MLB.com Columnist

Fred Zinkie

Miggy, Hosmer in position to thrive Thursday

Boston's Bogaerts, Cubs' Rizzo could also rank among day's top picks

Miggy, Hosmer in position to thrive Thursday

Welcome to DraftKings fantasy baseball, the Official Daily Fantasy Game of Major League Baseball.

The players listed below are in position to provide difference-making stats for DraftKings participants on Thursday.

Miguel Cabrera: With a lifetime .317/.428/.558 slash line against left-handers, the first baseman has proven to wield a potent bat during those matchups. Cabrera could post a substantial DraftKings total when he faces Indians lefty Ryan Merritt, who will be making his first career start.

Ian Kinsler: Hitting leadoff, the second baseman may maximize his opportunities to reach base and score runs when he brings his lifetime 134 wRC+ against left-handers (104 vs. righties) into a matchup with the inexperienced lefty Merritt (six innings). With 26 homers, 79 RBIs and 114 runs across 663 plate appearances, Kinsler has been one of the most productive top-of-the-order bats in baseball this season.

Zinkie on All-Breakout Team

Eric Hosmer: With a lifetime .346 wOBA against right-handers in comparison to a .299 mark vs. lefties, the first baseman has the skills to excel against righty Kyle Gibson (career 4.58 ERA, 1.40 WHIP) and a Twins bullpen that ranks 26th in the Majors with a 4.60 ERA.

Kendrys Morales: As a big leaguer, the slugger has registered a .206 ISO against right-handers in comparison to a .161 mark vs. lefties. Morales could hit his 31st homer of the season or drive in multiple runs when he faces the right-handed Gibson (5.04 ERA, 1.56 WHIP in 2016) and a Twins squad that ranks last in the Majors with a .666 defensive efficiency ratio.

Danny Espinosa: Despite a .209 batting average, the shortstop has impacted many 2016 DraftKings contests by compiling 23 homers across 502 at-bats. Espinosa could excel in a matchup against southpaw Robbie Ray (career 4.58 ERA, 1.44 WHIP) and a D-backs bullpen that ranks 28th in baseball with a 4.98 ERA.

Zinkie on All-Fantasy Team

Jayson Werth: The veteran outfielder has long fared best vs. left-handers, against whom he has produced a lifetime .936 OPS (.780 vs. righties). Werth could reach base often or score multiple runs when he faces the left-handed Ray (4.77 ERA, 1.46 WHIP in 2016) and a D-backs squad that ranks 29th in baseball with a .667 defensive efficiency ratio.

Xander Bogaerts: From the No. 2 spot in the highest-scoring lineup in baseball, the shortstop could provide outstanding production when he bats at hitter-friendly Yankee Stadium against southpaw CC Sabathia (4.02 ERA, 1.34 WHIP in 2016). In his career, Bogaerts has posted 131 wRC+ against left-handers that exceeds his 92 mark vs. righties.

Dustin Pedroia: Hitting leadoff, the second baseman may maximize his opportunities to reach base and score runs when he takes his lifetime .848 OPS against left-handers (.798 vs. righties) into a matchup with the left-handed Sabathia (4.59 ERA, 1.38 WHIP since the outset of 2013) at New York's offense-inducing venue.

Chris Young: The outfielder owns notable lifetime splits, with an .847 OPS against left-handers that exceeds his .706 mark vs. righties. Young could excel at New York's homer-happy venue against the left-handed Sabathia and a Yankees relief corps that lacks reliable options after trading away Aroldis Chapman and Andrew Miller in late July.

Odubel Herrera: Having posted a lifetime .816 OPS against right-handers that exceeds his .659 mark vs. lefties, the outfielder has the skills to reach base often against Braves righty Josh Collmenter (4.19 ERA, 1.34 WHIP in 2016). Herrera could also swipe a base against catcher Tyler Flowers, who has thrown out three of 63 would-be basestealers this season.

Zinkie on top Padres prospects

Enrique Hernandez: Since the outset of 2015, the outfielder has produced an impressive .902 OPS against left-handers that exceeds his .573 mark vs. righties. Hernandez will be in excellent position to thrive when he faces southpaw Christian Friedrich (career 5.32 ERA, 1.52 WHIP) and a Padres bullpen that ranks 22nd in baseball with a 4.11 ERA.

Anthony Rizzo: With 31 homers, 105 RBIs and 91 runs across 662 plate appearances, the first baseman has been one of the most productive players in the Majors this season. From the heart of a Cubs lineup that ranks third in baseball with 785 runs scored, Rizzo could post a substantial DraftKings total at the expense of Pirates righty Ivan Nova (career 4.32 ERA, 1.37 WHIP).

Jeremy Hellickson: With a 3.78 ERA and a 1.17 WHIP, the right-hander is putting the finishing touches on an excellent bounceback season. Hellickson could end his year on a high note when he works at pitcher-friendly Turner Field against a Braves lineup that ranks 26th in baseball with a .714 OPS against righties.

Jose Quintana: The left-hander could improve on his impressive 3.21 ERA this year when he faces a Rays lineup that ranks 24th in the Majors with a .663 OPS against southpaws since trading away right-handed hitters Brandon Guyer and Steve Pearce on Aug. 1.

Jon Gray: With a 4.54 ERA this season, the right-hander could have a reasonable price tag in DraftKings contests when he vacates his offense-inducing home park and works at pitcher-friendly AT&T Park against a Giants lineup that ranks last in the Majors with 265 runs scored since the All-Star break.

Gray's 10th strikeout

Ariel Miranda: With a 1.96 ERA across his past four starts, the left-hander has done his part to keep the Mariners in the postseason chase. Miranda could continue to fare well when he faces an A's lineup that ranks 27th in the Majors with a .690 OPS against southpaws.

Chris Archer: With 228 strikeouts, the right-hander has overcome a 4.02 ERA to make a major impact in many 2016 DraftKings contests. Archer could compile a handful of effective innings and whiffs when he faces a White Sox lineup that ranks 23rd in the Majors with a .719 OPS vs. righties.

All statistics are accurate through the completion of Tuesday's games.

Fred Zinkie is the lead fantasy baseball writer for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FredZinkieMLB This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.