[brid autoplay=”true” video=”288417″ player=”10951″ title=”Fantasy Baseball Mailbag Week 23″]

The September roster expansion this year was a bit of a dud.  No Eloy Jimenez and no Vladimir Guerrero Jr.  It’s too bad what’s best for baseball and these young players is not what is also best for their teams.  Their rewards and our rewards are not aligned.  It’s like going into the supermarket for pluots and they tell you, “It’s pluot season.  Pluots are best this time of year.  You want to eat dem pluots now so they slobber down your chin like you’re a human St. Bernard.  So, we’re putting our pluots into liquid nitrogen to freeze them until mid-April of next year, and we will serve you pluots once their service time allows us to keep them an extra year.”  However, the Nationals are working on a different schedule apparently because they are calling up Victor Robles, i.e., to the Victor goes the spoiled pluots.  Where will Victor Robles play?  Haven’t a clue, Colonel Mustard.  Bryce Harper (1-for-2, 3 RBIs and his 31st homer yesterday) goes to right and Robles plays center while Adam’s Eaton the pine?  Adam’s Eaton up time while Bryce goes to the bench because the Nationals know Harper is not in their future plans?  Robles just plays periodically unless something goes completely sideways and the Nats will pass ‘o Robles.  On Prospector Ralph’s top 500 fantasy baseball prospects, Robles is about as high a player can be who isn’t A) Not being called up this year.  B) Not already called up.  C) There’s no C.  To give you an idea of Robles’ profile, think Starling Marte without knowing his upside.  I will call you No Ceiling Marte.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Adam Wainwright – Will return next Monday.  He’s had 17 scoreless innings in his rehab assignment, and his last two seasons of uselessness in the major leagues.  The rehab is admirable, but unless he’s David Robinson it means nothing.  Working basketball in there!  (Terrible segue alert!)  Son just dropped his top 200 for 2018 fantasy basketball and our fantasy basketball leagues.  Go there, peep that like a marshmallow bunny!

Bud Norris – 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 5 ER in his last two appearances with three homers allowed in that time, and his 5th blown save, ERA at 3.60.  The Shildt head said of whether or not Norris was his closer still, “I understand you have to play hot hands and every game has a sense of urgency to it, but I’m also not just a guy who’s going to ignore a body of work and a guy’s capabilities either.”  Is this for or against Norris?  Is he saying Norris’ career 4.44 ERA and 1.39 WHIP in 1218 IP (!) is good or bad?  Is he even talking about Norris or is he talking about pottery with hot hands and a body of work?  I grabbed Jordan Hicks, just in case this word diarrhea by the Shildt head leads to a closer change.

Yairo Munoz – 3-for-4, 2 runs and his 7th homer, hitting .285.  *playing Charades*  Oh!  Oh!  I know this one!  Aledmys Diaz in 2016!  Well played, Munoz.

Jack Flaherty – 5 IP, 1 ER, 8 baserunners (5 BBs), 5 Ks, ERA at 2.83.  Wasn’t a great matchup for him, so hoping his lost of command isn’t a sign that he’s starting to tire.  Either way, it’s been a good year.

Shohei Ohtani – His loss of velocity in Sunday’s game is being reported as not having anything to do with his elbow problems.  Right, it’s due to Russian hackers breaking into the speed gun readings.

Matt Shoemaker – 5 IP, 0 ER, 3 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 2.53.  Don’t worry, he’ll be missing an elbow tendon by nightfall.

Mallex Smith – 1-for-5, 1 run, 1 RBI, as he was activated from the DL.  Kevin from ESPN’s “Get Him In Your Lineup” Department said, “I only wear button-fly jeans like porn stars.  You know what they say, dress for the job you want.”

Joey Wendle – 3-for-4, 1 run, hitting .302, hitting near-.400 in the last week.  Go ahead, Mr. Wendle!

Marcus Stroman – 1 2/3 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 5.54, as he was activated for the start.  Picked up right where he left off!

Kenley Jansen – May miss series in Colorado due to high altitude and his heart.  All kidding aside, is Kenley okay to be playing baseball?  Is he a close play away from a heart attack?  I’m not joking, this is scary.

Alex Wood – 5 IP, 1 ER, 7 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 3.37.  On a real baseball note, I want the Dodgers to lose every game the rest of the year so Dave Roberts gets fired.  Sacrificing for the greater good.

Jacob deGrom – 6 IP, 1 ER, 3 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 1.68.  I can’t wait to read the hot takes on deGrom not getting someone’s 1st place Cy Young vote.  They are going to be hot and bubbling over with nonsense!

