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    The most roto-relevant news of the previous day, recapped in a concise format for your morning coffee.
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  • Prospect Coverage
    Our prospect team mines the minors for top prospects and useful pieces alike.
  • MASH Report
    Award-winning in-depth injury report with analysis from Jeff Zimmerman.
  • The Sleeper and The Bust Podcast
    Paul Sporer, Justin Mason, and Jason Collette lead the RotoGraphs staff in a regular fantasy podcast.
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  • Top 50 Fantasy Prospects
    Marc Hulet adjusts (and updates) his prospect list for fantasy purposes.
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C  -  1B  -  2B  -  SS  -  3B  -  OF  -  SP  -  RP

Week 23 Waiver Wire Projections

If there is a weekend to take off, it’s this one. Kyle Seager and Adam Plutko are the hot commodities. Not good.

The projection guidelines:

  • The ownership rates are from CBS since they have some quickdraw waiver wire leagues where players can be picked up at any time.
  • The FAAB estimates are based on the 2018 15-team mixed NFBC leagues which used a $1000 FAAB budget. Owners are going to need to convert these values to their own league.
  • The ownership values were taken from Saturday and lots can happen in between when they publish and FAAB bids run.
  • Only players owned in 50% or fewer of CBS leagues are examined.
Week 23 Batter FAAB Projections
Name Previous Ownership% Current Ownership% Change% Cost
Tim Lopes SS | SEA 0% 2% 2% $3
Abraham Toro-Hernandez 3B | HOU 2% 6% 4% $4
Jake Fraley RF | SEA 2% 6% 4% $4
Nick Solak 2B | TEX 3% 9% 6% $6
Wilmer Flores 1B | ARI 3% 9% 6% $6
Matt Beaty 1B | LAD 3% 6% 3% $4
Tom Murphy C | SEA 4% 13% 9% $10
Tommy Edman SS | STL 6% 15% 9% $11
Dexter Fowler RF | STL 7% 12% 5% $6
Delino DeShields CF | TEX 8% 14% 6% $8
Austin Nola SS | SEA 9% 18% 9% $12
Harrison Bader CF | STL 9% 11% 2% $4
Jose Iglesias SS | CIN 9% 11% 2% $4
Matt Adams 1B | WAS 10% 12% 2% $5
Raimel Tapia CF | COL 11% 14% 3% $6
Hanser Alberto SS | BAL 14% 19% 5% $9
Mark Canha CF | OAK 15% 19% 4% $8
Tucker Barnhart C | CIN 20% 23% 3% $9
Albert Pujols 1B | LAA 25% 27% 2% $11
Evan Longoria 3B | SF 25% 27% 2% $11
Chris Taylor SS | LAD 26% 29% 3% $13
Willy Adames SS | TB 27% 29% 2% $13
Luis Arraez 2B | MIN 33% 53% 20% $62
Kyle Seager 3B | SEA 34% 54% 20% $63
Marwin Gonzalez LF | MIN 36% 52% 16% $51
Freddy Galvis SS | CIN 36% 40% 4% $22
Kevin Pillar CF | SF 38% 53% 15% $50
Mike Yastrzemski RF | SF 39% 55% 16% $55
Francisco Mejia C | SD 42% 47% 5% $30
Nick Ahmed SS | ARI 43% 58% 15% $56
Kolten Wong 2B | STL 43% 45% 2% $26
Kyle Tucker LF | HOU 44% 46% 2% $27
Randal Grichuk RF | TOR 48% 51% 3% $33
Asdrubal Cabrera 2B | WAS 49% 52% 3% $34
  • Luis Arraez, Marwin Gonzalez, Kevin Pillar, Nick Ahmed, and Kyle Seager: All five have been available most of the season and are in or ending a hot streak. Also, I wonder if these hitters are trending up based on last week’s ownership momentum (Seager, Ahmed, and Pillar) even if the underlying end-of-season projections don’t support it. Also, owners may be looking for a change and with so few sexy options, these regulars are that change.
