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Houston Asterisks

Hey gang, Dan here, and I’m irritated.

I’m irritated because we have a new season approaching, and it should be a time of joy.

I’m irritated because we should be debating on who the strongest teams in each division are. We should be debating what we wanna do with our first round draft pick. We should be making plans to go to spring training games, and counting down the minutes until Opening day.

But alas, we’re not. All we are doing is talking about the trash (can banging) Houston Astros and their scandal that is destroying baseball.

We can’t go more than five minutes without some new beat reporter publishing new facts that make this story worse. Every day, more and more players speak out, and more and more videos and memes are posted on Facebook and Twitter about how fun it’s going to be to drill Astros players this year. Baseball is under siege right now.

Make no mistake, I’m just as angry as everyone else. I am firmly in the camp of trying to do my best Emperor Palpatine impression when it comes to these cheaters. “Wipe them out. All of them”.

But while anger at the Astros themselves is understandable and justified, they should not be the main target of our wrath. The person you should be mad at is MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred.

Rob Manfred has failed his sport, and failed the fans. The slaps on the wrist of the Houston Astros are ineffectual and weak, at best.

The biggest problem that people have is the immunity granting for the players involved. Basically, if they told MLB investigators the truth, they would be let off without any punishment for their involvement. That, is insane.

There’s plenty of former Astros who have left that team that would’ve been more than happy to roll over on them. Talk to Mike Fiers, talk to Gerrit Cole, talk to Charlie Morton. Countless others. Granting these players a free pass for their cooperation was a HUGE misstep in judgement. I wish the police treated us that way when we committed a crime. “Tell us what happened, and you’re free to go”.

The issue is you have this raw anger from those who were cheated, that can never be squashed. The Dodgers, Yankees, Athletics, Rays, Red Sox, countless others were beaten by the Astros in games they cheated. Taking away chances at World Series championships, MVP Awards, CY Youngs, Silver Sluggers, the list goes on and on. You’re taking money, and fame, and pieces of these players legacy away from them. Rob Manfred FAILED all of us.

Just for fun, I came up with the list of punishments that I would’ve given the Astros, had I been the Commissioner at the time.

-$100 million dollar fine for the organization.

-Automatic forfeiture of the 2017 World Series Championship and the 2017 AL West Championship. This includes trophies, rings, any gear or memorabilia and any mention of them winning, all gone. I would NOT award the World Series to the Dodgers. That just gets messsy.

-162 game suspensions for any player found to benefit from the cheating system. The Astros wouldn’t be able to field a full team, but hey we’re always complaining the Minor Leaguers don’t get a shot as much as they should, right? The Astros AAA players would get free tickets to the majors. See, I’m helping.

-Automatic forfeiture of any personal awards won during that time. This includes Altuve’s 2017 MVP.

– A postseason ban for three years.

– A ban from television in the Houston market, and the Houston market’s surrounding territories for one year. No games on TV whatsoever. The Astros organization would compensate the TV providers on their lost revenue.

-And the big one, automatic bans on Hall of Fame eligibility for anyone involved.

Is it harsh? Absoultely. But strong misbehavior requires a strong response. The message needed to be sent that this would NEVER be tolerated again. Baseball failed miserably in sending that message. And we’re all suffering for it.

This is going to be the last time I speak on this. I want to move forward with preparing for what should be an exciting Rays season, and hopefully we can all start to put this scandal behind us. But I felt really strongly about this, and felt like I needed to dust off thefoulline.com’s keyboard and get my thoughts out there with the first post of the new decade.

Let’s finally start to focus on real baseball again. Not Asterisks.

Defend The Title, Week Three

We’re going to have a quick post this week, as the evening baseball games are nearly starting and I have to hurry and watch Yu Darvish get blasted. I can’t wait, I’m so excited!

Week Three Power Rankings

1)Yankeehaters– Being the only undefeated team left standing, and an offense tearing the cover off the ball, the Yankeehaters are certainly deserving of the #1 spot. But I still feel like he’s gonna need better pitching down the road when the competition he faces stiffens up a bit.

2) Love Boat Captains– Took a horrific loss on Sunday Night Baseball and is no longer undefeated, but this team is very very dangerous. Jose Altuve is all the way back, Luis Castillo looks like he’s breaking out, and German Marquez is a sneaky CY Young contender. My only concern with this team is there’s no way Cody Bellinger is this good, right? He can magically crush lefties now?

3) Rays Those Cowbells– This team is still finding itself. Max Scherzer, Chris Sale and Trevor Bauer just aren’t clicking together right now, but I still believe they’ll give me the best pitching staff in the league. I need Joey Votto to step up, and Justin Turner starting to hit will begin to bring this offense together. There’s a much higher ceiling than this team has shown.

