MLB Daily Fantasy Draft Giants vs Dodgers
Dominate your competition with our MLB Daily Fantasy Draft, create the winning lineup at Fanpicks.com. Nothing like getting thrown into the fire, as Ross Stripling will find out tonight, when he makes his Major League debut pitching for the Dodgers versus their archrival Giants at inhospitable AT&T Park.
Stripling, who has never pitched above Double-A, said he’s been studying Giants hitters since he learned last weekend that he gets first crack at holding the fifth starter job. He went 1 and 1 with a 4.09 ERA in four Spring Training games. The 26 year-old was chosen over Carlos Frias and Zach Lee to complete the rotation the opening day rotation. Both Frias and Lee already started for the team over the course of the previous season, so it may seems suprising to go with the rookie who is coming off Tommy Johns surgery.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy indicated that catcher Buster Posey is likely to get his first day off this season. Rookie Trevor Brown would start in his place. Posey was initially expected to rest in Wednesday’s series finale at Milwaukee, but played instead. The Giants would need Posey’s bat this Saturday, when they face Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw and are scheduled to counter with their own No. 1 pitcher, Madison Bumgarner, to the hill. Posey usually takes a break from catching about 40 games per season, but usually does not miss Bumgarner’s starts. Matt Cain, who will starts for San Francisco, is 5-11 with a 3.49 ERA in 30 career outings against the Dodgers. Spring training hasn’t been too good for him though, as he recorded an ERA of 7.71 in three starts.
Top Fantasy Picks
2B Joe Panik (SF)
3B Justin Turner (LAD)
OF Yasiel Puig (LAD)
Fantasy Baseball Draft Pittsburgh Pirates vs Cincinnati Reds
Dominate your competition with our Fantasy Baseball Draft, create the winning lineup at Fanpicks.com. The Pirates won 98 games last season, posting the Major League Baseball second-best record and reaching the postseason for the third straight year. But they couldn’t quite solve the Reds, the National League Central’s last-place team a year ago. Looking to stay atop an increasingly competitive division, Pittsburgh must first improve its record versus Cincinnati. The Bucs will get their first shot to do so today at Great American Ball Park, where they will open their season series against the Reds at 7:10 p.m. ET.
The Reds defeated the Pirates in 11 of their 19 meetings last season, despite concluding the year 64-98. Cincinnati swept the clubs’ first series a year ago back in their home field, the Great American Ball Park, while pulling out three victories by a total of five runs. The Reds will be looking to start the season 4-0 for the second straight year. Pittsburgh will send their Opening Day starter, Francisco Liriano, to the mound. Liriano struck out 10 and walked five over six scoreless innings in a win over the Cardinals on Sunday. Despite Pittsburgh woes against Cincinnati, they will be able to count on Liriano who has been lights-out against the Reds current crop of hitters. All 13 Cincinnati players who have faced Liriano, own a collective .212/.307/.321 batting line against him. Catcher Devin Mesoraco has fared better than the rest against the Pirates lefty, going 5-for-13 with seven walks and only two strikeouts. Opposing Liriano will be right-hander Alfredo Simon who prepares to make his season debut for the Reds.
Pittsburgh manager, Clint Hurdle, used the same starting lineup in each of their first three games when they faced the Cardinals. John Jaso was batting leadoff and Andrew McCutchen followed against the trio of right-handed St. Louis starting pitchers. Coming off an off-day Thursday, expect to see the same order deployed against Simon. The 34 years-old Simon has faced McCutchen and Starling Marte in 32 and 31 plate appearances respectively. The most than any other hitters he faced in his eight-year career. McCutchen carry a 7-for-26 with a homer against the Dominican pitcher, while Marte is 9-for-27 with two doubles.
You can expect catcher Devin Mesoraco, shortstop Zack Cozart and center fielder Billy Hamilton to make their returns to the Reds’ starting lineup. All three were given a break on Thursday as manager Bryan Price is trying to ease all three back into action after they had major surgeries in 2015. One piece missing will be second baseman, Brandon Phillips, who is day-to-day with a stomach bug and already missed the past two Reds games.
Top Fantasy Baseball Draft Picks
P Francisco Liriano (PIT)
OF Gregory Polanco (PIT)
OF Jay Bruce (CIN)
NBA Daily Fantasy Draft Miami Heat vs Orlando Magic
Dominate your competition with our NBA Daily Fantasy Draft, create the winning lineup at Fanpicks.com. The Miami Heat (46-32) make their way to Orlando for the first of two back-to-back match-ups against the Magic (33-45).
The Heat delivered another blow to the Chicago Bulls’ playoffs hopes on Thursday night and, in doing so, bolstered their own in a 106-98 home win. All five starters for the club posted double digits in the victory, with Dwayne Wade leading the group with 21 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists, shooting 9 of 18 from the paint. Goran Dragic scored a double-double with 16 points and 12 boards, going 7 of 16 from the paint. Dragic is putting up an average of 13.9 points and 5.9 dimes for the team this year, suiting up for 67 games and leading the club in assists. Hassan Whiteside came off the reserves for his 39th double-double of the season on the strength of a 16-point, 12-rebound outing as Miami stand in fifth place in the Eastern Conference, just a half game behind the third place Hawks.
The Magic have lost two of their last three games, with their latest defeat coming on Wednesday night to the visiting Detroit Pistons, 108-104. Evan Fournier topped the squad in scoring with 19 points, hitting all five of his shot attempts from the foul line but had difficulty from beyond the arc, where he finished 0 for 5. Elfrid Payton contributed with 17 points and 5 assists, forcing 3 turnovers and shooting 8 of 13 from the court, while Nikola Vucevic came out from the bench to collect the double-double with 15 points and 13 rebounds, going 7 of 14 from field goal range. Vucevic, who remains Orlando’s top offensive contributor despite being absent for the majority of the month of March with a groin injury, is averaging 18 points and 9 rebounds for the team through 62 games played, edging the unit in blocks with 1.1 per outing. Andrew Nicholson had 14 points, 5 rebounds and a pair of threes as the Magic remain in 11th place in the East, with their follow-up game coming versus Miami on the road on Sunday.
Top Fantasy Picks
G Goran Dragic (MIA)
G Victor Oladipo (ORL)
C Nikola Vucevic (ORL)