Carlos Santana was signed by the Phils.  Did Carlos Santana ever have a song called, “Harumph?”  Cause he’s making me harumph all over the place.  Doesn’t Hoskins play 1B?  Will Santana move to 3rd?  I agree, Maikel hasn’t been great, but he’s too young to give up on.  Maybe Santana plays outfield?  Hoskins plays outfield?  Maybe they juggle left field?  Maybe they juggle balls hit to them in left field?  Maybe they’re juggalos?  I got questions, y’all!  The scenario of Hoskins in the outfield seems most likely with Franco getting pushed down the order, but not out of the lineup entirely.  This might be something to watch in the spring with The Jacked Up Jew, and how he manages his new Latin classic rock guitarist.  As for Santana, his stats last year look like that of an aging slugger.  Carlos Santana’s gone from Oye Como Va to a hard-of-hearing Latino, ‘Oye come again?’  His average home run distance from 2016 to 2017 came down ten feet, but Citizens Flank might help a little.  His line drive rate went up, but his fly balls are going nowhere, and his Hard Contact was down.  He’s even seeing more pitches inside the zone, because people just aren’t scared of him anymore.  His stats don’t scream, ‘The end is nigh,’ but they are whispering, ‘Soon, my pretty.’  For 2018, I’ll give Carlos Santana projections of 74/24/81/.257/4 in 552 ABs.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this offseason for fantasy baseball:

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It was bound to happen one of these days, but we here at the prospect podcast have finally created our War and Peace. It’s only fitting that the Atlanta Braves minor league system would be the subject of such a saga. To cover all of these prospects I reached out to a friend of the show in Jason Woodell (ProspectStorm.com, Prospects1500.com, and @Jasonatthegame), a man who’s seen more of these Braves prospects than just about anybody. So you’ll get some first hand accounts from a really knowledgeable baseball mind. We also dig into the Shohei Ohatni injury, have a detailed discussion of Platelet-Rich Plasma injections, and the success rate. You might need to listen across a few sessions (we go an hour and forty minutes). It’s all the Braves Prospects from Ronald Acuna to Austin Riley to Mike Soroka, Kyle Wright, Kolby Allard, Luiz Gohara, and the rest. See what I mean? There’s so much to talk about. 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 Prospect Podcast:

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It’s with heavy hearts that we bid adieu to the dynamic duo of Halph. That’s right, it is with great sadness that I inform our listening public that Michael Halpern has moved on to the high stakes world of Bird Law. Our once loyal podcast host is needed by our feathered friends. Remember loyal listeners, bird law in this country is not governed by reason. With that said, the one the only Lance Brozdowski will be joining me as my permanent co-host until, he too grows up. I’m Peter Pan y’all, not to worry, old Ralphie ain’t going nowhere. Unfortunately Lance is unavailable until after Thanksgiving, so you got me for at least an episode. In today’s show I touch on Peoria’s stacked Arizona Fall League team. As well as my thoughts on Luis Urias, Mitch Keller, Kyle Lewis, and Eric Filia. It’s sure to be more Endorphin Ralph than you can handle. It’s the latest episode of the Razzball Prospect Podcast.

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How angry would Braves fans be if I spent the entire opening to their personal prospect spank bank eulogizing Roy Halladay? I won’t do that, though I did think about just writing 1,000+ words about how much I loved Doc. Then again, perhaps a Doc Halladay eulogy, might be easier to swallow for Atlanta fans, than more talk of John Coppolella. That being said, I have no idea if they will lose Kevin Maitan, my guess is no. More on Maitan and disappearing value in a few. The best way to sum up the Braves farm is to say. “This system is deep AF!” That was the most millennial description of the Braves system possible. It’s true, I went 15 deep into the Diamondbacks system, I’m going 25 deep today! I hope the phallic undertones aren’t lost on you. Because make no mistake, the Braves are the biggest swinging johnson in the room. Their 10-20 is better than most team’s top tens. So whatever black magic, underhanded dirty shizz Coppolella was doing. It was working. This team has outsigned, outdrafted, and outtraded all comers. That includes you Yankees and White Sox! I’m talking the last two years of course. Any later than that is a different era. For you Prospect hounds this system has it all, future MLB arms of all types, a through the roof prospect superstar in Ronald Acuna, power bats, speedsters, glove first catchers, bat first catchers, relief arms, and Methodists!