4) sportsmanMike– Fun fact, Jose Ramirez has been boarderline the worst hitter in baseball through two weeks. There’s no way that will continue, and when he gets going he’ll make for a nice superstar to mesh with his elite DeGrom/Snell tandem.

5) Stogies– This team could be pretty good. Clayton Kershaw returns tonight, and Vlad Jr won’t be far behind him. Add in Giancarlo Stanton and Francisco Lindor returning from the DL in the near future, and you’ve got serious reinforcements coming. I still think he needs one more good pitcher to be a real contender.

6) RedRays– This offense is good. Like, beer league softball good. But looking at this pitching staff would make me sad if I ran this team. If this squad can put together a trade for a good pitcher, there could really be something here.

7) Believe The Hype– Allan got a HUGE win to avoid falling into the dreaded 0-3 hole and looked damn good doing it. Could this be the start of some positive momentum? He still needs to find a first baseman.

8) The October Boys– At what point do we start to just accept a sad reality that maybe Kris Bryant just isn’t that good? We keep waiting, and he just will not return to that elite level. Dennis could sure use his production to make some waves this year, as h es by far the lowest scoring team through three weeks.

9) WillisBeTheYear– Just had an absolutely horrific week pitching wise. It was REALLY bad. Losing Severino for a lengthy period is gonna hurt, he was counting on him to be the ace this team needed. But you know Willis will figure something out, he always does.

10) Lou Brown– Not as bad as the record. There’s talent here, and he’s had the misfortune of having the most points against so far. I wouldn’t be surprised if this team enters the win column this week.

Game of the Week

Love Boat Captains vs Yankeehaters

Battle of the spouses and division leaders. Fun prediction, the last undefeated team falls this week.

Good luck to everyone in Week Three!



Defend The Title, Week One

I had it all figured out.

As I said in my last post, I was hell bent on building dominating pitching this year. I was going to draft ace after ace, and watch them strike hitters out and pile up the wins. Every owner in the league was going to count down my PSR’s like every single one of them was a nuclear bomb waiting to go off and drop 30+ points of mayhem and carnage. It was the perfect plan.

Until it wasn’t.

Let’s go ahead and get to some rankings before another Rays Those Cowbells pitcher walks in a run shall we?

Week One Power Rankings

1) WillisBeTheYear– The big bats carried the load for our highest scoring team of week one, as Paul Goldschmidt, Javy Baez and JD Martinez combined for 80 points and mashed 8 HRs between them. That kind of production will be par the course for this elite trio, but it was the surprise elite pitching of guys like Kyle Freeland and Brad Keller that really brought this performance all together. If one these mid-rotation guys can develop into a legit ace, this might be the team to beat.

2) RedRays– Just an absolutely BRUTAL loss. Anytime you score the second most points in a week and lose, it’s a devastating blow that can leave you reeling for a few weeks. He shouldn’t feel too badly though, Christian Yelich at #8 might end up being the steal of the draft, and his OF is easily the deepest and best in the entire league. It’ll carry him to quite a few victories this year.

3) sportsmanMike– A really impressive showing for the CBS draft recaps pick to win the championship, as he put up 200 points and dominated in a game where Andrew Bennintendi, Jose Ramirez and Blake Snell combined for like 9 points. You know those guys are going to be MUCH better going forward. But Mike, I love you, but for gods sake you gotta address your first base position. Sooner than later.

4) Love Boat Captains– A typical LBC performance, led by elite hitting. Cody Bellinger was the player of the week and if he gets back to rookie form, getting him in round 6 is going to be grand larceny. Speaking of draft steals, how did we all let Trea Turner fall to 30th overall? He’s going to have a prime Carl Crawford type season. I fully expect Ginger to rise up the rankings in the coming weeks, this is a really good team.

5) Yankeehaters– I’m not going to spend a whole lot of time on Dave’s week one. His team didn’t play well and is much better than it showed and will obviously improve going forward, but the bottom line is, if his opponent set his lineup, he probably would’ve lost.

6) The October Boys– Got a solid start from Jake Arrieta and snuck by Allan at the last possible breath of Sunday Night Baseball. A one-two punch of Corey Kluber and Noah Syndergaard could be quite dangerous, and Aaron Judge will mash with the best of them. But per usual, this team still has too many Yankees on it.

7) Lou Brown– I like this team. Any lineup with Rizzo, Merrifield, Mookie and Tommy Pham is going to put up points, and Gerrit Cole is as good as anybody. Add in the best team name in our league, and you have a solid recipe for a good season.

8) Believe The Hype– The bats were BAD for Allan in week one, as this was the only team that didn’t hit a single home run. Things can’t be this bad going forward, but first base could become an issue as Miguel Cabrera looks like he’s 50 years old and is surrounded by an absolutely horrific Tigers lineup.

