I also considered “Yas Many More Holmbergers Please” but the title isn’t really what’s important here. What’s important is how awful David Holmberg is and how happy I am to load up on some Diamondbacks this evening, especially AJ Pollock. First, let’s touch on the dumpster fire that is David Holmberg. Well, he has a 5.95 ERA for starters. That could be a small sample size, though, as he’s only pitched in 4 games and is fresh off a 2 IP, 7 ER outing at the Dodgers. So, before that trainwreck was a 3.06 ERA. Not too shabby you say. Well, his FIP and xFIP tell a different story, they are 7.33 and 5.81 respectively and even before the 7 ER outing they were each sitting around a 4.90. We can even go back and take a look at last season’s 30 IP and see the 7.60 FIP and 5.86 xFIP. Those numbers are eerily similar to this year’s numbers through 19.2 IP. Holmberg has spread the love quite nicely with righties and lefties as each has a wOBA over .350, with righties earning a slight bump (.390) which is why we are focusing our attack there. In addition to all of this, all of Holmberg’s pitches have a negative value and his fastball has been especially bad this season. Guess who the second best fastball hitter (behind Goldy who is simply a beast vs. everyone and every pitch type) on the Diamondbacks is this year? AJ Pollock, come on that one was easy! Pollock is enjoying a very nice breakout season. One of the many great things about Pollock this season is it doesn’t matter who he’s facing, he’s raking. The trouble in DFS sometimes can be when you identify that mint matchup vs. a certain handed pitcher, only to have that pitcher pulled after 3 IP and 6 ER and you mint matchup goes out the window as your play is pulled for a pinch hitter. No fear with Pollock, he’s an equal opportunity masher. Here are Pollock’s slash lines plus wOBA vs. first righties: .309/.365/.471/.361 and then lefties: .316/.368/.490/.372. Pretty remarkable right? All this is to say Pollock is a stud and Holmberg is a dud, so fireworks should be in the air at Great American Ballpark tonight.
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Chris Sale, SP: $13,200 – There’s a slew of aces toeing the rubber tonight, making it tough to decide which way to go. I’m taking the easy way out and taking the guy facing a team second to last in runs scored in their home park. We all know that Seattle is very lefty heavy, which is why we love taking them facing weak righties in hitters parks. However, when they are at home facing an elite lefty, it’s lights out for them.
Masahiro Tanaka, SP: $9,800 – So, we all thought Tanaka would be dead by now, right? Little did we know he has the ancient Japanese secret for pitching through torn ligaments. Well, as long as he has Japanese medicine on his side, we may as well take advantage until his arm does fall off. This is really just a price play where you’re getting ace upside for a fraction of ace pricing. Of course, the downside is your pitcher dies on the mound. Risk vs. reward I’d say.
John Lackey, SP: $9,100 – Lackey is the definition of old reliable. The big man hasn’t given up more than 3 runs in a start since June 8th. That game was in Colorado where you shouldn’t have started him anyway. Take that game out and you have to go all the way back to April 22nd to find the last time he’s given up more than 3 runs in a game. He won’t blow you away, but he’s about as consistent as they come. For a cash game play, I can’t think of much more of a sure thing than Lackey in Petco. Boring and reliable.
Rubby de la Rosa, SP: $7,000 – I’m admittedly a sucker for Rubby, have been since his days in the Dodger’s system. At first glance, there’s not much to be impressed about the kid (yes, he is just a kid still) with a 4.40 ERA. Just over a month ago that ERA was over 5, so we’re making progress here. The 3.80 xFIP shows he’s been getting a tad unlucky and it’s typically the gopher ball that plagues him. Pitching in Arizona doesn’t help matters much there and the same will be true in GAB tonight. It’s going to take brass ones to start him vs. the Reds in Cincinnati but when we dig into these cheap pitchers we’re just looking for upside. Rubby has nice velocity and a wipeout slider that makes me drool a little. If you haven’t given him a look before, try to catch his start and hope it’s not one of those times he goes out and gives up 9 ER.
