To paraphrase Tupac from Brenda’s Got a Baby, “I hear Grey’s got 2018 fantasy baseball rankings, but Grey’s barely got a brain.  A damn shame.  That guy can hardly spell his name.  GREY’S….GOT EM….RANKINGS!  Don’t you know he’s got ’em.  He wrote them solo, and he wrote them on his bathroom floor and didn’t know what to throw away and what to keep.  He crumbled these rankings up and threw them in a trash heap.   GREY’S….GOT EM….RANKINGS!  Don’t you know he’s got ’em.”  Don’t say I don’t keep my shizz socially conscious.  Or is it socially conscience?  Meh, doesn’t matter, I do it either way.  So, this top 60 starters has eleven pitchers I’m not crazy about, which is more than half the post, so, uh, yeah, I’ve seen a better group of pitchers.  Guess it’s to be expected after last year when the average ERA for a starter was, like, 6.45. As with previous rankings posts, my projections are included and where I see tiers starting and stopping.  Anyway, here’s the top 60 starters for 2018 fantasy baseball:

41. Danny Salazar – This tier started in the top 40 starters for 2018 fantasy baseball.  This tier goes until Cueto.  I called this tier, “Even Dave Matthews likes 4:44.”  I wanna love Salazar because of his 12.7 K/9 in 103 IP.  I can’t because he only threw 103 IP last year due to shoulder and elbow issues.  I’m pretty much expecting to get screwed by Salazar in the exact opposite manner that I’ve been screwed by him every other year.  Usually I’d own him and he’d be the number two I always dreamt of (after eating prunes).  This year, I won’t own him and he’ll be a number two without the prunes.  Revelation Alert!  What if for the first 1,000 years of human existence men sat to pee?  Then one day a man had terrible explosive diarrhea, and his wife was like, “You better clean that up,” and no one wants to clean the toilet, so instead he stood to pee and cleaned the crap with his urine.  Then, of course, he was so impressed with his ingenuity, he was like, “Oh my god, this is the best thing ever, I have to tell other men about it,” and before long everyone was standing to pee.  2018 Projections:  10-8/3.91/1.32/164 in 134 IP

42. Taijuan Walker – Going on three years now, I’ve been all-in on Walker.  This year, I’m taking a sabbatical.  It’s not Black Sabbath, it’s Latino Sabbath, and I’m off Taijuan.  Last year, he had a career high K/9 with 8.4, but his walk rate also ballooned up to 3.5.  He has never been able to stay on the field for more than 170 IP, and Chase Field is so bleh, fancy cigar box or not.  Finally, the percentage of pitches a batter swings at and missed with Walker has dropped to 8.6% and 27.4% on pitches outside the zone, which are poor rates, and make me think he’s fooling no one.  So, this year, my ulcer will not have a tag on it reading, “Made in Taijuan.”  2018 Projections:  10-12/3.94/1.35/155 in 171 IP

43. Jon Lester – The King of Saberhagenmetrics just came off one of his worst seasons to date, so, if everything we know about Saberhagenmetrics holds true, Lester’s in store for one of his best seasons.  Only problem with that is I can’t even justify drafting him due to Saberhagenmetrics, and I made up that facacta theory.  “I see you like Lester this year.”  “Oh, yes, Saberhagenmetrics says he’s going to be good.”  That’s a crazy person explaining drafting Lester this year.  2018 Projections:  12-10/3.94/1.28/177 in 183 IP

44. Johnny Cueto – Seriously, I could could go on for another five or six starters who I don’t like, but I wanna jump back into guys I’m interested in.  There will be more time for Herbs after the next tier or so.  Cueto is about the easiest guy to figure out.  For years, Cueto beat his xFIP by a lot — 2.82 ERA vs 3.23 xFIP — those types of years.  Then, this past year it caught up to him.  Know why?  Because he didn’t pray?  That’s your answer?  No, that’s not why.  Previously, he beat his predicted ERAs because he commanded his pitches so well, he made hitters make poor contact.  This past year, his command went to hell, hard contact went sky high, literally, he gave up a shizzton of homers.  He could fix his problems from last year, but I’m not risking it to see if he does.  2018 Projections:  10-11/3.81/1.24/165 in 188 IP

45. Jon Gray – This is a new tier.  This tier goes from here until Bundy.  I call this tier, “Candice Huffine.”  For those that don’t know, Candice Huffine is a plus-sized model.  She’s kinda smoking hot.  Can we get her on the podcast?  I wanna just talk to her for an hour.  Grey’s got love for big girls.  Does it negate anything nice I could say by saying I have love for big girls?  P to the erhaps.  So, why name this tier Candice Huffine?  Because I’m looking at pitchers who may not be your standard definition of beauty, but I have love for them.  As for Gray, he’s kinda sexy.  Wait, does that ruin my new year’s resolution to no longer talk in third person?  Oh, Jon Gray!  Yes.  Him.  Resolution…Intact!  Nice work, Grey!  Damn!  Gray’s K/9 is going to be above 9, so there’s a chance here for wonderful.  How…ever, Coors.  I snapped my fingers during the ellipsis in however.  Still, at this price, I’m going in on Gray again.  Okay, now this is getting dirty with seven R’s.  2018 Projections:  12-9/3.88/1.27/181 in 174 IP

46. Blake Snell – I already gave you a Blake Snell sleeper.  It was written while writing a PhD dissertation on the similarities of West Side Story and the Beat It video.  2018 Projections:  13-9/3.68/1.30/185 in 183 IP

