Please see our player page for Zach Plesac 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.

With the top 80 starters for 2020 fantasy baseball, we are so close to the end of the rankings, I can almost taste it! Wait, that’s not rankings I taste, I bit my lip and it’s blood. I wonder if when Dracula bites his lip it’s like when Cougs goes out with her friends and I’m left at home while Emmanuelle is on Cinemax. I’ll go over exactly how to draft starters in a few days, but there are so many ways to skin a cat we should have PETA breathing down our necks. Also, I’m hoping to do the RCL signups next Monday. Stay tuned! Or not, your call. All the 2020 fantasy baseball rankings are there. Here’s Steamer’s 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers. Here’s all the 2020 fantasy baseball auction rankings. At the top of that page there’s about 20 different league types to choose from. All projections listed are mine and I mention where I see tiers starting and stopping.  Anyway, here’s the top 80 starters for 2020 fantasy baseball:

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K.I.S.S. – Keep It Simple, Stupid.

Is it a corny acronym? No doubt.

Does it have a purpose in fantasy baseball? Absolutely.

I’m not the smartest person on the planet. There is zero chance I can combine hundreds of metrics into a special formula to conveniently spit out 2020 breakout pitchers. Ask Rudy for that. However, I can break down the game to simple components and use a few metrics at a time. That is exactly what I plan to do in this series for the next month. Keep It Simple, Pat. K.I.S.P.!

Last week, I highlighted a group of pitchers who exceed expectations in the past 3 seasons. Time after time in reviewing these pitchers a commonality was the use of a highly effective secondary pitch. Additionally, the usage of this secondary pitch contributed to a rise in the effectiveness of the player’s fastball. This cohesion leads to the hypothesis of this week’s article, locating exceptional secondary pitches. If a pitcher throws hard with at least one valuable secondary pitch they will generate more strikeouts, more poor swings, and infrequent hard contact.

In order to find players that matched to this premise I did the following:

  • Started with 2019 Fangraphs pitch data and filtered out anyone with less than 50 MLB innings pitched and more than 400 career MLB innings pitched to isolate for Youthful Jumps.
  • Brought in the average fastball velocity for the last two years and removed all pitchers throwing less than 93.4 MPH. This isn’t an arbitrary number; Shane Bieber was the average velocity floor from the Youthful Jump group at 93.4 MPH.
  • Highlighted only players with a Standardized Pitch Value (Pitch Type Linear Weights per 100) for a secondary pitch over 0.5 for the 2019 season.

Shockingly, there were only 12 pitchers from the 2019 season who met the criteria. Of those, seven could be removed for various reasons mentioned at the end of the article for clarity. The five pitchers who remain are detailed below:

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Trying to predict what’s going to happen at this time of the year is similar to fouling off a pitch straight into your man parts. You try to do everything possible to do the right thing and sometimes you just Mitch Haniger yourself out of the season. While the streamers last week were all mixed up […]

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*glances at Houston score* Welp, another insane offensive night for the As–Wait a second! Make that As– into an A’s. We’ve got a barnburner like the Astros were John Wilkes Booth! (If you get that joke, you’ve also read Manhunt, to which I say — nerd!) The ALCS is going to be a series of 24-23 games that last eighteen hours. “Joe Buck, are you even watching the game or are you just reading old issues of Men’s Health with the pages stuck together?” That’s Ron Darling reprimanding Buck. It was the 4th inning and the entire A’s lineup already had multiple hits, so let’s check some boxes, shall we? Sean Murphy (3-for-5, 3 runs, 4 RBIs) hit his 2nd and 3rd homers, and I recently picked him up for an AL-Only league. He had ten quick homers in only 31 games of Triple-A so he’s got power to spare, and Chris Herrmann was just designated for assignment. I hope Herrmann can find peace with they’re re-assignment. Matt Olson (2-for-4, 3 runs, 4 RBIs) also hit two homers. What Olson is doing in 70% of a season and without a hamate is going fairly unnoticed, and I already know I’m going to be so high on him in 2020. Then, Marcus Semien (3-for-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs) hit his 27th homer, because what goes up must come down with, uh, Semien. Finally, Khris Davis (3-for-6, 2 runs, 3 RBIs) hit his 20th homer, asserting he’s not really Chris Davis, but I’m not sure I believe him. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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After Reynaldo Lopez‘s last start of 2/3 IP, 6 ER, I wrote him off for this year and next year.  Now, I will begin a backpedal not seen since the bear at the circus who can ride a bicycle. “Beaux-Bo, you can’t pedal so close to that family of three eating a turkey leg. Beaux-Bo, stop it! Beaux-Bo, no! Beaux-Bo, no! Beaux-Bo, put down that torso!” And that’s the final written transcription of Beaux-Bo, the bicycle riding bear. Actually, I’m going to backpedal my backpedal, so, eat a D, Beaux-Bo, the bicycle-riding bear! I was serious last week when I said I’m outlawing pitchers who start a game, give up 5+ runs and can’t get out of the 1st. They’re completely untrustworthy, so it’s not surprising Lopez would have a start of 9 IP, 1 ER, 1 hit, 3 walks, 11 Ks, ERA at 5.17. That’s the problem!  What are we getting next time out?  3 IP, 6 ER? 7 IP, 2 ER? No one has any idea. Listen, I know there’s uncertainty in this crazy thing called fantasy (worst Queen song ever), but I’m not inviting more risk. I’m still out on Lopez. Sorry, gotta put my foot down, even if I’m writing this from an anti-gravity chamber where I can eat turkey legs without fear of a bicycle bear attack.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Surprisingly, we don’t have a super short slate today with 12 games on the docket. However, there is a decided lack of top tier pitching options. Enter Matthew Boyd (SP: $9,700)  He’s been ringing guys up but also struggling with the long ball. That gives him high upside but also makes him risky. The choice is yours. Personally, I’m in because the Ks are too enticing to pass up. The bot also loves him today so there’s that. He projects as the only elite pitching option today which definitely makes him worth a look. I say do it, you know you want to.