  • Tommy Edman, Jake Fraley, Raimel Tapia, and Tim Lopes: For any team needing stolen base help, these four are a must-add. Besides the steals, they are not complete zeros in power. Lopes is the top target if a team only needs steals.
  • Tom Murphy: Catchers have been surprisingly decent this season with owners not having to settle for the .230 AVG and 14 HR guys.
  • Austin Nola: He’s been acceptable but his real value comes from leagues where he’s catcher eligible.
  • Nick Solak: He’s a nice power addition if he can find full-time at-bats.
Week 23 Pitcher FAAB Projections
Name Previous Ownership% Current Ownership% Change% Cost
Matt Magill RP | SEA 0% 7% 7% $2
Carlos Estevez RP | COL 0% 5% 5% $1
Brock Burke SP | TEX 1% 7% 6% $2
Rowan Wick RP | CHC 1% 3% 2% $0
Matt Albers RP | MIL 2% 4% 2% $0
Daniel Hudson RP | WAS 4% 14% 10% $4
Logan Webb SP | SF 6% 18% 12% $6
Steven Brault RP | PIT 6% 10% 4% $1
Felix Hernandez SP | SEA 6% 8% 2% $1
Tony Gonsolin SP | LAD 8% 15% 7% $3
Dereck Rodriguez SP | SF 8% 12% 4% $1
Jacob Waguespack SP | TOR 9% 16% 7% $3
Jalen Beeks RP | TB 9% 12% 3% $1
Adrian Houser RP | MIL 12% 37% 25% $26
Nick Anderson RP | TB 13% 17% 4% $2
Johnny Cueto SP | SF 14% 18% 4% $2
Mike Montgomery RP | KC 15% 37% 22% $21
Adam Plutko SP | CLE 15% 32% 17% $13
Hunter Strickland RP | WAS 17% 19% 2% $1
Kolby Allard RP | TEX 19% 27% 8% $4
A.J. Puk SP | OAK 21% 27% 6% $3
Justus Sheffield RP | SEA 22% 30% 8% $5
Sandy Alcantara SP | MIA 24% 27% 3% $3
Dylan Bundy SP | BAL 26% 29% 3% $3
Michael Wacha SP | STL 28% 31% 3% $3
Homer Bailey SP | OAK 30% 40% 10% $8
Joe Jimenez RP | DET 32% 34% 2% $3
Dillon Peters SP | LAA 34% 36% 2% $4
Sergio Romo RP | MIN 39% 43% 4% $6
Joe Ross SP | WAS 40% 53% 13% $14
Adam Wainwright SP | STL 40% 50% 10% $11
Mark Melancon RP | ATL 44% 57% 13% $15
Ivan Nova SP | CHW 44% 57% 13% $15
Cal Quantrill SP | SD 48% 65% 17% $22
  • Adrian Houser, Mike Montgomery, and Joe Ross: Recently, I found all three making positive changes to their arsenals and they deserve the ownership boost.
  • Adam Plutko: I don’t hate his two-start week at Detroit and at Tampa.
  • Justus Sheffield: He’s had walk problems forever, so it’s not surprising to see he walked more batters than struck out in his 2019 MLB debut. Pay for the talent, not the name.
  • Logan Webb: I’m putting him in the must-own bin. Strikeouts, walks, groundballs. Oh, my.
  • Brock Burke: He starts today for the White Sox and with no runs allowed in a first start, his stock could increase with a good performance. It’s tough to get a read on his talent because he’s jumped so many levels in the past two seasons. But that rise might be the sign needed to buy-in with the Rangers feeling he has conquered each level.

Reliever Rankings (Saves focused)

  1. Mark Melancon
  2. Joe Jimenez
  3. Matt Magill
  4. Sergio Romo
  5. Carlos Estevez
  6. Matt Albers
  7. Daniel Hudson
  8. Hunter Strickland
  9. Nick Anderson
  10. Rowan Wick


