Happy hump day, everyone! Both FanDuel and DraftKings feature 12 game main slates starting at 7:05. On the weather front, we have some light rain forecasted in Kansas City for the Royals/Brewers game, but other than that, we’re looking dry. Let’s dive into the plays!
Top SP: Jack Flaherty, STL ($9,700 DK, $10,800 FD) vs PIT
Before I get to Jack Flaherty, I wanted to take a second to mention Max Scherzer. I love Scherzer, and I don’t think any pitching environment takes him out of play. That being said, he’s pitching in Wrigley today with winds that are forecasted to be blowing out at 14 miles per hour. When I factor in the lower price of Flaherty along with the weaker matchup, I choose Flaherty over Scherzer. That being said, if you said to me that in a GPP, I could have 10% rostered Scherzer or 35% rostered Flaherty, I’ll choose Scherzer. My point is, know the type of contest you’re playing in and adjust accordingly.
Jack Flaherty has looked excellent to open the year. The strikeouts are slightly down from his wonderful 2019 season, but everything else is back in line, and the homers have been kept under wraps. He also gets an elite matchup against the Pirates, who have an implied run total of just 2.9 runs.
Value SP: Corey Kluber, NYY ($7,800 DK, $7,800) at TEX
Revenge narrative??? Kidding mostly, as Corey Kluber pitched just one inning with the Rangers before getting shut down in 2020. Kluber started off the year a little shaky, but over his last four starts, he’s thrown 26.1 IP while allowing just seven earned runs. Today he gets the Rangers in Globe Life Park. The Rangers have some pop from the left side of the plate, but they make up for it with a 27% strikeout rate. Being that we’re not in Yankee Stadium, I’m not as concerned with the Rangers’ power bats. The fun part about Kluber’s early struggles is that his salary has remained depressed, making him an ideal SP2 with upside.
Honorable Mention: Shohei Ohtani, LAA ($7,400 DK, $9,500 FD) vs CLE.
1B Max Muncy, LAD ($5,300 DK, $3,800 FD) vs ARI
Max Muncy and the Dodgers get a prime matchup against Merrill Kelly today, which is definitely a spot I want to stack. While it makes me sad that Corey Seager and Cody Bellinger are on the IL, it makes for some interesting stacking opportunities. When I look at our main man, Muncy, he’s slid into the 3-hole with the other sluggers missing from the lineup. He’s already popped eight homers while walking at a 22% rate. Usually, the Dodgers are a stack that you have to make work, but with Seager and Bellinger being out, cheaper guys like Matt Beaty, Gavin Lux, and Lucas Raley have all slid up the lineup.
Honorable Mentions: Rafael Devers, BOS ($5,500 DK, $3,900 FD) at TOR; Vlad Guerrero, Jr., TOR ($6,200 DK, $4,200 FD) at ATL.
OF J.D. Martinez, BOS ($5,600 DK, $4,200 FD) vs OAK
After an off-year in 2020, J.D. Martinez has returned to his mashing ways to start the year. The Red Sox slugger already has three more homers than he did in 2020 in 13 fewer games and is showing no signs of slowing down. Today the Red Sox will face former Dodgers up and comer, Ross Stripling. The Blue Jays’ righty has had a tough start to the year, allowing at least two runs every time he’s taken the mound, and he’s yet to cross the five innings pitched line. The Red Sox will be no easy task as they’re second in the league in isolated slugging against righties to start the year.
Value Batter: OF Kyle Lewis, SEA ($3,200 DK, $2,500 FD) vs DET
The reigning AL Rookie of the Year has had a tough start to the season. Kyle Lewis needs a get right spot, and the baseball gods have answered those prayers with a matchup against the Tigers. On the mound for the Tigers will be Tarik Skubel, who has struggled with control to open the year. On top of that, the Detroit bullpen has been the worst in the league to start the year. That makes the Mariners one of my favorite teams to stack today, and the bonus is that they’re not very expensive.
Top Stack: Yankees at TEX (LHP Hyeon-Jong Yang)
Anytime I see that stacked Yankees lineup facing a lefty, I say, “yes, please.” The Yankees are projected to roll out eight right-handed bats against the Rangers’ southpaw, Hyeon-Jong Yang. For his part, Yang has looked decent in his 16 innings thrown this year, limiting the damage, but he has had some trouble with the long ball. Do you happen to know if the Yankees are known to mash homers? The only issue I’m running into is that the bats at the top of the lineup are priced appropriately. So, if I’m running a Yankees stack, I’ll look to pair two of the pricy guys – DJ LeMahieu, Aaron Judge, Luke Voit – with a cheaper bat or two – Clint Frazier, Miguel Andujar.
Good luck today!
Honorable Mentions: BOS at TOR (Stripling); SEA vs DET (Skubel); LAD vs ARI (Kelly).
Design by J.R. Caines (@JRCainesDesign on Twitter and @caines_design on Instagram)