The baseball season is officially here! Well, it already started Sunday night, but the real fun kicks off Monday as we can finally start picking our daily lineups. Every Monday through Friday, I’ll post my Best Bets and Bluffs for daily games. With Best Bets, we’ll hit on value picks, and Bluffs are over-priced players. Hopefully, I’ll help you avoid any pain, unlike Dan Crawford, whose groin was in the wrong place for Carlos Boozer’s celebration.
Jon Niese, NYM – Since every team’s No. 1 pitcher toes the mound Monday, it’s tough to find value and not spend big with pitching. However, Niese is a nice find, tied for 17th with Ricky Nolasco at $6,600 on FanDuel.com and sits 47th on DraftKings.com at $8,300. Niese looked sharp in Spring Training with a 1.23 ERA and 19 Ks in 22.0 IP. Plus, the Mets face the weak-hitting Padres, who are also without Chase Headley.
Ike Davis, NYM – No, this isn’t a Mets blog. I’m certain you’ve heard it by now, but just in case I’ll repeat it; Davis hit 27 of his 32 HRs in the second half of last season. He has legitimate 40-plus HR power. With his 2012 second half, solid Spring Training and matchup with one of Opening Day’s lesser pitchers (Edison Volquez), Davis provides nice value with $3,200 FD tag and $4,000 DK price.
Howie Kendrick, LAA – Kendrick has reached the point of being undervalued after “underperforming” the past few years. In truth, Kendrick doesn’t seem to be the superstar analysts hoped to see, but he is rather consistent. He mashed in Spring Training with a .435 AVG and four HRs (.754 SLG%). Add in a very hitter-friendly park, as the Angels head to Cincinnati, and you have a great value at 2B with price tags of $3,600 FD and $3,300 DK.
Dustin Pedroia, BOS – Don’t get me wrong, I love Pedroia in regular leagues, but with daily, you don’t need to spend $4,100 FD or $4,500 on him. Pedroia has a history of not hitting CC Sabathia well – just 6-for-28 with nine Ks and one BB. Save your money, and grab the aforementioned Kendrick.
Matt Kemp, LAD – Another superstar checks in as the second bluff with Kemp facing Matt Cain. For his career, Kemp is just 10-for-46, or hitting .217, against Cain. Kemp also has 13 Ks versus just one walk and one HR versus Cain. Save that $4,400 FD and $5,000 DK money for help elsewhere.
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