2019 Week 22 NFBC Main Event FAAB Results
Add Avg Bid Leagues (38)
Mark Melancon $20 8
Joe Ross $17 5
Luke Voit $15 5
Carlos Estevez $11 6
Sergio Romo $9 6
Matt Beaty $9 17
Mike Montgomery $9 12
Ivan Nova $9 10
Wade Davis $9 13
Daniel Hudson $8 27
Adam Plutko $8 6
Kolby Allard $8 16
Josh Rojas $7 35
Tommy Edman $7 11
Corban Joseph $7 11
Asdrubal Cabrera $7 5
Evan Longoria $7 10
Jesus Luzardo $7 6
Tony Gonsolin $6 21
Logan Webb $5 25
Sean Manaea $5 7
Jalen Beeks $5 9
Zach Eflin $5 10
Kike Hernandez $4 5
Martin Perez $4 5
Hanser Alberto $4 8
Johnny Cueto $4 8
Joe Palumbo $4 17
Ty France $4 16
Greg Allen $4 22
Zach Davies $4 6
Wilmer Flores $3 20
Tim Lopes $3 7
Jose Iglesias $3 6
Trevor Richards $3 6
Matt Albers $3 13
Dillon Peters $3 6
Brandon Drury $3 11
Welington Castillo $3 12
Steven Brault $3 12
Matt Magill $2 10
Josh Naylor $2 7
Michael Wacha $2 7
Tucker Barnhart $2 5
CC Sabathia $2 6
Dereck Rodriguez $2 8
Brett Phillips $2 7
Rowdy Tellez $2 6
Kyle Freeland $2 5
Hunter Strickland $2 7
Isiah Kiner-Falefa $2 6
Tommy Milone $1 6


2018 Week 23 NFBC Main Event FAAB Results
Add Avg Bid Leagues (34)
Michael Kopech $85 5
Koda Glover $22 16
Touki Toussaint $17 20
Brad Keller $16 6
Trevor Hildenberger $15 15
Robert Gsellman $14 7
Taylor Ward $14 32
Danny Jansen $13 27
Austin Gomber $12 17
Rafael Ortega $12 25
Jake Junis $11 8
Freddy Galvis $11 7
Greg Allen $10 21
Brett Anderson $10 25
Tyler Austin $9 16
Alex Cobb $9 10
Kelvin Herrera $9 9
Welington Castillo $8 20
Matt Wieters $7 5
Wei-Yin Chen $7 6
Daniel Poncedeleon $7 21
Charlie Culberson $7 6
Cedric Mullins $7 14
Adam Plutko $6 14
Nicky Delmonico $6 8
Jalen Beeks $5 10
Lucas Giolito $5 6
Melky Cabrera $5 18
Hunter Strickland $5 5
Austin Jackson $4 8
Neil Walker $4 7
Felix Pena $3 11
Lourdes Gurriel Jr. $3 8
Phillip Ervin $3 6
Erasmo Ramirez $3 13
Kevin Plawecki $3 9
Logan Forsythe $3 14
David Fletcher $3 5
Ty Blach $3 6
Joe Mauer $2 5
Kolten Wong $2 6
James Shields $2 11
Jordan Hicks $2 5
Pablo Lopez $1 7
Robbie Erlin $1 6
Jose Bautista $1 6

Bullpen Report: August 24, 2019

It feels like bullpens settled in over the last few days but blips always arise. There’s no impending change in Cincinnati, but it will be intriguing to see if the Reds move Raisel Iglesias in the off-season. Iglesias entered last night’s outing having converted his last nine save chances. However, a lead-off single by Colin Moran followed by consecutive hits from Jose Osuna and Adam Frazier tied the game in Pittsburgh resulting in Igelsias’ fourth blown save and first in over a month. Jacob Stallings bunted two runners into scoring position, the only out recorded by Iglesias before a walk-off single by Pablo Reyes resulted in loss number nine for Iglesias. With the Reds retooling for next year, they seem to be building a solid bullpen leading up to their closer, especially Amir Garrett and Robert Stephenson. Garrett recorded his 19th hold with a clean eighth inning striking out one. Stephenson tossed a clean seventh with a strikeout during a tied game. Over his last 11 appearances, Stephenson owns a 0.73 ERA with a 0.65 WHIP and 15:4 K:BB spanning 12.1 innings.

Pittsburgh’s Felipe Vazquez notched his fourth win in relief working a clean top of the ninth. It’s been slim pickings for Vazquez in terms of save chances since the inception of the second half, which could create a unique buying opportunity for 2020 when fantasy players focus on save totals, not performance. Focus on Vazquez’s 14 strikeouts versus two walks in 11.2 innings since the All-Star break with no earned runs and a minuscule 0.51 WHIP in them.

