First off, what a boring-ass team to sign Shohei Otani.  At best, the Angels are the Mets of SoCal.  Pissed off Mets fan, “I’m supposably assuming youse are talking like the Yanks are the best team of New York?”  Well, I wasn’t saying it was the Nets, Jets, Giants or Bills.   The Yankees just traded for Giancarlo, the Mets are looking at re-signing Neil Walker.  Point, set, match.  (Here’s my Giancarlo Stanton 2018 fantasy after his trade; it’s super erotic.)  The Angels are so pathetic they decided to change their name to the Los Angeles Angels.  I’m sorry, but that’s just sad.  That’s like marrying a woman who has a kid, who is a Jr., and you decide to take his father’s first name, so you can be his new Sr.  Angels, you are not L.A.’s senior!  Have you heard anyone in Anaheim complaining about the fires of Los Angeles?  No?  That’s because they’re 40 minutes away without traffic, and there’s always traffic!  Okay, blood’s boiling in my ulcer, I need to calm down.  Let’s do the jump, and get back at it about Shohei Otani.  Anyway, here’s what I think of Shohei Otani for 2018 fantasy baseball:

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The reckoning of Broshitz is upon us! After a couple of solo podcasts I’m back with a new partner, and it’s none other than Razzball writer Lance Brozdowski. It’s a great week to start too, as we jump right into our top 20 in First Year Player Drafts. We kick it off with some in depth Shohei Otani talk, then jump into some of the top talents in this year’s class. We talk MacKenzie Gore, Hunter Greene, Keston Hiura, Heliot Ramos, Jo Adell, and many more. The Razzball Prospect Pod is back, and firing on all cylinders. 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:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Grey starts the podcast by recounting the harrowing story of his grandparents escaping a concentration camp in Nazi Germany during World War II. It truly makes stressing about things like messed up podcast recordings seem silly. The recording was perfect for this one, though, allowing us discuss Yoan Moncada’s hot streak, Ozzie Albies’ sleeper status, and if Jonathan Schoop will still be underrated next year. Then, we bring on Ralph Lifshitz to argue about the chances an MLB team will actually let Shohei Otani hit, along with talking about Noah Syndergaard, Matt Olson, Kyle Schwarber, and Zack Godley. 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 Podcast:

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Will computer programmers for billion-dollar corporations find a way for Shohei Otani to be eligible as both a pitcher and a hitter in fantasy? These are the tough questions Abner Doubleday surely pondered when he invented baseball in 1839 (Doubleday invented baseball like Al Gore invented the internet and global warming). It’s also the question that Ralph Lifshitz and I ponder to start the podcast, along with touching on Willie Calhoun and Tyler Glasnow’s recent call-ups. We then dive deep into our third base rankings, debating if Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is the #1 prospect in baseball, Colton Welker vs. Dermis Garcia, and how to value the proximity and safety of Jeimer Candelario and Brian Anderson. We cover everybody from Nick Senzel, Michael Chavis, and Miguel Andujar, to Nolan Jones, Sheldon Neuse, Yairo Munoz, Ryan Vilade, and many more. 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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Is September 13th the earliest the hot stove has ever been fired up? We have about a month and a half left of baseball, including the playoffs, and at the moment the biggest story in the game is an international free agent. Granted this is no average international free agent, it’s Shohei Otani, the 23 year old pitcher/outfielder/designated hitter, described by many as the Japanese Babe Ruth. In my opinion that’s a bit hyperbolic, he’s neither fat nor drunk, and his home run trot isn’t a full on shuffle. Do you people even know who Babe Ruth is? I scoff at you! All joking aside, with the rumor coming out of Japan yesterday that Otani will in fact enter the posting process, the offseason has unofficially started. Over the course of today’s post we’ll go over my novice take on the business side of his signing, and the MLB roster rules governing his free agency, his profile as both a hitter and starter, and we’ll close with a very early prediction of his pre-season ranking in both re-draft leagues, and dynasty first year player drafts. It’s important to view this from all angles, as there’s a wide range of possibilities for how Otani is handled next season by his future MLB team, the league, and fantasy sites. If there’s anything I missed or explained poorly (probably haha) hit me up in the comments, and set me straight. I promise I won’t bite… this time.