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Every year in early October, a few hundred prospects converge on the Minor league complexes of Arizona to celebrate the grandest of all prospecting expeditions. The Arizona Fall League. Now I want you to backup, and read the words “Arizona Fall League” like you’re Ham Porter talking about Babe Ruth. Okay, now that you’ve reread the opening sentence, I’d like you to read the last one again in a “silly” old lady’s voice. Okay, now that you’ve done that we can move on. BTW, if you didn’t do any of that out loud, you win. You’re not an idiot. As for the Arizona Fall League, or the AFL as us “cool kids” call it, tis’ back in full swing. In case you don’t know it’s a 6 team league in Arizona run by MLB, and the teams are comprised of top prospects from almost every MLB organization. The ultimate goal is to showcase these talents for scouts and MLB executives, but there’s a multitude of reasons why players head to Arizona. It might be further refinement of a new swing adjustment or pitch, but it’s very often to make up time. Over the last few years we’ve had a string of exciting prospect classes in Arizona, and this year is no different. Needless to say, we’ll be covering some of the top prospects in the game today. Even one that earned his own Rookie post from the incomparable Grey Albright.

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Ayo whaddup, it’s ya boy Grey Albright aka the Fantasy Master Lothario aka White Chocolate aka The Ladder You Use To Reach New Heights aka The God Particle aka Trump’s Next Supreme Court Nominee Judge Reinhold aka Paid Overtime aka A Close Parking Spot When You’re In A Rush aka Al Swearengen’s Swearing Dictionary aka Teacher, We Don’t Need No Education aka The Weird Guy That Latches Onto The Main Character In Oscar Films I Think His Name Is Paul Dano aka The Butcher, The Baker and The Candlestick Maker aka The Stinging On Your Pinkie Toe When You Clip Too Close aka Paul Anka aka Forget How You Spell My Name And Just Get Me My Coffee!  I just spent thirty minutes looking up Mindy Cohn and whether or not she’s a lesbian.  Ah, the offseason.  You are a soothing mistress that touches my naughty bits with idle hands.  She’s apparently not a lesbian, but a confirmed friend of the gays, and she wanted to lose weight in the 80’s, but the producers asked her to avoid it for the character of Natalie.  They finally agreed to let her wear baggy clothes.  No comment, except the “no comment” comment has the weight of a thousand eye rolls.  A quick preamble about the 2018 fantasy baseball rookie series that is coming from me over the next few weeks.  Rookies could get a post if they meet MLB eligibility requirements, less than 130 ABs or 50 IP.  That means no Yoan Moncada, no Rhys Hoskins, no Rafael Devers, and finally no Amed Rosario.  In 2012, the first player I highlighted was Mike Trout.  That wasn’t an accident.  I said in the Mike Trout post, “He’s ranked number one for me. Numero uno. The Big Mahoff.  He’s the big Statue of Liberty in New York, not that girly one in Paris!”  Since then, I’ve attempted to make the first rookie post about a prospect that will be the top rookie for fantasy the following year.  Two years ago, that honor went to Corey Seager.  Yes, it’s an honor, don’t be so condescending.  Last year, it was Yoan Moncada. (But the 2nd rookie post was Aaron Judge!  If this were horseshoes, I’d be so money.)  This year the top fantasy prospect isn’t no ordinary man, this is the prospect I be seeing in my sleep.  Ronald Acuna will be your number one 2018 fantasy baseball rookie.  Will Acuna be named to the All-Century Team in 85 years or edged out by a robot with grabby hands named the Hitter-Tron that my great-great-nephew will sue due to trademark infringement only to find out it’s the same Hitter-Tron that once graced this little fantasy baseball blog called Razzball?  Can Acuna be a top ten outfielder in 2018?  So many questions and so little time to look up Mindy Cohn info!  Anyway, what can we expect of Ronald Acuna for 2018 fantasy baseball?

