Mother Nature does not care about fantasy baseball. The weather has wrecked havoc on the schedule, forcing teams to readjust rotations and DFS players to revamp lineups on the fly.
So apologies in advance if more precipitation wipes out any of these recommendations for Tuesday’s 13-game slate on FantasyDraft, which starts at 7:05 p.m. ET.
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Top SP: Corey Kluber, Cleveland Indians ($23,200) at Minnesota Twins
The slate certainly isn’t devoid of top names, but none hold a candle to Corey Kluber. A postponement leads Shohei Ohtani to face a Red Sox lineup carrying a .348 on-base % and 16.6 % strikeout rate. His opponent, David Price, left his last start after an inning with a hand injury. He’s better saved as a risky tournament proposition. Lance McCullers is intriguing with ample upside, but comes with a wide range of outcomes. Dating back to last season, Kluber has gone at least seven innings in 10 of his previous 11 starts. While the Twins brandish some dangerous batters, they’re hitting .239 with a 25.2 strikeout %. Fire up the Klubot for a special start at Puerto Rico.
Value SP: Alex Wood, Los Angeles Dodgers ($16,100) at San Diego Padres
I was prepared to write about Nick Pivetta despite facing the Braves, who entered Monday night boasting an NL-leading .350 wOBA. Yet Alex Wood costs an identical $16,100 at Petco Park after getting shelled for seven runs last week. That gives him a 5.09 ERA while continuing last summer’s troubling velocity decline, but the 27-year-old southpaw also possesses a 56.3 % ground-ball rate and 11.0 swinging-strike % with no walks allowed. Although Christian Villanueva and Jose Pirela have made life difficult for opposing lefties, they’re not intimidating enough to fade Wood at a reasonable second-starter cost.
A hole in the Rogers Centre roof delayed a mouth-watering matchup against Eric Skoglund to Tuesday. DFS players, however, have now lost the opportunity to heavily stack the Blue Jays against a lefty with a career 9.53 ERA. According to The Athletic’s Rustin Dodd, Skoglund will start the first game of Tuesday’s doubleheader with Danny Duffy taking the night contest. Keep that in mind, as FantasyDraft lists Skoglund as the probable starter. While Duffy is no pushover, he has yielded a .558 slugging % to 48 righties faced this season after relinquishing a .272/.335/.432 slash line to them last year. Even after three hitless games, Justin Smoak is sporting a .391 wOBA while batting 7-for-18 with two walks versus southpaws, whom he annihilated (.331/.413/.565) in 2017. Pay close attention to Toronto’s lineups to make sure he plays both games, and accompany him with the remarkably cheap Teoscar Hernandez ($4,500) if the recently promoted outfielder is given the evening’s starting nod.
Once an ace, Adam Wainwright is now someone DFS gamers can exploit. Although he’s coming off a quality start (7 IP, 8 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 4 K) against the Brewers, the 36-year-old has greeted just 25 of 48 batters with a first-pitch strike. He has also accrued an uninspiring 5.5 % swinging-strike rate. After allowing a .289/.358/.463 slash line to lefties last season, he’s the perfect prey for Kyle Schwarber, who has boosted his career wOBA against righties to .366 by taking three deep in 2018. He has yet to record a hit off Wainwright in nine plate appearances, but let’s hope that small sample size merely decreases his exposure among the competition.
I have considered picking Odubel Herrera in virtually every column this season, but this may be my last chance. After taking Julio Teheran yard last night, Philadelphia’s under-appreciated outfielder is hitting .340/.397/.491. He’s parked into the No. 3 spot of a productive lineup. That’s not a $6,400 player. Mike Foltynewicz has jumped out to a 2.93 ERA with 18 strikeouts in 15.1 innings, but we’ve been fooled too many times by someone with a career 4.79 ERA in addition to a .371 wOBA against lefties. Take the value while it’s still on the table.
Stack: Los Angeles Dodgers at San Diego Padres (RHP Bryan Mitchell)
You don’t need a PhD in statistics to know that a 14:3 BB/K ratio is bad for a pitcher. No, that wasn’t meant to say K/BB. Bryan Mitchell has struck out three batters in 13.2 innings while issuing 14 walks. He has relinquished nine runs and a 91.6 contact %, so the Dodgers have a grand opportunity to move past their early funk. Because of early struggles, Corey Seager ($8,400) and Cody Bellinger ($8,100) are both affordable considering the vulnerable righty on the mound. Chris Taylor, who has hit three homers in the last six games, costs $7,300 from the leadoff role. Anyone unwilling to spend $8,000 on a slumping Yasiel Puig can instead ride with the streaking Matt Kemp for $6,800. With Logan Forsythe joining Justin Turner on the disabled list, Chase Utley will likely get another start at second. The 39-year-old hasn’t looked his age, so consider him for just $5,400.
Honorable Mentions: Astros at Mariners (Miranda); Cubs vs. Cardinals (Wainwright); Brewers vs. Reds (Romano)