When this site first came to fruition, it was known as 3 Up, 3 Down. The idea was that yours truly would pick three players I loved (Ups) and three I hated (Downs) for each day’s DFS slate. We’re heading back to our roots for today’s celebration of the return of baseball. It’s a classic Three Up, Three Down, you guys. Get into it.
What makes me someone you should listen to? Easy. This used to be my full-time job. Just like most of you degenerates out there, I had a gambling problem. Every night I would sit up looking at wind patterns, arm angles, splits, indoor/outdoor BABIP, etc. in order to max my lineups. At one point I could tell you if Kendrys Morales could hit a curveball in 71-degree weather vs. 72-degree weather. He can in one and can’t in the other. I know, it’s weird, right?
I went deep into the stats and the gameplay of the sport. I also went deep into my own head and into a dark time of my life. THAT is a story for another time. All you need to know is that, while it was an obsession, I was damned good at it. By the time I called it quits, I was taking home around 5 figures.
Before we go any further, if you have a problem, get help and talk to someone. For real. Take it from someone who has been able to get over their problem before the sport lost all its meaning.Don’t tempt yourself if you have had past issues or feel you could easily develop a gambling problem. The time to get help for your addiction is not tomorrow, it’s today. Click here for help from the National Council on Problem Gambling for more information on addiction.
… so now let’s talk about tomorrow’s main event slate.
Cesar Hernandez – 2B, Philadelphia Phillies – $3,900
The NL East has been known for their great second basemen. Daniel Murphy, Neil Walker (LOL), Dee Gordon, Brandon Phillips (LOL) and even Asdrubal Cabrera. The guys who gets lost in the shuffle is Cesar Hernandez, the starting 2B for the Philadelphia Phillies.
In the DFS scope, 2B has become an all around position. First base is mostly a position for dingers, Shortstop for singles and steal and 3B for the riff-raff who can hit with power. However, lately since Altuve and Dozier came on the scene, it’s become a very important part of your lineup. Most guys are going to lean Altuve, Dozier, Schoop and Merrifield. Don’t fall for that. Hernandez is the guy.
I mean, yes, all of the aforementioned guys have solid numbers, but so does Hernandez, who hit .298 in 2017. Now you add in the fact that the Phillies have a solid lineup that may or may not compete in 2018, his value jumps. He’s worth the risk of not taking a power-hitting 2B. 100%.
Lucas Duda – 1B, Kansas City Royals – $3,800
I have a love/hate relationship with Lucas Duda. When he is able to get his pitch, I love him like a son. When he falls for a curveball away, he’s dead to me and I never want to see him again. I used to love hearing guys at Citi Field call for “Duda Bombs” only to see him walk back to the dugout after waving at a ball WAAAAAAYYYYY out of the zone. I also loved seeing Lucas connect for a long double in the gap. He’s hot and cold at the same time. He was the quintessential Mets player, you love him, but you should hate him and he makes you cry in the shower.
That being said, I love no pressure Duda on the Royals. What’s the worst that could happen? He’s traded at the deadline? Come on. That’s child’s play. He’s hitting in a lineup behind Kendrys Morales and Whit Merrifield who have the solid chops. That’s when Duda is able to spread his wings and fly, when he’s protected with better hitters. Seriously. Duda played better on the Mets when he had Cespedes, Wright and Granderson swinging hot bats. That sentence alone just made me realize why Duda never worked out on the Mets. He’s in the right system now. I follow Lucas Duda. #DontThrowHome
Manuel Margot – OF, San Diego Padres – $3,400
Margot is the next big thing. You heard it here first, and if you’ve been reading our stuff, you’ve heard it a lot. Margot has speed, a solid bat, and a great glove. While the glove won’t get you any points, his bat and his speed will. Margot stole 17 bases in 2017 and you can bet on that number being higher this season. That’s gonna start quick. The Padres lineup is built for hitting with runners in scoring position and will allow them to focus less on the long ball and more on their BABIP. If Margot can turn into a Charlie Blackmon type player, the Padres will be set. Like I said, this is gonna start quick out of the gate. This is not your Padres team from the past two years.
Aaron Judge – OF, New York Yankees – $5,100
New York Magazine
Starting off with a big shot across the bow. Judge is the fanciest play of the century most nights, but not Opening Day. A year ago Judge wasn’t the superstar he is today, remember that. The Sophomore Slump is real and it’s going to hit the Yankees slugger hard. There’s also veteran J.A. Happ to contend with and while Judge is hitting .286 against the lefty, that’s just 2 hits in 7 ABs, one of which was a home run. Don’t be so quick to forget that Judge has struggled against lefties… essentially his entire life, hitting .211 compared to a .285 against righties. Don’t get fooled by last year’s shimmer, Judge needs still needs polish.
Garrett Richards – P, Los Angeles Angels – $6,800
This is less of a “don’t pick Garrett Richards” pick and more of a “don’t sleep on the Oakland A’s”. If you listen to one thing from Jake Bridges it’s his hype on Matt Olson. Not only is Olson poised for a breakout season, the A’s also have Jonathan Lucroy, Jed Lowrie, and Khris Davis. This is not a lineup to sleep on. Not at all, they’re here to haunt your dreams and get a new ballpark. That and play some hard-nosed Oakland baseball.
Luis Severino – P, New York Yankees – $10,600
Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press via AP
I know. A Red Sox/Mets fan picking two Yankees on his dislike list? What does he know?! I love Severino. It pains me to say that, but I think the guy has an insane ceiling and is gonna be the Ace on this staff for as long as they can keep him. However, not against the Blue Jays and not on Opening Day. Severino is hit or miss in big games. Remember when he left the Wildcard game after getting absolutely lit up by the Twins? He should have manhandled that lineup, but fell behind and couldn’t get back in rhythm. This Jays team has nothing to lose, and this Yankees team has a lot to prove and a ton of hype to live up to. I would stay away from Severino until he settles in for the season. There’s also the fact that in his career the Jays are hitting .261 off the young fireballer, with an OPS of .854, and he’s never won at the Rogers Centre. So the numbers are on the Jays side. Just sayin’.
The Tampa Bays are essentially a Quad-A team. Chris Sale narrowly missed out on the Cy Young last year. Somethings don’t change, you guys. Sale is worth the price tag.
Archer has a lot to prove… to other teams this year. If he wants to hit pay dirt in the offseason and play for a different team come August, he needs to come out hot. Against this Red Sox team? I don’t think it happens, but it could be worth a shot. Take him at your own risk.