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Updated: 2016-09-28T17:00:00+00:00

 



2016 hi-A Breakout Prospects: I’m Going to Get You hi-A Today!

2016-09-28T17:00:00+00:00

I don't know where you're from, by where I'm at everyone is getting hi-A. I have no idea why I find this funny, it's not. Then again they don't pay me to be funny, actually they don't pay me for anything. If I was paid for anything though it would probably be this, writing about prospects. Particularly those in the low minors and a few years away. Today, we'll take a long look at the breakout players in two of the three hi-A level leagues, the California League and the Florida State League. Though they share the distinction of being the even in terms of level, the two circuits couldn't boast more divergent offensive profiles. As the California League is known for its hitting and power friendly environment, the Florida State League is known for the opposite, low scoring games, and pitching friendly statistics. On Sunday we'll dig into the numerous breakouts and players of note in the third hi-A syndicate, the Carolina league. We'll also touch on some of the top performers in the A level Midwest League. If there's anyone else you feel I neglected to include, that's on your radar in the Cali or FSL, I'd love to discuss them. You know what the old timers say, Prospecting takes a village.(image) I don't know where you're from, by where I'm at everyone is getting hi-A. I have no idea why I find this funny, it's not. Then again they don't pay me to be funny, actually they don't pay me for anything. If I was paid for anything though it would probably be this, writing about prospects. Particularly those in the low minors and a few years away. Today, we'll take a long look at the breakout players in two of the three hi-A level leagues, the California League and the Florida State League. Though they share the distinction of being the even in terms of level, the two circuits couldn't boast more divergent offensive profiles. As the California League is known for its hitting and power friendly environment, the Florida State League is known for the opposite, low scoring games, and pitching friendly statistics. On Sunday we'll dig into the numerous breakouts and players of note in the third hi-A syndicate, the Carolina league. We'll also touch on some of the top performers in the A level Midwest League. If there's anyone else you feel I neglected to include, that's on your radar in the Cali or FSL, I'd love to discuss them. You know what the old timers say, Prospecting takes a village.(image) (image)



DraftKings: Congratulations, It’s Twins!

2016-09-28T16:45:00+00:00

Can you imagine such a surprise thing in the delivery room? I can barely fathom the idea of fatherhood, let alone the extra money and work having two babies at one time can be. Thankfully, this isn't a stay at home dad blog so of course, the title don't mean shizz in terms of giving birth to two bundles of expensive joy at once. Nay, I'm talking about my favorite type of bundle of joy: cash. The kind of cash you get when starting someone against the Twins. Heck, you can look back just to my Friday post to see how I think of said Twinkies. Synopsis: they trash and I look to take advantage of that knowledge as often as possible. How do I plan to implement this info today, you ask? By starting Jason Vargas. Yes, I hate Minnesota that much...apologies to Prince #RIP. Vargas showed decently in his last outing but really, this is a two fold call. One, the Twins have been at or near the bottom all year in terms of offensive output and are currently streaking further down, dropping a wRC+ of 41 and a 31.3% K rate over their last 7 and a 62 and 27.9% over their last 14. Basically, Dozier stopped hitting a HR every day so their offense went south. Funny that. Anyhoo, we now get to look at that Vargas price tag of $4,600 and get to ask ourselves a very simple question: can he score around 15 points against such a bad opponent? Well if his 11.2 in Cleveland over just 4 innings in his last outing is any indication, the answer is yes. Due to pitch count concerns and because, well, he IS Jason Vargas, I wouldn't play him outside of tourneys tonight but he's a great price reliever if you wanna pay up for an SP2 or for big bats. So grab a couple of cigars and celebrate with me. Here's my spank to make you cry taeks for this Wednesday DK slate... New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run Monday October 3rd to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. Wanna know what the best part is about signing up with us? The free subscription for the rest of the season to our DFSBot, that’s what! For details on the how to, please visit our Razzball Subscriptions page.Can you imagine such a surprise thing in the delivery room? I can barely fathom the idea of fatherhood, let alone the extra money and work having two babies at one time can be. Thankfully, this isn't a stay at home dad blog so of course, the title don't mean shizz in terms of giving birth to two bundles of expensive joy at once. Nay, I'm talking about my favorite type of bundle of joy: cash. The kind of cash you get when starting someone against the Twins. Heck, you can look back just to my Friday post to see how I think of said Twinkies. Synopsis: they trash and I look to take advantage of that knowledge as often as possible. How do I plan to implement this info today, you ask? By starting Jason Vargas. Yes, I hate Minnesota that much...apologies to Prince #RIP. Vargas showed decently in his last outing but really, this is a two fold call. One, the Twins have been at or near the bottom all year in terms of offensive output and are currently streaking further down, dropping a wRC+ of 41 and a 31.3% K rate over their last 7 and a 62 and 27.9% over their last 14. Basically, Dozier stopped hitting a HR every day so their offense went south. Funny that. Anyhoo, we now get to look at that Vargas price tag of $4,600 and get to ask ourselves a very simple question: can he score around 15 points against such a bad opponent? Well if his 11.2 in Cleveland over just 4 innings in his last outing is any indication, the answer is yes. Due to pitch count concerns and because, well, he IS Jason Vargas, I wouldn't play him outside of tourneys tonight but he's a great price reliever if you wanna pay up for an SP2 or for big bats. So grab a couple of cigars and celebrate with me. Here's my spank to make you cry taeks for this Wednesday DK slate... New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a[...]



MI Crazy Or Did Jean Valblech Segura Go From Miserables To 20/30?

2016-09-28T07:01:00+00:00

You literally can't find a middle infielder with less than 20 homers.  You can't.  Try it.  See?  This year there are more players with 20 homers than any other season in the history of baseball.  Some conspiracy theorists have said the new commissioner, Our Manfred, is sticking Capri Sun straws into baseballs and juicing them, but this year is odder than that and deserves a better conspiracy theory.  No one is hitting 50+ homers like during the Steroid Era.  Only one guy is even close to 50 homers.  Instead of a few guys doing insane damage in the power department, everyone is doing better, moderately.  It's the trickle down theory.  If you're not familiar with that, I'll explain it.  When Kim Kardashian first appeared on the scene, only she was smoking hot, but rather than Kim hogging the hotness to herself, it trickled down.  Khloe went from a 3 to a 5, Kourtney went from a 5 to a 7, Kris went from a 6 to a 8, the two Jenner girls came of age, going from untouchable to 8's, and even Bruce went from a zero to a three, becoming a woman that you'd throw one if you were drunk enough.  This is also what's happened in the majors.  Jean Segura, and all middle infielders, went from fours or fives to 20s.  Yesterday, Segura went 1-for-4 with his 20th homer, hitting .316, to go with his 30 steals.  It's going to be hard in 2017 to know if these are legitimate gains in power, for Segura and a whole slew of other players, or if half the league is going to regress.  Kinda like Brody Jenner, who was so popular before Kim, ahem, came on the scene.  Anyway, here's what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:(image) You literally can't find a middle infielder with less than 20 homers.  You can't.  Try it.  See?  This year there are more players with 20 homers than any other season in the history of baseball.  Some conspiracy theorists have said the new commissioner, Our Manfred, is sticking Capri Sun straws into baseballs and juicing them, but this year is odder than that and deserves a better conspiracy theory.  No one is hitting 50+ homers like during the Steroid Era.  Only one guy is even close to 50 homers.  Instead of a few guys doing insane damage in the power department, everyone is doing better, moderately.  It's the trickle down theory.  If you're not familiar with that, I'll explain it.  When Kim Kardashian first appeared on the scene, only she was smoking hot, but rather than Kim hogging the hotness to herself, it trickled down.  Khloe went from a 3 to a 5, Kourtney went from a 5 to a 7, Kris went from a 6 to a 8, the two Jenner girls came of age, going from untouchable to 8's, and even Bruce went from a zero to a three, becoming a woman that you'd throw one if you were drunk enough.  This is also what's happened in the majors.  Jean Segura, and all middle infielders, went from fours or fives to 20s.  Yesterday, Segura went 1-for-4 with his 20th homer, hitting .316, to go with his 30 steals.  It's going to be hard in 2017 to know if these are legitimate gains in power, for Segura and a whole slew of other players, or if half the league is going to regress.  Kinda like Brody Jenner, who was so popular before Kim, ahem, came on the scene.  Anyway, here's what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:(image) (image)



Giants Acquire Gordon Beckham

2016-09-28T00:36:00+00:00

7:36pm: Alex Pavlovic of CSN Bay Area tweets that the trade is now official and adds that the Giants will send minor league infielder Rich Rodriguez to the Braves in return. While it’s certainly surprising to see a player headed back to the Braves, Rodriguez spent the 2016 season, his age-22 campaign, at Class-A Advanced…

7:36pm: Alex Pavlovic of CSN Bay Area tweets that the trade is now official and adds that the Giants will send minor league infielder Rich Rodriguez to the Braves in return. While it’s certainly surprising to see a player headed back to the Braves, Rodriguez spent the 2016 season, his age-22 campaign, at Class-A Advanced and batted .174/.209/.183 in 117 plate appearances.

MLB.com’s Chris Haft tweets that Nunez is expected to be out for the next two to three days, so the Giants ultimately may not lean on Beckham for more than a couple of games.

2:32pm: The deal is going through, with cash consideration to Atlanta, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman tweets.

1:48pm: The Giants are “very close” to striking a deal to acquire infielder Gordon Beckham from the Braves, Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle reports on Twitter. Presumably, the move would be made to help cover for Eduardo Nunez, who is dealing with a hamstring issue.

It’s obviously rare to see trades at this stage of the season, but hardly unprecedented. Beckham, 30, would not be eligible for the San Francisco postseason roster and is a free agent after the season. But the team evidently feels that it needs a boost to its infield mix over the final six games, as it clings to a Wild Card slot.

If Nunez is out, the Giants would be left with options such as Conor Gillaspie, Ehire Adrianza, and Kelby Tomlinson at third base. Beckham isn’t exactly a premium addition — he owns only a .217/.300/.354 batting line over 273 plate appearances on the year — but promises to bolster that unit. He has been somewhat more useful against left-handed pitching, so the club will pick up some flexibility if nothing else.

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Giants Designate Matt Reynolds For Assignment

2016-09-28T00:18:00+00:00

The Giants have designated left-hander Matt Reynolds for assignment in order to clear a spot on the 40-man roster for Gordon Beckham, whose acquisition from the Braves is now official, tweets Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle. Additionally, the Giants have selected the contract of former Pirates catcher Tony Sanchez from Triple-A Sacramento and…

The Giants have designated left-hander Matt Reynolds for assignment in order to clear a spot on the 40-man roster for Gordon Beckham, whose acquisition from the Braves is now official, tweets Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle. Additionally, the Giants have selected the contract of former Pirates catcher Tony Sanchez from Triple-A Sacramento and placed Mac Williamson on the 60-day DL with a quadriceps strain to clear another 40-man roster spot.

Reynolds, 31, signed a minor league deal with the Giants earlier this summer and had his contract selected back in July. He allowed five runs in six innings at the big league level but enjoyed a more successful run with San Francisco’s Triple-A affiliate, firing off 13 2/3 shutout innings with a 12-to-2 K/BB ratio. The veteran Reynolds tossed 153 1/3 innings of 3.58 ERA ball with with 8.3 K/9 against 2.5 BB/9 between the Rockies and D-backs from 2010-13, but he underwent Tommy John surgery in early 2014 and missed the season. He’s spent the past two seasons attempting to earn his way back into regular bullpen work at the Major League level and figures to be in line for another minor league pact and an invite to Spring Training this coming offseason.