9) Rays Those Cowbells– Simply put, this was bad. Some hitters I was really banking on for great seasons did nothing, and most of the elite pitching I drafted got utterly pounded. Still, I’d hate to overreact. There’s simply no way that Chris Sale and Yu Darvish can be that bad going forward, right?

10) Stogies– I was going to put myself last in the power rankings, I deserve it. But when you lose by 15 points and start players on the DL and pitchers who didn’t have a start scheduled, you deserve the 10th spot just on principle. Gotta do better going forward.

Game of the Week

Love Boat Captains vs RedRays

The RedRays are off to a solid start tonight in trying to bounce back from a tough loss.

Thanks for reading, good luck in Week two!


Ace In The Hole

Playing in thefoulline.com fantasy baseball league for as long as I have, I’ve obviously been able to pick up on some owner trends over the years and how they approach their draft.

Ginger will load up on elite bats in the early rounds and hope to grab a few diamond in the rough pitchers later. Dave will mostly emulate the same plan, Allan will use the exact opposite of whatever strategy he used the year prior, and Dennis will load up on every single Yankees player he can get his hands on. Everyone has their tendencies and most tend to stick to them.

You might have to ask Dave or Allan what the book is on me, but I definitely had a plan heading into this season. It took me 25 minutes or so to formulate my entire draft strategy for the 2019 season. I was getting elite pitching, and then I was going to draft more elite pitching. Then when that was done, I might take an elite pitcher or two.

In my opinion, the opener is going to take over Major League Baseball, and the days of the 200 inning workhorse are numbered. The truly elite aces are going to separate themselves from the rest of the pack, and having those dominate pitchers are going to be the difference between winning and losing. I was locked and loaded on my plan, and wasn’t going to deviate from it no matter what.

So naturally, I drafted Max Scherzer and Chris Sale in the first two rounds, and both of them lost on Opening Day. So much for the best laid plans right?

Opening Day quick hits:

-This was the best draft we ever had. Everyone had a plan and seemed to be happy with their picks, and unlike previous years, it didn’t seem to just drag on for all eternity.

-I was stunned that I seemed to be the only person prioritizing pitching, as only two pitchers went in the first 15 picks. I thought as many as 10 pitchers could’ve gone in the first two rounds.

-My desire for Max Scherzer was the worst kept secret of the draft, and Dylan changing his team name to “Max Headroom” before the draft only to take Mookie Betts was a master class in trolling.

-I hate to say it, but I’m starting to get this nagging feeling that Francisco Lindor might end up being the bust of the year.

-The RedRays have EASILY the best OF in the league. Yelich, Springer and Acuna? Yeesh.

-I absolutely LOVED the Yankeehaters first four picks.

-I said Javier Baez would be the bust of the year. He proceeded to mash two dongs today.

-Mike is starting Jurickson Profar at first base. That makes me sad.

-Jameson Taillon in round 11 by team Stogies might’ve been the steal of the draft.

-Or was it Corey Seager by Rays Those Cowbells in the same round?

-Maybe I’m crazy, but is first base the weakest position in fantasy this year? Try to convince me otherwise.

-The Chris Archer trade is the gift that keeps on giving.

-Apparently Dave was mildly upset that I picked Zack Wheeler in round six. I was really sorry to hear that.

-Allan needs an intervention for his Carlos Correa love. And it’s not really doing you any good.

-I heard a rumor that Ginger was absolutely sick about selecting Stephen Strasburg and regretted it almost immediately. My respect for her grows even more.

-Dylan drafted Tommy Pham. If he had followed through on taking Max Scherzer, he might’ve been my mortal enemy this year.

-Speaking of Dylan, I absolutely LOVE the name “Lou Brown”. Simple, yet outstanding. In a league where nobody else changes their team name, Dylan keeps it fresh year after year and I can respect that.

-Andrew McCutchen was one of my favorite players to draft this year. He’ll score 130 runs atop that Phillies juggernaut.

-Dennis taking Kris Bryant in round five is going to end up being a sensational pick.

-I took him about 50 picks before his ADP, but I absolutely had to have Yu Darvish this year. He’s throwing 97 MPH in spring training and plays for an elite team.

-How did Willis get JD Martinez with the ninth overall pick?

-This may be hyperbole a bit….. but I think Luke Voit could hit 40 home runs.

-I think I had the best draft I’ve ever had…. by far.

-And looking at the matchups…. I think I may start 0-2.

So who wants to make a trade?

Thanks for reading, and good luck in Week one!


The Champion of Ignorance

Hey gang, happy Spring Training!

If you hadn’t heard, and I seriously doubt it if you know me at all, I won my second fantasy baseball championship last season over a determined sportsmanMike squad. It was a wonderful season that ended in a wonderful result for me personally.

