Friday night will feature plenty of great action across MLB, with every team going and the bad weather of midweek mostly behind us. Without many aces going, it might seem hard to narrow your focus on one group of hitters, so here are some names – at every position and price range – to help you do just that. Good luck.
Jacob deGrom @ ATL ($10,700) – In his last five outings, deGrom has gone at least seven innings in each, and has given up no more than two earned runs in any, all while averaging almost 10 K’s per start. He only won three of those games, amazingly, but each of those three was worth 30+ fantasy points easily. And he has a shot at another one over the Braves tonight.
A.J. Burnett @ WAS ($8,700) – Going through and really looking at Burnett’s numbers from this season is something of a revelation. 6-2, 1.89 ERA and 1.13 WHIP – that’s the easy stuff. He has been in double digit fantasy points in ten straight, including six over twenty. He’s facing a good offense right now, but he has had solid performances against other good offenses (six innings of shutout ball against STL, for example). Maybe Burnett is back to being the bad matchup no matter who he is facing.
Rubby De La Rosa vs. SD ($6,000) – Hot off eight innings of shutout ball against the Giants, he is catching a good matchup in a good pitchers park, and his offense is raking right now. He has a good shot at the win in this one, which could be enough to make this jump from a passable pick to a very good one, for the money.
Marco Estrada vs. BAL ($5,600) – This is another try at chasing the victory. This has the makings of something of a high-scoring game, but I think two things are working in Estrada’s favor: 1. he’s got three straight victories for a reason, as his team’s stellar offense is usually busy picking on the third or fourth starter while he’s out there, and 2. yeah, his offense, vs. Mike Wright.
Russell Martin vs. Wright ($4,800) – There are going to be plenty of Blue Jays batters here backing up my Marco Estrada call, so let’s take a quick second to look at Wright: five starts this season, no more than five innings in any of his last three, with thirteen earned runs on twenty hits allowed over that three-start stretch.
Buster Posey @ Bolsinger ($4,000) – He is someone who hasn’t seen a lot of big wings in production this season: over any given one or two week stretch, he’s been pretty close to his season averages. In other words, he’s usually not killing you, with some fantasy points in almost every game. The increased productivity of the Giants offense in general is certainly helpful in that regard.
Stephen Vogt vs. Shoemaker ($3,600) – I don’t know, I just love starting this guy at catcher for these prices. He’s hitting in the heart of an order against a pitcher who has managed to allow fewer than three earned runs only four times all season.
Miguel Montero @ Hughes ($3,500) – With three home runs in his last seven games and nine on the year, Montero has shown an ability to hit for power with relative consistency. Hughes, for his part, has given up five home runs in his last four starts, for fifteen on the year. It could be a match made in heaven for fantasy owners – at least, fantasy owners who don’t own Hughes.
Edwin Encarnacion vs. Wright ($5,000) – That .235 average might scare you off, but he is hitting .333 and slugging .528 so far in June.
Joey Votto vs. Haren ($4,700) – Votto has absolutely got to be in consideration for your lineup right now. Maybe you feel like there are better options than basically anyone facing Haren, and you could be right. But I still wanted to take this opportunity to point out a guy with four home runs and a pair of doubles over the past couple of weeks, all while hitting .350. Consistency _ upside.
Michael Cuddyer @ Wisler ($3,600) – Here’s another guy I am just going to keep recommending as long as h keeps it up.
Evan Gattis @ Elias ($3,600) – Gattis is an interesting case, but before you just write him off, after hitting only .164 in April, he batter over .270 in May, and is hitting more like .255 over the first couple weeks of June. He has not been hitting like a guy with a .235 batting average in quite some time.
Jason Kipnis vs. Karns ($4,800) – Why wouldn’t you recommend him? He is, right now, just providing a huge positional advantage. Dee Gordon’s speed is an undervalued asset, but Kipnis has been steadily maintaining an OPS over .900, which is a top bat in all of fantasy, not just at 2B.
D.J. LeMahieu vs. Jungmann ($4,000) – Jungmann has put up great numbers in his two starts so far, but this will be a true test, to see if he can continue making outs against this offense, in this park.
Justin Turner vs. Heston ($3,800) – He’s hitting .318/.350/.458 on the year, with six home runs. So I am not quite sure why he’s cheap, especially when you consider he has scored at least five fantasy points in eight of his last nine games.
Kolten Wong @ Aumont ($3,400) – I don’t think it is a bad idea to get Cardinals into your lineup at every possible opportunity either. Phillippe Aumont has been called up to make a spot start in place of Cole Hamels, so unless the lack of a scouting report on him really messes with the St. Louis hitters, you have to think they have a good chance of pushing some runs across.
Miguel Cabrera @ Warren ($5,700) – In a matchup with an ineffective pitcher, in a park that can allow more than it’s fair share of short little home run shots, any power hitting third basemen would be a consideration. And Miguel Cabrera is not just any old power hitting third (or first) baseman. He’s been one of, if not the, best hitters in the league all season long, and he’s particularly hot right now, with a dozen RBI in his last six games.