Erasmo Ramirez – 5 1/3 IP, 1 ER, 2 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 5.56.  Ugh, I picked him up due to the Stream-o-Nator, but I dropped him before the game after looking at his last few starts.  Stupid human brain!

Jonathan Villar – 1-for-4 and his 12th homer, and 2nd homer in as many games.  I’ve told you to pick him up at least five times a week for the last three weeks.  If it takes you this long to pick up on obvious clues, it might be why you’ve got friends who are girls vs. girlfriends.

Nathan Eovaldi – 3 1/3 IP, 0 ER, 6 baserunners (4 BBs), 4 Ks, ERA at 4.20.  Solid ERA for Snoop Dogg, less solid for fantasy baseball.  This guy’s ‘good’ pitching went bad at some point in August.  Yo, look at some game tape, Eovaldi, your shizz is fudged up!

Touki Toussaint – 4 2/3 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 3.38.  As I was recording the podcast yesterday, I was watching Touki here and there which went something like this, “Damn, Touki looks great again!…He’s a negative on the Stream-o-Nator….But I should’ve streamed him…A no-hitter?…Damn damn damn….Oh, forget it, the Red Sox got runs during the SeatGeek ad.”

Ozzie Albies – 1-for-4 and his 22nd homer.  He’s been hitting towards the bottom of the Braves lineup for a while, and his new lineup spot is not without warrant, Cherry Pie, this was only his 2nd homer of the 2nd half.

Shane Greene – 0 IP, 3 ER, ERA at 4.72 and his 5th blown save and 2nd consecutive game giving up runs.  You know that terrible song, “Yellow is the color of my energy?”  Well, Greene is the color of my puke.  This was all precipitated (Blame it on the rain!) by the Tigers bringing him into a blow out on Sunday, letting him give up runs for no reason, then, when they actually needed him on Monday, he was fah-tee-gayed.  It’s fatigued, pronounced Italiany.

Niko Goodrum – 1-for-4 and his 16th homer, and his third homer this week.  Hot schmotato alert!

Victor Martinez – 1-for-4 and his 9th homer.  He is rumored to be retiring this year.  At his age, I hope he remembers.

Michael Fulmer – 5 2/3 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 4.57.  Was hit by a comebacker and left with a bruised shin.  What an MFer!  Which is what I call Michael Fulmer.

Nicky Delmonico – 1-for-4 and his 8th homer, but seven homers in the 2nd half, so I’ve been streaming him for power here and there and, holy crap, he was hitting leadoff!  He’s hitting .223 with nothing but power.  Okay, that’s weird.

Daniel Palka – 1-for-4 and his 21st homer, and 2nd homer in as many games.  Also, in this game, Matt Davidson (1-for-3, 2 RBIs) hit his 20th homer and 2nd homer this week, because Shane Greene was doing pukkake.

Chris Shaw – 1-for-1 and his 1st career homer.  If it’s a pinch-hit homer and in Coors, does it count?  It does, says here…*pulls out 17,000-page MLB rules handbook*  Really, what we should be wondering about, why is Shaw not starting?  The Giants need to see what their 57-year-old men lineup can do?

Trevor Story – 2-for-4, 5 RBIs and a double slam (27, 28) and legs (23), hitting .295.  Is Trevor Story having the quietest top 20 season in memory?  Not to answer, but to ruminate.

DJ LeMahieu – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and a slam (14) and legs (6), and his 2nd homer in three games.  DJ came into April like a lion, hopefully he goes out the same way.  Does that make DJ Mad Lion?

Madison Bumgarner – 5 IP, 6 ER, ERA at 3.07.  Bumgarner should knock on Verlander’s door this offseason and see if he can find out how to become effective again as he gets older, or get traded to the Astros.

Aaron Judge – Took swings and hit off a tee.  Hopefully, he avoided the sand trap.

Luke Voit – 1-for-4 and his 7th homer, and 45th homer in the last week.  Yo, Voit, you wake with your finger in a electrical socket to get supercharged?  Seriously, he has six homers in 11 games with the Yankees and had five homers in 77 games in his career previously.  He’s got Maas appeal!  (By the way, this cracked me up.  On ESPN’s highlight page — I’m not gonna link to it, because eff them, but it said, “Voit’s fly ball carried over the wall.”  Hey, ESPN, that’s called a home run.)

Trevor Cahill – 5 IP, 2 ER, 5 baserunners, 3 Ks, ERA at 3.60, but his home ERA coming into this game was 0.85 and the Stream-o-Nator loves his next start at home.  The only question I have is do I drop Cahill and pick him back up, or hold onto him.

