Welcome to the penultimate Saturday of the MLB regular season. We have teams fighting for playoff spots, team trying out prospects, chances of rain. You know. Pretty much all the stuff you want to avoid when playing in daily fantasy – except the teams fighting for playoff spots. As always, make sure that the players you choose today are actually playing, even if they are supposed to play, have a replacement in mind and ready to go, in case of a last mine scratch or rain out.
Jordan Zimmermann, Washington, $11,000 — Take whatever sample-size you want with Zimmermann, he has been very good for a while now. His ERA and WHIP over the last 2 game are 1.42 and 1.03, over the last six games they are 2.48 and 1.03, in his last 11 starts they are 2.51 and .99 with a 67:8 K:BB ratio. I will take those numbers from a starter facing the Astros.
Chris Tillman, Baltimore, $9,100 — Tillman has actually had a better ERA and WHIP over his last 12 starts than Zimmermann has had over his last 11 – Tillman sports a 2.01 ERA and .95 WHIP over his last 12 games. While Tillman does not have as good a K:BB ratio, it is still very good at 65:16 over his last 76 innings pitched. On Saturday, Tillman gets to face a Boston Red Sox team hitting only .233 this month.
Michael Wacha, St. Louis, $7,800 – Speaking of a team not hitting, I present to you Wacha’s opponent, the Cincinnati Reds. The Reds have scored only 45 runs this month – 2nd fewest in the league. To go along with not scoring runs, the Reds “offense” sports a .221 batting average and .283 OBP this month. Wacha is not without risk as his last start came against these same Reds and did not go so well – Wacha allowed the Reds to score six runs (13% of their total for the month). I think the risk is well worth it for $7,800.
John Niese, New York Mets, $7,700 — The Reds offense has been a juggernaut this month compared to the Braves. Atlanta has scored 36 runs this month, and they are batting .206 with a .269 on base percentage. For the season, Atlanta ranks 26th in runs scored against southpaws too. To top it off, Niese has 14 strikeouts, one walk, a 1.98 ERA and 1.10 WHIP in his last two starts.
Buster Posey, 1B/C, San Francisco, $4,400 — Posey is not facing a weak pitcher Saturday or anything, but I like him in this match up. Mainly, because Posey is hitting .407 over the last month – I also like the eight home runs and 28 runs batted in that have accompanied that batting average.
Jose Abreu, 1B, Chicago White Sox, $4,900 — If only Abreu’s teammates would get on base for him… Despite hitting .364 with a 1.208 OPS over the last seven games, Abreu only has four runs batted in. While that limits his upside, he is playing well and facing Chris Archer who has a 4.75 ERA over his last six starts.
Ian Kinsler, 2B, Detroit, $4,400 – I am not all that enamored with the options at second base today. Kinsler has been good against Kansas City this season – he is hitting .292 with two home runs, six runs scored and nine runs batted in in 65 at-bats. Not bad, but I would be going cheap at 2B today.
Anthony Rendon, 3B, Washington, $4,900 — Tens are wild with Rendon. Over his last ten games, Rendon is averaging ten fantasy points per contest. He also has 10 hits in the last week. I will take Rendon’s hot-streak even with him facing Jarred Cosart who has pitched well lately.
Dee Gordon, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers, $5,200 — The great Felix Doubront has averaged one strikeout per game the last two games. Gordon is hitting .370 over the last week with three steals. I once again refer to my award winning formula: Felix Doubront + batter = profit.
Mike Trout, OF, Los Angeles Angels, $5,700 — Hey, it is the first time all year I have recommended Trout, I wanted to do so before the season ended. You really do not need me to tell you why Trout is a good start against Colby Lewis, do you?
Jose Bautista, OF, Toronto, $5,300 — It might seem strange to suggest going with a batter hitting only .200 over the last seven days. Bautista has managed a .467 OBP in that same span, is averaging nine fantasy points per game the last ten games, and is facing Chris Capuano on Saturday.
Matt Kemp, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers, $5,300 – If Kemp were not facing Doubront, I would label this a gut call. Instead, I once again refer to the magical formula: Felix Doubront + batter = profit.
Yan Gomes, C, Cleveland, $3,900 — Minnesota is starting Trevor May on Saturday. Why does that make Gomes a good start? Mays has a 7.71 ERA and 1.86 WHIP in the majors.
Matt Adams, 1B, St. Louis, $3,500 — It is all about the price. Adams has not been anything special lately, but he is averaging 6.7 points per game over his last ten games. All you need from Adams is an average game for him to provide double value. Cincinnati starter Mike Leake has a 7.31 ERA and 1.69 WHIP over his last three starts, so I like Adams’ chances today.
Josh Rutledge, 2B/SS, Colorado, $3,500 — Rutledge is averaging nearly seven fantasy points per game at home this season. You need more? Trevor Cahill is starting for Arizona, you know, the guy with a 7.71 ERA and 1.86 WHIP in his last five starts?
Chase Headley, 3B, New York Yankees, $3,400 — Third base is the opposite of second base for me today; I would rather spend the money for a good player than fish in the bargain pool. Headley has 18 fantasy points in his last two games, so provides the potential for profit today.
Jed Lowrie, SS, Oakland, $3,200 — Jerome Williams is starting for the Phillies on Saturday. The same Jerome Williams that was cut by the Texas Rangers and Houston Astros this season. What can I say, there are times I only need one thing to like a play, for me that one thing for Lowrie is Williams.
Oswaldo Arcia, OF, Minnesota, $4,700 — Perhaps Arcia is priced a little high to be considered a value play today, but he is under $5,000. Better yet, Arcia is averaging 9.3 fantasy points per game over his last ten games, plus will be facing T. J. House today.
Mookie Betts, OF, Boston, $3,800 — Owners in season-long leagues might be disillusioned with Betts, good thing this is daily fantasy. Betts is cheap, coming off a ten-point fantasy game and facing a team that has already clinched its division.
Enjoy the games today, may all of your pitchers pitch perfect games and all your batters hit for the cycle! You can catch my very infrequent posts on Twitter @STCDub.