Week 1 of the NFL season is upon us. We care about that, but we also care about you folks still playing away down the stretch in your fantasy baseball season. We're here to help. At least Ray Flowers is. Here are some daily matchups of note for Tuesday, September 2nd.
* NOTE: Just because a player is not listed does not mean that he is a bad or good play. The players listed below are mentioned merely because of the BVP data for the matchup.
Clint Barmes is batting .348 over 23 at-bats against Adam Wainwright. Look it up. Russell Martin also mashes with a .370 average over 27 at-bats. Andrew McCutchen has hit .325 with a homer in 40 at-bats. Neil Walker has hit .310 with seven RBIs over 29 at-bats.
Jose Bautista keeps taking everyone deep. He's taken Jeremy Hellickson yard three times leading to a 1.169 OPS over 30 plate appearances. Adam Lind has four RBIs and a .320 batting average over 25 at-bats.
Mom of the year right here.
Giancarlo Stanton has two homers, five RBIs and a .375 batting average over 24 at-bats against Jonathon Niese. We all know that Reed Johnson hits lefties, and Niese is no exception to that rule. Over 23 at-bats Johnson has batted .375.
Justin Upton continues to roll and Kyle Kendrick doesn't seem likely to slow him down much. In 22 at-bats the younger Upton has gone deep twice, driven in four, and posted a 1.146 OPS. Freddie Freeman isn't too far behind with a .990 OPS, a homer and six RBIs (28 PAs). Chris Johnson also excels in the matchup with a .957 OPS, a homer, five RBIs and three doubles over 23 plate appearances.
David Wright is beat up and generally stinky. Can he summon the old magic against Brad Penny who has seemingly been telling Wright which pitch is coming over the years? In 20 at-bats Wright has hit .600 with four homers and 10 RBIs. He's also walked five times leading to a 1.854 OPS.
DISH DISASTERS – Worst Hitting Matchups of the Day
Ian Desmond has three hits in 20 at-bats (.150) against Clayton Kershaw. Adan LaRoche is batting .227 with 11 Ks in 22 at-bats. Half of those at-bats have ended in punchouts. I didn't need a calculator to figure that out.
You've heard about air guitar... but what about air fornication?
Matt Joyce has two homers and seven RBIs against R.A. Dickey. He's also batting .200 with a .265 OBP over 33 plate appearances. Ben Zobrist and James Loney also join the pity party. Each has 27 at-bats against the knuckleballer. Each has five hits. Each is batting .185. Desmond Jennings is worse at .111 over 18 at-bats, but the bestest line belong to Jose Molina who has one hit in 15 at-bats.
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MOUND MAVENS – Starting Pitchers to Target
Jake Arrieta was bombed last outing (6 ER, 4 IP), the second time in five starts he's allowed at least six earned runs. At the same time he's also allowed two or fewer earned runs in five of his last seven outings. He also owns a 1.86 ERA and 0.88 WHIP in nine home starts this season. Oh, he also held the Brewers to two runs over seven innings back on August 11th.
Carlos Carrasco is pitching as well as any man in the game right now. His last four starts have resulted in a 0.73 ERA, a K per inning, and an 8:1 K/BB ratio. He's also walked three batters in that time while going 3-0. He starts against the Tigers.
R.A. Dickey is always a hit or miss affair. Not many in the game can take the bump with an equal chance of a seven inning shutout our a four inning, seven run outing. Dickey has held the current Rays roster to a .187/.272/.301 line over 232 plate appearances. That's a lot of poor hitting. The last time he faced the club from Florida was July 13th and he held them to two runs over six innings and in three of his last five outings in August he allowed two or fewer earned runs.
Doug Fister you can still trust. He's allowed nine runs in his last two starts but four homers? He has allowed three homers over his previous eight starts. He's still not beating himself either with only two walks in his last two starts. Matchup isn't easy in Los Angeles against the Dodgers, but you shouldn't be panicking with Fister.
Yovani Gallardo has a 3.00 ERA and 1.22 WHIP over 18 starts against the Cubs. The last time he faced them it was a one run, seven inning outing. He's also posted a 2.39 ERA and 1.10 WHIP in 13 road starts this season.
Shane Greene pitches at home against the BoSox. He's jacked up the K-rate of late, 25 in his last 18 innings, and he's still not walking anyone (four free passes in those three games). The last time he lost was July 21st. That was also the last time he allowed more than three earned runs (6-straight starts).
