Fantasy Baseball Daily Fix: May 23rd, 2013
Today marks a unique challenge when it comes to playing Draftkings. There hasn’t been a day in the season with this few games on the docket. My normal strategies really don’t play out here because there are only five games on the docket. That leaves you with only ten starting pitchers to choose from and ten position players at each position. The normal weeding out of players is difficult based on that. Some teams don’t have regulars at certain positions, so you are really left with a skeleton crew.
So, since we have to throw caution and strategy to the wind, I would suggest playing one of the cheaper games and a game with shorter odds. Therefore, 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.
Before we get to the lineup of the day, please take note of this SPECIAL OFFER. For anyFIRST-TIME depositor at DraftKings, if you deposit at least $25, you will receive an extra $10 from DraftKings. That’s right. Click on this link, deposit a minimum of $25 and receive a bonus $10. Please allow for a few days for the extra money to be processed to your account.
Pitcher: Ervin Santana vs. Los Angeles Angels
This one is a pretty easy one considering the lack of choices we have. Santana has pitched well on the season so far while his opponent (Joe Blanton) sits at 0-7 with an astronomical ERA. If the Angels hadn’t spent so much money (relatively) on Blanton I would suspect he would be out of the rotation by now. He might be following this contest, so get in while the getting is good.
Pitcher: Jeanmar Gomez vs. Chicago Cubs
You talk about slim pickings. Gomez is the only other pitcher on the docket with a sub 3.00 ERA. I have to admit he probably has done that with the grace of God and a long-handle spoon. Still Edwin Jackson (his opposing pitcher) has struggled for much of the year, so you can say the Pirates have a decent chance of winning this contest. Brandon Morrow and Ryan Dempster are also decent plays for your second pitching slot. Let’s just say it’s all guess work on a day like today.
In lieu of playing matchups we are focusing on going with the hot hand. Salty has been hitting the ball of late and so we should take advantage of the hot streak while we can. Meanwhile, McAllister would fit somewhere comfortably in the mediocre category. This seems like a solid play on a day like today.
First Base: Eric Hosmer vs. Joe Blanton
Joe Blanton is probably one more start away from being demoted to the bullpen or being designated for assignment. Take advantage of his largesse on his last day in the rotation. The worst that can happen is that he actually pitches well and gives fantasy players another opportunity to pick on him down the road. Only Phillip Humber (now in AAA) has done worse on the season.
Second Base: Jason Kipnis vs. Ryan Dempster
Kipnis has been playing well lately and Dempster has been getting shelled lately. This seems like a match made in heaven. Kipnis is also one of those guys I like to call accumulators. He doesn’t necessarily wow you with his percentage numbers, but he seems to rack up the home runs, runs, RBIs, and stolen bases. Those all mean big time points for you.
Third Base: Will Middlebrooks vs. Zach McAllister
Studying Will Middlebrooks early career is like studying a volatile period in the stock market. There are extreme highs (like his three home run game) and extreme lows (like hitting under the Mendoza line for much of April). He seems to be in the midst of an upswing, so it makes sense to take advantage of that.
Shortstop: Alcides Escobar vs. Joe Blanton
I can’t afford not to take advantage of Joe Blanton. If you play only one guy against him you are nuts. Unfortunately, there are some positions (2B, 3B, RF) where you really can’t afford to play anyone, but other than that feel free to go all in against Blanton.
Outfield: Alex Gordon vs. Joe Blanton
Andy Dirks has had a relatively quiet season so far, but he will put up some numbers that might surprise you down the line. He is currently hitting around .250, but he has five home runs on the season. If he keeps to that pace he will hit close to 20 home runs on the season. Today feels like one of those days he will bust out. Scott Diamond was solid last season, but he is a low strikeout guy. This season he has turned back into a pumpkin.
Willingham has gotten off to a slow start (“only” six home runs) but has an excellent pedigree. He’s also going up against a pitcher that has been hit hard on the season. It seems like a decent play to me when you consider there aren’t too many alternatives.
Don’t look now, but Mike Trout is on the prowl. He has lifted his average up to .297 and he is on pace to hit nearly 30 home runs. No, he isn’t quite the player he was last season, but who could possibly follow up a season like that? Last season, the whole Angels season turned around when Trout was called up. Now, it may turn around as he begins to approach the player he was last season.
Meanwhile, they had role reversal in Baltimore. Jason Hammel had been hit hard while Hiroki Kuroda had been brilliant. It turned out the other way as Kuroda left following the second inning. Chris Davis continued his magical season going 4 for 4 with a home run and two RBIs. Nate McLouth stole his AL leading 14th base in the victory as well.
Not everything is sour in Las Angeles. The Dodgers and Angels have been disappointing this season, but the decision to sign Hyun-Jin Ryu wasn’t one of those bad decisions. He moved to 5-2 on the season with a 3.30 ERA. With Ryu, Clayton Kershaw, and Zack Greinke fronting their rotation you can never fully count out the Dodgers.