We have another split slate of games as we inch closer and closer to the weekend. We have a good night last night with some of our projections, so let’s keep that momentum going today. Let’s get right into things and as always, you can get me on the Ol’ Twitter machine @Sbuchanan24.
Heaviest Pitcher Favorites
Clayton Kershaw vs. New York Mets (-226) – Sometimes, Kershaw gets this huge favoritism from Vegas, and I might not agree because of the matchup. Kershaw almost always is the heavy favorite no matter what. Well, tonight is one of those nights where I couldn’t agree more. Kershaw against the Mets? Good god, cover your eyes folks, this one is going to be a massacre. The only downside to this matchup is that I’ve never seen Kershaw more expensive than tonight. Kershaw will cost you a whopping $14,500 if you decide to roster him, an obvious steep price. But, he is getting the worst offense in the majors. Should I also mention that Kershaw hasn’t allowed a run in 20 consecutive innings and owns a 0.58 ERA in his last four starts with 43 strikeouts? Yeah, good luck to the Mets tonight. Kershaw enters tonight with a 2.68 ERA with a 0.99 WHIP and K/9 of 12. If you can afford him, go for it.
Francisco Liriano vs. Washington Nationals (-165) If you can’t afford Kershaw, you can nab Liriano for the low low cost of only $10,300! What a bargain! But really, that cost honestly sounds low compared to the sky high price of Kershaw. Liriano enters tonight not having pitched since July 12th, as he was scratched 15 minutes prior to his last start. Yup, 15 minutes. How many of us suffered a big fat zero from him the last time out? I’m sure quite a few. He SHOULD be ready to go tonight but if you do roster him, be sure to monitor his status closely, especially 15 minutes before lock. Liriano gets a decent matchup against the Nationals tonight who are smack dab in the middle of the league in offense. They rank 16 in batting avearge, 15th in runs scored, 14th in OPS and 12th in home runs. Liriano has been fantastic this season, throwing a quality start in nine of his last 10 starts.
Garret Richards vs. Minnesota Twins (-159) – First off, I’m just glad we actually have pitcher here that I agree with. Jorge De La Rosa really worked out last night, right guys? Shocking. Richards gets the start this afternoon against that damn Twins offense that Vegas loves to pick on again. He’s actually only the fourth expensive pitcher on the afternoon, which is kind of surprising and almost makes him a must start if you play in the short slate this afternoon. At $9500 against this Twins offense, you can’t ask for much better. Richards comes in with a 3.24 ERA with a 1.20 WHIP and a K/9 of 7. Richards also owns a 21:4 K:BB ration in his last four starts, after seeing his strikeout numbers dip from last season. Take a look at Richards if you’re playing this afternoon.
Top Overall Game Over/Unders
Milwaukee Brewers vs. Arizona Diamondbacks (Chase Field) – 8.5 Over/Under- Well finally, we have another game on the board as the Rockies are off today. The Brewers and Diamonbacks are projected at 8.5 runs for today, which is the highest total of the day. Mike Fiers goes for the Brewers while Zack Godley for the Diamondbacks. Fiers has been a bit incosistent, coming into tonight with a 3.79 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP. Homeruns have been a bit of a problem for him this season, as he’s given up 13 on the year. The Diamondbacks are right in the middle of the league in home runs at 15th. Otherwise, the DBacks rank really well in other offensive categories, 6th in avearge and runs scored and 10th in OPS. Godley is not available on DraftKings tonight, so I’ll give you a quick run down. Godley has split time between Single A and Double A this season and owns a 2.72 ERA over 17 appearances. While that sounds good, most of those numbers come from Single A, as his Double A numbers break down to a 5.14 ERA in three starts. So, if you want to take a shot in the dark here and stack the Brewers, I wouldn’t disagree.
Toughest Left/Right Matchups
Toughest Pitchers vs. Left Handed Batters
Ervin Santana vs. LA Angels- Santana has now made three starts on the season, so he’s eligible for the Steve Buchanan Left/Right matchup section. How exciting for Santana. He’s at the top of the line today, holding lefties to a .179 average on the season.
Francisco Liriano vs. Washinton Nationals- If you want to go with someone who’s pitched all season, Liriano is your guy. He’s holding lefties to a .189 avearge.
Toughest Pitchers vs. Right Handed Batters
Chris Young vs. St. Louis Cardinals – Even on a day where Clayton Kershaw is pitching, Chris Young is the toughest against righties. Young is holding them to a .172 average on the year. In comparison, Kershaw is at .206.
Francisco Liriano vs. Washington Nationals- It’s usually pretty rare to see a pitcher on here twice, for a GOOD reason. Liriano has been doing it all against both types of batters, as righties are only hitting .193 against him.
