Please see our player page for Masahiro Tanaka to see projections for today, the next 7 days and rest of season as well as stats and gamelogs designed with the fantasy baseball player in mind.

You know how you bought that prosthetic pierced nipple in college? Then, one day, you were at a strong-in-energy kegger and everyone was screaming for you to jump in the pool, but you knew there was a 99% chance your prosthetic pierced nipple would come off and everyone would know you’re a fraud? But you jumped in anyway, and your prosthetic pierced nipple floated away, but, to your surprise, everyone liked you still, without the prosthetic pierced nipple. Lucas Giolito is your tan-lined nipple without the prosthetic piercing. He may get hit around occasionally, he might not always get Ks, but, at the end of the day, Lucas Giolito (6 IP, 2 ER, 6 baserunners, 13 Ks, ERA at 3.42) is a great, bare-nippled pitcher.  His 11.3 K/9, 3.2 BB/9, 3.35 FIP tell me next year he’s going to be a sneaky top 15 starter in 2020, who is forgotten like a prosthetic pierced nipple. Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

It’s never too early to turn the page towards 2020. Which is what Hugh Downs used to say while wearing a smoking jacket and flipping through a script. By the way, Hugh Downs missed his porn actor calling.  “Oh my God, that’s an Orca in your pants!” “Well, I ain’t Churchill Downs.”  Fun Fact! Hugh Downs only wore slippers. Okay, okay, OKAY, enough about freakin’ Hugh Downs. This is like when Seinfeld was telling Bania to ease up on the Ovaltine jokes.  Grey, you’ve got fifteen minutes of Hugh Downs! Let him go! I’d love to but he goes Downs so easy! So, Luis Castillo pitched another gem in a season of them (7 IP, 2 ER, 4 baserunners, 13 Ks, ERA at 2.63). His peripherals are equally gorge like Barbara Walters fluffing Hugh–I’ll stop! Castillo’s has a 10.8 K/9, 3.9 BB/9, 3.71 FIP and his fastball velocity is up and he’s throwing his change a lot more (26% to 32%). He kinda reminds me of another Reds pitcher, Trevor Bauer. Castillo’s ERA could easily be near-4 vs. near 2.50. Still like him, not saying make a chump dump like when Hugh Downs used to spend 30 minutes in the bathroom and blame Mike Wallace, but Castillo looks a lot better than Bauer in ERA, but for 2020 I don’t see a ton of difference. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Not your Grandfather’s Top 100 Starting Pitchers…

The outpouring of concern over Grandpa-Donk’s well being during Heatwave 2019, has been heart warming. Rest assured, Gramps is still alive and donkey kicking. In fact, last weekend the old jackass worked out in the yard 48 hours straight in the 100-degree heat without stopping for so much as a Señor Crappers change. Once he finished the field labor, G-Donk came inside to make the rest of us pancakes and lemonade–an old Donk family tradition. As Great Gran-Donk always said, “When life gives you apocalyptic weather, make pancakes and lemonade.”

Mmmmm ice cold lemonade: my favorite of the fresh squeezed juices. You know what other juice is worth the squeeze? The Clevinger concentrate. I was skeptical when Mike Clevinger returned from his back injury in mid-June. His first two brutal starts had me strutting around like top donkey, so smart. But since the calendar turned to July, Sunshine has been lights out going 4-0 with a 1.74 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, and 41 strikeouts in 31 innings. Clevinger is extracting juice like a fantasy ace right now and there’s no reason to think the liquid will dry up anytime soon.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Rob Manfred presses the button on a contraption that looks like a skinny hose, and juices spurt out. Rob looks up to the store clerk, “So, I just push this end of the hose inside the baseballs and juice comes out and balls go zoom?”  “Zoom, baby, zoom.”  “I’ll take 300 of them.”  “You only want 300 homers?”  “You’re right, I’ll take 45,000.”  “Will do, Kemosabe. Hey, wanna see where I store the white pine tar that pitchers can use undetected?”  “No, that’s illegal!”  So, what’s this, three days in a row with a hitter hitting three homers in a game? Shizz is bizzonkers. Every year I say the same for Nelson Cruz (3-for-5, 5 RBIs and his 23rd, 24th and 25th homer) and Edwin Encarnacion. They will hit home runs until they’re 50. That’s if they’re not already 50, then make it 70.  When reached for comment after the game, Cruz said, “I could’ve hit four homers, but then you find out why Mark Whiten was called ‘Hard Hittin.'” Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Today is the first day of the rest of our lives, so let’s play some DFS.

