Friday, April 17, 2009

4/17: Favorable Matchups

A few people have asked me to start discussing favorable matchups the day before the games, so that they can take the advice into account when setting lineups for games like ESPN Baseball Challenge and Yahoo, where transactions have to be done the day before. I'll do it when I can, but can't promise anything - I'm mostly evaluating the match-ups when I've got a few minutes to set my lineup for Draftbug daily fantasy baseball contests which only lock a few minutes before the earliest games start.

For today's games, the hitters on the Phillies, Royals, and Cubs have favorable match-ups.

The Phillies match-up is pretty interesting. Chris Young is actually a pretty good pitcher, but he's also a flyball pitcher on the road in a great home run park. That still would make this only a moderately good matchup for the Phillies. What puts some of their players over the top is that Young is possibly the worst pitcher in baseball when it comes to holding runners on base. Guys like Rollins and Victorino will have a chance to run wild on the basepaths.

The Royals against Matt Harrison in Texas is very favorable as well. Harrison is not good. Texas is good for hitters. Anybody who plays is a nice potential sleeper, even in points leagues where you might not normally consider them. I'll be eyeing Coco Crisp for use in some of my contests. Not that he'll be quite as valuable as the top outfielders, but he'll be close enough, and a bargain that will allow me to use more expensive players like Rollings and Utley.

The Cubs at home against Walters have a nice match-up too. Walters should have a respectable strikeout rate, but he's wild, and any team at home in a hitters park shoudld be expected to perform well.

On the pitching side, Hamels would appear to be the clear standout, except for his one strikeout performance last time out, following health concerns. Because of that, he's risky and those not willing to take a chance may want to look elsewhere.

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