*swirls a glass, takes a gulp. spits it back in a bucket* “That’s vintage Justin Verlander,” said Kate Upton. “Okay, this might sound gross, but can you spit into my mouth?” That’s you getting up the nerve to say something to Kate Upton. I just thought of a moneymaking idea for Shark Tank! You stand outside of Comerica Park with a cardboard cutout of a naked Verlander and have people pay $10 to take a picture with him, pretending to be Kate Upton. Oh, and no, this post isn’t an attempt to Bleacher Report up Google’s rankings by mentioning Verlander and Upton repeatedly, though it does seem that way…Verlander/Upton, Verlander/Upton and Verlander/Upten for the illiterates. So, Verlander did look magnificent yesterday until the 8th inning when he began to tire, ending up with a one hitter –> 9 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners (1 Hit), 9 Ks with an ERA at 3.45. Big Magoo captured Verlander’s upside about two weeks ago with this post. Worth reading, but the key part (cause I know, y’all can only read so much), “Since the All-Star break, Verlander’s 7.25 K/BB ratio is the 5th highest among qualified starting pitchers, and his 1.1 BB/9 is the 6th lowest. He shares the same swinging strike rate (12.1%) as Jake Arrieta and Gerrit Cole over that span as well. Now, excuse me as I go drain the weasel on a picture of Grey.” Hey, wait a minute! I didn’t remember that last part. So, if Verlander is out there in your league, the one-hitter yesterday doesn’t seem to be a hirame. Sorry, I just had sushi. It’s not a fluke. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:
Shane Greene – Season is over for Greene as he will undergo hand surgery. The surgery is to remove JB’s hand from him.
Anibal Sanchez – Set to throw next week. That gives you about three weeks to drop him. Maybe four if you’re lucky.
J.D. Martinez – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 34th homer. Does Just Dong make his way into the 2nd round overall next year? Asking for a friend.
Miguel Cabrera – 1-for-3, 2 RBIs and his 17th homer. Do you know what Cousin Slowpants’ batting average is? Nope, try higher. .560? Oh, c’mon, is that a real guess? Why not just guess “avocado?” He’s batting .370. Not to sound all Tim McCarver, but Miggy’s a professional hitter.
Nick Castellanos – 1-for-4 and his 15th homer. Yesterday, I named Domingo Santana my first 2016 sleeper that you will forget by December, so when I write a post about him you won’t be like, “Yeah, I know this shizz.” Well, the 2nd 2016 sleeper, Castellanos.
Hector Santiago – 4 1/3 IP, 5 ER, ERA up to 3.13. I mentioned this about two months ago, and to reiterate on the aforementioned tip, Santiago feels like a guy that will slowly, but surely make his way up to a 3.50 ERA and kill you with a slow death. And that’s me paraphrasing me while calling you Shirley!
Jacoby Ellsbury – Didn’t start yesterday due to a sore hip. He should just officially change his name to D’Ellsbury.
Michael Pineda – 4 1/3 IP, 5 ER as he returned from the DL. Can we return him back to the DL? I don’t necessarily think this means Pineda will be useless the rest of the year, but I wouldn’t start him until he showed a decent start.
Didi Gregorius – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 6th homer. Didi, Didi, Didi, can’t you see? Sometimes your one homer per month hypnotizes me.
George Springer – Hoping to start rehab this weekend, which puts him in line to get activated early next week. Usually hitters returning from broken wrists take a while to return to form, so Springer may not be himself until next year, but you’ll take what you can from him and like it!
Evan Gattis – 2-for-4 and his 21st and 22nd homers, and has three homers in the past two games in The Stadium They Built Across From The Parking Lot Which Was Once Where Ruth Built A House. Gattis feels like a guy that could be playing in pinstripes at some point in his career. Sure, not until he’s about 36 years old, but at some point.
Collin McHugh – 6 1/3 IP, 2 ER, 7 baserunners, 8 Ks, ERA at 3.92. McHugh now has five straight Quality Starts. Or as my Italian grandfather would walk around saying to everything, “Cheeng-oo-BETZ, kapeesh?” The Stream-o-Nator loves McHugh’s next start, and I see no reason why he’s not a start everywhere until he throws a bad one.
Carlos Gomez – 1-for-3, 1 run and his 6th steal. Hey, would ya know? He’s finally fogging up the mirror under his nose.
Chris Bassitt – 4 1/3 IP, 4 ER. Oh, no, Bassitt, not on National Dog Day!
Billy Burns – 1-for-4 and his 3rd homer, hitting near-.425 in the last week. Burns is scalding hot. Pun noted because I was too lazy to avoid it.
Brett Lawrie – 2-for-4 and his 12th homer. Incredibly, he’s hitting near-.500 in the last week. It’s so incredible that Lawrie is actually doing something I feel like changing the word “Incredibly” to “Lawriely.”