47. Chase Anderson – Confessional!  *aims camcorder at funky chair in front of funky wall, sits in chair*  Hey, so we just got home from DA CLUB, and Cassie has been bugging me all night.  I think we’re gonna need a roommate meeting.  Also, I didn’t expect to like Chase Anderson this year.  Steamer hates him, and, while I don’t listen to everything Steamer says, they are the best projections in the business, so it would be foolish to not at least–COULD YOU BE QUIET OUT THERE, I’M DOING MY CONFESSIONAL!  Sorry, Malliq got crazy drunk and is actin’ a fool.  Where was I?  Anderson!  Right!  Steamer projects him for 4.91 ERA.  Um, okay.  *mimes walking out of the room*  Don’t want that, right?  I hear ya, but his velocity went up by two miles per hour, and the changes look legit from when he was a 6.5 K/9 to a 8.5 K/9 guy.  Okay, I’m gonna go see if Malliq cleaned the dishes yet.  Peace.  2018 Projections:  13-9/3.71/1.14/152 in 171 IP

48. Jameson Taillon – Last year was a lost season for Taillon.  *slowly crosses legs, winces*  My general prediction for owning Taillon in 12-team leagues and shallower, a prediction not based on anything scientific, mind you.  I draft him, he struggles in April, I drop him, then stream him in May and June, then finally own him again in July for six weeks, until he flames out in September.  Damn, my predictions not based on anything are specific, huh?  2018 Projections:  10-7/3.51/1.29/141 in 152 IP

49. Patrick Corbin – Already gave you my Patrick Corbin sleeper.  It was written while being fitted for gold fronts. 2018 Projections:  15-11/3.58/1.29/186 in 204 IP

50. Dylan Bundy – At this point, I’m looking for reasons to draft some upside, so take these small sample sizes with a grain of salt, which technically is a small sample size.  In 65 IP, Bundy had the 24th best FIP in the 2nd half last year, the 23rd best K/9 (9.9) and the 27th best walk rate (2.3).  If he has a 9.9 K/9 and 2.3 BB/9 over the course of this season, he’s going to be a top 15 starter next year.  Know how I keep saying I like pitchers in their third major league season?  Bundy’s about to enter it, and he’s only 25.  Not that long ago, he was a top prospect.  All Bundy needs to do is keep his homers down for a count of five, no problem there in the AL East.  2018 Projections:  10-12/3.77/1.24/181 in 197 IP

51. Lance Lynn – This is a new tier.  This tier goes from here until Duffy.  I call this tier, “Slice of bread bookmark.”   Would a slice of bread work as a bookmark?  Sure.  Can you find better things to hold a page in a book?  I’d guess so.  That’s similar to these pitchers, because they could work fine as starters, but I think you can find better.  In deeper leagues or leagues with an innings category, these guys get a boost.   As for Lynn, I had the great fortune to own Lynn last year.  I just giggled thinking about writing that.  On the entire internet, when someone’s started a sentence, “I had the great fortune to…” I’m pretty sure the sentence ended with something of a bit more consequence than owning Lynn.  I had the great fortune to…dine with the Dalai Lama.  I had the great fortune to…discuss art with the MOMA chief curator.  I had the great fortune to…walk on the moon.  Nope, not me!  I was fortunate to own Lynn.  Will we be fortunate to own him again?  Not feeling it.  He was lucky last year with a .244 BABIP, the number of pitches batters swung at outside the zone dropped, and his walks were wild, man, wild.  UPDATE:  Signed with the Twins.  Solid real baseball move by the Twins to sign Lynn, but it doesn’t make him more enticing, due to his peripherals that were discussed in the above blurb.  Though, he will be trying to keep his BABIP in order again this year because he’ll be in another contract year.  Kidding!  Don’t buy the contract talk mumbo-slash-jumbo.  2018 Projections:  10-12/4.01/1.29/167 in 196 IP

52. Gio Gonzalez – Entering his contract year in 2018, which likely means nothing.  If it means anything, it means his biological clock was a year fast and he just had his last great season.  His fastball is now down below 90 MPH on average (from near-91 as recently as 2016), and his last year’s numbers of .258 BABIP and 81.6% LOB are kinda goofy.  It’s not exactly illuminating to just write off every pitcher over the age of 32 who was lucky last year, but who said I was illuminating?  What, I’m a nightlight?  2018 Projections: 11-11/4.08/1.30/171 in 184 IP

53. Michael Fulmer – A small peek into how I do the rankings.  I look at the top 120 starters (or any position) and their ADP.  I jot them down, then move them around on how I would draft them.  I then go through every team’s depth chart to make sure I haven’t missed anyone.  When I jot names down the first time, it gives me an idea of how others are drafting a player.  If I then move a guy way down, I know he’s being overrated.  With that said (here comes a point!), I moved Fulmer down almost 20 spots.  I have no idea why people are drafting him so high.  Last year, he had a 6.2 K/9, 2.2 BB/9, 4.24 xFIP.  He throws hard (95 MPH), but who cares?  2018 Projections: 9-13/3.73/1.14/139 in 181 IP

54. Kenta Maeda – Member about 374 words ago (guesstimate!) when I said this tier was solid for innings?  Well, that’s aside from Maeda.  Masidea?  Oof, after that I should never be allowed to portmanteau again.  Nomanteau?  2018 Projections:  12-7/3.91/1.13/144 in 142 IP

55. Danny Duffy – I have strong feelings about all the guys in this tier, except Duffy.  I’m so meh on him, I couldn’t be more meh.  My cup runneth over with meh.  It’s that time of the month, and I got the mehses.  I’m eating a tuna salad sandwich on white bread with extra meh-o.  Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy, but here’s my number, so call me meh-be.  Duffy is the meh-or of Meh-berry.  Okay, I’m done.  2018 Projections:  10-12/3.76/1.25/149 in 172 IP

