- Double Down on Effort
- Daily DFS
- Saturday Picks
1. Double Down on Effort
We’re over two months into the season. The daily grind is starting to wear on most owners, but now is the time to power through your fatigue. This is when championships are won. Everyone gives their all in April and all the relevant teams bust their hump in September. The time in between is when almost every owner grows lax. If you’re still plugging away while your rivals are taking a nap, you can make up some major ground in the standings.
Case in point, I had one expert league where I really flopped hard in April. A bad month from Miguel Cabrera didn’t help, but my problems went beyond him. I’ve since climbed from 13th to 5th simply by virtue of fielding a complete roster most days. It’s mostly a scrubs and scrubs unit, but I’ve managed the categories up to respectability (aside from my complete punt of SB). Now it’s time to give the team a face lift via trade.
2. Daily DFS
Early: The Cubs have an afternoon game, so they won’t be a part of any DFS contest. Sorry to anyone who wanted to use Nate Eovaldi or Jason Hammel.
Late: The other 14 games are grouped together. Tonight features a lot of useful pitchers, so there aren’t many obvious stacks.
As per my post yesterday, the Athletics and Orioles have both performed fairly well against left-handed pitchers. Tommy Milone and Wei-Yin Chen are decent, but the combination of matchup and Camden Yards makes them borderline exploitable.
Feel free to go after Brandon Cumpton. He’s a balls in play fiend, so you’ll be betting on bad luck in a pitcher friendly stadium. There are better and worse bets to be made.
Eddie Butler makes his major league debut at Coors Field. Targeting the debut of a top prospect is a real shot in the dark, yet his recent minor league numbers weren’t all that impressive.
Andre Rienzo is decidedly mediocre. The Angels have an impressive offense, but their home park isn’t hitter friendly.
3. Saturday Picks
Pitchers to Start: The St. Louis Cardinals have been among the worst teams in baseball against left-handed pitching, so think about using soft-tosser Mark Buerhle.
The Rangers’ lineup isn’t particularly deep at the moment, so Cleveland right-hander Jose Tomlin could be worth a shot. He’s a pure command and control guy plus he allows plenty of fly balls, so there is the potential for multiple home runs.
The biggest downside to Blake Treinin is whether he can last more than five or six innings. A matchup against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park is definitely desirable.
Pitchers to Exploit: The very left-handed Indians will face Nick Tepesch. In his brief major league career, lefties have hammered him to the tune of a .293/.353/.508 line.
The worst offense in baseball – the Chicago Cubs – happens to rank ninth best against left-handed pitching. So you can still target them against veteran lefty Randy Wolf.
Roberto Hernandez has days when he doesn’t allow any fly balls. Those he does allow seem to have a high risk of leaving the yard. A game in Cincinnati will not help his HR/FB ratio.
The Athletics are one of three offenses to be substantially above average against lefties and righties. Tomorrow, they’ll face righty Miguel Gonzalez. He’s a fly ball pitcher who allows a slightly above average rate of home runs. Not a good combination for Camden Yards. He ought to sign on with the Twinkies if and when he reaches free agency.
Per my research yesterday, the Braves have been otherworldly against left-handed starters. They play in Arizona tomorrow, which is an actual hitter friendly locale (unlike Atlanta). They’re opposed by Wade Miley. I expect fireworks.
Hitters (power): Chris Johnson is probably among your league’s available hitters. His matchup with Miley is worth a look.
John Jaso doesn’t fit in the power or speed section, but he will probably bat second against Gonzalez, and he’s a good bet for an OBP around .400.
Sean Rodriguez will have the platoon advantage tomorrow. His best attributes are his free availability and flexibility.
Junior Lake is getting prime time reps in the Cubs lineup. He’ll face Wolf tomorrow.
Hitters (speed): Matt Shoemaker appears to be an adequate pitcher. Both Adam Eaton and Conor Gillaspie are adequate hitters. Adequacy squared still equals adequate. In other words, you can start these guys but don’t expect the world of them.
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.
There’s a chance for thunderstorms in Colorado tonight. Since it’s an obvious target, be careful.
The Link. Since tonights matchups lack big stacks, you’ll want to target hitter friendly stadiums.
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