Stream Team: Cashing In On Aces
Over $6,000 in prize money is on the line in Monday’s MVP and Single competitions at FanDuel and, as usual, there’s even more to come over the rest of the week. All lineup decisions are obviously important in a FanDuel league, but we know from experience that hitting on the right pitcher pickup is critical to having monetary success when the final pitch is thrown.
Your three FanDuel Stream Team options for each day are listed below, with an asterisk next to my personal pick of each day. You’ll also find a Roto Stream Team on each day, the five best pitchers owned in 40 percent of Yahoo leagues or less that you could conceivably stream in your league.
Ace: Alexi Ogando, TEX at LAA ($6,500). He was shelled in his last start (against the Mariners, oddly enough), but he’s absolutely owned the Angels so far, allowing them just one run in 22 innings. He shut them out in Los Angeles over eight innings in his first start after the break, and he’ll be looking to do the same on Monday.
Middle Man: Rodrigo Lopez, CHC at HOU ($4,300). Lopez was solid in his last start against the Nationals, going 5.2 innings while allowing one earned run on five hits and no walks. He should turn in another quality performance against the Astros, who rank 28th in scoring since the All Star Break. It seems simple, but it’s always a good idea to target terrible offenses when looking at your matchups.
*Wild Card: Henderson Alvarez, TOR at SEA ($2,300). Alvarez made his MLB debut in his last start, allowing eight hits and three runs in 5.2 innings against the Athletics. He should do much better in Seattle, where the last-place Mariners’ offense awaits. Last place in what, you ask? Runs, hits, average, OBP, SLG, OPS … it ain’t pretty. If you can stream a pitcher against a lineup that has an OBP under .300 for the season, you take it.
Roto Stream Team: 1. Randy Wolf (vs. LAD), 2. Henderson Alvarez (at SEA), 3. Jake Westbrook (at PIT), 4. Rodrigo Lopez (at HOU), 5. R.A. Dickey (at SD).
*Ace: Cory Luebke, SD vs. NYM ($6,300). I’m going back to the converted reliever yet again. He’s been simply phenomenal over this last two starts, striking out 17 batters over just 12 innings. He did allow four walks in his last start after going walk-less in his previous two outings. Considering he’s only issues 26 free passes in 93.1 innings this year, I’ll give him a pass on the performance. He’ll face the Mets for the second time in a week in this matchup.
Middle Man: Erik Bedard, BOS vs. TB ($6,100). Bedard, knowing he was likely to be traded within the next few days, was trounced by the Rays during his last start with the Seattle Mariners, which was his first start since being activated from the DL. He was then sent to Boston, where he posted two solid performances, allowing five runs in 10 innings while racking up 11 strikeouts. He’ll look to get his revenge against the Rays on Tuesday as part of a doubleheader.
Wild Card: Randall Delgado, ATL vs. SF ($2,000). Rookie Randall Delgado was called up for the second time this season after Tommy Hanson needed a trip to the disabled list. In his first start, the Rangers collected seven hits and two walks in four innings, along with three earned runs. He’s been much better in the minors this year, and his status as an elite prospect should translate into a great start against a Giants offense that’s the worst in the majors since the All-Star Break.
Roto Stream Team: 1. Cory Luebke (vs. NYM), 2. Randall Delgado (vs. SF), 3. Ivan Nova (at KC), 4. Mike Leake (at WAS), 5. Jonathon Niese (at SD).
*Ace: Bartolo Colon, NYY at KC ($6,400). Colon is the first of two bargain aces worth selecting on Wednesday. He’s allowed two runs or less in each of his last five starts, bringing his ERA to 3.31 on the season. Sporting a solid career WHIP and K:BB ratio against the Royals, he should grab a win against the Royals.
Middle Man: Jair Jurrjens, ATL vs. SF ($6,300). If you want to gamble a little bit, you could roll with Jurrjens in his first start off the DL. The matchup is right — San Francisco’s offensive post-break ineptitude is surpassed by none, as they’ve scored just 84 runs in the last month of work. Unfortunately for Jurrjens, he’s up against Matt Cain, which further downgrades his matchup. At that price though, he’s worth considering, though I’ll ultimately roll with Colon.
Wild Card: Kyle Lohse, STL at PIT ($4,300). Lohse is generally a poor bet to do well in any competition involving strikeouts, but with the Pirates floundering at the plate over the last month, he stands a great chance at posting a quality start and a win. That’s good enough for the cheap price tag.
Roto Stream Team: 1. Brandon McCarthy (vs. BAL), 2. Bud Norris (vs. CHC), 3. Nathan Eovaldi (at MIL), 4. Paul Maholm (vs. STL), 5. Ross Detwiler (vs. CIN)
*Ace: Ian Kennedy, ARI at PHI ($8,500). He’s not the most cost-effective purchase of the day, but what Kennedy does have is wins in each of his last seven starts, as well as a complete game shutout (with 10 Ks, no less) against the Phillies early in the season. With Vance Worley also on the mound, this matchup features pitchers with a combined record of 23-4 this year. Someone’s gotta win, and I think it’ll be Kenendy.
Middle Man: Mike Minor, ATL vs. SF ($6,100). Minor has been up and down this season, with a 4.84 ERA and 1.61 WHIP through eight starts at the major-league level and a 3.22 ERA in 100.2 innings in the minors. He doesn’t stand the best shot of picking up a win against Tim Lincecum, but he is facing a terrible offense and could post a strong strikeout total in a low-scoring affair.
Wild Card: Philip Humber, CHW vs. CLE ($5,000). We’re short on cheap options for Thursday, so we’ll throw Humber into the mix even though he’s allowed four or more runs in each of his last five starts, despite only having two such games in his first 15 starts this year. You’re better off spending the big bucks on a quality ace instead of hoping Humber turns it around in this game.
Roto Stream Team: 1. Mike Minor (vs. SF), 2. Javier Vazquez (at SD), 3. Luke Hochevar (vs. BOS), 4. Philip Humber (vs CLE), 5. Marco Estrada (vs. LAD).