There are few things less terrifying than a close encounter with a bear in the wild. The National Park Service (NPS) says that if you do, there are a few tips to follow:

  • Stand your ground, and slowly wave your arms–Seems like that may stir the bear up, but I’ve watched the Detroit Tigers slowly wave their bat-holding arms at Seattle’s pitchers the last few days to no avail. The Detroit batters have flailed their bat-holding arms so futilely that they’re two shutouts away from MLB officially changing their name to the Motor City Kitties.
  • Make yourself look as large as possible–I guess we should only hike with Aaron Judge and Oneil Cruz.
  • Be especially cautious if you see a female with cubs–If you run into this scenario, just tuck your head and smooch your keister goodbye. Unless…you beat Cubs with a Bear.

And that Bear is The Bear, Jordan Montgomery (FD $9,600/DK $9,200). In his last 31 days (and 31 IP), Jor-Mont is 4-0 with a 1.76 ERA/0.82 WHIP, with a 28:4 BB:K. Meanwhile, Harrison Bader is busy studying the center field layouts in AL parks in case he gets an 8th inning defensive appearance in the playoffs. Streamonator has Montgomery 4th today, but there’s zero chance I’m not rolling with the only thing on planet Earth hotter than Ichiro’s “hotter than” joke (if you haven’t heard it, Google it. Not at work, though!). The Cubs are in the bottom third of the league vs LHPs and I’m not foolish enough to bet against Jack Nicklaus’s grandson at home during an incredible hot streak.

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Alek Manoah, SP: FD $11,000 – Streamonator has Charlie Morton as its top pick today, and I get it–Morton is making opposing batters salty. He’s facing the Marlins (which is good!) but the Marlins pitcher is Sandy Alcantara (which is bad for Charlie’s win chances!), so I’m backing Manoah as well. He’s on the road in Pittsburgh, and I doubt Beede will be throwing BB’s to the Blue Jay hitters, so expect Toronto to put up enough runs for Manoah to cruise to victory (according to Streamonator, he’s got the highest percentage chance at victory of any pitcher on the slate Friday).

Sean Murphy, C: FD $3,000/DK $4,600 – Murphy probably won’t flip the page on his calendar, as his August saw him wallop five HRs while triple-slashing .330/.442/.553. The A’s are happy with the performance, but only because it drives his trade price up this offseason so they can clear room for Shea Langeliers.

Gavin Sheets, 1B: FD $3,200/DK OF-only) – With ILoy Jimenez (thanks, Grey!) filling his reservation at rehab center (two more punches on his card and he gets a free roll of kinesthetic tape), Sheets is going to see plenty of ABs, and he’s hit three homers (and knocked in nine runs) in his last 18 ABs.

Keston Hiura, 2B: FD $3,000/DK 1B-only – Pick your Brewer here–you could also roll with Kolten Wong, who is 13th on the Razzbal player rater the last seven days. Hiura cleaned up some swing mechanics and may be ready to deliver on his hype, as he hit six homers in August and batted .286.

Max Muncy, 3B: FD $2,500/DK $5,100 – Yu Darvish is pretty darned good, but at this FD price, I’m happily riding Muncy’s seven-homer, .900+ OPS his last 31 days.

Nick Gordon, SS: FD $2,500/DK OF-only – You could play Gordon today for his eight hits the last seven days, his .986 OPS the last seven days, or because when the announcer says Nick Gordon faces Davis Martin, 10% of the crowd will turn around and look because these dudes have four first names.

Christian Yelich, OF: FD $3,400/DK $4,600 – Yelich is the 10th-ranked hitter today according to Hittertron, and I see why with his 1.000+ OPS and pair of homers the last seven days. 

Tyler O’Neill, OF: FD $3.300/DK $5,500 – TON is 4th on the Player Rater the last seven days, but get this–he only has four total hits. All four of those hits have been HRs, though. Could also go with his teammate Lars Nootbar today for the same price if you want some Cards leadoff goodness without the boom-or-bust TON has given the last seven days.

Stone Garrett, OF: FD $3,100/DK $2,300 – Metamorphic Mrs. Garrett has been scorching his last 12 ABs, with five hits and a pair of HRs. He’s a righty facing lefty Eric Lauer, and these D-back OFs have really been enjoying themselves offensively lately. Corbin Carroll should sit vs the lefty Lauer, so expect the righty Garrett to get the ABs to start.


I’m Only Happy When It Rains

@BallparkWeather says that there are clear skies across most of MLB, with only a couple of games with a low risk of a shower, but almost no chance of anything that would cause any game issues. The schedule is your oyster, playas.


Doing Lines In Vegas

Detroit and Kansas City are two of the worst six teams in MLB in giving up 1st inning runs, so I’m pounding the +240 on over 1.5 1st inning runs this game.