When I was fresh out of college, I worked at a web company (everyone did in the 90s). There was four of us. The other three had real job titles; I was the gofer/do-whatever. It was about a month before I was going back to school for my Master’s. I had no intention of keeping the job. Honestly, I doubt they would’ve kept me for that full month if I weren’t leaving. I failed at everything they assigned me, but they kept giving me new tasks, hoping I’d succeed. The only task I seemed capable of was heating up pre-cooked sausages from Trader Joe’s. I made sausages on a grill for three weeks straight, so, when I finally did leave, they gave me a plaque that reads, “Who wants some sausages?” This brings me to the sudden and incomprehensible rise of Yulieski Gurriel. The Astros are that company, and YuGu is me. The Astros seem between a rock of “We want this guy to succeed” and “We have about a month left, and we’re just hoping something works.” Yulieski hasn’t failed in the minors; he’s looked completely lost. He hit .118 in Double-A, was promoted to Triple-A and hit .222. I could see grabbing Gurriel in all leagues to see if he can get lucky, and figure out how to make something other than pre-cooked sausages for lunch, but the Astros are not promoting him because of how well he’s looked. They’re promoting him because there’s about a month left. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:
Dallas Keuchel – 8 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 7 Ks, ERA at 4.64. Has been terrible all year, goes into one of the worst parks, against one of the best offenses and looks good. Ah, baseball, you ulcer-inducing, bastard.
Mark Trumbo – 1-for-3 and his 37th homer. Speaking of ulcers.
Jonathan Schoop – 1-for-4 and his 19th homer, hitting .284 and hitting near-.350 in the last week, as he now bats fifth. He has over hundred at-bats in three different spots in the order and has hit in every lineup slot except leadoff and cleanup. I guess Showalter lost the leadoff and cleanup darts.
Carlos Gomez – Signed a deal with the Rangers, will join the team on Thursday and be their everyday left fielder. “Oh, thank God, I’m out of Houston. What a terrible–Great, I’m still in Texas.” That’s my thoughts if I were Carlos Gomez, and if my thoughts took two weeks to form. Rangers aren’t getting much out of Profar, DeShields (1-for-3, 2 RBIs and his 4th homer), Mazara, Stubbs (1-for-2 and his 3rd homer), Rua–Jesus, when did they get so many outfielders? Any hoo! They’re not getting much from those guys, but just because the Rangers are desperate enough for Gomez, doesn’t mean I would be in most fantasy leagues.
Logan Forsythe – 1-for-5, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and his 16th homer, hitting .279. Talk about picking up right where you left off. Okay, I wasn’t talking about that, but I will now. Logan has six homers in the last ten games and has one homer in each of his last three games. Though, he did miss about a week between his last game and yesterday, due to back spasms. That gives me an idea! Start a service that text messages spa customers about deals and call the service, SpaSMS, and Text Massages. I have no time; someone else should run with this idea.
Steven Souza – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 13th homer, and 2nd homer in three games. Souza could be a rising schmotato in the brass section.
Aaron Sanchez – Optioned to the minors. Not as a “You stink,” designation, but more as a “Your arm will fall off soon” designation. Jays said they will recall Sanchez as they move to a six-man rotation in September, adding “assuming Sanchez’s shoulder is still rotating after all the innings we’re throwing him.”
Marcus Stroman – 7 1/3 IP, 1 ER, 8 baserunners, 9 Ks, ERA at 4.47. All the problems I had with Stroman in the 1st half of the year, he’s corrected. Okay, the one big problem I had was: he was not good. In the 1st half, he had 83 Ks in 116 IP. Bleh. In the 2nd half, he has 52 Ks in only 45 IP. Well, hello there. Even the Stream-o-Nator agrees he has a solid next matchup. In conclusion, yes, please and thank you.
Melvin Upton – 1-for-4 and his 19th homer, and 2nd homer in as many games hitting .248. Hasn’t been a great 2nd half for Melvin, but overall a fine year from him, i.e., Melvin 2016, some sweet notes, not much depth, and sours after being exposed to air for three months.
Cody Allen – 1 IP, 0 ER, and his 24th save, after throwing two walks and thirty pitches, looking shakier than Michael J. Fox. Why Allen and not Miller? Because Terry Francona wants to make fetch happen.
Corey Kluber – 6 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 10 baserunners (4 BBs), 8 Ks, ERA at 3.13. “We never got to talk about your relationship with your father because you spent our entire 55-minute session talking about how you dropped Kluber in April.”
Jose Ramirez – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 10th homer, hitting .310, as he bats cleanup and Carlos Santana (2-for-4, 1 run, hitting .244) hits leadoff. I’m convinced that the Indians’ offense is doing well in spite of Francona. There’s nothing you can say to persuade me otherwise.
A.J. Ramos – 1 IP, 0 ER as he was activated from the DL. He returned from a fractured finger quicker than Rich Hill returned from a rotund blister. For now, Fernando Rodney will continue to get saves, but that could change at a moment's notice.
