There are many options to consider on Tuesday's full MLB slate, but certain pitchers and hitters stand out. Here are the top ones to get in your lineups.
Pitchers to Stream
Brandon McCarthy (R), 50 percent ownership in ESPN leagues, Los Angeles Dodgers vs. New York Mets: McCarthy has a strong 3.14 ERA this year and it's well-supported with a 3.19 FIP. After allowing 6 ER in a May 15 start at San Francisco, McCarthy has put up a 1.91 ERA and 0.88 WHIP in five starts, with three or fewer hits in four of those starts. McCarthy's ground ball rate has spiked to 46 percent, up from just 35 percent last year, while his hard contact rate has been cut from 36 to 24 percent -- third-lowest among starters (min. 50 IP). The Mets are 19th in wOBA against righties since the start of last season.
Mike Montgomery (L), 7 percent, Chicago Cubs vs. San Diego Padres: Monty has shifted into the rotation with the injuries to Kyle Hendricks and Brett Anderson and he has a real chance to stick even when they return. He sits 91-93 mph from the left side with a four-pitch mix that helps mitigate massive platoon splits. Let's be honest, though, a major part of this recommendation is of course the opposition. The Padres are dead last in wOBA against lefties this year with just a .280 mark. They are 10 points from even moving up one spot. They also have a .291 mark on the road against all pitchers, righty or lefty, so if Montgomery leaves with a lead then he has a great shot at notching the win.
Jordan Zimmermann (R), 16 percent, Detroit Tigers at Seattle Mariners: I never expected to recommend Zimm in one of these articles this year, but he's been great in each of his past three starts and four of five. Zimm went six innings or more in only two of his first seven starts, but he's done so in five of his past six. His surge includes trips to Houston and Boston where he was successful, though also a 7 ER dud at the White Sox. His stuff just looks a lot better. He's getting ahead often with the 91-93 mph fastball and generating whiffs with his breaking balls. The Mariners are about average against righties with a .325 wOBA that ranks 13th.
Pitcher to Avoid
Zack Greinke (R), 98 percent, Arizona Diamondbacks at Colorado Rockies: Yes, it's the obvious answer, but you'll never go broke fading starters in Coors. Plus, there just aren't that many studs going on Tuesday that you could possibly fade. Greinke did put up a strong 7 IP/2 ER outing in Coors earlier this year, but I don't mind running away from his career 4.03 ERA/1.58 WHIP in nine starts there.
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. A 50 typically earns the pitcher a "quality start" by this measure, while a 70 is considered a dominant start.
Miguel Montero (L), 1 percent, Chicago Cubs vs. San Diego Padres (RHP Jhoulys Chacin): Of his 50 extra-base hits since 2015, Montero has hit 45 of them against righties. He has a .189 ISO against them this year, too. Meanwhile, Jhoulys Chacin is a completely different pitcher on the road. He has a 1.72 ERA in seven home starts and a 10.27 in seven road starts. Neither is representative of his true talent, but he had a 5.85 ERA on the road last year, too.
Trey Mancini (R), 35 percent, Baltimore Orioles vs. Cleveland Indians (RHP Josh Tomlin): Mancini has been a bit of a revelation for the O's this year. He has already popped 12 homers with a .310/.352/.576 line and now he's seen his role expand. He's actually done his best work against righties despite being a righty himself. His .340/.391/.660 line against righties has been awesome and includes eight of the 12 homers. Josh Tomlin has allowed six of his 11 homers against righties, with a .325/.346/.526 line in 159 PA.
Eric Sogard (L), 6 percent, Milwaukee Brewers vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (RHP Chad Kuhl): Soooo, Eric Sogard is awesome now? He's hitting .343/.470/.507 against righties this year with 15 walks against just nine strikeouts. He has seven multihit games out of the 13 he's played in June. Chad Kuhl has been pummeled by lefties in his career, allowing a .310/.382/.559 line. His .392 wOBA against lefties is fourth-highest among qualified starters since the start of last year.
Eduardo Escobar (B), 10 percent, Minnesota Twins vs. Chicago White Sox (LHP Derek Holland): Escobar is blitzing lefties this year with a .360/.429/.620 line in 56 PA while righty hitters have thrashed Derek Holland to the tune of a .282/.363/.534 line with all 14 of his homers allowed. It's just that simple here.
Jorge Polanco (B), 4 percent, Minnesota Twins vs. Chicago White Sox (LHP Derek Holland): Polanco doesn't have great numbers against lefties this year (.567 OPS), but a .222 BABIP is holding him back. He had an .857 OPS against them last year. Again, we're just picking on Holland a bit with some cheap Twins who will bat from the left side against him.
Scooter Gennett (L), 10 percent, Cincinnati Reds at Tampa Bay Rays (RHP Alex Cobb): Ol' Scoots is probably going to hit four homers the next time we use him. OK fine, he's not going to do that, but he has a .299/.328/.556 line against righties this year with seven of his eight homers on the season. Alex Cobb has had decent results on the year, but his split-changeup hasn't been great this year so his platoon splits are essentially neutral.
Matt Davidson (R), 12 percent, Chicago White Sox at Minnesota Twins (RHP Ervin Santana): There's a relatively high chance that Davidson goes 0-for-4 with 3 strikeouts on any given day, but he hasn't let his 39 percent strikeout rate hold him down. He still has a .257/.301/.546 line with 15 homers in 196 PA. He has been split-neutral, too, with an .854 OPS against righties and .833 against lefties. Hits have been rare against Ervin Santana this year, but righties have done better (.629 to .503 OPS) and his strikeout rate is the lowest it has been since 2006. I'll take a shot on Davidson's power.
Delino DeShields (R), 8 percent, Texas Rangers vs. Toronto Blue Jays (LHP Francisco Liriano): DeShields has a gaudy .414 OBP against lefties this year thanks to 10 walks in 58 PA and that has allowed him to swipe eight bases, one more than he has against righties in essentially half the plate appearances. Francisco Liriano has allowed 13 stolen bases in 14 attempts this year. Sure, some may be on the catcher, but steals come against the pitcher for the most part. Liriano is also allowing a .273/.391/.475 line against righties this year. DeShields' discipline and Liriano's consistent walk issues are a great match here.
Denard Span (L), 3 percent, San Francisco Giants at Atlanta Braves (RHP Julio Teheran): Span's power -- limited as it may be -- comes almost exclusively against righties with 16 of his 18 extra-base hits coming against them. He actually had a .308/.365/.444 line against righties from 2014 to '16 and he's heating up in June (.901 OPS). Meanwhile, Julio Teheran is allowing a .277/.383/.530 line against lefties this year and a .263/.333/.455 from 2013 to '16.
Jason Heyward (L), 23 percent, Chicago Cubs vs. San Diego Padres (RHP Jhoulys Chacin): We're picking on road Chacin again. Heyward has a career .276/.360/.444 line against righties and he's back near that career level this season after a rough 2016. He hit just five homers against righties in 431 PA last year, but this year he already has five in 163 PA.
Hitter matchup ratings
Notes: Hitter ratings account for the opposing starting pitcher's history (three years' worth, as well as the 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, whereas 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.