Sanchez, 28, will give manager Bruce Bochy a third catcher over the final week of the regular season. The former No. 4 overall draft pick hit .259/.303/.378 in parts of three Major League seasons with the Pirates but has split the 2016 season between the Triple-A affiliates for the Jays and Giants, batting a disappointing .201/.298/.317 through 228 plate appearances.

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Lourdes Gurriel Setting Up Private Workouts With MLB Clubs

2016-09-28T00:01:00+00:00

Free agent infielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr., who hosted a showcase attended by roughly two-thirds of the league earlier this month, is setting up private workouts with “about a half-dozen” clubs, reports Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Currently known to have a private audition in the works are the Red Sox, Cardinals, Astros and Marlins, according…

Free agent infielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr., who hosted a showcase attended by roughly two-thirds of the league earlier this month, is setting up private workouts with “about a half-dozen” clubs, reports Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Currently known to have a private audition in the works are the Red Sox, Cardinals, Astros and Marlins, according to Heyman.

Gurriel, the younger brother of Astros infielder Yulieksi Gurriel, was declared a free agent in early August and is considered one of the better all-around prospects on the international market. He’s currently subject to international bonus pools, but that’ll change next month on Oct. 19 when Gurriel turns 23. At that point, he’ll be free to sign with any MLB club for any amount, so the Red Sox will have a shot at him even though they’re currently restricted in their signings of players that are subject to international bonus restrictions (i.e. players that are under 23 and/or have fewer than five years of professional experience).

Gurriel is a career .277/.362/.426 hitter in just under 1100 plate appearances in Cuba’s top professional league, although those numbers include some lackluster stats from his years as a teenager. Gurriel batted .308/.388/.466 as a 20-year-old in the 2014-15 season, and he was even more impressive as a 21-year-old in the 2015-16 season, hitting .344/.407/.560 with 10 homers in 245 plate appearances. Gurriel is primarily a shortstop but is also said to be capable of sliding over to third base, second base or the outfield. At 6’4″ and 205 pounds, it certainly seems possible that Gurriel will eventually have to move off of shortstop, given his size relative to his peers at that position.

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Drew Pomeranz Won’t Start Again This Season

2016-09-27T23:31:00+00:00

Red Sox left-hander Drew Pomeranz won’t make another start this season, manager John Farrell told reporters, including WEEI’s Rob Bradford. Pomeranz has been feeling some soreness in his left forearm and has also pitched a career-high 169 1/3 innings this season whilst splitting the year between San Diego and Boston. Farrell stated that Pomeranz came…

Red Sox left-hander Drew Pomeranz won’t make another start this season, manager John Farrell told reporters, including WEEI’s Rob Bradford. Pomeranz has been feeling some soreness in his left forearm and has also pitched a career-high 169 1/3 innings this season whilst splitting the year between San Diego and Boston. Farrell stated that Pomeranz came out of his last start “a little more sore” but emphasized that the lefty isn’t being shut down and will hopefully make a bullpen appearance before season’s end. If Pomeranz is deemed healthy enough, he could be a bullpen option in the postseason, but his status for the playoffs remains unclear, writes Tim Britton of the Providence Journal.

The news on Pomeranz is magnified by the fact that the Red Sox were reportedly unhappy with the lack of medical information disclosed by the Padres prior to the trade that sent Pomeranz to Boston in exchange for top pitching prospect Anderson Espinoza. Major League Baseball has already suspended San Diego general manager A.J. Preller for 30 days, without pay, due to the fact that the Padres withheld medical information in the Pomeranz trade. Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe tweets that Red Sox officials declined comment about the specifics of what was withheld today in the wake of Farrell’s announcement, but it was “very clear” that the officials to whom he spoke are angry.

Bradford tweets that in spite of this recent development, the Pomeranz case will remain closed. Reports at the time of Preller’s suspension indicated that the White Sox, among other teams, were “enraged” with the Padres and felt that they were knowingly deceived, but based on Bradford’s tweet, it doesn’t appear that there will be any further action taken against San Diego. The 27-year-old Pomeranz pitched to a 2.47 ERA in 102 innings with the Padres this year, but his performance has slipped with the BoSox, as he’s worked to a more pedestrian 4.68 ERA in 67 1/3 innings. Boston controls him via arbitration for another two seasons beyond the current campaign.

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Prospect Stock Report 9.27.16

2016-09-27T22:22:00+00:00

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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE! Jose De Leon was shelled by the Diamondbacks his last time  Full Article »
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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE! Jose De Leon was shelled by the Diamondbacks his last time  Full Article »(image)



Joaquin Benoit Out 2-3 Weeks With Torn Calf Muscle

2016-09-27T21:37:00+00:00

4:37pm: Benoit is in the Jays’ clubhouse, tweets Nicholson-Smith, and says that he’s been told he could be ready to return in two to three weeks. He’s currently wearing a walking boot and using crutches. 3:35pm: Blue Jays right-hander Joaquin Benoit, who left the park on crutches last night, has been diagnosed with a torn…

4:37pm: Benoit is in the Jays’ clubhouse, tweets Nicholson-Smith, and says that he’s been told he could be ready to return in two to three weeks. He’s currently wearing a walking boot and using crutches.

3:35pm: Blue Jays right-hander Joaquin Benoit, who left the park on crutches last night, has been diagnosed with a torn calf muscle, manager John Gibbons told reporters, including Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet (Twitter links). Benoit suffered the injury while running in from the bullpen on the heels of a benches-clearing brawl. Worsening matters for the Blue Jays is the fact that Gibbons also said that second baseman Devon Travis got his shoulder “tangled up in the brawl” and subsequently aggravated it on a swing. He’s now day to day with said injury.

For the Blue Jays, the loss is significant, especially when considering the nature in which Benoit’s injury occurred. Since coming over from the Mariners in exchange for Drew Storen, Benoit has pitched to a brilliant 0.38 ERA with 9.1 K/9 against 3.4 BB.9 in 23 2/3 innings of work. While injuries are a natural part of the game, incurring one in the midst of what was a senseless and entirely avoidable brawl last night is undoubtedly frustrating for both the team and fans alike.

Looking to the future, the injury is clearly disheartening for Benoit, who will presumably be unable to participate in the postseason and will also enter the free agent market on the heels of an injury. While the calf tear probably won’t impact his stock in the same manner that an arm injury at the age of 39 would, it nonetheless deprives him of the opportunity to further distance himself from what was a dreadful first three months of the season while pitching with the Mariners. Benoit struggled to a 5.18 ERA with Seattle due largely to poor control and a susceptibility to home runs, but he righted both of those trends to a large extent while pitching with the Jays and had done quite a bit of work to rebuild some of his free agent stock.

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Blue Jays Designate Brady Dragmire For Assignment

2016-09-27T21:12:00+00:00

The Blue Jays announced that they have designated right-hander Brady Dragmire for assignment (hat tip: Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith, on Twitter). Dragmire’s roster spot will go to fellow right-hander Chris Smith, whose contract has been selected from Triple-A, per the club. The Jays also added that infielder Andy Burns has been recalled for the final few…

The Blue Jays announced that they have designated right-hander Brady Dragmire for assignment (hat tip: Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith, on Twitter). Dragmire’s roster spot will go to fellow right-hander Chris Smith, whose contract has been selected from Triple-A, per the club. The Jays also added that infielder Andy Burns has been recalled for the final few games of the season as well.

The roster moves were necessitated by a pair of injuries sustained by Joaquin Benoit and Devon Travis in last night’s benches-clearing brawl. The scrum, seemingly, could have been entirely avoided, but the Blue Jays will now be without one of their top setup men for the remainder of the season and the duration of the postseason (assuming they advance into at least the Wild Card game), as Benoit has been diagnosed with a torn calf muscle. Travis, meanwhile, is day to day with a shoulder injury.

Beyond that, the Jays have had to make a 40-man roster move sooner than they may have preferred, though Dragmire’s spot was already in jeopardy following a rocky 2016 season at the Double-A level. In 72 innings with Toronto’s affiliate in New Hampshire, Dragmire logged a 4.38 ERA with 5.1 K/9 against 3.5 BB/9. He did post an excellent 63.6 percent ground-ball rate, though, and he won’t turn 24 until February, so there’s some reason for optimism.

Smith, meanwhile, joins Toronto after posting a 1.93 ERA with 12.0 K/9 and 3.3 BB/9 in 60 2/3 innings between the Jays’ Double-A and Triple-A affiliates. He’s been with the Blue Jays since 2015 and, prior to that, spent the 2014-15 seasons in the Yankees organization. Smith was an undrafted free agent who cut his teeth in the independent Frontier League and overseas in the Australian Baseball League before eventually signing with the Yankees. If he enters a game for Toronto, he’ll be making his big league debut after a lengthy and unique journey to the game’s top level.

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Giants Sergio Romo: The Closer to Own in the Final Week

2016-09-27T20:50:00+00:00

The Giants are still playing for a Wild Card spot. In order to win every game in the final week, Sergio Romo looks to be the closer going forward and should be added. The San Francisco Giants collapse after the All-Star break is one that will be remembered. Now, the team is trying to lock […]

Giants Sergio Romo: The Closer to Own in the Final Week - Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks - Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks - Practical and useful fantasy baseball advice and analysis.

The Giants are still playing for a Wild Card spot. In order to win every game in the final week, Sergio Romo looks to be the closer going forward and should be added. The San Francisco Giants collapse after the All-Star break is one that will be remembered. Now, the team is trying to lock […]

Giants Sergio Romo: The Closer to Own in the Final Week - Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks - Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks - Practical and useful fantasy baseball advice and analysis.

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Steven Matz To Undergo Surgery To Remove Bone Spur From Elbow

2016-09-27T20:48:00+00:00

Steven Matz’s season is over, as Newsday’s Marc Carig reports that the excellent Mets left-hander will undergo surgery to remove the bone spur in his left elbow that has been plaguing him for the majority of the summer (Twitter link). Carig does tweet that Matz won’t require surgery to address the shoulder issue that has…

Steven Matz’s season is over, as Newsday’s Marc Carig reports that the excellent Mets left-hander will undergo surgery to remove the bone spur in his left elbow that has been plaguing him for the majority of the summer (Twitter link). Carig does tweet that Matz won’t require surgery to address the shoulder issue that has also been bothering him for the past couple of months, though that’s a small silver lining for Mets fans who were hoping that Matz could potentially return to the club in some capacity during the postseason.

While Matz, 25, announced his presence in the Majors last summer with an excellent debut, he didn’t pitch enough innings for his rookie status to expire. The 2016 campaign has technically been his rookie year, and it’ll come to a close with a 3.40 earned run average and a 129-to-31 K/BB ratio that was compiled over the life of 132 1/3 innings out of the New York rotation. Matz becomes the third Mets starer to require season-ending surgery, joining rotation-mates Matt Harvey (thoracic outlet syndrome) and Jacob deGrom (ulnar nerve in right elbow) in that category. Meanwhile, right-hander Zack Wheeler was never able to return to a Major League mound this season after suffering setbacks in his recovery from Tommy John surgery last spring.

If the Mets are able to hang onto the Wild Card spot they currently possess, they’ll likely turn to Noah Syndergaard in said Wild Card matchup and, if they make it past that point, entrust Bartolo Colon and one of their young right-handers — Seth Lugo or Robert Gsellman — to fill out the rotation in the National League Division Series.

