The Daily Grind: Goldilocks Thursday

This Thursday is neither too thin nor too wide. It’s just right.


  1. TDG Invitational
  2. Weather Reports
  3. Pitchers to Use and Abuse
  4. SaberSim Says…
  5. Not Crisp

1.The Daily Grind Invitational

My expectations of a bland outing from Julio Teheran proved unfounded. Antigonist rode Teheran, Justin Verlander, and Nick Castellanos the finish line. Their entire offense was under 10 percent owned. I detect some DraftKings tactics. Congrats and Leaderboard.

We have nine games in the evening slate on FantasyDraft.

2. Weather Reports


3. Pitchers to Use and Abuse

As Verlander was beyond obvious yesterday so too is Gerrit Cole ($23,200) tonight. He’s a good $5,000 underpriced versus the Tigers. I’m pretty sure that’s not even hyperbole.

Max Scherzer ($21,900) is back in time to visit pitcher friendly PNC Park. I’ve not heard any rumors of a pitch count, although I’m wary of investing ace-level money when he could be out in five frames. Or rusty. Or maybe he’ll outperform Cole with a low-ish ownership rate.

German Marquez ($20,400) is going to start earning a reputation as a second half pitcher. He’s shoved in recent weeks, hence the lofty price for a sea level visit to the Cardinals. Due to some of the pitchers surrounding him, Marquez may have an under 10 percent ownership rate in large GPPs. I do think he’s likely to reach the 20 point threshold. Miles Mikolas ($14,500) deserves some attention as a mid-tier play against the Rockies. They’re terrible on the road.

One reason Marquez will be low-owned is because Mike Soroka ($19,800) costs less and has that juicy Marlins matchup. Soroka is considerably superior to Teheran. If Julio T. can bank over 30 points, so can Soroka. At least, that’s the logic many people will be using today.

Noah Syndergaard ($19,400) has a more challenging pairing with the Indians and Aaron Civale ($12,200). Thor benefits from almost always throwing between six and eight innings. He costs $1,000 less than Marquez and looks pretty similar to my eyes. Civale is a potential top bargain thanks to just under a strikeout per inning and an average of six frames per start (only four starts). He’s a command and control guy with a six-pitch kitchen sink repertoire. For all that, his stuff isn’t below average like a Jordan Yamamoto. The Mets could do some damage, but nobody should surprised if Civale whips out 18 points.

Ryan Yarbrough ($17,600) must be some kind of mirage. I’ve seen pitchers with his lack of stuff thrive over half a season, but we’re coming up on two years of very strong performances back by… nothing. He would not look out of place pitching in my men’s league (granted, he would be the best pitcher). He’s a no-fastballs, soft-contact specialist. While this price feels absurd, he’ll probably earn it and then some versus the Orioles. Baltimore starter Asher Wojciechowski ($13,700) is quite reasonably priced for his strikeout potential. Woj is coming off four consecutive rough starts, three of which were against top offenses.

Kenta Maeda ($15,800) seems like a solid mid-tier option if you want to avoid the bargain bust-rates but can’t find the cash for an ace (or a second one). He’ll host the Blue Jays.

Masahiro Tanaka ($14,800) and his new splitter offer an alternative to Maeda. A visit to the Coliseum isn’t ideal. Tanaka can be homer prone and the A’s offense has some fly ball launchers.

Sandy Alcantara ($12,900 at Atlanta) and Ariel Jurado ($10,300 at White Sox) are entirely hopeless as low cost bargain plugs. Alcantara fired off 17 points against the Braves a couple starts ago. Jurado sometimes flirts with 20 points in between various disasterpieces.

Favorite Plays: Cole, Marquez, Yarbrough, Civale

I like the Marquez pick purely because it’s tricksy. The guys priced around him look like better values to me.

Stack Targets: Jordan Zimmermann, Ross Detwiler, Jurado, Steven Brault, Alcantara, Jacob Waguespack, Wojciechowski

4. SaberSim Says…

Cole, Scherzer, Maeda, Soroka, and Marquez top the charts. You’ll get the most bang for your buck from Cole, Maeda, Scherzer, Civale, and Jurado. Austin Meadows, Cody Bellinger, Ronald Acuna, Yordan Alvarez, and Freddie Freeman lead the bat-wielding savages. Penny pinchers will prefer Nick Solak, Meadows, Jon Jay, Lewis Brinson, and Jack Mayfield.

5.Not Crisp

For all those points he scored, Verlander didn’t get the job done.

Not crisp.

In case you didn’t know, Francisco Mejia has a glaring blind spot. If you’re Mejia owner, take solace in that fact that Bellinger had this same blind spot two seasons ago.

We hoped you liked reading The Daily Grind: Goldilocks Thursday by Brad Johnson!

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Yarbrough’s ERA since the AS Break is 1.51 but he’s faced @BAL, CHW, @TOR, @BOS, TOR, @SEA, DET. That’s 6 cupcakes and Boston who rang him up for 4 R in 4.1 IP. I will say though, b-ref’s splits page shows his numbers against both over .500 teams (3.87 ERA in 104.2 IP) and under .500 teams (3.53 in 147.2) and he’s been pretty consistently good against everyone.