I remember a time not long ago. A time when the #Barves were the Braves. I think said time predates the hashtag phenomenon which makes it, like, sooooo old. Before Fredi got Fired and even more importantly, before Freddy Got Fingered, you could count on three things: death, taxes, and the Braves reaching the playoffs. From 1991 to 1998, three Braves pitchers won six Cy Youngs. and the 90’s and early 2000’s were filled with Braves bats you’d love to roster in the current DFS world. Fred McGriff, David Justice, Andruw Jones, Chipper Jones, and Ron Gant, just to name a few. The Braves looked like they’d never come down from their perch…and now enter the dystopian future of Atlanta. Nick Markakis is your leadoff hitter. Retreads like Chase d’Arnaud and Gordon Beckham solidify your infield. Your most feared hitter is Freddie Freeman who is good, don’t get me wrong, but he bats like Adrian Gonzalez and Gonzo is eight years his senior. It’s a team that lacks identity, cohesion, meat in the middle of the lineup, pitching…yeah, we’re looking at the bleakest roster in MLB right now. Man, that’s depressing, I need something to cheer me up. I know, I’ll start a pitcher against their sorry a$$es! Those double dollar signs are me telling you you’re gonna rake in the dough starting Francisco Liriano tonight against these #Barves. They are bad and they only get worse when facing a lefty so gear up for a potential banner night for Francisco. But now that we’ve covered that, we need to move along so let’s do this. Here’s my nobel prize winning taeks for this Wednesday DK slate…
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Gio Gonzalez, SP: $9,300 – The Mets have been a pretty cold team over the last 14 days and actually the coldest team over the last 7. That last 7 marker is even more disturbing considering it includes a three game trip to Coors. When you’re hot you’re hot and when you’re not, you’re the Mets. Factor in how lefty dominant the Mets lineup is and you’ll quickly realize you can’t say ‘Gio’ without spelling ‘Go’. Not sure what that means, but it’s clear I’m sending you a sense of urgency here. Abide!
Drew Pomeranz, SP: $8,900 – If you’re wondering how I feel about the guy on the other side of the rubber…first off, don’t say guy on the other side of the rubber and secondly – and more importantly – Johnny Cueto is a great cash game option tonight. He’ll also be highly owned which more than likely means Drew won’t be. Law of averages, kiddies. I know the Giants don’t strike out much as a whole, but you don’t find yourself in the top 10 for SwSt% without showing some above average talent. I’m shaking my Pom Pom in both cash and tourneys today.
Julio Teheran, SP: $8,400 – It gets gross quickly, brosephs and…brosettes??? Think I just said dude lady there…regardless, it’s not a fun slate for finding a good, cheap SP2 unless they finally price Mike Clevinger as he takes the bump against the Reds. Teheran has been…not Teh-rrible? Teh-olerable? That’s probably the best pun word, let’s go with it. Couple that with the Pirates likely only having a maximum of two lefty bats in the lineup – ok, three if you’re counting Liriano because of semantics and because you’re kind of a jerk – and you have a spot where Julio could have you saying Juli-$hit. How many times can I curse in this post with dollar sign edits? I’m not asking for permission; I’m the editor I do what I want, I’m just looking for an over/under.
Brian McCann, C: $3,900 – So, the question is gonna be this: which is more popular, a Yanks stack against a struggling pitcher or a Shelby Miller start against a struggling offense? Things could get ugly quick in Coors south and I tend to lean towards the patience of the Yanks bats to prevail. I’m predicting more conga line offense than bombs dropping everywhere but hey, 0/1 with an RBI, three walks, and three runs scored is still 14 points, right? I don’t know if I’m going full stack here but if you’re backfilling, consider Mark Teixeira, Carlos Beltran, Starlin Castro, or Jacoby Ellsbury.
Josh Thole, C: $2,600 – I went on a punt hunt and came up with this stupid c…atcher. There are times for dope rhymes and that was not one of them. Dickey’s on the mound, Thole will be behind the dish. End of analysis.
