Welcome to our MLB Daily Fantasy Breakdown! Today, we have a nice slate of Sunday baseball.
FanDuel has moved their main slate to include just the early games over the past month, which is a big help, as, with no late swap, you can very easily get stuck. The pitching matchups overall look pretty unspectacular, but we will do what we can in order to get some good lineups in place. Let’s make tonight a good one, as there are a number of great contests that are being offered on FanDuel. If you don’t have an account, use our link to sign up for FanDuel.
Today, we will break everything down position by position. If you like what you see, don’t hesitate to follow us on Twitter @researchandwin and let us know we helped you or yell at us for leading you down the wrong path.
With that out of the way, let’s move on to the picks:
JON LESTER – I typically don’t like using left-handed pitchers against the Brewers, as they can hit them well. Lester is a very good pitcher, and has really only had two bad outings this year. There are times when he doesn’t deliver what he should, but it isn’t killer. I don’t like the matchup for Kluber, so Lester by default would be my high-end play of the day. He is averaging almost a strikeout an inning, and we know the Brewers can strikeout, so there is some upside here.
SCOTT KAZMIR – Kazmir is typically not a guy I look at too much, but there is a lot of merit to it tonight. He is averaging over a strikeout an inning, and gets a team in the Cardinals that cannot hit lefties very well. This is a perfect storm. We’ve seen lefties of his caliber like Danny Duffy have big games against the Cardinals, so it wouldn’t surprise me if Kazmir was able to do the same tonight. He is priced very well and you can fit a lot into a lineup with him.
LUCAS GIOLITO – I’m sure no one wants to hear about Giolito, as he hasn’t really delivered this year, despite all the hype, but the skills are there. The problem is the opponent. The Padres sure can strikeout a lot, but they are currently hitting the ball very well, which causes me a great deal of concern. Overall, I think I would prefer to spend up a bit more on Kazmir, but he is worth a deep tournament look.
EVAN GATTIS – For those who don’t know, Tim Lincecum is absolutely horrible. Like, bad. He has a wOBA against right-handed hitting of over .500. That is absolutely absurd. The Astros can be a frustrating team, but they can also be a team that can put runs up like crazy. Gattis is a powerful hitter, and can easily dominate Lincecum on a night like this. He makes a great play in either format.
WELLINGTON CASTILLO – If you want to go away from Gattis in tournaments, there is always Wellington Castillo. He is also bad. However, he can hit left-handed pitching. The problem is, he isn’t doing much of anything. He will unnecessarily be very popular today because of the numbers, so it could make a lot of sense to fade him completely. I most likely will. If you are a statistics guy, the numbers line up well for him if you can look past his recent performance.
PAUL GOLDSCHMIDT – Goldschmidt made this same spot yesterday, but today, he actually gets a better matchup. Brandon Finnegan has been getting beaten up all year against hitters that are lower caliber than Goldy. This matchup plays right into his hands, and his strengths, so the only impediment really is the price. I think it is fair for his upside, and you should be able to build a decent lineup around him.
KENNYS VARGAS – Rick Porcello is not a bad pitcher whatsoever, but I think he is prone to giving up at least a few runs. I would look for them to come from the left-handers on the Twins. Vargas has been a pretty solid option since he returned from the minor leagues, and I wouldn’t hesitate to run with him in a tournament lineup or two.
JOSE ALTUVE – Altuve was a horrible disappointment last night, as he squandered a very good situation. I am writing that as of about the fifth inning, and he is the only one who hasn’t done anything meaningful. He gets another strong matchup today against Tim Lincecum, and I would do what I could to get him in my lineups. I know it can be hard to look past how badly someone does for you, but honestly, if that was the case, there would be no one left to play. Everyone has off nights.
JASON KIPNIS – Kipnis has been hitting the ball very well as of late, and he is a guy I have a lot of interest in getting into my lineups. The matchup is pretty close to Altuve’s, as Vance Worley is not a great major league pitcher. I will gladly take the savings, and hope that the Indians can do something with the opportunities tonight, contrary to what we have seen in this series.
JOSH DONALDSON – Josh Donaldson vs. Wade Miley just does not sound fair. I feel like he’s faced a lot of lefties in the past week, and he has put up some nice performances in the process. I could see the same thing happening in his home ballpark against Miley today, and he definitely ranks as my top overall play of the day.
DANNY VALENCIA – Valencia is now well under $3k, as FanDuel’s pricing algorithm insists that Blake Snell is a very good pitcher. While I am not contending that he isn’t, I am contending that he is a rookie, and that another dominant performance isn’t guaranteed. Because of this, I would prefer to use Valencia in tournament games, but I can certainly see the logic of using him in cash games as well at his price.
BRAD MILLER– Jesse Hahn will be on the mound for the Athletics today, and that should mean that we give Brad Miller a good look. Miller is having himself a nice season, and is absolutely crushing right-handed pitching. Everything lines up for him to have a good game in this matchup here, and I will have him in a lot of my lineups.
XANDER BOGAERTS – Bogaerts is the highest priced shortstop on the slate today, and with good reason. He should be able to absolutely dominate lefty Tommy Milone tonight, and so should most of the rest of his Red Sox teammates. If I am spending up, I don’t know that he is the guy I want to put my money on, but he should still be an excellent guy to target in tournaments and cash games tonight.
GEORGE SPRINGER – Springer is the last guy who gets an actual mention here in our write-up, but honestly, there isn’t any reason to not grab some element of Houston in this game. Lincecum should get beat up on again, and should provide significant opportunities to get fantasy points against him. Whoever starts is worth a spot in your lineup.
STEPHEN PISCOTTY – I know we’ve talked about Kazmir and how he is a good play tonight, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t hitters in a good spot against him. Piscotty is a guy we know who can hit left-handed pitching well, and if Kazmir makes one mistake, Piscotty could make him regret it.
MIKE TROUT – Trout comes in at $4.8k, seeing an increase in price after doing nothing to deserve it. Mike Fiers is a pitcher that could definitely give up a big outing today, and likely will, to the Angels. Trout usually does not leave you empty handed, but at his price, you are empty handed if he hasn’t given you double digits. Really, it needs to be in the 20’s. Can he do it? Sure. Will he? Everything lines up well, but he hasn’t looked good in this series.
JAYSON WERTH – The Nationals have been a good team for quite some time, but then again, they always strumble around when they shouldn’t, like this entire series against the Padres so far! Werth is excellent against left-handed pitching, so the matchup is certainly in his favor, and he should get a good spot in the lineup. I believe he can take advantage of everything lining up positive for him tonight.
COREY DICKERSON – Dickerson is another Tampa Bay lefty that we want to target today against Jesse Hahn. Dickerson has huge power upside, and if he can take a hold of one, it will leave the park. The issue for me is the price. Three big games at Coors isn’t justification for a price jump, and I think that will keep many people from rostering him, which does make him appealing for tournaments.