Welcome to another edition of the 2013 MLB Season Preview – Daily Fantasy Baseball Strategy.
With the baseball season just a couple of months away, we’ll go through the roster of every MLB team and break it down from a daily fantasy standpoint. Which players can help your team win, and which ones will you want to avoid in the first couple of weeks?
To kick things off in the NL West, we will take a look at the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The D-backs have had one of the busiest offseasons in the league up to this point. They’ve already acquired or signed an astounding 17 new players! The headliner is without a doubt the trade of Justin Upton to the Atlanta Braves, while the big free agent signings included Brandon McCarthy and Cody Ross. The Snakes finished with an 81-81 record last season, and it’s hard to predict how good they’re going to be in 2013 with all of these new faces.
Jason Kubel – LF: Kubel is coming off a nice 30-HR season in 2012. He may not be the most exciting player for fans with his .261/.329/.471 slash line in last two seasons, but he did hit .343/.398/.518 over the last two Aprils which makes him a great daily fantasy option at the start of the season. Hard to say what his price is going to be, but you won’t find many players with better April numbers than Kubel.
Aaron Hill – 2B: Hill was acquired from the Blue Jays in August 2011 and he’s been a different player ever since. His average in his last two Toronto years hovered around .240, while in Arizona he’s hit .305. His power numbers were great last season, knocking 26 HRs and 85 RBIs, good for a Silver Slugger award. It’s possible that his price will be too high, but if you can get him for a reasonable salary, he is a good play at 2nd base.
Adam Eaton – OF: It remains to be seen if Eaton will end up in the starting lineup coming out of spring training, but if he does he will be a very good fantasy play. The youngster has only 85 MLB at-bats under his belt, but his minor league stats were off the charts in 2012 and I am more than willing to take a chance on him for a minimum DFS salary.
Wade Miley – SP: Miley is another great young player and an All-Star in his rookie season last year when he posted a 3.34 ERA in 29 starts. He also had a great start with a 1.29 ERA in 21 innings in April. I expect him to be in the middle salary tier and a good match-up play.
YOU SHOULD AVOID
Miguel Montero – C: Montero is one of the most consistent-hitting catchers in the league, managing a solid .286/.391/.438 with 15 HRs and 88 RBIs last year. However, he isn’t a great play for daily fantasy baseball because of his slow start last season where he batted around only .250 the first two months. He is a much better hitter vs. RHP, so that’s the match-up in which you want to target him later in the season. Because of his well-known name, I believe his price will be higher and outside of value at the start of the year.
Cody Ross – OF: Ross is just too inconsistent to trust him in daily fantasy- it’s difficult to predict what he is going to do. He hit .267/.326/.481 with 22 HRs last season- solid numbers- but there is no guarantee he can repeat those in Arizona. I would wait and see how he starts before putting him into my daily fantasy baseball lineup.
Ian Kennedy – SP: Kennedy had a down season in 2012 after a great 2011 when he won 21 games and posted an ERA of 2.88. His 2012 ERA was more than one run worse at 4.02. While it’s hard to explain his down season, between that and the fact that April is not historically one of his best months we should look for daily fantasy options elsewhere.
Brandon McCarthy – SP: McCarthy was a very good play in 18 starts last season but he was constantly battling with injuries. He missed time in July with an injured shoulder, and he later suffered a fractured skull after he was struck in the head by a line drive. Reports are in that he is fully recovered from that head injury, but it is a concern for daily fantasy players in April. He also moves from a pitcher-friendly ballpark to hitter-friendly one, so you might be better off just staying away from him in his first couple of starts.
PITCHER/HITTER MATCHUP TO WATCH
Paul Goldschmidt – 1B: Goldschmidt played his first full MLB season in 2012 and hit .286/.359/.490. He was much better against southpaws though, with a .343/.423/.645 split, than against right-handers (.257/.326/.412). He started slowly last year, but he will still be a nice play vs. LHP if the price is right. He may generate interest later in the season because he has surprising speed for a first baseman (18 SBs in 2012) which helps his daily fantasy upside.
Hope you’ve enjoyed our preview of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Stay tuned for other MLB 2013 season previews, and don’t forget to check out our other articles Daily Fantasy Radio!