MLB Preferred Plays – 4.11.17

Jered Weaver is pitching in Coors Field tonight. I repeat, Jered Weaver is pitching in Coors Field tonight. You shouldn’t need any more explanation as to why to load up on Rockies bats tonight against one of the worst fly-ball pitchers, the epitome of regression with age, and a walking gas can.

With this being said, I am not going to be writing up any Rockies players because I feel it would be a waste of both my time and yours, so I’m going to write my preferred plays (minus the Rockies) to give you some alternates to fill in your lineup with.Here are my preferred plays for Tuesday, April 11th:

*My preferred “other options” are in italics*

Pitcher

J.A. Happ ($8,500)

With so many higher-risk pitching options on tonight’s slate, safety is going to be extremely important when choosing your pitcher which is why I love J.A. Happ tonight against the Brewers. Since joining the Blue Jays in for the 2016 season, Happ experienced a bit of a career revival, posting a 3.15 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, a 20-4 record and 163 Ks to only 60 walks. His numbers at the Roger’s Centre (where he’s pitching tonight) are even better: a 2.90 ERA, .239 batting average allowed and 85 strikeouts in 90 IP. In his first game of the 2017 season he twirled a gem against the Baltimore Orioles going 7 strong innings with 9 strikeouts, an offense far more intimidating than the Brewers who currently lead the MLB in strikeouts on the season (81). With so many questionable matchups tonight, J.A. Happ gives us a relatively safe floor (-190 favorite tonight) with GPP upside and comes at a perfect discount on a Coors slate.

Other options: Cole Hamels ($9,500), Matt Harvey ($8,700), Jameson Taillon ($8,000), Joe Musgrove ($7,200)

Catcher

J.T. Realmuto ($2,600)

Realmuto was going to be a lock for me the last time the Marlins played until he was ruled out when lineups were released. Tonight, we get another crack at him as Fanduel has stubbornly refused to raise his price. He’s produced 11 hits over his first 5 games en route to an early .606 wOBA and a .409 ISO with an outstanding 4.2% strikeout rate. He also posted a .348 wOBA last season, so we know that while his current numbers are rather inflated, it’s definitely not a fluke. It also doesn’t hurt that Realmuto has had success early in his career against tonight’s matchup, Bartolo Colon. Over 21 at-bats, he’s produced 9 hits (4 of which are doubles and one home run) while posting a .429/.429/.762 slash line. Realmuto typically bats in the 1 or 2-hole as he possesses a rare combination of power and speed that most catchers do not. With his price still sitting at only $2,600 tonight, consider him a staple to your cash lineups.

Other options: Buster Posey ($3,900), Tony Wolters ($3,200), Matt Wieters ($2,900), Russell Martin ($2,500)

First Base

Wil Myers ($4,100)

If you didn’t roster Wil Myers last night then there’s a good chance you didn’t cash. Myers was 63% owned in my cash games and went 4-4 while hitting for the cycle in Coors field and I’m fully on board with going right back to him tonight. Over his last three years against the Rockies, Myers has posted a .315/.381/.577 slash line with 8 of his 41 hits leaving the ballpark. Those are mighty fine numbers, but his numbers at Coors? .323/.378/.600 slash line with 5 of his 21 hits leaving the ballpark…even better. He faces off with Antonio Senzatela of the Rockies tonight who made the jump straight from Double A to the majors. He didn’t have an impressive K-rate in the minors and the fact that he has such little major league experience and has the duty of pitching in Coors tonight is alarming. I love another Padres stack tonight as long as it’s centered around Wil Myers.