Jeff Locke has a 2.70 ERA over four starts against the Cardinals. That includes a 7.1 inning, one run outing, in his last start. Locke has also allowed just three runs over his last three starts and won 4-straight decisions. He pitches in St. Louis.
Wade Miley on the road in San Diego. The last time he faced the Padres was May 27th, but he walked one, struck out 11, and allowed three runs over seven innings. Miley also has a 2.65 ERA and 1.22 WHIP on the road this season and he's allowed a total of four earned runs over his last three starts.
James Paxton is pitching on some borrowed time if you look at the totality of his game, but the fact is he's getting it done right now. In only one of his seven starts has he allowed more than three runs, and five times it's been one or zero earned runs. The Athletics are always a tough matchup but they are in a slump right now. The last two weeks: .222/.302/.347.
MOUND MESSES – Starting Pitchers to Avoid
Jeremy Hellickson faces the Blue Jays, the team with the highest OPS against righties in baseball. Hellickson has also failed to go more than five innings in two of his last three starts. Very boring.
It's just me, but I'm not starting a guy in his first game in the big leagues in a year. Derek Holland takes on the Royals in Kansas City. The Royals are ranked 16th in OPS against lefties this season.
You think you could hit this heat?
Jonathon Niese is not a “mess” Tuesday. He's is boring as all get out though. In his last 10 starts he's never struck out more than 10. He has thrown 4-straight quality starts but his ERA has only gone down three hundredths to 3.48. He has a 1.30 WHIP on the year – league average. He faces the Marlins in Miami where the club is 10th in baseball in home OPS.
Yusmeiro Petit retired 46 straight batters to set a big league record. He pitches in Colorado. The Rockies have a .884 OPS at home. Even with the team all beat up, that's still a massive number to look past for a guy who has made seven starts all year.
Adam Wainwright has a 3.68 ERA at home this season. Worse than you thought I bet. He's lost three of his last four games. He's allowed at least three earned runs in four straight outings and check out his numbers since the start of August: 2-4, 5.17 ERA, 1.43 WHIP, 6.6 K/9 over six starts. He faces the Pirates.
C.J. Wilson got lit up by the Astros on July 4th (6 ER, 4.1 IP). Proud of me for not making a firework joke? Did I ruin it by noting I didn't do it? Wilson has walked at least three batters his last three games, and he's only struck out12 batters over his last four starts. Terrible. He's got a 4.55 ERA on the road this year and the Astros are ranked 4th in baseball in OPS against lefties.
Make sure you tune in to the Drive at 7 PM EDT, Monday through Friday on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius210, XM87), to hear Ray Flowers pontificate about the world of sports.
Christopher Backhaus - Wow, how is Vargas out there? I can give the thumbs up to taking a shot there since you added Wong.
Hello Ray, H2H, Mix, 12 teams I almost never carry a offensive bench, but after no DL move from Rizzo and Pedroia, I drop my worst closer and added Kelton Wong to manage 2b. I have Pedroia as my bench, but also Rizzo is still on the shelf and his return is questionable. Don’t know how much playing time will Pedroia get with his battered body and the redsox being dead last. So, now that I have Wong, can I drop Pedroia and add: Marte (just dropped), Kenny Vargas, Dunn, McGehee (hitting again), Chisengall (hitting again). I am already on the playoff so I can “Cruise” this week. Should I make a move or wait and see toward the end of this week? Many thanks,
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The co-host of The Drive on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius 210, XM 87: Mon-Thurs 7 PM, Fri. 9 PM EDT), Ray also hosts a show Sunday night (7-10 PM EDT). Ray has spent years squirreled away studying the inner workings of the fantasy game to the detriment of his personal life. Specializing in baseball, football and hockey, some consider him an expert in all three.
- Calvin Johnson unlikely to play
- Donald Brown hasn't cleared concussion protocol
- V-Mart seeking 4-yr contract in free agency
- Lincecum's MRI clean, available Friday
- Wainwright underwent surgery Friday
- Vereen "questionable" for Sunday
- Jimmy Graham likely to play Sunday
- P. Thomas & K. Robinson ruled out for Sunday
- Marquis Teague has been traded to the 76ers
- Aldridge (groin) will not play Friday night