Last night’s lineup was a fairly solid one as we got three home runs from the lineup and two quality starts out of our pitchers. While Perdomo didn’t get a win, he did rack up nine strikeouts over six innings while Jesse Chavez got the victory along with 5 punchouts in six frames. That said, the main L.A. Dodgers stack didn’t put up a whole lot of numbers and prevented us from competing in the upper end of GPPs. Let’s build on a decent Monday with tonight’s picks!
P – Yu Darvish (TEX) – $11,300 vs. PHI
The first pitcher of the night comes from Texas where Yu Darvish and the Rangers take on the visiting Phillies. Darvish enters play tonight in search of his fourth win of the young season while he has also compiled a 2.96 ERA and 9.06 K/9 on the season. That K/9 finished at 11.84 in 2016, so I see some positive regression coming in that category for the talented right-hander. Darvish is walking 3.66 batters per nine innings, a number I would like to see come down and perhaps he can find some elite control tonight and hold a so-so Phillies offense in tact while racking up some punchouts this evening.
P – Jimmy Nelson (MIL) – $7,600 vs. SD
Our next pitcher might fly under the radar a little bit tonight as Jimmy Nelson takes on the San Diego Padres. The Padres rank 26th in runs scored on the season while striking out 359 times, the fourth-most in the league. Nelson is coming off of his best start of the season against the Red Sox as he tossed 6.2 innings while yielding just one unearned run and racking up eight strikeouts in the process. Nelson has been up and down this season, posting three excellent starts, two terrible starts and three so-so starts, but he is in a good position tonight to rattle off back-to-back excellent outings against this Padres club tonight.
C – James McCann (DET) – $2,900 vs. BAL
McCann isn’t off to the best of starts in the batting average category this season, however he does boast some nice pop in his bat, especially against left-handed pitching. In 2017, McCann has obliterated left-handed pitching with a .545 ISO and 1.119 OPS on the season. Clearly these numbers are unsustainable, however his .077 BABIP against lefties is also unsustainable and will regress positively as the season moves on. Needless to say he has an excellent matchup tonight against Orioles’ lefty Wade Miley.
1B – Anthony Rizzo (CHC) – $4,600 vs. CIN
I was actually very surprised to see that there are four first baseman pricier than Rizzo on tonight’s slate and one the same price. I’m surprised because Rizzo will take on super-veteran Bronson Arroyo tonight who has been giving up tonnes of fly-balls and home runs this season. Arroyo boasts a 6.02 FIP against lefties on the season to go along with a 2.25 HR/9 against opposite-handed hitting. Rizzo hasn’t been his MVP candidate self this so far this season, but he had a .273 ISO and .970 OPS against righties in 2016, so let’s expect some positive regression from him moving forward.
2B – Ian Kinsler (DET) – $3,900 vs. BAL
Kinsler will lead off for the Tigers this evening against Miley, and therefore is technically the first person up in this Tigers stack. Like Rizzo, Kinsler has been a little slow out of the gates this season but you don’t keep hitters like Kinsler down for very long. After all, he had a .216 ISO and .893 OPS against left-handed pitching last season while hitting 28 home runs and scoring 117 runs as well. He should be a productive player in the second base position tonight.
3B – Nick Castellanos (DET) – $3,700 vs. BAL
Likely hitting second right behind Kinsler, Castellanos has been hitting the ball extremely hard this season. His hard hit rate against lefties on the season is exactly 50.0%, and his ISO against them is .267. His .250 BABIP against lefties on the season spells positive regression, and with so many hard hit balls and such solid power numbers it’s hard to argue with that notion. This guy is a star in the making and should certainly have some good cuts tonight against Miley.
SS – Addison Russell (CHC) – $3,500 vs. CIN
Russell doesn’t have his best numbers against right-handed pitching, but there are some factors at play that suggest a good matchup for him this evening. The Cubs are expected to score plenty of runs, the wind is blowing out to left field in between 15-20 MPH today, and Bronson Arroyo has been very bad to right-handed hitters as well this season, yielding 2.21 HR/9 against them. Russell should hit 4th or 5th in the Cubs’ lineup tonight, which should provide some solid run-producing chances this evening.
OF – Kyle Schwarber (CHC) – $4,100 vs. CIN
Schwarber is slated to hit leadoff tonight for the Cubs which should be an excellent spot as he will likely receive five or more at bats this evening. Schwarber is another player scuffling in the early going this season, however he has displayed a serious ability to hit right-handed pitching for power in his brief MLB career. In 283 career at bats against righties, Schwarber has a .237 ISO and an .838 OPS against while making hard contact 38.3% of the time. He is in a very attractive spot tonight against Arroyo.
OF – J.D. Martinez (DET) – $4,300 vs. BAL
The final man in this Tigers stack is J.D. Martinez who hasn’t missed a beat since injuring his foot in spring training. In just his second game back of the season, Martinez clubbed two home runs and has four hits and a walk in three games on the season. In 2016, he hit lefties to a .207 ISO and .861 OPS and hit the ball hard 45.7% of the time against them. Needless to say, the Tigers lineup got longer and more powerful with the return of Martinez over the weekend.
OF – Yasmany Tomas (ARI) – $4,100 vs. NYM
With the Diamondbacks expected to score a lot of runs tonight I want some exposure to that offense and that is what I get with Tomas. Tomas will face lefty Tommy Milone tonight and that’s a good thing considering he destroyed left-handed pitching in 2016. Last season, Tomas compiled a sky-high .326 ISO and a 1.112 OPS against southpaw pitching. When we factor in that Chase Field is a very hitting-friendly environment we have a very attractive matchup here with the slugging outfielder.