Kolten Wong (14.2% owned – increase of 9%) was far from being the most added player over the past week. In fact, he barely made the list, but the fact that he made the list at all is amazing. It would be Wong of me to not at least dig into him further, no?
Ok, I apologize. That was bad. Anyways, since the start of the month, Wong has a triple-slash of .375/.458/.583 with one home run, five doubles, one triple, 12 runs scored, 10 RBI, and one stolen base. Remember, back in 2014 Wong hit 12 home runs and stole 20 bases, so there’s some potential here. Let’s break it, break it down. He’s walking 10% and striking out 14% of the time. Those are nice numbers and an improvement from his 2014/2015 numbers. BUT…they are very close to his 2016 numbers when he hit .240. The swinging strike rate hasn’t changed but the chase rate has improved by 5%. In addition, his contact on pitches outside the strike zone has increased 6%. He’s also hitting left-handed pitching very, very well so far (.333 average vs .258 career mark). Now, to the portion of the show that you’ve all been sitting on the edge of your seats for…..We are not Wong to be overlooking Kolten. The BABIP is a sky-high .353. That batting average is going to come back down to the .260-ish range. That batting average against lefties is fueled by a .385 BABIP. Nothing in the peripherals shows a drastic change that motivates me to think that his recent success is sustainable. Looks like a lot of luck. TRASH
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Dodgers lefty Rich Hill gets an enticing matchup at home against the DBacks on Thursday, making him a valuable play on FanDuel. In his last three starts, Hill has been the dominant pitcher that we came to know last year, striking out 26 batters in 19 innings with just six walks and a 1.89 ERA. The Diamondbacks might seem like a scary opponent, but when they’re away from their home ballpark, they’ve got just a .299 wOBA, which ranks them 26th in the league. Furthermore, they struggle mightily against left-handed pitching, with a .289 wOBA against southpaws, as well as a 25.3% K-rate. So on the road against a lefty, the Diamondbacks are actually among the worst lineups in baseball. With Rich Hill pitching his ass off, $8,700 is an outstanding price for his upcoming outing. Just hope there’s no blisters.
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Don’t look now, but the hottest dynasty baseball league in the game is back for another monthly update. We are the American Dream personified. A former colony of the REL, otherwise known as the Razzball Elite League, and the evil iron fist of King George JB. Much like our founding fathers, [email protected] and I, the league’s John Adams, and Thomas Jefferson worked hard to redraft our constitution, and bring prosperity to all those affected by King George JB’s extreme taxation. Through these wars waged by an army of rag tag farmers, a great general emerged. Who is this great general? Our George Washington, if you will. None other than the original smoothie himself, Captain of the clean gooch, one Nick The Dick. Under the courageous command of Nick, and his Captain Jaaaaaake, Razz30 has taken on all comers, and anyone looking to down our new found utopia. There is no 30 team league in the land where it’s citizen’s are better educated, better looking, or just plain better. Our gooches are hairless, but our faces are not. We trade like spice merchants in the ports of the Orient! We pillage the posts of our enemies! We chat like high school girls on social messaging apps. We’re the league you wish you played in. It’s the Razz30 Update for April in the year of our lord two thousand and seventeen. Claws Up for my Family!
Man, after thinking about where I need to go with this intro, I got a mad hankering for Italian food. Just ordered some to get here during afternoon baseball. Is it profiling that now I’m non-stop craving Italian when I hear a name like Sal Romano? But Italian food is so positive! Is there such a thing as positive profiling?!
