The Daily Grind: 7-8-14 – Presented by FanDuel


  1. A Fellow Brad
  2. Daily DFS
  3. Wednesday Picks
  4. Table

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1. A Fellow Brad

I’m not sure anyone has ever suggested to me that “us Brads need to stick together.” However, one Brad has found himself suddenly fantasy relevant, and I might as well use him as a teaching moment.

Brad Boxberger seems to have worked his way into the Rays saves-holds rotation. He’s always struck out a ton of batters, but walks have made him a shaky asset. He seems to have a grip on the free passes, although he’s added a home run problem (24 percent HR/FB). Fantasy owners should probably root for Boxberger to grab a larger share of the closer role. His strikeout rate could push him to near elite value despite obvious problems with his game. On a more cautionary note, don’t be too eager to jump on a half constructed bandwagon. Jake McGee is still a better pitcher.

2. Daily DFS

Early: The first game of the Cubs-Reds doubleheader is early. Just let it go.

Late: The Red Sox will try to pepper the Monster against John Danks in the latest Battle of the Sox.

The Royals will face Jeremy Hellickson in his first start of the season. His rehab assignment was somewhat less than fantastic with an ERA above 7.00 and a .493 BABIP.

Tsuyoshi Wada and David Holmberg could allow a ton of runs in the second game of the double header. Wada has pitched well at Triple-A, which is (much) more than can be said of Holmberg.

Why does Phil Irwin sound like a golfer to me? (I know why…). In any case, the Rangers acquired him from the Pirates earlier this season. He walks too many batters, but at least he has the stuff to record some strikeouts. His fastball runs around 90 mph.

Franklin Morales will start for the second time since returning to the rotation. Don’t expect him to go deep. The Padres should like facing him at Coors Field.

Brad Hand and Vidal Nuno offer two more exploitable lefties. Is it just me or is there an unusually large quantity of mediocre left-handers in the league right now?

3. Wednesday Picks

Pitchers to Start: Dillon Gee is back. I don’t know how eager I am to jump on this outing against the Braves – I mostly wanted to point out his return. His rehab stint was short, so don’t expect him to go deep. Gee may hold the record for most appearances in The Daily Grind, dating back to our THT years.

Brandon McCarthy will make his first start for the Yankees tomorrow. New York is maybe the worst place he could have gone (except Colorado). The short right-field porch is not going to help his home run problem. Neither is a start at Progressive Field.

Rubby de la Rosa will supposedly start on Wednesday. He’s probably the top pick up for tomorrow, although a matchup against Chris Sale isn’t a walk in the park.

Pitchers to Exploit: Eric Stults‘ latest adventure will take place at Coors Field. His ERA has been creeping downward, but it may take a bump up after tomorrow. He’s opposed by Jair Jurrjens. The Dodgers bashed 12 hits including two home runs in his 2014 debut. The Padres have somewhat less offense than the Dodgers, but Jurrjens is still a good target.

Dallas Beeler will make his second major league start of the season. Despite a six inning shutout in his debut, he looks like a swing starter to me. The Reds could do alright.

The Nationals have a few lefty mashers, which makes is a hairy start for Wei-Yin Chen.

Hitters (power): Wilson Ramos is one of those mashers. He’s still healthy, right? He seems to land on the disabled list every time I step away from my computer.

Trevor Plouffe will see left-hander Roenis Elias. Plouffe has good platoon numbers against lefties.

Lonnie Chisenhall and David Murphy have a shot at a home run against McCarthy.

Seth Smith and Chase Headley look mighty fine.

Hitters (speed): Tommy La Stella seems like a good idea against Gee. It’s too bad he doesn’t actually swipe bases.

Nathan Eovaldi has struggled through his last five or so outings. His strikeout rate has plummeted, so Parra may have a chance to reach base multiple times. I’d avoid him if you play in a league that punishes caught stealings.

Drew Stubbs offers power and speed while Brandon Barnes is just speed (and not a lot).

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.

Nearly half the league comes with a 30 percent storm threat today. Check the weather maps closer to game time.

The Link. Some of the late games have pitcher friendly weather tacked onto pitcher friendly ballparks. I’d look there for pitching.

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