Happy Friday! We’ve already got a significant change to the slate, as Griffin Canning (who was my favorite value SP) was forced into action last night in a 16-inning game. He got rocked, so maybe it’s a blessing in disguise we can’t play him today. The FTA crew will be hard at work for you tonight for this 14-game mayhem, and make sure to follow me on twitter @jac3600.
Zack Greinke, ARI ($10,200)
There’s going to be some fun talk about Joey Lucchesi (see below) as the cash SP as he allows you multiple big bats (and there are a ton of high-level offenses going today). I think, however, you really are going to want to stick with the safety of Greinke. He’ll be pitching in a controlled environment in Miami and the matchup really can’t get much better. The Marlins rank last in both wOBA and wRC+ against RHP and also have the fifth highest K rate against them. They were recently roasted by the likes of Ivan Nova and Reynaldo Lopez, so Greinke shouldn’t have any issue with his slate-low 3.2 IRTA. Greinke’s K rates have been down this year but he has an impeccable BB rate of 3.3% and is a -180 favorite on the road. I’d rather find value bats to fit in the high-end hitters than fade this safety in cash.
Other options – Hyun-Jin Ryu, Zack Wheeler
Joey Lucchesi, SD ($7100)
With Griffin Canning off the board, Lucchesi becomes the best value play and is cash viable if you want to adopt a bit more risk in order to fit more offense. His 4.36 SIERA isn’t anything to write home about but he’s also got a 48% GB rate and has a 3.7 IRTA (only Greinke’s is lower). The Giants have come surging back into the playoff picture but they still rank 28th in wOBA against LHP with a 24.3% K rate against them (12th highest). Lucchesi is an elite GPP option, and I’ll stamp my seal of approval for cash if I like the lineup.
Other options – Michael Pineda, James Paxton, Jack Flaherty, Sandy Alcantara, Gio Gonzalez
Freddie Freeman, ATL ($4000)
Even though Atlanta will not be a “featured” offense for cash games, we have to talk about how bad Jake Arrieta has been against lefties this season. In 118 innings this year, Arrieta has a 6.22 FIP and a 14.5% K rate against them while giving up a .383 wOBA and 1.94 HR/9. Since the beginning of last year, Freeman has a .393 wOBA and .263 ISO against RHP. It will be hard to take over the likes of hitters like Trout and Judge, but the argument is there, and I LOVE him in GPPs.
Other options – Edwin Encarnacion, Pete Alonso, Joc Pederson, Carlos Santana, Willson Contreras
Nate Lowe/Ji-Man Choi, TB ($2700/$2400)
These Tampa first basemen are great values to attack on this slate, especially if you’re using Greinke. Lowe is still hot with a 34.6% HHR over his last 15, and he’s got himself a .194 ISO against RHP this season. Choi is not as good a hitter, but we’ve see him lead off against righties recently and he’s getting a big park boost going to Toronto. The Rays have an IRT of 5.1 runs, and these two are solid cheap exposure (you can even use both to load up at other positions).
Other options – Miguel Cabrera, Brandon Dixon, Danny Santana, Eric Thames
Catcher values – Yasmani Grandal, Christian Vasquez, Wilson Ramos
Max Muncy, LAD ($4100)
The Dodgers are once again in a good spot tonight with a 5.3 IRT in Washington. Anibal Sanchez has always been a launching pad, and he has allowed the fifth most homers over the past four seasons. Muncy ranks third in homers over the last 162 games behind only Yelich and Trout, and he’s got a .388 wOBA and .296 ISO against RHP this season. He’s a great GPP play, but as usual, we’re grabbing value at the position in cash.
Other options – Gleyber Torres, Eduardo Escobar
David Fletcher, LAA ($2900)
We’ve already had some interesting discussion in FTA+ chat about Asher Wojchichowski (or however it’s spelled). It’s a very minimal sample size, but he DOES have a 42% K rate against RHP so far while allowing only a .212 ISO, and he shut down the Red Sox last start. Ultimately though, you don’t shy away from attacking the Orioles pitching staff, and Vegas agrees as they’ve pegged the Angels for an IRT of 5.6 runs. Asher has a career 4.74 xFIP, indicating there’s really nothing to fear, and he’s backed by the league’s worst bullpen.
