We are getting into the part of the season where bad teams start trying out weird things and we see veteran players start to take a step back for younger talent to emerge. Luckily, that’s not going to matter for the big squads like the Twins and the Astros, but there will likely be some cheap value on unproven guys to be had. This is a good slate, let’s dig in.
StudJustin Verlander, HOU vs. SEA, $12,000– The Astros just combined to no-hit the Mariners on Aaron Sanchez’s first start as an Astro, and that doesn’t exactly bode well for their chances against Verlander. Coming off a 44.6-DKFP performance and averaging 26.5 on the season, Verlander is by far the top option on this slate.
Other Options — Caleb Smith ($10,600)
ValueDrew Smyly, PHI vs. CWS, $6,600– There are definitely concerns when it comes to Smyly, but one thing he’s good at is striking batters out. In his last two games, he’s got 13 strikeouts in 13 innings pitched and that’s against two teams that rarely strike out. Facing the White Sox, who are a swing happy team, he is a volatile but high-upside cheap option.
Other Options — Reynaldo Lopez ($7,200)
StudMitch Garver, MIN vs. KC, $5,300– Garver is in the middle of his first cold streak of an otherwise phenomenal season, but a matchup with Brad Keller ($5,600) should help break him out of it. His .978 OPS and .617 SLG are both top 20 in the league among qualified hitters and against a pitcher that doesn’t miss bats, he should have lots of opportunity to crush value.
Other Options — Yasmani Grandal ($4,100)
ValueMartin Maldonado, HOU vs. SEA, $2,900 — Maldonado is being traded across the league and is on his third team of 2019, but he should still provide some decent value especially in a better order than before. His last five games have an average of 6.8 DKFP and he’s currently on a three-game hitting streak, so let’s ride the wave in a good matchup.
Other Options — Elias Diaz ($2,800)
FIRST BASECarlos Santana, CLE vs. LAA, $4,800– The batting average is a bit of an issue, but when Santana is making contact it’s mattered. Over the last couple games he’s only got four hits but three of them are home runs, and over the last 10, he’s got five extra base hits along with six runs and nine RBI. Going up against a pitcher that is middling at best and a train wreck at worst, he’s a solid choice in GPPs.
Other Options — Pete Alonso ($5,100)
ValueC.J. Cron, MIN vs. KC, $3,700 — Cron isn’t necessarily cheap, but he’s way too cheap for his assumed production and his ceiling in one of the most high-powered groups in the league. He came back from injury and instantly produced with a home run on three hits and there’s nothing about Keller that makes me think that’s not in the cards again. This is a $5,000 player, take the discount.
Other Options — Jesus Aguilar ($3,100)
StudJose Altuve, HOU vs. SEA, $5,100– There was a time this season when people were doubting Altuve’s ability to produce at an elite level, and those people look pretty silly at these days. Over the last 10 games Altuve is hitting .450/.532/.825 with 18 hits (not a typo) and 10 runs along with four homers. The Seattle pitcher and bullpen combo is one of the worst on this slate and he deserves priority if you can afford him.
Other Options — Whit Merrifield ($4,500)
ValueStarlin Castro, MIA at TB, $3,000– There’s not really much more time for Castro in his everyday role, but he should produce modest results while there as he finally hit his stride recently. He’s coming off of a 20-DKFP game with a home run and two runs scored and is currently sporting a .754 OPS, so there’s certainly worse options in this price point. It’s better to pay up, but Castro offers some good salary relief if you can’t.
Other Options — Yolmer Sanchez ($3,100)
StudVlad Guerrero Jr., TOR at BAL, $4,900– We are fully engrossed in the Vlad Guerrero Jr. party time extravaganza and he is not someone worth fading today. The Orioles are throwing out a bullpen game with the worst bullpen in the league and Vladito is hitting .425/.489/.850 with an average of 14.9 DKFP over the last 10 games. Blue Jays chalk is scary, but this will likely be good chalk.
Other Options — Alex Bregman ($4,800)
ValueMarwin Gonzalez, MIN vs. KC, $3,400 — It’s been a rough stretch for the switch-hitting first baseman but with the matchup at hand and the scarcity of value plays at this position, he is worth consideration. On the season, he does have a .716 OPS and 6.4 DKFP per contest which are both decent marks for someone his price, and although he’s much better as part of a stack he can come in handy as a one-off to help you fit Verlander.
Other Options — Jace Peterson ($3,200)
StudCarlos Correa, HOU vs. SEA, $4,900– The Astros as a group are in a strong spot against Tommy Milone (8,000) and Correa has really put things together over the last four games with an average of 14 fantasy points and two home runs. He’s exceptionally strong in this split against a LHP and with how hot him and the rest of the squad have him he is in play in all formats.
Other Options — Francisco Lindor ($5,400)
ValueWilly Adams, TB vs. MIA, $3,400– Willy Adames is one of the streakiest hitters in the league, and he is currently in the middle of a really nice string of games. His last 10 have produced a .273/.351/.667 slash line with five of his nine hits getting extra bases (four home runs), so his price is definitely lagging. He won’t stay hot forever, so if you are going to use him today is a good day to get on the bus.
Other Options — Jose Iglesias ($3,400)
StudNelson Cruz, MIN vs. KC, $5,600 — It is nothing short of incredible what Cruz is able to handle as a 39-year-old man. While most players pushing 40 are burning burgers on the grill and blaming it on something else other than incompetence, Cruz is hitting .486/.561/1.429 and averaging 20.9 DKFP per game. In case you read that wrong, he’s got a 1.429 SLG over the last 10 games. The matchup and his superhuman form make him the highest ceiling option.
Other Options — Yordan Alvarez ($5,700), Christian Yelich ($5,500)
ValueAristides Aquino, CIN at ATL, $3,300 — The young outfielder should be in for an everyday role so long as he produces, and his price is still low enough for us to take chance on an unknown talent. His three games have produced mixed results but his .992 OPS in AAA shows a lot of upside to be had and it’s better to take chance now rather than wait for the field to catch on.
Other Options — Bubba Starling ($3,100)
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 Multichem) 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.