Daily notes: Fantasy rankings for Friday

Milwaukee's Travis Shaw is an overlooked slugger who plays in the hitter's paradise known as Miller Park. Jon Durr/Getty Images

Friday's slate features all 15 games being played under the lights. This gives you all day to ruminate over roster additions. Here are some pitchers and hitters available in more than half of ESPN leagues for your consideration. If you have a question on a player not highlighted, drop a tweet to @ToddZola or ask away in the comments below.


Looking for a spot starter on Friday? Here's a list of potential options still available in more than 50 percent of ESPN.com leagues.

Starting pitching

Adam Conley (Miami Marlins at San Diego Padres, 5 percent ownership in ESPN leagues): If you're streaming pitchers, there's certain matchups to exploit. Many of them are covered by Tristan Cockcroft in a recent column. Add southpaws facing the San Diego Padres to the list. Per ESPN Fantasy research associate Kyle Soppe, since the start of the 2016 campaign, the Friars sport the third-worst strikeout rate with a lefty on the hill, along with a below-average weighted on base average (wOBA). Righty swingers Manuel Margot and Hunter Renfroe should eventually help reverse that trend, but until the rookies develop a bit more, continue to use lefty throwers versus the Padres. Conley's early strikeout rate is below career norms, but look for that to tick upward in this Petco Park affair.

CC Sabathia (New York Yankees at Pittsburgh Pirates, 38 percent): Included among Tristan's matchups to exploit is left-handers facing the Bucs, and this was written before Starling Marte's suspension. The southpaw's 1.47 ERA over his first three starts is impressive, but note Sabathia has whiffed only 11 with seven walks in 18 1/3 innings. That should improve in the Steel City. Also in his favor is that the home team, aided by PNC Park, lacks the punch to take advantage of Sabathia's long-ball tendencies.

Wily Peralta (Milwaukee Brewers vs. St. Louis Cardinals, 26 percent): Like Sabathia, Peralta hasn't pitched as well as his 2.65 ERA suggests, as he's fanned 13 with eight walks in 17 frames. What's odd is his velocity is up (even when considering the adjusted readings this season), and he's throwing a ton of first-pitch strikes, yet his swinging-strike rate is down. If the first two trends hold, expect an uptick in swinging strikes, hence strikeouts in general. The visiting Cardinals bring a league-average offense into Miller Park along with Adam Wainwright, who's allowed a whopping 24 hits in 13 2/3 innings. That will no doubt correct, but the Brewers should still be able to do some damage, giving Peralta a chance at a win.


If Peralta records a victory, he'll no doubt get a little help from his friends. Neftali Feliz looks to rebound from his four-run implosion versus the Cubs on Wednesday. If Feliz continues to scuffle, Corey Knebel waits in the wings. The 24-year old righty has punched out 12 in 8 1/3 innings, allowing just one tally. Even more impressive is Jacob Barnes. The 27-year old right-hander has tossed 9 1/3 shutout stanzas, fanning 11 along the way.

Projected game scores

GS is the projected game score for the pitcher. A "*" means that the pitcher lacks requisite career major league data to produce an accurate rating; these are the author's ratings.


Here's a position-by-position look at hitters in favorable spots with less than 50 percent ownership.


James McCann (Detroit Tigers, 10 percent): If you're looking for some pop, McCann is in a great spot. Since the beginning of last season, 11 of his 15 homers have come against lefty pitching, despite facing right-handers almost twice as much. McCann will dig in against Hector Santiago, a fly ball southpaw, prone to allowing the long ball.

First base

Justin Bour (Miami Marlins, 9 percent): In his column, Tristan also identified the Marlins as an underrated offense. The Fish will be in Petco Park, which is still pitcher-friendly, but less so after renovations before the 2015 season. Bour enjoys the platoon advantage with soft-tossing Trevor Cahill on the hill for the Padres. Though to be fair, Cahill fanned 66 in 65 2/3 innings last season, albeit mostly in relief. This season, the righty has 15 strikeouts in 11 1/3 frames. Still, situated in the five-hole, between Giancarlo Stanton and Marcell Ozuna puts Bour in a good spot.

Second base

Josh Harrison (Pittsburgh Pirates, 21 percent): Harrison historically hits lefties well and could be leading off with Sabathia on the hill.

Third base

Travis Shaw (Milwaukee Brewers, 40 percent): It probably won't be long before Shaw exceeds the 50 percent ownership threshold we use to identify players to discuss. He's been hitting third or fourth, taking advantage of the hitter-friendly environment of Miller Park. Shaw also has enough speed to chip in with some steals, as the Brewers run more than any other team in the league. Friday, Shaw draws Wainwright, a veteran trying to return to form. With the platoon edge in the best venue for lefty power in the game, the edge goes to Shaw.


Taylor Motter (Seattle Mariners, 7 percent): Even though he's cooled off since taking over for the injured Jean Segura, Motter is in a good spot, facing the talented but inconsistent Sean Manaea on the road in Oakland.

Corner infield

Logan Morrison (Tampa Bay Rays, 14 percent): After sitting out Thursday with a lefty on the hill, Morrison should return to the lineup with righty Mike Fiers and his bloated home run rate on the Tropicana Field hill.

Middle infield

Jordy Mercer (Pittsburgh Pirates, 2 percent): Finding viable options up the middle is tough on this slate, so despite pegging Sabathia as a streamer, let's double down on the keystone combo for the Pirates. One reason for this is if Harrison doesn't hit first, Mercer likely will, so if you only need one, check lineups and grab whoever is atop the order.


Denard Span (San Francisco Giants, 11 percent): Choosing a leadoff hitter at Coors almost feels like cheating, but Span is likely available, with the platoon edge against Tyler Chatwood, who struggles at home. Why not jump on him as he'll be in play tomorrow as well, with another right-hander on the hill for Colorado.

Ezequiel Carrera (Toronto Blue Jays, less than 1 percent): Digging deep for the last two fly chasers, beginning with Carrera who draws Alex Meyer in Angel Stadium. No longer a prospect, Meyer has yet to translate minor league success to the majors. When promoted, his walk and home run rate shoot through the roof. Perhaps things will be different for the 27-year-old, but until he proves otherwise, it can't hurt to have exposure against Meyer.

Guillermo Heredia (Seattle Mariners, less than 1 percent): Another deep dive for an outfielder almost assuredly available, Heredia's been sitting on top of the order with a lefty on the hill. The righty swinger will face Manaea, a lefty prone to control woes. Heredia has the patience to take advantage.

Hitter ratings

Notes: Hitter ratings account for the opposing starting pitcher's past history (three years' worth, as well as past 21 days) and ballpark factors. "LH" and "RH" ratings account only for left- and right-handed batters, respectively. Weighted on-base average (wOBA) is the primary statistic used in the calculation. Ratings range from 1 to 10, with 10 representing the best possible matchup, statistically speaking, and 1 representing the worst. So, for example, a 10 is a must-start rating, while a 1 should be avoided (if possible); a 1-2 is poor, 3-4 is fair, 5-6 is average, 7-8 is very good and 9-10 is excellent.