FanDuel left a little something to be desired yesterday, but I won way more on DK than I lost on FD so it was a good night. Chalky Trout came through in a big way, and he’ll be the featured hitter on the early slate today. This article deals with the eight-game main slate, highlighted by the elite trio of deGrom/Cole/Scherzer at SP. We’ll be working hard in chat once again, and follow me on twitter @jac3600.
Jacob deGrom, NYM ($11,300)
Last week when these three pitchers were on the slate, there was a big debate over which way to go. It’s much easier tonight, as deGrom gets the Marlins matchup which has been the key attack point all season (for much lesser pitchers than him). Don’t let the two duds fool you. DeGrom is striking out almost 13 batters per nine innings this season and his 2.85 SIERA is the second lowest on the slate behind only Scherzer. The Marlins rank dead last in wOBA against RHP with the second highest K rate, and deGrom is a mega favorite at -305 with a 2.3 IRTA (the lowest I’ve seen this year). Zach Wheeler blazed through this lineup last night, and I can’t imagine anything goes differently this evening. I consider deGrom a cash game lock, but I LOVE the idea of pivoting to Cole/Scherzer in GPPs.
Other options – Gerrit Cole, Max Scherzer, Walker Buehler
Jon Gray, COL ($6800)
With most lineups in GPPs carrying expensive pitching, a Coors stack with a cheapie may actually win it tonight in big tournaments. Gray strikes me as the right pitcher for the job there, even though he’ll be pitching in Coors. Gray continues to give up homers (1.45 HR/9 since 2018), but he’s still striking out over a batter per inning and his SIERA is under 4.00 for the third straight year. The Padres only have an IRT of 4.5 (low for a Coors team) and they rank 24th in wOBA against RHP with the fifth highest K rate. Vegas likes Gray to win too, as they’ve pegged him a -160 favorite.
Other options – Kevin Gausman, Jeff Samardzija, Sandy Alcantara
Freddie Freeman, ATL ($4000)
The Braves’ IRT of 4.3 runs confuses me, because Merrill Kelly has shown no reason whatsoever as to why we shouldn’t fully attack him. He comes into this start allowing 1.62 HR/9 and a 5.01 SIERA, and he’s only inducing a 9.3% swinging strike rate. Freeman has massacred righties in his career, and the last three years he’s posted a .393 wOBA and .240 ISO against them. He’s one of my favorite GPP plays tonight, but you can go cheaper in cash.
Other options – Rhys Hoskins, Pete Alonso, Eric Hosmer
Mark Reynolds, COL ($3300)
Reynolds annoyingly wasn’t in the lineup last night, so I hope he’s back tonight. Reynolds’ K rate is over 35% this year which is rough for cash, but the cleanup hitter in Coors is simply too cheap at this price tag. Joey Lucchesi has a 3.74 SIERA and K upside, so there’s definitely a chance for a zero here, but Lucchesi is also allowing a 41% HHR to RHB (38% overall), and the Rockies have a slate-high IRT of 5.5 runs.
Other options – Joey Votto, CJ Cron, Max Muncy, Miguel Cabrera, Yuli Gurriel, Tyler White
Catcher values – Robinson Chirinos, JT Realmuto, Mitch Garver
Jose Altuve, HOU ($3800)
The Astros really throw a wrench into the whole “Coors” thing, as they have an elite matchup with a 5.3 IRT (right behind the Rockies). Drew Smyly has been wildly volatile this season, as he’s posting a career high 11.37 K/9 but also walking almost six batters per nine as well. Smyly has allowed 2.37 HR/9 this season and ZiPS is predicting it won’t get much better than that. Houston ranks first in wRC+ against LHP and Altuve has a .229 ISO this year. He should not be under 4k.
Other options – Whit Merrifield, Ozzie Albies
Robinson Cano, NYM ($2900)
Marlins pitcher Sandy Alcantara looks like he has the stuff to be a solid major league pitcher, but it’s clear he’s not ready yet. In his MLB career, Alcantara has a 5.58 SIERA with a horrific 14% BB rate, and Cano is starting to pick it up after a slow start (26% HHR last five games). The Mets are a prime GPP stack, although they may get a bit higher ownership than originally thought after going off last night.
Other options – Ian Kinsler, Jonathan Schoop, Joe Panik
Alex Bregman, HOU ($4200)
That’s right. Arenado is hot, he’s at home, and he’s facing a lefty, and I’m STILL going to prefer Bregman tonight. Price aside I still think I’d lean Arenado, but the $800 discount is huge on a night where you have to spend all the way up at SP. Bregman is an elite hitter who has a higher walk rate than K rate, and his .940 OPS is actually going to improve when his BABIP (45 points lower than career) adjusts. Since the beginning of last year, Bregman has a .400 wOBA and .251 ISO against LHP, and he steals bases as well.
Other options – Nolan Arenado, Manny Machado, Josh Donaldson
Jeimer Candelario, DET ($2600)
This pick is out of necessity that I write up a value, and I think paying up at 3B is the right move tonight. Kohl Stewart will start the second game of the doubleheader tonight against Detroit, and he has a career 13.4% K rate and 5.05 xFIP. It’s also possible we get a tired Minnesota bullpen after they’ve already pitched a game today.
Other options – Evan Longoria, Marwin Gonzalez
Trevor Story, COL ($4800)
Story has a 41% HHR over his last five games and a 34.1% mark over his last 15. He homered against the lefty last night, and tonight he gets to take a shot at another one. In his career, Story has battered lefties for a .305 ISO and 1.015 OPS, which is simply unheard of at the SS position. He’s worth every penny, but he’ll be tough to fit since we’re paying for deGrom.
Other options – Carlos Correa, Jorge Polanco, Adalberto Mondesi
Greg Garcia, SD ($3000)
Garcia is not a great hitter (.146 ISO) but he REALLY knows how to get on base with his elite 19.2% BB rate this year (and a very nice 12.7% mark for his career). Jon Gray has allowed a 38% HHR to LHB since 2017, and Garcia is a leadoff hitter on the road in Coors which is almost a certainty for five PAs. He’s an unexciting play, but a very sensible one.
Other options – Dansby Swanson, Corey Seager, Harold Castro
Nelson Cruz, MIN ($3900)
Let’s talk about the Twins, who have every bit as much upside as anyone else on the board tonight. Detroit will start Gregory Soto tonight, and he’s only thrown 14 innings above High-A this season. That could spell disaster against a solid Twins lineup, and Cruz has a long career of blasting lefties (.297 ISO!). His power hasn’t diminished a bit this season either, as he’s currently rocking a .378 wOBA and .252 ISO. For under 3k, you’re getting a great per-dollar option.
Other options – George Springer, Bryce Harper, Charlie Blackmon, Ronald Acuna, Wil Myers, Franmil Reyes, Eddie Rosario, Max Kepler, Michael Conforto
Jesse Winker/Yasiel Puig, CIN ($3300/$2900)
Unless lineups tell a different story later, the Reds look like the best source of value despite a big park downgrade. Jeff Samardzija has a 5.44 SIERA and a horrendous 29% GB rate this season, and Winker should be a lot better with his BABIP 56 points lower than it should be. Puig is a high-upside power/speed guy who has a 31.1% HHR over his last 15 games. Both are fine cash values, and I like a Reds stack in GPPs.
Other options – Brandon Nimmo, Jeff McNeil, Joc Pederson, Nick Castellanos, Christin Stewart, Niko Goodrum, Derek Dietrich, Alex Gordon, Adam Jones, Jarrod DysonFantasy Baseball