Yeah, can’t top the start at this point. Shark done been jumped, peeps, we gotta find a new road to venture down cuz you can’t climax at the title and then tease the rest of the time…dang it, phrasing! Segueing away from this mess…the knuckle ball. It’s a curious thing. It does it’s own thing so when it comes to making a call on a knuckle ball pitcher, you have to start with two key points. One, is the pitcher ‘on’ currently? Well, R.A. Dickey has three straight 25+ DK point games to his credit so check that box. Two, how does the team fare against him/knuckle ballers in general? You see, BvP is a bit of a sticky subject in our little world that we fantasy baseball guys live in. It’s not a huge part of my research, personally…unless said pitcher is a knuckler. Overall, the Yankees as a team haven’t done well against Dickey since his return to the AL in 2013. Over 8 games, Dickey has owned the Bronx Bombers to the tune of a 1.98 ERA to go with a 0.97 WHIP and has averaged close to 7 IP per start. Now the Ks haven’t been anything special with a mere 6.67 K/9 during that span but in a tournament where Dickey has a chance to not only last long into a game but also get 4 points for a win, count me in at his current $6,600 asking price. When you factor in the current Yankees roster owns a mere .640 OPS off of R.A., it’s easy to find this matchup more enticing than at first glance. So let’s go forth together with Dickey in hand, dear friends, and see where it gets us…ugh, yeah, phrasing. Let’s move on shall we? Here’s my other throbbing hot takes for this Friday DK slate…
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Jose Fernandez, SP: $13,000 – Clayton Kershaw is $15K? EL OH EL OH KAY. Though I do like Jacob deGrom, I’d rather he not face the DH so if I’m looking to spend up for cash games today, I’m looking Jo-Fer’s way against a depleted Atlanta lineup. Sorry Braves, when you bat a guy 6th whose Yugoslavian name translates to ‘Turd Sandwich’, you’re gonna get picked on.
Sonny Gray, SP: $11,200 – I don’t know about you but for me, I’m always on the lookout for a name that could get overlooked on such a top heavy pitching slate and methinks I’ve found it. The Astros are a dangerous offensive club overall but in the end, when you K a lot, you’re gonna get looked at by me and Gray could do some damage while going underowned.
Andrew Heaney, SP: $8,300 – We could hem and haw about the top tier plays all day but I’d rather get my hands dirty and do some actual work if I’m gonna be hangin around here. Orioles are still a whiff fest overall this season and haven’t shown well on the road as they own the third highest K% away from Camden Yards. Chris Davis is on a hot streak so he can and will be a constant factor to consider here but I don’t think Andrew is gonna be an L 7 Heaney in this start.
Jordan Zimmermann, SP: $7,500 – I never roster this guy. He never seems to fall into either of the two categories of safe, reasonably priced cash play or high upside GPP play…until today. If I’m doing multiple lineup constructions, I’m willing to look at the starter facing a Rockies club that owns the second highest K% on the road this year. Rocky Road…delicious!
Julio Teheran, SP: $7,200 – You’re not playing for the win here vs Jo-Fer but Teheran seems to have turned the corner of late minus an ugly start in Baltimore. Given Miami’s AAA lineup right now, kicking it with Julio down by the DK school yard isn’t a bad tourney go at all.
Aaron Nola, SP: $6,000 – I write these the night before so I don’t know who will and won’t be a popular topic but I’m going to guess Nola will be popular across the board today. Cheap pitcher who is a high end prospect pitching against San Diego you say? My guess is he’ll be suggested as your SP2 to pair with Kershaw or Jo-Fer. Basically what I’m saying is, just because he’s cheap doesn’t make him a good tourney play and in fact he might be a fade in that regards. Y’all been warned.
Josh Phegley, C: $2,900 – I’m not overly enthused about my catcher options today so I’m looking to punt as best I can. Phegley gets run vs lefties and even though said lefty is Kuechel, a hit and a run should all but cover this price point so you can pay up elsewhere.
Albert Pujols, 1B: $3,800 – On the year, Albert has hit 25 of his 30 HRs against righties and hits .50 points higher at home than he does on the road. Pujols is at home and against a righty. If you’re looking to pay up at pitcher tonight, here may be your diamond in the rough dong.
