Ahhh yes, the start of a long weekend! But a long weekend in September also means, that baseball is wrapping up soon. Well, at least the regular season. What a sad state of affairs this is. But not to worry, we still have PLENTY of baseball left to play on DraftKings, with today being no exception. Let’s just right into things, and as always, you can get me on the ol’ Twitter machine @SBuchanan24.
Heaviest Pitcher Favorites
This section is to showcase who the Vegas favorites are on the night. Not my own personal choices.
David Price vs. Baltimore Orioles(-290) – No surprise to see Price as the favorite pitcher on the night. He was been absolute money since coming over to the Blue Jays. In 43.1 innings in the month of August, Price owned a 2.28 ERA with a .248 wOBA against him to go along with 50 strikeouts, the most he’s had any month this season. Price goes up against an Orioles team that has struggled with left handed pitching this entire season. On the year, the Orioles own a .297 wOBA when facing lefties with a high strikeout rate of 22.5%. This should ring true, as Price owns an 8.9 K/9 on the season, but as I mentioned, his strikeouts have been up since he jumped over to the Blue Jays. The other factor as well, which I usually don’t take into account to much, is that Price will certainly be in line for a win, as the Blue Jays have been providing an absurd amount of run support for their starting pitchers. I mean, if Drew Hutchison can have a 12-3 record on the season, that’s all you need to know. Price is expensive this afternoon, but certainly will be one of, if not the, best pitcher on the early slate.
Wade Miley vs. Philadelphia Phillies (-215) – Miley has had such an up and down season this year, it’s truly hard to figure out which Wade Miley were going to get tonight. After running a streak three straight quality starts, Miley has hit a bump in the road once again. His last two starts, he’s scored a combined 14.1 points against the Chicago White Sox and the New York Mets. Funny thing is, the better start came against the Mets. Go figure. The Phillies are in the middle of the road when it comes to facing a left handed pitcher this season. They own a .310 wOBA when facing them this season, which is good for 17th in the majors. Their strikeout rate is at 20.9% which isn’t as bad as it sound, ranked 17th in the league. When it comes down to it, I don’t think this is a solid start for Miley. He’s been very inconsistent for my liking and the Phillies aren’t the same team from the first half of the season. They’re a much better hitting ball club and have taken care of pitchers much more talented than Miley. I’ll be keeping Miley on the bench today.
Jake Arrieta vs. Arizona Diamondbacks(-212) – I think it’s safe to say that Vegas is liking this afternoon slate of baseball. Arrieta takes on the Diamondbacks today, fresh off his no hitter. I was thinking Arrieta might be owned through the roof today and then I saw his price tag. Oh baby, he’s jumped up to $13,500. Now, he totally deserves it. He’s been completely lights out since June and in the month of August, owned a 0.43 ERA to go with a 0.70 WHIP. I mean seriously, that is about as perfect as you can get. Also, I mentioned the month of June, Arrieta has thrown a quality start since that month. Another incredible accomplishment. As for the Diamondbacks, they do hit RHP well, owning a .318 wOBA against them, which is good for 11th in the league. However, at this point, I’m not even going to entertain the idea of going against Arrieta. If you do, it would be a bold move, one that if it did pay off, I’m sure you would do well. But, I think I’ll stick to the course and slot in Arrieta today. This game also has the lowest run total I think I’ve seen all season, with 4.5 runs projected.
Top Overall Game Over/Unders
San Francisco Giants at Colorado Rockies (Coors Field) – 11 Over/Under – Coors Field. Highest scoring game of the night. You can get the point already. Jake Peavy takes on Chad Bettis in this one. Peavy has been having a typical season, going five or six innings, giving up a few runs, and striking out 4-5 batters. I mean, he’s almost scripted in his starts. You’ll know what to expect. He’s only averaging 12.2 points per start, and even with his low price tag, he’s not worth the chance against the Rockies. Just facing Carlos Gonzalez, who’s on an absolute tear, would be enough for me to keep Peavy on the board tonight. Peavy doesn’t have horrible splits, .316 wOBA against righties and .326 against lefties, but they aren’t anything dominating either. The Rockies should certainly nab some hits here. As for Bettis, he really struggles against righties, owning a .373 wOBA when facing them. Your typical Rockies starter, Bettis owns a 4.78 ERA with a 1.43 WHIP and a K/9 of 7.5. I mean, this is the same ol’ song and dance every day. Righties will be a good target in this one.
Toughest Left/Right Matchups
Toughest Pitchers vs. Left Handed Batters
Jake Arrieta vs. Arizona Diamondbacks- It should come to the surprise of no one, that Arrieta is the best against lefties on the day. I mean, Arrieta is almost untouchable at this point. You’d have to be crazy to think you have a chance against him this afternoon. Poor Diamondbacks. On the season, Arrieta owns a .215 wOBA when facing lefties.
Alex Wood vs. San Diego Padres- Wood certainly sees his struggles against righties, but he’s been on point when facing lefties this season. He gets the light hitting Padres tonight, which makes him a slightly intriguing option, but I’m not going to go crazy with exposure to him. On the year, Wood is holding lefties to a .239 wOBA.
Toughest Pitchers vs. Right Handed Batters
Jaime Garcia vs. Pittsburgh Pirates –Really, have you looked at what Garcia has done this season? He’s so quietly having a fantastic season, it’s almost a shame he’s not getting more attention. Tack on the fact that he’s only going to cost you $9,600 and he’s a solid play. Coming into tonight, Garcia owns a .227 wOBA on the season.
