The weekend hasn't started yet, but who says the fun can't begin on Friday? That's exactly what DraftKings offers fans, with a full array of options to pick apart in MLB daily fantasy.
While owners would love to load up on the best pitchers and sluggers, it's never that simple. DraftKings price sheets force you to form a balanced lineup. Here's a look at a strategy to tackle the July 24 slate of games.
First Baseman: Joey Votto, Cincinnati Reds ($5,700)
Yes, the price tag is frightening. But between the matchup, Joey Votto's recent power surge and the ballpark he'll be hitting in, there's a reason why he's so pricey.
Votto is crushing at the plate since the All-Star break with 13 or more fantasy points in six of the last seven games. Five of those games have been multi-hit performances with four extra-base hits over that stretch.
ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo
Yesterday Joey Votto became the 5th player in the last 20 seasons to reach base at least 9 times in a calendar day. http://t.co/Nan3ZwpBzu2015-7-23 16:30:17
Don't expect Votto to slow down in Colorado against the Rockies starting pitcher Eddie Butler. The 24-year-old hurler was rocked in his last outing, allowing six earned runs on 11 hits at home. In the crisp mountain air, Votto will make Coors Field his new home and daily fantasy owners very happy.
Second Baseman: Jose Altuve, Houston Astros ($4,500)
As he has been all season, Jose Altuve is still on fire since the All-Star break. Over his last 10 games, the Houston Astros infielder has averaged over nine points per game with two home runs. He only has nine homers on the season, so that's a huge stat for the 5'5" player.
Similar to Votto, Altuve comes at a steep price. For a second baseman, $4,500 is quite a bit to spend. But with his production and the players that can be had at shortstop and in the outfield for a reasonable price, Altuve should be a lock in every lineup.
Third Baseman: Josh Donaldson, Toronto Blue Jays ($4,000)
Josh Donaldson is 10th on the DraftKings price sheet. I repeat, an All-Star third baseman is 10th in salary. With over 10 points per game in his last three outings, there's no reason not to put the Blue Jays infielder on your roster.
Before Thursday night, Donaldson had a reasonable two hits in his prior two games with two doubles, two RBI and a walk. The only problem was he had just one homer since the break—but that changed on Thursday. Coming off a game where he went yard against his former team, Donaldson can do the same against Felix Hernandez, a pitcher he has some familiarity with.
Shortstop: Francisco Lindor, Cleveland Indians ($3,200)
When Francisco Lindor was first called up, there was no question as to whether or not he could hit the ball. It was just a matter of when. The answer to said question: now.
Jordan Bastian @MLBastian
Lindor: .203 (.497 OPS) 1st 19 games, .318 (.802) last 10. Said this weekend he appreciates Tito keeping him 2nd in order thru early woes.2015-7-20 14:05:49
Lindor has been raking recently with six multi-hit performances in his last 10 games. At a price tag of over $1,500 less than fellow rookie Carlos Correa, Lindor will outplay his value.
A switch hitter, Lindor has hit far better from the right side of the plate all season. With a matchup against lefthander Jose Quintana, who's allowed 18 hits and seven earned runs over his last two starts, Lindor is a can't-miss shortstop.
Outfielder: Billy Burns, Oakland Athletics ($3,700)
You know that whole multi-hit trend that I keep harping on? Yeah, well, Billy Burns just so happens to fit in that category as well. The Athletics outfielder has two hits in four of his last five games with a double.
But what makes Burns special is his ability to steal bases. He doesn't provide the power of a guy like Mike Trout or Bryce Harper, but he's a consistent player with speed. Tack on the fact that he's facing Jose Quintana, and Burns seems like a perfect option for a low-end No. 2 or high-end No. 3 outfielder.
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