Hideki Matsui – It has been a while since Matsui was of use in daily fantasy baseball games, but facing off against Jason Vargas is as promising as it gets for the former Yankee. Matsui holds a .280 batting average against the lefty, but has done substantial damage with those hits. He has homered 42.9% of the time he records a hit and averages 1.43 RBI per hit against Vargas. With table setters like BJ Upton and Ben Zobrist beginning to heat up, look for Matsui to be an under the radar option when it comes to producing runs.
Texas Rangers – Ervin Santana has the potential to be great every time he takes the mound, but against the Rangers deep lineup, his inability to consistently locate figures to doom him tonight. As a team the Rangers are batting .296 against Santana, with Michael Young (.351), Elvis Andrus (.355), and Ian Kinsler (.383) leading the way. The big bats of Texas have struggled in the batting average department, but Beltre and Hamilton have produced runs at an elite pace against the righty. They have knocked in 19 runs on 16 hits, having blasted 5 homers. The high team average means that Santana won’t be able to pitch around anybody, thus making all Rangers worth the investment.
Garrett Jones – With MVP front runner Andrew McCutchen hitting near him in the batting order, I expect Jones to have a monster day against Carlos Zambrano. The fiery Marlin figures to focus on retiring McCutchen, thus overlooking the sneaky power of Jones. Both Jones and McCutchen own averages over .400 against Big Z, and there is no reason to think that that won’t continue tonight. Every one of Jones’ 13 home runs this season have come off of right handed pitchers, and he has a great opportunity to add to that total against Miami.
Players to avoid:
Alfonso Soriano – If this is an audition for the trade possibilities, then Soriano might want to take the night off. Jake Westbrook has held him to a mere 3 hits in 27 at bats(.111 batting average), all of which have been singles. Hits figure to be hard to come by for Soriano, and with Westbrook only surrendering 3 homers since May 29th, a long ball seems unlikely. Soriano will gain value in daily fantasy baseball leagues if he gets traded, but for tonight, he is to be avoided in all formats.
Ryan Howard – Sure, the big man homered less than a week ago and is supposedly 100% healthy after returning from his achilles injury, but there is a big difference between being healthy and being able to hit Matt Cain. Over his career, the Phillies first basemen has managed only 2 hits in 16 at bats (.125 batting average) against the righty. The Phillies offense simply isn’t as feared as it once was, and runners in scoring position figure to be a rarity tonight. Howard may be helpful as the fantasy baseball season progresses, but with his health in question and a Cy Young candidate on the mound, there are plenty of better options for you daily fantasy team.