We start off the week with an 11-game slate on tap and minimal weather concerns. People will be looking toward some expensive pitching options, but is that the way to go on this slate? I help answer that question and others below. Let’s dive into all the information 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.
Gerrit Cole, $12,500, HOU (-235) vs. OAK (+205) — Not only is Cole the most expensive pitcher on this slate but he and the Astros are the biggest favorites. He faces the Athletics for the second time this season, a team that was only able to tag him for two runs on four hits through six innings in their prior matchup. However, Cole ended with 13.9 DKFP in this contest because he struck out four hitters, his second-lowest total this season.
The A’s are one of the toughest teams to strike out in the league, with their 20.8 K% ranking 24th in the league against righties. Paying up a massive salary for Cole doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense in this matchup if he’s going to struggle to strike them out again. Especially when you consider that Robbie Ray ($11,400) is cheaper and faces an Orioles team that has the sixth-highest K% again lefties at 25%. Ray is also a massive favorite at -230 and, in my opinion, is in a much better matchup against an O’s team that traveled across the country and is losing the DH.
Highest TotalNYY (-117) at MIN (+102) 11 runs — The Yankees are slight favorites in this one as they face Martin Perez ($8,100) in what is expected to be the highest run total of the evening. Perez has been good at Target Field this season, boasting a .276 wOBA with a 3.89 xFIP and four of his eight home runs allowed. The Yankees have been decent against lefties and sport a .323 wOBA with a .186 ISO and a 23 K%. The knock against Perez has been his recent struggles, averaging just 13.1 DKFP over his past five starts.
If anything, I find myself siding with the Twins in this game against lefty CC Sabathia ($8,600). The Twins have smashed lefties this season and enter this game with a .360 wOBA, a .226 ISO and a 19.8 K%. A number of hitters on this team excel in this matchup. Both teams have a projected 5.5 run total so, with that in mind, I find myself taking the Twins over the Yankees here.
Weather ConcernsCOL at WAS (Nationals Park) — This game could start in a delay that could last a couple of hours if the rain takes place as expected. The Nationals are one of the worst teams to trust when it comes to rain delays, so I would check this closer to lineups locking. They’ve postponed games for much less.
Splits to Start
Pitchers vs. Left-Handed BattersWorst vs. LHB, wOBA, xFIP, Best vs. LHB, wOBA, xFIP
Peter Lambert, .404, 4.90, Daniel Ponce de Leon, .209, 3.34
Ivan Nova, .375, 4.97, Chase Anderson, .227, 4.84
Trevor Williams, .370, 5.20, Sonny Gray, .239, 2.96
Pitchers vs. Right-Handed BattersWorst vs. RHB, wOBA, xFIP, Best vs. RHB, wOBA, xFIP
Ivan Nova, .382, 4.75, Mike Clevinger, .217, 2.09
Adrian Sampson, .379, 5.32, Gerrit Cole, .263, 2.44
Chase Anderson, .368, 4.96, Erick Fedde, .274, 5.83
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, $4900, 81.8%
Carson Kelly, ARI, $4300, 77.8%
Austin Meadows, TB, $4300, 76.9%
Mitch Garver, MIN, $5400, 75%
Alex Avila, ARI, $3900, 75%
Pitcher to Build AroundRobbie Ray, ARI vs. BAL, $11,400 — I love the strikeout upside for Ray in this spot against the Orioles. As I mentioned, they traveled across the country yesterday and will be losing their DH playing under National League rules. They have one of the highest K% in the league against left-handed pitching with a 25 K%, which ranks the sixth highest in the league. Ray also has pitched better at home than he has on the road, with a .293 wOBA and a 3.53 xFIP at Chase Field.
Heavy Hitter to Pay ForMitch Garver, MIN vs. NYY, $5,400 — Garver continues to crush the ball on a nightly basis, as he enters this game averaging 11.2 DKFP over his past five games. Lefties have been his sweet spot, as evidenced by his .506 wOBA and a .581 ISO at home against them. With Sabathia taking the mound for the Yankees and an expected high-scoring game, Garver will be someone I’ll be locking in across my lineups for this evening.
Save Big by Drafting…J.P. Crawford, SEA vs. TEX, $3,800 — Crawford is someone you usually don’t consider, but he quietly has put together a decent stretch of games as of late. Tonight, he’ll be taking on Adrian Sampson ($4,100), who on the road against lefties is allowing a .404 wOBA with a 5.15 xFIP and five of his 17 home runs allowed on the year. As for Crawford, he’s sporting a .335 wOBA and a .209 ISO against righties at home with three of his four home runs.
Stack Em UpSTL at PIT (Trevor Williams) — It’s been a while since I’ve taken a Cardinals stack in daily fantasy but tonight, we’re breaking the streak, baby! Williams was scratched from his start over the weekend due to illness and now takes the hill tonight. He basically has been getting wrecked since the end of June, allowing a total of 24 runs on 37 hits through 22 2/3 innings. His highest fantasy score in that span is a whopping 10.2 DKFP, which tells you everything you need to know here.
Favorite Prop Bet
Colorado Rockies OVER 4.5 runs (-109)I understand the Rockies are on the road and they aren’t even close to the offense they are at home, but this just feels too low. Erick Fedde ($4,500) hasn’t been anything special on the mound and is coming off a month of June (only six innings pitched this month) where he allowed a .364 wOBA with a 5.78 xFIP. Not to mention, the Nationals’ bullpen has been amongst the worst in the league all season long. A total of 4.5 runs doesn’t feel like much to overcome in this matchup for the Rockies.
Editor’s Note: Tonight’s game between the Rockies and Nationals has been postponed due to inclement weather.
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