Other options – Ozzie Albies, Jason Kipnis, Jonathan Schoop, Luis Rengifo
DJ LeMahieu, NYY ($4200)
Looking ahead to the rest of this article, I probably won’t write up another Yankee so we need to touch on them here. Even after getting waxed for 19 runs and only scoring three last night, the Yanks have the highest IRT on the slate at six runs. Vegas is not remotely afraid of Andrew Cashner and his 5.04 SIERA, and neither am I. LeMahieu has a modest .181 ISO against RHP this season, but its his 14% K rate against them that really stands out, making him a terrific floor play. If you take the plunge on cheap pitching, this is a nice investment for cash.
Other options – Josh Donaldson, Jose Ramirez, Mike Moustakas, Justin Turner, Yoan Moncada
JD Davis, NYM ($2400)
The Mets may have the sneakiest IRT over five runs today. They are taking on Dario Agrazal who has looked completely not ready at the MLB level. Thus far, he’s posted a 6.20 SIERA with a meager 10.4% K rate backed by only a 5.6 % swinging strike rate (yeesh). Davis has a 33.3% HHR over his last 15 games and has been getting top four lineup spots no matter the handedness of pitcher. I will be stacking Mets in GPP, and cheap plays like this are good cash values.
Other options – Vladimir Guerrero, Matt Chapman, Tim Beckham
Francisco Lindor, CLE ($4200)
Didi may wind up being a wiser investment at $500 cheaper, but I’m all aboard the Lindor train lately. Cleveland has an IRT of 5.3 runs today against Jake Junis who has a 4.83 SIERA and has been blasted for a 42.2% HHR. Lindor has a 35.3% HHR with five homers over his last 15 games, and he has a .231 ISO against RHP since last year. For all you BvP truthers out there too, he’s owned Junis in his career, going 12-25 with three doubles, three homers, and only two strikeouts.
Other options – Didi Gregorius, Javier Baez, Xander Bogaerts, Jorge Polanco
Jonathan Villar, BAL ($3000)
There’s a good amount of opportunity cost at the SS position so you’ll want to spend, but Villar is too cheap for someone who has 11 homers and 17 SBs. The Angels still have not announced their starter, but it’ll benefit the Orioles if it’s a bullpen game as the Angels’ pen ranks 22nd in SIERA. Villar has to lead off, though, and they inexplicably drop him to sixth sometimes (last night included).
Other options – Dansby Swanson, Elvis Andrus, Corey Seager, Andrelton Simmons
Mike Trout, LAA ($5000)
Please don’t fade Trout just because the Orioles pitcher has looked good against righties for 12 total innings. This is the best player on the planet, and he’s hitting like it right now too. He had three more hits last night and now has a 32% HHR on the season with a 38.7% mark over his last 15 games. Trout has a .445 wOBA and .360 ISO against RHP since the beginning of last year, and it’s laughable to imagine anyone on the Baltimore staff (who, by the way, are tired after 16 innings yesterday) keeping him at bay. He’s a flat out lock in cash, and I’m going overweight in GPPs.
Other options – Aaron Judge, Aaron Hicks, Cody Bellinger, Shohei Ohtani, Justin Upton, Nelson Cruz, Eddie Rosario, Max Kepler, Ronald Acuna, Christian Yelich, Mookie Betts, JD Martinez, Tommy Pham, Michael Conforto
Austin Meadows, TB ($3400)
Meadows’ price has really caught my eye on FD. He should not have dropped down this far, and now has a matchup and park environment to exploit as well. Meadows is sporting an really solid .944 OPS against RHP this season, and Jacob Waguespack is BAD. In AAA this year he has a 5.43 FIP with 1.54 HR/9 allowed, an is backed by a bullpen that ranks 24th in SIERA despite the success of Ken Giles.
Other options – Kole Calhoun, Nick Castellanos, Alex Verdugo, Mallex Smith, Whit Merrifield, Jorge Soler, Alex Gordon, Shin Soo Choo, Nick Markakis, Austin Riley, Tyler Austin, Avisail Garcia, Randal GrichukFantasy Baseball