Please see our player page for Whit Merrifield 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’m starting a new feature for this column — Jose Ramirez Watch! The mood is tense! No one is losing more value than Ramirez right now. In a lot of leagues he was a top-10 pick and right now he isn’t even justifying a top-100 pick. It’s still early for him — but his owners have to be disappointed.

Last Week: 14 | This Week: 25

Last 7 days: 5/22, 6 runs, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 2 SB, 227 AVG

Another disappointing week for J-Ram, however, it is better than the previous week when he went 2 for 25. Baby steps? Here’s what I said to a commenter in last week’s top 100 column:

“JRam wasn’t hitting over .250 until April 24th last year.He’s got a higher hard contact rate so far this season (yay!) but also a higher soft contact rate (boo!) His BABIP is only .167 after last year’s 252. I’d obviously hold and wait until May 1. I think he’ll be fine — not 2018 foooiinnneee — but 2019 fine.”

Let’s see where his average sits later this week…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

If one goes purely by Streamonator (SON), Justin Verlander is one’s top man on FanDuel today, for his match-up versus Texas. There will be Ks. There may be a win. But… JV is also the chalk play, and at $10,800 (I just choked on my Easter chocolate), he will cost you a third of your total lineup budget. I think we can do better than that. On this very Good Friday — which is also the first day of Passover and a day upon which I’m well chuffed to be here for the first time this season, pinch-hitting for Richardo — let us explore some ideas beyond the obvious. Some of them might be gambles, but hey, we’re here to gamble, right?

New to FanDuel? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well, be sure to read our content and subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays. Just remember to sign up through us before jumping into the fray. It’s how we know you care!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Yesterday, Tyler Glasnow like an Afrikaan miner threw a gem — 6 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners, 11 Ks, ERA at 0.53.  Hey, I wrote a Tyler Glasnow sleeper this year, so I’m down with TG-AF — that’s Tyler Glasnow as f**k!  Yes, I’d love to mock the Pirates for trading him away.  However, I’m not sure how much we can’t discount how Ray Searage preaches contact and is a wet blanket on Ks-slash-some pitchers, i.e., Glasnow may never have been this pitcher on the Pirates.  Then throw-in Meadows into the trade, though?  I mean, what were the Pirates thinking?  “Argh, we’re dumb.”  Pirates should be cursing themselves, which would sound like, “Plankety plank plank!”  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It’s the most glorious weekend of the year — Wrestlemania weekend! You know what that means: wrestling themed blurbs!

On the Double Turn…

Two players in my pre-season top-5 are trending in opposite directions, but I don’t start freaking out too much until tax day. A lot of experts were calling for Jose Ramirez and Christian Yelich to regress from their MVP-caliber seasons last year. Well Yelich came out swinging an angry stick hitting a homerun in four straight games to start the season leaving him ranked third on the Razzball Player Rater so far. He’s reached base successfully in every game so far and is on his way to competing for the MVP again in 2019. Jose Ramirez? Not so much. For some players we like to point out how they’re “continuing their hot hitting from the end of 2018.” Ramirez is doing the opposite. He ended 2018 with a 40 game slump hitting .166 with a .597 OPS. He also only hit .231/.646 in the minors. His BABIP is currently sitting at .150, he only has 3 strikeouts to 2 walks and he’s hitting a higher percentage of fly balls from 2018 (small sample size) so maybe he’s just getting a bit unlucky in the early going. However, it’s enough to make me flip these two in the rankings.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I’m not going to overreact to 20 at-bats. I will not do it. That being said, if you’re in a league with me — every one of my players is a bum and is on the block. Starting next week we’ll start to see some moving and shaking, but this list is mostly a refresher from the pre-season. There are really only six “fallers” this week and they’re all injury related. I’ll be writing more about them in my injury column which drops on Wednesday, but here’s who slipping, tumbling, sinking, fumbling:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Hello, Genie, I have three wishes for this baseball season?  My first wish is “No one I own get hurt.”  I didn’t buy Kevin Kiermaier, Steven Souza or Troy Tulowitzki, so I made your job easy for you, great, powerful Genie.  My 2nd wish is “Everyone I own do well.”  I drafted Trea Turner, Luke Voit, Enrique Hernandez, so, really, I’m doing much of the heavy lifting for this wish too.  My 3rd and final wish is “All 3rd base coaches send runners home by doing The OA interpretative dance.”  Thanking you in advance, Genie.  Wait a second, you’re not a genie, you’re Bartolo Colon in Blue Man Group paint.  Damn you!  So, we’re off and running for another great season, just like the Dodgers’ offense.  Enrique Hernandez (2-for-3, 3 runs, 3 RBIs) hit two home runs.  Ya know what, maybe Kiké does love me.  Next up, Joc Pederson (3-for-5, 3 runs, 4 RBIs) hit two homers, as he hit leadoff.  A double dong day from Wong and Joc?  Baseball, do you stuff your pants?  Also, Max Muncy (1-for-4, 2 RBIs) hit his first homer, saying, “Hey, don’t forget Grey wrote a sleeper post about me?”  Then Cody Bellinger (2-for-4, 2 runs) hit his 1st homer; he’s not Cody Malinger!  Actually, I’m convinced Dave Roberts could field any lineup and they would score more runs than their opponent for at least 90+ games, especially when they’re going up against some of these teams.  Wilmer Flores (1-for-4, 1 run) was the three hole hitter on the Diamondbacks.  I love Wilmer and his ubiquitous tears like he’s reading The Notebook, but there’s a bunch of MLB lineups out there that just are not good.  Also, in this game, Corey Seager (1-for-3) hit his 1st homer and Austin Barnes (3-for-4, 2 runs) hit his first homer, because BASEBALL’S BACK!  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Redraft leagues are the standard of the fantasy sports industry. Each year you get a fresh start at remembering you shouldn’t draft A.J. Pollock. Ever. You can draft whoever you want at your draft position or spend as much as your budget on whoever you want. But for me there is nothing more fun than a good long-term keeper league. Smart owners get to flex on their leaguemates by keeping players they selected deep in their drafts or picked up on a hunch. Keeper leagues are a great intermediate option between full-on redraft leagues and the craziness of a dynasty league. 