Manny Machado @ Estrada ($4,900) – Just because I think Estrada has a chance to win doesn’t mean I think the Orioles are going hitless. He’s got two three-hit games in his last six and has at least two hits in eight out of his last twelve, including six home runs (and a pair of doubles) over that span.
Evan Longoria @ Carrasco ($3,700) – I don’t know if you felt this reading it, but I felt like maybe I was in some kind of time warp when I was writing this. He is just not someone I’ve considered for my lineups with too much regularity in the recent past, but apparently I’ve been missing out. No more. Hitting .328 and slugging .428 over the past ten days, he actually has a very respectable .274/.352/.412 on the year.
Pablo Sandoval @ Pino ($3,500) – It’s hard to say how he will react to some team discipline for violating their social media policy, but he had the night off last night as a result, so hopefully he’ll just be well-rested and motivated to continue his streak of five straight two-hit games.
Jose Reyes vs. Wright ($4,700) – Tulo is home against an inexperienced pitcher, so maybe I am a fool for not starting my list there. It’s certainly possible. But Reyes has seemed like the play the Blue Jays were hoping for when he came on board, hitting .345 and slugging .483 in May, numbers that have only dropped off slightly so far in June (.290 and .420).
Carlos Correa @ Elias ($3,900) – He has played in ten major league games, and has a hit in nine of them. With a walk in the other, he’s been on base every night of his career. He has fifteen total hits, including three doubles and three home runs. He has four steals, and has yet to be caught stealing. You want downside, he has eleven strikeouts. But I choose not to focus there, and instead try to focus on the fact that if we knew this was going to continue he would cost almost $6K right now.
J.J. Hardy @ Estrada ($3,400) – He has at least one hit in eleven straight, including at least two hits in his last three. He seems to have made is past a recent injury scare without too much long-term damage done, so hopefully he can stay out there and stay productive.
Jose Iglesias @ Warren ($3,300) – Batting second in this lineup against Warren is going to give Iglesias plenty of opportunities, and this is a guy who has been capitalizing on his chances so far this year. The simple fact that he managed to climb from eight or ninth in the order to the top, in a lineup this good – even if it ends up being temporary – is a testament to what he’s done on the year, getting on base at basically a .400 clip (which is a lot easier to do when you are hitting .333).
Yoenis Cespedes @ Warren ($4,800) – Warren just hasn’t been able to put up consistent solid performances this year. And while it’s true that he has been much better at home, his stiffest opponents have been on the road, so that’s not too surprising. Just use that as another example of the sample sizes in baseball just basically all being tiny until you start looking at careers. An entire season of baseball can be too small a sample size at times.
Yasiel Puig vs. Heston ($4,800) – He had that crazy 4-for-4 night with a home run about a week ago, but he also has just been an all-around solid bat since returning to the Dodgers lineup. You know they are happy to have him back, and fantasy owners are too.
J.D. Martinez @ Warren ($4,700) – He has continued to be on fire, and until he stops, I am going to keep putting him here. His price isn’t high enough yet to make me back off a guy averaging 10+ fantasy points over the past two weeks on the basis of a slash line of .295/.425/.640.
Carlos Gonzalez vs. Jungmann ($4,500) – Jungmann hasn’t been terrible. This pick is not really a prediction that this pitcher is necessarily going to fail, because so far he’s shown signs that he might actually be able to stick around and succeed. But that doesn’t mean it’s easy all of a sudden to get out hitters like Gonzalez. That’s no easy task for the most veteran guy on a staff, especially when Gonzalez has picked up both his average and slugging % recently (notice the 3-point just in his fantasy average to almost 10 per game over the past two weeks).
Kevin Pillar vs. Wright ($3,900) – .393/.407/.571 so far in June, including five hits (and 35 total fantasy points) in his last two games. And now with a good matchup. Yes, please.
Juan Lagares @ Wisler ($3,700) – There has been a noticeable tick upwards in his power very recently. He’s been hitting well all year, but over his past nine games he has five extra base hits, a definite increase in frequency, which has correlated to more than two more fantasy points per game. If that continues even for one more night, he is an obvious value play at this price.
Chris Colabello vs. Wright ($3,500) – Baseball is a weird game. Who knows why a guy can all of a sudden find a hitting stroke no one knew he had? For fantasy purposes it doesn’t matter though, does it? It doesn’t matter who a guy is, or how old, or whether he’s done it before, or even whether he will keep doing it long term (at least for DFS) – all that matters is what he’s doing right now. And Colabello is doing it.
Chris Coghlan @ Hughes ($3,500) – He has five walks and fourteen hits in his last ten games, against only two strikeouts. He is hitting cleanup for the Cubbies, and he has been rewarding them to the tune of an OPS over .900 so far in June. Maybe he can reward you too.