Welcome to our daily look at daily fantasy baseball. We’ll use DraftKings salaries to give you some tips and advice on the day’s action. We’ll play the 15-game main slate.
Remember to check lineups and weather as gametimes approach. We’ll publish this piece in the mornings, and a lot can happen during the day. If Dusty Baker decides to bench Bryce Harper at the last minute, don’t blame us!
I’ll plan to wager $6 per day on DraftKings - $5 on a cash lineup, $1 on a tournament version (usually single-entry) – and track my progress all season. If you’re a more serious player who doesn’t want to trust his or her bankroll on a guy who enters six bucks a day, I’ll understand.
Kevin Pillar was just an OK lineup lock with nine points. The rest of the recommendations were OK, but fading Dallas Keuchel didn’t help anyone.
We’re taking a mulligan on Thursday’s lineups, as they were full of Nats and Orioles, and circumstances didn’t allow me to make changes after the postponement.
Season status: Plus $9.50
USA TODAY SportsLance Iversen
News & notes
Clayton Kershaw ($11,300) is the night’s biggest favorite at minus-200 at Coors. Next up is Johnny Cueto ($12,600) at home versus the Reds … The highest projected run total is 9.5 for Pirates-Diamondbacks (Tyler Glasnow-Patrick Corbin) and A’s-Rangers (Jesse Hahn-Andrew Cashner), while the lowest is seven for Reds-Giants (Scott Feldman-Cueto) … Phillies-Nats is threatened by a 95 percent chance of rain from 8 p.m. until 8 a.m. Let’s agree to stay away from that one.
Ryan Braun (calf) is probably DL-bound … The Giants activated Denard Span from the DL, and were rewarded with four hits, including a home run … The Rockies placed struggling SS Trevor Story (shoulder) on the DL … Robinson Cano was scratched Thursday with a quad issue, and should be considered day-to-day … J.D. Martinez is expected to come off the DL for the Tigers tonight.
Reinhold MatayReinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Cueto is the top dog SP in terms of salary and Kershaw is next, but Rick Porcello ($9,700) is a better play for a lot less money against a Rays’ lineup that has whiffed 25.9 percent of the time vs. RHP. Porcello has been between 20.5 and 25.6 DK points in each of his last four starts.
Cash: We usually like to get down to the $3K range here, but Yonder Alonso ($3,800) is the 23rd-most expensive first baseman on the board. He has 11 homers, a 1.076 OPS and faces a terrible starter in Andrew Cashner.
Tournaments: Jays OF Ezequiel Carrera ($2,900) isn’t all that great, but he’ll bat second against shaky Mariners SP Christian Bergman. Carrera posted 26 DK points on Wednesday, followed by eight on Thursday.
I really like the Red Sox and Dodgers, but let’s go after Matt Harvey with the Brewer hitters. It’ll probably be Villar/Broxton/Thames/Shaw in the top four.
USA TODAY SportsJeff Hanisch
The Guys to Avoid
Both Kershaw and the Rockies’ hitters are too expensive to roster considering the circumstances.
Isaiah J. DowningIsaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Position notes & suggestions
Starting pitcher: Cueto looks strong, but Porcello is better… Patrick Corbin ($8,100) and Miguel Gonzalez ($8,000) are playable in cash games. The Pirates have struggled vs. LHP with a .299 wOBA and 22.7 percent K rate … Remember when I wanted to target Dylan Bundy ($7,500) on Thursday? That was against the Red Sox. A matchup with the putrid Royals is much friendlier … Yankee rookie Jordan Montgomery ($7,100) has made five starts without going below 14.1 or above 16.8 DK points … Nobody has higher strikeout upside than Lance McCullers ($9,500), but he’s facing a good lineup in a hitter-friendly ballpark … I’ll pass on Kershaw in Coors, thanks.
Catcher: On the high end, I prefer Gary Sanchez ($4,500) to Yasmani Grandal, mainly due to lineup spot … Evan Gattis ($3,900) looks like a solid play at Yankee Stadium vs. Montgomery … Francisco Cervelli ($3,600) isn’t exciting, but he’s always playable against a lefty … I’d rather not go below Stephen Vogt ($3,500).
First base: As good as Cody Bellinger and Freddie Freeman look, I’d rather go with Eric Thames ($4,800) vs. Harvey … Matt Carpenter ($4,500) vs. Eddie Butler is also a nice option … Jordan Zimmermann’s awfulness makes Albert Pujols ($3,900) intriguing … As noted above, Alonso ($3,800) is the best value here.
Second base: Jose Altuve ($5,100) is always strong vs. LHP … I think Dustin Pedroia ($4,300) and the Red Sox are going to rough up Alex Cobb … Ditto for Jonathan Villar ($4,200) and the Brewers vs. Harvey … Jed Lowrie ($3,400) is the cheaper play, batting in a good lineup slot vs. Cashner. Hopefully he’ll be back in the two-hole instead of fifth, like he was Wednesday.
Third base: Justin Turner ($5,100), expensive at Coors … Jake Lamb ($4,600) is in play vs. the talented but erratic Tyler Glasnow … The only third basemen with more DK ppg than Jedd Gyorko ($4,400) are Miguel Sano, Kris Bryant and Travis Shaw. So, we like Gyorko, but prefer Shaw at $3,900 … Kyle Seager ($4,100) is heating up a bit, and faces Toronto’s hard-to-predict Joe Biagini … Josh Harrison ($3,800) has traditionally hit LHP pretty well (.336 career wOBA), and he has three of his five 2017 homers against them.
Shortstop: $5,500 for Corey Seager? Yikes … Carlos Correa ($4,900) is in play if you don’t believe in Montgomery, but Jean Segura ($4,500 vs. Biagini) is the best option among the expensive guys … Jorge Polanco ($3,700) batted fourth for the Twins on Thursday after a couple of games hitting second … Brandon Crawford ($3,300) came off the DL for the Giants on Thursday, batting cleanup. He’s in a nice spot vs. Scott Feldman.
Outfield: If you want to spend big, Mike Trout ($5,300) is your guy, but Mookie Betts ($5,200) isn’t far behind … Ditto for Joc Pederson ($4,900) if he leads off at Coors … Since I’m not buying Cobb, Andrew Benintendi ($4,600) looks downright cheap … Michael Conforto ($4,300) and Christian Yelich ($4,200) can be building blocks for a non-elite outfield … The Brewers have moved the surging Keon Broxton ($4,000) up in the order … Ben Gamel ($3,800), Kevin Pillar and David Peralta ($3,700) are in the next tier. Gamel is red-hot, but Pillar is the best of this trio … We mentioned Span ($3,400) above, and he’s a pretty cheap play vs. Feldman … Digging deep and cheap can find you Joey Rickard ($2,700) leading off for the O’s against Danny Duffy.
Copyright The Associated Press. All rights reserved.AP
Jose Berrios will make his 2017 debut for the Twins on Saturday … Saturday is a Chris Sale day at Fenway … The Yankees and Astros won’t be on Sunday’s main slate due to the Derek Jeter festivities in the Bronx.
Copyright The Associated Press. All rights reserved.AP