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Wilson Ramos Diagnosed With Torn ACL

2016-09-27T19:17:00+00:00

Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos has received the devastating news that he has again torn his right ACL, manager Dusty Baker told reporters (via CSN Mid-Atlantic, on Twitter). Ramos previously suffered that injury — which isn’t exactly typical for a catcher — back in 2012. With just a week left in the regular season, and the…Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos has received the devastating news that he has again torn his right ACL, manager Dusty Baker told reporters (via CSN Mid-Atlantic, on Twitter). Ramos previously suffered that injury — which isn’t exactly typical for a catcher — back in 2012. With just a week left in the regular season, and the division already locked up, the Nationals now face a void at the catching position entering the postseason. Ramos’s huge season — a .307/.354/.496 slash with 22 home runs over 523 plate appearances — was among the factors that helped drive the Nats’ success this year after both player and team disappointed in 2015. Of course, the injury also casts a massive shadow over Ramos’s upcoming free agency. It had seemed all but certain that he’d receive and decline a qualifying offer, then enter the market in search of four or five years at over $10MM per season. Instead, in all likelihood, he’ll now likely be looking for an entirely different sort of contract. Washington had reportedly just taken a crack at extending Ramos, though the team’s reported offer (something a bit north of three years and $30MM) didn’t seem all that likely to result in a deal. As I noted in that post, Ramos had already taken on basically all of the risk of performance and injury decline, reducing his incentive to sell his future seasons at a discount. But the relatively meager odds didn’t prevent the catastrophic injury, which is all the more concerning given that Ramos has already had that ligament replaced. The Nats will go with Jose Lobaton and Pedro Severino for now, and will simply have to make do with that pair for the playoffs. It’s now certain that the organization will need to replace Ramos after the season — there would seem to be little chance that he’ll be ready for the start of 2017 — though it could also sign a gap-filler and explore some kind of multi-year arrangement to keep him around for the future. Just how things will play out remains unknown, with Ramos’s anticipated timeline still yet to be determined. The repeat nature of the surgery likely increases the uncertainty surrounding his recovery, and the situation as a whole only adds to concerns about how the large-bodied receiver would age, particularly with the litany of leg injuries he has suffered. On the positive side, “the Buffalo” — as he is affectionately and appropriately known — just turned 29 in early August, so he’s still rather youthful. He has already proved capable of working back from an ACL tear, and has held up to an immense amount of abuse before this hard-luck injury, appearing in 259 games since the start of 2015. All said, it’s extremely disappointing to see such misfortune for a universally respected player who has already been through so much. Hope remains that he’ll be able to return to being a productive big league receiver, but it won’t be in 2016. The injury also creates some added opportunity for other catchers on the free agent market, such as Matt Wieters and Jason Castro, who may see their demand increase. And it could shift the trade winds, potentially enhancing the Yankees’ bargaining position with veteran Brian McCann and adding to the appeal of struggling P[...]



MLBTR Chat Transcript

2016-09-27T19:03:00+00:00

Click here to read a transcript of this week’s chat with MLBTR’s Steve Adams.

Click here to read a transcript of this week’s chat with MLBTR’s Steve Adams.

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AL Notes: Kluber, Richards, Sandoval, Castellanos

2016-09-27T18:26:00+00:00

As if the Indians needed another rotation injury question mark, ace Corey Kluber left yesterday’s contest with a groin strain. Fortunately, the matter does not appear to be of major concern, as MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian reports. Kluber was pulled mostly for precautionary reasons — with the division already in hand, Cleveland has little reason to push…As if the Indians needed another rotation injury question mark, ace Corey Kluber left yesterday’s contest with a groin strain. Fortunately, the matter does not appear to be of major concern, as MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian reports. Kluber was pulled mostly for precautionary reasons — with the division already in hand, Cleveland has little reason to push him. Instead, manager Terry Francona suggested, the aim is “to get him healthy” with the postseason beckoning. Here’s more from the American League: Angels righty Garrett Richards will test his stem-cell-bolstered elbow out against live batters for the first time tomorrow, as Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. Richards is brimming with confidence in a joint that once seemed certain to cost him all of the 2017 season after already taking most of 2016. Now, he says, “I feel like I could go pitch in a game right now.” Assuming the one-inning simulated game goes well, Richards will throw two instructional league innings and begin ramping up his innings before shutting things back down for what he hopes will largely be a normal winter. While a postseason return to the Red Sox for Pablo Sandoval seems rather implausible, manager John Farrell said it isn’t off the table entirely in an appearance on MLB Network on Sirius XM (Twitter link). “He’s done a very good job in rehab,” Farrell said of Sandoval. “In the event of an injury he could be part of the conversation.” Turning to the 30-year-old third baseman, who has only appeared in three games this year and struggled badly ever since coming to Boston, would obviously be something of a last-ditch move. But it’s also quite promising to see that Sandoval is even drawing this kind of consideration, as it suggests that the team is optimistic in his progress — and could perhaps yet receive from value from his sizable contract. Tigers third baseman Nick Castellanos is ready for an intrasquad game as he continues to work back from a broken bone in his hand, as MLB.com’s Kyle Beery reports. The 24-year-old may yet make it back by the end of the regular season, skipper Brad Ausmus said, which would represent a nice addition if the team is still pushing for a Wild Card spot. Castellanos has broken out this year with a .286/.331/.500 batting line and 18 home runs over 432 plate appearances, which has not only firmly planted him in the team’s plans for the coming seasons but has also set him up nicely for his first season of arbitration eligibility. [...]



The Change: The Final Streams

2016-09-27T18:12:00+00:00

Congratulations on playing meaningful (fake) baseball this late into the season! At this point, your nerves, eyes, and pitching staff are shot, and you’re plugging leaks with sieves. Or maybe I’m just projecting. Either way, maybe you’ll find this guide to the rest of the week’s streamers useful. If you’re in a redraft roto, I […]Congratulations on playing meaningful (fake) baseball this late into the season! At this point, your nerves, eyes, and pitching staff are shot, and you’re plugging leaks with sieves. Or maybe I’m just projecting. Either way, maybe you’ll find this guide to the rest of the week’s streamers useful. If you’re in a redraft roto, I suggest using up your innings by Friday. The best prospect pitchers probably don’t have the innings to step in and pitch five or six on the weekend, the veterans will get some rest, and you’ll be left with some unsavory matchups, in large part, if you wait for Saturday and Sunday to blow out the rest of your innings. WednesdaySeth Lugo (47% owned) vs MIA Trying to dig through the psychology of a team is folly, especially one that’s just experienced a tragedy. So just look at this on the face of it, and Lugo in Miami is a good start. Sure, there’s Trevor Bauer (60% owned) at home against Detroit, but between Detroit and Miami, the Tigers are the ones that will field the team closes to their most competitive. The Tigers may need to win out to be in the postseason while the Marlins are about a game from being eliminated. There’s a chance that Lugo is developing a home run problem — he has six allowed in his last five starts — but at least Miami is a decent place for him to pitch his next time out. And yeah, I’ll take both of these over Sonny Gray (60% owned), even if he gets the Angels. Which Sonny Gray? James Paxton (37% owned) @HOU Paxton owned Minnesota last time out, and he’s really cut the walks since he changed his arm slot, so this is a believable breakout in general. Houston has seen him a ton, and recently, but how comfortable can you get against a lefty throwing in the high 90s with good secondary stuff? I also like Blake Snell (24% owned) on the road against the White Sox, but Snell’s command means that has more risk than a New Paxton start. Tyler Chatwood (36% owned) gets the Giants in AT&T, and that’s a good matchup with a high-floor pitcher. He just doesn’t have the ceiling of Paxton or even Snell. Luis Perdomo (3% owned) vsLAD I do like Mike Foltynewicz (10% owned) at home against Philadelphia, but a) he’s a little bit too owned for the deep league version, and b) he’s prone to bigger blowups, since his natural command and control are minus tools. He’s combatted bad control by throwing to the middle of the zone, but the bad command means that he’ll still serve up (high velocity) dickshots and get in trouble from time to time. Perdomo, on the other hand, is a predictable dude with a nasty sinker. If 3% is too owned for you, I’m sorry. But Rylan Edwards points out that Jason Vargas is living, breathing, and pitching, and his pop-up inducing stuff gets the Twins. ThursdayRobbie Ray (36% owned) @WAS You could consider Ray’s opponent, Joe Ross (48% owned), but Ross still hasn’t thrown more than three innings since his return from should troubles. Ray’s been up and down, and five strikeouts against four walks in 3.2 innings is a pretty down outing to be coming off of. He’s a bit like Jon Gray was before the curve — tons of Ks, not a ton of walks, and some hard-[...]



RCL Update: The Week That Was, Week 25

2016-09-27T18:00:00+00:00

It’s hard to believe there’s only one week to go in this marathon of a season.  We’ve tortured ourselves for 25 long weeks, agonizing over batty calls, dipping into the streamers with mixed results, cursing players and praising others.  We’ve ignored our families, our jobs and our personal hygiene and now it all comes down to the final week.  You may smell like stale Funyuns, but dagummit, that virtual fantasy trophy is all yours.  Team Levy is perfect yet again, gaining back the point they lost last week.  After some good conversation with the crowd I came around a bit on Team Levy last week.  I was surprised to learn that no one in the history of the RCLs has ever gone perfecto.  That just goes to show you what a special feat it is, regardless of league competitive index.  We’ve had 117, 118, even 118.5, but never 120.  That’s a lot of teams in a lot of leagues, some of them pretty terrible I’m sure.  We could be witnessing RCL history folks and if it takes a historic achievement to take down a team from a high LCI league, so be it.  Let’s take a look at what else happened in the RCLs this week, in the week that was, week 25:(image) It’s hard to believe there’s only one week to go in this marathon of a season.  We’ve tortured ourselves for 25 long weeks, agonizing over batty calls, dipping into the streamers with mixed results, cursing players and praising others.  We’ve ignored our families, our jobs and our personal hygiene and now it all comes down to the final week.  You may smell like stale Funyuns, but dagummit, that virtual fantasy trophy is all yours.  Team Levy is perfect yet again, gaining back the point they lost last week.  After some good conversation with the crowd I came around a bit on Team Levy last week.  I was surprised to learn that no one in the history of the RCLs has ever gone perfecto.  That just goes to show you what a special feat it is, regardless of league competitive index.  We’ve had 117, 118, even 118.5, but never 120.  That’s a lot of teams in a lot of leagues, some of them pretty terrible I’m sure.  We could be witnessing RCL history folks and if it takes a historic achievement to take down a team from a high LCI league, so be it.  Let’s take a look at what else happened in the RCLs this week, in the week that was, week 25:(image) (image)



DraftKings Cheat Sheet, Tuesday, September 27th (UPDATED)

2016-09-27T17:02:00+00:00

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FanDuel MLB Cheat Sheet: Tuesday, September 27th (UPDATED)

