Hector Noesi has frequented the Daily Forecast throughout this season. He’s a great pitcher to target against, given his flyball tendencies, .367 wOBA vs RHB (.343 vs LHB), and inflated 1.64 HR/9 vs lefties, the highest of all probable pitchers today.
Now, if you peruse Noesi’s game log, you’ll see he hasn’t been too terrible lately, tossing a few decent games to go along with the clunkers feeding his numbers above. Even if Noesi is settling down as the season goes along, this is a tough draw against a red-hot Mariners club. Also take into consideration that the White Sox bullpen has been abysmal lately, and they could easily give up 5+ runs themselves.
I’ll be sure to have plenty of Mariners in my lineups this evening, led by Robinson Cano, Kyle Seager, and Dustin Ackley. Logan Morrison and Mike Zunino make for a sufficient value plays, and Kendrys Morales is a tournament option in a likely cleanup role.
Robinson Cano (2B) – SEA: Not only is Cano the top second baseman of the day, he can be considered one of the best hitters overall. A cushy matchup against the aforementioned struggles of Hector Noesi should be enough to keep Cano’s 10 game hit-streak alive…and then some.
Anthony Rizzo (1B) – CHC – EARLY: Rays’ rookie pitcher Jake Odorizzi has been a pleasant surprise, but he may be "leaking some oil" at this point in the season. Odorizzi was jumped early in his last start vs the Angels, and if fatigue is an issue, Rizzo is the most likely Cubs’ bat to seize the opportunity.
Matt Kemp (OF) – LAD: He’s heating up at the right time for the Dodgers. Tonight he will take on Mike Fiers, who despite his name, is a spot-starting pitcher not to be feared. I’m liking LA to put up some runs, led by Kemp’s rejuvenated swing (and also Adrian Gonzalez batting cleanup).
Devin Mesoraco (C) – CIN: It’s hard to say what Miami pitcher Brad Penny will bring to the table today, given his last MLB start occurred in 2011. Still, Mesoraco has absolutely crushed righties this season (.412 wOBA), inspiring confidence to dub him one of the top Catcher options against a flaky spot-starter in Great American Ballpark.
Ryan Howard (1B) – PHI: Howard is starting to find his groove again, racking up 8 RBI’s and 4 runs in his last four games. He’s more of a boom or bust option, and I actually think Adrian Gonzalez may be a safer H2H & 50/50 style pick for a similar price. However, Howard is sitting pretty vs Dillon Gee (.346 wOBA vs LHB), who he has fantastic career numbers against (9/20, 6 HR, 14 RBI).
Dustin Ackley (OF) – SEA: Everyone’s favorite value play got a little more expensive ($3,300 on FanDuel), so do your best to avoid frugality when it comes to the "fantasy flavor of the week". Ackley refuses to fall out of relevancy, and I'm expecting that to be the case again batting 2nd for this well-aligned Seattle team.
Matt Adams (1B) – STL – EARLY: Ubaldo Jimenez generally succumbs to lefties (.339 wOBA), plus today will mark his first start in over a month. I like a lot of Cardinal bats in the early slate, as guys like Adams, Wong, Carpenter, and even Peralta have some serious upside considering the matchup and park shift to Camden Yards.
Jay Bruce (OF) – CIN: With Brad Penny taking the mound for Miami, I'm loving Bruce Almighty’s chances with the platoon advantage at Great American Ballpark. Consider him a Top 10 outfielder for a bargain price of $2,900 on FanDuel.
Mark Trumbo (OF) – ARI: Mr. Trumbo is in the same boat as Bruce Almighty (wait, that's "Evan Almighty" with the boat), ranked in the top 10 amongst outfielders for a cheap salary. He’ll face another one of Colorado’s precarious lefties in Jorge De La Rosa. Trumbo has shown progress in his current five game hitting-streak, and we all know a monster game is right around the corner.
Yu Darvish – TEX: Darvish is the Ace of the day, going up against a Houston team that he has historically dominated (with the exception of his last meeting). The Astros have been playing a lot better recently, but so has Darvish by racking up 33 strikeouts in 25 innings (6 ER) since the All-Star break. No other pitcher in action today has "knockout punch" like Yu, and he checks in as the second largest favorite to earn the all-important win.
Garrett Richards – LAA: If you don’t want to spend on Darvish, you could go with the "store brand" version in Garrett Richards: comparable, economically priced, but not quite as exciting (with upside). The Angels breakout hurler is back on track following a shutout in his last start, and Boston ranks below-average in all the major hitting categories.
Francisco Liriano – PIT: Liriano has an excellent matchup against a Padres team that is BY FAR the worst in MLB vs left-handed hurlers. He weathered a tumultuous start to the season, but has leveled off with 29 IP 4 ER 29 K’s in his last four starts. Consistent recent play, great matchup, pitcher-friendly park, anticipated run support: don't be leery to click Liriano this evening.