After a night where we had multiple rain delays, Thursday night brings a quiet night of weather for this eight-game slate. Pitching is going to be a bit tough to decide on, but the offense should be plentiful. Let’s jump into the information for tonight and as always, you can reach me on the ol’ Twitter machine @SBuchanan24.
Largest FavoriteNote: This section highlights the pitcher whose team is the largest favorite on DraftKings Sportsbook.
Trevor Bauer $11,000, CLE (-225) vs. DET (+195) — We might want to consider renaming this section “Indians pitcher favored over Tigers” since this is now the fourth day in a row they’ve been the largest favorites. Bauer has had his struggles against this team this season, averaging 19.1 DKFP through 18 2/3 innings. While that fantasy point total seems good, it’s in large part to his 42.85-DKFP performance against them, as his other two starts he finished with 2.4 and 12.1 DKFP. Bauer also has struggled at home this season, as evidenced by his .333 wOBA, 4.56 xFIP and 14 of the 20 home runs he’s allowed.
The Tigers’ offense is certainly not one you fear, but I’m not going out of my way to pay this huge price for a pitcher who has a lot more negatives than positives in this matchup. We have other pitchers at cheaper prices I’d rather consider like Stephen Strasburg ($10,500) or even Charlie Morton ($10,200) in a tough matchup against the Yankees.
Highest TotalOAK (+116) at MIN (-132) 11 runs — The Twins are favored in this projected high-scoring affair against the Athletics and Mike Fiers ($7,000). As you’d imagine, Fiers has been hit hard away from Oakland and sports a .314 wOBA with a 5.23 xFIP and nine of his 15 home runs allowed. Fiers had a decent start against this club recently in which he allowed just one run on five hits and four strikeouts through six innings. Of course, this game was at home, so it’s hard to think he can do the same twice. At home, the Twins have combined for a team .336 wOBA and a .205 ISO, both of which rank amongst the highest in the league.
Weather ConcernsNo weather concerns for tonight!
Splits to Start
Pitchers vs. Left-Handed BattersWorst vs. LHB, wOBA, xFIP, Best vs. LHB, wOBA, xFIP
Tanner Roark, .410, 6.16, Madison Bumgarner, .226, 3.05
Matt Harvey, .399, 5.57, Wade Miley, .227, 3.50
Dakota Hudson, .385, 5.16, Stephen Strasburg, .229, 3.39
Pitchers vs. Right-Handed BattersWorst vs. RHB, wOBA, xFIP, Best vs. RHB, wOBA, xFIP
Madison Bumgarner, .336, 4.27, Charlie Morton, .220, 3.05
Noah Syndergaard, .324, 3.85, Tanner Roark, .249, 3.34
Matt Harvey, .320, 4.99, Trevor Bauer, .265, 3.86
Top Hard-Hit%This section will populate with the hitters that have the top hard-hit% over the past seven days. This percentage can help distinguish who is swinging the bat well over the course of the past week. I’ll be updating this daily so we have a consistent flow of names in this section.
Name, Team, Salary, Hard-Hit%
Aaron Judge, NYY, $4400, 92.3%
Ryan Braun, MIL, $4600, 78.6%
Mitch Garver, MIN, $5200, 77.8%
Eric Thames, MIL, $4500, 72.7%
Alex Bregman, HOU, $4900, 70.6%
Pitcher to Build AroundStephen Strasburg, WAS at ATL, $10,500 — On the road, Strasburg has a .238 wOBA with a 3.29 xFIP and only two of the 13 home runs he’s allowed on the season. He’s faced this team twice already and has come away with a DKFP average of 24.8 through 13 innings in which he’s allowed five runs on 10 hits and 16 strikeouts. Of the most expensive pitchers amongst Bauer and Morton, Strasburg feels like the safest matchup of the three against a team he’s handled twice already this season.
Heavy Hitter to Pay ForMichael Brantley, HOU at LAA, $4,500 — Brantley will have the luxury of facing Matt Harvey ($4,800), who just recently returned from a two-month stint on the injured list. Harvey brings with him a .430 wOBA, a 5.82 xFIP and four of the 11 home runs he’s allowed against lefties at home this season in this matchup against Brantley. On the road against righties, Brantley sports a .391 wOBA with a .208 ISO and five home runs.
Save Big by Drafting…Christian Stewart, DET at CLE, $3,600 — I don’t usually write up Tigers players. In fact, this might be the first time this season I’ve done so. But, I do think Stewart makes some sense against Bauer. One of the biggest struggles for the Indians’ ace has been left-handed bats, who have tagged him with a .384 wOBA, a 4.84 xFIP and 10 of the 20 home runs he’s allowed. Stewart is the perfect guy to potentially take him deep and carries a .216 ISO on the road against righties.
Stack Em UpHOU at LAA (Matt Harvey) — I’m fine with going full board with the Astros against Harvey even with the game at Angel Stadium. The Astros have been one of the best offenses in the league on the road this season and have a .347 wOBA with a .210 ISO. Even with a cozy ballpark behind him, Harvey has posted a .410 wOBA and a 5.60 xFIP through 32 1/3 innings at Angel Stadium this season.
Favorite Prop Bet
Detroit Tigers OVER 3.5 runs (+108)This is simply a small total against a pitcher that has not only struggled against this team but overall this season. Sure, Bauer could go out and wipe the floor with this Tigers team, but he simply hasn’t been that pitcher on a consistent basis this season. Getting plus money on this total makes it all the more enticing, and I think it’s one people simply would pass over because of the perception that Bauer has been dominant. If anything, he’s been anything but that.
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