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July 8, 2014

Daily League Strategy

Cutting to the Chase

by Paul Sporer


DraftStreet offers one of the best lineup constructions in the industry allowing for three pitchers, two starters and a starter/reliever. Additionally, they don’t overvalue the win as it is worth just two points. The rest of the scoring and roster setup can be viewed here if you aren’t already familiar with it.

PITCHING

1. Tyler Skaggs ($12,807 – LAA v. TOR) – Skaggs enjoyed a strong return from the disabled list with 7 2/3 strong innings in U.S. Cellular Field against a powerful White Sox team. Skaggs has been a bit up-and-down, but the season as a whole is obviously a step forward. He has shown great upside in several outings and his 3.52 FIP suggests he has been markedly better than his 4.16 ERA. He catches the Jays in a spectacular drought, and they have been absolutely wretched against lefties of late. Their .475 OPS against lefties since June 1 is better than only San Diego’s .464, and both of those teams are well below Philly’s .555 mark, sitting in 28th.

2. Carlos Martinez ($12,588 – StL at PIT) – Martinez hasn’t really been turned loose yet with just five innings as a max this year, but that hasn’t kept him from posting a strong 7.2 points per game in the four starts. Pitchers averaging that point totals in the range of 7.2 are all priced in the $13,000-$17,000 range and they don’t even all hold the upside that Martinez has. If Martinez is putting up these kinds of numbers in five innings, what is he going to do when he finally gets to go seven or eight?

3. Brad Peacock ($10,683 – HOU at TEX) – Peacock has been solid since joining the rotation. He’s logged a 3.95 ERA in 12 starts, although too many walks with 34 in 68 1/3 innings. He’s improved of late recently with a 3.18 ERA in his last seven starts with just 16 walks in 39 2/3 innings. Just before the start of that run, he struck out 11 Rangers in a 4-0 loss. The Rangers are even less of an offensive threat now, almost two months later, and Peacock should find success against them once again.

HITTING

1. Paul Goldschmidt ($8,765 ARI v. MIA) – Goldschmidt looks like a nice centerpiece for Tuesday. He destroys pitchers throwing with either hand, but lefties really take the brunt of his damage. He has a .397/.526/.569 line against lefties, albeit in just 78 PA. He gets Brad Hand on Tuesday. The 24-year-old lefty is allowing a .961 OPS to righties in 91 PA and a career mark of .802 in 372 PA. Goldy has a streak of 10 straight scoring nights with six of his last seven seeing him net at least five points.

2. Chase Utley ($6,316 PHI at MIL) – Utley hasn’t been the same after a strong April and May. He has a .579 OPS in 140 PA since June 1, but I still like this matchup for him. He had a huge night on Monday, but his price is still ripe for the picking. Wily Peralta has displayed a sharp platoon split this year, with an inability to consistently retire lefties. His .826 OPS against them is markedly higher than his .608 mark against righties. Enjoy Utley at a significant discount.

3. Giancarlo Stanton ($7,551 MIA at ARI) – You can basically copy and paste Goldy’s write-up in this space, but Stanton is priced at a level where you can probably afford both, especially you veer toward the cheaper end of the spectrum on pitching as I’ve recommended with my three picks. Stanton has a 1.172 OPS against lefties in 85 PA (up from .917 against righties) and he’s facing a pitcher with a sharp platoon split in favor of righties. Vidal Nuno makes his Arizona debut and brings with him an .873 OPS against righties, compared to .689 against lefties. It will be Stanton and the Marlins’ first look at Nuno, but I’m not sure that will save him.

4. George Springer ($7,489 HOU at TEX) – Springer is boom or bust thanks to his obscene strikeout rate, which has led to a .235 batting average, but he’s shown incredible power. Springer has four games of negative outputs in his last 10, but he also has three ranging from 9.25-10 in that same span. He gets Phil Irwin, on his way up from Triple-A. Irwin has allowed minor league righties an .817 OPS compared to .648 for lefties.

5. Rene Rivera ($4,258 SD at COL) – Rivera has ripped lefties with eight extra-base hits in 42 PA. That’s the difference in OPS between righties and lefties for Rivera. He doesn’t do damage with any measure of frequency against righties or lefties, but his lefty damage is much louder. The Rockies will roll a second straight lefty out there on Tuesday, this time Franklin Morales. Rivera went 2-for-2 with two walks against Tyler Matzek on Monday night. Just make sure he’s in the lineup, because he’s not the everyday catcher.

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Paul Sporer is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
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<< Previous Article
Premium Article The BP Top 50 (07/07)
<< Previous Column
Daily League Strategy:... (07/02)
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Daily League Strategy:... (07/22)
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Fantasy Article Deep Impact: Week 14 (07/08)

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