56. Jake Faria – This is a new tier.  This tier goes from here until the top 80 starters for 2018 fantasy baseball.  I call this tier, “Stunod or in a mirror it’s donuts.”  Stunod means stupid in Italian.  I know this, of course, because my grandfather, who is 90 years old, has called me or someone a stunod every day of my life.  I named this tier because we’re gonna look stupid drafting these guys, or we’re gonna look stupid smart with stupid being a superlative meaning ‘very.’  There’s a high probability that we draft someone from this tier, and drop them by April 10th.  That’s not to say they’ll be bad.  You might regret it, but you might not, and that’s why these guys are so risky.  I do love all their upside.  As for Faria, can the Rays save money by starting the year with him in the minors?  Because if they can, you better believe they will.  They are prolly in the process right now of painting their Evan Longoria bobbleheads’ face black and giving them away as Denard.  Rays’ President of Operations, “It’s not racist, it’s practical.”  2018 Projections:  9-6/3.71/1.20/152 in 149 IP

57. Jordan Montgomery – His SwStr% was 12.2%, which was 15th in the majors, right behind Severino, Greinke and Darvish.  In case SwStr% is foreign to you, the 1st 15 starters is an elite crop of pitchers.  If it is foreign to you, does your language have a lot of percent signs in the words?  Montgomery was 9th in the majors for swings generated outside the strike zone.  This is one of my favorite stats because if someone’s swinging out of the strike zone, they’re likely not generating great contact.  Shizz’s common sense.  His best pitches are the change and curve.  He threw both of them a lot.  Why is obvious.  His fastball is a piece of fake vomit you buy at Spencer’s Gifts that you get home to realize it’s real vomit.  He threw his fastball the 4th least number of times in the majors last year, because when hitters saw it, they were like, “Yo, I don’t even need to take steroids if he’s throwing that crap.”  If Montgomery fixes his fastball, he could be a top 20 starter.  My guess is he doesn’t fix it this year, and he’s more of the same last year, which is still totally usable.  2018 Projections:  12-7/3.86/1.28/154 in 168 IP

58. Trevor Williams – Already gave you my Trevor Williams sleeper.  It was written while Jameson Taillon was asking his doctor, “What’s the count?” 2018 Projections:  11-9/3.87/1.27/158 in 178 IP

59. Mike Clevinger – Another thing I do with my rankings, when I’m writing down all the names I plan on talking about, I jot down quick notes that I want to discuss when I come back to the players.  For Clevinger, I wrote, “Rotation spot?”  I still don’t know the answer to that pregunta.  Right now, the Indians have Josh Tomlin in their rotation, but they’d be better off with Lily Tomlin, so I have to guess they go with Clevinger, at least for 150 IP.  Now, if he were to get a 10.1 K/9 again like last year and 150 IP, I would’ve ranked him even higher, but, yeah, he could be the makings of a headache.  He’s a 4+ BB/9 guy, so if his K/9 drops to minor league levels of 8.5, Clevinger won’t just sound like a murderer, he will be one to your fantasy team.  The risk (not the board game) is worth it.  2018 Projections:  10-7/4.08/1.31/159 in 152 IP

60. Hyun-Jin Ryu – There’s quite a few guys in this tier who might not have a rotation job in April.  Will Ryu?  That sounds like will.i.am’s cousin.  “Yo, you hear the track that Will Ryu produced for the Gorillaz?  It’s got the boom bap.”  “No, will.i.am has the boom bap, Will Ryu has the boom crack of the bat.”  Instead of dance, Will Ryu’s tracks last year also made you walk.  His 3.2 BB/9 is way above his 1.7 BB/9 from 2014, and he’s going to be 31 this year, so I’m not sure there’s any going back — boom crack of the bat!  Though, Dodger Stadium, 8+ K/9 and a career 3.41 ERA still has me interested.  2018 Projections: 9-3/3.59/1.28/121 in 138 IP

270 Comments
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Jon
Jon
4 years ago

Which side do you prefer in a dynasty?

A) Bogaerts+Roberto Osuna
B) Billy Hamilton+Ken Giles+Francisco Mejia

J-FOH
J-FOH
4 years ago

Just finished episode 3 of dirty money. The drug short. They just broke down what I have been trying to explain to people for the last ten years as to why health insurance costs so damn much. The proposition we didn’t pass in 2016 addresses this problem to force them to the negotiating table. We are so fucking dumb. I want to beat that fat fuck when we get done with tucker

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: I wouldn’t give that 99% too much credit. They blame Obamacare for a lot of it. And that’s just flat wrong. With that individual mandate I think the pharmaceutical companies and medical supply companies saw an opportunity to take advantage of stuff. I know what my friends on insulin went through. It was fucking awful. My daughters epi pen the last couple years has made us cut back on a lot of things. Because you can’t buy just one pack unless you want to play Russian roulette.

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: we had our chance and they didn’t get the votes. Kind of like ingredients in our foods. Nope, we couldn’t bear to know that either. We are our own worst enemies.

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: yup, they toted out veterans with a gun to their heads and said if you make us control pricing we are going to rip off the VA so please protect veterans and pay our ransom money

Random Collmenter
Random Collmenter
4 years ago

5×5 roto league with OPS and QS. 10 teams.

Can pick two more keepers after Blackmon and Stanton. Which two of these should I keep?

Wil Myers – 7th rd
Story – 8th rd
Brinson- 15th rd
Luis Castillo – 19th rd
Albies- 22nd rd

Thank you!

FrankGrimes
FrankGrimes
4 years ago

Do you even bother to watch the Super Bowl?

FrankGrimes
FrankGrimes
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey:
My fav. Does she use rigott?

El Marco
El Marco
4 years ago

This has nothing to do with SP but got me excited and had to share. Bellinger vs Stanton at age 19…

Yr age lvl
G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO
BA OPB SLG OPS

Bellinger
2015 19 A+
128 544 478 97 126 33 4 30 103 10 2 52 150
.264 .336 .538 .873

Stanton
2009 19 AA, A+
129 551 479 76 122 24 5 28 92 3 3 59 144
.255 .341 .501 .842

Nightpandas
Nightpandas
4 years ago

Happy stupidbowl day…

Would you trade your Castillo and J Grey for Pollock and G Richards…obp k/9 league….if I do this I could keep Bundy instead of Richards

Nightpandas
Nightpandas
Reply to  Nightpandas
4 years ago

@Nightpandas: we keep 11 and 15 teams so not a ton of good OF left

Rawr...
Rawr...
4 years ago

I feel like Samardzija is underrated. If this “no three times through the order” stuff is going to be the new norm, a guy who is locked in at 200 IP is extremly valuable. I think it was 13 guys with 200 Ks last year, and he was one of them and I can see that happening again. He also has the WHIP to go with the Ks. The Giants think they’ll win more games this year so that could be cool too!

