With almost a full slate of 14 games going tonight, we have plenty of fantasy baseball information for you today. So let’s not waste any time and jump right into things! As always, you can get me on the ol’ Twitter machine @SBuchanan24.
Heaviest Pitcher Favorites
This section is to showcase who the Vegas favorites are on the night. Not my own personal choices.
Kyle Hendricks vs. Philadelphia Phillies (-222) – Hendricks will be taking the mound for the Cubs tonight, which will be the second game of their double header. Yes, on such a short slate last night, we had to rain outs, which really put a damper (no pun intended) on our lineups. Nonetheless, you have plenty of options to choose from tonight. Hendricks gets the nod from Vegas as he enters tonight with a 4.08 ERA to go with a 1.23 WHIP. Hendricks is not usually someone I would be running out in my lineup, even if he is facing the Phillies tonight. His command is certainly good, as he owns a 138:39 K:BB ratio on the season, but his likelihood of running into some trouble is usually something to expect. Granted, the Phillies are not really hitting that well in the second half, owning a .317 wOBA during that time, which ranks 17th in the league. So Hendricks and his $7,200 price tag does make him slightly intriguing. Against the Phillies, anyone can come off looking like they’ve had a stellar game. It’s just a matter of if you want to take that chance or not.
Hisashi Iwakuma vs. Colorado Rockies (-173) – Man, this is really getting bad for the Rockies, isn’t it? Once viewed as one of the best offenses in the league, the Rockies are constantly being targeted by Vegas as a team to have opposing pitchers favored. Iwakuma checks in tonight with a 4.08 ERA to go with a 1.08 WHIP and K/9 of 7.2. The obvious appeal here is that the start is in Seattle and not Colorado, which makes a world of difference. The Rockies are starting to move back up in the ranks in terms of wOBA in the second half of the season, as they now sit at 13th in the league with a .324 wOBA. The strikeouts are still up, with a 21.1 K%, which is good for 11th in the league. Iwakuma hasn’t been pitching well, but he also hasn’t been terrible either. He’s been scoring in the mid to high teens lately, which is just where he’s been averaging all season with 17.3 points per start. Like Hendricks, Iwakuma isn’t very expensive tonight, coming in at $8,500, which sounds like a pretty appealing price when you consider the matchup. One thing is for sure, you could go cheap on pitching tonight and really load up on hitters if you take these two for your roster tonight.
Chris Archer vs. Boston Red Sox(-167)- A slate with Chris Archer pitching wouldn’t be complete if he wasn’t in the top three favored pitchers from Vegas. Archer does get a fairly tough matchup against the Boston Red Sox tonight, a team that is hitting very well and tough to strike out. Coming into tonight, the Red Sox own a .340 wOBA, which is good for fourth in the majors since the All Star break. They’re also really tough to strike out, as they own a 19.1 K%, which comes in at 23rd in the league. With that being said, Archer doesn’t sound like one of the best starts on the night, especially when you consider his price tag of $12,600. That’s going to be awful expensive for someone who has to face a team with a .340 wOBA. Archer has been strange as of late, as it feels like the moment he starts to lose it a bit, an implosion is near. Now, he’s done a fairly good job of keeping it to a minimum the majority of the time, however, you can’t keep getting so lucky. The Red Sox are not a team you can afford to do this to, so I think Archer might be a pass in my book tonight, as shocking as that may sound. I’ll end this section hear so you can catch your breath.
Top Overall Game Over/Unders
Oakland A’s at Texas Rangers 9.5 Over/Under – I think it really says something about the pitching, when you have the highest projected run total of the night going to two teams that are not exactly hitting well during the second half of the season. However, that’s just what you have with Oakland and Texas tonight. The A’s are running out Jesse Chavez, who just looks like a lost puppy lately. After such a solid first half, Chavez has completely taken a 180 and continues to get shelled in the majority of his starts. In his last three starts, Chavez has earned a whopping 6.3 points. That’s three starts COMBINED. Think he’s hit a rough patch? He’s lasted only 11 innings during those three starts where he’s given up 12 runs on 22 hits with a 11:8 K:BB ratio. Not good numbers at all. With Texas owning a .321 wOBA in the second half, they should have no problem continuing a bad stretch for Chavez.
Texas runs out Colby Lewis, who enters tonight with a 4.68 ERA to go with a 1.26 WHIP and a K/9 of 6.3. If you thought the score for Chavez was bad in his last three starts, you have seen the combined score of 1.5 for Lewis. Yes folks, that’s 1.5 points in his last THREE starts. Quite the accomplishment huh? Even with how poorly the A’s are hitting, you have to at least consider a sneaky Oakland stack tonight. Reason being, is it will be extremely cheap, you can load up on some premium pitching, and certainly have low ownership across the board tonight. Needless to say, this one should certainly have some runs tonight.
Toughest Left/Right Matchups
Toughest Pitchers vs. Left Handed Batters
Dallas Keuchel vs LA Angels – We got Keuchel on the mound tonight, so let’s put him on his rightful throne against lefties this season. With just a few starts left, Keuchel is still holding it down against the lefties, holding them to a .170 wOBA on the year.
