Jays traded Roberto Osuna to the Astros for Ken Giles. Basically, they traded headaches. If the Jays and Astros wanted to do what was best for baseball, they would have Giles and Osuna step into a steel cage, right at the Canadian border, and whoever was able to get out, that would be who would continue on. It can have lots of little Canadian touches too, like a maple syrup hazard and scaffolding designed by Bret Hart. “Giles looks like he’s going to escape–Ooh, a Mountie greets him with poutine in the eye. Would’ve thought he’d look out for that, but it never o’CURD’d to him.” “Mean” Gene Okerlund with the pun! I like this trade for both teams. Your piece of shizz for my piece of shizz. All trades should be this clearcut. As for fantasy, Roberto Osuna should take over in Houston when he returns next week, but Hector Rondon had been pitching well (until his last outing). Might not be Osuna immediately, but I’d imagine he gets in the 9th by his third appearance. Pretty much same deal with Ken Giles. Though, there’s a lot more emphasis on Ken with Giles. Ken he? I don’t know, but the Jays also have less desirable options, so I could see Giles getting saves even quicker than Osuna. In most leagues, I’d grab both. Or whichever makes it out of the steel cage.
I mean, who doesn’t like a good old Kenny Rogers reference? I appreciate it, but was more keen on Islands in the Stream, which in reality still works for this post. This week, I wanna focus y’alls attention on when to keep relievers of hold value or when to fold them and grab someone new. I wanted to bring this up because the near-leader in holds currently is Juan Nicasio. (Who for all intents and purposes is a fantastic Holds pitcher when you just take into account the hold total of 12. Which trails only Archie.) The hold total is great for holds leagues says captain obvious. The peripheral stuff is absolutely poop though. Commander Poop, for the full nautical theme. He checks none of the boxes from the non-hold league boxes, his K-rate is just a tick above 9, HR/9 at 2.0, a BAA over .300 and an ERA over 6… Those are not the four checks that I was referring too. So for mixed leagues, the guys you want to own are all over these standards: The K-rate has to be at or above 11 K/9, which includes over 60 relievers in baseball. HR/9 has to be tiny, think under 0.50, BAA against has to be anything at or below league average of .243. And lastly, the ERA has to be respectful, but not the end-all-be-all of determinations, because unluckiness does happen with relievers. So when doing your homework for reliever adds, make a checklist of those three stats and let the ERA be the tie-breaker in determining your add. In holds leagues, quantity does matter, but if you are only going to eat one banana why buy the whole bunch and let them ruin all the other categories?
We’re back with our second installment of this year’s Roto category leaders. Once again, listed is the current leaders, favorites in a group (if tied), and who is licking their chops to, meow mix meow mix please deliver, take over the lead, ready to run a train on them chicken fingers nom nom nom nom. You know what, let’s get right into it!
With the season winding down and most H2H leagues in full-on go mode, this week’s holds post will be the last one of the year. I know, so sad, right? It has been a 25-week journey into the pits and pendulums that are fantasy bullpens. But with the conclusion, it is always good to look ahead to next year for everyone in keeper, dynasty or just anyone looking to get a jump on next year now. I mean, I never stop really doing bullpen research all year, I drink one can of beer at a time and then look to the bottom of the can to see if the answer or answers are printed on the bottom. Alas, I haven’t found one yet, but that won’t stop me from trying again and again in my ever search for bullpen enlightenment. Things to look for late in the year for future bullpen potential; high leverage usage, a great success with stranded runners and a great situational involvement in that teams bullpen moving forward. Just a P.S., those are the things I give you with every bullpen piece in my helpful chart. Yes that last one is tough because we never know who will be traded and add or subtract value from another, but great bullpen arms on one team with potential for holds, saves and just overall decent fantasy return are very rarely ever traded and don’t return to same spot with new team. So put your feet up, I have 10 more beers left before this post is done…
As the season draws nigh, and it comes to the point in the season when we here at Razzball use words like nigh, verisimilitude, or even rancorous. Don’t ask me what the meaning is, because I could barely spell them without my handy speak and spell. The whole gist of this discussion is to basically look at our roster and think diversification. Look at the bullpen pieces that currently occupy one or several of your pitcher spots. I say this because we all want counting stats at all times, and in a manner… this is why come the end of the year, it is very sexy to have guys who have multiple pitching eligibility for the off chance your don’t have a starter going in a spot or on an innings limit. These fellas help out in K’s, rates, vulture wins, and since we are here for the holds, they do them too. Listen, this isn’t a new thing or a crazy theory that I concocted in my basement after painting too man model airplanes. Though, the thought process after that is kinda cloudy and sorta fun? So here is a rundown of the guys with some dual eligibility late in the fame to aide in your fantasy quest. Cheers!