We have seven games on the FanDuel Main Slate today, with Jacob deGrom, Shane Bieber, and Masahiro Tanaka leading the way as our top pitching options. The weather looks perfect where these games will be played, so fire up the grill, crack open a beverage, and let’s get to it.

Read on for our picks, and enjoy the day t0day, DFSers.

New to FanDuel? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well, be sure to read our content and subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays. Just remember to sign up through us before jumping into the fray. It’s how we know you care!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

On the first pitch Justin Upton (2-for-4) saw back from the IL, he slammed it into the seats for his 1st home run. Kevin from ESPN’s “Get Him In Your Lineup” Department said, “Anyone who wants to come over on Saturday, I’m doing a screening of the short film I did about O.J. Simpson and a lovable group of his former Bills teammates plotting to break into a Vegas casino to steal back his memorabilia called, O.J.’s Eleven. I play O.J. in blackface.”  People have been asking about adding Justin Upton, and he’s currently owned in 70% of ESPN leagues, though Klara Bell owns 17,000 teams to help fill his virtual trophy case, and doesn’t own Upton, so, technically, Upton’s owned in 101% of leagues, but, if he’s available, I’d add him everywhere.  Prior to his injury, he was a top 30 outfielder, and see no reason why he can’t do something similar from here to there.  There being October.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The sun rising at dawn as two towheaded surfers paddle out on their longboards.  One surfer, Rob, wears a business suit and sunglasses.  The other surfer looks like Tony Hawk’s wet brother.  Tony Hawk’s wet brother asks, “Why the business threads, my brosef?”  “I’m the commissioner of baseball and could be called into action at any time.”  “Whoa, right on.”  Rob points at the ocean, cascading out in front of them, “You see this Tony Hawk’s Wet Brother?  This water as far as the eye can see?”  “I do, my brosef.”  “This is juice that I will be stuffing into baseballs.”  “Whoa, right on.” And that’s Our Commissioner Manfred surfing in the morning sun.  Yesterday, was another day for the long ball bizzonkers led by the Diamondbacks.  Leading off literally and, well, literally, Jarrod Dyson went 2-for-4 and hit his 4th homer.  Inner monologue, “You know you want to compare how many home runs Dyson has to David Dahl.  You know you want to do it, so do it.  Come on.  Compare them.”  Dyson’s having a nice year.  “A nice year compared to who?  Say it!”  Hopefully, Dyson keeps it up.  “You are the lamest!” Next up literally and literally, Ketel Marte went 3-for-5, 2 runs and hit his 16th homer.  “I dare you to compare Marte to David Dahl!”  Shut up, Inner Monologue!  I hate you!  Next up literally and literally, David Peralta went 1-for-4 and hit his 9th homer, as they started the game Dback-to-back-to-back.  Four home runs is most home runs ever hit in a row. That record is in jeopardy this year in every inning. Then not literally, Ildemaro Vargas went 2-for-5, 3 RBIs and hit two homers (3, 4). I have a hard time suggesting him because names starting with Il confuse my pea brain.  You Il Duce? No? Then goodbye!  Finally and literally, Eduardo Escobar went 4-for-5, 3 runs, 5 RBIs and hit his 16th and 17th homer, hitting .299.  Gabe Kapler said to the opposing pitcher, Jer-khoff, “Don’t blow this,” and Escobar screamed, “Did someone say blow?!”  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Masahiro Tanaka’s first 11 starts have been about as good as you could’ve hoped when you drafted him around the 30th-40th SP off the board. It felt like he was being ignored in some leagues and came at quite the value. He’s a no doubt starter this week with the way he’s been performing, but it may be a good opportunity to sell high on the veteran pitcher.