2016-09-27T17:01:00+00:00

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DraftKings: Thanks, Jose

2016-09-27T16:45:00+00:00

Never in a million years would I have fathomed that my final DraftKings article of the year would start off touching on the death of one of the best pitchers that this generation has ever seen. I can easily say that--even though Fernandez was 24 years old--because his talent was off the charts and he had the numbers to back it up. This season alone, he posted a 2.89 ERA with a whopping 253 strikeouts in 182.1 innings pitched. That gave him a league leading 12.5 K/9. It was a somber scene in Miami on Monday night, but in true baseball fashion, an unbelievable moment was created when Dee Gordon--who came into the game with eight career home runs in over 2,200 plate appearances--hit a lead off home run and was balling his eyes out as he crossed home plate. As fans, we didn't know Jose Fernandez personally. The Jose Fernandez was knew was the elite pitcher that was on the mound every fifth day. His smile lit up the stadium and clearly his teammates thought the world of him. Baseball is unlike any other sport in the sense that these guys are with each other every single days for over seven months out of the year. Unlike other professional sports, there are games practically everyday. The tribute was touching and well deserved, but this is a tough one for every baseball fan on the planet. Time will pass and the wound of losing Fernandez will start to heal, but he will forever be etched in our memories. Rest in peace. Thanks, Jose. New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run Monday October 3rd to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. Wanna know what the best part is about signing up with us? The free subscription for the rest of the season to our DFSBot, that’s what! For details on the how to, please visit our Razzball Subscriptions page.Never in a million years would I have fathomed that my final DraftKings article of the year would start off touching on the death of one of the best pitchers that this generation has ever seen. I can easily say that--even though Fernandez was 24 years old--because his talent was off the charts and he had the numbers to back it up. This season alone, he posted a 2.89 ERA with a whopping 253 strikeouts in 182.1 innings pitched. That gave him a league leading 12.5 K/9. It was a somber scene in Miami on Monday night, but in true baseball fashion, an unbelievable moment was created when Dee Gordon--who came into the game with eight career home runs in over 2,200 plate appearances--hit a lead off home run and was balling his eyes out as he crossed home plate. As fans, we didn't know Jose Fernandez personally. The Jose Fernandez was knew was the elite pitcher that was on the mound every fifth day. His smile lit up the stadium and clearly his teammates thought the world of him. Baseball is unlike any other sport in the sense that these guys are with each other every single days for over seven months out of the year. Unlike other professional sports, there are games practically everyday. The tribute was touching and well deserved, but this is a tough one for every baseball fan on the planet. Time will pass and the wound of losing Fernandez will start to heal, but he will forever be etched in our memories. Rest in peace. Thanks, Jose. New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well reserve your spot in the 25 Team Razzball Exclusive League set to run Monday October 3rd to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us [...]



MLB Today: Javier Baez Shakes Off Slump

2016-09-27T16:33:00+00:00

August was ugly, but September has been marginally better despite less PT. Still, he's been a hard player to keep active in Fantasy rosters lately. Baez's walk rate keeps dipping, and that's a concern from an overall development perspective, although we're still bullish on his long-term prospects. So he hasn't had the offensive breakout we expected this season, but let's remember he's 23.

This is just an article tease. Visit RotoRob.com for full articles, plus plenty of daily fantastic Fantasy sports content!(image) August was ugly, but September has been marginally better despite less PT. Still, he's been a hard player to keep active in Fantasy rosters lately. Baez's walk rate keeps dipping, and that's a concern from an overall development perspective, although we're still bullish on his long-term prospects. So he hasn't had the offensive breakout we expected this season, but let's remember he's 23.

This is just an article tease. Visit RotoRob.com for full articles, plus plenty of daily fantastic Fantasy sports content!(image) (image)



Marlins To Extend Martin Prado

2016-09-27T16:12:00+00:00

The Marlins have agreed in principle to a three-year, $40MM extension with third baseman Martin Prado, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports. Assuming the deal goes through to completion, he’ll remain with Miami through 2019. While the Miami organization will obviously be glad to have retained a team leader, it’s hard to celebrate given…The Marlins have agreed in principle to a three-year, $40MM extension with third baseman Martin Prado, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports. Assuming the deal goes through to completion, he’ll remain with Miami through 2019. While the Miami organization will obviously be glad to have retained a team leader, it’s hard to celebrate given that the team is still reeling from the death of star pitcher Jose Fernandez just days ago. Last night’s game was one of the most heart-wrenching experiences ever seen at a ballpark, with Prado among the Marlins players who took the field in extremely difficult circumstances. (You can find his emotional post-game interview here.) Prado, 32, has long been respected as a hard-nosed, versatile performer. He joined the Marlins before the 2015 season in a trade that sent Nathan Eovaldi and Garrett Jones to the Yankees and also delivered breakout righty David Phelps to Miami. Of course, Prado is also quite an accomplished hitter. Though he has never been an abundant source of home runs — even less so now than before — Prado continues to put up steadily above-average overall offensive production. This year, he owns a .305/.360/.415 batting line in 644 plate appearances over 149 games, which is just a shade better than his career mark of .293/.342/.423. The strong 2016 season came at an opportune time for Prado, who hasn’t been quite as useful with the bat over the last several years as he was earlier in his career with the Braves. He ended up being dealt from Atlanta to the Diamodbacks and then on to the Yankees before moving back to the NL East. Had he made it onto the open market, Prado figured to receive wide interest. That’s due not only to his sturdy bat and reputation as a leader, but also for the defensive flexibility he possesses. Prado has delivered well-regarded glovework at third for some time now, but also has shown himself plenty capable of playing second, first, the corner outfield, and even shortstop in a pinch. The major question seemed to be whether the Marlins would issue Prado a $16.7MM qualifying offer. Instead, the sides obviated the need to consider that scenario. The club may have been a bit squeamish at the idea of paying such a large single-season salary to a good but not great player, while Prado himself would have been tempted by such an offer given the alternative of entering the free agent market with draft pick compensation tied to his signing. This contract seems to serve purposes for both player and team, with the organization locking up the third base position for years to come and the latter limiting his risk while picking up a pretty nice payday. Prado will end up receiving a bit more than second baseman Daniel Murphy got last year from the Nationals in free agency, after he declined a QO. The new contract also dwarfs the $11MM guaranteed to David Freese by the Pirates to keep him from reaching the open market, while falling a fair sight shy of Chase Headley’s relatively recent four-year, $52MM pact. If there’s a beneficiary here outside of the two parties[...]



Minor MLB Transactions: 9/27/16

2016-09-27T15:48:00+00:00

Here are a few of the latest minor moves from around the game, courtesy of Baseball America’s Matt Eddy: The Orioles have brought back righty Franderlyn Romero, amongs other minor league re-signings. Romero, 23, hasn’t exactly prospered since joining the Baltimore organization in an early-season international signing slot swap. The 23-year-old moved up to the High-A level for…

Here are a few of the latest minor moves from around the game, courtesy of Baseball America’s Matt Eddy:

  • The Orioles have brought back righty Franderlyn Romero, amongs other minor league re-signings. Romero, 23, hasn’t exactly prospered since joining the Baltimore organization in an early-season international signing slot swap. The 23-year-old moved up to the High-A level for the first time with his new team, but gave up 96 hits and posted a 6.16 ERA in his 76 frames there, with 6.4 K/9 against 2.6 BB/9.
  • The Diamondbacks will take a chance on 25-year-old Mexican southpaw Armando Aguilar on a minor league deal. Per Eddy, Aguilar is a lefty specialist who was quite stingy against same-handed hitters, posting 9.2 K/9 and a 0.99 WHIP in fifty appearances this year for the Mexican League’s Leones de Yucatan.
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Blue Jays bullpen in shambles as playoffs approach

2016-09-27T15:07:00+00:00

Closer Monkey - Instant email alerts whenever there's a closer change. Closer depth charts to help you stay ahead. September 27, 2016 Seattle Mariners – In a game with significant playoff implications, Edwin Diaz got torched by the Astros in the 9th inning, blowing his third save of the season. Luckily for Diaz, his team was able to bail him out by scratching out a run in the 11th … Continue reading The post Blue Jays bullpen in shambles as playoffs approach appeared first on Closer Monkey.Closer Monkey - Instant email alerts whenever there's a closer change. Closer depth charts to help you stay ahead. September 27, 2016 Seattle Mariners – In a game with significant playoff implications, Edwin Diaz got torched by the Astros in the 9th inning, blowing his third save of the season. Luckily for Diaz, his team was able to bail him out by scratching out a run in the 11th to take the lead. In the bottom of the 11th, Nick Vincent kept Mariners fans on edge as he wobbled his way through the last three outs, earning his third save of the season. Down the stretch, we expect the Mariners to stick with Diaz, who has been solid lately, boasting a sub-1.00 WHIP in his last 30 appearances. Hierarchy remains: Diaz | Cishek | Vincent. Toronto Blue Jays – Thirty-nine year old Jason Grilli was tapped to finish off the Yankees in the ninth innings with the Jays up one run. He was only able to record one out before being replaced, but in the meantime he had surrendered 2 home runs and the lead. His outing last night was Grilli’s 65th appearance of the season, a career high, and John Gibbons may be hesitant to use ol’ Grilled Cheese in big spots down the stretch. But if he wants to look elsewhere, he may not have the services of Joaquin Benoit, who didn’t even pitch yesterday but still managed to get injured in one of the bench-clearing incidents during the game. If Benoit can’t serve as Roberto Osuna’s handcuff as a result, perhaps Grilli will get another chance, or Gibbons could look to platoon Joe Biagini and (gulp) Brett Cecil in the 8th. Updated hierarchy: Osuna | Benoit | Grilli. New York Yankees – Following Grilli’s “melt-down” *ducks*, Tommy Layne nabbed his first save of the season. He is not expected to be among the Yankee’s late inning plans for the end of the season. Hierarchy remains: Betances | Clippard | Warren. VULTURE SAVE WATCH 1. Luke Gregerson, Houston Astros – Ken Giles has pitched in two straight and three of four. He has thrown 96 pitches over his last four appearances. The post Blue Jays bullpen in shambles as playoffs approach appeared first on Closer Monkey.[...]



Twins To Hire Derek Falvey To Oversee Baseball Operations

2016-09-27T14:57:00+00:00

TODAY: Both Picollo and McLeod have been informed that they are “out” of the race for the Twins’ top job, Jon Heyman of Fan Rag tweets. Minnesota has still not announced anything, though if Falvey is indeed the hire, the Twins may just be waiting for him to celebrate the AL Central crown with the Indians (which…TODAY: Both Picollo and McLeod have been informed that they are “out” of the race for the Twins’ top job, Jon Heyman of Fan Rag tweets. Minnesota has still not announced anything, though if Falvey is indeed the hire, the Twins may just be waiting for him to celebrate the AL Central crown with the Indians (which was locked up last night). YESTERDAY, 11:43am: Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press and MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger both caution that the team’s executive search “is still ongoing” (links to Twitter), and the team has, of course, yet to make an announcement on the hiring. 10:34am: The Twins will indeed hire Falvey to oversee their baseball operations department, tweets ESPN’s Keith Law. 10:33am: Indians assistant general manager Derek Falvey has emerged as the “distinct favorite” to be named the new president of baseball operations for the Twins, reports Yahoo’s Jeff Passan (Twitter link). An official hiring could come soon, according to Passan. TwinsDaily.com’s Jeremy Nygaard first tweeted last night that he’d heard Falvey was going to land the job. The Twins have been linked to a number of young executives as they look for a replacement for recently dismissed GM Terry Ryan. Among the other names known to be in the mix are Rays vice president of baseball operations Chaim Bloom, Royals assistant GM J.J. Picollo and Cubs senior vice president of player development Jason McLeod. Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN tweets that McLeod interviewed last week and was informed by the Twins on Friday that they planned to go in a different direction with their hire. Falvey, meanwhile, was said by Passan to be a “strong candidate” back on Sept. 15. The 33-year-old Falvey will become one of baseball’s youngest executives and represents a significant departure from the status quo for Minnesota. His rise to the position of president is a surprise to say the least, as he’s spent less than one full season as an assistant GM. Falvey was promoted to that post last October in conjunction with the promotions of Chris Antonetti to president of baseball operations and Mike Chernoff to general manager. Prior to that, he spent four seasons as Cleveland’s director of baseball operations. The Boston native holds a degree in economics from Trinity College, where he also played baseball, and has contributed to the Cleveland front office in many capacities. In addition to his longstanding role in the team’s player development process, Falvey has overseen the advanced scouting department and worked with Antonetti and Chernoff on “financial, statistical and contractual dealings,” per the Indians’ media guide. Falvey figures to be the first of multiple new hires for the Twins, who reportedly will allow their new president to hire a general manager to work underneath him as well. Beyond that, changes atop a baseball operations hierarchy often lead to personnel shuffling further down the pecking order, and it should[...]



