- Weather Bonanza
- The Daily Grind Invitational and Leaderboard
- Daily DFS
- SaberSim Observations
- Tomorrow’s Targets
- Factor Grid
1. Weather Bonanza
It’s finally hot through most of the United States. Broiling heat means more home runs and more home runs mean more fantasy gold. Heat and humidity also lead to powerful thunderstorms. We’re seeing that today with eight of the 15 games affected by some kind of storm risk. None of them are a guaranteed to be postponed.
On a day like this, there are two approaches – high effort and low effort. If you’re willing to do your homework and tinker until the last possible moment, you could take advantage of underused pitchers and hitters. For example, the Nationals face Dan Straily and the Reds bullpen. There are home runs to be had along with a 75 percent storm risk. If that risk reduces dramatically closer to game time, you may be one of the few holding Bryce Harper.
The easy way is to simply avoid the games with rain. Why take the easy way out? Well, perhaps you have things to do on a Saturday afternoon? Or perhaps you like to pretend to have things to do. In any case, this is a common approach so you’ll probably wind up with overused, mediocre picks. You’re hurting your expected value using this strategy. In other words, it’s fine for a $3 buy-in, but don’t get lazy when dropping $300 on a contest.
2. The Daily Grind Invitational and Leaderboard
It figures. Somebody dropped out of the league at the last minute, converting it to a freebie. And OF COURSE it was the day I won a resounding victory with the help of Noah Syndergaard, Corey Seager, and Adam Duvall. The TDG Invitational isn’t about winning money, but it is a matter of pride. If the contest had run, I’d now be in first place on the FanDuel leaderboard with fronski nipping at my heels.
Oh well, woe is me and such. For future reference, please do not leave the contests without recruiting a replacement. It’s a courtesy to others who put in the time and effort of building a lineup. The league was full by 11:00am which means plenty of people were frozen out. The entry fee is only $2 for a reason. If you can’t check lineups ahead of time, invent a new process sans lineups.
We’ll do FanDuel again today. The same $2 and 20 users. For reference, I do Saturday’s completely blind. If I’m lucky, I’ll get a couple minutes to confirm my guys are even playing. Given the weather reports today, I’m just handing over my $2.
3. Daily DFS
The contests are confusing today. The games in Chicago and Philadelphia can only be played in all-day formats. The main slate includes the seven 4:00pm games and the three 7:00pm games. Those same three 7:00pm games kick off the evening slate which involves six games total. So there’s some overlap.
Afternoon: Stephen Strasburg at Great American Ballpark is iffy in the first place. Who wants to pay $12,000 for sea level Coors Field? With the weather report tossed in, gimme someone cheaper. That’s probably not Chris Sale or Jeff Samardzija. They’re both expensive and face tough opponents.
Steven Wright is interesting for a couple reasons. He has one of the dry games which is nothing to sneeze at today. We’re going to see some pitchers get interrupted. The Blue Jays lineup is a terrifying matchup, even if they aren’t nearly as scary as last season (yet!). However, the knuckleball is the great neutralizer. I do wish Wright didn’t cost $9,200 on FanDuel. For $8,200, I’d be happy to roll the dice. I may still do so, but I won’t be happy about it.
I want to like Matt Andriese. As I discussed in yesterday’s column, he just doesn’t finish off hitters. He’s a pitch to contact guy without Jordan Zimmermann’s wiles. He could still get the better of the Twins, and they have one of the lower storm risks. Ervin Santana always has the potential to spin off a surprise good outing too.
Late: As it turns out, I didn’t recommend any of the overlap pitchers. Now will I. Instead, find money for Clayton Kershaw versus the Braves.
4. SaberSim Observations
Well…SaberSim likes the early games we can’t use. Jason Hammel, Junior Guerra, and Jeremy Hellickson are the third to fifth ranked pitchers. Kershaw and Strasburg are first and second. Kershaw is projected for over 20 more FanDuel points than the next best guy in his slate. Just find the money for him. Cashner, Collin McHugh, and Chris Sale are the next three on the board.
The top stacks include the Red Sox, Mariners, Blue Jays, Angels, Orioles, and Astros.
5. Tomorrow’s Targets
Pitchers to Start: Nationals ground ball guy Tanner Roark has an auto-win opposite Jon Moscot. Roark should receive enough run support to fuel multiple victories. He’ll probably allow a home run. Don’t expect more than a few strikeouts. The Reds aren’t the Twins.
Also consider: Tyler Duffey, Jon Gray
Pitchers to Exploit: Some day, the Brewers will decide they’ve seen enough Wily Peralta starts. It’s time for him to head to the bullpen. Perhaps he’ll have an epiphany. More likely, he’ll be an adequate middle reliever. Peralta has a 6.51 ERA, 5.88 K/9, and 3.81 BB/9. A .392 BABIP and 17 percent HR/FB ratio look unlucky. He’s usually league average in BABIP, but he’s also consistently homer prone. Even the Phillies lineup is streamable against him.
Hitters (power): There’s a couple widely available stacks. I love Franklin Gutierrez as an every start home run threat. The other Mariners listed are also good picks at power friendly Texas Toast Stadium.
Hitters (speed): With Marlon Byrd suspended, Rajai Davis will remain an every day guy. He’s opposed by fly ball pitcher Chris Young. Nobody really runs on Salvador Perez – maybe because he’s caught 15 of 27 base runners.
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.
No weather factors again. They’ll be back next week.
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