Daily Intel – 4/29/2019

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News From Yesterday’s Slate

San Diego Padres – 6
Washington Nationals – 7     (12 Innings)

  • Nats 1B Ryan Zimmerman hit the IL with plantar fasciitis in his right foot, which will keep him out at least three weeks. 1B/OF Matt Adams is an under-the-radar add for mixed leagues owners looking for power and RBI, as he’ll bat cleanup most days with Zimmerman out. Adams did leave seven men on base in his first five at-bats yesterday, but he came through to lead off the bottom of the 12th with a walk-off home run.
  • 3B Anthony Rendon sat out again, his sixth game missed in the last seven, due to an elbow issue stemming from a hit by pitch last weekend.

Miami Marlins – 1
Philadelphia Phillies – 5

  • In the era of disappearing complete games, seeing one yesterday from a younger arm like SP Zach Eflin feels like seeing a four-homer game or something similarly rare in terms of individual performances. Eflin was incredibly efficient, needing only 107 pitches to go nine innings, throwing 77 of them for strikes. He threw first-pitch strikes to 24 of 32 batters, a smart approach against an awful lineup like Miami’s. He only struck out three, allowing one run on seven hits and no walks.
  • Phillies SS Jean Segura was back in the lineup after being hit on the head Saturday, going 3-for-4 with a triple, two runs scored, and an RBI.

Oakland A’s – 4
Toronto Blue Jays – 5     (11 Innings)

  • A shocking blown save for A’s RP Blake Treinen, who was asked to extend himself in to a second inning of work in the 11th after a scoreless 10th. It did not work out, as he allowed a three-run homer to 2B/3B Brandon Drury that tied the game and then a few more baserunners, leading to 1B Justin Smoak grounding a single through the third/short hole to win it. Treinen’s five hits and two walks led to four runs allowed in 1 2/3 innings, pushing his ERA up from 0.68 to 3.00. Treinen has a scary-high 11 walks in 15 innings this year; he walked 21 batters in 80 1/3 innings last season.
  • In addition to Drury staying hot for Toronto, 2B/SS Eric Sogard also continued to rake, going 3-for-6 with a leadoff homer, a single, and a double.

Baltimore Orioles – 1
Minnesota Twins – 4

  • We pointed out yesterday the power streaks Twins OF Max Kepler has been prone to, and that continued yesterday when he led off the game with a homer, his third straight game with one. He added a double in the third inning and also scored on that reach, giving him two runs for the day.
  • Twins RP Blake Parker got the save here, his first since April 17. He threw a perfect ninth inning with two strikeouts.

Milwaukee Brewers – 2
New York Mets – 5

  • Mets 2B Robinson Cano was hit by a pitch on the hand again; last week it was his right hand, this time it was his left. Initial X-rays were negative, and there should be more info today on any timeframe for a return.

Colorado Rockies – 7
Atlanta Braves – 8

  • Braves RP A.J. Minter was a disaster again in the ninth inning, but this time the Braves did not let him ruin their day, pulling him after he allowed two of the first three batters he faced to reach via single. They brought in RP Luke Jackson, who generated a looping fly out and a soft ground out to strand both runners and earn his first career save. After allowing four runs in his first appearance of the season, Jackson hasn’t allowed a run in his last 12 appearances, a span of 13 innings. If you’re speculating for saves, we’d grab Jackson immediately.

Tampa Bay Rays – 4
Boston Red Sox – 2

  • More dominance from Rays SP Tyler Glasnow, as he recorded nine strikeouts in 6 2/3 innings of work to improve to 5-0 on the season. His ERA ticked up to 1.75 on the season after he allowed two earned runs on six hits and a walk. Glasnow did a nice job changing eye levels with his fastball and actually used the changeup nine percent of the time as a third pitch, way up from the 2.5 percent rate he was at entering the game. Glasnow obviously isn’t going to be a 1.75 ERA guy all season, but it would be a real surprise if he finished with an ERA worse than 3.25.
  • SP Chris Sale was a misplay in the outfield by OF Jackie Bradley Jr. away from having a great day in the box score; Bradley probably should have tracked down a deep fly to center field by Rays 3B Yandy Diaz that was over his extended glove and led to two runs scoring, putting Sale in a 4-0 hole in the second inning. The runs were unearned due to an error earlier in the inning. After that, Sale was dominant for the next five innings, and he finished the day with seven innings of work completed, striking out eight and allowing just two earned runs on four hits and three walks. He threw 72 of his 111 pitches for strikes and generated 21 called and 15 swinging strikes.

