10 games are on the slate today as we start looking toward the weeend. We have three games this afternoon and seven games tonight. Let’s not waste any time and jump right into things. As always, you can reach me on the Ol’ Twitter machine @SBuchanan24.
Heaviest Pitcher Favorites
Zack Greinke vs. Philadelphia Phillies (-358) – Greinke comes into tonight as the super heavy favorite for this one. Last night, as expected, Kershaw absolutely dominated the Phillies. That was the Phillies I’m used to seeing. Not this recent Phillies team that start to hit a little bit. Like Kershaw, Greinke should have no problem handing the Phillies. For being the most expensive pitcher on the day, he doesn’t look that bad, priced at $11,200. Sure it’s not great, but it’s certainly manageable. Greinke goes into this start leading the majors in ERA at 1.48 to go along with a 0.89 WHIP and a K/9 of 7.6. I think it’s pretty obvious that Greinke is going to be one of the top picks tonight.
Jose Fernandez vs. Cincinnati Reds (-175) – It is truly awesome to see Jose Fernandez back on a major league mound. Making his first start after recovering from Tommy John surgery, Fernandez looked great against the Giants, going six innings allowing seven hits, three runs and striking out six. It would have been asking a bit much for a dominating performance from Fernandez, seeing as this was his first start back, but it was encouraging. Tonight he gets the Reds with their average offense. They rank 20th in batting avearge and 23rd in runs scored. Of course, the area Fernadnez has to be careful of is the home runs, as they’re 6th in that category. Don’t bet the farm with Fernandez just yet, but know that it’s coming.
Yordano Ventura vs. Tampa Bay Rays(-151) – Ventura will be making his first start since being placed on the DL on June 18th with a hand injury to his throwing hand. Ventura had been dealing with nerve issues that were bad enough to shelve him. In two rehab starts, Ventura gave up four runs on six hits and six walks and struck out nine in 9/1 innings pitched. The command is clearly an issues right now and even though he’s going up against the light hitting Rays, I’ll be staying off of him for now until he proves he’s fully healthy and that he has command of the ball. Ventura enters this afternoon with a 4.68 ERA to go along with a 1.26 WHIP and a 7.2 K/9.
Top Overall Game Over/Unders
Atlanta Braves at Colorado Rockies (Coors Field) – 10.5 Over/Under- The receipe for a high scoring game is simple. Take your Rockies, mix them with any other team and PRESTO, we have the higest projected game of the night. Alex Wood takes on Kyle Kendrick in this one. Wood has been having a solid year for the Braves, as he comes into tonight with a 3.34 ERA and a 1.42 WHIP. He does a good job of keeping the ball in the park, as he’s only given up six home runs in just under 100 innings pitched. He may not be the flashiest name of the night, but he’s certainly been doing well this year. Kendrick, well, is the complete opposite. He comes into tonight with an even 6.00 ERA to go along with a 1.45 WHIP. His matchup on the surface may look like a decent one, as the Braves rank last in home runs, 21st in runs scored and 23rd in OPS, but they are 9th in batting average. Kendrick is not ever someone I’d trust and regardless of the poor offensive numbers of the Braves, you’d want some exposure to both sides.
Toughest Left/Right Matchups
Toughest Pitchers vs. Left Handed Batters
Zack Greinke vs. Philadelphia Phillies- As expected. Greinke is having one hell of a season, and he’s holding batters down no matter who they are. Lefties are only hitting .202 off of him this season.
Felix Hernandez vs. L.A. Angels- Hernandez goes against an Angels team who last time out, was removed after 96 pitches due to heat cramps. He’s been getting it done against lefties this season, holding them to a .211 average.
Toughest Pitchers vs. Right Handed Batters
Zack Greinke vs. Philadelphia Phillies- Greinke is a machine that just can’t be stopped this season. Righties have only been able to a manage a .199 averae against him this season.
Nathan Karns vs. Kansas City Royals- Karns, in my opinion, has not been getting the respect he deserves. He’s been really solid this season, as he’s holding righties to a .210 avearge on the year.
Best Left/Right Matchups
Easiest Pitcher vs. Left Handed Batters.