Unfortunately, that was about the only thing I got right in 2018. I made bad trade after trade, I played terribly, I made stupid drops, and it was only through pure luck that I manged to blindly flail my way into a title. But I know nobody wants to hear about the “poor little champion who thinks last year wasn’t up to his standards”. That’s arrogant, obnoxious and downright douchey. The real reason I’m writing this post is the biggest regret I have of last season, my horrible treatment of my beloved Tampa Bay Rays.

Last April, after a terrible start to the season, I wrote a downright scathing article on the Rays titled “Ray of Nope”. In said article, I destroyed my team, calling them a “disgrace” and “unwatchable”. I tried to tell you they had no young stars, no good players,and nobody had a jersey worth buying. I said they had no direction for the future, and specifically, I targeted CJ Cron, for some reason choosing to unleash my wrath on him in particular.

Well to recap:

-Blake Snell won the CY Young award and had the lowest AL ERA in nearly 20 years. I went out and purchased his jersey. “No young stars, no jerseys worth buying”

-The Rays traded for Tommy Pham and signed Charlie Morton for $30 plus million dollars. “No commitment to short term winning”

-The Rays dumped sorry Chris Archer on the Pirates for three elite young players, and now have a consensus top three farm system in the game. “No direction for the future”

-The “disgraceful and unwatchable” Rays went on to win 90 games in a division with two 100 plus win juggernauts, and have developed into one of the most interesting MLB teams to watch heading into 2019.

-And just for fun, CJ Cron hit 30+ home runs and became our most consistent hitter.

I’m not proud of the things I wrote, and it just piled onto a horrific 2018 where I threw out bad take after bad take. For somebody who loves and cherishes baseball, and takes great pride in his knowledge of the game, it was a very humbling experience.

This is “Dan The #1 Rays Fan’s” public apology letter to the Tampa Bay Rays. I promise to be more patient in the future. I’ll love you always and forever.

Dan’s Spring Quick Hits

-Year after year the pre-draft rumblings are the person with the #1 overall pick is leaning toward not taking Mike Trout.

-Year after year it continues to baffle me.

-I had a blast at a spring training game yesterday with most of thefoulline.com crew, and it was nice to finally meet Dylan and Trent after all these years. Everyone has crazy baseball knowledge, and getting together and talking about the game in the sunshine is rapidly becoming one of my favorite activities.

-I badly badly badly want Max Scherzer with the #4 overall pick.

-I don’t think Willis fully grasps how badly he’s owned me over the last few years. Nine straight wins at one point! Maybe he’s just too humble to rub it in. He’s a great dude and an even better fantasy baseball player.

-Dylan made a point of letting me know some of my trade offers are “bogus” and was quickly backed up by other league members. One of my biggest goals in 2019 is to change my apparent reputation around the league.

-Every single player in the league seems to have a different take on the state of certain positions, what’s deep and what’s not. This year is going to be fascinating.

-Charlotte Sports Park has the second best cheesesteak I’ve ever eaten.

-After getting nine beers handed to him from Dave, we had to pull over on the side of the highway so Allan could go to the bathroom on the way home.

-I totally support the “Lugo” and the “Drew” division this season. Two legends of thefoulline.com who will live forever.

-Draft day is my favorite day of the year, always. I can’t wait for Sunday.



The Days Of Summer, Week Eight

In the few weeks since the last fantasy baseball review, quite a bit has happened. The Yankeehaters finally lost, the bottom has completely fallen out on team Believe The Hype, and a three team race for the Fried Chicken Division is officially underway.

One thing I’ve noticed is the inconsistency the 2018 season seems to bring. One week, every hitter in the league is on fire and multiple teams crack 300 points. The next week, nobody can buy a hit and teams struggle to score all week long. It’s making team evaluations and trades impossible, as week to week you don’t know what you have and you never know if your team is going to show up.

Even though I’m sure things will be flipped upside down next week, let’s get to some power rankings!

 

Week Eight Power Rankings

1) Yankeehaters– A 7-0 record is over, but it was still the most impressive start in the history of our league. Dave’s elite players have carried this team, as Manny Machado, Bryce Harper, Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander have been among the absolute best at their positions. Any day now you have to wait for the famous “Dave trade” where he flips Jose Quintana and Nomar Mazara for one of the best players in fantasy baseball and further locks up his position on the #1 spot in the power rankings.

2) The October Boys– It’s been a strange season for Dennis, who finds himself at 6-2 and in first place despite being one of the lowest scoring teams in the league. Per usual, he’s got a whole lot of Yankees on his team, but this season, the Yankees are among the best teams in baseball, so by extension, so is team October Boys. As long as the Yankees continue to play well, you have to assume that this team will be near the top of the power rankings all season long.

