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.
Felix Hernandez, Mariners (vs. Orioles) -- With apologies to Chris Sale, Adam Wainwright, Johnny Cueto and Masahiro Tanaka, the two best pitchers in the league this year are, without a doubt, Hernandez and Clayton Kershaw. Baseball Throwdown-ers shouldn’t be worrying too much about projected score or opponent when one of those guys takes the mound. Just make either one your pitcher and watch the points roll in. If you would like some numbers, though, here’s a fun stat. In all of his last 12 starts, Hernandez has gone at least seven innings and allowed two or fewer runs. He had at least eight strikeouts in nine of those 12 outings.
Brandon Moss, A’s (@ Rangers, Jerome Williams) -- Moss is hitting just .258 with a .309 OBP in July, but he has made up for that with a .548 slugging percentage, five homers, eight doubles and 11 RBI. Williams is making his first start of the year for the Rangers Friday after struggling with the Astros in relief. In 47 2/3 innings, he had a 6.04 ERA and 1.57 WHIP. Moss also sports a neat .878 OPS against righties this year.
Mike Trout, Angels (vs. Tigers, Drew Smyly) -- Given that the projected scores are so close for nearly everyone, sometimes you just have to roll with the best baseball player on the planet. Trout is hitting .292/.357/.596 with six homers, nine doubles and 18 RBI in the month of July. He’s just 2-for-8 against Smyly in his career, but both of those hits went for extra bases. More than anything, though, I’m trusting the best to be the best today.
• Alex Wood, Braves (vs. Padres) --- Repeat after me: “I will always pick on the Padres. I will always pick on the Padres. I will always pick on the Padres…”
• Jesse Hahn, Padres (@ Braves) -- Hahn has whiffed at least a batter per inning in six of his seven starts, and the Braves have the sixth-highest strikeout rate in the league.
• Miguel Cabrera, Tigers (@ Angels, Tyler Skaggs) -- Cabrera is 6-for-17 with a homer, five RBI and four runs in his last four games.
• Paul Goldschmidt, Diamondbacks (@ Phillies, Kyle Kendrick) -- Goldschmidt is having a big July, slashing .375/.474/.703 with three homers and 10 doubles.
• Andrew McCutchen, Pirates (@ Rockies, Brett Anderson) -- McCutchen facing a lefty (though he has been better against righties this year) at Coors Field is a great cocktail for the Throwdown.
• Matt Holliday, Cardinals (@ Cubs, Travis Wood) -- Holliday is hitting .290/.353/.581 with two homers and three doubles in 34 career plate appearances against Wood.