With every team in action Friday night, it’s a great night for the biggest and best in DFS action, so good luck. Here are some players to target for your lineups, at every position and price range.
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Clayton Kershaw vs. ChC ($14,400) – I don’t need to tell you why you should consider Kershaw. This is when you consider him: when you’ve gone through the rest of the pitchers and decided there is no one else with 30+ point upside; when you’ve decided you aren’t 100% convinced you can make up a deficit at Starting Pitcher with value-play hitters; when you’ve realized that you are going to panic if you see his name in your opponent’s lineup.
Scott Kazmir @ MIN ($9,500) – The Twins have the third-highest strikeout % in the majors against left-handed pitching, and Kazmir has 6-8 strikeout potential when he is pitching well. But more importantly, if he can get a few easy outs and get through seven or more innings, he’ll increase his shot at earning the win – not to mention racking up more fantasy points for you all along the way.
Aaron Nola vs. SD ($8,000) – He plays for the Phillies, and yet he’s won four of his last six starts. He’s got to be doing something right, right? He has the potential to get 5-6 K’s per outing, so if he can get you to seven or eight innings, he will be returning good value on this investment.
Henry Owens @ NYM ($7,700) – With a 23.3% K rate against lefties, the Mets are doling out good fantasy performances to opposing pitchers left and right. Owens has struggled in spots in the four total MLB starts he has under his belt, but he flashed 10K potential against the Mariners two starts ago, and started bringing it all together in his most recent start against KC, giving up four hits in eight innings, earning the win and 25 fantasy points in the process.
Brian McCann @ Perez ($4,000) – Williams Perez and his 1.54 WHIP and 1.28 K/BB ratio, might have trouble getting through this patient Yankees lineup, and McCann is just a part of that trouble. He has three multi-hit games in the past week, but like pretty much every other catcher, there isn’t a lot of consistency here. You’re paying for upside, so you might as well do it on a night when that upside could be realized.
Salvador Perez @ Ramirez ($3,300) – Perez has connected for two home runs and a handful of doubles over the past week and a half, and the one other time he faced Perez, he had a very solid fantasy performance, going 2-for-3 with a home run.
John Jaso vs. Volquez ($2,900) – He is still hitting almost .300, now through about 113 at-bats. He has faced Volquez before, getting on base five times in nine plate appearances. There were couple of walks mixed in, but of his three hits (.429 average) there was both a double and a home run, making this an opportunity to create some upside for your lineup as well.
Jose Abreu vs. Walker ($4,800) – He’s been on a tear, hitting .335 over his past ten games, hitting safely in eight straight, with three multi-hit efforts in his last five. He’s also managed three hits (including a home run) in his five at-bats against Walker, so there is no reason to expect he slows down now.
Evan Gattis @ Gibson ($4,500) – He’s hitting .340 over the past two weeks, a full .100 points higher than his season average – which sounds like exactly the kind of hot streak we like to take advantage of in DFS. He’s had three home runs in the past two games, so, yeah, odds are he doesn’t hit another one tonight, but I’d take multiple hits with one or two for extra bases, and I am pretty sure you would too. And that’s exactly what he has been doing lately (more than one hit in five of his last ten).
Mark Trumbo @ Danks ($3,800) – Lately he has just felt like a more expensive player than this, hitting consistently and coming up with big hits in big spots. That’s reflected in his fantasy scoring – about 8.5 over the pat two weeks compared to 6.5 for the year – but at least as of now, it’s not reflected in his price.
Logan Forsythe vs. Volquez ($3,400) – With two doubles and two home runs in the past five games, and a fantasy scoring average over nine for the past couple of weeks, this price just isn’t reflecting his recent performances.
Ian Kinsler @ Dickey ($4,500) – With a .375 batting average in 16 at-bats against Dickey, you like his chances of doing something. With two home runs making up a part of that average, you should like his chances of doing a lot.
Robinson Cano @ Danks ($4,400) – Cano has gone yard against Danks twice in nineteen at-bats, and has been on base eight other times, so if there is any scoring in this one (and I’d be surprised if there weren’t), Cano will likely play a central role.
