'Brian McCann' photo (c) 2009, Keith Allison - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/


BaseballGuys.com has partnered with DraftDay.com to give all my wonderful followers 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.

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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. Brian McCann 2. Joe Mauer

McCann has hit the ground a running with a .333 average, three homers and 10 RBIs in his first 21 at-bats. He's 0-for-2 against the hot Patrick Corbin, but McCann is going so well, including 7-for-17 of late (.412), that you should be starting him regardless.

You could obviously list Mauer's name in every one of these writeups and be fine, but he's scalding right now. Mauer has hit .447 the past two weeks with 13 runs scored. That's enough to overlook his “mere” .316 mark against Mr. Peavy over 29 at-bats.

FIRST BASE 1. Edwin Encarnacion 2. Billy Butler

EE faces Barry Zito, in Toronto. That alone should make you interested. When you hear what he has done in nine plate appearances, your interest better be piqued: 4-for-7, two homers, eight RBIs. He also has two homers and six RBIs the past week.

Coming off a huge game (five hits, five RBIs), there is no reason to expect Butler to slow down against Jason Vargas considering he has six hits and three walks in 16 PAs against him. The end result is a .462 average, .563 OBP, two homers and five RBIs.

SECOND BASE 1. Robinson Cano 2. Neil Walker

Cano faces the all mighty King Felix Tuesday, but he's had a ton of success in the matchup. Besides only striking out six times in 41 at-bats he's also hit .366 with two homers and five RBIs.

Walker is back from the DL, and though he went 0-for-4 in his first game, perhaps facing Kyle Lohse will help. Walker has eight hits, to go along with five RBIs, in 20 at-bats (.400 average).

THIRD BASE 1. Ryan Zimmerman 2. Adrian Beltre

It's borderline stupid to suggest playing anyone against Mr. Kershaw, but here goes. Zimmerman has four hits in nine at-bats against the lefty with nary a strikeout. He's also starting to warm at the dish with a .318 mark and five RBIs the past week.

Going with two vets at the hot corner today. Beltre has hit .316 with five homers and 14 RBIs against Bartolo Colon over 57 at-bats. He owns him, or something like that. Beltre has also hist .346 with two homers and seven RBIs the past week.

SHORTSTOP 1. Ben Zobrist 2. Jayson Nix

Oh that John Lackey. Seems like many batters enjoys seeing him on the bump anymore. Zobrist is 8-for-20, a cool .400 average, with five walks against Lackey leading to a .538 OBP.

Jeter and Nunez are down and out, so Nix is the starter at short for the Yankees. He's produced five hits in 10 at-bats against King Felix and he's also rapped out eight hits, and six runs, over the past week of games.

OUTFIELD 1. Jose Tabata 2. Andre Ethier

Add Tabata to the list of guys that crush Mr. Lohse. Well crush might be too strong a term, but he does have 10 hits in 21 at-bats (.476), and that’s impressive. Tabata also has seven hits in his last 14 at-bats this season.

Ethier is hitting only .254 on the year, but things are looking up. He's hit .318 the past week, and now he gets to face Dan Haren who he has only hit .426 against in 47 at-bats (two homer,s seven RBIs as well).

STARTING PITCHERS 1. Chris Tillman 2. Jeremy Guthrie 3. Julio Teheran 4. Scott Kazmir

Tillman is 3-0 with a 2.03 ERA over his last four starts and he takes on the Padres Tuesday. That's usually a good thing, facing the Padres, right?

The last three weeks Guthrie is 3-0 with a 0.42 ERA and 1.11 WHIP. He faces an Angels team that has scored just 156 runs this season, the same total as the Astros.

The Braves haven't lost a single one of Teheran's starts this season, even if he is only 2-0 on the season. In his last three starts he has allowed a total of six runs which is impressive even if he has only 11 Ks and has allowed 25 hits (19.1 innings). He faces the D'backs.

Kazmir is 2-1 with a 2.65 ERA and 1.06 WHIP, not to mention 21 Ks, over his last 17 innings. I picked him up this week in two leagues. Must mean he's bound to fall on his face. He faces a Phillies team that has a .619 OPS over their last eight games.


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-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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Fantasy Football Matchups Week 16 - 2014 : Ray Flowers | @FantasyAlarm http://t.co/nX294h5BCP #nfl