2014 winner of the FSWA’s Baseball Article of the Year award. 2016 FSTA Winner for Radio Show of the Year for "On Target Fantasy". 2017 winner for Basketball Writer of the Year from the FSWA. Benny was a featured writer for the DraftKings Playbook, an on air talent for FNTSY Radio, a podcast host and writer for RotoWire, a daily fantasy expert at Scout Fantasy and one of the featured writers and webcast hosts at RotoCurve. He is a published author in the fantasy sports space and a journalist who has had articles picked up by the AP press and distributed through various news outlets around the country. He is a frequent guest on Sirius XM Fantasy and FNTSY Radio talking about both season long and daily fantasy sports topics.
- Eric Skoglund v. Andrew Cashner
Skoglund: He had one great start against the White Sox and has been trash in his other 4. The other starts he gave up 4-5 runs in 4-5 innings of work, with a HR allowed each time. He walks about 3 per 9 innings and gives up over a hit per inning. His ERA currently sits in the 6s and not much outside of the White Sox gem makes me think any of this is going to change. He does have K per inning upside, but when you go 4-5 and give up 4-5, 4-5 Ks is not going to save you.
Baltimore: I am not a huge fan of this offense, to be honest with you, but the one thing they do have is some righty power. Manny Machado is the #1 bat here by a wide margin, but Trey Mancini and Jonathan Schoop are both interesting as well. The two youngsters both have some pop in the bats and hit in the top part of the order. One swing upside from guys like Adam Jones and Mark Trumbo is a little riskier, but they would be guys I looked out to round out a stack. Danny Valencia also has really good numbers against lefties, but he’s a risk to get subbed out and also hits low in the order even when he does play.
- Carlos Carrasco v. Junior Guerra
Carrasco: Carrasco on the road is where we usually like to use him as his numbers are worse a home. This is a bad ballpark switch though as Milwaukee is a great hitter’s park. Carrasco is a K per inning type of pitcher, so he does have strikeout upside and he is facing a team that does strike out often. Carrasco is tougher on righties who hit just .224 with a WHIP of 1.04 against him in 2017. Lefties are his weaker split, hitting .244 last year but with a WHIP of just 1.16. I know Kluber struggled with this team yesterday, but I like Carrasco as much today as I liked Kluber yesterday for many of the same reasons. The Brewers offense has upside because they can score, but they have a lot of high variance home run or bust types that can easily strikeout three times in a game as well. With the Way Cole has looked early on, I think Carrasco might fly under the radar a little bit here and that makes him a very interesting play.
Brewers: The lefties are the way to attack him and currently that means Travis Shaw and Christian Yelich. Yelich has the better numbers, but I like Shaw more as a one-off play with upside. Yelich lacks the pop you really need from a guy you pay up for. Shaw not only has the HR pop but hits in the middle of the order giving him a higher chance to drive in some runs.
- Danny Duffy v. Dylan Bundy
Duffy: If Duffy was only asked to face left-handed batters, he would be one of the top pitchers in the game, but he struggles mightily with righties. This year already he has allowed a .288 average to righties with 9 homers in 30 innings of work. Last year the average was about the same, although the HR rate this year is alarmingly high based on his past metrics. I will say it is not out of character though as Duffy always has a high FB rate to righties. He really is lights out to lefties though, so avoid them. Duffy does have some K upside, although nothing elite level, he can get you at or close to a K per inning. He has made 7 starts, averaging 5-6 innings per turn and giving up at least 3 runs in five of the seven.
Orioles: I am not a huge fan of this team as a whole, but they do have some bats that concern me here. Manny Machado is the best of the regulars and Trey Mancini is not far behind him. Those two guys are about the only two everyday players with decent to above average numbers in a spot like this. Both of them have power and make contact from the right side and play well with how bad Duffy is to righties. The Orioles have a lot of other right-handed bats, but guys like Jones and Trumbo are only guys I would use on a stack. I do not know if Danny Valencia ends up in the lineup today, but he has great lifetime numbers against lefties too, so he would be an interesting punt option if he does.
Jeff Samardzija v. Zach Eflin
Samardzija: Samardzija missed the first month or so with injuries and has not pitched over 5 innings or 90 pitches yet this season. Still, his price remains slightly elevated. The matchup is pretty good against a weak hitting Phillies team, but Samardzija is not back to 100% yet and not pitching to his top capacity. Samardzija at his best is a guy with K per inning upside. He does not walk many batters, but he does give up about a hit per inning. In about 100 innings to each side of the plate, Samardzija kept the WHIP below 1.20 to each. Lefties flashed a tad more power and had a tad higher OBP. So far Samardzija has not pitched up to his past stats, which is to be expected as he knocks the rust off. I’m not expecting the Phillies to light him up today, but I also wouldn’t be expecting a ceiling game from Samardzija, even though the matchup is solid.
Phillies: Lefties with power do the best against him and currently the best hitter on the Phillies is Odubel Herrera against right-handed pitching. He has been hitting third and even providing protection in that order for Rhys Hoskins who has better numbers and was batting second recently. Those are the two guys who scare me the most here. Samardzija did give up 30 homers last year, but it was in 207 innings of work. That equates to about one every 6 2/3 - 7 innings. Again, I’m not expecting his best effort, but I think he’s good enough not to get lit up by a weak offense. He’ll likely only go 5-6, so the upside is capped, but he is looking better, so I think the Phillies' upside is limited as well.