Labor Day Weekend, a time for most Americans to drink beer and grill hot dogs. In my case, just the hot dogs. Tonight, I am going to be building a big campfire so my wife, kids and I can relax and enjoy some quality family time over some gooey S’mores. I am going to miss my campsite almost as much as baseball this year. But all good things must come to an end. Until next season of course.

We had our FAAB bids in my FanAddicts league run by my friend Brian Ambos last night. I have a lousy $3 left and, of course, now they call up Jose De Leon. I needed to replace Eddie Rosario with someone who has some SB potential so I bid $2 on Ender Inciarte and $1 on De Leon. I am loaded with starting pitching for the run (Felix Hernandez, Madison Bumgarner, Max Scherzer, and more.) and decided in order to finish in the money this season, a bat is what I need to gain points, not more pitching. In roto leagues it is all about categories. Anyhow, despite my thinking that Ambos was going to end up with De Leon, it was actually another friend of ours, Bobby Catanese. This league is filled with skilled players who would eat the average player, as well as most experts, alive, and has. FYI, I am in sixth, only a few points from the money, and Bobby is pulling away. Kudos.

So at the beautiful time of 3:30 a.m., I bring you today’s Pitching Coach Article.

Possible weather concerns!

With all this talk of Tropical Storm Hermine sitting off the Northeast, combined with what I see on all the videos and projections by The Weather Channel, I am having a hard time grasping a game being played at Citi Field tonight. Then, when I check the hourly forecast on Yahoo, it has it being very windy tonight but no rain. So at this time I guess this game is ok. Otherwise, we have no concerns I see with games that are not played in indoors. The weather is slightly warmer than yesterday but still a cooler day across the country for baseball.

Day Slate

If you play on DK today, you will notice a huge void of mid-priced SP, everyone is either expensive, or cheap, or crap. With little in between. Honestly, with all the good SP going on this slate, combined with having the Coors Field game on the night slate, there is no excuse to go bargain hunting today. I will be spending up on SP in all my lineups hoping to take advantage of some nice matchups.

Yu Darvish, Texas Rangers

Although Darvish does not get a great park shift at home today he does get a team with a ton of strikeout upside in the Houston Astros. The Astro’s may have a .341 road wOBA (first in MLB) but they also strikeout 22.8 percent of the time versus RHP. Darvish has a 11.3 K/9, 13.6-percent swinging strike rate (highest on slate), and 71 strikeouts over his last 56 innings. This includes a start versus the same Astros on Aug. 8th where he struck out eight batters, over seven innings, allowing zero earned runs. His price maybe high, but, with the Astros batting .228 over the last seven days, now is the time to attack. Plus, more-than-likely, no Jose Altuve. The current Astros are batting .250 (29-for-116) with two HR (Colby Rasmus and George Springer), seven RBI, and 39 strikeouts versus Darvish.

Chris Archer, Tampa Bay Rays

The Toronto Blue Jays are not as scary as they seem, they are more so. But, you take them out of the Rogers Centre and they are 20th in MLB in wOBA at .311, with an average wRC+ of 92. Archer has really turned things around as of late, over his last five starts he has a 2.87 ERA with 41 strikeouts over 31 1/3 innings. He has a 10.76 K/9 facing a Blue Jays team striking out 23.3 percent of the time versus RHP, he also gets a great park shift pitching at home where his ERA is 2.61 opposed to his 5.79 road ERA. The current Blue Jays roster is batting .179 (46-for-257) with 10 HR (Jose Bautista (3), Edwin Encarnacion (3), Dioneer Navarro (2), Russell Martin, and Justin Smoak), 31 RBI, and 69 strikeouts versus Archer. He may be a slight Vegas underdog today, but not mine.

Carlos Martinez, St. Louis Cardinals

The only thing that is keeping Carlos Martinez away from being the top play today is the horrible park shift. He is in the “Great American Small Park” taking on a Reds team that is striking out 23.4 percent of the time over the last seven days. You add in the low .309 wOBA combined with the wRC+ of 88 versus RHP, and it makes Martinez all that more alluring. Over his last two starts he has been dominant striking out 18 batters over 14 innings, with a 1.29 ERA versus the Mets, and Brewers. He has a 2.30 road ERA opposed to his 3.83 home ERA to go with a 1.96 lifetime ERA in Cincinnati. I could go on and on, but you get the point. The current Reds roster is batting .244 (19-for-78) with three HR (Zack Cosart, Joey Votto, and Billy Hamilton), six RBI, and 18 strikeouts versus Martinez.

