Rizzo homers, drives in four in loss Wed.
He drove in the first run the hard way -- by getting hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. He singled to center in the fourth inning to plate Kris Bryant, then drove in Bryant again by homering to right in the eighth. Rizzo is slashing .277/.400/.518 with five homers and 15 RBI.
Coors reigns supreme in Projected Ownership tonight
Coors hitters combine for the six most highly projected ownership rates on FanDuel tonight, along with the top four on DraftKings. Luckily, there appear to be many third base pivots on either site with Joey Gallo, Mike Moustakas, Justin Turner and Miguel Sano all being projected at 10% or less on either site, while Mike Napoli and Anthony Rizzo may get the same treatment at first base. With several bats worth paying up for tonight and not a clear cut elite mound option tonight, players are expected to pay down for pitching tonight. There are some lower-priced arms that have shown some strikeout potential this month (Vargas, Garrett, Chavez). Premium subscribers can check out ownership projections for all players on our Projected Ownership page.
Rizzo slugs two-run shot in loss to Reds
Rizzo took Bronson Arroyo deep in the top of the fourth inning but the Cubs weren't able to overcome a rough start by John Lackey. Rizzo has homered in three straight games, tallying a total of eight RBI during that short stretch.
Cubs bats are the definitive top offense to target on the main slate
To put it mildly, Bronson Arroyo has not been great in his first three starts of a clearly failing comeback attempt at the ripe age of 40. This afternoon, he gets the pleasure of facing the defending World Series champions and arguably the best lineup in the Majors. The one thing that Arroyo has done will to this point is limit hard contact to left-handed batters (23.8% HH%), but that is likely more of a result of a microscopic sample size than an actual trend, evidenced by his 11.1% strikeout rate and 11.1% walk rate. He's also been just as bad versus right-handed batters, striking them out only 14.6% of the time while surrendering a 45.2% fly ball rate and a 36.4% hard hit rate. After evaluating the aforementioned statistics, it really is difficult to imagine Arroyo shutting down the Cubs offense this afternoon and hitters from both sides of the plate are firmly in play for all formats. Anthony Rizzo (150 wRC+, .398 wOBA, .259 ISO since 2016) and Kris Bryant (129 wRC+, .367 wOBA, .223 ISO since 2016) are the clear top Chicago bats virtually any time the Cubs are facing a weak right-handed pitcher, closely followed by Kyle Schwarber (147 wRC+, .387 wOBA, .252 ISO career vs RHP), who seems to finally be breaking out of his early-season slump. Although unexciting to roster, Ben Zobrist (120 wRC+, .354 wOBA since 2016) looks to be the top candidate to round out the stack in tournaments given his batting position in the order and relative succes versus righties. All in all, everything adds up to the Cubs hitters being the definitive best options to target on the main slate, and frankly, it's not even close.
Rizzo blasts another three-run homer in win
Rizzo belted a three-run homer in his final at-bat on Friday which tied the game in the ninth inning and he replicated the feat off of Reds starter Cody Reed in the first inning on Saturday. He finished the afternoon 2-for-3 plus a walk with three runs scored and three RBI. Rizzo is now hitting .299/.420/.507 with three homers and nine RBI on the year.
Rizzo launches game-tying homer vs. Reds
The Cubs were down to their final out before Rizzo took Michael Lorenzen deep to tie things up. They eventually won the game in the 11th. Rizzo went 1-for-5 with a walk on the night. He has hit safely in 10 straight games and owns a .286/.408/.444 batting line with two homers and six RBI through 16 games on the young season.
Sean Manaea and Nelson Cruz both among top projected players and values tonight
Nelson Cruz not only projects as one of the top three hitters on DraftKings (10.42), along with Paul Goldschmidt (10.89) and Mike Trout (10.4), but also projects as one of the top three values for just $4.2K (2.48 Pt/$/K). Those three are joined by Anthony Rizzo on FanDuel, as the only hitters projected for more than 13 points. Despite liking Cruz, the RotoGrinders Player Projections also see Sean Manaea as a top six pitcher and top five value on either site. While good players rarely advocate using a batter against your own pitcher, exposure to both sides of this matchup should be considered, but not necessarily in the same lineup. On DraftKings, Trevor Cahill rates as potentially the top value (3 Pt/$/K on a $5.6K cost). He's ridden a breaking ball to an impressive 16.9 SwStr% through two starts.
Cubs bats are one of the top places to look for hitting away from Coors Field
Tim Adleman is set to toe the rubber in tonight's game against the Chicago Cubs after pitching decently well in his first start of the season against the Milwaukee Brewers, allowing just one earned run while punching out five in four innings of work. The currently available sample size of Adleman at the Major League level is still fairly limited, but he has shown early signs of being a reverse splits pitcher, posting a 21.0% strikeout to lefties compared to a 14.1% strikeout rate to right-handed batters. Adleman has also surrendered an above average hard contact rate (33.0%) and a massive amount of flyballs to left-handed batters (53.7%), putting power lefties like Anthony Rizzo (150 wRC+, .398 wOBA, .254 ISO vs RHP since 2016) and Kyle Schwarber (148 wRC+, .387 wOBA, .256 ISO career vs RHP) in amazing spots to potentially go deep in the hitter-friendly Great American Ballpark this evening. However, given Adleman's low strikeout rate and 37.0% hard contact rate to righties, there is no reason to write-off Cubs right-handed bats like Kris Bryant (132 wRC+, .371 wOBA, .227 ISO vs RHP since 2016), Wilson Contreras (120 wRC+, .353 wOBA, .202 ISO vs RHP since 2016), and even Addison Russell as a part of a Cubs stack or one-offs. With all this said, the Cubs are shaping up to be one of the top places to look for offense away from Coors Field on Friday's slate.
Improved hitting conditions at Wrigley tonight, with Kansas City looking favorable as well
It's a bit cooler, predicted to be in the 50s with winds up to 15 mph blowing in from right in both NY parks tonight, potentially affecting LH power a bit in those parks tonight. Cincinnat is a little warmer (near 70) and it'll likely take more than a 10 mph wind in from right to keep Bronson Arroyo's pitches in the park. It's about 15-20 degrees warmer at Wrigley tonight with wind blowing out lightly to left (11 mph), perhaps enhancing hitting conditions tonight in baseball's most unstable environment. Minnesota remains cold (50s), but wind may be blowing out to right at 14 mph. Kansas City might have some of the most favorable hitting conditions with temperatures in the low 70s and an 11 mph wind blowing out to left. It's actually the top run scoring environment in play tonight (106), according to Seamheads.com 3 Year Park Factors. West Coast games are all a bit cooler with an 11 mph wind blowing out to right in Oakland the only meaningful gusts. Be sure to check back later for Kevin's evening update.
Rizzo singles, draws walk, steals base
But the top of the Cubs' lineup was mostly held quiet by the Milwaukee pitching staff. Rizzo, who finished the night 1-for-3, is batting .280 with an .800 OPS through 13 regular-season games.