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The Mad Prof’s Mid-June pickups who will pay season-long dividends

I took some heat after last week’s analysis.  In some cases, it was from true believers in Trevor Bauer.  In others, it was from folks who read no further than the title of the article and decided I was burying Chris Sale (which, if one read the article, was not true).  In any event, the league is now generating some solid and massive data that enable us to look at what appear to be the stirring so f season-long trends.

Instead of looking at where the league studs may be a bit weak or worrisome, this week I offer some quick thoughts on several SP who’ve delivered quality dividends.  I do this based on overall league data and relative performance of the players themselves.  In particular, as you know, I like to look at pitching efficiency.  Not to overhype…but in the spirit of BABIP and other leading indicators of humanity’s mortality, it seems that the demigods of our existence can’t escape the Thanosian power of probability and regression.  So…  Manaea fell to earth (but bounced back over the weekend), Corbin and Bauer are legit demigods. Who should you be looking to pick up next? Here are some guys you shoulda spent a buck in your drafts.  Imagine how much better your batters would be if you had gone after these guys instead of Kershaw…

Caleb Smith (MIA) is owned in only 39% of Yahoo! Leagues.  He has pitched well all year and owns a solid [79:30] K/BB ratio.  He pitches in the NL, so he gets to strike out opposing pitchers 3-4 times a game.  He is not efficient.  His 18 PIP is significantly higher than the league average (16.4).  He is not getting hit any harder (37%) than league average (36%) He is flying under the radar in many leagues and, if available, offers quality counting stats for your roster.

Kyle Gibson (MIN) is owned in only 26% of Yahoo! Leagues.  Yet, his WAR of 1.4 fits right in there between David Price (1.5) and Strasburg and Greinke (both 1.3).  He’s efficient (16.6 PIP), tossing 9/3 K/9 and not getting hit hard (31.3%).  He won’t get many W for you with the Twinkies. But, he will get you some solid counting and ratio stats.

Detroit’s Mike Fiers continues to deliver quality profits despite being held in only 5% of Yahoo! Leagues.  In his last three starts, he gave up only four runs in 19 IP against the Yankees, Indians and Angels—three very hot teams.  He has an 18:4 K/BB ratio over that span and has been demonstrating solid skills.  When he gets hit (BABIP 0.290) he does get hit hard (44%).  Both are worse than MLB average.   He is not a #1 SP by any stretch and he is playing on Tigers team that is not going anywhere…yet.  On the other hand, Ron Gardenhire has assembled a scrappy young team that is not easy to kill.  So, if you have room on your roster, Fiers is a solid flyer/add.

Twenty-six year old Domingo German (NYY) has remained in the Bombers’ lineup despite struggling with a high ERA for the 2018 season.  He is 0-4 with a 5.32 ERA.  BUT, he has a [53:19] K/BB ratio.  When he gives up hits, (0.290 BABIP) the longball is hurting him (16% HR/FB ratio).  He is not getting hit real hard generally (36.7% hard hit ratio—that is league average).  His K/9 of 10 is just behind Caleb Smith’s 10.8 rate.  German is owned in only 11% of Yahoo! Leagues and is a great pickup to hang onto as we look towards the All-Star Break.

Carlos Rodon (CWS) is owned in 30% of Yahoo! Leagues.  He returned from the DL to pitch a quality game (but not a quality start) against the Red Sox.  He gave up only two ER.  This is a guy who threw 165 IP two years ago before hitting the DL last year.  He has a career 3[90:15]8 K/BB ratio.  This guy is not a gamble.  He IS the real deal.  Grab him before someone else does.


That’s it for this short week.  Best wishes for the Ides of June.


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Major League Fantasy Baseball Radio Show: Join host Brian Roach, Jr, and Cole Freel live on Sunday June 10th, 2018 from 8-9:30pm EST for episode #124 of Major League Fantasy Baseball Radio. We are a live broadcast that will take callers at 323-870-4395. Press 1 to speak with the host. We will discss the latest information in the world of fantasy baseball.