3) Rays Those Cowbells– It’s fairly annoying that I’ve been playing fantasy baseball for a decade now, and I still make the same stupid, idiotic lineup decisions that I was making as a rookie. But I have finally learned my lesson. Mark down this date, for I have learned! Never again will I start mediocre bum pitchers purely for the sake of having enough “PSRs”. Always start your best team. Period. No excuses. It directly cost me a win this week. It will never happen again.

4) Beni and the Betts– I’ll probably end up saying this all year long, but how on gods green earth did Mookie Betts last until the 14th overall pick? I just want it on record that I was saying the entire time that Mookie was falling too far in the draft, and I begged Dave to take him at 1oth overall instead of Bryce Harper. He didn’t listen, and the rest of the leagues loss is Dylan’s gain. Good for him! Dylan is going to contend all year, and Mookie Betts is going to be a big reason why. One of the biggest second round steals in the history of our league.

5) Love Boat Captains– A four game winning streak follows up a 1-3 start, and Ginger has jumped back into contention. Better things may still be on the way, as returns of Robbie Ray and Johnny Cueto would do this team good and give it the pitching boost it needs to secure it’s status as a playoff contender.  Whit Merrifield is one of my favorite players in the league.

6) sportsmanMike– Write this down, this team is going to be a contender. One of the higher scorers in the league, Mike has taken some really tough luck losses this season. If deGrom can stay healthy, and when Paul Goldschmidt gets going, this team is going to be a force that nobody in the league will want to play.

7) WillisBeTheYear– This team has a roster that isn’t playing up to it’s talent level, and it’s hard to figure out why. He’s got a good, balanced lineup, and a solid pitching staff led by some really good veterans. I still think this team is going to get it going at some point.

8) RedRays– Lost in a game where his opponent put up 220 points, ouch. Having Clayton Kershaw on the DL certainly doesn’t help, but this just doesn’t look like a very good roster this year.

9) Stogies– Had a great week and blasted his opponent. This roster is underrated, he has some really good under the radar elite hitters like Michael Brantley and Odubel Herrera. And pitching staff with Corey Kluber and Noah Syndergaard on it is going to be a threat to win every week. I like this team to improve and win more games going forward.

10) Believe The Hype– Allan’s steadfast refusal to trade for any good pitching has led to his downfall. This could’ve been avoided.

 

Game of the Week

Rays Those Cowbells vs The October Boys

First place in the Fried Chicken division is on the line.

 

Good luck to everyone in Week Nine!

 

The Days Of Summer, Week Four

Now that’s more like it.

After weeks of low scoring, boring games, week four saw an uptick in the action. Six of the ten teams topped 275 points, and two teams cracked the 385 points barrier. It wasn’t just the scoring that picked up either, as the RedRays and WillisBeTheYear engaged in a roster shattering, six player blockbuster trade involving five players picked in the first three rounds.

Elsewhere around the league, Allan and Ginger both took heartbreaking losses, Dave reached the 4-0 mark, and Dan and Mike had an all out war for the top scorer of the week award. Hitting is slowly starting to pick up around the league, but still, 14 of the 30 MLB teams are still hitting below the .240 mark. Maybe this is the new norm in baseball now and in the future?

Let’s get to some power rankings.

 

Week Four Power Rankings

1) Yankeehaters– I was skeptical at first, but Gerrit Cole certainly seems to be for real. He forms a dynamic duo with Justin Verlander at the top of his rotation, and Harper and Machado have been the best at their positions so far in 2018. Do I believe Dave has the best team? I do not, but regardless, 4-0 is 4-0 and he deserves to be at the top of the power rankings for now. I don’t have the heart to tell Dave that he hasn’t reached the 300 point barrier yet, and he has the lowest point total against him so far this season.

2) Rays Those Cowbells– Still not good enough. Even putting up the season’s highest point total at 386 points still isn’t enough for me, because it was carried by my elite pitching staff, and I still feel like this team hasn’t put together a complete performance. Willson Contreras and Miguel Cabrera can’t find their power stroke, and Francisco Lindor, Matt Carpenter and Michael Conforto can’t hit their way out of a paper bag right now. I’m still interested in making a deal to improve my offense, but everyone seems to be content to hold tight for now. Still, I like where things are at right now. My plan to build around elite pitching is working.

3) The October Boys– A strong start to the season continues for team Dennis. Aaron Judge is proving last year was no fluke, decreasing his strikeouts, increasing his walks, and becoming a better overall hitter in the process. Max Scherzer is fighting for the crown of best pitcher in baseball, and the Blake Snell breakout train seems to be full systems go. After a few disappointing seasons, Dennis is on the attack in 2018.