Speaking of Profiling, we’re back with enough edition of the Pitcher Profile! I know I’m picking someone that’s pretty far off the beaten path, but any time Sunday baseball features an-even-somewhat-interesting guy making their debut, I’m intrigued! Romano was vaguely on the radar for the NL-only and NFBC-type leagues given the Reds complete lack of a starting rotation, and surprisingly it was Rookie Davis getting the first DL stint (not their old farts, although Brandon Finnegan got hurt as well Saturday night) that opened an early spot for Romano to make his debut. Buried on prospect lists in the 10-20 range for Cincy (they do have a good farm system though), with Ralph ranking him as merely a “floorboard”, Romano apparently has pretty interesting stuff from what I read, mainly a mid-to-high 90s fastball. As tradition, I write the intro to the Profiles before I watch a pitcher’s start, and I’ll withhold any judgment until I see him throw. So as I eagerly await my baked ziti, the Brewers game is about to start and I’m pumped to see how Romano looks and Profile his debut. Here’s how he fared yesterday afternoon in his debut:
It feels like just the other day the baseball regular season started. You wrote “I heart baseball” in permanent marker on your arm, then you met a girl who wrote “I heart guys who heart baseball” on her arm, then, during sex in July, you screamed out “I got a Trumboner!” and now you don’t have baseball or a girlfriend. C’mon, calendar, make like a soldier and turn to March. The only cure for the post-baseball season blues — recapping the preseason top twenty lists and being hand-fed Doritos. First up, Cool Ranch and our preseason Top 20 Catchers for 2016. It’s important to look back before we look ahead to 2017. To paraphrase the one and only B-Real, “How do you know where you’re at, if you don’t know where you’ve been? Understand where I’m coming from?” (Also, if you missed it, I interviewed B-Real this year on our podcast, though that might not have been as good as our Jose Canseco interview.) It wouldn’t be fair for me to preseason rank the players, then rank them again in the postseason based on my opinion, so these postseason top 20 lists are ranked according to our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater. It’s cold hard math, y’all! Please, for the love that all is holy, don’t ask me if this is for next year. Anyway, here’s the top 20 catchers for 2016 fantasy baseball and how they compared to where I originally ranked them:
So for a lot of these puppies I pump out here for Razzball (That makes sense in oldspeak terms right?! You’re not picturing me birthing a litter under Grey’s desk at the Razzball office, right?! RIGHT?!), I write the intro before a pitcher’s start to unsully my biases so you can read how the pitcher looked in real-time. Yeahhhh, football is on during Sundays now… It’s tough to multi-task watching the Panthers, RedZone, AND baseball! Alas, for this week’s installment of Pitcher Profiling, I had already known the outcome before breaking it down. The title should give it away as well!
I lucked out and nabbed Ivan Nova in several leagues just on a streaming whim within his first few starts on the Pirates, and was reaping the rewards of a late-season pitching surge. All hail Searage! I actually read an interview with Frank Herbert that the planet Dune was actually being mined for “Magic Searage Dust”, but it wasn’t literary-sounding enough, so he just went with “Spice”. Authors are nothing but lazy bums! Which speaking of, I picked a dude who got shellacked and didn’t pitch too deep… But I wanted to take a second look at how he… well, looked (lazy again!), to see if I should just cut bait and move on, or hold onto the most recent Searage reclamation project through the finish line. Here’s how Nova fared pitch-by-pitch, and hopefully a helpful treatises on if you should hold him as well:
“Naquin the Chef looks determined without being ruthless. Something heroic in his manner. There’s a courage about him. Comes across so calm. Acts like he has a dream. Full of passion. Well, you know why. Knock homers out of the box all the time. Pitches know his repertoire, big fly. Yeah, straight up, Naquin mess your whole team up. It’s for real though, ball connect with stick, ditto. We could trade places, ball lifted run around the bases. Word up, peace, infatuated redfaces.” I almost didn’t write the title of the Naquin the Chef song, Infatuated Redfaces, but then I was like, “There’s a team named Redskins and a mascot named Chief Wahoo, I think I’m all right.” Yesterday, Tyler Naquin kept it going with the insane run he’s been on — 3-for-4, 6 RBIs with two homers (11, 12). He now has six homers in the last ten games. That’s six homers in July to go with his six homers in June. As I said back in spring training when I saw Naquin play, he had a nice stroke against righties, but looked kinda gnarly vs. lefties. Looks like a 17/17 player that needs to platoon. Right now, his power’s way above that, but will likely come down to earth at some point. Of course, I’d still own him now. Word up, peace, infatuated redfaces. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
A few weeks ago, I was but a wee lad writing my first article for Razzball, and you were reading that article because you were either desperate for catcher advice in your fantasy league or because you just plain hate yourself. I recommended picking up J.T. Realmuto for a lengthy dice roll or Jarrod Saltalamacchia for some short term power, and we all laughed a little on the outside and cried a little on the inside.
