Dodgers and Giants game looks as though it will be a low-scoring affair
Two pitchers with significant upside in Matt Moore of the Giants and Jose Urias of the Dodgers take the mound today in San Francisco in a game that has a low run total of 7 1/2 runs. Urias has all the upside in the world with a high K rate but his problem is he will likely be limited in terms of how long he will pitch thus making him a risky option. Moore has struggled this season but has shown upside in the past. Facing a Dodgers team that struggles against southpaws though he makes for an intriguing GPP option, especially with most players likely targeting the other pitcher in this game, Carlos Martinez, or Justin Verlander. While the bats from both offenses are better left alone, you could make a case for using the right-handed bats of Enrique Hernandez, Justin Turner, and Yasiel Puig from the Dodgers and the right-handed bats of Hunter Pence, Christian Arroyo, and Buster Posey (especially at a particularly thin catcher position) from the Giants.
Buster Posey collects two more hits
Posey has hit safely in each of his seven games since returning from a concussion, although he has managed just one run scored and just one RBI. Nick Hundley made another start behind the dish Tuesday, although Posey did fill in at catcher in the later innings. Whether Posey is at first base or back behind the plate, as long as he is starting he is an obvious worthwhile fantasy option.
RH power could benefit from strong winds in Kansas City if they can escape rain threat
With cooler temperatures and the threat of rain in several spots (including one game already PPD), players have their work cut out in finding positive hitting conditions tonight. While domes in Toronto, Houston and Tampa Bay may seem like the safest bets tonight, temperatures are projected to be in the 70s in Cincinnati without the threat of rain or strong winds in any direction. Among the games Kevin has identified as rain threats this morning, Kansas City is otherwise looking at temperatures near 80 with winds blowing out to left at 15-25 mph, strong hitting conditions for RH power, if the game plays, though the Royals may not generate much of it against Madison Bumgarner. Buster Posey and Hunter Pence could benefit though. Be sure to watch for Kevin's evening update.
Buster Posey goes 3-for-5 in first game back
It's unclear whether Posey will catch Wednesday, but since the Royals are playing in K.C. and have the DH available, he should be in the lineup either way.
Giants with several solid options against Arizona today
If Matt Moore can avoid trouble from the top of the Diamondbacks lineup today he has the potential to have an excellent outing and as such makes for a great GPP option today. His adversary, Taijuan Walker, however, will have a much tougher time against a pesky Giants lineup and is a player to avoid. A.J. Pollock, Paul Goldschmidt, and Yasmany Tomas are viable options from the Arizona lineup while Brandon Belt, Hunter Pence, and Buster Posey highlight a solid Giants offense that is one that should be targeted on this small slate. Brandon Crawford and Eduardo Nunez are also worth considering, especially if you're going to stack the San Francisco lineup.
Robbie Ray had the fifth highest strikeout rate (28.1%) last year, but allowed a lot of hard contact
Robbie Ray's 28.1 K% last season was a top five mark among qualified pitchers last season, but he also had major issues with hard contact (36.6 Hard%, 90.7 mph aEV, 8.1 Barrels/BBE). The Giants struck out just 18.4% of the time against LHP, the lowest mark in the National League and Arizona may be the most hitter friendly park outside of Colorado. While that strikeout rate certainly plays on a four game slate, an alternative approach might be a San Francisco stack for the contrarian player. Gorkys Hernandez is off to a hot start and still comes at a bargain price. Buster Posey (143 wRC+, .178 ISO vs LHP in 2016) and Hunter Pence (122 wRC+, .239 ISO) are the obvious RHBs to include in any stack. However, Brandon Belt tied for the team lead in wRC+ (143) and was second with a .212 ISO vs LHP last year.
Posey most popular bat on our Projected Ownership page tonight
Buster Posey is the only hitter on the board projected to for 25% or better ownership on both sites tonight. For good reason too, facing a pitcher who gives up as much hard contact as Patrick Corbin. It might be a tough choice for some between he and Gary Sanchez, who leads our HR Predictor tonight and is also projected for 20% or greater ownership on either site. Potential pivots from Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Altuve tonight are Carlos Santana and Ryan Schimpf. Santana bats leadoff for an offense with one of the highest run projections tonight and Schimpf hits nothing but fly balls and even homered off Kershaw yesterday. Neither is projected to be owned at more than 7.5%. Projected Ownership is part of our Premium Content where you can see predicted percentages for both hitters and pitchers.
Patrick Corbin gave up the hardest contact on the slate in 2016
Patrick Corbin allowed the hardest contact on the today's slate last season, including a 38.5 Hard%, 90.7 mph aEV, 9.3% Barrels/BBE, and 5.6% Barrels/PA. Combine that with a below average strikeout rate (18.7%) and potentially the most hitter friendly park outside of Coors and we have a recipe for offense with the Giants topping the board with a projected five runs scored tonight. Hunter Pence (106 wRC+, .217 ISO vs LHP since 2015) claims ownership of Corbin with four career HRs in 28 PA. He also led the team with a 95.4 mph aEV on balls in the air last season (fly balls and line drives). Buster Posey (141 wRC+, .180 ISO) was second (94.4 mph). A potential sleeper play tonight is Brandon Belt, batting second. He hit LHP well last year (143 wRC+, .212 ISO) and Corbin allowed hard contact equally to RH and LH batters. Gorkys Hernandez may be an average stick at best against LHP, but he's a min-priced bat on FanDuel ($2.6K on DraftKings) at the top of lineup for what's expected to be one of the most potent offenses tonight.
Jon Gray has struck out 26 of his last 50 batters
Jon Gray lasted just four innings in his last start, but still struck out 10 and has struck out 26 of his last 50 batters. Despite facing the offense with the lowest strikeout rate in the National League (16.9% at home, 17.3% vs RHP), he still has high strikeout upside. Perhaps what the Giants refuse him in strikeouts, the extremely negative offensive environment will return in terms of run prevention. A good pitcher in Colorado can turn into a great pitcher in San Francisco. There are no workload concerns as he's thrown over 100 pitches in each of his last two starts, but just 106 in his last start. Additionally, our Projected Ownership page only has him as the 5th or 6th most popular pitcher with fairly low ownership rates on either site. While ideally, players would probably like to avoid San Francisco bats, many are above average hitters against RHP (even if not with a lot of power) and may be priced too cheaply on DraftKings. Pence (122 wRC+, .131 ISO), Belt (133 wRC+, .185 ISO), Posey (105 wRC+, .136 ISO) and Crawford (111 wRC+, .186 ISO) are all barely above $3K.
Christian Friedrich has a 5.23 xFIP and 5.7% K-BB% versus RHB this season
The Giants are fighting for one of the wild card berths in the National League, but they have sputtered to four losses in their last five games. They should be able to do some damage against Christian Friedrich, who fits in with the major trend of starting pitchers today. He doesn’t strike out enough batters (17.7%), he walks too many guys (9.3%), and his SIERA sits at 4.81. The hard contact is also a problem, at 32.1%. The Giants bats are all fairly priced on FanDuel, with Buster Posey (147 wRC+, .386 wOBA, .194 ISO vs LHP) and Hunter Pence (142 wRC+, .379 wOBA, .262 ISO vs LHP) standing out as great plays over there. Friedrich does struggle a bit more against right-handed batters, so that is where we would want to focus. The Giants bats are less appealing on DraftKings, where some of the prices are much higher. It’s pretty clear where we want to get our Giants exposure this evening.