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The Daily Duel: The Butler Did It

Kevin Payne

Kevin Payne

Kevin has worked for Rotowire just under a decade and has covered basketball, baseball and football. A glutton for punishment, he roots for his hometown Bills, Sabres and the New York Yankees. He hosts the RotoWire SiriusXM show every Wednesday and Friday and you can follow him on Twitter @KCPayne26.

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Tip of the Week

Some of this is a little recycled so bear with me. The FanDuel format offers several different contests, all of which can be viewed using different strategy. Here are some of the different contests with the strategy I usually approach them with. If you have some suggestions of your own, feel free to hit up the comments.

50/50 Contests – Simply put, the top half wins (minus a small vig) while the bottom half gets nada. Typically I approach these contests looking for a higher floor than most of the other types of contests. To do this, using a mix of players with good matchup against pitchers, ballparks, etc. is the best recipe to win. Picking a pitcher is vital in these formats as they’re usually the easiest to rely on for points.

Heads Up – These are a total wildcard. You never know who your opponent is going to play and the potential fallout from it. Typically as the entry price for Heads Up contests rises you’ll find more experienced and better competition. Theses contests are unpredictable because you can’t predict what your opponent will do. Will they take similar players as you? Will they stack a team with a favorable matchup? These contests offer some more fun since you can root against the players on your opponent’s team, rather than competing against multiple teams and a good chunk of the player pool in a tournament format.

Tournaments – These offer the highest reward, but tournaments are also the riskiest, as a smaller percentage of entrants finish in the money in tournaments compared to other contests. With these contests many participants will “stack” and use all players from one team. Others will use players based on different matchup strategies. One good strategy for these games is to try and figure out which players are going to be used the most, especially with the pitchers. Figuring out which players aren’t going to be used and taking a chance could score you points your opponent won’t have. Going with an expensive pitcher and filling out your team with a mix of studs and cheap players can work as well.

Do you have any preference as far as what contests you like to play? Or you do have a particular strategy you use or have found successful?

Value Players Looking To Rebound

Here are some players who have seen their value drop significantly due to poor production in the season thus far. You might be surprised at some of the names and how much their stock has fallen. That being said, most of these players have a track record of success or enough pedigree that they should be able to turn their season around sooner rather than later and have good value in the near future as a result.

Adam Dunn, CHI, $2700 - By now you should know what you’re getting with Dunn: a power hitter who is going to hit around the Mendoza line. Dunn has been even worse this season, hitting only .133 entering Tuesday night’s contest. However, Dunn was robbed of a home run by Aaron Hicks on Monday night and hit an opposite-field homer in his first at-bat Tuesday night. This could be a sign that his power is ready to break out over the next few games. In addition, Dunn can still take a walk (.333 OBP last season), which makes the batting average not quite as bad as it seems.

Adam LaRoche, WAS, $2600 – LaRoche has showed signs of life as of late although his power stroke is yet to be seen. Going into Tuesday night’s game he was riding a 10-game hitting streak but outside of a double all of those hits were singles. LaRoche historically has been a slow starter and hits in a great spot for a team that should score plenty of runs this season.

David Freese, STL, $2500 – The World Series hero had a rough start to the season, landing on the DL with a back injury. Freese has struggled since returning although he may have turned a corner. He had a five-game hit streak broken Tuesday night but he still managed to get on base with a walk during the game. The Cardinals have one of the better lineups in the game and his slow start can likely be blamed on shaking some rust off from the back injury.

On Fire

These players have been some of the hottest hitters in the league recently. They are worth considering putting into the lineup regardless of the price they cost. Hot streaks don’t always last, but one of my rules is if a player’s smoking the ball, there’s no reason to sit him down.

Mitch Moreland, TEX, $3300 – Moreland has caught fire for the Rangers, raking over the last three weeks. He’s currently riding a seven-game hit streak and has six home runs over his last nine games. His OPS has jumped 350 points since April 21. Moreland should hit even better this summer once the weather warms up in Arlington and it’s possible he moves up in the batting order at some point.

Billy Butler, KC, $3600 – Apparently a trip to California is exactly what Butler needed to break out of his early season slump. Over his last two games he’s gone 7-for-9 with a home run and seven RBI. In the process, he’s raised his batting average 40 points and his OPS 105 points. Right now seems like the perfect time to get him in your lineup while he’s in the middle of a nice hitting run.

Pablo Sandoval, SF, $3600 – You’d be hard-pressed to find a hotter hitter right now than Panda, who has a seven-game hit streak including home runs in each of the last three. One of the best “bad-ball” hitters in the game, Pablo will have plenty of RBI chances with Marco Scutaro (.349 OPS) and Angel Pagan (.338 OBP last season) hitting in front of him.

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