At least, that’s what wise men say.  Thankfully for both you and I, I’m not one of those…wait, I mean…dammit, nevermind, you know what I mean.  I think?  Not good to start a recommendation blog off with trepidation but what can I say as I’m going for the unreliable narrator thing.  I mean, it worked for Chuck Palahniuk and who doesn’t love the anti-hero Tyler Durden?  So while I splice some rated X films into your kids’ movie, lemme tell you a little bit about Chris RusinOr better, yet let me tell you about his opponent, the Texas Rangers.  Or better than better yet, let me start by saying this: it’s a tourney only call.  I know, I know, anything goes in tourneys but hear me out.  The Rangers are an impressive offense overall so far this year, especially with how many projected them but there’s one thing they haven’t done well: hit left-handed pitching.  For the year, the Rangers have K’d 22.9% of the time vs southpaws and just got sat down by Keuchel on Sunday as he went 7 and struck out 13 while only giving up 2 hits.  Would I expect that from Rusin on Monday?  Hells to the no, children, but I expect the opportunity for at least 5 to 6 innings and perhaps 7 punch outs.  Given the low ownership he’ll garner and the minimal price tag of $4,800, Chris opens the doors to flood your lineup with all of the best bats in the prime spots…ya know, like Colorado, where he’s pitching.  It’s a gamble but it’s not one without its merit and I’ll be sure to be the fool that’ll Rusin today.  But enough about Elvis love songs, let’s get a little more country.  Here’s my ring of fire hot takes for the Monday DK slate…

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Andrew Heaney, SP: $8,400 – I wanna love this call.  I really do.  I wanna ask for it’s hand in marriage (but first ask its father out of respect) and then walk down the aisle to it and give it a passionate kiss.  All that said, Boston just doesn’t seem to K much even though they are near the bottom for wRC+ against lefty pitchers.  It feels like a lot of money for a guy that you’re praying can get 5 Ks but that’s what kind of day its going to be.  On the plus side, the rainout yesterday pushes Heaney to being the second pitcher of the day.  There’s no empirical data I could find so just take this for conjecture and do with it what you will: I like game two pitchers in double headers because I believe its harder for teams to stay up for said game after expending energy earlier in the day.  Now when he gives up 5 in 2.1 IP, we will know who’s to blame for this.

Gio Gonzalez, SP: $8,100 – Do I like Gio’s opponent in Matt Harvey today?  Of course.  Would I prefer to pick on the team who’s in the 16th inning on Sunday as I type this and who K’s 23.9% of the time against LHP on the year a bit more?  YUP.  I’m hoping for a GG from GG today.

Matt Moore, SP: $7,200 – I really don’t know what I’m doing here.  Moore had no control prior to Tommy John and it’s only been worse since his return…but it’s still the Phillies.  They don’t K much but they also are aggressive swingers and not in the way your parents are.  On a day like this, you’re looking for a great performance that seemingly doesn’t make sense on the surface, this one feels like just that.

Rubby de la Rosa, SP: $6,500 – Can I just go on record as saying I really don’t like the pitching choices for today’s slate?  Can I get an ‘amen’ while I’m at it?  Maybe even a #preach with that chick from OITNB to solidify it?  Thanks, I needed that.  The Marlins…well, they’re without Gordon and Stanton, easily the best offensive players they’ve had this year.  That said, they can get extremely left-handed and for that reason I suggest the Gem Of The Rose with some hedging.  I’ll want to see how many of their lefties the Marlins slide into their lineup before I commit to Rubby but he has merit on this slate.

John Jaso, C: $3,700 – I’m not all about spending up at C and I’m also not all about telling you that Colorado bats are in play.  They are.  FIN.  Just consider any and all bats playing there talked about.  Now can we move on, please?  Thanks.  I’m not even sure if the Rays can/will squeeze Jaso into the lineup on Monday since he’s their regular DH but maybe they put him behind the plate to get his bat in the game.  I mean, he IS a catcher by trade right…right?  I seriously don’t know anymore.  He’s marked as catcher everywhere and yet I don’t think he’s done that in about 2 years.  But whatevs, against a sub-par pitcher in a park that’s friendly to lefty bats, I’ll check in on Jingleheimer Schmidt.

A.J. Pierzynski, C: $3,600 – I haven’t given you a discount special here because I assume you know if the backup catcher is playing, there’s your punt option.  Play those guys if you need some pricing relief.  Me, I am intrigued in the idea of picking on a still recovering Beachy as he pitches himself back into MLB shape on an MLB mound.  An ATL stack isn’t totally crazy here so consider this a raised eyebrow of interest for guys like Kelly Johnson and Cameron Maybin.

Todd Frazier, 1B/3B: $4,900 – I’m typically all about paying up at 1B but today has me questioning that thought process.  The rent is either too damn high a la Goldy or I can find some great deals much lower than the Todd Father.  That said, I know he hasn’t done much of anything of late – he’s hitting just .208 with zero HRs in the month of July – but I do like he gets the platoon split, is coming off a day of rest and is at home.  Could be a nice day to get Frazier back up off the matt.  Or not

Adrian Gonzalez, 1B: $4,200 – I’m fine with settling in with A-Gonz at this price given Wisler has not been that impressive in his brief stint up and Adrian has scored 10 or more DK points in four straight.

