Please see our player page for Nate Jones 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, the Indians called up Oscar Mercado, after a hilarious bit where they phoned their Triple-A team and asked to speak to Oscar and they were met with, “The Oscar Mercado called and said they’re out of you!”  The Indians have now cornered the mercado on Oscars like Meryl Streep.  Mercado has speed to burn. He is so fast he just ran into your room, mussed your hair and ran back out before you even had a chance to flinch, which is great because you’re secretly being filmed for the new Netflix game show, Flinch.  Mercado had one season in the minors with 50 steals.  I just became aroused like Lorenzo Lamas after he sees himself in the mirror.  Prospect Mike said of him, “Mercado came to Cleveland from St. Louis at last year’s trade deadline in a move that probably slipped under everybody’s radar. He had a crazy good season in Triple-A though, hitting .278 with eight homers and 37 steals.  Caveat:  Grey is dumb.”  What?  That’s not a caveat. I grabbed Mercado in a few leagues, because I could use steals, and, brucely, who doesn’t need steals?  Not to answer, but bat your eyelashes and look pretty. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

This week is all about securing a closer for the end of the season. There are a host of names that could fulfill this role depending on availability in your league. Some of the guys I’m looking at this week are Mychal Givens (FAAB: 3%), Nate Jones (FAAB: 3%), Tommy Hunter (FAAB: 2%), and Ty Buttrey (FAAB: 2%). All of these pitches are providing saves in their current bullpen situations. I’ve listed the players based on talent and opportunity.

Givens and Jones are easily the most skilled of the bunch. Both were vying for the closer role even before other names were traded away from their respective teams. Givens was an add when he secured 8 wins in two-straight seasons as a dominant long reliever for the Orioles, and Jones is always a name people will grab as a high-level 8th inning arm.

Hunter and Buttrey are new to the equation.  I’ve speculated on Hunter multiple times throughout the year when the Phillies bullpen was in flux. He is providing a ton of value the past two seasons without being relevant in the fantasy community whatsoever. Now that Seranthony Dominguez seems to be out, Hunter should be the guy for the rest of 2018. Buttrey is in the same situation with Angels closer Blake Parker being relegated to the 8th inning role. He is a very unknown name that is now saving games and could go overlooked in FAAB this weekend.

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Mets outfielder/grandfather Jay Bruce hit his second home run in the past three days last night, a 3-run shot that put the game out of reach and he finished the night 2-for-5, with his eighth home run and four runs batted in. When Jay has-a-day at Fenway that calls for the throwback “Bruuuuuuuuce!” Despite battling injuries all year long, the veteran is now batting .270 with four home runs and 12 RBI in September and he’s getting hot at just the right time for his team and fantasy owners. The Mets have won seven games in a row, you guys! That’s right, that same Mets team that won just five games in June are 7-3 over their last 10 games! Why do you care? Well, Bruce’s mighty power bat could be a big reason why! There was also a rat in the dugout and on the field at ‘Family Friendly’ Fenway Friday night, and I’m inclined to say the New York Mess probably brought the plague with them, but at least no one has hand foot and mouth disease…yet. Barring him catching the black plague, Bruce might catch fire in the next couple days because that’s what Jay Bruce does, so I’m telling you now that all the signs are there for the beginning of an absolute tear and maybe you should grab him before that happens. It’s easy to forget he hit 37 home runs between New York and Cleveland last year. I’m not saying he gets to 30 home runs, or even 20, but the Mets are hot, Jay sits in the heart of this line up and one of a few players capable of a 5+ homer week. He was a BUY and he’s available in over 75% of leagues and the team is Queens in a fantasy gold mine right now. I can’t believe I’m saying that, what a wild season!

