'Tampa Bay Rays center fielder B.J. Upton (2)' photo (c) 2011, Keith Allison - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Daily baseball is all the rage in the fantasy sports world, so I will be covering the game a couple of times a week here at BaseballGuys.com. To that end, I’ve partnered with DraftDay.com to give all my wonderful followers, that’s you, the chance to play the game on a daily basis. On Tuesday and Thursday’s here at the site, every week, I’ll be giving you some insight into the mind of The Oracle as I will give you some of my best plays for the day – even if I’m willing to admit that daily games are a bit of a crap shoot given the difficulty in predicting how a handful of at-bats will work out.

To join a daily league remember to visit DraftDay.com by clicking on the link to their site.

One other source for those of you on Twitter.

@MLBDailyLineups – lists all the lineups in one spot so you can make sure you don't have someone in your lineup that is sitting on the bench that day.

CATCHERS 1. Matt Wieters 2. A.J. Pierzynski

Wieters is always a strong option. He's only faced Blanton three times but he has two hits. He's also driven in five runs in his last four games.

I gotta be honest. It's really hard to find a viable option at catcher Thursday based on matchups. Pierzynski is only 5-for-14 in his career, and he's been hurt of late, but it's against his former team so maybe he summons something special.

FIRST BASE 1. Mitch Moreland 2. Edwin Encarnacion

Mr. Moreland is batting .429 the past week with nine hits, including four doubles, in 21 at-bats. He faces Mr. Peavy, and their history only includes six at-bats. Moreland has stroked a hit three times, twice going deep, on his way to five RBIs.

Encarnacion has blasted five homers, driven in eight runs and has scored seven times the past seven days. He's only 1-for-11 against Ryan Dempster.

SECOND BASE 1. Dustin Pedroia 2. Omar Infante

Pedroia is hitting .435 the past week. He's hitting .330 on the year. He's hit .309 in his career against lefties. He faces lefty J.A. Happ of the Blue Jays.

The Tigers face Jordan Lyles in his first appearances of the 2013 season (he owns a 5.20 ERA and 1.42 WHIP over 235.1 big league innings). Infante is batting .381 with two homers and seven runs scored over his last 23 plate appearances.

THIRD BASE 1. Chase Headley 2.Manny Machado

Headley went deep Wednesday and he could keep the good times a rollin' Thursday against Travis Wood a hurler he has beaten for six hits, including two big flies, in 12 at-bats.

Machado faces Mr. Blanton. Machado also has scored seven times the past week while batting, get this, .406 with an OPS of 1.112. He's hot, hot, hot.

SHORTSTOP 1. Elvis Andrus 2. Yuniesky Betancourt

Andrus has had a disappointing start to the year. But things are slowly improving. He's hitting .292 the past week and he faces Peavy whom he has four hits against in 12 at-bats.

Betancourt has four homers and seven RBIs in the past week. It's a mirage. Maybe he can keep it going for another day against J. Westbrook whom he has gone 8-for-22 against in his career (.364).

OUTFIELD 1. Nick Markakis 2. B.J. Upton

Markakis faces the very hittable Joe Blanton Thursday, a righty whom he has rapped six hits against in 12 at-bats (he also driven in four runs).

It all starts today. Upton remembers he's an elite talent. He faces homer prone Dan Haren who has, shockingly, given up homers to Upton. In 31 at-bats Upton is hitting .323, but it's the five homers that really stick out.

STARTING PITCHERS 1. Kyle Kendrick 2. Travis Wood 3. Ervin Santana 4. Jake Westbrook

Kendrick is the type of pitcher I avoid in roto leagues, he's got soft skills, but if you're looking at a one day matchup it's not always so clear cut. Over his last four starts he is undefeated with a 1.29 ERA an a WHIP under 1.00. Now he faces the Marlins. He's also 8-0 with a 2.15 ERA against the Marlins since 2010. Nuff said.

Wood has lasted at least six innings in all five of his starts and never allowed more than two earned runs. The Padres are not an offensive juggernaut by any means either.

Santana is 2-0 with a 1.23 ERA and 1.00 WHIP the past three weeks. He plays in an early game, so hopefully you get this news on the quick. He faces a Rays club that is 10th in the AL in runs, is batting .244 with a .311 OBP, and one that has had long stretches of ineffectiveness.

I wrote earlier this week to sell Jake Westbrook in Surgers and Slumpers, so why am I suggesting you start him Thursday? Remember, we're talking one start here, not 25. Westbrook does have an ERA under 1.00, and he faces Wily Peralta of the Brewers who hasn't exactly been lights out. Westbrook also has a 3.06 ERA in his eight career starts against the Brew Crew.

To join a daily league remember to visit DraftDay.com by clicking on the link to the site.

By Ray Flowers




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About Ray Flowers

The co-host of The Drive on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius 210, XM 87: Mon-Fri 7-10 PM EDT), Ray also hosts his own 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.

Ray Flowers on Twitter

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