Wednesday night features a full slate of fantasy baseball with 12 games set to take place under the lights tonight. Chris Sale will make his Red Sox debut at the top of the salary chart for pitchers, but there are definitely some nice bargains to be had throughout the salary spectrum. To help you find the best bargains, each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I’ll be bringing you my best from the Bargain Bin post highlighting two pitchers under $8K and three hitters under $3.5K. Let’s take a look at who is in a place to produce tonight:
Jerad Eickhoff – SP – PHI @ CIN – $7,400
The Phillies decided to go with Jeremy Hellickson on Opening Day while leaving Eickhoff’s first start of the season until tonight when they’ll face the Reds at Great American Ballpark. They won the opener 4-3, and Eickhoff will look to make it two in a row tonight.
Last year, Eickhoff showed a lot of potential going 11-14 despite a solid 3.65 ERA. He averaged just under a strikeout-per-inning with 167 in his 197.1 innings pitched. He did not face the Reds last year, but he’s in a good matchup to pick up a win and some strikeouts today. Eickhoff did have an ugly finish to spring training, but he looked strong before that allowing two runs in 11 innings his two previous starts while striking out 14 Rays and Braves.
James Paxton – SP – SEA @ HOU – $6,900
The Mariners look to avoid their third straight loss as they take on the Astros tonight and will give the ball to southpaw James Paxton. Paxton will look to continue the form he showed in spring training when he posted a 3.00 ERA with a 1.00 WHIP. He struck out 15 and walked just two in 12 innings. The main drawback to Paxton’s fantasy value is his durability, but on DraftKings that is much less important since you’re only committing to him for today’s start. He faced the Astros at Minute Maid Park last season and allowed two runs on five hits while striking out seven. If he has a similar start today, he’ll be a great buy under $7K.
Mark Reynolds – 1B/3B – COL @ MIL – $3,400
Reynolds has collected multiple hits in each of the Rockies’ first two games of the season and produced some nice numbers even though he has been in the bottom third of the Colorado lineup and isn’t even playing at Coors Field. He is 4-7 to start the season with a homer and a pair of doubles.
He’ll look to continue his hot start tonight as the Rockies get another favorable matchup against the Brewers’ starting rotation. Wily Peralta will start for Milwaukee, and Reynolds has gone 1-4 with a pair of walks against him in their previous meetings. Colorado’s lineup has started the season showing they can hit even away from Coors, and Reynolds is a good way to get a piece of that action at a good price tonight.
Manuel Margot – OF – SD @ LA – $3,100
San Diego shocked the fantasy world last night by beating the Dodgers behind a great start from Clayton Richard who held the LA lineup scoreless. Margot contributed to the 5-0 win going 2-4 with a stolen base and a run scored batting in the #2 slot. On Opening Day against lefty Clayton Kershaw, Margot led off and finished 1-4 with a double and a RBI.
Since the Dodgers are starting lefty Rich Hill tonight, look for manager Andy Green to slot the promising rookie in the top spot in his lineup again. Hill always looks awful in spring training, and this year was no exception (6.19 ERA), so there could be nice value in the Padres’ lineup if he can’t throw the switch tonight at Dodger Stadium. Margot benefits from hitting near the top of the lineup and should continue to get enough at-bats to be a regular in the bargain bin as long as his price is at this level.
Corey Dickerson – OF – TB vs. NYY – $3,300
The Rays had Dickerson in their leadoff spot on Opening Day, but he was missing from the lineup card yesterday when they faced lefty CC Sabathia. He went 1-5 with a run scored on Sunday, but he struck out as a pinch-hitter last night dropping him to 1-6 on the season. Last year, he tailed off a bit after leaving the rarified air of Colorado, but he had a solid .807 OPS against right-handed pitchers.
Tonight, Dickerson should be back in the lineup against Michael Pineda of the Yankees who is a righty, and he has intriguing upside based on his past history against Pineda. Dickerson is 6-12 in his career against the Yankees’ starter with two doubles, a home run and three RBI.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Z.Thompson) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.