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Clayton Kershaw returns, Jacob DeGrom looks to continue his dominance, and oh yeah, it’s Nola Day!
Early Slate (4:05 PM ET)
Must Play SP: Zack Greinke, ARI ($18,900) @ PIT
Greinke has beeen susceptible to the long ball of late, surrendering 5 in his last 3 outings, but the Pirates have been slumping hard at the plate over the last two weeks (82 wRC+ and only 9 HRs). There’s some positive regression due for Greinke, as his SIERA and xFIP suggest he’s been unlucky, so take him at the pitcher friendly confines of PNC Park. Nola has a similar matchup favorability against the Naitonals, but I’ll bet the $2,900 saved Greinke rights the ship.
Honorable Mention: Aaron Nola ($22,800)
Value SP: Sonny Gray, NYY ($13,700) @ TB
After a rollercoaster start to the season, it looks like Gray has finally gotten a feel for his slider. The last 4 outings, his slider has had a 4.27 pVAL, a significant improvement over April and May’s -0.75 pVAL. His O-Swing % and SwStr% have seen 4 and 2 percentage point increases respectively, which has led to the increase in ground balls and soft contact. Playing away from Yankee Stadium is an added bonus.
Honorable Mention: Andrew Suarez ($14,900)
IF: Jesus Aguilar, MIL ($9,200) vs. STL (Miles Mikolas)
Although it’s not as relevant in a daily format, the season long numbers for Aguilar are supported by xStats. His stellar play is not a fluke, as 35.9% of his BIP are Low Drives and High Drives, which generate wOBAs of .727 and 1.154 respectively. It also shows that when he hits the ball hard, it’s an effective hard hit (ask Marcell Ozuna about what hitting a bunch of worm burners does for your BABIP). Hopefully Aguilar forces Bernie down the slide today.
Honorable Mentions: Anthony Rendon ($7,700)
OF: Odubel Herrera, PHI ($9,100) @ WAS (Erick Fedde)
“Can Odubel Herrera just buzz off?!”- Frustrated Fantasy Owners playing against him this week.
All of his production lately has been coming from BIP (2.6 BB%), but if you’re hitting .472 does it matter if you’re drawing walks? Not if you’re averaging 1.5 Bases per AB. He’s been the catalyst for Philly’s recent offensive surge that’s put them atop the Runs scored leaderboard for the last 10 days (excluding Coors Field participants), and he should continue to see the ball well against Fedde.
Honorable Mention: Aaron Hicks ($8,100)
Value Hitter: Jonathan Schoop, BAL($6,600) @ ATL (Julio Teheran)
He’s been a disappointment for most of the season, especially compared to his production from last year, but he’s been improving his plate discipline over the last 10 days (11.8 BB%), and SunTrust Park is a great place for power hitters. Nick Williams has done more to warrant the selection here, but I want to take a flier on Schoop today. Teheran’s peripherals have to catch up to him at some point.
Honorable Mention: Nick Williams ($6,700)
Stack: Philadelphia Phillies @ Washington Nationals
Odubel Herrera has the highest wRC+ in baseball over the last 10 days, and teammates Rhys Hoskins and Nick Williams are both top 25 in the same time frame. Only Herrera is within the 25 most expensive hitters (although Rhys is only $100 less), and Nick Williams is $6,700. Andrew Knapp and Jorge Alfaro are both under $6,000 (Knapp is much preferred to Alfaro, so hopefully Kapler puts him in the starting lineup). Carlos Santana and Cesar Hernandez are reasonable buys at $8,300 and $8,200 respectively. This is where the extra $2,900 from Greinke will be most handy.
Honorable Mention: New York Yankees @ Tampa Bay Rays
Late Slate (7:05 PM ET)
SP: Jacob DeGrom, NYM ($25,600) vs. LAD
There are three things that are certain in life: Death, Taxes, and DeGrom pitching 7 innings with 2 ER or less (would’ve been 1 ER or less if not for those pesky Yankees). The last time DeGrom gave up more than 2 ER was April 16th. He’s 11/12 on QS conversions when he pitches 6 innings or more, and has the 5th best K% in the MLB. It’s a shame the Mets will probably find a way to lose tonight’s game.
Honorable Mention: Eduardo Rodriguez ($16,300)
IF: Ryon Healy ($8,400) @ BOS (Eduardo Rodriguez)
Healy has batted .029 higher against LHP than RHP. Pair that alongside his recent streak of solid production at the dish (170 wRC+), and a team that’s coming off a strong offensive showing last night. and Healy should slot in a as a strong play in a sparse slate.
Honorable Mention: Evan Gattis ($8,600)
OF: J.D. Martinez, BOS ($10,600) vs. SEA (Mike Leake)
Martinez has been mashing the ball at Fenway this year. If you look at his spray chart for home runs, you’ll see a lot of them have been opposite field. Knowing that it’s only 3o2 feet down the right field line, Martinez has been targeting that part of the park, and it’s paying dividends in his home run totals.
Honorable Mention: George Springer ($10,100)
Value Hitter: Marwin Gonzalez, HOU ($7,200) vs. KC (Ian Kennedy)
Usually I try to find value below a $7,000 threshold, but the way Marwin’s been playing this price tag warrants an appearance here. .400/.516/.680 over the last 10 days, and the Astros offense is still just as potent as it was last week (55 Runs over the last 10 days), so Marwin should provide some decent counting stats as well.
Honorable Mention: Luis Valbuena ($6,700)
Stack: Los Angeles Angels vs. Toronto Blue Jays (Marcus Stroman)
Nick always suggests avoiding the DLH, especially if it’s extended. Stroman did not look good prior to landing on the DL, and seeing as he only pitched a simulated game this week, there’s not much for the Blue Jays staff to measure his progress by. Rich Hill’s great start in his first game back is the exception, not the norm, so start the Angels and hope the command is still a bit rusty for Stroman.