J.A. Happ, Toronto Blue Jays

Of the four listed so far, Happ is more of an expensive GPP play in my opinion. Although he gets a great park shift at Tropicana Field, the Tampa Bay Rays over the last seven days are batting .297 with a .368 wOBA, and wRC+ of 134. On the season they have a .299 wOBA (27th in MLB) to go with a 26 percent strikeout rate versus LHP. Happ has struggled as of late allowing seven earned runs over his last 11 2/3 innings with nine strikeouts but, on Aug 10th he completely shut down the same Rays team at home striking out seven batters over six innings while giving up zero earned runs. The BVP is not pretty with the current Rays roster batting .315 (47-for-149) with five HR (Tim Beckham, Matt Duffy, Logan Forsythe, Evan Longoria, and Steven Souza Jr.), 21 RBI, and 29 strikeouts versus Happ.

Daniel Norris, Detroit Tigers (GPP only)

If you insist on playing at least one cheap player today like myself, then take a look at Norris. Do not let the numbers fool you, he is filthy. He is just still figuring things out. Today he gets the Royals who are 30th in MLB with a wOBA of .288 and wRC+ of 77 on the road. Norris has a good fastball and 7.49 K/9 which offers some K upside, regardless of opponent. The last time Norris faced the Royals on Aug 15th he went 5 1/3 innings allowing one earned run, but, only had one strikeout. The upside is limited here but the price-tag is cheap. The current Royals roster is batting .282 with no HR, three RBI, and three strikeouts versus Norris. LHB have a .408 wOBA and RHB have a .349 wOBA, versus Norris which is rather scary.

                 vs Lvs R   
Julio TeheranATLRPHI152.28.021.831.12.21911.6%3.123.751.02.25242.3%38.5%1.100.3110.252$8400$10000$6850
Wade MileyBALLNYY141.08.692.621.53.3259.3%$6700$5400$5600
John LackeyCHIRSF158.18.872.391.08.21712.7%3.413.691.04.25242.1%32.9%1.280.3090.261$8900$9700$7400
Tim AdlemanCINRSTL35.16.112.802.04.2659.6%3.824.981.33.26040.4%36.7%1.100.3650.353$6,000$5,000$5450
Anthony RanaudoCWSRMIN24.24.726.572.55.2566.3%$5400$4300$5400
Daniel NorrisDETLKC39.27.493.181.13.3038.9%3.864.401.61.34944.2%31.0%1.430.4080.349$6500$6000$6350
Collin McHughHOURTEX148.08.872.431.40.30111.6%4.803.751.49.35845.1%33.9%1.330.3550.364$7900$5600$6350
Edinson VolquezKCRDET160.06.703.211.07.2819.2%5.014.351.48.31154.6%24.3%2.250.3350.335$7100$6200$6350
Chase AndersonMILRPIT124.17.453.261.81.2699.1%4.924.641.41.28737.7%37.2%1.010.3090.399$6300$5200$5600
Andrew AlbersMINLCWS10.16.973.483.48.3676.1%6.974.952.13.37852.8%19.4%2.710.2690.558$5500$4000N/A
Seth LugoNYMRWSH34.27.272.340.26.20710.7%2.604.301.01.23045.4%34.0%1.330.2620.256$6200$4000$6300
Michael PinedaNYYRBAL147.210.242.381.34.27015.2%$8100$6600$6550
Jake ThompsonPHIRATL26.15.474.782.05.2827.6%7.865.501.63.26747.8%32.2%1.480.4040.365$5,900$4,000$5450
Steven BraultPITLMIL14.07.714.500.64.2868.6%3.865.131.64.33341.3%37.0%1.120.3150.359$5800$4700$6450
Johnny CuetoSFRCHI184.17.961.810.68.24010.1%2.983.481.10.28952.3%28.1%1.860.3010.265$9300$10900$7200
Carlos MartinezSTLRCIN158.17.793.180.63.22210.6%3.073.781.17.26958.9%22.8%2.580.3280.218$9800$10600$6650
Chris ArcherTBRTOR169.010.763.201.28.23913.5%$9600$9900$7150
Yu DarvishTEXRHOU71.211.302.511.13.21913.6%$10500$11800$8050
J.A. HappTORLTB161.27.902.621.11.23210.9%3.233.901.15.27045.2%33.3%1.360.2940.299$9400$10300$7000

Night Slate

With a Coors Field game on the slate that I actually want to attack, I will be fading the more expensive options like Danny Salazar tonight. Although, I expect him to be the cash game chalk. I am throwing out three cheapies to you for tonight, all that could be paired with Danny boy if you so choose. Or, you pair two of these players together and load up on bats. That is what I am doing.