Thanks for the hard work!

El Marco
El Marco
Reply to  Rawr...
4 years ago

@Rawr…:
I’m with ya on that one. Trying to figure out where he should be drafted.

Rawr...
Rawr...
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey:

I’m down to Samardzija, Hill, or Bruce as my 10th keeper. Have Kluber, Verlander as my only SP and Braun, Pham, Pollock as my OF. I feel that my smartest move is going for those 200 K that Samardzija.

J-FOH
J-FOH
4 years ago

I finally finished Scott Tucker and holy fuck these people are the worst because they feel like they have done nothing wrong. I want to drag him to an indian reservation and beat him down with his state law doesn’t apply to me bullshit. In the end those sentences were bullshit. Those guys should have been put away for life

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: if you drive, Im there. His wife is the worst. Yes bitch they took your stuff because it was all bought with dirty money

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: like slit his eyelids with a razor and then squeeze lemons and pour hot sauce into them?

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: hasn’t anyone seen swimming with sharks. Its probably my favorite Kevin Spacey movie…oh shit, too soon?

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: I bought the deluxe dvd like ten years ago. It’s like the playbook for being the most belittling boss you can be. Also a playbook for revenge. The end is the best

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  J-FOH
4 years ago

get some meth, a rat, a pvc pipe and do what some call getting Richard Gere’d.

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  J-FOH
4 years ago

Hollywood has some cruel messages in their movies

Nick the Smooth Dick
Nick the Smooth Dick
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: I’ll fuckin, I’ll fuckin, lay his nuts on the dresser, just his nuts….

Evan
4 years ago

Some trade advice please:

Was offered $12 JD Martinez and $1 Berrios
For my $1 Acuna and $13 Nola

14 team mixed – deep league – $260 budget – $7 escalation

Current keepers (keep 9)
Hosmer – $16
Nunez – $8
Mancini – $1
Josh Bell – $1
Olson -$1
Acuna – $1
Nola – $13
Alex Wood – $1
Knebel – $1

Go for it or hold?

Thanks!

Evan
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey:

It was shockingly fair which was a surprise. Ha.

Would you trade Acuna $1 for $12 Martinez straight up?

Evan
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey:

I’ll call him “Acuna Matata” which means “never trade”.

Thanks for your help. I guess I’m all in on Acuna. Fingers crossed.

J-FOH
J-FOH
4 years ago

You watch lookalikes on Netflix? Babys mama ha that on and for the ten minutes I saw it was pretty funny

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Lookalikes and why you will like it.
1) They are all British

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: oh yeah you do. Next thing I know you will be taking Cougs over there to show her where you lived and spend a couple weeks soaking it all in

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: “Hey baby lets go grab some fags for old times sake”… “Grey that is so inappropriate on so many levels”

Shitwolf
Shitwolf
4 years ago

wow @ grey and Magoo… that convo was very helpful in terms of my understanding of draft strategy…

I also read the strategy of using middle relieves/closers with a couple of aces works well, my question on this is in what rounds do you start targeting MR and closers?

do you pay up for any of the premiums like a miller?

Shitwolf
Shitwolf
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey:

gotcha I play in both a 10 (daily) and 12 (weekly) team league both yahoo h2h… the 10 teamer uses holds as a stat while the 12 teamer is a 5×5 h2h Wins, k, saves, era, whip…

In these leagues we play
2SP:
2RP:
4P:

My thinking was to target say a cmart/ severino or Ray earlier, Nola / baeur middle and then MR/closers and then gamble on the Snells etc. I guess what I’m trying to ask in each of these formats how many MR/closers would you be looking to use? Also would this be a good draft strategy or am I overthinking?

Last 2 years I won using 2 closers/6 starters in the 12 team league, and it is my first year in the 10 team league, which is why I am wondering about MR… Thanks Gandalf

Sampsonite
Sampsonite
4 years ago

Grey you have been a god sent for my fantasy baseball Dynasty league. However, when it comes to pitchers I like to compare your list to JB. When does his list come out? I love your ranking but I get sold on a pitcher when you both have them in similar spots.

Crime Dog
Crime Dog
4 years ago

Does this make the most sense?

Nado- keep 3 years
Marte- keep 2
Upton- keep 1

Drop:
Degrom
Cruz-dh only
Buxton
Edwin

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Crime Dog
4 years ago

@Crime Dog: I’d go with deGrom, depending on your format. He’s the last SP that I would put in the “elite” tier, and Upton’s avg is at risk of falling based on his high K-rate. Might start running less at his age too.

Crime Dog
Crime Dog
Reply to  Big Magoo
4 years ago

@Big Magoo: it’s the first year we’re designating keepers so no one is currently under contract. 5×5 with QS replacing wins and OPS replacing average

Mordacious Levator
Mordacious Levator
Reply to  Big Magoo
4 years ago

@Big Magoo: he ran more in last 2 years than previous few years, but of course older now. but somebody would’ve likely said exact same thing 2 years ago when his steals were declining at that time, then didn’t.

Jon
Jon
4 years ago

Help me balance a deal? My Bogaerts + Raisel Iglesias for their Mancini + _____

Could be Ray, deGrom, Paxton, Nola, Weaver…

Jon
Jon
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Sure, so you’re saying I just ask for the top guy?

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
4 years ago

Oof. Pretty rough sledding in this area. The only guys I’m on board with here are Cueto and Snell (and you don’t even like Cueto). Montgomery is kind of interesting as a late round pick though.

