Well, last night was a dud. Chris Sale and Jose Fernandez got knocked around a bit. Andrew Cashner was phenomenal, and pretty much everyone I recommended performed rather poorly despite their match-up advantages. Here’s to hoping today is a little more fruitful.
Strikeouts are the holy grail for pitchers in daily leagues. On Draftstreet in particular, they are a valuable asset. Gerrit Cole’s performance Thursday was solid. He allowed three runs, five hits,, walked two batters, and hit another over six innings. So, decent, but not overly impressive. At least it’s not impressive until you consider the 10 points he gained for his strikeouts. A decent start was turned into one of the better pitching performances of the day due to Cole’s ability to rack up strikeouts.
Cole was facing the Cubs, who by all accounts aren’t an offensive juggernaut. The Cubs swing-and-miss issues – ~24% strikeout rate thus far – make them a nice target to start pitching against until something changes. Statistics take a while to stabilize, but we’re nearly at the point where contact rates began stabilizing, so let’s look at them on a team wide basis.
This should come as no surprise, but the Astros had the worst contact rate entering Friday. The Braves had the third worst accompanied by the worst Swstr% (12.4%). The Mets and Cubs have also struggled making contact – ninth and tenth worst, respectively. That backs up the fact they have two of the highest strikeout percentages in the majors right now. So far, the best offenses to target in search of strikeouts have been the: Mets, Astros, Padres, Braves, Dodgers, Marlins, and Cubs. I don’t expect that will change much throughout the season, although targeting the Braves or Dodgers can backfire because of their ability to leave the yard multiple times.
The Daily Five
The Royals offense hasn’t quite gotten off the ground yet, but if anyone can cure that, it’s Ricky Nolasco. Nolasco is a solid, albeit underwhelming pitcher. Both Hosmer and Aoki will have large platoon advantage. Butler won’t one, but he’s performed pretty well against right handed pitchers during his career (112 wRC+). If you’re looking to make a four man stack, or avoid using Butler, Alex Gordon is my next favorite option.
Matt Adams – $6,960
Adams has put together a nice season so far. He has a definite advantage tomorrow, and given his place in the lineup and the overall pitching match-up he should have some chances to knock in a few runs.
Alex Wood – $13,728
It’s hard to argue with Wood’s results so far. I’m a little worried about the fact that Washington is seeing him immediately after seeing him last weekend, but his price is too good to pass up.
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Landon is a senior writer at The Fantasy Fix. You can follow and interact with him on Twitter (@joneslandon).