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Willie Calhoun vs. Gleyber Torres. Nick Senzel vs. Willie Calhoun. Willie Calhoun vs. Michael Kopech. These are just a few of the Willie Calhoun centric conversations Ralph Lifshitz and I engaged in during this week’s prospect podcast. We also got to a few of the other guys in our 2017 end-of-season top 20 prospect rankings, debating how high Scott Kingery’s upside is, is Ryan McMahon worthy of a top 20 ranking, and if Royce Lewis could be the next Victor Robles. We discuss everybody from Ronald Acuna, Vlad Guerrero Jr., and Eloy Jimenez, to Taylor Trammell, Juan Soto, and Alex Reyes. 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 Prospect Podcast:

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I know, you thought it was going to be 100 prospects right? Well, it’s a good news/bad news thing. The good news is I will be ranking the Top 100 Prospects and beyond, however I will be doing them in increments of 50. So the bad news is you only get 4,000+ words and 50 prospects to read. Lets be honest, we are amongst friends here right? Even 4,000 words is at least two, if not three bathroom sessions. I know that’s when you read these, and I’m cool with it. Now that we’ve made assumptions about your bathroom reading habits, lets move along. As always, I’ve tried to balance the right now value of “close to the majors” prospects vs the high end talent. While also trying to be somewhat objective, and conscientious of the general consensus, which is important to trade value. That’s not to say I don’t go rouge and aggressively rank some players I like. Ahhh, who am I kidding it’s all personal bias. So here you go, dig in. The next 50 will drop on Wednesday at the stroke of midnight.

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It’s the last day of fantasy baseball. Bummer… I know, I don’t want to talk about it either, but I’ve run out of ways to open posts at this point in the season. So, I’m going to just state the obvious, and awkwardly fumble into the purpose of this pointless, yet verbose opening. I have a surprise for you, a sneak peak if you will of my forthcoming memoir “Fights & Prospects: Life as a Crab & The Top 100 Prospect List”. I’ve decided in an effort to market myself as a Rick Flair-esque persona, I’m going to write a tell all autobiography. Only I’m not going to talk about myself at all, but simply give you an updated Top 100 next Sunday. Today is the first ten from that list. So the Top 10 Prospects for 2018 Fantasy Baseball if you will. Titles are fun! It’s drawing heavily from my Positional ranks that we just finished, and bridges the gap to the Top 100 and beyond. In closing, thanks for reading this season, and remember to check here for prospects rundowns for all 30 MLB systems throughout the off-season.

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Take everything you know about Byron Buxton’s defensive prowess and throw it out the window. It means nothing in his fantasy valuation.

I’ve avoided even mentioning all-encompassing phrases for the majority of my time writing about baseball, but this theme of defensive value permeating fantasy esteem has emerged from the depths of the internet to catch my intrigue; Buxton has rekindled that curiosity.

Fantasy sports deal so much with numbers, the latent reasons why we make some decisions are never actually recognized. I traded Xander Bogaerts and Michael Conforto for Francisco Lindor after a month of baseball in a redraft categories league. For a short period of time, I felt duped by the name value of “Mr. Smile,” attributing my fault to the wizardry he has displayed at shortstop. But I was wrong. Lindor has quietly produced a season good for 61st overall in roto leagues, a rare contributor in each of the five hitting categories. Conforto left that fantasy team of mine with the hopes of all Mets fans acutely pressed on his shoulders. Reflecting on the only healthy individual on the Mets season – jk lolz – I’m surprised the outfielder still sits as a top 100 player (85th overall). With Bogaerts struggling mightily in the second half, I’d give the advantage to myself in the deal, with the extra credit that Lindor’s production right now is vital to my title run chances.

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