The Daily Grind: 5-29-14 – Presented by FanDuel


  1. Injuries
  2. Thin Thursday DFS
  3. Friday Picks
  4. Table

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1. Injuries

I have a new found appreciation for pulled hamstrings, having lost mine yesterday to what I’ve self diagnosed as a light grade two strain. I think that’s a reasonable segue to a fresh reminder about injured players. So often we’ll hear such and such player is working through an injury. A player can sometimes be half as valuable as his normal self when playing through pain, just ask Miguel Cabrera last season. DFS owners will want to avoid banged up players in most cases, although the information is not always released in a timely fashion (for good reason). Traditional fantasy owners don’t always have the choice, sometimes your banged up Cabrera is still way too good to change – even if he’s no longer worth his draft day price.

2. Thin Thursday DFS

Early: Thank the gods there’s only two early games, so I don’t need to post before my scheduled 12:15 slot. I was up quite late last night dealing with my hamstring and arm, so a lack of an early contest meant I could sleep in all the way to 7:40. Someday I’ll take off so I can actually sleep in… You don’t care, do you?

The Rangers, Twins, Tigers, and Athletics are off the board. They weren’t obvious places for value today anyway.

Late: We’re left with eight games, which is a good number if you ask me.

The Mets should be pleased to face Dave Buchanan. He shutdown the Dodgers offense, but doesn’t really have the stuff to do anything of the sort consistently. On the other side of the matchup is Zack Wheeler who’s kind of lost his feel for command and control. He’s actually hard to hit as a result (also, he has good stuff) , so I wouldn’t target him too aggressively.

If you’re looking for a high-risk, medium-reward stack (you were!?), R.A. Dickey occasionally melts down. The Royals can send a lot of lefties against Dickey at the Rogers Centre. Those lefties don’t have much power.

The Orioles offense gets a stab at righty Brad Peacock. I’m not finding much use for the O’s offense on account of their cost. Unless you can find one of those $3,000 to $4,500 type pitchers, it’s hard to fit any kind of stack together.

The Giants have plenty of right-handed bats to try against recently returned Cardinals starter Jaime Garcia.

The Diamondbacks exploded against Tim Stauffer yesterday, much to my surprise. I avoided Stauffer, but it was because he’s a bad bet for more than five innings. Today they face a post-injury version of Tony Cingrani who has struggled a bit.

There’s one Red I would patch into my lineups against Josh Collmenter. He’s left-handed, tends to bat in the middle of the lineup, and is not named Joey Votto (he’s still out).

Matt Shoemaker versus Brandon Maurer is a game to exploit. Too bad it’s to be played in Seattle, although Los Angeles isn’t really any better for park effects.

3. Friday Picks

Pitchers to Start: Rafael Montero has the stuff to shut down the Phillies tepid offense. He’s also the kind of pitcher the Phillies randomly wallop, so this matchup isn’t without risk.

Pitchers to Exploit: I bet the Twins thought they were paying for a better pitcher than a 6.12 ERA ad 4.67 FIP when they signed Ricky Nolasco. The game is to be played at Yankee Stadium. I bet you can guess what I’m going to say next – short right field porch. On the other side of the matchup, the righty heavy Twins face mediocre lefty Vidal Nuno.

Colby Lewis might be turning things around, but it still might be worth trying Nationals hitters tomorrow.

Some people will pick Brandon Workman to start, and they might even be right. I’m looking at unimpressive minor league numbers this season and thinking it’s safer to take a pass.

The Milwaukee Brewers have a combination of right-handed hitters who annihilate lefty pitching. Travis Wood is widely considered a lefty pitcher. Sorry Wood.

I started the season very confident Brett Oberholtzer was a guy to exploit. Then I watched a couple sharp starts early in the season and wasn’t so sure. Well, he’s lost his edge. He still have a 3.71 FIP despite a 5.32 ERA, so he may work as a back end starter. But he’s not a fantasy guy.

Hitters (power): Adam LaRoche is back in the middle of the lineup.

Rickie Weeks and Mark Reynolds are two of the mostly available Brewers.

J.J. Hardy, Nick Hundley, and maybe even Steve Pearce are worthy of consideration against Oberholtzer.

C.J. Cron will probably start against lefty Drew Pomeranz. Josh Hamilton has been slightly delayed in his return by a bone bruise in his thumb. I have one of those too, they’re not fun, but it’s easy enough to play through it after a couple days rest and a temporary grip adjustment.

Matt Joyce and David DeJesus draw their regular recommendation.

It seems like there should be a right-handed bat to use in this Jason Vargas versus J.A. Happ game, but I’m drawing blanks. Dioner Navarro? Danny Valencia? I guess…

Trevor Plouffe is legitimately mashful against lefties, and he’s a three-hole to boot.

Hitters (speed): Jonathan Villar is most useful for his position, speed, and existent power. He’s least useful for his ability to reach base and spot in the lineup.

Chris Denorfia will probably lead off against John Danks.

4. Table

The table below indicates which stadiums have the best conditions for hitters today. The color coding is a classic stoplight where green equals go for hitters. The weather conditions are from SI Weather’s home run app. A 10/10 means great atmospheric conditions for home runs. A 1/10 means lousy atmospheric conditions.

St. Louis has more scattered storms, but the odds are pretty low at about 30-50 percent.

The Link. DFS players, remember the Twins and Athletics games are not for you.

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jim S.
jim S.

Villar was 0-for-17 prior to yesterday.