4) sportsmanMike– Put up 385 points, leads the league in scoring, and just made a great trade picking up Rays Those Cowbells favorite Ozzie Albies to fill a big hole in his infield. Patrick Corbin is the new Clayton Kershaw, and Jose Ramirez has fourteen walks and only five strikeouts all year long. Has anyone realized that Mike has the entire Arizona Diamondbacks team? Paul Goldschmidt, AJ Pollock, Zack Greinke and Patrick Corbin. Good thing for Mike that Arizona is having a good season huh? This is easily a contender for best roster in the league. Mike is dangerous once again this year.

5) Beni and the Betts– Mookie Betts is absolutely amazing. The fact that we can even start comparing him to Mike Trout speaks to how far he’s come. He’s easily a top three outfielder in fanasy baseball. It was a tough week for Dylan, who fell short in his showdown with Dave. But help is on the way. Josh Donaldson and Xander Bogaerts should be returning in short order. Sean Manaea certainly seems to be for real, and should help this pitching staff going forward.

6) RedRays– I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a more jarring shift of mentality in a season before. Decided his roster wasn’t good enough, and blew the entire thing to pieces in one trade. It takes guts, and I applaud him for that. Clayton Kershaw and Carlos Carrasco are two of the best, and will massively improve his pitching staff. But with Arenado and Rizzo gone, does he have enough offense now?

7) WillisBeTheYear– Probably shouldn’t have lost this week, put up 320 points and still got crushed by Rays Those Cowbells. Have you seen his offense? Rizzo, Arenado, Stanton and Martinez, and Daniel Murphy coming back soon. If his pitching staff is filled with a lot of veterans, but if it can hold up and give him quality innings, we might have a league winner here.

8) Stogies– Dug deep down and got a much deserved first victory. May have a 1-3 record, but his point total isn’t too far off the league leaders and this has been of of the more unlucky teams in the league so far in 2018. When is Noah Sydergaard going to make the leap? I keep waiting. He’s good, but he should be setting records. He should be the best pitcher in the league easily. His stuff is the BEST I’ve ever seen in all my years of watching baseball.

9) Love Boat Captains– Game with Dennis could’ve gone either way. Joey Votto is going to breakout offensively soon. He’s WAY too good to be down for long, and when he does it’s going to completely transform this offense. The problem with this team is I’m just not sure the pitching staff is going to be good enough to compete.

10) Believe The Hype– Allan is committed to staying the course. He’s going to keep his elite offense, and try to find pitchers that are good enough. So far, it’s not working. But he thinks I will, and I respect his willingness to stick to his plan. We’ll see how things go over the next few weeks.

 

Game of the Week

Believe The Hype vs WillisBeTheYear

A rematch of last years final, and two desperate 1-3 teams. The loser could be in trouble.

Raining Champion

Rain.

I feel like I could just use that as my intro to the recap, and just move onto some power rankings. It was an absolutely miserable week all across Major League Baseball, continuing a trend of a miserable season. We’ve had 26 rainouts up to this point, the most in baseball in a decade. Hitters all across the league are hitting .241 collectively, the lowest average on April 17th in 27 years. It’s been absolutely awful.

It’s time to get to some power rankings, before they’re rained out.

 

Week Three Power Rankings

1) Yankeehaters– 3-0, top scorer. You mix all that in a big bowl, and the recipe comes out first in the power rankings. Verlander has carried over his Astros brilliance from last year, and for some reason Gerrit Cole is the new Bob Gibson. You know Dave isn’t done making changes, and he’ll do some of his tweaking to bring in more superstars. Expect the Yankeehaters to hang around the top of the power rankings for most of the season.

2) Beni and the Betts– Winners of two straight, and has the only 300 point performance of the season! Dylan has put together a solid start to the year. Have you seen this teams outfield? When Tommy Pham is your third best OF, you’re in a really really good shape. Injuries have left this team’s infield in absolute tatters, and if he could get his players healthy, and find a first baseman and some pitching depth, this team could go places this year.

3) The October Boys– Dennis could’ve had a bigger point total than he had, but rainouts took a lot of his offense down and he only had 140 ABs on the week. Max Scherzer will haunt my dreams forever, putting up a 72 point smackdown that will go into thefoulline.com history books. If Yu Darvish could ever get it going, this could be a dangerous team.

4) Rays Those Cowbells– By far the most perplexing team I’ve ever had. I can’t decide if I love this roster, or wanna blow it to pieces. One day they look amazing and put up a ton of points, and the next my offense is in a coma and goes 2-27 on the day with 16 strikeouts. Still, I have a lot of good pitching to play with and in a season where it’s hard to come by, I shouldn’t have a problem finding the big bat I seek on the trade market.

5) RedRays– A solid team. Once Rizzo comes back healthy, this team will be even better. Stephen Strasburg is a great ace to have on your staff, until he gets injured. But that day isn’t here yet, and Strasburg is doing wonders and carrying this pitching staff. If Arenado could actually learn how to fight, this team could go even further.

