Tuesday baseball is back, and we have 13 games on tap for the main fantasy baseball slate. There are a wide array of pitching options, and there will be some tough decisions to make tonight. That is what I am here to help with!
EDITOR’S NOTE: Tonight’s game between the White Sox and Royals has been removed from the main slate due to scheduling issues.
Here are five different pitchers fantasy owners can consider using on DraftKings:
1. Matt Boyd, $10,300, DET at BAL
Boyd has enjoyed a true breakout season in 2019. Through 11 starts he has a 3.11 ERA and a sterling 1.01 WHIP. Boyd also has struck out 80 batters in 66 2/3 innings, which has been fantastic for his fantasy value. He has thrown his fastball and slider more this season — each with an increase in velocity — and brought down the usage of his secondary pitches. Focusing more on what he does well has sparked a change for Boyd.
The Orioles are eighth worst in runs scored per game and are a great matchup for any pitcher. Lefties especially perform well against Baltimore, as the O’s strike out 26.1% of the time when facing southpaws. Their wRC+ of 89 is good for 20th. I mentioned Boyd’s slider before, and it is a pitch the Orioles really struggle with. Not a single batter in their expected lineup has an ISO better than .190 or a wOBA better than .290 since 2016 against that pitch.
2. David Price, $9,400, BOS vs. CLE
Price has had some issues with injury and illness, but he has pitched well when available this season. In eight starts, he has compiled an ERA of 3.24 with 47 strikeouts in 41 2/3 innings. Outside of his flu-shortened start last week, Price has gone at least six innings in five of seven appearances. Since the start of 2018, he has been more effective against lefties but has struck out a higher percentage of righties faced, mitigating some concerns against the platoon.
The Indians have been one of the most disappointing teams in baseball this season. They are 25th in wRC+ when facing lefties and strike out against them 24.3% of the time. Cleveland has scored more than three runs just once in their past seven contests. Price throws his cutter four times as often against righties as he does lefties in an effort to jam the platoon advantage. Both Francisco Lindor ($4,600) and Carlos Santana ($4,600) struggle mightily against this pitch. The only other reputable hitter in the Cleveland lineup is Jose Ramirez ($3,500), but he is hitting less than .200 for the season.
There are some weather concerns in this game, so be sure to keep an eye on the forecast leading up to first pitch.
3. Dylan Bundy, $8,500, BAL vs. DET
Across from Boyd is Bundy, who comes with some more risk but has a world of upside in this matchup. He had a rough March and April but appears to have settled down in May. Bundy has a 2.28 ERA in four May starts and has struck out a batter per inning on the year.
Working in Bundy’s favor is the matchup. Since the start of 2018, Bundy has a 30.8% strikeout rate when facing right-handed batters, far greater than his 17.7% number versus lefties. The Tigers are expected to have seven right-handed hitters in today’s lineup. Collectively, Detroit has been the worst team in the league against righties in terms of wRC+, and it strikes out 26.2% of the time against them, third most in baseball.
Bundy has had just minimal stretches of top-end performance over the past couple of seasons, but this appears to be the kind of spot he can dominate in terms of DraftKings scoring.
4. Stephen Strasburg, $11,800, WAS at ATL
Strasburg has been elite this season, with a WHIP under 1.00 and 87 strikeouts in just 72 innings. In seven of his 11 starts, Strasburg has yielded two or less earned runs. He also has given up 96 grounders to 81 fly-balls.
So why isn’t Strasburg higher in the rankings today? The matchup isn’t pristine, as he faces a Braves team that is league-average against righties and strikes out just 22% of the time. Strasburg is safe and well insulated by his strikeout floor, but this matchup doesn’t appear to give him the ceiling you’d probably want in a near $12K player.
The floor here is still excellent for Strasburg, which is why he makes this list. He hasn’t scored less than 16.95 DKFP in any of his past eight starts and has gone over 20 points five times. The weather could force you here today, and if some strong batter value pops up, Strasburg is well worth considering.
5. Trevor Richards, $8,200, MIA vs. SF
Richards has been solid, but not spectacular in 2019. His ERA is 4.14, and he has experienced some ups and downs throughout the year. He has given up four or more earned runs three times, and one or less earned run four times in 10 starts. Richards has struck out 50 batters in 54 1/3 innings on the year.
The Giants are one of the worst offenses in baseball. They are 26th in wRC+ against righties and are 10th in strikeout rate at 24.3%. San Francisco should have at least four lefties in the lineup today, but that is not a big deal for Richards, who has allowed 86 fewer points of ISO to the left-hand side since the start of 2018. Brandon Belt ($3,700) is the only hitter in the Giants’ projected lineup to have an ISO over .170 or wOBA over .320 when facing righties.
Richards is a GPP-type of play I would not recommend using in cash games. Even in a plus matchup, we have seen his downside to be very real. He could, however, be the key to rostering multiple high-priced batters in a tournament setting.
Put your knowledge to the test. Sign up for DraftKings and experience the game inside the game.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is amicsta) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.