It's Friday, and that means a couple of things. One, it's about time to cut loose and have some fun. Two, I'll be giving some plays for Friday and Saturday that would seem to be in prime position to succeed. Third, at the bottom of this piece is a chance to partake in a FREE daily fantasy baseball game with a chance to play for $250 in prizes. Psst. I'm in the league too. Think you can best The Oracle?
HITTERS – FRIDAY
Adam Dunn vs. Clayton Kershaw: Up to 22 homers and 50 RBIs, Dunn has had a great bounce back season. However, why on earth would I suggest playing a guy who has hit .183 against lefties this season when that same player has hit .223 against port siders in his career? It's only a handful of games mind you, but Dunn has annihilated Kershaw in 11 at-bats going deep three times, driving in seven runs and batting .636. That's why.
Scott Podsednik vs. Ryan Dempster: Three times in his last four games Pods has produced two or more hits, and in 51 at-bats with the Red Sox this year he has hit .373 with four steals. Facing Dempster he's also been a producer with seven hits in 18 at-bats (.389) and he's also walked four times leading to a .500 OBP.
Ben Revere vs. Yovani Gallardo: The speedster with the Twins has a hit in nine of 10 games to raise his average up to .339 (he's had two or more hits in six of those games). He's also swiped six bags while scoring nine runs in those 10 outings. Give him a matchup with a pitcher that he's produced four hits in 10 at-bats against and he would seem to be a borderline must start.
PITCHERS – FRIDAY
Ryan Dempster vs. Red Sox: Dempster has allowed one or zero runs in three of his last four outings. He's also tossed 15 scoreless innings in his last two outings while walking a single batter to lower his ratios to Maddux-like levels (2.31 ERA, 1.03 WHIP). Current Sox batters are hitting only .246 against Dempster as well, so are you willing to take a shot on the righty in this matchup?
Kyle Lohse vs. Royals: Current Royals hitters have only 50 at-bats off Lohse, but to say they have lacked success would be a massive understatement. The club has hit .240 against him with a .615 OPS as they have failed to go deep, have drawn only one walk, and struck out seven times.
Ryan Vogelsong vs. Mariners: In 30 outings last season Vogelsong had a 2.71 ERA. In 11 starts this year that number is 2.26. Over his last eight starts six times he's permitted one/zero earned runs, and the two times he didn't he allowed a total of five runs over 13.1 innings.
HITTERS – SATURDAY
Rajai Davis vs. Cliff Lee: Davis has stolen four bags in his last seven games, and though he has only 99 at-bats on the year he's swiped 14 bases. He's also hit a fair clip over his last 31 games batting .278. There isn't much to go on with this matchup but in 11 at-bats Davis has produced six hits (.545 average).
Brandon Phillips vs. Jonathon Niese: Brandon Phillips has five hits in 10 at-bats against Niese, and two of those hits have been big flies. Phillips has also really kicked his game into gear in June hitting .353 with three homers and 13 RBI in 12 games.
Gaby Sanchez vs. James Shields: If you want about the most random call you could possibly find, look no further. Sanchez has produced six hits, including a homer, and five RBI in 13 at-bats against Shields, good for a .462 average. Of course Sanchez is hitting, if you can call it that, .190 on the year and has only two hits in 15 at-bats since he was recalled from the minors.
PITCHERS – SATURDAY
Chad Billingsley vs. White Sox: Chad has allowed two runs over 14 inning in his last two starts leading to two victories. Billingsley has also struck out eight batters in three of his last four outings. The question is – which Billingsley will show up? The guy who throws strikes or the one who nibbles and walks four or five batters and gets into trouble?
Tim Lincecum vs. Mainers: Once more into the breach... this might be it. I might have to change my thoughts on Lincecum if he doesn't come through with a strong outing. (1) His rotation spot is in danger (the Giants might move him to the bullpen to work on things). (2) He's basically returning home to pitch in Seattle. (3) The Mariners have the 4th worst batting average (.234) and the second worst OBP (.297) in baseball. This is it Timmy – make it happen.
James Shields vs. Marlins: I know I just mentioned how Sanchez hits Shields hard, but that's not something the rest of the Marlins can say. If we remove Sanchez work the Marlins club has hit .217 with a mere seven RBIs over 129 at-bats.
CONTEST – TAKE ON RAY FLOWERS
Daily Joust is offering you a chance to make some free money, and you get to also take me on in the process (if you beat me you get another $5 bonus).
BaseballGuys has partnered with DailyJoust.com to give everyone an opportunity to compete in Daily Fantasy games this baseball season. There is a $250 MLB Baseball Freeroll Tournament Friday June 15th starting at 7pm EST.
That's right, it's FREE to enter, and you get a chance to play for $250 in prizes (there is also a 40% deposit bonus up to $400).
Choose your roster with the following positional requirements: C, 1B/DH, 2B, 3B, SS, OF, OF, OF, SP.
1. To register at DailyJoust and make your selections for the contest click on the BBGuys Landing Page and sign up.
2. Watch the live scoring on DailyJoust to see how your team stacks up against the competition – and me.
Are you game?
By Ray Flowers
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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.
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