Daily Fantasy GPP Plays – Tuesday, September 27th

2016-09-27T14:50:00+00:00

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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE!   Welcome to Daily Fantasy GPP Plays. This title should be  Full Article »
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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE!   Welcome to Daily Fantasy GPP Plays. This title should be  Full Article »(image)



Jered Weaver Still Mulling Future

2016-09-27T14:27:00+00:00

Veteran Angels right Jered Weaver suggested last night that he is still not sure whether he’ll pitch in 2017 and beyond, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. Weaver says his focus at present is getting his back ready for one final start in the current campaign, which could be his last with the…

Veteran Angels right Jered Weaver suggested last night that he is still not sure whether he’ll pitch in 2017 and beyond, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. Weaver says his focus at present is getting his back ready for one final start in the current campaign, which could be his last with the Halos as the open market beckons.

Weaver has largely been available this year for Los Angeles, turning in 31 starts, even if the results haven’t been there. And he tells Fletcher that he still feels capable of pitching at the major league level as a starter.

“I feel like I can,” said Weaver. “I feel like my body is responding to what I’ve been doing over the past year and a half, two years. I haven’t really thought about next year, to tell you the truth. I have been focused on getting through this one.”

While he may not yet have really drilled in on the question of whether he’ll carry on, the 33-year-old does seem to have given at least some thought to the process. “It’s a decision I’ll have to make in the next couple months,” he said, seemingly indicating that he won’t be rushing into any final call right at season’s end. Weaver had said that he’d sit down with the media this week to discuss his future, but Fletcher tweets that the session won’t involve any announcements of his intentions.

Weaver is currently sitting on a career-high 5.06 ERA over his 178 frames in 2016. That follows a rough 2015 season and ongoing questions about his velocity and back health. Before that, of course, Weaver was one of the league’s more reliable, top-of-the-rotation workhorses.

While the Angels and other possible suitors surely won’t look upon Weaver as much more than a back-of-the-rotation depth piece, there’s certainly reason to believe that he’d be pursued. Whether any club will promise him a rotation spot, or offer much of a guarantee, is less clear. Even as the results have improved somewhat over the second half of this year, Weaver has allowed a troubling .300/.350/.525 batting line to the last 331 hitters to dig in against him, which is actually a bit worse than his first-half numbers.

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MLB DFS Value Plays: September 27th

2016-09-27T14:15:01+00:00

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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE! Looking for some value plays to help fill out those lineups  Full Article »
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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE! Looking for some value plays to help fill out those lineups  Full Article »(image)



The Daily Grind: DFS, Streaming, and More for September 27

2016-09-27T14:15:00+00:00

Agenda Debate Cancelled The Daily Grind Invitational and Leaderboard Daily DFS SaberSim Observations Tomorrow’s Targets Factor Grid 1. Debate Cancelled Today’s debate, aka” The RotoGraphs Chat” is cancelled. If you have last minute questions pertaining to winning a league championship, hit me in the comments or on Twitter. If you’re just itching to resolve your […]Agenda Debate Cancelled The Daily Grind Invitational and Leaderboard Daily DFS SaberSim Observations Tomorrow’s Targets Factor Grid 1. Debate Cancelled Today’s debate, aka” The RotoGraphs Chat” is cancelled. If you have last minute questions pertaining to winning a league championship, hit me in the comments or on Twitter. If you’re just itching to resolve your keeper picks four months early, I suggest you put them out of your mind for awhile. Revisit them in January with a fresh perspective and a new ream of offseason analysis. 2. The Daily Grind Invitational and Leaderboard It was an ugly day for 14 of us in the TDG Invite, but FantasyJude had no issues. He got double-dongs from Jonathan Villar and Robinson Cano en route to 187 points. And if he hadn’t taken a stiff negative from Jaime Garcia, he could have easily eclipsed 200 points. Many Congrats. The leaderboard is updated. Same ol’ same ol’ on DraftKings tonight. 3. Daily DFS  Yesterday’s Grind All 15 games are in the main slate. Even though there’s a quint-ace of Max Scherzer, Chris Sale, Justin Verlander, David Price, and Noah Syndergaard, there’s really only one I see as a viable play. Any guesses? The Tigers are in desperation mode which means relying on their horse to carry them to victory. Scherzer and Price are making tune up outings and Sale showed mortality against the Phillies last week (I’m sure not paying $14,000 for him again). Thor is probably limited for health reasons. Fortunately plenty of second tier options exist. Julio Teheran, John Lackey, Jerad Eickhoff, Kevin Gausman, Ian Kennedy, Felix Hernandez, Aaron Sanchez, Adam Wainwright, and Jose De Leon are all viable. Like Detroit with Verlander, the Orioles have a horse, and they need him to win this likely preview of the Wild Card game. Unlike Detroit, Baltimore has a lot of trust in their bullpen. Gausman is returning from an intercostal strain. If he’s fully healthy, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him go eight innings. Then again, they might turn to the pen at the very first sign of trouble. As we all know, the Blue Jays offense is dangerous. This should be a pitching duel between two young up-and-coming stars. I’m usually wary of Kennedy. If you’re on FanDuel, he’s a very good bet to earn a victory while tossing six innings. That’s an easy 30 points with upside for more. I’m less enamored on DraftKings where the win is only worth four points. De Leon will be everybody’s favorite wild card. The righty has the stuff to slice through the Padres lineup like a scalpel. All young pitchers are volatile, and De Leon has had some trouble with serving up fat pitches. He’s not my first pick for a DFS pitcher. Bargain hunters may consider German Marquez. The righty posted excellent numbers in the minors, but he’s had some tr[...]



Field of Streams: Episode 247 – Then I’ll Get Dirty

2016-09-27T13:45:00+00:00

Episode 247 – Then I’ll Get Dirty The latest episode of “Field of Streams” is live! In this episode, Dylan Higgins and Matthew Dewoskin discuss Jose Fernandez’s tribute and Dee Gordon’s home run, Matt being ashamed of a Stephen Drew pick, Alen Hanson’s surprising identity, how to pronounce Matt Koch’s name, Matt’s eternal Pirates lefties, nailing a Chris Coghlan […]

Episode 247 – Then I’ll Get Dirty

The latest episode of “Field of Streams” is live!

In this episode, Dylan Higgins and Matthew Dewoskin discuss Jose Fernandez’s tribute and Dee Gordon’s home run, Matt being ashamed of a Stephen Drew pick, Alen Hanson’s surprising identity, how to pronounce Matt Koch’s name, Matt’s eternal Pirates lefties, nailing a Chris Coghlan pick, and not paying much attention to the debate.

Contest picks for Tuesday, September 27: Alex Cobb @ CWS (Dylan) and Jose De Leon @ SD (Matt).

Suggested DFS picks worth attention for Tuesday, September 27: Sandy Leon, Salvador Perez, Jonathan Lucroy, Buster Posey, David Ortiz, Edwin Encarnacion, Freddie Freeman, Eric Hosmer, Brandon Moss, Joey Votto, Brian Dozier, Dustin Pedroia, Rougned Odor, Robinson Cano, Matt Carpenter, DJ LeMahieu, Josh Donaldson, Kyle Seager, Jonathan Villar, Justin Turner, Nolan Arenado, Adrian Beltre, Tommy La Stella, Freddy Galvis, Asdrubal Cabrera, Carlos Correa, Aledmys Diaz, Alen Hanson, Stephen Drew, Mookie Betts, Gregory Polanco, Dexter Fowler, Jose Bautista, J.D. Martinez, the Braves outfielders, Odubel Herrera, the Rangers outfielders, the Mariners outfielders, Yasiel Puig, Ryan Raburn, David Price, Max Scherzer, John Lackey, Aaron Sanchez, Justin Verlander, Noah Syndergaard, A.J. Griffin, Alex Cobb, Chris Sale, Felix Hernandez, Jose De Leon, and Matt Moore.

As usual, don’t hesitate to tweet us or comment with fantasy questions.

You can subscribe to the podcast on iTunes or via the feed. Please rate & review the show in iTunes letting us know what you think!

Approximately 31 minutes of joyous analysis.

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Farewell

2016-09-27T13:36:00+00:00

Neil Weinberg and Kevin Ruprecht will be stepping down as Co-Managing Editors of Beyond the Box Score. Neil Weinberg and I, Kevin Ruprecht, will be stepping down as Co-Managing Editors of Beyond the Box Score effective at the end of the World Series. We are both ready to move on from our current management roles and will tackle other things in life. Neil and I announced the news on Twitter this morning. It has truly been a joy to manage this website, and we hope we’ve made into something you enjoy coming to every day. Neil’s statement made on Twitter pretty much covers what both of us want to say, so I’ll put it here. 1. Seems rather small, given yesterday, but some news: I’ve decided to step down as managing editor at @btbscore at the end of the WS. pic.twitter.com/FJgM0UdBDR— Neil Weinberg (@NeilWeinberg44) September 26, 2016 That means Beyond the Box Score is looking for new management! If you want to apply to be the Managing Editor of Beyond the Box Score, there will be a now hiring post coming soon.Neil Weinberg and Kevin Ruprecht will be stepping down as Co-Managing Editors of Beyond the Box Score. Neil Weinberg and I, Kevin Ruprecht, will be stepping down as Co-Managing Editors of Beyond the Box Score effective at the end of the World Series. We are both ready to move on from our current management roles and will tackle other things in life. Neil and I announced the news on Twitter this morning. It has truly been a joy to manage this website, and we hope we’ve made into something you enjoy coming to every day. Neil’s statement made on Twitter pretty much covers what both of us want to say, so I’ll put it here. 1. Seems rather small, given yesterday, but some news: I’ve decided to step down as managing editor at @btbscore at the end of the WS. pic.twitter.com/FJgM0UdBDR— Neil Weinberg (@NeilWeinberg44) September 26, 2016 That means Beyond the Box Score is looking for new management! If you want to apply to be the Managing Editor of Beyond the Box Score, there will be a now hiring post coming soon.[...]



Joaquin Benoit Leaves Park On Crutches

2016-09-27T13:31:00+00:00

Blue Jays reliever Joaquin Benoit left the ballpark last night on crutches, according to Shi Davidi of Sportsnet.ca (via Twitter). The veteran is suffering from a leg injury — suggestions are that the issue is in his calf — that arose during a bench-clearing dust-up in yesterday’s game. It would obviously be rather disappointing if it…

Blue Jays reliever Joaquin Benoit left the ballpark last night on crutches, according to Shi Davidi of Sportsnet.ca (via Twitter). The veteran is suffering from a leg injury — suggestions are that the issue is in his calf — that arose during a bench-clearing dust-up in yesterday’s game.