Looking at this group kind of hammers home my thinking that the 5-10 round area is one to avoid for SPs. Remember who you had ranked as your #17-20 SPs last preseason? Duffy, Maeda, Salazar, and Cole. I’m not bringing that up to make you feel bad (I was in on Maeda last year too), but to illustrate the volatility of the SPs in that 12-15 through mid-30ish area each season.

If one decides to avoid the proven aces and target that group, he basically needs to hit on a Severino or a Ray later on (which I know helped propel you to the top in at least one league last season) to contend in a competitive league, which isn’t impossible, but it’s quite risky.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Yes on C-Mart (62.18 ADP), but definitely not on the other two (24.10 ADP for Kluber; 42.65 ADP for Verlander). I’m referring to NFBC leagues (or other similarly competitive formats), not ESPN or Yahoo. RCLs, in particular, are a different beast, so it depends what format you’re talking about.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Greinke was great last season, but horrible the year before. He was a risky pick coming off of a poor age 32 season and didn’t look like a prime rebound candidate pitching half of his games at Chase Field.

Archer is overdrafted every year. He’s been a one category SP over the last two seasons (avg 9.5 wins, 1.25 WHIP, 4.05 ERA).

Quintana had a 4.15 ERA and 11 wins.

Nola wasn’t drafted in that range last year (192.21 ADP). He was a breakout SP drafted later on.

Are these guys the crux of your argument?

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Yeah, it’s just one year, but that seems to be the area of the draft where teams are scrambling to build their pitching staffs, which generally leads to quite a bit of reaching. If you hit on someone like Greinke last year, then you’re golden. Very high bust rate in that range though.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Quintana, easy. But Peraza is going at pick 201 right now and Quintana is inside the top 100. Where are you looking?

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Those are probably last year’s ADPs. You can just go to the Steamer projection pages directly on fangraphs and the ADPs are listed there.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Oaktown was pushing that strategy in ’16 I think, but I was lukewarm on the idea back then (of doubling up on aces, not grabbing one ace). I think the player pool fits that strategy perfectly this season though.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Just scrolling through ADP – Marte, Hoskins, Cruz, EE, Rendon, Pham, Yelich, Hosmer, K. Davis, Myers, Shaw, Cain, Cespedes, Puig, etc. are in that 5-10 round range in 12 teamers. Outside of a few SPs (Nola, Quintana, Castillo), I’d rather have the hitters.

Gigorilla
Gigorilla
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

Did you remind Magoo who won that NFBC league? Going away in the last 4-6 weeks?

Coming from the middle of the pack in mid July, to dominate all Razzballers with the leather, whips and chains you love so much?

Leaving the competition in the dust??

oops, sorry, just had a Razzball fantasy moment…….

Gigorilla
Gigorilla
Reply to  Gigorilla
4 years ago

BTW Grey — I like to be off topic, since there’s way too much baseball talk going on here.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Stop distracting me with flattery. That’ll get you everywhere!

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Gigorilla
4 years ago

@Gigorilla: That’s terrific, and very impressive, but it’s a bit different if you’re in a league with people who are mostly following your rankings. If this was the league where Grey got Kluber (likely outside of the top 40 picks), then this actually supports my argument.

Gigorilla
Gigorilla
Reply to  Big Magoo
4 years ago

got it Magoo, just saying the wiz won vs a bunch of semi pros who don’t think he is the messiah. and have their own rankings.

Sometime I get the feel that it is all about ‘swordfights’ around here from the “pros”, when most know that projections, regressions, breakouts, sleepers, rankings, etc., are a knowledgeable crapshoot at best.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Gigorilla
4 years ago

@Gigorilla: I’m not a swordfight kind of guy (not that there’s anything wrong with that). I just enjoy debating player valuations and strategies because I don’t think that there’s any one correct way to be successful. It helps to display different points of view and might offer an angle that you hadn’t previously considered, which is a win for everyone.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Definitely! Probably should’ve saved this debate for a draft strategy post, haha.

Gigorilla
Gigorilla
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

Magoo — bend over to King Grey

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Big Magoo
4 years ago

@Big Magoo: They never get this concept and why they don’t is why they won’t

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Gigorilla
4 years ago

@Gigorilla: I already told you – I’m not a swordfight kind of guy. No need to project your preferences onto someone else.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Fangraphs now conveniently lists each player’s current NFBC ADP on their Steamer projection pages, so I can tell you that Bauer (146) and Gray (146.4) are going right next to each other – late 10th round in 15 teamers and early 13th round in 12 teamers. So if you like those guys and take them in that general range, it lowers the impact of one or both of them potentially busting. Should have a solid foundation (and probably at least an SP1) by that point.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: I don’t like either of those guys, so it depends who you’re targeting. There are exceptions on both sides, but SPs tend to have a higher bust rate more often than hitters in that range. That’s my main point. It’s fine if you disagree, it’s just something that I’ve noticed over the years.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Yeah, I’d like to get one of the top 10 guys. Top 8, preferably (I like Carrasco and Severino, but they have a few concerns).

My current strategy is to prioritize the #5 slot and start with Arenado, then Ramirez or Lindor, then Strasburg or Syndergaard. I’d be thrilled with that start. If someone like Carrasco or Severino falls to my 4th pick, I’d probably double up then wait until the 12th/13th to continue drafting SPs. Would provide a nice 5 cat base to work with on offense and a nice low WHIP, high K base on the pitching side.

I’d have a different strategy in 15 teamers (riskier going with the Stras/Noah types as your SP1), but I’d rather shoot for upside in a 12 teamer. I’ve learned that poor performances in your lineup are much worse than injured players on the bench, and I’m not concerned about the performances of guys like Stras and Noah when they’re healthy.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Turner would be my contingency plan at #5 (Turner/Arenado are the 4th and 5th players off of the board in most drafts so far). A Turner/Springer/Abreu start would be very feasible in a 12 teamer, and even possible in a 15 teamer. Just a question of what SPs would still be on the board for your 4th pick.