Severino Gonzalez vs. L.A. Dodgers- It’s insane that Gonzalez is THIS bad against lefties. They are literally destroying him to a .489 average. .489. Remember, for anyone to be in this section, they need to have at least three starts under this belt this season. Nice job Gonzalez.
Brett Oberholtzer vs. Cleveland Indians – Oberholtzer clearly was called back up from the minors to get knocked around by lefties again. They’ve been crushing him to a .382 average on the year. Good luck with that tonight Brett. How do these two even have jobs?
Easiest Pitcher vs. Right Handed Batters
Mike Pelfrey vs. Detroit Tigers – No one else deserves to be ragged in to much after seeing the numbers of those two above. So, with that being said, Pelfrey is allowing a .307 average to righties.
Alex Wood vs. Colorado Rockies – Even with Wood being solid this year, he’s still had his troubles with righties. They’ve been hitting .301 off of him. Still better then those bums above us.
J.D. Martinez ($5600) – One time, Martinez was under $4000. Those were the days. Martinez is back on the list because, of course he is. He’s 10 for his last 25 with four home runs, 10 RBIs, and nine runs scored. Animal.
Cameron Maybin ($5000) – Never thought I’d see the day where Maybin was one of the most expensive outfielders of the day. He’s been fantastic for the Braves this year. He comes into tonight 12 for this last 30 with two home runs, seven RBIs, a stolen base and six runs scored.
Nick Castellanos ($3700) – Castellanos seems like he’s really turning his season around lately. He’s 10 for his last 28 with two home runs, nine RBIs, and six runs scored. He’s a cheap play for some decent offense as of late.
Best Batter vs. Pitcher Matchups
Mike Trout vs. Felix Hernandez – The God of L.A. takes on the God of Seattle in this one. Trout is 20-58 against Hernandez with eight extra base hits, three of them being home runs and a .986 OPS.
Juan Uribe vs. Kyle Kendrick -I’m sure no one exactly struggles against Kendrick, it’s just that Uribe does quite well against him. Uribe is 5-10 against Kendrick with two extra base hits, one of them being a home run and a .1400 OPS.
Brian Dozier vs. David Price – Love showcasing these hitters who have seen a lot of success against an ace. Dozier doesn’t have a TON of success against Price, but when he’s gotten a hit, he’s made them count. Dozier is 6-24 off of Price with four extra base hits, tw of them being home runs and an .853 OPS.
Much easier night weather wise, as we seem to only have two games of concern today:
Cardinals at Pirates
Braves at Rockies
One Pitcher To Build Lineups Around
Zack Greinke ($11,200) – I’m going to start losing readers with two super obvious pitching choices in a row this week. Yes, I picked Kershaw last night and yes it was obvious. But I mean, he got you 49 points last night. He was the clear cut favorite in my eyes, and it came out the way I expected. I didn’t go with Chris Archer because I wasn’t thrilled with the matchup and yeah, -0.90 points last night. Now, once again it’s Greinke, so here we are again. I’m big on pitchers who can get a good amount of strikeouts on any given night because that’s what gets you the points when it comes to pitching. Basically, everyone who’s going tonight, are going against teams that don’t strikeout a lot. Philly is one of them, but Greinke is literally just allowing nothing to everyone. His 0.89 WHIP going into the All-Star Break is a true testament to that. I have no problem if you start Hernandez, Fernandez or Price tonight, just realize all those team are in the bottom half of the league in terms of strikeouts. Not bad plays, just not huge strikeout potentials. Let’s goooooo Greinke.
Superstar Worth Paying For…
Adrian Gonzalez ($4700) – When looking at the easiest pitchers against left handed batters, you had to figure someone who going to be in this section. Well, here’s Adrian Gonzalez. He get’s that matchup against Severino Gonzalez, who’s allowing a .489 average to lefties. Advantage, Gonzalez. An addition to that, Gonzalez has been crushing right handed pitching, hitting .298 with 15 home runs. he’s not super expensive either, as $4700 is worth the price. Fire him up.
Save Big Bucks By Drafting…
Alexi Ramirez ($3,200) – Ramirez gets the start against RA Dickey this afternoon, where he’s seen some good success against him. For the cheap cost of 3200, Ramirez is 5-13 against him with two home runs, three extra base hits and a 1.390 OPS. Cheap money, good production.