The Daily Grind: 7-19-14 – Presented by FanDuel


  1. Tips and Tricks
  2. Daily DFS
  3. Sunday Picks
  4. Table

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1. Tips and Tricks

Hey, hi, and howdy. I’m undertaking a bit of a project to create a collaborative guide to the second half of the season. This link has a bunch of tips and tricks, your job is to ask questions or offer suggestions in the comments. I will update intermittently until I feel like we have something definitive.

Operational Note: I will be out tomorrow morning due to an early AM game. Three of my next four Sundays are scheduled thusly.

2. Daily DFS

Early: Only four games are early – three at 1:00 and one at 4:00.

Brandon McCarthy’s start could go either way. He’s allowed many home runs this season, which is scary when combined with Yankee Stadium. The rest of his peripherals have been quite excellent.

Like McCarthy, Colby Lewis‘ peripherals aren’t as bad as his ERA. The problem with Lewis is BABIP. A little luck neutrality could trim his ERA to around 4.00. The Blue Jays offense is a bit hamstrung, but they still have some fearsome hitters.

Drew VerHagen will make his major league debut as part of the Tigers’ twin billing. Marc Hulet says he has a sinking, mid-90’s fastball but needs to develop his curve and change to remain in the rotation. In the minors, he’s succeeded by limiting walks.

Late: Due to the doubleheader, 12 games will be played late.

Brett Anderson doesn’t have to deal with the nightmare of Coors Field today. All things considered, Anderson at PNC Park has a whiff of upside. It’s so hard to even guess how he’ll do. I can guess that he won’t last much beyond five innings. The Rockies bullpen is pretty iffy before the seventh inning.

You know I like Zach McAllister, but there aren’t many pitchers who matchup with the Tigers. There are better pitchers to exploit and cheaper lineups to leverage.

The Astros possess one of those cheaper lineups. They’ll face pyromaniac Hector Noesi at U.S. Cellular Field.

For much of the season, Aaron Harang had inexplicably figured out how to generate extra swinging strikes and strikeouts. Now that talent has just as inexplicably vanished. The matchup with the Phillies isn’t bad, but you’ll still need to be careful with him.

The Athletics have the kind of right-handed hitters who can give Wei-Yin Chen some trouble. Thankfully for him, the game is at the O.Co Coliseum.

By virtue of his recent return from the disabled list and an extremely inexpensive Padres lineup, you could consider targeting Dillon Gee. It’s not where the smart money is going, which makes it a sneaky play for GPPs. That said, I doubt I’ll be trying it out.

3. Sunday Picks

Pitchers to Start: I’m hesitant to recommend a pitcher against the Rockies even though the game is at PNC Park. Jeff Locke has forgotten how to walk hitters, and he’s generating a high whiff rate to boot. The strikeouts haven’t followed yet, but he’s doing very interesting things.

Tyler Skaggs doesn’t pass the eye test for me. He reminds me of J.A. Happ in some ways. However, there’s no arguing that his peripherals have been much better than his 4.50 ERA. He’ll face a lefty-heavy Mariners lineup and has a decent shot at earning the W.

In his last start, Odrisamer Despaigne struck out a normal amount of batters for the first time in his brief major league career. He struck out a reasonable number of guys in his equally brief minor league career, so there is reason to believe he can turn this into a trend. He’ll face the Mets.

Pitchers to Exploit: Nick Tepesch is a reasonable back of the rotation arm, but you need to be better against the Blue Jays. Even with injuries to Edwin Encarnacion and Adam Lind.

Brad Hand either needs to figure out how to walk fewer batters or strike out more of them. Even Marlins Stadium can’t save him if he continues with a 1.75 WHIP or even his projected 1.55 WHIP.

Kyle Kendrick has become a pretty safe bet to allow three runs in the first inning. Usually he calms down at that point; sometimes he doesn’t. The last time he faced the Braves, Freddie Freeman went deep to provide those three runs.

Tyler Matzek has cut his walk rate in half upon his promotion to the majors. As expected, his strikeout rate has also dropped sharply. I expect the command and control problems to return without the benefit of his minor league strikeout numbers. The end result will belong right here.

Astros righties will see the occasionally flammable John Danks at White Sox Cellular Playpen. The Sox are opposed by Jarred Cosart. We could see a few home runs.

I guess Kevin Correia got bumped. Here he is again. Nothing has changed since yesterday – he still sometimes allows hits in bunches.

Hitters (power): Chris Coghlan, Luis Valbuena, and Arismendy Alcantara remain low impact plugins.

Seth Smith returns. This time he’s opposed by Zack Wheeler.

Speaking of regulars, why not try Matt Joyce against Correia. I thought it was a good idea yesterday, and I still do.

Corey Hart seems like a wise play against Skaggs.

Chris Carter, Robbie Grossman, and Matt Dominguez could all be worth a look against Danks.

Hitters (speed): Adam Eaton might swipe a base against Cosart.

Drew Stubbs should start against the left-hander, but it’s never a sure thing.

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.

Pittsburgh has a 50 percent chance of rain, Minnesota has isolated storms, and Atlanta has non-isolated storms.

The Link. We still have limited green options and surprisingly crisp weather.

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