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The purpose of this column is to highlight some players with upside and well-suited for tournaments. While the majority of the hitter picks will likely have power upside, that's not necessarily the case for all the listed options. Other contextual factors such as batting order, ballpark, opposing pitcher, price, speed, etc also come into play, and you'll see these items sprinkled into the write-ups below. Along with that, we'll be gauging the ownership levels, giving you some plausible pivots from the popular choices in a given game slate.

Pitchers

Clayton Kershaw (L), Dodgers

FanDuel DraftKings Opp FIP K% GB% Opp Run Total Moneyline
$13,400 $15,000 @PIT 2.12 33.6 52.4 3 -135

Captain obvious, right?

Maybe not, as there is a legitimate chance a large percentage of GPP players fade Kershaw and value hunt or target another high-end hurler (Jose Fernandez, Jacob deGrom) pitching Friday. Taking a speculative dice roll that Kershaw will be an afterthought for many in tournaments could reward.

Plus, it isn't a daunting matchup against the Pirates, as their 23.4% strikeout rate against southpaws is the fourth-highest mark in the league.

Daniel Norris (L), Tigers

FanDuel DraftKings Opp FIP K% GB% Opp Run Total Moneyline
$6,000 $6,400 BOS 4.76 17.8 33.7 4 -114

At the other extreme is Norris. The rookie battled control issues all season in the minors but seemed to fare just fine in his Tigers debut against the Baltimore Orioles. Norris went 7.1 innings and surrendered a single walk and four hits. He has flashed some strikeout upside in the minors, too.

The Red Sox offense doesn't instill a lot of fear, either. They've scored just nine runs over their past four games, and there are some major weaknesses in their current everyday lineup.

Top Hitters

Michael Brantley (L), Indians

FanDuel DraftKings Opp Pitcher
& Handedness
wOBA vs RHP 2012-2015 ISO vs RHP
2012-2015
wRC+ vs RHP
2012-2015
Batting
Order
Team
Run Total
$3,400 $4,700 Mike Pelfrey RHP .359 .155 131 3 4

Brantley has lived on base over his past 25 games but doesn't have the counting stats to show it. His .356/.442/.567 slash line speaks volumes about his current form, though. Dating back to the beginning of last season, Brantley owns a .903 OPS, .185 ISO and .391 wOBA against righties, too.

Simply put, Pelfrey is pitching over his head (4.06 FIP and 4.46 xFIP), and he is due for another blowup start. Expect Brantley to have a hand in the action, too.

Anthony Rendon (R), Nationals

FanDuel DraftKings Opp Pitcher
& Handedness
wOBA vs LHP 2012-2015 ISO vs LHP
2012-2015
wRC+ vs LHP
2012-2015
Batting
Order
Team
Run Total
$3,000 $3,200 Jorge De La Rosa LHP .359 .153 130 2 4


Rendon is beginning to show signs of putting it back together again. He is 10-for-35 with three runs, two doubles and a home run over his past 40 plate appearances, and he is priced for profit. He owns a career .304/.360/.478 slash line against southpaws, and De La Rosa has allowed 28 runs through 50.1 innings (4.83 ERA) over his past nine starts.

Todd Frazier (R), Reds

FanDuel DraftKings Opp Pitcher
& Handedness
wOBA vs RHP 2012-2015 ISO vs RHP
2012-2015
wRC+ vs RHP
2012-2015
Batting
Order
Team
Run Total
$3,300 $4,900 Chase Anderson RHP .340 .196

113 4 3.5

Cincinnati's offensive surge was slowed by the high-end pitching staffs of the St. Louis Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates over the past week. So, a trip to hitter-friendly Chase Field to tee off on Anderson, in his first start back from the disabled list, is just what the Reds needed.

Frazier's price on FanDuel is a true steal, especially with Anderson sporting a 9.12 ERA over his five starts before the injury.

Alcides Escobar (R), Royals

FanDuel DraftKings Opp Pitcher
& Handedness
wOBA vs LHP 2012-2015 ISO vs LHP
2012-2015
wRC+ vs LHP
2012-2015
Batting
Order
Team
Run Total
$2,200 $3,400 John Danks LHP .302 .084 89 1 4

Danks is prone to blowups, and the Royals lineup has the firepower to beat him around in a hurry. Setting the table is a reeling Escobar who is in need of a slump-busting matchup. The shortstop owns a .278/.336/.339 slash line against lefties, and while he lacks huge upside, there is a lot of value in his cap relief, especially if he has a multi-hit game and posts a tally or two in other columns.

Value and Platoon Plays

Jose Fernandez (SP - MIA) FD: $11,000 DK: $13,000

An Atlanta lineup without Freddie Freeman demands mention, and like Kershaw, there is potential Fernandez's ownership percentage isn't as high as anticipated.

Alex Rios (OF - KC) FD: $2,200 DK: $2,800

The veteran hasn't been able to string together any consistency at the dish this season, and John Danks is a complete wildcard to pick up. Still, Rios carries a cellar-dweller cap hit, and he owns the handedness advantage.

Justin Upton (OF - SD) FD: $2,800 DK: $4,200

Upton pushes the value needle Friday. The Friars are showing signs, and Upton has seven runs, three home runs and eight RBI over his past nine games. Facing a rookie hurler doesn't hurt, either.

Matt Wieters (C - BAL) FD: $2,500 DK: $2,800

These prices jump out, and while Andrew Heaney has been solid, Wieters is 11-for-29 with a .986 OPS over his past 30 plate appearances. View the backstop as an excellent value option Friday.

Albert Pujols (1B - LAA) FD: $3,500 DK: $3,800

While Pujols hasn't been mashing at his best of late, his nine runs, four home runs and 10 RBI over his past 16 games with a .791 OPS isn't a significant enough slump to drive his price down. On a night with a lot of daunting matchups, Pujols' cap-friendly salary is worth targeting.





Comments
joshshep50
I really like the idea of ponying up for Kershaw in GPPs since his upside is through the roof, and there are a few value arms I like (Norris is one, Kevin Gausman is another).
JasonG4s
Love the Todd-Father tonight, and like you said on FanDuel, he is a steal!
bigitaly42
Nice call on Norris, I'm loving him as a cheap option tonight!