Happy Wednesday, and welcome to the second official day of summer. Offenses are slowly improving and today’s slate is loaded with pitching options. So, to combat this, I’ve laid out a breakdown by price points. Additionally, from a hitting perspective, there are A LOT of value options. Lastly, when you consider this is a nine-game slate, make sure you’re stacking at least four from a single team. Feel free to make it a five-person stack even. Someone will put up ten runs today, and we want as much exposure to that lineup as possible.
Baseball is a game of high variance, and today’s as good as any to try something new. Good luck!
Implied Run Totals (IRT)
- CHC (4.5) @ PIT (4.5) – Both sides are extremely inexpensive, which could lead to stacking. However, unless I’m putting more than three entries into a contest; neither is a priority for stacking. Furthermore, both pitchers won’t wind up in many lineups, and stacking either side will give you very little leverage. Rather, snag one-offs and value bats with some power.
- WSH (4.34) @ BAL (5.16) – Baltimore grabbing an IRT over five? Well, they do square off against Patrick Corbin. That’ll make me want to stack Orioles, and hope they put up a huge day. On the other side, the Nationals have been better but still not spectacular against RHP (last 30 days: 18.9% K-rate but .147 ISO and 95 wRC+). We don’t need to stack that today.
- NYY (4.06) @ TBR (3.44) – This game has the lowest O/U on the slate. Until the Rays get healthy, it’s not a stack to target. Oddly, the Yankees don’t project well, making them a solid stack option. Sure, Baz looks dynamic but would it shock us if one of the top-scoring offenses in the MLB gets a hold of a few long balls? Nope.
- DET (3.83) @ BOS (4.67) – Detroit is not stackable. They’ve been dreadful most of the year, and even Riley Greene can’t save that offense right now. On the flip side, Boston gets a challenging matchup against Tarik Skubal. However, you’ll pick up a ton of leverage if you choose to stack against Skubal.
- SFG (4.12) @ ATL (4.38) – Top arm on the slate is Rodón, and stacking ATL against the top SP isn’t a smart play. Additionally, stacking the Giants against Morton is risky. He’s been good as of late (29:3 K/BB) but also allowed his share of HRs. Left-handed bats have struck out at a 27% clip but also feature a .240 ISO. Perhaps avoid the stack and grab left-handed one-offs.
- CLE (3.89) @ MIN (4.61) – Cleveland gets a couple of power bats back into the lineup, and salaries aren’t outrageous. However, they’ve got a matchup against Sonny Gray. He’s been pretty solid this year but if you’re looking to grab some leverage, Cleveland could be interesting (just not stable). Another interesting stack might be the Twins. Lots of power and they’ve crushed RHP as of late. Furthermore, McKenzie has been known to give up lots of fly balls that translate into HRs.
- STL (4.25) @ MIL (4.25) – Quite an interesting game. We’ve got two SPs that aren’t terribly viable for DFS purposes so gaining much leverage is out the window. So, we’d need these two offenses to smash for any chance of winning a GPP. My lean is towards the Cardinals since they slay southpaws (last 30 days: 120 wRC+ and .173 ISO). Wait, what about the Brewers? Avoid, Waino is outstanding at limiting offenses.
- SEA (3.97) @ OAK (3.53) – We need to have a serious talk about your gambling problems if you’re stacking Oakland. Seattle is a decent offense but lacks an abundance of power. While they’ve got plenty of left-handed bats to give Blackburn problems; he’s a massive ground ball pitcher. Additionally, it’s a huge ballpark and quite difficult to hit HRs.
- KCR (3.34) @ LAA (5.16) – The Angels project VERY well in this one but you won’t be able to use Ohtani since he’s pitching. That’ll crush their stackabilty and make them more of a one-off lineup. Additionally, since the Royals match up against Ohtani, we are avoiding them too.
Since the slate is much bigger than usual, I’ve broken down the SP targets by price ranges. Note: The price ranges are somewhat skewed to DraftKings. The easiest way to notice is Shohei Ohtani since he’s $8,500 on DK and $10,000 on FanDuel.
