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There is just one slate today and it starts early with the first gaming taking place at 1:05 p.m. ET. In total there are 14 game being played today which gives us a lot of options to choose from. The only downside is that it is a Tuesday which will lead to many regular players getting a day off.
Must Play SP: Clayton Kershaw, LAD ($24,700) @ SF
Kershaw is the clear ace of the day with Charlie Morton and Mike Clevinger coming in second and third. Sure he is pricey but that’s expected for the #1 pitcher in all of baseball. Not only has he been great but very consistent throughout the last 9 years by posting an ERA of less than 3.00 and staying healthy for the most part. Kershaw has the stuff to throw a complete game shutout every time he takes the mound and today he gets to face a Giants lineup that he has seen many times in the past. Although he is off to a slow start by his standards, I expect him to return to being dominant starting today. Let’s face it – it’s only a matter of time till he is back.
Honorable Mention: Charlie Morton, HOU ($22,300) vs SD
Value SP: Jordan Montgomery, NYY ($14,100) vs BAL
Montgomery is tasked with taking on the mighty Orioles lineup which is a difficult matchup for any pitcher and the Yankees ballpark is known to be a pitchers park either. Yet, I have confidence in Montgomery since he has handled the Orioles very well in the past by allowing a miniscule 0.185 BA thanks to his 26.7% K-Rate. Another advantage for Montgomery is that he is a much better pitcher at home even though you would expect it to be the other way around. In 2017, His 3.43 ERA at home was almost a point lower than his Road ERA of 4.38.
Honorable Mention: Luke Weaver, STL ($14,000) vs ARI
IF: Zack Cozart, LAA ($9,300) vs OAK (RHP Kendall Graveman)
I am picking Cozart again today because of the same reasons I picked him yesterday plus that he already has taken Graveman deep in their first matchup. He broke out last year but the injury prone label and position security in LA hurt his value in season long leagues. That doesn’t matter at FantasyDraft thanks to the daily lineups and Cozart has been batting at the top of the lineup in front Mike Trout and Albert Pujols (The RBI God). Cozart hit a career high 24 HR in only just 122 games last year and he is bringing it over into 2018 with already going yard twice. It’s not just the homeruns either, he is showing off his power with 3 doubles and a triple thanks to a 25% LD rate.
Honorable Mention: Jose Abreu, CWS ($8,100) vs DET (RHP Mike Fiers)
OF: Mookie Betts, BOS ($9,900) vs TB (RHP Andrew Kittredge)
Mookie is one of my favorite players watch and what I have noticed is that he performs much better at home. He has faced Kittredge before and is 1-4 with a walk and a double against the inexperienced right hander. Mookie can do it all and will fill out the stat sheet with all sorts of stats including walks, homeruns, and even steals. He does cost a lot today and rightfully so but I would try to include him into my lineup if the budget allows.
Honorable Mention: Josh Reddick, HOU ($8,000) vs SD
Value OF: Corey Dickerson, PIT ($6,900) vs CIN (RHP Tyler Mahle)
In 2017, Dickerson was off to a hot start with the Rays but couldn’t overcome the one weakness in his game, Left Handed Pitching. He started to struggle when he was finally allowed to face lefties. If he has improved is yet to be seen but we won’t be seeing that today as he faces a righty. 24 of his 27 homeruns came against righties last year. He doesn’t have a Homerun in 2018 yet but is 8-16 in the last 4 games.
Honorable Mention: Jose Martinez, STL ($6,700) vs ARI
Top Stack: Yankees vs Orioles (RHP Mike Wright)
Yankees are resting two of their bigger bats today with Gary Sanchez and Didi Gregorious getting a day off but their lineup still has plenty of value. I am more interested in their cheaper bats today and would love to have any combination of Neil Walker ($6,800), Miguel Andujar ($5,400), Tyler Austin ($7,200), and Ronald Torreyes ($5,700). Mike Wright and his 4.84 FIP against the Yankees is nothing to be scared of.
Honorable Mention: Astros vs SD (RHP Tyson Ross)