Fantasy Baseball 2014: The Daily Double Switch for May 1st
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Rain, rain, go away! The last few days of baseball have been hampered by Mother Nature’s penchant for providing rainfall in the month of April, but the buck stops here. The month of May is finally here and I’m looking forward to the flowers and another full month of baseball! Let’s get May started on the right foot!
If you aren’t already testing out all the picks on DraftStreet, get there now!
*Note: There are multiple double-headers today, be sure that you are aware which games are included on the site you are playing on!
*Rain has been pounding the east coast, keep your eye out for all games in that area.
LAD/MIN – Chance of few showers for both games today.
Today is ugly. The recent weather has forced managers to change their game plans and get creative when trying to decide on a lineup and today should be no different. By product of elimination, Ervin Santana is the top pitching option today. Santana is striking out more hitters than he ever has before and on a day with not a lot of great pitchers, he needs to be on your shortlist. His 10.08 K/9 and 1.95 earned run average jump out to me as he gets to face the Marlins at Marlins Park today. The Marlins have torched both of the Braves starters in the first two games of this series, but Santana has been a force on the road this year, and I expect that to continue.
Homer Bailey gets a matchup today that daily fantasy players are recently taking advantage of. The Brewers are a completely different team against right-handed pitching and they are still expected to be without their best player, Ryan Braun. Bailey has not been brilliant this year, but his 9.90 K/9 is an encouraging statistic heading into today. Expect a much better performance from him while he lowers his earned run average from the sixes.
If you don’t want to use Bailey or Santana, test your hand with Mark Buehrle or Chris Tillman. Pitching matchups aren’t plentiful today, but these two will provide you solid outings and salary relief. Buehrle gets to face all the Royals left-handed bats and continue his magical year, while Tillman gets to face the Pirates brass that haven’t quite picked up where they left off last season.
Catcher is not a fun position today, especially since we don’t get the automatic Buster Posey against a left-handed pitcher. In fact, Posey doesn’t play at all and without Yadier Molina, there is not much to be desired from the catcher’s player pool. With that being said, I like Matt Wieters in the first game of two today. Wieters faces Bucco Charlie Morton in game one at Camden and will be swinging from the left side. Morton historically has been hit hard by left-handed pitching, surrendering a career wOBA of .391 to lefties. Wieters has been awesome from the left this year, hitting to the tune of .368 with a couple of homeruns.
Pickings are slim when I have to talk about Travis d’Arnaud as one of the better plays on the day. d’Arnaud gets a big boost in park factor today traveling to Coors Field and is going to be very affordable on a day where you might need to get some top bats. He has not been good this year, but his price tag and park factor make him a solid punt option. Juan Nicasio throws the fourth most fastballs in the league and nearly 60% of d’Arnaud’s at-bats are ending on fastballs, I’m sure he’ll be sitting dead-red today.
Others to consider: Jordan Pacheco and Salvador Perez.
Finally some better hitting options appear for the “one-baggers” today. My favorite cash game play today is Adrian Gonzalez. Gonzo is one of the safest plays in all of daily fantasy sports and he gets to face Mike Pelfrey today. In his last seven days, Gonzalez has nine hits in 20 at-bats, three of which have traveled over the fence. While he won’t be playing in Coors today, I love his matchup, despite Pelfrey’s drastic reverse platoon splits.
Justin Morneau is probably the lead candidate for comeback player of the year, especially after Harang’s outing last night. Morneau has been swinging the bat like his days as the MVP award winner in Minnesota. At home tonight at Coors Field against Bartolo Colon, this matchup has me drooling. Colon throws essentially nothing but a fastball and has already given up six homeruns this year, expect that number to grow tonight.
Others to consider: Joey Votto, Lucas Duda and Mike Napoli.
Despite normally being a position that I struggle to fill, second base presents some fairly decent options today. My favorite guy is Robinson Cano. Cano has seen a dip in his power since leaving behind the pinstripes for Safeco Field, but he’s back in the Bronx tonight. The short right field porch and the fuel from the rain of boos he’s sure to receive has him at the top of my second base list. Hiroki Kuroda hasn’t been any better or worse against left-handed hitters in his career, but has already given up three homers to them this year. I think Cano makes it four.
