Please see our player page for Yoenis Cespedes 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.

Anyone who plans on engaging in a little fantasy baseball fun over the (hopefully) upcoming 60-game season has certainly been thinking about the overwhelming number of meaningful changes that have occurred over the last several months.  There are so many alterations and unusual circumstances, and so much incomplete information, that it’s been hard for me to begin even preparing for how to attack things in 2020.  How this all translates specifically to AL-only, NL-only, and other deep leagues is yet another wrinkle that it may be tricky to successfully iron out before it’s too late.

I have a few teams that have sat “frozen” since as early as November that will re-open for FAAB and waiver wire moves soon, plus at least three more deep-league drafts to do over the next few weeks.  As I begin formulating some strategies for addressing these teams, I’m going to start by checking in on some deeper-league injury situations.  Since I’m writing this several days before players are expected to show up at their new camps, there will likely be a flurry of news and updates soon, but for now let’s take a look at some of the health news that’s come in over the last week or so.  We’ll keep it deep league by checking in on some players outside the top 300 in NFBC ADP this year, listed in order of earliest drafted to latest drafted. These are guys that we might have forgotten about and who might get ignored in standard leagues regardless of whether or not they’re ready to take the field, but who, if healthy, might help those of us who are going to need to get a little more creative with our roster construction.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

For players who only played in 38 or fewer games since 2018, Yoenis Cespedes leads that group in home runs, RBIs, runs–I’m kidding. That is what we’re about to walk into though, if/when this season gets going. People are going to be talking about how great a player is in 40-or-less games. What a jizzoke. Also, anyone that says, “This is going to be more of a sprint than a marathon.” Tell them to buy The Giant Book of Metaphors & Similes, which is like…um…what’s a giant book of metaphors and similes like? Damn, should’ve bought that book when I saw it the last time I was in a bookstore in 2002. This baseball season is going to be as long as the line at your nearest Barnes & Noble. Bookstore employee, “Just this one book for today?” Customer, “Yeah, that’s it.”  Bookstore Employee, “Would you mind filling out a survey?” Customer, “Um, yeah, sure.” Employee, “Great, 1st question is:  Why are you in a bookstore? Second question:  Do you not have internet?” Customer, “This survey is tough!” Any hoo! With the delayed season, we have a chance to ACKSUALLY see Yoenis Cespedes. So, what can we expect from Yoenis Cespedes for 2020 fantasy baseball and what makes him a great dart throw?

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Hello, again. Time to wrap this baby on up with the NL East. I don’t know what else to write here that I haven’t in the other two pieces. Check out the NL West Edition and the NL Central Edition if you haven’t already.

Just made myself another old fashioned, the wife is reading, and the kiddo is asleep. Let’s do it to it.

Atlanta Braves

Probably not gonna surprise anyone with this pick: Austin Riley. Riley was having himself a very nice spring, but so was Johan Camargo, his competition at third. Now the DH solves all that – let the slugging prospect, well, slug. Camargo is the better glove, so there you go.

Riley showed glimpses of serious power last season, bashing 18 homers in only 80 games. My lazy and mathematically-challenged brain would double that to 36 HR in 160 games just to give a very rough idea of what we’re looking at. Of course, that’s not sound fantasy advice nor very accurate given those were his first 80 games ever in the majors. We gotta look deeper. Deep dives are king! I’m no expert delver, but let’s give this a shot anyway. He slashed .226/.279/.471 with Atlanta, but hit for a much better average all through the minors. I know that’s not very telling, but I like to at least see if someone has shown ability to hit for average somewhere, sometime. The power last season was nuts – 127 games total and 33 homers. Looking at just his AAA numbers, in 2018 he hit 12 HR in 324 PAs, but launched 15 HR in just 194 PAs last year. Then came up to the bigs and hit 18 more. That’s quite the progression in just a year’s time. His isolated power was .182 in AAA in 2018, which is pretty solid (.200 is the baseline for “great” according to FanGraphs, though it fluctuates a little relative to league averages in a given year). Anyway, his ISO spiked to .333 in 2019, which is off-the-charts good. Yes, we’re judging these numbers off fewer PAs than FanGraphs recommends, but whatever. You can see the power is there. Riley did his best Aristides Aquino when getting the call last season, slashing .324/.368/.732 with nine homers and 25 RBI in his first 18 games. Buuut in his final 62 games, he had almost the exact same production (nine HR, 24 RBI) and a yucky, yucky slash (.192/.249/.379).