Aren’t you high on Rendon this year? Should be able to grab him in the 5th of a 12 teamer.

Big Magoo
Big Magoo
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Haha. That’s how it usually works!

Scott
Scott
4 years ago

Machado will begin the season as the starting SS. Does this change your top 10 rankings where he was listed at 8? 3b is deep. Thx

Sweatpants Nation
Sweatpants Nation
4 years ago

Grey and anyone else.
Keeper advice please: I can keep up to 12. I have 8 set. Do you think any off these are worth it or should I just throw them all back and see what happens in the draft. $260 Roto, most top guys go $35-$45 (lots of big names this year in the draft), 10 team but we roster 40 each so not a ton left for FAAB, when we run out of money there is a round robin snake to fill rosters, can keep guys up to 3 years. I think most of these guys can be bought back for the price I have and the hitters may end up being bench guys depending on how the draft goes. Thanks for the input.
Matt Chapman 2 yrs $5
M Semien 1yr $2
Tomas 1yr $2
H Ramirez 1yr $6
W Davis 1yr $10
Colome 2yrs $9
Taillon 1Yr $5
Cobb 2yrs $3
T Walker 2yrs $7

Sweatpants Nation
Sweatpants Nation
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Thanks. I struggle at times with value of players especially in this leagues settings. A guy has Edwin Encarnacion for 2yrs $29 and very few keepers. If sent him that list and told him to pick any 3 or 4 do you think that would be a better way to go. I have Bellinger at $5 but was planning on using him in the OF because Goldy, Rizzo and Votto are in the draft and was going to target one of them. Read your EE write-up so know you think he should be fine but is his $29 a better value than one of those 3 at $36-$40 (my guess what they will go for).

Sweatpants Nation
Sweatpants Nation
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: thanks

Justin
Justin
4 years ago

Cueto’s blip last year seems to be more control related whereas Lester’s seems to be more velocity related. With one of Lester’s plus pitches always being his fastball, that’s a bit more concerning methinks. Lester gave up a lot more homers last year, maybe that’ll come back down, but Cueto missed all of spring training because of his papa’s illness and never really got on track.

J-FOH
J-FOH
4 years ago

Im rooting for Maeda out of the pen.

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: No way, he was nails out of the pen and they have no clear 8th inning arm right now. Makes most baseball sense for them to put him in the pen

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: He’s pen too. Long Relief, maybe something else if he shows he can. They have Cingrani and Alexander as lefties but the bridge to Jansen is Baez? Yuck! Don’t forget about Yimi, he’s back and I have a feeling when Urias returns he’ll be pen too. I just see maeda as the best right handed bridge to Jansen

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: That’s the thing, after Hill and Kershaw I have no idea. I know they plan on bringing in another starter but after that? Its the Dodgers, they do all kinds of whacky shit. For the firt time in a long time I wouldn’t invest too much in their staff after those two.

J-FOH
J-FOH
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: I still don’t know why anyone wont take Kemp where the Dodgers throw in some prospects to shed the payroll. I would totally have him as my DH, like the White Sox, if my team sucked. dude can still hit.

JR
JR
4 years ago

If you had to pick one of Curto or Lester to go back to being a top 20 pitcher again for the next 2-3 years who would you pick? You’ve got them right next to each other for this years projections so I get it’s basically a coin flip right now, but who would you say has a better chance of getting back to borderline ace?

I have both of them in a very deep dynasty league (per your rankings, they’re my # 6&7 starters); but the league is ratios and QS instead of counting stats and wins and trying to decide which one to move on from.

cabron
cabron
4 years ago

When Coors introduced a humidor offensive production immediately dropped by 22%. If that happens at Chase field it would no longer be a hitters park. I am not sure if they are even 100% to introduce it, but I am fading non-Goldy hitters hard and all in on their pitchers

cabron
cabron
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: I know right? It is almost as if they don’t care about our fantasy leagues!

Justin
Justin
4 years ago

This clickbait of the woman trying to catch the hot dog cracks me up…

Det. John Kimble
Det. John Kimble
4 years ago

Not going to lie. I laughed really hard at the Salazar write-up.

Can’t wait for the War Room tool. Any idea on an ETA?

birrrdy!
birrrdy!
4 years ago

STRONG finish with the Taillon joke. Just awesome, and it never gets old.

And I am so telling that stand to pee history sometime this SB weekend. Perhaps multiple times to people’s annoyance.

ManorMachine?
ManorMachine?
4 years ago

Creepy. I own 41 Walker, 43 Cueto, 44 Gray, 45 Snell, 46 Anderson. I’ll probably own 42 Lester too cause he’s the best pitcher available in my league next year. At least I have Scherzer and Strasburg.

Anyway, Snell is too expensive to keep at $7, isn’t he? (those other guys I own around him are 1 to 3 bucks)

mesh
mesh
4 years ago

Dynasty League: Odubel Herrera and Colin Moran for Daniel Murphy?

Willy Mo
Willy Mo
4 years ago

Anxious to see the pitcher pairings and also one of your drafts broken down.

You do any drafts yet? You been mocking? If yes what site?

Swfcdan
Swfcdan
4 years ago

Ha on the pee and Candice blurbs- she a big girl yo (if you look hard enough there’s a boobies snap out there waiting to be seen).

Gray was good last year and it doesn’t seem unrepeatable. If he puts up another good year will people change their mind about Coors pitchers? Pfft yeah right! Still it’s fun owning Gray in a keeper to see if he can do it. Should get a ton of wins and K’s on that team for sure.

Also did you rank his teammate DD (no not Candice bra size, I mean David Dahl!) in your OF rankings list? Amazing how an injury can wreck players fantasy ranks – same owning Conforto (sad trombone).

