As the season progresses, we get these lovely things called ‘stats’. And with those stats, as they build and build, we get ‘stabilization of stats’. But sometimes you’re kinda in between and gotta start reading some tea leaves to beat others to the rush. With that, I started looking at Taijuan Walker and his miniscule $6,800 price tag. I mean, minus his last start, his stats looked really solid for the year as I’m fairly certain his ERA was sub-3 prior to the debacle in Texas. Then I realized: he likes homeschooling. Maybe he’s just a young pitcher still learning the ropes. Maybe he lets it fly at home because he knows the ballpark helps. Whatever it is, his home vs road splits are night and day and thankfully he’s at home…which I think is day in that metaphor. Regardless, at home Walker is rocking a 3.48 ERA backed by a 3.51 xFIP. Top that off with an 8.93 K/9 and a 1.96 BB/9, and you’re looking at some fairly elite stats over 41 IP so far. Given the cost and the big arms on the mound, making Walker your SP2 makes a lot of cents (see what I did there!). So Walker with me will you as we take a look at my taeks for this Wednesday DK slate…
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Noah Syndergaard, SP: $12.400 – This is gonna be opposite day. With hyped prospect Jameson Taillon making his major league debut and being relatively cheap, do people swipe left on Synder? Something tells me we’re gonna see a lot of high ownership on Taillon which will naturally push down the ownership on Noah. Spending up in a tourney could have you wielding Thor’s hammer at the end of the night. Please don’t read that as a euphemism, you’re weirding me out.
Yu Darvish, SP: $11,000 – Expensive pitchers are good! Who knew, right? Astros are still a huge K machine this year so no need to avoid Darvish in any format. How do Yu want it? How do Yu feel? Playing Darvish in a cash game or for tourney fame, he’s for real. Bee Tee Dubs, there’s nothing wrong with rostering Max Scherzer today save the price for being a flyball pitcher in a homer friendly park.
Wei-Yin Chen, SP: $7,900 – The Twins have been a lost cause all year and losing Sano hasn’t made things any better. After lefty Adam Conley mowed eight of them down last night, the Twins now have a 24.8% K rate against southpaws on the year. With that, I’m Wei-Yin the odds in Chen’s favor to be a solid SP2 on this slate in both formats.
Ricky Nolasco, SP: $6,900 – Time to get down, to get gross, and to get ugly. Nolasco is the desperation hookup at the end of a long night at the bar. BTW, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, you weren’t no catch either…but I digress, the Marlins have been playing poorly of late and Nolasco has been pitching well. Not great! Just…well. If you wanna spend up on bats for the day, a combo of Nolasco and Walker will give you heart palpitations for a good five hours. Minus the extra scratch, I assume that’s what you’re into if you’re playing tourneys with Ricky.
Brian McCann, C: $3,600 – Jonathan Lucroy is fine if you’re Brew crew stackin’, but Weaver against a lefty in a lefty friendly park? That’s for me. If you wanna do a Yankees stack, I am on board. Gimme some Carlos Beltran, Jacoby Ellsbury, Brett Gardner, and even Alex Rodriguez if you wanna go a full five.
Matt Adams, 1B: $3,900 – Alfredo Simon against a lefty in GABP? I just Lonely Island‘d thinking about it. More than likely the most popular stack for the night. You have the pick of the litter here but Brandon Moss and Matt Carpenter are also great one offs if you don’t follow the full stack mentality.
Scott Van Slyke, 1B/OF: $3,500 – If you can’t tell, spending down at pitching today isn’t a requirement. With lefty Chris Rusin on the mound, SVS is fully in play as is Trayce Thompson and Kike Hernandez. I’m not suggesting stack here but feel free to sprinkle Los Doyers where you need to fill a roster gap.
Scooter Gennett, 2B: $4,000 – Jesse Hahn’s splits and current performance don’t bode well for him vs lefties. Well, it doesn’t bode well against anyone really, but…anyhoo, Scoots should be a solid tourney play with his recent struggles and a raised 4K price tag. Brewers in general are in play but if you’re going with a one off, I’d also consider Jonathan Villar or either of the lefty outfielders if they play.
Adrian Beltre, 3B: $4,300 – Two things Beltre refuses in life: walks and head rubs. Since we don’t care what Elvis Andrus does, Beltre vs Fister’s walk tendencies just means Beltre is gonna have a chance for a couple of 10 pitch ABs. Could he get a HR out of one? Definitely. Could he get a head pat out of it as well? Take it up with Andrus.
Kelby Tomlinson, SS: $2,700 – Today feels like a good day to just take the SS from your stack and move on. Tomlinson is a great cash relief, but you’re not paying for fireworks down here.
Bryce Harper, OF: $4,300 – Feels like forever ago that we talked about Harper being the easy call for a HR on the night. Now he’s not even batting .250 and just struggling in general. Cut him! For realsies, Shields and his issues with lefties is well documented. US Cellular Field isn’t a lefty haven but at this price, I’m willing to kick the tires on this ‘failed prospect’.
I’m Only Happy When It Rains
If you’re an early bird and want to play the PHIvsCHC game, just be aware there are thunderstorm warnings. At the very least, there could be a lengthy delay, but it’d be wise to check back in on this one before lock. Outside of that, good day sunshine.
Doing Lines In Vegas
For a day with such expensive pitching, there aren’t many big lines to back things up. John Lackey and the Cubs in the early slate have the biggest line at -190 with Kenta Maeda and his Dodgers holding a -175 for the big line for the evening. Basically, you’re paying for K’s tonight, folks, not necessarily a victory. If you’re looking for runs, look no further than TEXvsHOU, MINvsMIA, and MILvsOAK as they sit at 9. Meanwhile the big numbers game of the night is CINvsSTL at 9.5. The Big Pasta will make sure all those Cardinals stay full, but don’t forget there’s some runs to be had by the Reds as well, especially if you’re stacking.