Perhaps turning the corner, Brad Hand snapped a personal three game skid of blown saves securing his 30th save last night. Hand yielded a lead-off single to Alex Gordon but erased him quickly inducing a double play ground ball by Cheslor Cuthbert before ending the game on a Bubba Starling ground out. More important than the save, Hand getting his outs via grounders compared to fly balls. Hand’s 41.8 fly ball percentage this year represents a career high, but any migration towards his old career 43 percent ground ball rates would be welcomed by his owners. There’s no guarantee Carlos Carrasco will even make it back to Cleveland despite all of our best wishes. First, here’s an update regarding his rehab outings going forward:

Second, Carrasco could figure into late inning match-up situations like Cody Allen used to share with Hand in September as covered in this link from Indians beat writer, Paul Hoynes. Stay tuned and continued prayers for Cookie in his battle with Leukemia.

A marathon in New York ended with the Braves emerging victorious after 14 innings. Mark Melancon locked down his fifth save, and fourth in a row striking out one in a scoreless appearance. Luke Jackson garnered his seventh win in relief working two scoreless frames allowing two hits with two strikeouts. Shane Greene logged his fifth straight scoreless outing with a clean eighth inning. Chris Martin pitched a scoreless ninth inning and has retired 12 of the last 13 hitters he’s faced. Seth Lugo fired two scoreless innings for the Mets in a tied game walking two and striking out four. He lowered his home ERA to 1.86 in the process. But, Lugo needed 38 pitches over his two innings so he’s likely unavailable on Saturday. This could result in a save chance for Edwin Diaz. He turned in a clean 10th inning keeping the game tied with two strikeouts and riding a four game scoreless streak. Jeurys Familia absorbed his second loss allowing two hits, an earned run and two walks with three strikeouts in the top of the 14th inning. He’s only given up five earned runs since July seventh but owns an 18:16 K:BB in this stretch, tread lightly.

Matt Magill recorded his third save with a clean ninth inning against the Blue Jays. Since he’s received each of the last four save chances for the Mariners, his shared status with Anthony Bass has been removed on the closer chart. Not sure Magill can stay hot, but since joining Seattle, his 15 strikeouts versus three walks in 12.1 innings will keep him in the ninth inning. Austin Adams will continue his rehab in the minors and could be a factor down the stretch, but his health can be fickle. Do not forget about Adams next year if he makes it back from his rehab.

Quick Hits: Aaron Slegers gets his first save working the last three innings against the Orioles. Slegers allowed three hits and an earned run, but all saves count the same in the books…Speaking of Baltimore, they placed Shawn Armstrong (right forearm strain) on the injured list to provide him with some rest. This puts Hunter Harvey even closer to a save chance and probably the last chance to stash him if desperate for a save in the Orioles bullpen…Kyle Zimmer will work exclusively from the stretch going forward. He fired two scoreless innings against Cleveland yielding a hit and walking one with two strikeouts last night…Save number 31 for Roberto Osuna working for the fourth time in the last five games. With Ryan Pressly on the injured list, Houston will likely ride Osuna hard. Monitor his workload…Jeremy Jeffress allowed an unearned run in the ninth inning. Josh Hader would have worked if the no-hitter was in play…Buck Farmer gets his 12th hold giving up two runs on a home run to Miguel Sano. Joe Jimenez coughed up a solo home run to Jake Cave in a non-save outing in the ninth…Sergio Romo allowed two urns on three hits in two-thirds of an inning…Alex Colome tossed a clean ninth inning getting in work with a strikeout…Luke Farrell fired two clean innings with two strikeouts for Texas…Miami’s not recorded a save since July 24th.

Not Very Stable
Hot Seat
Bullpen Report — 8/24/2019

NL Lineup Analysis (8/23/2019)

Already, the excitement over the recent callups of Trent Grisham, Josh Rojas and Ty France has started to fade. These are just some of the fantasy implications resulting from changes in National League lineups and batting orders this week.