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During the winter I made a somewhat bold statement, that I’m not sure many agreed with it at the time. I stated that, I’d rather have Rhys Hoskins long term than Tommy Joseph. There was a great deal of skepticism regarding Hoskins 2016, mostly because it took place in the comfy confines of FirstEnergy (not a typo) Stadium. And really, who can blame them? The ballpark is so bananas, it tricked people into thinking Darin Ruf, and Dylan Cozens were actually good. That said, there was a lot to like about Hoskins profile,  FirstEnergy (not a typo) Stadium not withstanding. Throughout his professional career he’s hit for power (.233 ISO), average (.291), gotten on base (.375), and walked at a high rate (10.4%). He’s also done all this while striking out at a sub-20% clip. Tell me that doesn’t scream MLB worthy? In the offseason I was by far the high man on Hoskins, ranking him 57th in my top 100. Fast forward two and half months, and Hoskins is the new danger, hitting a robust .350/.447/.675 with 8 homers, and 15 RBIs in just 24 games. Meanwhile Tommy J struggles in Philly, and the calls for Hoskins in Philly get louder. Sure he’s a righthanded throwing first baseman, but Paul Goldschmidt scoffs at you scoffs at your concerns. I put my money where my mouth is on Hoskins, and dealt Nick Gordon, and T.J. Friedl in the Basbeall Prospectus expert league, The Devil Rejects, back in November, and am quite happy with how my gamble looks to paying off. This prospector’s word of advice, go get Hoskins. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this week in the minors.

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“For the times they are a-changin”

– Bob Dylan

You will soon notice that things are going to be a little different around here, starting with this post. I would introduce myself, but if you are reading this, you likely already know me from the several hours of prospect banter I have recorded right here on the Razzball airwaves with the self-proclaimed “Prospect Jesus,” Ralph Lifshitz. This podcast is one thing that isn’t going to change, and Halph is back at it again this week, starting off by talking up Hunter Greene, along with two other prospective two-way talents in Shohei Otani and Brendan McKay. We then shift focus to some of the fast risers on Top 100 lists, including Cody Bellinger, Lewis Brinson, Anthony Alford, and Kyle Tucker. And oh yeah, we also may or may not mention a few of those changes I was talking about before. It’s the latest edition of the Razzball Prospect Podcast.

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Okay, so it’s not really new, that’s a lie. Really it’s a re-brand of a league that existed last year that you probably know as REL2. That’s right, Razz30 is the bastard son of JB’s REL, with a Macy’s makeover, from those dolled up chubby former homecoming queens that work the makeup counter. BTW, I can hear your inner-monologue because I have telepathic powers, and I know you’re asking “why did you rebrand a fantasy league?”. Well to put it bluntly last year was akin to pooping yourself while simultaneously driving head on into a tractor trailer truck, surviving only to find out your wife is now sleeping with your high school bully, and he doesn’t have a job, so he’s going to sleep in your spot in the bed going forward. Now you’re covered in poop, laid up in the hospital with more broken bones than Evil Kenevil, and you’re emasculated as well. Seem dramatic? Maybe, maybe not. Just talk to the guys that lost their best players from forced real life trades. I could go on and on, but why look back? We’re moving forward with a new and improved format, and I’m proud to announce we’re embarking on the first 30 team league in Razzball history. When this job was bestowed upon me, by my predecessor the Notorious M.I.K.E, I promised him I would take Razzball to places they’ve never been before. That place is a 30 team league where people are spending half their FAAB adding Raul Alcantara. It’s real out here!

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It’s been a rough couple days. What can I say, sometimes I leave fantasy behind, and actually dabble in the realm of investing my emotions into real baseball. For shame, my Red Sox have let me down. It’s okay, I have things to take my mind off these hard losses. Sure, I have my loving wife, and three beautiful children; most normal people would seek solace in those they hold most dear. Not me, I’m far too twisted for that. I need to bury my face in minor league stats and scouting reports. Thinking somewhere in all this I’ll find my happy place. Well now that I’ve gotten my rambling incoherent emotional discharge out of the way. Let me tell you I’m excited. Not because I’ve been doing Google image searches of busty actresses, but because it’s time to release my First Year Player Draft (FYPD) post. I’ve been working on it, and kicking around the names for a few weeks to a month now. Hopefully this can help you navigate the upcoming first year player drafts in your leagues. In addition to today’s post, Michael Halpern and I will be inviting two special guests onto next week’s episode of the Prospect Podcast. The four of us will mock out our top 32 picks, and speak a little on each. Look out for that… Speaking of Halp, he put out his first year player draft top 10 over on imaginarybrickwall earlier this week. Make sure you check that out. Today I’ll hit you with my top 15, and finish off the top 30 on Wednesday.

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Last week I joined a league called The Devil’s Rejects. You’ve probably seen posts on this league over at FanGraphs recently. In fact, it must have subconciously rubbed off on me because that is a very FanGraphsy title. Rejects is a 20-team dynasty with 45-man rosters where we keep 28 forever. It’s full of industry talent from sites like FG and Baseball Prospectus. Razzball’s own J-FOH has a team and we’ve already made our first trade with no blood, sweat, or tears spilled. The squad I took over was one that had cycled through a couple of owners in the previous two or three years. So yeah, it’s a bit of a project. But the point of this post is that there’s one name on this roster I have absolutely no idea what to do with, and I’m wondering if other dynasty geeks out there are faced with the same problem. It’s Shohei Otani, the Japanese pitcher who’s tearing it up in the NPB.

Please, blog, may I have some more?