Giancarlo Stanton – Says he plans to return this season from his groin strain. Giancarlo, if I said you didn’t need to rush your groin, would you hold it against me?
Jung Ho Kang – Hit the DL with a shoulder injury. That’s karma for trying to turn a double into a homer.
Tyler Glasnow – Resuming his rehab assignment. He’s had a shoulder injury and a setback. My math says he’s one more setback from needing shoulder surgery or trading sex for a full tank of gas so he can get to a music festival. My math may be a little off.
Josh Bell – 1-for-3, 1 RBI as he was recalled. On one hand, it’s absurd if he suddenly becomes the Pirates’ 1st baseman, when he could’ve been for the last two months. On the other hand, it’s absurd if he’s called up and doesn’t play every game. On a third hand, that is an oven mitt on a ketchup bottle, Clint Hurdle. I grabbed Bell in one league, hoping he plays.
Ryan Vogelsong – 6 IP, 1 ER, 5 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 2.98. Here’s the image that comes to mind for Vogelsong. A peg boy sits uncomfortably on a Pirate ship and asks what the other Pirates are singing, and he’s told, “It’s the Ballad of the Currently-Good Streamer, it’s called Vogelsong.”
Enrique Burgos – Looks to have moved into the lead for the Diamondbacks’ closer job. As I speculated here last week, then confirmed by Dan Pants this weekend, then reaffirmed today, then, later in the week, I’ll be once again talking about how I wish I never grabbed Burgos.
Travis Jankowski – 1-for-5, 2 RBIs and his 2nd homer. Do you also sing Travis Jankowski instead of Marshall Mathers in every Eminem song? Hmm, maybe it’s just me. If you’re wondering about Jankowski, you haven’t been reading what I’ve been saying for the last two weeks.
Patrick Kivlehan – 2-for-2, 3 runs, 1 RBI and a homer on Saturday as he was called up. There’s a legit chance that Kivlehan is not a player, but just some Scrabble letters fell out of the bag onto the Padres’ lineup card. Kivlehan was designated for assignment twice this season by two different teams, but the Padres are like that friend of yours that will sleep with anyone. Maybe Kivlehan is a schmotato, but there’s not a ton here.
Steve Cishek – 1/3 IP, 0 ER as he was activated from the DL, but he got Wally Pipp’d by Edwin Diaz, and it looks like Cishek will only act as a setup band…fan…man! Setup man! Sorry, I was playing charades.
James Paxton – Expects to return on Thursday. Also, on Thursday, I have a Genius Bar appointment to find out why my autocorrect changed ‘ridiculous’ to ‘get rid of Cougs.’ What is my iPhone trying to tell me?
Leonys Martin – 2-for-4, 2 runs and a home run on Saturday. Now has an eight-game hitting streak. Watch out, DiMaggio! Dot dot dot. No, but is obviously heating up.
Junior Guerra – Will throw a simulated game today. The kids call that an RPG.
Keon Broxton – 2-for-5 and his 5th and 6th homers, and has three homers in the past three games. I keep telling you to pick him up for steals; he’s telling you there are other reasons.
Vince Velasquez – 6 IP, 5 ER, ERA up to 4.31. The way the Phils’ coaches are treating Velasquez reminds me of the way another resident of Philly treated someone he was coaching. That ended with a dead Apollo Creed.
Mike Leake – 7 IP, 0 ER, 8 baserunners, 8 Ks, ERA at 4.56. Elias Sports Bureau said Mike Leake is the name most likely to be used by Bart Simpson when calling Mo’s. Leake’s next start looks tasty (vs. OAK), and I could see grabbing him.
Brandon Moss – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs with his 23rd homer, hitting .262. This is from Keith Law last year after Moss was traded to the Cards for Rob Kaminsky, “Seems like a significant overpayment for a player (Moss) who doesn’t materially change (the Cards’) chances of winning the division or making the playoffs and could easily be omitted from the postseason roster in October. The 2013 version of Moss appears to be a fluke in hindsight.” I’d quote more, but it’s behind a paywall. That’s exactly the kind of crack reporting you should paying for. Currently, Kaminsky has a 6.3 K/9 in Double-A and Moss is leading the Cards in power. There should be a trigger warning in front of all Keith Law articles that says, “If you stumble on this article in the future, when there’s more time to realize how completely off I was, then I’m sorry I’m infuriating you.”
Jedd Gyorko – 2-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 20th homer, in only 272 at-bats. Unless you counted the first 1,500 at-bats of his career when I was hoping he would break out.
Stephen Piscotty – 2-for-4 and his 18th homer, hitting .276. I have a bet with myself that Piscotty will get to 25 homers. I plan on welching.
Huston Street – Could opt for season-ending surgery. Sign’s been up for a month already, “Street’s closed, use an alternate route.” That alternate route, Fernando Salas, has two saves all month (one yesterday). So, that alternate route is an unpaved road that has guys with squeegees at every red light trying to wash your windows with their spit.
