he stretch, that youve got a team thats plin
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Sundays MLB slate is interesting, as there are no truly elite pitching options. But with quite a few solid pitchers in good spots and some teams with great hitting matchups, there will be plenty of options for season-long and daily fantasy players. See what gems have been unearthed, along with a surprising set of hitters to target, in Sundays daily notes.PitchingSolidKyle Hendricks is getting some buzz for the National League Cy Young Award, primarily driven by a league-leading ERA among qualified pitchers. Some are pointing to an average strikeout rate along with a FIP and xFIP significantly higher than his ERA as reasons he doesnt deserve to win.I have another issue, which is the same shortcoming he incurs in fantasy: not enough innings. To be fair, Hendricks ranks 21st in innings per start. Still, to be considered the best, I want that higher. This is obviously speculation, but if Hendricks had been left in a few games longer, chances are hed have given up a few more runs, softening the Cy Young argument. That said, Hendricks has been DFS cash-game gold all season, owning one of the more stable floors in the league. However, with the lack of top pitching on Sunday, and considering his matchup with the strikeout-prone Milwaukee Brewers at Wrigley Field, Hendricks also checks in as a GPP option.Drew Pomeranz has registered a 2-5 record with a 4.60 ERA since being acquired by the Boston Red Sox. However, in 11 starts, the southpaw has allowed two or fewer runs seven times, three tallies once, and in three outings surrendering five scores. Hes also fanned 62 over 58 2/3 Beantown innings. Those who picked up Pomeranz after the trade are no doubt disappointed in the results. However, the game log shows hes capable of solid efforts, which is what matters to DFS gamers. Sundays date with the New York Yankees at Fenway Park isnt ideal, and the guests produce at a below-average level facing left-handers. Pomeranz sets up better for cash but is defensible in tourneys as a contrarian option.Ivan Nova is the anti-Pomeranz in that his numbers have markedly improved since he was shipped across leagues, landing in the Steel City. His true projected game score landed him in the streaming tier, but the algorithm carries over much of his time with the Yankees. To be honest, the adjustment could have, and perhaps should have, lifted Nova above Pomeranz. The Pittsburgh Pirates right-hander takes the hill at the Great American Ball Park to face a Cincinnati Reds squad that has hit righty pitching well since the break -- the reason Nova is just below Pomeranz. Theres isnt much strikeout upside here, so normally Nova would be relegated to cash action, but on the weak docket, hes in play for tournaments.On a ledger like this, you need to dig deep for any actionable edges. For instance, over the past month, the Philadelphia Phillies sport the lowest-weighted on-base average (wOBA) versus righties in tandem with the worst -- by far -- strikeout rate in this scenario. Granted, Andrew Cashner has been extremely inconsistent, but a date at Citizens Bank Park against the Phillies thrusts the Miami Marlins right-hander into GPP contention.Heres another instance of a team running cold, as the Los Angeles Dodgers carry a meek .225 wOBA and bloated 29 percent whiff rate versus southpaws into Chase Field as they wrap up a series with Robbie Ray and the Arizona Diamondbacks. Calling Ray an emerging ace is aggressive, though its quite fair to suggest that if he can hone his control and display more consistency, the soon-to-be 25-year-old can attain that level. For now, hes a great GPP play.One guy has a 3.05 ERA and 1.11 WHIP with 171 punchouts in 192 innings, while the other sports 3.12/1.00 ratios with 167 whiffs in 201 innings. The former is playing out the string while the latter is among the favorites for the American League Cy Young award. The second, of course, is Rick Porcello and his 20-3 record.The other is Jose Quintana, whos taking a 12-10 mark into Kauffman Stadium for the finale of an AL Central set between the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals. The home team has been whiffing at a 23 percent clip versus lefties the past month, rendering Quintana an option for both cash and GPP action.Squaring off with Quintana is fellow southpaw Danny Duffy. The 27-year-olds quest for Cy Young contention has been curtailed by the long ball, as hes surrendered seven homers in his four most recent outings. Still, Duffy also can be safely used in all DFS formats.StreamersA whopping 18 arms fall in the streaming range, with all but one, Trevor Bauer, owned in fewer than 50 percent of ESPN leagues. This being the last day of most head-to-head scoring periods, context dictates absorbing the risk of the