Reminder: Always double check the lineup card before rosters lock to make sure that a player you've chosen to roster is playing that day, and check the weather to make sure your players won't get rained out of their game.
C- Brian McCann vs. Colby Lewis, $2,800
I was tempted to go with Buster Posey in Coors Field here, but McCann is nearly $2,000 cheaper and I really like this matchup. Firstly, McCann is at home in Yankee Stadium, where he has had dramatically better results as a Yankee:
Home: 329 PA, 23 HR, .266 ISO, 125 wRC+
Away: 349 PA, 4 HR, .076 ISO, 58 wRC+
McCann is useless on the road, but he's excellent at home. His price tag incorporates his entire stat line, so by only using him at home, fantasy owners can take advantage of good value.
Secondly, McCann faces Colby Lewis, who gives up a lot of fly balls (44% to LHB from '14-15) and a lot of hard contact. Lewis is allowing a hard hit ball in 19% of his left handed opponent's at bats, well below average. The fly ball/hard contact combination is very dangerous in Yankee Stadium, and McCann will be a strong threat to hit a dinger against Lewis with the short porch.
1B- Brandon Belt vs. Kyle Kendrick, $3,900
I was reluctant to use Belt earlier this year because of his lack of production post concussion, but he's eased any concerns lately. Belt has soared in May, increasing his ISO from a putrid .039 in April to an incredible .297 in May, rising his total up to .178. It's possible he just needed some time to time up MLB pitching post concussion. Belt made a swing change in April of 2013 and became one of the most productive players over the next calendar year until he broke his thumb last May, posting a .214 ISO with a 147 wRC+ in 641 PA. If he's healthy, I believe in his talent, and he faces one of the least effective pitchers in baseball in the best run scoring environment in baseball. Kendrick's 5.04 FIP vs LHB since the start of 2014 is 10th worst. His LH opponents are getting a hard hit ball in 20% of their at bats against Kendrick, 18th worst, and his .985 opp. OPS vs LHB is 6th worst. Left handed opponents have a .417 on base percentage vs Kendrick, which would rank 8th best in baseball for a hitter. Belt is ending 23.4% of his at bats this year with a hard hit ball vs RHP, 14th best in baseball. Hard contact + Coors Field is a recipe for production.
2B- Robinson Cano vs. Marco Estrada, $2,900
Cano's price has tanked because of bad outcomes, but he's 10th best in baseball in his % of at bats ending with a hard hit ball vs RHP at just under 23%. That is an elite number, and Rogers Centre is a huge park upgrade for him over SafeCo. I suspect his lack of production is a combination of bad luck and park factors. Cano faces Marco Estrada, whose 4.90 FIP vs LHB since the start of 2014 is 13th worst in baseball. I think Cano is still a high level hitter in the right situations (vs a RHP in a good offensive park), and this matchup fits that description. Cano is the 17th priced 2B on today's slate, and that's incredible value for me.
OF- Charlie Blackmon ($3,800), Carlos Gonzalez ($3,300) vs. Ryan Vogelsong
Vogelsong has been getting destroyed by LHB this year. Here are his ranks:
Opp. OPS vs LHB: 1.143 (4th worst)
Opp. % of ABs ending in a hard hit ball: 24.6% (5th worst)
Vogelsong's 4.45 FIP in 100 IP vs LHB since the start of 2014 is 32nd worst, and his 4.86 ERA is 13th worst. The matchup takes place in Coors Field.
I seem to write about CarGo a lot, because I still believe in his talent despite what 6 weeks of results have produced. He's 11th best in baseball in average exit velocity off the bat, which shows he's still got plenty of power in his swing. I suspect his timing is a little off after the injury plagued and shortened 2014, and that it will come back with enough reps at the plate.
As for Blackmon, he is best used at home vs RHP:
2014: Home vs RHP: .977 OPS, 155 wRC+, .209 ISO (252 PA)
2015: Home vs. RHP: .891 OPS, 130 wRC+, .167 ISO (46 PA)
Today's slate is absolutely loaded. Look at these names:
Max Scherzer, Felix Hernandez, Zack Greinke, Michael Pineda, Gerrit Cole, Jon Lester, Chris Archer, Garret Richards, Jeff Samardzjia, Lance Lynn, Colin McHugh, Carlos Carrasco, Scott Kazmir, Andrew Cashner, Noah Syndergaard.
In FanDuel, it's usually a good idea to pick a second tier high strikeout pitcher, because you aren't penalized for walks or hits. Of the names on that list, I like Pineda, Cole and Carrasco the most. Pineda's 1.98 FIP is the best in baseball, he faces a bottom third Rangers offense vs RHP (79 wRC+, 27th, .125 ISO, 23rd), and his opposing pitcher isn't so great in Colby Lewis. Cole's 2.41 FIP is 6th best in baseball and he faces a rotten Mets offense (77 wRC+, 28th/.109 ISO, 29th) in an excellent pitcher's park, although he draws a potentially tough opposing pitcher in Noah Syndergaard. Carrasco's 2.73 FIP is 13th best, he faces a bottom third Reds offense vs RHP (87 wRC+, 21st/.139 ISO, 17th), and Mike Leake is about an average pitcher.
Follow me on Twitter at @TimFinn521, I usually tweet out more good options as lineups are released.