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

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Choosing the right closer is hard enough when there is only one to choose on draft day.  Tons of factors to guide your hand…  Jump forward 50-plus games and when the situation has multiple faces and not a ton of situations from which to choose: is it worth the squeeze?  The White Sox closer situation has gone from one, to a few, and back again multiple times this year, and now it has swung back to Joakim Soria after garnering the last two saves.  The conundrum here is that Nate Jones had gotten the previous three save chances.  Than if you scroll the calendar even farther, Jace Fry got a save and retread Bruce Rondon also factored in on one occasion in mid-May.  So with a team that only has 13 saves all year, better than only one other team, the Marlins (who are a complete and utter disaster for saves). So when chasing saves, and we all do it, even you, the guy who can’t make eye contact way in the back…  It is part of the FAAB chase and the most alluring I might add and frequent drain of funds. So with a team that has flip-flopped three times in 50 games, with 13 saves and on pace for a MLB bottom-three in save chances, is it worth the headache of this guy or that guy?  I wanna root for the Mexecutioner, and some guy named Nate, but they are basically like part-time lovers, and I would rather stream the spot with great counting stats that matter.  Soria’s K/9 is in the mid-10’s which is admirable, but on a game-to-game basis, the save chase comes down to volume, not the here and now.  Yes, Soria should be owned, and yes Jones should be owned.  But I am just bringing this up for your sake of saves hope.  If you can pair either one of them at the right time, obviously when they are on a hot streak of two saves in 10 days, do so and upgrade your save booty.  Advice over, bits of tid to follow.  Cheers!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Opening a gift, “Aw, geez, Kershaw, you didn’t have to give me your arm.”  That’s Ross Stripling at the office Christmas party.  “Don’t mention it.  Hey, Tommy Lasorda, could you get off my lap, my back is starting to hurt.  Also, you’re not wearing pants.”   I forget if I ever told you — the royal you since you’re wearing that Burger King crown — but a friend of mine told me Lasorda still goes to the Dodgers’ clubhouse to use the showers and likes to walk around naked.  How’s dem visuals!  By the by, I’ve reached the age where I forget if a friend of mine told me that, I heard it on the radio or if a commenter told me.  Welcome to your 40’s, you don’t look a day older than 27.  No, really, I don’t.  Anyhoo!  Last night Stripling did what he’s done all year — 5 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 1.52.  The slightly bizzonkers thing is his peripherals say he’s nearly this good — 11.1 K/9, 1.9 BB/9, 2.63 xFIP.  Don’t love he throws only 92 MPH, but he’s dominating with the curve.  He credits pitching coach, Rick Honeycutt, with his newfound success, saying he told him to throw the curve as hard as he can.  I see no velocity difference in his curve, according to the stats, but stats-schmats, Honeycutt-Schmoneycutt, whatever works.  At this point, hard to ignore the results(schmults).  Anyway, here’s what else I saw in fantasy baseball yesterday:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

In the spring of 2018, the Catholic Church summoned Father Carmen Sandiego to the Vatican to give him the job to investigate miracles, supernatural signs and apparitions.  Unfortunately, Father Carmen Sandiego, who wasn’t very good with his GPS, got lost for four days in the Steven Avery car lot in Wisconsin, then ended up in Milwaukee.  When he wandered into the parking lot of Miller Park, and Brewers fans tailgating with MGD and cheese curds, everywhere Father Carmen Sandiego turned he heard about the resurrected Jesus Aguilar, so he chose to investigate.  He found a player who had lowered his strikeout rate 8% from last year, upped his walk rate, cut his soft contact and could be a sneaky 25-homer, .275 guy.  Jesus didn’t appear to him in a vision, he was flesh and blood, like the Lenny & Squiggy cosplayers he also encountered.  However, Father Carmen Sandiego didn’t report back to the Vatican, instead he grabbed Jesus for his fantasy team.  Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

For all intents and purposes, Jean Segura was a flopapotamus last year, failing to get to any of the previous year’s stats across the board.  That includes the all loving steals category.  He has gone from 33 in 2016, to 22 last year, to already having 11 in just over 200 plate appearances, which is a phenomenal pace for anyone that bought into him a his ADP in draft season.  Eleven steals already leads to a projection of right around 40, and 40 steals is fantastic, as it has only been eclipsed 10 times in the last few years.  Which brings back my old standby statement: that steals are a dying breed except for the select few.  I fully expect that the Mariners, who currently sit top-6 in MLB in steals, to keep the running game as a a major cog now that Robbie Cano isn’t around showing his elite speed.  With Dee Gordon and Segura, the Mariners have a duo of speed that really is unrivaled by other MLB teams.  The past week for Jean has seen his total jump from 5 to 11 steals overall. (Coincidence that Cano isn’t in the lineup that he is taking the base rather than trying to get hit over?  I think not.)  Nothing about that screams coincidence, it would be more of a coincidence for me to casually run into my ex-girlfriend outside the church on her wedding day.  So with a slash line of .414/.419/.655 since the removal of Cano, he looks primed to be an even more of a steal threat moving forward.  That is also a nod for Dee because the re-invention of lineup changes is the way a team plays.  I read that in a fortune cookie just now.  So welcome to SAGNOF day, kinda like Rusev day, but with less Bulgarian influence.