Alex Wood vs. Arizona Diamondbacks- Granted, when you proceed Keuchel, no one looks as good against lefties as he does. However, Wood has certainly done his part against them, as he’s holding them to a .239 wOBA on the season.
Toughest Pitchers vs. Right Handed Batters
Jimmy Nelson vs. Pittsburgh Pirates-Nelson continues to spell trouble when he faces RHB on the year. They just can’t seem to figure Nelson out, as he owns a .249 wOBA against them this season.
Cody Anderson vs. Detroit Tigers – Anderson has looked solid this year, as he’s been trouble for righties in his starts. Those righties have only managed a .251 wOBA against Anderson this season.
Best Left/Right Matchups
Easiest Pitcher vs. Left Handed Batters.
Mike Lorenzen vs. St. Louis Cardinals- Lorenzen isn’t just awful against lefties, he’s extremely awful against lefties. On the season, Lorenzen is allowing an atrocious .430 wOBA against them. Stop that.
Mike Wright vs. Kansas City Royals-Oh man, so many bad jokes could come out of Mike Wright not being able to pitch against lefties. But I’ll spare you this time. Wright owns a .407 wOBA against lefties this season. No jokes…. I promised.
Easiest Pitcher vs. Right Handed Batters.
Chad Bettis vs. Seattle Mariners – Ah yes, a Rockies pitcher who struggles against a particular type of batter. I mean, don’t we have this discussion on an almost daily basis? Bettis owns a .377 wOBA against righties this season. At least he fits the criteria of being a Rockies pitcher, struggle against a particular type of hitter.
Jared Cosart vs. Washington Nationals – I don’t believe Cosart is made this list before, so I’ll go easy on him. Unlike Bettis, Cosart isn’t a repeat offender. Although, I have a feeling he might end up being one. Cosart owns a .362 wOBA against righties this season. See you soon!
Yoenis Cespedes OF ($5100) – The MVP chatter has certainly been coming up for Cespedes lately. I mean rightfully so, he has been an absolute force since joining the Mets. He comes into tonight red hot, but I don’t think he has been anything but that since August. Cespedes is 11-32 with four home runs, 10 RBIs, and 10 runs scored.
Bryce Harper OF ($6000) –The man many think SHOULD have the MVP honors over Cespedes, Harper has been red hot with the bat, especially with the long ball. Harper is 10-23 with five home runs, six RBIs, and eight runs scored. This will be a fun race to watch between these two.
Mark Canha 1B/OF ($4200) –Canha is not an MVP candidate. Sorry, man. But, he’s been playing like one lately! So he’s got that going for him. Canha is 10-24 with three home runs, six RBIs, six runs scored and two stolen bases.
Best Batter vs. Pitcher Matchups
Buster Posey vs. Andrew Cashner- Posey has gotten to Cashner 50% of the time in his career. Coming into tonight, Posey is 10-20 against Cashner with three extra base hits, two of them being home runs, and a 1.395 OPS.
Brian McCann vs. David Price- Let’s try this one again, since we had it here yesterday but the game got rained out. McCann has surprisingly had some nice success against Price in his career. McCann is 10-23 against Price with three extra base hits, all of them being home runs, and a 1.284 OPS.
Ryan Braun vs. Charlie Morton- Braun has been hitting well lately, and with a good matchup against Morton on the horizon, I see that continuing tonight. Braun is 8-23 against Morton with four extra base hits, one of them being a home run, and a 1.032 OPS.
Another night of some weather issues may be ahead. We have three games you especially want to keep an eye on.
Tigers at Indians
A’s at Rangers
Twins at White Sox
One Pitcher To Build Lineups Around
Dallas Keuchel ($13,400) – Keuchel is expensive tonight. $13,400 is nothing to sneeze at. However, the Angels are BRUTAL against left handed pitching this season. With as dominant as Keuchel has been this season, I have to think paying up for Keuchel is going to be well worth the investment. The Angels as a team have a wOBA of .288 against lefties. .288! That’s the third worst in the league. They don’t strikeout a ton against lefties, with an 18.7 K%, which is quite good, but not enough to shy me away from Keuchel. I think with the park factor, the fact that the Angels are brutal against lefties, I’m liking this matchup tonight.
Superstar Worth Paying For
Eric Hosmer ($4300) – Hosmer has quite the nice matchup tonight going up against Mike Wright, who has no idea how to pitch to lefties. He owns a .407 wOBA against lefties on the season, which doing some quick math here, doesn’t equal much success. Hosmer, just so happens to hit righties well this season, checking in with a .389 wOBA against them with an ISO of of .193. Not only that, Hosmer isn’t that expensive at just $4300. He’s a nice “expensive” guy to pay for tonight.
Save Big Bucks By Drafting…
Scooter Gennett($2900) – Going back to my boy Scooter for this one. He faces Charlie Morton tonight, who struggles against lefties this season. Gennett is absolutely brutal against lefties, but is a completely different person against righties. Gennett owns a .317 wOBA against righties while Morton allows a .358 wOBA to those left handed batters. At just $2900, Gennett could be a sneaky play tonight. But not so sneaky anymore.