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Top Play SP: Zack Greinke, HOU ($10,700) at CHW
Word of warning before I get into my favorite pitcher on today’s slate: Keep an eye on the weather in Chicago for the Astros/White Sox game. That being said, Zack Greinke is my boy today. Greinke had the most meh debut for the Astros, going six innings, allowing five earned runs and striking out just two. Today, he hits the restart button. The White Sox strike out 26.5% of the time against right-handed pitching this year, the highest rate in the league. They also have the third-worst wRC+ against righties. There’s no doubt I’m locking Greinke into my SP1 slot today.
Honorable mention: Joey Lucchesi, SDP ($10,000) vs. TBR.
Value SP: Mitch Keller, PIT ($8,400) at LAA
A little bit behind the scenes, I usually write these the night before but waited until Monday morning in the hopes that the starters in Game 2 of the Yankees/Orioles doubleheader were announced. No dice, so we’re stuck with a lot of mediocrity in bad matchups. Mitch Keller at least offers some upside because of his prospect pedigree. Keller is the Pirates’ third-ranked prospect, and in 103.2 innings at Triple-A this year has a 28.2% strikeout rate. However, he does face the Angels today in Anaheim, which has played as a hitters park this year because of the lowered fences. There are a decent amount of mid-level value bats, which might make it feasible to pay up for two pitchers today.
Honorable mention: Jose Suarez, LAA ($7,900) vs. PIT.
Top Play: OF Michael Brantley, HOU ($4,300) at CHW
First off, I don’t understand how Dylan Cease has a $9,100 price tag. Prior to his last start, he’d gone 28 innings and allowed 20 earned runs in five starts. He had himself an OK start against the Castellanos-less Tigers on Aug. 6, but he still has a 6.00 ERA. I certainly don’t understand that price against the Astros. The Astros currently have a 6.1 implied run total, which is the highest on the slate of any game outside of Coors. Michael Brantley is projected to hit third for the Astros, is affordable, and has put up a .403 wOBA against right-handed pitchers, while striking out just 8.5% of the time.
Top Play: 1B Daniel Murphy, COL ($4,400) vs. ARI
While most of the bats in today’s Coors game are priced up, it appears that DraftKings forgot about poor Daniel Murphy. The results for Merrill Kelly haven’t been awful against lefties, but he has allowed a 46.7% hard-hit rate while striking out just 16.4%. This should bode well for Murphy, who strikes out just 13.5% of the time against right-handed pitchers and is projected to bat third for the Rockies today.
Value: OF Jesse Winker, CIN ($3,900) at WAS
The Reds are my favorite value stack, going against Erick Fedde. The Reds have a 5.0 projected run total, and only two of the bats in their projected lineup are priced over $4,000 in Eugenio Suarez ($4,500) and the beast Aristides Aquino ($4,400). Jesse Winker is projected to lead off today and has put up a .230 ISO and .377 wOBA against right-handed pitchers this year. Fedde, on the other hand, has allowed a .372 wOBA to left-handed batters, while striking out just 13.5%.
Honorable mention: 2B/OF Josh VanMeter, CIN ($3,700) at WAS; OF Randall Grichuk, TOR ($3,800) vs. TEX.
Top Stack: Astros at White Sox (RHP Dylan Cease)
As you could probably tell from the Brantley writeup, I am just not on the Cease train. The Astros are just too good an offense, and the prices on their bats dropped a little after putting up “just” seven runs to close out the Orioles series. Cease has allowed a home run in each of his six starts and at least three earned runs in five out of six. For the stack, I’m actually good with 1 through 9, with Robinson Chirinos ($3,500) and Josh Reddick ($3,100) being available as values. Good luck today!
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is RMoss1983) 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.