There has been a lot of offense this weekend but a lot of it has come from up and comers like Travis Shaw and Jackie Bradley Jr. rather than traditional stars like Mike Trout and Andrew McCutchen who are at bargain basement prices in salary. Today is the day to load up on your “go to” guys while their salaries are so affordable, and thankfully there are so many strong, reliable starters on the bump.
Jose Altuve, Astros – $10,800 vs. Boston Red Sox
In the last week Altuve has batted .464 with an OPS of 1.127 with three stolen bases and today he faces Sean O’Sullivan who has a career ERA of 5.96. The Astros/Sox series has been one of the highest in baseball and Sunday shouldn’t be any different. Both teams are good stacks, start with Altuve.
David Ortiz, Red Sox – $10,400 vs. Houston Astros
When making these picks it feels like I shouldn’t select the most obvious players and that’s what David Ortiz is. He is tearing pitchers apart right now with a .400 batting average, 1.467 OPS, three home runs, and eight RBIs in his six previous games. There is an argument that a hot streak has to come to an end, but there is also the phrase “don’t bet against a streak.” Ortiz is locked out and as safe a selection as there is in DFS right now.
Mike Trout, Angels – $8,700 vs. Seattle Mariners
By recommending David Ortiz I played it safe but with slight concern that the scorching hot bat has too cool, but with Mike Trout it’s the opposite. He has batted .273 with an OPS of .862 and only one home run and one stolen base in his previous six games and today he faces Felix Hernandez, which is the good news. Trout is 25 for 68 with five home runs and a 1.106 OPS in his career against the King and he is at a bargain basement salary of $8,700. I like the sample size of success against Felix Hernandez and the price for one of the two best players in the game is phenomenal.
Adam Jones, Orioles – $8,400 vs. Detroit Tigers
I wanted to travel down the contrarian route by picking Andrew McCutchen ($8,000) or Starlin Marte (7,600) who are facing Jon Lester at Wrigley Field and I am recommending them both today, but Adam Jones has been too good to ignore in this column. He has 12 hits in his previous 26 at bats with four home runs, eight RBIs, eight runs scored and a 1.443 OPS and he faces rookie Michael Fulmer at Camden Yards. The numbers are loud and the park is homer friendly which should mean a rough day for Fulmer, at least from Adam Jones.
Jose Fernandez, Marlins – $22,800 vs. Washington Nationals
Fernandez is a no brainer in cash games while there is a case to be made against him in tournaments. He has 58 punch-outs in 40.2 innings pitched which makes him an easy cash game play, but with a less than filthy ERA of 3.54 and Whip of 1.30 this season and the likelihood of a high ownership percentage and an expensive salary I can see the case for sitting him in tournaments. None-the-less, today should be a strikeout day for the electric right-hander versus the Nationals.
Felix Hernandez, Mariners – $22,000 vs. Los Angeles Angels
There has been a lot of talk about Felix’s drop in velocity and not enough talk about his 2.27 ERA and 1.19 Whip. With 33 strikeouts in 43.2 innings pitched there are signs that he isn’t as dominant as he once was, but he should do well against the struggling Angels who rank 24th in home runs, 23rd in runs scored and 20th in team OPS.
Kevin Gausman, Orioles – $15,600 vs. Detroit Tigers
Gausman is a guy that Fantasy players have been holding out high hopes for quite some time and this season he is starting to deliver with a 2.16 ERA, .80 Whip and 23 strikeouts in 25 innings pitched. His strikeouts and low ratios make him a strong second starter option against a Tigers team that has one home run, a .205 team batting average and .540 OPS against him in 44 career at bats.