Our guest this week is Professor Mark Rush. Mark is the Political and Legal Professor for Washington & Lee University. He is also the Chief Editor for, and also an author.


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Unrepentant Red Sox fan and all things Boston. Deflategate was a joke. Boston Latin School is awesome. Harvard and Johns Hopkins alma maters... Besides that... Stanley D. and Nikki Waxberg Professor of Politics and Law at Washington and Lee University. Wrote for Ron Shandler's Shandler Park for two summers and have been on board with MLFS since 2011. Been at Washington and Lee since 1990 with a brief hiatus (2010-2013) in the Middle East. Currently developing that last word in Fantasy Baseball analysis. Married to Flor, Dad to William and Alex, and adopted daughter Reem. Soon to be father and law to Meaghann. Alpha male to the world's super-pup, Humphrey. Life is not bad.

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Major League Fantasy Baseball Show Episode #134, 8/26/2018 Host Brian Roach, Jr., Co-Host Cole Freel, Guest Bryan Luhrs

Major League Fantasy Baseball Show Episode #134, 8/26/2018 Host Brian Roach, Jr, Co-Host Cole Freel, Guest Bryan Luhrs

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Ben WBen W

I am a recent college graduate from a small liberal arts school in Atlanta, GA. I'm a sports junkie and a diehard Atlanta sports fan.

Brian Roach, JrBrian Roach, Jr

Baseball fan through and through. Follows every team, every player and every transaction. Graduated Lasell College in 2013. Covers high sc...

Bryan LuhrsBryan Luhrs

Faith, Family and Fantasy Sports.These are the three words that best describe me. I am a faithful husband and father of 6 amazing children. I ...

Cole FreelCole Freel

Bachelors in English and History from Indiana University. Borderline-Obsessed Fantasy Baseball Writer who also dabbles in Football, Basketball...

Corey D RobertsCorey D Roberts

Owner and creator of Major League Fantasy Sports. We will provide you with the best tools to be successful in your leagues no matter if ...

Geordie EasterbrookGeordie Easterbrook

I’m a former pitcher from upstate New York, and a proud Demon Deacon. Go Deacs! I’ve been playing fantasy football and baseball for the be...

James WilkJames Wilk

I grew up a Dallas Cowboy's fan in Washington Redskins' country, but I currently reside in Florida. I have played fantasy sports since 1999,...

Jason BlackfordJason Blackford

General IT/Web/Backoffice resource for MLFS. After sitting down with Corey and getting a good look at the time and effort needed to maintain ...

Joe IannoneJoe Iannone

I'm an accountant and an amateur writer of fiction and sports commentary, mostly baseball. I've been a student of the game of baseball since...

John GozziJohn Gozzi

Intense sports lover . a writer who specializes in creative non- fiction almost always challenging the status quo. I've suffered but rema...

Josh HoukJosh Houk

Certified Sports Fanatic: Everything Cleveland sports and all the happenings around classic sports. Full time program manager in construc...

Kevin BzdekKevin Bzdek

I've been playing fantasy baseball for 14 years. I am also an auditor and CPA, where I analyze information on a daily basis. Combined, my pas...

Kyle AmoreKyle Amore

I'm a former collegiate and semi-pro baseball player. I underwent successful Tommy John Surgery in 2008, and can give a wide-range of tips on...

Mark RushMark Rush

Unrepentant Red Sox fan and all things Boston. Deflategate was a joke. Boston Latin School is awesome. Harvard and Johns Hopkins alma mater...

Matt BarkmanMatt Barkman

A/S/ the old school AOL instant messenger days...
Elementary Physical Education by day, chasing around my 1 and 2 year old boy...

Mike RiggallMike Riggall

I've been coaching lacrosse since 2002 and playing fantasy football since 2006. I've racked up several championships over the years includi...

Todd NevinTodd Nevin

A business analyst by day, pursuing all things baseball by night. My favorite day of the year is opening day and my favorite sound is the crac...

“Big Rigg’s” Running Back and Wide Receiver Calls for Week #7…

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