At this point in the season, nearly all of the highly dependable closers are off the waiver wire. However, given the significant turnover at the closer position, there are still arms that pop up that can be a viable source of saves. The window to pounce on them can be small, so it is imperative to stay on top of who has been getting the save chances and react accordingly. Below I have 3 closers all less than 25% owned on ESPN. For those in deeper leagues these guys may be gone already, but they are all available in 75% or more of ESPN leagues. I have listed them in order of their value in my eyes.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Please see our player page for Sergio Romo 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.
I wonder what Keith Law aka [email protected] thinks about Yordan Alvarez. *searches through transcripts of Klaw chats, which he calls a Koffee Klawtch* Hmm, that’s weird. He didn’t rank Yordan in his preseason top 100. Prospect Mike had him at 27 overall in the top 50 for fantasy baseball prospects. “Hello, Mr. Skywriter? Yes, can I pay you to fly above [email protected]’s home with the message, ‘Oops.’ Where does he live? Hmm, I’ve been training my dog to sniff out bad takes, so I just need a few hours and a box of Milkbones.” On our Prospectonator, Yordan is ranked in the top 5. Again, with some stank, [email protected] didn’t even rank him in the top 100. I get it; he’s doing real baseball vs. fantasy. The problem is real baseball has become fantasy. Do people even care about defense anymore? The Orioles top pick overall is a catcher who is already in talks about moving off that position. Just one more time — he didn’t rank Yordan Alvarez in his preseason top 100! Are we even comprehending how crumby with cracker crumbs this is? Any hoo! Heir Yordan had 23 homers and a .343 average in 56 games of Triple-A. I will now laugh myself into coughing fit. Yo, Yordan, you Babe Ruth? I know what you’re thinking, how long has he been in Triple-A, is he old? He’s 21 years old. No idea of the Astros’ plans for him, and, if by some stroke of the malocchio, he doesn’t hit, I guess he could get sent down. However, I think Tyler White’s done and Yuli Guli sounds like an anime character who can’t hit, so even when George Springer, Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa — damn, you wrestling gators in hopes of passing the Yanks for most injured players? — return, I think Yordan is here to stay, and, yesterday, his 1-for-3 with his 1st homer is just the start. Get him accordingly. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Jordan Lyles was exceptional Friday night capturing his second win of the year going six strong innings allowing just four hits, a walk and striking out six. He now leads the league with a 0.53 ERA. Mazel tov, Jordan, and happy Pesach! Well, someone clearly did not observe the High Sabbath last night. He had better things to do, busy mowing down the San Francisco hitters. So is the Bucs pitching coach Ray Searage is a miracle worker or a Three Eyed Raven or some kind of warg magic man?? The Pirates pitching staff now boasts a league best 2.54 ERA. But back to Jordan. Lyles has now struck out 16 over his past two starts and holds some real pretty ratios like that league leading 0.53 ERA and a 0.88 WHIP with an 19/5 K/BB. Yes, more please. Put that on your seder plate. After the all star break last year, Lyles started relying more on a combination of his curve ball and 4-seam fastball and benefited from this greatly posting a 3.00 ERA with hitters batting just .213 against him. His curve ball, in particular, can be pretty nasty when its on and when he’s mixing in the 4-seamer effectively Jordan has looked like a dominant pitcher. Seems like he’s brought this strategy with him to Pittsburgh and things with Searage have clicked. He had his outing shortened Friday after taking a line drive off the hand but the injury does not appear to be serious and he is expected to make his next start Wednesday versus Arizona. Lyles is available in over 75% of fantasy leagues and worth your streaming consideration at the very least. He’s starting to look like a steal for Pittsburgh, and he seems like a real mensch you may not want to Pass over!
Here’s what else I saw in fantasy baseball Friday night:Please, blog, may I have some more?
