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Fantasy Baseball Daily Fix: April 4th, 2013

“Here come the Astros burning with desire, here come the Astros, they’re breathing orange fire.”

The Astros may be breathing orange fire again, but they sure as hell aren’t making a lot of contact these days. In three games, they have struck out 13 times, 15 times, and 15 times again. For the math impaired, that makes 43 times in the first three games alone. They have come to the plate 96 times which means they have a K rate of 44.8 percent.

You might wonder what this has on the price of tea in China, but the implication couldn’t be more clear. If you have a pitcher to pick then pick anyone facing the Astros. Sadly, the Astros have an off day, so you will have to actually work to pick your second pitcher. However, they aren’t the only team that has struggled to hit the ball this season.

On Monday (the first full day of the season), there were four shutouts in twelve games. Tuesday saw two shutouts (including the almost perfect game against the Astros), and Wednesday saw three shutouts (including the Astros again). So, there have been some dominating pitching performances and based on the number of points pitchers garner, it is best to pay a good deal of attention on the pitching match-ups before filling out your docket.

While the Astros have taken the lead in the ineptitude race, the Cubs are not far behind. They have had 63 plate appearances so far and have struck out 24 times. They’ve struck out 38.1 percent of the time and they are playing today, so you might think about going with James McDonald. That is if you are willing to bet that two games is enough to bet on a trend.

Playing a daily game can lull you into betting on the here and now. It is similar to playing roulette in Vegas. The highest percentage play is to play the percentages. It might not win you a specific contest, but the more you play the percentages the better off you will be in the long run. Play often enough and it will be just like playing in a normal fantasy league.

Draftkings.com Team of the Day

Today I’ll be playing the MLB Daily Dollar ($200 Guaranteed, Single Entry). It cost only a dollar and I’m a sucker for a little risk reward for my buck. So, here is my lineup for today.

Pitcher: Jordan Zimmerman–$8,800

Zimmerman is going up against the Marlins. He has a sub 1.20 WHIP against the Marlins for his career and has struck out nearly a batter per inning in his career against them. Plus, the Marlins have the look of the walking dead offensively this year.

Pitcher: Jeremy Guthrie–$6,700

As Brett Talley mentioned earlier this week, you want to save money on pitching when you can. Guthrie has good career numbers against the White Sox and they are not one of the better offenses in the American League. His career ERA against the Sox is closer to three than four and he has a WHIP around 1.10 against them as well.

Catcher: Carlos Santana–$4,200

He has very good numbers against the Blue Jays and in the Rogers Centre in particular. Plus, why not stick it to the Canadians since they have my spell checker in a tizzy when I tried to use the Canadian version of the word “Center”. I’ll stick by the track record in Toronto though.

First Base: Kevin Youkilis–$4,100

Youkilis was a bit of a compromise vote. When going through the list of players that would click it included the likes of Albert Pujols, Joey Votto, and Prince Fielder. Those were too expensive, so I went with Yuk. He is going against his former mates, so there isn’t a tremendous track record.

Second Base: Brandon Phillips–$4,400

He is usually much better at home and the Angels pitchers are going from the likes of C.J. Wilson and Jered Weaver to Joe Blanton. When you look up mediocre in the dictionary there is a picture of Blanton. He’s nice for a fourth starter, but teams like the Reds make their hay off of other team’s fourth starter.

Third Base: Ryan Zimmerman–$4,600

If Ricky Nolasco is the ace of the Marlins then who is their third starter? They seem to be destined to come in last place, so you might as well take advantage of them while they’re down. After all, if the commissioner’s office considers them a major league team then we should as well.

Shortstop: Jhonny Peralta–$3,300

He has great numbers at U.S. Cellular Field. I mean great numbers. His OPS is nearly 1.000 at the ballpark and we are looking for bargains anywhere we can get them. While we would love to have a star at every spot we have to take a flyer or two with the salary cap they give us.

Outfield: Shane Victorino– $4,100

The switch hitter looked horrible in the WBC, but has been brilliant so far this year and he has a great track record against lefties (career .326 TAV against LHP). Plus, the Yankees have that stink of road kill on them for right now. The fact that he is affordable makes it all the better.

Outfield: Shin Soo Choo–$4,800

Anyone that has read my articles here probably figures I have a man crush with Shin Soo Choo. Well, I have a crush on him when he is hitting against righties. He is hitting against Joe Blanton and therefore he probably should mash again.

Outfield: Bryce Harper–$5,000

This seems like a low amount for Harper. Harper hits well against right handers and he has the look of a guy that could become this year’s Mike Trout. If we can’t afford last year’s Trout then why not roll the dice on someone that could be this year’s.

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