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Top SP: Matthew Boyd, DET ($10,000) vs. TEX
Boyd is having a phenomenal breakout season, with a mighty 30.1% strikeout rate to just a 4.9% walk rate. His 3.37 FIP and 2.96 deserved run average suggest that he’s actually pitched better than his 3.61 ERA. Boyd is coming off two weak starts in a row but should turn things around in this matchup with the Rangers. While Texas crushes righties, they are roughly league-average against lefties with their .312 wOBA, and they are less scary away from their hitter-friendly home park. Most importantly, they’ve got the highest strikeout rate in all of baseball against southpaws with a 27.6% mark. Boyd has a ton of upside for this start and is a strong investment as your top starting pitcher.
Value SP: Framber Valdez, HOU ($6,900) vs. PIT
Valdez got roughed up in his time out in a brutal matchup at Yankee Stadium but was awesome in his first two starts after joining the Astros rotation—he notched two quality starts with 15 strikeouts in 13 innings. Valdez has a tremendous opportunity against the Pirates, who have a poor .285 wOBA versus left-handed pitching, which is the third-lowest in the league. Valdez is an awesome value play at this low of a price and can easily get a win with the Astros lineup supporting him.
While he hasn’t put up big power numbers this year, Turner is still has great on-base skills with a .300 batting average, .382 OBP and just a 15% strikeout. He’s in a fantastic spot to rack up runs and RBI, batting third in the loaded Dodgers lineup, who should hang some runs on opposing starter Taylor Clarke. Clarke gave up six earned runs to the Giants in his last start and has a 6.75 ERA, so Los Angeles is in line for a big day against him. Turner is a player to target in cash games for his high floor.
Ohtani is once again showing off how ridiculously talented he his, as he’s batting .312 with a .961 OPS and seven homers in the past month. He has played like an elite fantasy hitter for his entire career so far, yet you can still get him for a much lower price than other high-end options. Reds starter Tanner Roark has a 4.38 SIERA, and Ohtani is a good play for counting stats batting third against him.
While Segura is having a down year overall, he’s absolutely obliterating left-handed pitching to the tune of a 168 wRC+. He gets to face a weak lefty in Vargas, who has a 4.48 FIP, in an extremely hitter-friendly park. The Phillies lineup has exploded out of their slump and put up 20 runs in the past two games, and Segura will see lots of opportunities to score runs batting second for them.
Lineup Stack: Padres at Orioles (RHP Dylan Bundy)
It’s rare that I would ever recommend stacking the Padres, but the park switch from San Diego to Baltimore makes a huge difference, going from one of the worst run-scoring environments to one of the best. Plus, the Padres get to face the worst pitching staff in the league, including a starter in Bundy who has an awful 4.99 FIP with a 1.90 HR/9. There are some affordable Padres bats to target in Eric Hosmer ($4,100), Franmil Reyes ($3,900), and Josh Naylor ($3,500). Also, Manny Machado ($5,200) is worth the price tag as an elite bat to target.
Honorable Mentions: Dodgers vs. Diamondbacks (Clarke); Astros vs. Pirates (RHP Dario Agrazal).
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is troyklauder) 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.
Graphic by Justin Paradis (@FreshMeatComm on Twitter).