Dallas Keuchel – 6 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 3.51.  You know who’s getting the short end of the stick on the Astros?  Altuve’s a good guess, because of short, but I was gonna say Collin McHugh (2 IP, 0 ER, 5 Ks) who has a 1.83 ERA, and a 11.8 K/9.  I guess it could be argued McHugh is this good because of his role and if his role were changed, he wouldn’t be as good.  Kinda like Mark Wahlberg in a role of a Masshole vs. any other role he’s been in.

Alex Bregman – 1-for-3 and his 28th homer, and 2nd homer in as many games, hitting .292.  During Sunday Night Baseball, I heard on ESPN that Bregman is aiming for the AL MVP award.  I thought that was interesting, is J.D. Martinez not eligible because, besides having a Triple Crown-type year in the AL, he’s hitting near-.310 as Jose Martinez in the NL?

Yuli Gurriel – 1-for-3, 2 runs and his 9th homer.  That was his 2nd hit in the last week.  Not 2nd homer, second hit.  As in he was batting .059 entering play yesterday in the last week.  Yuli Andrews says, “Fa la ti no schmotato.”

Kyle Gibson – 7 IP, 2 ER, 5 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 3.74.  I don’t usually mention 7 IP, 2-3 ER and not that many Ks-type starts.  I have no evidence to support this, but Kyle Gibson seems to do more starts like this than anyone else.  We should have a glossary term for these boring, non-blurb worthy starts.  Please suggest in the comments.

Jeremy Jeffress – 1 IP, 0 ER, ERA at 1.48 and his 8th win.  Okay, so Jeremy Jeffress is officially the greatest player I’ve ever owned.  Sorry, 1998 Sosa!

Anthony Rizzo – 3-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 24th homer, hitting .284.  HR to the Rizzo!

Zack Godley – 5 IP, 4 ER, ERA at 4.51.  This start came against the Padres.  Of course, only when I stream him.

Franmil Reyes – 2-for-3, 4 RBIs and his 14th and 15th homers, and has six homers in the last nine games.  Between Triple-A and the majors, he has 31 homers in under 400 at-bats.  To grab him, I just dropped Reddick, which also sounds like how a male bee dies.

Trevor Williams – 6 2/3 IP, 0 ER, 6 baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 3.15.  If he can get his ERA below 3, I’m putting on my tombstone, “Here lies Grey Albright, he called Trevor Williams a sleeper in 2018.”

Adam Frazier – 4-for-4 and his 8th homer, hitting .288, and third homer in the last nine games, and he hit .338 in August in 77 ABs.  Adam fine schmotato, I say!

Gregory Polanco – 2-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 23rd homer, hitting .249, and 2nd homer in the last three games.  As previously mentioned, I was wrong about no Pirates player getting 20 homers (thanks, Polanco!), but he might be the only one.  Not a big deal, until you see there’s 75 players in the majors right now with 20 homers.

Scooter Gennett – 2-for-4 and his 20th homer, hitting .320.  Scoots McAiry-the-ball has only hit four homers in the 2nd half, but he has maintained his .300+ average.

Jose Urena – 7 IP, 1 ER, 4 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 4.41.  Urena Dog Chow, as I like to call him, now has two of three great starts since he tried to turn Acuña’s tilde into an em-dash.  Don’t fully trust Urena (with anything that needs level-headedness) and the Stream-o-Nator doesn’t love his next start.

Lewis Brinson – 2-for-3, 1 run, 1 RBI.  Okay, but still just a cyclops with a monocle on him.

Jake Junis – 7 IP, 0 ER, 2 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 4.32.  Sonavabench!  Junis vs. the Indians in Cleveland was not a start I was expecting to regret being on my bench.  I guess I was being Ja-Jun.  Fancy words for $500, Alex!

Ryan O’Hearn – 3-for-4, 3 RBIs and his 8th and 9th homers.  This is from a guy who had 11 homers in 100 Triple-A games while hitting .232.  That doesn’t tell the full story, but unless he commissions a ghostwriter no one’s telling his full story.  He has plus-power to all fields.  If pitchers get lazy and throw him fastballs down the middle, I could see him hitting 30 homers over the course of a season, but with a .220 average.

Josh Donaldson – Hit the DL with his usual calf problems.  You know you have some bad legs if you’re going to the DL when there’s not even a DL anymore!  Donaldson walks by a homeless person and that homeless person is like, “Hey, are those my bum legs?”