Who’s got one thumb and hit over 60 home runs in their career? Sorry, Carlos Correa ain’t what I’m looking for. Yeah, so what if I spent my Tuesday night researching weird thumb stuff? We already know Correa wasn’t the first person to pull off a thumb injury like this. But hey, turns out, he’s not even the first person named Carlos to do it! Yep, former Chicago White Sox-ian Carlos May blew off his own thumb in 1969 while serving in the U.S military. His story is one hundred and ten times cooler than Correa’s, and it’s kinda scary that he went on to have a more productive career with one appendage, than 40% of all Major League players.
A week after the All Star break is the best time to ignore actual stats and ride on a whim of “yeah, he should probably play better in the second half, my Dad thinks so”. It’s like a relapse of Opening Day optimism, only by now you probably know that your team sucks. Enough of the history/heartfelt reflection, though, here’s my take for Wednesday’s slate:
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Jacob Faria, SP: $8,600 – By golly, I think he’s got it! There are two cardinal rules when it comes to fantasy baseball: don’t draft Mets pitchers and always, and I mean always, ride the hot hand. Faria is the latest wave in prospects that we “dun didn’t know nofink about”. He’s come back to earth a little lately, surrendering his tenth earned run of the season last week, and although there is a slight home run problem developing, he’s facing an A’s team that leads the league in strikeouts this week. Faria hasn’t faced the A’s at all in his career, so this is kind of like a blind date. Hopefully, the only one being stood up is Khris Davis when he strikes out for the 19th time this month (!).
Jose Berrios, SP: $9,000 – The Yankees are one of the better teams against righties, ranking in the top 10 in almost every offensive category. Since Jordan Montgomery’s numbers over the past month look more like a Matrix code, though, Berrios at home is a nice, cheap option. Montgomery has given up a home run in seven straight games, and Aaron Judge had only his fourth multi hit game of the month last night. The Yankees strike out numbers are up and down like an airplane toilet seat, and since they rank seventh in the league in K% this week, Berrios is your guy.
Welington Castillo, C: $2,700 – The Rangers got thwamped last night and now with Martin Perez taking the mound, I don’t see things getting any better for them. Castillo’s wRC+ jumps over 20 points when he gets a southpaw. Where’s the bouef, you say? I got yer Welington right here!
Wil Myers, 1B: $4,000 – There’s one thing I like more than pina coladas, and that’s Rockies pitchers at home. Maybe Jon Gray’s disgusting 6.23 ERA has gone to my head, or maybe beefing up on hitters facing a pitcher who has recorded a lazy 25 strikeouts this season is a really genius move. I’m a man of research (crazy right!) and Myers owns a career .400 AVG vs. Gray with four hits – two of which were for extra bases. He’s even tacked on a cheeky home run. This one seems too good to be true, but it’s also too hard to ignore.
Yuli Gurriel, 1B: $3,500 – This might be the first and last time I recommend Yuli. He’s hit two RBI’s over the past three days which is nice, and the Astros are facing bipolar James Paxton at home. Nearly every other Astros hitter will cost you a pretty penny in this kind of matchup, but Guri, Yuli, whatever you want to call him, has eight extra base hits vs. southpaws this season.
Rougned Odor, 2B: $2,900 – ‘Bird’ is not the word anymore. The Orioles’ stellar bullpen days seem outnumbered, and since the mound belongs to Kevin Gausman tonight, you know we’re in for a fizzler. Odor has made Gausman his puppet throughout his career. He owns a .333 OBP and three extra base hits vs. the righty, and now we once again wait and see if the real Odor actually wants to play ze baseball. He hit five home runs in his final eleven games right before the All Star break, so like, where did that dude go?
Brandon Drury, 2B: $2,200 – Tim Adleman is pitching for the Reds today, and Brandon Drury loves him some righties this year. He hit a double last night off of Sal Romano, and is the kind of player that is hard not to love. I’m rolling with him and his power in his Great American Ballpark debut.
Marwin Gonzalez, SS: $3,500 – Just because Correa is all thumbs right now doesn’t mean we can’t start an Astro at SS. Marwin has 17 HRs on the year and though he hits better against righties, the Astros as a whole totally rake against left handed pitching. Just giving you a way to sneak in more Astros into your lineup. You’re welcome.
Jose Ramirez, 3B: $4,000 – “That’s Matt Cain in the corner. That’s Matt Cain in the spot light, losing his commaaaaaannnddd”. Ramirez post All Star break: two hits, four strikeouts. He’s due for a big day, and what better way to kick off a triumphant second half than by crushing whatever little amount of confidence Cain has left?
Charlie Blackmon, OF: $5,000 – I say boom, boom, boom and everybody say Chuck Nazty. That’s Charlie Blackmon’s Twitter handle if you don’t know. It’s a couple letters away from being slightly worrying, but if you admire a good beard, he’s worth a follow. Anyway, Blackmon is probably the “must have” guy today. He’s hit three triples, a couple of home runs and four RBI’s this week and is a potential low-key fantasy MVP if this keeps up.
Steve Pearce, OF: $3,000 – People talk about regression like it’s a bad thing. Pearce is proof that sometimes it can be good. Since his horrid April start when he batted .167, Steve has found his stroke and now owns a respectable .281/.337/.477 for the year and his career SLG% against lefties is a healthy .502. Not much has gone right for Toronto this year, but Pearce has been relative bright spot in it all.
Jackie Bradley Jr., OF: $2,800 – As a cheaper option, it’s hard not to like Jay Be Jay. He’s quietly had just four games without a hit this month, and since everyone seems to be a hater, I’ll take him against Aaron Sanchez and his 11.4% walk rate vs. da’ Sawx.
I’m Only Happy When It Rains
We should see a full slate of games today. I was convinced for a while there that the Braves’ ‘chop’ was actually a rain dance in disguise, but even the weather in Atlanta looks to be all systems go. There is a thunderstorm chance in Miami, but who cares because, the roof… the roof… the roof is all closed. (Yeah, slow weather day).
Doing Lines in Vegas
Carlos Carraso is the lucky favorite, sitting pretty at -195 vs. the Giants. There’s also eight games with an over/under of 8.5 runs or more – they include Cubs/Braves, Padres/Rockies, DBacks/Reds, Yankees/Twins, Mariners/Astros, Rangers/Orioles, Blue Jays/Red Sox and Tigers/Royals.