MLS Fantasy 2018 - Parsing The Percentages, Round 3

Hey gang, Kevin from Soccer Captains here, and I’m back to bring you my take around Round 3. Once again, this article centers around a team’s percentage to win, which in theory leads to higher expected returns for players from that squad.

Last week, in our inception article, I’m happy to report we had a great showing: we focused our eyes on the ATL/DCU and NYC/LAG matchups, with our picks generating the following results:

• Miguel Almiron (ATL) – 15 points
• Josef Martinez (ATL) – 12 points
• Maxi Moralez (NYC) – 15 points
• Jesus Medina (NYC) – 15 points
• David Villa (NYC) – 17 points

To be fair, one might consider these the ‘Usual Suspects’ when it comes to fantasy… but at the end of the day, you can’t argue with the results. That being said, we are ready to take on Week 3 and analyze which players to target as you get ready to round out your lineups. Here are my picks:

ATL vs VAN (3/17/18) - ATL with a 63% Chance to Win

NYC vs ORL (3/17/18) - NYCFC with a 66% Chance to Win

For a second week straight, we are looking to both Atlanta and NYCFC with a chance to fill up the stat sheet for both goals and bonus points. Both ATL and NYC proved that their offense prowess remains legit and should be on display once again this coming week. David Villa ($11.3m) gets the green light here as always, and we still love the potential for both Maxi Moralez ($10.0m) and Jesus Medina ($9.7m) to fill up the box score. On the defensive end, Ben Sweat ($5.5m) is worth a look as well, as even if Orlando manages to find the net, he will provide you with a salary increase at a minimum based on his first two performances.

For Atlanta, Josef Martinez ($10.5m) and Miguel Almiron ($10.3m) again are essential to the success of the attacking front. With Almiron being available this weekend, but most likely not in the lineup NEXT weekend as he got called up for international duty, take advantage of this appealing home matchup in front of a raucous Atlanta crowd. Jeff Larentowicz ($6.5m) also provides very solid defensive cover out of the midfield, and is likely your best defensive option for Atlanta; he isn’t as damaged if Atlanta were to give up any goals, and also provides a solid bonus point floor for managers looking to round out their XI with a cheaper 4th or 5th midfielder.

SKC vs SJ (3/17/18) - SKC with a 63% Chance to Win

To be honest, it’s tough to gauge Sporting KC so far this season. Yes, it has only been two weeks, however, those two weeks have been a tale of two teams; being shut out by NYCFC at home in Week 1 and then winning an wild away match in Chicago last week. Heading back home for Week 3, where they are typically stingy defensive (NYCFC’s success aside), we like them to win this game, and for their offense to find the back of the net at least once or twice. For a strong midfield play look to Felipe Gutierrez ($8.7m) who had a monster week last week on the road, netting two goals and playing the full 90 mins. He should be involved at both ends of the pitch, with a solid bonus floor… and at a minimum, he should be due for a salary increase no matter his output this round. Another player we like to follow up on his strong Week 2 performance is Johnny Russell ($7.9 m) who scored a goal last week against Chicago and who is slated for another strong offensive performance this weekend. We’re also going to take a flier on young Dániel Sallói ($5.5m), who had two assists last week; if he’s in the starting lineup, the 21-year-old is an exciting cheap option to round out the midfield.