The Houston Astros gave Major League Baseball another reason to be very, very afraid Friday night when newly acquired outfielder slash first baseman slash survivor slash hero Trey Mancini smashed two home runs including a grand slam in just his second start in an Astros uniform. The big night for Trey led the ‘Stros to their 70th win, and Mancini is now 3-for-11 with seven RBI on his new team, with all three of those hits going yard. It’s just easier if I hit it into the stands! Fair enough! Can’t argue with that logic. Mancini started his night with a solo shot in the second inning to tie it, but really went beast mode an inning later with this absolute mammoth grand salami, his 13th jack of the year and it put Houston comfortably ahead. The grand slam was actually Trey’s first in, well, ever! What are those strange things he keeps seeing on base when he bats with this new team? Those are your teammates, Trey! Men on base! I know–what a concept! Mancini was the longest-tenured Oriole before the trade on Monday and he’s been a part of the good (this inside the parker off Josh Lowe’s head, possibly the play of the year) and the bad (over 500+ losses in his career with the O’s including three 100+ loss season’s in the past five years). It’s a bitter-sweet trade for the Baltimore fan-favorite but he’s probably not going to miss that park much, or that starting pitching staff. Slim Shady would say m-f-ers act like they forgot about Trey but it will be interesting seeing what a half a season looks like from a guy who’s spent the better part of a decade rotting in one of the league’s worst franchises. Trey’s started just two games since joining Houston but since he only hits home runs now I expect that he should become a staple in this lineup real quick. To recap, the 70 win Astros are somehow much better than they were last week. League…take notice!

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

Framber Valdez – 6.1 IP, 7 hits, 3 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 10th win. Time travel with me, Doc Seth Brown! Framber hasn’t given up more than 3 ER in a start since June 11 when he gave up 4 to the Marlins, then back on April 19th when he gave up 6 ER to the Angels. And that’s it, and that was back when the Angels had hopes and dreams and were supposed to be competitive. Since that start in April, Framber has pitched at least 6 innings in every start since. He leads the league in quality starts with 18, one more than Cy Young favorite, Sandy Alcantara. So yeah he’s been really good, and no one’s talking about him. Except me, right now, and probably others.

Hunter Gaddis – 3.1 IP, 7 hits, 8 ER, 2 BB, 2 K. Picture if you will, you’re a rookie and your first start ever is versus this Astros team. Sounds to me like you’re probably not getting a second start any time soon?

Ronald Acuna Jr. – 4-for-5, run, SB (23). Robbed Pete Alonso of a home run. That’s not all he did but that part was pretty cool. He also tied his career high with four hits and stole a base, all this a night after homering. Yesss, Alt-164 seems to be heating up and I literally cannot wait to see what that looks like. ñññ!

Eddie Rosario – 2-for-5, HR (3), 4 RBI. Eddie, Set, RosariGo! William Contreras also homered (14). Rosario’s availability is a little shocking to me, but I guess he hasn’t really gotten going since returning from IL. Well, let me fill you in, Eddie is a dude who can get insanely hot and hit in bunches, and he currently looks to be on the cusp of something just like this. He’s hitting .333 with 6 hits since the start of August, he also leads all majors leaguers with 9 RBI since the start of the month. August is Eddie time!

Michael Harris II – 2-for-4, HR (10). He’s the rookie of the year if Spencer Strider wasn’t on his team, right? Well, imagine having MH2 on your team??? *swoons*

Taijuan Walker – 1.0 IP, 7 hits, 8 ER. Welp. His ERA jumped almost a run to 3.45 after the game. No need to fret Mets fans, he won’t be part of the postseason rotation anyway. He does get a much more fantasy-friendly match-up with the Reds next week.

Edward Cabrera – 5.0 IP, 0 hits, 3 BB, 8 K in his return from the IL. He was on a pitch count so who knows what he would have been capable of had the reigns been off, but E-Cab has been more or less untouchable in all his starts but one. And that one start he was against the Astros, and he left the game with elbow issues. Just sayin’!

