The Daily Grind: DFS, Streaming, and More for August 15 by Brad Johnson August 15, 2016 Agenda Olympics The Daily Grind Invitational and Leaderboard Daily DFS SaberSim Observations Tomorrow’s Targets Factor Grid 1. Olympics A goodly chunk of the Olympics have come and gone. Last night had one of the most highly anticipated events, the men’s race against Usain Bolt. I’m told that just like the rabbit in dog racing, if any of the men ever catch Bolt, it will ruin them for all future races. It didn’t happen last night. An American doper won the race as he was first to finish after Bolt. In another tale of dominance, American gymnast Simone Biles looks like she’s Mike Trout…if Mike Trout were playing in my men’s league. The dominating wins only halfway capture how much better she looks than all the other competition. Hope Solo seems like a totally cool lady. She famously compared the Swedes to cow hearts. The heart is a tough but very nutrient rich cut of the heifer. One might choose to order a cow heart at your local restaurant if you seek virility and/or an especially crunchy bit of meat. It follows that eating a Swede will probably restore your potency in bed and/or offer a bit of crunch with every bite. Personally, I’ve only ever eaten heart in tacos. Michael Phelps, no relation to David Phelps, still looks like the douchiest douche in the pool. I’m glad I’m not the best in the world at something – that’s gotta really screw you up as a person. Meanwhile, all the other swimmers are nice to everybody but Phelps. Katie Ledecky – the women’s Phelps – seems especially gracious in victory. The announcers are pretty comical with how they describe player backgrounds. They barely talk about the men aside from whatever rivalry they can invent. With the women, they really emphasize the coaching staff. I’m starting to think all of the men probably weren’t coached by anybody. They just show up and play. “Hey Mikey, come play pick-up Olympics with us after lunch. We’ll be at the Rio playground.” (Hey! Who’s the asshole who invited Phelps?) 2. The Daily Grind Invitational and Leaderboard Let’s play on FanDuel today. We’ll have nine games with which to work for the main contest. See you there. 3. Daily DFS Early: The Red Sox and Indians are chilling by themselves as the only early game. Too bad since Josh Tomlin and Drew Pomeranz make for an interesting matchup on both sides of the ball. They’re both guys you could start or target. Late: The other nine games are late. Max Scherzer is obviously the top pitcher of the day versus Colorado. It’s too bad the game is at Coors. I may still gamble on big strikeout total outweighing a two homer outing. Scherzer’s biggest/only issue this year has been the long ball. Despite Coors Field, he still has a high floor because he’s a near lock for a win against Jorge de la Rosa. Felix Hernandez is the other name brand asset, but his command looks questionable this year. He completed an eight inning start against the Angels just 10 days ago, so we know he can succeed against this team. Even a diminished Hernandez is more than capable of delivering the top performance of the day. The win should be his opposite Ricky Nolasco. Outside of the top tier, you’ll find Matt Moore making his third start for the Giants. He’s been walktastic with 11 free passes in 12 innings. Otherwise, he’s posted solid numbers – three hits, two runs, and seven strikeouts in both appearances. The Giants are hosting Pittsburgh tonight. Either side of Robbie Ray or Bartolo Colon could be of interest depending on format. Ray is a good GPP play for his high strikeout totals. The Mets offense is a shambles. Six innings, 10 strikeouts, and a win could produce the top performance of the night. Colon is a better play in 50/50s where a steady 30 FD point start is of more use. Unless you think Chad Green can survive a start against the Blue Jays – I’m not betting money on that – the only bargains of interest to me are R.A. Dickey and Ryan Vogelsong. Dickey occasionally fires random blissful outings. Vogelsong is returning to his old stomping grounds in San Francisco, and he’s looked fine this year. Stack Targets: Green, de la Rosa, Luis Perdomo, David Phelps, Ross Detwiler, Nolasco, Martin Perez, Brandon Finnegan, Daniel Norris, Ian Kennedy 4. SaberSim Observations Drew Smyly is the top rated pitcher today – ahead of Scherzer, Ray, Moore, and Phelps. I’m probably not stacking against Smyly (well, maybe I am now), but I sure as hell don’t like him more than most of the cheaper, crappy options. I consider him comparable to Dickey. You’ll get the occasional strong start mixed with pain. Phelps ranking fifth is also interesting. His projection of six innings seems very high to me. I’ll take him for a median of five innings and a ceiling of seven. Stacks include dat Coors game, Diamondbacks, Marlins, Rangers, Trout, Giants, Athletics, and Yankees. 5. Tomorrow’s Targets Pitchers to Start: Ervin Santana may be boring, but he has a pretty good shot at defeating the Braves while pitching deep into the outing. He should every stat but strikeout rate. If you’re in a H2H, that won’t even matter. Also consider: Blake Snell, Jameson Taillon, James Paxton Pitchers to Exploit: Of all the pitchers in the exploit column, Braden Shipley’s 2.96 ERA is the outlier. Shipley has benefited from a .239 BABIP and 91 percent strand rate through 24 innings. His stuff isn’t impressive by any stretch of the imagination, and his command leaves something to be desired. Maybe he can be a contact management guy, but that profile usually takes years to develop. Also consider: Matt Garza, Trevor Cahill, Eduardo Rodriguez, Yovani Gallardo, Michael Pineda, Joel de la Cruz, Edwin Jackson, Andrew Triggs, Lucas Harrell, Chase Anderson, Gio Gonzalez, Chad Bettis, Jhoulys Chacin Hitters (power): After breaking out as a 30-year-old last year, Clint Robinson has returned to Earth. His .221/.283/.357 line in 160 plate appearances is rather disappointing. Fantasy owners have rightly eschewed Robinson thus far. A series at Coors Field is the only time to use him. Also consider: Seth Smith, Adam Lind, James Loney, Ryan Raburn, Nick Hundley, Scooter Gennett, Stephen Vogt, Yangervis Solarte, Robbie Grossman, Joe Mauer, Nolan Reimold Hitters (speed): I’m glad Jorge Polanco is FINALLY getting a chance to play in the majors. This has been long overdue. For those of you who waited all year for Orlando Arcia (another solid option tomorrow with a doubleheader), Polanco is the better version of him. They have the same discipline and contact skills except Polanco’s power is more actualized. Unlike Arcia, Polanco has a reasonable chance to be an above average hitter over the rest of the season. He doesn’t quite have the same speed on the bases. Expect six steals in the final quarter-season. Also consider: Trea Turner, Ben Revere 6. The Factor Grid 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. The Link. This post is not brought to you by any DFS platform. The current author is quite pleased to present a DFS ad free environment.