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I love getting bashed, it's my favorite pastime. No one is perfect, least of all me. If you play the daily game you have to understand that this is an inexact science. Trying to pick out one game out of 162 and delineate the best players --- that's hard to do. At Fantasy Alarm we have all kinds of tools to help you in the daily game so make sure you avail yourself of all of them. Let's get to the BVP info for Friday.
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DISH DIAMONDS – The Best Hitting Matchups of the Day
The numbers were accrued starting more than a decade ago, but in 70 at-bats versus A.J. Burnett the wily Bobby Abreu has always had success (.329/.429/.529).
Starlin Castro has rapped out 10 base knocks in 24 at-bats against Marco Estrada (.417). Wellington Castillo has only five homers this season, but he's also gone deep an impressive four times against Estrada in 17 at-bats in his career. Given that Estrada has allowed at least two homers in five of his last six starts, Castillo sounds like a pretty good play. Ditto power hitting Anthony Rizzo. I know he's 1-for-21 against Estrada, but the righty from Milwaukee is getting pounded deep. Take a shot.
Brian McCann has murdered, simply bombed, Ricky Nolasco. The numbers are irrefutable. In 58 at-bats he's hit .345 with a 1.188 OPS which includes eight homers and 23 RBIs. That's a beat down of epic proportions.
Brandon Moss has hit .375 with a 1.162 OPS an a homer in 17 plate appearances against Garrett Richards. Moss destroys righties but it should be noted that Richards has only allowed one homer this season so no one is lifting the ball of the kid as of yet.
Angel Pagan isn't a power threat, but dude is batting well over .300 and has double-digit thefts for the Giants. Yes the matchup is tough with Adam Wainwright but Pagan does have a .500 average over 15 at-bats in their confrontations.
DISH DISASTERS – Worst Hitting Matchups of the Day
Robinson Cano faces the uber struggling Justin Verlander Friday in Seattle. Verlander has always had Cano's number holding though him with a homer an a .231/.268/.333 slash line over 41 plate appearances.
I'm always down to party, but this is taking things a bit too far.
Carlos Gomez has 16 at-bats against Travis Wood. He's got a homer but he's also hitting .188 with a .691 OPS. Rickie Weeks wishes he was that good. Weeks has two homers but he's also hit .125 with a .625 OPS in his 24 at-bats. And then there is Jonathan Lucroy. He's hitting .125 with one RBI in 17 plate appearances.
Don't know why you would be playing him anyway, but here's a warning. Adeiny Hechavarria is 2-for-14 against Mr. ERA, Julio Teheran. You might be interested to learn though that Giancarlo Stanton has only one hit, to go along with four strikeouts, in 12 at-bats against the righty.
Daniel Nava has two hits in 20 at-bats, and that includes eight punchouts versus K master David Price. Price has also held pretty much every Red Sox down. The numbers are pretty impressive for the hurler: Dustin Pedroia (.250 with one homer in 48 ABs), David Ortiz (.216 with no HRs in 37 ABs), A.J. Pierzynski (.176-1-3 in 17 ABs) and Jonny Gomes (.190-0-2 in 21 ABs).
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Fantasy Alarm Lineups
MOUND MAVENS – Starting Pitchers to Target
Josh Beckett is coming off a no-no, and he threw a career-high 128 pitches so it's possible the Dodgers try to pull him with a low pitch count. Still, he's allowed a total of five runs over his last four starts and in five home outings this year he has a 2.10 ERA an 0.93 WHIP. He takes on the Pirates in LA.
Hisashi Iwakuma has a 2.39 ERA over five starts and he's gone at least 6.2 innings each time out. He's also made three starts at home this season and not walked a single batter. Tough matchup with the Tigers, who have the 4th best OPS in baseball against righties, but Iwakuma has done nothing but engender confidence since he returned from injury.
Corey Kluber has a tough matchup against the Rockies, but there's still plenty to recommend him, not the least of which is that he's pitching at home. In five starts at home he's produced a 2.72 ERA with a 1.09 WHIP over five starts as he's struck out 43 batters while issuing just seven walks.
Taking things too far Part II.
David Price has a 4.42 ERA and 4-4 record. Still, there's no way you can ignore his .219/.278/.343 line against current Red Sox batters. He's also allowed a mere six homers in 251 at-bats. He did allowed five runs in his last start against the Sox, but he still went eight innings in the effort and I'm still mesmerized by the 84/8 K/BB ratio.
Travis Wood faces the Brewers, a club that currently has 131 at-bats against him. In the at-bats he's allowed six homers, but he's also held the group to a .198/.264/.389 slash line. Back on May 18th he held the Brew Crew to two runs over seven innings to pick up a win. The negative is that 6.59 road ERA over five starts. Hey, it's Travis Wood. It's not like he's an ace.
MOUND MESSES – Starting Pitchers to Avoid
Marco Estrada allowed four homers in his last outing. As I noted above, he's been pounded deep for a total of, make sure you're sitting down, 13 homers in his last six starts. That's flipping amazing. He's already made two starts against the Cubs this year going 1-1 with a 4.97 ERA, four homers allowed, an a 1.03 WHIP.
Tom Koehler allowed seven runs in his last outing and has seen his ERA go from 1.99 to 3.10 over three starts as he's allowed 11 runs over 16.2 innings. The overall numbers look strong but he's been listing of late and the Braves come to town, an offense that can put a hurt on you if you make mistakes.
Why? I just don't get it.
Mike Leake has made five starts against the Diamondbacks in his career and though he's 2-0 he's allowed six homers leading to a 6.10 ERA. That ERA is more than double his current 2.79 mark, and he has gone 5-straight without allowing a big fly. Still, the D'backs hit well at home though with the 7th best team OPS and 6th best batting average at home.
Brett Oberholtzer against anyone should sit. He has one win in eight starts with a 5.32 ERA and 1.52 WHIP. He pitches at home against the Orioles and he has allowed 15 runs over 14 innings spanning three starts at home this year.
Francisco Liriano is 0-5 on the year. He's lost his last two starts allowing 15 hits, six walks and 10 runs over 10 innings. He is a M E S S. He faces the Dodgers in LA. Good luck with that.
Jason Vargas versus the Blue Jays. Really need me to tell ya why? The Jays mash. They mashed Vargas for 10 hits and five runs in an outing back on April 29th. It's Jason Vargas. He's also allowed four homers in three games and six in five outings. That's not a trend you want going up against the leagues best home run hitting team.
Justin Verlander stinks right now. Period. Read all about it in Justin Verlander: Is He Finished? If you don't feel like reading, and no one seems to anymore (I still read actual books, I know, how foreign) Verlander has allowed 28 hits and 16 runs over his last three starts covering 17.1 innings.
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.