2013 Fantasy Baseball, Daily Fix: May 29, 2013
I’m playing in a Double Up! contest. Personally, I will probably be going with one of the one dollar games, but you can choose to do what you want. Don’t forget to get your deposit bonus here. If you can take any comfort from a day like today it is that every other player in your contest has to deal with the same issues as you. There’s just going to be a lot less predictability.
One of the great things about following us for a week is that you will see six different ways to play (you get me twice) and all of us have had our fair share of success. So, there is more than one way to skin a cat. Today, I’m basing my picks on the same criteria (daily matchups) as I always do, but I’ll give you an alternative solution in case you don’t want mine or if the money becomes a stickler. I usually go with as cheap an option as I can, so you might be able to upgrade at some positions.
Pitcher: Jordan Zimmerman vs. Baltimore Orioles
Zimmerman is already up to seven wins on the season and appears to be the 2013 version of Gio Gonzalez. He might be more costly, but I’ve come to believe that you can’t whiff on pitching. When I look back at the times that I’ve lost (more often than not lately) it is because one of my pitchers gets shelled. There are no guarantees in life, but I want to get at close as I possibly can. Alternative: Anibal Sanchez
Pitcher: Brandon McCarthy vs. Texas Rangers
No, the overall numbers aren’t going to impress you, but McCarthy finally has seen a positive regression the last three starts. One of those included a complete game shutout. I don’t think he’s going to shut out the Rangers today, but he should pitch well and that will give you points whether he wins or loses. Plus, his price hasn’t quite caught up to his value yet. Alternative: Lance Lynn
Catcher: Wilin Rosario vs. Erik Bedard
It’s funny how life never seems to work out as planned. This is a moment where all forces seem to be converging to offer you 20 points or so. Wilin Rosario rakes at home (the Rockies are at home), rakes against lefties (Bedard is left-handed), and is up against a shaky pitcher (the afforementioned Bedard). Of course, knowing my luck, that is why he would likely take the collar. So, an alternative. Alternative: Nick Hundley
First Base: Yonder Alonso vs. Joe Saunders
Alonso is very ordinary these days. He’s hitting around .280 with limited power numbers, but he’s going up against a starter that has an ERA over 6.00. If Saunders had not signed a significant contract he likely wouldn’t be in the rotation anymore. The Mariners are hoping he will work out the kinks and become the solid starter they signed late in the offseason. Good luck with that. Alternative: Albert Pujols
Second Base: Howie Kendrick vs. Chris Capuano
Today is one of those days where the matchups don’t really fit what we are looking for. Nothing can set up perfectly, so we go with the safe play. We are fairly certain that Kendrick will play and he is usually consistently productive in terms of giving you something. The odds are against a huge day, but when you are playing a double up game you just want some production. Alternative: Rickie Weeks
Third Base: Nolan Arenado vs. Erik Bedard
Arenado has been about as good as most rookies can expect to be. He’s had games where he looks like a rookie of the year candidate and games where he looks like he should be back in AAA. Erik Bedard is performing much like a AAA pitcher these days and Coors Field isn’t likely to help that, so Arenado should feel right at home. He has put up some huge individual numbers in some games, so maybe we’ll get lucky. Alternative: Chase Headley
Shortstop: Everth Cabrera vs. Joe Saunders
If you have been following my picks for the whole season you’ll notice I like to bet heavily against struggling pitchers. Sometimes you just have to bet on one of those 12-4 games working in your favor. Cabrera is a good percentage bet because he can score points for you with the bat and on the bases. He also comes a little cheaper than the rest of the picks. Alternative: Jean Segura
Outfield: Norichika Aoki vs. Sam Deduno
This falls under the wild card category. Aoki is a solid player and always a solid pick, but Deduno has a 10.00+ ERA on the season. That’s because he hasn’t pitched a lot yet. One bad start can skew the numbers big time and can fool you into thinking he’s a pitcher to bet against. I’m not betting the farm against Deduno, but he’s worth a poke with at least one of the Brewer outfielders. Alternative: Mike Trout
Outfield: Chris Denorfia vs. Joe Saunders
Denorfia is quietly producing at a .300 clip, so this is a sounder play than what you might think. With Cameron Maybin on the bench, Denorfia has become a regular outfielder even though he seems to be priced as a reserve. Take advantage of the savings here because 50,000 can catch up with you really quickly. Alternative: Will Venable
Outfield: Dexter Fowler vs. Erik Bedard
If we had an unlimited payroll we would throw Carlos Gonzalez into the mix, but sadly we don’t. Dexter Fowler becomes a very different player when he enters Coors Field (.294/.391/.484 vs. .250/.338/.378). That alone would be enough to gamble on, but when you add in the Erik Bedard effect then you have to feel pretty confidently about your chances. Alternatives: Michael Cuddyer
It’s Rookie Time
If there’s one thing I’d love to fix about the CBA it is the whole nonsense surrounding super twos. Essentially, it allows incoming superstars (a la Mike Trout) to be considered arbitration eligible after two plus seasons. It happens for players that get called up early in the season and if it happens early enough they consider that partial season as if it were a whole season. The end result becomes a glorified game of chicken where clubs keep their star prospects down on the farm for as long as possible so those players don’t become eligible for arbitration early. Everyone knows what they are doing, so no one is really fooling anyone. It only means we are depriving the fans of some really exciting young ballplayers for the first two months of the season.
As the calendar approaches June, some teams are beginning to call those guys up. The Mariners have recalled Nick Franklin, the Rangers recalled Jurickson Profar recently, and the Orioles recalled Kevin Gausman. More will be on the way in the coming weeks and some fantasy players can’t wait. If you are playing in traditional fantasy leagues (non-dynasty) then it pays to wait and see on some of these guys. With all three players mentioned above, I have no doubt that they will make it and become solid contributors. It just might take them awhile to adjust.
When the calendar does flip to June we will see a slew of youngsters coming up to help their teams in the pennant chase. The press likes to focus on guys like Wil Myers, but there will be more than a dozen when all is said and done. Some will succeed and some will fail. The fantasy players that avoid the hype will be the real winners throughout this period of rookie madness.