August is here, finally. The trade deadline has passed, and football is just a few weeks away. Not much happened at the trade deadline with one of the quietest deadlines we’ve ever seen in recent memory, which should tell you a lot about the changing landscape of Major League front offices.
In years past, teams used to offer prospects for players who could help them down the final stretch of the season. Slightly above-average players were dealt for decent returns for their services, which almost seemed more prevalent out of tradition, rather than necessity. It was the “going rate” for a long time if you wanted a guy to help you down the stretch, a player on an expiring contract, playing for a team in the cellar of a division, who gets dealt for two or three prospects, one of which is typically promising.
This season, teams like the Yankees, Red Sox and Dodgers sort of just sat on their hands at the deadline. I think many front offices are realizing that the seasons can be over by the All-Star break but that doesn’t mean it’s smarter to just ship off your talent to another organization because things didn’t work out, at least right away. Teams are realizing holding onto these assets is more critical to future success because these players are known commodities while prospects are unproven and most will never pan out. Building a strong farm system is crucial, but depleting your own farm system to acquire players who may not make a significant impact during the limited time they’ll be with the club isn’t a very smart move. This sort of thing at the trade deadline is something you should expect a lot more of in the future.
Tuesday night will be a showdown
Following a collapse by our Fantasy team last week after a promising start from our pitchers, we are going to go to a “Showdown” style this week in DFS. Today, we are looking at the late game in LA. It’s the Dodgers hosting the Cardinals in what will be a game in which the Dodgers will be the heavy favorites. Like the All-Star game, this format will be one MVP (1.5 DFS Points) and five Utility slots.
These “Showdown” contests on DraftKings can be very misleading if you’re picking based on who you think will do well instead of what contest type you’re playing in. This week, we’re doing the Showdown style, but targeting the bigger contests with more weight at the top. We are swinging for the fences this week as this bold lineup is one that will either cash big or miss terrifically.
Captain (1.5 X Points)
Joc Pederson (DK-$10,800)
Pederson is coming off a 21-point game in his last appearance. It’s not common for a guy batting .230 to have 24 home runs and have the ceiling he does and yet cost so little. Pederson is the perfect choice at MVP for a Showdown contest because there is no real middle ground with him. He’s either going to win or lose your matchup for you, so you may as well start him and if he hits a bomb, rest assured your roster will be in a golden spot. The advantage of having Pederson in the MVP slot, as opposed to the normal slot is that he isn’t costly, so regardless of what happens, you’ll have money to spend at the other places across your lineup.
Option 2: Kristopher Negron (DK-$7,500) See final paragraph
Paul DeJong (DK-$7,000)
Paul DeJong is another power-upside guy for this showdown, at a reasonable price. It helps he’s got a tough matchup against a future Hall of Fame arm, but his lack of history with Kershaw and right -handed bat should ease the fears one would have in this position. DeJong is cheap and flashes the power needed to win a top-heavy contest.
Paul Goldschmidt (DK-$7,800)
There’s no doubt this isn’t a good matchup for Goldy. Though he’s a six-time All-Star and former Silver Slugger award winner, facing Clayton Kershaw at home is a rough one. Still, if there’s a guy on the Cardinals who can take advantage of a pitcher having an off night, look no further. Goldy will be a tough out for Kershaw in this one.
Clayton Kershaw (DK-$11,400)
Everyone is picking Kershaw. Okay, maybe not everyone, but a good many people will be picking him for this contest due to his high floor, the number of left-handed batters he will face, and the setting of a night game at home. There’s a lot to like about Kershaw here, so don’t overthink things. Set him in your lineup and enjoy the points, but pray Pederson goes yard and gives you the leg up, because a lot of people will be using Kershaw as their MVP and using whatever scraps are leftover to back-fill their rosters.
Miles Mikolas (DK-$8,000)
Miles Mikolas hasn’t been bad this season. He’s rocking a WHIP of just 1.22 and an ERA of 4.00. It’s not awful. If this game turns into a pitchers duel, we should have a decent cashing shot, regardless of how well Pederson does. With many people likely opting to go with Kershaw at MVP, little room will be left to roster a guy like Mikolas, so whomever you choose at MVP (just make it cheap) will give you the ability to start both Mikolas and Kershaw and reap the rewards. You just need to get something out of the MVP to have a shot at winning a contest with a heavily weighted payout.
Kristopher Negron (DK-$5,000)
Negron is the value buy of the week and out “Option B” route for the week. If you want a more conservative roster option for the week and would rather slide in a guy like Marcell Ozuna for Pederson, you can always go with Negron in the MVP slot and move Ozuna into this slot.
As it stands for “Option A”, I’m going with Negron in the final utility slot. Negron is a solid utility player who has made the most of his opportunities this season in limited action with the Dodgers, batting over .300 with two home runs in 43 ABs. He’ll have opportunities in this one, and for just $5,000 on DraftKings, he’s the perfect option to fill out this roster.
Collin is a former Army Intelligence and Logistics officer who will watch any sport and gamble with anyone willing. This is his second year writing for dailyfantasysports.codes.