6) sportsmanMike– This is a good team. An offense loaded with stars, and a solid good enough pitching staff. Once Corey Seager and Jose Ramirez come out of their offensive slumber, things will get ever better. And just FYI, don’t ask me how I know this, but Mike is looking to make a big splash on the trade market this week. Check your inboxes!

7) WillisBeTheYear– The bad news, he’s lost two straight and sits at 1-2. The good news, he’s facing Rays Those Cowbells! Team RTC is the personal punching bag of team Willis, having won 9 straight against them and 11-3 overall. Expect Willis to get back into the win column this week and move up in the rankings.

8) Love Boat Captains– Injuries are hitting team LBC hard, as the three time champion sits in last place in her division. Nobody on this planet deserves to have to roster Chris Archer. He’s absolutely awful, yet he’s too good to cut. Off the top of my head, he’s one of the most frustrating fantasy players to own I can remember in the last decade.

9) Believe The Hype– He doesn’t want too, but Allan really needs to make a deal for some pitching. I have plenty available and I’m looking for a big bat! We match up. Let’s deal Allan.

10) Stogies– Things aren’t as bad as they seem. He’s run into the top scorer of the week on two different occasions. Expect this team to find the win column shortly. Even as soon as this week.

 

Game of the Week

Beni and the Betts vs Yankeehaters

The top two teams meet yet again. Can Dylan make a big statement win?

 

Good luck to everyone in week four. And please, no more rain!

Ray of Nope

The Tampa Bay Rays are a full on disgrace.

Chances are, you already knew this.

I’ve been a Rays fan for a LONG time. Since the very beginning. I have seen almost everything. I watched the “hit show”. I watched Albie Lopez and Tanyon Sturtze start opening day and pretend to be aces. I watched Josh Hamilton, Bobby Abreu, Trea Turner, Jose Bautista, and countless others be given away by the team, and become superstars and World Series Champions elsewhere. I watched Quinton McCracken, Danny Clyburn, Mike Kelly, Kevin Stocker and Paul Sorrento masquerade as a real major league lineup. I’ve been to Tropicana Field for a noon game on a Monday against the Kansas City Royals, where the announced attendance was 9,687, and I can tell you that there was 200 people in the stands. I have seen absolutely everything that the glory days of the Devil Rays has had to offer.

I can tell you with 100% certainty that this is the worst team in franchise history, and I’m absolutely disgusted with them. They have three starting pitchers, the bullpen is awful, and the lineup can’t hit a lick. Did I leave anything out?

I mean just look at the lineup for gods sake. CJ Cron is hitting 3rd for this team. CJ Freaking Cron. Let’s just go ahead and take a look at the #3 hitters around the AL East.

Giancarlo Stanton

Andrew Benintendi

Adam Jones

Josh Donaldson

CJ Cron

See what I mean?

What exactly are people expecting? Everyday I look at the Rays social media websites, and people are outraged. They’re surprised, they’re upset. It’s astonishing to me that the reactions have come off this way, like they expected this team to make a run at a Wild Card spot. Although judging by the attendance at the Trop over the last 20 years, not a lot of them really care anyway.

The worst part about this team, the fact that separates them from the old Devil Rays teams, is those teams had a future. Those teams had stars. They would lose 100 games, but you could tune in and watch Carl Crawford. You could watch Rocco Baldelli, Scott Kazmir, James Shields, Delmon Young, and other exciting players that you felt really good about. You could watch them lose a game, but know that better days were ahead. The core was in place.

Is there anyone you want to watch on the 2018 Rays? Do you wanna buy anyone’s jersey? Is there ANY player on this roster, that you look at and say to yourself “this kid is gonna be a really good player someday”. I can’t think of a single player I care about on this team.

They don’t call me “The #1 Rays Fan” for no reason. I love this team and have spent countless childhood nights sitting in front of the TV, watching good baseball and bad baseball alike. The Rays are ALWAYS going to be a huge part of my life.

But I can’t honestly tell you the next time I’m going to tune in for a game. I just don’t wanna watch this team. My time is too valuable to spend it watching CJ Cron be the best hitter on the team.

I’ve completely given up on this team. I’ve lost all faith, and it makes me really sad. I still love them, but right now, I just don’t want any part of them.

 

Dan’s Fantasy Quick Hits

-My team has had 368 ABs this season, and my players have 66 hits. That’s a .218 batting average, for anyone keeping track at home.

-Mike Trout is hitting .212. Francisco Lindor is hitting .143.

-My team is 2-0.

-Mike is the fourth highest scoring team in the league.

-His team is 0-2.