Then Realmuto hit .500 over the course of the next week. .500, as in half of his at bats were hits. .500, as in the batting average of some of the top high school baseball prospects (except Realmuto, he hit .595 and had 119 RBI in 42 games. Found those stats by accident while searching for a picture of the Realmuto family crest.). .500, as in—OK, enough. It was only a week.
Realmuto cooled off a bit the next week, but he was still more than solid, especially for a catcher: 8-23, 0.348 BA, 2B, 4 RBI, 2 R, SB, .739 OPS. Not too shabby, even if there isn’t a ton of power there. I would like to take this time to point out that my predictions (read: ANALYSIS) for Realmuto, Salty, and Wilson Ramos were all pretty much spot on. Ok, now that we got that out of the way, we can move on.
The free agent catcher wasteland is as bleak as it has ever been. I checked the top 3 free agents by position yesterday in my CBS league, and the top 3 catchers available were: Saltalamacchia, Chris Herrmann, and David Ross. I think most of us would agree that the logical reactions to those three are “old news,” “who?,” and “really?,” respectively. It’s bad, guys. Let’s start with the catchers to stay away from, first.
Typically I lead every Monday with a solid Starting Pitcher pick but since today’s starters are underwhelming at best, we’re going to concentrate on some juicy stacks. Michael Pineda, or the Human Pinata, is in Coors Junior and he’s given up 7 long balls to RHB. Stack 1, Paul Goldschmidt, Welington Castillo, Jean Segura, Yamany Tomas, Brandon Drury, and Jake Lamb ( I know he’s a lefty, but he’s been raking). Manaea Mania came and went, thankfully I dropped him after his second start because he coughed up 8 ER last time out against Boston. Unfortunately Texas doesn’t have too many RHB, so this is more of a mini stack, Ian Desmond, Adrian Beltre and Ryan Rua. I’d really like to jump all over Jon Niese tonight as he’s already let up 8 HR’s to RHB. Too bad Atlanta only has Jeff Francoeur and a couple other scrubs. The final stack of the night is against the cobbler, Matt Shoemaker. Anytime this guy has taken the mound post 2014 he’s been crushed by the long ball. I’m crushing on Joc Pederson, Corey Seager and Yasmani Grandal tonight. As I mentioned, the pitching isn’t ideal tonight, but there’s a few matchups that could help us cash in tonight, especially if you want to go big risk, big reward. Tonight is the debut of our new Razzball Exclusive League on DraftKings, so be sure to check it out!
New toDraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run today to wet your DK whistle.Just remember tosign up through us before you do. It’s how we know you care! If you still feel helpless and lonely, be sure to subscribe to theDFSBot for your daily baseball plays.
I’ll be frank with you guys, this slate does not instill confidence in me. There are some very good options on offense, but not too many like I have seen in the past and at the same time, there aren’t many good pitching options at all, so much so that spending up for two SP’s seems like a must on this 11-game main slate of games.
There’s not many value options here, as the only one I could even remotely endorse is Cesar Ramos at $4,600 against Toronto, however he’s facing Toronto, so that probably isn’t a very good idea.
But, as I listen to “Regulate” off of Warren G’s 1994 “Warren G Regulate…G Funk Era” album, I am very determined and confident that I can help you guys find some good pitchers, good pitchers to pick on, and some great bats. You ready?
Let’s get to it.
New toDraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run Monday May 16th to wet your DK whistle.Just remember tosign up through us before you do. It’s how we know you care! If you still feel helpless and lonely, be sure to subscribe to theDFSBot for your daily baseball plays.