Daily Fantasy Baseball must starts: Friday September 14th

Evan+Longoria+Tampa+Bay+RaysDon’t get cute today. There are some big bats you need to roster, and a few ideas for sleepers to fill out the rest of your daily fantasy baseball lineup.

Value plays:

Evan Longoria – I typically don’t suggest going for the high priced players, but based on his history against CC Sabathia, it is impossible to ignore what Longoria has done. He holds a .378 batting average and an even more impressive .865 slugging percentage (5 homers) against the big lefty. Elite right handed hitters typically have loads of success at Yankee Stadium, and Longoria should be treated as the best player in daily fantasy baseball games today.

St. Louis Cardinals – Are they slumping? Yes. But they still are the second best hitting team in the majors (.273 team batting average) and have had plenty of success against the Dodgers Chris Capuano. The current Redbirds are batting .364 against the LA lefty with Matt Holliday and David Freese combining for a .433 batting average. Capuano has surrendered 5 home runs in his last 5 starts, making St. Louis a good bet to hit at least one long ball. Both teams desperately need this game, and I’ll take my chances with the defending champs.

Aaron Hill – Of 2B with at least 500 at bats, Hill’s .294 batting average ranks in the top 5. He has quietly produced very nice numbers, and owns a .333 batting average and .867 slugging percentage against Matt Cain. An amazing 80% of Hill’s hits have gone for extra bases, making him a very intriguing option in daily fantasy baseball leagues tonight. Another reason to like Hill is his ability to make contact against one of the best pitchers in the game: he has struck out once against Cain. Success in fantasy baseball is based on making the most of the opportunities presented, and Hill has shown an ability to produce against Matt Cain. Read more…

Daily Fantasy Baseball must starts: Monday August 27th

Daily Fantasy Baseball Must StartsThere are plenty of solid options on a slower day in the MLB, but can you really justify not rostering Nelson Cruz these days?

Value plays:

Miguel Montero – The Diamondbacks catcher is quietly on pace for his best season of his career, and with a matchup against Bronson Arroyo, I like that trend to continue. He has 8 hits (4 for extra bases) in 15 career at bats (.533 batting average) against the Reds righty, leading Arizona in HR’s, hits, and RBI. He is slugging 1.200, a number that is impossible to ignore on a slow Monday in the majors. Montero averages a little more than 1 walk every 3 games, making this free swinging catcher a player with a high ceiling against the Reds.

Nelson Cruz – Nobody on planet Earth is hotter than Cruz, and not even the great David Price has a good chance to slow him down. Cruz owns a .500 batting average against the Rays ace with a .800 slugging percentage. The Rangers lineup should benefit from pitchers wanting to face Cruz with the bases empty, leading me to believe that the top of this order will come out swinging and provide Cruz with run producing opportunities. The past numbers are great and he simply cannot be retired these days; you’ve got to ride out this remarkable fantasy baseball streak as long as it lasts.

Carlos Beltran – Can I make it any more clear? The Cardinals offense is rounding into form, and Beltran should lead the charge tonight against A.J. Burnett. The St. Louis outfielder has a .333 batting average against the Pirates ace with more RBI (10) than hits (9). The Cardinals as a team are batting .322 against Burnett, and I trust this veteran team to piece together quality at bats tonight. Burnett has given up 28 hits and 14 earned runs over his last 3 games, providing Pirates fans with a glimpse of what Yankee fans saw last season. This is a HUGE series for the NL playoff picture, and for daily fantasy baseball games, I like the Cardinals (specifically Beltran) to steal the show today. Read more…

Daily Fantasy Baseball must starts: Saturday August 25th

Daily Fantasy Baseball Must StartsAs we approach the conclusion of the regular season, expect wild things to happen in the chase for the final playoff spots. Teams that need to win games often end up producing in a big way, making the Cardinals and Orioles interesting options for tonight’s action.

Value plays:

St. Louis Cardinals – I’ve written about them before I’ll say it again: you’re crazy to bet against this team this time of year. The healthy Cardinals (Berkman is still on the DL) are batting .297 against Mike Leake and are treating every game like a playoff game. Two of their best hitters (David Freese and Matt Holliday) lead the way against the Reds righty, combining for a .474 batting average with only a single strikeout. Skip Schumaker could be a sneaky play in daily fantasy baseball leagues, as he has knocked in 5 runs in 6 career at bats against Leake. Look for Rafeal Furcal to set the stage, and the big bats (Beltran, Holliday, Freese, and Molina) of St. Louis to cash him in more often than not.