Victor Martinez, 1B: $3,800 – They say Detroit is Rock City but I’m here to tell you its actually Stack City.  The Tigers get to face a lefty pitcher and the lefty-heavy Mariners lineup gets to face Alfredo Simon who has been killed by LHHs all year.  Granted, he’s better to pick on away from home but the splits don’t lie and I’m all about getting in on this Tigers vs Mariners pie today.  Consider this a ‘Kick out the jams mutha [email protected]#$as!’ endorsement of Yoenis Cespedes and JD Martinez as well as a ‘excuse me while I kiss the Sky’ rock on fist pump for Kyle Seager and Robinson Cano, at the very least.

Justin Bour, 1B: $3,100 – For all the Bour-lievers out there, its the right park and possibly the right matchup so I approve.

Joe Panik, 2B: $3,500 – The numbers for Kennedy of turned a corner a little of late but I still will take a lefty against him at this juncture.  Also, I don’t like any other play at 2B so I kind of *pinky to corner of mouth* Panik’d when making this pick.  You’re welcome.

Jake Lamb, 3B: $3,600 – So I’m really happy for David Phelps and Ima let him finish his slow ascent to decency once he’s done playing in AZ.  He has a 4.48 xFIP and an 85.3% LOB rate vs lefty bats on the year.  Besides all that, the few times he’s played in lefty friendly parks, he’s been hit plenty.  A full Arizona stack will probably be popular, but I’m considering Ender Inciarte and David Peralta here to at least take advantage of the splits.

Brad Miller, SS: $3,100 – I already mentioned the Mariners above so this will be the last one that I do.  He’s recently been seen batting leadoff when facing a righty on the mound.  If that trend continues, I’m all about rostering Brad Miller in the hopes that he’s not just Bad Miller.

Marlon Byrd, OF: $3,800 – A lefty on the mound?  Yeah, flip me the Byrd.

Rajai Davis, OF: $3,500 – Much like Miller, I already mentioned the Tigers above but I can’t leave off the King of SAGNOF.  Davis will also most likely get the lead off nod with a lefty on the mound.  He’ll also most likely be rostered on just about every cash game lineup because everyone knows that.  Welcome to the fold, sheeple.

I’m Only Happy When It Rains

After bizarro world hit in southern California yesterday, postponing two games, we get the usual it may or may not rain dance for the CINvsCHC game which looks like it could hit a delay if weather patterns hold.  Similar things could be said for COLvsTEX but neither weather threat is imminent.  I’d take a look before lock on how to handle either, though.

Doing Lines In Vegas

It looks like Heaney owns the big line for the night at -165 which should tell you what you’re stepping into for pitching tonight.  Make sure to wash off your boots before entering the house.  Over in the PHIvsTB matchup, Vegas also likes Moore (-150) but they’ve bumped the run total up a half run from 7.5 to 8 from opening.  Are you gonna suck me into a TB stack, Vegas?  Really?  Sighs…meanwhile, Vegas sees the implosion building on both sides in DETvsSEA as I mentioned above, pushing the run line from 8 to 9 with Simon being given the smallest of nods at -113.  Similar things are afoot in CINvsCHC as the run line went up a half run from 8 to 8.5.  If you’re looking for pitching solace, you might find it in SDvsSF where the run line is projected for 7; just keep in mind there’s heavy money on the over.

  1. Pat says:

    I agree with you about the pitching today. Holy jesus it’s ugly. How do you feel about Ventura? I’m trying to fit different pitchers into all of my lineups since they’re all possibly going to blow up; and to me Ventura seems as good as bet as any of the others, I’m not sure though. Thoughts?

    • Sky

      Sky says:

      Just don’t believe he gets many Ks but I do think he has a higher floor than most other pitchers. Overall, he’s not on my radar for the day.

      • Pat says:

        @Sky: k thanks, appreciated as always!

        • Sky

          Sky says:

          No worries, thanks for reading!

  2. PhrasingBackInTheMix says:

    Hey Sky, thanks as always, I especially like the way you recap the Vegas situation for these DK slates. Wondering if you care to offer any thoughts on this lineup — I’m stacking Cubbies today in a GPP (assuming that game looks like it’ll get played).

    SP: Gio ($8100)
    SP: Rubby ($6500)
    C: Schwarber ($3400)
    1B: Rizzo ($5100)
    2B: Cano ($3600)
    3B: Bryant ($4800)
    SS: Tulo ($5200)
    OF: Fowler ($4300)
    OF: Soler ($3400)
    OF: Trout ($5600)

    • Sky

      Sky says:

      Appreciate the kind words! I definitely see some merit in the Cubs stack, just so many underperformers in that lineup of late, I have a hard time getting behind working them into a LU. That said, they do make for a great contrarian play for that reason as their ownership should be relatively low.

      PS, awesome Archer reference for your name.

  3. Ralph Lifshitz

    Ralph Lifshitz says:

    I demand Elvis’ eyes follow me! Come on Sky! What’s this looking longingly to the right (his left) stuff?

    • Sky

      Sky says:

      I originally googled ‘Elvis Presley Karate gif’ in the hopes that someone had gif’d his crazy dance moves on the stage and threw ninjas at him. Unfortunately, it was clearly just a dream of mine for there to be such a thing…

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