Brantley, Abreu lead July 11 Baseball Throwdown recommendations
SI's FanNation app has arrived, offering daily fantasy sports games that let you put your skills on the line for money or just for bragging rights, leading off with the launch of Baseball Throwdown. Every day, SI's Michael Beller will release his lineup for that day's Baseball Throwdown contest and offer up other recommendations to get your team ready for the day's slate of games. Download the FanNation app today and get started challenging your friends.
Pitcher: Jordan Zimmermann, Nationals (@ Phillies) – Zimmermann is projected to score 14 points today, a number he can outpace against the punchless Phillies lineup. The Phillies are batting just .238/.300/.362 as a team, with a .293 wOBA and 83 wRC+, both of which rank 29th in the league. They also strike out 20.9 percent of the time, a tick above league average. Zimmermann has faced them once this season, and it resulted in one of his best starts of the year. He fired eight shutout innings, allowing just five hits and one walk while fanning four batters. His 14-point projection includes an expected 0.5 wins, 6 1/3 innings pitched, 2.3 earned runs and 5.2 strikeouts. He will do better than that.
Infielder: Jose Abreu, White Sox (@ Indians, Corey Kluber) – Kluber has been great this year and certainly could have been an AL All-Star. The way Abreu is hitting, though, it doesn’t much matter who is opposing him on the mound. Abreu is 7-for-12 with a homer, three doubles, two RBI and two walks in his last three games. He is projected to score four points today, the same as guys like Pedro Alvarez, Nolan Arenado and Brandon Belt. You’re getting an absolute steal with Abreu at this projection.
Outfielder: Michael Brantley, Indians (vs. White Sox, Hector Noesi) – The first-time All-Star Brantley makes for a great play today thanks in large part to a three-point projection that seems awfully low for his matchup. The left-handed Brantley has mashed righties to the tune of .349/.398/.562 with 11 homers this season. Exactly two players in the majors have at least 10 homers, 10 steals, 60 runs and 60 RBI this year: Mike Trout and Brantley. You want him in your daily lineup today.
Mark Buehrle, Blue Jays (@ Rays) – This is largely a projection-driven recommendation. Buehrle’s expected total of 10 points is low given his nice matchup against the Rays.
Jeff Samardzija, A's (@ Mariners) – The Shark has a great matchup in his second start with his new team. Safeco Field is a great place to pitch, though it doesn’t aid a ground-ball pitcher like Samardzija the way it does a fly-ball pitcher.
Adrian Gonzalez, Dodgers (vs. Padres, Jesse Hahn) – Hahn has been great since getting the call to the majors, but a three-point projection feels low for Gonzalez.
Kolten Wong, Cardinals (@ Brewers, Yovani Gallardo) – Wong is 4-for-8 with a pair of homers in his last three games and comes with a very beatable projection of three points.
George Springer, Astros (vs. Red Sox, John Lackey) – Springer carries significant strikeout risk, which will cost you points, but he’s a threat to go deep every time he steps to the plate.
Ryan Braun, Brewers (vs. Cardinals, Joe Kelly) – Kelly’s making his first start since going on the DL with a hamstring injury back in April. Braun and the Brewers can take advantage.