Starting pitcher: Carlos Martinez ($12,500) is the best pitcher on the board, but his matchup at Cincinnati isn’t great, and he’s so much more expensive than the rest of the SPs … Dan Straily ($9,100) looks solid against the Cubs if you get used to the idea that we’re two months into the season and the Cubs still aren’t hitting. But don’t you get the feeling that they have to start soon? … Jeff Samardzija ($8,900) has the best K rate on tonight’s board, and the Brewer hitters have the worst K rate of the 14 teams playing … Sean Manaea is averaging more than 10 whiffs per nine, and has 66.2 DK points over his last two starts … Junior Guerra ($7,600) might be the safest starter considering his home matchup with the terrible Giants … Mike Fiers has allowed 18 home runs, which is terrible. He’s also averaging 13.1 DK points over his last four starts, which isn’t terrible. Fiers faces a bad Royals’ lineup on the road. He’s a flier … J.A. Happ ($7,300) faces an Oakland lineup that has MLB’s second-worst K rate versus southpaws.
Catcher: Evan Gattis ($4,100) has more power than most catchers, and Ian Kennedy isn’t shy about giving up home runs. Pitcher-friendly Kauffman Stadium is Gattis’ biggest barrier … Tyler Flowers ($3,700) hits at home vs. Philly rookie Nick Pivetta … Is $2,900 a low enough price to bet on Sal Perez busting his slump vs. Fiers?
First base: Ryan Zimmerman over Justin Bour in the $5K-plus range, but Eric Thames ($4,700) isn’t bad if you don’t roster Samardzija … I know Straily isn’t bad, but Anthony Rizzo’s salary ($4,300) is getting awfully low … Ditto for Matt Carpenter ($3,700), a good hitter mired in a miserable slump. Carpenter faces Reds’ rookie Asher Wojciechowski.
Second base: Jose Altuve is tearing it up right now, but $5,800? It can work if you don’t roster C-Mart at SP … Jed Lowrie ($3,800) is reasonably priced vs. Happ … Speaking of Happs, Ian ($3,500) has been leading pff for a few days for the Cubs … And speaking of leadoff hitters, consider Logan Forsythe ($3,300) vs. Gio … Pinder is mentioned above.
Third base: As Samardzija struggles with LHB (.379 wOBA against), Travis Shaw’s $4,700 salary isn’t as bad as it seems at first glance … Kris Bryant ($4,500) carries the same logic as Rizzo … Josh Donaldson ($4,400) has four homers in eight games since coming off the DL, and it’s a tossup between he and Shaw as the top 3B … Forsythe fits here as well, and looks good if you don’t want to spend.
Shortstop: Trea Turner ($4,900) over Correa at the high end, especially since he can save you $600 … If you don’t use Turner or Correa, you can drop all the way down to Pinder at $2,700.
Outfield: At $5K-plus, it’s Kemp and Stanton over Harper and Springer … Christian Yelich ($4,500) is a solid play vs. Butler … Ender Inciarte ($4,000) looks terrific at this price vs. Pivetta … Howie Kendrick is generally just OK, but he’s a lot more interesting at a mid-range salary ($3,600) vs. Colon … Khris Davis is mentioned above … Odubel Herrera ($2,900) homered Sunday, and has six hits in his last three games. Maybe he’s finally heating up, and at this price vs. Colon, I’d like to find out.