It was a wild offseason for the National League, one highlighted by Trea Turner’s lucrative ($300 million) transition from the Dodgers to Phillies, along with fellow shortstop Xander Bogaerts’ introduction to the NL, via the San Diego Padres and $280 mil of his own. Two of the absolute best shortstops in the game are anchored […]Please, blog, may I have some more?
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Baseball, like a flower, blooms in the spring. They also share equally effusive PR people. Just the other day I read about how a petunia’s branches gained 15 pounds and was in the best shape of its life. Sure, it’s always good to look at spring training numbers to give you an idea what you can expect from guys during the season — can I draft Jarred Kelenic yet?! Dude is mashing like the ball’s a potato! Players in spring training are facing the top pitchers who are all displaying their best stuff. No one needs time to get warmed up. No one’s trying new pitches or getting a feel for the ball. They are at the height of their game in the beginning of March. Our former commissioner, Bud, once doffed his toupee and tried to have the World Series played in March. That’s the true pioneer of a sped-up game. Forget the pitch clock, just play the World Series at Spring Training. Since these spring training numbers mean so much, I decided to look at some players stats so far:Please, blog, may I have some more?
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:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Guess what, y’all?! A new Spencer Torkelson dropped! No, he’s nothing like that old Spencer Torkelson! For one, he’s not young! He’s more like a new older Spencer Torkelson! For two, the Tigers are calling up Kerry Carpenter because they have no conceivable reason to keep him down anymore, because of the stats he was putting up in the minors — .316/.384/.653 with 30 home runs and 75 RBIs in 96 games between Double-A Erie and Triple-A Toledo. That’s the Mecca of Ohio. It’s why it’s called Holy Toledo. He was on a recent prospect stash list by Itch, and I say stop stashing and start doing! Comerica Park sucks. More like Crummica! Owned it! But someone making that good of contact with that sorta power is worth a look in deeper mixed leagues. Let’s see if Carpenter can drum up some offense and make the Tigers’ stop feeling like Rainy Days and Mondays. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
This Jacob deGrom (5 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 2 baserunners, 12 Ks, ERA at 2.53) is among the best pitchers ever. I don’t know what’s changed for him in recent years, but he’s gone from one of the best pitchers in the league to one of the best pitchers ever. He’s Walter Johnson in color. He’s Bob Feller on the back of a motorcycle doing 101 MPH, holding out a four-seamer. He’s “Aw Shucks” Bob Gibson. The last time Jacob deGrom carried a perfect game into the 6th, it was broken up by Clint Barmes, who was an all-world sleeper who could hit anyone. Yesterday, the Braves were deer meat without a Clint Barmes to turn to. DeGrom now has the most strikeouts in his first 200th career games (1,523). The problem, of course, deGrom looks gassed at 70 pitches. He is the Icarus of pitching. One of the best ever for just a moment in time. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
So, the Trent Grisham/Luis Urias trade is still being sorted it seems. If you’re the Brewers and Padres, do you think you won or lost the Urias/Grisham trade? Or do you think it’s a push and decide to go back to the well like Baby Jessica and try one more? How you answer that decides whether or not you make the Josh Hader trade, right? Since that Hader trade was made, it must mean both teams thought they won the Grisham/Urias one. Right? You don’t trade with a team that just fed you an L, do you? Well, I’m here to say the Brewers won that trade, and I think they won this trade too, but I’m a big fan of trading away closers, so I am biased. Yes, even top tier ones. With that said, I do think it’s odd the Brewers made this trade — appearing like sellers — as they are leading the NL Central.
The trade in full: Josh Hader to the Padres for Taylor Rogers, Robert Gasser, Esteury Ruiz, and Dinelson Lamet. Do the Brewers just have such a “We can fix him” mentality they just have to take on messes? Oh man, the Brewers are Kate Hudson. That makes Taylor Rogers Matthew McConaughey; Dinelson Lamet is Paul Rudd and Esteury Ruiz is John Krasinski. What an All-Star cast of lovable losers that the Brewers, excuse me, Kate Hudson, er, I mean, Brewers need to fix! Looking at this from the other side, is the move from Taylor Rogers to Josh Hader worth the multiple players being sent away? Who’s the buyer here? Who’s the seller? Who’s the Boss!? Kinda like the Josh Hader trade because if you look at it at first, you’re like, “Brewers got hosed,” but then you look at it more and you’re like, “Padres got hosed,” but then look at it more and you’re like, “No, the Brewers definitely were hosed.” The Josh Hader trade is the Mona Lisa smile of trades.
— Razzball (@Razzball) August 1, 2022
So, Josh Hader is clearly the new closer in San Diego. Truly hope Devin Williams gets a chance to be the Brewers’ closer, but it’s been floated that the Brewers might like him in setup and roll Taylor Rogers out there for saves. Floated by whom? Me, right now, in these last few sentences. As for Esteury Ruiz, he was sent down, and Lamet is likely to be used in a similar role as in San Diego, for now, at least. Unless Kate Hudson can work her magic! Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
For what it’s Cronenworth, I wrote this prior to the news the Yankees were acquiring Andrew Benintendi:
Trade deadline predictions:
L. Castillo: LAD
J. Soto: STL
W. Contreras: NYM
D. Robertson: SDP
J. Quintana: NYY
T. Mahle: MIN
B. Drury: MIN
F. Montas: LAD
A. Benintendi: NYY
T. Skubal: TEX
J. Bell: HOU
C. Rodón: STL
I. Happ: NYM
J. Gallo: DFA
D. Peralta: NYY
— Razzball (@Razzball) July 27, 2022
Let’s make it 2-for-2 off the bat and DFA Joey Gallo! That would also be a better hitting line than Gallo’s ever had. The Mets got the Yanks so shook after a walk-off win they went out and acquired a guy who can’t even play in Toronto in the playoffs. Doesn’t seem like the smartest of trades, but I’m sure Cashman did his research. So, the assumption is Hicks goes to the bench (finally!), and Benintendi goes out to left field. Then what happens when Giancarlo returns, and they trade for David Peralta and Matt Carpenter hits 6 homers in a week and the sky is falling! I don’t know. Benintendi is clearly helped by this move, due to the stadium and lineup, but he does have a very flat Launch Angle and kinda makes baby contact, so I don’t think this boosts Benintendi to, say, a top 20 outfielder. He’s around a top 40 outfielder now, and I’d say he’s top 30 now. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Poor Red Sox fans. After being subjected to Mookie Betts game winning home run and his game ending diving catch only a night before, Friday night the Blue Jays completed a historic Beantown beatdown at Fenway scoring 28, yes, TWENTY EIGHT runs on the Sawx hapless pitching staff like it was CFL game. Boston Massacre, […]Please, blog, may I have some more?