If history teaches us anything about fantasy baseball, it’s that the proof is in the pudding. If history actually teaches us anything, it’s that Brad Pitt killed Hektor. See what I did there, I pulled the ole okie doke. It’s a favorable trick passed down through the years of dudes who vape and like to talk about how a dime won’t even buy a nickle anymore. Those first few sentences are brought to you by filth and non-sense, because life isn’t fitting if there isn’t filthy or nonsensical. So onto Holds, which about six actual readers, and one of the female variety still get all excited about. The title says it all this week for the lede, Hector Neris has been carried in most formats all year because he brings some fantasy goodness to the table. As a handcuff, there’s no way he can do it for the whole year, even with Jeanmar, or the fact that he has sexy enough reliever numbers, 11-plus K-rate, under 3 ERA. I could go on and on and bore the crap out of you, but let’s just put it this way: he has 27 Holds behind a closer that has 34 saves for a surprise bullpen asset in the Phillies. So in the last two weeks with the Phil’s getting there fair share of victories he has been an augmenter to your hold total notching a league high 5 holds. He is a key cog down the stretch for not only the Phils , but for your fantasy team regardless of format. So go take a look, just in case the late year shuffle has thrown him by the wayside. After you do that follow the bottom for some Holds, set-up and other relief goodies…
The holds leaderboard has been basically demolished as guys have switched roles. Three out of the top-10 holds guys (Bettances, Herrera, and Watson) currently are holding down the closer roles for their respective teams. Add in two more from the top-20 (Andrew Miller and Ken Giles) and you can see that 20% of the entire holds leaders are double dipping in stats. Not always a bad thing, but when you are counting on one stat from a guy and then it switches to another, it detracts from the previous. Have no fear, because the bullpen aficionado is here to steer you through the muck and mire that is the bullpen shuffle. So for this week, we are going to look at guys who aren’t in a closing role. I have taken current closers out of the equation for the chart, because this is a holds piece and we don’t want “their kind” infiltrating the holds stuff. So be active on the waiver wire as we come down to the end of the season, there should be no commitment in the relief game.
The Indians traded Clint Frazier, Justus Sheffield, Ben Heller and J.P. Feyereisen for Andrew Miller. A regular Thanksgiving bounty to the Yankees as the Indians received SAGNOF and smallpox. Hopefully, the Indians don’t have reservations later about those prospects they sent for Miller and want them back like, um, a regretful trade partner. For a second this weekend, it appeared that the Indians traded for Miller and Jonathan Lucroy, but Lucroy vetoed the trade. Looks like Milwaukee is a bunch of Brewer-givers. Will say this, it was a bold trade by Cleveland vs. sitting around Indian-style as they did all offseason. So, Miller becomes the de facto closer in Cleveland, and remains a top five closer in fantasy. Cody Allen gets his value boinked on the head and it’s now seeing stars. Mean’s while, in New York, Dellin Betances becomes the 9th inning man for the Yankees and, taking over setup, is their newly acquired, Tyler Clippard. That’s right, the Yankee Clippard! Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:
Shaba Antone in the know knows that I am all about Jamaica. Love to visit the place. I also have several friends that reside on the isle and like to partake in the national festivity of… well, you know, don’t make me say. The Dodger pen has been a flux of capacitors all year, and I think at some point I’ll bet a sixer on the leading hold leader from them being someone who may have contracted a melanoma. Enter Joe Blanton. The resurrection project of all resurrection projects. Not only has he flourished in the role of set-up to the stars, but he doesn’t seem to have any competition to say the opposite. In his last 30 days, minus a week off for the All-Star break, he has a one-off the pace total of 7 holds, a K/9 rate of above average, and an ERA of two bills. All this for a team that has lacked stability setting up the dude who sounds like someone you would rent a kickboard from in Jamaica. Now, he isn’t the only reason for the Dodgers having a top-5 bullpen ERA in the last 30 days, but he isn’t not-not the problem. He is someone you may need to own though, add in the fact that in some leagues, I have SP eligibility, and he looks even sexier. So now that we have got the lede out the way, let’s get to the milk and cookies of the bullpen report.
I figured out the best concoction for delivering fantasy baseball… First, go to liquor store and grab your consumption of choice. Next, convey your thoughts about fantasy bullpens to the masses in a cognitive and fluid way that makes sense to… the masses. Mission One: check, Mission Two: to be determined. This week, I wanna touch base on the neophyte in Seattle’s Edwin Diaz, the once highly-touted starting pitcher prospect that is now occupying the first chair in Seattle. He is sorta the new kid in class, and the trust level to let him borrow a Nintendo game just isn’t there yet. The stats will speak differently though. Check the rhythm of the rhyme I wrote and while I got a chance here, let me clear my throat. For the last month, he has been chipping away at the Benoit salad in Seattle’s pecking order. Well, now he is the goods by setting up a Cishek. Cishek in this case is Swahili for “not for long”. Over the last fortnight, he leads all of baseball in holds with 5, and his 20.57 K/9, which is basically unparalleled by anyone. Listen, Cishek has the job and he isn’t getting shipped anywhere while the Mariners are in a wildcard hunt. But isn’t it fun to own the guy who is sexy now before you start seeing kids in the mall all wearing him like he is the new Cavaricci? Diaz is his name and RP satisfaction is his game, green is his color… blue is the other. So hop on the good foot and add the sure thing. While you’re at it, check some other delectable sundries that I have in the shape of bullpens and their place in society…