It would obviously be rather disappointing if it turns out that Benoit will miss any significant portion of time. After all, the Jays need him not only for the final week of the season but for the postseason to come.

Things had been going quite well for Benoit in Toronto prior to this. Since coming over in the trade that sent Drew Storen to the Mariners in a swap of struggling relievers, Benoit has allowed only a single earned run over 23 2/3 innings of work while permitting just 17 hits and carrying a 24:9 K/BB ratio.

That turnaround has not only provided a huge boost to the Blue Jays, but has set up Benoit nicely for free agency. He had posted some rough results in Seattle over the season’s first half, but his work in Toronto is more reminiscent of Benoit’s consistently strong production over the previous half-dozen campaigns.

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Ian Desmond regained leverage as well as value

2016-09-27T13:30:00+00:00

Desmond’s upcoming payday has as much to do with the market as his renewed ability. This probably wasn’t how Ian Desmond planned his career. After turning down a 7-year, $107 million extension with the Nationals two years ago, he bet on himself to earn substantially more in free agency. The bet looked pretty good at the time and in 2014, but took a sharp turn for the worse in 2015. His year wasn’t that bad, actually, but combined with the qualifying penalty offer, it meant the best offer he got was a 1-year, $8 million deal from the Rangers. Even worse, reestablishing his value became more difficult, as the Rangers signed him to move down in the defensive spectrum, and play the outfield instead of shortstop. When the Nationals offered the extension to Desmond, he had just come off a 2013 season where he hit .280/.331/.453 (a 116 wRC+), with 20 HR and above-average baserunning. His defense at shortstop was never very good, but he could at least handle the position enough to provide a substantial boost to his value. He was one of only four qualified shortstops who were above-average hitters in 2013. Only Troy Tulowitzki had a higher ISO than Desmond, and he hit at Coors Field. Desmond likely thought that he’d be entering a weak free agency class for shortstops and would be going into his age-30 season. While that’s not particularly young for a free agent, and while middle infielders tend to suffer more wear and tear, it’s not too old either, and he had a great track record of health that continues to this day. Based on what we knew at the time Desmond turned down the extension, one could make a reasonable argument that it was a reasonable bet to make. Don’t get me wrong, there were certainly good arguments against it, but Desmond’s decision was at the very least defensible. In 2014, his bet was looking pretty smart. His offense declined slightly because of a drop in batting average that came from a significant increase in strikeouts, but he was still hitting for a lot of power for a shortstop, ranking second in ISO at the position, behind only Jhonny Peralta. Because DRS and UZR don’t agree on his defense, his fWAR tends to be higher than his bWAR. However, I believe it’s fair to say that he had consistently been an All-Star caliber player to that point in his career. An All-Star caliber shortstop is worth far more than the $107 million the Nationals offered to Desmond. Again, so far, so good. Then, ironically, in his contract year of 2015, Desmond had his worst offensive season since 2011. His 83 wRC+ ranked only tenth among qualified shortstops. His power didn’t drop too much, but his .290 OBP meant he was making far too many outs for that power to overcome. It still was a decent season for Desmond overall, having been worth 2 bWAR, but it was a big drop from where he had been. One could say that the league overreacted to his disappointing 2015 in not giving Desmond a better deal. One could cite recency bias and overvaluing one year over his established track record. These are reasonable arguments, but there are caveats that go beyond what I’ve already mentioned regarding the qualifying o[...]



Deep League Waiver Wire – Final Week Pitching Streamers

2016-09-27T13:15:00+00:00

First, a quick thought on Jose Fernandez. A lot has already been said about the joy and enthusiasm with which he played the game and I second every last bit of it. Watching him pitch, he appeared to exist on another plane, one lacking a dimension for growth or improvement because how could that even be […]First, a quick thought on Jose Fernandez. A lot has already been said about the joy and enthusiasm with which he played the game and I second every last bit of it. Watching him pitch, he appeared to exist on another plane, one lacking a dimension for growth or improvement because how could that even be possible? His jump from A-ball to the majors was simultaneously remarkable and laughably uneventful. He even made Tommy John look easy. Perhaps the adversities that Fernandez experienced in Cuba equipped him with the knowledge and perspective to make the athletic adversity felt by most seem inconsequential. I don’t know. What I do know is that Jose Fernandez put a face and vividness to the Cuban ballplayer’s experience that our sports media previously only alluded to in off-handed whispers. He shared personal experiences so heavy, their mere mention caused him to float above his peers. I’ll miss watching him pitch. I wish I watched him more. But I’ll try not to think of what could have been because what was, was pretty damned significant.   As for my final Deep League Waiver Wire column of the season, I thought I’d look at some streaming options to take you through the end of the week. I can’t stress this enough – if you’re not in a deep league, you can do better. There are some pretty uncompelling names in the paragraphs that follow but I’m hoping they provide the last-minute pitching juice needed to propel you to the top of your standings. Tuesday: German Marquez (1% Yahoo, 0.5% ESPN, 6% CBS) @ SF In his first start last Wednesday, Marquez held the Cardinals to a single run and five base runners through five innings. He struck out three, walked one, and kept the ball on the ground. His fastball sat at 93, just a shade down from his relief work (granted, we’re talking about just 3 previous appearances) and in case you were wondering, Marquez did this in Colorado. Now, I’d normally stay far away from a rookie Rockie but given the ballpark and the match-up, I’ll consider him here. In the minors, Marquez’ calling card was his control, averaging 2.00 BB/9 since the start of last season. This is important given his date with the Giants who rank 4th in baseball in walk rate. But as a team, the Giants have been scuffling, hitting just .230/.297/.361 over the last month. I feel good about placing a bet on Marquez for some eleventh-hour ratio help. Wednesday: Jason Vargas (0% Yahoo, 0.5% ESPN, 1% CBS) vs. Min Having missed nearly the entire season recovering from TJS, Vargas is scheduled to make his third and final start of the season Wednesday against the Twins. In his first start, the 33 year-old lefty went three innings against White Sox. In his second start, he went four against Cleveland and now appears to be ready for 100 pit[...]



10 Important Stories From 09/26/16 Box Scores: Duvall Keeps Slugging, Baez’ Big Day & More

2016-09-27T12:48:00+00:00

by Ray Kuhn Impossible. Emotionally exhausting. Powerful. We can keep on going all day with adjectives to describe what we saw on the field in Miami last night. While the game itself did bring with it some level of normalcy, it was still like nothingby Ray Kuhn Impossible. Emotionally exhausting. Powerful. We can keep on going all day with adjectives to describe what we saw on the field in Miami last night. While the game itself did bring with it some level of normalcy, it was still like nothing we have seen before. And hopefully like nothing we ever will see again. It’s hard to pivot to seemingly meaningless fantasy baseball analysis after talking about the sudden and tragic death of one of the best pitchers of our time, but that is what we do. And by that, I don’t mean be insensitive. Baseball, and fantasy baseball, exist to help us escape life and the tragedies that come with it. As the end of the season draws near, let’s take a look at some of the performances that stood out from a fantasy perspective last night. 1) Justin Bour Just Misses a Cycle If there was an element of the the cycle you would expect Bour to be missing, it would not be a home run. Well at least compared to a triple, because before last night, Bour had never tripled in his professional career. After missing two months, Bour returned in the beginning of September, and he has yet to find his groove. Including his 3 for 4 effort last night, Bour is hitting just .196 in September with three RBI. There is no arguing with Bour’s power, prior to his injury he had 15 home runs with 46 RBI, and he could be a good source of such over his next few games. 2) Adam Duvall Goes Deep Twice One of the unexpected All-Stars from this season who has sustained his fantasy value is Duvall. The outfielder went 4 for 6 during Cincinnati’s rout of the Cardinals, and that included two home runs, five RBI, and four runs scored. You aren’t going to get batting average from Duvall, .242, but he is at 33 home runs and 100 RBI for the season. When you get production like that, especially based on where he was drafted at the start of the season, you can certainly make due with a .242 batting average. The strikeouts are going to be there, 155 so far this season, but at this point that is to be expected. Duvall has a 47.1% fly ball rate this season, but it was 47.4% last season and his home run per fly ball rate has dropped from 27.8% to 18.3%. 3) Jean Segura Continues With the Power If Segura is going to bat .317 with 30 stolen bases and 94 runs scored, you would consider that a win. But after his two home runs last night, the middle infielder is up 19 on the season to go along with 63 RBI. And that is a nice bonus. But aside from the speed, which is a skill set he has proven to own, what can we expect from him next season? Segura’s BABIP of .350 is above his career average of .313 and his home run per fly ball rate of 13.1% is well above his mark from the past two seasons (5.1% and 5.3%). He is still just 26-years old, so it is possible that some of those improvements will stick. And even with a little regression, Segura still[...]



Starting Pitcher Streamers for Thurs 9/29

2016-09-27T12:15:00+00:00

If you’re in a fierce battle in the wins or strikeouts categories, or both, you are no doubt considering streaming pitchers if your league uses daily transactions. So let’s take a look at the pitchers owned in less than 50% of CBS leagues who are scheduled to start on Thursday and determine who warrants a […]If you’re in a fierce battle in the wins or strikeouts categories, or both, you are no doubt considering streaming pitchers if your league uses daily transactions. So let’s take a look at the pitchers owned in less than 50% of CBS leagues who are scheduled to start on Thursday and determine who warrants a pickup and who’s at risk of destroying your ratios. Daniel Norris vs CLE I discussed Norris just last week and like what I have seen in his recent performance. It’s a home start and the Indians are right in the middle of the pack among all Major League teams in wOBA against left-handers. They don’t possess a ton of power against southpaws, but have been able to post an elevated BABIP, which one a game-by-game basis is far less predictable. So this makes for a pretty decent matchup for Norris, even though the Indians don’t strike out a whole lot against lefties. Verdict: Start Cody Anderson @ DET Remember how excited some of us were (I was somewhat as well!) during spring training when Anderson was throwing with higher velocity and striking out everyone? Yeahhhhhh, so he currently owns a 6.34 ERA and his strikeout, while much improved from last year, remains sub-20%. Looking under the hood, his overall skills have actually been pretty decent. He’s just been killed by a .376 BABIP and 18.2% HR/FB rate. In a better matchup, I’d be tempted to recommend him, but against a strong Tigers offense at Comerica Park, he’s not a consideration. Verdict: Bench CC Sabathia vs BOS Sabathia has posted monthly ERA marks above five in three months and marks below 3.00 in two months, with an ERA in the middle the last month. Talk about up and down! Overall, he’s basically the same pitcher as last year, but without the poor batted ball luck and the inflated HR/FB rate. The Red Sox own the second highest wOBA versus lefties in baseball. They don’t strike out, take their walks, hit for power, and convert balls in play into base hits. This is a dangerous team no matter the pitcher on the mound. That it’s Sabathia who has posted weak skills this year mean the risk of a ratio torching is present. Verdict: Bench Kendall Graveman @ SEA Man these extreme ground ball pitchers always intrigue me. If they could just find a decent strikeout pitch, a breakout would be imminent! Graveman’s strikeout rate has gone from low to scary this year, but he’s still inducing grounders and displaying good control. Unfortunately, the entire skills package has led to an ugly 4.61 SIERA. The Mariners have had a pretty good offense this year and when considering a streamer, part of the expectation is for strikeouts. Sadly, Graveman cannot be counted on for those and since he’s pitching away as well, he doesn’t fi[...]



