The daily grind: 8-5-13

The Daily Grind provides daily match-up advice for tinkerers and daily fantasy players. I welcome advice to help make this column more effective, including notice of impending weather events, new injuries, and changes to platoon situations. Ownership rates are from Yahoo!

The daily picks are a mixture of Daily League specific advice and information for the more typical fantasy owner.

Today’s weather watch

Games in St. Louis, Chicago, Cleveland and Kansas City all have a 30 percent chance of scattered storms.

Today’s grind

It’s a bit thin today, but you may be able to find somebody at the last minute.

Tomorrow’s grind

Pitcher (to start): Edwin Jackson heads another thin day for starters. He’s 32 percent owned and most notable for his 3.45 FIP.

Jenrry Mejia is the prospect of the day, although I worry about his ability to contribute at the major league level. He’s succeeded by not allowing walks (one in 13 innings), but his minor league numbers predict a more average rate going forward. With his merely adequate strikeout totals, that makes him questionable as a fantasy starting pitcher.

I’m more willing to believe that Tyler Chatwood has discovered improved control. He will be prone to blowups simply because his stuff is merely adequate, but he can be started against weak offenses like the Wright-less Mets.

I don’t actually recommend that you use Steven Wright against the Astros, but I feel obligated to point out that a relatively unknown knuckleballer is starting.

23 percent owned Bud Norris gets the start at Petco Park tomorrow.

Pitcher (bum): With health, Jordan Lyles may grow into a good major league pitcher, but as of tomorrow he’s an unfinished product facing a difficult Red Sox lineup.

I’m comfortable betting against Joe Kelly versus the Dodgers.

Josh Johnson has had the worst season of his career, taking a 6.60 ERA into tomorrow’s game. It’s easy to see why he’s struggling—nearly 20 percent of the fly balls he allows are home runs.

Hitter (power): Andre Ethier‘s ownership is barely above 50 percent, making him a nice stream option against righties like Kelly.

Justin Smoak will face Johnson, who has been prone to blowups this season.

The Royals acquired Justin Maxwell specifically to face lefties like Andrew Albers.

Hitter (speed): Give Will Venable a try against Norris.

Gerardo Parra remains a well-rounded option versus right-handers like Jeremy Hellickson. You can give Adam Eaton a try too, although he hasn’t been sharp since returning from the disabled list.

Eric Young Jr. is playable if you need steals.

Pitchers to come

Wednesday: I wish I could switch from Hector Santiago to Danny Salazar for Wednesday’s pick, but Salazar faces the Tigers—one of the few teams I have trouble recommending many pitchers against.

Thursday: Thin Thursday remains Gerrit Cole‘s day.

Friday: I’m once again split between Dan Haren and Brandon Beachy. Both have excellent match-ups: the Phillies and Marlins respectively.

Noteworthy news

The Biogenesis fallout hasn’t hit quite yet. It looks like Alex Rodriguez will be usable for about three weeks for anybody needing to replace David Wright.

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  1. ABSkippers said...

    Im in 2nd place in a 5×5 roto keeper league and trying to orchestrate a couple of dump trades to make a run.  I need AvG and RBI on the hitting side, and Ryan Zimmerman and Brian McCann are potentially fringe parts of one deal.  I’ve been going with a Smoak/Todd Frazier/Juan Francisco rotation at CI, and a Gattis/Jason Castro rotation at C.  Is either of those parts enough of an improvement to hold out for?

    Also, what do you think about Beltran ROS?  Looks like he could be due for some AVG regression, plus he’s old and might be subject to nagging injuries down the stretch.

  2. Brad Johnson said...

    Hard to say without taking a closer look, but I’m usually in favor of using limiting a team’s exposure to platoons (despite that my column is all about platooning).

    Beltran is a fickle beast. He retains the upside to be one of the best hitters in the league for any given stretch, but he’s similarly likely to put together no production due to injury/age. I’m still playing him more often than not in the league that I own him, although he’s been losing time recently. It’s a linear weights league, so the calculus is different.

  3. R.J. said...

    Hey Brad, I’m in 4th place in a 16 team roto league. Offensive categories are OBP, SLG, R, HR, SB and Pitching categories are QS, ERA, WHIP, K/9 and Saves.

    I have been offered Madison Bumgarner for my Pedro Alvarez. There’s some potential volatility in ERA and WHIP in the standings which I may be able to capitalize on. I am around 6th or 7th in HR and have Chase Headley as my other 3B option. My current staff is D. Price, A. Sanchez, J. Fernandez, AJ Griffin, C. Kluber, and J. Hellickson. Would you pull the trigger here? Thanks for the help!

  4. Brad Johnson said...

    Compton – Yea, he’s a solid bet for a waiver wire win against SD, although the rest of the stat production is mediocre.

    R.J. – I would take the deal based on the info you’ve shared. HR does seem like a category you need to target, but Alvarez actively hurts you in OBP, R, and SB while providing neutral value in SLG. Bumgarner obviously helps 4 of the 5 pitching categories.

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