Once again, the Arizona Diamondbacks check in as the highest projected scoring team. The combination of subpar pitching, hot bats, and Chase Field’s hitter-friendly environment all line up favorably for the D-Backs.
Arizona will take on Jordan Lyles tonight. Even though Lyles hasn’t been too bad this season, he owns the absolute worst split of any pitcher in action tonight: .359 wOBA against left-handed bats over the past three seasons. Granted, some of that is inflated by pitching in Coors Field, but it still highlights a susceptibility to target for daily fantasy purposes.
David Peralta steps in as the most viable Diamondback lefty to give Lyles fits, and he’s a cool $2,300 on FanDuel. Otherwise, Ender Inciarte is another lefty who will likely resume his leadoff role. Those two make great pairings with Mark Trumbo and Paul Goldschmidt for a promising Arizona stack.
The following recommendations are from the late slate of games, starting at 7:10 ET.
DIAMONDS IN THE ROUGH
David Peralta – OF – ARI (FanDuel Price: $2,300)
Just touched on him in the introduction. I’m expecting him to bat cleanup tonight with one of the best matchups on the board. Even though Peralta generally profiles as a “boom or bust” player, he’s a calculated risk worth taking tonight.
Jason Heyward – OF – STL (FanDuel Price: $2,800)
Heyward’s recent struggles can be attributed to a nagging hamstring/groin injury over the past several weeks. He took a few games off, and looked more like himself in last night’s contest (1-2, 3 BB, 2 runs, 5.75 FP). Aaron Harang has been decent to begin this season, but I’m not completely buying it. Regression is right around the corner, and I’m expecting Harang to fall back on his generous .331 wOBA (44% flyball rate) against left-handed hitters.
Ian Desmond – SS – WAS (FanDuel Price: $3,200)
To be honest, the shortstop position is pretty uninspiring tonight. Aside from Troy Tulowitzki (who is extremely expensive for a middling matchup), there aren’t any “slam dunk” value plays. Desmond represents one of the better picks of that bunch, stepping in against lefty Alex Wood. Wood has been pitching to contact lately, recording just one strikeout over the past 12 innnings. The Nationals should put plenty balls in play tonight, including Desmond, who hits lefties at a solid .347 wOBA .195 ISO clip.
Yasmani Grandal – C – LAD (FanDuel Price: $2,400)
Catcher mirrors that of shortstop tonight, and I see no reason to spend over $3k in this spot. Grandal is my favorite “per dollar” pick of the position, in a pleasant matchup against Ryan Vogelsong (.334 wOBA vs LHB). Grandal is a switch-hitter who profiles better from the left-side (.342 wOBA vs .316), and he’ll bat 5th with plenty of RBI potential in this Dodgers lineup.
Rickie Weeks – 2B – SEA (FanDuel Price: $2,200)
Seattle takes on another lefty tonight in Texas’ Wandy Rodriguez. That means platoon-specialist Rickie Weeks will likely remain in the lineup, with potential to bat in the top half of the order (or 6th). Weeks hit a homerun off a lefty last night, and while it’s unrealistic to expect a repeat performance, he certainly represents one of the better minimum salary infielders this evening.
Austin Jackson – OF – SEA (FanDuel Price: $2,300)
Austin Jackson will enjoy the same platoon advantage outlined in the write-up above. He’s in a fine situation, batting leadoff for a Seattle team expected to put up some runs. Jackson’s numbers against left-handed pitchers are slightly better, checking in with a .338 wOBA over the past three seasons. That, plus his lineup positioning makes him an extremely comfortable play for this near minimum price point.
Kolton Wong – 2B – STL (FanDuel Price: $2,700)
Wong is always worth of tournament consideration when stepping in against a lefty. That especially holds true when you consider the flyball tendencies of Aaron Harang. As I mentioned before, Harang owns a .334 wOBA and 44% flyball rate against left-handed bats. Even though Wong’s splits don’t exactly show it, he has displayed homerun upside over the past season-and-a-half. Keep him on your tournament radar at an otherwise weak position.
Justin Ruggiano – OF – SEA (FanDuel Price: $2,700)
If Ruggiano were priced near the minimum, I’d be all over him in this spot. He’ll likely bat in the top third of the lineup (2nd?) with Seattle going up against another lefty. He has flashed some stolen base upside over the past two games, which goes well with a very impressive .392 wOBA .273 ISO against southpaws.
Andre Ethier – OF – LAD (FanDuel Price: $2,500)
Ethier filled in for Yasiel Puig last game, batting 2nd in the Dodgers’ lineup. If he’s in that position once again, he’ll earn serious tournament consideration. As I mentioned before, Ryan Vogelsong has been extremely generous to lefties (.334 wOBA), and Ethier has a proven track record against right-handed pitching (.267 wOBA .179 ISO). Potentially hitting in front of RBI-machine Adrian Gonzalez doesn’t hurt either.