Happy Fourth of July everyone! I had a much-needed day off from DFS yesterday for a family day, but we’re back to the grind today with a full day of baseball. FanDuel has once again botched the early slate so we’ll only be dealing with the main there, but DraftKings has two tidy seven-game contests, bringing you some all-day fun. I’ll attempt to be on chat for both slates today, and follow me on twitter @jac3600. Good luck!
Trevor Bauer, CLE ($12,000)
Bauer leads the competition at the SP position tonight, but are you really prepared to pay the same price tag for him as you do with Scherzer/Sale/Kluber? The strikeouts say you can, as Bauer has struck out eight or more batters in eight straight outings with 11 or more in five of those games. He’s facing a Royals squad that now ranks last in wRC+ against RHP, and he’s a -220 favorite with a 3.6 IRTA. Ultimately, I have a rough time going with Bauer based on the intense heat across the country that really pushes me towards stacking offense, but if you want the safety of Bauer I don’t fight you.
Other options – Gerrit Cole, Patrick Corbin
Rich Hill, LAD ($7600)
If Hill didn’t have such issues with length, I’d call him a lock on this slate, but he’s still my favorite pitcher for cash games at this moment. The training wheels have been taken off somewhat lately, as Hill has logged two quality starts out of his last three, and his K rate is on the rise. The Pirates aren’t a great team for K upside, but Hill has the lowest IRTA at 3.3 runs and is just behind Bauer as a -210 favorite. You’re sacrificing upside dipping down from Bauer to Hill, but the $4400 savings gets you some serious offense in great hitting conditions.
Other options – Marcus Stroman, Sal Romano, Tyler Anderson, Clay Holmes
Joey Votto, CIN ($4300)
Dylan Covey is fully on board the regression train, and you should buy a ticket now before everyone realizes it. The Reds have a whopping IRT of 5.7 runs (second only to the Rockies in Coors). Covey has allowed over a 50% hard hit rate in his last three starts, and Votto has a higher walk rate than strikeout rate. He dudded for me with an 0-5 the other day, but Votto is one of the ultimate cash plays in MLB.
Other options – Edwin Encarnacion, Brandon Belt, Ian Desmond, Jose Abreu, Buster Posey
Yuli Gurriel, HOU ($2900)
Gurriel is a good way to grab cheap exposure to another premier offense on the slate, the Astros. Gurriel will be in Texas taking on Mike Minor in 100 degree heat, and the latter is still allowing 1.27 HR/9 while posting a 4.52 xFIP. The Astros are ranked first in wRC+ against LHP which has led to an IRT of 5.5 runs, and Gurriel should hit anywhere from third to fifth.
Other options – Justin Smoak, Kendrys Morales, Yonder Alonso
Catcher values – Evan Gattis, Max Stassi, Tucker Barnhart, Tom Murphy
Jose Altuve, HOU ($4200)
Second base has some enticing options for a shorter slate, but Altuve is the cream of the crop. He’s once again getting on base at an alarming rate, and he has a .382 wOBA and .170 ISO against LHP over the last two years. Altuve’s power has dropped off a bit this year, but the speed has picked back up and he has a good shot at five PAs on the road in Arlington.
Other options – D.J. LeMahieu, Max Muncy, Scooter Gennett
Yoan Moncada, CHW ($3300)
The White Sox IRT seems a tad low at 4.3 runs given the fact that it will be in the 90s in Cincinnati and Sal Romano has allowed 1.50 HR/9 while posting a 5.12 FIP. Moncada’s K rate is WAY too high at over 35%, but he’s a high event player with both power and speed, and he’s got a .207 ISO against RHP in his career thus far. He’s a viable drop-down from Altuve at almost $1000 less.
Other options – Jason Kipnis, Rougned Odor, Alen Hanson
Nolan Arenado, COL ($5100)
Alex Bregman has been so good lately that he actually challenges Arenado for the top play here, but there’s no mistaking Arenado at home against a lefty in Coors. Arenado has an unreal .543 wOBA and .423 ISO against LHP since the beginning of last season, and Andrew Suarez pitches to way too much contact to be relevant in Coors Field. The Rockies have an IRT of six runs, highest on the slate, and Arenado is viable across all formats.
Other options – Alex Bregman, Jose Ramirez, Eugenio Suarez, Justin Turner
Yangervis Solarte, TOR ($2800)
Opportunity cost in fairly high at 3B tonight, but Solarte will be the choice if you decide you’d rather have Bauer than all the offense. Corey Oswalt has already allowed three homers since being called up to the bigs, and Solarte has a .182 ISO against RHP over the past two years. The Blue Jays will be in one of the only controllable climates on the slate, but they still have an IRT of 5.2 runs against Oswalt and the Mets bullpen that ranks dead last in FIP.
Other options – Mike Moustakas, Todd Frazier, Pablo Sandoval
Trevor Story, COL ($4200)
Story and Francisco Lindor lead the way at the SS position, but the $800 discount on Story makes him the clear winner. Andrew Suarez’s 17.5% K rate is just not viable enough to pitch in Coors Field, and Story has a .309 ISO against LHP since the beginning of 2016. He’ll hit cleanup for the Rockies in Coors and is a great option in all formats.
Other options – Francisco Lindor, Brandon Crawford
Marwin Gonzalez, HOU ($2300)
I honestly don’t know how you pass on Marwin at this price, which is a gift. The only bugaboo is his lineup spot, which could be as high as second or as low as eighth (he hit there yesterday). I’m still willing to roster him way down in the order, as he saves you a ton of money and gets you cheap exposure to arguably the best offense on the slate. Marwin is generally better against righties, but he’s got a very serviceable .171 ISO against LHP since the beginning of last year.
Other options – Jose Peraza, Elvis Andrus, Chris Taylor, Tim Anderson
George Springer, HOU ($3700)
Springer returned to the Astros lineup yesterday, and is my highest priority cash play (even if you use Bauer, I’d make sure to get Springer in there). He is far too cheap at $3700 (I’d pay $1000 more for him today), and he’ll be the road leadoff hitter in Texas against Minor in 100 degree heat. Little more explanation is needed on this one, but Springer has a .413 wOBA and .252 ISO against LHP since the beginning of last year and Texas’ bullpen is bad too.
Other options – Charlie Blackmon, Carlos Gonzalez, Andrew McCutchen, Gorkys Hernandez, Michael Brantley, Scott Schebler, Teoscar Hernandez
Curtis Granderson, TOR ($2800)
Granderson is the top OF value and is another cash staple for me. I mentioned the Blue Jays’ high IRT despite playing in a controlled environment, and he has a posted a very solid .232 ISO against RHP over the last two years. Corey Oswalt looks like a great target to attack in all formats, and the Jays will get nine innings of upside against the Mets’ meager bullpen.
Other options – Tommy Pham, Marcell Ozuna, Avisail Garcia, Daniel Palka, Jesse Winker, Billy Hamilton, Lonnie Chisenhall, Tyler Naquin, Nomar Mazara, Joey Gallo, Josh Reddick, Jake Marisnik, Kevin Pillar