I wouldn’t say there are fantastic values on the day, but there are always a few nuggets to pull from the depths of the DFS pool. The catcher slot bugs me a bit, mainly due to all the injuries, but I was able to list a couple I like. I mean, have you seen a healthy catcher out there? One that you can use? Sheesh. I guess you can take comfort in the fact that you’re not going to have to spend a ton at the catcher slot considering. Good luck on Thursday!
Matt Harvey @ ARI ($10,400)– Harvey is your huckleberry if you’re looking for a superstar arm to lead the way. He actually showed he was human two starts ago against the Pirates, but bounced back nicely with a 27.8 fantasy point effort facing the Marlins. The matchup is good for Harvey, and we should see him go deep into the game with a good shot at double-digit strikeouts.
Dallas Keuchel vs. BAL ($10,000) – Keuchel has put up insane numbers to this point, surprising even the best of us DFS owners. He’s averaging 23.9 FPPG on the year and is facing an Orioles lineup that is struggling with the bats of late. I’ve got Keuchel pegged for seven innings at least, as he keeps getting outs via the ground ball. If I haven’t said so before – I love this guy.
Trevor Bauer @ KC ($7,900) – I like that Bauer is listed below $8 K, which is a value in my book with the way he’s been pitching. Bauer is averaging 27.3 FPPG over his last four starts, and while I’m not thrilled about him facing the Royals’ bats I’ll take the chance that he earns at least 20 fantasy points.
Aaron Harang vs. CIN ($6,800) – I have to admit I’m shocked. I like Harang… to a certain point; however, the guy has done more than enough over the last season and a half to earn my respect. The matchup isn’t great, so be wary there, but Harang has put on an excellent run, tallying 10 quality starts on the season so far.
Yasmani Grandal vs. Michael Wacha – STL ($3,800) – I know, I don’t have any stud catchers listed, but that’s because there are so many catcher injuries right now and not very many choices to choose from. I could list Stephen Vogt in the stud section, but I actually like the values here more than Vogt today. Plus, we don’t see a full schedule with Thursday being a traveling day. Grandal is one of the better hitting catchers in the game right now, solid all the way around, and presents a decent value under $4 K.
Yadier Molina @ Carlos Frias – LAD ($3,400) – Molina still hasn’t hit a home run this season, but is averaging 5.2 FPPG on the year. I mean, that’s not great, but it’s respectable for a catcher. And, you have to figure the power is going to come at some point. I like Molina’s salary enough to hope that he’ll hit his first homer in my lineup.
Paul Goldschmidt vs. Matt Harvey – NYM ($5,300) – I almost passed on Goldschmidt facing Harvey, but I just couldn’t. Goldy is hitting .355, 15 HR, 44 RBI and he’s giving 12.1 FPPG. That line is just too enticing, especially if I’m going all-in on a $5 K player.
Miguel Cabrera vs. Jesse Hahn – OAK ($5,200) – Okay, so I’m not being too original by suggesting Cabrera, but can you blame me. I mean, really? No, you can’t. Hahn has never faced Miggy before, and I think he’s in for a real treat. It’s been awhile since Miggy smacked a homer, so don’t be surprised if he takes Hahn downtown. Even with the lack of power, Miggy has averaged 7.3 FPPG over his last four games.
Brandon Moss @ Chris Young – KC ($4,900) – I just had to list one more stud suggestion for the day, with Moss tuning up Young with three career home runs in 14 at bats. You have to love the power potential in rostering Moss for the day.
Adam LaRoche @ Yovani Gallardo – TEX ($3,900) – This is purely a matchup-based suggestion, as LaRoche destroys Gallardo over his career: .367/.457/.667, 2 HR, 5 XBH, 6 RBI, 5 BB in 30 AB. Yeah, baby, yeah.
Brian Dozier @ Steven Wright – BOS ($5,400) – Want a power-hitting second baseman in a hitters park facing a 30-year old rookie knuckleballer? Yes, please. It’s a shame that so many seasonal fantasy owners gave up on Dozier early on, but we DFS’ers have the luxury of not worrying about the entire season. Thankfully, eh? The big bat that Dozier carries, and with him getting a chance to time some floaters, is just too tempting for me. I have no issue paying $5.4 K.
Jose Altuve vs. Wei-Yin Chen – BAL ($4,800) – Altuve finally pulled out of his hitting funk that he went through a bit ago, getting his average back up to .300. There just isn’t a better all-around second baseman in the league, and I actually consider $4.8 K a value on Altuve. If you need added incentive, Altuve is 6-for-13 (.462) against Chen over his career.
Brandon Phillips @ Aaron Harang – PHI ($3,900 ) – Phillips can be streaky at times, and he’s gone 4-for-10 over his last two games for a combined 33 fantasy points. This could be the start of a nice run for Phillips.