Nelson Cruz – 3-for-4, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 39th homer. You know if I get on board with Cruz next year he will have the worst year of his career. You know this, right?
Kyle Seager – 1-for-5 and his 18th homer. This was Seager’s first sign of life in about a month (hitting .196 in August). Maybe he was having a sit-in until his brother was promoted, though spelling “sit” like Jhonny Peralta would.
Tom Wilhelmsen – Lloyd McClendon said, “(Wilhelmsen) is the closer as we speak.” Actually, he said this around 9 AM PST yesterday when absolutely no game was going on, so, of course, basic cliches elude him. Why wouldn’t they? Or he was saying that while watching a video playback of an inning where Wilhelmsen was closing as he spoke.
Logan Morrison – 2-for-3, 1 run, 1 RBI and his 7th steal; he also hit a home run on Tuesday. Morrison’s starring in an adaptation of his own novel and schmotatoness: Beloved.
Ketel Marte – 2-for-5, 2 runs. He’s been leading off, and hitting around .450 in the last week. This one Ketel is Effen black cherry-cinnamon schnapps hot. This blurb was brought you by 20-something Grey who used to drink on the reg.
Billy Hamilton – Hasn’t even begun baseball activities. No scratching himself, no spitting, no nothing. He’s been sitting with a mouth full of Big League Chew in his mouth, dribble coming down his chin, as a fly lands on his crotch and he hasn’t done anything!
Yasmani Grandal – Expects to return on Thursday. Whatever, I’ve moved on to my new squeeze, The Beef.
Yasiel Puig – 1-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 11th homer. He could have a .440-hitting, 10-homer September or go 0-for-110. Only those in El Cubanati know for sure.
Brett Anderson – 6 2/3 IP, 0 ER (3 unearned runs for a small box scare), 6 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 3.36. Somehow, he has a 3.36 ERA on the year, and I swear I’ve streamed him to something like a 17.00 ERA over four streams. No matter what the Stream-o-Nator says, I wouldn’t ever touch Anderson. Once bitten, twice shy, Great White.
Bartolo Colon – 7 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners, 8 Ks, vs. Jerad Eickhoff 6 IP, 3 ER, 7 baserunners, 6 Ks. Elias Sports Bureau said this game was significant because a drunk David Hasselhoff once bent over and mooned a passing tourist who exclaimed, “Eick! Hoff! Colon!”
Wilmer Flores – 2-for-5, hitting over .400 in the last week. Don’t cry for him, Argentina, he’ll do it for himself. Plus, he’s a hot schmotato.
Michael Cuddyer – 3-for-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 10th homer. For what it’s Werth and likely nothing because watch him be randomly rested, but I’ve already picked him up as my batty call for today.
Rick Porcello – 7 IP, 0 ER, 5 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 5.47 as he was activated from the DL. Written before the Red Sox game, “This will turn out great.” Written after the game, “Yup.” Written after ‘Yup,’ “I meant ‘This will turn out great’ sarcastically.” Written after, ‘I meant ‘This will turn out great’ sarcastically,’ “Whatever, I still wouldn’t own him.”
Travis Shaw – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 7th homer. Shaw’s schmotato has cooled off dramatically (hitting under .200 in the last week), but this might be a sign that he’s still got something left in him. Hard to say at this point without some more cyclops’ing.
Junichi Tazawa – 1 IP, 0 ER and his 3rd save. For those holding Machi, I’d be happy he didn’t get called on. In fact (Grey’s adding on!), this Red Sox closer shituation is the type of bullpen where you don’t want the guy you own to enter the game.
Gregor Blanco – Scratched with a hip strain, which comes as Angel Pagan is about to return. The Giants don’t have a center fielder or left fielder, they have a Frankenfielder that is made of many different players.
Matt Cain – Could lose his rotation spot. Sounds like Bochy also streamed him on Tuesday.
Nori Aoki – 1-for-4 and his 5th homer. Really, it was just Nori’s ankle and wrist yesterday that was the Giants’ left Frankenfielder.
Chris Archer – 6 IP, 4 ER, 10 baserunners, 12 Ks, ERA at 2.88. The Ks are nice, obviously, but when the guy you rely on to stabilize your fantasy rotation gets hit by the Twins, it’s gonna be a long week.
Evan Longoria – 2-for-5 and his 14th homer. I’m writing a note, rolling it up and putting it in a bottle and sending it afloat into the ocean because I think that when you find a note in a bottle, you take it more to heart than if someone just tells you. On this note, I’m writing, “Longoria sucks.” My future apologies if a Desperate Housewife fan finds it.
Eduardo Escobar – 2-for-4 and two solo homers (6, 7). Third homer this week and hitting near-.300 in that time. It’s not bizzonkers, but it seems like a light schmotato.
Hector Olivera – Now the Braves are saying that it’s unlikely that Olivera will be called up before September 1st. Is it possible that Olivera was traded to the Braves, but part of the deal included Mattingly continuing to manage him?