lesser options. Below are the better choices. If youd like a little more analysis on a name not featured, please take advantage of the comments section or fire a tweet to @ToddZola.Using Chad Bettis for a home tilt is obviously dangerous for ratios. However, the Colorado Rockies righty is in a great spot for strikeouts and a win facing the San Diego Padres and their 25 percent whiff rate versus right-handers for the past month.Its been only two starts, so to say Jose De Leon is homer-prone is premature, especially since two of the three hes served up in his initial two outing came at Yankee Stadium. Still, its a little comforting that the Diamondbacks are just average in power, even if the matchup is at homer-friendly Chase Field. Its risky, but De Leon has shown enough to be in play for those in need of a late push.Daniel Norris is permitting a lot of baserunners but has yet to allow more than three runs in a start this season. Coming off a couple of starts in which Norris fanned 18 in 12 1/3 innings, the Detroit Tigers lefty is a risky but viable streamer against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field.Some consider chasing wins a fools errand, but if thats what you need to win, you play the matchups and hope for the best. Colby Lewis and the Texas Rangers are favored over Ross Detwiler and the Oakland Athletics in Arlington. The As arent especially potent, but with Lewis just recently returning from injury, theres some risk to ratios.Avoid Only four hurlers fall in the automatic avoid range, and three certainly qualify as desperate times require desperate measures. Jarred Cosart at Coors Field, Gabriel Ynoa taking Jacob deGroms spot at Citi Field and Ross Detwiler at Globe Life Park are scary.Normally, Wily Peralta would be included, but hes been impressive lately, so if the Cubs dont field their best lineup, the Brewers righty could be a sneaky play, even in DFS.The only starter ranked above the automatic tier that really worries me is Wade Miley, whos taking the hill in Camden Yards against the Tampa Bay Rays. The Rays have been crushing southpaws lately, which doesnt bode well for the Baltimore Orioles left-hander.HittingIts usually good to assume that when a game at Coors Field doesnt lead the hitting section, its an opportunity to fade that contest for better matchups elsewhere. Today is not one of those days. Cosart will take the ball for the Padres in Denver, so the Rockies are the top hitting options on Sunday. Lefty swingers Charlie Blackmon, Carlos Gonzalez, David Dahl, Gerardo Parra and Daniel Descalso are the primary targets, but dont be reticent about getting differentiation by eschewing the platoon edge with DJ LeMahieu or Nolan Arenado -- like you need a reason to use Arenado.The place to go instead of Denver is Arlington, with the Rangers squaring off with Detwiler. Here its best to stick with the platoon edge, meaning Carlos Gomez, Ian Desmond, Carlos Beltran, Adrian Beltre and Jonathan Lucroy are front and center.Finally, well wrap up Week 24 with a nod for the Rays against Miley. The lefty has serious home run issues and Tampa has ample right-handed power in their lineup. In fact, upon further review, this is the best swerve from the chalk that is Coors Field. Tampa has many interchangeable parts, so be sure to check the lineup. Evan Longoria is the mainstay with Logan Forsythe, Steven Souza Jr., Richie Shaffer, Mikie Mahtook and Nick Franklin the chief targets.Most likely to hit a home run: Im not a fan of riding streaks, but I do like good hitters locked in against lesser pitchers, so lets task McCutchen with taking Straily deep.Most likely to steal a base: He needs five more to accomplish the feat, but you have to think Brian Dozier has his eyes on a 40-homer, 20-stolen-base campaign. J.R. Richard Jersey . The Brazilian goalkeeper signed a loan deal with the Major League Soccer club on Friday as he looks to get playing time ahead of this summers World Cup in his home country. Alex Bregman Jersey . The Cleveland Indians, Tampa Bay Rays, and Texas Rangers all won on Sunday meaning the Rangers will host the Rays in a play-in game on Monday. http://www.astrosteamproshop.com/ . Paul Pierce couldnt believe he missed at the end. Young scored a season-high 26 points to spark a huge effort from the leagues most productive bench, and Los Angeles beat the Brooklyn Nets 99-94 on Wednesday night after blowing a 27-point lead. Jose Altuve Jersey . "Hes going to have hip surgery on Jan. 7, and hell be expected to rehabilitate for four to six months beyond that," Canucks general manager Mike Gillis said Friday in an interview. George Springer Jersey . After dropping their final six games of December, the Wild opened the new calendar year with four consecutive wins. Following a loss to Colorado on Saturday, Minnesota rebounded the following night to blank