Back at it for a full-slate Friday, we are!

Make picks, I will.

Talk like Yoda, I’ll stop.

We have 15 games in the majors and pitching is lackluster. There’s one clear top option and he makes today’s Index. But before we get to the picks, let’s take a look at today’s rankings.

Catcher

  1. Martin Maldonado
  2. Gary Sanchez
  3. Alex Avila
  4. Manny Pina
  5. Buster Posey

First Base

  1. Paul Goldschmidt
  2. Anthony Rizzo
  3. Matt Carpenter
  4. Eric Hosmer
  5. Joey Gallo

Second Base

  1. Daniel Murphy
  2. Chris Taylor
  3. Jose Altuve
  4. Neil Walker
  5. Rougned Odor

Third Base

  1. Jake Lamb
  2. Travis Shaw
  3. Manny Machado
  4. Miguel Sano
  5. Mike Moustakas

Shortstop

  1. Brandon Crawford
  2. Freddy Galvis
  3. Kike Hernandez
  4. Jean Segura
  5. Ketel Marte

Outfielders

  1. Mike Trout
  2. Bryce Harper
  3. Ryan Braun
  4. David Peralta
  5. Yoenis Cespedes

PItchers

  1. Rich Hill
  2. Marcus Stroman
  3. Carlos Carrasco
  4. NIck Pivetta
  5. Seth Lugo

Top Stacks

  1. Arizona Diamondbacks
  2. Washington Nationals
  3. San Francisco Giants
  4. Kansas City Royals
  5. Minnesota Twins

 

Rich Hill – SP – Los Angeles Dodgers – $12,200

Analysis; The clear-cut number one pitching option on the board tonight. You have to pay a premium, but Hill is facing the Padres, the 29th best team in wOBA this season. The Padres strike out a ton and Hill has the filthy pitches to make San Diego impatient and swing at strikes out of the zone. In two starts against SD this season, Hill is 2-0 in 12 innings pitched, given up 1 ER and has struck out 16. Pitching in the safety of home, Hill has all the arrows pointing at him today.

Jake Lamb – 3B – Arizona Diamondbacks – $4,500

Analysis: Jake Lamb rewarded the Index users handsomely the last time he made the list. Now he is back and is up against the Cubs and starter John Lackey, who you should know by now has lost some zip on his pitches and has been getting drilled by lefties this season (.378 wOBA allowed, 2.50 HR/9 and a 33% hard contact rate). Lamb is 3-for-7 with 3 RBI and a walk against Lackey. Lamb flourishes at home just like the rest of the D-Backs offense. Stack city.

Ryan Braun – OF – Milwaukee Brewers – $4,700

Analysis: Ryan Braun against a reverse-splits pitcher whom he has great BvP against? Yes, please! Facing Homer Bailey in Miller Park, Braun gets to hit against a familiar foe, one he has 13 hits out of 39 ABs against. In those 13 hits, Braun has 4 doubles, 3 HRs, 2 walks and 2 steals.

Yoenis Cespedes – OF – New York Mets – $4,200

Analysis: The Mets went off yesterday and today people are wanting to go back to the well. I can see the case against Pivetta, but players like Conforto and Neil Walker I might reserve for cash games. It’s Cespedes that I want in my rosters. Pivetta has been strong to left-handed bats this season, but against RH bats, he’s got some wild reverse splits – .412 wOBA allowed, 3.12 HR/9 rate and a 44% hard contact rate. Yoenis is hitting in a small, hitter’s park and has solid numbers against RH pitching this season – .339 wOBA, .197 ISO and a 42% hard contact rate.

David Peralta – OF – Arizona Diamondbacks – $4,200

Analysis: Same thing here as Lamb above – get the lefties in against Lackey tonight. You can add Marte, Descalso and Herrmann if they are all in the lineup. Goldy is a solid option too, but Peralta and Lamb will be part of my core tonight. Against Lackey, Peralta is 4-for-6 with 2 doubles, 1 triple and an RBI.

Mike Trout – OF – Los Angeles Angels – $5,700

Analysis: Mike Trout versus a lefty? Yep. Do I need to explain it more? Really? Ok. Against lefties this season, Trout has a .443 wOBA, a .255 ISO and a 36% hard contact rate. The Angels are taking on Marco Gonzalez, who in two starts this season has given up 10 ER and 4 HRs. Trout is on fire right now and is making a run at AL MVP.

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