Anthony Rizzo, 1B: $5,100 – The Cubs stack failed us yesterday to the tune of the team getting no hit for nearly 8 innings. That hurt some wallets for sure. Of course, in the DFS world, you can’t play the jilted lover and make money. A re-up of the Cubs stack is a moral prerogative. Healthy doses of Kris Bryant, Dexter Fowler, and Ben Zobrist are more than allowable.
Chris Davis, 1B: $4,900 – This is a one off option. Walker’s numbers so far against lefties – albeit in a small sample size – shows someone who at first looks to be a lefty killer with his .222 wOBA against. But once you get a bit more advanced, you see the 1.27 HR/9 and the 4.20 xFIP. I have a secret Crush today and his name is Davis.
Edwin Encarnacion, 1B: $4,400 – Everyone is aware of Jake Odorizzi’s reverse splits at this point so I’m assuming this stack will be the most popular of the night. Jake away from the Trop against righties is like Aunt Opal with IBS out on the town with you eating cart food: it’s bound to end in runs. Give me the solid two, three, four here with Josh Donaldson, Jose Bautista, and EE and if you wanna push in Troy Tulowitski and Kevin Pillar, you have my blessing.
Brett Lawrie, 2B: $3,600 – More stacks? Ooph, yeah probably. There’s no way Doug Fister doesn’t end up on everyone’s target list tonight. Like the Yankees, I’d rather backfill here since the heat will be strong. If you’re curious why I try and avoid the most popular stack, go look at what happened to the Cubs last night.
Nolan Arenado, 3B: $4,500 – Nolan hasn’t hit a HR in about a week. That’s far too long for the MLB HR leader to hit the snooze button on his power. Look for declining Adam Wainwright to serve up a few meatballs.
Luis Valbuena, 3B: $3,500 – If you’re looking to pay down, take a gander at this hitter who’s hitting like crap…hrm, maybe I should work on my sales pitch. He’s going against Latos. There, that’s better. Fister vs Latos has 12-10 written all over it, while a Fister vs Dallas Latos has the future revenue for Mat and his household written all over it.
Aledmys Diaz, SS: $3,600 – When your seven spot hitter has an OPS over 1.000, it’s time to think about a lineup change. At least that’s what I would think, but what do I know, right? Whatevs, Diaz has been killing the ball all season. He don’t need no five ABs to give you goodness, he’ll do it in three to four.
Nelson Cruz, OF: $4,300 – With Crush and Cruz hitting bombs in Camden Yards today, it’ll be like 2014 all over again. Chris Tillman is a guy that was known for his reverse splits coming into the season, but so far hasn’t presented it. He’s also a guy sitting there with an xFIP of 4.00 despite the pretty 2.58 ERA. I’m not following up a Mariners stack night with another (and yes I stacked Mariners last night and yes I enjoyed it, thanks for asking), but I’ll take the one off and hope he puts Tillman in a full Nelson.
Rajai Davis, OF: $3,500 – Davis has been batting leadoff against lefties and gets a rookie pitcher in Brandon Finnegan who has been slowly turning into a pumpkin while he learns the MLB ropes. Another stack? Sigh, probably another stack…
Brandon Drury, 3B/OF: $2,600 – The Dbacks play mix and match every night so it’s hard to tell when you’ll get a Drury siting, but at this price, be on the lookout.
I’m Only Happy When It Rains
I’ll drop this Beatles style…via Eddie Murphy. Worse than a Rick Roll? You know it!
Doing Lines In Vegas
For a day in which I expected huge run totals across the board, Vegas is muting a lot of my enthusiasm. There’s only one game at 9 or above which is ARZvsNYY and that one already had a half run shaved off. That said, plenty of games sitting at 8 or 8.5 today with only SDvsSF, PITvsATL, and NYMvsWAS sitting below that marker. Like I said, this pitching slate ain’t purty. If you’re looking for a big line leader for the night, you’ve got the lead Liriano and his Buccos at -200. After him, you’re looking to John Lackey at -170. You could get bold and go to Waino’s -160 but that line is already down from -180 to open. I’ll pass there. All this to say, you better nail pitching tonight, there’s a lot that could go wrong and seemingly few options that are gonna go right.