The two biggest lefty killers will carry daily fantasy baseball lineups – USA TODAY
First game: All 15 contests will be played at 7:05 p.m. or later. You can edit every player up until his individual start time.
Aces up every sleeve: It’s once again a loaded pitching day. Clayton Kershaw faces the strikeout-happy Chicago Cubs, but the offensive strategy below probably doesn’t allow you to choose his price ($9,900, 19.8% of cap), the highest on the docket today. There are plenty of alternatives.
Interleague alert: The Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees and Oakland Athletics will lose their designated hitters this weekend. Keep an eye on lineups. David Ortiz probably will play first base at least once, but the slumping Alex Rodriguez might be relegated to pinch-hitting duties.
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Max Scherzer, Washington Nationals vs. Miami Marlins
$8.500 salary | 17.0% of cap
His price has dipped thanks to a 7.80 ERA in his last three starts, fueled by a dipping arm slot that’s flattening out his fastball. But he threw a quality start last week and should get back on track against the Fish, who have the second-lowest OPS (.680) on the season and still don’t have Giancarlo Stanton in the lineup.
Michael Wacha, St. Louis Cardinals at San Francisco Giants
$7,600 salary | 15.2% of cap
Another price loophole on which to capitalize. Wacha probably isn’t long for this discount given his sparkling 1.38 ERA this month in what has been a brilliant year. This matchup at arguably the league’s best pitcher’s park against a woeful home offense should pay big-time.
Aaron Nola, Philadelphia Phillies vs. San Diego Padres
$6,800 salary | 13.6% of cap
Despite some trouble with homers, the right-hander has settled in nicely with a 3.59 ERA and 34 K’s in 42 2/3 innings. The Padres haven’t liked leaving Petco Park, posting the sixth-lowest road OPS (.679), along with the fifth-worst (.686) vs. righties.
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OF Nelson Cruz, Seattle Mariners at Chicago White Sox (John Danks)
$6,200 salary | 12.4% of cap
3B Josh Donaldson, Toronto Blue Jays vs. Detroit Tigers (Matt Boyd)
$6,400 salary | 12.8% of cap
Do all you can to fit the batters with the highest (1.159) and second-highest (1.117) OPS against southpaws in your lineup today. Each team provides steady alternatives if you can’t.
For Cruz, Austin Jackson ($3,900 salary, 7.8% of cap): He’s 23-for-52 (.442) with three home runs, 12 RBI and a 1.164 OPS lifetime against Danks. Also, Franklin Gutierrez ($3,600, 7.2%) has a two-game homer streak and typically dings southpaws well.
For Donaldson, 1B Chris Colabello ($4,700, 9.4%), who has hit .324 with five homers in 71 at-bats against lefties.
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SS Wilmer Flores, New York Mets vs. Boston Red Sox (Henry Owens)
$4,500 salary | 9.0% of cap
The Metropolitans are scorching at the dish. Flores enjoys facing lefties: .303/.347/.551 with five home runs and 13 RBI in 89 at-bats this year. Eight of his 14 homers have come at Citi Field.
C Jason Castro, Houston Astros at Minnesota Twins (Kyle Gibson)
$2,600 salary | 5.2% of cap
Ten of Castro’s 11 homers this year have come against righties, and Gibson (6.35 August ERA) ranks 18th among qualified starting pitchers with a 13.2 rate of fly-ball-to-homer conversion (HR/FB). This’ll save you some bucks to squeeze in the big boppers.