Chad Green – 6 IP, 1 ER, 6 baserunners, 5 Ks, ERA at 3.66, and two solid back-to-back starts. I already gave you my Chad Green fantasy. Full disclosure, I owned Green yesterday to stream him, but I got cold chicken feet and dim sum and dropped him before the start.
Jason Hammel – 3 IP, 6 ER, ERA up to 3.07. Super psyched about my starters pitching in Coors. Really, super psyched. *sticks head in oven, lights candle to read The Bell Jar*
Charlie Blackmon – Out a few days with a bruised toe. In the clubhouse this weekend, a coach said, “Blackmon?” Charlie looked down at his toe and shook his head, “Black and blue, man.”
Nolan Arenado – 4-for-5, 6 RBIs and his 31st and 32nd homers, hitting .280. “Timmy, if you look out the window you’ll see the area in Denver where most Torenadoes happen.” “Um…Dad?” We see outside the window a cow twirls off the ground. “Not now Timmy, Daddy’s high AF.”
DJ LeMahieu – 3-for-4, 3 runs and his 10th homer, hitting .345. DJ on the ones and twos! Mostly on the twos. As in 2B.
Julio Urias – 6 IP, 0 ER, 6 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 3.95. Still don’t think he’s as good as he can be, which is excellent. In other words, the Ju-Uri is still out.
Chase Utley – 2-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 11th homer, third homer this week, and has two hits in six of his last ten games. For the one Philly fan who was channel surfing and watching the Reds/Dodgers’ game, Utley’s just rubbing it in now.
Anthony DeSclafani – 7 IP, 4 ER, 9 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 3.27. Sorry, need to vent. There’s no qwerty way to say this; DeSclafani is the effin’ hardest name to type. DeSclafani’s got nothing on the seesaw for making my left hand do the heavy lifting on the typing. “I teeter my seesaw on DeSclafani in redrafts” is like the left hand typing version of “Sally sells seashells…” Any hoo! I’d lean on Stream-o-Nator for DeSclafani (left-hand painting), but I don’t agree with the machine for his next start; I don’t trust him.
Eugenio Suarez – 3-for-4, hitting .253. In the last week, Eugenio is hitting near-.400 and has raised his average from .238 to .253 in the past ten games. Hot schmotato alert!
Noah Syndergaard – 8 IP, 0 ER, 4 baserunners, 6 Ks, ERA at 2.61. I’m not even gonna bother saying I wish there were ten or twelve Ks. Not even gonna say it. Besides saying I’m not saying it.
Jose Abreu – 1-for-4, two runs and his 16th homer, hitting .283. Also, in this game, Todd Frazier went 3-for-4, 2 RBIs and his 10th steal. Frazier gets three hits; Abreu hits a homer; cats and dogs are living together in harmony.
Tim Anderson – 3-for-4, 1 run and his 6th steal. Anderson has an outside chance of having a 10/10 year. Which is, ya know, whatevs, until you realize it’s only in a half a season. Do I hear my first 2017 sleeper?
Danny Duffy – 6 2/3 IP, 1 ER, ten baserunners, 4 Ks, ERA at 2.66. Honestly, I don’t remember exactly what Arrieta’s stats were for me last year when I picked him up off waivers in June, and I’d guess they were better than Duffy’s are this year, but, in 95 2/3 IP this year, Duffy’s given me: 10 wins/2.35/0.98/98. Yeah, I got me a Duffy, and I need to adjust my pants.
Ervin Santana – 7 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 10 Ks, ERA at 3.39. I’d say yesterday Santana was a tough luck loser, but he’s making $13.5 million this year, so screw him.
Jace Peterson – 2-for-3 and his 7th homer, hitting .255. Snitker hasn’t even been playing Peterson every day, so I’d wait to see more. By the way, Snitker is not an onomatopoeia for derisive laughter.
Andrew Benintendi – 2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs and his 1st homer. Me in the back of a taxi, “I was just about to drop Benintendi if he didn’t show some signs.” Taxi driver, “This is not Taxicab Confessions.”
Sandy Leon – 2-for-4, 1 RBI, hitting .386. Rather than rubbing pine tar on his bat in the on-deck circle, I could’ve sworn I saw him rubbing Ted Williams’ frozen head on his Louisville Slugger.
Justin Upton – 2-for-4, 6 RBIs and two homers (14, 15). If you just recently dropped him, it’s fine to laugh to avoid crying. Upton is just trying out for the role of new superhero, Spitey Man. He spins regret from his wrists.
Cameron Maybin – 1-for-4, 2 RBIs as he was activated from the DL. It’s good to have Maybin back, said no one ever. I picture the trainer telling Ausmus that Maybin is ready to go, and Ausmus saying, “Who? Oh, I mean, good, good. Our centerfielder, right?”
Jordan Zimmermann – Will throw a rehab game on Friday in Toledo, which is different than how your sister addressed her stalker letter which is, “To Leto.”