Sandler’s Sandlot: August 7 MLB DFS Picks
As a young man quickly approaching 22 years of age, I often find myself reclined, reminiscing my youth. Thinking back to a time where I was a curly headed runt (or “eff”, if you ask some of my friends) has become one of my favorite past times. Adam Sandler, at the ripe age of 48 is undoubtedly frequently doing the same – dreaming about a time where slapping putts with a hockey stick and being the water boy were his biggest accomplishments.
Now though, Sandler’s greatness is essentially a memory, and probably to a large subset of Major League Baseball players, a pretty good memory. As a tip of the cap, this week’s pop culture cross reference is made up of former Adam Sandler characters. Feel free to disagree with the assignments, but I think I hit this one on the head.
Editor’s Note: The Giants-Cubs game is at 4:05 ET so you’ll have to enter in all day contests to use players from that game.
Catcher: Kyle Schwarber
Sandler Character, Film: Bobby Boucher, The Waterboy
This one was a slam dunk, although ironically, Bobby Boucher was a football player. Schwarber is a stud man – and i’m not just saying this because I’m a Cubs fan. Again last night he took a pitcher deep, and he’s getting on base, and clobbering balls at a high rate in his first real taste of the major leagues. Mike Leake was scratched for this game, and as a result, he’ll get to face flyball prone Ryan Vogelsong. I know Schwarber will be a popular catcher play because of his lineup spot and salary, but you’ve got to get on the train when you can. Vogelsong is yielding 2.64 HR/9 TO LEFT-HANDERS this season. WHAT ELSE DO I HAVE TO SAY?! WATER!
First Baseman: Anthony Rizzo
Sandler Character, Film: Zohan, You Don’t Mess with the Zohan
Dude, I know that no one has seen this movie all the way through, but this is totally true of Rizzo right now – you don’t mess with him. I know it seems like I’m just being a homer by recommending these guys back to back, but there is a reason for it. Despite being a full 15 game slate today, there are a not a lot of offensive environments to try and pick and choose from. Rizzo is one of the best hitters in the major leagues, and gets on base at a tremendous rate, while he’s really been flexing his muscle in the power department recently. Take a look at the note I made about Schwarber in the bit above…Ryan Vogelsong is giving up 2.5 HR/9 to left-handed hitters. Rizzo is left-handed. Don’t mess with the Zohan.
Second Baseman: Ben Zobrist
Sandler Character, Film: Max Simkin, The Cobbler
Regrettably, I’ve seen this Sandler movie that was released in 2014. I have no clue why I watched it, but I did so, in its entirety. It’s not a good movie, but the main character, Max Simkin (played by Sandler) takes on the lives of a variety of different people. I felt that was fitting for Zobrist, who has now been traveling around the league, and has been known for his super utility man status. The best part about Zobrist today is his matchup with John Danks. Unfortunately, Danks has not been cooperating with opposing stacks in recent starts, however, I’m not going to stop trying. Zobrist will hit near the top of the order in one of the offenses with the highest implied run totals of the day.
Shortstop: Troy Tulowitzki
Sandler Character, Film: Billy Madison, Billy Madison
Tulo is no longer a Rokie (only those that really know Billy Madison will understand that), and so far, he’s been flourishing in his role atop the Blue Jays potent offense. I expect that to continue today when the Blue Jays travel away from the Rogers Centre to Yankee Stadium to face Nathan Eovaldi. While Eovaldi does a pretty solid job of keeping the ball on the ground, his inability to strike people out pushed Tulo to the top of a very short list of potential shortstops. Add in the fact that he’s still incredibly underpriced, and he’s easily the top option. Seriously, I had about three guys to choose from, this position is easy.
Third Baseman: Anthony Rendon
Sandler Character, Film: Sonny Koufax, Big Daddy
Rendon’s back in action, which means you can go ahead and plug him in any time there is a left-hander on the mound opposite him. He’ll get to face Jorge De La Rosa tonight and his salary ($3,200) is prime for the pickings. Even in his brief time off the DL this season he’s continued to mash left-handers, and I don’t see it stopping tonight. As for the comparison with Sonny Koufax…I honestly was running out of time to use Koufax, and I didn’t want to exclude him because of the namesake.
Outfield: JD Martinez
Sandler Character, Film: Happy Gilmore, Happy Gilmore
This comparison is one of my favorites, and probably one of the most accurate of the bunch. Martinez, much like Gilmore essentially appears out of oblivion to become one of the most feared players in their respective sport. After dealing with some slumping in the beginning of the season, Martinez has turned on the power, and I’m not sure Joe Kelly will be able to turn it off. Kelly has been atrocious this season and his 12.9% HR/FB% isn’t going to help him today. Martinez probably won’t be a popular pick, but he’s one that could win you a tournament as Detroit has an implied run total of around 4.9 as of right now.
Starting Pitcher: Clayton Kershaw
Sandler Character, Film: Longfellow Deeds, Mr. Deeds
I’ve been saving this comparison the whole piece. Clayton Kershaw is the ultimate Longfellow Deeds. He’s gracious, he’s rich, he’s awesome and well, when he needs to, he can be nasty (hint: this is all the time). Kershaw is going to pitch in an awesome pitcher’s duel opposite Gerrit Cole in a great pitcher’s park in Pittsburgh. He’s price is outrageous, and with the other options, he probably won’t be your go-to cash game pitcher, but I can’t fault you for rostering him. If you can find a way to fit him in go for it. Otherwise, throw him in a tournament with a cheap, yet successful stack, and watch the money roll in.