Yesterday, was not just our Independence Day. Yesterday, was the halfway point of the baseball season. So, Halfway to Independence from Jonathan India Day. You cannot tell me our forefathers just happened to put the Fourth of July on the exact midpoint of the baseball season by accident. They didn’t put hairspray on their platinum silver wigs like they were Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada and just happen to drop the doozy of the Declaration of Independence on baseball’s 81st game played just as a little oopsie-daisy on their Yankee Doodle like how your daddy did your mommy. No way! This is why baseball is the National Pastime. So, Happy 4th of July to even all you cowards who drafted starters early. Speaking of starters, Brayan Bello will start for the Red Sox this Wednesday. Bello will pitch for a scream. Take it Highlights, it’s yours! Bello was in the Itch’s top 50 starting pitcher prospects, saying, “Bello added strength and velocity over the lost minor league season and now features a mid-90s fastball with a little extra dotting the gun once in a while. He was successful enough before, as we’ve detailed in these pages, but now he’s striking out 36.9 percent of hitters in High-A and 31.1 percent in AA—a big jump from the 22.6 percent he posted in 2019. His fastball gets a bit too much for him to be a no-doubt starter unless he finds a nasty breaking ball to go along with his plus changeup. Would love to see him take that fastball and hit Grey.” Not cool, man! In a 15-team, mixed league, I grabbed him and I felt unhinged even as I was doing it, but I need something to Bello about. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Yesterday, the Nats’ GM Rizzo put his feet up on his desk, rolled up a million dollar bill and used it to lit a cigar filled with million dollar bills, saying, “And that’s why I gave Patrick Corbin $140 million eight years after his prime.” Patrick Corbin went 8 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 12 Ks, ERA at 6.06. You can think to yourself, “Damn, I should’ve streamed Patrick Corbin yesterday because the Streamonator loved it,” but I’d prefer to think, “I ain’t ever starting a pitcher with a 6+ ERA.” His last three years of ERAs are…I’d ask for a drum roll, but they deserve a sad trombone…4.66, 5.82, 6.06. If we were in Bizarro World, you’d be collecting your crown from America’s Next Top Model and Patrick Corbin would be an ace. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Louie…Kah-steel-yo…Cah-still-oh…Cah-stee-low…Lou-ess Cah-sty-lo. Did I get it? Was it in there somewhere? I took thirteen years of Spanish (as detailed in my ebook Who Is Grey Albright — available in our shop!) and my Anglo tongue can’t get Luis Castillo out (6 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit, 3 walks, 10 Ks, ERA at 3.38) but he was sure able to get out the Red Sox yesterday! (You didn’t think I’d land that sentence as well as I did; admit it.) Going into Fenway and holding the Sawx to one hit and striking out 10 is something to make Daddy stand up and take notice. Luckily, I have a standing desk so I don’t need to hunch over to type this. Castillo’s had a strange journey from borderline ace to “Do I even want to draft him in a shallower league?” His 9.5 K/9, 2.7 BB/9, 2.89 xFIP in 26 2/3 IP is still a pretty small sample size — that’s what she said derisively! — but it’s the best his numbers have looked in any capacity for years. His velocity is pretty down, and, coupled with the shoulder soreness in March, I wouldn’t necessarily bet on it continuing, but better to be here than Berrios. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Bert Blyleven allowed a major league record 50 homers in 1986. It was in 271 innings. Hunter Greene (5 IP, 5 ER, ERA at 5.89) might beat the record in 100 innings. There’s an old adage (I don’t know what an adage is but it sounds good) and it goes that starters are better at home. Just in general. Of course, there’s exceptions. Or I should say “of Coors.” Any hoo! Greene is the type that could throw a 15-K shutout vs. the Dodgers or give up five homers to the Marlins with Miguel Rojas leading the charge. His opponent or environs don’t matter, so it’s hard to roster a guy like that. Also, don’t ever say “environs” in real life, person you’re with has ever right to punch you. The offensive star of the game for the Reds was Kyle Farmer (4-for-4, 3 runs, 5 RBIs and his 2nd and 3rd homer). Was his first game back from being out with general soreness. Lucky he didn’t run into Major Setback. Also, in this game, Nick Senzel (4-for-4, 3 runs, 1 RBI) did what we expected of him in 2019, and 2020, and 2021, and, well, you get the picture, as he hit leadoff. Was this a sign of things to come or just going against a terrible pitcher? Well, Justin Steele (2 IP, 7 ER, ERA at 5.40) did not look good. Maybe it wasnt the best idea to pitch the Man of Steele against a guy the color of Kryptonite. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?