“Wonder Twins power activate! In the form of a string bean!” That’s what goes through my mind every time I see Triston McKenzie. If Triston McKenzie and Deivi Garcia were ever on a seesaw, they’d both be in the air with their legs dangling. Triston McKenzie doing indoor skydiving is just him pinned against the ceiling until the wind is shut off. Triston McKenzie was in his high school play, which was an adaptation of Forrest Gump, and McKenzie played the part of the feather. Once Triston McKenzie forgot his house keys and slipped in through the mail slot. Okay, get out all your shizzes and giggles. Triston McKenzie is skinny eh eff. He’s listed as 160 pounds, which is normal-ish. Dot dot dot. For a man a foot shorter than him! He’s six-five! Haha, dubya tee eff. Instead of chewing gum, chew bacon! Instead of using toothpaste, use milkshakes! (I’m not exactly Mr. Quote-The-Simpsons, but that line never gets old for me.) Okay, now that I spent one word for every pound on how much Stretch McKenzie weighs, can we talk about how he had the stats this year in the majors that we wanted from Sixto Sanchez? Acksually, McKenzie had the stats we wanted from Max Scherzer. McKenzie had a 11.3 K/9, 2.4 BB/9 in 33 1/3 IP, and now I swoon like the audience mesmerized by his feather portrayal. To step back a little further to catch you up, before we go into his 2021 projections. Prospect Mike (member him?) said two years ago, “(Triston) does have a plus fastball and curve with decent control, so don’t put me down as a hater. His 2018 was spent in Double-A, where he whiffed 87 batters in 90 innings with a 2.68 ERA, and I’d like to kick Grey in the balls.” What the eff? So, the reason I went back two years is Triston McKenzie didn’t throw last year. More on that in a bit. So, what can we expect from Triston McKenzie for 2021 fantasy baseball?
We had some laughs at Triston McKenzie rocking a Kate Moss figurine, but it’s actually an issue. Not to get all Tony Little on his ass, but he needs to build up muscle. In 2019, he had an upper back injury that was supposed to be a six-weeks-long thing and ended up causing him to not throw a pitch in a game in 2019. Upper back is code for shoulder, by the way. Gumby is thicc compared to Stretch McKenzie, and if he has no muscle mass he’s going to struggle to throw hard for long period times. Case in point: His fastball velocity fell this season from his debut of 95 MPH to 93 MPH in the matter of one month. Over the course of a full season, Stretch Armweak is going to need to stand next to a pitching machine and mime throwing. He could show up at camp in 2021 with more stamina, but as of right now I’ve never started a post with more enthusiasm only to get to the middle and want to start looking at a different pitcher. On the flip side (though with McKenzie there is no flip side, it’s just a long line that is transparent), McKenzie was able to throw 143 IP in 2017, and maybe he was just injured in 2019, and is beyond that now. Plus, Cleveland craps out top-notch starters like it craps out women who think Drew Carey is handsome. Stretch Armweak might be a guy who dominates for the first two months of the season then fades, which has value in redraft leagues. In conclusion, if he shows up with more muscle mass than a cracker and doesn’t make me want to call him Triscuit McKenzie, then I might go all-in on him, but, for now, I’m super hesitant he has enough stamina for a six-month season. For 2021, I’ll give Triston McKenzie projections of 7-3/3.76/1.12/98 in 84 IP.