Please see our player page for Tom Murphy 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.

Another week, another round of tweaked hammies (hope you’re as not-really-hurt as you claim, Jean Segura!), nightmare pitching (thanks for nothing, Corbin Burnes!), and various trials and tribulations that cause headaches for any fantasy owner, but are particularly excruciating for those of us in the deepest of leagues, where suitable waiver-wire replacements range from nearly-impossible-to-come-by to completely non-existent.  Once again, here’s hoping you’re avoiding as many of those headaches as possible while we take a look at players who may be of some interest to those in NL-only, AL-only, and other deep leagues.

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Fernando Tatis Jr. made the team.  Did not see that one coming.  Don’t own him anywhere.  To which you now say, “Tough Tatis.”  Wow.  I’m stunned.  Good for the Padres!  This is not good for the Luis Urias, who I’ve lowered in my top 20 2nd basemen.  Possibly bad news for Ian Kinsler too, but owning Ian Kinsler in fantasy was bad news for you anyway.  Here’s what I said earlier in the preseason on Tatis, “Fernando Tatis Jr. was born in 1999.  Recently, it was announced Acuña was so young he didn’t know who Mickey Mantle was, well, Tatis Jr. is so young he doesn’t know who Mike Trout is.  Dude was born like a minute ago, and not a minute as it’s defined in Urban Dictionary, which is a long time, but an actual minute.  Fernando Tatis Jr.’s dad is so young he didn’t even use charcoal as his medium; he used MS Paint.  Tatis Jr. looks like an All Star ready to happen, until the 75th round draft pick, Albert Pujols Jr., comes along and replaces him.  Jokes aside, Tatis looks damn near perfect.  A lanky Machado maybe, a young Hanley possibly.  Like something Ryan Brasier would cover, Tatis looks real and spectacular.  I’d say the difference him and his pops is the difference between Ken Griffey Jr. and Sr., but Ken Sr. wasn’t that bad.  How about this, the difference between Tatises (Tatii?) is the difference between J.D. Martinez and J.D. Martinez Sr.  Was there a J.D. Martinez Sr.?  No idea, but that’s the point.  FTJ is going to be special.  Now Fun the Jewels fast!  Now Fun the Jewels fast!  Now Fun the Jewels fast!”  And that’s me quoting me!  I love him, guys and five girl readers, and you need to own him in all leagues.  Immediately.  He has some swing-and-miss tendencies, due to his age, so I conservatively projected him up to around 18/18/.250, but, honestly, he could be so much more.  He was also moved up my top 20 shortstops, if you’re into that sorta thing.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw in spring training for fantasy baseball:

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NL WestNL Central | NL East | AL West | AL Central | AL East

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!

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Hello, darkness, my old friend.  But replace ‘darkness’ with ‘catchers’ and ‘my old friend’ with ‘we have to get through this to get further into our 2019 fantasy baseball rankings.’  Hmm…Then replace ‘our 2019 fantasy baseball rankings’ with ‘my 2019 fantasy baseball rankings,’ then replace ‘with’ with ‘wit’ to millennialify it, then replace every third ‘replace’ with ‘in place of’ to diversify word choice because my 3rd grade teacher, Ms. Pinatauro, said we shouldn’t repeat words–Actually, she can eat it!  After going over the top 10 for 2019 fantasy baseball and the top 20 for 2019 fantasy baseball (clickbait!), we are now in the positional rankings, and all 2019 fantasy baseball rankings can be found there.  Here’s Steamer’s 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers.  The projections noted in the post are my own, and I mention where tiers start and stop.  I also mention a bunch of hullabaloo, so let’s get to it.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 catchers for 2019 fantasy baseball:

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I try to avoid repeating ledes during the season and Sean Newcomb already had one.  There I said, “It’s 2074, Grey Albright’s frozen head is on a shelf next to Ted Williams’ frozen head…I took a picture of Ted’s penis…I’m so romantic!”  Damn, I pull quotes almost as well as I dispense fantasy baseball advice!  By the way, I watched the Ted Williams special on PBS this weekend.  Biggest surprise (to me), he was Mexican.  He was the original Fernandomania — Teodoromania?  When I searched Ted Williams and his Mom, that dominated the search results and who are we to question Google?  So, Sean Newcomb ended the game one out from a no hitter against the Dodgers, one of the best offense teams — 8 2/3 IP, 1 ER, 1 hit, 1 walk, 8 Ks, ERA at 3.23.  I pulled the reins on Newcomb in the last few weeks because his peripherals are garbage and I’m only happy when I’m pulling reins.  His velocity is down, his 8.3 K/9, 4.3 BB/9 and 4.32 xFIP are not telling the whole story, but they’re telling enough of the story while sitting around a campfire farting.  Then on Sunday, he threw 134 pitches.  I’m all for hypnotizing pitchers into thinking they’re Walter Johnson, but he had never pitched more than 111 pitches in the majors.  Solid game on Sunday, but if you grab Newcomb he could leave a mushroom cloud in his wake, and not as in an umami bomb.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

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Poor Aaron Sanchez (SP, Index Finger Contusion) probably hurt his finger on the latest episode of Chopped: All-Stars! The boring old baseball version of Aaron Sanchez has yet to rediscover his Cy Young caliber abilities after missing most of 2017. Sanchez rebounded nicely after a 5 inning, 7 ER performance at the end of May with three quality starts in a row in June. Hopefully this injury won’t derail his progress too much. Stash or Trash: I’d stash. If he can come back quickly he could provide some solid value in the second half. Fill In: Rather than force myself to find five starting pitchers who I might not even fully believe in — I’m going to give you three solid options at the bottom of this article who could fill in for the five injured starting pitchers this week.

