The Daily Grind: Jones, Corbin, Smyly, Valencia


  1. Jones Chatter
  2. Daily DFS – Corbin
  3. GB / FB Splits
  4. Tomorrow’s Targets – Smyly, Jungmann, Hutchison, Valencia, Peterson
  5. Factor Grid

1. Jones Chatter

Over the course of the last year, I’ve written some things about Adam Jones. Namely, I have concerns about paying full price for him on draft day because I worry about his hyper aggressive approach falling off a cliff. Any little injury could do it.

Those concerns don’t translate to DFS play where we can just stop using him if something alarming happens. This year, Jones has partially assuaged my doubts by increasing his contact rate. He’s still the same free swinger with power and a .280 average. Now he’s striking out 15 percent of the time instead of closer to 20 percent.

What interests me about Jones is the way he’s been priced on FanDuel over the last couple seasons. He’s split his time between bargain ($2,600 to $3,300) and elite ($4,000 and up) despite nothing changing in his overall profile. Right now, he’s $3,200, and he’s been even cheaper over the last couple weeks. As a result, I’ve played him very often.

When Jones is expensive, it’s because he’s recently had a two home run night or he’s driven in a bushel of RBI over the last few games. The thing is, that doesn’t change what we expect from him. All hitters have streaks, but Jones doesn’t display boom-bust characteristics the way we see in a Jay Bruce or Chris Carter. When he’s cheap, take advantage of the savings relative to his talent.

2. Daily DFS – Corbin

Yesterday’s Grind

Early: We have just two early games today. If you’re not building a lineup around Felix Hernandez at Fenway, then I don’t know what you’re doing. Well, I do. Obviously you’re fading the King. Your alternatives are Masahiro Tanaka versus the Blue Jays (ick), Marco Estrada against the fly ball mashing Yankees, and Wade Miley.

Late: As usual, the 13 game even slate contains aces and stompable blubberers. Jon Gray is the cheapest pitcher today on FanDuel. He’s at Coors Field against the Padres. I’m interested only to the extent that he’s obviously not the worst pitcher of the day. Over two starts, he’s shown off his potent 95 mph four-seam fastball, slider, and change. It’s a good repertoire for a Coors Field pitcher. Alas, he’s unlikely to throw more than five innings.

The other cheap guys are easy exploits. Lefty David Holmberg has produced good results through three starts, but he’s overdue for a 1.1 inning stinker. I think the Dodgers will deliver it tonight. His 3.06 ERA belies a 5.05 xFIP.

If you want a bargain to use, it’s clearly Patrick Corbin. The Braves hit well against his left-handed teammate Robbie Ray, but the Atlanta offense still rates among the worst against southpaws. Aside from coughing up a few too many home runs, Corbin has been in top form since returning from the disabled list.

If you’re not using a bargain, I assume you’re making room for Chris Archer, Johnny Cueto, or Jake Arrieta. SaberSim likes Jimmy Nelson, but I’m not so sure.

Stack Targets: Miley, Estrada, Chris Bassitt, Mike Foltynewicz, Josh Tomlin, Tyler Duffey, Holmberg, Brad Hand, Jerome Williams

3. Tomorrow’s Targets – Smyly, Jungmann, Hutchison, Valencia, Peterson

Pitchers to Start: There are four rookies with either talent or solid matchups. Then there’s the return of Drew Smyly. His stuff is said to be back in top form, although his walk rate was high during his four game rehab stint. Now is your chance to pick him up, but you should expect some turbulence.

I believe this is Taylor Jungmann’s first appearance in the “to start” category. By suppressing home runs, Jungmann has produced a useful 2.42 ERA to date (3.79 xFIP). My biggest concern relates to his 2.91 BB/9. He’s averaged about 4.25 BB/9 throughout his four year minor league career. He’s has a couple extended stints with a solid walk rate before losing his touch. I’m not on board the bandwagon, but you can use him against the Phillies.

Also consider: Luis Severino (careful!), Henry Owens, Joe Ross

Pitchers to Exploit: While his home numbers have declined slightly in recent weeks, Drew Hutchison still possesses ridiculous home/road splits. He has a 2.68 ERA (2.90 FIP) at home compared to a 9.00 ERA (4.68 FIP) on the road. There is no tidy explanation for such extreme splits. Given his recent performances, I’m starting to expect the 4.68 FIP guy even at home. The Yankees have a potent offense and should deliver some damage.

Also consider: Rubby de la Rosa, Aaron Harang, Tommy Milone, Matt Boyd, Mike Fiers, David Phelps, Chris Rusin, Ian Kennedy

Hitters (power): When your DFA’d out of the Blue Jays lineup, you’re not going to land in a better situation. Unless, of course, you’re Danny Valencia. The utility fielder went from a platoon bat in Toronto to the A’s everyday cleanup hitter. He’ll make for a wonderful pickup tomorrow against southpaw Wei-Yin Chen at Camden Yards.

Also consider: Chase Headley, David Peralta, Jake Lamb, Scooter Gennett, Chase Utley, Stephen Piscotty, Andre Ethier, B.J. Melvin Upton, Ben Paulsen

Hitters (speed): The first time I met Carson Cistulli, he talked to me about Jace Peterson. At the time, he was an afterthought prospect in the Padres system. Scouts liked his individual tools but weren’t too keen on his future value. He’s now shown that he’s at least a reliable, every day contributor. He’s not a great stolen base source for one glaring reason – he has 10 stolen bases in 19 attempts. At least he tries.

Also consider: Rusney CastilloTyler Saladino, Delino DeShields

4. 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.

Aside from a low risk of storms late in the Boston game, baseball should be high and dry today. My now-vintage iPhone 3G doesn’t want to open the weather conditions app. Assume they’re very good around the league.

The Link.

This post is brought to you by Concerned Citizens For Fantasy Baseball. CCFFB is a non-profit based within the commissioner’s office.

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Cat Latos
Cat Latos

I think Im going to target Holmberg as well. He is reverse splits more than likely because of the change up and have a poor breaking pitch according to Kiley. Id like to play Dodgers lefties, but I have a strong premonition Donny Baseball sits all his lefties without looking at a scouting report. Christ, Girardi stacked lefties vs Estrada, who has no breaking ball.