It’s the MLB Game Day Recap Day 26, which means it’s time to talk about baseball. There is no running theme tonight baseball is all we are going to discuss. No long rants about the change in baseball. Zero discussions on why old things are better than new things, or vice versa. Baseball is just perfect. During the front half of the season, it’s easy to forget that for all the annoyances that crop up, baseball is still the absolute best. I say it every time, but it’s always true. This is the best sport. Sports are a mix of athleticism and preparation. Baseball has everything and taking the time to enjoy it is something we all need to do.
Trevor Rogers likely doesn’t belong here, as he’s already climbed up the ladder to be a top-tier starter. Tonight was his third start of 6.0+ inning with 8+ strikeouts with 0 earned runs allowed. He’s averaging 12.21 strikeouts per 9 as a starting pitcher. Rogers is absolutely everything we expected out of Sixto Sanchez and then some. Once last year’s top bWAR rookie pitcher returns the Marlins rotation is going to be absolutely filthy. Their 1-4 of Lopez/Alcantara/Rodgers/Sanchez, also known as LARS, can lay claims to one of the best in baseball. Rogers could also rename the foursome as RLAS if he continues pitching this was. There are many stars being made in Miami right now, and Rogers is one of them.
Normally when Colorado pitchers blow up you have the backdrop of “well, that’s why you get for starting a pitcher in Colorado.” Tonight’s explosion happened in San Francisco, a notorious pitcher’s park. Austin Gomber managed to allow nine runs on seven hits and four walks over 1.2 innings without giving up a dinger. For whatever reason, Gomber has mixed completely acceptable starts with two nuclear bombs. This is not the type of pitcher that you want pitching in Colorado if this is what he does outside of the thin air. The supposed centerpiece of the lukewarm Nolan Arenado deal, Gomber is looking more and more like a future bullpen arm. Keep him off of your fantasy roster even with cushy matchups. His bombs are unpredictable.
Jesse Winker went 2 for 5 tonight with an extra-innings two-run bomb, which is par the course for the NL’s leading hitter. He continued his 11 game hitting streak where he’s scored eight runs, mashed four dingers, and drove in ten runs. His batting average was .381 overall heading into tonight. Jesse has always had contact, but he showed in 2020 that he can also hit for power. Very quietly he has been an elite hitter since he debuted in Cincinnati in 2017. Jesse was an OPS+ of 126 on his career and has a 1.107 OPS for 2021. This is the type of name you buy because all signs say this breakout can be sustained. Anyone who was on a 40 home run pace in 2020 and has this type of OPS for 2021 should be considered as “real”. Buy Winker where you can.
Ian Happ cannot figure out how to play baseball. An elite fantasy performer in 2020, Happ just has not figured out how to perform in 2021. He went 0 for 4 tonight which drops his already disgusting triple slash of .154/.321/.200 even further. Despite being 2B, 3B, and OF eligible, Ian is not only a cut candidate, he should be on the waiver wire. Happ has one extra-base hit and 10 total hits across 88 plate appearances. This is flat-out awful. The upside with Happ is clearly there, but it’s also not enough upside to hold onto the guy while waiting for it to appear. Cut him and deal with any potential losses, he’s not worth the hold.
The Emilio Bonifacio Award
Buster Posey is no the typical Bonifacio winner. He qualifies at just two positions and is used nearly exclusively at one, catcher. Buster scored three runs tonight while hitting a dong and driving in three more. Forgotten and dismissed in dynasty circles as over the hill, Posey has proved his doubters wrong. He is splitting time heavily with Curt Casali, but when he’s in the game, he’s performing. He now trails only that Wilson’s duo of Contreras and Ramos in homers for the catcher with his five. If you’re able to stomach the DNPs, you have an elite catcher when he’s in the game.
The James Shields Award
The foursome of Adam Wainwright, Anthony DeSclafani, Zack Wheeler, and Zach Plesac all not only went 6+ but managed to go 7.2+ including two complete games. Wainwright was the tough-luck loser in a classic pitcher’s duel against Wheeler. Adam gave up two late-game solo homers to Rhys Hoskins in the seventh and ninth innings while otherwise giving up just four singles and striking out eight. Wheeler gave up only one hit through 8.0 innings with three walks and struck out nine. The lone run was an inherited running scoring too once Hector Neris entered the game. DeSclafani appears to have become an ace in San Francisco and is absolutely on my one-month-in trade targets list. Plesac continued his dominating ways against all non-White Sox teams spinning a gem against the Twins.
The Brad Lidge Award
It’s a broken record at this point, but Alex Colome is absolutely shot. Who could have predicted that? The former elite reliever was once again horrendous as he recorded the worst possible ERA and WHIP tonight, the dreaded INF. Prior to tonight’s outing, Colome had -1.1 WAR. He gave up a walk-off homer without recording an out tonight. This guy is an absolute nightmare and is the reliever disaster of 2021. There was 2019 Trevor Rosenthal. We can’t forget the 2018 first half of Greg Holland. There’s the original 2000 Billy Wagner. This is the guy you cut today and it does not matter who you add. Send him to the curb, it’s over.
The MLB Game Day Recap is all about baseball. Baseball truly is perfection. I just love this sport so much. The way the game can be so different yet nearly the same in each game can never be understated. Unlike clocked sports, there is never a moment where it is over before it’s over. There’s nothing to do but appreciate the beauty of the game tonight. It’s just excellent.