Other options: Mark Reynolds ($4,100), Freddie Freeman ($3,600), Kendrys Morales ($3,000), Mitch Moreland ($2,700)

Second Base

Robinson Cano ($3,100)

Fanduel REALLY needs to fix their pricing algorithm or however they determine players’ salaries because they aren’t doing a good job and here’s another prime example. Robinson Cano is heating up and the rest of baseball needs to watch out. He has three hits in his last two games, all of which went for extra bases, to go along with six RBIs. He faces off with Joe Musgrove, a high-potential young arm for the Astros tonight. While the potential is there for Musgrove, he hasn’t faired well against left-handed hitting, allowing a .341 wOBA and a 35.6% hard contact rate. Cano brings his .176 ISO against right-handed pitching into the matchup tonight, giving me a good amount of confidence that he can find himself another extra base hit. For $3,100, you’re getting away with highway robbery here, don’t pass it up.

Other options: Ryan Schimpf ($3,500), D.J. LeMahieu ($3,400), Dee Gordon ($3,200), Brandon Drury ($2,800), Joe Panik ($2,600)

Third Base

Jake Lamb ($3,400)

There are a handful of options I absolutely love at third base tonight (Arenado, Machado, Solarte, Bregman) but my favorite is Jake Lamb. He’s crushed right-handed hitting over his career to the tune of a .375 wOBA, .284 ISO (!!!) and a 36.4% hard contact rating. While he’s playing in San Francisco (arguably the least hitter friendly park in the league), he gets a matchup that could help him negate the park factor. Jeff Samardzija has allowed a .341 wOBA to lefties over his career and got absolutely rocked by these same Diamondbacks in his season opener when he allowed 8 hits, 2 walks and 6 earned runs in 5.1 innings pitched, the lone game this season that Lamb has failed to record a hit. Look for him to make up for that tonight, as Jake Lamb is my #DailyDinger call of the day.

Other options: Nolan Arenado ($4,900), Manny Machado ($3,800), Yangervis Solarte ($3,500), Alex Bregman ($2,900), Pablo Sandoval ($2,500)

Shortstop

Adam Frazier ($2,300)

With so many high-priced bats that are so intriguing tonight, I chose to find value at the SS position with Pirates’ youngster Adam Frazier. As a .273/.343/.410 career hitter against righties with a rather high-potential to bat leadoff tonight, Frazier is in a perfect spot for a value play. He faces off with Rookie Davis, the Reds’ rookie (lol) who’s making only his second career major league appearance. In his first game this season, Davis pitched three innings against the Phillies while along 5 hits, 2 walks and 4 earned runs. I have a feeling that the Pirates are going to tag him early, and with Frazier likely at the top of the order, he should play a pivotal role.

Other options: Trevor Story ($4,100), Trea Turner ($3,700), Xander Bogaerts ($3,300), Chris Owings ($3,200), Brandon Crawford ($2,800), Troy Tulowitzki ($2,800)

Outfield

Mitch Haniger ($2,000)

Yes, I know, play the Rockies outfielders. I’m playing at least one, if not two of them, but that requires another value play. Thank God we have Fanduel’s horrible pricing and a minimum-priced Mitch Haniger! His current .242 batting average shows that he’s had his fair share of struggles this season (especially with strikeouts), he’s been on absolute fire over his last five games. In that span, he’s recorded 7 hits, 3 home runs, 5 RBIs and 7 runs scored while batting second in the order as one of the Mariners’ everyday outfielders. He gets a boom-or-bust matchup with Joe Musgrove tonight and with Haniger’s 33% hard-contact percentage, if he gets ahold of one it’s leaving the yard. Aside from stacking the Coors game, I’m a huge fan of a Haniger-Cano stack as the Mariners’ likely #2-3 hitters. Lock him in as the best value play on the board tonight.

Other options: Charlie Blackmon ($4,500), Carlos Gonzalez ($4,000), Ryan Braun ($4,000), Yoenis Céspedes ($3,800), Starling Marte ($3,700), Giancarlo Stanton ($3,600), AJ Pollock ($3,500), Jose Bautista ($3,400), Jay Bruce ($3,400), Christian Yelich ($3,300), Dexter Fowler ($3,200), Carlos Gómez ($3,100), Curtis Granderson ($2,600)


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