-Dave talked about how much he loved Masahiro Tanaka in the preseason.

-Tanaka has started one game for team Yankeehaters.

-Corey Kluber has claimed the title of best pitcher in baseball. Try to find a reason I’m wrong.

-Did Ginger set a lineup this week?

-The state of starting pitching is BAD. If you’ve got good pitching, hang onto it!

-Allan has easily the best OF in the league.

-Yes, I know Willis has Stanton and JD Martinez. I stand by what I said. Hoskins and Ozuna are absolutely mashing, and there’s all kinds of good vibes around the Mets right now. You just get the feeling Cespedes is going to stay healthy.

-The full on fantasy review returns next week.

-Rays Those Cowbells is going to drop some spots in the power rankings with this awful performance.

-How long before Dave trades Manny Machado?

 

Good luck to everyone the rest of the week!

 

 

 

The Days Of Summer, Week One

I guess momentum is real after all.

2018 started the same way 2017 ended, with all four of the playoffs team playing well and racing off to 1-0 starts. The short week and cold weather really hurt starting pitching, as getting six innings from your starting pitcher this weekend was like pulling teeth. As with every week one, you can’t get too excited or too down on your team, because after four games of baseball, you know almost nothing about the season. I don’t think Jose Ramirez is going to go without a hit for much longer, do you?

I have a tee time scheduled for later today, so let’s get going on some power rankings and get this season’s fantasy reviews off with a bang shall we?

 

Week One Power Rankings

1) Believe The Hype– Like almost all of last season, Allan finds himself back on top of the power rankings after having the leading point total for week one. Superstars won the day for Believe The Hype, as Jose Altuve, Freddie Freeman and Carlos Correa all dominated and carried the offense, and young breakout candidate Jose Berrios pitched the gem of the weekend and threw a complete game shutout. Allan looks ready to roll again after finishing in 2nd place last year and looks primed to make another run.

2) WillisBeTheYear– The champ is here! Willis puts up 214 points and his offense rapped out 35 hits. David Price and Shohei Ohtani dominated, and Giancarlo Stanton didn’t wait long to make an impact in his Yankees debut, slamming two home runs. Take a look at this roster, it’s absolutely stacked. Willis wants to go back to back and has firmly established himself as one of the most dominate owners in our league.

3) Yankeehaters– A solid start for Dave, who mixed some duds offensively with some dominating starting pitching from Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole. Bryce Harper hit two jacks on Sunday, and you know as long as he can stay healthy he’s going to be just fine. I didn’t notice until now, but has anyone else realized that Dave drafted the entire Houston Astros starting rotation?

4) RedRays– Hung tough and pulled out a nailbiter against the Love Boat Captains. Alex Wood and Stephen Strasburg (barf) were the standouts for this squad, and when I look up and down this roster I see a really solid mix of youth and veterans. The last few seasons team RedRays has kind of just hung around the middle pack, not being awful and not truly challenging for a playoff spot. This year could be much different. He had a really nice draft and this is a team I’ll be keeping my eye on.

5) Rays Those Cowbells– Eh. Not the greatest week one, but my team hung in there and found a way to win. My pitchers all pitched well but weren’t allowed to go very deep into games. I’m 79% sure that Gabe Kapler may become my new mortal enemy with the way he handles Aaron Nola. I accomplished my mission to improve my OF, picking up Jose Martinez off the waiver wire and bringing in Rays Those Cowbells fan favorite Michael Conforto in a deal with Mike. Things will improve from here.

6) Stogies– This sucked. Dave V put up one of the highest point totals of the week and still lost. This is a squad that doesn’t deserve to be 0-1 and a lot of good things are gonna happen for this squad going forward. I know I sure wish I’d drafted Noah Sydergaard. He looked absolutely electric in week one.

7) Love Boat Captains– Lost a heartbreaker to the RedRays that could’ve went either way. You know Ginger is gonna be fine, she always is.  Luis Castillo is much much better than he pitched this weekend is gonna help this team win games.

8) Beni and the Betts– Team leader Andrew Benintendi went 0-11 and didn’t record a hit in week one. Not the best omen to start the season for Dylan. There’s still a lot of players I like on this offense. Tommy Pham is going to be a star.

9) sportsmanMike– Paul Goldschmidt, Jose Ramirez and Corey Seager combined for five points. Five. Add in the fact that Mike swung a deal for a really good young pitcher over the weekend, and this team is going to be just fine. He won’t be down here very long.

10) The October Boys– With the exception of Max Scherzer, this teams pitching was absolutely awful in week one. Please please please stop drafting all Yankees players. It’s a strategy that just isn’t working for you.

 

Game of the Week

Yankeehaters vs Believe The Hype

A grudge match between two bitter rivals and 1-0 teams.

 

Good luck to everyone in week two!