Ben Zobrist @ Ramirez ($4,100) – Hitting .333 and averaging nine fantasy points per outing over his last ten, he’s been on fire. Combine that with his .444 average against Ramirez (4-for-9) including 2 home runs, tonight is a night you could look for him to maximize his upside.
Kolten Wong @ Leake ($3,200) – Wong had been going through a bit of a down stretch, but he has five hits in his last three games, which could be a sign he is turning around just in time for a plum matchup with Leake. Wong has hit .318 against him in the past, with a home run and a double in 22 at-bats.
Josh Donaldson vs. Boyd ($5,700) – This is the kind of guy you get in your lineup if you decided not to cough up for one of the top pitchers, because he is at least potentially capable of making up a difference. With almost 15 fantasy points per game over the past few weeks, he is doing everything well, and playing at the center of an explosive offense. Upside for days.
Nolan Arenado @ Liriano ($4,100) – He is 3-for-6 against Liriano in their previous encounters, with a double. That gives you confidence in his consistency. He has 30 home runs on the season. That gives him upside.
Matt Carpenter @ Leake ($3,800) – With two doubles and a home run against Leake, Carpenter has a chance to contribute in a big way tonight, which could just what he needs to get his season back on track after the mini-slump he is going through right now.
Chase Headley @ Perez ($3,600) – I like this matchup for the entire Yankees lineup, and I definitely expect some scoring – and lately, Headley has been a big part of that. Hitting .348 and slugging .473 over the past ten days, he’s been outperforming his price tag – and you’re just hoping that continues for one more night.
Carlos Correa @ Gibson ($4,800) – Yeah, I know, it’s almost boring how good he is, but he is another one of these players who can seem to have just a ho-hum type day and still get you 15 fantasy points, which you will need if Kershaw, for example, is at his best in someone else’s lineup.
Ketel Marte @ Danks ($4,000) – The next Correa? He has 24 games under his belt, and he is hitting .318. He has drawn eleven walks (.390 OBP) and he is slugging .432 despite no home runs, flashing serious gap power and the speed to leg out doubles. With three steals on top of all that, the upside is real.
Wilmer Flores vs. Owens ($3,600) – I know I recommended Owens, but that doesn’t mean I think he’s throwing a no-hitter. And Flores has been just the guy to make sure it doesn’t happen, hitting just about .300 over the past couple of weeks, with at least one hit in seven of eight.
Nelson Cruz @ Danks ($5,600) – New and improved! Now with a 50-home run pace!
J.D. Martinez @ Dickey ($5,100) – He has been hotter recently than he has been on season, which in his case is actually saying something. He is slashing .292/.353/.567 for the year in a breakout campaign, and he is significantly outpacing every single one of those figures over the past month or so.
Ryan Braun vs. Iglesias ($4,700) – He is slugging .568 over the past ten days, with three home runs and a double, and the entire lineup around him is performing better, perhaps as a result. He is the kind of slugger that can pace an offense, as well as a fantasy team.
Austin Jackson vs. Danks ($3,700) – In a huge sample size, Jackson has had a lot of success in this matchup, going 23-for-52 (.442), which, honestly, is more than enough for me when you’re looking for someone at this price.
Kole Calhoun @ Salazar ($3,600) – As you go through the pitcher vs. hitter stats, sometimes something just stands out at you, no matter how good a pitcher is. In this case, Calhoun was that standout – not only is he 3-for-6 in this matchup (with two walks), but two of those three hits were home runs. I’d take some of that for $3,600.
Rajai Davis @ Dickey ($3,600) – Dickey has been better in the past than he has been this season, so while he is still a quality pitcher capable of earning some wins, he shouldn’t scare you off any. Davis as been streaky at best this season, but he has had a lot of success in the chances he’s had against Dickey previously (5-for-8 with two doubles).
Alex Rios @ Ramirez ($2,800) – He’s been hotter than you’d expect for someone at this price, lately, going for double-digit fantasy points in four of his last five games.