Jose De Leon, Los Angeles Dodgers

I find it amazing when a MLB team can be so bad that a rookie call-up starts off a -195 favorite versus them. The thing is, De Leon is no ordinary call up. I know the Dodgers; they are the one constant I have had in my life since I was a child. I also follow their farm system closely. I was making posts about De Leon and buying up his autographed rookie cards on ebay long before today.

It is no coincidence De Leon will start at home in Dodger Stadium today which is 29th in runs scored, facing the worst team in MLB. The Padres are striking out 24.6 percent of the time with a low .295 wOBA (last in MLB) versus RHP. Over the last seven days they are striking out 27 percent of the time and batting a pathetic .196 with a wRC+ of 61. Which was a great number for Roger Maris, but a horrible number for wRC+. Over his last two minor league starts he has 20 strikeouts over 14 innings while allowing only two earned runs. I do not believe he will be on any innings limit as he is more seasoned than Julio Urias, and was reported early on to be more “major league ready”. I am all in on De Leon today and very sad I did not get him in my dynasty league with Ambos.

Christian Friedrich, San Diego Padres

I was crazy for taking Brock Stewart last week, downright insane for starting Jimmy Nelson last night (Who pitched 5 1/3 innings allowing one earned run with four strikeouts), and should have my four-year-old smack me around for taking Friedrich tonight. Even though he has a 5.40 ERA at Dodger Stadium this season and has allowed five earned runs over his last 6 1/3 innings, I am drawn to this play. Call it hunch, but the numbers tell me it is time to attack the Dodgers. Over the last seven days they are batting .236 with a .298 wOBA striking out 23.4 percent of the time. They also struggle horribly versus LHP where they are 29th in wOBA at .286 and have a low wRC+ of 79. I believe most of the SP on the slate are going to have bad nights, why pay for it? The current Dodgers roster is batting .360 (27-for-75) with three HR (Adrian Gonzalez, Yasmani Grandal, and Joc Pederson), 12 RBI, and 19 strikeouts versus Friedrich. If he can strike out 19 batters over 75 plate appearances than it stands to reason at some point he puts it together. Plus, all I can think is Enrique Hernandez, Rob Segedin, Carlos Ruiz, and Yasiel Puig, all who make me want to vomit.

Seth Lugo, New York Mets (Weather concerns???? Keep an eye)

The other guy I love tonight is Seth Lugo. The Nationals are batting .216 with a .251 wOBA over the last seven days, with a horrible wRC+ of 51. They also are in the middle-of-the-road versus RHP with a .321 wOBA striking out 19.2 percent of the time. Meanwhile, Lugo over his last two starts has a 1.64 ERA with nine strikeouts over 11 innings versus the Marlins and anything but nice Cardinals. The Nats are in a funk, Lugo is pitching well, and he is very cheap. I see nothing negative about the risk here for the price.

                 vs Lvs R   
Archie BradleyARIRCOL111.08.434.051.30.2688.3%4.954.301.53.30750.3%27.4%1.830.4130.283$6200$4300$5800
Eduardo RodriguezBOSLOAK74.07.423.281.70.26410.5%5.354.691.41.28433.9%43.8%0.780.3450.343$7200$6500$6800
Danny SalazarCLERMIA127.210.303.950.99.23111.9%3.883.651.32.29648.0%31.4%1.530.2700.330$9900$9000$6950
Jon GrayCOLRARI138.29.743.050.97.23712.9%4.413.731.24.29846.6%30.5%1.530.3040.310$7700$7100$6400
Matt ShoemakerLAARSEA158.28.001.641.02.26713.9%3.913.801.23.31143.3%34.9%1.240.3050.325$8400$10100$6700
Tom KoehlerMIARCLE150.07.263.480.90.26210.4%4.024.611.43.30045.3%30.7%1.470.3330.317$7200$5100$6400
Seth LugoNYMRWSH34.27.272.340.26.20710.7%2.604.301.01.23045.4%34.0%1.330.2620.256$6200$4000$6300
Kendall GravemanOAKRBOS156.$6500$5800$6050
Christian FriedrichSDLLA100.16.463.591.08.2728.9%4.844.781.49.29446.9%34.6%1.360.3150.336$5500$5000$5900
Hisashi IwakumaSEARLAA166.06.511.841.30.2758.6%4.014.371.29.29641.3%37.5%1.100.3280.331$8000$6900$6800
Reynaldo LopezWSHRNYM25.19.954.620.71.29111.9%5.334.251.70.35942.9%31.2%1.380.2910.422$6500$4600$6450

See you next weekend! Off to the woods.

Good luck today. Check your catchers if they played last night.

Follow me on Twitter @RealJerryColvin or email me at

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