I get them all the time. The DFS man-crush. The players in the game that I latch onto and can’t stop rostering them, through the good times and bad. This isn’t a bad thing. In fact, when you know a guy is in a good spot, it’s important that you not bail like a newb at the first 0-4. Park is good, he’s making hard contact, the handedness is in his favor again, then don’t worry, just go with it. In fact, it may make sense to commit to a player for a whole week if he’s locked in and hitting with authority.
Right now my DFS crush has been J.D. Martinez and has been for almost two months. I’ve had exposure into J.D. almost every game for between 30-45 games and the results have been fantastic. He’s been the top hard contact/expected power player over the last 30 days and has launched 13 home runs over that period of time. There have been clunkers, too, but knowing he was going good and having the prices way below his production, those days were mere speed bumps on the way to the cash freeway.
Some crushes last shorter than others. The 2014 summer of Scooter Gennett was fun. Johnny Paredes had his week or two this season and Gerardo Parra has been on man crush status for some guys as long as I’ve been on Martinez. Parra is still inexpensive, too. The newest sensation is Kyle Schwarber in Chicago. The catcher eligible slugger popped two home runs and scored 40 points Tuesday night, which may have just made many a DFS player swoon right into crushdom.
They wear off eventually – everything has to come to an end, but it’s a fun ride.
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Jose Fernandez, SP: $10,000 – An even 10K for Jose Fernandez. His only gotcha is that he pitches on the Marlins, and as such he’s only a minor favorite (-130) against the Diamondbacks in Arizona. And while the Diamondbacks are certainly capable at home against RHP, Fernandez has put up these numbers over his last three starts: 2.22 SIERA, 17% swinging strike rate, 9.9 strikeouts per nine AB and an average velocity of 95.7 mph. I’ll take it.
Lance Lynn, SP: $9,900 – Not far behind is Lynn, who faces off against the toothless Chicago White Sox and their punching bag SP, LHP John Danks. Lynn isn’t just backing into this pick, however. In his last five starts, Lynn has posted a better-than-Jose 10.2 K/9 and a solid 3.27 SIERA. His control has been stable (3.4 K:BB ratio) so he should be a good bet to go deep into the game against the not-too-picky Sox, who have a 5% walk rate over the last 14 days.
Brian McCann, C: $3,900 – For me not to take a long look at rostering McCann against a RHP in Yankee Stadium would take an act of Schwarber to move me, and the Cubs aren’t on the slate, so the coast is clear for McCann against Kevin Gausman.
Albert Pujols, 1B: $4,500 – Kyle Pelfrey is a RHP but he’s an equal opportunity offense provider, so Pujols at a nice price for the elite bat he’s been, fits the bill.
Edwin Encarnacion, 1B: $3,500 – However, if you want to take advantage of a real deal, Encarnacion is reduced rate due to facing off against Sonny Gray in Oakland. Howevah….Encarnacion has picked it up big over the last seven and 30 days and Gray hasn’t been anywhere near elite for quite a while. His SIERA is mid 3s, his strikeouts are down and he’s a half step flat when he sings in the shower. Just sayin’.
Brian Dozier, 2B: $4,600 – Hard to pass up Dozier against a lefty, even if C.J. Wilson hasn’t been too bad against righties this season. Dozier is top-tier and worth the dollar if he fits.
Jose Altuve, 2B: $4,300 – It may be even harder to pass up Altuve in the same situation, especially if you prefer targeting Wade Miley over C.J. Wilson. Both games are expected to have a game total of eight, so flip a coin and roll with it.
Robinson Cano, 2B: $3,400 – But if you want to punt altogether, then Cano has been better than both recently and his game score is a nine. Anibal Sanchez has been even more hittable than Gray, and with Detroit being a good scoring park this season, Cano may just be the way to go.
Martin Prado, 3B: $3,200 – So we’re going to pinch a penny with these next two positions because you have to do it somewhere. Prado faces Robbie Ray, who hasn’t been a gas can but is very touchable, especially in the hitter friendly Chase Field.
Brad Miller, SS: $2,800 – Miller has been getting some premium at-bats and is top five at shortstop in expected power over the last 30 days, which means he’s hitting the ball really hard and in a nice scoring game against a not-dominant pitcher like Sanchez, at 2.8K Miller can provide some punch while also giving you some spending freedom.
Mookie Betts, OF: $4,100 – Betts has been much maligned for all the preseason hype, but he’s come across big over the last couple of months and has both regained his leadoff spot in Boston and also a lot of owner’s confidence. Minute Maid Park can certainly help righty power and Collin McHugh has fallen on mediocre times, sporting a 3.63 SIERA.
Randal Grichuk, OF: $4,200 – Grichuk is great against LHP and he has one of the worst in Danks in front of him tonight. Adding to the advantage of rostering Grichuk, who has a 1100 OPS vs. LHP over the last 30 days, is that he did not go off against Carlos Rodon Tuesday, meaning those burned (and there weren’t many even Tuesday) may shy away further, leaving you alone on a very productive island.
Chris Parmelee, OF: $2,000 – Bare mins for a guy who hits RHP well, has had an above average expected power rating since he’s been in the Orioles lineup and has been hitting fly balls at a 60% clip over the last week and 56 percent over the last 30 days. Great profile for a punt play that can pop a home run for you.
Seth Smith, OF: $3,100 – Last Mariner, I swear, but Seth Smith is a sneaky play and with Sanchez providing HRs at a 1.6 per 9 IP rate, Smith’s underlying power/hard contact metrics begs an chance to take advantage.
J.D. Martinez, OF: $4,900 – I am tempted to just say that I heart JDM, put a period on the sentence and be done with it. But, since I should provide more I’ll note that JD is going against a LHP (Montgomery), which he has crushed for a 1500+ OPS over the last 30 days. And even though Montgomery has been good, Vegas thinks he struggles a bit in Detroit and since he gives up a a homer per 9 IP, let’s go ahead and just assume Martinez gets it. No bias here whatsoever.
I’m Only Happy When It Rains
No rain, no crazy wind, no weather at all to speak of for this slate of games. The heat and air density in Houston and Arizona is somewhat hitter friendly, but those are two parks that folks target anyway, so it looks like weather won’t be a major part tomorrow, but always, always, always check as the lineups are coming in whether or not things have changed.
Doing Lines In Vegas
The Mariners/Tigers game is a nine total and that’s the highest of the night games. There is nothing crazy low, but the Blue Jays/A’s game is a seven game total and Sonny Gray is the top SP, odds wise, at -170.