Podcast: 2017 Mock Draft Special!

2016-09-27T12:00:00+00:00

The Razzball Pod is back, and we open with the somberest of news with the tragic passing of Jose Fernandez and what it meant to the baseball community. But hopefully all of our saddened feelings can be assuaged by remembering why we love fantasy baseball, and thinking ahead of what will come in 2017! On today's show, we mock the first 3 rounds of the 2017 Fantasy Baseball Draft! As you'd expect, Grey constantly smatters me with "I hate that pick" of which he gets an armageddon of gongs. THE GONG WILL BE HERE FOREVER, GREY! Here's our latest edition of the Razzball Baseball Podcast, now with more - you guessed it - gongs!(image) The Razzball Pod is back, and we open with the somberest of news with the tragic passing of Jose Fernandez and what it meant to the baseball community. But hopefully all of our saddened feelings can be assuaged by remembering why we love fantasy baseball, and thinking ahead of what will come in 2017! On today's show, we mock the first 3 rounds of the 2017 Fantasy Baseball Draft! As you'd expect, Grey constantly smatters me with "I hate that pick" of which he gets an armageddon of gongs. THE GONG WILL BE HERE FOREVER, GREY! Here's our latest edition of the Razzball Baseball Podcast, now with more - you guessed it - gongs!(image) (image)



Roto Riteup: September 27, 2016

2016-09-27T11:15:00+00:00

This is it. We’re down to the final week. It looks like most have shifted their focus to 2017, as they rightfully should have, so we’ll probably keep it pretty brief in this space for the week, maybe with a look back on our 2016 performance at some point in time. For a few more […]This is it. We’re down to the final week. It looks like most have shifted their focus to 2017, as they rightfully should have, so we’ll probably keep it pretty brief in this space for the week, maybe with a look back on our 2016 performance at some point in time. For a few more days, we soldier on and trudge through the waiver wire. On the agenda: 1. A beautiful moment 2. Various News and Notes 3. Streaming Pitcher Options A beautiful moment I’m hardly qualified to accurately put into words what Jose Fernandez meant to his friends, his teammates, his community, and to baseball as a whole, but I’ve spent the last two days unspeakably sad about the death of one of my favorite people in sports. Any time a 24-year-old passes, it’s obviously going to be sad, but Fernandez’s case is extreme. The hugs, the smile, the energy, the backstory, his importance to the local community, his family, that he was one of the best pitchers in baseball…it’s all just heartbreaking. I hope those close to him, and all those who loved him, find peace. And shout out to Dee Gordon for producing just a beautiful moment last night, donning Fernandez’s batting helmet and batting stance, then taking one out of the park. pic.twitter.com/Dyeyu1Cg2L — nick pants (@nick_pants) September 26, 2016 pic.twitter.com/87rYestgyt — Richard Lee-Sam (@RLeesam) September 27, 2016 Various News and Notes There’s a lot of potentially bad news for playoff hopefuls to sort through. It’s probably best to assume teams are going to play it pretty cautious with anyone a week before the playoffs, given that all six divisions are locked up. NATIONALS: Bryce Harper underwent X-rays on his left thumb, but the results came back negative. There was some concern he may have re-torn his UCL when sliding on Sunday. Instead, he could be back in the lineup later this week. Things may not be as fine for Wilson Ramos, who left yesterday’s game with an apparent knee injury when jumping for an overthrow at home. He’s set for an MRI today. And Daniel Murphy probably isn’t going to be back this week, but the NLDS may be realistic. BLUE JAYS: Throwing baseballs at people is dumb. In this case, it led to benches clearing and, somehow, Joaquin Benoit suffering a potential calf injury. Benoit has no fantasy relevance unless you’re tight on holds this week, anyway, but this serves as a reminder that sometimes, we humans are dumb. INDIANS: Corey Kluber was pulled after four innings due to groin tightness, and uhh, the Indians can’t really afford for him to miss a playoff start. With Danny Salazar and Carlos Carrasco on the shelf, the Indians were plotting a three-man rotation for the postseaso[...]



Houston Colt .45s Rookie Report Card, 9/27/63

2016-09-27T10:00:00+00:00

Fifty-three years ago today, a woeful expansion team fielded a unique lineup.Bob Aspromonte was one of the few veterans on the Colt .45s at the end of 1963. (via Houston Colt .45s)To a certain extent, the end of the baseball season is silly season, at least for teams out of the running. If you have a utility player who wants to play all nine positions, just wait till after Labor Day. Every time it’s happened in major league history (Bert Campaneris, A’s, Sept. 8, 1965; Cesar Tovar, Twins, Sept. 22, 1968; Scott Sheldon, Rangers, Sept. 6, 2000; Shane Halter, Tigers, Oct. 1, 2000), it was during the final four weeks of the season. If you want to add Minnie Miñoso to the roster, as the White Sox did, so he could add two more decades (the 1970s and 1980s) to his major league playing record, go ahead and do so, but only in the waning days of the season. In short, if you want to do anything that looks like a minor league publicity stunt, go right ahead, but not until September – and only if both teams have nothing to play for. What better way to describe the Houston Colt .45s and the New York Mets at the beginning of the final weekend of the season on Sept. 27, 1963? The Colts had certainly experienced their share of speed bumps during the season. Starting on June 16, for example, the team endured a 10-game losing streak that included four consecutive shutouts (June 20 vs. Cubs, June 21-23 vs. Reds), tying a major league record. As the season came to a close, the Colts were actually on a roll, having won four in a row, six out of seven, and 10 out of 12. It was too little too late, however; they were mired in ninth place in the National League with a record of 64-95. Eighth place, occupied by the Pirates, was way out of reach. The Mets could only envy the Colts. The Mets were firmly entrenched in 10th (hence last) place with a 50-109 record, 14 games behind the Colts. On Sept. 12, the Mets embarked on an eight-game losing streak. They managed to squeak by the Giants (5-4 on Sept. 21), then lost four in a row; so when they arrived in Houston for the last three games of the season, they had gone through a 1-12 stretch. As bad as the Mets’ season had been, however, it was superior to their inaugural season of 1962 when they won just 40 games. A 25 percent increase in victories certainly qualifies as progress. The Colts could boast of no such improvement. In their 1962 inaugural season, they had gone 64-96, and their sophomore season was pretty much an encore, which equates to a disappointment. But the team did have its strong points, most of which involved pitching. Since Paul Richards, a former catcher, was the Colts’ GM, an emphasis on pitching was to be expected. That was how he had elevated the Baltimore Orioles to respectability. Colt Stadium, the team’s temporary home, was 360 feet down the lines and 420 to center field, and the humid, subtropical air was not conducive to long-distance hitting, so emphasizing pitching was sound strategy. Ken Johnson, Dick Farrell [...]



The Longball (Daily GPP Plays): September 27th, 2016

2016-09-27T09:30:00+00:00

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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE!   The Longball Hello and welcome to the Longball for September  Full Article »
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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE!   The Longball Hello and welcome to the Longball for September  Full Article »(image)



Pitching Streamers & DFS Plays for Tuesday, September 27th

2016-09-27T09:00:00+00:00

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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE!   Max Scherzer (vs ARI) – Scherzer has been on absolute  Full Article »
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Check out our FanDuel and DraftKings Cheat Sheets! Check out RotoQL’s MLB projection and optimal DFS lineup tool for FREE!   Max Scherzer (vs ARI) – Scherzer has been on absolute  Full Article »(image)



Bullpen Notes: September 26, 2016: Betances’ Struggles Continue, Diaz Blows Save & More

2016-09-27T07:50:00+00:00

Are you following @Rotoprofessor on Twitter? If not you should be, as we Tweet out all the important bullpen notes every morning from the previous day’s games. Who is in jeopardy of losing their job? Who is worth the speculative add? Here are this morningAre you following @Rotoprofessor on Twitter? If not you should be, as we Tweet out all the important bullpen notes every morning from the previous day’s games. Who is in jeopardy of losing their job? Who is worth the speculative add? Here are this morning tweets (Please note we won’t be posting these on the website every day, so make sure you follow @Rotoprofessor to ensure you don’t miss a thing): NYY: Defense issue but Betances BB 2 of 3 (2 R w/o out). 10 ER (11 H/8 BB) in 8.1 IP in Sept. No long-term answer? #FantasyBaseball #closers — Rotoprofessor (@Rotoprofessor) September 27, 2016 Diaz w/BSV (2 R/4 H) 2nd in 3 outings. Hard not to be impressed w/conversion (82 K) & looks like potentially elite #FantasyBaseball #closers — Rotoprofessor (@Rotoprofessor) September 27, 2016 OAK: Dull takes L (1 R/2 H/1 BB) in non-SV. Disappointing as looked like SV opps could come but still deserve look #FantasyBaseball #closers — Rotoprofessor (@Rotoprofessor) September 27, 2016 HOU: Giles works 2nd straight (1 H/1 BB/3 K) so no ill effects from injury scare. Fire up as must use closer #FantasyBaseball #closers — Rotoprofessor (@Rotoprofessor) September 27, 2016 TOR: w/o Osuna & Benoit it was Grilli who got opp & blew it (4 R/0.1 IP). Not going to see any SV opps anyways #FantasyBaseball #closers — Rotoprofessor (@Rotoprofessor) September 27, 2016 [...]



Cubs Javier Selves A Merry Little Christmas Yesterday

2016-09-27T07:01:00+00:00

Yesterday, was the first time the Cubs have won 100 games since 1935.  Though, in 1994, the Cubs were so gonna win the final 49 games if the strike didn't happen, giving them 98 wins, then two losses were going to go under review and get reversed.  What?  My crystal ball is very specific.  Why don't you people believe me?  Kidding, I know you believe me because I can see you in my crystal ball.  Put on some pants that don't have an elastic band, would you please!  Kyle Hendricks (6 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners (0 walks), 5 Ks, ERA down to 1.99) did his usual magic.  I say let him sit out his final start so he can end the year with a minus-2 ERA, and I bet the Cubs say the same thing as me.  Know why?  I have the best words.  People love my words.  No one has words like me.  Carrying them offensively was Javier Baez (2-for-5, 6 RBIs and his 14th homer).  Whenever Hendricks grooves, Baez seems to play himself a little ditty, too.  Must be their Woodstock connection.  If Joan Baez didn't perform at Woodstock, don't tell me, for folk's sake.  Baez is going to be a tough nut to peg (totally a saying) for 2017 fantasy.  He's made great strides with his strikeouts.  Looks like an easy bet for a 17/17 season if he were to play every day, but 17/17 is just a tad boring compared to 20/20.  By the way, Tad Boring never gets any dates on Tinder.  Also, we're not sure if Baez will have an everyday job.  Cubs' playing time can be Maddon'ing.  Anyway, here's what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:Yesterday, was the first time the Cubs have won 100 games since 1935.  Though, in 1994, the Cubs were so gonna win the final 49 games if the strike didn't happen, giving them 98 wins, then two losses were going to go under review and get reversed.  What?  My crystal ball is very specific.  Why don't you people believe me?  Kidding, I know you believe me because I can see you in my crystal ball.  Put on some pants that don't have an elastic band, would you please!  Kyle Hendricks (6 IP, 0 ER, 7 baserunners (0 walks), 5 Ks, ERA down to 1.99) did his usual magic.  I say let him sit out his final start so he can end the year with a minus-2 ERA, and I bet the Cubs say the same thing as me.  Know why?  I have the best words.  People love my words.  No one has words like me.  Carrying them offensively was Javier Baez (2-for-5, 6 RBIs and his 14th homer).  Whenever Hendricks grooves, Baez seems to play himself a little ditty, too.  Must be their Woodstock connection.  If Joan Baez didn't perform at Woodstock, don't tell me, for folk's sake.  Baez is going to be a tough nut to peg (totally a saying) for 2017 fantasy.  He's made great strides with his strikeouts.  Looks like an easy bet for a 17/17 se[...]



