MLB Daily Fantasy Helper: Tuesday 4/14/15
If you’ve never played daily fantasy baseball before, it’s time to start. Unlike traditional leagues, you’re able to select the players you want on that specific day only, giving you a different squad to root for each and every day.
And while there are many platforms to play daily fantasy baseball on, one of our favorites is from our partners over at DraftKings.com. Never played over there before? It’s time for that to change. Sign up now and use our optimal lineups here at numberFire.com to crush the competition. You won’t regret it.
As for today's lineups -- those can be found here. The information below is to help you understand why particular players are being picked, because we don't want you going into the things completely blind. We want to help you. Keep in mind, however, that things often change up until the games start, so make sure you're refreshing the optimal lineups as close to the start of games as possible.
To get a general idea of who we're picking in tonight's slate, check out the video below, courtesy of Periscope. And be sure to follow us on there, @numberFire!
Matt Harvey – Harvey was impressive in his first outing this year against a depleted Nationals' lineup, and tonight he'll face just as weak of an opponent -- if not weaker -- in Philadelphia. So far during this short season, the Phillies have the 28th-ranked wOBA in baseball, and are striking out on nearly 21 percent of their at-bats. The game, meanwhile, is being played in New York, which, according to FanGraphs' Park Factors, was the third least friendly hitter's ball park in baseball last year. Harvey is expensive and will be highly owned, but he's a must play tonight, especially in cash games.
Odrisamer Despaigne – If you're looking for a cheap option that could be a little more contrarian, I like Despaigne's chances against the Diamondbacks tonight. As I noted yesterday, the D'Backs see a major park shift by playing in San Diego, meaning their bats won't be as strong as they typically are. Despaigne, in relief of Ian Kennedy last week, was perfect in 4 2/3 innings. He doesn't have a strong strikeout rate, but Vegas has this game at just a 6.5 over/under, which is just as low scoring as the aforementioned Mets-Phillies contest. At such a small cost -- and, by the way, he's our 10th-ranked pitcher tonight -- he makes for a very reasonable GPP option.
Best High-Priced Hitters
Nelson Cruz - Oh boy. Nelson Cruz has four homers over his last three games, and tonight he'll face lefty David Huff, a career fly-ball pitcher. Against lefties in his career, Cruz has a .377 wOBA and .231 ISO, all while slugging .520. The Mariners have a team total over four runs, and it'd be surprising to see Cruz not be part of that run scoring tonight.
Anthony Rizzo - Rizzo made it to this column last night, but it makes sense to bring him up again because his salary has dropped by $500 on FanDuel. And, once again, he's facing a middling right-handed pitcher tonight. When this is the case (all right-handed pitchers, not just middling ones), Rizzo hits to a .358 wOBA and .203 ISO. Yes, please.
Most Cost-Effective Hitters
Matt Joyce - As they were last night, our numbers are all over the Angels tonight. They're facing Nick Martinez and the Rangers in Texas, the second-best place to hit in the bigs last year only behind Coors. Joyce hasn't been stellar to start the year, but against right-handers throughout his career, he hits to a .353 wOBA, which is well over 90 points better than how he hits against lefties. His ISO, too, jumps to over .200. At a bottom-of-the-barrel cost, he's a nice cheap option to allow for some bigger bats in your lineup, especially if you're using Harvey.
Joe Panik - Panik's been hitting second in the Giants' lineup when facing right-handed pitching, which is precisely what they'll get tonight in Rockies' pitcher Christian Bergman. Panik's been fairly average this year with a .231 average, but his batting average on balls in play is about 60 points lower than it was a year ago. In other words, he should be hitting a little better than he is now. Considering the strong pitching matchup, Panik's dirt cheap cost and his spot in the lineup, he makes for an ideal punt option at second base, a position worthy of a punt.