Justin Steele – 4.2 IP, 4 hits, 0 ER, BB, 10 K. Anyone ever seen that movie Real Steele with Hugh Jackman and the Wasp and they like battle giant remote-controlled robots in the future? I feel like that movie had no business being as good as it was. Kinda like Justin?

Rowan Wick – 1.1 IP, 1 hit, BB, 3rd win. He’s your new de facto Cubs closer. For real, they traded everyone else!

Willson Contreras – 1-for-4, 2-run HR (16). Well, except Contreras and Happ. He’s now homered in back-to-back days and he basically has two months to show everyone why he’s worth signing next year. As for that epic hug with Ian, things are awk now, to say the least, but at least the Cubs now have their 2022 highlight of the year. Also, Willson looks like an amazing hugger. So snuggly!

Kyle Gibson – 8.0 IP, 2 hits, ER, BB, 4 K, 7th win. He brought a no-hitter into the seventh as he turned in what was probably one of his best starts of the year. So yeah, start everyone against the Nationals.

Josiah Gray – 4.0 IP, 5 hits, 6 ER, 3 BB, 4 K, 8th L, 4 home runs. Part of me thinks it’s great Josiah is tanking his value so hard (ERA at 4.92) I’ll be able to draft him everywhere next year, but the other part of me thinks am I crazy for wanting any part of this Nationals team next year?

J.T. Realmuto – 3-for-4, 2 runs, HR (11), 2 RBI. Phillies had themselves a good ol’ fashioned hometown community home run party. Rhys Hoskins hit his 22nd, Kyle Schwarber hit his 34th, Nick Castellanos hit his 10th, and Derrick Hall hit his sixth, etc. As for JT, he’s been mostly meh, but the homer last night made him the only catcher with double digits homers and steals. That’s so me to own someone like that. Lol classic DP. Also, how low does Schwarber’s batting average have to dip before they stop leading him off?

Jeff McNeil – 2-for-5, HR (6), 2 RBI. Jeff was responsible for the Mets offense in this one. He’s boring but he’s also got an 8 game hitting streak, and he’s hitting .467 in the past week with two bombs. How do I explain to myself why that’s boring?

Riley Greene – 2-for-4, HR (3), 2 RBI. With an oppo-fieldo shot. Leading off seems to suit Riley, who’s got a few multi-hit games and 7 RBI in the past week. I like Riley Greene okay, but not as much as he likes striking out. As a general rule, I’m trying to avoid Detroit in real life and fantasy.

Eloy Jimenez – 2-for-4, HR (6). Two homers in the past week! He’s hit safely in 11 (ELEVEN) of his past 12 starts, with multi-hit games in 5 of his last 7! He’s back, baby! Lizzo would say “It’s About Damn Time!”

Dylan Cease – 6.0 IP, 2 hits, ER, 3 BB, 5 K, 12th win. Liam Hendriks got his 22nd save striking out two, the 100th save of his career. Gratz Liam, that’s quite an accomplishment. Speaking of accomplishments, Dylan hasn’t given up more than one run in a start since getting rocked by the Red Sox in late May. Thirteen straight starts allowing one run or fewer, sweet sassy molass, DC! Only Justin Verlander and Sandy Alcantara have a better ERA than Cease’s 1.98, and those guys are in the Cy Young conversion. Is Cease in there? He is now cuz I just put him there. Honestly, the White Sox got all the pieces to make a run right now they just have to not suck like they have and could be the 2021 Braves of 2022. Make it happen, ChiSox! MLB needs Dylan’s mustache in October.

Glenn Otto – 6.0 IP, 4 hits, 2 ER, BB, 7 K, 8th L. His name is Otto! He likes to get blotto!

Eric Lauer – 7.0 IP, 6 hits, ER, 3 BB, 4 K, 8th win, ERA at 3.59. Started rough but settled down nicely, and has now won back-to-back starts for the first time since May. Not quite as dominant as he was when he first arrived on the scene but the 111:40 K:BB is still really pretty and I’m stuck with this Mrs. Eric Lauer-Pants tattoo so I might as well just go with it.