Shelby Miller vs. Washington Nationals- On a day with so many solid number one pitchers going, I bet you didn’t expect these two to have the best wOBA against right handed pitching. Miller enters his start against the Nationals with a .247 wOBA against righties.
Best Left/Right Matchups
Easiest Pitcher vs. Left Handed Batters.
John Lamb vs. Milwaukee Brewers-Lamb hasn’t had much go right for him in his four start thus far this season. He ERA continues to climb, as does his wOBA against lefties. On the short season, Lamb owns a .429 wOBA against lefties. Yeah, thanks for coming.
Ervin Santana vs. Houston Astros- Santana is NOT what the Twins expected when they got him back from his PED suspension. He’s been an absolute train wreck, and one that you just can’t help to look at. Well, we’d look at any train wreck, but that’s besides the point. Santana owns a .377 wOBA against lefties this season.
Easiest Pitcher vs. Right Handed Batters.
Matt Moore vs. New York Yankees- Moore is making his second return in 2015. First, it was the recovery from Tommy John surgery. That…..was a disaster. Sent down to the minors, Moore makes his return and gets a tough matchup against the Yankees. During his time he was in the majors this season, Moore owned a .448 wOBA against righties. Hopefully, he’s worked things out.
Chad Bettis vs. San Francisco Giants- Bettis hasn’t had a good go around when it comes to facing RHP. It doesn’t help when, you know, your home field is at Coors. Bettis owns a .373 wOBA against righties on the season.
Carlos Gonzalez OF ($5000) – Boy did that salary shoot up from yesterday. Going up $800 dollars since yesterday, Gonzalez is truly on fire right now. Gonzalez is 10-30 with five home runs, 13 RBIs, and seven runs scored. The price tag is going to hard to fit him in tonight.
Nolan Arenado 3B ($5000) – Well this is something that Peavy won’t be excited about. Two Rockies hitters that are just tearing the cover off the ball right now. He might even be hotter than Gonzalez, as Arenado is 16-35 with five home runs, 11 RBIs, and nine runs scored.
Chris Davis 1B ($4400) – If you’re looking for someone with some power lately and isn’t as expensive as the previous two guys, look no further than Chris Davis. Davis has now officially entered the 40s in home runs, and is only going to cost you $4400 tonight. Davis is 8-25 with five home runs, eight RBIs, and five runs scored.
Best Batter vs. Pitcher Matchups
Jay Bruce vs. Matt Garza- Say what you want about BvP, it’s been MONEY these past few days. Don’t believe me? Give it a shot sometime. We start off with this nice matchup for Bruce in a double header that they’ll be playing today. Bruce is 11-30 against Garza with seven extra base hits, three of them being home runs, and a 1.206.
Salavdor Perez vs. Jose Quintana- Perez is really started to fall off with his offensive production in the second half of the season, but he’s got some good numbers coming into tonight against Jose Quintana. Perez is 15-41 with seven extra base hits, two of them being home runs, and a 1.068 OPS.
*Nelson Cruz vs. Jesse Chavez-*This is a short sample, but a good sample. Cruz, who crushes almost everyone it feels like, is 6-13 against Chavez with four extra base hits, three of them being home runs, and a 1.731 OPS. C’mon baby, BvP one time!
We don’t have any games that look to be trouble today/tonight. That Milwaukee Cincinnati game REALLY screwed with a lot of people, as it looked like they would play that one. But don’t worry, today looks like it should be a clear one.
One Pitcher To Build Lineups Around
David Price ($11,900) –Arrieta is most likely the obvious choice, but like Kershaw, it would really be hard for me to recommend him because of how expensive his price tag is. So, I’ll just assume you know how good Arrieta is and just go to the next pitcher on my list. Price, as I mentioned in the beginning of the article, has been fantastic for the Blue Jays. He has a great matchup against the Orioles tonight, who have really struggled against left handed pitching on the season. If you want to take it a step further, the Orioles have really fallen off in the second half of the season, with a combined .311 wOBA, which is only good for 24th in the league. It doesn’t help that their strikeouts are also way up with a 22.5 K% in the second half. The deeper stat wise we go into this, the more and more I like Price this afternoon. I’m sure with only six games this afternoon, he’s going to be highly owned, but I don’t think fading him is a wise decision.
Superstar Worth Paying For
Alex Rodriguez ($4300) – You know, I had Rodriguez in mind before I started writing this article, because he CRUSHES left handed pitching this season. Then, when I went to go look at this price for this afternoon, he’s WAY cheaper than I expected. He’s too expensive to go in the section below, so today we’ll have a “cheap” superstar worth paying for today. Rodriguez on the season owns a .422 wOBA against lefties with an ISO of .309. If you aren’t familiar with those stats, I can break it down for your very easily what they mean. PLAY RODRIGUEZ.
Save Big Bucks By Drafting…
Darin Ruf ($2200) – Even with being a six game slate, the afternoon games are FULL of fantastic matchups today. I love this one today, as we get on the Ruf Ryders with Darin Ruf. He faces Wade Miley, who struggles against RHB. On the year, Miley owns a .342 wOBA against them and it just so happens that Ruf CRUSHES left handed pitching. On the season, Ruf owns a .448 wOBA with an ISO of .247. Just to compare how much better Ruf is against lefties than righties, Ruf owns a .193 wOBA with a .102 ISO. Sooooo, you playing Ruf today or nah?