Spring is on its way! The RCLs are up and running, Grey’s busted through his rankings, and it’s not negative 100 outside my house for once. As if the opening sentences didn’t generate enough excitement, the dynamic duo of Castle Grey-Shitz is back for another week of big audio dynamite. This time we come correct with the top 25-30 shortstops for 2018 Fantasy Baseball from the Book of Albright. We dig in on Carlos Correa’s value, debate Alex Bregman’s running ability, use our meh emojis for Corey Seager, before moving on to Chris Taylor, Xander Bogaerts, Javier Baez, Elvis Andrus, Trevor Story, and many more. Just another week here with Ralph & Grey! Finally, please make sure to support our sponsor by heading over to RotoWear.com and entering promo code “SAGNOF” for 20% off the highest quality t-shirts in the fantasy sports game. It’s the latest edition of the Razzball Fantasy Baseball Podcast:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

So far we’ve (I’ve) gone over the top 10 for 2018 fantasy baseballtop 20 for 2018 fantasy baseballtop 20 catchers for 2018 fantasy baseballtop 20 1st basemen for 2018 fantasy baseball and the top 20 2nd basemen for 2018 fantasy baseball.  Sure, I could’ve just said here’s the 2018 fantasy baseball rankings, but if you’re gonna clickbait, you gotta go full bait.  Last year, I was drooling about the top 20 shortstops; this year, well, I like a few of them.  Lowercase yay!  How’d it go from a deep position to shallow in one year, especially a year after a huge offensive outburst?  I have some theories, but they all involve the Illuminati, so I can’t talk about them.  With each player is my projections and where I see tiers starting and stopping.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 shortstops for 2018 fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Love is too strong of a word.

like The Los Angeles Angels’ acquisition of shortstop Zack Cozart. As I write this column, it’s the Halos’ most recent power move. Subsequent to winning the lottery with Shohei Ohtani and trading for second baseman Ian Kinsler, while rumors pointed to Mike Moustakas, Billy Eppler zagged towards a more cost-effective option at third base. Rarely, however, is a cost-effective option also the better option. If Cozart ends up as a more productive player than Moustakas in 2018, I won’t be stunned. (Hot take level? Medium).

Think of it like this. You go to Whole Foods with a $20 budget. Instead of buying two pints of $10 ice cream, you purchase four pints of $5 ice cream. Then, you find out the $10 ice cream is actually worse for you than the $5 ice cream. Cozart is the $5 ice cream. Moustakas is the $10 ice cream. (Side note – Haagen Dazs is the best ice cream).

Well, that metaphor and my praise only work if we’re talking real-life value.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Carlos Santana was signed by the Phils.  Did Carlos Santana ever have a song called, “Harumph?”  Cause he’s making me harumph all over the place.  Doesn’t Hoskins play 1B?  Will Santana move to 3rd?  I agree, Maikel hasn’t been great, but he’s too young to give up on.  Maybe Santana plays outfield?  Hoskins plays outfield?  Maybe they juggle left field?  Maybe they juggle balls hit to them in left field?  Maybe they’re juggalos?  I got questions, y’all!  The scenario of Hoskins in the outfield seems most likely with Franco getting pushed down the order, but not out of the lineup entirely.  This might be something to watch in the spring with The Jacked Up Jew, and how he manages his new Latin classic rock guitarist.  As for Santana, his stats last year look like that of an aging slugger.  Carlos Santana’s gone from Oye Como Va to a hard-of-hearing Latino, ‘Oye come again?’  His average home run distance from 2016 to 2017 came down ten feet, but Citizens Flank might help a little.  His line drive rate went up, but his fly balls are going nowhere, and his Hard Contact was down.  He’s even seeing more pitches inside the zone, because people just aren’t scared of him anymore.  His stats don’t scream, ‘The end is nigh,’ but they are whispering, ‘Soon, my pretty.’  For 2018, I’ll give Carlos Santana projections of 74/24/81/.257/4 in 552 ABs.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this offseason for fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I’m excited to announce that I’ve already participated in my first 2018 fantasy baseball mock draft. And here’s the crazy part, it’s still 2017. Mind blown! Last week Scott White from CBS invited me to join his first mock of the season. While one might have thought I would have passed on the offer considering the 2017 World Series had completed only three weeks earlier, I jumped at the opportunity. And when I say “jumped” I mean I shrugged and said to myself, “What the heck.”