The Diamondbacks continue to employ a platoon of Jarrod Dyson and Adam Jones, but with the demotion of Tim Locastro to Triple-A Reno on Aug. 15, David Peralta is back to playing everyday in left field. He has made seven straight starts and is in the lineup once again for Friday night’s game in Milwaukee.
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The Sleeper and the Bust Episode: 730 – Fireside Chat: The 2020 SP Pool


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Paul and Nick take a closer look at Paul’s early 2020 SP rankings. Nick highlights some of his disagreements including Mike Clevinger, Jack Flaherty, and Stephen Strasburg among others.

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Paul Sporer Baseball Chat – August 23rd, 2019

Paul’s weekly chat starts now!

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Contact Management Is and Is Not a Myth

If there were ever a baseball question that keeps me up it night, it’s this: how do the physical properties of pitches affect batted ball outcomes? Many researchers have tackled the subject with varying degrees of success and elucidation. My attempts have focused primarily on a pitch’s ability to generate swinging strikes and ground balls, the first of which used pitcher-level PITCHf/x data while the more recent of which used individual pitch-level Statcast data.

While modeling whiffs and grounders is interesting (and important, too), something strikes me as much more compelling and confounding: the relationship, if any, between a pitch’s physical properties and its batted ball outcomes, whether described as exit velocity, launch angle, or total base-run value allowed, as measured by weighted on-base average (wOBA) or even expected wOBA (xwOBA).

The ability to prove “contact management” as a legitimate and shared pitcher skill has long eluded the Sabermetric community. Assumptions of a league-average batting average on balls in play (BABIP) and, for xFIP, home runs per fly ball (HR/FB) pervade the common ERA estimators (FIP, xFIP, SIERA) we use to gauge talent and assign value. Those assumptions regarding BABIP and HR/FB imply a pitcher’s inability to control them — and there isn’t much evidence to suggest otherwise.

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The Stash List – Recent Draftee Edition

Hey y’all! Can you believe it is almost the end of August and the end of the minor league season? I know I am not ready for the season to end. With the minor leagues almost finished for the year, I thought it would be fun to check out some recent draftees you might want to draft in your First Year Player Drafts. It is never too early to get a hit start on draft prep! Today, I’m bringing you two outfielders, one with speed and the other with power, and two pitchers who are performing well in their first taste of pro ball. 

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Bullpen Report: August 23, 2019

With a handful of closers unavailable to pitch, Thursday turned into Substitute Closer’s Day. The appearance by a fill-in that could signal the biggest fantasy impact was Derek Law’s foray into a save opportunity against the Dodgers. That’s because the Blue Jays’ placed Ken Giles on the paternity list prior to Thursday night’s game, and the incumbent closer could be miss the entire upcoming weekend series in Seattle. In other words, Law could have more save chances over the next three days.

Law had already filled in for Giles on a short-term basis earlier this month, when he was out with right elbow inflammation. Since returning on Aug. 13, Giles has made only three appearances, and only one of those outings was for a save opportunity. Because of Giles’ relative inactivity, we have kept Law in the grid as a co-closer, as it’s conceivable he could get saves if the Jays want to be careful with Giles’ workload.
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Can Andrew Benintendi Take the Xander Bogaerts Turn?

From a fantasy perspective, 2019 has not gone how we hoped for Andrew Benintendi. The Red Sox outfielder was being selected in the top-30 this spring: 30th overall in NFBC drafts and 29th at Fantasy Pros.

Benintendi continues to do things well in his third full big-league season. He hits for average, and walks often enough. While he is pacing for his lowest full-season stolen base output to date, he still can contribute in steals. But 450 games into his Major League career, Benintendi hasn’t been able to hit for the power that many anticipated. His 20-home run season in 2017 and current ISO of .181 being his high-water marks.

Benintendi’s solid, but underwhelming 2019 season may see him enter 2020 as a bit of a forgotten man in drafts. This could be a mistake if he is able to make the same power gains his teammate  Xander Bogaerts has made over the past two seasons – and Benintendi does share a significant amount of offensive traits with Boston’s star shortstop.

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The Daily Grind: Pick An Ace

When I campaign for President, this is a contender to be my official song.


  1. TDG Invitational
  2. Weather Reports
  3. Pitchers to Use and Abuse
  4. SaberSim Says…
  5. Pace of Play

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