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Top Play SP: Max Scherzer, WAS ($12,300) at DET
The final day in June brings us a nine-game slate featuring a pair of top-tier aces in Gerrit Cole and Max Scherzer. Both, of course, are tremendous plays but here we will pay up a little bit more for Max Scherzer who will get to go against his former club the Detroit Tigers. As you’ve no doubt probably noticed those Tigers have been bad, really bad. Their team wOBA of .284 is right there at the bottom of the barrel with the Marlins at .280. The Nationals and Scherzer are massive (-324) favorites today too.
Cole and his slate leading 36.6% K rate is a great pivot if you are trying to be a little different. He’ll go against the Mariners at home who have been a very respectable offense. However, the recent loss of some key bats in Mitch Haniger, Edwin Encarnacion, and Jay Bruce has watered down their lineup quite a bit.
Honorable Mention: Gerrit Cole, HOU ($11,900) vs SEA (Marco Gonzales).
Value SP: Blake Snell, TB ($8,000) vs. TEX
It’s been an ugly stretch for Blake Snell whose had four awful starts in his last five turns. I won’t pretend that I have a reason to explain the poor recent results. I’m inclined to think that it’s quite simply just poor variance and nothing more. We know the skills are extraordinary, last year was a testament to that. And this year too the lefty has carried an outstanding 31.7% K rate backed by an otherworldly 18% swinging K rate. I don’t believe those skills have all of a sudden dissipated into thin air so quite simply I think you just take the extreme discount here and move on. After all, this was an arm that we were paying well into the $11,000 range not too long ago. And by not too long I mean back in May. I know it seems like ages ago, right? Perhaps an added bonus can be attributed to the matchup here too as the Ranger’s team K rate of 25.3% is good for fourth worst. Snell and the Rays are also heavy favorites today (-180) with the Rangers having an implied team total just over three runs.
Honorable Mention: Aaron Sanchez, TOR ($4,400) vs KC (Brad Keller) (GPP Punt)
SS: Francisco Lindor, CLE ($5,500) at CLE
For one more day the Indians will be the beneficiaries of hitting at Camden Yards. Their leadoff man Francisco Lindor will get to face Gabriel Ynoa today. Ynoa has not been particularly good to put it kindly with an abysmal 15.1% K rate (7.3% K-BB%). An xwOBA of .379 good for a bottom 5% mark in the league doesn’t inspire too much confidence here either.
Honorable Mentions: 3B/SS Alex Bregman ($4,900) vs SEA (Marco Gonzales), OF George Springer ($5,700) vs. SEA (Marco Gonzales), OF Christian Yelich ($5,800) vs. PIT (Steven Brault).
OF: Juan Soto, WAS ($5,200) at DET
It’s no secret that Jordan Zimmermann hasn’t been good for quite some time now. Lefties, in particular, have really murdered him of late. This season his fastball has been crushed by lefties to the tune of a blistering .494 xwOBA. And last year that mark across a larger sample (131.1 IP) was still pretty gaudy at .389. The Nats are pegged with one of today’s more impressive implied run totals at over five and a half runs so we should expect to see their cleanup hitter Juan Soto right in the thick of things this afternoon.
Honorable Mentions: OF Kyle Schwarber, ($4,200) at CIN (Anthony DeSclafani), OF Bryce Harper, ($4,500) at MIA (Trevor Richards), 1B Anthony Rizzo, ($5,100) vs. CIN (Anthony DeSclafani), 1B Jose Abreu ($4,200) vs CWS (Lewis Thorpe), OF Ryan Braun, ($4,700) vs PIT (Steven Brault).
Value: OF Eloy Jimenez, CWS ($3,900) vs MIN
Today’s originally scheduled starter, Kyle Gibson, was pushed back so instead, the White Sox may be getting a matchup upgrade here in the lefty Lewis Thorpe, who will be making his Major League debut. It is at least worth mentioning though that the aforementioned Thorpe has shown some excellent K ability in AAA this year (29.2% K rate in 69.1 IP). Still, debuts can often be frenetic affairs fraught with peril so the powerful Eloy Jimenez could look to take advantage here and the sub $4,000 price presents some nice profit potential.
Honorable Mentions: 3B Vlad Guerrero Jr, ($3,500) vs KC (Brad Keller), 2B Jose Altuve, ($3,900) vs. SEA (Marco Gonzales), 3B Eugenio Suarez ($3,900) vs. CHC (Jon Lester), OF Adam Eaton ($3,800) vs DET (Jordan Zimmermann).
Top Stack: CLE at BAL (Gabriel Ynoa)
As previously alluded to with Lindor, you have to like the Indian’s chances of stacking up some runs today as they’ll get the gift that keeps on giving in the Baltimore pitching staff at Camden Yards. Not surprisingly the Indians are right there at the top of the list with an implied team total approaching six and a half runs. The top of the order is expensive here in Francisco Lindor ($5,500), Carlos Santana ($5,500), Oscar Mercado ($5,200) but they carry added upside considering the matchup against a dreadful Ynoa (15.1 K% rate and 20.3% HR/FB rate). Also, keep an eye out on Jake Bauers he could be a potential value play at $3,700 if he cracks the lineup.
Honorable Mention: MIL vs. PIT (Steven Brault), WAS at DET (Jordan Zimmermann), HOU vs SEA (Marco Gonzales)
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.