Rowdy Tellez – 1-for-3, HR (22), SB (1) slashing .240/.323/.483. I know there’s no way you could ever picture this guy stealing in your head so here’s the vid. Rowdy, Tellez how many home runs you gonna hit this year? What’s that? Oh? He said he’d rather show us.

Devin Williams – 0.2 IP, 2 K, SV (7). D-Dubs prob has the single most unhittable pitch in the bigs today and I don’t know that any one player gained more value at the deadline than Devin. If there’s any chance he wasn’t owned pre-Hader trade, he needs to be owned now.

Tyler Mahle – 6.0 IP, 5 hits, 4 ER, BB, 5 K, 3 HR. Mahle was cruising through four until Matt Chapman tagged him for a solo shot in the fifth then he gave up two more bombs in the sixth. Jorge Lopez (1.0 IP, 3 hits, 1 ER, BS (5)) went on to blow the game and it was not a great showing for the Twinkies new toys but at least he fared better than Jose Berrios (3.2 IP, 6 hits, 5 ER, 2 BB, K).

Whit Merrifield – 2-for-5, run, as he led off. So is he vaccinated or is he gonna get vaccinated or what is the deal here and why is it all so unclear?

Matt Chapman – 1-for-4, HR (21). A 415-footer! He’s got six homers since the all star break! Someone was upset about not being an all star I guess!

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. – 2-for-4, HR (23). Is it me or is Vlad is having the quietest 30 home run season in history?

Nick Gordon – 3-for-5, HR (5), 3 RBI. FLASH! AHHH-AYYYYY! He’s hitting .500 in the past week with a homer and a steal. He also has extra base hits in six of his last eight games. Not sure I’m ready to add him but he is playing well!

Matt Carpenter – 2-for-5. A tearful reunion for Carpenter and the Cards, had the Cards known they could pay him the league minimum they might have kept him around another year!

Aaron Judge – 2-for-4, 2 runs, SB (11). He didn’t even homer!? Pathetic.

Clay Holmes – 1.0 IP, 2 hits, 2 ER, BB, 2 K. Clay hadn’t pitched all week, so Boone went to him for the two inning save and disaster struck. He’s got just one save in 5 chances since the all star break and has allowed 5 runs in 5.1 IP. He could be at risk of losing chances to Aroldis Chapman who hasn’t allowed a run in his past four appearances. Bullpen drama? In the dog days!? Yes, please!

Dylan Carlson – 0-for-4 as he led off. But where’s Edman?! And why??????

Paul DeJong – 1-for-3, 2 RBI. Grey told you to BUY and he hit the go-ahead double in the eighth inning. He’s not gonna save your batting average but he’s got two bombs since coming off the IL last week. Grab him if you need MORE POWER, Tim Taylor!

Ryan Helsley – 1.0 IP, BB, SV (10). Lowered his from 0.62 to 0.61. Doing his best Clay Holmes impression, does that mean he’s going to lose his job to Gallegos again in a few weeks?

Nestor Cortes – 5.1 IP, 1 hit, 2 ER, 4 BB, 4 K. Nasty Nestor did his part but the Yanks went to the bullpen early which proved. Cole’s got all the flash, sure, but there’s a case to be made for Nestor as the Yank’s most consistent starter.

Felix Bautista – 1.0 IP, hit, BB, 2 K, SV (4). He was a BUY and he’s the closer in Baltimore. His first save since Jorge Lopez got traded, Bautista could be one of the biggest fantasy adds post-deadline. The ratios may not be as glorious as Lopez but the save opps should still be there! Grab him!

Dean Kremer – 6.1 IP, 4 hits, 0 ER, 2 K, 4th win. I still don’t 100% understand how the O’s are doing what they’re doing. I still couldn’t name an O’s starting rotation, despite looking at box scores for most of the day. Dean gets the Blue Jays next week. Pick him up if you hate yourself.

