DraftKings Plays of the Day—6/21
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Top Play SP: Chris Sale, BOS ($12,000) vs. TOR
Early-season concerns long behind him, Chris Sale leads tonight’s slate with a whopping 35.7% strikeout rate and has posted double-digit strikeout performances in all but two of his past 10 starts. He’ll look to take advantage of a good matchup tonight with the Blue Jays having the sixth-highest team strikeout rate at 24.6%. The Red Sox are tonight’s biggest favorite with an incredible -365 money line.
Value SP: Aaron Nola, PHI ($8,000) vs. MIA
A couple of clunkers in his starts on the road at Atlanta and San Diego have caused Aaron Nola’s price to drop to the lowest point we’ve seen it in quite some time. Nola is having a pretty rough time of it in 2019 with a ghastly 4.89 ERA and 1.50 WHIP. The skills certainly have dropped off compared with last year as his swinging strikeout rate of just 8.9% can attest (12.4% in 2018). And the walks are up too; that’s never a good thing. Fortunately, he’ll get a transient panacea today in the visiting Marlins and their woeful offense. The price drop and favorable matchup make Nola an appealing play this evening. The Phillies and Nola (-212) are one of the biggest favorites of the evening.
Honorable Mention: Griffin Canning, LAA ($8,500) at STL (Michael Wacha).
3B: Anthony Rendon, WAS ($5,300) vs. ATL
Dallas Keuchel will finally be making his debut tomorrow against the Nationals on the road. Vegas doesn’t seem to think much of the southpaw, with the Nats currently holding a robust implied team total of right around five runs. Anthony Rendon is in the midst of yet another stellar campaign, hitting .300 again while also having excellent expected statistics xBA of .337 and xwOBA of .455, both good for top 1% marks in the league. Look for him to give Keuchel a rude welcome back to the majors.
OF: Bryce Harper, PHI ($4,400) vs. MIA
The results have been pretty decent for Sandy Alcantara so far this year as he’s managed a 3.73 ERA. But I think we see some regression, and it could come this evening on the road against a good-hitting Phillies team. Alcantara has managed just a 16.7% strikeout rate, which is right at the bottom of the starters taking the bump this evening. Combine that with a walk rate over 10% and there could be some trouble brewing here. Bryce Harper is certainly having a down year, but at this price and against a suspect opponent to boot, he’s a strong play worth considering in all formats. The Phillies will be at home at hitter-friendly CBP and have a nice implied total over five runs.
Value: 1B Brandon Belt SF ($4,000) at ARI
It’s a small sample size caveat of course (30.1 innings), but tonight’s starter for the Diamondbacks, Taylor Clarke, has not been very good, with just an 18.7% strikeout rate along with a 5.28 FIP. In particular, he’s really struggled against lefties, striking them out at just a 15.3% clip while allowing a .380 wOBA. Brandon Belt will get the favorable lefty-righty matchup here and could look to take advantage. The Giants aren’t a team I’d pretty much ever want to stack, but there is some value here if you’re looking for some bargain bats.
Honorable Mentions: 2B Joe Panik, ($3,400) at ARI (Taylor Clarke), 1B Paul Goldschmidt, ($3,800) vs. LAA (Griffin Canning), 1B Ji-Man Choi ($3,900) at OAK (Tanner Anderson RHP).
Top Stack: TEX vs. CWS (Reynaldo Lopez)
The Rangers currently lead tonight’s massive 14-game slate with an implied team total of over six runs. They’ll get the White Sox Reynaldo Lopez this evening who has been nothing short of a disaster in 2019 and especially so lately, having allowed five or more runs in three of his past four turns. Along with a modest 20.8% strikeout rate, Lopez has shown next to no ability to mitigate batted balls, evidenced by a 10.4% barrel rate and an ugly .372 xwOBA. He’s an extreme fly-ball pitcher too, which should not bode well at hitter-friendly Globe Life Park in Arlington. Look for the Texas bats to take advantage here.
Honorable Mention: NYY vs. HOU (Brad Peacock).
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.