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!

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Brendan McKay has been taking a big crap on my last two articles and I’m learning that it’s hard to trust these kids. While they may have the spectacular minor league numbers, I want to see some production at this level before recommending them as streamers. That’s why everyone in this article will be prior streamers, as I really want to get back on track for you guys. With that in mind, let’s start with one of the most underrated pitchers in baseball.

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Welcome to the start of the weekend DFSers! We have a 13-game slate on FanDuel this Friday. The Twins send their ace, Jose Berrios ($8,800), to the mound where he gets one of the best matchups a pitcher could ask for in the Tigers. In the second half, the Tigers have just a 70 wRC+ against right-handed pitching, which is good for 28th best in the league. They also have the highest strikeout rate against righties at 28.2%. Jose Berrios has always had better numbers at home, and this year is more of the same (3.27 ERA vs. 3.45). Berrios should have no problem cruising through the declawed Tigers. My only worry with this pick is at this price, Berrios is likely to be heavily owned. Let’s take a look at the rest of FanDuel’s slate to see if we can find a decent pivot.

New to FanDuelScared 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!

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No Doubt

Player Team Opp. 1 Opp. 2
Gerrit Cole HOU @CHW @OAK
Clayton Kershaw LAD @MIA @ATL

It wasn’t worth the effort to paste Gerrit Cole’s head on the GIF, but you get it, Cole is about to dive straight into a pile of money as he enters free agency next season.

After getting off to a rough start, Cole keeps cruising with a 1.98 ERA, 0.90 WHIP, 36% K rate along with a 6.3% BB rate since his May 27th start. He may be getting a little lucky, but you have bigger concerns than whether he should be in your lineup.

Clayton Kershaw has been great this season as well, and performing even better since July started. 1.66 ERA, 0.97 WHIP, and a 32% K rate. As Mark Twain was famously quoted as saying, “Rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated.” The back has held up this season and we’re getting a (potentially last) look at vintage Kershaw down the stretch.

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Yesterday, Michael Conforto went 2-for-3, 3 runs, 3 RBIs and his 24th and 25th homer, and, like, his 43rd homer in the last month (9 homers since the break). Men, dudes, bros, youse, five lady readers, Goofusses and Gallants, Cousin Sweatpants, my peeps from another Easter basket! Conforto gets scorching hot for these month-long stretches that makes you think he could put it together for a whole year one of these days, um, years. He’s the third Met player in history with 100+ homers before the age of 27. The other two are Darryl Strawberry and David Wright. The three of them all stayed at a Howard Johnson in the offseason. HoJo puts on a team-building seminar on his back patio and provides snacks, and Lenny Dykstra works the valet. Conforto’s in-Confort-ible! *screams for 10 minutes* Okay. I’m back. If you look at Conforto’s peripherals he really is more this post-All-Star break hitter, and less the one that struggled for the previous six weeks prior to this. Hopefully, Conforto stays in-Conforto-ible for the rest of this year and into 2020. I can see it now! (Only another 18 months of bad 2020 puns.)  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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