The hard part is over for DFS players, as the non-waiver trade deadline has passed. Sure, there can still be trades up until Aug. 31, but really they will be much fewer and far between and involve less-heralded stars while coming with a bit more warning.
The month of August is much more stable than the end of July, and you can enjoy the next few weeks with little worry until rosters expand Sept. 1. Enjoy!
This summer you can win up to a $250,000 from our friends at FantasyAces.com, and there will be a live event at Angels Stadium.
There is another qualifer Tuesday – enter here: $250,000 in the FantasyAces.com World Baseball Championship
For more recommendations from me throughout the week, plus tips from other top industry analysts like Drew Dinkmeyer, check out DailyRoto.com for comprehensive free and premium DFS content.
FantasyAces.com salaries included below where applicable. (*** salaries subject to change ***)
PROBABLE PITCHERS TO START
MONDAY (11 games – one before 7pm ET)
Jesse Chavez, Oakland ($5,650 vs. BAL): If you’re looking to save a little lettuce, Chavez is a solid addition. He faces a Baltimore club that is 2-6 against their past eight American League West foes, and they’re 9-24 in their past 33 games against right-handed starters. That bodes well for Chavez’s outlook. True, he is 3-4 in 10 home appearances (eight starts), but he also has a 2.33 ERA and just hasn’t received great run support. He is a solid pitcher at home against an Orioles offense that ranks sixth in strikeouts.
Garrett Richards, L.A. Angels ($7,550 vs. CLE): Richards will be at home, and he is facing a flagging Cleveland offense that has posted three or fewer runs in nine of the past 11 games, with the Tribe going 3-8 during the stretch. Richards is 6-2 with a 2.08 ERA in nine starts with a .175 opponent batting average and 51 strikeouts over 65 innings.
TUESDAY (15 games)
Jimmy Nelson, Milwaukee (vs. SD): Nelson posted an impressive 3-1 record with a 1.64 ERA in five starts in the month of July, and he enters Tuesday’s outing with four straight quality starts. Nelson also has 32 strikeouts over his past 33 innings, and that’s great news against a San Diego offense that is averaging 8.26 strikeouts per game.
Masahiro Tanaka, N.Y. Yankees (vs. BOS): Tanaka will be facing a very favorable matchup against Red Sox SP Henry Owens, and the most important thing is Tanaka is home, where he has five of his seven victories this season while allowing a .226 opponent batting average with 47 strikeouts over 49.1 innings. Tanaka is a strong DFS play based on the pitching matchup and his amazing strikeout potential. Plus, the Red Sox rank last in the American League in run differential, and 28th in the majors.
WEDNESDAY (15 games – 11 after 7pm ET)
Gio Gonzalez, Washington (vs. ARI): The Diamondbacks have been hot, but Gonzalez is even better at home. He has a 5-1 record with a 2.50 ERA and a solid .243 opponent batting average while striking out 40 batters over 50.1 innings. The key to Gonzo’s success is the fact he has allowed a total of just five homers in 110.1 innings this season while striking out 98. The D-Backs entered the week whiffing an average of 8.08 times per game on offense.
Carlos Martinez, St. Louis (at CIN): Martinez has a very solid matchup against Reds RHP David Holmberg. He rolls into the start after posting a 2.01 ERA in five July appearances (four starts), and he is 1-0 with a 2.25 ERA in two starts against the Reds this season. C-Mart will hook you up with plenty of strikeouts while limiting the walks and hits.
THURSDAY (10 games – five after 7:05pm ET)
Chris Heston, San Francisco (at CHC): Heston doesn’t have a ton of experience, but he has quickly emerged as a DFS favorite. He has lost just one of his seven road decisions while limiting the opposition to a .232 batting average. He will be facing a Cubs offense that ranks first in the majors in strikeouts.
Michael Wacha, St. Louis (at CIN): Wacha heads into the new week with a 7-2 record in 11 road outings, striking out 61 over 68 innings away from Busch Stadium. And he is 2-0 with a 1.35 ERA in two outings over 13.1 innings against the Reds, including a win at Great American Ball Park on April 11 when he allowed just one run over 6.1 innings.
FRIDAY (15 games – 14 after 7:05 pm ET)
Sonny Gray, Oakland (vs HOU): The Astros are very much improved, and might very well be a playoff club. However, they still rank first in the American League in strikeouts, so look for Gray to post a strong stat line.
Julio Teheran, Atlanta (vs. MIA): Teheran has experienced a little bit of a rough patch, but he is still 5-1 with a solid 2.37 ERA in 10 home outings with 60 strikeouts over 64.2 innings and a stellar .201 opponent batting average. The difference between his success at home, and his terrible numbers on the road is in the home runs allowed category. He has served up 15 long balls in 66.2 innings in 12 road starts while giving up just three homers in 64.2 innings in 10 home outings.
SATURDAY (15 games – 10 after 6:10pm ET)
Charlie Morton, Pittsburgh (vs. LAD): Morton has posted a strong 4-1 record with a 2.52 ERA in 39.1 innings, and he is coming off seven scoreless frames in Cincinnati Sunday. If he can start to turn it up on the road, he is going to be dangerous. He has quality starts in five of his six home outings this season.
Garrett Richards, L.A. Angels ($7,550 vs. BAL): As mentioned above, Richards has been lights out at home this season, and the Baltimore offense is struggling against right-handed starters. It’s a match made in heaven for DFS players, especially since there are so many holes in the O’s bats.
