- Some words about park factors
- Daily DFS
- Friday Picks
1. More about Park Factors
Think about what’s included in a season-long park factor. Chilly April games, muggy August games, and everything in between. In some locales, conditions change so completely that the park can go from a pitchers venue to a favorite of hitters. You’re familiar with the Factor Grid below, however it’s based on full season park factors. In these summer months, we have to expect most parks to run slightly hotter. This was true in May too, April is the only month where there is strong evidence of lesser run scoring.
Wrigley Field is a particularly strong example. Prevailing winds blow in during April before flipping direction sometime in May. The stadium goes from slightly pitcher friendly to hitter friendly, yet the park factor mixes it all together. It’s just something to consider.
2. Thin Thursday
We have 11 games today. There was no rainout yesterday after all.
Early: Five games fit the early bucket including a 12:35 ET start. Don’t forget to edit your entries.
There aren’t many stacks you’ll want to target, but the game in Tampa Bay features two mediocre pitchers. As we discussed yesterday, Jake Odorizzi appears to be among the kings of bad luck. I don’t always rush to dismiss the possibility that a back-of-the-rotation guy like Odorizzi is just unusually hittable. Jacob Turner has the same luck profile, just less so. He’s probably the more exploitable of the two.
J.A. Happ has to work through a very tough Detroit Tigers lineup. They’re very right-handed and feature some cost effective lefty mashers too.
Kyle Kendrick isn’t the best target for a stack, but you can find worse matchups for roster patches.
Late: We have six games this evening and they all start before 9:00 PM ET.
The Los Angeles Angels feature a fearsome lineup. Brad Peacock is usually pretty exploitable, especially in a shallow pool of games. On the other side of the matchup is Tyler Skaggs. He’s a mid-tier pitcher, so you can patch a couple guys in against him like George Springer.
Chris Tillman and Colby Lewis are both quite hittable. Tillman’s combination of decreased velocity and increased walk rate is worrisome. Lewis’ problem is a whopping .401 BABIP. Is he unlucky or throwing beach balls?
Since there aren’t many games, I’ll mention Kevin Correia. He allows a ton of balls in play, so he lives and dies by his defense. The Brewers aren’t particularly well-suited to hammer him.
3. Friday Picks
Pitchers to Start: Marcus Stroman is an interesting if risky play tomorrow at the Rogers Centre. The Cardinals feature an average offense against right-handed pitching. The young Stroman is throwing 94 mph gas and had a lovely first start against the Royals last week. His 7.30 ERA is terrifyingly high, but he has a 2.98 FIP and xFIP.
Rubby De La Rosa was dominant in his 2014 debut. He’ll have a tougher opponent tomorrow – the Detroit Tigers. Consider this a high-risk, high reward play. You may want to consider stashing him.
I don’t often has the urge to recommend Erik Bedard. As we know Tropicana Field is a pitcher’s park. The Seattle Mariners have the fourth worst offense against lefties.
The early results from Chase Whitley have been good. He mixes up his pitches and isn’t walking many hitters. I think that’s good enough to use against the Royals no power offense.
Phil Hughes is easy to use at home against the Astros. His ownership is shooting up, so he might not be available to you any longer.
As if there were enough youngin’s, the Rockies Eddie Butler will make his major league debut. His strikeout rate was way down this year in the minors and the game is at Coors Field, so I’m not overeager to jump on this one. You may want to stash him all the same.
Veteran Brandon McCarthy continues to post fantastic peripherals and lousy run results. I’ll continue to bet on the peripherals taking over. The Braves are among the worst teams against right-handed pitching.
Pitchers to Exploit: Both Tommy Milone and Wei-Yin Chen have a less-than-pleasant stadium matchup with Camden Yards. Both offenses feature enough right-handed power to make this a dodgy day for these two pitchers.
The Angels can probably get to Andre Rienzo. He’s fine for the back of a rotation, but he’s not going to have too many strong outings.
Jeremy Guthrie allows plenty of balls in play, which isn’t a great thing at Yankee Stadium. Line up for the short porch in right field.
Derek Norris mashes lefties. Chen is a lefty. Case closed.
Craig Gentry sometimes leads off against lefties. He did yesterday.
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.
The evening has several storm risks. None are listed as higher than 50 percent, so monitor them. Yesterday’s 100 percent chance of rain turned into 10 percent by game time, so these things can change abruptly. The possibly affected games are in Minnesota, Kansas City, and Colorado.
The Link. Both contest times have options from all three colors. Huzzah.
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