It’s the MLB Game Day Recap Day 12, that means it’s time to talk about protests and baseball. It’s a classic pairing that is world known, like peanut butter and jelly. There were protests for World War I, World War II, racial integration, and so many more. So today the Twins and the Red Sox announced their postponement due to the murder of Daunte Wright. It’s another murder in a long line of state sanctioned and approved murders of black and brown people in this nation. The Twins and the Red Sox as organizations attempted to do something while actively doing nothing. It’s the same song and dance that PR teams constantly show us. Say as much as you can as an organization without entirely alienating the other side. Then, quickly and swiftly, change the subject by having one of your pawns change it for you. It will never end.
Since we’re on the topic of horrible subjects we all want to go away and never return, let’s talk about Yuli Gurriel and the Houston Astros. As much as I tried to will it into reality, it appears Yuli Gurriel and his ragtag bunch of Astros are still good. The man who made racist gestures in the dugout in regards to Yu Darvish during the World Series is very hot. 10 hits over his past 7 games. The power numbers aren’t there yet, as he’s only got 2 RBIs over this span with zero dingers. That said, if there is any part of Gurriel’s game to rely on, it’s his power. An absolutely ugly person to use in a utility slot, Gurriel can give fantasy managers rosterable stat lines over a sustained hot streak. Add him where you have roster space.
Zack Greinke, on the other hand, gave us the biggest letdown of the day. Any pitcher facing the Tigers is a borderline streamable matchup. Greinke going up against one of the weakest offenses, yes please. It’s just Zack got battered around brutally. 10 hits, 3 walks, 6 earned, 3 dingers and only 2 K’s over 4.2 innings is the type of line you expect facing the Dodgers. The Tigers have been surprisingly offensive to start the year, but when they face a starter like Greinke, the pitcher has the advantage. Rough play for any DFS players. If any managers in your league roster Greinke and get antsy to move players, go make a lowball offer. He should rebound and if you can take a profit, do it.
Huascar Ynoa was not the name anyone had on their short list as the Braves starter who steps up and becomes a fantasy star. Two starts into the year he’s now gone 11.0 innings giving up 1 earned run striking out 16 with a 0.65 WHIP. In case it wasn’t clear, that’s an absolute fantasy goldmine. The mixture of the Braves offense with any starter makes the pitcher streamable, but that type of production? Wow. 2 years ago we had Mike Sorotka, last year we had Ian Anderson, this year it’s Huascar Ynoa. Get this man on every roster, he’s a league winner.
Madison Bumgarner was once a league winning pitcher, but not anymore. Another start, another outing with an ERA over 9.00. At certain point, elite pitchers can morph into entirely unusable assets. They get locked into big contracts and are given ample opportunity to turn their poor performances around due to the team’s financial commitment to them. The problem? These guys rarely turn it around. Felix Hernandez went from being an elite front line starter to a fantasy landmine. This is what Madbum is now. Stay as far away from him as possible on the pitching side, and get as close as possible on the offensive streaming side. He’s cold now, and he’s not going to get hot over the long haul ever again.
The Emilio Bonifacio Award
Billy McKinney pulled off an extremely rare feat of getting 3 hits in a 9 inning game after pinch hitting in the bottom of the 6th. Three straight singles gave him a 1.000/1.000/1.000 triple slash for the day along with one run scored. As integral piece in separate Jeff Samardzija, Aroldis Chapman, and JA Happ trades, McKinney has never reached his perceived potential. With Christian Yelich potentially out for the short term, McKinney could find himself with some playing time in Milwaukee. He’s definitely only an add in very, very deep leagues but maybe [probably not] there is still some untapped potential.
The James Shields Award
Sandy Alcantara, Casey Mize, Yu Darvish and Tyler Glasnow all went 6+ tonight. I really, really, want to spend an entire paragraph heaping praise onto Casey Mize. He’s a future stud who needs to be owned everywhere based on this performance alone. I just have to devote the section to Tyler Glasnow, which I probably will for all of his 6+ starts. He allowed 2 singles and a walk over 7.2 innings striking out 14. The biggest knock against Glasnow all preseason was his lack of depth, being a Rays starting pitcher. Whoops, turns out he’s gone 6.0, 6.0 and now 7.2 in his first 3 starts. [checks notes] That’s depth! There’s a high probability Glasnow ends the season as the number 1 overall fantasy starter. I’d trade any non-deGrom pitcher for him 1 for 1. The AL BEast is no more with Glasnow around.
The Brad Lidge Award
Andrew Chafin is a pitcher from a bygone era. A pure left handed specialist for all of 2017-2019, the new 3 batter rule for 2020 seemed to eliminate a need for Chafin. Instead, he persisted as a mid inning left handed replacement in 2020. 15 games, 9.2 innings, 6.52 ERA. His 2021 has been great so far, scoreless in 3.2 innings, but today he gave up 3 runs and got the blown save in Milwaukee. Chafin is a relic to a former time, back when pitchers could face only 1 or 2 hitters and it wasn’t mandatory to stack lineups L-R-L-R-L. It will be fun watching to see how long Chafin hangs on because there likely will never be another pitcher like him ever again.
The MLB Game Day Recap is all about baseball. Protests and baseball that is. The concept of protests and baseball should not be one that scares anyone as a fan. The concept of protests and baseball are universal. Protests are what a mass of people outside of power do in order to tell those in power they don’t like how something is working. Baseball is what a mass of people outside of power do in order to enjoy themselves. Protests and baseball go hand in hand. They will forever be hand in hand, as they are both for the people.