The format for the mock league was head-to-head points using standard CBS scoring. Those of you that have read my posts during the last three years will know that I am a points league kinda guy. My content is focused on this format. What better way to get an early start on some new material than to join eleven other top notch analysts in a way too early mock draft.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Here’s what I said last year, “We’re gonna find out if the top 20 shortstops are as Ken Bonerific as the top 20 2nd basemen.  Hint:  they are.  Damn, I gotta work on building suspense.  That hint pretty much gives the whole kit away and tacks the kaboodle onto its back as it’s walking out the door.  Goodbye, kit and kaboodle, I just gave you away for nothing.”  And that’s me quoting me!  This year?  Not so much.  Without further Machado, to recap, this final ranking is from our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater with my comments.  The Player Rater allows me to be impartial while looking at how I ranked them in the preseason.  Anyway, here’s the top 20 shortstops for 2017 fantasy baseball and how they compare to where I originally ranked them:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

*fumbles with an envelope, Hillary Swank stands next to me, watching on, embarrassed for me*  And the Teoscar goes to…Teoscar Hernandez!  Hillary Swank leans into the microphone, “Well, he was the only one nominated.”  Ugh, totally unnecessary Swank!  I should’ve pointed out how she was checking out Hugh Jackman’s wife the entire time on stage.  I picked up Teoscar before yesterday’s game for the runs because he was leading off, I never expected such a windfall of gorge.  He went 2-for-5, 4 RBIs with his 6th and 7th homer in only his 73rd at-bat.  That’s 20 hits total for him, with seven going gonzo.  This is better than Million Dollar Baby!  Yeah, I hope Hillary Swank’s Google alerts are going bizzonkers today.  Not ready to announce my love for Teoscar for next year, I am more of an IFP Spirit Awards guy, but you have to grab Teoscar for these final days.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

As the story goes, Daniel Mengden entered the Lion’s Den Friday night with a 6.59 ERA through 17 career major league starts, and somehow left the game with his first career complete game shut out allowing just two hits and striking out seven retiring the last 11 batters in the row for his first win of the year. He looked dominant at times allowing only two base runners in the outing with Philadelphia not being able to manage any hard contact off the young right hander, who’s got a funky handle-bar mustache and an even funkier looking windup/delivery. This was by far the best start of the 24-year old’s young career, and just his second scoreless start in the majors. He added his first career hit as well and scored a run to help his cause. Whata night for the youngster! After struggling with a 6.50 ERA, and 1.61 WHIP through 14 starts last year, and two subpar outings in May/June of this year, Mengden has returned to the rotation in September and now put up back-to-back quality starts including a six inning two earned run performance against the fearsome Astros line up last week. Mengden may not be the safest fantasy option out there on waivers, but the A’s seem to be playing the role of spoiler late in the year and he remains a pitcher available in most leagues. I’d take a flier on Mengden, bible readers know how Daniel fared against the lions, let’s hope he can keep it going as he heads to the Tigers den next week in Detroit.

Here’s what else I saw in fantasy baseball Friday night:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

DFS could be systematic, hydromatic, ultramatic… why it could be Rhys Lightnin’ today! I’d probably draft Rhys Hoskins above a whole bunch of guys next season. Throw Jose Abreu, Miguel Cabrera, Eric Hosmer, Logan Morrison, Ryan Zimmerman and Wil Myers on that list. Greasy Rhysy gives me the warm fuzzies with all of this home run business, oh and speaking of business, comparing him to a shart is kinda doable. We thought we knew what we had when Hoskins was called up in August, but when we pushed a little further, the explosion occurred. It’s a party in everyone’s pants, and since Hoskins ($4,100) is the lede on this fine Wednesday, he’s most certainly one of my top OF picks today.

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?

There’s a common term sociologists use called, The Tide of Uze.  Everything that encompasses everyday life is on The Tide of Uze.  Brushing your teeth, walking your dog, Jose Abreu, they’re all on The Tide of Uze.  There’s small pleasures to be found with them, but they’re so consistent they are often lost amongst other more exciting things.  However, this past weekend The Tide of Uze was raised by Irma GAWD!, the fantasy football kickoff and me going to a Dodgers game with Dr. Kenneth Noisewater, a frequent commenter who was in town.  I didn’t rank those per their importance, I’ll leave that to you.  Big weekend for the world, right?  (Yes.) With the Tide of Uze raising, it lifts everything that was floating on its surface, which meant Jose Abreu had a career weekend.  On Saturday, he hit for the cycle, and, not to be outdone, he homered twice on Sunday (2-for-3, 3 RBIs, home run, 30 and 31).  His season numbers are now 85/31/90/.302/1.  All preseason I talked about how I wasn’t getting a 1st baseman in the first two rounds, so I was drafting Abreu everywhere, and I was nervous about it.  Let’s just say I’ve learned to appreciate The Tide of Uze.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?