Pitcher List is proud to partner with DraftKings for the 2019 season. We’ll be featuring our top picks for every daily slate through the season and feature articles dedicated to the GPP.
|Road SP||xFIP||K%||K-BB%||ML||OK%||Home SP||xFIP||K%||K-BB%||ML||OK%|
All pitcher stats seen above are from the 2018-19 MLB seasons combined unless otherwise noted below.
Smith* = 2018 AAA
OK% = Opponent team strikeout rate (2019 year to date).
ML = Money Line.
This article was written the night before; some money lines may not yet be available (marked as TBD).
SP: Chris Paddack, SD ($9,200) vs. NYM
There are quite a few great pitching options to pick from this evening. You’ve got Gerrit Cole at home as a massive favorite against the light-hitting Royals, Blake Snell, Cole Hamels in a great matchup at home against the Marlins, and of course Jacob deGrom in this very same game. Then there’s the Padres rookie sensation Chris Paddack whose big brother, Michael, evidently took umbrage to MLB naming some guy named Pete as the Rookie of the month. Who knows if Chris Paddack even noticed, but still it’s kind of fun to take note of, and who doesn’t love a good narrative every once in a while? In all seriousness, though Paddack is a great play any time he’s on the slate, the swing-and-miss stuff has looked absolutely legit so far (28.7% K rate). The only thing is he’ll have to be efficient, as the Padres have really shown a tight leash with him pitch count wise — 89 being his high water mark to date. This is an interesting price point relative to the other big names on the slate, as I think most will want to spend just a little extra for the likes Snell or deGrom, perhaps leaving Paddack a little under-represented tonight.
SP: Jhoulys Chacin, MIL ($6,900) vs. WAS
All these fantastic arms on the slate and I’m going with Jhoulys Chacin. It’s like foregoing a private jet to ride a horse and buggy cross country. This is a matchup and price play. The Nationals are dealing with a few injuries right now, with the absence of Juan Soto and Anthony Rendon making their lineup a little weak right now. They also recently lost Matt Adams to the IL, which takes away a potential power lefty bat. Chacin has shown to be much weaker against LHB (last year against LHB: .338 wOBA 15.4% K rate, as opposed to RHB: .234 wOBA 23.9% K rate) which should bode well against a predominantly righty-hitting Nats lineup, Adam Eaton being the only notable exception. The Nationals have one of the lower team totals of the slate at just under four runs.
1B: Nate Lowe, TB ($3,600) vs. ARI
This is a great price for one of the more exciting, young talents in baseball. Back in December, our own Adam Garland highlighted Nate Lowe in his fantastic article, which you can read here if you missed it. Suffice it to say: If Lowe plays to his capabilities he won’t be priced here for long. The Rays will get Merill Kelly this evening. He hasn’t been terrible on the surface, with a 3.60 ERA, but his indicators (4.48 xFIP and 4.76 SIERA) and K rate of 19.3% point to a pitcher who is most likely below average.
OF: Bryce Harper, PHI ($4,500) at STL
After a sensational 2018, Miles Mikolas has fallen off big time in 2019. His K rate has dipped to an ugly 13.5% (18.1% last year) and it’s also worth pointing out that his BABIP allowed this year is actually lower, at .258 than last year’s mark of .279. His ground ball/fly ball ratio is also down this year, and a quick glance at his batted ball profile shows elevated marks across the board (wOBA allowed and xwOBA) relative to last year. It’s hard to say exactly what’s wrong with Mikolas — maybe last year ends up being a career year for him. Whatever the case may be, it’s reasonable to say that this is a pitcher who isn’t at his best right now. The results haven’t been what we expected fromBryce Harper, but this price is too good for me to pass up, especially in a matchup against what looks to be a struggling RHP in Mikolas. And here’s a random observation for today: Alex Gordon going against Gerrit Cole costs the exact same price as Harper against Mikolas. Woah.
SS: Corey Seager, LAD ($3,600) vs. ATL
This is a similar situation to Harper. It just seems like a hitter who’s way too talented for this price point. Corey Seager has been a big disappointment so far, and I have to admit looking at his Statcast data isn’t too encouraging. But he recently admitted to some struggles with his swing mechanics as a reason for his slow start. He did manage to hit two doubles yesterday, so perhaps that’s a sign he’s starting to figure things out. His opponent Kevin Gausman is coming off an abbreviated outing where he was tossed for beaning the opposing pitcher Jose Urena. Prior to that, he had two sub-par outings against the Rockies and Reds. As far as splits go, Gausman (because of his nasty splitter) has actually shown reverse tendencies for his career, allowing a higher wOBA to RHB, so this play doesn’t exactly line up perfectly by the numbers. Still, we know Gausman is more than familiar with the long ball, having allowed 55 home runs from 2017-18. If you’re wanting to play to Gausman’s reverse splits, Seager’s teammate Justin Turner is also priced nicely at $3,900.
Tournament Stack: Phillies at Cardinals (RHP Miles Mikolas)
The big spot to attack figures to be the Red Sox against John Means. And it makes sense as a high powered offense at Camden Yards. For another option, I’d consider the Phillies on the road against the Cardinals. I’ll cite the same reason mentioned with Bryce Harper above: Mikolas could be a pitcher worth targeting with bats right now. Across 200 innings last year, Mikolas allowed only 16 home runs. This year he’s already allowed eight in just 40 innings. Perhaps it’s just a blip, but as I mentioned, the skills are down noticeably across the board, so this could be a spot worth attacking with a deep Phillies lineup.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is sammybaugh) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games on which I offer advice. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any nonpublic information.