Andre Ethier and James Loney – Don’t let a matchup with a Cy Young candidate scare you away, as both Dodgershas owned Matt Cain over their careers. The Dodgers slugging right fielder has a career .480 batting average against the Giants ace, and by batting between Matt Kemp and Hanley Ramirez, he figures to plenty of pitches to hit. Loney also holds an impressive batting average (.364) but has done more damage with his hits (38% have gone for extra bases). At first glance, it would be easy to avoid all LA players tonight in daily fantasy baseball games, but if the past repeats itself, that would be a very poor move.
Philadelphia Phillies – For one day you need to overlook the awful season put forth by the Phillies offense, and strongly consider a number of their hitters in your daily fantasy baseball lineup. As a team, the Phillies are batting .333 against Bronson Arroyo, with their big bats doing most of the damage. Juan Pierre, Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, and Placido Polanco. That’s not the projected batting order, it’s a list of starters that are batting at least .353 against the Reds righty. The Phillies may have burned you at various points this season, but in a daily format, you need to think twice about over looking a team that has a .530 slugging percentage against the projected starter.
Jason Bay – He is no longer the elite hitter that signed a mega deal with the Mets, but for one night, he should out perform his daily fantasy baseball price tag. He has a .667 batting average against the Rockies Jeff Francis, with an amazing 1.250 slugging percentage. Adding to his upside is the fact that he is not the only Met who has crushed Francis, as the team owns a .407 batting average. His past success against Francis is enough for me to make Bay my “top value” play for today, making him a must own in all daily formats.
Players to avoid:
Chicago White Sox not named Alex Rios – Phil Hughes is far from a dominate pitcher, but he has locked down the White Sox powerful batting order over his career. If you subtract Alex Rios (.429 batting average), the current ChiSox are batting .155 as a team against New York’s righty, with more strikeouts (24) than hits (13). Gordan Beckham has struggled the most,, going hitless in 10 at bats with 7 strikeouts. None of the White Sox big time power hitters (Konerko, Rios, Dunn) have ever homered against Hughes, and due to the low team batting average, it seems unlikely that they will string together to many hits. Chicago boasts a strong lineup from a fantasy baseball perspective on most days, but I’m not rostering any of them tonight.
Alex Gordon – The Royals have recently move Gordon to the 3 spot in their lineup in an effort to increase their potential run production, a move KC may want to reconsider for tonight. He has only 3 hits in 19 career at bats (.158 batting average) against James Shields, all of which have been singles. He has yet to walk against the Rays righty, and generally does not look comfortable against Shields (who has quietly put together 4 consecutive quality outings). I like the move to the 3 spot for Gordon moving forward, but his price tag outweighs his potential production tonight.