Detroit Tigers – 1
Chicago White Sox – 4

  • White Sox SP Reynaldo Lopez struck out a career-high 14, displaying an awesome four-seam fastball that generated 17 swinging and 12 called strikes on 69 offerings, and was hitting 97 mph at the end of the outing in the sixth inning. Lopez allowed one unearned run in his six innings of work, only yielding a double, a single, and three walks.
  • Tigers SP Matt Boyd did his best not to be upstaged, striking out nine in his six innings of work, but taking the tough loss after allowing four singles, a double, and a walk for two runs. He’s now got 48 strikeouts and 10 walks in 37 1/3 innings over six starts this season.

Cincinnati Reds – 2
St. Louis Cardinals – 5

  • Cardinals SP/RP Alex Reyes, who was demoted  after a rough start to the year, broke the pinky in his non-throwing hand after punching a wall Thursday following a bad outing at Triple-A. If you were holding on to him in any format, we’d let him go; he’ll only miss three weeks but the Cardinals clearly aren’t happy with his performance or his attitude, making it hard to see how he gets back to the majors before late in the summer.
  • OF Dexter Fowler went 2-for-3 with a double, an RBI, and a walk; he’s got five multi-hit games in his last 10 starts and has reached base in 12 of his last 13 starts. He should be a good source of batting average and runs scored for as long as he’s playing regularly.

Los Angeles Angels – 7
Kansas City Royals – 3

  • Two decent starts in a row now for Angels SP Matt Harvey; he allowed two runs on three hits and two walks over six innings earlier in the week against the Yankees, and he won his first game of the year in this game against the Royals, going seven innings and allowing one run on a double, a single, and three walks. He only struck out two on Tuesday and five yesterday, though, so his value remains limited to the deepest of mixed and AL-only leagues.

Chicago Cubs – 6
Arizona Diamondbacks – 5       (15 Innings)

  • Cubs 3B/OF Kris Bryant went 1-for-6, but the one was a two-run homer, his second homer in three games. He also doubled on Saturday, so the power is starting to creep back in slowly. He added a third RBI on the day via a sacrifice fly.
  • SP/RP Jon Duplantier, the top pitching prospect for Arizona, was called up earlier in the day and made his major league debut in extra innings, working the 10th through the 13th and allowing only one hit and two walks while striking out four. He also worked out of a bases loaded, no out jam in the 12th inning. Duplantier hasn’t been stretched out yet in the minors, so he’s unlikely to have a major impact for fantasy at this point in the year, but he is worth watching closely.

Cleveland Indians – 1
Houston Astros – 4

  • Indians SP Carlos Carrasco looked great after leaving Tuesday’s outing with a knee issue, but he was left in just a couple of batters too long, as the Astros tagged him for three runs with two outs in the seventh inning after a double, an intentional walk, and a home run. He left the game after that, taking the loss despite only having allowed one run, four hits, and two walks in the 6 2/3 innings prior to those last three batters. He also struck out nine.
  • Astros RP Ryan Pressly picked up the save with RP Roberto Osuna unavailable. Pressly’s dominance continued as he threw nine of his 10 pitches for strikes and struck out two batter, though he did allow a double, the first extra-base hit off him this season. Pressly has now worked 12 1/3 innings and allowed just that double and four singles, with no runs or walks, and 13 Ks.