Nashville 4-0, but then had the tables turned on them Tuesday. The showdown between two of the NFLs hottest teams could be decided by a single digit. In this case, that digit happens to be the middle finger on Matthew Staffords throwing hand.Stafford reportedly suffered torn ligaments and a dislocation in the first quarter of the Detroit Lions 20-17 win over Chicago last Sunday. He threw two interceptions, including a pick six, after having the finger taped and putting a glove on his hand. Stafford still led his club to its eighth fourth-quarter comeback victory, the most by any team since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970.Detroit, which leads the NFC North, will try to extend its winning streak to six games when it faces the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. The Giants have won seven of their last eight games, including a gritty 10-7 victory over NFC East leader Dallas last Sunday night.I expect it to be extremely competitive, Stafford said. Theyre playing for a lot and were playing for a lot. Its an NFC game and its going to be a big one. So were excited for the opportunity. Its great to be in this position; weve just got to go out there and play well.His finger complicates that process. The Lions pedestrian running game puts added pressure on Stafford to carry the offense. Hes ninth in the league in both completion percentage (66.7) and passing yards (3,447). Hes also tossed 22 touchdown passes and was intercepted just five times prior to the injury.Stafford, who scored the game-winning touchdown against the Bears with a 7-yard scramble, hopes the injury will be less of an issue with a week to experiment on equipment and treatment options. Hes unsure whether hell wear a glove against the Giants. An early forecast of inclement weather could force another in-game adjustment.Its never fun when its on your throwing hand but Ill figure it out and well go from there, he said. (The glove) is not really for my state of mind, its for whats going to be functional. So whatevers most functional, with what I can perform the best with, thats what Ill go with.Staffords job wont be any easier if Detroit is missing its leading rusher once again. Theo Riddick, who is most effective as a receiver out of the backfield, sat out against the Bears with wrist and ankle injuries and is doubtful. One of his backups, Zach Zenner, is in the leagues concussion protocol and is questionable.With three games remaining, the Lions (9-4) could wrap up their firstt NFC North title with a victory on Sunday and a Green Bay loss.dddddddddddd The Packers and Minnesota Vikings are tied for second place with 7-6 records and Detroit already holds the tiebreaker over Minnesota after sweeping the season series.The Lions dont have any soft touches remaining on the schedule. They have to play the Cowboys in Dallas the night after Christmas, then face the Packers at home on New Years Day.In head coach Jim Caldwells mind, the upcoming games arent any different from the ones his team just played.It didnt matter what the Bears record was last week, he said. That game still had a lot of magnitude. It was very, very important. This one is exactly the same. It just so happens, and thats how its going to be down the stretch, that youve got a team thats playing very, very well and thats riding high.The Giants (9-4) kept their division title hopes alive by defeating the Cowboys for the second time this season. They diffused the Dallas attack despite the absence of defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, who underwent sports hernia surgery last week and is expected to miss the remainder of the regular season. New York forced three turnovers, sacked rookie quarterback Dak Prescott three times and held Dallas to 260 total yards.Other than the crossing route that wide receiver Odell Beckham turned into a 61-yard touchdown reception, the Giants offense was a virtual no-show on Sunday. Quarterback Eli Manning threw an interception and lost two fumbles and the rushing game averaged 2.8 yards per carry.Ive got to play better, Manning said. Got to find completions, got to protect the football better. Thats whats got to happen in these types of games. You get into December, youve got to protect the football. Thats the most important thing right now.Manning was also picked off twice the previous week in a 24-14 loss to Pittsburgh and has thrown for fewer than 200 yards in the last three games. Fortunately for him, the defense has masked the offenses struggles. Opponents have been held to 20 or fewer points in five of the teams last six victories.Weve got to keep finding ways to win, he said. The defense is playing outstanding, so weve got to help them out. Weve got to score more points, give them a lead and dont make it hard on them. 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