Shelby Miller – 6 2/3 IP, 4 ER, 11 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA up to 2.62. At this point, I kinda hope his season ERA ends up around 2.50 on the year, so he’s completely overdrafted next year.
Jonny Gomes – 1-for-2, 2 runs and his 7th homer, and his 2nd homer in his 2nd start, but he platoons so you’d need to do the same. On a related note, you think Jonny bothers to tell baristas there’s no H or just rolls with it?
Adonis Garcia – 3-for-5 and his 6th homer in only his 31st game. Yo, Premier, hit that cut as Adonis gets nasty with the Maas appeal.
Gio Gonzalez – 4 2/3 IP, 4 ER vs. Padres. This is interesting (to me). Nationals feel like a team fighting for a playoff spot and the Padres don’t, even though the Padres went out and spent $300 million this past offseason. Okay, and one and a half games separates them in the Wild Card standings. What does this mean for fantasy? P. Diddly-squat.
Jimmy Nelson – 3 1/3 IP, 5 ER, 12 baserunners (8 BBs!), 4 Ks. The wheels came off yesterday for Nelson, then the side view mirror caught onto your underwear and dragged/wedgied you for about five blocks.
Khris Davis – 1-for-4 and his 17th homer, and his 11th homer in the last six weeks. Seriously, how is he only owned in 36% of leagues? I await your response.
Jason Kipnis – 2-for-5, 3 RBIs and his 7th homer. This was his 1st homer of the 2nd half and he has 1 steal. I’d now usually say I told you to sell him about six weeks ago, but that will spur him on to get hot, so I will just say nothing.
Francisco Lindor – 2-for-3, 1 run and 3 steals (4, 5, 6). Don’t look at me, I don’t know why you don’t pick him up.
Johnny Cueto – 5 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 3.95 on the Royals (2.94 overall). Real baseball trades are a lot like fantasy baseball ones. You swear to Mother Mary Margaret Magdalene that you got the better side of a trade, and this happens.
Mike Moustakas – 2-for-3, 2 RBIs and his 15th homer, and four homers in the last week. Moistasskissis is the hottest schmotato in the land and that’s the Land of Hot Schmotatoes so it’s significant.
Manny Machado – 2-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 26th homer, hitting .294. He’s cooled a bit in the 2nd half, but he’s securely in the top 20 overall next year, as I called in the preseason this past year. Sadly, I called it and didn’t act on it in any leagues. My problem: handsome, but hella dopey.
Chris Davis – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 35th homer. Yes, I would like another ten homers in fourteen days streak. Thank you!
Jonathan Schoop – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 10th homer. Definitely isn’t going to make me look brilliant for calling him a sleeper this past preseason, but that’s more due to injury. He has 10 HRs in only 53 games. Rudimentary math tells me he could’ve hit 25 homers this year.
Adrian Beltre – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 12th homer. The saddest thing about owning Beltre in my NFBC league is there’s no waivers, so I can’t even drop him.
Wil Myers – Took batting practice yesterday and felt great. He likely feels great because he didn’t own himself in fantasy the past two years.
Justin Upton – 2-for-4, 3 RBIs and his 21st and 22nd homers. If Upton follows seemingly every other year’s recipe for disappointment, he will hit five homers between now and October and go into the offseason with 27 homers and next March will look like he’s a safe bet for his usual numbers, only his usual numbers come with months of “Has he done anything at all this month?”
Paul Goldschmidt – 2-for-4 and his 25th homer. Au Shizz!
Patrick Corbin – 6 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 7 Ks. If you say his name real fast it sounds like he could be in El Cubanati, but he’s not. He is, however, unpredictable for this year.
Trevor Rosenthal – 1 IP, 0 ER and his 40th save. Siegrist is likely going to fill in as Rosenthal will miss a game or two for the birth of his child. If the child is Asian, Kolten Wong will miss the next series.
Jeff Locke – 7 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 3 Ks. If streaming is the key, then show me the Locke.
Andrew McCutchen – 2-for-5, 4 RBIs and his 20th homer. He only has six steals and I wouldn’t be surprised if he never gets back to where he was as recently as last year. Yeah, he had a knee problem this year, but steals are the first thing to go and, at 29 years old, it wouldn’t be unheard of.
Jose Fernandez – Marlins hope he can return mid-September. On one hand, he shouldn’t return this year. On the other hand, it’s the Marlins and I don’t think there’s one actual person in their front office that knows anything about baseball. On a third hand that is actually the Hamburger Helper, even if he returns mid-September, you’re not getting anything you wouldn’t be able to find off of waivers in most leagues.
Martin Prado – 1-for-4 and his 6th homer, has two homers in the last week, but not much else, so there’s that. On a related note, why would a guy like Prado ever retire? If someone’s willing to pay him to do nothing, you continue to play.
Chris Perez – Retired from baseball. More time for weed and making appearances at car dealerships dressed as Kenny Powers.