Terrin Vavra – 3-for-4. Mancini’s replacement, Vavra has hit safely in all but one of his games since his call-up. He is also a once-human lich king who ascended to godhood to rule the Upside Down. Oh wait, that’s Vecna. Nevermind.

Randal Grichuk – 3-for-4, 2 runs, HR (11). Randy’s hitting .296 with 2 bombs and 8 RBI in the past week. And the Rockies aren’t even at Coors!

Madison Bumgarner – 5.2 IP, 10 hits, 4 ER, BB, 2 K. I was a bit confused there was zero interest from teams in acquiring MadBum at the trade deadline, but I guess now I see why.

Ian Kennedy – 1.0 IP, K, SV (6). Looks like Ian has supplanted Mark Melancon as the go-to closer in what is now a committee following Melancon’s blown save on Monday. If you’re as desperate for saves as I am for positive feedback, Kennedy could be worth the add, but you better be really desperate.

Patrick Sandoval – 5.1 IP, 3 hits, 0 ER, 4 BB, 5 K. Patrick has slowly fallen into streamer territory now that his team has lost their will to win. At least he broke his streak of five straight losses last night and he gets a delicious match-up with the Oakland A’ss next week!

Robbie Ray – 7.0 IP, 5 hits, ER, 2 BB, 10 K. RobRay dominated Friday (23 CSW) but the run support was not there for him. Was a nice respite after getting crushed by the Astros in his previous two but the relief is short-lived as he gets the Yankees next week.

Jimmy Herget – 1.0 IP, SV (2). He’s the closer in Anaheim now, I think! He’s been more good than bad, but make no mistake, he’s also been bad. Saves though! Word is Mike Rowe is gonna shadow him next week for Dirty Jobs. Is that show still on?

Luis Rengifo – 2-for-4, run. Grey told you to BUY. And Guy Fieri said he’s out of sight with extra donkey sauce! Then Guy convinced you into binging his show for five hours, where you basically just watch people put ingredients into bowls over and over again.

Josh Winckowski – 5.0 IP, 5 hits, ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 5th win. His only blemish was the homer to Perez, who is on an absolute mission right now to hit all the balls into all the seats. Winckowski’s been up and down but he gets the O’s next week and I might consider the prospect of maybe thinking about mulling over the possibility of contemplating whether or not I should review the option of potentially picking him up. I still don’t know for sure though!

Salvador Perez – 1-for-5, HR (16). 450 footer! Since returning from the IL, he’s got five home runs and 14 RBIs, dot, dot, dot…in eight games! If he keeps this up he could win you your fantasy league. Carry me to the post-season, Sally!

Xander Bogaerts – 4-for-4, run, RBI. Awesome-X! He must have got the thank you letter I sent before the deadline thinking he was getting traded! There are plenty more words of encouragement where that came from, X. Text me anytime!

Tony Gonsolin – 5.0 IP, 3 hits, 0 ER, BB, 6 K, 13th win. Is what Tony G. is doing just Dodger magic? I mean the 2.30 ERA, 0.89 WHIP are prettier than a JLo 50th birthday photoshoot, but put Gonsolin on the Royals, and then what?  Do his ratios double or is he still the Ace we see on our cell phone wallpaper every day? Speaking of Royals, he gets them next week!

Sean Manaea – 4.0 IP, 10 hits, 8 ER, BB, 7 K. Woof. So maybe they should have traded for another starter, too? If FTJ was here this never would have happened. San Diego’s got all the talent, sure, but they’re still missing the swag.

Juan Soto – 1-for-3. Seriously, just how much more money do the Padres have to spend to not get blown out by the Dodgers like this again? Asking for a friend.

Thanks for reading! Questions? Problems? Complaints to management? Advice, small gifts or large bribes? Please leave it in the comments below. Join us next Saturday for another Friday recap as fantasy baseball continues next week, all week long!