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You would also be wise to bookmark the following two sources to check daily after you read this wondrous piece (I'm so afraid of giving myself props).
Fantasy Alarm Lineups
DISH DIAMONDS – The Best Hitting Matchups of the Day
Darwin Barney has seven hits in 21 at-bats against Wandy Rodriguez. That's a .333 average. As bad a hitter as Barney is can I suggest going with him Thursday? Really can't despite the success but there it is.
Matt Carpenter have yourself a career against one guy. Homer Bailey is that man that Carpenter likes to take out behind the proverbial woodshed and give a thrashing to. Shocking really. Carpenter has 10 hits in 16 at-bats against Bailey (.625). You couldn't get 10 hits in 16 at-bats in your local beer softball league. Try it. You won't be successful.
This might be the only time all year you'll hear me say something nice about Zack Cozart. He hits Lance Lynn well with six hits, including two bombs, in 17 at-bats. Jay Bruce is also excited to see Lynn on the bump as he's hit .429 with a homer against him in 14 at-bats. Feast or famine though as Bruce also has six punchouts.
All Giants lefties. Bronson Arroyo has allowed a .299/.339/.534 slash line to lefties the past three years. That's All-Star level production he's allowing.
Paul Goldschmidt owners are praying that Tim Lincecum takes the hill (knee, flu), and it sure like he will. I'll let the numbers speak for themselves: .500-5-11 in just 20 at-bats. Aaron Hill also has seven hits in 14 at-bats in the matchup.
Desmond Jennings loves seeing Brandon Morrow on the hill about as much as I enjoy thinking about what it would be like to be married to this lady. If you want a lock for the day, this might be it. Not only is Jennings hitting .538 in 13 at-bats against Morrow but four of his seven hits have gone for four bases. Wow is right.
Dustin Pedroia believes in Bigfoot. That makes him a great person in my book. He can play a little baseball too as he had four hits Wednesday. Oh, and he crushes Wei-Yin Chen with 11 hits in 19 at-bats. That's a .579 batting average folks.
Jose Quintana doesn't have a clue as to who to get out two Twins. Joe Mauer (6-for-12) and Josh Willingham (6-for-13) have crushed him. No exaggeration there either. Both guy has two bombs again him amongst their six hits.
DISH DISASTERS – Worst Hitting Matchups of the Day
Eric Hosmer has three hits in 16 at-bats against Anibal “The Animal” Sanchez. I just made up that nickname though it has a nice ring to it, doesn't it? The Animal also has Salvador Perez' number as the backstop is hitless in nine at-bats.
Evan Longoria isn't quite as excited about seeing Brandon Morrow as his teammate Mr. Jennings is. Longoria has only six hits in 26 at-bats leading to a .231 batting average. He also hit only .258 at home last year. Unfortunately that effort is boss when compared to what Ben Zobrist has done, four hits including 11 punchouts, in 30 at-bats.
Who else loves the fact that we've got games that count? I'm sitting there each day with my vodka and Red Bull lovin' it. Don't tell my bosses I'm half loaded when I do my writing. Actually, since this is a morning article each day please do tell my bosses if I'm drunk. Of course, this is null and void if it's a leftover from the previous night of partying in which case then it's totally fine.
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MOUND MAVENS – Starting Pitchers to Target
On paper Chris Archer should have success as he has a 1.65 ERA and 1.16 WHIP against the Blue Jays in three starts. Will he be able to focus after signing his $25 million deal? Wouldn't it be a little hard to focus after knowing you've just been given more money than any normal person could ever spend? Notice I said “normal.” Obviously athletes aren't normal and can blow through cash faster than I dust a bag of Doritos' Spicy Sweet Chili chips.
I hate to admit it, but Phil Hughes may not be horrible start Thursday (if you don't know, he isn't very good. Just check out his career numbers). Current White Sox batters have struck out 21 times in 69 at-bats while hitting .130 with a .326 OPS leading to a 1.53 ERA. I was shocked too. Those numbers could double and they would still be decent.
Lance Lynn may have a 4.03 ERA against the Reds in his career but over 38 innings he's punched out 47 batters while posting a 1.26 WHIP. Worth taking a look at.
Ivan Nova had a 3.10 ERA and 1.28 WHIP last season over 139.1 innings. He's also posted a strong 19-10 record with a 3.98 ERA on the road for his career. Look at the Astros lineup. Does it scare you? It's not like that lineup is filed with nine Pumpkinhead's or anything.
I mentioned above how Anibal Sanchez dominates some of the Royals. Turns out, not many have success against him. He's made five starts against the Royals and his ERA and WHIP are both under 1.00. That's impressive.
MOUND MESSES – Starting Pitchers to Avoid
Homer Bailey has a 2.61 ERA and 1.06 WHIP over his seven home starts against the Cardinals. Still, he dealt with some health hiccups in spring and owns career marks of 4.74 and 1.43 against the Cardinals. I'm willing to pass on his first start of the year.
Wei-Yin Chen should be on every bench Thursday. He's allowed current Red Sox players to hit .366 off him with a 1.035 OPS and six homers in 112 games. I'll take that as the lead indicator over the 3.63 ERA he posted at home last season.
Yordano Ventura has everyone excited. You should be excited, but don't be stupid. Huge risk starting him on the road against the mighty Tigers. Better off letting him just sit on your bench for now. Wait until the matchup is more favorable to use the young flamethrower.
Make sure you tune in to the Fantasy Alarm's Daily Game Show at 6 PM EDT, Monday through Friday on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius210, XM87) as Jeff Mans and Ted Schuster will help you to set your daily lineups.