Welcome in folks. How is it September already? I know it was September last week (after all I can usually read a calendar) but it didn’t really hit me until this week that baseball is in the closing stretch. We got our first taste of NFL action but those of you here are the true baseball die hards. Either that or you’re just fantasy addicts. Look I’m not here to judge, I’m in three season long baseball leagues and five for football. So I guess that makes me the addict. 

Anyhoo…September gives us a chance to see who the real breakouts were and who was a flash in the pan. All of this meandering brings me to Jeff McNeil (OF: $3,200) All season I’ve been just kinda waiting for him to cool off and he really hasn’t. He’s still batting over .320 and has managed to slug 20 homers. Yes I know that 20 homers isn’t as impressive as it used to be but he’s done far more damage in the second half, hitting nearly double his first half total. Translation: 7 in the first half, 13 (and counting post break). Long live the launch angle revolution. He’s rolling so roll with him today.

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Justin Verlander, SP: $12,000 – I normally try not to highlight the day’s most expensive option but the bot’s rating for Verlander is just too good to ignore. I imagine he’ll do what he’s done all season which is dominate hitters, contend for a Cy Young and go home to Kate Upton. 

Lucas Giolito, SP: $11,000 – Here’s another Cy Young candidate. He rings guys up (216 Ks in 170 innings) and pretty much just dominates all around. The Royals are a match up to exploit and I expect Giolito to crush it today. 

Caleb Smith, SP: $7,700 – The Brewer Crew took a hit when Yelich fouled one off his knee. It’s still somewhat potent lineup, but it seems that Hiura isn’t quite back to full strength yet so it’s not quite as intimidating. Plus we all know about the strikeout upside that Smith brings to the table. Combined with his low price tag and we’ve got ourselves a winner. 

Brendan McKay, SP: $7,100 – If you’d like to save even more of your precious salary cap for a bat, take a look at McKay as he takes on the Rangers. He was electric in his last outing but with the Rays managing his load, only allowed to throw 60 pitches. I imagine the Rays will continue to do so, limiting his upside. However, if they decide to turn him loose he has the raw stuff to dominate. 

Paul Goldschmidt, 1B: $4,000 – Au Shizz is in Coors and that’s a beautiful thing. He’s expensive but the bot is all over him. 

Matt Beaty, 1B: $2,900 – With a righty on the mound he stands a good chance of finding his way into the lineup. His numbers have been solid, but unspectacular and he’s priced to help you without killing your cap.

Hanser Alberto, 2B: $2,800 – As long as he keeps hitting, he deserves a look. It would be nice to see a little more power out of him but his high average should let him put up points.

Gavin Lux, 2B: $2,800 – This wouldn’t be a Butters piece without a young unproved prospect with sky high potential. Enter Mr Lux. After killing it in the minors he made it to the show. Muncy’s injury has given him the chance to show off that talent and Camden Yards is the perfect venue for him to take advantage.

Rafael Devers, 3B: $3,900 – The Bo Sox may not have lived up to expectations but Devers has surpassed them. He’s been a consistent option at the hot corner and that continues today. Fire him up with the usual confidence.  Just check the lineup, there’s a rumor he could be getting rested.

Kyle Seager, 3B: $3,500 – He almost seems like a boring option at this point but solid, boring players can win matchups. Post All Star break he’s been pretty damn good. He doesn’t have a matchup you should be afraid of so get him in your lineup.

Adalberto Mondesi, SS: $3,600 – Don’t fire him up for power. Speed is his game and steals score points. There is power potential, although you shouldn’t count on it, especially coming off a shoulder injury. The good news is that he’s continued to run wild.

Dansby Swanson, SS: $2,800 – Admittedly he has cooled off lately. However, the bot grades him favorably and you don’t have to pay much to get him. That’s a recipe for success.

Marcell Ozuna, OF: $4,300 – Meet the bot’s top pick today. Ozuna has been a solid fantasy player all season but the Coors effect puts him over the top. He should be able to add his home run total. 

Tommy Edman, OF: $3,400 – The bot is all over Cardinals hitters today and Edman is no exception. He’s forced his way in to lineup with a hot bat and the versatility to play all over the field. That means he basically locked into an everyday role and is a compelling option.

Eloy Jimenez, OF: $2,900 – Despite some injury struggles, Eloy has managed to put together a strong season. I’m in on him today because of the talent and love his price.

I’m Only Happy When It Rains

We’ve got some weather in the  forecast today, and by weather I mean the wet kind. Target Field in Minnesota projects to be the heaviest and should taper off as the game progresses. However, this could leave the playing surface in less than ideal condition. Contrary to public belief its not always sunny in Philly, but the rain should taper off. 

Doing Lines In Vegas

Vegas is all in on Cards @ Rockies and so am I. Fire up any and all of those hitters and you won’t be disappointed. I almost featured more of them but then I realized I was basically describing a one game slate.