Daily notes: Pitcher and hitter rankings for Friday

Eduardo Rodriguez has struggled since coming off of the disabled list, but draws a favorable matchup against the White Sox on Friday. Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

If streaming pitchers is your thing, then this is your slate. In fact, you're getting two bonus picks, and that's leaving out Kevin Gausman and Brad Peacock, both in a great spot but just beyond the 50 percent cutoff used to highlight potential pickups. Consider this trio in shallower leagues where they may still be available.

The key to finding hitting at this point in the season is paying attention to batting orders, as we've seen enough games post-trade deadline to get a feel for how lineups will flesh out. An effort will be made to mix some fresh faces in with the usual suspects in a favorable scenario.


Pitchers to stream

Eduardo Rodriguez (L), 44 percent ownership in ESPN leagues, Boston Red Sox vs. Chicago White Sox: Rodriguez has scuffled since coming off the disabled list, which is a little surprising, if not disappointing based on how well he was pitching before tweaking his knee. The numbers say the White Sox are dangerous versus southpaws, but splits of this nature are tenuous since the sample of plate appearances versus left-handers are limited. They could have serendipitously avoided the better lefties. Plus, Todd Frazier and Melky Cabrera are both donning new uniforms.

Brandon Woodruff (R), less than one percent, Milwaukee Brewers at Tampa Bay Rays: After a couple of false alarms, Woodruff is finally slated to make his MLB debut. Considering he's been toiling at Triple-A Colrado Springs, Woodruff has comported himself well, fanning 70 with only 24 walks in 72 2/3 innings. He draws a Rays club that lines up well versus righties, but also offers strikeout upside.

Jaime Garcia (L), 22 percent, New York Yankees at Cleveland Indians: Speaking of risk, Garcia makes his Yankees debut against an Indians club that is solid versus southpaws. That said, with the reinforced reliever corps, Garcia won't be asked to go through the order a third time, putting him in a good spot to grab a win with Trevor Bauer on the hill for the Tribe.

R.A. Dickey (R), 16 percent, Atlanta Braves vs. Miami Marlins: It's never comfortable streaming a knuckleball artist. However, those riding Dickey's coattails have been rewarded far more often than not over the past couple of months. The main concern facing Miami is the power of Giancarlo Stanton and Marcel Ozuna. In this season of the long ball, Dickey has been a remarkable job keeping the ball in the yard, allowing only two homers, both in the same game, over his last eight outings.

Adam Conley (L), 9 percent, Miami Marlins at Atlanta Braves: Opposing Dickey is Conley, who's been very good since being afforded another look in the rotation. In three starts, the southpaw has fanned 15, with just four walks in 20 2/3 innings, all while allowing just four earned runs. Conley holds the platoon edge on two of the Braves' key cogs in Ender Inciarte and Freddie Freeman.

Jharel Cotton (R), 5 percent, Oakland Athletics at Los Angeles Angels: Injuries, walks and especially homers have marred Cotton's 2017 season. With Sonny Gray toiling in the Bronx, Cotton will be expected to pick up the pace, mostly in the future but for the remainder of this season as well. He's been roughed up in his two outings since coming off the disabled list, but draws a weak-hitting Angels team in his effort to rebound.


Taylor Rogers has been anointed closer in Minnesota, making him a decent pickup for those chasing saves. However, those in keeper and dynasty leagues should keep an eye on Trevor Hildenberger. Hildenberger isn't at all dominant, yet he's managed to miss bats at every level.

In Motown, Shane Greene has inherited ninth inning duties, availing another source for saves. However, a quiet move at the deadline was the Tigers promoting Joe Jimenez. Jimenez broke camp with Detroit, but was initially overmatched. He's back and is being groomed as the long-term answer at closer.

Projected game scores

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



Kurt Suzuki (R), 4 percent, Atlanta Braves vs. Miami Marlins (LHP Adam Conley): Given that streaks are non-predictive in that they can flip at any time, a scorching month has found Suzuki hitting cleanup. That alone warrants consideration as most available backstops hit much lower in the order. It's not a sure thing that Suzuki plays, so consider his backup, Tyler Flowers, as your Plan B.

