Daily Fantasy Strategy – 6/7/13 – For Draftstreet by Brett Talley June 7, 2013 The platoon advantage is a well established concept. And it’s one of the most important factors, if not the most important factor, when picking hitters in daily fantasy contests. When I pick hitters, I start at the bottom of the list at each position and scroll up until I find a hitter that is facing a pitcher of the opposite handedness who also happens to not be very good. The problem with this strategy is that not all hitters have a normal platoon split, and others have about the same level of success against both LHP and RHP. The other issue is with switch hitters. Every day I have to look up a switch hitter’s splits from each side. Below are two charts I’ve created to make this process easier. The first shows the players who are either better against pitchers who throw from the same side from which they hit or players who have roughly equal success against pitchers of either handedness. The second shows the splits for switch hitters. The sample includes all hitters with 300+ PA against both LHP and RHP since 2011. I used wOBA to compare the splits. Name L/R/S wOBA v. LHP wOBA v. RHP wOBA Gap Mike Napoli R 0.36 0.405 0.045 Adam Jones R 0.32 0.362 0.042 John Buck R 0.266 0.307 0.041 Marco Scutaro R 0.32 0.345 0.025 Elvis Andrus R 0.299 0.319 0.02 Adrian Beltre R 0.369 0.388 0.019 Miguel Cabrera R 0.422 0.437 0.015 Chris Johnson R 0.315 0.326 0.011 Ben Revere L 0.292 0.281 0.011 Dan Uggla R 0.32 0.329 0.009 Ichiro Suzuki L 0.294 0.286 0.008 Aaron Hill R 0.334 0.34 0.006 Josh Willingham R 0.361 0.366 0.005 Paul Konerko R 0.36 0.365 0.005 Dustin Ackley L 0.29 0.287 0.003 Mark Reynolds R 0.341 0.344 0.003 Mark Trumbo R 0.341 0.343 0.002 Cameron Maybin R 0.298 0.298 0 Ian Desmond R 0.325 0.324 -0.001 B.J. Upton R 0.316 0.315 -0.001 Albert Pujols R 0.363 0.361 -0.002 Jhonny Peralta R 0.337 0.334 -0.003 Alcides Escobar R 0.295 0.292 -0.003 Michael Morse R 0.372 0.362 -0.01 David Wright R 0.371 0.358 -0.013 Alex Rios R 0.334 0.321 -0.013 Starlin Castro R 0.333 0.32 -0.013 Austin Jackson R 0.345 0.33 -0.015 Reed Johnson R 0.344 0.328 -0.016 Name L/R/S wOBA v. LHP wOBA v. RHP wOBA Gap Matt Wieters S 0.423 0.299 0.124 Shane Victorino S 0.396 0.312 0.084 Neil Walker S 0.274 0.348 0.074 Jimmy Rollins S 0.273 0.342 0.069 Cliff Pennington S 0.243 0.298 0.055 Mark Teixeira S 0.39 0.336 0.054 Danny Espinosa S 0.343 0.293 0.05 Coco Crisp S 0.291 0.34 0.049 Carlos Santana S 0.383 0.337 0.046 Alberto Callaspo S 0.335 0.306 0.029 Nick Swisher S 0.377 0.349 0.028 Jed Lowrie S 0.347 0.325 0.022 Ben Zobrist S 0.368 0.348 0.02 Chase Headley S 0.344 0.361 0.017 Angel Pagan S 0.307 0.324 0.017 Erick Aybar S 0.306 0.323 0.017 Melky Cabrera S 0.366 0.35 0.016 Justin Smoak S 0.294 0.308 0.014 Jose Reyes S 0.348 0.359 0.011 Carlos Beltran S 0.366 0.375 0.009 Dexter Fowler S 0.364 0.366 0.002 Jemile Weeks S 0.303 0.302 0.001 Asdrubal Cabrera S 0.336 0.336 0 Emilio Bonifacio S 0.311 0.311 0 Maicer Izturis S 0.296 0.296 0 The Daily Five James Shields, $16,292 This is your bi-weekly reminder to spend big on pitchers. They score more points, so you want to spend more on quality pitchers to give yourself the best chance at having one of the highest point scorers. Of the expensive starters today, Shields has the best matchup against Houston with maybe the exception of Matt Harvey against the Marlins. But I’m going with Shields because I like Harvey’s opponent. Jose Fernandez, $11,899 And Harvey’s opponent is Mr. Fernandez. The kid impressed in his first two starts of the season but struggled in his next few starts. But when the calendar turned to May, he showed improvement. His xFIP improved from 3.84 in March to 3.60 in May, and his K% jumped 1.6% and his BB% fell 1.5%. And he looked great in the first start of June when he held the Mets scoreless with eight strikeouts while allowing just four base runners over seven innings. He’ll face those very same Mets today who are 26th in the league in wRC+. Alberto Callaspo, $6,132 Callaspo is a swtich hitter who appears in the second list above. He has been quite a bit better against LHP the last few years, and he’ll face one today in Boston, Felix Doubront. Alex Gordon, $7,457 This is a good opportunity to remind everyone that it’s not a great idea to worry about streaks too much in daily contests. Sure, Gordon is hitting just .184 over the last 14 days, but he has a .379 wOBA against RHP over the last two-plus years. Trust the larger sample size, and start Gordon in a good macthup against bad right-hander Jordan Lyles. Jedd Gyorko, $6,181 This seems like one of the bargains of the day. Draftstreet is really good about setting prices daily and not letting bargains slip through the cracks. They’re obviously aware of the platoon advantage, and they adjust prices accordingly. They’re also very aware of the quality of the opposing pitcher. But I think they missed this one. Gyorko is only the 15th most expensive 2B despite the fact that he has a favorable platoon matchup against LHP Jorge de la Rosa. And it’s in Colorado. The only thing I can figure is that the Draftstreet pricers see de la Rosa’s 3.10 ERA and assume he is a quality opponent. But I see his 4.52 SIERA and his below average K% and BB% and I know that he’s not a quality opponent. Gyorko’s teammate, Everth Cabrera, is also a nice bargain at SS for $5,495. Friday SPECIAL for FanGraphs Readers Daily Fantasy is easy — you pick a lineup that’s good for one night only, and then you’re eligible to win cash. Draftstreet is running a contest this Friday, just for FanGraphs fans. CLICK HERE to sign up now! This contest will have GUARANTEED OVERLAY of at least $500 (extra money added to the pot courtesy of DraftStreet). The buy-in is $11 with $1,000 in prizes up for grabs, but there are only 50 spots available so hurry up and join now (maximum of 3 entries per user). This post, covering one of the leading sites for daily fantasy, is sponsored and made possible by the generous support of Draftstreet. 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