Best Left/Right Matchups
Easiest Pitcher vs. Left Handed Batters.
Bartolo Colon vs. LA Dodgers- Colon will get a pass from me. I’m not going to talk crap about him. He’s 43 years old and still pitching in the majors, and pretty damn well if you ask me. So lefties are hitting .307 against him, big deal. The guy is a legend!
Jeff Samardzija vs. Cleveland Indians – Samardzija gets an unfortunate rap here today, as everyone else pitches pretty damn well against lefties. Samardzija is at .275 against lefties, which is far from being that bad.
Easiest Pitcher vs. Right Handed Batters
Doug Fister vs. Pittsburgh Pirates- I remember when Fister was an all around solid pitcher. In 2015, not so much. Fister is having a terrible time against right handed batters, as they’re crushing him to an average of .366.
Drew Hutchison vs. Oakland A’s – Hutchison, not doing that much better against these righties. They’re also having their way with him, as they hit .330 on the year against Hutch.
Michael Brantley ($4300) – Brantley is having a great season for the Indians, per the usual. He comes into tonight getting into another groove, as he’s 9 for his last 19 with two home runs, nine RBIs, and three runs scored.
Preston Tucker ($3200) – Tucker absolutely smoked a ball off of Joe Kelly last night. Not the most shocking thing I’ve ever heard, but still, a great sign for the young kid. Tucker is 5 for his last 13 with three home runs, five RBIs, and six runs scored.
Jose Iglesias ($3000) – I really though this kid can’t hit. Why is he still hitting? Iglesias is 8 for his last 17 with a home run, four RBIs, seven runs scored and a stolen base. But really, when will he stop hitting?
Best Batter vs. Pitcher Matchups
Yoenis Cespedes vs. Hisashi Iwakuma- If you’re playing this afternoon, you have to take advantage of this matchup. Cespedes is 11-27 against Iwakuma with nine extra base hits, four of them being home runs, and a 1.444 OPS. Cespedes costs $3800, how could you NOT fit him in!?
Adrian Gonzalez vs. Bartolo Colon- Gonzalez saw his price jump up $100 bucks! He’s getting expensive! Ha, hardly. At $4000, he’s still so cheap Against Colon, Gonzalez is 9-21 with four extra base hits, two of those being a home run, and a 1.238 OPS.
Carlos Beltran vs. Ubaldo Jimenez- I honestly had to check and see if Beltran still played. I feel like I haven’t heard a peep about him this entire season. After confirming he was still playing, I can safely put this up. Beltran is 7-18 against Jimenez with four extra base hits, two of those being home runs, and a 1.310 OPS. Sneaky play if he starts today.
All quiet on the weather aspect today.
One Pitcher To Build Lineups Around
Francisco Liriano ($10300) –Honestly, it’s hard not to have Kershaw in this section. He’s by far, the top pitcher on the night, I mean how can you not like his matchup against the Mets? You love it. I know you do. However, the biggest gripe everyone will have is his price point. For that reason alone, I’m not featuring him here. If you can fit it him, fantastic. I have no doubt in my mind that he’s going to smoke the Mets tonight. I’m personally going to swallow my pride and pass so that I can balance my team out. So I’m taking Liriano. He get’s a good matchup against the Nationals tonight, who strikeout at a decent clip, ranked 12th in the league. Liriano will enter tonight with a K/9 just under 10, so give me all the Liriano’s. Offensively, the Nationals are in the middle of pack so nothing really in particular jumps out at me as being a red flag for tonight. Save a bit of cash and roster Liriano tonight.
Superstar Worth Paying For…
Andrew McCutchen($4400) –McCutchen is on the cheap side quite honestly, so you aren’t even really paying a ton for a talented player. Tonight, McCutchen gets Doug Fister, who is REALLY struggling against right handed batters. Fister is allowing an insane .366 average to righties on the year. McCutchen has been hitting RHP well this season, as he owns a .287 average against them with 10 home runs and a .886 OPS. Fister is allowing just about a home run a start, so I’m thinking McCutchen might be the guy who can take him deep. The price is right to take a shot on McCutchen.
Save Big Bucks By Drafting…
Jose Iglesias ($3000) – No other way to put it, he’s hot right now and he costs next to nothing. Iglesias is up to .321 average on the season with a .767 OPS. So while these numbers won’t blow you away, you can’t expect much from anyone in this tier of players. But you might as well strike the iron while is hot. He also gets a matchup today against the struggling Iwakuma, which will also go in Iglesias favor. Truly, don’t expect a ton but you may be surprised with what he brings. Worse case, you roster some higher priced guys because of him.