First base

Lucas Duda (L), 18 percent, Tampa Bay Rays vs. Milwaukee Brewers (RHP Brandon Woodruff): In part due to injuries and being a platoon player, Duda doesn't get the credit he deserves as a hitter. This aids the fantasy player, since he's usually available for good matchups like this one against Woodruff. Be it at designated hitter or playing first, expect to see Duda frequently in this space down the stretch.

Second base

Kolten Wong (L), 3 percent, St. Louis Cardinals at Cincinnati Reds (RHP Asher Wojciechowski): Wong is an example of paying attention to lineups. Granted, he may move back down for this contest, but for the last two games, he's hit leadoff. One was with Matt Carpenter out, while the other was with Paul DeJong getting the day off, but it's a good sign that the Redbirds are entrusting the top spot to Wong. As for the matchup, let's tag in ESPN Research Associate Kyle Soppe, who points out 19 of Wong's 20 extra base hits have come with a righty on the hill. Further, Wojciechowski, who is taking the rotation spot of Tim Adleman, is susceptible to lefty power and may not be stretch out. Soppe also notes that the Reds have one of the weaker bullpens in the league and are now without Tony Cingrani, lessening the chance Wong faces a southpaw or is lifted for a pinch-hitter.

Third base

David Freese (R), 4 percent, Pittsburgh Pirates vs. San Diego Padres (LHP Travis Wood): Freese and Jose Osuna usually occupy the attractive four and five spots in the Pittsburgh lineup with a lefty on the hill. Both hit lefties well and are coming off productive months in July.


Freddy Galvis (B), 24 percent, Philadelphia Phillies at Colorado Rockies (RHP Kyle Freeland): Getting exposure to Coors Field is always a boon. It's even better when it comes courtesy of a switch-hitting two-hole hitter with pop. That allows for plate appearances and the platoon edge to be maximized. Tommy Joseph, Maikel Franco and Aaron Altherr are additional Phillies available in many leagues, all owning the platoon edge on Freeland.

Corner infield

Matt Chapman (R), 2 percent, Oakland Athletics at Los Angeles Angels (RHP Troy Scribner): Chapman doesn't possess the platoon edge, but he's been exhibiting good plate patience and some pop. Plus, he will be facing a guy who hasn't started since July 22 in Triple-A, as Scribner has been working as a reliever since being called up. Matt Joyce and Marcus Semien join Chapman as solid streaming options.

Middle infield

Eduardo Escobar (B), 7 percent, Minnesota Twins vs. Texas Rangers (LHP Martin Perez): Despite allowing a homer in each of his last four efforts, Perez has done a good job minimizing homers. On the other hand, he's been extremely generous in terms of baserunners. Escobar, who has been very productive versus southpaws this season, is in a great spot, as are teammates Chris Gimenez and Byron Buxton.


Derek Fisher (L), 13 percent, Houston Astros vs. Toronto Blue Jays (RHP Cesar Valdez): Fisher won't hit leadoff when George Springer returns, but his roster spot is fairly safe with Nori Aoki shipped off to Friday's opponent. Aoki was traded for Francisco Liriano, whose departure paved the way for Valdez to return to the rotation. Valdez hasn't been effective as a starter or reliever, putting Fisher in a great spot.

Leonys Martin (L), 1 percent, Seattle Mariners at Kansas City Royals (RHP Jason Hammel): We interrupt the usual highlighting of Ben Gamel to bring you Leonys Martin. Given another chance to impress after failing to do so in April, Martin's been seeing regular time while Mitch Haniger is out. Martin has a triple and homer since his recall, with a chance for more facing Hammel.

Chris Young (R), less than 1 percent, Boston Red Sox vs. Chicago White Sox (LHP Carlos Rodon): Collectively, the Red Sox offense isn't as prolific as it was last season. That said, their patient approach remains effective against a potentially wild hurler like Rodon. Young hasn't hit lefties as well as in the past, but he should be granted a few chances to turn that around against Rodon.

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.