Dan Beaver

Cap Considerations

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Caps After Talladega (Fall)

Tuesday, October 10, 2017


At this stage of the season, the NASCAR Fantasy Live game is settling into a comfortable spot.  Most of the drivers at the top of the order are about where they should be. The six who are valued at $26.75 and greater are in spots that appropriate for their past 60-day performance. Only Kyle Larson and Kyle Busch swapped positions with 25 cent movements and even that might have been avoided if not for the accident on the No. 18.

Otherwise, Martin Truex Jr., Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, and Matt Kenseth all performed according to plan and earned enough points in this salary cap game to be worthwhile values.

The next level of drivers was a different story. From the $23 to $26.50 range, there were a number of increases. All of them were for 25 cents only and each was designed to bring the driver to a natural level.

Jamie McMurray jumped to $26.50 in large part because of the fact that he finally scored a top-five finish for the first time in more than 18 races. He has been a great value nonetheless with a seven-race streak of top-15s since the series rolled out of Watkins Glen International this summer. His average finish of 11.4 made him a place-and-hold driver when he was $1 cheaper than today and hopefully many players acquired him at an even cheaper rate.

Chase Elliott scored his third second-place finish in four playoff races. That might be a little frustrating to a driver still seeking his first win of his NASCAR career, but fantasy owners are reaping the benefits of consistently strong outings. Elliott’s next best opportunity to win will come at Kansas Speedway in two weeks and if he can survive the wild card race at Talladega SuperSpeedway, he will increase in value once more.

Erik Jones was another major driver to increase by 25 cents. He broke a shock at Charlotte Motor Speedway and fell two laps off the pace, but this team kept their heads, stayed in a position to get the Wave Arounds and Free Pass, and salvaged a decent finish. He earned substantial points after missing qualification and rolling off the grid deep in the field. Place-differential points can make a difference even for a driver who finishes 17th like Jones did in the Bank of America 500.

After Busch, Clint Bowyer was the next highly valued driver to take a decrease in salary. He fell 25 cent to $23.75. This was partly because he finished 27th at Charlotte. That was his third sub-20th-place finish in the past six weeks and if makes him a questionable value. He has a good record on the restrictor-plate, superspeedways, however, and the 25 cents he lost this week might allow players to upgrade their marquee pick.

The same thing is true of Aric Almirola. He lost 50 cents of value and fell to $10.75. He has been struggling since returning from injury. He has only two top-15s in his last 12 efforts and an average finish of 23.4. That is not terrible, but his points-per-dollar ratio is still out of whack, so it was difficult to keep him at a higher level. Plate tracks are unpredictable and one is reluctant to make major changes just for them. The good news is that Almirola has a pair of top-10s at Talladega SuperSpeedway in his last two starts and could be this week’s hidden gem.

 

Driver

Diff

 |

This Week’s Caps

Gainers

Kyle Larson

 $     0.25

 |

 $     27.75

Jamie McMurray

 $     0.25

 |

 $     26.50

Chase Elliott

 $     0.25

 |

 $     26.25

Erik Jones

 $     0.25

 |

 $     25.25

Ryan Newman

 $     0.25

 |

 $     24.25

Kurt Busch

 $     0.25

 |

 $     21.00

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

 $     0.25

 |

 $     20.50

Ty Dillon

 $     0.25

 |

 $     17.75

Ryan Blaney

 $     0.25

 |

 $     17.25

Danica Patrick

 $     0.25

 |

 $     13.50

Dale Earnhardt Jr.

 $     0.25

 |

 $     13.25

Michael McDowell

 $     0.25

 |

 $     10.75

David Ragan

 $     0.25

 |

 $       8.25

Landon Cassill

 $     0.25

 |

 $       5.75

Corey Lajoie

 $     0.25

 |

 $       5.25

Losers

Kyle Busch

 $    (0.25)

 |

 $     27.50

Clint Bowyer

 $    (0.25)

 |

 $     23.75

Trevor Bayne

 $    (0.25)

 |

 $     17.25

Chris Buescher

 $    (0.25)

 |

 $     14.75

Kasey Kahne

 $    (0.25)

 |

 $     12.75

Aric Almirola

 $    (0.50)

 |

 $     10.75

AJ Allmendinger

 $    (0.50)

 |

 $     10.50

 



Dan Beaver has been covering fantasy NASCAR for more than 12 years with a little help from his >500,000 record database. He can be found on Twitter @FantasyRace.
Email :Dan Beaver



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