Starting pitcher: Sale is a strong but expensive plays, as always. Remember that the White Sox have MLB’s best wOBA vs. LHP (.362) … Even though his last start was bad and he’s walking too many batters, it’s hard to dislike Justin Verlander ($10,700) vs. the Royals … We all love Luis Severino ($10,200), but even against the whiff-happy Orioles, he seems like a tournament play … Robbie Ray ($9,600) always has big K upside, and he’ll face a Pirates lineup that has whiffed 21.6 percent of the time vs. southpaws. Ray has been MUCH better away from Chase Field … Jeff Samardzija ($8,600) has a tough opponent in the Nationals. He also has 44 strikeouts over his last five starts. Don’t be afraid – the Nats have been more average than dominant since Adam Eaton got hurt, and AT&T Park is a tough place to hit … A Coors pitcher? Maybe. Tyler Anderson ($8,000) faces a Mariners’ squad that ranks 29th in wOBA (.268) vs. LHP … As good as Jose Berrios has been, he looks risky vs. the Astros … The deepest I’ll go is Michael Wacha ($6,900) at home vs. the Dodgers. The matchup isn’t great, but he’s been pretty solid this season, and whiffs about a batter per inning … Dinelson Lamet? Nah.
Catcher: Buster Posey ($4,100) looks like a solid bet vs. Gio Gonzalez … How many catchers have five homers with an .800 OPS? Travis d’Arnaud ($3,300) faces Zach Davies … Rupp’s friendly matchup with Nicolino is noted above … If you want to get cheaper, Detroit’s John Hicks ($2,700) could do the trick against a bad lefty.
First base: Among the high-priced first basemen, I’d take Miggy ($4,800) over Mark Reynolds and Anthony Rizzo … I can’t believe Logan Morrison ($4,500) has 14 home runs. He faces the mediocre Nick Martinez … Jays Kendrys Morales ($3,900) and Justin Smoak ($3,800) are both solid vs. Wojciechowski, but you obviously can’t use both. I’d take Smoak if I had to pick one … With Luis Valbuena ($3,100) now the Angels’ cleanup hitter, he’s a decent play vs. Bartolo Colon.
Second base: Brian Dozier ($4,700) works against the homer-rific Mike Fiers … Is DJ LeMahieu ($4,400) too mediocre to use, even at Coors? … Neil Walker ($4,100) has a good matchup with Davies, but is a but pricey … Josh Harrison ($3,900) hits lefties pretty well, and faces Ray … As noted above, if Andrew Romine ($3,000) leads off again, he’s a good value play vs. Skoglund.
Third base: Of course you want to roster Nolan Arenado ($5,400) if you can … Josh Donaldson ($4,600) is one of many Jays you should consider; he’s better than Eugenio Suarez in the same price range … Miguel Sano ($4,400) is the best bet for a home run vs. Fiers … Small sample alert: Manny Machado ($4,200) has three homers in 12 plate appearances vs. Severino … Harrison fits here, too … Hernan Perez ($3,400) has batted near the top of the Brewers’ order lately, and faces unimpressive Mets’ rookie Tyler Pill … Valbuena fits here, too.
Shortstop: Segura is mentioned above … Trevor Story ($4,500) has a .411 wOBA with 13 home runs in 159 career plate appearances vs. LHP … Andrelton Simmons ($3,600) vs. Bartolo? Simmons is batting fifth now for the Angels, and owns a decent .744 OPS this season … Heck, even Jorge Polanco ($3,200) might homer off Fiers … Padres leadoff hitter Allen Cordoba ($2,600) didn’t help us Monday, but at this price vs. Eddie Butler he’s a nice option.
Outfield: At $5K or above, my order of preference is J.D. Martinez/Conforto/Cruz/Judge … Adam Duvall ($4,600) has five homers in his last five games, and faces Happ … Aaron Altherr ($4,200) looks good vs. Nicolino, who has allowed 10 homers in 48 1/3 innings between Triple-A and the majors this season … Keon Broxton ($3,900) is likely to lead off again for the Brewers vs. Pill … The gang-up-on-Fiers strategy can include Robbie Grossman ($3,700) … Guillermo Heredia ($3,500) will be a solid play if he bats second at Coors … Psst – Andrew McCutchen ($3,200) is starting to hit a little … Kole Calhoun ($3,100) has been a disappointment this season, but he still looks interesting batting second against Bartolo … Romine and Cordoba fit here, too.