But nine touts have golden tickets into the finals already. All honor to Brian Walton, Rob Leibowitz, Patrick Mayo, Jason Collette, Jeff Erickson, Patrick Davitt, Tristan Cockcroft, Rick Wolf and Tim Heaney.
Each week we ask who the touts are picking tonight. Their answers follow, and you can follow the night’s action (or play tonight’s game for prizes or for free) at RTSports.com/tout-wars.
Who are they picking?
I like Jacob DeGrom ($8,700 vs Cubs) at home. I rostered Danny Espinosa ($3,200 vs Cincinnati) BEFORE last night’s explosion; I’m sticking with him.
Tough night – risky pitchers abound. I’m going with Steven Wright ($6,800 vs Angels) at home vs. the Angels. If he can contain Trout he should post a good start. Hitter: Daniel Murphy ($4,900 vs Cincinnati) is still way too cheap.
1B Victor Martinez ($4,700 @ Tampa Bay): Coming off a six-homer June, he’ll face gopher-ball-plagued Drew Smyly. V-Mart boasts .931 OPS against southpaws.
SP Steven Wright ($6,800 vs. Angels): Sad Angels lineup a perfect target for the knuckleballer.
Top Starting Pitchers Tanner Roark ($6,600 vs Cincinnati) and Ian Kennedy ($5,300 @ Philadelphia) I typically pay top dollar for starting pitching, but in tonight’s contest, I am taking a contrarian approach. I don’t see the value in paying top dollar to roster Johnny Cueto (SP-SF) at $9,000, especially after his latest outing where he gave up 6 earned runs and has a difficult opponent tonight at Arizona. The same also applies to rostering Jacob DeGrom (SP-NYM) at $8,700. His matchup tonight is a tough one at home against Jason Hammel of the Chicago Cubs. Plus there is a 75% chance of rain tonight in New York. Tanner Roark is at home versus Cincinnati and can be rostered for only $6,600. He’s won 3 out of his last 4 outings and has averaged 6 strikeouts per game over this time period. Ian Kennedy has a favorable matchup at Philadelphia and is coming of a great outing on June 26th versus Houston where he struck out 11 hitters.
Top Hitter Charlie Blackmon ($6,300 @ Dodgers) Charlie Blackmon is facing right-handed pitcher Bud Norris tonight in Los Angeles. Against right-handed starting pitchers, Charlie Blackmon is batting .310 with 9 nine home runs and 30 RBIs. Over the past week, Blackmon owns an OPS of 1.072.
A fresh start is what I need, along with some of that magic I had last year!
Top Pitcher, and the guy who won it for me last year was Clayton Kershaw, who is now on the DL. Maybe that is a sign I should take the pitcher who is taking his spot!?! Bud Norris ($4,400 vs Colorado) had been pitching well in ATL and getting some Ks, which when healthy he always has. Hoping for 8 tonight with 7 innings and a win, get me 20 Bud!
Top hitters..stacking Houston vs CWS and Marwin Gonzalez ($3,500), Jose Altuve ($5,900), Colby Rasmus ($4,200), Evan Gattis ($4,700) and Luis Valbuena ($3,100). Hoping Stro’s score in double digits and this group is productive.
I like Jacob DeGrom ($8,700 vs Cubs) and Steven Wright ($6,800 vs. Angels) as pitchers, and Ian Desmond ($4,900 @ Minnesota) on the hitting end.
Top pitcher: Julio Teheran ($7,100 vs Miami) The Marlins offense has been good this year – and there are certainly softer match-ups tonight – but Teheran has pitched like an ace the last few weeks and is priced like a second-tier pitcher. He is one of the 10 best pitchers in baseball by Baseball Prospectus’ WARP. Even if he doesn’t throw another gem, I’ll take the bargain.
Top Hitter: David Ortiz ($6,700 vs Angels) Jhoulys Chacin has struggled away from Anaheim. A Red Sox stack with Ortiz front and center is just what the DFS doctor ordered this evening.
My fave picks:
Johnny Cueto ($9,000 @ Arizona) Last outing was an aberration
Michael Fulmer ($6,900 @ Tampa Bay) He’s been a great find this last month (June) and last outing was explained by his dehydration
Mike Trout ($6,700 @ Boston) Captain Obvious, I know. But he’s been on a hot streak even by the standards he sets.
I need a solid outing tonight. Counting on my band of misfits here.