Rum Ham
Rum Ham
4 years ago

So I am catching up on the rankings and from the blurbs it seems like you don’t even like half the guys you are ranking in the top 60. But there is no “seems like” in “strategery” so lets break it down:

1— bacon avacado La Croix (wont pay)
Scherzer
Kershaw
Kluber
Sale
2— skunk La Croix (dont even like, REALLY wont pay)
Bumgarner
Strasburg
Syndergaard
deGrom
Carrasco
3— Panty mouth (first potentially draftable tier…but don’t reach)
Severino
Ray
C-Mart
Verlander
4— Shruggle (start drafting SP, but with a shrug?)
Archer
Greinke
**Nola – first SP Grey seems truly excited about!
Quintana
**Bauer – will be universally owned by razzball readers with this ranking
5— Don’t eff with (wants no part of these guys)
Darvish
Keuchel
Ohtani
6— lack of IP (good, but don’t bank on 200ip)
Wood
Castillo
Tanaka
S.Gray
McCullers
Paxton
L.Weaver
Hill
Berrrios
Wacha
7—Keds or Banana slippers (Grey’s gambles)
Gausman
Morton
Godley
Pomeranz
8—4:44, Everyone likes…but Grey doesn’t
Cole
Arrieta
Stroman
Hendricks
Price
Salazar
Walker
Lester
Cueto
9—plus sized hotness
J.Gray
Snell
C.Anderson
Taillon
Corbin
Bundy
10—bread bookmarks (you can do better)
Samardzija
Lynn
Gonzalez
Fulmer
E.Santana
Maeda
Duffy
11—stunod or donuts (Grey’s gambles 2.0, all or nothing)
Faria
Montgomery
T.Williams
(…to be continued)

Draftable
4 – would require ADP fall
5 – gotta take someone (but with a shrug)
10 – likable guys with low IP
4 – Grey’s fav gambles
6 – plus-sized hotness
3 (and counting) – next wave of approved gambles

Do not endorse
any of top 9
3 – dont eff with
9 – overrated like 4:44
7 – bread bookmarks

So far only 32 of the top 60 are approved picks! What a minefield. Fortunately there are plenty of ADP bargains to be found in tiers 4, 6, 7 & 9 to pull it all together. Back to the strategetorium, so much catching up to do!

Rum Ham
Rum Ham
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: I woke up in the middle of the night last Thurs hacking up holy hell and I’ve been sicker than a Chernobyl dog ever since. Finally turned the corner yesterday. Today woke up feeling sweet relief (praise jebus)!

Rum Ham
Rum Ham
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: @Grey: How am I supposed to comment without full use of my faculties? What would it even look like without references or zingers? “Love the list thanks for all the hard work Grey”, “Great job Grey as always”, “This site is the best Grey you da man”.

I’m about to start barfing again from all that sap

Rum Ham
Rum Ham
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Thanks Grey, you’re the best. Love the site!

Malicious Phenoms
Malicious Phenoms
Reply to  Rum Ham
4 years ago

@Rum Ham:

Is it really always sunny in Philadelphia? lol, good stuff Rum Ham!

Sweatpants Nation
Sweatpants Nation
Reply to  Rum Ham
4 years ago

@Rum Ham: Well, when you put it that way…

Mordacious Levator
Mordacious Levator
Reply to  Rum Ham
4 years ago

@Rum Ham: big ERV isn’t in bread bookmarks.

Malicious Phenoms
Malicious Phenoms
4 years ago

MP thoughts on pitching and managing to win at FB 2018.

First you are not the only guy in your league with shitty SP’s, the best are getting older and the young guns are still not elite.

So my advice is in invest in BATS, bats and more bats! WIN all of your offensive cats and get a couple of top arms, a bunch of middle relievers, closers and stream the rest.

Find MR on winning teams that help in K’s ERA and WHIP and vulture wins. Starters throw less innings now and MR are throwing 100+ innings.

Next if you play in a league that has stupid, lame cats, find another league to join. Plenty to join on fantrax, by far the best fantasy baseball site on the planet.

I will now take questions, if you have any.

LOL

Cheers,

MP

Raider
Raider
Reply to  Malicious Phenoms
4 years ago

@Malicious Phenoms: In a weekly h2h league 6×6, we hold 3 pitchers 4 hitters and I have pax verlander chapman, is it even worth drafting another SP or just rolling with guys like archie Bradley and josh hader? quality innings, give up W’s and a push on K’s, but it is such a ratio and Losses advantage. thoughts MP, Cram, grey?

BuckNastySauce
BuckNastySauce
4 years ago

Would you give up (select one) Matt Olson, Scott Kingery, Kyle Tucker, or Jackie Bradley Jr for Patrick Corbin?

Freshman Matt
Freshman Matt
4 years ago

I loved the asides. The content got me really concerned about my dynasty league. 12 team h2h and the only pitchers of mine that have come up so far are Hill, Maeda, and Pom. Not a who’s who.
Talk me off the ledge here? There are some guys coming up on Monday that I’ll be able to get my paws on?
Thanks as always.

Freshman Matt
Freshman Matt
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Yeah. I’ve got my dream offense and a decently deep minor league system. Guess it’s time to gut one or the other.

Freshman Matt
Freshman Matt
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: That’s the dream.
Maybe someone wants to send me all of the 4:44 guys for some future draft picks.

Branta
Branta
4 years ago

Gray, I love these rankings. Thanks again for another great start to the year!

What happens next Thursday though when the Rankings run out (assuming Wednesday is for RP/Closer rankings)? I always forget.

Malicious Phenoms
Malicious Phenoms
Reply to  Branta
4 years ago

@Branta: TOP 100, THEN UP TO THE TOP 500.

FrankGrimes
FrankGrimes
Reply to  Branta
4 years ago

@Grey:
@Branta:

APPLES!

