Just eight games total today on this second Thursday of the regular season and that’s because two games have been rained out (SEA-CWS, SDP-STL).
You can play the full day slate on either DK or FD or you could split them up with the early (4 games) and the main (also 4 games). Decent hitting matchups will be very hard to come by on the early slate with some really solid aces on the mound (Stephen Strasburg, Noah Syndergaard, James Paxton), not to mention a couple others with skill (Eduardo Rodriguez, Jakob Junis). That means we’ll see most of ownership focused on offenses of the Yankees (against Alex Cobb), Red Sox (against Brett Anderson) and the Royals (facing Spencer Turnbull).
Of course good pitching has been getting torched (Nola/Kluber just yesterday) so you know the path to GPP victory isn’t as easy as meets the eye. And in case you don’t know, I’m a co-founder of the Turnbull Fan Club,drafting him back in January and February in my deep seasonal drafts. Doesn’t mean I’m going to roster him today, but it also means I respect his skill enough (and he looked good in his first start), that I won’t be joining the ‘all-the-Royals’ party.
Gary Sanchez, RH/NYY, Christian Vazquez, RH/BOS, Wilson Ramos, RH/NYM
Tough to get pricey hitting in if you want some good pitchers over on DK. Sanchez has two bombs already this season and has one off Cobb in his career in eight at-bats. Vazquez has a homer and swipe thus far and will be in the lineup after getting the day off Thursday. Ramos is our evergreen cash play no matter who the pitcher on the mound is. Since 2016, he’s the only catcher hitting .300 or higher (Posey comes in at .299).
Greg Bird, LH/NYY, Luke Voit, RH/NYY, Alonso (RH) or Smith (LH), NYM
Bird is the word on FD because of the massive savings off Voit. Voit’s the priciest 1B there at 4.5k and Bird is just 3k. You’ll need the savings today, trust me. As for the Mets, Alonso may get the day off with lefty bat Smith in the lineup and playing first. You don’t really have much to go on at the position today. One could roster a red-hot Trey Mancini, but I’ll pass on him against Paxton.
Robinson Cano, LH/NYM, DJ LeMahieu, RH/NYY, Chad Pinder, RH/OAK, Whit Merrifield, RH/KCR
The one guy omitted from this list is Gleyber Torres but a case could be made there since he’s actually 300 cheaper than LeMahieu on FD. Merrifield is listed because he’s a cash game staple who can steal bags and pile up multi-hit games. He’s just very much fully priced. My boy Pinder against a lefty is going to be a thing this year, so you can save some salary cap at 2B with him today.
Anthony Rendon, RH/WAS, Matt Chapman, RH/OAK, Jeimer Candelario, SW/DET
One of my biggest top-50 overall draft targets this preseason, I pegged Rendon for his first 30-HR season in 2019. He’s already crushed two and is hitting .474 early on. He’s 10-for-29 with 7 RBI in his career against Syndergaard.
The position is rough today, but hey, only four games to work with. Chapman’s power comes against righties (.258 ISO last year, .163 against lefties) but every thing else (K%, BB%, wOBA, wRC+) is close to even. He mashed lefties his rookie year and we’ll see some positive correction there. Candelario is seeing the ball well, batting .308, but has no walks and nine strikeouts already. A GPP play today but Junis has flyball tendencies.
Adalberto Mondesi, SW/KCR, Xander Bogaerts, RH/BOS
Not much going on here and I certainly won’t be punting with a guy like Jordy Mercer. I’d rather spend up for a near-sure thing like Mondesi or hope Bogaerts is in the lineup after getting razzed a couple games ago and facing old-man lefty Anderson. Mondesi is hitting .409 through the first week and already has three triples and that inside-the-park homer.
Aaron Judge, RH/NYY, JD Martinez, RH/BOS, Mookie Betts, RH/BOS, Victor Robles, RH/WAS, Christin Stewart, LH/DET, Juan Soto, LH/WAS, Mark Canha, RH/OAK
Judge is the top-priced outfielder on DK and just a 100 shy of JDM on FanDuel. He’s the guy most will build around and you’ll see his ownership over 30%. Speaking of JDM, he and Betts will heat up soon enough, but it likely won’t be until they get out of Oakland. A hit here and there is nice, but that’s not what we’re paying 5k-ish on both sites for. Robles is a gut call as is one of my favorite rookie hitters, Christin Stewart. Could see him hit his first bomb off Junis today. Soto is always in the mix and Canha simply because ‘Death, Taxes and Canha against a lefty’ – even if it’s E-Rod.
First things first, give me all the Bauer at whatever the price. I’m also bullish on lefty Max Fried. As far as the hitters are concerned, my favorite group of hitters are the Pirates’ lefties. Tyler Mahle was the worst pitcher in baseball against lefty bats with a wOBA over .400 against them. Also, fine with the Reds against Jordan Lyles and will mix in some Rangers lefties against Matt Harvey. Perhaps a date with the straight-throwing fastball of Edinson Volquez will be what the Angels need to get their season started.
C – Willson Contreras, RH/CHC, Francisco Cervelli, RH/PIT
1B – Joey Votto, LH/CIN, Freddie Freeman, LH/ATL, Justin Bour, LH/LAA
2B – Adam Frazier, LH/PIT, Rougned Odor, LH/TEX, Ozzie Albies, SW/ATL
3B – Eugenio Suarez, RH/CIN, Josh Donaldson, RH/ATL, Jose Ramirez, SW/CLE
SS – Javier Baez, RH/CHC, Elvis Andrus, RH/TEX, Andrelton Simmons, RH/LAA
OF – Mike Trout, RH/LAA, Yasiel Puig, RH/CIN, Scott Schebler, LH/CIN, Corey Dickerson, LH/PIT, Melky Cabrera, SW/PIT, Shin-Soo Choo, LH/TEX, Joey Gallo, LH/TEX