Howie Kendrick vs. Michael Wacha – STL ($3,700) – Kendrick has been undervalued all season long, averaging 7.3 FPPG on the year. The problem of late? He’s been boom-or-bust. Kendrick has limited exposure to Wacha, with only two at-bats, but I’ve got a good gut feeling here.
Miguel Cabrera vs. Jesse Hahn – OAK ($5,200) – The options for a stud 3B are limited, so Cabrera gets listed here as well in the above 1B slot.
Todd Frazier @ Aaron Harang – PHI ($5,000) – Funny. I suggested Aaron Harang as a pitcher, but Reds’ players keep popping up. Frazier gets listed here because of his recent power surge (4 HR over his last 10 games), and that he’s got 16 HR on the year to go along with 31 RBI.
Maikel Franco vs. Anthony DeSclafani – CIN ($3,900) – Rookie hitters are always a risk, although Franco has nice power potential facing DeSclafani. We’ll hope he cuts down on the goose-egg performances, but I like taking a shot on Franco’s raw power potential.
Jose Iglesias vs. Jesse Hahn – OAK ($3,300) – It’s all about the price with Iglesias, AND that he’s hitting .329 on the season. You’re getting decent value for what you’re paying, assuming you’re using Iglesias as a nice fill-in play to round out your roster. I’m sure you’re not expecting power from Iglesias, but just in case you are? Don’t.
Hanley Ramirez vs. Tommy Milone – MIN ($5,100) – If you’re looking to build up your middle infield slots and take advantage of value elsewhere, then there’s no better play at SS than Han-Ram. You get power, which I like to obviously write about, and you get the quickest hands in the West. Or, East, I should say. Ramirez has never faced Milone before, although I still have confidence in his bat.
Jhonny Peralta @ Carlos Frias – LAD ($4,200) – Peralta isn’t hitting as well as he did two weeks ago, but that’s okay. I dig the price in the stud range and what Peralta has done to this point in the season. You get power and his very nice .878 OPS.
Yunel Escobar vs. Jake Arrieta – CHC ($3,300) – With four double-digit fantasy point performances over his last 10 games, Escobar gets the nod for me. I’m pleasantly surprised by what Escobar has done so far, and feel very good locking him in if I’m looking to save some bucks at shortstop. There are some really good values at short on Thursday, and the best part? Escobar is 7-for-18 with a homer against Arrieta. Me like-y.
Jose Iglesias vs. Jesse Hahn – OAK ($3,300) – See third base above on Iglesias.
Bryce Harper vs. Jake Arrieta – CHC ($5,100) – I’m really not picking on Arrieta since he’s a wonderful pitcher, but even with Harper’s power dwindling some he’s still hitting well and finding his way on base with walks. You have to admit that Harper is almost an auto-play on Thursday if you’re playing values with your pitching slots.
Hanley Ramirez vs. Tommy Milone – MIN ($5,100) – I like Han-Ram too much to not list him as a stud option at outfield, like I did above at shortstop.
Mookie Betts vs. Tommy Milone – MIN ($4,700) – We all saw what Mookie did at the very beginning of the year, winning a game pretty much all by himself. The kid is talented, no denying that, and it’s no secret that he’s going to be very special. But, what about Thursday versus Milone, you ask? I don’t see Milone overpowering Betts and keeping him off the basepaths. Over Betts’ last 10 games, he’s pumped up his OBP to .350. He’s been hovering around the .300 mark all season, so it’s nice to see the increase.
Michael Bourn @ Chris Young – KC ($4,000) – Bourn’s value no longer lies with his ability to steal bases, so why do I list him here, especially at this borderline price tag? Bourn is 5-for-10 over his career against Chris Young, with a 1.245 OPS.
Seth Smith vs. Erasmo Ramirez – TB ($3,800) – Smith doesn’t always play every day, so make sure you pay attention to the lit up green check mark so you know for sure that Smith is in the lineup. If he is, you’re getting a sneaky play. Smith is hitting .364 against Ramirez with three extra-base hits.
Dexter Fowler @ Gio Gonzalez – WAS ($3,800) – Fowler can steal bases (11 SB), hit for decent power (6 HR), but if there’s a knock it’s his consistency. Fowler is hitting well of late and does hit Gonzalez well (5-for-11, with one homer). Fowler is giving 6.8 FPPG over his last 10 games played.
Preston Tucker vs. Wei-Yin Chen – BAL ($3,700) – Tucker has hit for power at every level over his short professional career, and the Astros are getting him everyday at-bats right now. As long as he keeps hitting the way he has been, he won’t be seeing much bench time. Tucker is a good overall player, one that hasn’t even begun to show his power potential. I’m not big on Chen heading into Houston.
Randal Grichuk @ Carlos Frias – LAD ($3,300) – The salary, Grichuk’s .896 OPS and his ability to go on power-stretches get him in my lineups. Of course, you’ll want to make sure Grichuk is in the Cards lineup on Thursday, so if he is and you’re needing value at the outfield spot – I always need value there – he provides intrigue and boom potential.
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