Crime Dog
Crime Dog
4 years ago

I think my biggest dilemma right now with the draft approaching is whether to go back in on Odor this year. Steamer likes him. I think I like his chances for a rebound. I think the thing that frustrates me the most about him, or maybe this was him pressing too hard last year, is the guy knows how to get on base, just not sure if he just chooses not to. He had 10 walks in September. He also had a year in the minor of like 150 plate appearances where he walked more than he K’d, so frustrating.

Anyways, any help on this avatar? it shows up in my profile, I need Crime Dog’s big mug on display for the Razzball world to see.

Rum Ham
Rum Ham
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: I am also curious about the avatars. I uploaded one when I made a profile on the forum page a couple weeks back. It shows up when I sign in there but not when I comment on the main site.

Crime Dog
Crime Dog
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: it worked! Grey is an instructional dude that gets results!

Crime Dog
Crime Dog
Reply to  Grey
4 years ago

@Grey: Right and my league uses OPS over average. I feel like I have to take him this year if I got him in the 6th round (14 teams). He killed me last year taking him in the 4th round with a 650 OPS or something ridiculous. I think that should come way up this year if his BABIP normalizes. His batted ball profile didn’t change a ton so I’m hoping the BABIP goes back up to around 300 and he at least gets me a 750 OPS.

Malicious Phenoms
Malicious Phenoms
4 years ago

Lester bounces back and Bundy takes the next step.

I own five of the top 20 and one in the 20-40 and Lester and Bundy.

The rest are garbage. I will draft high end middle relievers and stream.

You want to win in fantasy baseball, you need to do the work, you to to know when to adjust. You can’t just read a bunch of rankings and expect to win.

Cheers,

MP

Peacecoast
Peacecoast
4 years ago

crazy how we all expect such low innings pitched nowadays…why not just stock up on high inning MR and vulture wins with great ratios? Or is that becoming the new thing too?

Fuck Salazar though man, seriously.

I like Bundy a lot. Montgomery too maybe. Rode Faria for a great strecth last year. Too bad it’s the Rays.

Sweatpants Nation
Sweatpants Nation
4 years ago

General question based on an observation. Is steamer always so conservative? I didn’t check everyone (that’s why you’re paid the big bucks) but I looked at quite a few and with nearly everyone they see pretty big regressions (maybe other than the top guys whom I didn’t look at) even though certain things like velocity, xFIP, BABIP, and SwgSt% don’t really change from last year. Do they just figure everybody was lucky?
Looking at Steamer is down right depressing. Looking at Grey is my happy place.

Conine
Conine
4 years ago

I noticed the projection on Chase Anderson as well. What is up with that? Has to be some kind of error right? I get projecting him in the 4s but 4.9 is kind of crazy.

Also love how no one can agree on the first names of Gurriel, Castellanos, Faria and Jake Junis. I have to keep editing the data in my spreadsheets to get my vlookups to work because every site/projections has them different.

Willy Mo
Willy Mo
4 years ago

Like Faria hes available very late in mocks so far. If the Rays confrim hes in the rotation how much if any u move him up?

Good info on Montgomery also.

One thing that i alsmost posted yesterday was, Grey, im concerned for your ERA in 2018. The pitching really thins out here imo and we are only in the top 41-60.

I think you are being too optimistic with a lot of the pitchers ERAs you are projecting. You only have 2 guys ranked in your top 60 with a projection of over a 4 era. Id have to go back and look but id bet i can find at least 10 pitchers prilly more that u ranked in the top 60 who had well over a 4 era last year, and some over 5. Gl fading the top starters. 2018 these pitchers are serving up the long ball. Quality pitching is top heavy and scarce imo.

Willy Mo
Willy Mo
Reply to  Willy Mo
4 years ago

@Willy Mo:

So you actually have 3 pitchers ranked in your top 60 with an ERA projection over 4: Samardzija, Gio, and Lynn. (Nobody had over a 5 era last year on the list i thought gausman did)

Heres a list of all the players with over a 4 era from last season in your top 60

Archer
Quintana
Bauer
Tanaka
Mccullers
Wacha
Gausman
Cole
Salazer
Lester
Cueto
Snell
Taillon
Corbin
Bundy
Samardzija
Maeda
Trevor williams

So 18 pitchers in the top 60 had over a 4 era last year while you project only 3 to have over a 4 era this year.

I reiterate my point from above…. im worried about your era for 2018 if u plan on only drafting 1 or 2 starters from the back end of the top 20 post, and think your era projections for this year are too optimistic in todays HR happy MLB.

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Willy Mo
4 years ago

@Willy Mo: These are your 4th/5th starters. If you draft 1 or 2 from the top 20 and 2 or 3 from top 40, then one of these guys ending up with a 4 ERA won’t kill you especially if you’re alternating spot starts with another guy from this group.

Malicious Phenoms
Malicious Phenoms
Reply to  Cram It
4 years ago

@Cram It:
THIS is why Cram is the top fantasy owner on this site, year in and year out. Dude knows what’s up. I have been following Cram’s sound advice on here and won my league the last four years!

THANK YOU, Cram!

Cram It
Cram It
Reply to  Malicious Phenoms
4 years ago

@Malicious Phenoms: Ha. MP! Talking fantasy baseball is the only thing that keeps me from being a full blown misanthrope.

Malicious Phenoms
Malicious Phenoms
Reply to  Cram It
4 years ago

@Cram It: I hear ya man. I live for this time of the year, the other 6 months of the year are useless to me..LOL

Cactus
Cactus
Reply to  Cram It
4 years ago

@Cram It: Looking for a tid bit of pitching advice from the community. I recently took over for a decent team in an 8 team roto dynasty league. 6 X 6 OPS and QS are extra cats. I was 2 points away from dethroning the 4 year consecutive champ last year.

My question is in my strategy. Last year I drafted one top 20 pitcher, DeGrom. Then I streamed or waiver wired literally everyone else. I felt like this was a solid strategy due to the size of the league. I am considering doing this again but wanted to get your thoughts. Oh and I also flipped DeGrom before he fell off for Springer.