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Howie Kendrick is out for multiple 10-day DLs with a ruptured Achilles injury.  Look at it this way, if Achilles couldn’t come right back from an Achilles injury, how would Kendrick?  He can’t, he’s out for the year.  Enter stage left, Juan Soto.  True story, as I was listening to Prospector Ralph and Lance Broetc. discuss the top 25 prospects for fantasy baseball (clickbait!), every time Ralph would say Juan Soto I’d think he was asking Lance if he wanted soda.  I kept wanting to say, just give him a Dr. Pepper and stop asking if he’s thirsty!  I don’t drink Soto, because it makes me burp, but I’ll tell you what?  I’ve found a special appreciation for La Croix.  Give me flavored seltzer or give me death, as Alan Hale Jr. once said.  Any hoo!  Love, love, lurve what the Nats did.  If you have a guy that’s going to be a superstar?  You call him up!  H to the hockey sticks with an E in between!  If the Blue Jays don’t call up Vlad soon, I will call them the BJs for the rest of eternity.  Ralph has gone over Juan Soto so many times, that it’s silly to reiterate.  Literally, he just wrote a Juan Soto fantasy.  If you’re really lazy and you have wheels on your barcalounger so you can get around, the most succinct is Soto could be a 35/12/.300 hitter during his peak and is 19 years old with extra fizz.  You can expect this year something similar to Bryce Harper’s rookie year — 20/15/.270.  If your eyes don’t bug out on that, you’ve lost feeling in your eyes.  Get them checked.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Starling Marte hit the DL with an oblique injury, which apparently opened up space for Austin Meadows to be called up.  Okay, I wanna be happy.  I do.  C**nt Hurdle seemed to do the right thing, Spike Lee.  However, I wanna mitch and boan about one thing.  The Pirates had to trade for Corey Dickerson to clog the outfield?  Dickerson screams DH.  Literally, he wakes at night screaming, “DH!”  He has David Ortourettiz’s.  Marte has already said he doesn’t think he’ll be out more than a week or two, so where’s Meadows going?  Back to the minors?  The Pirates have been doing The Running Man in place for years now, maybe you call up your 1st round pick who has 1,626 minor league at-bats!  Here’s what Prospector Ralph said in his top 100 fantasy baseball prospects, “The skills put him in the top three entering last season, but a injury riddled season, including his third consecutive year with a hamstring injury have me doubting the upside I once dreamed on. Meadows at his best combines plus hitting, running, and plate discipline with untapped raw power.  There’s still superstar upside here.  Speaking of which, I’d love to hit Grey upside his head.”  What the hey!  He looks like a 10/20/.280 guy to me, assuming he stays up, but assuming makes an ass out of the U. of Ming.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Trevor Cahill hit the DL.  Fun Fact!  If you have Hill in your last name, there’s a 100% chance you’re injury prone and will be on the DL for the majority of the season.  It’s a curse that began when Curt Schilling put ketchup on his ankle. With Cahill being DL’d, the A’s brought up Dustin Fowler to, uh, hit.  Yo, A’s, you lose a pitcher and bring up a hitter?  Michael Lewis is right, you do do things differently!  Speaking of do-do, how about those A’s?!  I’m being unnecessarily harsh.  A thousand apologies to the 1,200 A’s fans that are three-quarters of a mile away from the field, just past foul territory.  Any hoo!  Here’s what Prospect Ralph said about Fowler, “Fowler hints at an enticing set of fantasy tools. His combination of power, steals, and the ability to hit for contact make him a potential five category contributor in 5×5 roto formats. Could return a .270/20/20 season if his surgically-repaired knee holds up.  If only we could surgically repair Grey’s brain.”  What the hell, my dude!  Fowler should start at center over Canha, who should now platoon with Joyce, who should be out of the league.  I didn’t grab Fowler anywhere, but I could see it for a power/speed combo.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?