Yesterday’s lineup was on fire, as the Scherzer/punts squad came through with a 198 for my cash contests. Today we’re presented with a full slate, and offense will be the name of the game with all the viable pitchers looking very cheap. Get ready for a fun-filled night in FTA+ chat, as my streaks are now up to two days on FD and six on DK. Follow along with me on twitter @jac3600, and I’ll see our loyal subs later!
Dallas Keuchel, HOU ($8600)
Keuchel doesn’t have the greatest K upside anymore (18.2% K rate this year), but he’s perfectly fine if you want the safe option for your cash pitcher. The Royals still don’t strike out a ton, but they’re 24th in wRC+ against LHP and have no real power righties outside of Sal Perez. Keuchel is a -300 favorite with a 3.1 IRTA (both slate extremes by a lot) and he should easily provide the innings for a QS. I’m looking even cheaper for my cash option (see below), but Keuchel is definitely a viable option.
Other options – Patrick Corbin, Sean Newcomb
Shane Bieber, CLE ($6600)
Here’s a Biebs I can get on board with! He’s priced near the minimum and you can load up on Rockies bats to your heart’s content. Bieber is facing a garbage Tigers squad and he’ll bring in a 3.20 xFIP and 25.5% K rate (along with stellar control). The Tigers lineup is primarily right-handed, and Biebs (I don’t care if he’s not called that – I’m doing it) is a -200 favorite with a 3.9 IRTA. Full steam ahead, I say!
Other options – Andrew Heaney, Tanner Roark, Alex Wood, CC Sabathia, Jon Gray, Chris Stratton
Freddie Freeman, ATL ($4400)
Freeman can’t be in my cash lineups if it sacrifices top Rockies, but is he really all that different tonight? He’s the front-runner for NL MVP at this point of the season and has one of the best matchups on the slate against Alex Cobb. Freeman has destroyed RHP for a .404 wOBA and .264 ISO since the beginning of last year and Alex Cobb has a 7.14 ERA this year while allowing 1.86 HR/9. The Braves’ IRT of 5.1 pales in comparison to Colorado’s, but it’s still elite.
Other options – Ian Desmond, Edwin Encarnacion, Justin Bour, Anthony Rizzo, Yonder Alonso, Gary Sanchez, JT Realmuto
Eric Thames, MIL ($3400)
Thames’ price has gone down for some reason, and you can definitely take advantage even though his matchup against Jack Flaherty is not ideal. Thames’ hard hit rate is up right and he’s leading off against RHP. He’s crushed them for a .308 ISO since his return to the majors a year ago, and Flaherty has struggled with lefty power in his career thus far (.188 ISO allowed).
Other options – Carlos Santana, Mitch Moreland, Daniel Murphy, Yuli Gurriel
Catcher values – Evan Gattis, Tom Murphy, Willson Contreras, Yasmani Grandal
D.J. LeMahieu, COL ($4100)
Second base is loaded tonight, and I want to point out that I’m passing on Altuve against a lefty and Albies against Cobb with this pick. The Rockies’ IRT is almost seven runs which is quite remarkable, and the righties have a cookie of a matchup against Wei-Yin Chen. As I’ve pointed out before, LeMahieu doesn’t have the power upside of his teammates, but leading off in Coors Field is one of the best cash floors you can hope for. He’s got a .377 wOBA against LHP since the beginning of 2015.
Other options – Jose Altuve, Ozzie Albies, Javier Baez, Starlin Castro
Brian Dozier, MIN ($3400)
The good plays aren’t limited to the top, and Dozier is a tough fade for me at only $3400. Dozier is facing Mike Minor who really isn’t a bad pitcher, but he’s allowed 1.77 HR/9 to RHB since the beginning of last year and Dozier has a .385 wOBA and .249 ISO against LHP in that span. This game being in Texas would be ideal, but Minnesota still plays well to right-handed power.
Other options – Ian Kinsler, Jason Kipnis, Daniel DeScalso, Eduardo Nunez
Nolan Arenado, COL ($5100)
I know Arenado is fully priced, but you must pay this price tag. Like, seriously, don’t even look at another third baseman no matter which pitcher you choose. Chen has a pitching slash of 5.91/5.79/5.72 and he’s allowed 1.77 HR/9 this year. Extrapolate that to fit Coors, and then add in Arenado’s insane splits against lefties (and his numbers at home) and you have a must-play. Oh yeah, Arenado is sizzling right now, with nine hits, three homers, three doubles, and ten RBIs over his last five games.
Other options – Jose Ramirez, Alex Bregman, Kris Bryant, Matt Carpenter, Eugenio Suarez
Luis Valbuena, LAA ($2100)
Valbuena double-donged yesterday (and I used him!), and his price has dropped $200 to almost the minimum. Thanks to the UTIL spot, you can play him while still rostering Arenado, and that’s certainly a viable approach. Marco Estrada is usually a pitcher we attack with right-handed bats, but he’s actually allowed a .202 ISO to LHB since the beginning of last year.
Other options – Jake Lamb, Eduardo Escobar, Justin Turner, Kyle Seager
Trevor Story, COL ($4400)
It’s easy to fit both Arenado and Story into your cash lineup (especially if you use Biebs), and I plan on attempting it. Story has impressively cut his K rate from 34% to 27% from last year to this season, and he has a .259 ISO (and over .300 against LHP). Chen does not miss bats, and Story also has a 37% hard hit rate over his last 15 games. The Rockies should feast this evening.
Other options – Francisco Lindor, Carlos Correa, Xander Bogaerts, Trea Turner, Manny Machado
Elvis Andrus, TEX ($3200)
Andrus hasn’t done much since his return from the DL, but he’s still too cheap for the type of event player he is. Andrus had a combined 45 homers and steals and a combined 188 runs and RBIs last year, and he is hitting second for the Rangers. He’s a nice option if you’re stacking other teams or are doing a bottom-of-the-order Rockies stack with other positions in GPP.
Other options – Chris Taylor, Jose Peraza, Dansby Swanson, Addison Russell
Mike Trout, LAA ($5300)
I think you have to prioritize the Rockies big bats in cash, but Trout once again comes in as the top GPP option for me (and I’ll even explore fitting him alongside Arenado and Story since I’m going super cheap at SP). Trout has an unreal . 452 wOBA and .345 ISO against same-handed pitching since the beginning of last season and is facing a reverse-split pitcher in Marco Estrada. He could very well outscore everyone.
Other options – Charlie Blackmon, Mookie Betts, JD Martinez, Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, George Springer, Michael Brantley, Bryce Harper, Juan Soto, Adam Eaton, Tommy Pham, Christian Yelich, Derek Dietrich, Justin Upton
Jason Heyward, CHC ($2600)
I feel like I’m playing Jason Heyward every day lately, but his price just isn’t moving and he’s been hitting second for the Cubbies every day. Heyward is getting a big park upgrade going to Cincinnati, and while Luis Castillo has K upside he’s also allowed a .218 ISO to LHB since the beginning of last year. Heyward fits the cash mold beautifully once again.
Other options – Ender Inciarte, Preston Tucker, Robbie Grossman, Andrew McCutchen, Gorkys Hernandez, Lonnie Chisenhall, Tyler Naquin, Jon Jay, David Peralta, Jarrod Dyson, Joey Gallo, Brett Gardner