Submit Your Questions For This Week’s MLBTR Mailbag

2016-09-27T04:12:00+00:00

Last week’s edition of the MLBTR Mailbag saw Jeff Todd field questions about the Jonathan Lucroy trade, the Phillies’ hopes in 2017, the Yankees’ offseason and park-adjusted/context-neutral metrics such as wRC+ and OPS+. If you have a question on the upcoming offseason, free agency, the playoff race, Cy Young/MVP/Rookie of the Year voting or anything else…

Last week’s edition of the MLBTR Mailbag saw Jeff Todd field questions about the Jonathan Lucroy trade, the Phillies’ hopes in 2017, the Yankees’ offseason and park-adjusted/context-neutral metrics such as wRC+ and OPS+.

If you have a question on the upcoming offseason, free agency, the playoff race, Cy Young/MVP/Rookie of the Year voting or anything else and would like to hear MLBTR’s take, let us know: mlbtrmailbag@gmail.com. We can’t get to every question, of course, but we’ll try to diversify the teams/subject matter as best we can. If you miss out on having your question answered, remember that you can always ask during one of our three weekly live chats — Tuesday at 2pm CT with myself, Wednesday at 6:30pm with Jason Martinez and/or Thursday at 2pm with Jeff. Mailbag questions are welcome throughout the week, so feel free to send them in at any time.

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Quick Hits: Britton, Harper, Ramos, Bregman, McCullers, Rasmus, Abad

2016-09-27T03:53:00+00:00

Orioles closer Zach Britton has turned in a season to remember, and it’s not all that surprising given his recent excellence. Still, it wasn’t long ago that such a showing seemed highly improbable, as Danny Knobler of Bleacher Report writes. Britton was no lock to make the O’s roster out of camp in 2014, but the…Orioles closer Zach Britton has turned in a season to remember, and it’s not all that surprising given his recent excellence. Still, it wasn’t long ago that such a showing seemed highly improbable, as Danny Knobler of Bleacher Report writes. Britton was no lock to make the O’s roster out of camp in 2014, but the refinement of his unbelievable power sinker that year has turned the southpaw into arguably the game’s most dominant reliever. Knobler takes an interesting look at Britton’s transformation as a pitcher, as well as his earlier path toward the majors. Here are a few more stray notes from around the game: Nationals star Bryce Harper suffered a thumb injury that caused some concern, but manager Dusty Baker said tonight that X-rays were negative, as Dan Kolko of MASNsports.com reports (Twitter links). Washington is suddenly facing a variety of significant health concerns as it readies for the NLDS, though at least in Harper’s case the prognosis seems promising. Catcher Wilson Ramos is a new concern after leaving tonight’s game following a play at the plate. He’s due for an MRI tomorrow, the results of which could have huge implications for both the team and his coming run through free agency. Burgeoning Astros infielder Alex Bregman could be back sooner than expected after a “leap forward” in his recovery from a hamstring strain, MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart reports. Indeed, he could appear as soon as this week. While the timetable isn’t quite as promising for righty Lance McCullers Jr., he might be ready to go for the postseason if Houston can sneak in. Meanwhile, there’s said to be little chance that outfielder Colby Rasmus will return to uniform before qualifying for free agency. It’s possible that Red Sox deadline addition Fernando Abad won’t even crack the team’s postseason roster, as Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald reports. The veteran southpaw has largely been quite good against opposing lefties since coming to Boston, but he has still coughed nine earned runs with a dozen strikeouts and eight walks in his 12 2/3 innings of work. Though nothing has been decided, manager John Farrell did acknowledge that the club is assessing both Abad and rookie lefty Robby Scott for the postseason pen. Scott, 27, has just six MLB appearances on his ledger, though he has yet to allow a run. [...]



Wilson Ramos Departs Game With Leg Injury

2016-09-27T01:44:00+00:00

The Nationals are holding their collective breath after seeing Wilson Ramos land awkwardly on a play at the plate. The big catcher was helped off of the field with an apparent right leg injury. It’s far too soon to know whether the injury is a serious one, but it comes at an awful time for…

The Nationals are holding their collective breath after seeing Wilson Ramos land awkwardly on a play at the plate. The big catcher was helped off of the field with an apparent right leg injury.

It’s far too soon to know whether the injury is a serious one, but it comes at an awful time for player and team. Washington is preparing for a postseason run in early October, while Ramos is not only playing to help the team but also to set up his free agent market after the year.

Washington is not particularly well-equipped to deal with any missed time from Ramos, who has carried a big load this year. Switch-hitting reserve Jose Lobaton has taken just 104 plate appearances, with a decent but unexciting .220/.317/.363 slash. Intriguing prospect Pedro Severino has shown well in his 11 game stint, but his Triple-A numbers don’t suggest that he’s ready for a regular role.

Meanwhile, the 29-year-old Ramos has already logged 130 games for the Nats entering tonight’s action. He has been nothing short of outstanding, finally realizing his talent fully. In 520 plate appearances, Ramos owns a .307/.354/.497 slash with 22 long balls.

That output has Ramos primed to hit the open market with a chance to take his pick from a wide variety of suitors. MLBTR’s Tim Dierkes recently ranked him fifth in earning power among pending free agents, with Ramos standing out as the top catcher available.

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Rubby De La Rosa To Undergo Stem Cell Treatment In Bid To Avoid Tommy John

2016-09-27T01:27:00+00:00

Diamondbacks righty Rubby De La Rosa will receive a stem cell injection tomorrow, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports on Twitter. The hope is that the treatment will allow him to stave off what would be a second Tommy John procedure. De La Rosa’s rehab has been something of a rollercoaster: he was able to…

Diamondbacks righty Rubby De La Rosa will receive a stem cell injection tomorrow, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports on Twitter. The hope is that the treatment will allow him to stave off what would be a second Tommy John procedure.

De La Rosa’s rehab has been something of a rollercoaster: he was able to return briefly, then seemed destined to be shut down, and then seemed like he might be headed back to the major league mound by the end of the season. Now, the situation seems a fair bit more dire than had previously been suggested.

Stem cell and other alternatives to surgery have increasingly been utilized by pitchers hoping to reinforce, rather than replace, their ulnar collateral ligaments. The risk of a TJ procedure failing to produce the desired results is heightened significantly in the case of a second trip under the knife, so the stakes are high in De La Rosa’s case.

Given the timing, a TJ procedure in the near-term would clearly keep De La Rosa out for all of 2017. Second-time UCL replacement recipients tend to take longer to make it all the way back, though he’d at least be reasonably likely to make it back for ’18.

De La Rosa is due a raise — though it won’t be a large one — on his $2.35MM arbitration salary. He’s set for free agency before the start of the 2019 campaign, so the next two campaigns are the final ones of team control for Arizona.

All said, then, there’s a lot riding on De La Rosa’s ability to return. Over his 50 2/3 innings this year, he worked to a useful 4.26 ERA and also showed quite a bit of promise with a rising 9.6 K/9. That makes De La Rosa a critical part of the D-Backs’ rotation picture.

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Yankees Outright J.R. Graham

2016-09-26T23:49:00+00:00

The Yankees announced this afternoon that they’ve outrighted reliever J.R. Graham to Triple-A, thus removing the 26-year-old right-hander from the 40-man roster. New York claimed Graham off waivers from the Twins earlier this year after Minnesota designated the 2014 Rule 5 Draft pick for assignment. Graham stuck in the Twins’ bullpen all throughout the 2015…

The Yankees announced this afternoon that they’ve outrighted reliever J.R. Graham to Triple-A, thus removing the 26-year-old right-hander from the 40-man roster.

New York claimed Graham off waivers from the Twins earlier this year after Minnesota designated the 2014 Rule 5 Draft pick for assignment. Graham stuck in the Twins’ bullpen all throughout the 2015 campaign, with manager Paul Molitor typically reserving him for low-leverage situations. Graham wound up logging 63 2/3 innings of 4.95 ERA ball and averaged 7.5 K/9 against 3.0 BB/9 to go along with a 49 percent ground-ball rate. However, he was also quite homer-prone in his rookie campaign and struggled to strand runners. The former Braves top prospect tossed just 1 2/3 innings in the Majors this season and spent the majority of the year with the Yankees’ Double-A affiliate. All told, he logged a 3.27 ERA with 9.6 K/9 against 3.3 BB/9 in 44 innings across three minor league levels.

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Marlins To Retire #16 In Honor Of Jose Fernandez

2016-09-26T22:21:00+00:00

As baseball mourns the untimely loss of one of its brightest lights, 24-year-old pitcher Jose Fernandez, the Marlins will retire the number 16 in his honor, owner Jeffrey Loria told reporters including Craig Davis of the Sun-Sentinel (Twitter link). That’s certainly just one of the many tributes that will continue to be unveiled over the coming days…

As baseball mourns the untimely loss of one of its brightest lights, 24-year-old pitcher Jose Fernandez, the Marlins will retire the number 16 in his honor, owner Jeffrey Loria told reporters including Craig Davis of the Sun-Sentinel (Twitter link).

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That’s certainly just one of the many tributes that will continue to be unveiled over the coming days and long into the future. The Marlins cancelled yesterday’s scheduled game, and all the team’s players will wear Fernandez’s #16 in tonight’s ballgame at Marlins Park.

Most anyone with even a passing interest in baseball is familiar with Fernandez’s pitching greatness, personal vivacity, and remarkable path to the United States and Major League Baseball. It remains difficult to accept that he is gone.

In trying to come to terms with Fernandez’s death, we would do well to remember how he lived. His joy seemed to outweigh his talent, and that is truly saying something. Many wise and good words have already been written on this somber matter, but I would recommend in particular this touching piece from Dave Cameron of Fangraphs, which well explains why Fernandez’s tragic passing represents such a singular loss.

RIP, Jose.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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Brewers Scooter Gennett: Second Base Help in the Final Week

2016-09-26T21:00:00+00:00

Brewers second baseman Scooter Gennett is driving in a lot of runs over the last two weeks. If you need that kind of production on your team, then add him now. The Milwaukee Brewers offense has been basically average throughout the month of September. The team ranks 15th in runs scored and 14th in RBI. One […]

Brewers Scooter Gennett: Second Base Help in the Final Week - Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks - Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks - Practical and useful fantasy baseball advice and analysis.

Brewers second baseman Scooter Gennett is driving in a lot of runs over the last two weeks. If you need that kind of production on your team, then add him now. The Milwaukee Brewers offense has been basically average throughout the month of September. The team ranks 15th in runs scored and 14th in RBI. One […]

Brewers Scooter Gennett: Second Base Help in the Final Week - Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks - Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks - Practical and useful fantasy baseball advice and analysis.

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