The Green Tier features pitchers from $11,000-9,000 (for DK). Typically, this is the tier to pluck your cash games SPs from; however, there are so many viable pitching options, and that’s not the case today. Rather, consider either of these two options as the best plays in the price range.
- Carlos Rodón ($10.2K DK, $10.5K FD) is the top pitching choice on the slate, and when you glance at his metrics; it’s not hard to see why. He’s touting an ELITE ability to strike out batters over the course of a TON of innings. Now, when it comes to DFS, that is king. He draws a challenging matchup against ATL, who, in the last month, is striking out less than a 20% clip vs. LHP while showcasing a beastly 159 wRC+. Still, this is a high-priced arm easily capable of putting up the most points on the evening.
- Tarik Skubal ($9.2K DK, $9.6K FD) has tossed back-to-back stinkers, and that could chase some of the field away. Is it fatigue? Is it the ball? However, once you get past the recent pitching woes, Skubal does a lot of things we love for DFS pitching. He pitches deep into games, strikes out a batter per inning, and induces ground balls when contact is made.
Don’t want to pay all that salary for pitching? I don’t blame you, especially if you want to build a healthy-sized stack with a stout offense. That’s where this tier comes into play. Both can offer you ace-like quality of innings, but come with some concerns.
- Shohei Ohtani ($8.5K DK, $10K FD) is priced incorrectly on DraftKings. Take advantage and make him your cash games play. He draws a matchup against a team with plenty of strikeouts up and down the lineup, and not much thump. However, everyone and their plus one see this, so plan accordingly as he’ll be very chalky.
- Shane Baz ($8.0K DK, $7.2K) is an extremely risky play. For starters, we’ve only seen him for a limited time. After a jittery first start, he seemingly settled down and flexed the massive strikeout potential that has us drooling. But there are questions surrounding him, will the Rays let him throw more than 80 pitches? And, how will he hold up an elite offense? Well, we get to see that today. Lastly, Baz could be an intriguing pivot play to Ohtani if you’re looking to get different at this price range.
This is the land of GPP pitching options. In this tier, it’s two cheaper options to help you load up on pricey stacks or bats. In today’s case, we’ve got one ABSOLUTE wild card and one safer option.
- George Kirby ($6.6K DK, $8.8K FD) has been rather unfortunate. His 4.11 ERA is slightly misleading because the xFIP is nearly a run lower (3.31). Furthermore, when he’s allowing balls in play, it’s on the ground over 50% of the time.
- Daniel Lynch ($6.0K DK, $7.5K FD) is a wild card play. In his last time out, he racked up a career-high 10 Ks. And in the start before then he chucked seven K. Lastly, the matchup? In the last 30 days, the Angels hold a 68 wRC+ vs. LHP and a 22% K-rate (seventh highest in MLB). Yet, they’ve got a 5.16 IRT. As I said, it’s risky but could pay off huge.
- A matchup against Corbin is like a game in Coors Field as the field rushes to stack against him. Earlier in the year, he teased added velocity and returned to his usual form. However, this season has been BAD. He’s walking left-handed bats more than striking them out and giving up power to batters from both sides of the dish. Additionally, the bats are very cheap and will make it easy to load up on pitching.
- Orioles’ Core Stack Targets: Cedric Mullins, Trey Mancini, Ryan Mountcastle, and Austin Hays.
- The Twins have a decent 4.61 IRT, and pick up a little leverage against McKenzie. But what really has me intrigued is the salaries (with the exception of Buxton) are all so affordable. Especially when you consider how much loud contact McKenzie gives up to right-handed bats (.230 ISO). Lastly, anytime I can get the catcher in my stack, it’s an added bonus.
- Twins’ Core Stack Targets: Byron Buxton, Carlos Correa, Gary Sánchez, and Max Kepler.
Here are some of the best value hitters not mentioned above. Also, the value hitters are players under $3500 on DK and under $3300 on FD—just a step below my cash players. Use these players to smash into your lineup when you need to save some salary.