The Daily Grind: Top Heavy

Sometimes, writing a lede in is the last thing I want to do. Well, technically, I always write it last.


  1. TDG Invitational
  2. Weather Reports
  3. Pitchers to Use and Abuse
  4. SaberSim Says…
  5. Sith

1.The Daily Grind Invitational

The Blue Jays were one of about five very valuable stacks last night. But, because they’re the Blue Jays, they were clearly treated as fifth-best. MJA2112 was rewarded with an easy win headlined by Bo Bichette, Vladito, Randal Grichuk, Justin Smoak, and Cavan Biggio. Congrats and Leaderboard.

We have a crowded 14-gamer tonight on FantasyDraft.

2. Weather Reports

Keep half an eye on the nation’s capitol. They have around a 30 percent chance for rain.

3. Pitchers to Use and Abuse

FDraft has opted to remove the second half of the Astros-White Sox doubleheader. No Gerrit Cole for us. I had a speech prepared about it being a true doubleheader and everything.

Clayton Kershaw ($22,900) is correctly labelled as the cock of the walk. Which is a phrase I once heard on TV. He’s visiting the sad sack Marlins. I can’t wait for 2023 when they’re kicking off their next rebuild. Kershaw seems to be in vintage form these days. Jordan Yamamoto ($13,700) has had some moments, but this probably will not be one of them.

To beat the deadest horse since horse-based WARfare, Lance Lynn ($22,100) costs way too damned much for what he is. Or to finally take a different perspective, Lynn hasn’t thrown fewer than six innings since late-April. He frequently reaches seven frames and double-digit strikeouts. The Blue Jays aren’t quite as easy as earlier in the season, but they’re still exploitable most nights. Lynn’s success as a long-outing, one-pitch starter is the most baffling thing to happen in 2019. I could understand short, effective starts or a change in repertoire. But he’s same ol’ Lynn plus one mph. And he’s running a swinging strike rate over 20 percent higher than his previous career best.

Anyway, let’s move on. Chris Sale ($20,600) is visiting Mike Clevinger ($21,400). Both sides are usable and moderately risky. Kershaw comes with a similar price, comparable expectations, and a much higher floor. This is when I point out that Kershaw will likely be selected in very many lineups, making Sale and Clevinger a cunning contrarian ace. I prefer the Sale side of the equation.

Matt Boyd ($19,800) has earned a recent reputation as homer prone. Ignore that today. The lowly Mariners are visiting. They lack notable lefty mashers leaving Boyd with an easy path to something like six innings and eight strikeouts. He may even get some run support although that’s hardly a sure thing with the Tigers offense.

Domingo German ($19,600) is pricey for a pairing against the Orioles at Yankee Stadium. If I was chasing a win in standard fantasy, I’d certainly use German. In DFS, I see better options both above and below him.

Zack Wheeler ($17,900) might be one of those better options. The matchup against the Braves is the only thing that gives me pause. I have no doubt Wheeler is a superior pitcher to German, and I think Yankee Stadium roughly balances out the discrepancy between the Braves and Orioles lineup.

If Wheeler is uncertain as a superior option to German, Jack Flaherty ($17,700) is a near-lock. Sometimes, pitcher breakouts can occur in stages. Flaherty’s stuff was much-improved earlier in the season, but he didn’t seem capable of harnessing it in an effective way. Lately, he’s clicked back into ace-mode. DFS pricing has yet to catch on. He’s a $21,000 play against the Royals. Of course, although the pricing doesn’t reflect it, I’m sure every advice column in the world will tout Flaherty tonight.

I don’t understand why Madison Bumgarner ($17,000) is always excluded from the probable pitcher list. Past attempts to snag him at a lowered ownership rate have turned out to be a trap, but I think we could get him both low-owned and in reasonably favorable conditions tonight.

That’s a lot of words on the best pitchers – in part because things quickly fall apart. Some usable leftovers include Brendan McKay ($15,900) at Eric Lauer ($11,700), Jon Gray ($14,400) versus the Diamondbacks at Coors Field, and punchout-less Brett Anderson ($12,600) visiting the Giants.

Joe Ross ($11,200) requires some explanation. He seems to have added a curve ball, and his results have taken a step forward. Previously, he was a slider-only pitcher with a crappy fastball. I still think the crappy fastball will spell D.O.O.M. However, trying him as a value play isn’t a bad idea.

Favorite Plays: Kershaw, Boyd, Flaherty, Ross

Stack Targets: Yusei Kikuchi, Thomas Pannone, Ross, Chase Anderson, Martin Perez, Yamamoto

4. SaberSim Says…

We’ve got Sale, Boyd, Lynn, Kershaw, and Clevinger headlining the list. Values include C. Anderson, Pannone, Perez, Boyd, and Sale. So… use Sale and Boyd? Get hats for Charlie Blackmon, Mike Trout, Christian Yelich, David Peralta, and Cody Bellinger’s bats. Lewis Brinson, Josh VanMeter, Victor Reyes, Max Stassi, and Joey Votto are the early bargain targets.


I mean, what the actual fuck.

There’s been one of these surprise homertastic call ups in every reason season. Ohio leads the nation in Franmil Reyes clones.

I understand now, he’s a Sith lord who’s decided to earn a misbegotten fortune playing sports.

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Don’t you just hate it when you go and write all of this and explain why Kershaw is the best choice just to have the Dodgers bump him back a day for May? On the other hand, you can just cut and paste some of this for tomorrow when he actually pitches.