The 2019 AAA Riley struck out 20.1% of the time (his best anywhere) and walked 10.3% of the time; but alas, 2019 MLB Riley struck out 36.4% of the time and walked only 5.4% of the time. He still managed a .245 ISO in the majors, which is very damn good, but the rest of his offensive metrics definitely took a nose dive as the year went on. The batted ball metrics are great: 13.7% barrel rate, 44.6% hard-hit rate, and a 20.6-degree launch angle. Riley had 7.7% barrels per plate appearance, which would be top 50 in the league if he qualified. Better than Ketel Marte, Rafael Devers, Gleyber Torres, Max Muncy, and like a ton others, of course. Those are just some big fantasy studs that stood out.

I think you all get the picture. Riley has the chops to be a fantasy force as is, but he’s got improvements he needs to make. If a pitch is in the zone, dude swings like every time (okay, 80.5%) but also chased almost 38% of the time. If he can keep barreling balls and show some more patience, then whoa nelly. They’ve got Ronald Acuna Jr., Ozzie Albies, Freddie Freeman, Marcell Ozuna, and now this guy?!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The drumbeat of social distancing goes on. But as Rob Manfred says, baseball will happen….eventually. And the New York Mets will have a left fielder too. Or will it be a few left fielders? This whole quarantine thing is managing to make seasons possible that seemed impossible. In other words, those we thought would miss large portions of the the season are now in play. There was a time Yoenis Cespedes would strike fear into opposing pitchers. Then he signed with the Mets. Okay, that’s not fair, he did hit 31 home runs and was an All Star two years ago. But that was two years ago. Now he’s 34, and thanks to his lingering issues J.D. Davis, among others, got his chance. So what will happen in 2020?

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Maybe the real-life baseball season has stopped, but that doesn’t mean fantasy baseball has to. It’s all we have these days, really. Fantasy sports while we fantasize about real sports coming back. I feel bad for my fellow fantasy hockey folks – I get the feeling it ain’t coming back, even if regular hockey does. I’m not about that fantasy basketball life (I dabbled in my younger years – Tracy McGrady anyone? Had to have him on all my teams), but I fear it’s the same fate. Only fantasy football is unscathed…so far. Wild stuff happening on that front, too. Brady to the Bucs? Da BUCS?! DAFUQ! Gurley and Newton RELEASED?! Hopkins TRADED?! Maybe Watson, too?! Madness, I say!

Anyway. This is a fantasy baseball article. Almost forgot. It’s an important year for the fine ladies and gents here at Razzball: the inaugural season of RazzSlam! Big shoutout to the NFBC peeps for hosting it. Give ’em a follow on the Twitter at @TheNFBC. I had the honor of being accepted into League 2 (of 18). Some scrub ass writer for CBS is in it. Big deal. I’m kidding, he’ll probably whoop my ass.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Hello again. I’m back to remind you that baseball is still indefinitely delayed. While you’re likely still sequestered like myself (remember when I said I’d bet my next check? Bingo bango, no school for a week at least, plus Spring Break), why not take the time to read up on fantasy baseball stuff? Get some more names on your radar you may have neglected because of injury.

Last week, I talked about a bunch of Yankees and mostly some household ace names like Max Scherzer, Mike Clevinger, Justin Verlander, etc. Those guys were some big names whose stock slipped some in the ADP department thanks to their various ailments. I promised some more, so I won’t dilly dally any longer. This week’s crop isn’t necessarily superstars (though I guess that’s arguable), but they’re definitely some names you want to keep in mind.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It’s always dicey to put too much stock into average draft position when strategizing for a draft, particularly for players you are heavily targeting.  No owner wants to come up empty when four or five of his “must-haves” get snatched up a round or two sooner than expected, leaving said owner with a litter of panic picks and a team nothing like he’d envisioned.  On the other hand, paying no attention to ADP could lead to a series of reaches, which might result in a draft devoid of any true value picks, and a team without some solid built-in value is a team with a long season ahead.  In deeper leagues, these value picks are even more important.  The deeper the league, the shallower the free agent pool, so while your hits have an even bigger positive impact on your team, your misses might leave you with nowhere to turn in an attempt to plug holes on your roster.  Deeper leagues most definitely require near-perfect timing in a draft or auction, which makes assessing ADP — and when to use it versus when to ignore it — that much trickier.