Daniel Murphy is a hit machine. I don’t often recommend Mets, but things change today when they get to Coors Field. Murphy has excelled hitting in the two hole right in front of Captain America, David Wright. Murphy has eight hits in his last 19 at-bats, and is getting a major bump in park factor as the Mets make their way in to Colorado. He is still homerless and doesn’t sport a whole lot of power, but the homerun potential is there tonight. For cash games, Murphy is my favorite second baseman today.
Others to consider: Dee Gordon, Dustin Pedroia and Ben Zobrist.
I touched on Captain America in the previous section and he’s finding his way in to my heart again. David Wright has to be on your list of third baseman today. Wright plays half of his home games at spacious Citi Field but gets to travel across the country to Coors tonight. In only three at-bats against Nicasio, Wright already has two homeruns and could easily add to it tonight. He has not been good to start the year, and his one homerun is discouraging, but at his price tonight, he’s a solid option.
Evan Longoria should also be at the top of your list against Felix Doubront. Longoria has historically been better against left-handed pitching, and fares especially well against left-handers who own an earned run average in the sixes. Opponents are hitting .294 against Doubront and Longoria and company should only look to increase that tonight. He hasn’t a homerun against a left-handed pitcher yet this year, but looks to break that tonight!
Others to consider: Nolan Arenado, Juan Uribe and Kyle Seager.
Do you ever go a single day where Troy Tulowitzki isn’t the top shortstop option? Not typically, and that’s not changing today. Tulo is too good to succeed the top option to anyone else tonight. He’s back in his home park against, yes, Bartolo Colon. Colon has been brutal this year and has already yielded six homeruns. Need I say more?
The other top option for shortstop today is also on the pricey side. Hanley Ramirez gets two excellent matchups today, my favorite against Mike Pelfrey. Pelfrey has been drastically worse against right-handed hitters this year, and Ramirez is one of the best right-handed hitters in baseball. Right-handed hitters are hitting .429 against Pelfrey as compared to the .189 he is surrendering to left-handed hitters. Say what? Use Hanley with confidence, should you not decide to fork over the cash for Tulo.
Others to consider: JJ Hardy, Derek Jeter and Jose Reyes.
CarGo is back! In his first at-bat last night, Carlos Gonzalez hit a two-run homerun off of Josh Collmenter and let us all know that his tendinitis issue is in the rearview mirror. He is by far my favorite outfielder today against Bartolo Colon for the same reasons I’ve mentioned with all the other Rockies’ hitters. Gonzalez has hit 130 career homeruns, 90 of which have traveled over the fence against right-handed pitchers. Once again, need I say more?
Chris Kay and I did some bickering on the Reds and Brewers today and while he’s shying away from Reds hitters, I’m all aboard the “Bruce Train.” Jay Bruce will hit a homerun tonight, book it. Thanks to his struggles so far this year, Bruce has given us a very affordable price for his talents tonight. After hitting 30+ homeruns in each of the last four years, he only hit three in the month of April, making him “due” for the month of May. Bruce has been much better against right-handed pitching in his career and for the record, has the more homeruns in the month of May than any other month.
It’s too easy to mention Charlie Blackmon against Bartolo Colon today, so to move away from that trend I’m setting my eye on Yasiel Puig. Lots of times, we don’t talk about Puig because of his baseball ability, but more because of his stupidity or the excitement he brings to the field. Well, today he should be bringing some excitement while getting the opportunity to showcase his baseball ability. I already mentioned the extreme platoon splits that Mike Pelfrey has exhibited this year, take advantage of it in this matchup. Puig has historically been a tad bit better against left-handed pitching, but due to the small sample size and variance, I’m not afraid to roll him out today. I think he becomes more of a GPP and tournament play because of his potential low ownership, but I think he pays off greatly.
Others to consider: Eric Young Jr, Carlos Beltran, Matt Joyce, Justin Upton, Curtis Granderson and Alfonso Soriano.
NYM – Murphy,Wright,Granderson,Duda.