So, Rudy says to me, “You should get into a Best-Ball league?” And I replied, “Is that a fantasy league where everyone drafts in blue Polos like you work at Best Buy?” Then I saw those three little dots like he was typing something, then they disappeared. Then I saw the three dots again, and, alas, they disappeared again. Finally, he responded, “You don’t think that do you?” After googling what Best-Ball was, I replied, “No, jokes, man, jokes!” So, I got myself in my first Best-Ball league. Everyone likely knows what it is, but, if you don’t, it’s when you draft a team and the computer manages it for you by choosing who are the best players, and you get those stats. It’s basically one fantasy league removed from the robots taking over and killing us all. Drafting with me in my league was Elon Musk, Issac Asimov–Okay, I keed. Anyway, here’s my NFBC Best-Ball, Points League, 10 team draft recap:Please, blog, may I have some more?
I don’t pay much attention to Spring Training Statistics. You never know who the statistics are coming against. Baseball-Reference did, however, have an amazing tool last year that attempted to quantify the quality of opposing pitchers or batters faced during spring training games on a scale from 1-10 with 10 being MLB talent and 1-3 being high A to low A level. This tool is great, but it averages all the Plate Appearances or batters faced. You would still need a deeper dive to see if your stud prospect smacked a donger off of Chris Sale or off of your kid’s future pony league baseball coach. So what should we watch for in March when we’re starved for the crack of the bat? Ignore “best shape of their life” stories and Spring Training statistical leaderboards. Pay attention to injuries and lineup construction and position battles! Also pay attention to where Bryce Harper and Manny Machado sign… Note that those two signings can instantly eliminate some of the position battles detailed herein.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Briefly alluded to Stephen Piscotty in yesterday’s roundup and how I’d love to the see the A’s go deep in the playoffs. Do I think they will? Can pigs fly? No, though, Puig can hit deep flies, and lick inanimate objects like he’s a fly regurgitating his food. The A’s have two starters and they’re named Mike Fiers and Edwin Jackson (5 1/3 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 3.18). So, that’s an uphill battle as they say on the way to the soap box derby starting line. They do have a well-balanced offense, which is a little crazy when you think about their home park. Ron Jeremy has less foul territory. Oakland is a top five offense, and their park, as it always has been, is a bottom five park for offense. That’s so backwards it’s like, “I’m getting so lucky on Tinder recently!” Then finding out you’ve actually been opening 23 and Me and you’re banging your cousins. At the forefront of the A’s attack — A’stack? — is obviously Khris Davis (2-for-4, 2 runs, 1 RBI), but ‘a little dab will do ya’ with Semien (3-for-5, 1 run, 5 RBIs), every Semien encounter begins with a Martini (3-for-6, 3 runs, 2 RBIs and his 1st homer), and Matt “Thank God I’m Not Matt Olson” Chapman (2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs) has been on one since July, but Stephen Piscotty is having the year everyone expected from him when he was on the Cards. I know he had some personal issues, but he might be the first player ever to not be better on the Cards vs. anywhere else they’ve gone. Piscotty went 2-for-3, 2 runs, 4 RBIs and hit his 26th homer with back-to-back huge games, and in the last 20 games, he’s hitting .338 with eight homers and 26 RBIs. For 2019, what can he do? Piscotty doesn’t know! Piscotty doesn’t know! But I do. He can do what he’s been doing this season, a solid third outfielder with 2nd outfielder upside. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
*spraypaints Foltynewicz incorrectly on the bumper of my car* “Okay, Cougs, now back this car up over my head. Why are you arguing with me? I see the way you look at me when I burp in public, just back the damn car up over my head! I’m looking for a visual metaphor here!” So, how was your Monday? Mine was just terrific! Not as terrific as Ryan Borucki, apizzarently. On my tombstone it’s going to read, “He died from a miserable September in his fantasy leagues, of course. Dur.” I mean, Jesus Aguilar Christmas Effin’ Christ, what in the holy name! Okay, okay, OKAY! Back to Borucki. Yesterday, he went 8 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 3.86, which is a helluva lot better than Faultywhichwhich! Borucki’s K-rate (6.1), his walk rate (2.8) and his 4.57 xFIP leave piles and piles to be desired. However (throw out everything Grey just said!), the Stream-o-Nator does like his next start a teensiest bit, and I could see streaming him. “Now back up the car!” Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Didja you know The Captain from Captain & Tennille’s real name is Daryl Dragon? Why would this guy have a nickname? Your name’s awesome, you don’t get a nickname. Daryl Dragon has bedtime slippers that are cooler than you. Daryl Dragon washes his hands, then breathes a not-very-intense fire on his hands to dry them. Daryl Dragon can’t get a speeding ticket. “Okay, Mr. Dragon, I’ll let you go this time with a warning because your name is Daryl Dragon.” Raul Mondesi? Now that name sucks as bad as Thanksgiving dinners with the Mondesis (Mondesii?). “Please pass the potatoes and change your name back to Junior.” “NO!” and chucks mashed potatoes at his father’s head. “You throw like your mom!” “I hate you” And so on. I don’t hate Adalberto Mondesi though. Yesterday, he went 3-for-5, 2 RBIs and had a slam (9) and legs (25). He has nine homers and 25 steals in only 219 ABs. Mr. Prorater says, “In a full season, he’d have 20 homers and 55 steals. And if I ate an orange a day for a year, I’d have enough Vitamin C for a Mars colony.” You could consider this your first 2019 sleeper, assuming I don’t get too crazy with myself and rank Mondesi in the top 25 next year. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Join the 2018-19 Razzball Fantasy Premier League for a chance at prizes! Don’t know about Fantasy Soccer? That’s okay, Smokey is here to walk with you throughout this journey of exploration and an absurd amount of accent marks on player names. So probably hide all your snacks. It’ll be a long journey…
Maybe they thought they were safe by bringing Kelvin Herrera as a Linus blanket until Doolittle returned. Maybe they were comfy with the veterans that they had lined up just in case. Well that “just in case” just happened. Herrera is now on the DL and Madson assumes the role of all roles. (Until Sean Doolittle comes back from a stressed out foot.) The Nats had such promise in preseason and even after the acquisition of Kelvin, to be a good bullpen. Former closers, like most men, are there to do their job and file their income tax returns on time like big boys. Well, they disappointed me and definitely the owners of Doolittle. Since July 3rd, or basically the last time Doolittle pitched, they have four saves. Four, fore, for! Only ahead of teams like the Padres, Blue Jays and Angels. By the way, if you are scoring at home the Angels haven’t had a save in 27 games. That is actually more mind-blowing than a team with decent starting pitching to only get four whole damn saves. Makes save-chasing on Madson or the like seem glum. So save your FAAB bucks for another day because Sean should be back within the fortnight, no idea if he mastered his emote dances yet though. Not that it really matters, but a save earned is a save kept. I know that works with pennies, wasn’t sure if that helped with counting stats at all. The season is coming down the stretch, do you have what it takes oh glutens of the SAGNOF? If you feel weary or just on cruise control because of Fantasy Football, than relax take a gander on some useful bullpen stuff, followed by the rankings…Please, blog, may I have some more?
The trading deadline is days away and the roles they are a changing. In comes one out goes the other. Closers losing value left and right while the waiver wire warriors of the world are circling like buzzards for the SAGNOF scrap heaps. The latest in the foray of closers to go is Joakim Soria, now a Brewer. The White Sox closer role is likely to go to Jace Fry or Juan Minaya. Not an awesome situation or a good predicament to be in, but a closer is a closer. The SAGNOF model should be: “Leave no good save behind”. Similarly, the Orioles traded Zach Britton to the Evil Empire, Brad Brach assumes the role there for the time being or until he gets traded for assets that the Orioles can ruin. The trade winds and finalized deals don’t help the set-up man either, as key components to the back-end game have been replaced by acquired talent. This is life for the ever building bullpen foundation of playoff contending teams. Build from the back, because the girth of talent that exists in the starters just isn’t there. So if you are currently zonked from losing a closer that no longer has a professional job of closing, it is time to speculate where speculating looks speculative. Look at guys on the secondary for teams that are rumored to be wheelin’ and dealin’. The Rangers, Nationals, Twins, Rays, Tigers, and to a lesser degree maybe the Cardinals… Be ahead of the curve instead of being caught looking at Uncle Charlie. Closer news is fluid this time of year, and by the time this gets posted there could be 2-3 more trades that make me look even dumber than I already do. More after the jump, with success stories and diminishing returns. Cheers!Please, blog, may I have some more?