The Padres might be away from home on Thursday, but they’re still going to have to deal with a tsunami against Carlos Martinez ($9,800). Of course, Martinez goes by the curiously misspelled Twitter handle @Tsumany27, and he’s got the stats to back up the nickname. C-Mart’s rocking a career-high 25.5% K-rate and 17.0% K-BB, as well as a 3.36 Deserved Run Average. He’s a worthwhile start against even the toughest lineups in baseball, so he’s straight cash against the Padres. San Diego has just a .305 wOBA against right-handers this season, ranking them 29th in the league. They also have the second-highest K-rate versus righties at 25.3%. This easily puts Martinez as the top starting pitcher option on Thursday’s slate.
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Jose Berrios, SP: $9,100 – Berrios got himself back on track this weekend with a nasty seven inning, seven strikeout game against Arizona where he didn’t allow a single earned run, with just two hits and one walk allowed. This is the Berrios we should expect to see against the White Sox, whose .306 wOBA versus righties puts them at 28th in the league, just barely ahead of the Padres.
Alex Avila, C: $3,000 – As usual, the catching slate is absolute garbage on Thursday. You could spend $700 for Yadier Molina, but I’d rather take Avila in Cincinnati. Avila has an .890 OPS in the last 15 days and will be facing Sal Romano, owner of a 5.32 ERA.
Jose Abreu, 1B: $3,400 – Abreu feels way too cheap at this price when you consider his 129 wRC+ this season, as well as a career-low K-rate at 17.8%. He’s also got six homers in the last 15 days, and even in a weak White Sox lineup, he can put up tons of fantasy points on his own.
Eduardo Nunez, 2B: $3,300 – Nunez has a ton of value at the top of the Red Sox lineup, where he will get plenty of plate appearances and ample run-scoring opportunities. Nunez can get you points in lots of ways, as he contributes in every category across the board, demonstrated by homering in each of his last two games.
Eugenio Suarez, 3B: $3,600 – Suarez has been one of baseball’s top hitters in the last month, posting a 1.087 OPS with eight dingers. Any time Suarez is at home in his power-friendly park in Cincinnati, he can put up numbers, as he’s got a 1.047 OPS at home this year.
Javier Baez, SS: $3,500 – Speaking of hot hitters, Javy Baez also gets to enjoy Cinci’s park factors on Thursday. He’s hit himself into an everyday role with the Cubs and has eight home runs with three steals over the last 30 days. Even if you’re not rolling with an entire Cubs stack against Romano, Baez is worth a standalone play.
Billy Hamilton, OF: $3,200 – Hamilton has 53 steals entering Thursday, and should add to that total against Jake Arrieta, who is infamous for his stolen bases allowed.
Kyle Schwarber, OF: $3,600 – Schwarber has been installed in the two-hole for Chicago after putting up a .952 OPS in the last month. Like I said, stack the Cubs!
Tommy Pham, OF: 3,400 – One of the most surprising breakouts of the year has been Pham, who has been a fantasy catalyst with 16 home runs, 17 steals and a .305 batting average. He’s tough to avoid at this low of a price.
I’m Only Happy When It Rains
Our only threat of rain is in Pittsburgh, where there’s a 32% chance throughout game time. I wouldn’t be too worried about it. As far as winds go, there’s a significant wind blowing in from left field in Cleveland, but nothing else notable.
Doing Lines In Vegas
Washington-Houston is a hell of a matchup with Strasburg and Keuchel facing off. I’ll take the Nats at +120, as Keuchel has been prone to throwing clunkers now and then. I also like Texas at +110 against Troy Scribner.