year? Bull Durham theme one year in a MiLB park; The Natural theme one year in a lightning storm; The Rookie theme one year with all old players. The possibilities are endless! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Yesterday, Reid Detmers went 7 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 12 Ks, ERA at 3.62, as he threw an immaculate inning. Ya know what? There’s a lotta immaculate innings this year. I bet Rob Manfred has them using an immaculate inning ball. Detmers now has two huge starts this year (he no-hit the Rays earlier in the year) built around a rough patch, surrounding a demotion that was tagged “Fixer-upper,” and upper he fixer’d. Since he was recalled from his demotion, he’s been essentially lights-out (24 IP, 3 ER, 31 Ks). There was 9 BBs in those 24 IP, which is still a concern, but he looks like he’s on the standard path of ugly rookie year (last year), up-and-down year two (that’s right now) and next year will be the real breakout. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

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As we march diligently toward the two-thirds point of the season, we are getting closer and closer to knowing who players actually are for the season. But, because it’s major league baseball, we are also still getting surprised every day. Cole Irvin is the best pitcher of the last two weeks? Michael Harris leads all of […]

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Leagues are won and lost on the Merrill Kellys (Kellies? Kelli?). Nailing your top picks helps, but those are your top picks. Most times it’s just bad luck if they don’t work out. The later picks? Those separate from the men and five lady readers from the boys and girls. The picks that everyone rolls their eyes over and yawns. The picks that people are like, “Hey, I have to get home and leave this five-hour draft. Just give me whomever is leftover out of Merrill Kelly and Miles Mikolas.” Then your leaguemates goof around and finally are like, “Let’s give Chuck, Merrill Kelly, because Kelly and Chuck both suck.” Those two pitchers — Kelly and Mikolas — weren’t pulled from thin air. They were both drafted on average right next to each other at 483th overall. Sitting around them were Alex Reyes, Rich Hill and Michael Pineda. If you nailed the Kelly, and/or Mikolas in deep leagues? You were sitting pretty, just as Merrill Kelly (8 IP, 0 ER, 3 hits, zero walks, 7 Ks, ERA at 3.04) was yesterday, and all season. That’ll teach your leaguemates to try and sabotage you with Merrill Kelly. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?