Since I am obsessive enough about fantasy baseball that I now consider it more of a part-time job than a hobby, it should come as no surprise to anyone who knows me that I am currently — even though it’s only early February — finishing up my fourth slow draft of the season. So far, these are all 15-team mixed re-draft leagues, and while the format is different than some of my other leagues, the 15-teamers go deep enough that I am getting a good idea of players values that feel more “real” to me than just ADP numbers.  What I want to look at today is a handful of outfielders whom I had considered as potential targets going into my drafts but have not ended up drafting yet.  The reason?  They all have been going significantly ahead of their current NFBC ADP.  That ADP, of course, is still doing a great deal of fluctuating this early in the pre-season, and I think I’ve been too reliant on it when assessing where I hoped to draft some of my deep-league targets (the following players all currently have an NFBC ADP ranked well outside the top 200).  Going into my next draft(s), I feel like I’ll know that if I really want any of these guys, I may have to reach a little further than I’d originally planned to secure them (and that’s not even taking into consideration value jumps that may happen depending on who looks healthy and productive in spring training).

Please, blog, may I have some more?

We’ve done it! We’ve reached the end of the fantasy baseball hitter rankings for 2020 fantasy baseball rankings. Give yourself a big round of applause. I’d clap for you, but I have carpal tunnel from actually ranking all the hitters and writing all their blurbs and calculating all of their projections and– What exactly did you do? Oh, yeah, you read them. No wonder why your hands can still clap. Okay, let’s get to it because this post is like 5,000 words long and I wrote it with my toes. C’mon, pinkie toe, push down the shift key! Here’s Steamer’s 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers. All projections listed are mine and I mention where I see tiers starting and stopping.  Anyway, here’s the top 100 outfielders for 2020 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

To the Muppet Show theme song, “It’s time to face the music!  It’s time to say Asdrubal Cabrera is all right!  It’s time to meet the Rangers on the Rangers show tonight!”  Asdrubal Cabrera went 2-for-4 and his 8th and 9th homer, hitting .222.  Guess you can say that was an Asdouble homer night!  Give me some skin up in the air!  No?  Okay.  Asdrubal went cold the past three weeks after having a hot two weeks prior, and it sounds like I’m writing his autobiography.  So, finally he said to his 4th grade gym teacher, “I will be someone one day,” and that teacher was Hunter Pence, who also hit a home run, his 9th as he hits .307.  Pence aka The Gangly Manbird aka the Zombino aka the inflatable wavy guy outside of a used car lot has six homers in the past 11 games.  He sure doesn’t stink, but you know who does?  Rougned Odor (1-for-4, 3 RBIs, hitting .169) hit his 7th homer.  Odor…Odor…Odor…Odor…*my back is pressed against a giant gym sock*…Odor!  Seriously, you know when 25 homers is not feasible?  When it comes with a .170 average. Pick up the pace, Odor, you odorous piece of pond scum!  All of this offense was plenty for Mike Minor (6 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 11 Ks, ERA at 2.51).  Nope, he’s not pitching as well as his ERA indicates, but at a certain point you have to say to yourself, “Do I want some flashy FIP, which I don’t even fully understand, or do I want to win my league?”  But those runs were only barely enough for Clocks singer, Chris Martin (1 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 4.66). Bring back the South African dictator, Leclerc, which I say quietly to myself, so no one gets the wrong impression. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

We’ve done it!  We’ve reached the end of the fantasy baseball hitter rankings.  Give yourself a big round of applause.  I’d clap for you, but I have carpal tunnel from actually ranking all the hitters and writing all their blurbs and calculating all of their projections and– What exactly did you do?  Oh, yeah, you read them.  No wonder why your hands can still clap.  Okay, let’s get to it because this post is like 5,000 words long and I wrote it with my toes.  C’mon, pinkie toe, push down the shift key!  Here’s Steamer’s 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2019 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers.  All projections listed are mine and I mention where I see tiers starting and stopping.  Anyway, here’s the top 100 outfielders for 2019 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?