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The Daily Duel: Bruce Almighty

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

In the past few columns, I’ve touched on the different types of daily fantasy games that FanDuel offers. This week’s recommendation is to always enter a lineup into one of the daily tournaments. The tournaments start at only $1 and go into the hundreds depending on how much you want to wager. The payoff is too good to pass up compared to the 50/50 or head-to-head offerings. The daily “Bunt” costs only a $1 and first prize pays off $200, sometimes more. The daily “Squeeze” pays $700 for first, $400 for second and $250 for third. This contest as well as some of the higher priced ones allow up to five entries per player, allowing you to submit the same lineup multiple times. For example, if you entered three teams into the “Squeeze” and it was the winner that night, you would turn $6 into $1350. Granted, there are well over a thousand or two thousand entries in those contests but that’s minimal risk financially for a nice return.

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.

Paul Konerko, CWS, $2600 – Konerko is off to a miserable start posting only a .612 OPS. At this point, it’s difficult to ascertain if he’s just off to a slow start or if Father Time has caught up to the 37-years-old first baseman. Personally, I’ll bank on him not being done quite yet, although I’d look for a good game before considering him for my lineup. Adam Dunn, who was mentioned here last week and has four home runs and 12 RBI in his last seven games, should help provide protection while Alex Rios, Alejandro De Aza and Alexei Ramirez set the table in front of Konerko.

Neil Walker, PIT, $2800 – A lot of Walker’s early season struggles can likely be blamed on a DL-stint, putting him out of action for over two weeks. Walker looks like he’s still trying to get his timing down at the plate, and given he’s been a solid fantasy second baseman over the last few seasons, I expect him start hitting soon. The Pirates haven’t lost faith, as he’s still hitting towards the top of their lineup, behind the surprising Starling Marte and in front of Andrew McCutchen.

Nolan Arenado, COL, $2400 – It seems that Arenado’ s price hasn’t adjusted to his hot start. He’s hitting just .244, but he does have four home runs in 81 plate-appearances. With the hottest months of the season still coming, his bat should heat up as well. There aren’t too many other third base options for the Rockies and his pedigree should give him consistent playing time going forward.


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.

Brandon Belt, SF, $3700 – Regular playing time this season seems to be agreeing with Belt, who has been raking over the last two weeks. Over his last 11 games he has gone 14-for-34 (.411), raising his OPS 137 points during that span. Look for Giants manager Bruce Bochy to possibly move Belt up in the lineup if he continues raking at the plate.

Howie Kendrick, LAA, $3700 – Most of the players I talk about either have heated up recently after a slow start or are due for a turnaround after a prolonged slump. Kendrick falls into neither of those categories, as he’s actually on pace to put up a career year. He has heated up lately going 12-for-24 over his last six games with six runs and five RBI. Remember that second base isn’t a very deep position, making Kendrick a consideration almost every night.

Jay Bruce, CIN, $4200 – Bruce headed into Tuesday night’s contest riding an 11-game hit streak and has hit safely in 16 of his last 17. His power has finally resurfaced, as he has five home runs, seven doubles and 14 RBI over his last 10 games. He has a plus hitter’s park and a dangerous lineup in front of him with Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips hitting in the three and four spots.

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