The Daily Grind: 7-12-14 – Presented by FanDuel


  1. Leveraging Psychology
  2. Daily DFS
  3. Sunday Picks
  4. Table

FanDuel has unleashed the World Fantasy Baseball Championship; a week-long, $5,000,000 celebration of Fantasy Baseball in Las Vegas! The WFBC has something for everyone, from the $250,000 single-entry championship, to the live $3,000,000 DFBC Final in Las Vegas.

Remember to use promocode FANGRAPHS to get your huge 100% deposit bonus up to $200. Click here to win your seat ticket.

1. Leveraging Psychology

Yesterday I discussed how to best misspell the word “compliment.” It can pay to be pleasant to trade with – I discuss the concept in more depth in the article.

2. Daily DFS

Early: Nine games are early with start times ranging from 3:05 to 4:10 ET.

Scott Carroll is always somebody to target. His only positive attribute is his ground ball rate, but that doesn’t make up for the number of base runners he allows. On the other side of the matchup is Zach McAllister. He’s pitched well during his minor league rehab, yet it might be worth a shot to see if he has jitters in his return. I’d lean towards flakier options.

Shane Greene is one of those flaky alternatives. He’s projected to provide an ERA between 5.00 and 6.00 over amy meaningful sample. That’s a lot worse than Masahiro Tanaka.

Despite decent peripherals, Edwin Jackson has performed poorly as a Cub. The Braves have enough thump and wallop to punish an opposing righty from time to time, even if they aren’t among the top teams against northpaws (in fact, they are the fourth worst).

Both sides of the Jake Peavy versus Brett Oberholtzer matchup have a bit of meltdown in them. They’re also good enough to turn in a solid outing, which makes stacking against them a real crap shoot.

Daisuke Matsuzaka continues to get through games with bad peripherals. One of these times he isn’t going to make it through a start.

Kevin Correia and Tyler Matzek make for easy targets in Colorado, assuming the game is played. Both pitchers have a 4.79 ERA. Matzek, a southpaw, will face a Twins lineup with a few mid-octane lefty mashers. Correia just has to deal with a Rockies lineup that kills it in Denver.

Late: The remaining six games are in the late contest. Unlike the day contest, there aren’t many stacking options.

Miles Mikolas has been chastised twice since the Rangers called upon him. His 12.46 ERA is buoyed by a .448 BABIP. His strikeout and walk numbers have actually been good – 21 percent strikeouts to five percent walks. I’ve yet to see him so I can’t offer my personal take, but the numbers tell me he could be an adequate back of the rotation guy. In any case, the Angels will probably spank him again today.

Paul Maholm hasn’t started in awhile, but he’ll fill in for Josh Beckett today. I’m not sure why Maholm wasn’t given an opportunity for a larger role with another organization. He’s typically unremarkable as a starter, but his strikeout rate is inexplicably low this season. In any case, expect only a few innings.

3. Sunday Picks

Pitchers to Start: John Danks usually appears in the other side of this section. The Indians remain one of the worst teams against left-handed pitching. Progressive Field is also well suited for southpaws. Just don’t expect strikeouts or a dominating performance. The best this one offers is a shot at a win heading into the All Star break.

R.A. Dickey‘s always hard to predict. On the one hand, his matchup against the Rays is a pretty good one. On the other hand, his results seem utterly divorced from matchup quality. The other side of this game features David Price, so maybe it’s not worth the risk.

Chase Anderson isn’t overly impressive, but he has an air of “good enough,” with a hint of upside. A 10 percent swinging strike rate portends more punch outs in the future. His biggest issue has been a high home run rate, which is a problem from a fly ball pitcher.

Pitchers to Exploit: There was a point early in the season where I thought Brad Hand was a potential breakout candidate. He’s posted strong strikeout and walk numbers in his recent minor league stops, but he’s failed to translate those to the majors.

Bruce Chen is back – Tigers hitters rejoice. That’s what I expect the headline to read on Monday. Chen is a very poor man’s Jamie Moyer; he can keep the opponent off balance with his varied mix of soft, softer, and softer still. He’s opposed by Justin Verlander, who’s turned into a back of the rotation pitcher this season.

Clay Buchholz has allowed home runs in bunches since returning from the disabled list. Seems like a good time to grab an Astro or two.

The Braves remain one of the best teams against left-handed pitching. Travis Wood remains much worse against right-handed hitters. For his career, his platoon split is a .323 wOBA against righties compared to .268 for lefties. This season, he’s at .366 and .231 respectively.

I think Scott Baker could still survive as a major league starter if his home park were something like AT&T Park. Globular Life Park is not the right place for the extreme fly ball pitcher. Load up on Angels.

I love Phil Hughes at Target Field. That was a great move for his career. However, I think I’ll take the under at Coors Field. He’s opposed by Brett Anderson in his first start back from the disabled list. Who knows what’s you’re going to get from him? Probably an open roster spot when he goes back on the disabled list. Bet you didn’t see that DL joke coming.

The Yankees have TBA scheduled for tomorrow, which could honestly be anybody. Were I them, I would start Adam Warren and bullpen it. They’ll have three days off after all.

Hitters (power): Hang onto Plouffe for another day at Worst Beer Park.

Jon Singleton and Chris Carter are good pure power plays tomorrow.

Eric Campbell should start at first for the Mets. He seems ok in a Dan Johnson sort of way.

Ryan Raburn and Yan Gomes are worth a look against Danks.

Hitters (speed): Brock Holt and Mookie Betts (if he starts) make for good stolen base options. Betts much more than Holt.

Rajai Davis and Austin Jackson have the platoon advantage against Chen. One of them is liable to sit.

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.

Games in Chicago and Denver have a 50 to 60 percent chance of storms today. Tread lightly.

The Link. No time to pull the weather ratings. I warned you yesterday today could be spartan.

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.

Print This Post

The critics love The Daily Grind! "Reading these every day is like watching one man's slow descent into insanity." - Thomas ..... Follow Brad on Twitter @BaseballATeam or email him here.

Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted

As much as I love Dickey, for a fantasy perspective, his walks and fairly high WHIP will hurt more than help. I tend to stay away from him in general, but he’s still fun to watch.