Friday, April 22, 2016

Fantasy Focus: Erasmo Ramirez' Unique Value

Erasmo Ramirez might be one of the most interesting pitchers out there right now, both from a real-life and fantasy baseball perspective.  Ramirez has long been a darling of the saber crowd for his nice peripheral stats in the minor leagues.  He failed to break through with the Mariners in several years of trying and they finally traded him to the Tampa Bay Rays.  He had a terrific season with the Rays last year racking up 11 Wins with a 3.75 ERA and a low WHIP of 1.13.  He was in line to be the Rays 5'th starter this year and drew a lot of interest as a late round fantasy draft prospect.  Then, the Rays decided they did not need a 5'th starter for the first month of the season and announced Ramirez would be pitching long relief out of the bullpen except for an occasional spot start until late April.

What Ramirez has accomplished with that role is nothing short of remarkable.  In 6 appearances with just one start, he's already racked up 4 Wins which is tied for the MLB lead with Chris Sale and Jake Arrieta.   He's pitched 14 innings with just 1 BB and 12 K's for an ERA of 1.29 and WHIP of 0.71.

Erasmo Ramirez probably doesn't fit on every fantasy team, but in deeper leagues he can be plugged into a P roster slot where it doesn't matter whether he is starting or relieving.  He will be getting more starts starting in late April/early May but will probably continue to be a swing pitcher.  The Rays are one of those teams that believes most SP's should only face the lineup twice in a game, so a long reliever/swing man is going to get a lot of work and have lots of opportunities for Wins.  He's available in my league and probably is in yours too.  Go get him!


  1. I have been following Ramirez, he looks great this year. But CBS is reporting the Ray's will pass him by for the 5th spot and call up a minor leaguer 'Snell' I think. So they don't look to be treating Ramirez as a starter any time soon.

    1. We'll see. I read one report that the reason they called up Snell was because they had to use Ramirez in relief last night(he got the W). On the other hand, Snell is their top prospect and if he dominates, it will be hard for them to send him back down. They might also decide that Ramirez is more valuable to them in long relief every 3'rd day than starting every 5'th.