The Daily Grind: 6-12-14 – Presented by FanDuel


  1. Top Prospect Call Ups
  2. Daily DFS
  3. Friday Picks
  4. Table

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1. Top Prospect Call Ups

We have very early games, so I’ll keep this brief in order to post more quickly. I’ve noticed certain top prospects have very low prices in DFS until they “prove it.” This offers the opportunity to score big points for small dollars. Major league pitchers often challenge recent call ups in order to gauge their strengths and weaknesses. Sometimes, the prospects can take advantage of the early aggression to post some extra offense. Usually, the top prospect’s true talent level is higher than the cheap initial price regardless of how opposing teams approach them.

2. Daily DFS

Early: Four games are in the early contest, but there really isn’t much to choose from for stacking purposes. My advice is to target values where you see them.

Kyle Kendrick is one of two weak pitchers in the time slot, but he’s opposed by the San Diego Padres. You may not know this (if you’re just tuning into the season now), but the Padres lack for offense.

The other obvious target is the Atlanta Braves versus Jhoulys Chacin. He’s had control issues this season and the game is at Coors Field. Unfortunately, the Braves offense has struggled against righties of all flavors, so a full blown stack seems disingenuous.

Late: There are seven games tonight, four of which could be affected by rain.

Mark Buehrle isn’t your typical target, but there are a couple high profile O’s who may enjoy the platoon advantage at home. On the other side of the matchup is Kevin Gausman, who’s tasked with navigating a tough Blue Jays lineup.

I like Josh Tomlin, but his stuff isn’t the best. Anytime you have a guy with a short track record of success as a command and control pitcher, there is a risk of a blow up outing.

Another atypical target, Jon Niese is a good pitcher with a bad matchup. The Brewers have three of the best lefty mashers in baseball along with several guys from the second tier of lefty slayers.

Wade Miley and Scott Feldman carry the potential for a disaster outing. They both lean towards ground balls and allow plenty of balls in play. It’s up to their defense to get them through a ball game.

You can try right-handed Yankees against Roenis Elias, but betting on offense out of the Yankees hasn’t been a percentage play lately. They haven’t scored more than four runs in about two weeks and rarely did so before then.

3. Friday Picks

Pitchers to Start: You may not have noticed, but Jake Arrieta has been quietly decent this season. The Phillies have been loudly mediocre, so it makes for a good matchup. The Phillies will send Roberto Hernandez to the mound against a Cubs lineup that flounders against most righties.

Collin McHugh is still available in 58 percent of Yahoo! leagues. The Rays have a mid-tier offense, so McHugh is usable.

Pitchers to Exploit: Ubaldo Jimenez has had a choppy season. Whenever I tune in, I catch the good Ubaldo – the one with an unhittable sinker and enough control to avoid walks. The latter part tends to be a problem for him. The sinker is unhittable because it has crazy movement. It’s a very hard pitch to control in the strike zone. When hitters are patient, they can rack up the walks and force him to throw easier pitches in the zone. The Blue Jays are always a tough matchup.

Kyle Gibson is all about balls in play. While the Tigers won’t have the platoon advantage, they do tend to hit the ball hard when they put it in play.

Jeff Locke has funny numbers through two starts. He has a 5.11 ERA and a 1.71 FIP. If he can keep up the very low walk rate, he may even be viable. Personally, I’m betting on heavy regression, even against the Marlins.

Homer prone Tim Lincecum is exactly the kind of pitcher to target at Coors Field (okay, maybe this is a lot less exciting at AT&T Park). He’s allowed a lot of home runs over the last two and a half seasons, and we all know how Coors Field can boost those deep shots.

Hitters (power): Assuming he starts, Corey Dickerson seems like an obvious choice against Lincecum.

John Jaso doesn’t fit in the power or speed category, but he’s useful against David Phelps.

Adam LaRoche will face Lance Lynn. He’s known to have a certain weakness for left-handed batters.

Hitters (speed): James Jones has a decent assignment against Nick Tepesch.

I like the prospect of Adam Eaton leading off against Jeremy Guthrie. That smells of a multi-hit game.

4. Table

The table below indicates which stadiums have the best conditions for hitters today. The color coding is a classic stoplight where green equals go for hitters. The weather conditions are from SI Weather’s home run app. A 10/10 means great atmospheric conditions for home runs. A 1/10 means lousy atmospheric conditions.

Five out of the 11 games could be affected by rain. Yikes. Philadelphia, New York, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, and Boston are the locations at risk. Boston is listed at 30 percent while the other four are 50 percent. As per the usual, monitor.

The Link. The stadiums and atmosphere favor offense. Rain and pitcher matchups make your work a little harder.

This post, covering one of the leading sites for daily fantasy, is sponsored and made possible by the generous support of FanDuel. FanGraphs maintains complete editorial control of the postings, and brings you these posts in a continued desire to provide the best analytical information on the latest in baseball.

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Brad is a former collegiate player who writes for FanGraphs, MLB Trade Rumors, The Hardball Times, RotoWorld, and The Fake Baseball. He's also the lead MLB editor for RotoBaller. Follow him on Twitter @BaseballATeam or email him here.

3 Responses to “The Daily Grind: 6-12-14 – Presented by FanDuel”

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  1. The Friday Rockies Giants game is played in SF.
    Recommendations are probably still valid though.
    What happened to Lincecum? Injury? Hitters finally got the book on him?

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    • Brad Johnson says:

      His stuff declined. He was never much of a pitcher, he just relied on dominant stuff. It’s been weird, he’s been homer prone for parts of 3 seasons, but it’s always been a different pitch allowing the dingers.

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  2. I think I like the Braves a lot more than you do – their biggest problem vs. right handers is striking out, and Chacin simply doesn’t have strikeout stuff. Especially on a day without other appeals stacks, rolling out a gang of Braves seems to have a ton of upside.

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