Thanks to today’s day game in Chicago, we don’t have to factor in the wind at Wrigley in our lineups tonight.
And we only have 14 games to worry about. Only 14.
It appears there may be a few games with some weather concerns, but as of this writing (Thursday night), it doesn’t look like any forecasts show postponement possibilities.
Today’s slate also features Chris Sale, the obvious No. 1 pitcher on the slate, against the hapless Oakland Athletics.
There are a solid handful of pitching options in great spots outside of Sale, but I am not going to narrow one or two down for the Index, I mean, let”s face it, Jason Vargas? Yea, that was an oversight.
There also are a lot of gas cans on the mound today and the Index is going to focus
Analysis: It’s difficult to pick one guy at a position sometimes, but at 1B, there are two guys I really, really like. The first guy might be the hottest hitter in baseball right now, and when Crush Davis is hot, he’s got a great chance of sending a ball yard. Tonight he gets to face BvP darling Aaron Sanchez, who has owned in Sanchez’s short career. Davis is 8-for-18 with 2 doubles, FOUR home runs, 5 RBIs and TEN walks. I think Davis is a cash game lock with tournament upside.
Analysis: My second favorite play at first base should come at no surprise. It’s Goldy! Truthfully, the Diamondbacks might me my top stack of the night because they are facing Jered Weaver, and I am not sure they will command as much ownership as they should? Maybe the narratives throughout the day will change that tune, but on paper, it looks like Colorado/Cincy will be the chalk game of the night. Anyway, Weaver got roughed up earlier in the year by the Diamondbacks and currently has one of the weirder advanced stats line against RH bats this season – .418 wOBA, a 4.09 HR/9 rate, 29.9% hard contact and a .224 BABIP! I mean, how much worse can it get for Weaver against RH bats going forward?
Analysis: Another hot hitter going right now is Avisail Garcia and he is taking on the Lilttle Mermaid (Ariel Miranda), who has a major home run problem against RH bats. Garcia has three straight multi-hit games and faces a pitcher that averages 2+ HR/9 innings to righties. Garcia has crushed left-handed pitching this season to the tune of a .481 wOBA, a .200 ISO and a 46% hard contact rate.
Analysis: On the other side of this game we have Nelson Cruz vs. a lefty….a Stephen Monahan rule, you play him. Cruz gets the pleasure of facing Jose Quintana, a pitcher he is 7-for-20 against with a HR and a walk. Cruz burned everyone last night, but is in a great spot at a reduced price. Quintana has struggled with RH bats this season, allowing a .340 wOBA against, a 1.40 HR/9 rate and 30% hard contact. The ballpark might favor Quintana, but Cruz’s power is unmatchable.
Analysis: The theme of today is hot hitters. Charlie Blackmon is a hot hitter. He’s got 10 hits in his last four games and four straight days (because of the doubleheader Thursday) with multi-hit games. The Rockies are in the Great American Smallpark, which favors left-handed bats and they are facing an inexperienced pitcher, who in limited action, owns a .365 wOBA against lefties along with a 3 HR/9 rate and a 31% hard contact rate. Pitching in this ballpark with this Rockies’ team isn’t going to help.