Most of the numbers are in line with his career (GB rate, LD rate, K rate, BB rate, 1st strike rate). However, there are a few indicators that he’s been a little lucky and his stuff may not be quite what it has been in previous seasons, specifically his moneymaker, the splitter.

His swinging strike rate is down to 11.1% from 14.1% in 2017 and 15.1% in 2016. His 77% contact rate is the 2nd worst of his career along with career worsts in hard hit rate, launch angle, and average exit velocity allowed. 80.6% left on base rate isn’t completely unsustainable, but it would be the highest of his career.

It’s my belief, and the numbers back me up, that the splitter is not the pitch we’ve seen in previous seasons (below), which is leading to less swing and miss, and harder contact. The vertical movement on the pitch is the worst we’ve ever seen from Tanaka. His swinging strike and K rates are down, and of his 3 primary pitches (FB, Slider, Splitter), the splitter is the only one that has a worse whiff rate at 11.69 down from 22.99 the previous season and easily the worst of his career. The batting average against the split finger is .333 this season compared to .220 and .191 in the previous 2 seasons. Similarly, the slugging percentage is up to .560 this season vs .344 in 2017.

I don’t believe that Tanaka is just going to fall apart and if you need a steady arm to balance your roster, I think he’s fine, but with his current numbers I believe you may be able to sell him high compared to what he provides the rest of the season.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Cavan Biggio will be promoted today to join Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Soon, Bichette will join Guerrero and Biggio and the Jays’ master plan to reunite the 2005 All-Star Game in the luxury boxes will be complete.  “How’s Darin Erstad Jr. look?”  “More like Darin Ersatz!”  “I don’t get it.”  “Ersatz means an inferior substitute.”  “Is that some thinking man’s humor? I don’t like that.”  That was overheard in the Jays’ front office.  Here’s what Prospect Mike said about Biggio this preseason, “At 23, Biggio had a solid 2018 campaign at Double-A. He hit .252 with 26 homers, 20 steals, and a walk rate of nearly 18%. He has the pedigree and patience to make it in the pros and the power to hit 20-25 homers, but he also strikes out a lot and I’m not sure what position he’ll end up at. This could mean he ultimately finds a role as a super-utility type like a Swiss Army knife. Speaking of which, anyone know where Grey is, I want to harvest his liver.”  Okay, what now?  This year, Biggio cut down on his Ks, and held his walks, hitting .306 in Triple-A, while adding in his usual mix of power and speed.  I imagine he takes over for Sogard and hits leadoff. Sogard? So long!  I added Biggio everywhere I could because I have a sickness for upside.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Kinda obsessed with our Top 100 Fantasy Starts tool (not a tool as much as it’s a free list).  Since I’m writing this on Sunday, I’m not sure yet where Shane Bieber and his 9 IP, 0 ER, 5 hits, zero walks, 15 Ks will rank, but my guess is 1st or 2nd overall.  (The tool (list?) updates after this is posted.)  Pretty deep into the season to have Shane Bieber throw possibly the best start of the year.  Bieber was the youngest Indians pitcher since 1987 with 12+ Ks — wow! — the last to do it was Greg Swindell — um, all right! Bieber was the 4th youngest since 1908 to have a 15-K, zero-walk game, the other three:  Gooden — crazy! — Kerry Wood — nasty company! — and Vince Velasquez — well, um, he had a good game.  Only two Indians starters in history with a shutout, no walks and 15 Ks are Bieber — damn! — and Luis Tiant, who at 78 years old just beat up my autocorrect for changing his name to Luis Taint.  Sunday’s start shows why I wanted to draft Bieber in every league.  Hopefully, he keeps it gong…gong…go I ng–Sorry, my autocorrect is scared to change anything now.  Anyway, here’s what else I saw this weekend in fantasy baseball:

Please, blog, may I have some more?