SUNDAY (15 games)
Jake Arrieta, Chicago Cubs (vs. SF): Arrieta enjoyed his best month of the season in July, going 4-1 with a 1.90 ERA in six starts while striking out 44 batters in 42.2 innings while holding the opposition to a .189 batting average. He is one of the most consistent pitchers in the Chicago staff, and a matchup against Jake Peavy is in his favor.
HITTERS TO START
Jason Castro, C, Houston ($4,400 at TEX): Castro has powered up during his six-game hitting streak, going 8-for-22 (.364) with three runs scored, two home runs and six RBIs. He is a cheap option with some power upside.
Nelson Cruz, OF, Seattle ($5,650 at COL): Nelly carries a 13-game hitting streak into Coors Field, and it’s hard to imagine he won’t be piling up the extra-base hits in a stop in Denver. He has posted eight homers and 12 RBIs during his impressive run, and Rockies SP Eddie Butler isn’t exactly Cy Young.
Jung-Ho Kang, 2B-SS, Pittsburgh ($4,950 vs. CHC): Kang took the collar Sunday, but that has been a rarity lately. He finished off the month of July with a .379 average while rolling up 13 extra-base hits (eight 2B, two 3B, three HRs) with nine RBIs and a 1.064 OPS. At this price level he is an absolute must-have until he cools off significantly.
Marlon Byrd, OF, Cincinnati (vs. STL): Byrd enters the week with three multi-hit games in his past four outings, and that includes a pair of homers and four RBIs. He’ll look to keep it going against Cardinals RHP John Lackey. He is 10-for-32 (.313) with two doubles, two homers and eight RBIs against the 36-year-old.
Salvador Perez, C, Kansas City (at DET): Tigers RHP Justin Verlander hasn’t exactly been crisp, and no one on the Royals picks on him more than Sally Perez. The Royals’ backstop is a career .429 hitter (15-for-35) with seven doubles, a homer, 10 RBIs and a 1.120 OPS. Running a KC stack against J.V. is a good plan for Tuesday, and you’ll want Perez right in the middle of it all.
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B, L.A. Dodgers (at PHI): Gonzalez has eaten up Phillies veteran RHP Aaron Harang over the years, going 10-for-23 (.435) with two doubles, three homers and eight RBIs while posting a stellar 1.393 OPS. Gonzo has the chance to post big stats in the band box that is Citizens Bank Ball Park, especially against a guy he owns.
Xander Bogaerts, 3B, Boston (at NYY): Bogaerts is ripping up left-handed pitching this season, leading the majors with a .396 average (40-for-101) with a .945 OPS. He should fare well against Yankees LHP CC Sabathia, who is certainly a shell of his former self.
J.D. Martinez, OF, Detroit (vs. KC): The Royals sent down SP Yordano Ventura for a reason, and the only reason he is back is due to necessity. Martinez is tied for fifth in the majors with 23 homers against right-handed pitching, and Ventura has a 4.98 ERA. It’s a good spot for Martinez, who is enjoying a career year.
Yadier Molina, C, St. Louis (at MIL): Molina hasn’t fared very well at the dish lately, but he could get back on track in a big way against Brewers RHP Kyle Lohse, who has struggled in his own right. Y-Mo is 11-for-23 (.478) with three doubles, three homers, eight RBIs and a 1.480 OPS in his career against Lohse. Molina should be part of a Cardinals stack against Lohse, as OF Matt Holiday (.323 in 31 at-bats), OF Jason Heyward (1.152 OPS) and SS Jhonny Peralta (.320 in 25 at-bats) all have solid numbers against the Milwaukee righty.
Melky Cabrera, OF, Chicago White Sox (at KC): The Melkman has been killing everyone lately, and he owns a .364 career average (16-for-44) with five doubles, a triple, a homer, nine RBIs and a .955 OPS against Royals RHP Jeremy Guthrie. The good times will continue for the White Sox outfielder and his DFS owners, and his salary hasn’t even topped out yet.
Edwin Encarnacion, 1B, Toronto (at NYY): Encarnaion has great power potential, and he has a .937 career OPS in 22 at-bats against Yankees RHP Ivan Nova. He entered the week with three multi-hit games in the past four outings, and he is batting .304 with a double, two homers and a .942 OPS against New York pitching this season.
Minnesota at Toronto (MLB Network. 1:07 p.m.)
Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh (ESPN, 7:05 p.m.)
Boston at N.Y. Yankees (MLB Network, 7:05 p.m.)
Boston at N.Y. Yankees (ESPN, 7:05 p.m.)
L.A. Dodgers at Philadelphia – OR – Kansas City at Detroit (MLB Network, 1:05 p.m.)
Boston at N.Y. Yankees – OR – Minnesota at Toronto (MLB Network, 7:05 p.m.)
San Francisco at Chicago Cubs (MLB Network, 4:05 p.m.)
L.A. Dodgers at Pittsburgh (ESPN, 7:05 p.m.)
Baltimore at L.A. Angels – OR – Houston at Oakland (MLB Network, 10:05 p.m.)
Toronto at N.Y. Yankees (MLB Network. 1:05 p.m.)
L.A. Dodgers at Pittsburgh (FOX Sports 1, 4:05 p.m.)
St. Louis at Milwaukee (FOX Sports 1, 7:05 p.m.)
Baltimore at L.A. Angels – OR – Houston at Oakland (MLB Network, 10:05 p.m.)
San Francisco at Chicago Cubs(TBS, 2:20 p.m.)
L.A. Dodgers at Pittsburgh (ESPN, 8:08 p.m.)