Happy Friday! The pitching is a little iffy for tonight, but we finally have a somewhat full slate of MLB to deal with after several short cards in a row, and there is enough variety to choose from in our travels. I will be in chat tonight helping all our subs build the winning lineups, and tonight may be a little nutty with a 13-game NBA slate as well. Good luck, and follow me on twitter @jac3600.
Shane Bieber, CLE ($8900)
It’s an unbelievable stat to give, but through Toronto’s first six games, they have been no-hit through five innings in FOUR of those contests (and through six innings in three of them). Bieber is coming off a rookie season where he posted a 3.23 FIP and a 24.3% K rate, and he should have no problem navigating through this lineup. Bieber is a wide splits guy, so if Justin Smoak (neck stiffness) sits again, Biebs’ matchup gets that much better, and Toronto already has the lowest IRT on the slate at 3.4 runs.
Other options – Nick Pivetta
Kevin Gausman, ATL ($7200)
Bieber is easy to roster and still have solid bats, but Gausman presents an even cheaper option if you REALLY want to load up on offense. He’s making his first start tonight after coming off the IL but there should be no limitations as Gausman threw 90 pitches in his rehab appearance. Miami has the tenth lowest K rate so far in 2019 but they’re coming off a season where they ranked dead last in team wOBA and 29th in wRC+. Gausman tends to allow hard contact to LHB but Miami offers absolutely no resistance in that department after trading away anyone who could post big power numbers. Gausman may not have the K upside as Bieber will, but this seems like a very safe matchup for a price tag this low.
Other options – Collin McHugh, Rick Porcello, Sonny Gray, Felix Pena
Anthony Rizzo, CHC ($4400)
As is customary for this time of year, we’re not seeing many ridiculous implied run totals with the weather so cool across the country. Milwaukee is one of the more hitter-friendly environments right now with its controlled temperature conditions, and the Cubs have an IRT of 4.4 runs which is actually tied for the highest on the slate right now. Rizzo had a .378 wOBA and .211 ISO against RHP a season ago and Milwaukee pitcher Brandon Woodruff allowed a 35% HHR. The Brewers’ bullpen is elite which keeps the nine-inning upside down a little, but this game is stackable in GPPs and Rizzo is worth his price in any format.
Other options – Freddie Freeman, Rhys Hoskins, Jesus Aguilar, JT Realmuto
Justin Bour, LAA ($2800)
Bour is off to a cold start for the Angels with only an 8% HHR, but he continues to bat third for the Angels, and RBI opportunities should be plentiful hitting behind the best hitter on the planet. Bour has posted a .202 ISO over the past two seasons, and he’s facing Lance Lynn who has allowed a .363 wOBA and 1.39 HR/9 to LHB in that span.
Other options – CJ Cron, Kendrys Morales, Albert Pujols, Neil Walker
Catcher values – Willson Contreras, Yasmani Grandal, Brian McCann
TOP PLAY AND TOP VALUE
Rougned Odor, TEX ($3300)
I’m not in love with the 2B position at all tonight, but Odor seems like the most sensible play at the position even with his boom-or-bust tendencies (he went 0-5 last night during the Rangers’ 11-run outburst). The Angels are throwing out a pitcher in Felix Pena who is extremely reliant on flyball outs (43% FB rate since the ASB last year), and Odor has posted a .200 ISO against RHP in that span. He should hit second or third for the Rangers which gives him another shot at five PAs, and he has the upside to win you a GPP as well.
Other options – Jose Altuve, Ben Zobrist, Jurickson Profar, Jonathan Schoop, Lourdes Gurriel
Jose Ramirez, CLE ($4100)
Ramirez fouled a ball off his foot yesterday so we have to see if he’s in the lineup first. That said, this is a player who was routinely over 5k last season and is sitting at just $4100 today which puts him at the top of the list in all formats. Trent Thornton was impressive in his debut for Toronto, but the Tigers aren’t the Indians, and Thornton did give up almost a 37% HHR to LHB in AAA last year. Ramirez has a baseline .380 wOBA and .240 ISO against RHP with speed upside as well.
Other options – Kris Bryant, Alex Bregman
Rafael Devers, BOS ($2900)
Devers looks like a really strong value tonight. The Red Sox are off to a brutal start, but they’re getting a big time park boost going to Arizona where it will be 77 degrees at gametime. Zack Godley got battered in his first start and is coming off a season where he allowed a 39.4% HHR to LHB. Devers posted a .222 ISO against RHP since the beginning of 2017, and seems to be hitting third between some of the most elite hitters in baseball. I’ll take that for under 3k.
Other options – Josh Donaldson, Eduardo Escobar, Jung Ho Kang
Jean Segura, PHI ($3700)
The Phillies are tied for the highest IRT on the slate at 4.4 runs, and they look like an offense that’s going to put up a lot of points all season long. There is (understandably) a lot of hype surrounding their biggest FA acquisition in Bryce Harper (and the start he’s had is only amplifying this), but Segura had a combined 30 homers and steals last year after 32 the year before. He’s hitting second in front of Harper with a big lineup upgrade, and FD’s scoring system really benefits him with the extra weight on runs scored and RBIs. It also helps that he’s facing a reverse-split pitcher in Jake Odorizzi (.219 ISO allowed to RHB the last three years).
Other options – Javier Baez, Xander Bogaerts
Carlos Correa, HOU ($3400)
The Astros are another one of four teams that are tied with the highest IRT at 4.4 runs (Cubs, Phillies, Brewers, and the Red Sox sit at 4.3). Correa has a solid 33.3% HHR out of the gate even though the results are showing it (although he has doubled in three straight contests), and Houston is one of the few positive hitting environments on the slate. Correa hits fifth which is good but not ideal, but he does have a .217 ISO against same-handed pitching over the last three seasons.
Other options – Elvis Andrus, Andrelton Simmons
Mike Trout, LAA ($5000)
I’m torn between Trout and Harper at the top of the OF heap tonight, but overall quality of opposing pitcher is going to be the tiebreaker. Lance Lynn is trending downwards as far as HHR and HR/9 allowed to all batters, and Trout is currently rocking almost a 40% HHR in the early-going of the year. With pitching so cheap this evening, Trout is easy to fit in, and you can probably get Harper as well if you choose to go the “Gausman” route in cash (Harper is only rocking a 70% HHR in his new Phillie digs).
Other options – Bryce Harper, Mookie Betts, JD Martinez, Andrew Benintendi, Andrew McCutchen, Nomar Mazara, Joey Gallo, Michael Brantley, Kyle Schwarber
Ryan Braun, MIL ($3200)
I’m into Braun this evening, and I think we’re getting him at somewhat of a discount. Braun is certainly not the hitter of old (and he’s probably also not on PEDs anymore), but he can still get it done against LHP, posting a .360 wOBA and 125 wRC+ in that split last season. Jose Quintana is still somewhat of a quality pitcher, but he posted a career high 9.2% BB rate while also allowing a career-high 1.29 HR/9. Braun is solid cheap access to a pretty dangerous Brewers lineup.
Other options – Shin Soo Choo, Leonys Martin, Tyler Naquin, Ender Inciarte, Nick Markakis, Jesse Winker, Yasiel Puig, Eddie Rosario, Robbie Grossman, Stephen Piscotty, Jarrod Dyson, Curtis GrandersonFantasy Baseball