John Jaso, C: $2,700 – Uh oh, strike up the revenge game narrative. Really though, we’ve just got a good hitting lefty catcher facing a “meh” righty. Oh, and he’s cheap as dirt.
Ben Paulsen, 1B/OF: $3,200 – Yes, there is a game at Coors field. Yes, Bartolo Colon has been a very large pile of hot garbage lately. Yes, you should fit as many Rockies bats into your lineup as you can possibly cram.
Justin Bour, 1B: $3,100 – I was all set to unload against Aaron Harang and the Phillies went and threw a wrench in my plan. No matter, Jerad Eickhoff is making his MLB debut and I’d expect some jitters from the kid. I like Bour for his occasional power and getting out of Crayola Canyon should only matters.
Stephen Drew, 2B/SS: $2,800 – Stop me if you’ve heard me tout Stephen Drew in my column before. He’s tonight’s BvP shocker special though. Facing off against Carlos Carrasco Drew is 3 for 9 with 2 HRs.
Anthony Rendon, 2B/3B: $2,800 – Ride this train until his price catches up to his talent. It’s going to happen and you’ll want to be there when it does.
Yasmany Tomas, 3B/OF: $3,800 – As I mentioned above, I almost made Yasmany my lede but opted for the total stud instead. That’s not to say Yasmany is any slouch, but the Cuban is no Pollock. The Diamondbacks are the best non-Coors stack of the night, so do what we do and load on up.
Adrian Beltre, 3B: $3,700 – Beltre has a pretty good sample size vs. Verlander and it’s in Beltre’s favor. He is 13 for 42 with a HR off the former Cy Young winner and could be an overlooked option tonight. Overlooked options that have big nights are the biggest difference makers so take note.
Wilmer Flores, 2B/SS: $3,900 – I typically like to cheap out at shortstop, but I’m so drawn to Wilmer’s power in Coors field that I can’t help myself. Of course, this means Terry Collins will start Ruben Tejada over him just to spite me.
Juan Lagares, OF: $3,500 – I really try to not just list every Rockie/Opposing Team player when there’s a game at Coors and instead try to point out the guys whose prices aren’t inflated beyond all recognition, iBAR for short. Lagares has been getting looks at the leadoff spot again and I really think it’s the best spot for him and the Mets. I’d have loved if they’d have kept him their all season but alas. Keep an eye on the lineup and if Lagares is once again at the top, at this price he’s going to be very difficult to fade.
Anthony Gose, OF: $3,500 – Ahh Rangers pitching, how I love to pick on thee. Gose has been en fuego lately with a HR and 3 SBs in his last handful of games. The Tigers have won 3 straight and look to be foggin up the mirror under their nose. That means runs for Gose. I don’t see Colby Lewis providing much resistance either, so fire away.
Jake Smolinski, OF: $2,000 – Joe Smo’s cousin, Jake was just recently recalled from AAA when Ike Davis hit the DL. He should be used against lefties most nights and is a super-deep sleeper when he’s in there. He’s basically free and if you’ve stacked Coors and Goldy/Pollock you may need some salary cap help. Drew Smyly is fresh off the DL and just gave up 7 hits, 2 HRs and 5 ERs last time out. Couple that with the 9.00 ERA he had throughout his rehab starts and you might think the Rays rushed him back a bit before he was ready. Until he has a decent outing I’ll be looking to stack righties up against him.
I’m Only Happy When It Rains
It looks like the North East could be in for some trouble tonight as New York and Boston forecasts both feature pictures of gray clouds with rain drops throughout game time. Elsewhere, we’re free and clear.
Doing Lines In Vegas
Outside of Coors three games have the highest over/under with 8.5 runs. Those games are [email protected], [email protected] and [email protected] The lowest over/under is the Sale/King Felix tilt which boasts a 6 run total. The biggest favorite on the night is Baltimore and Wei-Yin Chen. With an 8.5 over/under however, I’m staying far, far away. If you’re interested in a full day slate featuring the loan 4 pm game, [email protected] Kyle Hendricks and the Cubbies are -210 favorites. I had a Hendricks blurb all written up before I realized it was an oddball Friday early game. Needless to say, I approve of the play.