Below you’ll find my keeper rankings for 2019. I’ve included each player’s age, position eligibility for the start of the 2019 season and any concerns I have about each player. Here’s what you’ll also see: I’m not high on starting pitchers. Too likely to suffer an injury and miss a large chunk of time. I’m not high on guys with less than two seasons of experience. I’ve seen sophomore slumps and prospect busts far too often. There are exceptions like Ronald Acuna who seem like a sure thing — but when it comes to Vlad Guerrero Jr. I prefer the wait and see approach. Plus, we really don’t know when he’ll even debut. Players over the age of 31 worry me — especially players whose value is speed dependent. I don’t want to keep a player whose decline is starting to begin. Injury prone players: duh. I’m not going to keep someone who can’t take the field.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Categories, eligibility and speed. These are the things that dictate where I rank hitters. Categories: A guy who contributes in all 5 categories is going to be ranked higher than someone who contributes in only 4 — even if those 4 categories are elite. That’s why I’m a bit lower on J.D. Martinez and Nolan Arenado compare to other people. Eligibility: obviously guys with multiple position eligibility or a shallower position will be ranked higher than say an outfielder. “Then why aren’t you higher on catchers?” Because after the top-2 catchers they’re basically all the same and likely to miss time. Speed: the most elusive of 5×5 categories. If you can give me at least 10 steals I’m going to give you a boost in my rankings. That’s why I’m higher on someone like Tommy Pham than others. If Trea Turner gets the 75-80 stolen base attempts that the Nationals want him to get then he has the chance to end the season as a top-3 player.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The intro for Yahoo’s 2019 fantasy baseball rankings reminds of a Dear John letter written by your ex-wife.  Only your name is Kevin and she accidentally writes “John,” and doesn’t have a chance to proofread it because she’s bedding down your best friend.  Read for yourself:

Sure, guys and five girl readers, “You’ll find your familiar Trouts’, the Betts’, the Martinez’, but questions remain.”

Huh?

Yeah, I have questions that, uh, remain.  How many Trouts have they ranked?  The Betts’?  Did they rank his entire family?  The Martinez’?  Is that like World War Z, but instead it’s, “An Apostrophe Z?”

“When should the first pitcher go off the board, and should there be more than one?”

Said like Ron Burgundy, “That’s not English.”  Should there be more than one?  Are Yahoo leagues this year one-pitcher leagues?  I’m so confused.  Did 100 monkeys with 100 typewriters, who only read Bleacher Report, write up this intro?

“Enough talk though.  Let’s jump into the rankings!”

Ha!  Was there enough talk?  I’ve written more in this intro than they wrote.  With that level of effort, they don’t even deserve this evisceration, but… *sharpens nails that look like the 108-year-old Asian man in the Guinness Book of World Records* …here goes nothing.  For this post, I will be looking at the consensus Yahoo 2019 fantasy baseball rankings vs. my own 2019 fantasy baseball rankings.

Please, blog, may I have some more?