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Cleveland Indians rookie Shane Bieber was dominant Friday night in just his third career start, pitching seven innings, allowing just four base runners and striking out nine for his second win. Talk about a reason to Love Yourself. The Biebs now holds a 2.45 ERA and 1.36 WHIP through his first three starts (18.1 IP) and his 22/3 K/BB is Despacito–at least I think it’s despacito, not 100% sure I know what that means. I’m saying it’s flames. Shane Bieber is striking out lots of batters. Oh Baby, Baby. Baby sign me up. Wow, you sure do know a lot of Justin Bieber songs. What do you mean? I make it my business to know all about the Beibebers. For example, in the minors this year Shane was 6-1 with a 1.29 ERA, 0.77 WHIP and a 72/6 K/BB. If those numbers make you scream like a teenage girl and and write Shane’s name is cursive flirty letters on your notebook you’re not alone, Beiber’s got the stuff to be a bonafide heart throb. He will likely see the usual rookie pitchers highs and lows, but he’s looking like the favorite to run away with the fifth rotation spot in Cleveland. He’ll get a rougher assignment than Detroit next time out taking on the Cardinals in St. Louis but I’d grab Shane for the upside alone and hope he can make a Belieber out of all of us.

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

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Here’s what I’ve said previously about Aaron Hicks, “Open Up and Buy AH, because owning Aaron Hicks is Nothin’ But A Good Time!  Also, a good time is searching any girl’s name from Rock of Love with your parental controls turned off.  Okay, I have a few Bee Tee Dubs here.  Unless you have a child, you don’t set parental controls on your TV.  You can filter what you see without magically stumbling on porn.  The internet though?  You need parental controls on it, no matter if you’re home, at work, 12 years old, 64 years old, at school or on the john.  You can Google something as innocuous as “Persian cucumber” with no parental controls and all hell breaks loose in your search results.  “Oh em gee, I just wanted a recipe for a cucumber salad!  And, wow, I didn’t know Omar Sharif had so many nude scenes.”   Bee tee dubya II, we’re due for a terrible 80’s hair band renaissance.  Someone needs to do a cover of a Poison song.  Bee tee dubya III, there is no bee tee dubya III.  Bee tee dubya IV, I have this nugget in my brain that says, even though I was only 14 years old, I knew how awful Poison was at the time.  Like, when they did Your Mama Don’t Dance, a big part of me knew they were absolutely terrible, even then.  Any hoo!  Hey, any hoo’s initials are Aaron Hicks.  Coinkydink?  Thinks not.  He’s on a 162-game pace of 25 HRs, 15 SBs and a .260 average.  Of course, that doesn’t matter.  We just want a hot player at this point, and, on our 7-day Player Rater, he’s near top 25, and should be owned everywhere.”  And that’s me quoting me!  Yes, the royal we (which is me wearing a Burger King crown) have been here before, but every year it’s the same story with Hicks, until he gets hurt.  Hey, he’s more predictable than that hair band renaissance apparently!  For now, Hicks is healthy, and should be owned.  Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:

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Ketel Marte (3-5% FAAB) is not the most intriguing pick-up of all time. He will not star in any Dos Equis commercials alongside silver-haired foxes who dive out of planes into the North Atlantic as an extreme form of salmon fishing. However, if you have injuries, it was surprising to see Marte available on the waiver wire. If your league is savvy enough, someone may be stashing the 24-year-old Arizona shortstop still trying to achieve his full potential. Since June began, Marte has 3 of his 4 HR to go along with a .426 ISO, 209 wRC+, and 3 barrels, that have all come on offspeed pitches. He has found more success this year on breaking and offspeed pitches. In fact, all 4 of his homers have come off of these offerings. Marte hasn’t made significant changes. However, now that he has 316 games of experience in the majors, this young player can finally be comfortable in the box against big league stuff. The MLB is not the best for a kid who can’t catch up to fastballs. Ketel Marte is now making all the contact you want to see while adding a little power to go with the speed. He’s not going to turn into a 20/20 candidate overnight, but that speed potential has been there this whole time. Pairing it with 15 HR pop is what Marte needed to stay relevant in today’s fantasy baseball landscape. While Ketel Marte doesn’t have off-the-charts raw power, he is looking a little more athletic these days, and it shows in the numbers. Pick him up where he is available and enjoy a solid floor for the rest of the season.

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Off the album, Get Hits or Buy Ryon, 50 Cent sung about Many Men at a corner spot, rapping, “Many men, wish Joe Mauer on me, have mercy on me, many men.”  Then on his other chart-topping song off that album, In Da Club, he rapped, “You can find at my corner slot, some schlubs.  Look, mami, at my corner infidel slot I got X, if you’re into scrubs.  I’m into havin’ specs, I ain’t into a corner man who’s known for his glove, so come give me a hug, if in my corner slot I got Cory Spangenberg’s mug.”  He followed those up with 21 Questions, when he sang, “Would you leave me if your father found out my corner man was scrubbin’?  Do you believe me when I tell you, I thought Josh Donaldson would be more than nothin’?”  Then, after all those, 50 Cent managed one last smash hit with P.I.M.P., where he rapped, “I don’t know what you heard about me, but a Mitch can’t get a FAAB dollar out of me.  No Kingery, no Sano, you can’t see, that my corner man is P.I.M.P.,” where P.I.M.P stood for Please, I’M Playing (Ronald Guzman).  So, Ryon Healy has been one of the hottest corner man over the last week, but beyond that, on our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater, he’s the 17th best 3B this year, in front of Kyle Seager, Longoria, Devers and Carpenter, who are all owned in more leagues than him.  Healy’s also on pace for 28-31 homers with a decent-enough average.  There’s no reason why he’s on waivers in any leagues.  Take 50 Cent’s word for it, Get Hits or Buy Ryon!  Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell for this week in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?