Pittsburgh Pirates –  6
Los Angeles Dodgers – 7

  • Pirates OF Melky Cabrera went 4-for-5 with three RBI and three runs scored, hitting two homers in the first two innings off Dodgers returning SP Rich Hill. He also doubled in the ninth inning off RP Kenley Jansen, who also walked a batter but closed out the game and struck out two to earn his 10th save. Cabrera is swinging at a career-high 50.6 percent rate, and he’s not making impressive contact in terms of velocity, but he is pulling the ball more and he is trying his best to put it in the air. For as long as OFs Starling Marte and Corey Dickerson are out, Cabrera is a good deep league play for volume counting stats and batting average.
  • Hill’s return, despite the two homers by Melky, ended up looking very good in the box score, as four of the five runs scored on him were unearned, and he only allowed five hits without walking a batter while striking out six in six innings. Hill was sharp inside the strike zone and threw 62 of his 85 pitches for strikes; he gets the Padres next on the road over the weekend and should be started in all formats.

New York Yankees – 11
San Francisco Giants – 5

  • Yankees 3B Gio Urshela started for the eighth time in nine games and posted his fifth multi-hit outing in that span, going 2-for-2 with a run scored before being pulled for OF Cameron Maybin as a pinch runner. Urshela has a very impressive 14.5 percent strikeout rate and is hitting the ball harder than in previous seasons, but still below league average. With 3B Miguel Andujar potentially returning this week, Urshela may lose value, but he’s got good value for batting average for as long as he’s playing.
  • Giants RP Will Smith worked for the first time in five days in an obvious non-save situation, and for the first time this year he allowed multiple runs, giving up three on three hits and a walk in the top of the ninth with the Giants down 8-4. The outing lifted his ERA from 1.04 to 3.72.

Texas Rangers – 14
Seattle Mariners – 1

  • Hard to see a reason to roster Mariners SP Erik Swanson after two awful starts this week. He was crushed for 11 hits and nine runs (six earned) yesterday over four innings, five days after he allowed five runs (four earned) on seven hits over 5 2/3 at San Diego. Swanson hasn’t walked anyone in his three starts, but until he figures out how to stay in the zone without getting crushed, he’s useless for fantasy.
  • 2B/OF Danny Santana continues to produce for the Rangers, going 3-for-4 yesterday with three runs scored, an RBI, and his fifth stolen base of the season.
  • Rangers RP Jose Leclerc worked twice in this series after his blowup last Sunday against Houston, and there wasn’t much reason in either of those outings to feel positive about his future value. On Thursday, he allowed two baserunners and struck out two in 2/3 of an inning, and yesterday he allowed a double and a walk in the ninth, striking out one.

Daily Fantasy Recommendations for Monday, April 29 (NOTE: We use DraftKings prices and format, which means two pitchers are required)

  • Catcher
    • High-priced option: Tyler Flowers ($4,100)
    • Low-priced option: Robinson Chirinos ($3,800)
  • First Base
    • High-priced option: Jose Abreu ($5,000)
    • Low-priced option: Ji-Man Choi ($4,000)
  • Second Base
    • High-priced option: Jose Altuve ($4,700)
    • Low-priced option: Kike Hernandez ($3,900)
  • Third Base
    • High-priced option: Josh Donaldson ($4,600)
    • Low-priced option: Johan Camargo ($3,900)
  • Shortstop
    • High-priced option: Tim Anderson ($5,600)
    • Low-priced option: Hernan Perez ($4,000)
  • Outfielder (three required)
    • High-priced option 1: Ronald Acuña Jr. ($4,900)
    • High-priced option 2: Chad Pinder ($4,300)
    • High-priced option 3: Khris Davis ($4,300)
    • Low-priced option 1: Jackie Bradley Jr. ($3,100)
    • Low-priced option 2: Tony Kemp ($3,700)
    • Low-priced option 3: Ryan Cordell ($3,800)
  • Pitcher (two required)
    • High-priced option 1: Patrick Corbin ($10,200)
    • High-priced option 2: Kenta Maeda ($9,700)
    • Low-priced option 1: Yonny Chirinos ($7,900)
    • Low-priced option 2: Manny Bañuelos ($7,500)

Today’s Best Bets

  • Our favorite favorite: WASHINGTON NATIONALS (-145) over St. Louis Cardinals
  • Our favorite underdog: Colorado Rockies (+115) over MILWAUKEE BREWERS
  • Our over/under play: Tampa Bay Rays/KANSAS CITY ROYALS UNDER 8.5 Runs

Yesterday: 1-2 (hit on favorite)
Season: 46-44-1

Note: Best Bets section is for entertainment purposes only.

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