Adam Jones – The upstart O’s have stayed in the playoff picture all season long, and their stud outfielder figures to get them one day closer to the postseason with a big effort against Brandon Morrow and the Toronto Blue Jays. Jones is batting .364 against the righty with an impressive .682 slugging percentage (38% of his hits have gone for extra bases). Those numbers are impressive, and when you combine them with the fact that he hits better at home (41 point rise in batting average, more runs, more RBI, and more SB’s), he becomes a can’t miss player in daily fantasy baseball leagues. Read more…

Daily Fantasy Baseball must starts: Friday August 24th

Daily Fantasy Baseball Must StartsTwo teams chasing a playoff berth are good bets to produce great fantasy days, as is one of the best hitters in the MLB.

Value plays:

St. Louis Cardinals – Those who don’t learn from the past are destined to repeat it. If you missed out on the Cardinals run last year, don’t compound the error this year, as they are positioning themselves nicely to slip into the playoffs once again. Tonight the offense figures to steal the show, as the current Red Birds are batting .368 against Mat Latos and slugging .563. Carlos Beltran has 3 hits (all home runs) in 5 at bats against the righty, while Rafael Furcal (.400 batting average against Latos) and John Jay (.545) figure to get one base early and often. Matt Holliday is the lone regular who has struggled against Latos (.182 batting average), but he has managed a team high 5 RBI thanks in large part to his teammates getting on base ahead of him. I’m not betting against the Cardinals for the rest of the season, and daily fantasy baseball owners should at least consider rostering a few St. Louis players on a regular basis.

Torii Hunter and Maicer Izturis – What? You were expecting a different Angels tandem? The big names may garner most of the fantasy attention most days, but don’t be surprised if it is these two that set the stage for a big night against the Tigers Rick Porcello. The duo is batting .545 with half of their hits going for extra bases. Hunter has as many RBI as hits, and his position in the lineup is ideal for run production. Izturis has been a different hitter since the beginning of July, raising his batting average by 30 points. He isn’t likely to be on many radars tonight, but for the price, there might not be a better bargain. Read more…

MLB best bets of the day: July 22, 2012

Lance Lynn Cardinals

After a less than stellar day yesterday we hope to put that pain behind us and move on.  We have some decent pitchers going today, and some, well, terrible ones… Jeremy Guthrie will be making his Kansas City Royals debut; Jordan Lyles will be looking to improve upon his 6.81 road ERA; Lance Lynn is going for his 12th win; Philip Humber and the White Sox will be looking to regain the division lead.

Houston at Arizona 4:10 PM Lyles vs Collmenter

As mentioned, Jordan Lyles doesn’t perform well on the road and luckily for the Diamondbacks, they’ll be facing the righty and the putrid Astros offense at home today. Arizona hitters haven’t faced Lyles much, but when they have they’re hitting .524 with an OPS of 1.190 – Not a great sample size, but a little is better than nothing.

Look for Justin Upton, Gerardo Parra and Miguel Montero to have some run-producing at bats today.

Picks: Diamondbacks -1 ½ (Even) and Over 9 (-120)

Chicago Cubs at St. Louis 2:15 PM Wood vs Lynn

Since giving up five earned runs or more in three consecutive starts in June Lance Lynn has been dominant. Lynn is sporting a 0.69 ERA and 0.92 WHIP in July and has recorded 17 strikeouts in just 13 IP. Furthermore, current Cubs are hitting just .227 against the 25-year-old red bird. Read more here…

Unsung Hero: Grover Cleveland (Pete Alexander)

Pete AlexanderWe are continuing our weekly segment with Unsung Hero… where YourSportsCheckup dives back in the archives of sports and picks someone that was underrated, not given enough shine or you just forgot about. This week in light of baseball season being in full swing, I wanted to highlight…

Grover Cleveland Alexander (February 26, 1887 – November 4, 1950), nicknamed “Old Pete”, was an American Major League Baseball pitcher. He played for the Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs, and St. Louis Cardinals and was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1938.  Read More…