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Top Play SP: Gerrit Cole, HOU ($12,200) vs. BAL
Tonight’s biggest favorite, Gerrit Cole (-330) also boasts the highest strikeout rate of the slate for 2019 at a massive 37.4% clip (excluding Andrew Heaney who has only pitched 11 innings so far). Cole and the Astros will host the Orioles, who are in the middle of their six-game Texas road trip. Those aforementioned Orioles have been, to the surprise of absolutely no one, pretty poor offensively with a .301 team wOBA, good for sixth-worst. Cole’s massive floor/ceiling in strikeout ability make him an excellent choice to consider in all formats.
Also worth mentioning too is Jacob deGrom, who comes at a steep discount compared with Cole and also gets a favorable draw against the road Rockies.
Honorable Mention: Jacob DeGrom, NYM ($9,400) vs. COL (Antonio Senzatela).
Value SP: Brandon Woodruff, PIT ($7,800) vs. PIT
Brandon Woodruff has been a revelation for the decidedly mediocre Brewers rotation. His 21.6% K-BB% is good for fifth-best on tonight’s massive 14-game slate. The Brewers check in as pretty massive home favorites tonight (-228); in addition the Pirates’ implied team total sits at around 3.8 runs, so this looks to be a perfectly reasonable spot to use Woodruff as an SP2. Although they don’t strike out much (21.8%), the Pirates have been a below-average offense on the year with just a .308 team wOBA and 90 wRC+.
OF: Mike Trout, LAA ($5,600) vs. SEA
Marco Gonzales had some moments very early on this year, but he’s crashed with a thud lately, allowing 32 hits in his past four starts. His 15.9% strikeout rate is among the five worst of the slate too. Tonight, he’ll face the same Angels team that just throttled him for 10 hits and 10 earned runs in his most recent start. On the other hand, what can you say about Mike Trout? He’ll hold the platoon advantage here against the lefty. Not that he needs it, of course. The Angels actually have one of the more robust implied team totals of the evening sitting at more than five runs.
Honorable Mention: Freddie Freeman ($5, 100) at MIA (Jose Urena).
OF: Mookie Betts, BOS ($4,400) vs. TB
This just seems too cheap of a price for Mookie Betts. He’s at the same price as guys such as Matt Adams, Jorge Soler, David Freese, and Kevin Kiermaier. Not to disparage those fine fellows, but Betts is just on a different talent level. This looks like an odd price point we should look to take advantage of today. His adversary, Yonny Chirinos, profiles as basically an average at best pitcher, so this is far from a matchup we should shy away from.
Value: 3B/SS Manny Machado, SD ($3,800) vs. WAS
Similar to Betts, we have in Manny Machado another very talented hitter priced to move. To make matters even better the Padres have a nice matchup tonight against Erick Fedde whose hideous 3.9% K-BB% is second-worst (ouch, Brett Anderson) of the pitchers toeing the rubber tonight. Manny’s first season in San Diego hasn’t been great by any means, but this looks like an excellent buy-low opportunity.
Honorable Mention: Eloy Jimenez, ($3,300) at KC (Homer Bailey).
Top Stack: MIL vs. PIT (RHP Rookie Davis)
The Brewers’ massive implied team total of just under six runs is currently the best of tonight’s 14-game slate. They’ll get to face right-handed pitcher Rookie Davis, who is taking the place of Nick Kingham in the Pirates’ rotation. Davis has not made a start since way back at the tail end of the 2017 season, so who knows what to expect here. Worth noting too that he’s topped out at just 52 pitches this year. There’s not much to look at with Davis in regard to what he’s done at the major league level because he’s totaled just 31.2 innings from 2017-19. His minor league numbers, though, don’t inspire much confidence, including strikeout rates well below 20% at several stops in the minors last year. The Brewers are an expensive stack, but they have big upside here against a very suspect pitcher. Speaking of expensive, I can’t seem to recall ever seeing a hitter priced at $6,000 in a game outside of Coors. Ever. I could certainly be wrong there; regardless, that speaks to the excellence of Christian Yelich.
The Blue Jays are another interesting spot to look, mostly because of their depressed prices. It’s tough to advocate a full-on stack considering it’s not a strong lineup as a whole, but individually, there looks to be some solid value bats here starting with Vladimir Guerrero Jr. ($ 3,900), who still looks too cheaply priced, as well as Randal Grichuk ($3,800). Rowdy Tellez ($3,200) and Cavan Biggio ($3,400) are cheaper punts who have the power potential to pay off in tournaments. Merill Kelly has been suspect at best with a bloated 1.43 WHIP, poor 18.9% strikeout rate, and a .360 xwOBA allowed.
Honorable Mention: TOR vs. ARI (Merrill Kelly).
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.