Sure, we're all excited about the start of the NFL season starting, but let's not completely neglect MLB. FanDuel is hosting a $100,000 Grand Slam tournament where a $25 entry fee will net the winner a sweet $10,000. Here are some options to consider for your rosters.
As always, make sure to check all starting lineups and potentially inclement weather before submitting your rosters. Additionally, if you aren't already, I suggest you check out the MLB Weather Page and follow RotoGrinders Chief Meteorologist @KevinRothWx on Twitter for the most up to date and accurate DFS forecasts you'll find anywhere. Alright, let's get to the picks.
Clayton Kershaw vs Colorado, $13,500
I'm running out of superlatives for describing how ridiculously good the Dodgers ace is. Short of googling synonyms for amazing, just know that he is the surest thing to take the bump in all of baseball, and makes for a fabulous cash game foundation piece. Kershaw has punched out 47 would-be hitters in his last four games, while sporting an appealing 11.6 K/9 rate. As for the matchup against the Rockies, they sport the lowest road wOBA in all of baseball while collectively striking out the second most.
Logan Verrett vs Miami, $6,200
Who? Really, I'm counting on the ineptness of the Marlins bats, and the discounted price here. The minor league numbers don't exactly jump off the page, but he looks competent enough to put up a stat line somewhere around 5-6 IP, 2 ER, and 4-5 Ks, which, if he was lucky enough to grab a win, would more than satisfy his asking price. By no means would I roster Verrett in a 50/50 contest, but if you want to load up on bats, I don't mind him as a tournament dart.
Buster Posey vs Cincinnati, $3,500
Sure, we prefer to roster the Giants backstop against a lefty, but he has hammered righties as well this season (.374 wOBA). Compound that with a matchup vs Keyvius Sampson, who simply does not appear Major League ready, and has yielded 22 ER in his last 19.1 IP. Needless to say, the Giants make for an intriguing stack with Posey being a cornerstone piece.
Josh Phegley at Chicago White Sox, $2,700
Attacking John Danks with bats has come with mixed results this season (especially at home), but the numbers give it merit. Giving up 14 HRs in 114 IP along with a .355 wOBA vs righties suggest vulnerability. As for Phegley, he has a respectable .347 wOBA vs lefties, should land in a positive lineup spot, and is fairly priced.
Adrian Gonzalez vs Colorado, $3,000
It feels like a bit of a down year for the Dodger slugger, but a .367 wOBA/.235 ISO comes with plenty of promise. Making Gonzalez especially attractive here is the salary, as it feels a little too cheap. Opposing pitcher Jonathan Gray should be a solid pitcher one day, but he is by no means a finished product currently. It is also worth noting that Gray is on a pitch count, meaning Gonzalez should take at least one AB, if not two, against the awful Colorado bullpen.
Mike Napoli vs Houston, $2,200
If you are looking to roster the previously mentioned Clayton Kershaw, you are going to need to roster a cheapie or two. Scott Kazmir is probably one of the better pitchers on the slate, but Napoli will take his hacks in hot Texas, at minimum salary, vs a lefty whom he has hit to the tune of a .386 wOBA/.281 ISO.
Brian Dozier vs Detroit, $3,000
While being the worst may be debatable, if nothing else, Kyle Lobstein is on the Family Feud Board of worst hurlers taking the bump this evening. He has been particularly generous to right-handed bats, whom he rocks a .380 wOBA against. As for Dozier, while the batting average is low, the price and the matchup up is right (especially when considering his power/speed upside). If you can pay a little more I'd consider lefty masher Logan Forsythe, while if you need to save $100, Jason Kipnis makes for a fine pivot.
Evan Longoria vs NY Yankees, $3,400
There have been rumblings of Longoria having a bit of a down year, but the dude is still raking vs southpaws (.352 AVG/.408 wOBA). On the other side C.C. Sabathia has given up a whopping 23 homers in 111 IP vs righty bats. Suffice to say, the power upside is real tonight. Lastly, if you are a BvP guy, Longo is 24-61 w/ 8 2Bs and 6 HRs in his career vs the aging Sabathia.
Trevor Plouffe vs Detroit, $2,400
Here is another cheapie to help squeeze Clayton Kershaw in your lineups. Again, Kyle Lobstein's arm is worth picking on and Plouffe is a cheap way to do so. He has been locked in of late (7 hits, including 2 HRs, in his last 3 games) and has been most appealing to roster when in Target Field and facing a lefty.
Carlos Correa at Texas, $3,600
The twenty-year-old rookie has lived up, and surpassed, the expectations that come with being the number one overall pick. He has especially thrived vs lefties who he has a .403 wOBA/.298 ISO against. He is probably more of a tournament play as he is hard to couple with Clayton Kershaw, but no shortstop comes with more upside.
Brandon Crawford vs Cincinnati, $2,300
This is kind of a cop out. Crawford is dealing with a calf and hasn't played since last Tuesday. He is considered close to coming back, and if he does so tonight, I'm perfectly content unleashing him as a salary saver. Basically, if you aren't paying up for a stud like Correa, look for a value punt play who lands in a positive lineup spot.
David Peralta vs San Diego $3,200
Peralta and his .392 wOBA vs righties should land in the cleanup spot this evening. He'll square off against James Shields who has given up an absurd 19 HRs in 88 IPs vs lefties. Oh, and this is pitching half his games in cavernous Petco Park. Tonight he'll be in Chase Field, which is much less forgiving. The numbers suggest Shields will give up a dinger or two, and Peralta is well positioned to be one of the culprits.
Adam Jones vs Boston, $3,000
Jones was dealing with a back issue, which may be to blame for some recent struggles. That said, it appears he is feeling better theses days as he has banged out a homer in each of his last two contests. The asking price has yet to adjust to this, and the Baltimore is best unleashed in Camden Yard vs a lefty (.384 wOBA/.300 ISO).