Adam Lind, 1B: $3,700 – Lance Lynn away from home is…well blech. He sits just under a 4.00 ERA away from St Louis so far this year and Miller Park has played very well to hitters so far this year. At this price range, I’m still heavier on Albert but if you put him in and see your Rem. Salary reads ‘-$100’ you now know what to do.
Justin Smoak, 1B: $2,500 – It’s days like this I wish DK had a UTIL spot. Yankees stadium plays as the second best stadium for LHHs behind Coors and Eovaldi has been eaten alive by southies all year, giving up a whopping .382 wOBA vs them. Make sure and check the Blue Jays lineup for the day and see if you can sneak a mini lefty stack of Dioneer Navarro, Ben Revere and even Ryan Goins for the punt factor. And actually, Goins is hitting well of late and may make my lineups regardless today.
Kolten Wong, 2B: $4,100 – He hasn’t been great of late but Miller Park for lefties is a haven and let me be not the first nor the last to say that Tyler Cravy scares no one. A Cards stack with Matt Carpenter and Jason Heyward would make a lot of sense to me. Does that make me Cravy? Possibly…
Jose Ramirez, 2B/SS: $2,800 – He’s been hitting lead off and getting on base at a decent clip since being called up. Walks and steals against the Twins is a thing, especially when the pitcher is Pelfrey. Could easily see him going 5x the salary with a walk, two swipes and a run.
Miguel Sano, 3B: $4,400 – When a pitcher like Cody Anderson gets figured out, it’s never pretty. When you only K 3.5 per 9, reality hits you hard, bro. I am not big on a full on Twins stack but I like the power that Sano brings against a guy who can’t miss bats.
Yunel Escobar, SS/3B: $3,500 – I’m more likely to play him at SS if I am going to play him at all but Yunel is a cash game play as he probably doesn’t give you a 15+ point game but against Jorge De La Rosa, ya never know. If you can’t tell, I’m more likely to punt my MI along with my catcher today.
J.D. Martinez, OF: $5,200 – Here’s where I’m throwing some money today. Joe Kelly has a very fast fast ball…a very fast, straight, hittable fastball. If you know anything about me and my writing and my man crushes, you’ll know Just Dongs Martinez is one of my guys and I can’t see a good reason to believe he doesn’t hit number 30 today.
Marlon Byrd, OF: $4,000 – Feels like I right this every week but…when there’s a lefty on the mound in a hitter’s park, flip me the Byrd.
Nolan Reimold, OF: $2,200 – I’ve been chucking out punts all day, might as well end on one. I suggested Heaney above but that doesn’t mean Reimold can’t shine. Buck is good at playing the splits and Nolan usually finds himself batting in the top 5 when a southpaw is on the mound. Looking back on this post, I’m basically giving you a cheat code to start Jo-Fer and Clayton Kershaw if you look really, really close. And maybe squint while you do. And now hold your tongue just right to the side. Now tilt your head. Now look around and see how many people are looking like you like you’re an idiot. Don’t ever play simon says with someone over the internet. You’ll lose every time!
I’m Only Happy When It Rains
There are no major weather concerns on the slate for tonight as of now but there are some strong winds out to right field in the OAKvsHOU game if you’re into that sort of thing.
Doing Lines In Vegas
There is a lot of run shaving off the opening lines today. So many, I feel it best y’all just go look for yourselves at this point. Overall, half of tonight’s games sit at 7 or under so hitting will be at a premium and a hard place to shop. If you’re looking for some safety, DETvsBOS and NYYvsTOR all sit at 9, though you know how I feel about the Toronto pitcher tonight so its not a line I’m following in full. In other news, the opening line for OAKvsHOU went from Gray a -120 favorite to a +105 underdog and he’s at home. I still think he can pitch well but keep in mind how bad the A’s bullpen has been all year and realize you probably aren’t getting the win if you roll with him. Overall there aren’t many heavy favorites tonight despite there being so many aces on the mound. Your biggest favorites on the night all sit at -155 as of right now, all shared between Zimm, James Shields, and Edinson Volquez and they’re all at home. Given how well the Phils offense has performed since the break, I do think Shields is a bit of a red herring for tonight’s slate and plan on avoiding him as others chase.